Silver Cascade Secrets – a Book Review

Silver Cascade SecretsTitle: Silver Cascade Secrets by Rachelle J Christensen

Genre: Currently #1810 in Kindle Store, Kindle Short Reads, Two hours or more, Romance

Publisher: Peachwood Press

Publication Date: September 2015

Silver Cascade SecretsColorful cover

Yah gotta give it for short, given the (romantic suspense) novella itself was only about 60 pages of an 85-page offering.

There wasn’t a lot of suspense here, only a young woman on the rebound chasing a possible next up romance; kind of a girl gets boy, girl loses boy, girl gets him back again story.

Jillian Warren is the landscape technician of the Silver Cascade Park set in Boise, Idaho (and you have to admit that’s different for a protagonist). I did enjoy the description of the gardens, themes, and seasonal colors.

It doesn’t take long for Jillian to develop the hots for Travis when she meets him in her park and notices how nice he fills out a pair of jeans. He is looking for his keys after his sister picks up his niece and she’s glad to help.

Travis soon shares that his brother-in-law was murdered months ago and Jillian is off and running on the mystery that doesn’t take as long to solve as getting Travis to shoot doe eyes back at her.

The novella is really too short for plot development, and the protagonist, swift as she is, doesn’t garner a whole lot of interest, as she seems a bit vacuous. (I mean, come on, she is just getting over her last love and supposed to be heartbroken.) The ex does make a short appearance creating turmoil for Jillian (remember I said girl loses [current] boy?).

We are barely introduced to the antagonist or the peripheral characters, and you don’t have to worry about adult language or situations as these characters and dialogue are too juvenile for either.

Following the short story portion of the book are recipes(!), introductory chapter of a succeeding book and prologue of an additional full novel, which I found to be a bit over-the-top promotion. This story is apparently included in an older anthology, but falls a bit short to be a stand-alone novella and perhaps was the reason for the marketing offers.

Four StarI was offered a free download for an honest review, and while I thought the premise was unique, the plot and characters fall just a little short of cozy. Recommended for those looking for a light-hearted, fast, and easy read.

Rosepoint Publishing: Four of Five Stars

Rachelle J ChristensenThe Author: Rachelle is an award-winning author of twelve books, including a Kindle Scout Selection and a mystery series. She is the mother of five who writes a variety of fiction as well as nonfiction. She and her family reside on a little farm in rural Idaho. Rachelle is a graduate of Utah State University. ©2017 Virginia Williams I Love Likes and Comments--Please Share!

Infographic for Click to Tweet Guidelines for WordPress

How to Add a Click to Tweet LinkMea culpa, and by the way, that is directly from the Oxford Dictionaries that I was so busy posting about on my blog Friday. Yes, I was trying something new, and as always with this old dog, graphic tricks don’t come easy. So apologies to all who received multiple updates as I doggedly tried again to create a “Click to Tweet” to my post. This is a free basic plan–there are paid upgrades (aren’t there always?). You’d think these things would be easier than they are, but apparently everything has to be tantamount to learning Photoshop. I seem to be the last one to figure these things out–or maybe not–if you haven’t tried it lately, perhaps this could help?

Just in case you could use a short Infographic on the whole Click to Tweet thing, I created this one and hope that it helps sufficiently that you will try it, if you aren’t indeed way ahead of me already. Click to Tweet

Continue reading Infographic for Click to Tweet Guidelines for WordPress

Which Side of the Oxford Comma War Are You On?

Oxford CommaThe Oxford University Press sparked a war back in 1892 that continues to this day with as many on both sides of the line protesting their side as the right one.

The Oxford comma (also referred to as a serial comma, or even the Harvard comma) is that “comma before the conjunction at the end of a list.” The Oxford University Press style guidelines touched off the conflict back when Horace Hart, controller of the University Press, organized a set of rules for the Oxford Press employees.

While the anti-comma faction would eliminate the second comma, the pro-comma faction would add it, sure that it provides clarity. The “pro’s” are more commonly found in the U.S. (I wouldn’t be without mine!) Only journalists forced to use the AP style generally omit it, but that was originally a bid to save space! The anti-comma people hold sovereignty in the U.K., except, of course, for Oxford University–go figure.

