Peggy Hattendorf: Author & RWISA Member!

I’m so pleased to share this fascinating and insightful Interview with the talented author of ‘Son of My Father’ Peggy Hattendorf.

The Indie Spot!

Greetings and welcome to The Indie Spot. It is my privilege and honor to introduce to you author and RWISA member Peggy Hattendorf — in her own words! Take it away, Peggy…

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The Interview

1) How long have you been writing?

My professional writing started in the mid-1970’s, when I created volunteer and staff handbooks for a number of agencies in the non-profit field.

I entertained the idea of writing a novel about 10 years ago but purposely shelved the plan for nearly two years due to other commitments. The notion of writing fiction still gnawed at me and I would jot down potential characters, ideas and storylines during this hiatus. When I finally dusted off my old notes, scribbles and research and read over the material, I realized I had the makings for a good story. With new found enthusiasm, I set about writing my first novel. My background…

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“Glimpses Across the Barricades” Poetry Collection #1 ‘The Pigeon Lady’ by Suzanne Burke.

Hello, and thank you for making the time to drop by. I will be sharing one of my poems each week, from my wip “Glimpses Across the Barricades” A collection of my own takes on those moments that bring about change in our lives.

 

 Glimpses Across the Barricades.

‘The Pigeon Lady’

A Story Poem.

By Suzanne Burke.

In loving memory of ‘Noelene’.

