Thursday, October 20, 2016

0 Foster An Author Day 4 + A Giveaway

Not many people know the backstory to Awaken.  The first part of the story was actually released as a novella (with a different title) in early 2015. Fans wrote to us asking for more of Lacey & Cooper so we completed their story with a well-deserved HEA. In Awaken, Lacey gets a second chance at life after battling breast cancer.  To rev up her lost libido, she decides to accept her friend’s invitation to visit a sex club.  From that moment, the course of Lacey’s life changes. 

"This is one dripping, delicious and salacious story of sexual awakening!" 


"A heartbreaking, soul mending and steamy" Romance
Hosted by Ozlo and Priya Grey

We're a husband & wife writing team that collaborates to write contemporary romances. If you haven't read any of our books, we hope this will be your first but not your last. Good luck!

0 Ravens: History and Mythology in Literature by I.A. Ashrcroft

Name: Raven Song
Series: Inoki's Game (Book 1)
Paperback: 290 pages
Published Date: March 14, 2016
Publisher: Lucid Dreams Publishing 
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1944674004
ISBN-13: 978-1944674007

A clicking of talons, a rustle of shiny black feathers… a laugh, eerily like a human giggle, and yet, alien. Unsettling. Perhaps you see the creature in an apothecary, or perched atop a fresh corpse on the battlefield. But the image begins to form, easy, without needing much prodding. Very few beings beyond ravens have affixed themselves so firmly in our mind’s eyes and in our stories. They are symbols of death, rebirth, war, knowledge, the occult, luck, and so much more—a creature that holds mythological immortality.

Perhaps you are now hearing a quirking, parrot-like voice coming from this visitor from beyond: “Nevermore!”, it cries. Edgar Allen Poe’s tragic and chilling poetry is enduring. But the world’s love affair with these feathered portents of fate began thousands of years before Poe. Let us now remember the Norse god Odin’s two companions: Huginn (“thought”) and Muninn (“desire”, often mistranslated as “memory”). They travel the world on his behalf, bringing back knowledge and news. Wise Odin sometimes fears for them on their far-reaching travels: he says one day, they may not return, and though he would grieve Huginn’s loss, he would miss Muninn the most. 

Odin has never been a god of trifling matters; his tales are steeped in blood and magic and prophecy. That the ravens should be some of his closest companions is telling, and even more so that their very species name in Old Norse, hrafn, was used as a kenning to speak of bloodshed. Odin’s other favorite animal allies were wolves, and both they and the ravens would gorge themselves on the battlefields of the wars he presided over.

As above, so below. Ravens and wolves share a kinship even in the mortal plane. When ravens find kills they cannot open themselves, they have been known to use their astonishing powers of mimicry to draw a nearby wolf pack, getting them to rip open a carcass for all to enjoy. Frighteningly intelligent creatures, these god companions. Did you know they regularly use tools? Did you know that ravens may have as many neurons in their brains as a primate? They simply pack them in more densely. So now you know where those keen, clever looks come from as they watch you, calculating.
Perhaps you will feel uneasy the next time a neighbor decides to try and exterminate them as pests. You see, they remember who is cruel to them, and who is kind.

But who else have they served? Beyond Odin, there was another god with a yen for prophecy that enjoyed the raven’s company: Apollo, of Greco-Roman lore. The raven was Apollo’s messenger, and was said to bring luck. But there was one important distinction to be made for the story-raven of this time and place. His feathers were a pristine white! 

Unfortunately for his faithful feathered companion, Apollo, like all of his family, was subject to rages and jealousies, just as the mortals beneath Olympus. For you see, Apollo took a lover, the princess Coronis. She herself, unfortunately, fell for a mortal prince, and when Apollo’s raven brought the news back to its master, he scorched the bird’s feathers black in his rage. He felt the raven ought to have pecked out the prince’s eyes as punishment. 

