It’s Friday: One’s Aspect to the Sun by Sherry D. Ramsey

One's Aspect

Blurb from Goodreads: Captain Luta Paixon of the far trader Tane Ikai needs to know why she looks like a woman in her thirties–even though she’s actually eighty-four. She isn’t the only one desperate for that information.

 

The explanation might lie with her geneticist mother, who disappeared over sixty years ago, but even if her mother is still alive, it’s proving to be no small task to track her down in the vast, wormhole-ridden expanse of Nearspace. With the ruthless PrimeCorp bent on obtaining Luta’s DNA at any cost, her ninety-year-old husband asking for one last favor, and her estranged daughter locking horns with her at every turn, Luta’s search for answers will take her to the furthest reaches of space–and deep inside her own heart.

View on Goodreads

View on Amazon

Book Beginnings on Fridays

Book Beginnings on Fridays is a meme hosted at Rose City Reader where you share the first sentence (or so) of the book you are reading, along with your initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires.

 

 

“Luta, we’re about an hour from Earth. It looks good if the Captain’s on the bridge when we dock.” Rei’s cheerful voice woke me over the Tane Ikai’s comm circuit. The dream faded slowly, fragments lingering in my mind like wisps of nebulae. It’s always the same dream, when we near a planet.

The Book Beginning was actually from the prologue. Nice setup, don’t you think?

The Friday 56

The Friday 56 is a meme hosted at Freda’s voice.

Rules:
*Grab a book, any book.
*Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader
(If you have to improvise, that’s ok.)
*Find any sentence, (or few, just don’t spoil it)
*Post it.
*Add your (url) post below in Linky. Add the post url, not your blog url.
*It’s that simple.

Here’s the blurb from Page 56:

I twisted around to try to get a look at the intruder, but his black biosuit concealed him from head to toe. He bent over me swiftly and something cold and sharp pierced the flesh of my upper arm, right through my sleepsuit. I swore, jerking and rolling away from the pain, still gasping for breath. The intruder moved away, back toward the hatchway, although all of this happened in a fraction of the time it takes to tell it.

To find out more about Sherry and her writing, go to sherrydramsey.com

Hmmmmm!  Never a dull moment in this book! What do you think?

Thanks for reading and Happy Weekend!

Jo-Ann

 

Review: One’s Aspect to the Sun by Sherry Ramsey

One's Aspect

One's AspectBlurb from Amazon: Captain Luta Paixon of the far trader Tane Ikai needs to know why she looks like a woman in her thirties-even though she’s actually eighty-four. She isn’t the only one desperate for that information. The explanation might lie with her geneticist mother, who disappeared over sixty years ago, but even if her mother is still alive, it’s proving to be no small task to track her down in the vast, wormhole-ridden expanse of Nearspace. With the ruthless PrimeCorp bent on obtaining Luta’s DNA at any cost, her ninety-year-old husband asking for one last favor, and her estranged daughter locking horns with her at every turn, Luta’s search for answers will take her to the furthest reaches of space-and deep inside her own heart.

View on Amazon  View on Goodreads

One’s Aspect to the Sun is the first book in Sherry D. Ramsey’s Nearspace Trilogy. It is based on a future where space travel is routine and the science to make immortality a reality is big business.

Science fiction or speculative fiction is not my first choice of reads, but I found this well written story completely captivating and hard to put down. Not only is the world building phenomenal, it is filled with mystery and family secrets.

The characters all had their own interesting backgrounds and stories, whether they were the ship’s crew or her own family members, even other species that exist in this universe.

I was thoroughly drawn into Ramsey’s world, a universe that is extensively detailed and captivating with planets, wormholes leading to other galaxies and pinholes.

The main character, Luta Paixon is the captain of an intergalactic cargo trader. She is a very real, believable character who prefers jeans and a t-shirt to a biosuit. We come to learn of her struggles as a mother, a daughter and a wife, all made more complicated by the fact that she does not look her age.

Luta does her best to evade PrimeCorp, a mega corporation that wants her DNA. In the meantime, she desperately continues the search for her mother in the hopes of finding answers.

