Elizabeth Melton Parsons

Writing~Art~Life


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Mist by Susan Krinard

mist book cover

New York Times bestselling author SUSAN KRINARD launches her first urban fantasy series with MIST.

Mist lives a normal life. She has a normal job, a normal boyfriend, and a normal apartment in San Francisco. She never thinks about her past if she can help it.

She survived. That’s the end of it.

But then a snowy winter descends upon San Francisco. In June. And in quick succession, Mist is attacked by a frost giant in a public park and runs into an elf disguised as a homeless person on the streets…and then the man Mist believed was her mortal boyfriend reveals himself to be the trickster god, Loki, alive and well after all these years.

Mist’s normal world is falling apart. But thankfully, Mist isn’t quite so normal herself. She’s a Valkyrie, and she’s going to need all her skill to thwart Loki’s schemes and save modern Earth from the ravages of a battle of the gods.

 

 

As many of you already know, I won  Mist by Susan Krinard over at Reflections of a Book Addict and I promised I’d leave my thoughts about it after reading. I’d stated in my earlier post that this was a new genre for me. Although I will read just about anything, for some reason I’d just never read any urban fantasies. I had no preconceived ideas as far as whether I’d like it, love it or hate it. I was looking forward to delving into new territory. Since I won the book, it cost me nothing but a little time to try the new genre. I didn’t read any reviews for Mist before I started reading and I’m glad. I read a few after I’d finished it and there was quite a few spoilers that I’d have been annoyed at knowing before I’d read the book. I understand the spoilers though. It’s difficult to detail the story line for you without the spoilers, so I’m not even going to try. Heck, even the blurb up there has a spoiler. I’ll just tell you what I think of the story.

I’m not exactly well versed in Norse mythology, but not completely ignorant either. I’ve read quite a few books about Odin, Loki, and the Valkyries, but never one set in modern times. So that was new for me and I actually liked it. As with most first books in a series, Mist was a lot about world building, back story and character development. I found it slow going at first. About ten pages in I was tempted to give the book to someone else and forget it, but I trudged on and eventually the beginnings of a good story began to emerge.

About the characters: Quite a few of the reviews I read said they felt Mist lacked emotion, therefore making it difficult to connect to her character. I disagree completely. I felt she was an emotional wreck. Sure she was trying to be the big, brave Valkyrie with a tight leash on her emotions, but it was clear this wasn’t the case. Her emotions were in full force, both complicated and conflicted. Kind of like how I felt about this story. It endeared her to me and made me want to know her better.  The elf, Dainn, was a super interesting character, also super annoying. Although I think he’s the male lead in the story, I was not enamored. There was something lacking, but I think (hope) he’ll improve as the series continues. Loki was vile, disgusting, and conniving as Loki always is, but his character wasn’t a villain I love to hate. He seemed weak and I really didn’t feel much about him one way or the other. I found the frost giants intriguing and thought the characterization of Freya was done well. Mist takes two young teens into her home and I think I like them and that part of the story line best of all. I would definitely like to know more about them and watch as their story unfolds.

I heard some complaints among the other reviewers about the differing POVs in the story, but to me this was a definite plus. I love being allowed inside the mind of all the main characters. That is, as long as it’s not over done and ruins all the surprises a story should hold. Maybe I would have held back on some of the details learned in this first installment, but I can’t be sure of that without reading the entire series first.

The Gods are going to war and modern earth is the designated battleground, Mist and her allies are the force that’s supposed to prevent that and save earth from the destruction the war would cause. That being said there are quite a few violent, action-packed fight scenes in the book.  But then, what kind of  a Valkyrie heroine would Mist be if she didn’t have a chance to kick some butt?

So, did I love it or not? That’s a good question. And one I’m not sure I can answer. I’m conflicted. There were things I loved about it and things I didn’t care for at all. By the time I reached the last page, I was pretty engrossed in the story, so I’d certainly read the next book in the series. I guess I’ll say I liked it and I’m optimistic that the next books will just get better and better. Would I recommend Mist to a friend. Yes, if it’s something I think they’d enjoy. I actually gave my copy to a friend because I think she’ll love it.

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I WOn a COntest!

mist book coverOkay, to some, winning a contest might not be such a huge deal. It’s big to me because I never win anything. This win is especially nice because it’s a new book. Mist by Susan Krinard. I’ve never read anything by this author and I’ve never read an urban fantasy. It’s a genre I’ve had on my ‘to try’ list for a long time and then I saw this contest over at Reflections of a Book Addict. All I had to do was leave a comment and since I was going to leave one anyway that wasn’t a chore. I left my comment and followed the site so I could go back and read more reviews, then I promptly forgot I’d entered. It never occurred to me that I might actually win. But I did and I’m so excited. I can’t wait to get the book and delve into this new world of urban fantasy. And who knows, I may have found a new author to adore. My heartfelt thanks to Kimberly over at Reflections of a Book Addict for having the contest. 🙂


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Death of a Butterfly – New Novel Peek

I played around with the idea for this suspense story a few years ago, but never went any further with it. Now I’m working on it again.

