Sunday Book Review – Sisters by Judith Barrow – #psychologicaldrama

My Sunday Book Review is for Judith Barrow’s brand new release – Sisters. Judith’s books never disappoint, and this new book kept me glued. This is the story of two sisters, and a huge lie that destroyed a family. The author has a talent for drawing out great characters that leave us thinking about them even after closing the book. The book is on pre-order now, release date, January 26th.

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Get This Book on Amazon

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Blurb:

A moving study of the deep feelings – jealousy, love, anger, and revenge – that can break a family apart. … Sisters is another absorbing, emotional and thought-provoking creation from the wonderful Judith Barrow.
Janet Laugharne


Two sisters torn apart by a terrible lie.In shock after an unbearable accident. Angie lets her sister Mandy take the blame, thinking she’s too young to get into trouble. But she’s wrong. Mandy is hounded, bullied and finally sent to live with their aunt, where she changes her name to Lisa and builds a new life, never wanting to see her sister again. Angie’s guilt sends her spiralling into danger. Thirteen years later, they meet again at their mother’s funeral. Lisa starts to suspect something is wrong. Angie seems terrified of her husband, and their father is hiding something too.
What does Lisa owe to the family that betrayed her?


I knew I was in for a treat. I wasn’t disappointed… I couldn’t wait to find out what happened to Lisa and Angie… A tale with characters that linger in your mind after you close the book.
Jacqueline Harrett

My 5 Star Review:

Judith Barrow strikes again with this new release, Sisters. Barrow has a talent for creating rich characters who linger with us long after we’ve finished reading the book. She is recognized for her fantastic family saga stories, and this one had me going through varied emotions as one huge lie orchestrated by elder sister Angie, for a very evil deed she committed, is pinned on her younger sister Amanda, and changes both their lives and the family dynamic forever.

I found it a gripping read as I shook my head and wanted to shake Angie even more for destroying her family over her selfish whims and passing the blame on poor Amanda. It irked me that Amanda didn’t stand up to her evil sister and tell the truth, but as Barrow so cleverly weaves this tale, she makes us understand how big sister Angie holds a grip on Amanda and talks her into good reason why Amanda shouldn’t tell on her.

The horrendous event that took place that Amanda was being blamed for, eventually has her parents sending her to Wales to live with her aunt to avoid the bullying and terrorizing Amanda endured for the awful event that took place. And wanting a fresh start, Amanda even changed her name to Lisa.

The story kept me turning the pages, hoping that Angie would speak up and tell truth, while having me shake my head thinking about how one sister can even live with herself as she watches her little sister’s life spiral and turn upside down because of her horrible actions and her coverup lies that went unchallenged. But it does seem Karma always find her way back to those as a reminder.

Some thirteen years would pass before the sisters are forced to meet up at their mother’s funeral. In between those passing years we learn about both Angie’s and Amanda’s lives. Amanda/Lisa is happy in her life living with Aunt Barb and Uncle Chris, while Angie, who ran away from home shortly after Amanda was sent to Wales, lived a tawdry life, until she meets up with her childhood crush and cohort in ‘the big lie’, Stephen Birch, now a wealthy businessman and predator in more ways than one. Once Lisa returns home from her mum’s funeral, she learns about Angie’s unhappy past and present life, with her now, abusive and dominating husband Stephen Birch. And as Lisa works on sewing up her mother’s estate, she discovers more dark secrets about Angie’s insidious husband. The story grows darker as we learn exactly what is going on in Angie’s marriage and what exactly it is Stephen wants from her – from her family.

As Stephen continues to emotionally abuse and torment Angie, Lisa’s empathy has her worrying for her sister. And by the time the next tragedy strikes in their family, Lisa begins investigating and working with an old friend, Ben, now a journalist, she teams up with to investigate just what the evil Stephen Birch is really up to.

Why is Stephen so evil? What is it he wants? What is it he has hanging over Angie’s head? Will Stephen be caught and punished for the physical abuse he caused to Angie? Will he be found discovered responsible for causing harm to the girls’ parents? How far will this deranged man go to get what he wants from these two sisters? You will find no spoilers here, and will want to keep reading to the end, anxiously waiting to see if Angie escapes Birch’s stranglehold on her and if just desserts are served.

©DGKaye2023

Sunday Book Review – Ida: Searching for the Jazz Baby #freeversepoetry

Welcome to my Sunday Book Review. Today I’m reviewing Frank Prem’s new release – Ida: Searching for the Jazz Baby. In this story of historical fiction written in free verse poetry, Frank touches on the life of Ida Pender, aka Jazz Baby, and her wild lifestyle in the 1920s. Complete with newspaper clippings and stories to accompany.

