Monday, 22 April 2019

Book Tour: Beverlee Beaz the Brown Burmese by Regan W. H. Macaulay...


Mirror World Publishing presents a 1-week virtual book tour for Beverlee Beaz the Brown Burmese Written by Regan W.H. Macaulay and Illustrated by Alex Zgud!


About Beverlee Beaz the Brown Burmese:

Beverlee Beaz, the brown Burmese, longs for adventure and has the powerful imagination to make it happen. On a lovely, but otherwise ordinary day, she seeks excitement among the forests and fields surrounding her home. The ordinary suddenly becomes extraordinary in the eyes of this wildly creative little brown cat.

Follow Beverlee on her adventure through the forest, over the hills… and into the world of her imagination!

Exclusive Excerpt: 

"She spotted a bright orange and black butterfly."



Book Details:
Page Count: 48
Genre: Children’s Picture Book
Tags: Fantasy, Imagination, Farm Animals
Publisher: Mirror World Publishing
Publish Date: April 17, 2019

Purchase Links:

Mirror World Publishing

Meet the Author:



Regan W. H. Macaulay writes novels, short stories, children’s literature, and scripts. Writing is her passion, but she’s also a producer and director of theatre, film, and television. She is an animal-enthusiast as well, which led her to become a Certified Canine (and Feline) Massage Therapist. Other award-winning picture storybooks by Regan W. H. Macaulay include Beverlee Beaz the Brown Burmese, Sloth the Lazy Dragon, and Tamara Turtle’s Life So Far. She is also the author of The Trilogy of Horrifically Half-baked Ham which includes Space Zombies! (based on her film, Space Zombies: 13 Months of Brain-Spinning Mayhem!—available on iTunes and on DVD), They Suck, and Horror at Terror Creek.

Social Media:


Meet the Artist:



Alex Zgud is an artist from rural Ontario, currently living in Calgary. She attended the Ontario College of Art & Design, where she majored in drawing and painting, and earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts. After finishing school she went on to begin a tattoo apprenticeship, and has since been developing her skills as a tattoo artist. Her preferred media are inks and watercolours.

Enter the Giveaway:

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Monday, 15 April 2019

Cover Reveal: Blackflies and Blueberries, Mysterious Tales from Fairy Falls, Book 2...


Mirror World Publishing presents the cover reveal for Blackflies and Blueberries 
(Mysterious Tales from Fairy Falls, #2) by Sharon Ledwith!

About Blackflies and Blueberries:

The only witness left to testify against an unsolved crime in Fairy Falls isn’t a person…

City born and bred, Hart Stewart possesses the gift of psychometry—the psychic ability to discover facts about an event or person by touching inanimate objects associated with them. Since his mother’s death, seventeen-year-old Hart has endured homelessness, and has learned ways to keep his illiteracy under wraps. He eventually learns of a great-aunt living in Fairy Falls, and decides to leave the only life he’s ever known for an uncertain future. 

Diana MacGregor lives in Fairy Falls. Her mother was a victim of a senseless murder. Only Diana’s unanswered questions and her grief keeps her going, until Hart finds her mother’s lost ring and becomes a witness to her murder. 

Through Hart’s psychic power, Diana gains hope for justice. Their investigation leads them into the corrupt world threatening Fairy Falls. To secure the town’s future, Hart and Diana must join forces to uncover the shocking truth, or they risk losing the true essence of Fairy Falls forever.

Blackflies and Blueberries Cover:


Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal

Publish Date: May 17, 2019

Publisher:  Mirror World Publishing https://www.mirrorworldpublishing.com/

Monday, 8 April 2019

A Writer’s Best Friend: An Osteopath…

Have you ever had a treatment from an Osteopath? Wait…what? No? Well, if you’re a writer like me who spends a good portion of the day sitting at a desk, body parts can get a little stiff, and over time can actually get ‘programmed’ into being ‘stuck’. Neck stiffness, back and shoulder aches, and even hips hurt after putting in a good day of writing. Yes, I get up to move and stretch after a set amount of time (around 20-30 minutes), but the stiffness and pain lingers long after the book is finished. So what can you do to ‘deprogram’ those muscles and get balance back your body? An Osteopath can help you with that!

