A Heartfelt Review #Thursday Book Feature

Today, instead of reviewing someone else’s book, I’m presenting a review of my latest, The Red Dress, by someone else. My friend Ann Parsons is the author of The Demmies, a book I reviewed here when it came out a few years ago. Now, here’s Ann’s review of The Red Dress.

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It is with extreme pleasure that I am reviewing The Red Dress by Abbie Johnson Taylor! This book is classified as  “Human Relations” by NLS. (National Library Services for the Blind and Print Disabled) It is the story of a woman, her family and a red dress. The character development is stellar! The plot is intriguing, and the writing is Abbie’s usual simple and straight forward story telling.

I am truly delighted to report that this book is now available through NLS on BARD. (Braille and Audio Reading Download) As you might have guessed, this book is one that is close to my heart because I know Abbie. She belongs to my writing group. I watched this book come into being, and it was a wonderful process! I, and my fellow group members, were able to see writing as it is made, from inspiration through perspiration to the final product. It is my joy to recommend this book to you all, not only because it is an excellent read, but because it is the brain child of a good friend of mine. I hope you will all enjoy reading this book.

It is thought provoking because it explores the human character. How and why do we react in the ways that we do to events in our lives? What motivates us toward forgiveness and redemption? And finally, what makes a darned good read?

Now, if I were a sighted reviewer, I would probably go on for paragraphs about how marvelous it is that Abbie has written a book since she “had to overcome blindness”, blah, blah, blah. I’m not going to be so ignorant and disrespectful! I am merely going to say that Abbie is following in the footsteps of a million bards who are and were blind. She can write and write well, not in spite of her disability, but because she’s a good writer! I only mention this because if you find reviews of her previous work, you may find some who miss the whole point, concentrating on the author’s physical characteristics rather than on the writing itself. Don’t do that! Read this book because it is well written, not because the author has a visual impairment.

Congratulations to Abbie Johnson Taylor for getting her book onto BARD! Just in case anyone wants to read this in Braille, it is available from Bookshare as well.  If you should decide you actually want to buy the thing, go to: https://www.abbiejohnsontaylor.com/ Isn’t it great to be able to support one of our own?

Ann P.

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Thanks to Ann for  such a glowing review. As always, thank you for reading.

 

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

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Memoir Pays Tribute to Country Music Icon #Thursday Book Feature

Me & Patsy Kickin’ Up Dust: My Friendship with Patsy Cline

by Loretta Lynn

Foreword written by Dolly Partton

Copyright 2020

 

What Amazon Says

 

Me & Patsy Kickin’ Up Dust shares the “important and inspiring” (Miranda Lambert) never-before-told complete story of the remarkable relationship between country music icons Patsy Cline and Loretta Lynn.

Loretta Lynn and the late Patsy Cline are legends–country icons and sisters of the heart. For the first time ever Loretta tells their story: a celebration of their music and their relationship up until Patsy’s tragic and untimely death.

Full of laughter and tears, this eye-opening, heartwarming memoir paints a picture of two stubborn, spirited country gals who’d be damned if they’d let men or convention tell them how to be. Set in the heady streets of the 1960s South, this nostalgia ride shows how Nashville blossomed into the city of music it is today. Tender and fierce, Me & Patsy Kickin’ Up Dust is an up-close-and-personal portrait of a friendship that defined a generation and changed country music indelibly–and a meditation on love, loss and legacy.

 

My Thoughts

 

In this book, not only does Loretta talk about her friendship with Patsy, she also tells part of her story after Patsy’s death, explaining how Patsy inspired her after she passed. The Audible version is narrated by Loretta’s daughter, Patsy Lynn Russell, who was born after Patsy’s death and named after her. Patsy does an excellent job. I felt as if Loretta, not her daughter, was telling me her story. I almost cried at the end when Loretta says that if you listen to Patsy Cline’s songs, she’s singing them just for you.

Well, Patsy Cline was singing just for me and my late husband Bill. Her rendition of “True Love” was on the cassette of love songs Bill sent me after he proposed. You can learn more about that by reading My Ideal Partner.

Meanwhile, if you like Loretta Lynn’s or Patsy Cline’s music, I encourage you to read Loretta’s touching tribute. Then, see how many of Patsy’s songs you can find on Amazon Music or other such services.

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By the way, if you use the National Library Services for the Blind and Print Disabled, my latest book, The Red Dress, is now available on the site. Click here to download the book.

 

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

***

My Books

My Amazon Author Page

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WebsiteImage contains: Abbie, smiling.

 

How to Build a Believable World #Thursday Book Feature

Write Great Fiction – Description & Setting

By Ron Rozelle

 

What Amazon Says

 

How essential is setting to a story? How much description is too much? In what ways do details and setting tie into plot and character development? How can you use setting and description to add depth to your story?

