A Blast From The Past, books, COZIES AND OTHER MYSTERIES, Fiction, JD Holiday, review, Suspense, writer's life

THE BOOK REPORT: A Mystery Series I Love.

I read five books in the Book Collector Mystery cozy mystery series why the mother and daughter author team, (Victoria Maffini and Mary Jane Maffini) Victoria Abbott.

This series is a fun read.  The authors cleverly use the book trade, in particular, collecting of first editions of mystery authors Agatha Christies, Lord Peter Wimsey,  Nero Wolf, Dashiell Hammett, and Ngaio Marsh as well as Jordan’s boss is the curmudgeonly impoverished heiress, Vera Van Alst and her crumbling mansion as the backdrop in the plot lines that include mysterious characters dropping in with no good intentions that lead to murder.

 The main character, sassy Jordan is a sweetheart of the character to follow along with. Her job is to find these book treasures for her boss.
Vera ruthlessly seeks out first editions like a bird pecking for worms and Jordan is her digging tool. There are plenty of twists and turns in all these stories that include the not-so-obvious criminal characters of Jordan’s uncles.

Another endearing character is a longtime companion and cook of Vera’s, Signora  Panetone, who heaps mounds of food on Jordan’s plate at very turn in the hopes of satisfying any misery Jordan may have. For an added bonus some of the signora’s recipes are included at the end of every book.

My only gripes, there are two, are that Jordan’s friends whom she desperately wants to count on are hardly around when she needs them and for that her loyalty to them might be misguided.  Whereas Jordan whines about the only person in most of the stories that he is in, her uncle Kevin, who is there for her.  Kevin is kind of a screw up according to Jordan (I don’t see it) and yet he’s always there to help Jordan when she needs him. She just does not, in my opinion appreciate him. I mean, for me, if I had a relative like Kevin I would be grateful!  Just saying!  These are a 5 STAR read! ~JD Holiday https://jdholiday.blogspot.com/

Buy these books at: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/victoria%20abbott/_/N-8q8

books, Fantasy, Fiction


Mischief in the Mushroom Patch

#amwriting. It’s a hashtag writers/author use all the time when they’re working on new pieces. I haven’t honestly been able to use or say that for a long time! However, after drastically changing my life, business, and personal, I’ve taken steps to take back a real writing schedule. Sure, I’ve talked about it in the past, what writer/author hasn’t? Keeping a writing schedule is essential for any author; daily writing is a task that should be a part of our regular day. Unfortunately, my days had drifted from that, writing daily, which is something that brings me such joy.

It is incredible how rejuvenated one feels when they fall in love again with their first passion—writing. Reintroducing myself with the characters that I created initially is entertaining, even for me, and I know everything about them. Rereading past works, ensuring I have names correct, places, scenes, is inspiring. New ideas rush through my mind, and I can’t wait to write them down.  I ask myself, “Where have you been, this side of you? You’ve been gone too long.” And, “Welcome back.” My mind is at peace as it drifts continually in search of how my characters will do it, why they do it, and what they will do next—scenes playing out in my head that must be believable to my audience/readers. Of course, fairies have a secret quarry deep in the forest where they mine for unique rocks, produce fairy dust in a dust factory, and have a master elder add the magic once the dust has been milled perfectly. Where on earth do you think fairies get their fairy dust? How fun it is to create adventures for children to read!

I’m certain this must happen all the time to other writers because it happens to me daily. My family will look across the room and state they

A Fairy Match in the Mushroom Patch – Book 2

see my mind at work. “Your wheels are turning,” they say. “What are you thinking about?” Or, “Did you even hear me?” I can always recite back every word they’ve said, but yes, my mind was at work on something else. It’s Lilly, Boris, and Jack, and the mischief they tend to drum up, accidentally, of course (The Mischief Series). I wish I could explain how exhilarating it is, creating an adventure that children love, so exciting. Currently, I’m writing the fourth book of The Mischief Series.

