Books Read in 2018

Look, I know it is way past time for me to be posting this.

In the Year of Our Lord 2018, I read 65 books. I will be honest, I thought this number would be a lot lower. I went through a serious slump in the middle of the year when I was under writing deadlines and feeling blah about multiple books I was reading at the time.

Least in a Month – In July and August, I only read three books, six total for those two months. There are two reasons for this downturn. I was under a large writing deadline at the time and the weather here in Wyoming is ridiculously nice that time of year. A lot of my free time was spent sitting outside drinking beers with friends and hiking around the mountains. I have no regrets.

Most in a Month – January wins this handedly with 13 books. Looking at the list for that month, I can tell you it is because I inhaled some graphic novels and finished up some nonfiction I had been reading through the fall the previous year.

2018 could be called the Year of the Series because I read or binged quite a few of them. I also stuck to some authors that I loved. There are a lot of books by Alyssa Cole, Kit Rocha, and Ilona Andrews books on this list. I read across genres more than I normally do and that has more to do with the two books clubs I am in than anything else. I read some truly exceptional nonfiction this year. Every NF on this list is amazing.

Favorite Book of the Year – I am starting to hate that I ever begun picking a favorite for the year. I always hate choosing. My favorite books of the year have an asterisk beside them in the list below. I am going to pick three that stood out and this is my writing space so I can do as I please.

The book that come up first in the list is The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet by Becky Chambers. This is the first of a trilogy, all of which are now out. I have only read the first one. The second is very high on my TBR list. I could tell you about the inclusiveness of the cast, the way this books deals with all different kinds of sexuality, the theme of found families that is woven into multiple places of the narrative, the beautiful characters that Chambers has created, the serious questions of humanity, AI, and loyalty, or the fact that this is a space opera and you would know this book is amazing. I still think about it often. It is over the top wonderful.

The second book that I loved was A Princess in Theory by Alyssa Cole. Cole is an auto-buy for me no matter what subgenre of romance she is writing. I adore her. This book was especially delightful because I loved Coming to America as a kid and this points to that cultural icon often. This book is also dominated by a whip-smart STEM heroine who has had to fight her way to where she is and a hero who comes to appreciate and understand what giving your partner autonomy means. This is also the first in a series and the rest of the books are predictably awesome.

The third book I loved was Undead Nation by Justina Ireland. On the surface, this is post Civil War America with zombies, but this book is vastly more than that. Ireland takes what is on its own a great plot and weaves in all kinds of things from who is disposable, girls’ finishing schools, what does slavery and ownership mean, a deconstruction of Jim Crow, and a character that is so bad ass that I loved her from the first page. Even if you don’t like zombies, this book as an examination of race and worth are in itself a reason to pick it up.

Least Favorite Book: The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness. There are not enough explicatives for me to use when describing this book to you. I was already frustrated by this book, but there are two things that pushed it into burn it all down territory for me. SPOILERS: The main character is a total shit to the only person/thing that is nice to him, his dog. You know who is mean to dogs? Terrible people. Then, in a true fit of shittiness, the dog dies to save the main character in what is a heart wrenching and awful scene. Ness also does one of the things that is an unforgivable act for me and that is ending the book on a cliffhanger. I am not talking about things are a little unresolved, I mean one of the characters is in mortal danger and all the progress that has been made goes to shit in the last scene. Basically, he ended the book in the middle of the Black Moment and I was FURIOUS. I still am to be honest. The ending of this book, and the other problems I had with it (misogyny much?), cemented the fact that I will never, ever buy or read another book by this author.

I know cliffhangers are a very common thing in YA and I do like YA, but I still hate cliffhangers. It is a cheap way to emotionally manipulate your readers. Don’t be a lazy a-hole and finish writing the book for the love of Pete.

See, I still have a LOT of feelings about this.

Favorite reread – In a shocking turn of events and for the first time ever, I had only one reread on this list, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. I feel like giving it my favorite reread title would be cheating since it was the only one. It was fun to read it again. I also read most of The Order of the Phoenix because I needed some resistance in my life. I did not include it in the list because technically, I did not finished reading it. DA all the way.

