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Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Lords of the Greenwood by Chris Thorndycroft Blog Tour and Giveaway :)

Lords of the Greenwood by Chris Thorndycroft

Publication Date: January 16, 2018
eBook; 469 Pages
ASIN: B07958RTQS
Genre: Historical Fiction/Medieval


Nottinghamshire, 1264. England is on the brink of civil war. The barons are in revolt against King Henry III. Such times suit Roger Godberd, sergeant in the garrison at Nottingham Castle. After throwing in their lot with the barons who embark on a bloody campaign for control of England, Roger and his companions are betrayed and seek refuge in Sherwood Forest. There they begin their new lives as outlaws evading their old enemy, the High Sheriff of Nottinghamshire. Yorkshire, 1320. Wrongfully accused of murder, young Robert Hood of Wakefield finds himself outlawed with only his bitter enemy Will Shacklock for company. Taking to the woods of Barnsdale, Robert and Will agree on an uneasy truce and begin recruiting a band of robbers fleeing the chaos of the Earl of Lancaster’s rebellion against King Edward II. Eventually drawing the attention of the king himself, Robert and his band are given a choice; be hanged as common criminals or enter the king’s service as agents of the crown… Blending real history with medieval ballads this is the entwined saga of two men, separated by a generation, united by legend, who inspired the tales of England’s famous hooded outlaw.

Amazon | Smashwords

***My Personal Review***



About the Author

Chris Thorndycroft is a British writer of historical fiction, horror and fantasy. His early short stories appeared in magazines and anthologies such as Dark Moon Digest and American Nightmare. His first novel under his own name was A Brother's Oath; the first book in the Hengest and Horsa Trilogy. He also writes under the pseudonym P. J. Thorndyke. For more information, please visit Chris Thorndycroft's website. You can also find him on Twitter and Goodreads.



Blog Tour Schedule

Friday, March 30 Excerpt at Let Them Read Books Saturday, March 31 Feature at Passages to the Past Monday, April 2 Guest Post at What Cathy Read Next Tuesday, April 3 Review at 100 Pages a Day Wednesday, April 4 Review at Pursuing Stacie Friday, April 6 Guest Post at Katie's Book Cave Monday, April 9 Excerpt at What Is That Book About Wednesday, April 11 Interview at Donna's Book Blog Friday, April 13 Excerpt at Teaser Addicts Book Blog Monday, April 16 Review at Katie's Book Cave Wednesday, April 18 Review at WS Momma Readers Nook Friday, April 20 Review at Historical Fiction with Spirit

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour we will be giving away two eBooks of Lords of the Greenwood! To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below. Giveaway Rules – Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on April 20th. You must be 18 or older to enter. – Giveaway is open INTERNATIONALLY. – Only one entry per household. – All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion. – Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen. Lords of the Greenwood 

Sunday, April 8, 2018

The Lost Dragon - The Dragon Hunters Book 1 by Drako Book Tour and Giveaway :)


The Lost Dragon
The Dragon Hunters Book 1
by Drako
Genre: LGBT Paranormal Fantasy

Andreas was born a Spartan warrior, long before human history even records Sparta existing. He served directly under Ares, until the day his lover was killed on the battlefield in front of him. On that day, he met his father, the mysterious Black Dragon God known as Jarel. From then on, he served his father faithfully, enforcing the laws of the primordial embodiment of black fire and father of the paranormal. Now, in these modern times, he hunts the rogue vampires and their leader. Little does he know, there's more to this than vampires simply turning against his father.

While protecting the lovely Cassandra Odele, Andreas must battle forces he doesn't know as he attempts to stop the resurrection of the Titan king, Cronus. Added to his problems, he now has two teenage nephews to see into adulthood. Of course, there's always a twist when dealing with the gods, and Andreas will come face to face with his past, leaving him to decide which is more important, his soul or the world?


