Thursday, March 1, 2012

Be The First To Do Your Thing

In honor of Women's History Month, I bring you a blurb about the first published American woman writer.  Thank you, Anne, for paving the way with a precedence that declares no matter who or where you are, or when your place in time is, you can DO YOUR THING!

So, get out there and do your thing, people!  Be first, be middle, be last.....  whatever, just BE!

Bradstreet, Anne (Dudley)

Bradstreet, Anne (Dudley), c.1612–1672, early American poet, b. Northampton, England, considered the first significant woman author in the American colonies. She came to Massachusetts in the Winthrop Puritan group in 1630 with her father, Thomas Dudley, and her husband, Simon Bradstreet, both later governors of the state. A dutiful Puritan wife who raised a large family, she nevertheless found time to write poetry. In 1650 her first volume of verse appeared in London as The Tenth Muse Lately Sprung Up in America. It was followed by Several Poems (Boston, 1678), which contains “Contemplations,” probably her best work. Her verses are often derivative and formal, but some are graced by realistic simplicity and genuine feeling.

Read more: Anne (Dudley) Bradstreet —
Mi Vida La Brea
Since Thanksgiving week, really, I have been trudging though life's muck to get to a place of freedom.  You know that place?  Where work, and finances, and life, and relationships all conspire at the exact same time to demand your immediate and unwavering attention?  It kinda feels like this:

Because of this cosmic convergence, I have dropped the ball majorly on the book reviews I promised to do.  I read three books in 4 days over Thanksgiving, and have yet to post one word about them.

Well, I will be correcting this problem in the upcoming week.  I don't want to post all three reviews on the same day, as I feel they each deserve individual attention; however, they will all be done by this time next Friday, March 9th.

Stay tuned for my new recommendations:

Hunter: A Thriller
by Robert Bidinotto

Dusk and Summer
by Joseph Pinto

Flowers for Evelene
by Joseph Pinto

Friday, December 9, 2011

Stalker Friday Derailed

I was all set to sic everyone on one of my favorite blogger/writers today, when suddenly the entire course of my day, maybe my life, was changed.

I have a regiment of blogs I read every morning before I get started at my day job.  Some help start my day with humor, some give me focus, some just help kick-start my brain. Today one of my more recent adds knocked me down and kicked me in the guts with a huge freakin' dose of humility and compassion.

Volunteering and assisting those less fortunate than myself has always been a very important part of my life.  I don't toss out used clothing or other items someone else might need.  I never, ever, pass up a Salvation Army bell ringer during the holiday season, even if the change I just got back in the store is all the money I have left. I have volunteered to serve breakfast at a local mission on Saturday mornings.

But lately, I haven't been taking the time to really think about the people.  I haven't considered the stories of the recipients, I haven't connected with the humanity of the needs. Because I'm busy, because I'm focused on what's going on with me - because I'm selfish and self-absorbed....  really, that's what it is.  Let's face the truth.

So, get out your kleenex and immediately go to CRAZY WORLD.  Right now.  I'm not kidding.  If you put it off you will miss out on the experience; you know you'll forget, and then later who knows if you'll be able to find it again. So go.

Then, when you've recovered from the kidney punch, kissed all your people, and sold all you own and donated the money, we should stalk somebody.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Flu Friday

Whatever this is, it's got me, and not in a good way....  fever, congestion, scratchy throat, cough....  I ain't stalkin' nobody today!

You're all either going to stalk someone of your own choosing, or stalk yourselves.

Sorry, that made me giggle, and I could use a weak, shivery smile right now. We'll be back to our regularly scheduled stalkerishness as soon as I can lift my head.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Stalker Book Review Bundle: Making Waves by Tawna Fenske

That’s right, boys and girls, today we are going to stalk not only a fabulous blogger, but a published author as well.  Good thing they are one in the same, or else we would find ourselves stretched a little thin on this, our 11.11.11 Veteran’s Day.
~Walk your post from flank to flank, and take no shit from any rank~

Now, back to our regularly scheduled stalkerishness.
Tawna Fenske, who writes the ever popular blog Don’t Pet Me, I’m Writing, has also enjoyed the August release of her debut romantic comedy, Making Waves.
I ‘pirated’ this synopsis, to be sure I didn’t write an accidental spoiler:
There are normal ways to cope with job loss, and most don’t involve plotting a revenge-fueled diamond heist in the Caribbean with a crew more suited to the boardroom than the poop deck.

But Alex Bradshaw isn’t feeling very normal when his unscrupulous boss kicks him to the curb after 20 faithful years as an executive with the world’s largest shipping company. Alex wants payback, and maybe a chance to reclaim his dignity and his pension while he’s at it. Assembling a team of fellow corporate castoffs, he sails to the Caribbean to intercept the boss's illegal diamond shipment. None of them counted on a quirky blonde stowaway with a perplexing array of talents, a few big secrets, and an intoxicating romantic chemistry with Alex.