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Blurb:

Who is Ida Pender? Is she the elderly woman – Ida-Spider – rumoured to be resident in a 1970’s Mental Asylum?

Is she Squizzy Taylor’s teenaged gangster moll of the roaring 1920’s in Melbourne? The woman the police declared had shapely legs? She is Ida. The Jazz Baby.

Frank Prem explores the story of Ida Pender, largely forgotten now, but once the notorious associate of a 1920s Melbourne gnagster. From the young girl sneaking out of her bedroom window to go dancing at the Palais de Danse, companion, accomplice, then wife and mother to Squizzy Taylor’s child by her early twenties, Ida is an extraordinary woman and a marvellous story.

My 5 Star Review:

A freeverse poetry collection about a jazz dancer and true crime in 1920s Melbourne, Australia where Jazz baby, Ida, daughter of a horse trainer, falls in love with Melbourne’s notorious underworld criminal, Leslie ‘Squizzy’ Taylor, once a horse jockey. The story begins in the 1970s where the author, Prem, as a young student, was a pyschiatric nurse at the Lunatic Asylum where several elderly women were called Ida. ‘Rumor’ had it that one of these Idas was Ida Pender, the gun-moll of Squizzy Taylor.

Prem researched the story of Ida Pender and Squizzy Taylor, who was eventually killed in a shootout, leaving Ida a widowed, single mother at the tender age of 23. Ida loved to dance since a child and was discovered to be part of a competitive dance group who loved to dance to jazz at the Palis de Dance. Prem brings back to life the story of Jazz Baby in prose and poetry. With each newspaper clipping headline, Prem tells the story in poetry through the character’s minds. An introductory poem to the elusive Ida:

the company (she keeps)


The pair are “Squizzy” TayJor, and his paramour, Ida
Pender, who has been associated with him since she
was a mere child of sixteen
“Squizzy” Taylor——As He Is! The Mirror, Perth 05/07/1924
is she
a bad girl
or
does she just choose
poor company . . .
a man
might be a
murderer
but still be nice
to me
and
if I love him . . .
and
I do love him . . .
where else
should I be
is she a bad
bad girl
or is she
just . . .
just . . .
just keeping company
as best
she can

If you enjoy a ‘different’ kind of story-telling, you will enjoy this well-researched story combined with the author’s imagination, written in poetry, accompanied by headlines. All the author’s research resources are listed in the book.

©DGKaye2023


New Reviews for D.G. Kaye Books and Paperback is now Live for Fifteen First Times

It may be a shameless promotion, but I don’t do it often, and since I just released my new book Fifteen First Times, a week ago, I was thrilled to find some have already read, enjoyed, and reviewed it. I also picked up a few other beautiful reviews for three of my other books, and am thrilled to share. I am also thrilled to announce that my book, Fifteen First Times is NOW AVAILABLE in Paperback.

And thank you to Carol Balawyder https://carolbalawyder.com/2022/12/19/d-g-kaye-fifteen-first-times/comment-page-1/#comment-27072 and Marjorie Mallonhttps://mjmallon.com/2022/12/20/book-review-fifteen-first-times-pokercubster-memoir-review/ and D.L. Finnhttps://dlfinnauthor.com/2022/09/12/september-book-reviews-part-2-bookreviews-whattoread-readersoftwitter-writingcommunity/ and Sally Croninhttps://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2022/12/21/smorgasbord-christmas-book-fair-book-review-memoir-fifteen-first-times-beginnings-a-collection-of-indelible-firsts-by-d-g-kaye/comment-page-1/#comment-651625, for sharing their lovely reviews of my new book on their blogs.

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Fifteen First Times

D.L. Finn‘s review

Dec 16, 2022

it was amazing

“Fifteen First Times” is a group of personal stories told in a humorous yet perceptive manner. It felt like I was sitting with Ms. Kaye having a cup of tea while she shared some of her life stories. I found it easy to relate to a first kiss, first heartbreak, or first-time driving. It got me reflecting on many of my firsts and how I navigated life after. The author’s strength, fashion sense, and humor shined through the words, painting a picture of her moments. This is a book of youthful reflections and what we can learn from all our firsts. There was also a loving dedication to her departed husband that touched my soul. This is a beautiful collection of coming-of-age stories I can easily recommend.

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marjorie mallon

5.0 out of 5 stars Personal, funny and emotional memoir

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 16 December 2022

Fifteen first times is a lovely memoir by D G Kaye. Reading it I recalled many of my first times too! In this short memoir, she mentions memories such as her diets, first kiss, colouring her hair, Christmas tree, first apartment, getting her driving licence, travel to Israel and Europe and much more. It is a personal, and relatable collection which I enjoyed.

