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

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

#Agent Thoth's #Personal Log: Day 856


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 Eight-Hundred-Fifty-Six:
The local weather where my post is located is beginning to cool down, again, as the axial tilt of this planet has resulted in an increase in the distance between this portion of the planet and its closest star at this point in the planet's revolution around that star. As a result, the juvenile felid has become increasingly determined to position himself on top of my hominid-servant as often as possible. This is a rare display of logic on his part, as my hominid-servant's body radiates a startling amount of waste heat. I believe this is due to the lack of fur on most of her body, which would trap the heat. Unfortunately, this is one of many ways in which hominids are inferior to civilized species.

For her part, my hominid-servant doesn't seem to mind the small pest's company, despite its persistence. Sharing space on my hominid-servant's lap decreases the efficiency of my ability to monitor her vital signs, however, I must admit there is a certain contentment to be found in snuggling up with the other residents of my domicile to share warmth and companionship. Even the canid participates in these group cuddles when my hominid-servant reclines on her sleeping platform. And, I'm surprised to say, under those circumstances, his presence isn't nearly as objectionable as it is most of the time. Or, perhaps, I have spent too much time among the hominids and have experienced a reduction in my intelligence as a result.


Awww... I guess hominids are good for something, after all. ;-) 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, October 30, 2018

Risk A Peek At The Wild Hunt This #Halloween!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I thought I'd give you a little reminder of one of the features of All Hallows Eve, the Wild Hunt, just in time for Halloween. Enjoy!

Excerpt from Taken By The Huntsman:
The Erlking had left Faerie for the human world, something he hadn’t done in decades, to hunt the one who had killed a pixie child named Coel. The Wild Hunt, also known as the Wild Horde among the Fae, often punished murderers; though, oath breakers, liars, and others who committed crimes against the goddess fell within their province as well. But catching a child-slayer had special meaning. Children were revered among the Fae, probably because they had so few. So, when Aeronwen, Coel’s mother, spilled her own blood and called for vengeance against her child's murderer the Erlking responded immediately.

Aeronwen claimed Griogal, the male Sidhe whose suit she had rejected, had murdered her son out of spite. As a Sidhe, Griogal's pursuit of a Pixie was considered something of a perversion among the Fae, and Aeronwen told the Erlking she had been disgusted by the idea. But, she had never dreamed that her refusal to consider Griogal's romantic overtures would result in the death of her only child.

The Erlking had reviewed the evidence against Griogal and found it more than sufficient. No one called the Wild Hunt lightly because, if the evidence didn’t support the charge or the offense was not great enough to warrant a punishment by the Hunt, the one whose blood had summoned them would be punished instead. The Erlking was the sole judge, jury, and sometimes executioner when the Hunt was called. Even more so than the US Supreme Court, the Erlking decided which calls to heed and his judgment was final. No appeal was possible.

In this case, the Erlking had heard Aeronwen’s call for vengeance against Griogal and had traveled to the scene of the crime immediately. The ability to instantly appear to a caller was a power that, as far as the Erlking knew, was unique to him. It was a power he possessed only when a call for vengeance was released onto the wind with blood. He could carry any or all of the rest of the Horde with him to the initial call, but the pursuit of their prey had to proceed by other means of travel.

When the Erlking and his Horde appeared at Aeronwen’s side, she accused Griogal and was supported by two witnesses who had seen the Sidhe cast a spell of fire against Coel. The Fae were extremely hard to kill, but a magical fire was one of the few things that could accomplish the task. Especially, with a child who would not have grown into his own magical protections yet. The Erlking cast his own spell of revealing, which did indeed show that Griogal had used magic fire to murder Coel. With the charge being child-slaying and the guilt of the Sidhe proven beyond any doubt, the Erlking had immediately started the hunt for Griogal.

As any child would be, Coel had been loved within his community and the Pixies were eager for his murderer to be brought to justice. But even those who had never met Coel refused to shelter Griogal. People were rarely willing to risk the wrath of the Wild Hunt, because to interfere with the Hunt was to be magically compelled to join it. The duration of the service was entirely at the discretion of the Huntsman.

However, it was also rare that there would be any who would be willing to aid the Hunt. Under other circumstances, nothing could compel the residents of Fairie to draw the attention of the Wild Hunt except the most urgent and righteous need for vengeance. In this case, with a child-slayer as the focus of the Hunt, the Fae had not only refused to hide Griogal, they had left signs to direct the Hunt to places Griogal found to hide himself. With the act of murdering Coel, Griogal had literally left himself with nowhere to hide. The Erlking would have caught Griogal long ago, except for the fact that the Sidhe had escaped to the human world.

The human world was fraught with peril, more so now than in older times. The humans had dirtied their world to the point that the air was dangerous to breathe and the water not fit to drink. They had covered whole swaths of land with tar and metal and other artificial things so that nothing natural could grow in those places. There had always been some risk in entering the human world. Any manmade metal could poison a Fae if it broke the skin, and even touching such materials would burn some Fae. These were the reasons the Fae’s deadliest swords and spears had always been made from manmade metal, specifically manmade cold iron. But never had the human world been so dangerous as it had become in recent years, with humanity’s enormous increase in numbers and apparent determination to make their world uninhabitable.