When she finally gets a major lead to her mother’s whereabouts she must dodge PrimeCorp. To complicate things, her husband is dying, and his last wish is to make one final trip into space. He does not expect to come back.

Wonderfully written, I give One’s Aspect to the Sun five stars.

Next week I will follow up with a review of the second book in the Nearspace series, Dark Beneath the Moon. Read about it on Amazon here.

Now is the perfect time to get your hands on these books. Sherry has just released the third book in the series, Beyond the Sentinel Stars.

Sherry D. Ramsey is a speculative fiction writer, editor, publisher, creativity addict and self-confessed Internet geek. When she’s not writing, she makes jewelry, gardens, hones her creative procrastination skills on social media, and consumes far more coffee and chocolate than is likely good for her.

Her books include One’s Aspect to the Sun (named Speculative Fiction Book of the Year for 2014 by the Book Publishers’ Association of Alberta); a sequel, Dark Beneath the Moon; a new middle grade fantasy, The Seventh Crow; the urban fantasy The Murder Prophet; and To Unimagined Shores—Collected Stories. With her partners at Third Person Press, she has co-edited five anthologies of regional short fiction to date. A member of the Writer’s Federation of Nova Scotia Writer’s Council, Sherry is also a past Vice-President and Secretary-Treasurer of SF Canada, Canada’s national association for Speculative Fiction Professionals.

Sherry lives in Nova Scotia with her husband, children, and dogs. You can visit her online at www.sherrydramsey.com, find her on Facebook, and keep up with her much more pithy musings on Twitter @sdramsey.

 

Review: Aggravated Momentum by Didi Oviatt

Blurb from Amazon: Deadly thriller, twisted plot, shocking, and dark conspiracy hardly scratch the surface to define Aggravated Momentum. Not everything is as it seems in what appears to be an average family. When danger lurks so close to home, skeletons emerge, and the darkest of secrets surface, causing twisted desires to become reality. Aggravated Momentum offers the perspective of some very diverse and unique characters, including fun, witty personalities to fall in love with, along with an intellectual killer to die for. You may be surprised as to whom exactly you can relate. Is it the cold, calculated murderer, who’s name is yet to be revealed? Markie or Kam, the independent sisters, guilty of nothing more than getting tangled with the wrong people at the most inopportune times? Or, the cowardly snake curled in a hidden corner? Who are you, exactly? And, more importantly, who are they? The deeper you dig into the psyche of another, the more breath taking are the secrets you will find.

View on Amazon

View on Goodreads

Put on your seatbelt and hold on tight because this novel is one hell of a roller coaster ride! There are more twists and turns I never saw coming.

As you can tell by the gorgeous cover, it is about murder — a serial murderer at that. It has great pacing and once I started reading it, could not put it down. It was wonderfully unpredictable, I had to know what was going to happen next! Didi did an amazing job building suspense and giving just enough back story that you don’t know who to trust.

The book is well written in Didi’s unique style. The dialogue is realistic. Yes, people do use swear words. It is an adult thriller.

I love that the point of view changed several times during the story and the reader could get into the head of not only Markie, the main character but also her sister Kam, the killer and even the main character’s mother. The reader gets to experience first hand what they are thinking (more surprises!) and discover their own dirty little secrets. And believe me, it seems that every character has them.

Go to Didi’s blog

Thanks for reading!

Jo-Ann

 

Depression is more than emotion

Reblogged from Brainless blogger

Depression is more than emotion.png

My mood is suffering with this loss of functionality right now. And I am trying to manage this sinking sensation I am having best I can. It is hard when a lot of the things I would do to boost my mood I cannot do. I am reminded that while I am on depression medication I still have depression, since it doesn’t just zap it away. And I am reminded the rest is up to me. And I know how it works with me and what I need to pay attention to. So this is a post on what depression symptoms were like for me untreated. More than the emotions, but those emotions… well they had a power I would underestimate by any means.

