Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Show with a “Tell”

Show, don’t tell. Ever heard that? How ‘bout, Show with a “tell”?

Definition of "A Tell"…Tweeked only a little to fit my point :)

A "tell" in poker(a novel) is a detectable change in a player's (character’s) behavior or demeanor that gives clues to that player's(character’s) assessment of his hand (state of mind). A player (reader) gains an advantage (a deeper understanding and interest) if he observes and understands the meaning of another player's (character’s) "tell", particularly if the "tell" is unconscious and reliable.

Like most authors, even before I seriously started writing, I loved to read. I didn’t realize it then, but the one most engaging aspect of the story was how I could get to know my favorite character. I liked being able to recognize that little ‘tell’ that clued me in on what he felt, or was thinking or what he might do, before the characters in the story figured it out. As I realized the small nuances of the author’s skill in showing the story I became more and more intrigued by the art and wanted to try my own hand at story telling.

Here are a couple of example from one of my favorite authors.
 Caroline Clemmons
Brazos Bride: Men of Stone Mountain Texas (A Stone Mountain Texas Book 1)
Zach rubbed his chin while he thought it over, slapped Joel on the back. "Hate to interrupt this much fun, but it couldn't hurt to cover Micah’s back. Some of his good neighbors might take him being alone as a gift." He leaned his shovel near Micah’s and mounted his horse.

From GABE KINCAID by Caroline Clemons
Gabe Kincaid (The Kincaids Book 4) “My, what a hotbed of crime we circus folk are. Did Zara talk?”

“Not a word.” He (Gabe Kincaid) screwed up his face and tugged at his ear. “Well, none that I can use in mixed company. Matter of fact, I learned a few new curse words. Ben’s (the sheriff) determined to keep at her until he gets sentences that don’t insult his parentage or suggest movement impossible for the human body.”

Sometime, especially if you want to add a little mystery or a bit of humor, you have to build on the ‘tell’. In my story, Passion’s Price, I have a character (William Montgomery, aka, Willy) who, though he tries to present himself with a devil-may-care personality, is actually quite high strung, evidenced by his pulling Boading Balls from his pocket and twirling them nervously within his hand causing an irritating clanking notice at the most inopportune times...

Excerpts from Passion’s Price.Passion's Price (Passion Series Book 3) William’s annoying habit tells on him.

Lady Gaylord took the opening to jump in. "We wanted to speak to you about Dawn."

"Yes," Lady Montgomery took up when the other stopped to take a breath. And so the discussion continued as it always did with these two; one starting and the other finishing the thought, leaving Raven with no recourse but to glance from one to the other.

"She is becoming quite popular, dear." Lady Montgomery watched several young men vie for a dance with Dawn.

"We know you are making arrangements to send her home, but she deserves a proper coming out," Lady Gaylord added.

"It would be a shame to send her home so soon," Lady Montgomery finished. "Her father has promised us for years that he would allow her a visit as soon as she was old enough. James knows what good care we have taken of you. This is the perfect time."

"Yes, of course. Just look at her. And to think she arrived just in time to attend this ball in honor of your birthday." Lady Gaylord placed a plump hand to her bosom and sighed.

William no longer pretended indifference to his grandmothers as the Baoding Balls slid more rapidly within his palm, the chiming increasing with his agitation.

"Yes, you must allow her to stay longer, at least until the Golden Lady returns."

"She will occupy a room upstairs. It will remain hers for as long as she likes."

"She likes the room." Lady Gaylord nodded and added, "And she and Sara get along well."

"Yes, they did. Sara can be her personal maid while she is here. I think they will both like that very much."

"Yes, I agree."

Lady Montgomery patted Raven's arm. "And, of course, your room is always ready any time you want to visit, same as Willie's."

Out of habit, William softly choked out, "Don't call me that, Gran."

Lady Gaylord laid her hand over William's. "Put those annoying balls away, dear. They are only going to get you into trouble."

William blinked in confusion, but did as he was told.

Much later, that little nervous trait causes William a lot of pain.

Lady Montgomery said, "Oh, it's those horrid chiming balls of Willie's. I had just told him they would get him in trouble. Victoria and I have told him time and again to stop playing with the infernal things. He refused to listen and see where it's landed him."

Her confused rambling gave Raven a chance to compose himself, though the content of her jumbled speech distracted him. He walked slowly around the two on the floor and retrieved a mug from the cupboard.

