Eight Tips for Creating Complex and Relatable Characters in a Romantic Suspense Novel

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Creating complex and relatable characters in a romantic suspense novel requires a combination of careful planning and attention to detail. Here are a few tips to help a writer create complex and relatable characters:

  1. Develop a detailed character arc: Characters should change and grow throughout the story. A detailed character arc will help the writer understand how their character will change and develop over the course of the novel.
  2. Create a detailed backstory: Every character should have a detailed backstory that explains who they are and why they act the way they do. This will help the writer understand their character’s motivations and make them more relatable to readers.
  3. Make characters multi-dimensional: Characters should have a mix of strengths and weaknesses and should be capable of both good and bad actions. This will make them more relatable and more interesting to readers.
  4. Use descriptive language: Use descriptive language to create a detailed and vivid picture of the character’s appearance, mannerisms, and personality. This will help the reader see the character as a real person and relate to them.
  5. Create conflict: Characters should have internal conflicts that they need to work through. This will make them more relatable and more interesting to readers.
  6. Use Dialogue: Use dialogue as a tool to reveal a character’s personality, motivation and thoughts. It also helps to create a sense of realism and relatability.
  7. Show, don’t tell: Instead of telling the reader what the character is like, show them through the character’s actions, thoughts, and dialogue.
  8. Be consistent: Characters should be consistent in their actions, thoughts, and reactions throughout the story. This will make them more relatable and believable.

By following these tips, a writer can create complex and relatable characters that will keep readers engaged and invested in the story.

Photo by Gabriel Bastelli: https://www.pexels.com/photo/silhouette-photography-of-man-and-woman-1759823/

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LOVE’S ENDURANCE – Kindle Countdown Sale

Love’s Endurance
SALE PRICE – 99 Cents
7-DAYS ONLY
Began: 11/29
Ends: 12/5 (Saturday – 8 a.m. PST)

A Christmas Miracle in the works! Inspirational!

LEARN MORE

BLURB

Love bears all things, believes all things,
hopes all things, endures all things.
1 Corinthians 13:7 (ESV)

Twenty-eight-year-old, Madison Barrett, and her husband, Eric, decide it’s time to start a family? She’s young. She’s healthy—until she gets news no woman wants to hear . . .

Readers who enjoy women’s fiction full of love and emotion will love Love’s Endurance.

Hurry! Buy your copy today while the sale lasts! or Read Free with KDP Select

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Short Excerpt:

A few months later, I sat on the cold brick steps by the fireplace, staring into the flames of my first self-made fire. It didn’t warm me as I’d hoped. Eric normally built the fires, but he didn’t anymore. Never would again. He’d left, and it was all my fault. Wasn’t that what I wanted? Not really, but what choice did I have? He deserved more than I could give.

I glanced out the window at the Christmas lights glistening on the new-fallen snow. A chill ran down my spine as I contemplated the events bringing me to this point in my life.  A life I now hated. At one time, I almost had it all: the perfect husband, the perfect job and a perfect future full of love and happiness. A child would have made my life complete.

Why had I wanted to wait to start our family? Eric wanted it all from the very beginning. But I wanted a college degree and a career first—an interior design business I cared little for and now considered selling. I planned to move away from Naperville, Illinois, my home, and Eric. Away from everything I had known and held dear the last five years.

“Excellent writing and realistic example of how loosing focus on your helpmate can strain the relationship…”

The phone rang, interrupting my thoughts.

I slipped the earring from my ear and answered. The voice I longed to hear whispered through the wires. I knew it would be like every call. He wanted to come home and try to make it work.

“Maddie.”

“Yes.”

“I love you.”

I remained silent, not saying it back no matter how much I wanted to. We’d gone through this a number of times. Pushing him away hadn’t worked. I needed to make him believe I didn’t care anymore.

You will want to buy a copy while the sale lasts! or Read Free with KDP Select

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Review:

Readers Review Room ~ Jena C. Henry

“There’s no use borrowing trouble, as Mom says.”

Madison “Maddie” Barrett and her husband Eric have been married five years. They have successful careers and a solid, loving relationship. until they must face their first major challenge together.

Eric wanted me to see a doctor, get therapy, or anything to bring me out of the funk. Readers will certainly be attracted to the kind and positive Eric and will empathize with Maddie’s struggles.

Author Cox gifts us with a short Christmas novella that is full of relatable characters and themes of sadness and joy. This book is well-written, positive and uplifting. There are several possible endings to the Barrett’s story and I was pleased and happy with the way the book resolved their situation.

This is a charming story to read by your Christmas hearth. Sip a cup of hot cocoa and thank God for your blessings. And remember, Mom’s wisdom is always right!