I think it would be enjoyed by all and in particular bloggers, writers (a lot of the content is female centric such as the short section on first period!) This is a topic that needs to be spoke about openly! So hats off to D G Kaye for being so honest sharing her personal memories.

She also shares her sadness at loss of several family members, a dear friend Alba and her much loved husband.

So, at times humourous, sometimes poignant, a sneak peak into the author’s life.

A recommended read.

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Review by Sally Cronin

My review for the book December 21st 2022

The author has a natural conversational style of writing that draws you in as if she is talking to you personally. Her memories prompt the reader’s own experiences at similar ages, and raises a smile or two at the similarities between girls of a certain age, however many thousands of miles they live apart.

This is particularly true in this collection of stories as Kaye shares episodes from her childhood such as playing in her mother’s stiletto shoes which would fuel a lifetime’s love of footwear, a first kiss, and taking that first puff of a parent’s discarded cigarette.

With the smiles comes the tears, as we identify the moments of loneliness and isolation as a girl becomes a woman without the support needed from a mother, a dysfunctional family life, and the loss of a much loved friend who shared the formative years between teens and late twenties.

At the end of the collection is a wonderful tribute to her late husband, who made her laugh every day and was the first and last love of her life.

D.G. Kaye writes with poignancy but also great humour, which makes these first times all the more delightful and memorable. The experiences are not just relevant to girls growing up, as many are relateable to boys and young men coping with the cultural and social expectations of the day, and finding their way in life and relationships. Take a walk down the memory lane of your own life in very good company. Highly recommended.

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Our experiences are stepping stones for much of what feeds our character. We live, we experience, we learn, we become, and we overcome.

I always look forward to reading D.G. Kaye’s books because I know they will be authentic, witty, and compelling.

Throughout D.G. Kaye’s latest memoir, she draws her readers in by sharing her past experiences. A reader can easily relate to fifteen real talk stories that cover topics such as her obsession with shoes, her hilarious experience with her first Christmas tree, her disastrous experiment with changing from blonde to redhead, her first kiss, and many more firsts, at times bittersweet, including the death of a close friend.

 In particular, I found her tribute to her beloved husband to be so very touching. She writes how no man could make her laugh. In the past laughter for her “could mask so many scars, aches, and insecurities….It was always me making someone else laugh…That was until I met my husband. Here was a man who made me laugh.”

During this Christmas season, if you’re feeling stressed like many of us are, I highly recommend this book. Relax and give yourself this gift for the holiday season. Your heart will likely smile as you reflect on some of your firsts and take a journey down your own memory lane.

xxx

P.S. I Forgive You - D.G. Kaye

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P.S. I Forgive You

Reviewed by Mac Trish (Alex Craigie) Dec. 12, 2022

This book is a painfully honest account of the author’s fractured relationship with her narcissistic mother.

Throughout Ms Gies’ childhood and into adulthood, her mother not only neglected her and her three siblings, but also ate away at their self-esteem and terrorized them into obedience. The mother’s volatility, frequent absences, lack of interest in their achievements and lives, and the exploitation, punishments and bare-faced lying made for a nightmare scenario that
was endured with a loyalty that in the end became so severely strained, it shattered.


It is clear that the author did everything she could to understand and excuse her mother’s behaviour. It is also clear that she was desperate for her to demonstrate some motherly affection, but none was forthcoming. The hateful responses and the game-playing took such a toll that in the end, in a desperate attempt for self-preservation, she cut her mother out of her
life. ‘I crested the wave of poison my mother tried to drown me with, and I snapped’.


The empathy Ms Gies had for her parent clearly made the situation very painful for her. When it became clear that her mother was dying, she struggled with her feelings, but she couldn’t bring herself to go to her because she was afraid of being damaged yet again by another of her vicious barbs.


After the death, came the soul-searching. I found the turmoil the author facedheartbreaking. ‘Guilt doesn’t subside; it resides in the hidden nooks and crannies of our hearts’. She did all she could to try and understand what had made her mother like this, but there were no easy answers. In the end, she knew that she couldn’t rest herself unless she
could forgive her mother and release her own bitterness and resentment. She writes ‘So I set her free of her sins, and in turn I set myself free’.


This is a beautiful book and one that had a profound impact on me. It is to the author’s credit that she takes such an honest and candid approach. It is truly remarkable that she was able to forgive someone who had hurt her so badly.

