Sunday, July 20, 2014

Short Story Sunday: Irreplaceable Words

I'm pretty lazy about posting on my blog regularly. I've decided I needed to post something besides book reviews. So I've started Short Story Sunday. Every (or every other) Sunday (or Saturday) I will post a short story I wrote. Sometimes it will be based on a picture and other times I just came up with it on a whim.
 Enjoy my short story!

I found this picture while just scrolling through my feed on Pinterest. It really intrigued me. The angle of the photo makes it seem that somebody might be looking in at her from across the street. There is just something about a girl in a coffee shop, writing in a journal, that made me think of me (or what I should be doing: writing.)

Photo credit: Pinterest

Irreplaceable Words

There she was across the street in the coffee shop. She was the girl he had seen yesterday at the park. 
He had been walking by on his way to work when he saw her. She had been pacing around, talking to herself, while scribbling in her notebook. He had stopped and watched her; curious at what she was doing. She had seemed to be acting out an intense scene between two characters. She had suddenly stopped. He had then realized that she had spotted him watching her. He had held her eyes for a moment before turning and walking quickly away. He hadn’t stopped thinking about her. 
And today he could hardly believe it when he spotted her across the street in the coffee shop. 
She had her chin in her hand and was writing in her notebook. Her red hair fell over her shoulder and a few strands seemed to dip into her coffee cup. She didn’t seem to notice.
Before he knew what he was doing, he ran across the street and entered the coffee shop. The strong, sweet smell of coffee and caramel greeted him. He kept glancing over the where she sat. He saw her take a sip of her coffee and continued to write in her notebook as she did so. 
She accidentally sat her cup down too hard and not quite upright. The cup tipped over. She was able to set it upright before all of it came out. But dark brown liquid had already spilled over her notebook and down the front of her. 
Without thinking, he grabbed some napkins from a nearby table and rushed over to help. 
“Oh it’s ruined!” she exclaimed, staring down at her notebook. She didn’t seem to care about her clothes or the coffee burns she had on her hands. She was only concerned about her notebook and the words she had written down in it. 
“Here, let me help.” He quickly handed her some napkins and together they tried to salvage what was left of the notebook. They were able to mop up most of the coffee in around the notebook, but not before the notebook had absorbed the rest of it. 
She gingerly lifted up her notebook. Drips of coffee spilled out. He saw tears in her eyes. She must have been working on something important, but now it was lost to her. She sat the notebook down back on the table and turned to him. 
“Thank you for helping me.” 
“You’re welcome.” 
She looked at him curiously with her large green eyes. “Weren’t you the guy that was watching me in the park?” 
He gave a sheepish grin. “Guilty as charged.” She smiled rather sadly back. She kept glancing over at her notebook. He suddenly had an idea. “Can I… buy you a new coffee? And maybe a new notebook?” 
She looked back at him. “A coffee would be nice, a new notebook would be nice, but I can never replace those words that were lost.”

COPYRIGHT: MERCY RAY SCHWISOW, 2014

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Book Review: Annie's Stories by Cindy Thomson

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Back Cover:
The year is 1901, the literary sensation The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is taking New York City by storm, and everyone wonders where the next great book will come from. But to Annie Gallagher, stories are more than entertainment—they’re a sweet reminder of her storyteller father. After his death, Annie fled Ireland for the land of dreams, finding work at Hawkins House.
But when a fellow boarder with something to hide is accused of misconduct and authorities threaten to shut down the boardinghouse, Annie fears she may lose her new friends, her housekeeping job . . . and her means of funding her dream: a memorial library to honor her father. Furthermore, the friendly postman shows a little too much interest in Annie—and in her father’s unpublished stories. In fact, he suspects these tales may hold a grand secret.
Though the postman’s intentions seem pure, Annie wants to share her father’s stories on her own terms. Determined to prove herself, Annie must forge her own path to aid her friend and create the future she’s always envisioned . . . where dreams really do come true.
The Positives:
I loved this book! I totally related with Annie in regard to her stories.
I didn't get into this book right away, due to some skeptic reviews other people had about another book the author wrote. But once I did get into it, I fell head over heels in love with the characters.
I love everything Irish, so Annie and her lovely red hair and stubborn streak really made me love her.
I am a writer and I LOVE books and that aspect of the book was wonderful.
Stephen was so sweet! He loved books and was nice to everyone he met. He sounded like my kind of guy; American, dark hair, and loves books. He always wanted what was best for Annie, but he did make mistakes.
Annie was a bit headstrong sometimes. She thought she was able to take care of herself, and that managed to put her in a few potentially dangerous situations.
Annie believed that God cared nothing about her and abandoned her. It took until almost the end of the book before she finally realized she was wrong.