And while Juli Flynn certainly didn’t plan to be a part of the most dysfunctional high seas caper in history, it’s a rare chance for her to feel like she belongs. She’s spent a lifetime being “different” from everyone else, though the reasons for that are something she’d prefer not to share with her newfound shipmates. Juli just wants to be normal for a change, but as she finds her place with the misfit crew – and in Alex’s heart – she discovers normal isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. And sometimes, being weird can be wonderful.
The most challenging thing I have faced thus far in my existence as a writer is attempting to describe all the things I LOVE about this book without giving the whole thing away.  Fenske’s main character, Juli, has to be one of my favorite female leads of all time.  She is smart and witty, strong when she needs to be, and vulnerable when she doesn’t.  And her secret makes me want to get out my pom poms and cheer, YAY WOMEN!  I give Tawna a standing ovation for that alone.
Juli’s love interest, Alex, makes my teeth sweat.  Want to talk about crushin’ on a character?  Hubba hubba! 
The writing has a beautiful tempo, making it an easy read without being too fast for connection.  Fenske let’s you get to know the characters, spend enough time with each of them to care what happens next. And what happens next is anybody’s guess. There are surprises, twists, and laughs. I seriously laughed OUT LOUD reading this book.
This did nothing, however, to detract from the ultra smexiness.  Tawna has mastered the craft of sexual tension.  The chemistry is believable, and coupled with an entertaining, action-packed story you won’t help but feel completely satisfied in every way.
Fenske’s style is reminiscent of Evanovich-meets-Roberts, however, the voice is uniquely her own.  If Juli Flynn continues her adventures, I guarantee I will own the series. As it stands, I cannot WAIT for Tawna Fenske’s next release!

Do I recommend this book?  AYE, CAPTAIN!!  ARRRRGG!

Also, STALK THIS WRITER!  She is worth the shoe leather and restraining order....  ;)

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Monday, November 7, 2011

My First Book Review: The Dark Path by Luke Romyn

Let me start by saying, I LOVED THIS BOOK.
Now, that having been said, if you are looking for a light, fun, autumn read, step away from the book, there is nothing more to see here…
Luke has packed more intense action and raw emotion into 2980 locations (Kindle version, obviously) than one mere mortal should be exposed to.  I despise spoilers, so I will afford the vaguest of synopsis here.
An assassin referred to as The Dark Man finds himself thrown into the most unlikely situation imaginable. One where he becomes responsible for saving a life. Along the way he finds out more about himself than he ever wanted to know, and everything he knew or believed to be true about the world around him is turned inside out.
I would say expect the unexpected, but there is no way you can prepare yourself for the journey you will embark on by committing to page one of this riveting tale.  It begins dark and formidable, gradually dragging you into a murky pool of evil where your feet don’t touch…  there are moments when, could you actually put the book down, you will desperately wish you could scrub your mind out with holy water.
But you won’t be able to put it down.
At first I was concerned that Romyn’s choice of language style would keep me from connecting fully to the story, as I am easily distracted.  However, my fears were completely unfounded, and I realized that the style was an integral part of the setting and mood. What I found was I could not be distracted, not by food, or sleep, or a silly day job. The problem with this story was that I couldn’t be disconnected from it.
Eventually, I called an exorcist.  I may need therapy for the resulting PTSD, and medication for the sleep depravation, but it was worth it.  Luke Romyn has crafted an amazing novel which, once I put down the holy water, leaves me praying for a sequel.

Do I recommend this book?   HELL YES!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Stalker Friday

I started wondering what would happen if I was stalking it forward... if I stalk someone and tell three people about it, then they start stalking that person and tell three more people, and so on, and so on...

We could amass, and descend on the unsuspecting, and I could declare myself Queen of the Stalker Horde.

We could, but I don't think we'd be any match for my next victim subject, as I have good intel that she keeps bodyguards hidden in her dishwasher.

Please let's all give a warm stalkery welcome to Paige Kellerman, possibly the funniest blogger ever....  I mean seriously, Sisterhood of the Travelling Toilet Paper????  She, and Husband, with Butch and Sundance turn every day life into a fascinating adventure, one I long to join daily, via internet lurking.

Paige, Never. Stop. Writing.  Or else be prepared to be ding dong ditched by a stalker flash mob....  Except in November, when we're all obsessing about our NaNoWriMo word count.... but after that, sister, I mean.... feel the rage with every tinkling little bell.  There may even be knocking involved.  Oh the humanity!

How can I describe the emotional rollercoaster of clicking my bookmarked link to her treasure trove of a site and realizing, this is the same tasty morsel I munched on yesterday?  It's like waiting for three months for the man of your dreams to come around the corner, and you hear footsteps and see a shadow, and it turns out to be the neighbors Fed Ex delivery from Jelly of the Month club.  Utterly disappointing, right?

Well, unless the Fed Ex guy is the man of your dreams, which is totally plausible...  I don't judge.