You can find all the answers you need in Write Great Fiction: Description & Setting by author and instructor Ron Rozelle. This nuts-and-bolts guide – complete with practical exercises at the end of each chapter – gives you all the tips and techniques you need to:

        • Establish a realistic sense of time and place
        • Use description and setting to drive your story
        • Craft effective description and setting for different genres
        • Skillfully master showing vs. telling

 

With dozens of excerpts from some of today’s most popular writers, Write Great Fiction: Description & Setting gives you all the information you need to create a sharp and believable world of people, places, events, and actions.

 

My Thoughts

 

One thing I don’t like about this book is the use of the ampersand sign in the title instead of the written word “and.” To me, this implies laziness. Of course, it may not have been Ron Rozelle’s decision, but come on. How much time and space does the word “and” take?

Otherwise, although I took issue with some of the author’s suggestions on writing and editing, I found this book helpful, especially the exercises. One of them inspired me to start the first chapter of my novel-in-progress, Grandma Doesn’t Know Me, with a description of the sights, sounds, and smells in a nursing home. If you write fiction and are struggling with description and setting, this book will be your friend.

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By the way, My Ideal Partner and The Red Dress are now available on Smashwords as part of its sale to support those isolated by the coronavirus. This sale will run until the end of May. Please click here to visit my Smashwords author page and download these books. As always, thank you for reading.

 

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

***

My Books

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WebsiteImage contains: Abbie, smiling.

 

 

 

An Artistic and Poetic Look at Life’s Wonders #Thursday Book Feature #Re-blog

Here’s an oldie but goodie from several years ago. This book is now available from Audible with an excellent narrator. So, I hope you’ll check it out.

 

Via Thursday Book Feature: Walking by Inner Vision

 

By the way, My Ideal Partner and The Red Dress are now available on Smashwords as part of its sale to support those isolated by the coronavirus. This sale will run until the end of May. Please click here to visit my Smashwords author page and download these books. As always, thank you for reading.

 

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

***

My Books

My Amazon Author Page

Facebook

WebsiteImage contains: Abbie, smiling.

 

 

 

Kindness of Strangers #Thursday Book Feature

The Day the World Came to Town: 9/11 in Gander, Newfoundland

by Jim DeFede
Copyright 2002.

What Amazon Says

The True Story Behind the Events on 9/11 that Inspired Broadway’s Smash Hit Musical Come from Away

When 38 jetliners bound for the United States were forced to land at Gander International Airport in Canada by the closing of U.S. airspace on September 11, the population of this small town on Newfoundland Island swelled from 10,300 to nearly 17,000. The citizens of Gander met the stranded passengers with an overwhelming display of friendship and goodwill.

As the passengers stepped from the airplanes, exhausted, hungry and distraught after being held on board for nearly 24 hours while security checked all of the baggage, they were greeted with a feast prepared by the townspeople. Local bus drivers who had been on strike came off the picket lines to transport the passengers to the various shelters set up in local schools and churches. Linens and toiletries were bought and donated. A middle school provided showers, as well as access to computers, email, and televisions, allowing the passengers to stay in touch with family and follow the news.

Over the course of those four days, many of the passengers developed friendships with Gander residents that they expect to last a lifetime. As a show of thanks, scholarship funds for the children of Gander have been formed and donations have been made to provide new computers for the schools. This book recounts the inspiring story of the residents of Gander, Canada, whose acts of kindness have touched the lives of thousands of people and been an example of humanity and goodwill.

 

My Thoughts

There are plenty of accounts of people surviving 9/11: a blind man whose guide dog led him down 78 flights of stairs to escape the World Trade Center, a blind cat left alone in a New York apartment for several days. This book looks at the tragedy from a different angle. On that fateful day, we were all too preoccupied with the people on the planes that crashed into the World Trade Center and Pentagon and the firefighters trying to save as many people as possible at Ground zero. It never occurred to us that other airplane passengers, although safe, were stranded in unfamiliar territory as a result of the closure of U.S. air space. Many of these passengers had relatives in New York, and one couple’s son was a firefighter at Ground Zero.

I like the way the author tells the stories of some of those passengers stranded in Canada, bringing them to a satisfying conclusion. I was amazed that some of the people in Gander and surrounding areas invited these passengers, total strangers, to their homes to shower and sometimes sleep. This is something I would never feel comfortable doing.
While reading this book, I was comparing the 9/11 tragedy to the Covid 19 pandemic we’re experiencing now. Although not as violent, the coronavirus has claimed many lives and affected a lot of people. Maybe someday, someone will write a book like The Day the World Came to Town, an account of the kindness of strangers in one corner of the world.

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By the way, My Ideal Partner and The Red Dress are now available on Smashwords as part of its sale to support those isolated by the coronavirus. This sale will run until the end of May. Please

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

***

My Books

My Amazon Author Page

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WebsiteImage contains: Abbie, smiling.