Perhaps this was unfair. Still, the raven’s loyalty did not falter, and it continued its service. Maybe this is why it was set in the night sky as the constellation Corvus. Or, perhaps it found its place there from an even more ancient time. Did you know the Babylonians also held fast to the raven? In their mythology, it clings to the tail of the Serpent, which in the Greek stories became the Hydra. And where Corvus rests in the sky, you can see the constellation Hydra in his claws. 

Luck and omens, death and life: there is more to tell. For hundreds of years, ravens have perched around the Tower of London. We don’t know exactly when the British began keeping them there in captivity. But, we do know why: legend has it that there is a prophecy, one that says that Great Britain will fall should the ravens of the tower ever leave. So there they sit, keeping to their perches, stately and well-fed by the official Raven Keepers. Let’s hope they don’t decide to get a job elsewhere one day.

Ravens are the harbingers of downfall, of our deaths… dark wings, dark words, as G. R. R. Martin writes in Game of Thrones. But perhaps they have something to teach us about the dead; perhaps, like in Poe’s story, they are the messenger forcing us to confront that which we would rather not.  
In Islam, it is actually the raven who taught humans how to bury their deceased. The Quran presents a version of the story of the siblings Cain and Abel, Abel lying murdered by his brother’s hand. Cain and his wife didn’t know what to do with the body, since humanity was so young, and there were no rituals around the dead yet invented. Then, Cain witnessed a raven burying one of its own, and decided to do the same. In Jewish folklore, there is a somewhat similar story, though this time it is his father Adam doing the burying. 

And so, the children of these people continued to bury their own for generations.
Perhaps there is always truth in a tale. Did you know ravens have truly been observed to hold “funerals”? They call out and cluster around their dead, as if saying goodbye. 
And where there is death, there is life. There is a promise of rebirth. In Kenyan lore, meat offerings left to ancestors on Kilimanjaro may be reborn as the white-necked ravens native to the land. In the Bible, ravens are responsible for sustaining the prophet Elijah, bringing him food while he was in hiding after all else failed. In an Athabaskan tale from North America, it was Raven who formed the first human lives from clay (though when he tried to marry one of the women he created, the men refused it, and so he also created mosquitos as revenge.)

There are some who cast the clever raven as the reason we have a beautiful, livable world at all, the raven as Prometheus, bringer of fire. The Haida peoples of North America tell us this: the raven brought the world light itself, and was forever changed for it. Clever Raven was once so beautiful in his regal white feathers, catching the eye of Gray Eagle’s daughter. But when he entered her family’s longhouse, he saw the treasures her father Eagle hoarded: fresh water, the sun itself, the moon, the very stars. Meanwhile, the people below lived in darkness, no fire nor water to comfort them. So, he stole everything, including a fire brand Eagle kept, and escaped. He hung the sun, moon, and stars in the sky. He dropped the fire brand into the rocks below (so rocks would make fire when struck). But, because of his steadfast clinging, the smoke from the fire brand scorched his feathers pitch black. 
And so his feathers remain. Perhaps you see a similarity to the tale of Apollo, the raven burned. The raven has been transformed from white to black in countless stories across the world. Why do we remember it so? 

Of course, a raven isn’t all black, not really. The ones who call Europe and North America home are more like something that slid out of an oil slick. They have an ethereal, blue-indigo illumination. You need to get close to see it, but it’s there, beauty in the night of their form. And there is playfulness too, because ravens aren’t as somber and grave as so many make them out to be. They are children; they are pranksters. They are known to treat the world as a game, outfoxing traps researchers put out for them. They cavort around in flight, taking heart-stopping dives and bounding back through the air for no reason other than pure amusement. They’ve been seen loitering around on a winter’s day, finding a car buried by the weather—and off they go, tumbling ass over teakettle down the snowy windshield slope, chittering, laughing, dancing as if they want to do it again. They are bubbly and wild. The verve of a raven is something that must be witnessed to be believed, and it never fails to bring a smile. 

