Thursday, February 28, 2019

Book Review: From Straight-laced to Cross-dressed by Douglas Baign


Inside the Book:

 
Title: From Straight-laced to Cross-dressed
Author: Douglas Baign
Publisher: Virtualbookworm.com
Genre: Biographies/Memoirs
Format: Ecopy /Paperback

From Straight-laced to Cross-dressed tells the story of a disturbed adult in therapy seeking to understand and prevent his desire to commit suicide. Douglas starts by knowing that it has something to do with sex but soon discovers that he can't talk about his sexuality without first discussing his religious beliefs and drift away from strict Christian Fundamentalism.The overlapping issues dredge up a confused morass of anger and love, abuse and sex.

  PURCHASE HERE


BOOK REVIEW:

I have a very open mind and have friends that are part of the LGBTQ community so I wanted to read this book to see what the author had to say. Books like this make me sad because religion tries to stop you from being your true self (well, some religions anyway). My heart broke for him as he thought that something was really wrong, when in reality he was just trying to be his authentic self.

I hope that someday soon (although I don't think it's likely) our world opens their hearts and minds to all people and stops judging them so harshly if they are different. 

MEET THE AUTHOR

Coming from a long line of teachers, Douglas Baign has a Masters degree in Education but spent his career testing and documenting low-level software. He likes looking at anything basic then challenging assumptions. Doug also has a BS in Cognitive Psychology and a deep and abiding interest in History and Physics.

Douglas' super-power is breaking things, especially computer code, but he prefers to create books, poetry and music. He also enjoys travel and photography.

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Friday, February 22, 2019

Book Feature: Fuji, Sinai, Olympos by Michael Hoffman


Inside the Book:



Title: Fuji, Sinai, Olympos
Author: Michael Hoffman
Publisher: Virtualbookworm.com
Genre: Essays
Format: Ecopy /Paperback

Travel companions on my journeys are four in number: Odysseus, Don Quixote, Huckleberry Finn and Basho.” (Travel) “He walked in priestly garb. Arriving towards evening at a town or village, he’d chant sutras until passersby gave him, or flung him, enough money for a flophouse bed, a little food, a bath and enough sak√©  to induce a measure of forgetfulness. ‘A beggar,’ he admonished himself, ‘has to learn to be an all-out beggar. Unless he can be that, he will never taste the happiness of being a beggar.’” (Walking) ‘“The pleasantest of all diversions,’ said the fourteenth-century Japanese priest Kenko,“ is to sit alone under the lamp, a book spread before you, and to make friends with people of a distant past you have never known.’ Reading is inseparable from reverie. ‘Sitting alone under the lamp,’ I was soon not alone at all, but hosting, I venture to say, as vivid and varied a company as ever gathered under one roof. (Genji, Myshkin and Jones) “Everest is nothing, mere seismology.” (Fuji, Sinai, Olympos) 

  PURCHASE HERE

GUEST POST

There are any number of things I could be writing about here, but only two which I am uniquely qualified to discuss: myself and my book. I therefore crave your indulgence.
I begin with the book because it is more interesting than me. The title, Fuji, Sinai, Olymposnames three sacred mountains – the three pillars that support and also unite the 20 essays that make up the book. Why these particular mountains? Fuji because it symbolizes my adopted culture (I live in Japan); Sinai and Olympos because they symbolize my native (Western) culture.
Humankind from its earliest beginnings have stood in awe of mountains. In mountains we conceive our gods, lodge them, encounter them, worship them. “To ascend is human,” I write in the book. The book is therefore itself a kind of ascent – at least strives to be. The essays complement each other, and yet each is a whole in itself.
At the core of the book lies a premise: that philosophy is central to human life, that, simply by virtue of being human, we are all philosophersI think, therefore I am; I am, therefore I think, I think, therefore I am a philosopher. It has nothing to do with earning a doctorate, mastering arcane terminology, or even being extraordinarily intelligent. Don’t all philosophers say somewhere in the course of their work that all other philosophers are fools? Bertrand Russell, that barbed philosophical wit, defined philosophy as “an unusually ingenious attempt to think fallaciously.” Taneda Santoka, the Japanese haiku poet, said, “Let us become more foolish. Better: let us revert to our original foolishness.” See what I mean?
No – I’m not making myself clear. I won’t apologize – obscurity, in moderation, is no bad thing; it’s bracing, stimulating. But I think of it like this: Socrates said philosophy is learning how to die; I say philosophy is learning how to be “more foolish” – to “revert to our original foolishness” – to recall our original foolishness, again in the spirit of Socrates, who said all learning is recalling what our souls knew before birth.
I say of myself that I am a philosopher because I am human. I am a thinker – not, I hasten to add, a professional thinker, or a professorial thinker (on the contrary, very much the contrary: I am a student, a perpetual student, a lifelong student; I never got out of college; studentcy is my natural and native mode), but a thinker in the sense that thoughts come to me, invited and uninvited, from books and from the void, from thinkers, poets, dreamers, saints, rogues, or none of the above, or all of them at once; they seduce me, these thoughts that come to me; I write them down raw, brood over them, rewrite them a little less raw, put them together, take them apart; years pass and I see, or rather feel, that they’ve become something – what? I don’t know – something – and that, that obscure but urgent feeling, is the sign that  it’s time to start writing.

