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An Easter Post

 All sorts of Pretties for Easter!! Have a wonderful Easter!

colorsheep
Pretty! Freshly dyed sheep run in view of the highway near Bathgate, Scotland. The sheep farmer has been dying his sheep with nontoxic dye to entertain passing motorists. Thanks to Vogue Knitting for the Photo!!!

 

 

A flock of orange dyed sheep brighten up the Isle of Mull
Click the photo to read the story!  One desperate farmer has given his flock a coat to dye for in a bid to thwart sheep rustlers on the Scottish islands. With the help of non-toxic orange dye the farmer has given the sheep the bizarre makeover as a result of ever increasing thefts

 

yelow
They call me Mellow Yellow!
coshp
Have you ever wondered how they make plaid? Well, this says it all! LOL

 

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Here, chicky chicky chicky!! Check out the original photo by clicking on the photo!
bunny
Love to spin Angora? Well, this is a lop, but she is already dyed for spinning! Check out the photo, and others, by clicking the link!
neonsunset
If you love spinning, you can’t go wrong with the spinning yarn rolags, and other items from my good friend Holly at Blue Barn Fibers! Check out her Etsy site by clicking the photo of her Neon Sunset rolag! Aren’t the GORGEOUS??
uke eggs
Aren’t these Ukrainian eggs amazing?? Thanks to Nancy Sproull for the photo! Check out her Pinterest page by clicking on the photo!
natural-dye-easter-eggs
Click on the photo to go to Sonya’s site to see how she coloured these amazing Easter eggs. The blue one is coloured with RED cabbage leaves. How cool is that? Photo courtesy of radmegan. All Rights Reserved. Please click the photo to check out this and other wonderful information and photos on Sonya’s site!
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Touring With Katy!!! My Book Tour Post For “See Jane Fall”

sjf
The new Heart of Montana Romance! Click the cover to purchase – if you are a romance reader, I can’t recommend Katy highly enough.

The beauty of a woman is not in a facial mode but the true beauty in a woman is reflected in her soul. It is the caring that she lovingly gives the passion that she shows. The beauty of a woman grows with the passing years. – Audrey Hepburn

A mother takes twenty years to make a man of her boy, and another woman makes a fool of him in twenty minutes. – Robert Frost

Jane has a life I would never want to even attempt. Orphaned at ten, she is shuffled off to live with her uncle Mays, her father’s twin brother and his family. Broken hearted and alone, she is shuffled to the side by her aunt and their daughter, Sara, who are furiously jealous of any attention that her uncle bestows upon her – the only daughter of his beloved twin.

There is another difficulty – for Sara is that incredibly rare creation of nature, a perfect beauty. The kind of beauty that leaves women in despair, and whom men . . .? Well, drooling idiot comes to mind. And let’s just say that Sara has that whole “bee-atch” thing down to a science. Hateful, vicious, self-centred, cruel, demanding, “fill in nasty descriptor here.” And Jane? Well, being the technical assistant to now supermodel Sara for the last five years (because uncle asked, and of course Jane can’t turn him down), Jane has withstood more poisonous vituperation than any one sweet, gentle, kind, good natured woman should have to stand.

As the third in the Heart of Montana Romance series, you no doubt can guess that the next shoot is to be set in Yellowstone, one of the most beautiful parks in the world, much less the United States. As always, Katy gives you a taste of the awesome beauty of Northern Montana all through the book, from the Loop to Sheepeaters, Old Faithful and Yellowstone Lake. The town of Gardiner plays its part as well, acting as the quaint and historical setting for all 720 of its inhabitants.

Coming ahead to set things up for Sara, or ‘Samara’ as she calls herself now, Jane meets Lars Lindstrom, who is set to be the local tour guide for Samara’s entourage. Fully loaded down with Samara’s ‘send ahead’ luggage: “I think it was eight bags. Maybe nine. Maybe eighty-six thousand and twenty-four. I can’t remember.” And the first thing Lars thinks is. . . “She really wasn’t much to look at.” Sigh. And there you go. The set up for pain, misunderstandings, and sheer stupidity on the part of the male population of the little town of Gardiner – and especially on the part of one naïve Swede named Lars. One stupid, drooling, fawning, naïve Swede named Lars. Sigh. So, though Lars is apparently drawn to Jane’s wit, courage, kindness, and a growing knowledge of how lovely she truly is, and refuses to believe that he will fall into Samara when she arrives, lured to her by her breathtaking beauty – and though Jane wishes with all her heart that she could be wrong, that he could be that .01% of the population that doesn’t fall under her spell – well.