And this is why they’ve been popular companions throughout the years to gods and mortals alike. Charles Dickens kept several in his life, loving their play and expressiveness, perhaps inspired by their place in the stories before him. His favorite, Grip, made a merry game of biting his children’s ankles (they did not appreciate this). Grip spent his days swaggering about, chattering, and learning new words (“Hallo old girl!” was said to be his favorite phrase). This creature inspired Dickens so much that he was allowed to strut right into the story Barnaby Rudge… a book that became a muse to a man who was about to put another talking raven to pen… a man named Poe.

Beloved and inspiring, feared and respected, exterminated as pests and treated like royalty: the raven. There is something both mystical and incorrigible in their dances, something that commands us to weave them into our stories forevermore. A hundred tales I could tell, but as raven teaches us, life does not go on forever.

Look closely in those dark, shiny eyes, and listen to its laughter… do you see that magic spark? 
~ I. A. Ashcroft

The writer, I. A. Ashcroft, invites you to spend more time with these mystical and enigmatic creatures in their debut novel Raven Song, the first in a series about old gods, a destroyed world, and people with magic trying to find their place. Visit to learn more and get free short stories.

Book Blurb:

A century ago, the world burned. Even now, though rebuilt and defiant, civilization is still choking on the ashes.

Jackson, a smuggler, lives in the shadows, once a boy with no memory, no name, and no future. Ravens followed him, long-extinct birds only he could see, and nightmares flew in their wake. Once, Jackson thought himself to be one of the lucky few touched by magic, a candidate for the Order of Mages. He is a man now, and that dream has died. But, the ravens still follow. The nightmares still whisper in his ear.

Anna’s life was under the sun, her future bright, her scientific work promising. She knew nothing of The Bombings, the poisoned world, or the occult. One day, she went to work, and the next, she awoke in a box over a hundred years in the future, screaming, fighting to breathe, and looking up into the eyes of a smuggler. Anna fears she’s gone crazy, unable to fill the massive hole in her memories, and terrified of the strange abilities she now possesses.

The Coalition government has turned its watchful eyes towards them. The secret factions of the city move to collect them first. And, old gods stir in the darkness, shifting their pawns on the playing field.

If Anna and Jackson wish to stay free, they must learn what they are and why they exist.

Unfortunately, even if they do, it may be too late.

Raven Song is the first of a four book adult-oriented dystopian fantasy series, a story of intrigue, love, violence, and the old spirits in the shadows who wait for us to notice them again. Readers of Neil Gaiman, Holly Black, and Charlie Human will enjoy this dark magic-laced tale rooted on the bones of what our world could become.


‘Aware that this is just the first book in the series and I am hooked and will read on, however as a standalone book it would still make a fantastic read.’ ~ Mark on Goodreads

‘A good urban fantasy with well-developed characters and a grim and complex setting. I would recommend.’ ~ Dannica Zulestin on Goodreads

‘Ashcroft has a brilliant imagination coupled with an eloquent writing style that draws the reader in, makes us feel a wide array of emotions, and holds us captivated to the very end. I anxiously await the next volume in this series.’ ~ K. McCaslin on Amazon

‘I usually think endings are the worst part of most books, hard to wrap up into a logical and solid ending, this book did well at it I was satisfied but very much looking forward to the next book.’ ~ taruofatlantis on Amazon

‘The narration by Mikael Naramore was good. He was able to capture the voices of the characters well, especially the manic Tony. In general the characters were distinguishable and the voicing gave life to each of them. The production quality was good as well.’ ~ Poonam on AudioBook Reviewer.

Author Bio:
I. A. Ashcroft has been writing fiction in many forms for almost twenty years. The author's first book, written at age seven, featured the family cat hunting an evil sorceress alongside dragons and eagles. This preoccupation with the fantastical has not changed in the slightest.

Now, the author dwells in Phoenix, AZ alongside a wonderful tale-spinner and two increasingly deranged cats. Ashcroft writes almost exclusively in the realm of darker fantasy these days, loving to entertain adults with stories of magic, wonder, despair, violence, and hope, bringing a deep love of mythology into every tale penned. The author also loves diverse and intriguing casts of characters.

When not buried in a book, one might find Ashcroft learning languages, charting road trips, and playing tabletop RPGs with clever and fun people.