Brandon was in his room on his bed, headphones in as he was blasting some music. His eyes were closed, and he was content in his own little world. After a moment, he felt the cell phone Andreas had also given him that day vibrate. He picked it up, finding a text message from Adonis.
Hey, whatcha doin?
Obviously Adonis liked to keep it short and simple. Brandon sent a quick response. Nothing. Bored.
He waited a few minutes and got another response.
I want to see you.
Brandon snorted. Where are you? I'll come get you.
Demun came into the room and sat on his bed. "Wow, you're already getting popular and we just got the phones today."
"It's just Adonis," Brandon replied.
"Oh, just Adonis? Come on, who do I look like? You've got a huge thing for him. What's the point in fighting it?"
Brandon scowled. "I'm not fighting anything. I just offered to come get him."
Demun grinned. "Ooh, so are you finally gonna...."
Brandon threw his pillow at him to cut him off, causing Demun to laugh. Brandon looked at his phone as another text came through from Adonis.
I'm at January Wabash Park, walking around the lake. You coming?
Brandon couldn't hide a smile. Be there in a few.
"So, are you going to answer my question?" Demun asked, eyes sparkling with amusement.
"No, but I'm going out," Brandon responded. "No spying on me either."
"Trust me, I can do without the visuals that may come with spying on you. I don't need to see Adonis naked, or you for that matter."
Brandon rolled his eyes. "We're identical twins, you jackass. We look the same everywhere."
"Yeah, but I look great to me. You're my brother, so by definition, you look disgusting."
Brandon laughed and got up, heading out of the room. He went into the living room, where Andreas sat watching TV.
"Do you mind if I go out for a while?" Brandon asked.
Andreas shrugged. "Go ahead. Stay in contact with your brother. If there's any trouble, don't try to handle it alone."
Brandon raised an eyebrow. "That's it? You're not going to ask any more questions?"
Andreas gave him a dull stare. "I'm not stupid. You just got a phone and a car today. Only one place you could be heading, and that's to see Adonis. Just try not to stay out too late."

"Wow, thanks." Brandon headed out.

The Dragon Witch
The Dragon Hunters Book 2

Victoria Damone is the daughter of the Black Dragon God, Jarel, and the goddess of magic and witchcraft, Hecate. Quick tempered and impatient, she strikes fear into the hearts of the rogue creatures rebelling against her father as well as the warlocks, servants of Prince of Darkness, Lucifer.


Ares, the god of war, is often misunderstood. Known only as a brutal god with an insatiable appetite for blood and destruction, as well as passing flings, the son of Zeus and Hera has spent most of his time defending Olympus from any and every threat.

Now the two meet and must combine forces. The Titan King, Cronus, has been resurrected by Lucifer and is quickly resurrecting his brethren to launch war against Zeus and all that stand with him. Not only this, but he's even joined forces with the legendary beast Typhon, the only creature to ever come close to toppling the Olympian god king. As the gods prepare for an unavoidable war, Victoria must hunt one of the most powerful and cunning warlocks to serve under the Prince of Darkness and simultaneously train her nephew Brandon in her craft. Her pride demands that she do this alone, but Ares is not a god to be denied. Ares clearly has his eyes on Victoria, but can she trust the notoriously wild and unpredictable god's intentions?




Fatal Healing
The Dragon Hunters Book 3

Odele, the goddess of Healing, has returned to Olympus, once again the direct servant to Hera, queen of the gods. Yet even after the defeat of Eris, her work is not done. The war of the gods is imminent now, with Cronus restored to life and the Titans back at his side. But before the battle can begin, Odele must find her mortal twin brother, who had been captured by the forces of the vampire Kalos years before. She asks Hera for her brother's whereabouts, and the god queen allows her to attempt to rescue him, but under the condition that she's accompanied by Apollo.


Apollo has waited ages for Odele's return to Olympus to heal the heart he'd broken ages before. The process of healing won't be easy, and Odele's heart is not the only heart to be healed. Both Apollo and Odele's lives are at risk, as they join the god of darkness in a battles against two children of Gaea and Odele's own brothers, Cronus and Typhon. Will Odele's heart be healed, and most importantly, will anyone survive this unique healing process?




Heir of Mjolnir
The Dragon Hunters Book 4

The servants of Hecate have been subject to persecution for many years. They have been misunderstood, accused of worshipping the devil. And Hecate has had enough. The Devil, Lucifer, has finally invaded the human world and his true servants, warlocks, are growing bold. Lucifer’s influence has spread throughout the world and nothing is the same as it was before he came. There are those that can counter the power of the warlocks, and Hecate may have found one.