You will want to buy a copy while the sale lasts! or Read Free with KDP Select

LEARN MORE

Other 99-Cent Books/Short Stories by Kim Cox

Short Story Collection:

DREAM, CONQUER, & LOVE

Short Stories:

A DREAM COME TRUE

IN HIS ARMS

ALL FOR LOVE

LOVE CONQUERS ALL

HAUNTING LANA: THE BEGINNING (prequel to the LANA MALLOY PARANORMAL MYSTERY SERIES)

Other Books by Kim Cox

Lana Malloy Paranormal Mystery Series

HAUNTED HEARTS – BOOK 1 (also available at other bookstores and in audio at this URL)

GET OUT OR DIE – BOOK 2 (also available in audio)

Romantic Mystery/Suspense

Anthologies by Various Authors:

WANDERING SPIRITS I

WANDERING SPIRITS II

All books available at Amazon

Note: At the end of 2022 and in 2023, all books will be available at all bookstores as their KDP Select membership ends. Come back here for updates.

Newly available in Hard Cover

All books available at Amazon

Guest Author: G. L. Rockey – Kindle Countdown Deals @glrockey #Book #Sale

ABOUT THE BOOK

51os9egz9rlTIME AND CHANCE will be 99 cents from January 9, 2017 to January 16, 2017.
“Nashville TV news director Jack Carr weaves his way through a tangle of greed, country music, murder, and a knockout undercover agent, Gillian Phoenix.”
Purchase here.

Reviews:

“Alcohol, sex, greed and just plain nasty human habits are the gist of this first-person account about a newscaster, his love life, kidnapped children and eviscerated organs. Readers who pick up this book will not be able to put it down.” – 4 Stars – Faith V Smith, Romantic Times

“…runs the gamut of emotions along with just the right amount of twists and turns designed to keep the reader twisting and turning -, and reading – As a serious writer, Rockey has the ability, as they might say in Tennessee, to “run with the big dogs,” when it comes to spinning the kind of yarn that could easily enter today’s best seller list.” – Peggy Russell, The Hinckley Record

Author/reviewer Denise Clark: Jack Carr has a quirky witty way of speaking reminiscent of fictional Philip Marlow. I thoroughly enjoyed the plotting points that kept my attention riveted throughout . . ..”
ScribesWorld review: A great book.

Purchase here.

ABOUT THE BOOK

511pjisb1lTHE JOURNALIST will be 99 cents from January 25, 2017 to February 1, 2017
“Taking Fake NEWS to a higher level.” Purchase here.

In 2020 a newspaper editor uncovers a sinister plot by the U.S. President to overthrow the government by manipulating the media.

“….HAS FRIGHTENING RING OF TRUTH”
‘Sam’ Boyer, Medina/Brunswick Sun Times

***** OUTSTANDING, ENGROSSING, A CLASSIC”
Inscriptions

“The Journalist is a captivating book that had me reading quickly to follow the developments as they occurred . . . extremely believable characters . . . I must conclude the writing is very well executed to stir up so much in the reading.”
Angie Mangino, Inscriptions

“. . . book has frightening ring of truth . . . compelling . . .”
‘Sam’ Boyer, Brunswick Sun Times

“Thrilling . . . captures you in the opening sentence and hold you spellbound till the end . . . it will also scare the socks off you . . . a must read.”
Kim Gaona, writer, reviewer

A “BOOK OF THE YEAR” Inscriptions Magazine

“Mr. Rockey gives the story so many twists and turns that it seems more than believable. It makes one wonder what really is the news and what is the political agenda behind it? — Reader Views
“…brings the political tensions and dilemmas of the twenty-first century into razor-sharp focus…a biting political thriller…full of colorful characters…a great read.” – Cheryl Swanson, Author of Death Game – Gotta Read
“…a captivating book that had me reading quickly to follow the developments as they occurred…extremely believable characters…Thrilling…one story that not only captures you in the opening sentence and holds you spell bound till the end, it will also scare the socks off you wondering…”What if?”” – 5 Stars – Angie Mangino

Purchase here.

ABOUT THE BOOK

51ab5bn08yl-_sx331_bo1204203200_FIVE STAR REVIEW will be 99 cents from February 13, 2017 to February 20, 2107 – a nice Valentine gift for readers
“Cloistered walls not for her, twenty-six year old dropout nun, Heather Lynn Lucas, “following her passion,” is an aspiring novelist.” Purchase here.