Lack of motivation

I had extensive lack of motivation to do anything. I tried many ways to boost this. One was do the activity for 10 minutes to encourage your brain to get into it. But I couldn’t. I didn’t feel like anything was worth while. Like anything had any appeal or interest. And everyday things exhausted me to think about doing. Finally, I came down to the do 1 thing a day rule.

Insomnia and sleep all day

My insomnia was at its worst. And other times I would sleep the day away and feel immensely guilty about this. I would say I was sick. I would get up before my spouse got home. Anything to hide the fact I Couldn’t get out of bed all day.

Losing weight

I was losing weight and had little appetite. I didn’t even see this as a depression sign, but there you go. It was consistent weight loss.

I had a massively hard time making decisions

I couldn’t make them. I would wait and wait and be paralyzed by them until it was too late to make them. And then I would feel guilty. But I also wouldn’t fight for my rights either. Like when I was kicked off long-term, severely depressed, suicidal ideation, in no way capable of returning to work… I had no fight in me, just sunk deeper. They wear you down. And when you are down you can’t see an out. You literally can’t see a way to fight.

Suicidal ideation

I had suicide attempts but those were on medications with side effects that enhanced my depression. Which is a class I cannot be on now, so my depression treatment is not antidepressants but rather Abilify. But suicidal ideation… that was all me. And I had that a lot. The one thing I value about treatment is that isn’t a factor at all anymore. For which I am grateful.

Fatigue

The fatigue added to my chronic illness fatigue is immense. Not to mention mental fatigue with the lack of concentration and just heaviness of thought. But actual fatigue was draining all the time. It was a constant weight.

Negative thoughts

Negative thoughts came with the intensity of emotion to back them. But I feel that I had little self-worth, a lot of self-blame, a lot of guilt and did a whole lot of catastrophizing while I was at it. I am still working on that self-worth. Working on some self-compassion. Trying not to blame myself for every single thing including my illnesses.

Depression is complex. It is so much more than the weight of the emotions that come with depression. Or the complexity of the negative thoughts that are in those emotions. It is how this shapes our reality, thinking, body, and our being in the world. It impacts our choices, our ability to make choices, our motivation to do things and how we act in our lives. Our whole being is the world is affected. It is complex, I say. And it demands complex solutions. Our therapy. Our own at home homework. Our own mood boosters; those things we do that we know help keep us balanced. Perhaps medication. Or perhaps meditation. Whatever works for the person. For me it was medication and some meditation. Meditation really relaxes me… sorts out the mental noise going on in there. We all have our ways of quieting the noise.

So I know when I am in a slump. I know why I am. And I know what to do about it. I have all the skills for it, now. It is just one of those things… you have to do the homework. Have to work it out. And if I cannot, I know what to do about that too. Always help to find out there. Always a therapy refresher course if you need one.

Suicide Hotline

Canada suicide prevention

Oberon: King of the Faeries

Mythical Mondays

Oberon King of the Faeries
Oberon King of the Faeries

Welcome to Mythical Mondays! 

Today, I’m highlighting Oberon, the Faery King.

Oberon

Oberon is also known in French as Alberon and in German as Alberich. It literally translates to King of the Elves. Elbe=elves and Reix=king.

His name was most likely taken from a legend of a Merovingian sorcerer named Alberich.

The King of Fairies has been used through the ages in legends and stories and plays, including Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream and the French medieval poem Huon de Bordeaux.

Merovingian Sorceror

Alberich was a powerful sorcerer who lived during the French Merovingian era (between the 5th and 8th centuries). His brother Merowich was the eponym from which the Merovingian dynasty descends, although a point to note, their actual existence is unproven.

Huon de Bordeaux

One of the first to name Oberon was John Bouchier (Lord Berners). He translated the 13th century fantasy Huon de Bordeaux, which is actually based on a little snippet of 9th century fact.

In the story, Huon was the son of Seguin, the Count of Bordeaux. He was passing through the forest inhabited by Oberon, and had been warned by a hermit not to speak to Oberon, the dwarf king who inhabited the woodland. Huon was too polite to not reply to Oberon’s greetings. Oberon explained to him that a certain fairy was not invited to his christening, and because she was so highly offended she cursed him to a dwarfish height. She then relented and gave him great beauty as compensation.