Humans were susceptible to Fae glamour, the ability to change appearance or to become invisible, so the Erlking was concealing his Hunt while he searched for Griogal. Though, he was not sure what, if anything, would show on their recording devices. In ancient times, if the Hunt had revealed itself in the human world, the humans who saw it went mad. The appearance of some members of the Hunt was so fearsome as to make it impossible for an unshielded human mind to survive an encounter with them without breaking. The Erlking was worried about what might happen if a modern human happened to see them. Would they also go mad? Or had humanity lost too much innocence for that?

It was the recording devices that the Erlking was most worried about. If humanity saw proof of the existence of the Fae, would they try to find a way to enter Fairie? Would they succeed? Humans had worshipped the Fae at one point in history but had forgotten them in more recent times except for old stories, which were dismissed as imagination. If the humans realized that those stories were real, what would they do? The Erlking tried to set aside these concerns as questions for another day; he had a child-slayer to catch. It was a testament to Griogal’s desperation that it would even occur to him to try to flee to the human world.

Of course, those hunted by the Wild Horde were nearly always desperate. The punishments devised by the Erlking were the stuff of legend, and Griogal was not the first Fae to run to the humans to hide. It was more common in times gone by, but even in more recent times there had been some Fae who had tried to hide with the humans. The magic held by most Fae made it possible for them to hide their true natures behind glamour and, in some cases, to amass the kind of wealth recognized by humans.

In past times, some of the Fae the Erlking hunted had tried to blend in with a human community and sometimes they even succeeded for a time. In more recent times, this happened less frequently because of how polluted the human world had become. Most full-grown Fae could not die of thirst or starvation, but they could suffer from them. As dirty as the human world had become, it was almost impossible to find food or water that was not contaminated with the same manmade substances that would poison a Fae. So, trying to survive for any length of time in such an environment was not a happy prospect.



Want to read more about the most famous Hunt in history?  Grab your copy of Taken By The Huntsman at the link below and let the magic of the Fae enchant you this Halloween. Happy Reading! :-)







Monday, October 29, 2018

Something Worth Watching?


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I'm back today with another video I wanted to share. This one talks about Michael Moore's take on a problem that I've remarked on multiple times. The purpose of a free press is to speak truth to power, be a voice for the voiceless, and to hold the powerful accountable. In other words, to afflict the comfortable and comfort the afflicted. I think this video makes some interesting points, but I'll let it speak for itself. So, please take a few minutes to watch it and you can make up your own mind. Peace!






Sunday, October 28, 2018

Shepherd's Pie Dumpling #Recipe!



Hey Everyone!! :-)

This is a variation on the recipe I shared with you last week. It's the same technique but slightly different ingredients and flavors. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do! :-)

Ingredients:
15-20 large wonton wrappers
2-3 cups vegetable or peanut oil
1 egg
2 tbsp water
1 cup butter melted
1/2 cup red wine reduced
2 tbsp vegetarian Worcestershire sauce
5 large potatoes peeled and boiled
1 cup frozen green peas thawed
1 onion chopped very fine or grated
1 carrot chopped small
1/4 cup fresh parsley chopped fine
4 cloves garlic minced fine or grated
2 tbsp tomato paste
1 tbsp dried oregano
1 tsp chili powder (optional)
Salt and Pepper to taste

Whisk the egg and water together in a small bowl and set aside. In a larger bowl, mash and mix the remaining ingredients except for the oil and wonton wrappers. Make sure you mix everything thoroughly. Taste your mixture and adjust seasoning as necessary. Lay the wonton wrappers on a clean, flat surface and brush the edges with the egg wash. Put a tablespoon to a tablespoon and a half (depending on the size of your wrappers) of the filling in the center of each wrapper, and then fold the wrappers over to form triangular-shaped dumplings and press the edges together to form a seal. Make sure not to over-fill your wrappers or they'll pop open when you cook them. If you want to, you can crimp the edges of your wontons with a fork, but it probably isn't necessary as long as you press the edges together firmly with the egg wash.

Put the oil in a frying pan and heat it to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Put your dumplings in the hot oil and fry until they are golden brown. Flip them over halfway through cooking to make sure they get brown on both sides. Be careful not to overcrowd the pan. Place the cooked dumplings on a paper-towel-lined tray to drain the excess oil and lightly sprinkle them with salt. Serve warm by themselves or with your favorite dipping sauce or gravy.

Bon appetit!


Saturday, October 27, 2018

Hauntingly Good #Reads #Giveaway! $84 #Cash #Grand #Prize! #Free To #Enter!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

There's a new giveaway for Halloween!  Please take a moment to check out the Hauntingly Good Reads Giveaway!!  There are lots of awesome books and prizes!! :-)  It's free to enter, there are over 54 prizes, and the grand prize is $84 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, October 26, 2018

#NewRelease #Announcement: Razor's Edge By Gabriella Messina!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

My good friend Savannah Morgan wanted to tell you all about a new book by her friend, Gabriella Messina. Savannah, take it away! :-)


Savannah:

RAZOR’S EDGE (Kate Gardener Mysteries #5)
Release date: September 30, 2018
www.books2read.com/RazorsEdge


Summer, and the city is heating up…

When a scandalous tabloid reporter is gunned down in broad daylight, the question isn’t who did it, but who wouldn’t? The man had “dirt” on some of the biggest names in politics and business, and rumor has it he was ready to break something big… a scandal that could threaten the upcoming elections, and even the very foundations of government.