Cloistered walls not for her, twenty-six year old dropout nun, Heather Lynn Lucas, “following her passion,” is an aspiring novelist. Pen name H. L. Lucas, a first novel written, having no luck finding a publisher, Satan shows up with an offer for publishing fame and fortune. Pondering Satan’s offer, Heather has her novel published as an e-book. Certain a review in the local newspaper will boost sale of her e-book, she attempt to contact the prestigious book editor, Joseph Hartman.

Spurned by Hartman, she attends the newspaper’s annual writing conference where she hopes to enlighten Hartman about e-books. Concerned he will recognize her name from previous attempts to contact him, she attends as Lillian Carol. Hartman not the stuffed shirt she expected, she engineers a lunch meeting with him, which leads to a disastrous dinner date. Dejected, Heather signs with Satan but insists on an out clause. An out agreement is reached that stipulates she has to get Hartman to marry her.

Contemplating the deal she has hastily signed, she reaches out to Hartman, he has been thinking about her too, they hook up again and fall in love. Hartman thinking she is Lillian Carol, Heather’s book published in hard back, Heather must tell Hartman her true identity before he discovers her trickery.

Purchase here.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

gary4By way of Carnegie Mellon Drama Department, G. L. Rockey earned a B.A. from Michigan State University and pursued a career in the television industry. From Providence to Phoenix and cities in between, he produced and directed a variety of television programs and managed TV station programming. While program manager at KTSP-TV in Phoenix, he represented NATPE (National Association of Television Program Executives) to Germany. He has a master’s degree from Cleveland State University and taught a course there.

TRUTHS OF THE HEART is G. L. Rockey’s latest novel. He has written three other acclaimed works of fiction: THE JOURNALIST (Re-released in paperback with the title REDACTED), a five star thriller with a “freighting ring of truth”; TIME & CHANCE, a mystery/suspense set in Nashville; and a collection of sixteen “off-the-wall” short stories, BATS IN THE BELFRY, BELLS IN THE ATTIC. Also published is a non fiction book, FROM THE BACK OF THE HOUSE: MEMORIES OF A STEAK HOUSE CLAN.

Find his published books at Anaphora Literary Press, Heritage Books, Inc., Amazon.com, Barnes&Noble.com, and Fictionwise, Books We Love, and eBookwise.

Find Rockey at his websiteCasablanca, Facebook, and Twitter.

The Writer’s Journey – Guest Author, Pamela Schloesser Canepa

Indie author finally realizes a life-long dream of sharing her writing habit with the world.
Pamela Schloesser Canepa, self-published author and Earth inhabitant.

pamela

How and when you started writing: I recall writing my first short story at age 8, when we traveled from Florida to Tennessee to visit my uncle and his family. I had to entertain myself in the car, and this came in quite handy! It was shared with family, and they all encouraged me profusely. I continued writing, for class, for myself, to exercise strong emotions, etc., but much of it was shown to no one. Still, it was good for me! I was a quiet little girl, and this helped me channel my voice.

How and when you first published: I entered poetry contests and got into vanity published books. If nothing else, it felt good. In my thirties, I published stories on my Myspace blog. (Don’t laugh)! I recently started blogging on WordPress this year, and shared some stories in contests on Wattpad, which started ideas for my novellas that have been published just this year (2016), in the sci-fi romance genre. My second two are science-fiction, but not strictly romance, however, and they carry a stronger theme.

Are you published Traditionally, Small Online Press, Indie Author, or combination?
I am an indie author. I think of the poems I got published in vanity press as a build up to where I am now.

Tell us about your journey to where you are today.
In a nutshell, I had to change from the little girl whose family gushed over her cute little stories, to the solemn, confused teen who wrote dark poetry and hid it. Then, I grew from the young woman who journaled her way into self-esteem after processing and leaving a bad marriage, to the woman who wrote poetry expressing her parental fears/frustration and shared them with the world, to who I am today, putting my thoughts into fiction in an attempt to get a message across while entertaining my reader at the same time. My writing journey has been a growth, not just as a writer, but as a person. I recently had a reader call one of my novellas “thought-provoking.” That was such an honor! Yet, I realize it is out there for criticism as well as praise, and I need to be ready for both. Some will love my work, and some will not. It comes with the territory.

What have you learned along the way?
I’ve learned that self-publishing also means self-promoting. That it is a lot of work. I’ve learned that some days I will get the writing or promoting fever and cannot stop until I’ve beaten that fever into the ground. I have also learned that having a friend who is in the same position as an indie writer is so invaluable. So I have joined Rave Reviews Book Club, through which I met the wonderful owner of this blog that is allowing me to spread news of my writing! I have also joined other writing forums online and made many helpful friends. I see that you can’t just take others’ support, you need to give it as well. That is what builds a community of indie writers who can learn from each other, and it really gets these books out there for the world to see.