I believe it’s safe to say that I think about this book morning, noon, and night. My characters— love them, where they live—setting, my story—plot, the conflict that the story is built around, the climax, and of course, how will I wrap up the story—resolution, and leave the door open for the next one? After that, what will my next book be?

Spider Web Scramble – Book 3


Joy. I feel complete joy and satisfaction again. If you’re a writer/author who no longer writes as you know you should, do something drastic and change your life. I did. I took back writing time and have no regrets. Danger in the Mushroom Patch, book four of The Mischief Series, will be my next release. Stay tuned as they say; the adventure continues. 😊 Copyright © 2020 Amanda M. Thrasher 




Working From Home

Early Morning Run

Like most people, I’ve been tuning in a lot more lately to the local news. Sometimes it can be quite depressing, but I watch it faithfully anyway. They’ve recently discussed employees that were forced to work from home during COVID, returning to work. Fortunately, most new to staying at home workers were pleasantly surprised, finding their temporary arrangement suited them just fine. In fact, they stated their productivity wasn’t affected at all; in some cases, it actually increased due to fewer distractions.

Now that the employees are starting to return to their regular places of employment, after the freedom of working from home, many are stating that they’d like to work from home permanently. Some employers even agree that the employees performed just as well, if not better, working from home and could save the companies thousands upon thousands of dollars in lease space and overhead if they changed their policies and permanently allowed their employees to work from home.

Home Office

I’ve worked from home for so long that I’ve taken this freedom for granted. Listening to others talk about how they wished they could continue to work from home reminds me of how grateful I am. Having the freedom to start my day with a leisurely run, shower, dress, sip my coffee, and not rush out the door, feels like a gift. Am I busy? Yes. But it’s a different ‘feel’ when everything I need is at my fingertips or in the vicinity of where I’m located.

I still prepare as if I was leaving, even though I answer to myself because it helps keep my mind focused. Admittedly, I’m guilty of multitasking throughout the day. Stop. Throw in a load of laundry. Stop. Start the dishwasher. Stop. Visit with my dad, who lives with us. Stop. Play with the dogs…I know, tooooo fun! That said, everything on my daily list does get accomplished by days end.

I hope that we adapt to this new normal, whatever that is, and if that means that businesses start to allow their employees to work from home without penalty, then I hope employees will enjoy the experience as much as I do. Granted, some people can not work from home; they need the activity, love to socialize, and can’t stand the distractions of household tasks. There’s nothing wrong with that; everyone is different, and that’s a good thing.

Puppy Break

But we all know how quickly life passes us by, and working from home allows us to enjoy the little things. I might be working, but I can always stop and visit with my grandkids if they drop by. I might be working, but if dad wants to chat (he’s 85), I can stop. I understand that not everyone can work from home, but if given the opportunity, I’d highly recommend it. #littlethings #writingfromhome #authorlife

Copyright © 2020 Amanda M. Thrasher

Author Website

Books by Amanda M. Thrasher

2020 Graduates, Amanda Thrasher, Article, author, books, Cereal Authors, daughters, Family, Fiction, Graduates2020, Highschool graduates, proudmomma, selflessacts

A Selfless Act

Lauren Thrasher
2020 Graduate

There is no question that this virus, COVID19, has affected everyone. Excluding those that have lost a loved one, our 2020 graduates were hit hard—robbed of their regular celebratory prom and graduation events.

Many schools are putting together outside graduation commences so their seniors can walk in their cap and gowns and receive their diplomas. Rules are stringent, as one would expect, but seniors at least will have somewhat of an unusual, at best, graduation experience to remember. My daughter’s school is holding their ceremony outside in the football stadium. Lauren, my daughter, has decided not to walk.

I was worried that Lauren would regret this decision and talked to her extensively, as did her dad, sister, brother, and all of her friends. For a second, I thought she might change her mind, but she held firm and has decided not to attend the ceremony and walk. Her reasons are admirable, honorable, and as her mom, make me so proud.

Lauren: “Why would I do that and put him at risk?”