Caught up in a tide of crime and controversy, where friend and foe alike are poised upon the razor’s edge…

DS Richard Pierce finds his career and his reputation in peril when he is accused of planting evidence to frame the “Cathgate Ripper”, a vicious serial killer whose trial is poised to begin. Convinced of his innocence, Kate Gardener races desperately to gather evidence to salvage the case and exonerate Pierce.

Kate has balanced on that edge before… but will she be able to save her friends without falling from grace herself?

*****

The Kate Gardener Mysteries is something of a hybrid, a merging of traditional British detective fiction with modern technology and sensibilities. In these books, our American-expat heroine is feisty and fearless, the cases are clever and, at times, quite violent, and the investigators catch criminals with clever analysis and a biting sense of humor.


Kate has balanced on that edge before… but will she be able to save her friends without falling from grace herself? 

Gabriella Messina
Razor’s Edge

Kate let out a whoosh of air, and wilted a bit. This was proving to be a more complicated evening of coffee and conversation than she’d anticipated…

“Parris, who are we really trying to save here?”

Parris grimaced, and pinched the bridge of his nose, doubtless to stifle the emotions that were on the threshold of overwhelming him. “I don’t know anymore… My father is… my father… but…” He trailed off, at a loss for words.

“Okay, let me ask you this.” Kate paused a moment, gathering her words. “Do you believe that your brother will be a good Prime Minister if he’s elected?”

Parris didn’t hesitate, nodding enthusiastically. “Absolutely. Yes.”

Kate nodded slowly. To save the son, they’d have to save the father, even if he didn’t deserve it… “Can you get the note for me? And anything else related to this?”

Parris nodded again. “Yes, of course. What are you going to do?”

A ‘Mona Lisa’ smile appeared on Kate’s face. “I’ll do what I can.”


Buy Link: www.books2read.com/RazorsEdge






#coverreveal #kategardenermysteries #razorsedge #crimefiction #suspense #bookstagram #bookish #booklove #bookworm #authorsofinstagram #author #igreads #instabook #teamslp #sophielynnproductions #sophielynnprdx #london #bookseries #scotlandyard




Thursday, October 25, 2018

#APC #Spotlight: House Of Grace: A Family Saga By Patricia M Osborne!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I've got Patricia M. Osborne in my APC spotlight, today! Patricia is an active and supportive member of the  Authors-Professional Co-op Facebook group and her recent history, romantic, personal journey, family saga novel, House of Grace, looks great! Here's the description:
It’s 1950 and all sixteen-year-old Grace Granville has ever wanted is to become a successful dress designer. She dreams of owning her own fashion house and spends her spare time sketching outfits. Her father, Lord Granville, sees this frivolous activity as nonsense and wants to groom her into a good wife for someone of his choosing...

Grace is about to leave Greenemere, a boarding school in Brighton. She’s blissfully unaware of her father’s plans when she embarks on a new adventure. The quest includes a trip to Bolton’s Palais where she meets coal miner, Jack Gilmore. Grace’s life is never the same again.

Travel with Grace through two decades as she struggles with family conflict, poverty and tragedy. Is Grace strong enough to defy Lord Granville’s wishes and find true love? Will she become a successful fashion designer? Where will she turn for help?
 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! :-)



Wednesday, October 24, 2018

#Agent Thoth's #Personal Log: Day 849


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 Eight-Hundred-Forty-Nine:
I have begun to despair of my hominid-servant ever fully recovering from her injury. Now, she has begun applying a foul-smelling unguent to the affected area on her back. The salve does seem to be effective in temporarily reducing her pain, however, the stench is so horrific that it makes it nearly impossible for me to get close enough to her to properly monitor her progress.

I have explained this dilemma to my hominid-servant, but my entreaties have received little sympathy. At best, she covers the potion with a piece of textile until it dries. But occasionally, she refuses me even that much relief. And then she adds insult to injury when I endeavor to push through the miasma and approach close enough to take readings by flapping her hands at me and shooing me away.

Her excuse for this behavior is that she doesn't want any of the substance to rub off on my fur. While I certainly agree with that sentiment, I cannot allow my own fastidiousness to get in the way of my research. And if I can endure the reek of her ointment, I think the least she could do is allow me to do my work without interference. Unfortunately, my hominid-servant is stubborn and, thus far, she remains unmoved in this matter.


Grrr! Those uncooperative hominids! ;-) 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, October 23, 2018

No Voice In The Halls Of Power...


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I've got a little more of Alyce's adventure to share with you, today! Enjoy! :-)

Excerpt from sci-fi satire novel:
I shrugged. "Well, other than forcing women to be little more than baby-making machines, as I said, there is the opposite problem. In some cases, women have been forced to undergo abortions when they didn't want to. In extreme cases, those in power have forcibly sterilized women. It has usually happened among racial, ethnic, and religious minority groups and among the disabled. Sometimes the people who committed such atrocities said they did it because they believed their victims weren't capable of properly caring for children, but that was a lie. They did it for the same reason anyone interferes with another person's reproductive choices. They wanted to control people they considered inferior."