"I don't understand." He looked down at William. "Maybe you should explain."

William looked up at him. "What Gran said is true. Dawn charged in here and kicked my Baoding Balls right out of my hand. I'm not sure how I got here. Um, you'll be glad to hear the Golden Lady is in port."

"Tell the truth." Dawn pressed the blade against William's throat. "Your chiming balls just told on you."

"What's all this talk about balls?" Lady Gaylord said as she entered from the garden, her arms laden with freshly cut flowers.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Passion's Vision Receives Reader's Favorite Award

I have been so busy with writing and promotion and all the things authors get all tangled into, that I finally realized I had not blogged about Passion's Vision receiving a Reader's Favorite Award. Can you imagine forgetting to blog about something that exciting and wonderful?

Well,... Reader's Favorite is a prestigious International Award. They have several awards they give out to numerous genres. Passion's Vision was awarded 2014 Finalist in Historical Fiction. I just have to post my Award. Believe me, it is in a beautiful frame hanging in my office.

I also wanted to post a site that features great books of every genre with links to purchase. Just click the link, of course it goes to Passion's Vision, but at the top of the page you can navigate to your favorite genre. 

Don't forget, Raven's Passion will be on special at Amazon 12/25 to 12/31/14 at Amazon Kindle for .99cents

Happy Holidays!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Native American Christmas

The stories I am writing for the Passion’s Series take place in the 1700s and my characters are Native American Cherokees. While researching for my Native American novels I came across some amazing information about Native American celebrations. Before the white man came to their land they had no knowledge of Christian teachings. As the missionaries introduced them to Christian traditions, the Native Americans found that the story of Christmas and Christ’s birth sounded similar to some of their own tribal prophecies and considered the familiarity of the message of Jesus with their own truths handed down by their ancestors.

Many Native Americans in North America did observe a celebration near Christmas time, that we call the Winter Solstice.  The Winter Solstice is the longest night of the year and falls on December 21-22. It was celebrated in the Americas long before European influence arrived. Different Native American tribes associate different beliefs and rituals with it.
For example, the Hopi tribal celebrations are meant to give aid and direction to the sun which is ready to return and give strength to new life. Their ceremony is called Soyal and lasts for 20 days. During this time there is prayer stick making, purification and other rituals, and is concluded with a rabbit hunt a great feast and many blessings.
There is a  Native American story of a brave named, Handsome Fellow. He could be called a Native American Santa. He is a handsome brave who wears white buckskins, and brings gifts to Indian children. Other gift bringers come at different times of the year, often in the summertime. What intrigues me the most about the Native American culture is their love for giving. The gift bringing and giving element is always a part of the American Indian culture, whatever the occasion is for a gathering.
I was struck by the words of  Looks for Buffalo, an Oglala Sioux spiritual leader, the full-blood Oglala grandson of Chief Red Cloud and White Cow Killer, and a Cheyenne Oglala leader, as he explains the meaning of Christmas to the traditional Indian people of the Americas. The following words are his own words:

"Traditional American Indians are raised to respect the Christian Star and the birth of the first Indian Spiritual Leader. He was a Star Person and Avatar. His name was Jesus. He was a Hebrew, a Red Man. He received his education from the wilderness. John the Baptist, Moses, and other excellent teachers that came before Jesus provided an educational foundation with the Holistic Method."

"Everyday is our Christmas. Every meal is our Christmas. At every meal we take a little portion of the food we are eating, and we offer it to the spirit world on behalf of the four legged, and the winged, and the two legged. We pray--not the way most Christians pray-- but we thank the Grandfathers, the Spirit, and the Guardian Angel."

"The Indian Culture is actually grounded in the traditions of a Roving Angel. The life-ways of Roving Angels are actually the way Indian People live. They hold out their hands and help the sick and the needy. They feed and clothe the poor. We have high respect for the avatar because we believe that it is in giving that we receive."

"We are taught as Traditional children that we have abundance. The Creator has given us everything: the water, the air we breathe, the earth as our flesh, and our energy force: our heart. We are thankful every day. We pray early in the morning, before sunrise, to the morning star, and the evening star. We pray for our relatives who are in the universe that someday they will come. We also pray that the Great Spirit's son will live again."

