NEW RELEASE: Inspirational Author Lauren Merryfield’s “There’s More Than One Way to Be Okay”

For the disabled in America today, inclusion is a big issue. Why do we shy away from someone we can see is blind? Why do we avoid interacting with the disabled? It’s most often because we simply do not know what their lives are like and how to find common ground. Simply by learning what Lauren Merryfield’s life is like, you might find a way to make inclusion a reality in your little piece of the world. Stop procrastinating and read about what a disabled person’s life is really like. Learn what inclusion means for author Lauren Merryfield in her book,There’s More Than One Way to Be Okay. See that her life is not so different from yours. Think about promoting inclusion of the disabled and what that might mean for our society. Lauren Merryfield invites readers to step into her life, a blind woman’s life, and discover how inclusion can improve life for the disabled and for everyone.

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There’s More Than One Way to Be Okay:
A Blind Woman’s PURRspective on Life
Lauren Merryfield
ISBN
: 9780989570312
eBook Price: $6.00

Lauren Merryfield has a lifetime’s experience with blindness and disabilities, but she “keeps on keeping on,” as they used to say, and knows how to manage the challenges of a nondisabled world—sometimes alone, sometimes with help. She lives in California and has one human daughter and three feline “kids.”

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Praise for There’s More Than One Way to Be Okay

Lauren Merryfield’s book gives a delightful insight into the life of a successful and warmhearted blind person. The ingenious ways she overcomes life’s formidable challenges were a complete revelation to me. The degree of success she has achieved in her life is an inspiration to us all. For a humorous glimpse into an unusual life filled with cats and characters, this is the book we all need to read.

– Elaine “Dusty” Foster, Colorado entrepreneur

This book is not only an interesting autobiographical sketch of the life and experiences of a woman who happens to be blind, but she also shares insights and knowledge gleaned through those life experiences, the education she received, and her own contemplation of life in its many-faceted aspects that should prove helpful to anyone who reads it. I am a braille proofreader by profession and was honored, as Lauren’s best friend, to be asked to help edit the manuscript. I found it to be very entertaining and well written, and I encourage anyone to read this delightful book.

– Rose B., braille proofreader, Nebraska

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 Available at the following eBook retailers:
Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Kobo
Google
OmniLit
e-Sentral
Sony

 

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NEW HISTORICAL FICTION from Nancy Blanton: ‘Sharavogue’

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Sharavogue
by Nancy Blanton

Published by iUniverse, 11/5/2012
eBook, paperback, hardcover


It is December of 1649 and England’s uncrowned king, Oliver Cromwell, leads his brutal army across Ireland to eliminate a violent rebellion. Fifteen-year-old Elvy Burke, the daughter of a great warrior, wants only one thing—to live her destiny as a leader and defender of her country. While waiting anxiously in her village, Elvy receives word that Cromwell and his cavalry are on the way. As she hears the thunderous hooves approaching, Elvy has already decided she will not give up easily.

When Cromwell cruelly beheads a village boy, Elvy vows to avenge the killing by destroying Cromwell. After fleeing from the general’s soldiers, Elvy aligns with a Scottish outlaw whose schemes send them headlong into a tumultuous journey across the sea to the West Indies, where she becomes an indentured servant for the fledgling sugar plantation Sharavogue. Knowing she will surely be killed if she attempts to escape, Elvy learns to survive in her new life—and soon discovers the depth of her own strengths and emotions.

Sharavogue is the compelling historical tale of one girl’s incredible journey through the lawless lands of the West Indies as she fights her way back to Ireland to confront her sworn enemy and claim her destiny.

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Born in Miami, Florida, Nancy Blanton is a corporate communications professional and former journalist. She wrote and illustrated a children’s book, The Curios Adventure of Roodle Jones, produced two corporate history books and two interactive timelines. Sharavogue is her first novel. Her blog, My Lady’s Closet, covers history, writing, and related experiences.

Available in eBook, Paperback, and Hardcover formats at:
– Amazon
– Barnes & Noble
– iUniverse
– IndeBound

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PRAISE FOR SHARAVOGUE

Blanton has accomplished what I think all writers of good historical fiction should. She has accurately portrayed a time in history with a real flare, serendipitously teaching her readers as she keeps them utterly captivated with her characters. Her descriptions of places and events is so vivid that it is easy to imagine being on the sugar plantation or sailing across the ocean.

– LAS Reviewer

Blanton ranks right up there with Cornwell, Scarrow, and Rutherfurd in making history enjoyable and dare I say even exciting! Looking forward to further books from her.

– Amazon Reader Review

This book kept me up nights. Every time I thought I could put it down something happened that made me read on. A very enjoyable first novel.

– Christine W.