"That's appalling!" exclaimed the big alien, though it came out barely as a whisper. Clearing his throat, he looked over his shoulder at the exhibit they had built. I couldn't be sure, but it seemed to me that he was looking at it through new eyes. He turned back to me. "Have the people in your nation-state done such things? If so, to whom?"

I nodded and wrapped my arms around myself. The hallway suddenly seemed chilly. Swallowing against the lump in my throat, I said, "Yes. People in my country have done things like that to people. It was done to Native American women, to African-American women, to women of various immigrant groups, to women who were either physically or intellectually disabled, or both, to women who had been convicted of crimes and were prisoners, and sometimes, pretty randomly, just to poor women who didn't have the means to defend themselves. That's what it always boils down to, hurting women who are powerless to prevent or escape the abuse."

"It sounds like something only people who were cowards would do," observed Squid-boy.

"It is. Why else would they only ever target people who couldn't defend themselves and who had no voice in the halls of power?"

"But things like that don't happen anymore?" asked Squid-boy.

I shook my head. "They do. Not as often on a large scale, but they still happen. And, frankly, the way things are going in my country, I think it's likely that the way women are treated will only get worse, and that the rights that we have will only become more limited."

"Forgive me for saying, but you're usually not quite so pessimistic about the chances for reform in your society. Why such a lack of optimism about this issue?" asked Yax.

"Because our courts have largely been taken over by religious fundamentalist extremists who don't consider women to be people worthy of the same rights as other people. It's hard to maintain a cheerful outlook when you know that any laws that exist to protect the rights of women are likely to be struck down within the next few years."

"Can anything keep that from happening?"

I shrugged. "As always, maybe if there is enough public outcry. But I think the odds of that are low. People are just too busy trying to survive to constantly keep fighting against all the horrible things the people in power are trying to do to us. Eventually, most people reach a limit in their ability to continue to resist and they just give up."

"But the things they are fighting against don't go away."

"No. They don't. And the people who are doing those things are only emboldened when they get away with their evil and no one even protests. But, realistically, that's what often happens. There's only so much energy and attention most people can devote to fighting. Which is why the people in power have designed the system the way that they have."



Monday, October 22, 2018

Something Worth Watching?


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I'm back today with another video I wanted to share. I think it perfectly highlights exactly who Republicans are. They are, quite frankly, the Christian Taliban, and it's beyond obvious that they hate women. And if you're a Republican and you're upset that I said that, maybe you should do something about the policies your party supports that prompted me to say it. And with that, I'll ask the rest of you to please watch the video and decide for yourselves if I'm being too harsh. Peace!







Sunday, October 21, 2018

Easy "Peasy" And Potato Samosas #Recipe!



Hey Everyone!! :-)

This is a fun, easy recipe to brighten up an Autumn night. Enjoy! :-)

Ingredients:
15-20 large wonton wrappers
2-3 cups vegetable or peanut oil
1 egg
2 tbsp water
1 cup butter melted
4 large potatoes peeled and boiled
2 cups frozen green peas thawed
1 onion chopped very fine or grated
1/2 cup kale or spinach leaves chopped fine
2 cloves garlic minced fine or grated
2 tsp ginger grated
1 tbsp coriander
1 tbsp cumin
1 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp mustard seeds or mustard seed powder
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
Salt and Pepper to taste

Whisk the egg and water together in a small bowl and set aside. In a larger bowl, mash and mix the remaining ingredients except for the oil and wonton wrappers. Make sure you mix everything thoroughly. Taste your mixture and adjust seasoning as necessary. Lay the wonton wrappers on a clean, flat surface and brush the edges with the egg wash. Put a tablespoon to a tablespoon and a half (depending on the size of your wrappers) of the filling in the center of each wrapper, and then fold the wrappers over to form triangular-shaped dumplings and press the edges together to form a seal. Make sure not to over-fill your wrappers or they'll pop open when you cook them. If you want to, you can crimp the edges of your wontons with a fork, but it probably isn't necessary as long as you press the edges together firmly with the egg wash.

Put the oil in a frying pan and heat it to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Put your samosas in the hot oil and fry until they are golden brown. Flip them over halfway through cooking to make sure they get brown on both sides. Be careful not to overcrowd the pan. Place the cooked samosas on a paper-towel-lined tray to drain the excess oil and lightly sprinkle them with salt. Serve warm by themselves or with your favorite dipping sauce.

Bon appetit!



Saturday, October 20, 2018

Hauntingly Good #Reads #Giveaway! $84 #Cash #Grand #Prize! #Free To #Enter!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

There's a new giveaway for Halloween!  Please take a moment to check out the Hauntingly Good Reads Giveaway!!  There are lots of awesome books and prizes!! :-)  It's free to enter, there are over 54 prizes, and the grand prize is $84 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, October 19, 2018

#APC #Spotlight: The Reapers (The Hunted series Book 1) By Ali Winters!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I've got Ali Winters in my APC spotlight, today! Ali is an active and supportive member of the  Authors-Professional Co-op Facebook group and her paranormal romance, mythological, urban fantasy novel, The Reapers, looks great! Here's the description:
Nivian had never failed to Reap a marked soul. That is, until she meets Kain Evers, a Hunter and the only being on earth with the power to destroy her.

When Reapers start to go missing, the Balance is thrown into turmoil, forcing Nivian and Kain to trust each other as they search for answers. Which is no easy task as they fight the feelings growing between them.

