Tuesday, May 31, 2011


Teaser Tuesday is hosted by MizB and anyone can play. Just take two sentences from your current read, post them, and share the link here: Teaser Tuesday 

This week's Teaser is from Lace and Shadows, a paranormal romance by Lisa Wanttaja. It's on my Kindle, and these two sentences are at the end of Chapter 1 (approx 2%).

Lisa WanttajaWith a cry halfway between a sob and a shriek, Jessamyn hurtled down the curving staircase, just as she'd fallen over a hundred years before. But this time her body, its flesh and fragile bone long since dust, dissolved to mist and joined with the rising maelstrom to roar through the empty house like a Low Country hurricane.

Monday, May 30, 2011


When I read the comment about Peggy and the P.I. from yesterday's SSS, I laughed out loud. Seeing Sandy's blog posting about it this morning made me laugh again. But my co-author is far too kind to old Hornyberry. Although Peggy certainly did compare him to McGruff the crime-fighting dog, she also has a few more gems to say about him.

"Not that this Bozo was such a prize. With his bald pate, jowls, and round belly, nobody would call him the pick of the litter."

I think that about says it all. Go Peggy!

~ Miss Pickles (alias Sandra)


I just had to post this in response to a comment on yesterday's Six Sentence Sunday posting. Will Peggy fall for the private investigator? Not a chance! Here's an excerpt from I.O.U. SEX that explains why Hornby isn't exactly hero material:

But he didn't look at all like what she expected. Instead of resembling the PIs she'd seen on television shows, he looked more like McGruff the Crime-Fighting Dog. You'd think he'd have the courtesy to rise to greet a prospective client, she thought. She straightened her shoulders and reminded herself that she would be the one paying for his services.

Saturday, May 28, 2011


Our contribution is from I.O.U. SEX, the story of three women who make a pact to track down their high school steadies. Peggy has just met with private investigator James Hornby and hired him to find her old boyfriend, Mark.

Waves of heat rose from the sidewalk as Peggy strutted from the air conditioned building to her Cadillac Escalade parked at the curb. Climbing into her SUV felt like entering an oven, but Peg hardly noticed the intense heat. As the engine roared to life, she turned the air conditioning to MAX and slipped off her shoes, wriggling her toes to restore circulation.
         She spoke to her smiling reflection in the rear view mirror. "Look out, Mark William Smith. Hornby's on your trail, and even a blind hog can find an acorn once in a while."

[By the way, Peggy LOVES to use homey sayings. We dubbed them "Peggy-isms" and had a lot of fun sprinkling them into her dialog.]

For more Six Sentence Sunday snippets (or to add your own), click on this link: Six Sentence Sunday. Thank you, Sara Brookes, for hosting.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

BOOK REVIEW - Deal With the Devil

Product Details
Not long ago I finished reading Deal With the Devil, Part One, by J. Gunnar Grey, and I'm counting the days until Part Two is available on Amazon. This story is a winner! 

I usually read women's fiction, so a book with a male protagonist and set in the 1940s in the middle of World War II is a big departure for me. But Grey's skillful writing grabbed me from Page 1 and held me throughout the book. More than once the twists and turns
 kept me reading far into the night. 

Protagonist Major Faust is one of the most intriguing characters I've encountered in a long time. He's a German army officer who has parachuted into England during a nighttime Luftwaffe bombing raid. When he's captured, he claims he was drunk, his buddy was the pilot, and that he was strapped into a parachute and pushed from the plane. He says he was not a part of the invasion force. But is it just a coincidence that Faust spent a year at Oxford and speaks the language perfectly? Is it also a coincidence that on the night Faust was captured, a young woman was raped and murdered, and that the same thing happened when he escaped (before he was recaptured)? 

I whole-heartedly recommend this book to lovers of World War II history, readers of mysteries, and fans of all-around good stories. When Deal With the Devil, Part Two, is released, it will be at the top of my TBR list. I can't wait!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


Teaser Tuesday is hosted by MizB and anyone can play. Just take two sentences from your current read, post them, and share the link here: Teaser Tuesday

Since two of us contribute to this blog, we're posting two Teasers this week. It's funny that although we chose our posts independently, they are both quotes from old men!

From Miss Pickles, alias Sandra: [*If you want to know why I use this blog name, go to our blog archive for March and read all my "hog" posts.] My two sentences for this week come from Water For Elephants: A Novel by Sara Gruen. I can't give you the page number, because I read it on my Kindle, but these two gems come from the first chapter. Jacob is a 93-year-old man who is in a nursing home, and he's lamenting the fact that he never gets any "real" food.

"Sometimes I think that if I had to choose between an ear of corn or making love to a woman, I'd choose the ear of corn. Not that I wouldn't love to have a final roll in the hay--I am a man yet, and some things never die--but the thought of those sweet kernels bursting between my teeth sure sets my mouth to watering."

From Sandy Ruth: This week's two-sentence teaser is from The Last Time I Saw You by Elizabeth Berg (Page 97.) It's the story of four people and their 40th high school reunion.
The Last Time I Saw You 

"Do things while you still can! Blink a couple of times and you'll be an old fart like me, with memories your only entertainment…."