Vax King had just graduated high school when the world changed. And unlike everyone around him, he saw through the lies. The world was trapped in the spell of the father of all evil and he seemed to be the only one in the immediate area that could see it. Then again, he’s a solitary witch and no one else knows it. But he’s shocked when the goddess Hecate appears to him with a quest to gain a weapon to help fight the forces of evil. The weapon is the legendary hammer of the Norse god, Thor, Mj√∂lnir, and if he can find this he can lead the forces of Hecate against their greatest enemy. But to gain it, he must survive the Rose realm and prove his worth. Should he fail, death is all that awaits. Can he prove to the enchanted weapon of the deceased god that he is more worthy of wielding it than the original owner, and therein become the leader of an army of witches ready and waiting to stand against Lucifer?



Relinquished Mercy
The Dragon Hunters Book 5

The heavenly war is coming to a head. The gods are ready. All that remains is the final clash between the most dominate forces of nature in existence.

Brandon has come to a decision. He can't deny who his soul mate is. He's the god of darkness and shadows, and his soul mate is a werewolf, Phil, the grandson of the very first werewolf. But things are never so simple. He has to get past the wolf's insecurities in order to give them both a shot at true happiness
Demun wants to fight against his soul mate. He hates having a predetermined mate. And worse, his mate is the phoenix known to be unable to settle down. Vic, the phoenix in question, wasn't fond of the idea either, but he's been around enough to know that fighting against what your soul requires is pointless. He just needs a chance.
The twins lead complicated lives, as they must not only deal with their soul mates but fight alongside the Dragon Witch, Victoria, to protect their children, the new Moirae. As always, a new threat lies hidden in wait, attempting to create a monster out of god that will change the world for the worst. And it may cost them one of their own.




Blood Monarch
The Dragon Hunters Book 6

A king's duty never ends, even when his kingdom changes. Vladimir Dracula is one of the most famous and misunderstood figures in all of history. One thing is true, he is a king, and he is a vampire. He is the true king and enforcer of the vampire race. Feared by all of his own kind, he is perhaps the most lethal of the Black Dragon God's mortal born servants. At the same time, he personifies sex. None can resist his charms, save one.

Vax King is the Chosen of Hecate, the Heir of Mjolnir, and has no plans on a mate. When he's called on to enter Fae lands, he's surprised to find the legendary vampire there. Looking to aid the beautiful Fae, Anaya, and her soul mate, Galen, Vax must enter a world of sex of violence with only Vlad to accompany him. Here, there can be no denial, no hesitation. Only truth....and dominance.
A war is brewing in the Fae lands, as the fallen angels rise to lay claim to the power of their goddess, Verlaine and topple their higher brethren. Older than most, Vlad must accustom himself to having a soul mate, and use all his legendary power to stop the forces of darkness long believed to be controlled by him. A new kingdom is the prize, and none knows better than the famed Dracula that the secret to power lies in the blood.





Drako was born in 1987 in St. Louis, Missouri. He is mainly a fantasy writer, though he also writes some poetry and general fiction. He is very active on both twitter and facebook and has his own website at www.drakosden.net which is frequently updated with news on his books and fun extras. When he isn't writing, he's busy helping take care of his nieces, playing videogames, reading, promoting, and spending time with family.



Follow the tour HERE for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!


Friday, April 6, 2018

Rope Me, Cowboys - Coyote Ranch Book 1 by Alexa B. James Book Tour and Giveaway :)


Rope Me, Cowboys
Coyote Ranch Book 1
by Alexa B. James
Genre: Contemporary Reverse Harem Rom-Com

Three sexy cowboys. One mishap-prone virgin. What could go wrong? 
To avoid a public scandal after a night of too much tequila, senator's daughter Amber Durant agrees to disappear for three months. 
She thinks she's going to babysit her new stepfather's three sons on his ranch in Wyoming. Turns out, they're all grown up. In all the right ways. But she can't have any of them, because they're her stepbrothers. 
It's going to be a long three months.
***This is a book one (of 4) in a slow-burn reverse harem contemporary romance series, suitable for ages 18+***