Oberon ended up helping Huon with a quest. Huon had killed Charlot, the Emperor’s son in self-defense, and he was required to visit the court of the amir of Babylon and perform various feats to win a pardon. He succeeds, but only with the help of Oberon and his magic. He was given a magical cup that has been compared to the Holy Grail, always full for the virtuous.

“The magic cup supplied their evening meal; for such was its virtue that it afforded not only wine, but more solid fare when desired”.

Midsummer Night’s Dream

It is believed that it was Lord Berner’s translation that led to the fairy element in Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Oberon wants to have the human child that his wife, Titania had taken into her care. It is the child of a mortal friend who had died. She wants to raise the child, but Oberon wishes to have the child for his own purposes. He wants the child to become a henchman for him.

He puts a magical ointment into her eyes to distract her, and she falls in love with a man who’s been given a donkey’s head.

Eventually he feels badly for what he’s done to his Titania and the two are reunited.

Nibelungenlied

There is also a folktale, an epic poem written in Old German called the Nibelungenlied.

Oberon was a dwarf chieftain responsible for guarding the treasures of Nibelungen.

He fought with Seigfreid and lost, so he had to part with the sword Balmung and a “cloak of darkness” (the Tarn-kappe) (any Harry Potter fans out there?)

Freya was another victor, she acquired the necklace Brisingamen, Odin’s magical ring Draupnir and the magical sword Tyrfing. Oberon had a rough go from the sounds of it!

The Dragon Prophecy: Oberon

Oberon, as he appears in the Dragon Prophecy, is the son of Maeve, Queen of the Fairies. He is a mysterious character, dark, quiet and brooding. He prefers to be alone, unless he is in the company of Titania or Aiden, his longtime friends.

Oberon is not what he appears to be. And he is not happy with the way his mother runs Court. When he unwittingly learns of his mother’s intentions for the future of the Fae, he takes advantage of the situation to change the world of Humans and Faeries forever.

Aiden is a halfling fairy. Being half human, she is regarded as a reject by the entire Court, with the exception of her friends Oberon and Titania.

She cannot fathom why Maeve is forcing her to marry Oberon. Why would she want a halfling to one day take her place as Queen? Aiden is given little choice in the matter. What’s worse, Oberon and Titania are obviously in love. 

It is hard to know who to trust in this land of faeries, sketchy druids and Shadows that kill.

I’m going to leave some references where I had found most of this information if you’d like to learn more about the legends and stories of Oberon.

ipfs.io

Wikipedia

Paranormal Encyclopedia

Long, Long Time Ago

Cryptids Guide

Hollow Tree Tales

Thanks for stopping by and reading! Have a great Monday!

Jo-Ann

 

 

 

 

 

 

ROW80 Update: Round 1 Week 4 Sunday!

ROW80

 

Novel Writing:  

Finished this round of edits on the chapter I was working on and reasonably happy with it. Yay! I’ve also picked up K. M. Weiland’s Structuring Your Novel and Structuring Your Novel Workbook to perhaps try cleaning up the plot as I go. I want the story to flow well and not drag so I’m hoping this well help with that. 

I’ve realized that I have to make my main character more interesting and a bit more likeable. So far, he’s been kind of flat, so I’ve been keeping that in mind as I go.

 

 

Painting:

I already posted this on Wednesday, but I didn’t paint again this week so I’m resposting what I’d painted last Monday. The work in progress and the reference photo are here if you’d like to check them out.

The colour is a little off on this photo but here is the final painting:

Acrylic 6 x 6 inche

 

Yoga

I’m disappointed I didn’t make it to yoga this week. Hopefully this week I will get a class or two in. 

Been working on deep breathing, trying to control unexplained anxiety that has kept me from doing going out the door this week. 

 

 

I’m excited to have won a copy of The Shadow Girls by Misty Mount! Isn’t that cover gorgeous?