"To the Indian People Christmas is every day and they don't believe in taking without asking. Herbs are prayed over before being gathered by asking the plant for permission to take some cuttings. An offer of tobacco is made to the plant in gratitude. We do not pull the herb out by its roots, but cut the plant even with the surface of the earth, so that another generation will be born its place."

"It is really important that these ways never be lost. And to this day we feed the elders, we feed the family on Christmas day, we honor Saint Nicholas. We explain to the little children that to receive a gift is to enjoy it, and when the enjoyment is gone, they are pass it on to the another child, so that they, too, can enjoy it. If a child gets a doll, that doll will change hands about eight times in a year, from one child to another."

"Every day is Christmas in Indian Country. Daily living is centered around the spirit of giving and walking the Red Road. Walking the Red Road means making everything you do a spiritual act. If your neighbor, John Running Deer, needs a potato masher; and you have one that you are not using, you offer him yours in the spirit of giving. It doesn't matter if it is Christmas or not."

"If neighbors or strangers stop over to visit at your house, we offer them dinner. We bring out the T-Bone steak, not the cabbage. If we don't have enough, we send someone in the family out to get some more and mention nothing of the inconvenience to our guests. The more one gives, the more spiritual we become. The Christ Consciousness, the same spirit of giving that is present at Christmas, is present every day in Indian Country."

Looks For Buffalo resides on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota and can be contacted at (605)867-5762 or P.O. Box 150, Pine Ridge, SD 57770. He is a contributor to
I hope everyone has a very Merry Christmas, filled with many blessings and lots of giving.

Above Photos from Google Commons.

                               Passion's Vision (Passion Series Book 1)
                               Raven's Passion (Passion Series Book 2)
                               Passion's Price (Passion Series Book 3)

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Welcome to Featured Guest Blogger, Monica LaSarre

Welcome to Featured Guest Blogger, Monica LaSarre.

I am grateful to the very talented Mary Adair for the opportunity to share a few words on her blog. I’ve enjoyed her Passion series immensely and am honored to have her as a supporter of my recently published children’s novel, Japer Penzey: International Boy Detective, The Ruby Brooch of Atlantis.

Let me cut right to the chase regarding what I hope you’ll take away from this blog post: I’ve discovered the fountain of youth and it’s not at the gym, or in a bottle of wrinkle cream, or hidden deep in the jungles of Africa. It’s at your finger tips. Its name is “Children’s Literature”.

I’m almost 40, writing is my second career (I worked in non-profit health care and transfusion medicine for decades), I’m a mom of two really great kids, and I love to read. I’m not different from many of you, most likely. We are adults, we have responsibilities, reading is a good way to relax and squeeze some extra joy out of life, but we read adult books (adult fiction, romances, non-fiction). I was in that boat too.

For many reasons, a few of which I’ll share momentarily, I found I had a burning desire to write a novel for kids. And I have to say, writing it has become a fountain of youth for me in so many ways. Since writing this novel, I laugh a lot more, I look at the world through a simpler gaze, and I’m a bit more unencumbered and gravitate towards adventure and learning with the wide-eyed expectation of a child. Through the experience, I’ve learned an amazing fact: children are simpler, happier beings and the way they look at the world is beautiful and enviable. Now, one of my favorite things to share with my reading friends is how I’ve come to appreciate mixing in children’s literature as a reading choice for myself. Beyond my book alone (which many adults are enjoying as a fountain of youth as well!), I enjoy reading classic children’s literature and books geared towards younger readers. I challenge you to try it. You will feel younger, I promise you.

A few things about my book: First, I wrote it to be read-aloud friendly. Sadly, so many children’s chapter books aren’t. I would see my kids’ eyes glaze over at long, descriptive, beautifully written passages in the books I would read to them, and wish there were more chapter books that kept them engaged. I found so few read-aloud friendly books; I decided to write my own. As an author, I’m compelled to share in my stories some valuable tools for helping our children grow into conscientious, thoughtful, compassionate people. Through my own love of culture and travel and sharing those passions with my kids, Jasper Penzey’s story was born.

A 9-year old international boy detective, Jasper has never known his mother. He moves to Greece with his history professor father and for the first time in his young life he has the opportunity to view another culture and another part of the world. He is pulled into a mystery involving the location of the lost civilization of Atlantis, which surprisingly exposes him to clues indicating his mother is out there somewhere in the wide world, and he would give anything to find her and know her. Filled with age-appropriate morals and quips, Jasper’s tale illustrates the power of bedtime stories, that people worldwide are different and special in their own way, and that history and mystery can be a lot of fun.

