Review: “Behind the Door (Behind the Love 4)” by PC Zick

I’m enjoying this romance series which doesn’t lose anything of its appeal from giving its characters a little more depth than we often find in the genre. Serious issues, such as PTSD and issues of self-worth make the romance all the more realistic and give its substance. Two characters with plenty to work through meet and these issues must not get in the way of their attraction.

In this fourth installment we dive into the love life of a side-character of the previous books. I often enjoy books that bring different perspectives to the same story but never read a series where this is done in separate books. Here, of course, the story focuses on Sally-Jean and her complicated love life, and we only get small reminders of the previous stories, rather than a full-blown new perspective. The charm of revisiting a beautiful story or two this way, remains.
Zick writes with a empathetic voice, a reminiscant of her time as journalist: always looking for the why, looking ay what lies behind.
Romance lovers will enjoy this book no doubt. It is heart-felt romance, with a bit of sadness and a bit of hope.

Follow this link to one of my previous posts about PC Zick

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Behind-Door-Love-Book-ebook

 

Official Blurb:

A voluptuous woman unlucky in love. A wounded psychologist on a mission. An undeniable attraction with an ethical dilemma.

Sally Jean Compton is in love. And this time it’s with a man who isn’t in love with someone else. Dr. Brett Gorman arrives in Victory to help the veterans of Deer River with PTSD symptoms. When tragedy strikes, neither Sally Jean nor Brett are prepared for what happens next.

The shocking aftermath of the terror of PTSD untreated leaves the entire town of Victory reeling. But none are more affected than Sally Jean and Brett who must deal with their own pasts and the trauma left behind.

When Sally Jean seeks out the expertise of Dr. Brett, the psychologist of the river folks, they discover an intense attraction that leads them both to learn about themselves.

But before anything happens, Sally Jean must learn she deserves to be loved, and Brett must forgive himself for the death of his friend and his sister, his wife. It’s a rocky journey to love.

Behind the Door is the fourth novel in the Behind the Love contemporary romance series that features sizzling attractions, dramatic confrontations, and intertwined and complicated lives. Set in the fictional small town of Victory, Florida, friends fight and love and form families of their own choosing.

About P.C. Zick 75fd9-1381222_681176021906130_1170544682_n

P.C. Zick describes herself as a storyteller no matter what she writes. And she writes in a variety of genres, including romance, contemporary fiction, and nonfiction. She’s won various awards for her essays, columns, editorials, articles, and fiction

Many of her novels contain stories of Florida and its people and environment, which she credits as giving her a rich base for her storytelling. “Florida’s quirky and abundant wildlife – both human and animal – supply my fiction with tales almost too weird to be believable. Her Behind the Love trilogy – contemporary romance – is also set in Florida. She began the Smoky Mountain Romances in 2015, and now there are four sweet romances in the series.

LINKS

Amazon Central: http://www.amazon.com/P.C.-Zick/e/B0083DPN4E/

Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/0o6-D

Website: www.pczick.com/

Blog: www.pczick.wordpress.com

Facebook: https://facebook/PCZick

Twitter: https://twitter/PCZick

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5989135.P_C_Zick

Google +: https://plus.google.com/u/0/114232083554517874771/posts

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Mystery Mondays Review: “Murder at the Bijou” by Teagan Riordain Geneviene

Bijou front only 2

This is a very enjoyable murder story set in the 1920s. Pip, Granny Phanny and a whole bunch of alliterated characters populate the story of surprisingly strong suspense with equally surprising turns of events.
This is hugely enjoyable and definitely recommended to anyone with a sense of fun and humour.

I loved this book when it was published in parts on the blog and loved it even more re-reading it as a whole in one sitting. Yes, one sitting.

I only now realised just how much work had gone into the individual parts. I often forgot from one week to the next what certain references mean or what they allude to. The novel is hugely enjoyable and a fun read thanks to many quirky expressions, usage of words off the beaten track, fabulous character names and many more delicious ingredients.
The writing is very original and the story line is fun and always manages to surprise you.
That’s in part because of the randomness of the supplies ingredients, but also due to the author’s creative powers.