Who is she putting at risk? Well, my dad, her granddad. He is eighty-five years old, suffers from COPD (has never been a smoker), and over the past five months, Lauren has witnessed his multiple hospitalizations. By the way, he lives with us, and I’m 100% convinced this played into her decision making despite our objections to her missing her own graduation.

Lauren’s prom dress.

“We’ll wear masks and use GermX,” I explained, but it didn’t matter. “Granddad won’t go, he’ll stay here, and we’ll film it for him,” but she didn’t waver.
“It’s not worth it,” she said. “With over two thousand people if most show up, masks off for photos, he’s at risk.”

My dad, her grandad.

She’s right. Texas had over 1,800 new cases Saturday and 33 deaths. Healthy people would likely be fine, but he would not; he’s at high risk for sure and certainly would not survive exposure.

Lauren has always been one of a kind and walks to the beat of her own drum, but I can’t begin to tell you how proud of her I am for this selfless act. An eighteen-year-old young lady who loves and respects her granddad and puts his health before herself, that to me, seems wise beyond her years. Proud momma moment.

Website: Amanda M. Thrasher

Copyright © 2020 Amanda M. Thrasher

Book Trailers and Teasers, books, Character Quotes, Children's story, childrens stories, Fantasy, Fiction, JD Holiday

Character Quotes: Geordie And The Beam Of Light by JD Holiday

Character Quotes: Geordie and Cordelia

from Geordie And The Beam Of Light

1AA PAGE7b- DONE girl looking in window SIGNED

Cordelia peeked inside the door of the dark studio. She could not see anything. “What are you working on?” she asked Geordie.
“The greatest invention ever,” Geordie said. “It will be a treat for all of us.”

More about this story at: https://jdholiday.blogspot.com/search/label/Geordie%20And%20The%20Beam%20Of%20Light



Amanda Thrasher

Everybody Needs a Friend Like This!

It’s been my experience that there are some people you meet in your life, who are meant to be a part of it. Knowing them enriches you, nurtures your spirit, and makes you realize that your life is better for having met them. I’ve been fortunate to have met more than one of these people, and I treasure each one.

Amanda M. Thrasher
Amanda M. Thrasher

One such individual, is Author Amanda Thrasher. Whether it’s her energy, joy of living, bubbly laugh, or happy smile, she makes anyone around her, feel better. Her books do the same. Whether she’s dealing with bullies, pressures on teens, chatting with ghosts, or dancing around the mushroom patch, her books have a message and purpose.

Amanda Thrasher s Collage 1

Among my favorites are Mischief in the Mushroom Patch, Fairy Match in the Mushroom Patch and Spiderweb Scramble. Even though these stories are written for children, they are a joy and delight for adults. I’ve often told Amanda, “When I grow up, I want to live in the Mushroom Patch.” If I’m very lucky, one day I’ll get there. Until then, I’ll enjoy the adventures of the charming little fairies who live there.

Amanda s YA Novels Collage

For more about Amanda and her work, you can visit her Amazon page 

Or check out her amazing publishing company Progressive Rising Phoenix Press

Among the Shine Clan

Among the Shine Clan by Dellani Oakes – Part 28

among the shine clan cover“Do you greet all your female guests with a pile of clothing and a personal visit?”

He chuckled eyeing her almost hungrily. “No, just the special ones.”

He faltered as she walked over to the bed, dropping the towel and dressing unashamedly. She was tall for a woman, broad shouldered and strong. Muscles rippled under her pale skin, the light casting highlights and shadows across her breasts and thighs.

Karl sighed longingly, wanting to touch her. This was what had gotten him in trouble before, her smooth, creamy complexion, hair like golden honey and her eyes, dark, stormy, blue-grey like the ocean in a hurricane.

Half dressed, she sat beside him on the bed, staring in his light grey eyes. He had aged a lot since she had last seen him. Of course, he had been eighteen at the time, and that was nearly sixteen years ago. Time had been hard on him. His brown hair was going grey at the temples. Her hand fluttered involuntarily to move a wisp of hair from his forehead.

