Willows of Fate is magnetizing!

Desdemona struggles through mental issues all her life that she eventually drowns with drinking and sex. Finally after she reaches the bottom of the barrel, she pulls herself up and runs down the narrow path towards a decent life, but those mental issues that she thought were mostly hallucinations, burn in the back of her mind.

After her mother’s death, those visions rise to the top and she soon discovers that the visions are real and always have been. The apparitions persuade her that she has to come to their world, that she is in grave danger.  She learns there is a dark force after what she possesses.  Almost too late, she will discover the secrets of the dark force and the possession they are willing to kill for.

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I highly enjoyed reading this Willows of Fate (The Lands of Sun and Stone Series Book 1) with its unique characters and its magnetizing twists and turns.  When reading a story, my first attraction is if the author’s words will pull me into a movie where I see pictures instead of black words on a white page.  That is exactly what the author, Suzanna J. Linton has done for me.  Now I crave for a sequel to find out what has happened to Desdemona.

I recommend this book for anyone who wants to escape reality and jump into a world of action, romance, and betrayal.


HAPPY EASTER!!

I hope everyone has a wonderful and happy Easter!!!  Looking forward to this weekend myself.  Itching and can’t sit still because I wanna get home and jump into my writing.

That’s right!  I finally busted through that horrible block!!  Geez, I mean it was really bad!  Everytime I sat down at the laptop, I just stared at the page and scene where I left off.  Nothing, I mean absolutely nothing would come to my brain or flow out of me.

I didn’t give up though and finally the ideas overflowed.

Maya and Bri’s adventure is coming along and unexpected events are happening that I never knew before hand.  Pretty soon I will post some excerpts to get opinions AND suggestions!

Happy Holiday.

HAPPY EASTER!!

I hope everyone has a wonderful and Happy Easter!!!  img_0427-1

Looking forward to this weekend myself.  Itching and can’t sit still because I wanna jump head-first into my writing.

That’s right!  I finally busted through that horrible block!  Geez, I mean it was really bad!  Overtime I sat down at the laptop, I just stared at the page and the scene where I left off.  Nothing, I mean absolutely nothing would come to my brain or flow out of me.

I didn’t give up though and finally the ideas overflowed.

Maya and Bri’s adventure is coming along and unexpected events are happening that I never knew before hand.  They are straying off the outline path! Giggles.

Pretty soon I will post some excerpts to get opinions AND suggestions.  Still working on book reviews as well.

HAPPY HOLIDAY!!

 

BREAK IS OVER!

Well finally I am going to get out of my slump.  Yea, my long period of a massive block, stifling the juices of my creativity.  House is done, well as much as we can do for right now, desk has been completed, and my own writing space has finally been born.

So there are no more excuses and its now time to sit down, flush out the block, and just write.

So onward I go…

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New Orleans Experience – Day Five and Six

Yes 2 days in one! I know, I know!  I needed another day in bed to recover from this cold! It sucks getting sick on vacation.  Thankfully the hubby got me cold meds and a huge bottle of vitamin C, which I have been probably overdosing on but it works!

So moving forward to Day Six…I made myself get up and get ready.  We strolled through the streets of the French Quarter searching for an authentic voodoo shop.  I desperately wanted to find something for my best friend.  After browsing through a few shops claiming to be voodoo, I quickly discovered that these shops are not really authentic at all but mostly commercialized.

They all had multiple displays of oils, incense, and even voodoo dolls that seemed of cheap quality but were for sale with a high price tag.  Now, for those with an open mind and soul, you know who you are, when you go into certain places, places that you know have a certain mystical attraction, you can feel the energy.  Something in the air whether it is the hair on the back of your neck standing, a calm or nervous feeling, or a small breeze that whispers through your hair that feels like a touch.

Well I expected to feel something.  All of these shops had an altar on display, roped off with a sign that said “Do Not Touch”.  Even with that altar display, there was no energy, no feeling…nothing.  The only vibe I got was the feel of someone trying to take advantage of tourists, claiming to be authentic and persuade visitors to empty their pockets and wallets for the cheap trinkets that they sold.

