Tag Archives: eden baylee

Music Monday remembers John Lennon

This past week marked 37 years since John Lennon died Dec. 8, 1980. I often think about what more he could have done if he were still here.

It’s a sad thought, tempered only by the enormous contribution he left behind.

His bestselling and most popular solo song, “Imagine” is packed with simple but powerful lyrics. Its message is as relevant today as it ever was.

I hope you enjoy this timeless song,

~ eden

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“Imagine there’s no heaven
It’s easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people
Living for today… Aha-ah…

Imagine there’s no countries
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion, too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace… You…

You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will be as one …”

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Music Monday goes back to SCHOOL

I heard this song recently and remembered how much I like it—a tune from my youth by Supertramp on their hugely successful Crime of the Century album. “School” contains a catchy interlude and one of the most memorable extended solos of any song I know.

The tune also reminded me we should never stop learning, whether formally or informally. Tangential to that thought is the realization that “the older I get, the less I know.”

As a young girl, I felt differently though.

I thought I knew everything I needed to know by the time I was eighteen—the arrogance of youth.

Thankfully, age has tempered me. I hope I’m more tolerant and less judgmental of others, but more importantly, the only thing I know for certain is that I don’t know everything.

And where I used to think it was a weakness to not know, I now take it as an opportunity to learn something new.

Life is ever humbling, isn’t it?

Have a great week,

eden

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Music Monday plays “Jig of Joy” from Return to Jogja #mtagung

Further to my blog about Bali last week, you will know that Mount Agung has since erupted—several times. The latest series of eruptions yesterday sent ash 4,000 metres into the atmosphere.

Ngurah Rai International Airport, located in southern Bali has closed, stranding thousands of travellers. Authorities are considering if they will reopen the airport on Tuesday. Though it must be inconvenient, I cannot feel too much sympathy for the tourists. I was at that airport less than a month ago, and I can think of worse places to be stranded.

I do, however, feel extremely sad for the people of Bali, especially for those who have been displaced, many since the end of September. No doubt, the livelihoods of those who cater to the tourist industry are also in jeopardy. It’s an awful disaster for those who live there.

A dear friend turned me on to an album called Return to Jogja by Sha’aban Yahya. I’ve heard this track from the album before, and I wanted to share it. A “jig of joy” is what I truly feel like doing when I think about Bali and its beautiful people. I can only hope my sense of joy extends to those who are suffering there at this time.

~ eden

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Music Monday rings with Hells Bells @acdc

This blog is dedicated to rhythm guitarist, Malcolm Young who passed away this past weekend.

Along with his brother Angus, Malcolm founded hard rock band AC/DC in 1973. The Young brothers were born in Glasgow, Scotland before the family emigrated to Sydney, Australia in the early sixties.

This 2009 footage from the River Plate Stadium in Buenos Aires shows why AC/DC is the best-selling Australian act of all time.

Rest in peace, Malcolm Young.

~ eden

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RESTLESS EARTH set to release in #NEW series by @JohnDolanAuthor

To say I’m a fan of John Dolan’s writing would be a gross understatement. He hooked me with his debut novel, Everyone Burns from his Time, Blood and Karma series, and I’ve been happily under his spell ever since.

Now, Mr. Dolan is embarking on a new series called Karma’s Children, with Restless Earth launching November 24th.

This latest book also pulls in elements from his first series.

Am I surprised?

No.

If you’ve read any of John’s first four books, you will know how twisty they can be. He’s proven himself a master of deception with a flair for unpredictable plots. He moves his characters from book to book like a chess player moves pieces across a board—carefully, with an eye for impending danger.

He’s also been known to sacrifice a few characters along the way, but I digress … 😉

I had the great pleasure of chatting with the author recently. Find out what he had to say about his writing, women, and life in general.

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Welcome John, and congratulations on the upcoming release of Restless Earth! This book is the first in a series called Karma’s Children. Can you tell us how this new series relates to Time, Blood and Karma? 

Good question, Eden. My original concept for the Time, Blood and Karma series was that it would run to seven books. However, the end of Book 4 (Running on Emptiness) was a natural watershed, so I decided to split the work into two series, with the second series starting with Restless Earth. The series title, Karma’s Children, was meant to invoke the first series, HOWEVER, I have constructed Restless Earth in such a way that those readers who are new to my writing can start with it, while those hardy souls who have ploughed through all four books in the first series will see it as picking up where Running on Emptiness left off. I hope that makes sense. If it doesn’t, it’s too late now!