I STUMBLED off the tiny plane that had flown me the last leg of the trip. The turbulence had been so bad I thought I might get sick. The nausea had passed but now my legs felt rubbery, and I was a little dizzy as I descended the shaky ladder towards the ground. It definitely did not feel sturdy enough to hold the guy who was waiting to come down after me, and I was fairly certain it hadn’t passed FSA inspections.
I exhaled in relief when I made it to the ground. A gust of October wind swept across the tarmac, bringing with it a dry chill that felt somehow wild and spooky. I shivered as I wheeled my suitcase across the tarmac towards the glow of the airport, which was really just a hangar. The night around us was so…black.
Beyond the airport, I could see everything and nothing at once. No tall buildings obscured the view, but then, no lights lit it up, either. There were a few small buildings, and houses in the distance.
The air smelled so clean and fresh that I kept inhaling until I got even more dizzy. I stopped myself, because I really didn’t want to pass out on the expensive shoes of my mother’s new husband’s old wife.
Gripping the handle of my suitcase as another gust of dry, cold wind whistled across the tarmac, I hurried forward. Something about the place made me want to run, as if something were going to jump out of the dark and chase me.
Get it together, Am, I told myself. I wasn’t seriously afraid of the dark. Except, it never really got dark in New York, so how would I know?
I reached the airport and went through, got the rest of my luggage, and pulled it outside. A single bench sat off to one side, but most of the airport appeared deserted. I glanced along the lane that ran in front of the building. The nosepicker was jumping up and down on the bumper of a minivan while his family loaded in suitcases. A little closer to me, a beat up old red pickup sat idling. And against that leaned the hottest guy I’d ever seen.
He gazed out into the night from beneath the brim of a cowboy hat. His dark lips moved slightly as he chewed on the end of a piece of dry grass. He was tan and tall, with broad, sculpted shoulders shown off to full advantage by a plaid shirt with the sleeves torn off. He’d left his shirt untucked above a pair of jeans that fit him oh-so-well and a pair of dusty cowboy boots.
Damn. If all the guys in Wyoming looked this good, maybe the next three months wouldn’t be so bad after all.
“Hey there,” he said to me when he caught me checking him out. “Are you Amber?”
I gulped. “That’s me. Are you picking me up? I mean, like, giving me a ride. I wasn’t asking if you were trying to pick me up. Nope. Totally was not even thinking about that. Not even a little.”
He laughed and strode over, thrusting out a work-worn hand. When it closed around mine, it felt like it could pulverize my bones if it wanted. Luckily, he was only after a handshake, not bone-meal. He gave my hand a tight squeeze, which, ridiculously, made my legs a little more quivery than they already were. “I’m Sawyer,” he said with a grin. “And I’m here to pick you up.”
I couldn’t help but smile back. “Awesome,” I breathed.
“If you’ll just unhand me, I’ll get your bags.”
“Oh! Right. Yeah, sorry about that. It was the plane ride. I blame that. Seriously. It was long.” I dropped his hand and continued to ramble as he picked up my bags, as promised, and swung them over the side of the truck bed and settled them in. I watched his muscles flex as he lifted them. They were really, really nice muscles. He must spend hours in the gym, I thought as I headed for the passenger door.
He slid in front of me and pulled it open, holding it for me until I’d climbed in before closing it gently behind me. He patted the hood of the truck like it was a beloved horse as he circled it before climbing into his seat.
“You all ready?” he asked. “Buckle up, Princess. It’s gonna be a long one.”
“Oh boy. I like the sound of that.”
He shot me a surprised grin as he laid his arm across the back of the seat and twisted around to see behind him as he backed up. I didn’t know this guy from Ted Bundy, but I was kinda disappointed when he didn’t oh-so-casually drape his arm around me afterwards.
Instead, he dropped his hand to the radio and dialed across the stations as he pulled away from the airport.
It was totally the rebound thing. I’d just been dumped in the worst way. Of course I was lusting after this sexy, sexy cowboy.
“What kind of music do you like?” he asked as we edged away from the few businesses and out of town.
“Oh, all kinds,” I said, marveling at how far apart the houses were. There were entire blocks of darkness between them!
“We might as well start getting to know each other,” he said.
“It’s our job to keep you out of trouble for the next three months. I guess that starts with knowing what kind of bar you’re likely to run off to.”
“What?” I squealed, turning to him. “You live with Mrs. Westling? Are you, like, her ranch hand or something? She does live at the ranch, right? Because I didn’t get the full scoop from my mom and Senator Westling, but they did tell me that much. And that, you know, I was an embarrassment to their family name, and I had to go babysit his kids until I learned to make better decisions. Wait, oh my god, you’re not her new husband, are you? Because if you are, I’m just going to come out and say it,
she totally won the divorce. Not that my mom isn’t pretty, because she totally is, but Mrs. Westling must be a real cougar. That’s all I’m saying.”
“Is that really all you’re saying?” He grinned sideways at me as we sped along a straight road that disappeared into…nothing. It stretched on as far as I could see, without a single car in sight.
Suddenly, I felt as if we were hurtling through space. I gripped the dash and stared straight ahead.
“Sorry,” I muttered, sinking down in my seat, my face warming. “I talk a lot when I get nervous. It’s better than sweating, though, right?” I winced that I’d put that lovely image into his head and vowed to shut the hell up. Otherwise, I’d have told him my entire life story before he dropped me off and
disappeared into the night forever. But apparently, that wasn’t happening. Apparently, I was going to see a lot of this guy.
I wished I wasn’t quite so excited about the prospect.
“To answer your question,” he said with a slight drawl. “I’m not married to Mrs. Westling, or anyone else. Actually, there is no Mrs. Westling. Our mother remarried a few years ago and took new name, and none of us are married.”
“Us?” I said, suddenly feeling the unmistakable butterflies of premonition as his words sank in.
“That’s right,” he said. “Dad told you there were three of us, right?”
“You’re the snot-nosed kid I’m supposed to babysit?”
Sawyer laughed. “I guess so.”
“And you all live on the ranch?”
“Yup.”
“And I guess they’re all grown up, too?” I squeaked.
“All grown up,” he agreed with a grin in my direction.

