Category Books


Remember when you were little and would scribble a big blob of yellow on a page and call it a tiger, then hand it to an adult who would proclaim it the most beautiful giraffe in the world and pin it on the refrigerator? No? Likely it’s because the squashing of creativity with rules started […]

Words To Live By: An Unquenchable Spirit of Adventure…

“There is no experience from which you can’t learn something. When you stop learning you stop living in any vital and meaningful sense…”

Book Feature: MAYHEM AT ROCK CREEK by M. L. Poncelet

“… frontier history rugged and real.” Popular books and movies have made the phrase “gold rush” all but synonymous with California and Alaska.  But have you ever heard about the Canadian gold rushes at Fraser Canyon, Cariboo, or Rock Creek ? In 1859, two U.S. soldiers crossed three miles into the then British colonial territory of […]

Book Feature: I SPIDER by Anthony Lance

“…think Hitchcock’s PSYCHO meets THE BIRDS with flashes of humor — and spiders.” I have a rather compulsive habit of downloading books to my e-reader, so it was no surprise when I SPIDER joined the masses on my kindle after I’d read a few book excerpts on author Anthony Lance’s I SPIDER Blog. But that, as they […]

BTSN Book Feature: A GAME OF PROOF by Tim Vicary

“Gripping moral dilemmas in a top-notch crime/legal thriller.” Whether British or American, we like to think of our laws and our legal system as the bright moral lines in the sand of our respective communities.  Those clear points where we’ve collectively agreed thou shalt not cross.  Sure we know no institution is perfect, nor the […]

Mother’s Day – An Appreciation

My mom has long been my hero.  Her tireless work ethic, impish sense of humor and Saks’ Fifth Avenue style on a Woolworth budget never cease to inspire.  I wrote this poem for “Toni” years ago, but I share it with moms everywhere.  Thank you for all you do… Please pass it on to anyone […]

Words To Live By: “Eyes Blinded By The Fog Of Things …”

“Eyes blinded by the fog of Things cannot see Truth. Ears deafened by the din of Things cannot hear Truth. Brains bewildered by the whirl of Things cannot think Truth. Hearts deadened by the weight of Things cannot feel Truth. Throats choked by the dust of Things cannot speak Truth.”    ~~ Harold Bell Wright, […]

BTSN Book Feature: KISS CHRONICLES by Virginia Sanders

“A heartfelt journey of missed kisses, family cancer and fundraising.” I love personal journeys and people brave enough to share them.  In KISS CHRONICLES, author Virginia M. Sanders doesn’t hold back.  Frequently humorous and occasionally raw, her emotions are always real as she chronicles her journey through missed kisses, family cancer and ongoing ordeals in trying […]

Of Mothers and Journeys

One year ago, I became a published author. DIRTY WORDS ON CLEAN SKIN detailed my journey from fearful news junkie to outspoken activist.  The disturbing parallels between my own mother’s life and the misogynistic media treatment of Hillary Clinton and other politically inconvenient women in 2008 motivated me to take action.  Notwithstanding the teeth gnashing involved […]

A Humble Thank You To Women Writers

In honor of Women’s History Month, a humble thank you to the many amazing women writers and the characters they created who inspired my dreams, impacted my life and shaped my future through the use of storytelling.

Words To Live By: “The Duty of Criticism”

“The duty of criticism is neither to depreciate nor dignify by partial representations, but to hold out the light of reason, whatever it may discover; and to promulgate the determinations of truth, whatever she shall dictate.” ~~ Samuel Johnson, The Rambler #93, February 5, 1751

Words To Live By: “An Unquenchable Spirit Of Adventure…”

“There is no experience  from which  you can’t learn something. When you stop learning you stop living in any vital and meaningful sense. And the purpose of life, after all, is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear  for newer and richer experience. You can do […]

The Sisterhood Of The Never Imagined Empowerment NOW T-Shirt

I recently went on a trip to a city I’d never been to before to hear a woman I’d never met in person speak to a group I’d only read about in the news and it prompted me to send my nieces a cartoon t-shirts I’m calling “THE SISTERHOOD OF THE NEVER IMAGINED EMPOWERMENT NOW T-SHIRT”. It […]

BTSN Book Feature: SENATOR by Richard Bowker

“…a fascinating insider’s depiction of political life, and a compelling morality tale.” When should a senator (or any politician) stop serving in government? Is the slow seep of corruption in values and interests inevitable?  Do politicians even know themselves when they’ve stopped serving the people’s interests except as a means to re-election? Senator James O’Connor […]

Dear Fifth Wave Feminists, We Need You!