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She fed pigeons in the park opposite my home.
The same bench each day she occupied; she never seemed to roam.
There she sat in the early morn and again at end of day.
On my way to work as I hurried by, she’d smile at me and say
“Good morning dear, a lovely day for your early morning walk.”
I nodded my response; I did not make the time to talk.
I’d quickly grab a coffee from the station coffee shop
and gulp it down as I waited for my crowded train to stop.
My working days were filled with legal speak and lengthy hours.
I remained remote and untouchable inside my clever ivory tower.
My world was filled with designer clothes, and all the correct possessions,
and of course, I had my dearest friends, and our numerous bitch sessions.
My calendar was full with gallery openings and plays-
I was on the “A” list of the social must invites, where I worked hard to stay.
I surrounded myself with people whose favorite word was ‘yes’,
those cool, together, people, who never showed distress.
The seasons changed with rapid pace, the fall wind was chill.
The pigeon lady remained upon her bench, and smiled her greeting still,
A battered straw hat she always wore, upon her graying head.
I didn’t break my stride as she spoke. I hurried by instead.
The mornings grew darker, as days were met by early winter snow,
yet still she sat with her battered hat, perhaps she had nowhere else to go.
It was not my problem after all; therefore, I didn’t stop to ask
I had Christmas shopping yet to do, so I thought only of that task.
One early morning in late December, I awakened so unwell
the thought of going out to work my fevered brain dispelled.
The illness burned and left me weak and shaking in my bed,
day merged with night, as I lay with pain pounding in my head.
For three days I lay in sweat-drenched delirium, yet shook with fevers chill,
I telephoned my dearest friends for help; they were all too busy still.
By day four the weakness had me in tears of lost despair.
My doorbell rang, I answered …  to find the Pigeon Lady there.
“Good morning dear,” was her surprising greeting,
she continued on, and said “I’ve made you soup but it needs heating.”
She stood there in her battered hat then gave me flowers that she bore,
she laughed, a quite delightful sound, at the expression that I wore.
“I’ve missed you dear,” was all she said, as she escorted me briskly back to bed.
I was confused, which clearly showed, pain was pounding in my head.
“Where is your linen kept?” she asked, she then changed my sweat-soaked sheets.
She raised the blinds to let the sunshine in, and then I had her soup to eat.
After the soup she explained, “Your gardener told me you were ill.”
I had no idea what to say, my eyes were closing against my will.
“Come on, young woman, off to sleep,” said she, and I gladly went.
I slept at once in my clean fresh sheets. My crying was all spent.
I awoke unsure of what I’d see, a delightful aroma filled the room;
a cheery fire awaited me, to take away the chilly gloom.
She’d left a note, which read, ‘I’ve left a meal, and tomorrow I will call.’
I had not the strength to ponder, why she had come at all.
On the morrow just on daybreak, she was there once more
Her clothing clean and tidy, yet still her battered hat she wore.
I didn’t know how to thank her for the kindness she had shown.
It was so far outside my experience, on the streets where I had grown.
“Your life has been so empty dear.” How did she understand?
“It will be all right you’ll see;” said she, as she gently touched my hand.
“What is your name, my dear?” she asked, with her sweet slow smile
“Of course I gave you your park name, it’s been bestowed on you a while.”
“My park name?” I queried. “Whatever do you mean?”
“Oh; I give everyone a name my dear!” and her eyes began to gleam.
“We have so many characters in the passing parade I see,
that I bestow on each a name that means who they are to me.”
I was not certain I would like or understand what I was about to hear.
She looked at me, and gave my hand a pat. “Why you are the ‘Lady Guinevere;’
still in search of ‘Camelot’. Be patient dear, she added, I just know it will arrive;
if you can just stop from shutting out the world in order to survive.”
How had this strange woman looked inside, and found the child that once I’d been?
I was profoundly shaken, how could she know these things others had not seen?
She smiled once more and waited, “And so what is your name?”
I grinned at her at last, and made no attempt to hide my pain.
“My name is Jennifer,” I said, how we laughed at that. ‘Guinevere’ was so correct
“Well now, Lady Jennifer.” she said, in her manner so direct
“My name is Francesca, however dear; you may call me Fran.”
We shook hands my new friend and I, and we talked as some friends can.
Three more days went by before I was well enough to work resume
Fran came by each day to check on me, she didn’t just assume
always asking if it were convenient for her again to call,
I thanked her and told her truly it was not inconvenient at all.
Day four I had risen early it was still a little dark
I made two mugs of hot, sweet, tea and joined Fran in the park
She was clearly so delighted, we enjoyed that place and time.
Then each morning thereafter, a small bench space was mine
I learned about the pigeons; their names and all their individual deeds .
They soon became accustomed to my joining in their morning feeds
Fran shared with me her park people, and a few I helped identify
There was, Mr. Baggy Pants who almost lost them as he scurried by,
and young Master Odd Sox, was color blind for sure,
I became ever more grateful, that she had knocked upon my door.
People that I worked with commented on a change in me
Mostly they seemed uncomfortable. So they just let me be.
Fran one morning said to me as another season changed
“Lady Jennifer my friend, a dinner I have arranged.”
“I’d like you to come home with me tomorrow after work”
“Come home with you?” I questioned, then, I felt a total jerk.
Luckily she laughed at me, and no offense did take
“Yes dear I have a family, and a home” she corrected my mistake.
I had mixed feelings about that evening, I was unsure what to do. I mentioned this to Fran, who said “My dear you just be you.”
Our morning ritual we shared and arranged a time to meet.
Fran’s large dog was so pleased to meet me, he knocked me off my feet.
I was welcomed as her trusted friend by her sons, all three.
Thomas was the eldest, head of the family was he.
The middle son was Jacob, so like his mother he did look.
The youngest one was Elijah who read me like a book.
All three sons proudly wore policemens’ uniforms.
Their father was killed in the line of duty, I was sadly then informed.
The time flew by so quickly, and often to their home I went
Many happy hours of shared dreams and laughter was time so gladly spent
Fran held herself so gracefully, I could not think of her as old.
I did not want to ask her age fearing she would think me bold.
Her hair was completely gray by now; and her hands would often shake.
And as the distance she would walk became difficult to make; she said no words to indicate that may have worried me
her carefree laugh, and ready smile, were all she’d let me see.
I awoke one morning as usual and prepared our cups of tea
I walked outside, then, stopped in shock; for Fran I could not see.
The pigeons were all there waiting, as it softly began to rain,
She is just late I told myself; I waited for hours in vain.
A police car stopped outside my home, Thomas looked my way;
I did not want to hear the words he said; I wanted to run away.
Our beloved Fran had gone to bed, and in her sleep had died
Thomas put his arms around me as we clung to each other and cried.
I feed pigeons in the park opposite our home
I wear Frans’ battered old straw hat; I have not far to roam.
My daughter lay safely in her pram. The passing parade goes by.
My small Francesca loves the birds, and greets them with a delighted cry
Her daddy Thomas dotes on her, and on me, his wife.
Every day I tell my Francesca more about her grandma’s life;
One morning as we sat there, a young woman strutted into view.
A “Lady Guinevere” at last! I looked up and smiled,
Fran this one’s for you.

 

Book Review: ‘How Can You Mend This Purple Heart.” by Terry Gould.

 

 

BOOK REVIEW: “How Can You Mend This Purple Heart?” By Author TERRY GOULD. T.L Gould.