Ideal for readers aged 7-12 and for all adults wanting to discover their own fountain of youth, I’m pleased to share Jasper Penzey’s story with you. The first in an 8-book series, Book 2 takes place in Panama and will be published in early 2015. I hope you’ll join me on this adventure and share Jasper’s story with all the readers in your life, young and old. I give away a free book (children’s literature) daily (on average) on my Facebook page, so join me there as well. I love fan mail and dialogue with readers via my website, on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. I hope to get to know you and interact with you based on our shared love of reading and all things books.

These photos were taken while on a family vacation. Both were taken on the island of Santorini, both in the exact spots that became scenes in the book. One  taken on a boat to the temple island, the other one in Amoudi where Jasper saw the best sunset.
M.A.A.    Thank you, Monica for guesting my blog today. I agree with you totally, nothing brings back the feeling of youth like the antics and laughter of children. The whole world is a new and wonderful place when seen through the eyes of a child. I loved book one and will be waiting anxiously for the book two. Please come back and share with me when Jasper's next adventure is published.


My website:

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

REVIEW: Jasper Penzey The Ruby Brooch of Atlantis by Monica LaSarre

The Ruby Brooch of Atlantis (Japer Penzey: International Boy Detective, #1)The Ruby Brooch of Atlantis by Monica LaSarre
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

First of all…I love the title! Don’t you just love that name “Jasper Penzey”

I have nothing against fantasy, like Harry Potter, but I cheer anytime I read a children's book that can excite a child about "real" abilities like Thinking, (I loved that Jasper would Stop and take time to Think about the situation.) He reasoned things out. Also, I liked that he had patience with a child that was so different from himself and saw the good things about her. It took no time at all and they were fast friends. They ran around outside, not spending their whole day on the computer or TV.

Unlike the Harry Potter stories, which I also love, This book is not a story about an imaginary place with people that have magical powers. Jasper's "power" comes from his ability to thing and follow clues. Jasper is a nine year old boy with the budding talent of Sherlock Holms. He has sleuthing in his blood and determined to be the best sleuth ever. In fact, his nickname, given to him by his nanny, Renee, is “Sherlock”.

The story of Jasper starts with a mysterious woman as she bids her tiny baby goodbye. Nine years later the faint scent of jasmine and a feathery soft kiss still lingers in Jaspers mind.
Jasper’s need to follow the clues is evident from chapter one. He tallies the clues but is totally blindsided when he is told by his dad that he is moving to Greece. How did all the clues lead him on the wrong path? The worst thing ever was to move! That night he finds a small box hidden in his room. Inside the box was a letter from his mom and a mysterious amulet. These two items is all he has of his mom’s and he treasures them in secret. Once settled in his new home he contacts his best friend and has him watch his old house for the possible arrival of his mother.

It does not take long for him to make a new friend and of course, they become hip dip in a mystery that would rival any of Sherlock Holms’ escapades. With help from Cally, his new best friend, even if she is a girl, they begin a journey of discovery and danger. Together they crack the case of the missing ice cream; unravel the mystery of the men in sunglasses, smooth over a family misunderstanding…and of course save the day. I am being careful not to put in any spoilers.

I just can’t say enough good stuff about this story. This is a story that will ignite the interest of any young sleuth. It is packed with tidbits of a faraway place that mixes “learning” with the joy of reading. It is definitely a page turner and is kid tested! My nieces and nephews L-O-V-E-D it! Ms. LaSarre is a talented storyteller and I look forward to reading more of her work, and I know my nieces and nephews are going to be begging for more.
Also the cookie recipes at the end are wonderful!

View all my reviews

Sunday, November 30, 2014

The Jewel Box

The Jewel BoxThe Jewel Box by C. Michelle McCarty
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

“Life is a lesson. Take notes…” on page 33. I love this line from the Jewel Box, and to me, it sums up the storyline in a wonderful way. The Jewel Box is an absorbing, well-written story of a young woman struggling to overcome and learn from her mistakes while living her life to the fullest.