Death of a Butterfly

Marti rubbed her arms, trying to relieve her cold shivering. Walking across the room she stared out at the dark street. There was a storm brewing. She could feel it. Fear caused her trembling to increase, but she knew it wasn’t the storm. The dark outline of a man still stood in the shadow of the streetlight. She’d hoped it was her imagination, but it was Daniel. She could feel it as strongly as she could sense the storm coming. Why was he just standing there? Why not make his move?

Going to the desk across the room, she removed the loaded pistol from the top drawer. She’d loaded the gun earlier, but checked it again. Her hands shook causing her to almost drop it. The sound of thunder rumbled sullenly and the wind picked up, rattling the old, loose shutter she’d put off fixing. It was too late now, just as it was too late to run. Besides she was sick of running, sick of constantly looking over her shoulder. She’d end it tonight. Come on, Daniel. What are you waiting for? Come for me.

She looked out the window again. The leaves on the trees danced crazily in the wind. He was gone. Dread moved its icy fingers down her spine. She listened intently, blocking out the sounds of the coming storm. She tried to control the trembling in her limbs. She needed to stay calm. She’d only get one chance and if she missed…she couldn’t even think that way. She wouldn’t miss.

She’d already checked the locks on the doors and windows, but knew they offered little protection. Daniel wasn’t one for dramatic entrances and knocking down doors or breaking windows was beneath him. He’d find a quiet way to enter and then he’d just be there. Marty moved away from the window, slowly backing into the far corner of the room. He’d not come up behind her this time. Holding the pistol out in front of her with one hand, she reached into the pocket of her old gray hoodie with the other and removed the cell phone. She pushed 911 and asked for a patrol car when they answered.

“What is your emergency ma’am?”

“I have an intruder at 810 Walnut Street. Please hurry.” Marty immediately ended the call and took the gun in both hands. The clock on the shelf to her right loudly ticked away the minutes. She had no concept of how much time had passed. The storm continued to grow stronger, but she tried to ignore it and concentrate on any small noise she might hear inside the house. Her arms tired and began to ache. She’d not be able to hold them steady much longer.

 

ÓE. G. Parsons


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Review for Winter of the Heart by E. G. Parsons

ft-cover-woth-3-for-web

Recommended Read from AllBooks Review:

Pre-Pub Reviews

Genre: Historical Fiction

Title:  Winter of the Heart – ISBN: 1440491682 or EAN13: 9781440491689

Author: E. G. Parsons

It is 1876. Megan Connors, alias Maggie Bertram is married to a horrible, abusive man. She manages to escape and acquires employment as a school teacher on a ranch, owned by Charles Donovan, in South Carolina. The instant chemistry between Megan and her new employer is obvious to everyone. Life seems to be improving by the day. A rather strange encounter with the ghost of Charles first wife, Rachel is rather unsettling. It seems that Rachel wants Megan to help Charles find love. Charles is still haunted by a letter that Rachel left just before her death.

Megan loves her job and now has a new friend, Alicia Jordan. One day Megan’s world is shattered when William O’Brian, her husband, finds her and insists on taking her with him. In spite of his feelings for her, Charles Donovan does nothing to stand in William’s way and Megan leaves.

When Charles realizes that the man is a beast and Megan might be in danger; he hires a private investigator to find her. He cannot deny his love for her. Megan, abused and locked in her room struggles to be free. One night she can no longer tolerate the abuse and she again escapes. Will Charles find her? Will she survive the mountain winter on her own? Will William reappear and recapture her?  All of these questions will be answered in Winter of the Heart.

The characters are realistic and colorful, the plot is suspenseful and the entire story is overflowing with heartfelt emotion. Romance fans will love this book. A book that readers will have trouble putting down until the final conclusion. Well written, well researched and a very entertaining read.

Highly recommended by Shirley Roe, Allbooks Review. www.allbookreviews.com 

 Review From RWU:

Desperate to escape her abusive home life, Megan Connors flees to rural South Carolina, where she accepts a position as a schoolteacher on a prosperous but secluded ranch. Wealthy ranch owner Charles Donovan, a man haunted by the ghosts of his past, is immediately attracted to the beautiful, headstrong Megan. Though Megan shares the attraction, she resists her feelings for Charles, afraid of the terrible secret that casts a dark shadow across her newfound happiness.  Together, these star-crossed lovers must reconcile both past and present dangers if they are to lay their ghosts to rest and find a future together.