I knew right away they weren’t real.  But remembering what a Haitan waiter told us that the truly authentic voodoo shops could only be found in the swamps, I was about to give up on finding that special gift for my friend.  I decided to buy a coffee mug and a poster from the Marie Laveau VooDoo Shop (yes it felt commercialized as well) instead of that special charmed gift that I had hoped would call out to me.

After making my purchases and feeling very disappointed, the hubby and I cut down one of the smaller side streets, enjoying the view and the hubby found a spot that was filmed on NCIS New Orleans that he took a picture of.

Right close to the spot where he took his picture I found this little shop that caught my attention right away.  Mind you this shop was on a side street, no traffic at all, on foot or in a car.  There was nothing else on this street but residential homes and a gated parking area.

IMG_1299The sign hanging above the door had an energy and called out to me!  We went inside and I could feel the energy right away.  There was a feeling of peace and excitement at the same time.  There were items for sale but there weren’t huge supplies of these items.  Also these items didn’t seem cheap in quality either.

We browsed and chatted with the lady in the shop.  Come to find out, she was a palm-reader and she hosted (by appointment only) sessions for readings as well as special vampire/ghost tours that you would not find in the tourist attraction brochures.  If you would like to visit their website, click on the picture.  If you want to visit physically, their address is:

Carpe Noctem Boutique du Vampyre

709 1/2 St. Ann

New Orleans, LA  70116

As we kept chatting with her I found a shelf with special items on display.  No I won’t tell you what that item was because that was what called out to me, that special gift for my best friend, and I don’t want her to read this before I get home and know what her gift is, (Love you Gwen).

Anyways, there a little sign attached to the shelf giving instructions that you choose the main gift, but the lady in the shop would pick out special charms for you that would go inside the item.  So I asked her about those items.  She explained she would get a feel or read from you and she would pick out the charms just for you.

Butterflies exploded in my stomach!  I explained to her that I was searching for a gift for my best friend and asked if she could get a feel for her.  She said sure after she asked some questions about my friend.

PERFECT!

I answered her questions and she  picked out the charms.  I didn’t get to see the charms, so I don’t know what they are and they are hidden inside the gift.

This wonderful lady also gave us a special map to some hidden places that you don’t find on any of the ghost tours.  I loved her!!  And there were many more items in the shop I really wanted to buy.

But after saying our goodbyes and an invitation to come back for a private session and tour with my best friend, we made our way to Frenchman Street.  There we found the jazz and blues clubs.

We picked one and ordered a cocktail…only $5…and listened to the music while we relaxed.  I loved it!

Later we strolled down the streets heading back to our resort but made a quick stop at a Cigar Factory while hubby bought and enjoyed a hand-rolled cigar.

Today was a wonderful day and I look forward to what we have on the schedule for tomorrow.

 

New Orleans Experience – Day Four

Well unfortunately, this day was not exciting!  I spent the day in the bed sniffling, sneezing, and coughing.  Yep! I caught a cold while on vacation.  It sucks!

So while I was doped up on NyQuil and binging on Netflix, the hubby got me meds and breakfast before he took off to go see the Veterans Memorial and Museum.  He had a great time! I know my hubby enjoys history just as much as I do, even though we are attracted to different genres of history.

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Afterwards he came back and hung out with Netflix and me.  My big teddy bear had a pizza delivered and we ate in the bed.  I love my man!

New Orleans Experience – Day Three

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Today was a full day of historical learning and exploring.

We hopped into the car and drove an hour outside of New Orleans, headed to the Houmas House Plantation and Gardens.  First we purchased tickets to take a tour of the house and gardens before we strolled over to the restaurant and enjoyed a delightful brunch.

The food was delightful and the atmosphere made me feel like we jumped through a time warp into the colonial days.  I enjoyed a crawfish omelet that was stuffed full of crawfish and spinach.  The hubby enjoyed the buffet that had a little bit of everything including lamb and duck.  As we ate I imagined these were dishes that were made in those grande ole days.

After our lovely brunch, we strolled over to a small building on the grounds that housed a bar and lots of history mounted on the walls.  Here we enjoyed a drink and conversation with the bartender while we waited for our tour to begin.  We discovered bottles of whiskey, scotch, and bourbon that would burn a hole through your pocket or wallet.  The most expensive was over $3,000 a shot and the cheapest was over $100.