Believe me, Samara is one person that anyone with a conscience should happily love to hate. And my blood boiled with it, I must admit. The thing Sara truly doesn’t comprehend? Beauty is ever to the lonely mind a shadow fleeting; she is never plain. She is a visitor who leaves behind the gift of grief, the souvenir of pain1. Sara may be beautiful for a few more, fleeting years – but Jane. Jane will be beautiful forever… But will Lars figure that out? Or will he, like so many others, be merely another broken toy, flung aside by a spoiled, vindictive child-woman, while Jane herself is once again left to fade into the background? No way, People. You HAVE to read this book; I certainly am not going to tell you!

Katy’s handling of Samara and Jane, as well as Lars, Nils, Maggie, and the rest of the characters in this third of this marvelous series, is as wonderfully handled as always. She draws you into the characters and the landscape, and the reader can’t help but long for the stunning vistas of Montana, and the presence of its people, as the story wraps around your heart and mind and pulls you in.

And is it silly to say how much I love the Swedish language peppered throughout the story? Katy imbues her books with the strength and loyalty that threads throughout the families in her books. The feeling of not only history and pride in heritage, but the love and compassion that the families have for not only their blood relations, but for their friends and neighbors. Vardefull (I can’t find the a with the two little dots over the top, darn umlauts!) Anyway, the word means “valuableprecious” sort of what I feel about Katy’s books. One way or the other, this has always been one of my favorite things about her writing. Her focus on a family life lived well, even if Jane’s personal family is a train wreck, Lars’ definitely isn’t.

Fair warning: Toward the end of the book one of the characters decides to engage in a BDSM lifestyle, although graphic scenes are not included in the book. This bothered me. If you are offended by this “lifestyle” as I am, please keep this in mind.

This book was provided to me by Heather Davenport at Book Plug Promotions in return for an honest review. No remuneration was exchanged. All thoughts and statements are my own.

________
1 Christopher Morley

Blurb:
When a plain Jane photographer faces off with her supermodel cousin to win an easygoing cowboy’s heart, someone’s going to fall. Hard.
Synopsis:

DIZZYING HEIGHTS

When his company is contracted by a magazine to help with a fashion photo shoot, easy-going Yellowstone tour guide Lars Lindstrom rolls his eyes. This means he’ll have to “babysit” supermodel Samara Amaya’s assistant. Little does he know that Jane Mays, Samara’s down-to-earth, smart-mouthed assistant and cousin, with her smoky voice and surprisingly soft heart, is someone of whom he can’t get enough—or that spoiled Samara has her sights set on a weekend fling with him and will do just about anything to get her way.

When a plain Jane faces off with a supermodel to win a cowboy’s heart, just about anyone can end up taking a fall. This time it’ll be for good.
AUTHOR BIO:katy-regnery-2

KATY REGNERY, contemporary romance author of the Heart of Montana and Enchanted Places series, has always loved telling a good story. She credits her mother with making funny, heartwarming tales come alive throughout her childhood. A lifelong devotee of all romance writing, from Edwardian to present-day, it was just a matter of time before Katy tried her hand at writing a love story of her own. Living in northern Fairfield County, Connecticut, where her writing room looks out at the woods, her family creates just enough cheerful chaos to remind her that the very best love stories of all are the messy and unexpected ones.

Please track down Katy on Twitter (@KatyRegnery) or Facebook (KatyRegnery) where she loves interacting with her fansespecially at #LunchtimeLiveWithKaty every weekday from 12-1pm EST.

Katy Regnery Links!
• Katy Regnery (Goodreads): https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7211470
• Katy Regnery (Amazon Author link): http://www.amazon.com/Katy-Regnery/e/B00FDZKXYU/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1394938840&sr=8-2-ent
• Facebook: www.facebook.com/KatyRegnery
• Twitter: @KatyRegnery
• By Proxy (Goodreads): https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18299829-by-proxy
• Midsummer Sweetheart, Heart of Montana #2 (Goodreads): https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20613919-midsummer-sweetheart
• See Jane Fall, Heart of Montana #3 (Goodreads): https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20920630-see-jane-fall
Purchasing Links:
By Proxy – http://amzn.to/1lcMKV3
Midsummer Sweetheart – http://amzn.to/1aRG3UA
See Jane Fall – http://tinyurl.com/lgmxr6w

 

Rafflecopter:
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Review: All for You by Jessica Scott – Very Highly Recommended