Here’s the blurb from Amazon:Shy, thirteen-year-old Zylia has always known she was different. Most teenagers feel unnoticed and unseen, but for Zylia, it’s something much worse. She’s disappearing from this world and doesn’t know how to stop it. At times, she’s not sure she wants to. Until she stumbles across a family mystery surrounding the disappearance of her great-aunt Angelica years earlier. During her quest to unravel the mystery, Zylia discovers she’s able to cross the boundary and enter the “in between” world. Now, it’s up to Zylia to save herself before she’s trapped “in between” forever.

View on Amazon

View on Goodreads

Review to come!

How about you? Did you reach your goals?

Have a wonderful week and thanks so much for stopping by!

Jo-Ann

Depression-A Killer

Excellent article on depression by Penny Wilson.

Depression-A Killer

How long will this subject remain in the shadows?  How long will it have such a stigma attached to it that people dare not even use the word ‘Depression’?

Life has no value to depression.  EVERY DAY 121 Americans commit suicide.  50% of those people suffered from depression.

More than 38,000 people a year commit suicide.  Yet 80 to 90% of those that seek help for depression are helped  using therapy and/or drugs.

The problem with that, is the fact that only about 50% of those that suffer from depression seek help. Why?  Because it’s a dirty little secret that no one wants to talk about!

Kurt Cobain, Robbin Williams, Mindy McCready, director of the movie Top Gun Tony Scott, linebacker for the Kansas City Chiefs; Jovan Belcher, actress Lucy Gordon and Jonathan Brandis-star of The Never Ending Story.  These are all people that committed suicide.  I could easily fill a page with names.

Depression is sneaky and deceptive.  It creeps into your life in such subtle ways, you don’t even know it’s happening until one day, you look around yourself and your entire word has gone grey.  What I mean by grey, is that your world no longer has any color to it.  It has no life.  NOTHING matters any more.  NOTHING brings you joy.  Depression has stolen that from you.

(this is one of those things that No One wants to talk about or admit to) I am one of the lucky ones.  I’ve struggled with depression off and on for most of my life. I never attempted suicide, but I did think about it at times.

Right now, I’m good.  Hell, I’m great!  Life is wonderful, alive and quite rich for me.  But I never know if or when it may come into my life again.  I hope never.  But I can’t be certain of that.   

WEB MD says that some of the signs of depression are:

  • Fatigue or loss of energy almost every day
  • Feelings of worthlessness or guilt almost every day
  • Impaired concentration, indecisiveness
  • Insomnia or hypersomnia (excessive sleeping) almost every day
  • Markedly diminished interest or pleasure in almost all activities nearly every day (called anhedonia, this symptom can be indicated by reports from significant others)
  • Restlessness or feeling slowed down
  • Recurring thoughts of death or suicide
  • Significant weight loss or gain (a change of more than 5% of body weight in a month)

If you know of someone that might be depressed, reach out to them.  Start a conversation.  Let them know that it’s alright to talk about it!  Let’s bring depression out of the shadows and into the light.  This is the only way people are going to feel safe enough to talk about it and seek help.

* I found my information/statistics at various websites.  Here are a few that have wonderful articles on depression and how to seek help:

WEDMD

SAVE.ORG

Mental Health America

Copyright (C) 2018 Penny Wilson

It’s Friday: Aggravated Momentum by Didi Oviatt

The blurb from Goodreads: Not everything is as it seems in what appears to be an average family. When danger lurks so close to home, skeletons emerge, and the darkest of secrets surface, causing twisted desires to become reality. Aggravated Momentum offers the perspective of some very diverse and unique characters, including fun, witty personalities to fall in love with, along with an intellectual killer to die for. You may be surprised as to whom exactly you can relate. Is it the cold, calculated murderer, who’s name is yet to be revealed? Markie or Kam, the independent sisters, guilty of nothing more than getting tangled with the wrong people at the most inopportune times? Or, the cowardly snake curled in a hidden corner? Who are you, exactly? And, more importantly, who are they? The deeper you dig into the psyche of another, the more breath taking are the secrets you will find.