The Negatives:
Sometimes I thought that Stephen could be a bit more assertive and masculine. But it wasn't a big downer for this story.

Overall:
This book was amazing and I highly recommend it!

I received this book for free from Tyndale House in exchange for my honest review.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Introduction of Characters: Unafraid - Part 3

Welcome to the third and final part of the Introduction of Characters for Unafraid.
I'm so sorry it took me so long to post the third part. We are in the middle of packing for a move, so I haven't had a lot of time to work on it or any of my other writing for that matter. 

The Enemy, the Commanders, and the Foundling
(Photo credit: Pinterest)

Abaddon:
Race: Unknown
Age: Not certain, over 1,000 years old
Physical Traits: Black hair, one completly black eye, one yellow eye, scar running through yellow eye, 6 feet, 4 inches
The meaning of Abaddon is destroyer. He is that. He has come to Adwar before. Over a 1,000 years ago, he tried to take over. But he lost and the King of Kings locked him in the Underworld for the next 1,000 years. And then he comes back and the people of Adwar have to fight him.

General Kiran:
Race: Lolnalian
Age: Late 50's
Physical Traits: Balding gray blond hair, blue eyes, 5 feet, 10 inches
General Kiran is the commander of the Lolnal army and is a close friend of the royal family of Lolnal. He is mentor to William and Genevieve and they trust him completely. 

Captain Phillip:
Race: Ulairoian
Age: Early 30's
Physical Traits: Dark brown hair, brown eyes, 6 feet, 1 inch
Captain Phillip is the commander of the Ulairo calvary. He is also a trusted friend of the royal family of Ulairo. He once asked if he could court Carolina, but was refused because he was much older than her. 

Earvin: 
Race: Iriorian
Age: 13
Physical Traits: Blond hair, emerald green eyes, 5 feet, 2 inches
Earvin was found by Daniel and Genevieve after Abaddon's men destroyed his village and killed his parents. He was the only survivor. They rescued him and adopted him as a little brother. Earvin will be the main character in the sequel to Unafraid, Rise Up.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Book Review: Truth Be Told by Carol Cox


Oh look! Two posts in one week and they're both book reviews! Haha, gotta love book review programs!

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Back Cover:
When Amelia Wagner takes over the running of her father's newspaper in Granite Springs, Arizona, she vows to carry on the paper's commitment to reporting only the truth. But Amelia soon learns that even the truth can have consequences. Her father's revealing articles about Great Western Investment
Company's business methods have caught the notice of the wrong person, and pressure mounts for Amelia to retract her father's statements.
Determined to find the truth, Amelia goes through her father's notes and begins to interview members of the community. She can't seem to shake Benjamin Stone, a Great Western employee who's been assigned to keep tabs on her for the good of the company.
The more Ben and Amelia learn, the more Amelia's father's claims appear to be accurate. In fact, it's probably worse than he realized. Even Ben is beginning to wonder if he's become a pawn in the workings of a corrupt empire. But Great Western isn't about to stand for a female reporter and one of their own men bringing down their lucrative schemes. Working against time, and never knowing what danger lurks around the next corner, Ben and Amelia set out to reveal all they've discovered before Great Western silences them for good.

The Positives:
As with most books I love, I read this in about two days or less. I was pulled into Amelia's story right away. She isn't one of those damsels in distress, but she also isn't a feminist who thinks she is better than men at everything. She was just the right combination. But don't get me wrong, she made a couple stupid decisions at times that made me want to slap some sense into her.
And Ben Stone is probably the sweetest guy in this book. He was supposed to watch Amelia as an assignment, but he ended up falling in love with her.
I loved that their relationship wasn't built on how handsome or how beautiful they each were. It did mention what they looked like and what they thought of their appearances, but it was not the main focus. The focus was on each other's character and their morals.
And the faith in this book was one of the best! Amelia wavered, as any Christian would under her circumstances. But she hanged on to her faith. Ben's faith was great to see, too. It really brought them together.
I loved hearing everything about the newspaper business!

The Negatives:
Nothing.

Overall:
This was an amazing book and captivated me. I would definitely recommend this book!