 
Some Army families who recently lost members to suicide criticize the branch for failing to aggressively shake a culture in which soldiers believe they’ll be deemed weak and denied promotion if they seek mental health aid. They also blame Army leaders for focusing more heavily on weeding out  emotionally troubled soldiers to artificially suppress the branch’s suicide stats versus embracing and helping members who are exhibiting clear signs of trouble. – The Enemy Within: Soldier suicides outpaced combat deaths in 2012
Thursday Jan 3, 2013 5:23 PM Bill Briggs, NBC News contributor

A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual doom. – Martin Luther King, Jr.

allforyou
Very Highly Recommended. A romance, yes, but also an extremely well written call for compassion and assistance for those soldiers who are in deep and abiding pain.

Write what you know. It is a simple rule, a pillar of “How To Write A Good Book” and probably one of the most misunderstood. As Nathan Englander, the critically acclaimed author of What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank once said, “Write what you know” isn’t about events. It’s about emotions. Have you known love? jealousy? longing? loss?

In her new book, All For You, A Coming Home Novel Jessica Scott takes that advice and builds upon it, writing a heart wrenching story which left me sobbing on the floor, my heart broken for all those soldiers who return from war broken and lost, and just how badly they need our help – help that the unremitting machine of the military and government would rather deny them. As K. Lang from Las Vegas put it in her Amazon review, no matter the branch, there are raging morons who don’t care and people with flaws trying to fix things in spite of those same raging morons. And the raging morons are thick on the ground at Fort Hood, Texas. (Having done a job there many years ago, I can tell you – I met my own fair share. And that was in peacetime.)

For all of you romance readers out there, this is indeed a romance, never fear. And an extremely well written one. If you don’t like romance? Just skip through those parts, but you HAVE to read this book. What is says is too important not to.

Sergeant First Class Reza Iaconelli is a broken and deeply damaged man, a leader of men with a long-time alcohol problem and a broken soul. He has had to live within a shell of alcohol and brutality for so long, he truly doesn’t know any other way to be. Captain Emily Lindberg is the psychologist who has left behind a life of privilege and familial control, striking out on her own in order to do good for the soldiers who truly need her services, leaving behind the spoiled, rich kids of privilege looking for excuses for their own bad behavior.

What Emily walks into is far from what she expects. Fort Hood is a place of systems and procedures that don’t work, that are devastating to the very people they are supposed to protect. Those soldiers, both men and women, who have come back from war, from death and dirt, blood and insanity – actions that are beyond the normal person’s comprehension. Scott lays it out in all its brutal simplicity – get EM’ in, get EM’ back out into the field. No matter what. And if they are damaged? Get EM’ all the way out, back into society, no matter what the war has done to them, no matter how the blood and gore has broken them. No matter how much they have given and suffered for their country. They are coldly thrown away, like so many broken, irreparable tools.

Jessica Scott knows of which she speaks. A career Army officer and wife of a career Army NCO, Scott has written for the New York Times’s At War blog, PBS’s Point of View Regarding War, and Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America. She deployed to Iraq in 2009 as part of OIF/New Dawn and has served as a company commander at Fort Hood, Texas twice. So, yes, she does know that of which she speaks. And what she knows is horrifying.

Scott is careful to point out in her Note From The Author, “This book is not meant as an indictment of our men and women in uniform or the military that we serve or the thousands of leaders who do the right thing every day and try to take care of their soldiers.” And there are those who do try every single day to do the right thing. Who try their best, despite a broken and uncaring system that rolls right over the top of them in a heartless march to simply fill out the paperwork, follow the rules, and move on to the next thing – which, in too many instances, is gaining their next bar or pip or stripe no matter the cost to their own soldiers, those very soldiers whom their very purpose should be to protect and honor.

Yes, Jessica Scott has written a brilliant story of romance between two people who, no matter how different they may be, not only learn to love one another, but also need one another in order to do what they need to do, who need one another to do good and to provide the strength that not only they need, but also those around them need in order to stay sane, focused, and safe. But she has also written a story which points out just how badly our soldiers need our help. How the pain, death, and the horrors they face every day can often be more than even the strongest among them can bear, and how more often than we would like to admit, the uncaring military machine simply throws them under the bus, leaving them to lives of drug abuse, alcoholism, homelessness, and ultimately suicide.

Buy the book. Read it. And then take a look around you. In Jennifer Scott’s words, if you know someone who is hurting, if you suspect someone is having a hard time, ask them. Don’t be afraid. Speak up. Ask the question. Because you never know what someone else is going through. And you might just make a difference.