As mortal enemies, they were never meant to work together, now they're forced to protect each other if they want any hope of righting the Balance before all is lost.

Unfortunately, to succeed, one of them must die.
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, October 18, 2018

#October2018 #IndieBooksBeSeen #Indie #Author #Books #Monthly #BookReview!



Hey Everyone!! :-)

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

Cold Iron by C. A. Sanders:

About a year after the events in The Watchmage of Old New York, a series of fires sweep through Manhattan. Someone is setting these fires, and it's up to Nathaniel and his police detective son, Jonas, to find out who, how, and to stop them before more people die. Will our two intrepid heroes solve this mystery and save countless lives? You'll have to read to find out!

Honestly, I loved, loved, loved this book. Once again, as a transplanted New Yorker, I enjoyed the peek at a city I haven't seen in person in years. I also really enjoyed the way Mr. Sanders incorporated some of the politics of New York from the mid-1800s into his supernatural world. It makes this story almost like a cross between urban fantasy and steampunk, two of my favorite genres.

The plot was also extremely engaging; fast-paced with enough twists to keep you interested. The characters were well developed enough that I almost feel like I might see them the next time I make it to The City, and the descriptions of the places and people were accurate enough to make me homesick. Overall, a wonderful fantasy mystery/adventure that leaves me longing for the next book. Five stars, and please, sir, can I have some more? ;-)









Wednesday, October 17, 2018

#Agent Thoth's #Personal Log: Day 847


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 Eight-Hundred-Forty-Seven:
My hominid-servant is still not entirely recovered from her injury. Though she has resumed most of her normal activities, the pace at which she performs them has slowed significantly, and she rests more often between tasks than she did before. When I expressed concern, she just patted my head and informed me that she is "getting old." A statement that I can only assume indicates that this affliction is one that is common among aging hominids.

She did manage to leave my domicile long enough to procure a replacement for the artificial heat source the juvenile felid damaged and, as I suspected, it does seem to have a therapeutic effect on her injury. Unfortunately, that effect seems to be of short duration. I did suggest that she might find more permanent relief if she altered her stance so as to use all four limbs for ambulation. However, my suggestion has thus far fallen on deaf ears. As always, I will continue to report on any further developments.


Hominids sure can be a lot of trouble. ;-) 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, October 16, 2018

#Interview With Dominik Marcel Kirtaime!

Hey Everyone!! :-)

Dominik Marcel Kirtaime is here with us, today. Dominik, will you please tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.?

D: My name is Dominik Marcel Kirtaime and I was raised in Bristol, England. After my military career, I decided to stay and live in Germany with my family. As a child, I wanted to be a writer and enjoyed storytelling. When the opportunity knocked to become an indie author and publisher, I just had to grab the ropes and make my childhood dream come true - pen went to paper and fingers to the computer keyboard.

Me: Sounds like you've had an eventful life, so far. Congratulations on achieving your dream. :-) What's the name of your latest book and what inspired it?

D: The Perennial Migration. The story was inspired by the reptilian conspiracy and being fascinated by trees.

Me: Ha! I have to admit, that's quite an introduction. What are you working on now?

D: A sequel to The Perennial Migration.

Me: Cool! Series are always fun. What authors, or books, have influenced you?

D: James Herbert, Stephen King and Dean Koontz. 

Me: Ah, only the classics, then. ;-) What are you reading now?

D: I am reading Phantoms & Monsters: Unexplained Encounters. On Goodreads I always post what I am currently reading. A rating and review is posted once each book is finished.

Me: I'm sure the authors appreciate that; as I'm sure you know, reviews are our lifeblood, after all. For those who might consider reading your book, what would you tell them to expect?

D: Action, Adventure and Surprises.

Me: Sounds like fun! :-) What is your favorite part of being an author?

D: Talking about my book. Interacting with both other authors and readers. Passionately getting the word out to the world about me and my written work.

Me: Yes, talking to people about your work can be a blast. Do you have a day job as well?

D: No.

Me: Lucky you! :-) What do your think the hardest and easiest parts about being a writer are?

D: The hardest part is once the work has been published because as an indie author and publisher you then need to take care of marketing. The easiest part was for me building the story structure and basic character profiles.

Me: Yep, the old marketing challenge. Every indie author's bane. ;-) What genre do you place your book in?

D: Fantasy and Sci-Fi

Me: Two of my favorite genres! :-) Is there anything else you'd like to tell your readers?

D: My research took me deep into many conspiracy theories which are still valid today. I was amazed at just how much literature and other media was available to me. With my chosen gentres of Fantasy and Sci-fi, I can take readers into such dystopic realms with characters ready to take on any situation.

Me: And so all these fine people can explore those realms with you, are there any links you'd like me to post?

D: Yes please:

Me: Perfect! Thank you so much for stopping by, today, Dominik. And thank you also to everyone else who joined us. Don't forget to check back tomorrow for the latest in Mistral Dawn's Musings! :-)




Monday, October 15, 2018

Something Worth Watching?


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I'm back today with another video I wanted to share. Actually, there are two videos, and they illustrate how shamelessly the people who have been bought and paid for by the for-profit medical industry, including our Liar in Chief, will lie to the American people to keep us from getting what every other industrialized nation on the planet has, universal healthcare. So, please take a few minutes to watch these videos, and then think about who you want to support with your vote next month. Peace!






