Review: Caravan, by Dorothy Gilman

  Title: Caravan Author: Dorothy Gilman Publisher: Fawcett Crest, 1993 (original by Doubleday, 1992). 248 pages Source: I think I found this at the library book sale. Or else on Mom's bookshelves. Publisher's Summary: A lushly romantic adventure story set in the North African desert in 1914, told by the impeccable Lady Teal as she reminisces in her London town house about her decidedly peccable past… With her anthropologist husband murdered and their caravan stolen by fierce Tuareg tribesmen, Caressa’s choices are death or a life of slavery. Concealing her dangerous beauty beneath the faded robes of an Arab boy, she embarks on the adventure of her life, harassed by vicious nomads, slave traders, and the envious witch doctor, Isa. Only a handful of carnival magic tricks stand between her and oblivion. Then she discovers an inner magic so mysteriously compelling that the desert people call her a sorceress. With it she will secure her freedom and discover the love of h

Mystery Review: Murder at the River Bend Resort

  Title: Murder at the River Bend Retirement Resort Author : Stan Schatt Publisher: self. 2017, 238 pages ISBN-13: 978-1548656195 E-Book ASIN: B073WPDFPK   Publisher's Blurb:  When a very disagreeable resident of the exclusive River Bend Retirement Resort is murdered, bestselling mystery writer Miriam Lipsky has to find the real killer to save a dear friend from prison. She finds the retirement home seethes with intrigue, passion, and jealousy. To make matters worse, it’s hard to distinguish what residents actually saw from what they imagined. Miriam finds she has to search for the killer while juggling an autistic grandson, a divorced daughter with a tendency to choose the wrong man, her best friend’s overly friendly husband, and a stalker who who leaves her more and more threatening notes. To make matters worse, her rabbi won’t take no for an answer when it comes to fixing her up. Miriam, a widow after a disastrous marriage, has given up on love. Just when she is sur

#Fi50: Oops!

Fiction in 50 is a regular feature in the last week of every month and I invite any interested composers of mini-narrative to join in! What is #Fi50? In the words of founder Bruce Gargoyle, "Fiction in 50: think of it as the anti-NaNoWriMo experience!" Pack a beginning, middle and end of story into 50 words or less (bonus points for hitting exactly 50 words). Then click the link in the image above and add your post, or add a link in the comments below. Check out some of the other offerings, and join the fun! You can post any time during the week, or the whole month--prompts are available on the Fi50 page through the end of the year. Oops! “Festering rat-dung!” “What’s the matter?” “Uh, my hand slipped.” “Damage?” “Yeah, maybe. What does blood do to these circuits?” “I have no idea. Test routine one.” “Controls respond.” “Air quality okay. You need a bandage.” “Later.” “I’m getting some odd readings.” “Uh-oh.” “Yeah. I hope your insurance is paid up.”   *** ©Rebecca

Flash Fiction Friday: It Ain't Fixed Until You Break It

This week's Wendig Challenge was simple: write a story around the idea that sometimes you have to break something to fix it. I suspect he was thinking about politics, but it made me think of good old Xavier Xanthum, since he's pretty good at messing up.  And hey--if you like flash fiction, consider joining us next week for the Fiction in 50 (words) feature. Write your 50 words, post your story, and link back to my #Fi50 post (goes live on Sunday). It Ain’t Fixed Until You Break It “Blethering belugans!” Xavier Xanthum, Space Explorer, cursed as he struggled to reach into the narrow adjustment slot for the left thruster, scraping the skin off three knuckles. Wanderlust was showing a decided tendency to veer off-course if he or Larry didn’t keep an eye on it, and Xavier wanted to save the cost of a repair. Of course, Larry had two eyes he could keep wherever he wanted, along with enough bandwidth to do everything else around the craft at the same time. At the moment, he was adj

Audio-book Review: Anne of the Island, by L.M. Montgomery

    Title: Anne of the Island Author: L.M. Montgomery. Read by Susan O'Malley Publisher: Blackstone Audio, 2001; original published 1915. Source: Library digital resources Publisher's Summary: New adventures lie ahead as Anne Shirley packs her bags, waves good-bye to childhood, and heads for Redmond College. With old friend Prissy Grant waiting in the bustling city of Kingsport and frivolous new pal Philippa Gordon at her side, Anne tucks her memories of rural Avonlea away and discovers life on her own terms, filled with surprises...including a marriage proposal from the worst fellow imaginable, the sale of her very first story, and a tragedy that teaches her a painful lesson. But tears turn to laughter when Anne and her friends move into an old cottage and an ornery black cat steals her heart. Little does Anne know that handsome Gilbert Blythe wants to win her heart, too. Suddenly Anne must decide if she's ready for love...   [Goodreads summary] My Review:  Sinc

Monday Ramblings

Sometimes the ideas are just a boiling pot of mud I haven't felt much like reviewing things lately. I've decided I took on too many read-for-review books (mostly for Great Escapes tours, and mostly good mysteries), and I need to back off while I work on my own books. I still have a couple more scheduled reviews to get through, but I'm not taking on any more mystery reviews until Death By Adverb is completed. (Yes, I know I'll probably break that vow when some truly wonderful looking books crosses my screen.) One side-effect of that is that even though I've finished quite a few books in the last couple of weeks, I didn't sit down and review any of them, because I just didn't feel like it. So here you are, getting some wandering thoughts instead of a review of a marvelous middle-grade book or a deeply puzzling mystery. In fact, since I've been doing more biking than writing, I decided that there is a metaphor to be found on the road. Sometimes you can'

Friday Flash: No Mercy

Since I missed last week's challenge, I'm kind of mixing and matching Wendig Challenges. This week, we were to write a story of good vs. evil. I sort of managed, while using opening and closing lines from the previous week, when he gave us title, opening, and closing lines to choose from. I couldn't make any of the titles fit, though, so I have pretty much just done my own thing. Even the good/evil thing got a little fuzzy, and if I had had more words to play with, would have gotten fuzzier still. Funny about that. This one ran a little long, at just under 1100 words. No Mercy Three days with no sleep was the least of my worries. I could endure that; I could endure just about anything. Just about. I couldn’t watch as the overseer beat my 9-year-old son for the stumble that had spilled a half a dozen berries into the dirt of the field. Nor could I stop it, and for that, I thought my heart would burst. That night, when we crawled at last into the stifling hut that was our hom