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Have Bags Will Travel reviewed by D.L. Finn

This was a quick, fun read for all those adventurous souls who love to travel or read about it. It took us back to days of more effortless traveling, to current times when there’s a lot more involved. Told in a personal, humorous tone, I immediately connected to the antidotes told. I’m glad I’m not the only one who over packs and then had to pay for it when checking the luggage. I shook my head, knowing how hard it is to get traveling purchases home in luggage — and through customs. Luckily, I’ve only had my bags searched once. I can’t imagine being a target when I came back to my country. I thoroughly enjoyed this; it not only made me want to travel but long for the good old days when planes offered more room. This ends with some sound advice for traveling that includes a luggage scale. An excellent read for travelers!

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Twenty Years by D.G. Kaye

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Twenty Years: After “I Do”

Pete Springer

Reviewed in the United States on November 4, 2022

Verified Purchase

Twenty Years: After “I Do” is a memoir by D.G. Kaye regarding her 20-year marriage to Gordon, a kind man 20 years her senior. While I believe the author wrote this book for people in a similar situation that have a spouse considerably older or younger, I think it is an essential read for any married couple.

Having read previous books by this writer, I knew I would get honesty and humor—two elements that make any read better. Kaye doesn’t try to sugarcoat anything and describes the many challenges married partners face, particularly in her situation, having a much older husband.

Some priceless nuggets included the importance of a sense of humor, communicating about and listening to each other’s problems, giving each additional space to follow individual hobbies and passions, and being flexible enough to take on different roles over the years.

I liked that there were so many relatable topics—health challenges, hearing loss, and depression, just to name a few.

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https://www.facebook.com/WritingBad

©DGKaye2022

Tada! Announcing my #NewRelease – Fifteen First Times – Memoir – #Booklaunch

I am thrilled to announce the release of my latest book – Fifteen First Times, Beginnings: A Collection of Indelible Firsts. The book is now live on Amazon and the paperback will follow.

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Get this book on Amazon

Universal Book Link

Blurb:

This book is a collection of stories about some of Kaye’s first-time experiences with life’s most natural events. Told through the intimate conversational writing we’ve come to know from this author, poignant personal steppingstones to learning moments are revealed. She encompasses the heart of each matter with sincerity and sprinkled inflections of humor.

From first kiss to first car to walking in the desert with four-inch heels, Kaye’s short coming-of-age stories take us through her awakenings and important moments of growth, often without warning.  Some good and some not, life lessons are learned through trial and error, winging it, and navigating by the seat of her pants.

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Editorial:

D.G. Kaye writes with heartfelt regard and unabashed honesty. The life experiences she shares in Fifteen First Times evoke tears as well as laughter. Kaye’s candor and compassion will no doubt appeal to and help many seeking to grow and come into their own. I highly recommend this book and all others by this forthright author. The reader will be left with an ardent desire for more. ~ Author, Tina Frisco

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These short stories are a reminiscing back to some of the firsts in my life. They are moments that left an imprint and propelled me forward through life. Nothing that happens to us is insignificant – everything that happens is for a reason or for teaching us something to take forward with us.

I finished writing this book almost three years ago. When it was ready for edits, I left it to marinate since it was late 2019 and I was getting ready for my winter escape with my husband in early 2020. By the time we returned in mid-March, Covid lockdowns began and so did my husband’s deterioration of his health. The book was the furthest from my mind, as I had no head for edits and publishing. The year got worse as it progressed, and I lost my husband early spring of 2021. Needless to say, I was in no state of mind for publishing. I pushed myself to get back to it this past summer, along with many other projects I’d left on hold. And I kept my promise to myself that I’d publish this book before 2022 came to an end. Mission accomplished.

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D.G. Kaye books

Visit my books on Amazon

©DGKaye2022

Q & A with D.G. Kaye featuring Colleen Chesebro and her #Newrelease – Fairies, Myths, & Magic II

Welcome to my last Q & A for 2022. I’m thrilled to be ending the year out with a bang with Colleen Chesebro here today talking about her brand new release – Fairies, Myths & Magic – A Winter Celebration, book II. Colleen wanted this book out just in time for the winter solstice, which makes it extra enjoyable to read during the festive season. Colleen is an author, poet, and recently began her publishing business – Unicorn Cats Publishing.

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About Colleen:

An avid reader, Colleen M. Chesebro rekindled her love of writing poetry after years spent working in the accounting industry. These days, she loves crafting syllabic poetry, flash fiction, and creative fiction and nonfiction.


In addition to poetry books, Chesebro’s publishing career includes participation in various anthologies featuring short stories, flash fiction, and poetry. She’s an avid supporter of her writing community on Word Craft Poetry.com by organizing and sponsoring a weekly syllabic poetry challenge, called #TankaTuesday, where participants experiment with traditional and current forms of Japanese and American syllabic poetry.