Why all the fuss over bell, book, and candle? Aren’t we invoking the Oxford comma for purposes of clarity?  Click to Tweet

And doesn’t that really promote consistency of comma use? Apparently not in some scholars eyes. The article by Warren Clement to The Globe and Mail noted this example: “She invited her father, a tuba player and several ballerinas. It is clear that she invited her father, the musician and the ballerinas.(?Is it?) Now insert the Oxford comma: She invited her father, a tuba player, and several ballerinas. Suddenly the father has become a tuba player.(Really?)

Hmmm…You say to-may-to and I say to-mah-to…

And we’ve been at this 125 years? So I’ll submit to you one final argument illustrated in riveting detail that you may or may not have seen before: “We invited the strippers, JFK, and Stalin.” I rest my case.

Illustration-Oxford comma
Illustration by AE Ferg-Offered by Stephen Tall

 

I’ll stick to my Oxfords, but I’d be interested to know if you do. Do we have a majority? ©2017 Virginia Williams I Love Likes and Comments--Please Share!

The Fifteenth of June – a Book Review

The Fifteenth of JuneTitle: The Fifteenth of June by Brent Jones

Genre: Currently #721 in Best Seller’s Rank for Kindle eBooks, Literature & Fiction, Literary Fiction, Sagas

Publisher: Amazon Digital Services, LLC

Publication Date:  February 2017

The Fifteenth of June Eye-catching cover (The bench holds significance.)

What is it that makes us step outside our comfort zone to sample a graphic scene filled plot we wouldn’t usually consider? Perhaps it is the chance to be an anonymous, albeit disapproving voyeur in a train wreck.

Such is the case when I read emotionally charged The Fifteenth of June by Brent Jones. His protagonist, Drew Thomson, is a deeply flawed 28-year-old alcoholic who realizes after five years living with Heather that he really doesn’t love her. Drew moves from her apartment with no job, no digs of his own, and no prospects. His contacts are from previous employment where he was fairly successful but crushingly unhappy, and his antisocial behavior seems exacerbated by the lack of any sense of direction. There is no future. There is only the past and it was dark. Continue reading The Fifteenth of June – a Book Review

Traveller – Inceptio – a Book Review

Traveller-Inceptio by Rob ShacklefordTitle: Traveller – Inceptio by Rob Shackleford

Publisher: BookBaby

Publication Date:  February 2017

Traveller – Inceptio – The cover depicts a “pattern welded sword,” called a Saex, created by Owen Bush, Swordsmith of Kent, England

How long has it been since you were able to get into a really good book and find a long-term companion?

Traveller-Inceptio pulls you in from the first page as you realize this man, Michael, does not belong here–not really. But he is not your ordinary traveler, nor an ordinary man finding himself in extraordinary circumstances. After momentary disorientation, he becomes alert to his surroundings. He is intelligent and well trained–but where is he exactly?

The forest is pristine, almost magical, and ethereal even to the point where he might imagine fairy folk, playing quietly in the warming sun, until the wolf makes itself known. Continue reading Traveller – Inceptio – a Book Review

Exploration of Sunken (Treasure) Ships

the MargueriteWhat is it that attracts us to sunken ships? Whether treasure ships or WW2, the fascination seems endless and demands a search. If found; explored.

What happened to the ship and it’s crew? Was it a battle? Was it a hurricane like the one in which the Marguerite went down?

Sole-SurvivorMy grandfather, son of the captain, was first officer abroad the Marguerite about to cross the equator “some ten of fifteen miles west of Lagos,”  (aka the gold, ivory, and slave coast) on a starboard tack when a typhoon struck the ship and she down, stern first. My grandfather always classified the Marguerite as carrying general cargo. No treasure there–we think! Continue reading Exploration of Sunken (Treasure) Ships

MS Word Spelling and Grammar Checker, Grammarly–or Both?

Grammar NaziLate to the party again? Sometimes I never get there at all! It’s not as if I haven’t heard of Grammarly before, just that I’ve been quite content to finish my thoughts and then run the Spelling and Grammar checker under “Tools” in my very old MS Word (2003) program. But there are advantages and disadvantages to the simple Spelling and Grammar checker on my equally old (POS) computer. I wonder if the newer word (2007, 2010) .doc and .docx have a more complete command of the language? Currently, I must “add to dictionary” constantly slang terms, colloquialisms, and common blogging expressions, as well as the idioms commonly used for sailing or popular historic word usage (from my grandfather’s manuscripts). So, I thought I’d look into the fuss over Grammarly. Continue reading MS Word Spelling and Grammar Checker, Grammarly–or Both?