I was in so much trouble.

Wrangle Me, Cowboys
Coyote Ranch Book 2

Determined to contribute at Coyote Ranch, Amber Durant finds herself in charge of feeding and exercising the horses. Surely even a mishap-prone Manhattanite can't screw up that simple task...unless that Manhattanite is Amber. 


When it comes to her stepbrothers, things are even more complicated. As things heat up, she is torn in three directions. But will all three men run the other way when they find out she's still in possession of a much-despised V-Card?

And if that doesn't scare them off, will a couple nosy parents and judgmental ranch hands do the trick?




Ride Me, Cowboys
Coyote Ranch Book 3

Amber and her boys ready themselves for the future...but time is running short as her three months in Wyoming comes to a close.



Wreck Me, Cowboys
Coyote Ranch Book 4

Amber's story concludes in this fourth and final installment of the Coyote Ranch series. After a betrayal, will she and her men find their Happily Ever After?




Alexa B. James is the contemporary romance pen name for a 2-time USA Today Bestselling author of YA paranormal romance. 


Alexa is a mom, wife, librarian, and country girl at heart. When she's not pounding away on her keyboard, you can find her in her garden, chasing chickens around the yard, or holed up under a blanket with a cup of coffee and a book with lots of kissing. She loves romance novels of every variety (why choose?) and plans to publish more this year.




Follow the tour HERE for exclusive content and a giveaway!


Rehabilitation - Unbelief Book 1 by C.B. Stone Book Tour and Giveaway!


Rehabilitation
Unbelief Book 1
by C.B. Stone
Genre: YA Dystopian
171 pages

Darkness has a name...

From the ashes of destruction, the Elite rose up as the ruling power of the New World, enforcing new laws. 

Those laws are broken at great peril.

When she witnesses her best friend taken by force in the night, she knows he is destined for a fate worse than death. 

She’s heard the rumors, the whispers of what happens in Rehabilitation. 

She’s seen the dead looks in the eyes of those who return.

If they return.

But she can’t ignore what she's witnessed...

No matter the danger.

How can she abandon her best friend to such a fate? She must try to save him...

No matter the cost.





This is a dystopian series set in a post-apocalyptic world with hints of romance. Books should be read in order. May be cliff hangers.







Ruin
Unbelief Book 2
161 pages

What happens when your eyes are opened to truth?




I dream that night of walking through the ruins. Strangely, I’m barefoot. Yet the snow beneath my feet doesn’t feel cold, I don’t even feel cold. Somehow though, I’m going the right way, I know I am. I’m not sure how I know… it’s just a knowing I feel deep down in my bones.

Sinna has stumbled into a world unlike any she’s ever known. Her eyes have been opened and there’s no going back. She’s never considered herself a Believer, she always left that to Jacob, but things are happening fast. 

Is there something to this faith stuff after all? 

And if there is, is it strong enough to see her through what’s coming next?