Chesebro is an assistant editor of The Congress of the Rough Writers Flash Fiction Anthology & Gitty Up Press, a micro-press founded by Charli Mills and Carrot Ranch.


In January 2022, Colleen founded Unicorn Cats Publishing Services to assist poets and authors in creating eBooks and print books for publication. In addition, she creates affordable book covers for Kindle and print books.


Chesebro lives in the house of her dreams in mid-Michigan surrounded by the Great Lakes with her husband and two (unicorn) cats, Chloe & Sophie.

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Get this book on Amazon

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Blurb:

In this second book in the Fairies, Myths, & Magic series, step into a world where dark fairies and other magical beings converge in a collection of poetry and short stories inspired by winter and the celebration of the winter solstice.

From autumn’s scary fairies to the forgotten female characters of Yule, prepare to embrace the magical winter solstice myths from around the world. Meet Frau Holle in the Wild Hunt, Befana—the Christmas Witch of Italy, and the Japanese goddess Ameratasu who controls the springtime. Prepare to embrace the Scottish trows, the Irish Goddess of Winter—the Cailleach Béara, and Snegurochka—the Snow Girl.

Learn how to make Yuletide rituals part of your celebration by embracing the symbols of Yule by decorating with evergreens and crystals.

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Celebrate the Landvættir

each Yule, we pay homage
to the land spirits,

Landvættir—guardians of the terra firma
earth, air, fire, and water
jointly bound as one

where the ley lines converge
strength and energy
exist in a parallel space, winter-worn
bronzed leaves on barren trees

watchers of the truth

birth, life, death, and rebirth,
earth magic abounds

reflected in the stormy clouds of winter

for keepers of the land
another year dawns

© Colleen M. Chesebro

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See my recent 5 Star Review for Fairies, Myths, & Magic II

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Welcome

Let’s get to know a little bit more about Colleen

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What hobbies do you enjoy when not writing?


I’ve been so busy lately, but when I have spare time, I like to crochet with thread. I make old fashioned doilies. Just like I count syllables in my poetry, I count stitches in my crochet!

This is a photo of a doily I crocheted as a gift for a friend. Working with my hands as always been something I enjoyed.

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D.G. – You are multi-talented Colleen. That’s beautiful. .💜

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Where do your book ideas grow from?


It seems I always have a book idea rolling around in my mind. Most of the time, something pops into my mind and I’m off to write down the idea, so I don’t forget it. I have a notebook full of ideas! The notes app on my iPhone is full of
ideas too. If I don’t write them down… they’re gone!


Writing poetry and short stories is something I enjoy. Not long ago for one of my #TankaTuesday poetry challenges on Word Craft Poetry, our prompt was to choose a color. The next thing I knew, I’d written a poem about the throat chakra
featuring the color, blue.

the blue throat chakra…
a nexus to the divine
blue hues of heaven
serene, calm, tranquility
found in a blue sky,
slow down, make time to be still
listen to your voice

obey the stillness within
blue the color of pure mind
uncluttered by thoughts
in silence, one can perceive
blue—the purest mind
open wide… the throat chakra
your seat of creativeness


© Colleen M. Chesebro

From that single poem, I birthed the idea to write a book called Chakra Poetry. See how easy it is to be inspired?

D.G. – I think many of us have that same syndrome – forgetting great ideas shortly after they arrive, lol. Yes, writing down is essential. 🙂

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Would you like to share with us what upcoming projects and/or ideas for books you’re working on?


I find inspiration everywhere but most often I’m motivated by other poets. One day, during one of my poetry challenges, another poet asked me about the difference between the Japanese poetry forms: zappai and haiku. I didn’t know
the answer. Well, that lit a fire under me to find more!


I love to research, so off I went. I had to learn everything I could about these two Japanese forms. In fact, I’ll take this a step further and add senryu poetry to it. My next non-fiction book will be called “Haiku Craft: haiku, senryu, & zappai.” Of course, this is a tentative title and can always change. My main objective will be to take a deep dive into these forms by showing examples and creating some poetry of my own to use as examples.


I’ve also been playing with the idea of a book called Tarot Poetry. I think it would be fun to research each tarot card and write poetry inspired by the different cards. I like the blend of non-fiction and poetry. I will need to find a tarot card artist who is willing to allow me to use their tarot card images (with permission). Much of what is found on the card is what characterizes the meaning.


I won’t share all my secrets because I like to have a few things left to dazzle my readers.

D.G. – Oh! I love that idea about writing about Tarot cards! 🙂

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What’s your opinion on self-publishing?


Self-publishing was a dirty word for many years. However, it’s been my experience that self-published books are as good as those published by major publishers. I’m a self-published author, and proud of it!