He caught her hand in his, kissing it gently, his lips seeking hers. Instead of falling into his embrace as she dearly wanted to, she moved away from him. Resisting him was so hard, but she must. She had never dated married men. Many of her ideals had lapsed over the years, but that one never had.

“I’ve missed you, Hannah.”

“Oh, you certainly seem to have, Karl. I’ve been gone sixteen years, and you have a child fifteen years old? I see you missed me for a week?” Her betrayed her hurt.

“I’m sorry, Hannah. I didn’t want to. The marriage was planned, you know that. Even if you’d stayed, I would still have married Uta.”

“You have four children, Karl. You don’t look like you are hurting for attention.”

“The sex is meaningless, Hannah. I never stopped loving you. You’re still so beautiful. You set me on fire!” His voice grew husky as he rose, walking to her.

“You have a wife and four children! Aren’t you worried your snooty little wife or one of your precious children will walk in on us?”

“Uta took the children to the park. I told her you and your friends needed a quiet house to get a few hours of sleep.”

“How kind of you, that is exactly what I need. Did it occur to you that I might not love you any more?”

Her words caught in her throat, forcing the bile in her stomach to gag her. She couldn’t lie to him, but this time she had to be strong.

“I was young, Karl. I made a mistake and paid dearly. I served my time and lived to tell about it. I’m not that girl any more, enamored of a handsome, gallant, intelligent, charming young man.”

“Was I all those things to you, Hannah?” He moved closer to her, touching her arms gently with his fingertips.

“Karl!” The name was a sob. Uta stood in the doorway.

“It’s not what you think, Uta,” he babbled.

“It looks as if you’re talking to a woman who’s nearly naked. What am I to assume?” Her face was tight with anger.

“Assume the worst, Uta,” Fiddlestix spat. “Just like you assumed Karl and I were sleeping together! Well, for your information, we never had sex. Not for lack of wanting to, but your little trap snared us before we could. You stole my youth, my love, and my life from me, Uta!”

Throwing on the rest of her clothing, Fiddlestix ran down the hall, banging on the doors of Blacksmith and Buzzard. Both of them answered in various stages of undress, eyes bleary.

“We’re leaving,” she told them. “I no longer feel welcome here. Mr. Fumler has promised us an escort. Get dressed. Karl, I’ll expect your team downstairs in fifteen minutes.”

Karl nodded, walking off toward the stairs. Uta stood glaring at Fiddlestix, hands balled into fists.

“Don’t ever come back, Hannah, or I swear to you…!”

“Don’t threaten me, Uta.” She pointed one powerful metal finger at Karl’s wife. “Don’t make that mistake. I’m not the girl I was. If you didn’t have children, I’d have killed you already. But a child needs its mother.” She pushed past Uta, nearly knocking her down, as she hurried outside toward her bike.

© 2018 Dellani Oakes

To Buy Dellani’s Books

For More About Dellani

Among the Shine Clan

Among the Shine Clan by Dellani Oakes – Part 29

among the shine clan coverFiddlestix ran toward the river less than a mile away. There was a special place there she had always gone when she was upset. Her feet carried her there automatically, tears streaming down her face. Collapsing into a heap on the damp bank, she heard footsteps following her, but she did not look up, assuming it was Karl.

“Hey, chica,” Blacksmith’s voice was so unexpected, she stopped crying. “Listen, we gonna go now, or what? The men are asking about you. Let’s get out of here, okay?” He helped her stand up, eyeing her appraisingly. “He meant a lot to you, huh?”

She nodded, not trusting herself to speak.

His smile was gentle, warm with understanding. “There’s other men out there. Maybe you’ll find another one who’ll treat you right, eh?”

“Do you ever have regrets, Dario?”

“I have many. What kind?”

“Where you wonder what it would have been like to settle down and have a family?”

He laughed sardonically. “Sometimes, when I am very drunk, I have these thoughts. Then I find a pretty girl, have lots of sex and tequila and I feel better. We aren’t meant for that kind of life. Other people live like that. Not us.”