There was a beautiful wood display cabinet behind the bar that showed off bottles of liquor that the bartender explained was not for sale or taste.  One of those bottles was as old as the Houmas House itself.  Soon the bell rang out in the gardens indicating the start of a new tour and we quickly headed towards the area to wait for our educational visit to begin.

Our tour guide was a small petite woman named Sandy dressed to represent the colonial times with her hoop skirt and southern accent.  She was funny and interesting and made the tour fun with jokes appropriate to the era and educational at the same time.

She took us through the main part of the house and through all the rooms explaining the history and the purpose of some of the artifacts.

I think my favorite part of the whole house was the spiral staircase that wound up to the second and third stories.  Sandy began her story in the foyer below the stairs explaining that in the prime time of the plantation, the house actually had two sets of stairs, one for the men and one for the women.

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At first I thought it was because that women were believed to be the weaker sex but she explained that during those times a woman’s ankles were precious and only for her husband to see.  So while the men drank bourbon and smoked cigars talked too long of politics, the wives would become bored and decide to retire for the evening.  If the women walked up that steep spiral staircase and the men other than her husband saw her delicate ankles as she climbed, then the husband would have to defend her honor.  They way they would do that would be with a dual including the pistols.  Imagine a dual with pistols just after the men had been drinking.

*Shivers*

What I find ridiculous is that the ankles were hidden from another man’s eyes but the corsets and dresses pushed a woman’s breasts up and tight just barely covering and giving everyone an ample view of cleavage.

After the tour of the house we explored the gardens with sculptures and fountains.  Something in the garden gave me pictures of lovers in those times meeting in secret to steal a kiss or just maybe even more.  Definitely saw props for a romantic novel or two here in this place.

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Well after our wonderful tour and blast in the past, we headed to the nearest commercial area where luckily I found a Tanger Outlet!!  *Dances a jig*  Shoppers paradise for sure.   We strolled through some of the shops and bought a few things for our daughters and granddaughters, then headed back to New Orleans.

The rest of our evening we walked through the shops, diners, and bars on the river side, enjoying beignets and coffee.

Finally after watching some street performers tap-dance or play violins and bagpipes, we wound our way through booths of palm readers to one of the bars on a corner and ordered some appetizers and a couple of drinks.

We sat by an open door/window and listened to the violin while we ate and talked about our days adventures.

I am beginning to fall in love with New Orleans not just for the reputation of it being a party town but for the rich depths of its culture and art.

New Orleans Experience – Day Two

Everybody deserves a Lazy Day!

That is just what I did.  Exhaustion and the early onset of a cold kept me prisoner.  We watched our Fire Stick/Netflix and binged all day, taking naps here and there.

Finally the latter part of the day around 3:00ish, we decided to get up, take showers, and walk down to Bourbon St, to get some dinner.  This is where everything gets interesting.

We crossed the roads and intersections and finally made it to the French Quarter.  It was like we stepped into another world crossing an invisible barrier.  Now imagine, the streets our resort condo is on, the area looks like any big city with tall buildings, traffic, tons of people on the sidewalks, littered with shops and restaurants.  The only difference is the trolley tracks running right in the middle of the Main strip.

When we stepped through to this new dimension, the buildings shrunk in size, the streets grew thinner, the noise of vehicles and horns blaring disappeared and was quickly replaced by loud music, and laughter.

We crossed over another intersection of these smaller streets where shops, bars, restaurants, and other enticing indulgences housed the street level.  The second and sometimes third story levels contained apartments condos with balconies overlooking the streets below.  Crowds of people lined the streets, drinking, laughing, and watching the street performers.

This was the place!  The whole reason I wanted to come to New Orleans, to step into the world where The Originals and many other favorite TV shows were based.

We walked and walked dodging large crowds until finally we came to a less crowded area and the shops disappeared.  We only assumed this was more of a residential area with a Blacksmith Shop Bar in the center of it all.  So we decided instead of turning around and fighting our way through the drunken crowds, we cut down a side street, and then headed back.