View on Goodreads

View on Amazon

Holy twisty turns! What a book! I will post the review in the next couple of days, but I wanted to share with you a little piece of Aggravated Momentum! Also, please check out Didi’s blog here! She is an amazing writer, and if you enjoy suspense you will love her books!

Book Beginnings on Fridays

Book Beginnings on Fridays is a meme hosted at Rose City Reader where you share the first sentence (or so) of the book you are reading, along with your initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires.

 

 

My hands are as far above my head as they can reach, my back intensely arched, and my calf muscles tighten, extending to the footboard. My pumpkin orange painted toes point as they join the stretch. The sun beams through a tight crevice in the drapes, challenging my eyes to regain vision. I squint and strain to open them. It’s late afternoon, and I’ve been sleeping for four hours. Sadly, it’s the most uninterrupted sleep my taxing life has allowed in over a week.

The Book Beginning was actually from the prologue. Nice setup, don’t you think?

The Friday 56

The Friday 56 is a meme hosted at Freda’s voice.

Rules:
*Grab a book, any book.
*Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader
(If you have to improvise, that’s ok.)
*Find any sentence, (or few, just don’t spoil it)
*Post it.
*Add your (url) post below in Linky. Add the post url, not your blog url.
*It’s that simple.

Here’s the blurb from 56% on my Kindle:

The entire time he’s filling us in, the officer sitting at the desk gawks at Kam. She’s mine, fucker. I force myself to look away and show no reaction to it–a master performance, as usual. 

Hmmmmm!  Never a dull moment in this book! What do you think?

Thanks for reading and Happy Weekend!

Jo-Ann

 

ROW80 Week 3 Wednesday

ROW80

 

Novel Writing:  

I ended up rewriting most of the chapter I was working on. Perfectionist? Maybe. I just didn’t like the POV! The main character, Mac was written in first person, and so was his brother Finn. When I was revising last week, I decided it might work better to have Finn’s perspective told in the third person. 

I decided yesterday that third person didn’t work. I didn’t like it. So, I went to the beginning of the chapter and tweaked it to first person. It reads much better. I also cleaned up some dialogue and hacked out some extraneous stuff that wasn’t working.

 

Painting:

I painted on Monday and actually finished the piece I was working on! Yay! The work in progress, if you’d like to see it, is here.

The colour is a little off on this photo but here is the final painting:

Acrylic 6 x 6 inches

 

On Tuesday, there was a one day sale on canvas at Michael’s. Buy one get one free! It was around 4o’clock when my friend and I got there. We stocked up on canvas and paint and took our time enjoying the new spring stock and the markers.

There were so many pretty colours to choose from, they were irresistible! And they had paper to try them out…so what do two artists do?

My friend Adelle’s pretty flower
I was feeling the Valentine spirit!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The reason for showing you these little doodles leads to the next part…why I didn’t make it to yoga class!

 

Yoga

I was all registered for class tonight. I really planned to go! But, by the time I got home from Michaels, I knew there was no way I was going to make it there in time.

We had so much fun colouring with all the colourful markers, but I ended up not being able to make it to yoga. Hopefully, I will get a class in before the week is over.

 

How about you? Did you reach your goals?

Have a wonderful week and thanks so much for stopping by!

Jo-Ann

Daily Walk: Ice Crystals

Today was cold, damp and overcast. I did not want to go for a walk. Burger dragged me out, and I’m so glad he did. Once again, we headed to the trails. In the woods, we were protected from the windchill which was down to -16oC (3.2oF). Once you get walking, it’s quite lovely and comfortably warm.

Burger found this frozen pool with the prettiest ice crystals on the surface! It looked like snow that had settled on the top, but not quite.

They were even present on the brook. The water was still running, but with thin sheets of ice on the surface.

Closeup of the ice particles. Looks like Jack Frost was here. I love how that little branch sits on top of the ice, completely crystalized.

Crystalized branches on the side of the brook.

What’s the weather like where you live?

Thanks for visiting,

Jo-Ann and Burger ❤