No, it makes perfect sense! It’s great that new readers can hop on board with Restless Earth even if they haven’t read your previous books. I am intrigued, however, by the blurb for the new book. It speaks of four different men but does not mention women at all. Are there any women in this book?

There decidedly are women in this book. In fact, it is the females – some of whom are ‘offstage’ – who are the main catalysts for much of what happens in the novel. As in my earlier books, there are a number of strong female characters in Restless Earth. The men absolutely do not get everything their own way. Quite the reverse. Just like in real life, eh? You ladies are really the ones in charge: we men are just stupid enough to believe our own propaganda.

Ha, I’m sure women are going to love this book then! I, for one, fell in love with David Braddock, your smart-talking, somewhat damaged detective from the Time, Blood and Karma novels. Can we expect another equally fascinating character in Restless Earth?

I’m flattered that you fell in love with Braddock, warts and all. He can be an irritating smarty-pants at times (much like his creator), but generally readers seem to root for him. However, to answer your question, Braddock himself returns – perhaps somewhat chastened by his earlier experiences – as do some of the characters from the earlier novels. But there are new characters too, of various nationalities, age and sex. As to how ‘fascinating’ they are, I will leave that to the readers to decide. You can, however, expect to encounter a certain amount of mystery, moral ambiguity and black humour in this book. If you are looking for a straightforward goodies vs. baddies story, you might struggle a bit. As it says in the publicity blurb for Restless Earth: “It’s not always easy to tell the good guys from the bad guys. And sometimes, there are no good guys.” Real life is rarely black and white, in my experience, so if you want your fiction to reflect this aspect of reality, you need to mix up the black and white into shades of grey (though not fifty shades, perhaps!).

Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions, John. Your books are definitely not 50 shades of grey! Personally, I prefer my fiction a bit “messy” and true to life. That you treat readers as intelligent people who can think for themselves is what I appreciate most about your writing. 

Readers, please continue on to learn more about Restless Earth and special offers from the author. 

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PRE-ORDER NOW to get Restless Earth delivered to your Kindle November 24th! 

Available on Amazon Worldwide

“It’s not always easy to tell the good guys from the bad guys. And sometimes, there are no good guys.”

Four men scattered across the globe. . .
One seeks pleasure
One seeks purpose
One seeks redemption
And one seeks revenge.

A wind is howling around the skyscrapers of New York, through the battlefields of Iraq, and into the bustling streets of Bangkok. It carries with it the fates of these four men: men bound together by chance and history.
Which of them – if any – will survive the tempest?

The “Karma’s Children” series will appeal to lovers of the following book categories: mystery, thriller, crime, Thailand fiction, private investigators, British detectives, and amateur sleuths.

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Special Offers from the Author

To celebrate the launch of Restless Earth Nov. 24th, John is offering several deals for readers. Unfortunately, none of them are pictures of his abnormally large penis … his words, not mine, heh (Liberally taken out of context from an interview John did with author Eric J. Gates). 😀

Of course, I’m only kidding, as John’s deals are all fabulous book-related items. Take a look!

From November 24-28, Mr. Dolan is offering:

  1. A Poison Tree Kindle e-book FREE
  2. Everyone Burns Kindle e-book at the reduced price of 99 cents (99p in the UK)
  3. Jim Fosse’s Expense Claim (a Kindle e-book short story) remains FREE

As if this is not enough, John is also giving away 3 paperback copies of Restless Earth (US and UK only) on Goodreads. Hit the link below from Nov. 21-Dec. 31 to enter the giveaway! 

From Nov. 21- Dec. 31

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Restless Earth by John Dolan

Restless Earth

by John Dolan

Giveaway ends December 31, 2017.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

From Nov. 24-28

FREE on: Amazon

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Reduced price on: Amazon

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FREE on: Amazon

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Thanks again for sharing of yourself, John, and for all the wonderful offers of your books. I wish you huge success with the new series, and I can’t wait to read Restless Earth!