This is a dystopian series set in a post-apocalyptic world with hints of romance. Books should be read in order. May be cliff hangers.







Revelation
Unbelief Book 3
165 pages

She can't walk away now...




This plan—this crazy, stupid, impossible plan—could work. At the very least, it will serve to get the boys back into the folds of the Elite, so they don’t come to any harm for helping me. 

And it’ll get me back inside so I can try to save my father—but then what? How will I get him out? We have no guarantees this will even work…

Sinna is headed back to Rehabilitation. 

Like it or not, she doesn't see any other alternatives. She can't just pretend everything is okay, and hide out in the Garden. 

But how will they get back there? 

And what will happen when they do? Will they be able make it back out alive a second time? 

Sinna isn't at all sure about any of it, but her conscience won't let her back out now.







God Wars: The Beginnings
Unbelief Book 4
188 pages

In the Beginning...


Believing wasn’t always a crime. 


Faith in God wasn’t always illegal. 

In the glory days of the Old World, there were many who lived out their faith in full view of all, and taught their children, and their children’s children about God, their beloved Creator. 

In those days, prayer was still allowed in schools, church was still held on Sundays with picnics and family get togethers afterward, and the spare change that jangled in everyone’s pockets still carried the words ‘In God We Trust’. 

Then the God Wars happened. Life was never the same again.

This is a prequel. It's highly recommended to read the Unbelief Trilogy first.