In essence, Osteopathy is a holistic form of healing which emphasizes the interrelationship between structure and function of the human body. Osteopathic Manual Practitioners believe that human illnesses are rooted in problems with the musculoskeletal system, and that hands-on manipulation can solve these problems and effect a cure by harnessing the body’s own healing potential. No drugs. No excruciating exercises. No sweat.

Sign. Me. Up.

So how does osteopathy work? The following techniques are used to get to the ‘root’ of the patient’s problem, and to help the patient enjoy a pain-free (or almost pain-free) life:

Myofascial Release is a manipulative treatment that attempts to release tension in the fascia (connective tissues surrounding the muscles, bones, nerves, and organs) due to trauma, posture, or inflammation. Trust me, some of us writers need TLC when it comes to our posture!

Muscle Energy Technique is based on the principle of reciprocal inhibition, a theory that explains that muscles on one side of a joint will always relax to accommodate the contraction of muscles on the other side of that joint when indirect pressure is applied. This technique is usually utilized in order to lengthen shortened or spastic muscles, to improve weakened ligament and muscle strength, and to improve range of motion.

Oscillatory Osteoarticular Release involves gently moving two joint surfaces to reduce muscle spasms, ease neurological irritations, assist in joint mobility, and help reduce pain and discomfort. This technique allows the body to relax and prevents it from activating protective mechanisms like muscle spasms.

Counterstrain is a manual therapy technique, meaning the osteopath uses only his or her hands to treat muscle and joint pain and dysfunction. This is an effective but extremely gentle technique because its action for treatment moves the patient’s body away from the painful, restricted directions of motion.

Cranial Sacral Therapy originates from a concept explored in the 1900s by Osteopath Doctor William Sutherland that the bones of the cranium move amongst each other and can create pressure on the brain. In this technique, the role of an Osteopath is not to forcibly correct the body, but rather to encourage the body to correct itself, which leads to a more fundamental change and often disappearance of chronic symptoms.

Ligamentous Articular Release is a manipulative technique in which the goal of treatment is to balance the tension in opposing ligaments where there is abnormal tension present. This treatment modality aims to reset the balance point of the joint complex and relieve any abnormal tension causing a variety of symptoms including pain and abnormalities in balance.

Jeff Parker getting ready to manipulate me.
In a GOOD way!
I’ve been treated for almost a year now, using a few of these awesome techniques by my Manuel Practitioner, Jeff Parker, and have no doubt in my body and mind that this healing avenue works wonders. Since visiting Jeff, my knee pain has subsided 90% (I’ve got severe osteoarthritis in my left knee due to a sports injury), and he’s taken care of some nasty back spasms due to a soft tissue injury. Though my body fights me on some issues (neck stiffness and shoulder pain from my writing career) it’s starting to ‘deprogram’ itself and looks for the balance I need. Nature, after all, always seeks balance.

Have you ever had a session with an Osteopath? If so, what was your experience like? If not, then, if you’re suffering with body pain, I urge you to check an Osteopath out in your area. It may be just what the doctor ordered. Would love to read your input and comments. Cheers, and thank you for spending time with me by reading my blog!

Monday, 1 April 2019

Carpe Diem by Author Catherine Castle...

The other day while perusing an antique mall, I came across a little wooden plaque engraved with what I thought were the words Carpe Diem. Reminded of the movie Dead Poets Society, in which the phrase carpe diem played a role, as well as one of my favorite actors Robin Williams who starred in the movie, I picked up the plaque. Upon closer inspection I saw the words were not carpe diem, but Carpe Diet.

What a clever play on the phrase, I thought, and good advice as well, especially since I have a need to seize my own diet. I put the plaque down, but continued to think about the word carpe and its importance in our lives. The idea of seizing something has a hopeful element to it. When we seize a day, a moment, or a job the chances of doing something special or having something important happen in our lives increases. The big prizes in life go to those who are willing to take a chance and seize the brass ring as they pass by it.

As writers we need to seize several things if we are to accomplish our goals. We need to:

• Seize the dream. Without a dream we have nothing to strive for. I love the song from the musical South Pacific called Happy Talk. The lyrics ask if we don’t have a dream then how are we going to make a dream come true? Good question.