Readers, be sure to connect to John at all his virtual homes. He’s a lovely man … really. Don’t let the hat fool you. 😉

Find all John’s books on:

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA

Website

Twitter @JohnDolanAuthor

Goodreads  | Facebook | Blog

“Makes a living by travelling, talking a lot and sometimes writing stuff down. Galericulate author, polymath and occasional smarty-pants.”

John Dolan hails from a small town in the North-East of England. Before turning to writing, his career encompassed law and finance. He has run businesses in Europe, South and Central America, Africa and Asia. He and his wife Fiona currently divide their time between the UK and Thailand.

His mystery novel ‘Everyone Burns’ is the first book in the ‘Time, Blood and Karma’ series.

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Music Monday asks “Are You the One That I’ve Been Waiting For?” @nickcave

Nick Cave is an Australian singer/songwriter, author, and patron of the arts. I was pleased to see his support of the Ubud Writers and Readers Festival, from which I recently returned.

“Are You the One That I’ve Been Waiting For?” is a song that reflects on one of life’s biggest questions. The lyrics are bittersweet, the video equally so, marking a journey that is often the case when searching for that special someone.

For Nick Cave, this song was rumoured to have been about singer, P.J. Harvey.

If you’re still waiting, I hope you find “the one” very soon. 🙂

Have a super week,

~ eden

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I’ve felt you coming girl, as you drew near
I knew you’d find me, cause I longed you here
Are you my desitiny? Is this how you’ll appear?
Wrapped in a coat with tears in your eyes?
Well take that coat babe, and throw it on the floor
Are you the one that I’ve been waiting for?

As you’ve been moving surely toward me
My soul has comforted and assured me
That in time my heart it will reward me
And that all will be revealed
So I’ve sat and I’ve watched an ice-age thaw
Are you the one that I’ve been waiting for?

Out of sorrow entire worlds have been built
Out of longing great wonders have been willed
They’re only little tears, darling, let them spill
And lay your head upon my shoulder
Outside my window the world has gone to war
Are you the one that I’ve been waiting for?

O we will know, won’t we?
The stars will explode in the sky
O but they don’t, do they?
Stars have their moment and then they die

There’s a man who spoke wonders though I’ve never met him
He said, “He who seeks finds and who knocks will be let in”
I think of you in motion and just how close you are getting
And how every little thing anticipates you
All down my veins my heart-strings call
Are you the one that I’ve been waiting for?

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Find #new books on @Kindleworlds for the Lei Crime Series #LeiCrimeKW

Please welcome the latest books to join author Toby Neal’s Lei Crime Kindle World! 

If you’re not familiar with the series, read about it on Toby’s website. I’ve written three novellas for this series and you can too!

These new stories will join the growing list of Toby’s Kindle World November 16th. You can find them along with all the books for the series on Amazon US.

Congratulations to all the new authors joining the Lei Crime series Kindle World, and the old authors returning to it!

In the meantime, I’m writing A Fragile Truce, book two of Dr. Kate Hampton’s trilogy. If you’d like to learn of my upcoming releases and giveaways, please add your name to my list by subscribing below!

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Pre-order SWEET PEASE by @CameronGarriepy #newrelease

Author Cameron Garriepy, a friend and diverse author of romance, short fiction, and a regular contributor to the Word Count Podcast has a new book coming out!

Sweet Pease sounds delicious and is on sale for a limited time. In addition to a special pre-order price, you can also win a Kindle hosted by Love Kissed, which is sponsoring Cameron’s book along with many others. Enter by hitting the graphic above.

And now, let’s learn more about Sweet Pease!

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Pre-order SWEET PEASE now!

Find all Cameron’s books at:

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA

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Kate Pease has everything under control–her bakery’s expansion, her best friend’s wedding, and her carefully guarded heart–until Thornton College’s new novelist-in-residence maligns her scones in a student newspaper. Never one to back down from a challenge, Kate confronts him, only to discover he’s more dreamy academic than snarky stranger. Living in a postcard town, Kate knows better than to fall for an appealing tourist, but there’s nothing wrong with a fling.

Ewan Lovatt is in Thornton, Vermont for a semester to teach–and to research the Damselfly Inn’s past for a new project. His agent wants pages, but it’s not the historical house that inspires him. Tangling with the town sweetheart tempts Ewan with an undeniable attraction and a compelling new character. Suddenly his vision for the future and his agent’s big dreams for his career are at odds.