I’m so glad this was released as novel so I can enjoy the continuity and apprefciate just how well composed this ‘fragmented’ story actually is.

 

Teagan about the Book

As with the first serial, Murder at the Bijou — Three Ingredients I is a spontaneously written, pantser story. I wrote by the seat of my pants and let the “ingredients” readers sent each week drive a new serial story. This is the “bookized” version of that serial.

This time the Jazz Age setting is Savannah, Georgia where our flapper, Pip, is “sentenced” to live with her grandmother and learn to cook. Pip gets caught up in a layered mystery that includes bootleggers, G-men, and the varied challenges of being a young woman in changing times. She meets new friends, including some animal characters.

If you have not read The Three Things Serial Story, be warned. This adventure contains a bit of a spoiler, but does not go into detail about it.

Murder at the Bijou — Three Ingredients I is available through and Amazon and Create Space. If you don’t have a Kindle, Amazon also offers a free app that will let you read Kindle books on your computer or other device. The purchase links are below. But first, here’s a snippet.

Blue Lucille Ball Stage Door Trailer

In my imagination, a young Lucille Ball would play Pip.

Teagan Riordain Geneviene

Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene, a “southerner” by birth, was enchanted by the desert southwest of the USA when she moved there. She had always devoured fantasy novels of every type. Then one day there was no new book readily at hand for reading — so she decided to write one. And she hasn’t stopped writing since.

Her work is colored by her experiences in both the southern states of the USA and the desert southwest. Teagan writes many types of fantasy, from what she likes to call “quest type” fantasy, to urban fantasy, to fantasies with a dash of mystery. She also writes 1920s mystery stories. Her blog “Teagan’s Books” contains serial stories written according to “things” from viewers.

Major influences include Agatha Christie, Terry Brooks, David Eddings, Robert Jordan, and Charlaine Harris.

Purchase Links

Amazon USA

Paperback: https://www.amazon.com/Murder-Bijou-Teagan-Riordain-Geneviene/dp/1974544273/ref=la_B00HHDXHVM_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1502806322&sr=1-4

Kindle: https://www.amazon.com/Murder-Bijou-Teagan-Riordain-Geneviene-ebook/dp/B074S5ZK7L/ref=la_B00HHDXHVM_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1502806322&sr=1-3

Amazon UKhttps://www.amazon.co.uk/Murder-Bijou-Teagan-Riordain-Geneviene-ebook/dp/B074S5ZK7L/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1502806519&sr=1-1&keywords=murder+at+the+bijou

And https://www.amazon.co.uk/Murder-Bijou-Teagan-Riordain-Geneviene/dp/1974544273/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1502806519&sr=1-2&keywords=murder+at+the+bijou

Amazon Japanhttps://www.amazon.co.jp/Murder-Bijou-Three-Ingredients-English-ebook/dp/B074S5ZK7L/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1502806623&sr=8-1&keywords=teagan+geneviene

Author Bio

Visual for Teagan_2017 Chris

Image by Chris Graham

Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene, a southerner by birth, was “enchanted” by the desert southwest of the USA when she moved there. Now a resident of a major east coast city, she longs to return to those enchanting lands.

Teagan had always devoured fantasy novels of every type. Then one day there was no new book readily at hand for reading — so she decided to write one. And she hasn’t stopped writing since.

Her work is colored by her experiences in both the southern states and the southwest. Teagan most often writes in the fantasy genre, but she also writes 1920s stories and Steampunk. Her blog “Teagan’s Books” contains serial stories written according to “things” from viewers.