Sunday, October 14, 2018

#Spicy Peanut Soup In A #Crockpot #Recipe!



Hey Everyone!! :-)

This is an easy, delicious, hearty soup, perfect for those cool Autumn nights. Enjoy! :-)

Ingredients:
8 cups vegetable stock
1 cup red wine
2 tbsp olive oil
1 cup chunky peanut butter
1/2 cup tomato paste
2 tbsp vegetarian Worcestershire sauce
2 tbsp sriracha
2 tbsp harissa
8 cloves garlic minced fine
2 tbsp ginger grated
2 tomatoes chopped
2 onions chopped fine
4 potatoes scrubbed and diced
2 carrots chunked
6 cups collard or mustard greens chopped
1 cup peanuts chopped
Salt and pepper to taste

In a saute pan, add the olive oil and onion and cook until the onion becomes translucent. Add the garlic, ginger, tomatoes, and greens to the pan and cook until the greens wilt. Add the remaining ingredients except for the chopped peanuts, peanut butter, tomato paste, wine, and one cup of stock to the crockpot and turn on high. Add the contents of the saute pan to the crockpot and deglaze the pan with the reserved wine and stock. Simmer the wine and stock in the pan for a couple of minutes to allow the wine to reduce and add them to the crockpot. Cook the soup on high for 4 to 5 hours, or until it simmers.

Put the peanut butter and tomato paste in a microwave-safe bowl, cover with a paper towel, and heat in 30-second increments until the paste and peanut butter are soft enough to stir together. Add the paste and peanut butter to the crockpot and stir to combine. Taste the soup and adjust seasoning as necessary. Simmer for an additional 30 minute to an hour, garnish with chopped peanuts, and serve piping hot with a side of crusty bread or over cooked rice or quinoa.

Bon appetit!



Saturday, October 13, 2018

Hauntingly Good #Reads #Giveaway! $84 #Cash #Grand #Prize! #Free To #Enter!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

There's a new giveaway for Halloween!  Please take a moment to check out the Hauntingly Good Reads Giveaway!!  There are lots of awesome books and prizes!! :-)  It's free to enter, there are over 54 prizes, and the grand prize is $84 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, October 12, 2018

#NewRelease #Announcement: Noémie's Journey By Victoria Saccenti!



Hey Everyone! :-)

My friend Karina Kantas is here, today, to let us all know about a new release by her friend Victoria Saccenti. Karina, take it away! :-)

Karina:
Is proud to announce the release of her newest novel

Noémie's Journey

Book Description:

Love is waiting around the next curve…but trouble is never far behind.

Desperate to shake memories that stalk him like feral beasts, Richard Winters points his motorcycle toward the highway and twists the throttle—destination anywhere but New York. By the time he puts his kickstand down, he’s in Summitville, North Carolina, where, with a few annoying exceptions, one being an outlaw MC, he’s left alone.

Except there’s one woman who catches his notice and resurrects the protective instinct that cost him everything once before. A woman with stunning green eyes that haunt his dreams, and facing prejudice that makes him want to rise to her defense. But that would mean doing the last thing he wants to do—lower his guard.

Noémie Bellerose has heard times are changing, but in 1968 North Carolina, she and her younger brother are second-class citizens. The new bartender in town is temptation on two wheels, but in what world could the two of them connect? Not this one.

Despite their best intentions to avoid trouble, trouble finds them both—and so does an attraction that won’t be denied. But can love bloom where it is planted, or will they be forced to resort to desperate measures…before hate cuts them down?


About the Author:
Amazon Bestselling author, Victoria Saccenti picked up pencil and paper the moment her childhood book heroes started conversing with her. Sounds a little crazy, but there's no rhyme or reason for inspiration. Back then, she wrote one-act plays and short fairy tales for simple amusement. Today--many...many moons later--her playful stories have grown into family sagas and retro and contemporary romances with an edge. An avid people watcher, she explores in her novels the twists and turns of human interaction, the many facets of love, and all possible happy endings.

Victoria lived overseas and traveled the world for thirty years, and she brings that experience and sense of adventure to her stories. She enjoys taking her reader on a private journey from America to Europe to Southeast Asia and back around.

Central Florida is home. She splits her busy schedule between family and her active muse at Essence Publishing. But if she could convince her husband to sell their home, she would pack up her computer and move to Scotland, a land she adores.

Facebook - VictoriaSaccentiAuthor
Twitter - @VictoriaSAuthor
Instagram -Victoria Saccenti


INTERVIEW

-What made you want to be a writer?

My writing journey began decades ago. I plunged into the adventure-filled pages of Emilio Salgari’s Tigers of Malaysia and my imagination awakened. I started writing juvenile fantasies, kept a diary, progressed to short stories, then finally took on the big project, full-length novels.

-How important is it to read books when you want to be an author?

Read, read, and read some more. That is the main advice given by every major author. As other works expand the knowledge and style base. We’re exposed to new and different worlds when we read.

-Which character do you identify with most in your novel?

This may sound crazy, but I don’t identify with one specific character. I love and identify with all of them. When they speak to me, I listen.

-Is there a message you’d like to send through your book?

