Who Is Mistral Dawn?

Mistral Dawn is a thirty-something gal who has lived on both coasts of the US but somehow never in the middle. She currently resides in the Southeast US with her kitty cats (please spay or neuter! :-)) where she works as a hospital drudge and attends graduate school. Taken By The Huntsman is her first effort at writing fiction and if it is well received she has ideas for several more novels and short-stories in this series. Please feel free to visit her on FaceBook or drop her a line at mistralkdawn@gmail.com

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Lovestruck #Authors & #Bloggers #ValentinesDay #Giveaway! $100 #Cash #Grand #Prize! #Free To #Enter!

Hey Everyone!! :-)

There's a new giveaway for Valentine's Day!  Please take a moment to check out the Lovestruck Authors And Bloggers Valentine's Day Giveaway!!  There are lots of awesome books and prizes!! :-)  It's free to enter, there are over 30 prizes, and the grand prize is $100 cash payable through PayPal!! :-)  Now isn't that worth taking a few minutes to check out? ;-)   Here are all the details:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you so much for stopping by today!  And don't forget to check back tomorrow for the next installment of Mistral Dawn's Musings! :-)

Friday, January 19, 2018

#APC #Spotlight: The Crown Of Stones: Magic-Price by C L Schneider!

Hey Everyone!! :-)

I've got Cindy L Schneider in my APC spotlight, today! Cindy is an active and supportive member of the  Authors-Professional Co-op Facebook group and her dark fantasy, sword and sorcery novel, The Crown Of Stones: Magic-Price, looks great! Here's the description:
Born of the Shinree, a fallen race reviled for their inborn addiction to magic, Ian Troy is no stranger to scorn. His people, drugged to quell their deadly spells, are bred and sold as slaves. Conscripted into the army at a young age, Ian was made to fight in Rella's long-standing war against the brutal Langorian invaders. For six years, he battled as the queen demanded: without magic. But as Rella's defeat became imminent, Ian defied orders and turned to the Crown of Stones, an ancient Shinree relic of untold power. Harnessing its magic, he brought peace to the realms, but at an unthinkable price.

A decade later, Ian is still haunted by the tragic aftermath of that day. Living as a bounty hunter in self-imposed exile, he curbs his addiction with wine and regret. But when a fateful encounter with a pretty assassin brings Ian's past crashing into the present, his addiction is awakened. The land he gave up everything to protect is once more in jeopardy, and denial is no longer an option. To save the realms, Ian must embrace the one thing he fears most: his own power.

Magic-Price is the first installment in The Crown of Stones Trilogy
 If you think this sounds like something you might enjoy, go ahead and grab your copy here:

Thank you all so much for stopping by! Happy reading! :-)

Thursday, January 18, 2018

#January2018 #IndieBooksBeSeen #Indie #Author #Books #Monthly #BookReview!

Hey Everyone!! :-)

It's the 18th again, so time for my #IndieBooksBeSeen monthly indie author book review!! Enjoy! :-)

The Cat Who Wanted A Dog by Micki Peluso:
This is an adorable story about a cat who learns that sometimes his troubles aren't as troublesome as they first appear. The story is cute, the pictures are cute, and it's just a cute book overall. Having been the mom to a mixed furry family at times, I can relate to many of the details in this story. Five stars, and don't forget to print out the pictures so you, or the munchkins in your life, can color them in.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

#Agent Thoth's #Personal Log: Day 678

Hey Everyone! :-)

Agent Thoth discusses more of the trials and tribulations associated with living with hominids. Incidentally, if you've missed Agent Thoth's earlier entries, you can find them here: Thoth's Journal

Department for the Preservation and Confirmation of Intelligent Life (DPCIL)
Agent Thoth's Personal Log

Day Six-Hundred-Seventy-Eight:
I am beginning to believe there may be a physiological connection between the local weather conditions and my hominid-servant's hypothalamus. At first, I thought it was only psychological. Because any time she glanced out one of the transparent portals and observed any frozen precipitation, she would immediately increase the number of textiles covering her body.

However, I have now observed several occasions when the outside temperature dropped significantly during her sleeping hours, though the temperature inside my domicile remained constant during that same time period, and my hominid-servant responded by exhibiting extreme reluctance to emerge from beneath the textile panels covering her sleeping platform when it was time for her to rise. Since she was unconscious during the time that the weather conditions changed and has no view through any of the portals from her sleeping platform, there is no way she could have known about the increase in precipitation.

Absent another explanation, I have hypothesized that hominids must have a previously unsuspected intrinsic connection with their environment. The possible mechanism for such a bond is unclear to me, but I will endeavor to discover more about this phenomenon and report back when I have additional data.

Uh, oh! A mystery! ;-) You may have noticed that Agent Thoth has a new look. I hope you like his new picture as much as I do, but I'd love to hear your thoughts, either way. Feel free to let me know what you think in the comments. ;-) Happy reading, everyone!

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

There's A #Fire Burning And It Can't Be Put Out

Hey Everyone!! :-)

I know it's been a while, but with the holidays and everything, I fell a little behind on my writing. Still, I'm back on track, now, and I've got a little more of Alyce's adventure to share with you! Enjoy! :-)

Excerpt from sci-fi satire novel:
I followed the sound of his voice and found him standing next to an exhibit that showed a group of robots holding signs and…dancing?