You can also visit me at:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Teagan-Riordain-Geneviene/e/B00HHDXHVM
Twitter: https://twitter.com/teagangeneviene
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TeagansBooks
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/teagangeneviene/
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCoM-z7_iH5t2_7aNpy3vG-Q
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/teagangeneviene

Editing tools to help read your manuscript – Read Aloud

Re-blogged post. Thanks DG Kaye for this information: Source: Editing tools to help read your manuscript – Read Aloud

Many of us aren’t aware of the many options that Word offers to help with our writing. Although I don’t profess to know what all the functionalities are on the Word ribbon, I was happy to learn about the ‘Read Aloud’ feature, also known as ‘text to speech’.

 

My friend Marcia Meara of The Write Stuff wrote about a program she found that helps her immensely with editing her books called Natural Reader. As I was excited to learn more about that feature and made a note to download the program, I noticed in the comments in her post that if you use Word, you don’t even need to download an app because ‘Read Aloud’is available right in the Word program. You can find it by clicking on the ‘Review’ tab on the Word ribbon toolbar.

Since I’m currently in the revisions and editing stage of my newest upcoming book, I decided to try it out. I found it incredibly helpful. But let me preface by saying that having our work read back to us does in no way replace an editor. So to demonstrate how I used it and what I got out of it, I’ll share with you.

 

When I used the Reader:

 

After going through revisions and re-writes of my current WIP, I then print out a copy of my manuscript to re-read with my own eyes on paper to catch typos and other goodies I miss from reading on the computer. After making all the changes on paper, I then go back to my manuscript and make the new changes I came across on the paper edit. After all the changes, I then went back to the beginning of my MS and turned on the feature to allow the boring guy with the boring voice read back my book to me.

 

What did I find?

 

Wow! I sat in front of my computer as the voice read back my story to me. I found myself pausing it quite a few times when I’d hear a sentence that required a comma in it, detected by the sound of either a run-on or incoherent sentence. I found quite a few prepositions missed or added such as: on, it for and to. I also heard a few sentences that although weren’t originally flagged as fragmented, sounding a bit wonky to myself. The kind of sentence you may come across when reading a book that has you doing a double-take or scrolling back on your Kindle, wondering what the author meant to convey.

 

So, my conclusion is that this feature is immensely helpful in detecting little oversights we may have missed otherwise. Often times when we read our own work back to ourselves, we read what we expect to see, rather than what is actually in front of us. That’s why we have editors to pick up on things we miss. But this little feature should further help us to catch more little pesky oversights before sending our work to the editor, eliminating some time, and cutting the cost of the editing fees in doing so. I highly #recommend putting your work through the Reading Aloud test!

 

Here’s link to read more about it an demonstrate exactly how it works, as well as enabling speech to text – https://office-watch.com/2017/make-microsoft-office-speak-read-aloud/

Note*  My bad, thanks Marcia for reminding that in order to enable the Read Aloud feature, you must highlight the text you want read back to you first. 🙂

Note #2 It’s come to my attention from some of you readers that you aren’t able to access the feature on your ribbon. Here’s some help:

If you don’t see the ‘A’ in the review tab with ‘Read aloud’ under the ‘A’, you can find it! It may not have been enabled automatically on your program. Click on the tiny the tiny arrow on the top left-hand of your toolbar and a drop down box will open > click on ‘More Commands’ >Scroll down the list until you find either ‘Read Aloud’ or ‘Speak’ > Click on it and it will add the feature to your Word ribbon under ‘review’ tab. Once you’ve added it you can use it by clicking on the ‘A’ in the review tab or by the new tiny speech bubble icon that should now be right beside that tiny arrow where you click to find the ‘more commands’.

Saturday Historical Review: “Patriot’s Blood: Book Four in the Liam Mannion Series” by David Lawlor

I was delighted to find the Liam Mannion series continued. Patriots' Blood (A Liam Mannion novel Book 4) by [Lawlor, David]
After the peace treaty of Michael Collins with the English, some Irish feel that he sold them out and so the Irish conflict continues and again ‘brothers’ are fighting each other, although it is a less open civil war.
Liam won’t fight his former comrades, he’d only fight the English. But his girlfriend Kate fights on Michael Collins side, while at the same time there’s a lone killer, Branwen, taking out ‘traitors’.
He’s coming after Kate and Liam, so Liam can’t avoid getting involved.