NEW ROMANCE: ‘The Rebel’s Bride’ by JoAnn DeLazzari

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The Rebel’s Bride
JoAnn DeLazzari

Publisher: Blue Star Books
Price: $2.99
ISBN (eBook): 9781938568114

 A wonderfully well written book filled with spice, spirit, and sexual tension. 
–  Five Stars, Affaire de Coeur

 Another great read…kept me up all night. I loved it. Can you send me the hero?
B.K. Wines

The last thing Ransom Kent wants is a bride. A woman cost him his peerage and his family in England. Now a rebel with a dangerous job to do for his adopted country, Ransom Kent’s word is all he has left to honor his father and so he agrees to an arranged marriage to the scandalous daughter of a duke.

Catherine Thorpe has no expectations of marriage in England and owes much to her cousin. She agrees to take her place as the expected bride and sails to a new life. She doesn’t believe her impersonation will lead to romance and true love, but she didn’t expect to become the Rebel’s Bride.

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Now available at the following retailers:

Amazon
Kobo
Nook
All Romance eBooks
e-Sentral 

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For lovers of poetry and nature, read Linda Dickert’s collection, ‘The Mountains Belong to Me’

“Cries of coyotes, the croak of frogs and chirping of crickets exemplify the concertos of the Smoky Mountains. I appreciate the age-worn rocks’ accommodating a waterfall’s endless challenge. I hear gospel songs, and I can see myself clogging to great blue grass harmonies.”

Linda Dickert’s collection of poetry and prose celebrates life in the Great Smoky Mountains.

Her short essays, conversations, and inspirations draw from the happenings in the mountains of North Carolina,

sharing with readers the spirit of the Appalachians and instilling an appreciation for the natural world and our responsibility to protect and cherish it. Dickert gives readers an opportunity to reflect on their own environment and connection with nature.

All proceeds from this book will go to Spark Companions, a non-profit organization that helps individuals unable to pay for vet bills.

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Author Linda Dickert was born in Asheville, North Carolina in a time when people loved the Smoky Mountains more for their healing powers than for their monetary gain through logging and deforestation. It was in the mountain that she fell in love with the magnificence of the Appalachians and its ability to cleanse the spirit. Her book “The Mountains Belong to Me” is a culmination of a lifetime of experiences and adventures in the Great Smoky Mountains. She now lives in Cullowhee, North Carolina with her husband, one dog, and three cats.

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AVAILABLE AT THE FOLLOWING eBOOK RETAILERS!

(click on the logo to view product page and purchase)

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Nita Welch Owenby’s ‘The House of Rose’ is deeply woven with the histories of North Carolina, portraying life in the Appalachian Mountains in the early twentieth century. The story follows young Valee Rose, who, at the age of fourteen, finds herself abused and without a family. As she dreams for a better time and place for those in her care, and for herself, Valee faces her struggles with a great deal of determination. In reaching out to others she learns that nothing is impossible if you believe in yourself.

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     “Having never heard of the author or the book itself I went into it not knowing what to expect. What I found was breathtaking and I ended up devouring the book in a short amount of time.
This work is very descriptive so the images in your head become very clear. Also, it has amazing plot turns and twists that I never expected! This makes it hard to put down, and wanting to find out what happens as soon as possible.
At the very beginning I was stressed with a lot of information I didn’t think was useful, and I thought the book needed a lot of editing, but as you go on, you find out it really is helpful. Once you’re halfway done you’ll end up deducing things on your own thanks to the beginning.
I’d definitely recommend this book. ”

-María José Chaves Sánchez (notanerdychick.wordpress.com)

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“I really enjoyed this book.  Not only were there so many twists and turns, but I just felt so connected to the characters and could not wait to find out what happened next.  And it never did seize to amaze or satisfy… Great writing style, great characters, great story – this book has it all!”

– Kaitlin Lane, My Dog-Eared Purpose

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AVAILABLE AT AMAZON, SONY, BARNES & NOBLE, KOBO,
OMNILIT, iTUNES, E-SENTRAL, HIVE, FOYLES, TESCO eBOOKS, The INDIE eBOOK SHOP, and KALAHARI eBOOKS!!!

Nita Welch Owenby’s ‘The House of Rose’

New Crime Fiction: ‘Hidden Agenda’ by Peter Berman

     Jeremy Hart, a senior prosecutor in the LA District Attorney’s office, is a young widower whose grief counselor sends him to a charity party to jump-start his social life. At the party, he meets Claire, a young married woman with two small children who is trapped in a loveless marriage to Peter, a very wealthy and abusive man. When a courtship develops between Jeremy and Claire, Claire’s violent husband Peter discovers the affair. After a brutal beating, Claire confides to Jeremy that she believes that Peter is planning on taking her life.
     When Claire’s husband is found shot to death in the driveway of his home, detective Ulysses S. Gibson and his partner Jennifer Donahue are called to investigate the murder. For the prosecutor, the crime is an easy conviction when all the leads of the investigation point to Jeremy.
     For detectives Gibson and Donahue, nothing is so obvious. How are these individuals connected? And what of the death of Jeremy’s wife, Elizabeth, years go? Gibson and Donahue keep the scales of justice in balance as they discover everyone’s ‘Hidden Agenda.’