They had returned to the bikes and found themselves surrounded by muscular men dressed in camouflage uniforms. Karl was sending his best men with them, and for that, Fiddlestix was grateful.

Karl kissed her cheek, hugging her tightly to him, not wanting to let her go. “If you need me, you know how to contact me, Hannah,” he whispered before releasing her.

“Yes, Karl.”

“Hannah, I’m sorry….”

Fiddlestix pushed him away, turning abruptly from him. Flinging her long leg over the motorcycle, she kicked it into action. The Harlich men flanked the companions. Once they were on the road, she approached the man in charge, talking to him on her headset, explaining what had happened the night before with the Noir. His perfunctory nod punctuated the conversation.

“So, Hannah,” he said finally, switching to a private channel. “Does this mean you’re coming back?”

“No, Dirk, I’m not.”

“Because of Karl?”

“Not entirely.”

Dirk had been Karl’s best friend in those days. He knew about her disgrace, though many didn’t.

“I can’t go back to how things were. I’d fooled myself into thinking I could recapture my past. That doesn’t work.”

He nearly whispered into the microphone. “Do you still love him?”

“I thought I did, but no.”

“There are many other men around, Hannah. You don’t have to be alone unless you want to.”

She chuckled, making a rude gesture at him. “True. What’s funny is I’ve already had an invitation from someone else today, other than Karl, I mean.” She pulled ahead of him.

Puzzled, Dirk gunned his motor, trying to catch up. She wouldn’t reestablish conversation, no matter what he asked her.

They took side road, heading south. They would catch the remnants of I-95 and ride north, around the Noir territory. It was relatively safe here, as Château Noir had no hold on this area, not yet challenging the Harlichs for control. Given the hazards, the Noir didn’t really want it anyway. Alligators, snakes, panthers, sinkholes, quicksand and bogs made it one of the most dangerous areas in the county if not the state. The road was good, maintained by the Harlichs.

© 2018 Dellani Oakes

To Buy Dellani’s Books

For More About Dellani

author, Book Trailers and Teasers, Cereal Authors, Character Quotes, Fantasy, Fiction, humor, Literary, Ruth Davis Hays, Sci-Fi, YA

Character Quotes

The elderly magda, her bright eyes sparkling with mischief, said, “So, I suggest that we leave for Atollis as quickly as possible.”

“Oh, but I have come all this way. I certainly hope you don’t plan on leaving without these gifts,” sighed a new voice from the door of the library. They all looked up to see an elderly man in long, stately robes, leaning on a sculpted cane, with three attendants baring satchels. The fine eyes and small points to the man’s ears betrayed an elven heritage.

Immediately, Lady Pinne leapt up and welcomed him before quickly introducing him around the room as Cayolans’thiane, the Duke of Elis’tavan. He turned to Pinne as he slowly lowered himself into a comfortable chair. “I had no idea that libraries were where the young folk chose to waste their days,” he joked. “But, I have brought you some things to assist in doing just that.”

At the wave of his hand, his attendants laid their burdens on the table and opened them to reveal several, large, leather-bound books, stamped and inked with beautiful patterns of a scrolling floral. Runes of a faerlish nature were burned into the covers. All present, except Keinigan, leaned forward with awe and interest.

Pinne looked at her old friend curiously, to which he replied with a casual air. “The professor wrote to me some weeks back about needing the histories of the Faerl Folk. But, these are not exactly the ancient texts,” he explained. “These are translations in elven, given to me by my grandfather who had appropriated them at high risk from a friend that worked inside the Libreas. I hope they will provide what it is that you are looking for.”

“How can we ever repay you?” Lylith murmured as her fingers irresistibly traced the design on one.

“Oh, don’t you worry about that at present, mistress.” The old half-elf smiled.

Keinigan watched everyone and felt a twinge of dread as the newcomer’s aged eyes fondled their group with a lustful glance, welcoming their gratitude.

— THE EXCURSION, Book Four from the Translations from Jorthus series by R L Davis Hays