Somewhere between winter and spring, these two fiercely independent souls find magic together, but Kate offered her love to the wrong man once before. She’s not inclined to risk it again–especially on one who’s not staying in Thornton.

The second novel in the Thornton, Vermont trilogy, Sweet Pease revisits the town—and the characters—readers fell in love with in Damselfly Inn.

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Connect to Cameron

Blog | Facebook | Amazon | Twitter @CameronGarriepy

An Aries, a self-described shenaniganist, and an unabashed romantic, Cameron writes romantic fiction and genre-crossing short stories from the metro-Boston area, where she lives with her husband, son, and a poorly behaved pug.

In the eighth grade, she wrote her first romance novel on an antique typewriter, using a stack of pink paper. Detours between that draft and publishing her first novel included a BA in Music from Middlebury College, a professional culinary education, and twelve years in the child-wrangling industry.

Cameron’s adventures in flash fiction can be found on her blog. Formerly, she was an editor at Write on Edge, and she is the founder of and senior editor at Bannerwing Books.

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Author @LisetteBrodey releases BARRIE HILL REUNION

Friend and prolific author, Lisette Brodey, has recently released a new book called Barrie Hill Reunion, and it sounds like another great one. I learned of it from a fascinating post she wrote called: “The Very Long Birth of a Novel.

In it, she chronicles how Barrie Hill Reunion came to be. It’s a great read if you’ve ever wondered what becomes of dormant ideas for books, or how an author is able to resuscitate a story.

Based on Lisette’s post, you may want to revisit your own ideas! Learn more about her newest book and pick up your copy today.

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Find all Lisette’s books on:

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA

Eight people. One weekend. Eight lives forever changed.

In the mid-1960s, at an elite college in the quaint town of Barrie Hill, Connecticut, a group of literary-minded students met regularly off-campus at the Vanessa Grand Hotel. Often late into the night, they would discuss the day’s news, analyze literature, philosophize, trade barbs, and socialize.

Twenty years after graduation, in 1986, the group’s founder, Clare Dreyser, organizes a weekend reunion. Seven former Barrie Hillers and one guest get together, eager to re-create an extraordinary time in their lives and reunite with old friends.

From the outset, and baffling the group, Leah Brent displays a brash, condescending attitude for nearly everyone and everything. To the chagrin of actor Bart Younger, Leah immediately lays out the unwelcome mat for his wife, Aimee. No one, not even Leah’s husband, Colin, is immune to her wrath, but Leah is relentless in her bizarre and cruel quest to bring down her primary target: Clare.

As the reunion progresses, the Barrie Hillers strive to enjoy their time together as they become enmeshed in personal dramas, struggle with matters of ethics, and weather escalating uncertainties that threaten to destroy their lives. By Saturday night, the second day of the reunion, karma makes a surprising and shocking visit. As the Barrie Hillers’ time together draws to an end, each is changed forever.

flourish

Connect to Lisette

Amazon Author Page | Facebook | Twitter @LisetteBrodey

GoodReads | Website | Google +

Lisette was originally interviewed August 2012.

Lisette was born and raised in Pennsylvania. After high school, she moved to New York City where she attended Pace University and studied drama. After ten years in New York, several of them working in the radio industry, she moved to Los Angeles for four years where she held various positions at Paramount Studios in Hollywood and CBS Studio Center in Studio City, CA.

Back on the East Coast, she worked for many years as a freelance writer, specializing in PR and the entertainment industry. In 2010, she returned permanently to the Los Angeles area.

She’s the author of seven novels: Crooked Moon (General/Literary Fiction); Squalor, New Mexico (Coming-of-Age/Literary Fiction); Molly Hacker Is Too Picky! (Women’s Fiction/Chick-lit), The Desert Series: Mystical High; Desert Star; and Drawn Apart (YA paranormal), and Barrie Hill Reunion (Literary Fiction).

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Christoph Fischer releases: The Sanctuary on Cayman Brac (@cffbooks)

One of my favorite people, author Christoph Fischer, has just released The Sanctuary on Cayman Brac, the follow-up to The Healer and The Gamblers.

All three books can also be purchased together as a set via The Fraud or Miracle Trilogy.

I’ve highlighted Christoph’s books previously. He remains ever prolific in his offerings, and I’m always happy to promote his work. If you’ve read any of his books in the past, you will know he’s an incredibly talented writer of multiple genres.