• Seize the motivation. You can dream all you like, but without the motivation to make that dream a reality, it will never become more than a dream. Editors aren’t knocking our doors down. We have to knock on theirs. So do it.

• Seize the day. Find a day, or any part of a day or week or month or year, to work on making your dream come true. If you don’t write the words, no one can read them.

• Seize the prize. Before you reach the goal of publication there are many prizes you can reach for along the way such as contest wins, non-fiction sales to magazines or newspapers, invitations to blog on someone’s site, making friends with other writers who know what you are going through, discovering people who like your blogs or follow your blogs, and grabbing the prize of writing THE END! All are reasons for celebrating. So enjoy all the little accomplishments that come before your first book sale.

• Seize the success. Success can be a long time coming. While you’re waiting keep writing those books and sending out those queries. Sooner or later, if you’ve given it your all and learned your craft well, you will seize the success you’ve strived for.

So, don’t give up, and along the way, don’t forget to seize the chocolate—in moderation if you’re on that diet I referenced earlier.

Here's a peek into my latest sweet romance. I hope you enjoy it.

One date for every medical test—that’s the deal. Allison, however, gets more than she bargains for. She gets a Groom for Mama.

Beverly Walters is dying, and before she goes she has one wish—to find a groom for her daughter. To get the deed done, Mama enlists the dating service of Jack Somerset, Allison’s former boyfriend.

The last thing corporate-climbing Allison wants is a husband. Furious with Mama’s meddling, and a bit more interested in Jack than she wants to admit, Allison agrees to the scheme as long as Mama promises to search for a cure for her terminal illness.

A cross-country trip from Nevada to Ohio ensues, with a string of disastrous dates along the way, as the trio hunts for treatment and A Groom For Mama.

EXCERPT

With a sweep of his hand, Jack spread the photos out on the table in front of Allison and Beverly. “Here’s a few I just grabbed from the database. Any of them interesting?” He studied Allison’s reaction. She didn’t bat an eyelash as she scanned the men’s pictures. Then, without warning, she scooped them up and shoved them at him.

“I told Mama I wasn’t going to do this. It’s a stupid idea.”

“I’ll admit it’s not the ‘some enchanted evening, see a stranger across the room’ romantic way to find a husband, but it’s not totally unacceptable. Several of the couples my company has brought together have married.”

“And lived happily ever after?” she retorted.

“It’s a new company, Allison. I don’t have the stats yet.” He pushed the photos across the table. “Just take a peek. What harm can it do?”

Beverly grabbed the photo of a particularly handsome man. “How about this one? His coloring complements yours. You’d have beautiful children.”

"Mama!” Allison snatched the photo away. “We’re not going to discuss my possible, yet unlikely, progeny in front of Jack.”

A flash of Allison kissing this guy flew through his head. He grabbed the photo from her. “He’s not your type anyway.”

“And just how do you know?” she asked.

“I dated you, remember? You ditched me for some suave, corporate hotshot. At least it’s what you said.”

“Allison!” Beverly exclaimed. “You never told me that.”

Allison shot him a fierce scowl. “I’m not comfortable discussing my love life with you, Mama. Besides, what’s done and over with should be buried . . . in the past.” She picked up another photo. “What about him? Or him and him?” She pointed to two nerdy-looking fellows. “They seem corporate.”

Mama leaned over and checked out the pictures Allison had indicated. “Too ugly,” she said. “He’s got to be handsome. Like Jack. I want to know my grandbabies will be as beautiful as you two.”

He grinned. “Thanks for the compliment, but I know I’m not your daughter’s type.” He laid a sheet of paper on the counter. “Fill this out. Then I can get a better idea of what you want in a husband.”

“I don’t want—”

“I know,” he interjected. “But, for your mom’s sake, just pretend you do.”

Amazon Buy Link

Multi-award-winning author Catherine Castle has been writing all her life. A former freelance writer, she has over 600 articles and photographs to her credit (under her real name) in the Christian and secular market. Now she writes sweet and inspirational romance. Her debut inspirational romantic suspense, The Nun and the Narc, from Soul Mate Publishing, has garnered multiple contests finals and wins.