What would you do differently? I would do more promoting, pre-publication. I would also likely expand the ideas in my first few novellas. However, when all three are read, they tend to make my intended point. I may add to them in the future. But for now, I am working on a full-length novel and I am going through the entire process of editing, re-writing, and editing again. It is not for the faint of heart.

Published e-books:

Made for Me is a sci-fi romance, the first in a series of sci-fi novellas. Be sure to also check out the sequel, Seeing Through Sampson’s Eyes! The third, and latest, in this series is From Bedlam to Ben! All are available at Amazon.

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Thank you for reading, and I hope you will find time to read and enjoy my books!

Author Elizabeth Delisi’s New Contest

I’m happy to post Elizabeth Delisi’s new contest. Elizabeth Delisi is a multi-puplished author. Some of her books are “Since All Is Passing (a Mystery), Lady of the Two Lands (a Time Travel set in ancient Egypt), and the Lottie Baldwin Mysteries (Paranormal Mysteries).

Contest has started and ends September 15th – About 5 days left. Take it away, Liz.

Hello everyone!

I’m in the position of deciding what book to work on next. I’m having trouble choosing, so I thought a contest would be a great idea!

Here’s the details. I’m going to give you a small description of three different books I could work on next. You can respond to me at elizabeth@elizabethdelisi.com and let me know your choice of which one I should write next.

On September 15, the book with the most votes will be the book I work on next. The names of everyone who voted for the winning book will be put onto a special list from which a winner will be chosen at random.

What will the winner receive? A shout-out in the acknowledgments when the book is published, and a free copy of the book in the winner’s choice of format.

Timing: Wednesday, August 31, through Wednesday, September 14.

Here are the book options:

PERILOUS PREDICTION, sequel to FATAL FORTUNE: Psychic Lottie Baldwin and Deputy Sheriff Harlan Erikson are planning their wedding when Lottie’s ex-boyfriend shows up in town. Shortly after, he’s murdered and suspicion falls on Lottie as the only likely suspect. With an eyewitness fingering her as the woman seen entering the victim’s motel room, it looks like Lottie is in deep trouble that not even her Tarot cards can fix. Can Harlan prove the woman he loves is innocent before the real murderer adds Lottie to the victim list?

MURDER CUM LAUDE, sequel to SINCE ALL IS PASSING: Marie Kenning is having her usual breakfast in the Lakedale Café. Bill, the owner, asks a waitress to move his car before the police ticket it, as they do every morning. She complies, but when she starts the car, it explodes with a blinding flash. The police must dig into Bill’s past to see who would want him dead, and why. Does he have a shady past no one knows about? Can Marie and her fiancé Officer Chris Whitley solve the case before Bill becomes the next victim?

KNIT A SPELL: Astenia Rand owns and runs a yarn shop called “Knit A Spell.” Most customers think the name invites them to come and visit with knitting in tow. A select few customers know another meaning of the name: Astenia is a witch, and she weaves helpful spells into everything she knits and sells. It’s a good life, except for one thing: Astenia was cursed at birth by a spiteful witch. The curse says any man Astenia falls in love with will die; thus she’s doomed to a life alone. Or is she? What will happen when an immortal man, cursed by the same witch, decides to help her break the spell?

Send me your choice and I’ll put your name on the contest list!

Liz

Elizabeth Delisi
Fiction With Flair!
www.elizabethdelisi.com

Book Launch: “Our Justice” by John W. Howell

Introducing the third book in the John J. Cannon Trilogy – Our Justice

Our Justice

Click Cover to go to Amazon

Blurb

The terrorist leader and financier Matt Jacobs has figured out a way to eliminate the President. He is relying on John Cannon’s stature as a hero to help him carry it off. John finds himself walking the fine line of pretending to help Matt while trying to figure out a countermeasure to the plan.

The action begins with John fearing for his life. Clearly, whoever is trying to get him has a mission to accomplish and the elimination of John is at the top of the to-do list. The quest to survive takes John and his love, Stephanie from the beaches of Port Aransas to West Virginia and finally to Matt Jacob’s corporate headquarters at the Embarcadero Center in San Francisco. There John finally understands what he needs to do to protect both he and Stephanie from further mayhem.

The third book in the John J. Cannon Trilogy brings together two strong wills for a showdown. The question to be answered is who will feel the satisfaction that the achievement of justice delivers? John, Matt or neither?

Our Justice is available on Amazon and KDP now in e-book format for preorder at $2.99 with shipments starting on September 23rd. The paper edition will be available on Amazon September 23rd at $14.99. Click HERE to pre-order the e-book.