In researching his book, The Healer, I read that Christoph took a Reiki course to become more familiar with alternative healing arts and spiritual healing. Today, he is a Reiki Master, so he knows of what he writes!

The Sanctuary on Cayman Brac addresses the unanswered questions from The Healer and The Gamblers.

This final instalment promises to entertain, as evident in the reviews now rolling in as I post this. Find out more about the book and trilogy, and pick up your copy today!

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Find all Christoph’s books on:  

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK |  Amazon CA

Arpan has set up a training school and spiritual retreat on the small island in the Caribbean. Yet, the peaceful and quiet existence he has sought soon comes to an end. The arrival of Erica teaches him that loose ends won’t stop until they’re truly healed and dealt with.

Erica, out to seek revenge for past wrongs soon begins to fall under the Caribbean spell and the magic of Arpan. Torn between her desire for justice and her own longing for peace, what she discovers at the school sets her again on the path of confusion and distrust.

Set in a beautiful location and spiked with a crossover from the cast of Fischer’s other mystery novel, “The Gamblers” this is another fast-paced psychological thriller about faith and deceit. Erica will finally find out the full truth about who tricked whom and we’ll all get an answer as to who will walk away with the last laugh.flourish

Connect to Christoph

Christoph Fischer was born in Germany, near the Austrian border, as the son of a Sudeten-German father and a Bavarian mother. Not a full local in the eyes and ears of his peers he developed an ambiguous sense of belonging and home in Bavaria. He moved to Hamburg in pursuit of his studies and to lead a life of literary indulgence. After a few years he moved on to the UK where he now lives in a small town in West Wales. He and his partner have three Labradoodles to complete their family.

Christoph worked for the British Film Institute, in Libraries, Museums and for an airline. ‘The Luck of The Weissensteiners’ was published in November 2012; ‘Sebastian’ in May 2013 and ‘The Black Eagle Inn’ in October 2013 – which completes his ‘Three Nations Trilogy’. “Time to Let Go”, his first contemporary work was published in May 2014, and “Conditions”, another contemporary novel, in October 2014. The sequel “Conditioned” was published in October 2015. His medical thriller “The Healer” was released in January 2015 and his second thriller “The Gamblers” in June 2015. He published two more historical novels “In Search of a Revolution” in March 2015 and “Ludwika” in December 2015.
His latest novel “The Body In The Snow” is his first cozy mystery. He has written several other novels which are in the later stages of editing and finalisation.

Christoph was interviewed on my blog February 7, 2014.

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Music Monday asks “What’s Up?”

I just returned from Bali, and this song was performed by an Indonesian band while I was there. It sounded quite different with a four man, and a leader who sung with a slight accent. Still, it brought back memories of this 4 Non Blondes song, their one big hit.

I’ll post more about Bali over the next weeks once I get over my jet lag. Suffice it to say, it was an amazing trip.

Hope you have a wonderful week, and enjoy this blast from the past,

~eden

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Music Monday is Home

I heard this song performed by an Indonesian band the other day. They gave me a whole new appreciation for a song I knew, but never listened to closely.

I’m far from the home where I live, but I also feel right at home here in Bali.

It’s a most wonderful feeling, really.

Where ever you make your home, I hope you have a great week,

~eden

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New Release by #suspense author @JasonCMcintyre ~ UNWED

I’m currently en route to Bali for a writers’ festival, but I did not want to miss the opportunity to tell fans about Jason McIntyre’s upcoming release. I love his DOVETAIL COVE series, and this latest addition sounds like a great one.

Learn more about UNWED, and pre-order your copy today before it drops OCTOBER 27th!

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UNWED, A Dovetail Cove Novel, 1976

It’s January, 1976 and Bexy McLeod gets roped in to helping Dovetail Cove’s retired doc as he deals with St. Dominic’s latest problem. Having tangled with the town’s church-going community for years, Bexy knows she shouldn’t get involved. Wheelchair-bound after an accident left her a paraplegic, she might be the least-sensible choice. Trouble tends to follow the widow and the last thing Bexy needs is confrontation. But now she’s finding herself enamoured with the young woman she’s helping. Bexy may just have to go toe-to-toe with one of the most prominent members of Dovetail Cove’s upper crust…and its head priest.

MATURE THEMES and SUBJECT MATTER.