"What in the pink and purple heck…?"

The tall alien waved at the display. "Pay no attention to the 'droids' movements. It's just more maintenance routines to make sure their movement programming is working. Please just focus on the rest of the exhibit."

I did as he asked. The setting was a city street. The robots closest to me were, as I said, holding signs. They were dressed like regular civilians you might find anywhere in modern America. Farther down the street there were more robots, but they were dressed like police and carrying plastic shields and dangerous-looking batons. I knew what this was supposed to be.

Sighing, I nodded and said, "Yes, this ties into it, but it's a bit of a long story to get there."

"In what way?" asked Yax.

"Well, people aren't marching just because of the laws that make it difficult for them to vote. It's more of a 'one thing leads to another' situation."

"Being denied the ability to help choose one's government isn't sufficient reason to protest for your people?" asked Squid-boy.

I rubbed my temples. "It is. But it also isn't. Like I said, it's a long story. You have to understand everything in its historical context. The anger and resentment that are coming to a head now have been building for centuries."

"Centuries!" exclaimed Squid-boy. "Why has it taken so long for people to take action?"

I rolled my eyes. "It hasn't. Haven't you been listening to what I've told y'all? This is part of an ongoing struggle. People have been fighting this fight for generations. There have been changes, victories, but there has all been regression. Every time people start to think that maybe the fight is over, that, just maybe, true equality is within sight, other people with their own agendas organize and push back against the progress that has been made. The details are always slightly different, voter ID laws instead of poll taxes and the like, but the results are ultimately the same. And those who want justice are forced to fight for it again. It's a cycle."

"Why is it a cycle?" asked Yax. "What motivates some of your people to seek to disenfranchise others?"

I threw my hands up in the air. "Y'all really need to start listening, ya know? It's always the same thing. The rallying cry might be different, but it's always the same thing. The people in power, those who have a lot of money, find ways to divide everyone else so we won't unite and force them to share their power and their money. It always boils down to that. Whether the powerful are yelling 'States' Rights!' or 'Anti-American!' or 'National Security!' it's always the same thing: money and power and how to get away with hoarding them both."

"I understand that. What I find hard to believe is that so many of your people keep falling for it."

I shrugged. "Why? What could be easier? All they have to do is create privation and then tell those who are suffering that some other group of people who are suffering just as much, or more, is the cause of the suffering. Nothing could be simpler. People who are struggling are always going to be looking for someone to blame for their troubles. All those in power have to do is pick a convenient scapegoat and let nature take its course."

"It's that easy?" asked Squid-boy.

"Pretty much. Like I said, they've already got centuries' worth of resentments that have been simmering just under the surface to work with. All they have to do is stir the pot a bit, maybe turn up the heat, and bingo! Instant division."

"And it just keeps working? No one ever catches on?"

I glared at him. "You're repeating yourself, Squid-boy. Like I said, some people catch on. But they're usually not the ones who are shouting the loudest." I pointed at the exhibit of people marching. "This, here? This is where those in power start losing control of the fire they started."

Monday, January 15, 2018

Something Worth Watching?

Hey Everyone!! :-)

I'm back today with another video I wanted to share. This one highlights an ongoing problem that directly speaks to the reason we need to overhaul Congress. The problem I'm talking about is not just the fascistic, Big Brother-esque government surveillance of citizens who are supposed to be free, though that's certainly a problem worth talking about. No, what I'm referring to is the fact that people we've elected to do a job for us are brazenly refusing to do that job. They seem to believe that there are no consequences if they betray us in favor of serving their donors. And the saddest part is, up until now, they've been right. There have been no consequences. But we can change that.

Unfortunately, we have to wait until we can hold elections to before we can truly fix the problem. So, in the meantime, take a look at this video and find out if your representative is someone who voted in favor of this bill. It might be too late to change their vote on this particular piece of legislation, but you can contact them and let them know you see what they're doing and you aren't happy about it. If they get enough calls like that, it might make them think twice before voting the wrong way on the next bill. If not, well, 2018 midterms are coming. Peace!

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Chocolate Banana Bread #Recipe!

Hey Everyone!! :-)

I don't know about you, but when it gets cold outside I start thinking about baking. This is one of my favorite wintertime recipes. Enjoy! :-)

1 cup flour
1/2 cup powdered cocoa
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup chocolate chips
4 overripe bananas
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup butter melted
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. In a different bowl, mash the bananas with a fork and then stir in the butter, oil, and egg. Then add the brown sugar and vanilla. Stir until smooth and then add the dry ingredients a little at a time until everything is completely mixed together. Fold in most of the chocolate chips, but keep a few to sprinkle over the top.

Pour the batter into a greased 9-by-5-inch loaf pan and sprinkle the rest of the chocolate chips on top. Bake for 50-65 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the bread comes out mostly clean. Allow the bread cool in the pan for about 15 minutes, then run a knife around the edges of the bread and remove it from the pan. Let the bread finish cooling on a plate, and then cut into slices and serve it with a little whipped cream, if desired.

Bon appetit!