Lawlor writes great dialogue, authentic settings and excellent suspense. Scene setting seems to come to him effortlessly. The novel is skillfully written and full of accurate historical details. The characters are well chosen with their individual backgrounds to illustrate the conflict, the various viewpoints taken and the intense tragedy of a civil war.

I found it very moving to see the conflict and its unfolding. The story is gripping, chilling with its depiction of violence, especially as it’s between people sharing so much of the same goals.

Thsi truly is an excellent series that I can’t recommend highly enough.

me

Interview with David Lawlor:

Tell us a little about yourself:

My day job is as an editor with a national newspaper, but in the past six or seven years I have been bitten by the writing bug. I love it.
So far, I have written four novels, but have as yet just published one of them. I am now embarking on my fifth. all of my books are set in Ireland, although the first is also set in America in the 1840s.
I live in Co Wicklow, the Garden of Ireland, and am married with four children. When I’m not writing novels I like to add to my blog – historywithatwist.wordpress.com – which celebrates the bit players of history and some of the unusual escapades many of them have got involved in. Drop by for a nose around if you have the time.

How did you come to writing in the first place?

I’ve been writing for about seven years now. I have always been interested in Native Americans and when I came across the story of the Choctaw and how they helped raise money for the Irish Famine in the 1840s, I was hooked. I wanted to tell a story of how that money came to Ireland and that’s how I wrote my first book – a tale spanning two countries and one which was also set in the present. After that book I was on a roll and have since written three more.

What was your connection or fascination with that particular time?

I’ve always been interested in those periods in which life is put on the line. I wonder how I would react if placed in a similar situation. With regards to World War 1, after which The Golden Grave is set, I wondered at what it would be like to face death on a daily basis and what the psychological impact of such an experience would have, particularly if one had to revisit such a place so soon afterwards.

How comfortable do you feel writing about history? How did you research for it?

I’m not daunted by it, mainly because I feel I don’t need to research exhaustively for it. If I have a good hook for my story then I can hone my research to suit. So far, I’ve written two books set during and after World War 1. My next book is set in 1923, so a lot of the previous research I have done regarding clothing etc can be brought to bear again. I also find old photographs hugely useful for helping me describe things.
The first book I wrote (yet to be published) was set on a Native American reservation in the 1840s and the present time, so that took a lot of research as I had never been to that part of America and had to rely on textbooks and internet searches to try to capture the feel of the place. That type of research is time consuming but great fun when it all starts to fit together.

 

 

Who are your favourite authors / influences?

I like quite a few – Robert Harris, Sebastian Faulks, Tom Wolfe, John Connolly. What I like about Connolly is that he has a beautiful turn of phrase and uses it to great effect in the build-up of his scenes. At the same time he grabs the reader and usually keeps the pace right up ‘til the end.

What books have you read more than once or want to read again?

When I was in school I read Wuthering Heights eight times. I loved the mood of the book and the characters. I read a book by Tom Clancy called Without Remorse about four times, because I loved the arc of the story and was fascinated with how he did that. I have read Tom Wolfe’s A Man in Full a couple of times, purely because Wolfe is just a genius when it comes to description.

 

Website: historywithatwist.wordpress.com
Twitter: @LawlorDavid
Amazon US:http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00CFNEOCU
Amazon UK:http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00CFNEOCU/ref=cm_cr_mts_prod_img

Welsh Wednesdays: Re-blog: Snow Sisters by Carol Lovekin #snowsisters @carollovekin @honno

Re-blog from: Snow Sisters by Carol Lovekin #snowsisters @carollovekin @honno 
Thanks Jo from mychestnutredingtree.wordpress.com for this review of “Snowsisters” – which I will read once I secured myself a signed copy from the author (and I’m willing to stalk her from here to Timbuktu or Machu Pichu for it)
https://mychestnutreadingtree.wordpress.com/2017/10/04/snow-sisters-by-carol-lovekin-blogtour-carollovekin-honno

Snow Sisters by Carol Lovekin #snowsisters @carollovekin @honno

I am thrilled to be on the blog tour today for Snow Sisters by Carol Lovekin!