“You are cordially invited to UNWED…”

by Jason McIntyre

“You called me charitable. You did. And I think that’s likely the best thing to help her. No. Wait. That’s exactly what I think she needs. And not just for Mary. For everyone.”

—from UNWED

You’ve seen these people before. But not like this. Bexy McLeod is the damaged sort of character that populates nearly the entire town of Dovetail Cove. As a writer, she draws me in because—no matter the damage and betrayal she suffers—she keeps going. And she will until she draws her last breath.

In the creepy character-driven suspense book ‘UNWED’, we catch up with Bexy who first appeared in the startling novella, BLED. She’s trying to re-enter the life she once knew in this small town—a place which, on the surface, might look like every other small town you’ve ever visited, or even the neighbourhood where you grew up. Bexy fell away from her friends, even her family. After suffering a terrible accident that left her wheelchair-bound, she tried to find reason and meaning in the work of the church. But turmoil followed her there too. After a fundraising scheme, Bexy’s lost most of her money. And, be damned is she didn’t play a role in losing the money of many neighbours and townspeople too.

Not officially guilty of any wrong-doing, Bexy was shunned nonetheless. But now she’s back. And the townspeople simply aren’t having it.

No matter to Doc. He needs Bexy’s help with a young woman in St. Dominic’s choir. Mary Smithson has miraculously inherited a mansion on the posh Avenue in Dovetail Cove. And though an adult, Mary possesses the mental acuity of a young girl. If that wasn’t enough, she’s also finding mystery gifts left under her pillow at night from what she believes is the ‘toofairy.’

While UNWED takes place in 1976, its themes and characters still resonate with us today. The tendency of groups to follow the crowd, our often blind faith in leaders and trusted organizations, such things appeal to me as a storyteller and are timely in today’s world. You HAVE seen these people before. They are Bexy’s neighbours, yours too I’d wager.

UNWED is part of the Dovetail Cove saga of mystery, suspense and horror stories—a series that’s not really a series. I joke about this because the titles don’t follow any real order. They can be read alone or in groups, or one right after the other. They are solo books that comprise what I call a ‘mosaic’ novel—completely independent of chronological order because I wrote them as they made sense to me. Each one expands the larger Dovetail Cove narrative across the entire decade of the 70s and layers new detail into the tension and drama—and yes, startling suspense at times. So, while UNWED takes place in 1976, it certainly doesn’t need to be read after the Dovetail books that take place in 1971 through 1975.

Certainly, every story in the saga that one chooses to read will expand and elaborate on the mysteries surrounding this small island town and its inhabitants. But, by all means, if Bexy, Mary and the Doc intrigue you, start with them. Remember, the island is waiting for you. And it doesn’t forget.

The Dovetail Cove books so far:

1.   DEATHBED (1971)

2.   BLED (1972)

3.   FLED (1973)

4.   REDHEAD (1974)

5.   ZED (1975)

6.   UNWED (1976)

7.   SHED (1977)

8.   DREAD (1978)

9.   [ – coming soon – ] (1979)

10. [ – super mega finale – ] (1980)

Exclusive to Amazon for launch, pre-order UNWED until its release date on October 27:

Find Jason McIntyre

JASON MCINTYRE is the #1 Kindle Suspense author of THE NIGHT WALK MEN, bestsellers ON THE GATHERING STORM and SHED, plus the multi-layered literary suspense THALO BLUE. His short fiction has appeared in numerous magazines and won several awards.

His debut novel ON THE GATHERING STORM is cited by readers as an ‘uncomfortably thrilling’ read and earned McIntyre a spot in the Top 20 Debut Authors for the Goodreads Choice Awards.

Books

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Music Monday on the Eve of Destruction

In the wake of recent disasters–Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Maria, floods in South Asia, wildfires in California, I started watching The Vietnam War, Ken Burns’ and Lynn Novick’s gut-wrenching ten-part documentary series. It’s excellent and worth your time.

I suppose I’m feeling disheartened of late. For as many natural disasters that have hit us, there are many more man-made ones. You only have to read the daily news to learn of the cruelty human beings inflict upon one another.

Perhaps I fear history repeating itself, or maybe it’s because I’m traveling to Bali shortly, where Mt. Agung, an active volcano is threatening to erupt. Over 140,000 people have been evacuated. The eruption has been ‘imminent’ for the past three weeks. As at this writing, it still has not erupted.