MEET THE AUTHOR

Michael Hoffman has lived in Japan since 1982. His columns appear regularly in the Japan Times, irregularly elsewhere. His previous books include "In the Land of the Kami: A Journey into the Hearts of Japan;" "Other Worlds; Little Pieces: This Side of Japan;" and "The Coat that Covers Him and Other Stories."

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Thursday, February 14, 2019

Book Review: The Holy Spirit Will Deliver You by Patricia L. Loranger



 

Inside the Book:


Title: The Holy Spirit Will Deliver You
Author: Patricia L. Loranger
Publisher: iUniverse
Genre: Religious
Format: Ebook

Does it seem you just cannot win the battle over the devil? Are you battling the temptation to sin or hiding secret sins from your church and family? Do you find it difficult to participate in church groups or struggle to pray and read the Bible?
When we think of deliverance, we think of salvation, but this is only the first step. Deliverance is receiving freedom, and many Christians need freedom from their loaded baggage of sin. We say the sinner’s prayer and we think that’s it—we’ve got our deliverance. But this is just the beginning. Some Christians struggle their whole lives with temptation; they need deliverance, and there are so few deliverance ministries out there. The Holy Spirit Will Deliver You offers hope and guidance toward relief and redemption. With the aid of the Holy Spirit, author Patricia L. Loranger undertook two lengthily spiritual deliverances, in which she cast a large number of evil spirits out of herself. She knows that through the aid of God’s Spirit that dwells within, all believers can set themselves free from the chains that bind them.
Based on one woman’s personal experiences and grounded in scripture, this guide provides Christians seeking deliverance with answers and steps to take toward their ultimate freedom.

Purchase Here

BOOK REVIEW:
I have had my battles over the years, whether it was relationships, health, money...all of those and then some. But after reading this book I realized that all of us go through things and some of us rely on their faith to get through. Now, let me be perfectly frank - I am not Christian. But, I do have a faith, and even though my faith is different from the authors, I could use what she employs in her book in my own personal life and apply it to what I am going through. 

So, don't think that if you are not Christian this book won't help you, it very well might. 

Meet the Author:
Patricia L. Loranger is also the author of Child of Woe, Child of Sorrow. She currently lives in Ingersoll, Ontario, Canada.


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#BlogTour Moses & Mac by Franca Pelaccia @francapelaccia @pumpupyourbook #mystery #womensfiction #amreading #bookworm


MOSES & MAC by Franca Pelaccia, Action/Adventure/Mystery/Women's Fiction, 303 pp., $14.99 (paperback) $3.99 (Kindle)

Title: MOSES & MAC
Author: Franca Pelaccia
Publisher: Solstice Publishing
Pages: 303
Genre: Women’s Fiction/Adventure/Mystery

On her dismal 30th birthday, unassuming Victorian scholar Mackenzie Braden receives a mysterious package from her Aunt Sara, urging her to locate Moses’ rod. The most powerful weapon in history will start global chaos if it lands in the wrong hands. Sara was an agent for the top-secret Vatican Archaeological Service. She has also been dead for 30 years and the agency dormant for just as long. Mackenzie’s only clue is a souvenir figurine of Moses, and except for hunky ex-military pilot Eoin Reilly, her allies are as inept as she is.