Excerpt

I see out of the corner of my eye that Ned is on the phone. Hopefully, he’s calling in reinforcements since it looks like the SUV is gaining on us. Just as the rear window of the Focus blows inward, he finishes the call. Hundreds of pieces of glass hit Ned and me. Luckily, it’s shatterproof stuff, so we’re mostly okay cut wise. Ned crouches down and fires three quick shots with his 9MM. In the mirror, the SUV swerves to the left and almost explodes after it rams a parked car. “Stop,” Ned yells.

I slam on the brakes, which nearly tosses Ned through the windshield. “For shit’s sake, I don’t have a seatbelt on, junior, so take it easy. Just stop and turn around.”

John HowellAuthor BIO

John’s main interests are reading and writing. He turned to writing as a full-time occupation after an extensive career in business. John writes fictional short stories and novels as well as a daily blog. His first novel, My GRL is available on Amazon and wherever e-books are sold. His second, His Revenge is available on Amazon and KDP Select.

John lives on a barrier island in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of South Texas with his wife and spoiled rescue pets.

Other Places

Blog Fiction Favorites – http://johnwhowell.com/

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/john.howell.98229241

Twitter – https://www.twitter.com/HowellWave

Authors db – http://www.authorsdb.com/authors-directory/6604-john-w-howell

LinkedIn – http://www.linkedin.com/pub/john-w-howell/48/b59/462/

Google + https://plus.google.com/+JohnHowellAuthor/

Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/johnwhowell/

Amazon Author’s page – https://www.amazon.com/author/johnwhowell

Martin Sisters Publishing – http://www.martinsisterspublishing.com

Book Review: “Babe Driven” by Lizzie Chantree

lizzieAbout The Author

Lizzie is an enthusiastic inventor, businesswoman and artist. She founded her first company at the age of 17 and has been creating products and driving her family mad ever since.

Lizzie has appeared on Sky News, ITV Lunchtime News, This Morning, The Big Breakfast and the BBC’s worldwide radio service, amongst others, for becoming one of Fair Play London’s female innovators.

Lizzie lives in Essex, with her gorgeous husband, two vivacious children and a very unusual dog. In between the school run and baking cakes, (or burning them!) she sits in her rooftop studio daydreaming about gaps in the market and how she can fill them. Babe Driven is her first novel, Love’s Child is her second. She is currently writing her third novel and is collaborating on a children’s book range with her family.

About The Book

babeDriven

Babe Driven

Driving straight out of trouble and into paradise!

Harriet’s crazily successful business idea is under serious threat, and the danger seems to be coming from inside her own family. She whisks her sister and her friends away to an exotic location to try and work out whose side they are on. It’s time to start damage limitation.

When the girls arrive at the glorious villa owned by Harriet’s maverick business partner Nikki, they find a gorgeous band and their sexy lead singer Max staying next door, out to entice their new neighbours into all kinds of trouble.

This isn’t a holiday for Harriet and she can’t afford to be distracted. She has to sell her business idea to the powerful resort owner, the elusive Mr Grant, while she is there, or she may not have a business to go back to. Harriet will have to choose between family and friends, business or pleasure. For someone who stays out of the limelight, even though her new company is the hottest ticket in town, she’s going to have to avoid the front pages of every newspaper if she wants to survive the ride!

My Review

Strong and Fun Characters

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Babe Driven with a strong and fun cast of characters. Each one presented with their own set of problems to overcome. It may be their misconceptions of those around them, either friend or foe, to the realization of those who love them for who they are. You follow the strong personalities on their journey of enlightenment of those they love, even when they’re deeply flawed. They all grow in some way. Some may come to see others as they truly are and some may see themselves as others see them, whether good or bad. But they all grow and learn along the way.

I recommend this book to readers who love well-defined characters, mystery, romance, and humor.

Get your copy of BABE DRIVEN today!!!  Other Books by Lizzie Chantree: LOVE’S CHILD and FINDING GINA.

Next TEN books and short stories on my Review List are:
Cupid’s Quest by Lori Soard (finished)
Return of the Gulls by Maureen McMahon (starting 8/29/2016)
Taken by the Huntsman by Mistral Dawn
Myth and Magic by Mae Clair
Spirit of the Book by D. E. Howard
Waterlillies Over My Grave by Patricia Guthrie
Dragon Fireside Tales by Adam Boustead
Trusting Jack by Beth Hale
Haunting Megan by Rebecca Riley
Trafficking by Bill Ward

Book Review: “Papala Skies” by Stephen Geez

stephenGeezAbout The Author

Stephen Geez earned his undergrad and grad degrees at the University of Michigan. A composer, producer, publisher, and writer, he watches too much television but prefers diving tropical reefs. Watch for his essays, stories, and more books at http://www.StephenGeez.com.