I subscribe to Kindle Unlimited, the Amazon sharing program. I think I pay $9.00 a month to borrow novels from any author who participates in the program on Amazon.com. What I read; I review. The author gets paid a stipend for the number of pages read. In fact, some months, I make more on the stipends than I do in book sale royalties.

So, it came as a shock when I found the likes of Dean Koontz and other well-known authors participating in the KU program. These authors have publishing contracts, and they are competing with self-published authors for the same stipends! Suddenly, self-publishing doesn’t look all that bad, does it? Seriously, if you’re an author you should be listing your books in the KU program. It’s another revenue stream.


To make self-publishing easier, I founded Unicorn Cats Publishing Services to help poets and authors publish their books. One reason I undertook this mission was because of the font licensing, which is a huge concern for authors and bloggers. If you self-publish your book using Word, you could face issues with font licensing. Read: Font Copyright Laws for Books: Your Print Book Could be in Violation


I use the Atticus publishing program recommended by Kindlepreneur for manuscript preparation. The fonts are owned by the program. They continue to research different licensing options to protect all our authors as well as ensure
everything is safely and legally handled through Atticus.

I also offer affordable book cover options using Canva-Pro. Canva has an extensive selection of fonts. When you subscribe to their Pro plan you are covered under their licensing for fonts.


I believe self-publishing will continue to be the wave of the future. The big publishing houses won’t even read your manuscript unless you are famous. If you can get picked up by a small press, that’s wonderful news. Write ON!

D.G. – Thank you for sharing that all with us Colleen. I would have to guess that many self-published authors aren’t aware about the copyright laws of publishing from Word.

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Special thanks to Debby for her friendship and support. I appreciate you! 💜

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Find Colleen on all her Social Sites:

Colleen’s Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Colleen-
M-Chesebro/e/B01N9MV2RX

Amazon Universal Link: https://mybook.to/FairiesMythsMagicII

Word Craft Poetry: https://wordcraftpoetry.com


Colleen M. Chesebro, Author, Poet & Unicorn Cats Publishing Services: https://colleenmchesebro.com


Facebook Page: Colleen M. Chesebro, Poet & Author: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100085941528913


LinkedIn: https://linkedin.com/in/colleen-m-chesebro-6b856b237

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©DGKaye2022

Sunday Book Review – Fairies, Myths, & Magic II – A Winter Celebration by Colleen Chesebro

Welcome to my Sunday Book Review. I’m thrilled to be reviewing Colleen Chesebro’s new release – Fairies, Myths & Magic II. Colleen brings us into various fairy worlds, explains the myths and celebrations of pagan traditions, and stories inspired by the winter solstice.

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Get This Book on Amazon

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Blurb:

In this second book in the Fairies, Myths, & Magic series, step into a world where dark fairies and other magical beings converge in a collection of poetry and short stories inspired by winter and the celebration of the winter solstice.

From autumn’s scary fairies to the forgotten female characters of Yule, prepare to embrace the magical winter solstice myths from around the world. Meet Frau Holle in the Wild Hunt, Befana—the Christmas Witch of Italy, and the Japanese goddess Ameratasu who controls the springtime. Prepare to embrace the Scottish trows, the Irish Goddess of Winter—the Cailleach Béara, and Snegurochka—the Snow Girl.

Learn how to make Yuletide rituals part of your celebration by embracing the symbols of Yule by decorating with evergreens and crystals.

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My 5 Star Review:

This is book 2 in Chesebro’s FM&M series. In this edition, there is a delicious sprinkling of poetry, ancient pagan myths and legends, faery folklore, celebrations of winter solstice, and short flash stories with accompanying poems to highlight the stories.

The book begins by explaining the magic folklore and legends and some of the rituals of the winter solstice, pagan rituals, and an eerie faery story, the Changeling, about a little girl gone missing as revenge by an evil faery queen because of a generational curse. The way the author evokes the story is not only engaging, but the folklore in her stories give us insights as to the varying rituals pertaining to each subject.

In the Changeling, Trisha and David are filled with woe when Trish discovers her little four year old has gone missing from the back yard without explanation. When David arrives home from work and hears this news, he begins searching for the little one and discovers a piece of cholla wood in his garage with an engraved image of his daughter, making him realize, it was time for him to pay his debt to the faeries, otherwise known as the ‘good people’- despite them not all being good. David explains to his wife the curse and the story about how the dark faery queen shows up when it’s time to pay the debt for the accidental death of a baby killed back in David’s Irish ancestral history. The myth goes back to when the gentry would snatch a child and replace them with a changeling and send the human child to the ‘Otherworld’. But the people learned how to deal with these evil faeries and knew how to get their children back. In this story, the original plan of return backfired and so the penance for David’s family was that they would never know when the queen would show up and snatch one of their children.