I would go beyond that. Take the time to check out the heart of her story yourself. Talk to veterans and their families. If you are a family member or friend, be there for them, ask the right questions of your Congressmen and Senators. Write letters and give your support. These men and women give their lives and their souls in order to ascertain that you can stop at Starbucks for your latte. The least we can do is help to make sure that they get the help and support that they richly deserve.

VERY Highly Recommended. This book was provided to me by Netgalley in return for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

The Returns Take A Tour of Dumaine Street!

thekidsinjeep
M. K. Clinton’s Stars Cruising Dumaine Street on Thanksgiving!

M. K. Clinton’s wonderful hubby, Skipper, took this shot of the stars of The Returns and Showstoppers cruising Dumaine Street today! The breeze, of course, has Bentleys ears blowing in the wind. 

How Cute are they???

It’s Thanksgiving – Give of Yourself This Holiday Season

family in car
Photo courtesy of MikeMalloy.com
All rights reserved
native
Poster courtesy of Ann’s Journals Collection.
All Rights Reserved
Click for website.

Thanksgiving. The celebration of the survival of the first group of White colonists to live through their arrival on the new continent, soon to be called “America.” The Native population helped them to survive, teaching food gathering, how to build shelters, and how to survive the harsh Eastern climate.

Hence began the genocide of whole cultures, the slaughter of women and children, and the modern day environmental disasters of the White invaders.

But be that here nor there, Thanksgiving is now a celebration of family, friends, and community. Though in this day and age, there is way too much hunger in this land of plenty. Job loss; home loss; women and children living in cars and on the streets. The pressures on the American people are crushing. Hunger is out of control, and the systems that provide food and shelter for those in need are being squeezed tighter and tighter to pay for military costs and the greed of the top 1% of the country – those who caused this nightmare in the first place.

So, before you sit down with family and friends, you should consider doing your part to help. Call in a donation to your local shelter or soup kitchen. Better yet, grab up the turkey and stuffing and carry it with you, and your friends and family, and volunteer. The needy will be fed, and you might be surprised at just how wonderful it makes you, and those you love, feel.

Happy Thanksgiving.

richmenneed
Photo courtesy of Armchair Patriots.
Via Pinterest.com
Click for original photo.
table
Photo courtesy of cookturkey.net
Found on Pinterest.com
Click for original photo.

SHOWSTOPPERS IS OUT IN PAPERBACK! WOO HOO!

The Returns 2 ~ Showstoppers is out in paperback on Amazon!
The Returns 2 ~ Showstoppers is out in paperback on Amazon!

The holidays are nearly here, and what better gift than beautiful copies of SHOWSTOPPERS for all your friends and family? Heartwarming, funny, and all around lovable, these canine companions, along with their Angel Guardian, her Angel Mentor, and their favorite FBI Agent are on another adventure!

Travel with them, from New Orleans to New York as they track down the evil people who are kidnapping famous show dogs!

The Returns 2 ~ Showstoppers is out in paperback on Amazon! Click the link above and you can purchase copies for everyone on your list!

 

Review: Plague by Buzz Bernard

plague
The idea was good.
The outcome, not so much.
Click for Goodreads reviews.

“We produce about 100 metric tons per year of weaponized variola virus. Smallpox.” Uri Sherbokov – designated escort, minder, keeper – Plague

“I studied at Emory University in America.” – Alnour Barashi – Terrorist – Plague

“We had begun working on the biological warfare issue in 1993, after the World Trade Center bombing made it clear that terrorism could strike at home, and a defector from Russia had told us that his country had huge stocks of anthrax, smallpox, Ebola, and other pathogens, and had continued to produce them even after the demise of the Soviet Union.”– Bill Clinton

Plague
[pleyg] noun
1. an epidemic disease that causes high mortality; pestilence.
2. an infectious, epidemic disease caused by a bacterium, Yersinia pestis,  characterized by fever, chills, and prostration, transmitted to humans from rats by means of the bites of fleas. Compare bubonic plague, pneumonic plague, septicemic plague.
3. any widespread affliction, calamity, or evil, especially one regarded as a direct punishment by God: a plague of war and desolation. -Websters Merriam Dictionary 2013

I am very much of two minds about this book, and for two very different reasons. I put a great deal of thought into my review after reading, and still am torn.

To get this out of the way, I am not fond of the writing style. The exposition is thin, the characters are more ‘caricatures’ and it could stand a good editor who can help the writer more fully realize his plotting and characterizations.