I don’t like to tell anyone how or what to think. I only present events, choices, and possibilities. The characters come up to the proverbial crossroad and learn from their mistakes. In the exchange I can only hope the readers take something of value.

-Tell us how the atmosphere needs to be for you to be able to write. Example, music on or quiet etc.

I hide out in my silent cave. LOL I can’t write with music. If I do, my mind wanders away, gets lost in the notes and I lose the connection to the character(s).

-What is one goody you must have at your desk when you’re writing?

My cave is an organized chaos. I have all sorts of necessary goodies. Affectionate notes from my dear hubby, photographs of dear friends, my special notebook, things like that.

-What is the worst thing you’ve had to overcome before publishing your novel? IF it’s too personal just make a generalized statement if you can.

The biggest challenge was to gather the courage to put your work “out there” exposing your soul to the public.

-When you need some extra encouragement who do you turn to?

I have a wonderful set of friends.

-How do you market your book?

Social media platforms are a great way to spread the word. I also advertise via Internet publications. Plus, I have a terrific VA.

-Have readers ever contacted you? If so, tell us the best thing they’ve said to you.

Yes, readers regularly contact me. Their compliments are extremely rewarding.

-Who do you trust to read your finished books before publication?

I send the manuscript to two fantastic Beta readers. My editor is also a wonderful barometer/critic.

-Tell us all about your very first book signing. Take us there with your description of people, place, food, décor etc.

My very first book signing took place in San Antonio, Texas, at the lovely Menger Hotel. I was a nervous wreck and didn’t know what to expect, or how many books to bring. Authors decorated the packed room with colorful pullout and table banners. Logo’s, quotes, and character images where everywhere. My table partner was sweet and funny. She was probably as nervous as I was, since that was her first event as well. The happy cacophony of laughter and conversation and the scent of fresh popcorn are indelibly etched in the memory bank. Who knew that would be offered at the door? I also remember the aroma of chocolate. I had swag Hershey’s bites spread out on my table. I have a feeling the bites had a lot to do with the readers stopping by. They might have sold a book or two. Hershey’s bites rule!

-What do you enjoy when you’re not writing?

Reading is my favorite pastime.

-Tell us your favorite novel?

I’ll take a different tack. My favorite writer is Dorothy Dunnett. I love her series The Lymond Chronicles and House of Niccolò. The best historical fiction books ever written, in my humble opinion.

-What kind of advice can you give to other aspiring authors?

Hire a good editor. Editors are worth their weight in gold.

-Where can we find your author page of your work to follow you and purchase your awesome book?

Please stop by. You can find me at:

www.victoriasaccentiwrites.com
www.amazon.com/Victoria-Saccenti
Facebook - VictoriaSaccentiAuthor



PROLOGUE

Mount Vernon, New York. April 1968

Dickey entered his apartment, and before he could flip the light switch, the memories—feral beasts lying in wait—pounced from every direction.

Damn it. Stop. Stop. He stabbed his fingers into his face, but the self-inflicted pain had no effect on the barrage of angry whispers circling him. Taunting him, they grew louder…intensified to a roar of screams and jeers.

He’d done everything to break the pattern, had changed his routine, rearranged the sequence and time of his actions and nothing worked. As soon as he was alone, the scene and participants came to life, clawing at him whether he played music, listened to the radio, or watched TV. No distraction, no entertainment on earth could end the torment or silence the voices. No. They pulled him, yanked him back to the moment…the god-awful moment.

No more.

It was late, close to midnight, and still he reached for the phone—a pathetic jerk, a slave of the past. He loathed the lack of control, the outright weakness the call would reveal.

“Hey, Skip. Sorry to wake you.”

“Hmmm…yeah. Dickey?”

“Got a moment, pal?”

“Shoot. I’m awake now.”

“You once offered to buy my share of the business. Are you still interested in going solo?”

“It was a passing interest. But…why bring it up now?”

“Because I’m getting out of Dodge. I refuse to spend another hour in this state. I’m done. Finito.”

“Hold on, man. Vivian again? It’s been years.”

“I can’t shake it. I see her…them… No more.”

“What about that sweet young thing? She likes you.”

“And she was getting too clingy. I don’t do girlfriends. Mind’s made up.”

“Wait, Dickey—”

“Nah, I’m packing. I’ll head west or maybe south. Not sure. When I stop, wherever I stop, I’ll call. Hopefully, a drastic change will do the trick. And Skip, when you see that girl, please tell her I wish her the best.”

He dropped the phone on the cradle and swept through his place, tossing a few rolled items into the smallest duffel he owned. He didn’t need much. He’d tear into the road, travel light and long with a single purpose in mind: leave good old Dickey behind and forgotten. Hello world, meet Richard Winters.

In a few strides, he closed the door to his last home in New York, mounted his bike, and, with a deep rumble, sped into the night.

Ill or fair, he’d meet the wind head-on.