Contact the Author:


A boy lay on the broken sidewalk, eyes closed. He was pale and thin, looking not a day over ten years old. His half-clothed body shuddered against the chilly night air. His bony frame scraped against the grime of the street as he curled into himself, trying to keep back the cold. Overhead, the stars hung bright and lonely.

In the alley, almost invisible against the midnight darkness, a man stood tall over the boy. His well-pressed suit was as black as the shadows, as his skin, and as the raven on his shoulder. The way he hovered over the child, he seemed a strange guardian. But his eyes were turned upwards to the sky, away from the boy’s plight, as if it was no real matter. In those black eyes the stars were mirrored, impossible and brilliant. Those eyes stared back into the past, when the celestial lights were loved and revered, when each constellation had a story.

Once upon a time… this was when the world had sung to him, the dream-walker, the song-weaver, the star-stringer.

Once, before humans had forgotten his name.

Now, the starry sky was almost hidden by the glowing blue haze of the Barrier, a shield cast over what was left of the city: proud New York, ruined, rebuilt, defiant.

The stranger kept staring upwards into oblivion, even as the boy let out an unhappy whimper, chills wracking his weak frame. The raven flew from the stranger’s shoulder then, alighting onto the sidewalk, picking past the weeds and rubble. It rejoined its fellows who had settled amicably around the child, oblivious to the fact that ravens were all supposed to be dead. One hundred years ago, poison had leeched into the earth, into the grass, into the grazers, and into the corpses left behind. The blight spared little, its kind no exception. Regardless, this impossible creature affectionately brushed at the boy’s dark hair with its beak.

At the touch, the boy awoke with a start. His wide, uncomprehending eyes took in the world as he struggled to sit up, his head swinging around wildly; past awnings and high rises he had never seen, past scrawled words and graffiti he could not understand. He teetered to his feet, then fell back down again as his knees gave out, sending the birds around him into flight.

He saw no starry eyes in the darkness, no stranger standing nearby. He was halfnaked, shivering, hungry, and alone, his head aching down to his teeth. The nameless boy shook off the dreams he couldn’t remember and wondered where he was.

If there had been any passersby on that cold autumn night, they would have sworn that this boy hadn’t been there a minute ago, and no stranger or ravens had been there at all.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

0 Foster An Author Week: Day 3 Healing Melody Is On Sale!

Healing Melody is on Sale
Grab this #1 Inspirational Romance for just 99¢ or read it FREE with Kindle Unlimited.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

0 Foster An Author: Healing Melody

Healing Melody was our first standalone novel. It's a story that will pull on your heartstrings with high levels of drama, but it has plenty of spice too.  Melody is a young pop musician whose lost her mojo after an accident. She struggles to get her music flowing again, until she meets a hot, sexy MMA fighter, Kade.

"A real page turner, it's heartbreaking, soul mending and steamy."


We're a husband & wife writing team that collaborates to write contemporary romances. If you haven't read any of our books, we hope this will be your first but not your last. Good luck!

Monday, October 17, 2016

2 Foster An Author Week: Meet Ozlo and Priya Grey + A Giveaway

It's foster week and we're so grateful to our foster TO READ OR NOT TO READ. Check out their blog for great recommendations.

My name is Priya Grey and I co-write romance books with my hubby, Ozlo.  a.k.a Ozzy, as I like to call him.  We started writing years ago but decided to begin publishing our stories last year.  Readers describe our work as uplifting, thought provoking and steamy.

Come say Hi to us in the virtual world. We'd love to hear from you.



"A heartbreaking, soul mending and steamy" Romance
Hosted by Ozlo and Priya Grey

We're a husband & wife writing team that collaborates to write contemporary romances. If you haven't read any of our books, we hope this will be your first but not your last. Good luck!

Friday, October 14, 2016

0 David-Michael Harding talks Steinbeck, Genies, and Cats

Hello like-minded readers & writers of all ilks.  This is David-Michael Harding penning from the west coast of the peninsula of Florida.