But nothing is going to stop Mackenzie from recharging her lacklustre life, fulfilling her mission, finding answers about her aunt, and making Eoin her birthday present. Armed with the figurine, Mackenzie sets off with Eoin for the Middle East. There she has to fend off a Ph.D. candidate turned terrorist, a dysfunctional family of treasure hunters, a fake Mossad operative, a manic former VAS agent, the underground tunnels of the Gaza Strip, and a whole lot of rocket launchers. But this is training for the ultimate confrontation with her aunt’s and now her greatest foe, a charming deposed Saudi prince with world domination on his mind.

ORDER YOUR COPY:

Link to book on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/1625268602  (Print)




A birthday no one remembered was outright unforgivable. A birthday that would change all those to follow was downright insane.

It was a changing of the guard birthday. The one when everything went thicker—face moisturizers, waistlines and mindsets, and the absence of a credible man in my life was tossed around me, over me, behind me, and in front of me by all my loved ones. But, instead of a “Happy Birthday, Mackenzie” call from a mother who was never supposed to forget. Or a “You thought your old man forgot, didn’t you, Mackie?” from a father who pretended to forget. Or some form of birthday sympathy from any of my three older sisters, I got a call from ancient Father Somerville.

Father Somerville saw through my god-forsaken soul, or made me believe it, even now in my supposedly all-powerful thirtieth year of life. In his sixty-year-old seasoned pulpit voice, he declared I had received a package from my Aunt Sara. A package from her would have been great on a birthday no one remembered, if Aunt Sara hadn’t vacated her office and neglected her duties as lecturer of biblical archaeology over thirty years before and been declared dead twenty years ago.

Aunt Sara was my father’s youngest sister. She was also my godmother. Along with my Uncle Tony, she had held my tiny head over the baptismal font thirty years before. She had posed for pictures with every relative on the Irish side of the family and wisely followed that up with everyone on the Italian side. She enjoyed the seven-course meal at my Uncle Gianni’s restaurant, left to catch a plane to Cairo and was never heard from again. Unless there was delivery from heaven or as both rosary-touting grandmothers would say, from that other place that can’t be named, the package had to be a joke from one nasty person.

But, heck, it was my big 3-0 birthday. Maybe this was some ploy, although on the dark side, to get me to a big birthday bash.




Franca Pelaccia is the author of Moses & Mac, a fast-paced and lively action/adventure/mystery and the first book of the Vatican Archaeological Service series published by Solstice Publishing. The second book is tentatively entitled Mac & the Crusaders. Under the pseudonym of Kirsten Paul, Franca is the author of two romantic comedies for the Calendar Men of King Court series. The first book, The Hockey Player & the Angel will soon be published by the Wild Rose Press. The second book, The Detective & the Burglar is in progress. Writing as Francesca Pelaccia, Franca self-published The Witch’s Salvation, a historical paranormal novel, which won the Beck Valley Reviewers’ Choice Award for 2013. An avid reader, Franca reviews novels for the Historical Novels Society.

Website Address: https://francapelaccia.com/
Blog Address: https://francapelaccia.com/blog/
Twitter Address: https://twitter.com/FrancaPelaccia
Facebook Address: https://www.facebook.com/pg/FrancaPelacciaAuthor/posts/?ref=page_internal


http://www.pumpupyourbook.com


Franca Pelaccia is the author of Moses & Mac, a fast-paced and lively action/adventure/mystery and the first book of the Vatican Archaeological Service series published by Solstice Publishing. The second book is tentatively entitled Mac & the Crusaders. Under the pseudonym of Kirsten Paul, Franca is the author of two romantic comedies for the Calendar Men of King Court series. The first book, The Hockey Player & the Angel will soon be published by the Wild Rose Press. The second book, The Detective & the Burglar is in progress. Writing as Francesca Pelaccia, Franca self-published The Witch’s Salvation, a historical paranormal novel, which won the Beck Valley Reviewers’ Choice Award for 2013. An avid reader, Franca reviews novels for the Historical Novels Society.