Catherine loves writing, reading, traveling, singing, watching movies, and the theatre. In the winter she loves to quilt and has a lot of UFOs (unfinished objects) in her sewing case. In the summer her favorite place to be is in her garden. She’s passionate about gardening and even won a “Best Hillside Garden” award from the local gardening club.

Learn more about Catherine Castle on her website and blog. Stay connected on Facebook and Twitter. Be sure to check out Catherine’s Amazon author page and her Goodreads page. You can also find Catherine on Stitches Thru Time and the SMP authors blog site.

Monday, 25 March 2019

Jump into a Romantic Read this Spring with The Star-Crossed Seamstress by Suzanne G. Rogers...

Romance at its finest with this new release from the incomparable Suzanne G. Rogers. This beautifully written sure-to-be-bestseller is an historical romance that will touch your heart as it sweeps you away to an era long gone.

Skylar flees a family scandal in Boston, expecting assistance in society from her English relatives. Once her plans fall apart, however, she is obliged to earn money with her skills as a seamstress. Just when she’s given up on the notion of marriage, her path crosses that of a charming laborer who inexplicably sets her pulse racing.

When wealthy Joe Fiddick hits a patch of bad luck, he seizes the opportunity to do something meaningful by helping a neighbor and her pretty granddaughter with repairs to their cottage. As it turns out, he has more in common with the granddaughter than he realizes…and what they share spells disaster for their budding romance.

Will Joe and Skylar be star-crossed lovers or can the rift between them be mended?

EXCERPT

“Let’s start with the window in your workroom,” Joe said. “It can’t open and close properly because the hinges are rusted?”

Skylar nodded. “Yes. I should dearly love to have fresh air, but I cannot seem to force it open.”

He recoiled. “Insupportable! You cannot perspire over a petticoat or suffocate over a seam!”

Skylar couldn’t suppress a giggle. “Or gasp over a gown.”

His eyes crinkled at the corners. “Or faint over a fichu.”

“Or swoon over a sash.” Joe chuckled.

“Or pant over a pantaloon.”

“Or…or…become clammy over a coat.” She wrinkled her nose. “I suppose that last one wasn’t very good.”

“On the contrary, I thought it was splendid. In addition, since I’d just exhausted my cleverness, you win the game.” He made a gesture of invitation. “Will you show me to the window in question?”

“Indeed, I shall. Follow me.”

As Skylar led him into the cottage and down the hall, she had a smile on her lips. Joe was only a laborer, perhaps, but obviously he was possessed of wit as well as good looks. Even though he was poor and lowborn, she imagined he must cause quite a stir in his neighborhood.

In the workroom, Joe unlatched the window, gave it an experimental push, and peered at the hinges. “I’m going to need to pop out the pins on these hinges and sand off the rust. After a drop or two of oil, the window will give you no reason to complain.”

“I hope you’re right.”

When she leaned in closer to examine the hinges, his physical proximity made the fine hair on her forearms stand on end. Her eyes met his and for several heartbeats it was if something unspoken passed between them.

She cleared her throat. “I see what you mean about the rust.”

The Star-Crossed Seamstress can be read alone or as part of The Mannequin Series.

The Mannequin (Book One) is available at your favorite bookstore here.
Grace Unmasked (Book Two) is available at your favorite bookstore here.

Suzanne G. Rogers lives with her husband and son in romantic Savannah, Georgia, on an island populated by deer, exotic birds, and the occasional gator. She's owned by two Sphynx cats, Houdini and Nikita. Movies, books, and writing are her passions.

Learn more about Suzanne G. Rogers on her historical romance blog and her fantasy blog. Stay connected on Facebook and Twitter. Also, be sure to check out the website for the Sweet Romance written by Suzanne G. Rogers.

Monday, 18 March 2019

Book Tour: The Gimmal Ring by Karen Koski...

She wants the ring and she wants it bad!


Book Details:

Title: The Gimmal Ring
Author: Karen Koski

Page Count: 124

Genres: Urban Fantasy, Adventure, Middle Grade

Publisher: Mirror World Books

About The Gimmal Ring:


Gwendolyn Gimmal desperately wants an invitation to the mysterious Gimmal Gala where her family’s coveted ring is bestowed upon new inductees. It’s not that she particularly likes bling, but because she knows it will unlock exciting secrets and reveal what she believes will be her true life’s path. Her younger brother, Gage, also wants to attend the party, but mostly for the food.