David searches frantically through archived Gaelic scriptures in hopes to find out more about how the curse worked, while Trish searched online how to deal with the faery. David wants to sacrifice himself in his daughter’s stead, but Trish finds a different solution worth trying before sacrificing her husband’s life for her daughter’s. On Halloween, the next night, David and Trisha stood in the desert under a full moon and waited for the faery queen to appear. In a whirlwind, the queen appeared and swooped them right up and took them into her world. Trish gives an offering to the queen in exchange for her daughter and discovers her daughter and another changeling who looks just like her daughter. You will have to read on to discover if a bargain is struck and who is this other child. A few other of my favorite stories – Trash or Treasure? – The old saying – ‘One man’s trash is another man’s treasure’, Night of the Mothers – a Germanic holiday that celebrates motherhood and female ancestors. The author talks about Yuletide and takes us through the celebrations of solstice from various countries around the world – Germany, Italy, Iceland, China, Japan, and more.

Yuletide is the time to release the darkness and back to the light – making way for the sun’s return to spring. We will learn the significance of holly, ivy, mistletoe, and everything else tied in with this celebration, foods eaten to celebrate, and more. Did you know the foliage of the Evergreen trees represent immortality and mistletoe represents luck, love and fertility? Where did the usage of Christmas trees originate? Read this book to find the answers and more.

©DGKaye2022

#Book #Promotion featuring Harmony Kent and her #Newrelease – Sorrowful Soul – Book 3 in the Soul Poetry Series

Today I’m happy to be featuring Harmony Kent here with her newest edition to her beautiful, Soul Poetry Series, book 3 – Sorrowful Soul, now on preorder. I love Harmony’s writing and can’t wait for the paperback version to be published so I can have my own tangible copy.

Harmony Kent

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About Harmony:

Harmony Kent spent 13 years in a Zen Buddhist monastery, where she faced her demons and overcame devastating low self-esteem and found freedom. After a life-changing injury, Harmony returned to the world at the tender age of 40, and
her life as a writer began.


Harmony is an award winning multi-genre author, and her publications include:


The Battle for Brisingamen (Fantasy Fiction) AIA approved
The Glade (Mystery/Thriller) AIA Approved/BRAG Medallion Honouree/New
Apple Literary Awards Official Selection Honours 2015
Polish Your Prose: Essential Editing Tips for Authors (Writing/Editing) New
Apple Literary Awards Top Medallist Honours 2015
Finding Katie (Women’s Fiction)
Slices of Soul (Soul Poetry Series: Book 1)
Life and Soul (Soul Poetry Series: Book 2)
Sorrowful Soul (Soul Poetry Series: Book 3)
Interludes (Erotic Short Stories)
Interludes 2 (Erotic Short Stories)
Moments (Short Stories and Poetry)
Jewel in the Mud (Zen Musings)
Polish Your Prose (How to Self-Edit)
Creative Solutions (Creative Writing Inspiration)
Backstage (Erotic Romance and Thriller)
FALLOUT (Post-Apocalyptic Dystopia) BRAG Medallion Honouree
The Vanished Boy (Psychological Thriller)

As well as being an avid reader and writer, Harmony also offers reviews and supports her fellow authors. Harmony is always on the lookout for talent and excellence, and will freely promote any authors or books who she feels have these attributes.

Sorrowful Soul by Harmony Kent

Universal Sales Link:
https://mybook.to/SorrowfulSoul

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Blurb:

If we’re lucky, we meet twilight at the front door and old age creeps in on the night breeze.


Even if we make it to our twilight years, the more we age, the more loss we must endure as part of the cycle of life. Many of these poems lament death, but they also relate to broken relationships, severed friendships, and the loss of youth. This book of grief poetry is as much about saying goodbye and working through loss as it is about death and love split asunder.


This heartfelt collection provides company and compassion through the devastating journey of loss and shows us we do not travel this lonely road alone. Within these pages we share shock, numbness and denial, catapult into anger, bargaining, depression, loneliness, and guilt, and—eventually—make the seismic shift into testing the possibility of a new normal and finding acceptance.

Harmony’s beautiful book is on Pre-Order Now

GRAB YOUR COPY NOW: https://mybook.to/SorrowfulSoul

Check out Harmony’s beautiful trailer for Sorrowful Soul

Harmony here:

Hi, Debby. Thanks so much for hosting me today. It’s always wonderful to visit with you.