January – 13
*The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet by Becky Chambers
Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
Saga v. 4 by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples
Saga vol. 5 by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples
Chew vol. 4 by John Layman and Rob Guillory
Saga v. 6 by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples
*We Were Eight Years in Power by Ta-Nehisi Coates
Devil in Spring by Lisa Kleypas
Women in the Church: A Biblical Theology of Women in Ministry by Stanley J. Grenz and Denise Muir Kjesbo
*Jesus Feminist by Sarah Bessey
Chew vol. 5 by John Layman and Rob Guillory
Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIHM by Robert C. O’Brien
The Sleeper and the Spindle by Neil Gaiman

February – 4
Saga Vol. 7 by Fiona Staples and Brain K. Vaughan
Hidden Hearts by Olivia Dade
Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson
*Tempest by Beverly Jenkins

March – 5
*A Princess In Theory by Alyssa Cole
Etched In Bone by Anne Bishop
*Into the Drowning Deep by Mira Grant
*Obsidio by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Monstress Issue#1 by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda

April – 6
Ashwin by Kit Rocha
A Girl Like Her by Talia Hibbert
Bingo Love by Tee Franklin, Jenn St-Onge, and Joy San
*Undead Nation by Justina Ireland
The Viking Queen’s Men by Holly Trent
The Chieftain’s Daughter by Holly Trent

May – 6
Gladiator by Anna Hackett
Beautiful Darkness by Fabien Vehlmann and Kerascoet
Princeless Book One: Save Yourself by Jeremy Whitley and M. Goodwin
The Surface Breaks by Louise O’Neill
The Wolf Lord by Ann Aguirre
The Coyote’s Cowboy by Holly Trent

June – 4
Scythe by Neal Shusterman
East of West vol. 1 by Hickman, Dragotta, Martin
A Letter to My Congregation by Ken Wilson
Deacon by Kit Rocha

July – 3
*Ivan by Kit Rocha
Scales and Scoundrels Volume 1: Into the Dragon’s Maw by Girner, Galaad, and Powell
An Ember In the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

August – 3
A Torch Against the Night by Sabaa Tahir
*Magic Bites by Ilona Andrews
*Hot and Badgered by Shelly Laurenston

September – 6
The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness
Trade Me by Courtney Milan
Magic Burns by Ilona Andrews
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J. K. Rowling
*Lab Girl by Hope Jahren
*Magic Strikes by Ilona Andrews

October – 4
*Magic Bleeds by Ilona Andrews
Magic Slays by Ilona Andrews
Magic Rises by Ilona Andrews
Curran POV Collection by Ilona Andrews

November – 5
Magic Breaks by Ilona Andrews
*A Duke by Default by Alyssa Cole
How The Dukes Stole Christmas by Tessa Dare, Sarah MacLean, Sophie Jordan, Joanna Shupe
Tikka Chance On Me by Suleikha Snyder
The Beast’s Heart by Leife Shallcross

December – 5
A Hope Divided by Alyssa Cole
Circe by Madeline Miller
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson
Magic Shifts by Ilona Andrews
Once Upon a Winter’s Eve by Tessa Dare

Library Box Author List for #ALAMW18

**Updated 2/10/18**

I will be carrying around a Library Box during Midwinter. If you see me, log into the Library Box wifi, and download some ebooks from indie authors. If you like the book, review it or buy it for your collection.

Here is a list of participating authors and their social media links.

If Tomorrow Never Comes
Lisa Chalmers
Twitter: @lisaink

Fooling Around With Cinderella
Prancing Around With Sleeping Beauty
Stacy Juba

Denise Jaden

The Unraveling
Laurel Wanrow

Guarding Her Heart
Laura McNeil

The Bridesmaid and the Hurricane
Kelly Maher

The Rogue’s Fate
Missy De Graff

Lightning in the Dark
Storm in the Mountains
Letters in the Snow
Plagues of the Heart
Michelle Boule

Thank you to everyone who sent me books for this project. I will post stats next week.



Guerrilla Marketing – Give Librarians eBooks

Authors, this post is for you.

Some of you know that in two weeks over 10,000 librarians and other library industry professionals will be descending upon Denver for the American Library Association Midwinter Meeting. It has been a handful of years since I have been to an ALA meeting and I am beyond excited to see some of my favorite people again.

I am going to revive an experiment I tried at RWA three years ago. I want to give indie authors the ability to offer ebook versions of their books to the super heroes that have the buying power to acquire actual copies for readers: Librarians.

Indie authors, I have a fun and free way for you to get your books in the hands of librarians who can read them, review them, and buy copies for their libraries.

Here is how it works:

My friend Jason Griffey made a device which creates its own wifi signal, allows users to log on to the signal, and then download any content on the device. It is completely open source and completely awesome. Libraries and educators around the world are using it to distribute books and class materials and to reach students in new ways.