After finding her way into the hidden gala, Gwen learns that The Gimmal Ring is not only a piece of jewellery, but also a secret society of people. Things go awry when their parents are kidnapped from the Gala and held for ransom. Gwen and her brother must solve the clues and find the hidden formula the kidnappers have demanded by midnight, or they will never see their family members again. 

Their newly discovered enhanced abilities, while fun, are not completely reliable. Cracking newspaper codes, deciphering invisible maps, and playing a high stakes game of Enigma Machine Twister, are just some of the challenges they must overcome if they are to succeed in time. The adventure starts when they flush themselves in The Tele-Potti, a teleporting commode, and it all goes down the drain from there.

Read an Excerpt:

Gwen got ready to go to her aunt and uncle’s house, as she did every day after school.  Her dad usually got home late.  Her mom, like always, was gone. Gwen knew that her aunt would be baking up delicious treats for her mail order cookie and tea business. If she timed it right, she would get to sample the latest creations. She put on her shoes and tied them to just the right snugness.  Then she put on her backpack, adjusted the straps to distribute the staggering weight of her advanced textbooks so she wouldn’t topple over. She affixed a baseball cap over her unruly auburn hair at just the right angle to avoid sun exposure on her pale skin. Never too early to prevent wrinkles, she thought. She did a couple of calf raises and shrugged her shoulders, warming up her muscles for the journey. Leaving the outside light on, she exited the side door, locked it, took a deep breath, and set off in the direction of her aunt’s house.
 
Exactly twenty-two and a half steps later, Gwen let herself into the side entrance that led directly into the pantry. Like a snake shedding its skin, Gwen slithered out of her backpack and coat, and left them in a pile on the floor, where they would stay until she begged her Uncle Stan to give her a ride home.  The smell of cookies lured her into the kitchen. Through the smoke, she could make out the shape of her Aunt Gerri standing at the stove working her magic.

“Fire in the hole!” Aunt Gerri yelled.
 
Gwen ducked as a pot lid zipped by and narrowly missed her eyebrows that had just grown back. At least all that time practicing my ninja moves came in handy, somewhere,  she thought. She belly-crawled to the safety of the kitchen island and hid behind it until the sparks stopped flying.  Gwen never felt more at home than she did right here.  Even after the crushing disappointment of her brother discovering her hiding spot, again, and the dreadful day she had had at school, Gwen was comforted by the familiar smoke and flying objects in this kitchen.

Staring out the window, Gwen let her mind wander as she watched Gage balance on rocks while attempting to cross Coghill Creek. Their houses were located on sloping, treed lots with a creek that flowed past at the back of the properties. The stream emptied into Lake Erie at the southernmost part of Kingsville, the small town where generations of her family had always lived.  He wobbled once, twice, and then lost the battle as his sneaker-clad foot dunked into the water up to his ankle.  Gage owned rubber boots but he refused to wear them, saying “That was like admitting defeat before you even started”. So instead Gage had the largest, smelliest, wet shoe collection going. Usually watching her brother acting like an idiot was enough to distract her, but not today. Her mind kept replaying the humiliating events of the day. It had all started when Gwen got to school this morning.  It was raining, her hair frizzed and her glasses fogged.  Gwen attempted to navigate the busy hallways peering through her misty glasses. The bell rang and Gwen rushed to class. BIG mistake! Before she knew what was happening, she bounced off of something. Her books went flying and her shoes made a loud, moist squeak.  “I am sooo sor...” Gwen’s apology stopped short when she realized who she had run into. It was Nicole, the self- appointed leader of the popular girls.  Gwen dove onto the ground to retrieve her books.

Nicole glared. “Honestly Gwen, you shouldn’t break wind in public. It’s not very ladylike.”  Nicole watched Gwen’s horrified expression with pleasure. “Perhaps if you did something with that mess you call hair, you would be able to see where you were going.”

Gwen was too mortified to point out that it was her foggy glasses and not her hairdo that was to blame. She fled to the bathroom to scrape together what was left of her dignity. Not a great start to her day, and it only got worse.