I opened the cover of Winter of the Heart expecting a romance that would sweep me off my feet. As always, E. G. Parsons delivered. The imagery in this novel is exquisite, allowing the reader to envision life in 1800’s as clearly as if she were staring into a beautiful and lifelike painting. Charles and Megan are likeable, believable characters that you can’t help caring about and I thoroughly enjoyed spending time with them. The plot has something for everyone; history, romance, a hottie hero and it even contains a shivery ghost story for lovers of paranormal romance. All these factors combine to make Winter of the Heart E. G. Parsons’ most beautiful love story yet.

 Review from RWU (Romance Writers United) http://rwunited.freehostia.com/woth.htm

More Info 

 

 


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Review: In The Shadow Of The Dragonfly

dragonflycover_smallFrom above the shadows … light

 

Orphaned and impoverished, Gray Baldwin is a lost soul in search of a home, a life, and most of all — love. Kicked from foster home to foster home, at last a restored motorcycle and the onset of adulthood give him the means to leave behind all the ols threats, struggles and losses that haunt him. When he accepts a job at Hanwell Construction, life’s promising new start is both his hope and his torment. The spoiled daughter of a well-to-do business owner, pretty Hope Hanwell has a past to reconcile and a few tragic secrets of her own. She wants for nothing — and everything, pushing love as far away as she can until love pushes back. When Gray and Hope meet, theirs is a story of heartbreak, redemption and fate at its most devastating.

IN THE SHADOW OF THE DRAGONFLY  A Literary Love Story 

My Review:

In The Shadow Of The Dragonfly

By M. Jean Pike

Black Lyon LLC

ISBN: 978-1934912072

***** Five Stars….

Gray Baldwin was born into poverty and neglect. After losing his prostitute mother at the age of eight, he’s given into the custody of his first foster mother. Gladdy teaches Gray the true meaning of love, home and family. Despite the many pitfalls in his life, he never forgets those lessons and clings to his dreams of finding true love with a home and family of his own to belong to. When he meets Hope and her family, he believes he’s found what he’s been looking for his entire life.

Beautiful and spoiled, Hope Hanwell has never wanted for anything, at least on the surface. She’s never known her mother and bears the heavy weight of guilt for a later tragedy on her young shoulders. Hope has her flaws and is, at first, not very likable, but the author offers deeper insight and the reader gets a glimpse of the lovely person she could become. Hope wants Gray, but with nothing more serious in mind than a summer fling and has no idea how drastically their love affair will affect her life.

A literary love story, yes, but In The Shadow Of The Dragonfly by awarding winning author M. Jean Pike is much more than that. Through the lives of the very real people living within it’s pages, this story allows the reader to examine the pain, heartbreak, love, and hope that dwells within the hearts and minds of all mankind. With great strength and courage these characters overcome heartache and tragedy, moving on with their lives and forging a better tomorrow for future generations. In The Shadow Of The Dragonfly touched me on an emotional level seldom felt and I know these characters will live in my heart for a very long time. I can’t remember ever having read a more satisfying story and highly recommend it to all. 

Author/Reviewer, E. G. Parsons – http://egparsons.com   

Visit M. Jean Pike’s Wesite: http://www.freewebs.com/mjeanpike/

 


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In The Shadow Of The Dragonfly by M. Jean Pike

Dragonfly Cover

Dragonfly Cover

From above the shadows … light

 

Orphaned and impoverished, Gray Baldwin is a lost soul in search of a home, a life, and most of all — love. Kicked from foster home to foster home, at last a restored motorcycle and the onset of adulthood give him the means to leave behind all the old threats, struggles and losses that haunt him. When he accepts a job at Hanwell Construction, life’s promising new start is both his hope and his torment.

 

The spoiled daughter of a well-to-do business owner, pretty Hope Hanwell has a past to reconcile and a few tragic secrets of her own. She wants for nothing — and everything, pushing love as far away as she can until love pushes back. When Gray and Hope meet, theirs is a story of heartbreak, redemption and fate at its most devastating.

 

IN THE SHADOW OF THE DRAGONFLY  A Literary Love Story by M. Jean Pike

ISBN: 978-1-934912-07-2
Available from Amazon.com and Black Lyon Publishing in e-book and paperback.

Watch for my review of this book coming soon.

http://egparsons.com


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Wild On Books ~ Author Interview

Check out my author interview with Sheila at Wild On Books: http://www.wildonbooks.com/interviews/2008/e_g_parsons.htm

While you’re there be sure to read some of their book reviews. It’s a great site–very easy to browse. These guys do a fabulous job with their interviews and reviews. A great big thank you to Sheila for such a wonderful interview!