Where to find Noemie's Journey

http://bit.ly/NJAMKI - Amazon Kindle
http://bit.ly/BNNJEB - Barnes & N
http://bit.ly/iBooksNJ - iBook Apple
http://bit.ly/D2DNJEB - D2D
http://bit.ly/SWNJEB - Smashwords
http://bit.ly/EBKOBONJ - Kobo






Thursday, October 11, 2018

#APC #Spotlight: Wicked Cries: Book 1 in the Wicked Cries Series By Michelle Areaux!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I've got Michelle Edrington-Areaux in my APC spotlight, today! Michelle is an active and supportive member of the  Authors-Professional Co-op Facebook group and her paranormal, occult, urban fantasy, young adult, horror novel, Wicked Cries, looks great! Here's the description:
For 16-year-old Sadie Sanders, dealing with the dead is growing tiresome, especially when they expect her to be their messenger from the afterlife. But when her family moves to Salem, Massachusetts, and she finds the diary of a young girl named Elizabeth who was accused of witchcraft, she may need some help. Soon, Elizabeth begins to haunt Sadie, first in her dreams and then when she’s awake. As Sadie delves into Elizabeth’s journal, she slowly uncovers the secret Elizabeth needs to reveal, and it’s one that could change the course of history. Sadie needs help, and she wonders who, if anyone, she can tell about it. Worried that her friends and family wouldn’t believe her, or worse, prevent her from continuing her journey to find the truth, Sadie has a choice to make...and it’s not going to be an easy one.
 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! :-)



Wednesday, October 10, 2018

#Agent Thoth's #Personal Log: Day 842


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 Eight-Hundred-Forty-Two:
I have recently had reason to reflect on how inefficiently designed the hominid body is. Due undoubtedly to evolutionary pressures, the details of which I cannot imagine, they have developed a structure that requires them to walk upright on their rear limbs with no tail for counterbalance. As you would expect, this configuration of their anatomy results in excess strain being put on their lower spines. And as a result of this flaw in her construction, my hominid-servant injured herself recently doing routine tasks that should not have resulted in injury.

Unfortunately, because the area in question is a fulcrum in nearly all movements a hominid regularly engages in, the injury in question is quite debilitating when it comes to practical concerns. My hominid-servant did manage to fill the food dishes and clean the waste receptacles. However, due to the pain caused by her injury, she was unwilling to exert herself in any of the other useful, entertaining, or enlightening activities she generally performs.

This has made it difficult to study hominid behavior and has also discomfited the adolescent felid, as he relies on my hominid-servant providing an outlet for his youthful energy. I did note that my hominid servant attempted to alleviate her symptoms through the application of a heat source to the affected area. However, the tiny irritant had used the filament that connects the heat source to the junction that transmits electrical energy as a teething device, so the heat source proved non-functional.

Since my other studies were thwarted through a combination of lack of hominid activity and excess small felid activity, I decided to investigate whether the palliative measure my hominid-servant had attempted would have been effective. I therefore waited until she positioned herself on her sleeping platform in such as way that gave me access to the location on her back that seemed to be giving her the greatest amount of trouble. I then placed myself against the area, using the warmth of my body as a substitute for the artificial heat source she had intended to use, and engaged the P.U.R.R. to help soothe her into remaining still.

My efforts seemed to have made some difference, though it is difficult to quantify the improvement because, after a period of resting this way, my hominid-servant seemed to move more easily and with less pain. She also patted my head and told me I was a "nice kitty," which I found to be exceptionally patronizing but also an indication that my presence had aided in her recovery. From her movements, I believe that my hominid-servant's condition is improved but not resolved. I will monitor her progress to see if further intervention on my part is warranted and report back on any additional data this experiment yields.


Hmm... Always trouble, those hominids. ;-) 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, October 9, 2018

Killing To Preserve Life...


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I've got a little more of Alyce's adventure to share with you, today! Enjoy! :-)

Excerpt from sci-fi satire novel:
Yax cleared his throat. "The effect those videos had on these clinics that seem to be a vital part of your health system, especially considering the woeful inadequacies of that system as a whole, is horrible, but you said they weren't the worst thing people have done to shut down such facilities?"

"Oh, certainly not. There have been people who have blown clinics up, taken a gun into clinics and shot random people who were working or waiting there, stalked and murdered doctors who worked in clinics, posted the private information of clinic doctors, staff, and patients on the internet and encouraged other people to use the information to hunt them down and hurt them, and other acts of violence aimed at controlling and terrorizing women. And, then there's the other side of the coin."

"Coin?" asked Squid-boy, turning his head to look behind himself.

I rolled my eyes. "Not a literal coin. The other side of the issue of government and religion assuming control over women's bodies."

"You mean, there have been instances where people have forced females of your species to do things other than give birth when they didn't want to?" asked Yax.

I nodded. "Quite often, actually. Until fairly recently in our history, women were considered property in many societies. First of their fathers; then of their husbands. Husbands could rape and beat their wives without penalty. In some societies, women could be sold or traded to settle debts. In a few societies, husbands and fathers could even murder the women who belonged to them and not have committed any crime. For much of human history, it was pretty commonplace for people other than women to control women's bodies. Most people didn't even consider that to be wrong. Many still don't. It's still extremely common for rape to be used as a weapon of war."

"Rape! You can't be serious," exclaimed Squid-boy.

"Oh, sugar, I wish I weren't. But there are still a lot of people on my world, and in my country, who still don't see women as equal to men. Many people see denying women rights and agency as the natural order of things. It's as if some people think that to acknowledge that women as equals, entitled to equal rights, would somehow take away something from themselves. And I haven't even told you, yet, about some of the worst systematic abuses of women."