I loved this book! There were so many things within its pages that took me back in time. I love it when a book can make you cry as well as laugh and even get angry with a character.
The story begins when Jill, aka Cherie, accepts the delivery of a beautiful antique bar to her antique shop. This antique piece will never be sold. The beautiful bar, that hosts the initials carved by the love of her life so many years before, brings with it a rush of cherished memories that span her lifetime.

The story unfolds as her memories take her back through her life filled with tremendous tests of her will, more than one heartbreaking loss, and a once in a life time love to a beautiful conclusion that will warm your heart and have you wiping a tear .

The Jewel box captured me from the first page. Ms McCarty’s talent shines as the characters and situations jump right out of the pages and into your imagination. Every character is so well developed you just know she must have known some of your beloved and sometime corky friends.

I would recommend this book to anyone that enjoys Romance. I will be anxiously awaiting her next book. I now have a new author to add to my “Favorites list”.

View all my reviews

Monday, November 24, 2014

The First Thanksgiving Celebration.

Thanksgiving and Sukkot (Tabernacles)

Thanksgiving has always been one of my favorite holidays. I give thanks every day for my blessings, but to have a day set aside for thanks giving is truly special.  Knowing all (if not many) Americans celebrate by remembering all the good things and wonderful people in their lives for which they are thankful adds to the festivity.

I decided to look into the roots of the celebration, and this is what I learned.

According to some scholars, before coming to the new world, the Pilgrims lived for a decade among the Sephareic Jews in Holland.  Holland was considered a safe haven from religious persecution at the time.  The Pilgrims, being  devout Calvinist and Puritans considered themselves as “New Isreal”. I can see where they likely learned that Sukkot commemorated Israel’s deliverance from the religious persecution in ancient Egypt and thought of it as a parallel to their own situation.

 After they immigrated to the promised land of America, it is not surprising to me that the Pilgrims may have considered the festival of Sukkot when planning their own celebration. The Pilgrims considered their perilous journey to the new world as a type of exodus and wanted to associate their new celebration to the appropriate Biblical holiday.

It is interesting to me that the Jewish observance of their holiday always falls on Thursday and there is a special prayer of “Thanksgiving” before eating the meal.  It is also interesting to note that the Hebrew word for Turkey is tarnegol hodu, literally “Indian chicken”.  Is it a happy coincidence that we customarily eat Turkey on thanksgiving?

We all have times of up and downs. We all have something and someone (probable more than one someone) to be thankful for. My Thanksgiving wish for all my friends and family, is well expressed in this Cherokee Prayer Blessing.

May the Warm Winds of Heaven Blow softly upon your house.
May the Great Spirit Bless all who enter there.
May your Moccasins Make happy tracks in many snows,
and may the Rainbow Always touch your shoulder.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Find Award Winning Passion's Vision ay StoryCartel

You know how authors always harp about needing reviews? Well, that is because they do. Reviews help an author become recognized, and helps them to sale books, true. But, most of all reviews help authors become better writers. Every author I know, and I know many, write for the love of the art. They love to create and approach it in just that way, as an art.

Most people have a special talent, one they love to do and they thrive on the appreciation of that talent by the people they care about. When someone loves what they do, they want to do it again, even better the next time. It may be a special recipe for their family or church social, It may be a beautifully decorated nursery or crocheted shawl for a loved one or a song they wrote themselves. I think each of us were created with a need to express themselves, don't you agree?

I wrote a book, Passion's Vision. It has won awards and it has been a best seller off and on at Amazon. But all that dims to the happiness I get from receiving reviews. Reviews tell me that my fans are happy with what I write, they enjoy my stories and want to read more.  I loved everything about writing Passion's Vision and now I would love to see reviews. Good or bad. Of course we all love good reviews, but the negative ones help us grow as well.

A Free copy Passion's Vision is available for 18 days at Story Cartel is where you can get a free copy of a book in exchange for a review. No body will hound you if you do not leave a review. It is up to you, but I truly hope you download a copy, Love the story and comeback to Story Cartel to leave a review.

If you have never heard of Story Cartel and love to read, it is a wonderful site to pick up some great reads!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Writing Humor is not so easy

Writing humor.
I love to read stories that incorporate humor. To me humor is one of those “spice of life” things, so how could I not write humor? Well, writing humor is much harder than you would think. You would think having a sense of humor would be all you need. Not so, as I quickly learned.

