I have to live with myself

29 Mar

3-29-2015 9-57-16 PM

Book Locket

29 Mar

This beautiful vintage locket was made between 1890 and 1910. I like how it has four picture frames.

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29 Mar



28 Mar


The Abbey Library Of Saint Gall

28 Mar

The Abbey Library of Saint Gall is one of the earliest and most important monastic libraries in the world, as it contains an incredible number of medieval writings. The site was considered one of the most renowned centers of Western culture and science during the 9th and 10th centuries. In 1983 the Abbey of Saint Gall was listed as a World Heritage Site.



Coolest-Libraries-Abbey-Library-Interior-2More interesting libraries


Short Story Review: The Ties That Bind by R.M. Ridley

28 Mar

3-27-2015 8-17-35 PM


Blondes, Books, and Bourbon is a collection of short stories that we will featuring about over the next week. Each day is featuring one of these stories.

Today’s Featured  Story is:

The Ties That Bind: Can Jonathan Alvey control a poltergeist and maintain his promise to not fall victim to the Dragon Black?


R.M. Ridley lives with his wife on a small homestead in Canada, raising chickens and sheep. He has been writing stories, both long and short, for three decades, the themes of which range from the gruesome to the fantastical.
As an individual who suffers from severe bipolar disorder, Ridley is a strong believer in being open about mental health issues and uses his writing to escape when his thoughts become too wild.

(Book 1, 2014)
Blondes, Books, and Bourbon (anthology,
Bindings and Spines (Book 2, 2015)
Ridley’s work has appeared in two Xchyler
anthologies: “The Case for Custody” in
Shades and
Shadows: a Paranormal Anthology
, and
“Charon’s Obol” in
Legends and
Lore: An Anthology of Mythic Proportions
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon | About Me


WHITE DRAGON BLACK: Google + | Twitter—–


I received a free ecopy of of Blondes, Books and Bourbon for an honest review of “Ties That Bind.”
“Ties That Bind” is one of the short stories in this collection about Jonathan Alvey. His friend, Mary, reluctantly asks him to help a client who seems to be having problems with a poltergeist.
Even though this is a short story, and the first one I’ve read about Jonathan Alvey, I learned a lot about him. He’s a unique character: addicted to using magic but he feels that he has to help people who are having paranormal problems. You could say he’s a messed up hero.
I liked this story. I also read the first chapter of the book, Binding and Spines, at the end of this book. It’s supposed to come out this year. Jonathan Alvey is the main character in this book and I can’t wait to read it!


March 22: The Play’s the Thing – Promo, Excerpt
March 23: Cost of Custody – Author Interview AND Author’s Top 10s Favorites List
March 24: Sins of the Father – Review AND Excerpt AND Character Casting
March 25: Legerdelivre – Excerpt AND Character Casting
March 26: Do as I Say Not as I Do – Review AND Author’s Top 10s Favorites list AND Character Casting
March 27: What a Nightmare – Author’s Top 10s Favorites List AND Character Casting
March 28: The Ties that Bind
March 28: Bindings and Spines – Excerpt AND Character Casting

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27 Mar


She blazed. She kindled.

27 Mar


Book Review: Admit to Mayhem by D.J. Adamson

27 Mar

Admit to Mayhem banner



Admit to Mayhem 3Title: Admit to Mayhem
Author: D.J. Adamson
Publisher: Horatio Press
Pages: 286
Genre: Mystery/Amateur Sleuth

Purchase at AMAZON

With a contrary attitude and an addiction for independence, Lillian Dove admits she has not been a success in life. In fact, she considers failing as one of her addictions. Yet, when she comes across a suspicious house fire with a history of arson and murder, she instinctively attempts to help someone trapped. Lillian becomes the only possible eyewitness to criminal arson, and her life begins to spiral out of control.

 Lillian Dove is an endearing “everywoman” struggling with life issues, emotional complexities and a habit of doing just the opposite of what she’s told to do. These qualities in a heroine give the reader an ability to vicariously struggle along with the protagonist in this intriguing Midwest Noir mystery.

My Review:

I received a free copy of this book for an honest review.

Admit to Mayhem is a mystery with a lot of twists. Some of them were pretty easy to guess but some were surprising. When I started reading this book, I had to double check to make sure it was a mystery because it starts more like women’s fiction but it turns into a mystery pretty quickly.

Admit to Mayhem is based in a small town where everyone knows everyone else which can make things interesting. For example, when Lillian tries to save someone in a burning house she’s on her way home from spending the night with someone. Based on her location in the early morning hours, everyone in town quickly knew that she’d spent the night with him.

The main character, Lillian, struggles with addiction as well as a dysfunctional family. She is smart and independent, dealing with alcoholism and a horrible mother who’s in a nursing home, and she feels obligated to visit her every day. Although she’s able to solve this mystery pretty much on her own, there were times that her decisions drove me crazy! Or, I should say her not thinking things through before she acts drove me crazy.

Anyone who likes a mystery with some twists should enjoy Admit to Mayhem.


About the Author 

DJ AdamsonJ. Adamson is an award-winning author. Her family roots grow deep in the Midwest and it is here she sets much of her work. She juggles her time between her own desk and teaching writing to others at two Los Angeles area colleges. Along with her husband and two Welsh Terriers, she makes her home in Southern California.