I don’t live my life in fear, so after evaluating the risks, I’ll be leaving tomorrow as planned. I will be staying outside the 12KM exclusion zone around the volcano, so I should be fine.

This song played on episode 3 of The Vietnam War. The images are heartbreaking, the lyrics sobering. I’m moving forward, even though it seems as if the world is teetering on an eve of destruction everyday.

I’ll be blogging from Bali over the next weeks.

Stay safe,

~ eden

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Music Monday remembers Tom Petty

Last week, amidst another mass shooting in the US, it felt like Tom Petty died twice — once via rumours spread by news agencies too quick on the draw, and then as the victim of a heart attack. Petty was 66.

I’ve previously featured three of his songs on my blog, “I Won’t Back Down,” “Free Fallin’” and “End of the Line” as part of the Traveling Wilburys.

I actually came to know Tom Petty as one of the Traveling Wilburys before I discovered his extensive repertoire as leader of the Heartbreakers. Over the years, Petty’s distinctive twang has played often for me, through the car radio, over a speaker in a store, or on my own stereo system.  That ubiquity did not make him a journeyman though. In the vein of his idols Bob Dylan and George Harrison, Petty was an accomplished singer and songwriter. His songs’ opening riffs were instantly recognizable and his lyrics, whether simple or complex, were always relatable.

I will remember Petty as a man with artistic integrity who fought the record industry to keep his records and concerts affordable.

“Something Good Coming” is a testament to his enduring legacy as a hardworking, optimistic songwriter and a champion of the music industry.

“… And I’m in for the long run
Wherever it goes
Ridin’ the river
Wherever it goes

And I’m an honest man
Work’s all I know
You take that away
Don’t know where to go

And I know that look that’s on your face
There’s somethin’ lucky about this place
There’s somethin’ good comin’
For you and me
Somethin’ good comin’
There has to be”

~ eden

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Music Monday features @BigScaryMusic

Australian duo Tom Iansek and Joanna Syme formed Big Scary in 2006.

Their catchy single “The Opposite of Us” ranked number 17 on Triple J’s Hottest 100 in 2016, an annual poll hosted by the national Australian radio station, Triple J. Some music acts I’ve featured who previously ranked in the Top 10 of Triple J’s list include: London Grammar, Daft Punk, and Lorde.

I’ve been exploring new music and I liked this song immediately. Perhaps you will as well.

Have a great week,

~eden

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On Poe, Words, and Legacy ~ A story for @RBwood’s Word Count Podcast

The prompt for the latest episode of R.B. Wood’s Word Count Podcast asked that we use the month of September and the picture below in our setting. Richard snapped the photo of a statue of Edgar Allan Poe near Emerson College where he’s in studying for his MFA.

My story inspiration

This may be the first non-fiction entry I’ve written for the podcast. I was struggling to find some way to incorporate Poe into a story. A couple of days before the due date, I found out I would be attending a funeral. Somehow, I knew a story would find me there, and it did. 😉

 

You can also listen to me reading my essay on episode 70 of R.B. Wood’s podcast.

flourish

I attended the funeral of a friend’s mother recently. As this short tale is based on truth, let’s just call her Elsa, which is not her real name. Because Elsa died outside her country of birth, there was no one in attendance from her generation. It’s likely most of her friends would have pre-deceased her anyway. Everyone at the intimate ceremony was friends with her daughter, who like most of us were in our fifties or early sixties.

Earlier that September morning, I read interesting factoids about Edgar Allan Poe to inspire a tale for this podcast. Unlike Elsa who passed away just shy of her ninetieth birthday, Poe died at the young age of forty. To this day, the circumstances of his death remain a mystery. Though intriguing as that is, what struck me was that his enemy, a rival author, wrote Poe’s lengthy obituary, portraying him as a drunken, womanizing opium addict who based his darkest tales on personal experience.

Thankfully, funerals are a rarity for me, but the timing of it did arouse my curiosity. Perhaps it’s Poe’s recurring theme of death in his writing which made me think of the coincidence. Whatever it was, the  thought of the libellous obituary written for him stayed with me as an old priest prepared to speak at Elsa’s funeral. He approached the lectern carrying a piece of paper in one hand and a champagne flute of golden brown liquid in another.