 

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Winner of the Marine Corps Heritage Foundation’s James Webb Award for distinguished fiction

In this riveting first novel, author T. L. Gould draws on his experiences in a military hospital with severely wounded Marines recovering from the Vietnam War. He has created a plain-truth, no-holds-barred narrative, stark in its simplicity, detail, and humor. From dressing changes and morphine drips to off-site forays under a fence and into neighborhood bars and brothels, Gould chronicles the precipitous journey to recovery of the men of Ward 2B: how they learned to walk again, to love again, and to triumph over crippling injuries.

How Can You Mend This Purple Heart is not a story about combat in the jungles of Vietnam. It is a story about boys who returned from combat as men—men who left the better part of their youth, a bit of their souls, and a lot of their flesh in a battlefield on the other side of the world. It’s a story about their longing to recapture the spirit of boyhood and rekindle the optimism and fearlessness of youth. And it’s about their struggle to be whole again—or at the very least, to feel whole. It chronicles a journey of love, redemption, sorrow, and joy; a journey of pain and anger . . . and a journey of hope. But most of all, a journey of the human spirit and its triumph over the most impossible odds.

How Can You Mend This Purple Heart is a tribute to all the combat-wounded veterans of past and present conflicts. May they find the strength to continue their lives’ missions and know that the entire nation is grateful for their sacrifices.

 

The human spirit standing tall.
This 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 Review is from: How Can You Mend This Purple Heart? (Paperback)
I am privileged to own a copy of this book. Privileged indeed. Bookshelves hold the things we treasure; those books that linger in our memory and raise a smile, or cause our throats to constrict with unshed tears, our chests to tighten in helpless anger.

‘How Can You Mend This Purple Heart” does all of those things and more.

Do not read this book if you are looking for bloody scenes of war, they exist, but they exist in the memory of the men who returned from that war torn apart from planted mines.

They exist in the screams of night terror that echo through a hospital ward filled with men who survived the blasts, but not intact. They exist in the agony of knowing that for these men, life can never ever be the same again.

Do not read this book if you are looking for an easy read of mate-ship. It exists, but in the way of all things cruel and true, the mate-ship grows from shared terror, loss of limbs and shredding of innocence. Once the trust is established it can never be rent apart again.

Do not read this book anticipating only sadness; oh yes …  It exists, but in the way of the gallant and often surprising ways men reach out with unspoken need it is tempered with humor.

I laughed often during this journey of a book. I cried as well. but mostly I closed the final page with a feeling of kinship with the broken men who refused to just lay down and die. I closed it still angry about a war that they should never have had to fight.

I closed it with a smile at their kinship: and with hope for their futures.

I closed it with reluctance.

I recommend it with a certainty that the human spirit shines strong within those that have seen the worst man has to offer. I recommend it with a heartfelt hope, that their  indomitable  spirit will help prepare those whose innocence remains intact.book-cover-how-can-i-mend-this-broken-heart-terry-gould

💕 Still Me 💕 This is my hope and prayer.

A marvelous and moving tribute to all those touched by the soul-wrenching illness of ‘Alzheimer’s’. Dedicated with love to the woman who epitomized grace and dignity to all who new her. Beryl Rose … Rest easy dear one.

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Natalie Ducey

💕 Still Me 💕

This was written with the deepest respect for those living with Alzheimer’s and dementia, and their dear loved ones who know the journey well. I like to believe that although memories become fragmented and misplaced, the Soul never forgets. This is my hope and prayer.

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Cover Reveal: A Desolate Hour by Mae Clair #RRBC Author

Take a look at this exciting series, and the cover reveal for Book 3. “A Desolate Hour” from the talented pen of Author Mae Clair.

From the Pen of Mae Clair

Happy Monday, everyone! I’m kicking off the week by doing a cover reveal for A Desolate Hour, the third and final book in my Point Pleasant mystery/suspense series focused on the Mothman of urban legend.

Book cover for A Desolate Hour by Mae Clair shows a small town overlooking a river at night, full moon overhead, cover in wash of green red and black with white lettering

A DESOLATE HOUR
Book 3 in the Point Pleasant Series
Genre:
 Suspense/Mystery
Length: 79,000 Words
Publisher: Kensington Publishing/Lyrical Underground Imprint
Publication Date: July 18, 2017

BLURB:

Sins of the past could destroy all of their futures . . .