In Caitlin Moran’s outrageous, funny and heartbreakingly honest feminist manifesto How to Be a Woman, she calls for a fifth wave (by her count) of feminism to rise up.  Pointing at the statistics that say only 29% of American women and 42% of British women call themselves Feminists, she rails at the anti-feminism sentiment and […]

BTSN Book Feature: STIRRING UP TROUBLE by Juli Alexander

“ … a delightful witchy … YA romance … “ Did you ever wonder why witches are ugly, green and have warts?  Well…  It’s not their wickedness showing through.  It’s their punishment from Zeus for using their powers for self-serving purposes. Which leaves nerdy 15-year-old Zoe Miller, who is a witchwiz at STIRRING UP TROUBLE, trying […]

Soliloquy For An Avid Reader

Earlier this summer, fellow writer Suzie Ivy posted My Writer’s Twist on Shakespeare based on the “To be or not to be” Soliloquy for Hamlet over at the Reading and Writing Cafe blog.  She urged other writers to follow suit with whatever issues they were feeling conflicted over — work, parenting, eating, exercise … Like most people, I have a […]

BTSN Book Feature: PASSAMEZZO by J. E. Mathieson and A. A. Guest

“… rich generational saga … gripping political thriller… brutal cautionary tale” The subtitle “Who is trying to kill the boss of bosses” clues you into its thriller plot and the gangster hat on the cover points you to its Canadian crime family subject. The authors J. E. Mathieson and A. A. Guest describe their riveting, […]

Honoring A Mother, A Dog, And Those Who Give Shelter

Domestic violence is something Author Anita Finlay saw first hand growing up and is part of what compelled her to speak up about fair and equal treatment for women and write about the violent undertones of sexism during our last presidential election in her book Dirty Words on Clean Skin.  (My review is here.) Anita is also […]

BTSN Book Feature: DIRTY WORDS ON CLEAN SKIN by Anita Finlay

The media dubbed 2008 the year of the woman because of Hillary Clinton’s and Sarah Palin’s historic runs for political office, but it really was the year millions of ordinary women from both parties were “rudely awakened” from their political complacency and found their voice. The backlash we received in response showed us the ugly […]

BTSN Book Feature: BORN TO FLY by Diana Scimone

It is hard to keep your dreams alive when you live under a Dark Cloud in a colorless world and have to eat twig soup every day. But such is the life of Blossom, a young caterpillar with a big heart and an even bigger dream. She wants to find the last Moonbeam Tree in […]

BTSN Book Feature: ‘Admit The Horse’ by P. G. Abeles

Admit The Horse is a fictionalized telling of the 2008 primary and general election. Not the myths developed and created by the political gods and marketed 24/7 by mass media. But the back story of ordinary citizens engaged in a historic election and participating in ways they never dreamed possible. Each person discovers or holds the […]

BTSN Book Feature: BAD LUCK OFFICER by Suzie Ivy

” Ms. Ivy bares and shares it all with humor, passion and candor … a riveting read “ If you love cop shows and cop novels and think the various CSI television series are how law enforcement actually works, then let me introduce you to someone who will set the record straight and tell it like it […]

Cover - Bad Luck Cadet

Bad Luck Cadet #19 – Pepper Spray Me, Shoot You

Pepper Spray Me, Shoot You is the nineteenth installment in my Bad Luck Cadet Series that follows my adventures at the police academy after my mid-life crisis. It’s all about fun, laughter and PAIN!  If you are new to the series, you can follow it from the beginning on this blog starting with  Bad Luck Cadet #1 – Accidents Happen  […]

~ This Time, Women Are Here To Stay

Back in 2008, when Hillary Clinton was running for president, I came across an old black and white pictorial on American women from the late 1940’s at a used book fundraiser.  Since I was feeling more than a little dispirited over the fate of women at the time, I bought the book hoping for inspiration from […]

Bad Luck Cadet by Suzie Ivy

~ BTSN Book Feature: BAD LUCK CADET by Suzie Ivy

We women are routinely underestimated and overlooked by both ourselves and the other half of the human species when it comes to our mental and physical capabilities.  In our youth we strap on our resiliency and bravado to help us face down the prejudices.  By the time we reach middle age, that resiliency and bravado […]

~ Bad Luck Cadet #17 – The Police Perspective

The Police Perspective is the seventeenth installment in my Bad Luck Cadet Series that follows my adventures at the police academy after my mid-life crisis.  It’s all about fun, laughter and PAIN!  If you are new to the series, you can follow it from the beginning on this blog starting with  Bad Luck Cadet #1 – Accidents Happen  or […]

~ No Dorothy Yet, In Our Land of Oz

Last week, a friend sent me a fun bit of political humor (h/t S. Moss): The movie Wizard of Oz is 72 years old.  Today, if Dorothy were to encounter Men with no brains, no hearts, and no courage  She wouldn’t be in Oz … She’d be in Congress! I immediately wanted to add “Or in the White house!” Because Dorothy would just as easily find […]