Book Blurb…

Two sisters, their grandmother’s old house and Angharad… the girl who cannot leave.

Meredith discovers a dusty sewing box in a disused attic. Once open the box releases the ghost of Angharad, a Victorian child-woman with a horrific secret she must share. Angharad slowly reveals her story to Meredith who fails to convince her more pragmatic sister of the visitations, until Verity sees Angharad for herself on the eve of an unseasonal April snowstorm.

Forced by her flighty mother to abandon Gull House for London, Meredith struggles to settle, still haunted by Angharad and her little red flannel hearts. This time, Verity is not sure she will be able to save her

My review…

I think this will probably be on the short side for one of my reviews as I’m absolutely convinced that any words I use to convey the beauty of this book won’t match those used by author Carol Lovekin and the gently flowing fluidity of her beautifully crafted narrative. I just wanted to cry with the sheer joy at how perfectly the poetic prose brought this story to life giving it an ethereal quality that enveloped me from the very first page.

This ghostly story unfolds over three timelines; the present with Verity returning to Gull House after a series of family deaths, Verity and Meredith living there in the late 1970s with their flighty mother Allegra and then there is the voice from the past of their “ghost” Angharad as she tells her traumatic tale to those who can finally listen. I loved all of the women’s voices here but I especially loved the relationship between the two sisters. As a mother myself I was shocked at the differing attitudes Allegra had towards her two daughters. Showing such blatant favouritism towards one child could have divided the sisters but no matter what happened, the girls remained united…….until one day Allegra drops a bombshell that will send them all scurrying back to London.

I tend not to read any books with a supernatural theme but Snow Sisters was so much more than I ever could have expected. It cast a magical spell over me so that I was completely overtaken by the lives of all the women here and the mysteries surrounding them. I noticed that the male characters remained nameless throughout (apart from Idris whom we never actually meet) which gave them an shadowy creepiness, keeping the female characters vividly at the forefront of our concern.

This is an atmospheric and hauntingly evocative novel that stirred my soul more than I thought possible. A stunningly beautiful and touching storyline that I delighted in whilst reading and felt thoroughly bereft of once finished. Highly recommended.

Snow Sisters is available to purchase now from Amazon UK. I received my review copy from the publisher Honno Press.

Meet the author…

Carol Lovekin
 
Carol is a writer, feminist and flâneuse. Her home is in beautiful West Wales, a place whose legends and landscape inform her writing. She writes contemporary fiction threaded with elements of magic.
Her second book, SNOW SISTERS, was published on 21 September, 2017 by Honno, the Welsh Women’s Press. It has been chosen by the Welsh Books Council as their October Book of the Month (for independent shops.)
GHOSTBIRD, her first novel, was published in March 2016. The book was chosen as Waterstones Wales and Welsh Independent Bookshops ‘Book Of The Month’ for April 2016. It was longlisted for the Guardian ‘Not the Booker’ prize 2016 and nominated for the Guardian Readers’ Book of the Year 2016.Praise for SNOW SISTERS
“Lovekin’s words soar like the birds, who see everything”
Louise Beech – ‘How To Be Brave’Praise for GHOSTBIRD
“Charming, quirky, magical”
Joanne Harris – ‘Chocolat’Author photographs © Janey Stevens

Review: “L.A. Punk Snapshots in Color: Before they became huge international stars, Billy Idol, The Clash, Iggy Pop, The Damned, Bad Religion, T.S.O.L., and many other acts played the L.A. circuit” by Brenda Perlin