Bestselling Books:Invigilator, Fresh Ink Group Short Story Showcase #1, Papala Skies

papalaSkiesAbout The Book

Chicago native Rochelle DuFortier likes to imagine the future, her world a series of picture postcards so vivid they sometimes seem real. When a foolish mistake at thirteen causes her mother’s death, she’s sent to a secluded Hawaiian valley, an outsider “haole-girl” among pidgin-speaking boys who hurl flaming papala spears under the full moon to summon her mother’s spirit. After boarding school and a prestigious university back east, the ambitious young woman is torn between chasing new career opportunities, discovering her mother’s heritage in a remote French village, and meeting obligations pulling her back to Hawaii.

On this island steeped in ancient mythology and modern superstition, Rochelle tests the possibility of sharing pieces of her life with those whose beliefs she barely understands and never intends to embrace. She dives the depths of a pristine coral lagoon, conceals bodies in a subterranean lava tube, and challenges the eruptions of a living volcano, even as she deciphers the truth about her mother’s death and struggles to satisfy new debts born of old betrayals.

Papala Skies is the story of a young woman who makes all the right choices, only to find herself living an unexpected life. It is about the need to belong, and seeking one’s own version of truth amid such differing cultures’ responses to wrenching loss and abiding grief. It is about yearning for a sense of place, yet having to confront new ways to honor the love of family and friends.

Will Rochelle lose what matters most, or might she learn what the smart octopus already knows?

My Review

Intriguing and Character Driven

The vivid descriptions of imagery virtually transport you to the Hawaii island, and carry you to the city of Chicago, an ivy league university, and to France.

A complex story with tragic situations and reactions. The main character, Rochelle, is faced with the challenges of getting on with her own life or helping others with their challenges. Her life does not turn out as she always thought it would.

There’s an underlying suspense surrounding how Rochelle’s mother died, and Rochelle’s guilt over her mother’s death is felt throughout most of the story. But that’s not all. There are primary forces driving chaos in her life and those she’s come to love. There’s the complexity of plots and sub-plots as Rochelle is drawn from one tragedy to another.

The characters are so well-drawn that you feel you are right there with them, wanting to help but unable to prevent the next heartbreak life throws their way. You will cry, laugh, and revel in their victories over life’s unrelenting obstacles.

I highly recommend this character-driven tale with strong relationships, as well as intrigue, action, and yes, some romance too.

Purchase PAPALA SKIES today.

Next TEN books and short stories on my Review List are:
Babe Driven by Lizzie Chantree (completed reading, review coming soon)
Cupid’s Quest by Lori Soard (starting 8/23/2016)
Return of the Gulls by Maureen McMahon
Taken by the Huntsman by Mistral Dawn
Myth and Magic by Mae Clair
Spirit of the Book by D. E. Howard
Waterlillies Over My Grave by Patricia Guthrie
Dragon Fireside Tales by Adam Boustead
Trusting Jack by Beth Hale
Haunting Megan by Rebecca Riley

#RRBC Spotlight Author: Micki Peluso

With great pleasure I’d like to introduce to you, Micki Peluso, this week’s Rave Reviews Book Club’s Spotlight Author. Welcome, Micki!

What’s In A Word?

“In the beginning was the word . . .”
John 1:1 King James Bible

words_img

Remember the childhood taunt, “Sticks and stones will break my bones, but names will never hurt me?” (from Robert Fulghum). This is not true. The “pen is mightier than the sword,” and the complexity of language plays upon everyday living. It can be subtle,(my favorite) sarcastic, ironic, menacing, hateful, loving, instructive; the list is long. Ultimately words hurt much more than stones, because the scars from hurtful words do not always heal.

Writing is how I express emotions that cannot be exposed through any other outlet. All the feelings that encompass my psyche, subconscious mind, and yes, even soul, are transposed to a large yellow legal pad with an Erasermate pen. This most sacred experience allows me to examine my feelings from other points of view, vent words that hide from me verbally as I cope with the school of life–hoping to pass the test.

Words make or break relationships, erase the tears of a crying child, soothe an aching heart, cheer on an athlete, or manipulate an enemy. Words are power and it is essential to learn to use them wisely, to understand their strength. As applied to writing, proper word choice is critical to a successful essay, short story or novel. Making an error in word usage can change the tempo and alter the perspective of any given piece of writing.