For generations, Quentin Marsh’s family has seen its share of tragedy, though he remains skeptical that their misfortunes are tied to a centuries-old curse. But to placate his pregnant sister, Quentin makes the pilgrimage to Point Pleasant, West Virginia, hoping to learn more about the brutal murder of a Shawnee chief in the 1700s. Did one of the Marsh ancestors have a hand in killing Chief Cornstalk—the man who cursed the town with his dying breath?

While…

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Book Review: ‘Trafficking’ (Powell Book 1.) By Bill Ward.

Hello! Thank for stopping by. I always like to share a little about the author when I review one of their books.

Meet Author Bill Ward.

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Bill’s love of reading commenced at a very young age. He credits his Gran for encouraging his interest by regularly taking him to the local library after primary school. At boarding school, when the lights went out in his dormitory, he was often encouraged by the other boys to tell stories. English Literature was always his favourite school subject.

A long and successful career in IT saw him live and travel all over the world. With hindsight it was the start of his writing fiction but they were called business proposals in those days!

Having always enjoyed different cultures, the one life lesson Bill has learned is “wherever you go you will find good and bad people. This is not determined by colour, race, religion or country.”

Recently retired from the corporate world, Bill has finally fulfilled his lifelong ambition to become an author and has now written two thrillers, with the expectation of many more to follow.

Bill lives in Brighton, UK with his German partner and has seven daughters, a son, two horses, a dog and two cats! When he’s not writing he’s probably watching his football team West Brom, who he has now been watching for over fifty years!

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Trafficking is big business and those involved show no remorse, have no mercy, only a deadly intent to protect their income.
Afina is a young Romanian girl with high expectations when she arrives in Brighton but she has been tricked and there is no job, only a life as a sex slave.

Facing a desperate future, Afina tries to escape and a young female police officer, who comes to her aid, is stabbed.

Powell’s life has been torn apart for the second time and he is determined to find the man responsible for his daughter’s death.

Action, violence and sex abound in this taut thriller about one of today’s worst crimes.

My review 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟An uncompromising, fast paced explosion of a book!

Lets be clear from the outset, this book deals with Human Trafficking; with all its inherent violence, degradation and shattering  control over freedom, using fear and pain to reach those objectives.

It is not a comfortable topic, but the Author doesn’t try and pretty it up for generic consumption, he tackles it head on with great empathy, revealing the utter degradation that keeps these girls silent, dis-empowered, and often forgotten.

The characters aren’t so much written, as they are etched, with a light touch, this author has beautifully drawn each of the central figures, with layer after layer of pain and anger  simmering as an intensely volatile brew just beneath the surface.

Author Bill Ward gives us Afina, he shows us her fragility, her desperation, her fear, yet her grants her a defiant will, lest we become too complacent and write her off to the dirt of the lifestyle she was forced into.

This author makes us care about his characters including their imperfections.

Powell is a man driven by revenge. His daughter is dead, he seeks retribution, whatever it takes to achieve it.

His child died whilst attempting to save Afina. He wants Afina protected to make his child’s death count for something.

We understand the demons that drive him.

The author weaves his web carefully, constructing its threads and leading us forward, in this relentlessly fast-paced explosion of a book.

If you enjoy uncompromising thrillers, this book is for you.

As for me … I’m off to grab book 2.

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A sequel is born. ‘Acts Of Betrayal’ is here. Now available for pre-order.

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BOOK BLURB.

In this powerful sequel to Acts Beyond Redemption Nigel Cantrell is back, and he’s out for blood.

One of his team holds on precariously to life, with no guarantees of recovery.

Can those responsible drag him into a nightmare he will struggle to contain?

In a complex dual where oaths taken are forsaken, and promises made are broken beyond repair; he must seek the help of the only people he can trust, people who revere him … and, those that despise him.

Cantrell is efficient and deadly, but even he has ghosts in his past, demons that must be exorcised.

Yet, nothing is more demonic than the peril he must now face, as a one man’s maniacal thirst for revenge is uncovered.

A man so enormously powerful, with a hatred so intense, so extreme, that the possible demise of his own species means nothing to him. He will dispense his revenge as his diseased mind sees fit.

Nigel Cantrell and his team do not have failure as an option.
The fate of their country and beyond now rests in their hands.

Can they prevent the final acts of betrayal?

Acts of Betrayal available for pre-order here on Amazon.

Release date January 30th 2017.

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