I received this book for free from Bethany House in exchange for my honest review.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Book Review: A Place in His Heart by Rebecca DeMarino

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Back Cover:
Anglican Mary Langton longs to marry for love. Puritan Barnabas Horton is still in love with his deceased wife and needs only a mother for his two young sons. And yet these two very different people with very different expectations will take a leap of faith, wed, and then embark on a life-changing journey across the ocean to the Colonies. Along the way, each must learn to live in harmony, to wait on God, and to recognize true love where they least expect to find it.
This heartfelt tale of love and devotion is based on debut author Rebecca DeMarino’s own ancestors, who came to Long Island in the mid-1600s to establish a life–and a legacy–in the New World.


The Positives:
I was pulled into the story of Mary and Barnabas from the very beginning. I was fighting along side Mary when she said she would only marry for love. 
I felt for Barnabas and I wanted him to be happy again and not blame himself. I wanted to hit him over the head sometimes when he was being so stubborn.
His sons, Joseph and Ben, really tugged at my heartstrings. I wanted to wrap Joseph up and just hold him sometimes. He had been through so much for someone so young.
Mary's devotion and patience with Barnabas made me love her even more.
Barnabas and Mary's faith played a big role and gave the story such depth!

The Negatives:
The only negatives were that there were big gaps between chapters. Sometimes gaps from six months to almost eighteen months. It gave the story a feeling of dragging on and on.

Overall:
Even though it dragged in some places, I loved this book! It was great for the author's first book and based on her ancestors. I would definitely recommend this!

I received this book for free from Revell in exchange for my honest review. 


Through June 16th, Rebecca DeMarino is hosting a giveaway with $250.00 in prizes!  Open to anyone with a US shipping address.

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Random Facts About Me


I haven't done any random posts before, which is weird, because I like random facts about stuff. My writer friend, Jaye, nominated me for participation The Sunflower Blogger Award. So that means I get to share 11 random facts about myself and answer 11 questions Jaye gave me. And then I'm supposed to tag 11 bloggers to answer the questions too. Which I'll have to only tag a few. I don't follow a lot of blogs. 

Well, here we go! 

11 Randoms Facts About Me

1. I love reading Historical Romance, but I try to only write Fantasy. I don't want to do any research. I'm lazy that way.

2. I'm not allergic to anything. Except my mom is allergic to wasps, and I've never been stung before, so I may be allergic to wasps.

3. I've had glasses since I was eight, but I've been wearing contacts for about two years.

4. I'm an Introvert and I'd rather stay home and read a book than go to a party.

5. My celebrity crush is Tom Hiddleston. He's British, handsome, need I say more?

6. I once thought about getting my hair dyed red. It would be awesome to be ginger!

7. I share my middle name with my mom and I'm the only kid out of four that got her green eyes.

8. I'm a hyperventilating, feels feeling, shipping, fangirl. (Look those terms up on Urban Dictionary if you aren't sure what they mean.)

9. I have almost every single Michael Buble song on a playlist on Spotifiy. The whole playlist is almost five hours long. 

10. I LOVE the Dick Van Dyke Show. I laugh so hard when I watch it. It's clean comedy, so I don't have to worry about hearing nasty jokes on it. 

11. I hate lasagna. (Yes, that's very random. But it's true!)

My Answers to the 11 Questions

1. What is your favorite kind of tree?
Probably a weeping willow. We don't have any where I live, but they just seem like such a romantic tree.

2. Do you prefer tea or coffee or neither?
Both. I like my tea with honey. I only drink coffee from Starbucks and usually I like it in Frappuccino form. 

3. What is your favorite social media site?
Instagram! As they say, a picture says a 1,000 words. 

4. What is the last sentence you wrote in a story?
Sneak peek of Unafraid! 
She heard a pained screeching noise, a whistle of wind, and it was gone.


5. Who is your favorite historical figure and why?
Wow, this is tough. I admire a lot of historical people and I'm not sure I can pick just one.
But I guess I'd have to pick Saint Patrick. I love the work he did in Ireland and I like Irish things in general. And he was a big part of the paper I had to write about the Church in Ireland for my Church History Class.

6. What is your biggest pet peeve?
When girls, who claim to be Whovians, call the Ninth and Twelfth Doctor ugly and don't like them because of it. HELLO. He is the Doctor! He is brilliant, fantastic, and you shouldn't hate him just because he's not model material. (Sorry, needed to rant that.)