Years ago, four years of Latin was a required course in High School. Students groaned, but this arcane language was the best example of how the nuance of a word can completely change the meaning of a sentence or story. English, based in part, on Latin, is no different.

The words one uses in narrative or description develop character traits and personality.”He was a tempting, seductive piece of work,” shows the reader much about this character, as does, “She donned her reading glasses and began stamping books the children brought to the library desk.” Words in dialogue express emotions and character behavior. Words are all one has to work with, both in real life and in writing. It is prudent to choose them well. Roget’s Thesaurus should be every writer’s bible, packed as it is with synonyms that shift context and meaning in subtle ways.

Who and what I am or hope to become is evident in my stories. In romance, I am the character searching for love, in paranormal, I am the character facing his/her demons, real or imagined. Humorous stories disguise me in my character’s take on the foibles of daily living. In every story that I write, I am there–in words.

“Words express ideas, name things. They carry you from one place to another. . .  When your words change, you change.” Taken from The World Book Complete Word Power Library. “‘In the Miracle Worker,’ based on the life of Helen Keller, the little blind and deaf girl’s mother asks the child’s teacher what is to be taught first. “Language, I hope, replies the teacher . . . what is she without words?” Taken from the Dictionary of Problems and Expressions,” by Harry Shaw.

My losses, sorrows, joys, loves and dreams are forever etched in print. They cannot exist without me or me without them. Yet, I do not write to live, or live to write. Writing helps me make sense of the drama called life. Writing defines me. 

It is an avenue of escape in an uncertain, sometimes frightening world – where love is fragile, dreams shatter, hope is dashed, then renewed. Writing takes me through the dark tunnel to the awaiting light. I will one day pass on to another realm with writing as my epitaph. Writing is not what I do . . . It is who I am.


lastscan (4)Micki Peluso began writing after a personal tragedy. This lead to a first time publication in Victimology: An International Magazine and a career in Journalism. She’s freelanced and been staff writer for one major newspaper, written for two more and has published short fiction and non-fiction, as well as slice of life stories in colleges, magazines and e-zine editions. Her first book was published in 2012; a funny family memoir of love, loss and survival, called, . . . And THE WHIPPOORWILL SANG which won the Nesta CBC Silver Award for ‘Writing That Builds Character’, won third place in the Predators and Editors Contest and first place for People’s Choice Monthly Award. This book is close to her heart since it’s a deathbed promise to her dying child. It has the humor of ‘Cheaper by the Dozen,’ with the heart of ‘To Kill a Mockingbird. Some reviewers liken her writing to a cross between Erma Bombeck and Harper lee. She has over a dozen short stories in ‘Women’s Memoirs’, ‘Tales2inspire’, and ‘Creature Features’. Two of her short horror stories were recently published in an International Award winning anthology called “Speed of Dark.” She is presently working on a collection of short fiction, and slice of life stories in a book collection called, ‘Don’t Pluck the Duck’, due to be released in late 2017. Her first children’s story, ‘The Cat Who Wanted a Dog’ will be released in June of 2017. Author Peluso is a multi-genre and speculative writer who plans to tackle novels next.

000_bookcover for email normal (3)And The Whippoorwill Sang
by Micki Peluso

It is a day like any other, except the intense heat wave has broken and signs of early fall are in the air.

Around the dining room table of her 100 year old farmhouse Micki Peluso’s six children along with three of their friends eagerly gulp down a chicken dinner. As soon as the last morsel is ravished, the lot of them is off in different directions. Except for the one whose turn it is to do the dishes. After offering her mother a buck if she’ll do them, with an impish grin, the child rushes out the front door, too excited for a hug, calling out, “Bye Mom,” as the door slams shut. For the Peluso’s the nightmare begins.

Micki and Butch face the horror every parent fears—awaiting the fate of one of their children. While sitting vigil in the ICU waiting room, Micki traverses the past, as a way of dealing with an inconceivable future.

From the bizarre teenage elopement with her high school sweetheart, Butch, in a double wedding with her own mother, to comical family trips across country in an antiquated camper with six kids and a dog, they leave a path of chaos, antics and destruction in their wake. Micki relives the happy times of raising six children while living in a haunted house, as the young parents grow up with their kids. She bravely attempts to be the man of the house while her husband, Butch is working out of town.

Hearing strange noises, which all the younger kids are sure is the ghosts, Micki tiptoes down to the cellar, shotgun in hand and nearly shoots an Idaho potato that has fallen from the pantry and thumped down the stairs. Of course her children feel obligated to tell the world.