So what did I do? Like any good writer, I researched the subject. Here is something I read…
Rule 1: Words with the k sound (Cadillac, quintuplet, sex) are perceived as the funniest, and words with a hard g (guacamole, gargantuan, Yugo) are almost as funny. I am sure this is a good rule, not that I understand it.

This is what I can get out of it… “Sex in the back seat of a Cadillac could lead to quintuplets.”   Okay! Not Funny!

My story, Passion’s Vision, is filled with historical detail portraying the Cherokee People during a turbulent time of war, smallpox, great loses and miraculous victories. It is a fast passed adventure containing intrigue and a dash of Native American mysticism.

New Moon is a Cherokee warrior. She and her husband fought together in many battles. She mourns the death of her husband whose life was taken by a white man and to top that off she is having visions of a white man soon to arrive in her village. She is not sure, but he sets all her warrior senses aquiver over not knowing if she is supposed to kill him or have his child. That is defiantly not the funny part, though just at this moment, it kind of struck me that way.

James Fitzgerald is an agent in King George’s court. He is commissioned to blend into Dancing Cloud’s village to uncover and botch the plans of a French agent creating discord and bloody conflict between the settlers and the Cherokee.

These are two warriors from different worlds who meet and clash. It does not take long before it is revealed their survival depends on their ability to overcome their differences and defeat those who seek to destroy them both.

This story needed a bit a humor. I chose James to be the brunt of my moments of humor. He was just so clueless at times when he stumbles into confusion over the nuances of Cherokee culture.

In Passion’s Price I really had fun with my characters.  Raven, Red Panther’s adoptive son is the serious one. Dawn, Red Panther and New Moon’s daughter is also very serious, strong headed and, a visionary…like her mother. Now imagine tossing a heavy dose of Cherokee culture into an English fountain, in the way of a Sun Greeting Ceremony, performed in the nude of course, or dropping into a Cherokee Death Sleep during a “Coming out ball” just to prove a point. You have to admit that would cause a bit of a ruckus among the English elite.

 I added in two precious grandmothers who are known for their matchmaking and meddling into other’s affairs. I also introduced Sir William, affectionately called Willy by his grandmothers. William is totally smitten by Dawn but is quick to realize he has no chance winning her affection, so settles back to watch the battle of wills between Raven and Dawn.
Passion’s Price is every bit as serious a book as Passion’s Vision, but I really enjoyed and could not stop myself from stirring in a bit of humor at every opportunity.
 excerpt: From Award Winning Passion’s Vision:

A shout rose up from the watchman of the gate as Red Panther and New Moon emerged into the clearing that surrounded the village. The Old Beloved Woman quickly hurried through the gate with a robe to place about New Moon. Clucking like an old hen the elderly woman ushered her back toward the village.

Just before disappearing through the gate New Moon looked back at him, her eyes twinkling with promise and her lips spread in a smile that made his heart jump and his stomach tighten.

As James passed through the gate Dancing Cloud met him and slapped him warmly on the shoulder.
"Panther, it is good you have returned to us. I see your scalp," he said, pointing to the scalp at James' waist."Will his blood cry?"

"He killed New Moon's brother. He would have killed New Moon. He got what he deserved."

Dancing Cloud nodded his approval, "Good. It is finished." With a sideways glance he asked, "Did New Moon accept you?"


"Good! I would not have given back the bride price." Dancing Cloud said jovially. Noticing Red Panther's downcast expression he said, "You do not look good, my friend. I do not understand. You saved your woman, killed your enemy, you were alone in the mountains with New Moon. You should have come back strutting like that new stallion of mine."

James looked confused as he stared at Dancing Cloud, "Yes, I killed my enemy." He sounded incredulous. "I saved my woman, but the nights alone with my conquest were the most difficult of all. This custom of yours, of a warrior not defiling himself when on the warpath, almost killed me."

Dancing Cloud fought valiantly with his features but soon gave up and crumpled over in great laughter. James waited patiently for the chief to regain his composure. Finally the chief straightened and wiped his eyes as his face once again molded itself into the mask of total sobriety. "You must have strong medicine." He let his eyes casually roam about the village as if in thought, "Much control." With this last statement, he turned his back to James and walked away.