MARGARET MOORE
Margaret Moore celebrates her fortieth birthday quietly. It’s a day that should be
celebratory but in reality, it’s now only a day of sadness. Her father had died on his way home
from spending her birthday with her and her son, little David. Or, as she calls him, Davey. She
blinks, shaking her head. It’s hard to believe fifteen years have passed since that dreadful day.
Today, Davey is helping with the flood damages that have wreaked so much havoc on the
towns along the lower Mississippi. So, it seems like a natural day to spend time remembering her
father. Other than her son, she has no other family. Her mother died last year from a heart attack.
At least Davey telephoned her to wish her happy birthday. Margaret smiles as she looks at the
photo of her son, holding a prominent spot on the wall near the front entrance. He is such a
handsome boy.
Unbidden, she has an immediate second thought and has to convince herself it’s not an
irreverent one. She clucks her tongue, mentally chiding herself. But if she’s being honest, Davey
is proof positive that God has a sense of humor. Just like most firstborn children she’s ever
known, Davey is the spitting image of his father. A weird phenomenon, but she’s convinced the
first child a woman has inevitably looks like the father, whereas the second tends to look like the
mother. Whether that holds true or not with everyone, only God knows. But that was certainly
the case with young Davey, much to her chagrin. When Margaret found out she was pregnant,
she realized almost immediately that she didn’t want to marry the man who got her pregnant.
The man who in fact, had been her boyfriend for nearly two years prior. He’d been great fun and
all, and she’d liked him well enough, but he just wasn’t the kind of man you chose to bind
yourself to for the long haul.
Maybe it isn’t God's sense of humor but merely a pointed reminder that having a child with
someone binds the two of you together forever in an intangible but undeniable way. She’d lost
touch with Davey's father years ago, and sometimes feels bad about that. Occasionally she is
reminded how arrogant of her it has been of her to deprive Davey of a father.
Margaret and her mother had been close but she always knew that she and her father had
shared a special bond. After her parents divorced, she and her father developed a different sort of
relationship. It became more mature and their discussions often became intense and highly
political. This was partially because she had been sixteen at the time and it had become easier to
run his radical ideas by a sixteen year old who could intelligently argue back, than it had been to
have such discussions with a ten year old.
Her father had been on the road for much of Margaret's childhood, covering stories and
seeking out deep secrets and hidden agendas. He was a crusader for good, her mother always
said. Even still, she divorced him. She’d been lonely for one thing, living on her own and raising
a child. She also once admitted years later that she’d been afraid too. “Your father never had any
fear of the repercussions of sticking his nose in business it didn’t belong in, but I did.”
The reports after her father's fatal accident claimed it was caused by drinking and driving.
But Margaret knew better. He'd had one glass of wine at her birthday party. He was not drunk
when he left her and Davey and began the hour-long drive back to his own home. He had
however, been agitated and distracted, which she supposed could have resulted in the accident.
The media reports were highly skewed, she was certain. She always knew that for some reason,
the head of Robb Media hadn’t liked her father, even after the years of excellent service he’d
provided for that company. Because of that, she chalked the negative reports up to journalistic
chicanery and the whimsy of an antagonistic ex-boss.
For whatever reason, the newspapers sought to blacken his memory as much as they could.
Margaret possesses her mother's personality and she has always been much less inquisitive than
her father. She could definitely see him driving too fast, obsessed with whatever thoughts were
tormenting him that day, and losing control of his car. Despite that, part of her knows if only
she’d been more like her father, she’d have seen a plot behind his death and she’d have pursued
that plot, looking for the truth.
Margaret roams restlessly around her living room and looks out the front window. Eyes
turned inward, blind to the present world, she thinks back to that day his car had pulled into her
driveway. He’d opened his trunk and pulled out one enormous box. It was plain, made of
cardboard. She’d thought at first it was her birthday present, especially when that was the only
thing he’d carried into the house.
She’d pushed the door open wide, ushering him in and said, “Oh is that for me?”
He’d set the box down in her hallway and replied, “No. This is.” Then he’d reached into
his pocket pulled out a small package that he handed to her. She fingers the locket around her
neck. That had been her gift. A solid gold locket.
He’d given the box a small kick with his foot. “This is just some papers I'd like to store
here. Old research and a lot of memories.” His tone was reflective.
When she’d looked at him with a questioning gaze, he’d elaborated. “I'm downsizing and
sorting out some things. I'll have more stuff I'd like to store here, if you don’t mind. Oh, and is
there any furniture of mine you have a particular liking for?” She’d felt something then, some
frisson of unease. Maybe it had been God forwarning her of what was to come.
The box turned out to be full of family pictures, along with an old antiquated Bible, the
heavy kind with the gold-edged pages. It also held congratulatory cards that had been sent to her
parents on her birthday – her original birthday, the actual day she was born. There had also been
a file folder with a thick stack of articles neatly typed and stapled together.
When she had to close up her father's apartment after the accident, she and her mother
went through that box together. They’d laughed and cried and reminisced. Then they’d each
chosen which mementos they wanted to keep to remember him by. Margaret’s heart aches as she
remembers her mother’s words that day. “Sweetheart, you know I loved him too,” she’d
whispered tearfully.
All I could think of to say back was, “I know, Mom. And he loved you.”
At the end of it all, her mother took some of the furniture and Margaret took all his files
and his old typewriter. Now, on her fortieth birthday, Margaret thinks of that Bible and the
typewriter, both of which are on display in her front hall, set lovingly on a narrow, long-legged
table.
She thinks again of the boxes of papers stored in her garage and the file folder she has
stuck in among the taller books on her bookshelf. All the family photos she and her mother had
diligently arranged in properly labeled albums.
Now, with Davey gone for her birthday, Margaret wonders if this was how lonely her
father had felt. Downsizing? He’d lived in a tiny, one-bedroom apartment. How far did he plan
to downsize, exactly? She remembers he often used to tease her about having absolutely no sense
of curiosity. He always credited her mother with giving her genes that kept her from sticking her
nose into dangerous places.
Feeling suddenly as though she’d let him down somehow, Margaret looks up toward
heaven and whispers, “I'm sorry, Dad.” Then she gets up and refills her wine glass. Letting her
instincts guide her, she wanders over to her bookshelf and pulls the file folder down from where
it has been stuffed for fifteen years.
She opens the folder and the first stapled collection of papers that catches her eye is one at the
back. It has a front page of yellow lined paper littered with her father's distinctive handwriting.

Bold big letters in thick black pen strokes. The rest of it is typewritten.


C.B. Stone is sometimes called author, writer, or purveyor of stories. One might even dub her a yarn spinner if you will. It's very possible she might be considered just a little left of normal by most, but she's cool with that. Really, she's too busy avoiding normal to care. On any given day, you might find Stone pounding away at a keyboard in sunny Florida, contemplating waves, contemplating life and dreaming up more exciting stories to share with readers. 


Except Sunday's of course. Sunday's are God's day, so you'll often find her making her best "joyful noise" with her local church praise team. When not pounding poor fingers to bloody nuggets and reinventing the definition of eye strain, C.B. Stone enjoys living it up, doing the family thing, the kid thing, and the friend thing. And in her downtime, reading the minds of fans.

Also being invisible. Being invisible is fun.







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