Website Address: https://francapelaccia.com/







http://www.pumpupyourbook.com

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Tuesday, February 12, 2019

#BlogTour - Interview with M.D. Fryson, Author of Meridian Chronicles: Black Widow Curse & The Coven


I am a wife and mom to three boys. I am an animal lover especially horses that I used to ride, train and show. Someday will do once more!

Favorite books are anything astrology, self help, motivation, romance and humor.

I love chocolate, coffee, my family (not in that order), and the beach.

I like to garden, hike, jog, swim and travel. My oldest two boys tell me I am weird as they laugh and I’ll take that as a good thing. I am told I am witty and sarcastic and I believe that comes out in my writing. 

The third installment to this series comes out September, 2019 and I am nearly finished with the last book to the series that comes out in 2020.

Website Link: www.mdfryson.com      

Twitter Link: @madelyn_fryson




Title: MERIDIAN CHRONICLES BLACK WIDOW CURSE & THE COVEN
Author: M.D. Fryson
Publisher: AMF Publishing
Pages: 408
Genre: Paranormal Romance

BOOK BLURB:
MERIDIAN’S curse has left her in a state all her own of amnesia. She is on Earth lost and afraid with only fragments to piece together her mysterious circumstance. The curse has taken the unimaginable from her, but that is just scratching the surface. The Black Widow curse will reveal itself through the demon’s riddle, the Coven and the Fairy Nymphs.

A trip back to
Salem is just what the psychic ordered, but treachery lurks with an ex coven member who calls on demons. The demon realm offers more riddles than answers, but a stroke of luck from the high demon court, brings in a sophisticated demon, Lahash who has grown tired of the games. 

The curse hides
Meridian's identity and her memory will unlock the Universal secret of her twin soul to find her way home. As Meridian finds Aiden so do the impacts of her curse and what it could do to their budding relationship. 

Meridian’s soul and fate are in the cross hairs, while the odds rise between the demons, witches and the fairies. 

Finally having found Aiden, the Fairy Queen comes through to send aid to
Meridian, but she still doubts herself and contemplates running away from it all. Who is Meridian's twin soul? Will she go back to Etheria or will the curse reign down on Meridian?
Find out in this dark and twisted paranormal romance. 

ORDER YOUR COPY:





Thank you for this interview!  I’d like to know more about you as a person first.  What do you do when you’re not writing? 

Take care of my minions!  I have three, all boys.  I do like to read, art, garden, hike, jog and travel.   I enjoy music very much and classify myself as an ‘equal genre-tunity.’

When did you start writing?

Around 2015

As a published author, what would you say was the most pivotal point of your writing life? 

For me, being so new, I think just making the decision to publish what I wrote so far has been the most pivotal. Publishing wasn’t something that I set out to or aspire to be.  I just sat down to write one day and then I went further and thought, I think I will publish!

If you could go anywhere in the world to start writing your next book, where would that be and why?

 Back to England.  There is so much history there I would love to see and take in myself and apply my experience to something in a fantasy novel would be great.  I have been to England, however I regret not going on to other countries when I had the chance. It also helps that my grandmother is from England and I still have family there.  My grandfather was from Denmark.  Another country that I would like to visit. 

If you had 4 hours of extra time today, what would you do? 

Read more for sure.  I read quite a bit now, but a lot of what I read isn’t necessarily a novel so to speak.  I read a lot of different types of material.  Research, articles on subject matter that I find important.  I would love extra time to read that novel that I have to keep putting down for other obligations.  Of course, more sleep too!

Where would you like to set a story that you haven’t done yet? 

I have kicked around the idea of something in Greece.

Back to your present book, Meridian Chronicles: Black Widow Curse & The Coven, how did you publish it?

 I just did it myself.  Of course, I did hire an editor and cover artist.

In writing your book, did you travel anywhere for research? 

Yes, I went to Salem Massachusetts.

Why was writing Meridian Chronicles:  Black Widow Curse & The Coven so important to you?

It is the second of four books in this series that takes the reader through the many changes the main character goes through.  This book is the darkest one of all of them in that, the main character is cursed and subjected to the workings of a dark witch and demons.  This story is figurative for many things such as not having faith in oneself, feeling misunderstood, carrying around a secret that only certain people know about and feeling afraid to make a mistake.  I think we all at one point or another have faced a situation where we doubted ourselves.   For me writing this book in the series really sheds light on those things that I believe many could relate too. 