I once heard someone say that everything said before the word BUT, is likely a lie.  Example – “I really like ________  (fill in the blank with a place, a person, or a thing), BUT, ________  (repeat same place, person or thing) needs to do thus and so.”  A horrific example might be, “I love you, but… change/stop/do/don’t blah blah blah…”  YIKES!  Or maybe something less profound like, “The NY Yankees are the best team in baseball, BUT their pitching is a little off, they lost 78 games this season, and missed the playoffs.”  You get the idea. So here goes regardless.  This guest post isn’t about me, BUT you do need some background for context.  How’d that go down?

I’ve written five novels and a short story collection.  There are two screenplays floating around LA with my name on them looking for homes.  Add to that, publications in collegiate journals (once a time honored passageway to publication prior to the electronic/digital revolution) and magazine articles, and I’ve managed to pay the figurative rent for quite a while.  I know how fortunate I am and also how much work has gone into my solitary career.  Here’s the thing and the REAL reason for this post.  Though we toil in comparative quiet (except Stephen King, who often writes to heavy metal music) even he labors alone.

Ours tends to be a solitary existence.  When you run across someone who can be constructively critical without ramming a pin in your bubble, literate enough to put a red circle around your use of ‘use to’ and ‘used to,’ and can recognize when the arc of a character stubs his toe, while still making you smile and get back in the chair for another 1,000 words, you’ve got a genie in a bottle.  Sometimes a few words of encouragement or a shared tale is all it takes.  I had a genie in a bottle and he passed away all but unnoticed a little more than a month ago.  His name was Thomas Steinbeck.

Yep, it was THAT Steinbeck.  Like millions of junior high school students I read John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men and The Red Pony at some point in an education that always seemed on the brink of suspension.  In college, on academic probation, I launched into Cannery Row because it was the thinnest book in the stack of acceptable books to read and summarize.  When I finished, I found Sweet Thursday for extra credit.  The Grapes of Wrath and magna cum laude later, I was a ravenous reader of anything Steinbeckian.

That was over 30 years ago and I haven’t stopped.  But the sad fact is, there is a limit to John Steinbeck’s creations.  While I can still smile at Mac and the boys and their adventures on ‘the Row’ after countless readings, one can only plumb the depths so many times without the brain excusing itself from the current pass and wandering back to where you were when last you tasted this wine instead of relishing the wine itself.  Enter son Thom.

A few years ago I was compiling a collection of shorts on the heels of a semester of teaching writing at my local community college.  My pitch to young writers bent on being the next J.K. Rowling has always been to hone your craft by writing short stories.  They will still possess the necessary elements of grammar, character, conflict, and crucible.  I’m blatantly stealing from Steve Barry’s 6 Essential C’s of Story Structure .  I often tell students that you wouldn’t attempt a piano recital without practicing scales first.  Nor would you have much success running a marathon (a novel or feature length screenplay) without doing a bunch of two mile runs (the short story).  Once the writing muscle gets stronger THEN you take on the marathon.

At my students’ suggestion and consistent with their picks, I compiled what would become The Cats of Savone – 8 Short Novels for Busy People.  Being my first go at a collection, I looked at the competition.  That’s when I discovered Down to a Soundless Sea, a short story collection by Thomas Steinbeck.  I was skeptical.  Was this a son banking on his father’s name?   Drawn by my love of his father’s work, I picked up a copy.

Down to a Soundless Sea turned out to be an astonishing read.  The pieces are written in a tight style, not unlike the senior Steinbeck.  Humor runs pleasantly amok in the background and the scenery (Big Sur, Monterey & southern California – again, not unlike his father) is vivid.  Thom didn’t steal a word from his father, yet the years of sitting at THAT knee listening to JS spin yarns is apparent and delightful.  Thom went on to develop more of his own voice with the publishing of two subsequent novels (In the Shadow of the Cypress and The Silver Lotus) that don’t disappoint.  Still, I am drawn to the concise simplicity that is the story-telling-around-a-fire posture of Down to a Soundless Sea.