Sunday, May 22, 2011


We got such a positive response last week that we're continuing with Peggy, one of the three women in I.O.U. SEX who's on a hunt for her high school boyfriend (decades after graduation!) 
Setup: Peggy is meeting with private investigator James Hornby, intent on hiring him to find her high school boyfriend.

"How long do you anticipate this search will take?" Peggy cringed at the pleading note that crept into her voice, wondering if Hornby's dismissive looks or the run she'd just noticed in her pantyhose had caused her self-confidence to flee so quickly. She crossed her legs to hide the unsightly tear.
She wished he'd quit clicking that darned pen and fiddling with his frigging Blueberry or Raspberry or whatever it was called. Peggy suppressed the urge to reach across the desk, snatch it out of his hands, and fling it across the room. Instead, she clasped her hands in her lap, her need of the man's services overriding her desire to cram his electronic toy up his nose. 

6 Sentence Sunday is the creation of Sara Brookes. To read contributions from other writers or to join in, click on this link: Six Sentence Sunday Blog

Thursday, May 19, 2011

In Defense of Discomfort

What's your opinion? Is it important to dress up for special occasions? Or does it matter? Check out the Boomers and Books Blog to read my essay "In Defense of Discomfort." 

Here's the link: In Defense of Discomfort

(Image from Wikipedia)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


Teaser Tuesday is hosted by MizB and anyone can play. Just take two sentences from your current read, post them, and share the link here: Teaser Tuesday

I couldn't resist adding another two-sentence teaser from Saving CeeCee Honeycutt by Beth Hoffman. There are so many funny snippets in this book! This one is on Page 207.
With my hands clamped between my knees, I fessed up. I told Oletta about Miz Goodpepper and the flying slugs--how Earl, the married policeman, had danced around the porch in his Zorro mask and underpants while swinging Miz Hobbs's brassiere, and how, when Miz Hobbs ran down the steps, she slipped on a slug and cracked her head open.

Note: If you like this, you'll love the complete description of the flying slug incident in Chapter 11.

Sunday, May 15, 2011


Six more sentences this week from I.O.U. SEX. Setup: The three friends decide to hunt down their high school boyfriends. One of them (Peggy) gives up on internet research and decides to hire a professional to help in her search.

One week later Peggy sat in the office of James Hornby, P.I. Decked out in her best Ferragamo shoes and plus-size designer suit, she hoped she appeared to be a woman of means. This whole adventure was so far outside her normal experience and comfort level that she needed all the help she could get. Wearing nice clothes usually made her feel more confident. At the moment, though, her feet hurt and she couldn't help but wonder if she didn't resemble the Pillsbury Dough Boy trussed up in silk. She just hoped she didn't fall off her high-heeled shoes and ruin the effect she'd worked so hard to create. 

6 Sentence Sunday is the creation of Sara Brookes. To read contributions from other writers or to join in, click on this link: Six Sentence Sunday Blog

Friday, May 13, 2011


How do you know when you're getting old? Older than dirt? Out of shape? In deplorable physical condition? When you see your twenty-five year old daughter put on her running gear and leave the house to run the 1.8 mile loop that normally takes you 45 minutes to walk, and she comes back ten minutes later! As evidenced by this photo, she has even run a marathon and made it to the finish line. As for me, I sometimes don't even finish the walk!

~ Miss Pickles (alias Sandra)


Gracias! Merci! Dank! Paldies!

J. Gunnar Grey posted a very nice review of I.O.U. SEX on her "Mysteries & Histories" website today. Here's a link:
Mysteries & Histories Review

Thanks a million!

Sunday, May 8, 2011


6 Sentence Sunday is the creation of Sara Brookes. To read contributions from other writers or to join in, click on this link: 6 Sentence Sunday

This snippet takes place in Chapter 1 of I.O.U. SEX, when the three friends read June's high school diary and come up with the idea to search for their old boyfriends.

      Kiki rolled her eyes. "Shit, if I'd known then what I know now, things would have been very different. When I think of the staying power of those eighteen-year-old guys ...." She sighed. "Too bad we wasted it."
      Peggy put her hand over her mouth to keep her drink from spewing out with her laughter.

To read a sample of I.O.U. SEX, click on this link, then scroll down: Smashwords Sample

Monday, May 2, 2011


Teaser Tuesday is hosted by MizB and anyone can play. Just take two sentences from your current read, post them, and share the link here: Teaser Tuesday

Our teaser is from Page 6 of Saving CeeCee Honeycutt by Beth Hoffman. Twelve-year-old CeeCee is the narrator.  

She became so unpredictable that I never knew what would be waiting for me when I got home from school--a plate of gooey half-baked cookies or muffled sobs leaking from beneath her closed bedroom door. I didn't know what was wrong with her, but I did know that none of the other mothers in our town acted the way she did.



Music-legato.pngSince my granddaughter was born I've spent more time in my car, driving from our house to my son's place. And that means I've been listing to the radio more than usual. My favorite stations are Seattle's local National Public Radio (NPR) affiliates.

Yesterday I caught this program on KPLU and enjoyed it so much I just had to share. To listen to "The Lusty Month of May" on John Kessler and John Maynard's "Record Bin Roulette" click on the following link (then click on "Audio"): 
The Lusty Month of May

I hope you enjoy the broadcast as much as I did. HAPPY MAY!!