It was not yet one in the afternoon, but the alcohol had been flowing for some time.

The priest reminded me of Harry Dean Stanton, only smaller in stature and with the same tired, deep-set eyes and weather-beaten appearance of the actor’s later years. Stanton was 91 when he died only a few weeks ago. The priest looked 101. Maybe that’s why I felt comfortable with him speaking to us as if we were his children. After all, we were the kids in that room. He spoke eloquently about the importance of mothers and what they gave to their children—the gift of life, praise, and discipline.

He raised his glass and toasted Elsa before taking a long sip. Only a few of us were holding a drink, but we all mimicked raising a glass anyway. From where I sat in the back row, I saw friends look at each other and smile. Like me, they probably didn’t know what to make of this man.

The priest stood confidently addressing our small group and waxed lyrical about friendship. Friends are important, he said, and hopefully, unlike him, we don’t all meet our friends in cheap bars.

He took another sip of his drink.

Wide-eyed, the woman beside me turned to me, “What is he drinking?” she whispered.

I shrugged. My best guess was bourbon. And like her, I found this man’s honesty and self-deprecation strangely admirable.

The priest continued.

“Because I wear this collar, it’s my job to comfort you,” he said. “I’m a man of god, after all, much to the chagrin of the bishop.” Several people let out a boisterous laugh. Like a slow-leaking balloon, the words of the priest deflated the tension in the room. When Elsa’s daughter got up to pay her respects with a moving speech, she revealed how her mother married a much younger man in her father. The short but touching tribute left several of us dabbing away tears after she finished and took her seat.

The priest resumed his position behind the lectern. With the timing of a seasoned comedian, he looked at Elsa’s daughter and said, “You didn’t tell me your mother was a cradle robber!”

A collective gasp filled the room.

The pejorative term was said without an ounce of malice. His words were not delivered in the same vein as the obituary for Poe. They may have shocked us, but there was no ill intent behind them. We laughed even as we cried.

When the service ended, several of us expressed how we wished this priest would live long enough to deliver our eulogies. In his dry-witted, surly manner, he had endeared himself to us, seemingly without even trying.

The words about Poe upon his death damaged his legacy for almost a century until they were proven to be false. This realization, coupled with my recent funeral service gave me a newfound respect for those who must encapsulate a person’s life with merely words.

Words have the power to deceive, to hurt, and to heal. How we choose to use them is a  testament to our own legacies.

flourish

Thank you for reading and/or listening. Feel free to leave a comment or question. Feedback, whether good or bad is always welcome.

~eden

**

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Music Monday returns to summer with @Lorde

The leaves are changing colour. Some have even fallen off the trees. It is autumn, after all, only you wouldn’t have known it this past week.

We had record-high temperatures in Toronto, making up for the cool and rainy weather we’ve had most of the summer.

I loved it! And judging from all the people I saw outdoors in shorts, on restaurant patios, and walking in the streets, I’d say the rest of the city loved the return to summer too.

As a tribute to the hot weather, here’s one of the big hits of the summer.

Enjoy award-winning Lorde with her energetic song, “Green Light,” and let’s hope the heat continues.

Have a great week!

eden

 

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Music Monday features @Miss_GraceJones

The 42nd annual Toronto International Film Festival concluded yesterday after ten busy days. Not only was it a passel of big names from the world of film, but a number of musicians also premiered their documentaries at the festival. Among them were Lady Gaga, Eric Clapton, Grace Jones and the Tragically Hip.

When I drew a blank on this week’s music choice, I thought to highlight the only person I’ve yet to have on my blog from the TIFF list—Grace Jones. Her movie, Bloodlight and Bami looks at her unconventional life as a model, singer, and New Wave icon.

Here’s one of Jones’ biggest hits, “Slave to the Rhythm.” Check out her incredible live performance while twirling a hula hoop!

Wishing you a great week as we head into the final days of summer,

~ eden

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Music Monday features @HAIMtheband

I love these three funky sisters who make up the band, HAIM. They hail from a musical Jewish family and are multi-instrumentalists.

The California pop-rock band has amassed a huge following thanks to their catchy melodies. Their harmonies and musical stylings have been compared to Fleetwood Mac, but I think they are quite unique unto themselves.

Have a listen to one of their biggest hits, “Want You Back,” and enjoy your week.

~ eden

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