Where do you get your best ideas and why do you think that is? 
 The story premise is based on a couple of things.  One, some of my own beliefs about the unseen and the love story was inspired by a true love story.  Mine!  The relationship woes that both Meridian and Aiden face is figurative for some real instances that came up through out the years between my husband and I before we finally married.  He was the one who nearly got away.

Any final words?  

I hope that everyone who reads it the book, enjoys the read!  Thanks for taking a moment to get to know a little about me. 

Win Black Widow Curse & The Coven signed copy, coffee mug, book bling, $25 Starbucks Gift Card! 

Enter below!


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Monday, February 11, 2019

#BlogTour - Sgt. Windflower Mystery Series by Mike Martin @mike54martin @pumpupyourbook


SGT. WINDFLOWER MYSTERY SERIES 
by Mike Martin, Mystery



The Sgt. Windflower Mysteries are a light mystery series set in Newfoundland on the east coast of Canada. These cozy-like books follow the adventures of Sgt. Winston Windflower, a Cree from Northern Alberta as he finds a new life and new loves in the tiny village of Grand Bank. There are crimes and mysteries for the Canadian Mountie to investigate and solve but the Sgt. Windflower Mysteries are more about family, friends, good food and good times.

The recurring cast of characters include the love of his life, Sheila Hillier who keeps him well-fed and grounded in reality. There’s also his fellow Mounties like Corporal Eddie Tizzard and a long list of bad actors, both local and just visiting, to cause havoc in their sleepy little town. Windflower brings his native background and traditions with him and finds ways to use them to help himself and his friends through difficult times. Rounding out his life are his collie, Lady, who often has adventures of her own and some new additions to his family that appear in the latest book, Darkest Before the Dawn.

The Walker on the Cape (Book 1)

A man's body is found on the Cape in a small fishing community on the East Coast. At first everyone thinks it's a heart attack or stroke. But then it is discovered that he was poisoned. Who would do this and why? Finding that out falls to Sergeant Winston Windflower of the RCMP along with his trusted side-kick Eddie Tizzard. Along the way they discover that there are many more secrets hidden in this small community and powerful people who want to keep it that way.

Windflower also discovers two more things; a love of living in a small community that is completely different from his up-bringing in a remote Indian reserve and maybe the love of his life. He gets a taste of East Coast food and hospitality as well as a sense of how crime and corruption can linger beneath the surface or hide in the thick blanket of fog that sometimes creeps in from the nearby Atlantic Ocean.


The Body on the T (Book 2)

The Body on the T is the second book in the Windflower mystery series and it follows up on the highly acclaimed premiere, The Walker on the Cape. The story begins when a body washes up on a beach near Grand Bank, Newfoundland. There is no identification on the body and few clues to identify who the person was or where they came from. The case becomes the responsibility of Sgt. Winston Windflower of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and his trusted side-kick, Corporal Eddie Tizzard.

But this is just the beginning. There is also a devastating accident on the highway and another suspicious death to deal with. Throw in a rogue police officer and an international drug ring operating in the waters off the coast and Windflower’s peaceful world is turned upside down. This time Windflower’s adventures take him to the scenic town of Burin where Captain Cook once patrolled the waters looking for French mercenaries. And to historic St. John’s where he faces down an armed suspect on a parking garage rooftop in the midst of a busy downtown evening.

Along the way Windflower also continues to enjoy the food and home-style hospitality of this part of the world. Cod tongues, pan seared scallops and even figgy duff become part of his diet, and his long list of favourite foods. Windflower may be a long way from his Cree home in Northern Alberta but he has found a new place to love in the fog and mist of Newfoundland.



Beneath the Surface (Book 3)


Sgt. Windflower is back and as usual he’s loving life on the east coast. He may be a long way from his home in Northern Alberta but he has been adopted by the locals as almost one of their own. He has a good life, good work with the RCMP, and a good woman that he has grown closer to in his years on the southeast coast of Newfoundland. But trouble is brewing just beneath the surface of this calm and charm-filled existence.