With that out of the way, let’s talk terrorism, level-4 containment, and the ease of foreign terrorists gaining use of facilities. We know other countries are creating biological weapons, as are we. “An offensive biological program was begun in 1942 under the direction of a civilian agency, the War Reserve Service (WRS). The Army Chemical Warfare Service was given responsibility and oversight for the effort. The mounting threat of the German buzz bombs that were raining on England from launching sites on the Continent during 1943 spurred the urgency of BW (biological warfare) defense because it was thought that these high-explosive rockets might easily be converted into efficient weapons for massive BW attacks.”(Weapons of Mass Destruction: http://www.globalsecurity.org/wmd/systems/bw.htm)

Things haven’t slowed down since 1942, and in some countries, especially Middle Eastern and the former Soviet states, it has increase dramatically. Given the state of world terrorism, it is not if, but when we will have to face yet another bioterror attack, such as the anthrax attacks of 2001. How it happens, and what the outcome is up in the air, but it will happen, and it will be horrific.

Bernard’s “Plague” addresses this issue, given a situation where the terrorist is an employee of a level-4 laboratory. The scenario is plausible, though some don’t seem to agree with me. Employees have the run of their labs, and can come and go at need, making it simple for them to hide what they are doing. As another reviewer said (paraphrased) “just like at Wendy’s.” There are thousands of foreigners working at highly secure facilities all around the United States, making it easy for a foreign terrorist to gain access if their cover is deep enough. Besides, we have own own, “home grown” terrorists as well who are just as dangerous, though usually on a par with high school educations rather than high-level virologists. I had no problem believing that part of the story. I could even see a foreign government being involved in the ownership of one of these facilities. Apparently, American corporations are more about the money than they are the safety of the people. But be that neither here nor there.

The writing simply wasn’t believable. Like many, I am a huge fan of the nonfiction work “The Hot Zone” and others in the vein. I adore heavily scientific works based around this theme, whether they be fiction or non-fiction. However, this one didn’t reach the level of excellence I had hoped for. If Bernard had spent more time on exposition, I might possibly have found the work more interesting. However, the characters just didn’t feel realistic. They were stilted and in at least one case, cartoonish.

While the overall idea was good, in the end, the book was simply a disappointment for me.

Review Maggie Get Your Gun: Maggie MacKay Magical Tracker Book 2-Kate Danley

Maggie Get Your Gun: Maggie MacKay Magical Tracker Book 2

maggiegetyourgun
Click to get your copy. You will want to, because her new one is now out!

First, if you are looking for “serious” UF, before you pick up either of these volumes, let me warn you. Ilona Andrews or Mark Henwick, this is not. What this series is, though, is lighthearted fun with an interesting twist that keeps you reading. Sometimes, that is all you really need from a book, and Kate Danley delivers in spades.

One of the best things about this book is why Danley wrote it. Proceeds from the write-a-thon where this book was mostly written benefited the Young Writers Program, which funds free creative writing programs in hundred of schools and communities around the world. With the state of public education and the lack of support for the arts, I give Ms. Danley full kudos for her work.

The story itself picks up after the action in Maggie for Hire (Maggie MacKay – Magical Tracker). Maggie has her dad back and he and her mom have gone off for a nice weekend away to celebrate his return from two years stuck in limbo. Now, a new client walks in her door, with what seems a ridiculously simple job. To retrieve a simple ladies hair comb, ‘dropped in the desert’ outside of Calico Ghost Town on the far outskirts of Las Vegas. What happens next is a rather slap-stick (read ‘vintage Danley’) chase through deserts and down mine shafts to an old fashioned “Standoff At The OK Corral” ghost and monster style, in the streets of a real “Ghost Town” on the Other Side. As always, the good guys win, but only by a ‘ghost’ of a chance and with enough snark and ‘F’ bombs to float the Marie Celeste. (I will admit that I would appreciate some different and more creative expletives – the bomb is getting rather old . . .)

All in all, this series is funny and charming and is quite a pleasant way to wile away an afternoon. It doesn’t put a strain on the brain, the characters are to my mind quite likeable and you learn a bit more about Maggie’s mom in this one. I like her more even than I did before. I am really looking forward to the next one. I haven’t read The Woodcutter yet, that is on my list of must reads. Thanks, Ms. Danley, for a fun read and I look forward to more soon.

Funny throughout, good world building, likeable characters, lots of “F”bombs if you are offended by that sort of thing. Kate still needs a good editor, a few too many errors are creeping through that could set off the “Grammar Nazis”. Nothing five stars, but still well worth the $3.99.