Several stanzas of Sea stuck with me.  So much so that I sent a brief email to Thom’s publisher commending the style and specifically asking if he had smiled, choked up, or patted himself on the back when a particular line trickled out his fingers.  Unashamedly, I have done all of the above.  Shock of shocks, my email eventually crossed his desk and he sent a hearty response.  That was the beginning of a correspondence – not a long drawn out affair, but simple notes on wording, sentences gifted from the muse in our lives, movies, and a joint love of sailing – me in Florida and Thom in California.

The truth is, we never met, though we would have eventually had illness not intervened.  We never even talked on the phone.  “We’re writers.  Writers write.”  Just emails – sometimes sent off in the middle of the night – “Look at this!  Now that’s a helluva sentence!”  It was nothing profound – no book of letters to be found here – just a gracious man who led a life at times horribly difficult.  I cannot fathom growing up in a shadow that cast such a reach.  It might have been alright if Thom wanted to be a welder, but a writer?  Oh, that was going to hurt.  And it did.  I even suggested once he write under a pseudonym and embrace the pains the rest of us feel.  It never quite came to that.

Thom had much more in him and was just hitting his stride after a life spent adapting his father’s work and carrying the mantle of blessing and curse that came with that name.  For me, when some day they pack up my things, Thom’s signed copy of Down to a Soundless Sea will still be found at the exposed end of my highest prized classics.  Somewhere in his office, someone will find my Cats of Savone I gave to him.  The discovery won’t mean the same thing to whoever is tasked with packing our books, but the books and the memory mean something to me and I know it did to him.

Look for Down to a Soundless Sea at Amazon.

Many thanks to Marcie for permitting me to step onto her platform for a few moments.

David-Michael Harding is a former PEN International winner whose novel, How Angels Die, continues to receive critical acclaim.  A former semi-professional football player, his writing is hard hitting and passionate.  He resides in Tampa, FL, which serves as the backdrop for The New Illuminati.

David-Michael Harding

Thursday, October 13, 2016

0 Review: Mr. Darcy's Pride and Joy

Publisher: White Soup Press
Published: June 25, 2016
Genre: Historical Fiction, Pride and Prejudice Variations
Source: Author


Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet are engaged at last, and Mr. Darcy is preparing to take out a special licence to get married quickly. But, just when everything seems to be going just right, he encounters opposition from an unexpected quarter. Then, when his engagement is announced – to someone else – Elizabeth, understandably, begins to doubt his sincerity.

Perhaps their love is doomed after all…

My Thoughts

Every so often I get the urge to visit one of my favorite literary couples--Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet. I'm a fan of the "what if" stories and I've been reading Monica Fairview's Darcy Novels for some time. In this third installment, Darcy and Elizabeth are finally engaged, but before their engagement is announced Darcy reads in the paper about his engagement to another woman. And if that's not enough trouble, Darcy is refused consent by Elizabeth's father.

Shakespeare said, "The course of true love never did run smooth." It's definitely true in Fairview's books. It's been a long road with Darcy and Elizabeth, and reading their struggle makes their story all the sweeter. I've really enjoyed this series from Mr. Darcy's Pledge to Mr. Darcy's Pride and Joy. I'm not sure if this will be the end of the Darcy Novels, but if it is, it couldn't have ended on a better note. If you're into Pride and Prejudice variations, you should give this series a try. You'll be hooked! 

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

0 Last Week In Review (26)

What I'm Currently Reading

As you can tell from TBR I'm getting ready for Halloween. 

Haunted Historic Colonial Williamsburg Virginia by Tim Scullion

What I Finished Reading

What I'm Watching

I started watching How to Get Away With Murder this past week. I'm just a few episodes in, but so far I like it. 

Reading Challenge Update

Not much happened last week with my reading challenges.

I've been fall cleaning, so I haven't had much reading time. I'll be able to listen to some audio books this week. I'm so thankful that they exist! 

What are you reading?