7. What is your favorite dessert?
Ice cream! Any flavor WITHOUT nuts.

8. If you could live in any time period (past, present, and future) which would you choose?
Probably the 1940's and 50's, I LOVE the style of that time.

9. What is your favorite book to re-read (besides the Bible)?
The Hobbit! I've been re-reading it each time a new Hobbit movie comes out.

10. What genre do you read the most?
Historical romance fiction. It's my favorite!

11. What is the best movie you have ever watched?
Captain America: The Winter Soldier. That whole movie was just FEELS. BUCKY. *sobbing*

And now for the tagged bloggers, as I said I only will be able to tag a couple. (Which means just two.) ;-)


Here are my questions for the tagged bloggers:

1. What is your favorite TV show?
2. If you could live in any country, besides the once you live in now, which would you pick?
3. What is your favorite wild animal?
4. If you could live as a character in any book, which book would you choose?
5. If you had to choose, which of these famous cities would you live in: Paris, London, or New York?
6. What movie, book, or TV show can you quote endlessly?
7. What is most embarrassing thing you have ever done?
8. What is the bravest thing you have ever done?
9. What do you consider to be the best smell in the world?
10. What is the scariest thing that has ever happened to you?
11. If you could punch a fictional character in the face, who would it be?

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Book Review: Resistence by Jaye L. Knight

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Back Cover:
“Don’t you know? Animals like you have no soul.”

Could God ever love a half-blood all of society looks upon with such fear and disdain? Jace once believed so, but when a tragic loss shatters the only peace he’s ever known, his faith crumbles as the nagging doubts he’s tried to put behind him descend on his grieving heart. With them come the haunting memories of the bloodstained past he longs to forget, but can never escape.

Taken from home at a young age and raised to serve the emperor, Kyrin Altair and her twin brother live every day under a dangerous pretense of loyalty. After her unique observation skills and perfect memory place her into direct service to the emperor, Kyrin finds herself in further jeopardy as it becomes increasingly difficult to hide her belief in Elôm, the one true God.

Following the emperor’s declaration to enforce the worship of false gods under the penalty of death, many lives are endangered. But there are those willing to risk everything to take a stand and offer aid to the persecuted. With their lives traveling paths they never could have imagined, Jace and Kyrin must fight to overcome their own fears and conflicts with society as they become part of the resistance.


The Positives:
Where do I begin? This book was AMAZING! I guess reading it in 6 hours is proof of that. ;-) I could hardly put this book down!
I fell in love with Jace at the very beginning. It started with action and pulled me right in. This book had FEELS. I  could relate to Kyrin and was so amazed at her bravery, but also her fear was also very real. I would have acted the same way in her situation. 
I was sometimes wanted to wrap Jace up in a big hug and tell him that Elom did love him! And I felt like I was best friends with Kyrin. 
I was thinking the whole way through, "When are Jace and Kyrin going to meet?" I could hardly stand the suspense. 
The ending left me hanging and I can't wait for the next book!

The Negatives:
Nothing!

Overall:
This was an amazing book! The characters were so believable and I totally related with them. I highly recommend this book!


Available for purchase on Amazon May 20th!
View book extras at
www.ilyonchronicles.blogspot.com.

About the Author 

JAYE L. KNIGHT is a 25-year-old independent author with a passion for writing Christian fantasy and clean NA (New Adult) fiction. Armed with an active imagination and love for adventure, Jaye weaves stories of truth, faith, and courage with the message that even in the deepest darkness, God's love shines as a light to offer hope.


Jaye is a homeschool graduate and has been penning stories since the age of eight. She was previously published as Molly Evangeline. You can learn about her latest writing projects at www.jayelknight.com.


Social Media Links
·      Facebook Author Page
·      Facebook Series Page
·      Twitter
·      Pinterest
·      Google+ Author Page
·      Google+ Series Page
·      YouTube
·      Author Blog

·      Series Blog

Giveaway

Immerse yourself in the world of Ilyon! Fill out the Rafflecopter form below for a chance to win an autographed copy of Resistance (Book 1 in the “Ilyon Chronicles” series), a Resistance-inspired necklace crafted by the author (Jaye L. Knight), a Better Homes “Warm Rustic Woods” candle, and a wolf paw leather bookmark from Lodgepole Leathercraft. This giveaway is open to U.S. residents only.

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