Her latest book is the mystery, amateur sleuth, Admit to Mayhem.

For More Information

Book Review: Galadria: Peter Huddleston & The Knights of the Leaf by Miguel Lopez de Leon

27 Mar

Galadria banner

Title: Galadria: Peter Huddleston & The Knight of the Leaf
Author: Miguel Lopez de Leon
Publisher: Galadria Worldwide
Pages: 148
Genre: Fantasy
Format: Paperback/Kindle

In book three of Miguel Lopez de Leon’s Galadria fantasy series, GALADRIA: PETER HUDDLESTON & THE KNIGHTS OF THE LEAF, Peter and his family command a mystical cast of powerful, exciting new characters in their war against the blood-thirsty tyrant, Knor Shadowray.

Reviewers of book three of the GALADRIA trilogy praise the author’s stunning artistry and skill:

“A grand finish to a YA trilogy that never fails to challenge audience expectations.”–Kirkus Reviews

“With the close of his Galadria trilogy, Miguel Lopez de Leon packs battles, travel and adventure into a story that’s ultimately about family ties.”–BlueInk Review

“Once again, the writing in this book is superb and the story is fast paced and action packed.”–SPR Review

In book one of the trilogy, GALADRIA: PETER HUDDLESTON & THE RITES OF PASSAGE, 12-year-old Peter leaves his friendless, uneventful life in the suburbs and suddenly finds himself spending the summer chomping down magical chocolates and tossing around an enchanted boomerang at Hillside Manor, the 3000 room home of his aunt Gillian Willowbrook. While there, Peter learns he is the next in line to the throne of a magnificent realm called Galadria where his aunt is queen. His position is being challenged by a ruthless nobleman, Knor Shadowray.


Book two, GALADRIA: PETER HUDDLESTON & THE MISTS OF THE THREE LAKES shows Peter struggling to play the role of a prince. After being accepted as the heir of the Golden Realm, his new challenge is to gain command of Galadrian princely etiquette and survive dangerous adventures with his fearless white tiger, Rune. At a parade held in his honor, Peter and his aunt are violently ambushed by a band of screeching monstrosities and a merciless dark army led by the fiendish Knor Shadowray.


Galadria 2In the final book in the Galadria series, GALADRIA: PETER HUDDLESTON & THE KNIGHTS OF THE LEAF, the story continues where book two left off: Knor Shadowray’s relentless attack on the ruling Willowbrook family. In a desperate attempt to save her kingdom, Queen Gillian Willowbrook sends Peter and his grandfather to the Forests of Fernell to recruit a multitude of diverse warriors to defend the crown. Populated with serpent priestesses, nature-loving knights, magical weapons, paper-thin tree nymphs, and political fairies, the final installment of the Galadria trilogy shows the Galadrian populace at their breaking point as the realm explodes into a full-fledged civil war. A flurry of riotous battles are fought against the villainous Knor Shadowray’s ambitious attempt to capture the crown of Galadria.

De Leon developed the GALADRIA series out of a love of the fantasy genre and the thrill of creating “new worlds, creatures, and story lines…enhanced with magic and otherworldly mystery.” The trilogy also tells the coming-of-age story of a boy as he learns to accept himself and discovers the family he never believed he would have. “The Galadria trilogy is mainly about a lonely boy who, through overcoming obstacles, finds out who he really is. I think everyone has an element of the extraordinary in them, and I hope Peter’s story shows that,” de Leon says.

For More Information

  • Galadria: Peter Huddleston & The Knights of the Leaf is available at Amazon.
  • Pick up your copy at Barnes & Noble.
  • Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.
  • Watch his book video at YouTube.

My Review:

I received a free copy of this book for an honest review.

Galadria: Peter Huddleston & The Knights of the Leaf is the third and final book in a fantasy series for middle school readers. I haven’t read the first two books in the series yet but this one stands on its own.

Peter and his grandfather have to travel into the Galadrian forests to try to get help from the Knights of the Leaf or they will lose their kingdom to Knor Shadowray. Not only is there action and adventure in this book but Peter learns a lot about his parents. 

Peter is an extraordinary teenager and a great leader but he still sometimes acts before he thinks, like a typical teen. There are also many interesting creatures such as pixies, the Priestesses of Sertania (who live with snakes), and the wraiths of the Darkened Valley (who live in the frozen carcass of a dragon).

Middle school readers who like fantasy will enjoy this book. I suggest reading the first 2 books first, though.


About the Author 

Miguel Lopez de LeonMiguel Lopez de Leon is a prolific fiction writer with over 30 short stories published in a variety of international literary magazines and anthologies. De Leon, who prefers to write in the mornings, began working on his first novel as a hobby. That first book blossomed into the Galadria trilogy. “One part of the writing process I really enjoy is writing the first draft of a novel…For me, it’s the time when you can lose yourself in the story the most.” De Leon lives in Los Angeles and enjoys reading historical biographies and collecting vintage comic books.

 His latest book is the fantasy novel, Galadria: Peter Huddleston & The Knights of the Leaf.

For More Information


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