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A Handful Of Thoughts On A Monday Morning ~ M. Jean Pike

This morning as I sat on my porch drinking my coffee and trying to wake up, a blue heron soared in the mist above the creek. Spotting his breakfast, he circled and returned. He touched down on the wide, flat rocks of the creek bank and settled in for a morning of fishing. He was absolutely magnificent. As I watched, spellbound, a pair of Mallards drifted past. They glided serenely on the water, their colorful heads glistening in the morning sun, and disappeared beyond the reeds, seemingly unconcerned with what might be around the corner or what the day might bring. What a beautiful way to start the day. They reminded me to slow down and take each moment as it comes.
 
Is it me, or is life becoming more and more stressful? It seems everyone I talk to lately is dealing with something unpleasant — a recalcitrant teen, an aging parent, upheaval in their job or their marriage. As a nation, we worry about the rising cost of gas, global warming, war and politics. These days, when a sense of apocalypse seems to hang in the very air, it’s hard not to get caught up in the gloom and doom of it all.
 
I often think how wonderful it would be if, like fiction, I could write my own life story. If undoing mistakes and changing unfortunate circumstances were as easy as hitting the delete button. As a mere mortal, I don’t have that luxury, but while I can’t control my circumstances, I can certainly control my attitude. I’m a pessimist by nature, but as I grow older, I’m learning that it’s just as easy to see the sunlight as it is the shadows. As I go about the business of life, I’m learning how to fall in love.
 
Almost daily, I fall in love with the ancient golden lab who patiently waits with his boy at the bus stop, rain or shine. He reminds me that loyalty still exists in the world.
 
Almost daily, I fall in love with the dogwood trees that line the streets of my small town. Their whisper- soft petals of pink and white are a celebration of spring and of rebirth. They remind me that beauty still exists in the world.
 
Almost daily, I fall in love with my co-workers, Mimi and Jo, who know I have trouble getting started in the morning and always have a fresh pot of coffee, laced with Hershey’s cocoa, ready when I arrive. They remind me that kindness still exists in the world.
 
Almost daily, I fall in love with Rainy. Born severely retarded, she will never sing or dance or even tie her shoes. But when I play the right music, she lifts her voice and her joyful trilling is sweeter than birdsong. Because she trusts me, there is nothing within her power she wouldn’t do to please me. Rainy, with her quiet and gentle spirit. She reminds me that courage still exists in the world.
 
Almost daily, I fall in love with Noah, whose artwork decorates my office, and whose sheer individuality decorates my life. And with Todd, my hero, my friend. He never washes the dishes or cooks a meal, but he helps me unclutter my mind. He doesn’t always understand, but he always cares. In these uncertain times, my home is my sanctuary, and family is my stronghold.
They remind me that I am needed.
They remind me that I am loved.
M. Jean Pike 

http://www.freewebs.com/mjeanpike/

http://authorsden.com/jeanpike

            

Thank you, Jean. Visit Jean at her website or on Authors Den to find out more about her and her work. Read my previous posts for Jean’s book covers and blurbs.

Tomorrow: Poet Linette Marie Allen will be joining us.

Elizabeth Melton Parsons

http://egparsons.com


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Heatherfield – Paranormal Romance

Where her heart is, there will she be also …

Deep in a box of used books, counselor Tory Sasser comes across a novel without an ending: Heatherfield. As she reads the story of scarred war veteran, Jake Benjamin, her tears fall on the pages—and she could swear new words appear where once there was nothing.

But the fictional town of Heatherfield isn’t all it seems, nor is its creator, Destiny Paige. When Tory’s car runs off the road into the mist, she’s transported back to the 1940s—into the novel, trapped by the spirits that govern the place through Destiny. Even more, Tory is caught by the honest warmth and complicated tenderness that is Jake Benjamin. Realizing she’s falling in love with Jake, Tory is desperate to find her way back home to reality. Yet what is more real than true love? No, Heatherfield isn’t all it seems … not at all.

M. Jean Pike has created another must read with her newest paranormal romance, Heatherfield.  Her love and extensive knowledge of the 1940’s come to the forefront in this story. The reader feels as though they have been transported back to that lovely era right along with Tory. As with all of Ms. Pike’s books, the writing is both lyrical and literary without losing it’s down to earth and easy style. The author has a true talent for putting words on paper that draw the reader into the story and keeps them there from first page till last. I’ve often said that when I read, I become lost in the story–imagine truly becoming the hero or heroine of a book, your life dictated by the writer wielding the pen. With Heatherfiled’s suspenseful sub plot and beautifully romantic love story, it’s a true treasure that you will want to read again and  again.

ISBN: 9780979325281

Available in e-book and paperback. Amazon, Black Lyon Publishing, Your local bookstore.