The newest, Maggie on the Bounty (Maggie MacKay, Magical Tracker #3) was published July 15, 2013 and flew in right under my radar. I will be checking it out soon.

From the GoodReads blurb:

maggieonthebounty
The newest Maggie!

New business partners, Maggie and Killian, are looking forward to their latest gig: finding out why all the ghosts are disappearing from the Empress Adelaide, a turn of the century ocean liner who once shuttled Hollywood’s finest across the Atlantic. But Maggie and Killian find themselves trapped in the past, caught in a time rift with only a ghost of a chance of escaping. This ain’t no pleasure cruise.

Review: Play Him Again: A Matt Hudson Roaring 20’s Crime Novel

play him again
Click to look inside.

Note: I was originally asked by the writer to review this book when it first came out March 17, 2012, and received a copy for free. Before I was halfway through, I went back to Smashwords and purchased the book. This great a read deserves a payment to the author!

The Essex Super Six Coupe rolled over the redwood planking, shattered the wooden railing at the end of the Sunset Pier, and plunged into the Pacific Ocean.

 

I am not normally a student of American History. While the great histories of Egypt and the Mesopotamian regions are well within my purview, possibly my Native American history makes the history of the US after the arrival of the white man more painful than I care to think about. However, the period of this book, the 1920’s, the age of the Volstead Act and some of the bloodiest of the country, other than the Civil War, is admittedly fascinating. And Jeffrey Stone does an incredible job of making you feel like you are there, in the period, and know these people he is writing about.

The thing I totally admire about the book is Mr. Stone’s grasp of the period. His research was flawless. The main characters of the book are `rumrunners,’ those brave (and, of course, criminal) purveyors of `distilled spirits’, which were made illegal by the Volstead Act, the 18th Amendment to the Constitution. This act of hubris, brought on by the efforts of `temperance societies’ in the US, created an atmosphere of violence and greed across the country unseen at any other period. Billions of dollars in tax revenues were lost (could the Great Depression have been foreshortened by the taxes from legal liquor sales?) while gangsters turned the country into a shooting gallery, and thousands died from imbibing bootleg liquors laced with wood alcohol and other chemicals. Embalming fluid, anyone?

Stone’s little band of `heroes,’ led by Hud, a rum runner and all around nice guy (yes, he is a criminal, but in those days, you took your `criminal’ by degrees) are devastated as the book opens by the murder of their friend Danny, a `big con roper’. As I got deeper and deeper into the book, the reality and the spirit of the period drew me in, and refused to let me go. Hud is a rumrunner, but he is also very involved in another story so integral to the period – the advent of `talkies’ – motion pictures that featured sound.

In this day and age of Blu-ray, surround sound and 3D, it is hard to remember that, in the first two decades of the 20th century, movies were filmed with no sound at all, and were viewed strictly in theaters. Stone’s research into the period provides fascinating background. While 1927’s “The Jazz Singer”, the first movie produced and distributed with actual spoken dialog, was hailed by audiences of the time, Warner Brothers Studios head, and others, considered `talkies’ a passing fad, and were reluctant to invest in the technology. Stone’s Hud, fascinated by the process and seeing the possibilities in the field, spends time during the book planning his own talkie production, thereby giving us deep insight into what I consider to the hysterically funny limitations of thought of the studio heads of the time. (Yes, you CAN buy a three-disk special edition of “The Jazz Singer” at Amazon. Personally, I am waiting for the 3D version – ROFL)

Overall, this is one of the best books I have ever read set in the period. I am a huge fan of Dashiell Hammett and his ilk from that period, but this is a different animal. Steeped in the actual history of the period, Stone’s Hud and his friends are a more accessible group, with a minimum of the angst present in Hammett’s work. With even the slightest interest in the period, the development of the movie industry, or human nature as a whole, this is definitely the book for you. I mean, who can’t love an author who starts out his story in the front seat of an Essex Super Six Coupe? I do love me some antique cars!

This book is free at Amazon! Get your copy today!

Raised in Ohio, Jeffrey M. Stone moved to Santa Monica, California, in his early twenties. He now lives in Sonoma, in the Northern California wine country. Santa Monica beach was two blocks away but now it’s forty miles to the coast, the water is cold, and the rocky shoreline not conducive to body surfing. These days his favorite pastimes are playing tennis and riding his bike. As a reader, Jeffrey’s preferred genres have always been mystery/crime and historical fiction. As a writer, he aspires to write well researched, entertaining crime stories that transport readers into a different era.

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