L.A. Punk Snapshots in Color: Before they became huge international stars, Billy Idol, The Clash, Iggy Pop, The Damned, Bad Religion, T.S.O.L., and many other acts played the L.A. circuit. by [Perlin, Brenda]This book took me way back to parts of my past I hope I’ll never forget. Brenda Perlin continues her excellent Punk book series with an eclectic and exquisite selection of snapshots – of stars and groupies alike – that captures the multitude of what punk meant to different people; the multitude of what punks did, how they felt and how they expressed their feelings.
Interspersed with well-selected quotations from punks (famous and unknowns) the book explores the spirit of the movement. My favourite quote: “you didn’t decide to become a punk. The moment the music hit you, you knew you were”
Besides all of this, the book is a personal memoir and reflection on those times by the author, a woman who lived through the days with back-stage experiences who had some enviable personal encounters with some of the punk stars. (I’m very jealous of those moments, I won’t lie).
What makes this book such a treasure are the snippets that clear up many mis-conceptions, such as the uncorrect linking of the movement with violence.
Thanks for keeping the pictures and publishing in such a great book.

Blurb:

L. A. Punk Snapshots gives readers a window into the world of punk rock and its fans during the 1980s in Los Angeles. As the fledgling punk scene unfolded, sixteen-year-old Brenda Perlin was there to capture history with her camera. Before they became huge international stars, Billy Idol, The Clash, Iggy Pop, The Damned, Bad Religion, T.S.O.L., and many other acts played the L.A. circuit; and Perlin was there behind the scenes. Truly paradoxical, young, naïve Perlin infiltrated the punk world, and the result is a collection of photographs that is sure to please any music fan.

Brenda Perlin

Brenda Perlin is an independent contemporary fiction author of five titles and numerous short stories.

Ever since she was a child, Brenda has been fascinated with the writing process. She draws her biggest inspiration from Judy Blume who sparked her obsession with pursuing personal expression through prose. Brenda has always lost herself in the world of literature.

Her first series, the highly-acclaimed Brooklyn and Bo Chronicles, captures the soul-wrenching conflicts of a couple struggling for emotional fulfillment against those who would keep them apart. Next, Brenda ventured into the realm of graphic novellas with Ty the Bull, a story about a young boy who overcomes bullying, and Alex the Mutt, which explores the journey of love and loss of a beloved dog.

Her latest novel, Punk Rocker comes after L.A. Punk Rocker, both are anthologies where authors write about the music scene in the late seventies to the early eighties: a time when she was in Hollywood meeting famous bands and enjoying the new music scene. L.A. Punk Snapshots is her latest. There she shares quotes from famous and not famous music enthusiasts and old photographs from the early punk scene in Los Angeles.

While Brenda is still listening to her favorite bands from the eighties, Billy Idol remains the ultimate King Rocker and music is just as important to her as ever.

Welsh Wednesdays: Oil Painting Exhibition by David Cowdry

If you are living in or visiting South Wales this week, let me recommend an exhibition of paintings by David Cowdry, inspired by landscape, light & wildlife. This show is open to the public from Saturday October 7th to Thursday October 12th. Venue is the amazing Aberglasney Gardens – worth a visit in its own right.

Last year my partner and I went to the famous Aberglasney Gardens and noticed the stunning oil paintings on display in the Mansion. We got to chat to the artist and vowed to buy one of these paintings once we had settled into the new place.

Weeks later we met a nice couple with a dog at our first social invite, and halfway through the conversation we realised it was said artist: David Cowdry.
Well, we’ve been friends since and have not missed one of his local exhibitions since.

This Sunday we went to his latest exhibition, nothing short of phenomenal: splendid colours, artistic vision in landscape and nature, incredible underwater images…

We’re over the moon to have been given one such painting as wedding present, so admittedly we’re biased to recommend the show. It’s definitely worth it.