Purchase Links:

KOBO:  

MW paperback: 

MW Ebook: 

Amazon: 

Meet the Author:


Karen Koski writes stories set in magical Windsor and Essex County, Ontario where she was born and raised. Karen’s love of a good mystery inspired her to become a licensed Private Investigator. She is intrigued by anything that is not what it appears to be.

Karen resides in Windsor, Ontario with her husband, two daughters and a Moose.

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Monday, 11 March 2019

This March Break, Balance the Calm and Chaos in your Life with a Sweet Treat and Relaxing Read...


Face it, we all need breaks! A needed holiday a couple of times a year. A long weekend to unwind. A day off to recharge. Even when we’re working, we need to take at least fifteen minutes away from our jobs after we’ve been working non-stop for two or three hours. Hey, we’re not robots, and if our jobs require us to sit, stand, or walk around for any length of time, our bodies will eventually tire, and we lose our focus. And that could cause plenty of headaches for business owners, retail stores, and manufacturers.
  
Even when I’m writing a book, I make sure I include plenty of sequels between scenes. It’s kind of like a coffee break (or tea if you’re so inclined) for your reader. Scenes include plenty of activity and emotion, at times keeping readers on the edge of their seats. Sequels are devised to break the tension where there’s less activity, letting the readers’ emotions rest. I use this technique in both my young adult book series, The Last Timekeepers and Mysterious Tales from Fairy Falls. This way, there’s a balance between the calm and chaos in every tale I write, and doesn’t leave my reader feeling exhausted at the end of the book.

Ready for a break? How about a slice of Gingerbread Coffee Cake? It’s a twist on what you would think of as seasonal baking, and trust me, this cake is great for your anticipated time out, whether you’re at work or at home working on your next novel or artistic endeavor. With a prep time of 15 minutes and a total time of 1 hour, 25 minutes, this cake serves about 24 of your closest colleagues.

What You Need:

3 cups (750 mL) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting

3 tbsp (45 mL) cocoa powder, sifted
1 tbsp (15 mL) ground ginger
2 tsp (10 mL) ground cinnamon
2 tsp (10 mL) baking powder
1 tsp (5 mL) baking soda
½ tsp (2 mL) each salt and ground nutmeg
¼ tsp (1 mL) ground cloves
⅔ cup (150 mL) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 ½ cups (375 mL) sugar
3 eggs
½ (125 mL) molasses
1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla extract
2 cups (500 mL) sour cream

What You Do:

PREHEAT oven to 350°F (180°C). Grease 9 or 10 inch (23 or 25 cm) Bundt pan; dust with flour. In a bowl, whisk together 3 cups flour, cocoa, ginger, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg and cloves; set aside.

IN separate bowl, using electric mixer on medium speed, beat butter with sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Beat in molasses and vanilla.

USING mixer on low speed, alternately beat in flour mixture and sour cream, making 3 additions of flour mixture and 2 of sour cream and scraping down side of bowl as necessary.

SCRAPE batter into prepared pan, smoothing top. Bake until tester (toothpick) comes out clean when inserted into center of cake, 50 minutes to 1 hour. Let cool completely in pan on wire rack. Invert onto serving plate. Prepare sauce (recipe below) to drizzle over cake.

Coffee Caramel Sauce

1 ½ cups (375 mL) firmly packed brown sugar
¼ cup (60 mL) brewed coffee (brew stronger than package directions)
¼ cup (60 mL) 35% whipping cream, at room temperature
2 tbsp (30 mL) unsalted butter, at room temperature
¼ tsp (1 mL) salt

IN medium heavy-bottomed saucepan, combine sugar and coffee. Cook over medium heat, without stirring, until sugar is fully dissolved and mixture is foamy, about 12 to 15 minutes.

REMOVE from heat; stir in cream, butter and salt. Drizzle over gingerbread cake. Slice and serve.

So, now that you’ve baked to your heart’s content, it’s time for your break! Leave those dirty dishes in the sink, pour yourself a cup of your favorite hot beverage, and go curl up on the couch with one of my books. May I suggest a visit to Fairy Falls, or if you’re feeling really adventurous, a trip back in time with The Last Timekeepers? Just remember to pack lightly.