It begins with the discovery of a dead girl’s body in St. John’s, the capital city of Newfoundland and Labrador. The girl is from Grand Bank where Windflower has been stationed for the last few years. Sgt. Windflower and his associate Corporal Eddie Tizzard are pulled further and further into the case. The situation also grows to include a whole array of criminal activities from human trafficking and even the Russian Mafia.

Along the way Windflower not only has to deal with this crime wave operating all around the region, but with some challenges in his own life. He has to go back to his Aboriginal roots to find the answers to some very deep and disturbing questions. But nothing seems to bother his appetite and joy for life, especially his appetite. He continues to sample traditional Newfoundland dishes like fish and brewis but he also expands to include pan-fried sea trout and baked salmon, along with a range of desserts from blueberry buckle to his all-time favourite, peanut butter cheesecake.

His faith in the police force, that has become his life, is also threatened by a series of events that he becomes aware of that are certainly immoral if not even illegal. He is forced to face not only his own personal demons but those in real life that are lurking all around us. Sometime they are right in front of our face, but at other times they are hiding deep beneath the surface, waiting to be resolved.

A Twist of Fortune (Book 4)

A Twist of Fortune is the fourth book in the Sgt. Windflower Mystery Series and it continues the adventures of Sgt. Windflower as he tries to solve crime and experience the joy and the sadness of life in a small maritime community. Follow along as he feels the sometimes bitter taste of an east coast winter and the unique culinary delights of this part of the world.

A Long Ways From Home (Book 5)

A weekend visit to picturesque Newfoundland by a large crew of outlaw bikers leaves behind another mess for Sgt. Windflower to clean up. This time he’s facing violence, murder, mystery and intrigue. This adventure has Windflower questioning everything he thought he knew. There are troubles on the home front, cutbacks in the policing budget, old friends leaving and new ones not quite here yet. Windflower is seeking to find answers in territory that is both dangerous and unfamiliar.
This instalment in the Sgt. Windflower Mystery series has our hero dashing all over the beautiful little island of Newfoundland. Along the way he never wavers in his pursuit of justice. But he stills tries to find a way to enjoy the natural beauty that lays all around him, and to bring out the best from everybody he meets.
A Long Ways from Home is about more than just homicides or the dirty dealings of outlaw bikers. It is also about helping people and communities face up to and overcome new and very difficult challenges. Windflower relies on his friends and allies, including some four-legged ones, to help him and them find the answers. He also discovers that we are never really alone, even when we are a long ways from home.

A Tangled Web (Book 6)

Sgt. Windflower is back on the case in Grand Bank. This time there’s a missing girl, trouble at the factory and signs of danger everywhere. But there’s always good food, good friends and good company to make life worthwhile. All the usual characters and a few new suspects are back to help Windflower unravel the web of deceit and deception that threatens the small community.
 

Darkest Before the Dawn (Book 7)

Darkest Before The Dawn is the latest adventure in the Sgt. Winston Windflower mystery series, the popular Maritime tales about a Mountie who finds himself with a new family and a new life in tiny Grand Bank, Newfoundland. Ghosts, mysterious deaths, and a new, perplexing character confront Windflower, Tizzard and the other police officers in Grand Bank as they unearth secrets that have been lying hidden in the sleepy hamlet for decades. A fast-moving mystery, Darkest Before The Dawn is also a story of love, loss and learning how to grow old gracefully; a tale of family, community and looking after each other, of not giving up hope, just before the dawn.

ORDER YOUR COPIES:

Amazon



Mike Martin was born in Newfoundland on the East Coast of Canada and now lives and works in Ottawa, Ontario. He is a long-time freelance writer and his articles and essays have appeared in newspapers, magazines and online across Canada as well as in the United States and New Zealand. He is the author of Change the Things You Can: Dealing with Difficult People and has written a number of short stories that have published in various publications including Canadian Stories and Downhome magazine.

The Walker on the Cape was his first full fiction book and the premiere of the Sgt. Windflower Mystery Series. Other books in the series include The Body on the T, Beneath the Surface, A Twist of Fortune and A Long Ways from Home, which was shortlisted for the Bony Blithe Light Mystery Award as the best light mystery of the year. A Tangled Web was released in 2017 and the newest book in the series is Darkest Before the Dawn.

Website: www.sgtwindflowermysteries.com
Twitter: @mike54martin
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheWalkerOnTheCapeReviewsAndMore/





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