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What readers are saying…

“‘Hidden Agenda’ by Peter S. Berman is an amazing five-star crime-thriller/courtroom drama novel! It keeps the reader engaged, with plenty of dialogue, brilliant characters and most importantly, a dramatic storyline…’Hidden Agenda’ is beautifully woven together and is written in such a way that it is easy for the reader to follow and yet produces an engrossing story…I would love to read another story by Peter S. Berman. I can only hope that he will create another great crime novel with these fantastic detectives…

you will not be disappointed with ‘Hidden Agenda’!”  
          – Caroline Barker, A Reader’s Review

 

“Let me just give the author his due credit here. Nowhere does the novel become boring, repetitive or draggy. It is fast paced and will continue to have your attention and interest – as the truth is shred to pieces and lies are cloaked…All in all, the novel did make a good and intriguing read and I would surely recommend it.”
          – Shewta Singh, Reader

 

“As an avid crime (fiction) reader I have to admit that I was immediately drawn into the story.  The plot makes you want to continue without interruptions.  Hart, Gibson, and Donahue are characters you can easily become familiar with. The cleverly elaborated plot steers the readers through different stages of sympathies and antipathies; the desire to shake one’s head as well as to giving the thumbs up on certain occasions. Explaining more insights might lead to spoilers.  Therefore, just note this:  A must read for all crime fans. I definitely consider “Hidden Agenda” as movie material.”
          – Karen O., Book Reviewer

 

Available at these eBook retailers:
OmniLit/All Romance – 25% off until July 7th!
Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Kobo
– iTunes
Sony
e-Sentral
Hive
Foyles
BIGhay
Tesco eBooks
The Indie eBook Shop
Kalahari

Monday Book Review: Autobiography of Laura Schmid Hogan – ‘I, Laura: The Story of a Kansas Family’

ImageReview by Laura Garnier, Super Phlum Book Reviews

“I picked this story out of a line-up of potential stories for review, and honestly, what drew me to it is the fact that my name is also Laura. That, and I was intrigued to learn about the life of another Laura in what is, essentially, a whole other world (specifically the town of Atwood, Kansas, U.S.A).

I was fascinated by Laura’s story from start to finish. Not only had her early life been quite different to mine, but it started nearly one hundred years ago. Another world, another time. Despite some similarities I found between myself and Laura Schmid (she was born with dark eyes and hair, like me; her father named her Laura, like mine had; she never liked her name, and neither have I, though she disliked it due to the fact no one had heard it before, and I dislike it due to how common it is these days!), her upbringing couldn’t have been more different.

She was born, lived and worked on her parents farm along with her fourteen other brothers and sisters, being the youngest girl with only three brothers below her in age (I grew up with five other siblings, and I thought that was tough!). They all attended school when they reached the right age, but were never permitted to go on to high school, as their father wouldn’t allow it. Of course, Laura, at eighteen, did eventually attend high school, and then college, although she was ‘twelve hours’ from graduating when she decided instead to marry. Quite a different time indeed.

Throughout the story (which reminded me of the television show, Little House on the Prairie, that I used to watch every Sunday, that included another young girl named Laura), Laura recounts not only her childhood, but that and the lives of her immigrant parents and her numerous brothers and sisters, even putting in accounts from her brothers Joe and Paul on their experiences of life on the farm and in World War II. Laura and her family experienced a lot when it came to life and death, loyalty and sacrifice, but in reading you get the sense that camaraderie was a way of life in those days; times were tough so you had to look out for each other. Illness was rife and much of it still uncured and untreatable, so when a family member or close friend was taken it certainly had a knock on effect on every one who knew them.

Laura’s story is beautifully and intriguingly written. It’s very factual but you also get a feel of who Laura is as a person; strong, smart and incredibly devoted to her family, close and distant. Not only do you come to understand what life was like for a large family in the early twentieth century Mid-West of North America, you also get to know what the world was like in general, particularly with the war and the Great Depression hitting the U.S.

I’m used to picking up biographies on celebrities or those who have led eventful lives in one way or another, and normally I would think that the majority of people in the world don’t have any particular reason to bother writing an autobiography (I may only be twenty-four, but so far I know my life would not make for an interesting read!). Indeed nothing major in the way of events ever really happened to Laura, but reading and understanding her life under different circumstances and in a different time is almost like a reading a history book, teaching lessons in humility, loyalty and sacrifice, and learning that although life may not seem eventful whilst you’re living it, when you’re eighty-something and looking back over the years, your achievements and experiences can mean a heck of a lot more than they did way back when.

Maybe instead of picking up another life story of some reality T.V star who is barely out of school, I will think twice and search the bookshops for something a little more understated and unknown. Perhaps I’ll come across another life like Laura’s, and learn a few more things from a stranger’s life on the other side of the world, and perhaps learn to appreciate mine even more.”

 

This book is available at the following eBook retailers:
Amazon

Barnes & Noble
Kobo
– iTunes
OmniLit
e-Sentral
Hive
Foyles
Tesco eBooks
The Indie eBook Shop
Kalahari eBooks

Special thanks to Laura Garnier with Super Phlum Book Reviews!