Here’s a little bit I’d love to share about my latest book of poetry, Sorrowful Soul. Full of freestyle poems, which provide company and compassion through the devastating journey of grief and loss and onward, this heartfelt collection shows us we do not travel this lonely road alone.


Though I’ve organised this book of poetry into seven sections, which follow established stages of grief, I’d like to note bereavement is non-linear and messy. It’s common to move up and circle around, and progress to the so-called higher steps, only to come crashing down, especially on anniversaries or other meaningful dates. Not even meaningful, as it can be the most insignificant of everyday things that undoes us … a discarded shoe, an odd sock, or a simple visit to the shop.

D.G. – You said a mouthful here Harmony. I know of what you speak, only too well. 🧡


Below is an extract from a poem about the journey through grief and moving toward a tentative acceptance of a new reality …

From Part 6: Working Through
(Extract From Night Train)

This train of travesty don’t stop
Just keeps a rollin’ down these treacherous tracks
The further it lurches into the dead, fallen leaves
The more friends and acquaintances fall behind
Unwilling or unable to journey with me and my baggage
As I climb my mountain of woe and regret—too near the edge
I grow tired and weary, my luggage heavy
To continue on there’s only one thing I can do
Pack my grief into a smaller suitcase
Hold it tight to my heaving, ache-filled chest
And take a leap of faith from this speeding train
As it hurtles straight for the abyss

H.K. -The line ‘Pack my grief into a smaller suitcase’ was inspired by one of Debby’s podcasts on grief, which I love. These short pieces on grieving are a must-listen and emphasise the non- linear nature of grief. Debby has a wonderful voice, and I could listen to her for hours.

D.G. – Harmony, I’m tearing up here from your heartfelt poem and your most kind words about me, and honored you’ve been inspired by my podcasts enough to listen and share one of my lines in your poem. I cannot wait for your book to become available in paperback! 💜


H.K. – Sadly, at times it seems as though grief piles atop grief, and the ‘train of travesty don’t stop.’ Life doesn’t always wait for us to recover from one loss before it hits us with another. Have you had to cope with multiple losses at once? If so, what helped you through your difficult times? Chat with me in the comments. I hope you enjoyed this poetic excerpt and would love to know what you think. Thanks for reading.

Find Harmony on Social Sites:

Harmony’s Website


twitter: @harmony_kent


Goodreads: Harmony Kent


BookBub: Harmony Kent


Story Empire (co-authored blog): Harmony Kent


Harmony’s Amazon Author Page: author.to/HarmonysBooks

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©DGKaye2022

Cover Reveal – New Book Coming Soon!

I’m not quite sure where this year has flown to, but I also never mentioned I’ve been working on getting my book I finished writing in 2019, published this year. Seems I’m cutting it to the last days of 2022, but it’s coming.

The eventual coming of a new book … In 2019 I finished writing a little memoir called Fifteen First Times – Beginnings: A Collection of Indelible Firsts. It was late fall and my plan was to let the book marinate through the winter of 2020 while my husband and I went to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico for two months to dodge the worst of winter here. Little did I know, that would be our last vacation together, and I discovered he wasn’t looking well. We got home just in time – the day before Covid lockdowns began here, and coincidentally, my husband’s scheduled hospital checkup was cancelled.

The year 2020 became a difficult one as the days, weeks and months passed and I had yet to know that I was losing the love of my life to cancer and I couldn’t get him into the hospital until is was much too late. I digress. Needless to say, the last thing on my mind was going through edits, which requires concentration, and all the tedious bits that go into publishing. The year 2020 passed, and in spring of 2021 so did my husband. Needless to say, I was non productive in 2021.

I promised myself I’d publish this book in 2022. Edits began, and in between book stuff, was life, and learning to do podcasts, and writing for them, and well, as you know, before we know it, year’s end is approaching. And so now as we near the end of 2022, I will be publishing this book by hook or by crook before the calendar flips to 2023.

My spiritual Sister, Colleen Chesebro of Unicorn Cats Publishing designed this cover for my book:

Here’s the blurb:

This book is a collection of stories about some of Kaye’s first-time experiences with life’s most natural events. Told through the intimate conversational writing we’ve come to know from this author, poignant personal stepping-stones to learning moments are revealed. She encompasses the heart of each matter with sincerity and sprinkled inflections of humor.

From first kiss to first car to walking in the desert with four-inch heels, Kaye’s short coming-of-age stories take us through her awakenings and important moments of growth, often without warning.  Some good and some not, life lessons are learned through trial and error, winging it, and navigating by the seat of her pants.

💜💚🧡

I’m aiming to publish somewhere within the next two weeks. I hope once published that some of you in this wonderful community will help spread the word. 💜

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©DGKaye2022