The curb appeal was beyond beautiful and enticing!  This made me wish I owned one of those upper level condos and lived here.  I could imagine sitting on a balcony and watching the crowds below or enjoy the quiet side street with a cup of coffee and my laptop.

When I mentioned this to the hubby, he laughed.  He told me that I would hate it because the all-nite crowds partying and drinking, along with the loud music would keep me awake especially during Mardi Gras.  With a poor imitation of my female voice he quoted something I say quite often at night when I roll over ready to go to sleep, “Honey can you please turn the TV down, just a little bit?”

And with just one giggle and a  teasing comment, the hubby shot an arrow through my dream bubble.  Ugh!!!  The bad thing is, he’s right!!!  I guess I am getting old!

Strolling through the quieter streets where there were more shops emphasizing art and music, we came across a small parade of jazz players leading the way for a bride and groom.  Still dressed in their wedding attire they bounced black and white frilly umbrellas in the air while they walked a dancing jig.  Following behind them I assume were the wedding party, family, and friends dancing the same jig and waving white handkerchiefs in the air.

After they passed we cut down another side street headed back to that invisible barrier between two worlds where we saw a restaurant we wanted to eat.

Before you know it there was another parade with music coming down the small street with two huge floats.  The first float was decorated for the Saints football team.  The people onboard wore the colors and jerseys in spirit of the team while they threw plastic footballs and colored beads out to the onlookers below them.  The second float did the same thing but it was decorated with the colors and jerseys representing the Dallas Cowboys.

Yea, hubby said there was a football game between the two teams this particular weekend.

So on we went finally weaving our way through the crowded street and finally arriving at the Bourbon House.  I hesitated slightly because looking through the windows, the tables and environment itself looked extremely fancy or formal.  The waiters dressed in black with low lighting and white table cloths on the tables.   I felt under-dressed for such a place.

Quickly the hubby pointed out that there were people sitting at some tables that had on shorts and t-shirts.  Well, at least were better dressed than they were.

We were seated pretty quickly and enjoyed a real crab cake for an appetizer.  I mean real!!!  I will forever be comparing crab cakes back home to this crab cake.  Real crab meat without all the breaded fillers.

Hubby ordered a seafood platter and I got a catfish plate.  Of course we had to stick to our alcohol tradition and he ordered a Corona while I ordered on of the signature cocktails, Curious Cat.  All I can tell you is that it had honeysuckle nectar and that is what caught my attention.  It was so sweet and so delicious.  I drank two of them!

While we enjoyed our meal, I noticed on the upper balcony dining area were a group of camera men or crew.  I got excited because you could tell they were professional in the TV world sense.  They seemed to be filming a large table with men dressed in suits.  I couldn’t see the men’s faces only their backs.

I continued to watch upstairs as I ate and they hubby caught my attention and asked me if I was fascinated by what was going up there.  Of course!!!  There are so many shows and movies filmed in New Orleans, I was really hoping to see some celebrity, maybe sneak a picture with my iPhone.

When the cocktail waitress came to check on us we asked her what was going on with the camera crew.  She told us that it was some Southern Living Reality show.

Hmmm, interesting.  I will be on the lookout for that.  Just so the hubby and I can point out the moment they are in the restaurant and we can point at the TV and tell our daughters, that we sat just down below them. Ha ha.

We finished our meal without dessert, bellies full, and hubby went to pay the bill!  I am so lucky he didn’t have stroke right there!  Of course we knew the entrees were a little pricey but our bill was just at a hundred and fifty.  Eeeeck!  Those alcohol drinks were twelve a piece.

Oh well! We are on vacation right!!!!

We ventured back towards the main strip that would lead us back to our condo and enjoyed the walk there as well.  At night all the lights are bright on the tall buildings and for a moment, I felt like I was in New York or something.  I kept looking up into the sky to see the lit up buildings.  I had to stop though before I ran into someone.

We hit the Starbucks and then walked back to the condo to enjoy our warm beverages.

I have to say that I LOVE the French Quarter.  Everyone is friendly, smiling, and just having a great time enjoying life!

 

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