The village shaman hurried from his lodge, his hands filled with a variety of rattles and pouches of herbs, toward Red Panther. As he neared the chief, Dancing Cloud reached out and caught his arm. Pulling the old man close Cloud leaned toward his ear as if to whisper, but rather said very loudly, "You will not need all of those things. Red Panther did not break purification."

The old man looked at the chief in surprise and then to James. James, in an attempt to ignore the scene the Chief was causing, allowed his gaze to wander about the village.

To his dismay every face was turned his way. It seemed the entire village could find nothing of more interest than his sex life! Tucking his rattles back into his medicine pouch the shaman turned, and with one last glance at James, walked with Dancing Cloud back to his lodge.

 excerpt:Passion’s Price: 

"I can't believe everyone thinks that she fainted. I have a bad feeling about her," Dawn mumbled.
"And well you should, she's French you know." Lady Montgomery's words and tone of voice left little doubt as to her opinion of England's neighboring countrymen.
Dawn only half listened. The whole affair seemed a form of madness to her. The loud music, women's high, exaggerated giggles springing fourth in response to nonsense, men's blind doting over staged performances. This miss-matched accumulation of nonsense made this the most unpleasant and curious evening in all her experience with the white man's world.
Lady Montgomery interrupted her thoughts. "And no one really thinks she fainted, dear." She patted Dawn's hand. "Or, at least most of them don't."
"Then why all this?" She indicated the activity that was taking place a short distance from them, where men still thronged around Marguerite as she pretended to weakly accept their assistance.
"Why, dear, because it's expected. Ladies are supposed to swoon."
"They are expected to swoon?" Dawn asked incredulously. "Yes, of course, and some truly do," Lady Gaylord answered.
"Of course, the tight corsets, the drink, the crowd, the excitement. It's only natural that some sweet frail little thing will be overcome by it all and naturally swoon," Lady Montgomery added.
"But," she continued in what appeared to be an attempt to head off Lady Gaylord, "there are those who are not so overcome. When they feel they're being left out, they bring the attention back to themselves by feigning a swoon. I'd suggest Marguerite’s little performance was equal to that of a temper tantrum."
"Yes! She's angry," Lady Gaylord pushed forward.
Dawn gazed at her in surprise. "Why? With whom?"
"Why, with you, dear."
"Don't look so startled, dear. You've stolen her...thunder, you might say."
Dawn smiled. Knowing about her Cherokee ancestry the two dears continually tried to interject words into their speech they thought would make her feel more at home. Considering what they had just said, she looked hard in Marguerite’s direction and replied, "That is ridiculous. I never stole her thunder or anything else. Perhaps she's just insecure."
Both women swung their heads in Marguerite’s direction and stared for a short while before shaking their heads. "No," Lady Gaylord spoke decisively.
"No, you're wrong, my dear," Lady Montgomery agreed as she turned back to Dawn.
"She knows what she wants," injected Lady Gaylord.
"And she knows just how to get it. I'm sure she would stop at nothing. You, my dear, took away some of her thunder. She just took it back."
"You know, Victoria," Lady Montgomery tapped her fan against her hand speculatively. "I don't think she likes it at all that Dawn is here."
Dawn listened while the two matrons conversed between themselves as if she were not present.
Lady Gaylord nodded in agreement. "No, she's very unhappy about Dawn. Raven has given his new ward far too much attention to suit Marguerite."
"Well, why shouldn't he? She is his partner's daughter and she is here under his protection." Lady Montgomery smiled slyly, a hint of triumph in her voice. "And she's very beautiful."
"Yes, she is. More beautiful even than Marguerite, in my opinion." Lady Gaylord grinned wickedly, then sobered. "Dawn must be very careful of Marguerite." Dawn stiffened.
"Yes, she must," Lady Montgomery spoke softly as she moved closer, reminding Dawn of a mother hen shielding her chick.
Lady Gaylord, with the same air of protectiveness, put a reassuring hand at Dawn's waist. "We'll just have to help her."
"Yes, we must."
"Help me what?" Dawn could hold her tongue no longer.
Both women jumped and quickly exchanged secretive looks before they returned their attention to Dawn.
"Oh, nothing, dear. Nothing at all."
"You have nothing to worry about." Lady Gaylord patted Dawn's hand. "We'll not let Marguerite hurt you."
Dawn straightened. "I do not need anyone to protect me. I'm not afraid of some silly white woman who can't even achieve a proper death sleep."
"Oh, of course you're not afraid, dear." The grandmothers exchanged looks again. "You've nothing to fear. We just feel that you should not underestimate Marguerite. She is very cunning. By the way, dear, what is a death sleep?"
Dawn shrugged. "I'll explain later." She was stung by the older women's lack of belief in her. She was as much a warrior as her mother, and Marguerite had declared war.
She stole a glance at Marguerite, who now sat perched on a low stool where some gallant young man had placed her after he so graciously caught her in his arms. All around Marguerite silly young men, and not so young men, fretted and fluttered like wild birds in a mating dance.
Yes, this was war, a different kind of war. The rules, as she understood them, were confusing, but she knew she would win it. The stakes were too high to lose.
She looked at Raven leaning against the mantle, the look of a storm cloud on his face. The strength she saw in him did nothing to reassure her. Her vision was real. Raven was in mortal danger and his strength would not save him. It was up to her. The Great Spirit would not have sent her the dream if that were not so.
She saw him take a deep breath and push himself away from the backrest. He was about to go to Marguerite. It was time to let Raven's fiancée know her challenge had been accepted.
Without a word Dawn raised her wrist to her forehead.
A glance in Dawn's direction and Raven froze. "Great Spirit, no.”
William shoved himself from the mantle. "Good Lord, Raven, what's got into you?"
Raven watched as Dawn sank to the floor. As if in slow motion Lady Gaylord turned in Dawn's direction, placed a hand to her cheek and let out a wail to put any Cherokee mourner to shame. The resulting pandemonium gave credit to Dawn's flare for drama. Ladies, young and old, no doubt believing they had just witnessed the demise of one of their own, dropped faster than the bewildered gentlemen could respond.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Last Day