Just when their lives are nearly perfect, tragedy strikes—and the laughter dies. A terrible accident takes place in the placid valley nestled within the Susquehanna Mountains in the town of Williamsport, Pennsylvania. On a country lane just blocks from the family’s hundred year old haunted farmhouse, lives are changed forever.

In a state of shock, Micki muses through their delightful past to avoid confronting an uncertain future—as the family copes with fear and apprehension.

One of her six children is fighting for life in Intensive Care. Both parents are pressured by doctors to disconnect Noelle, their fourteen-year-old daughter. Her beautiful girl, funny and bright, who breathes life into every moment, who does cartwheels in piles of Autumn leaves, who loves to sing and dance down country roads, and above all loves her family with all her soul. How can Micki let this child go?

The family embarks upon yet another journey, to the other side of sorrow and grasps the poignant gift of life as they begin. . .to weep. . .to laugh. . .to grieve. . .to dance—and forgive.

To learn more about Micki Peluso, or to purchase her book, …AND THE WHIPPOORWILL SANG,
please visit:
Twitter: @mickipeluso
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AndTheWhippoorwillSang
Website: http://www.mallie1025.blogspot.com/
Email: mallie1025@aol.com
 

Book Review: “Dangerous Liaisons (Royal Command, #1)” by Sarah Stuart

About The Author

sarahStuartSarah Stuart lives on the edge of a quiet English village where wildlife sightings are common, though becoming less so. Hunting with dogs is now illegal in the UK: it goes on in secret and incidences of this are almost impossible to prove in court. Many of her dogs are, or have been, rescues and only those who enjoy the limelight perform onstage. 50% of her royalties are donated to animal charities.

Dogs were Sarah’s opening into show business. During a period when she lived in Wales she supplied them to professional companies using Aberystwyth University’s Arts Centre Theatre during student vacations. Many musicals and plays performed there were on their pre-West End premiere run, which gave her an unrivalled opportunity to talk to directors, choreographers and the many other vital members of the backstage staff, and the performers. These ranged from actors and actresses in their first, or early, roles to worldwide superstars of stage and screen. That experience, and her association with the Northern Ballet, underpins the vivid portrayals of show business triumphs and heartbreak.

Sarah has studied English language and literature, and history, with delight since her early teens. She is a qualified adult literacy tutor and has written short stories, in addition to other resources, for her students. Her published articles have been in magazines dedicated to wildlife and dogs. The Royal Command series, her debut into full-length fiction, has been well received. Book One, Dangerous Liaisons, is a Romance Finalist in the Independent Author Network Book Awards 2015 and the first version of this book, now lightly edited, gained a five star rating from Readers’ Favorite within weeks of publication.

Sarah’s hope is that readers will enjoy her novels as an escape from reality, but be left understanding that fame and fortune often comes at a high personal cost. Also, an increased perception of the threat to animals: those shot in the name of sport for trophy heads, endangered species, many poached for their fur and ivory, and tragically discarded pets.

About The Book

SARAH.STUART1-DLLizzie, daughter of a wealthy Scottish laird, inherits Margaret Tudor’s secret diary. A decoded message reads “I direct and beseech my heirs to find love where they may”. Lizzie falls in love with Michael, a poor aspiring actor whom she helps become a superstar. Lizzie passes the diary to their daughter, Lisette, who is influenced by Queen Margaret’s manipulative, vengeful, granddaughter, sparking dangerous passions and betrayals. Can Lizzie outwit the paparazzi or will the scandal of adultery and incest end in tragedy for them all?

My Review

Fast-paced Family Saga

I enjoyed this book and the second part lives up to the title of Dangerous Liaisons. This book could’ve been two separate books, the two parts are so different. The love story of Lizzie and Michael is breathtaking. The second part reminded me of V. C. Andrews’s family sagas of which I’ve been a huge fan.

While I could buy the forbidden sex the first time it happened, from the way the male lead was portrayed as never straying during his entire marriage up to this point, no matter how long he’d been away or how tired he’d been from traveling, I couldn’t buy it happening more than the one time. It seemed out-of-character for him to me.

Gorgeous new book cover.

Next TEN books and short stories on my Review List are:
The One Discovered: Chronicles of Diasodz, Book 1 by Yvette M. Calleiro
Bravura (The Music We Made Book 1) by Lisa Kirazian
Letting Go into Perfect Love by Gwendolyn Plano
Finch’s Crossing by Katheran Allen
Flash 40: Life’s Moments by Janelle Jalbert
The Bloody Shoe Affair by Joy York
Son of My Father by Peggy Hattendorph
Papala Skies by Stephen Geez
Babe Driven by Lizzie Chantree
Cupid’s Quest by Lori Soard