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

0 Review: Elphie Goes Trick Or Treating

By Hagit R. Oron and Or Oron
Publisher: Orons
Published: October 10, 2016
Ebook, ARC
Genre: Children's Fiction (Ages 3-8)
Source: Authors


Elphie is easily frightened. Phante is brave.
Elphie is calm and kind. Phante is hot tampered.
When they go trick or treating together, Elphie and Phante use their strengths to empower each other.
Read the book and teach your kids that the sweetness of friendship last more than that of a suger-coated candy.

My Thoughts:

Elphie Goes Trick or Treating is the third book in the Elphie Books series. In the first book, Elphie turns an everyday event into an epic adventure. Elphie gets a new pet and learns to overcome his fears in the second book. And now Elphie is starring in a new book in which Elphie and his friend Phante go trick or treating together and have to overcome some obstacles along the way.

Elphie Goes Trick or Treating is great for kids ages three to eight, and it's just in time for Halloween. They can learn from Elphie to be brave and kind, even when they're not feeling brave or their friends aren't being kind. Elphie the elephant is a character that children will want to visit again and again. 

Monday, October 10, 2016

2 Wishapick Book Birthday Tour: Win A Book, CD, And Fitbit Prize Pack #WishapickBookBirthday


Highly praised classic fairy tale, Wishapick Tickety Boo and the Black Trunk, a children’s book for all ages, written by acclaimed author MM Allen; and a CD of Wishapick Tickety Boo and the Black Trunk soundtrack composed by the talented Deborah Wynne.
Darkness-utter blackness. Was this why his mother had refused to let Jack unlock his father’s old trunk? It had been two years since his dad had died, and all Jack could think about was examining whatever treasures were stored inside the beloved trunk. But when he finally lifted the lid, he didn’t just fall in –he fell through it into a pit of rattlesnakes. Trying to recall his mother’s stories about the Breathe of All Good Things –anything to help him out of his dangerous predicament-Jack wished he had paid attention rather than mock the tales as childish myths… and that he’d waited to enter the trunk with his sister, Lilly. They could have at least faced this together. Jack quickly learns two things; the villagers in Wishapick think Jack is the only one who can bring light back to Wishapick –and accomplishing this feat is the only way he can return home.
Wishapick: Tickety Boo and the Black Trunk is available on Amazon (


About M. M. Allen
M. M. Allen, author of the acclaimed children’s picture book Let’s Play Ball, is the mother of two adult children and aunt to twenty-three nieces and nephews, including ten great-nieces and great-nephews. MM is a former teacher and university lecturer. She has also worked extensively in marketing and communications with varied businesses and non-profits. MM lives in a picturesque northern California town where she enjoys writing, tending to her rose garden, and caring for her West Highland terrier, Pip.
About Deborah Wynne
Composer and lyricist Deborah Wynne created a companion CD of songs to accompany Wishapick: Tickety Boo and the Black Trunk. Wynne’s primary talents lie in choral singing, stage musicals, and composing. Her musical projects include the 2013 album Strands of Gold and 2007 musical Moment of Truth. She is an active singer and composer in Santa Barbara, California, where she lives with her husband and their two shelties, Sparkle and Gracie.
Learn More About Wishapick
Wishapick Soundtrack Be sure to check out the companion music CD, Wishapick, for purchase or download from
Book Club Questions Get to the heart of Wishapick by downloading this set of book club questions: Wishapick by M. M. Allen: Book Club Questions



One (1) Winner Receives The Grand Prize:
An autographed copy of Wishapick: Tickety Boo and the Black Trunk
A CD of the Wishapick: Tickety Boo and the Black Trunk soundtrack
A Fitbit Alta

Value: $153.77

Four (4) Winners Receive:
An autographed copy of Wishapick: Tickety Boo and the Black Trunk
A CD of the Wishapick: Tickety Boo and the Black Trunk soundtrack

Value: $23.82

Giveaway begins September 23, 2016, at 12:01 A.M. PST and ends October 23, 2016, at 11:59 P.M. PST.

Giveaway open to US and Canadian addresses only.
Prizes and samples provided by M.M. Allen and Deborah Wynne

Thanks to The Children’s Book Review, M.M. Allen, and Deborah Wynne for providing this giveaway.

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