Today is the last day to get Raven's Passion for 99 cents.

Raven Who Flies To Meet The Clouds is a young half breed warrior who struggles to accept his heritage as well as to be accepted by the People he loves and the adoptive father he feels he will never be able to equal.

Raven, is strong, without fear and respected for his prowess as a young warrior. He is also battling his anger with a father he does not know. A white man who would love and then leave a young Cherokee woman to raise his child alone. The villagers see this pent up anger take control of his reactions each time he perceives a threat toward his near-sister, Golden Dawn. The village is unsure and concerned by his aggressiveness and inability to control his anger when Dawn is threatened. Now Raven's adopted father, Red Panther, is missing and possibly dead. Raven must prove to Chief Dancing Cloud as well as the rest of the village that he possesses the love and selflessness that a warrior, a protector of The People, must possess as he leaves with the war party to find Red Panther.

Golden Dawn:
Golden Dawn is Red Panther's, a white man, and New Moon's daughter. She has inherited her father's fair coloring, his pride and his determination. From her mother she is blessed with strength, courage, a warrior's abilities, and a gift of visions. She alone understands Raven's pain. She alone knows their paths are intertwined. She alone knows that someday, she will no longer be his near-sister and because of the love she has for him she will willing pay the price to save his life.

Raven's Passion:

The story of a young warrior struggling with the meaning of life, a life filled with the passion of a time when one's existence depended on unity, love, selflessness, and the village.

Review:   5 STAR
Reviewed by Michelle Stanley for Readers' Favorite 
Raven's Passion is a wonderful young adult book written by Mary Adair. Raven is raised by his adoptive parents. He is a confused, temperamental young man who does not know who his white biological father is, and feels like a misfit with the Cherokees. He does his best to adjust, but the taunts of some Indians always remind him that he is a half breed. Raven's adoptive father, Red Panther, is a good role model, but Raven yearns to know his father. 
When Indians are abducted by ruthless men, Raven and a war party search for them, encountering challenges along the way. Raven faces these battles with courage while fighting his own personal battle. 
Although Raven's Passion has a setting in the untamed western frontier, the story is one that many young adults will find interesting. It deals with issues that today's younger generation often faces. One of these is the burning desire to know the biological parent who has been absent from their lives from birth. 
I thought author Mary Adair did well, creating characters who were so realistic with their problems. She skillfully displayed how people lived in the past, while making the different personalities and feelings of the characters connect with the reader. I am impressed with the quality writing I have seen, as well her expertise on Indian history. This is the first book I have read from Mary Adair, but do intend to read more from this author.