Details

Start:
October 6
End:
October 12
Event Category:
Website:
https://en-gb.facebook.com/davidcowdryart.70/

Venue

Aberglasney
Llangathen Carmarthenshire SA32 8QH United Kingdom+ Google Map
Phone:
01558 668998
Website:
aberglasney.org
https://www.google.com/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode&q=Llangathen+Carmarthenshire+SA32+8QH+United+Kingdom

Mystery Mondays Review: “Acre’s Bastard” by Wayne Turmel

Acre's Bastard: Historical Fiction from the Crusades (a Lucca Le Pou Story) by [Turmel, Wayne]This is the story of an orphan in the times of the Holy Inquisition. Lucca le Pou is of mixed heritage, as are many of his friends. This is a clever set-up for a story about inter-religious, inter-ethical and inter-racial conflicts of the time and the atrocities to come.
The novel starts harmless with a bit of adolescent ‘peeping’ that kicks off a series of events that bring out hero Lucca into bigger trouble and force him to hide with Brother Marco.
Teacher, knight and Brother Marco helps Luca in his need and the two of them team up to solve a mystery as some irregular events occur, events only an observant mind would notice.
There is a warm feeling to the story, the friendship between the boy and Brother Marco is heart-warming. Marco teaches Lucca to notice what an untrained eye might overlook. The characters are excellent, the story-telling great, and the historical background sits well within this enjoyable story for young and old alike.

Wayne Turmel

Biography

Wayne Turmel is a writer, speaker and entrepreneur based in the Chicago area. He’s the author of 6 non-fiction books, including “Meet Like You Mean It- a Leader’s Guide to Painless and Productive Virtual Meetings” and two historical fiction novels, “The Count of the Sahara” and “Acre’s Bastard.”

His motto is: Those who forget the past are doomed to repeat it. The rest of us are doomed too, but get to smile smugly and say ‘told you so’.

You can learn more about him at http://www.WayneTurmel.com

Saturday Historical Review: “100 Tiny Threads” by Judith Barrow

One of my holiday highlights was to find undisturbed time to read ‘A Hundred Tiny Threads’ by Judith Barrow – the prequel to the Howarth Family Series. It’s the backstory of two characters in Barrow’s acclaimed historical WW2 series and explains or illuminates at least, where they come from as people. Starting in 1911 over the years we uncover the threads that bind Winifred and Bill together. If you, like myself, missed the characters of Barrow’s series, here is a welcome encore.

There is no doubt that Judith Barrow is one gifted writer. The book is well-written, full of great characters and instilled with an impeccably authentic feel of the times.

The story begins with Winifred and her struggles with her mother, who is as oppressing for her daughter as are the politics of the time. It is the era of the Suffragette movement and Winifred’s Irish friend Honora drags Winifred into the movement and introduces her to her handsome brother.

It is also the story of Bill, injured in 1911 in the mines and abandoned by his sort of family. He’s in love with Winifred throughout.

A lot happnes, so even if you have read the other books in the series, there are enough surprises and twists for you to take delight from. Besides the parts on the Suffragettes and their clashes with the police, the novel also includes war segments and sections about the conflict between Blacks and Tans in Ireland. Details on war fare, mining, women’s rights and irish politics make this a rich and rewarding read.

Great characters, engaging subplots and a love for details are among the many strength of this author. Barrow is a master at bringing the times to colorfoul and breath-taking life. This is moving, gripping and heart-wrenchingly good.

“Chains do not hold a marriage together. It is threads, hundreds
of tiny threads, which sew people together through the years.”
Simone Signoret.

It’s 1911 and Winifred Duffy is a determined young woman eager for new experiences, for a life beyond the grocer’s shop counter ruled over by her domineering mother.

The scars of Bill Howarth’s troubled childhood linger. The only light in his life comes from a chance encounter with Winifred, the girl he determines to make his wife.

Meeting her friend Honora’s silver-tongued brother turns Winifred’s heart upside down. But Honora and Conal disappear, after a suffrage rally turns into a riot, and abandoned Winifred has nowhere to turn but home.

The Great War intervenes, sending Bill abroad to be hardened in a furnace of carnage and loss. When he returns his dream is still of Winifred and the life they might have had… Back in Lancashire, worn down by work and the barbed comments of narrow-minded townsfolk, Winifred faces difficult choices in love and life.

All books by Judith Barrow on the Honno website

BUY THIS BOOK at Honno or Amazon