Everyone knows ARCs and free books are awesome to get at conferences. My LibraryBox will be a free, easy way for you to give e-copies out to librarians attending ALA Midwinter. Anytime I am at a conference event, I will have the LibraryBox on. Anyone with a wireless device can log on to the wifi signal the box creates and download books to read and review.

LibraryBox keeps tabs on how many of each item is downloaded, but it does not track individual users due to privacy. At the end of the conference, I will post the top 10 downloads. If you are an author or a publisher and you would like to participate, here are some FAQs you might want to know, be aware of, take heed of:

  • In order to participate in this project, you must be the digital rights holder for the works you send me.
  • This is for traditionally (with a publisher) or indie (self) published works. WIPs or manuscripts will not be accepted. Works of any length or genre are accepted.
  • The Midwinter file on my LibraryBox will be deleted after the conference. This means that after the conference, all the copies I have will be deleted from the boxen itself and my computer.
  • All books for this project will be in a folder marked “Midwinter 2018” on the boxen listed in alpha order by author’s last name.
  • Files should be in easily readable formats, like epub or pdf.
  • Do include your author website, mailing list, or other links in your file.
  • There will be a page on this blog listing all the participating authors and their websites so attendees can take a peek and so you can brag about it.
  • I will in no way use the books sent to me for profit or in any way not specified in this blog post.

Interested? Send me a copy of your book to mboule at gmail dot com. I will send a confirmation email when I receive your file.

If there are enough books, I will put them in genre or subgenre folders.

Questions? Ask them below.

Books Read in 2017

I read 66 books in 2017.

That is not a large number for me, but not terrible as things go. I admit that I vacillated between not being able to focus on anything except the huge dumpster fire happening in politics and wanting to escape everything through reading. My yo-yoing numbers reflect this. I have months where I read two books a week and others where I barely managed one every other week.

On a side note, writing has been the same way for me. It has been hard to get out of the reality of the dumpster fire and write something hopeful. I am trying, but this last book in the Turning Creek series is coming so slow. I hope to have it out this year, along with a bridge novella.

Here is a breakdown of the books:

Least in a Month – July with 2. I was packing and moving that month. Instead of reading, I binged Longmire on Netflix while I packed.

Most in a Month – October with 10. It’s my birthday month so I probably felt like indulging a bit more than normal.

My list this year contains more graphic novels than in past years. This is due to both necessity and access. I started a new job this year and part of that job is managing the graphic novel collection at my new library. I have finally been able to read some series I have had on my list for years: Saga, The Walking Dead, The Dark Tower (DNFed), and I finally am finishing up Chew. Other than these great series, there is the usual mix of YA, Romance, and fun stuff in space.

Favorite Book of the Year – As always, I read a lot of great books and I am going to resist the urge to break down my favorite books by genre. If I could only pick one to make you read, there is no contest. The Hate U Give by Angela Thomas is my favorite book of 2017. I think this should be required reading for everyone in America. The main plot is reason enough: a teenage girl watches her childhood friend get gunned down at a routine traffic stop by a cop. However, it is the other themes that Thomas has woven into the narrative that give this book a kick. The book also examines how communities are created, defined, and maintained and what the individual responsibility is to that community. The one that hit me hardest was the way the characters talk about the performance of race. This is a not to be missed book, which is being made into a movie, and I am in raptures to see what Thomas gives us next.

Least FavoriteRebecca by Daphne De Maurier
This book is a classic example of the main character being TSTL (too stupid to live). Not only is the main character completely vapid, she allows herself to be pulled in whatever direction other people want for her, even if it is dangerous and she knows she should say no. This is made worse by the fact that the main character is surrounded by horrible people. I read this with my bookclub and we all detested it. This is one of those rare cases where the movie is definitely better than the book.

Favorite Reread – I finally got my copy of World War Z back from by brother and devoured it. I was pleased to find that the political discussions and scenarios are no less true eleven years later that they were when Max Brooks first penned this novel. This book is in my top five of all time and with good reason. It is heart-wrenching, suspenseful, hilarious, and reflective. There are scenes from this book that still haunt me. I loved it no less the third reading through.

Here is the month by month list. Starred items are rereads.

January – 5
Saving Grace by Julie Garwood*
Must Love Kilts by Anna Quarles
Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Last Olympian by Rick Riordan
The Girl With All The Gifts by M. R Carey
Ready to Fall by Olivia Dade

February – 3
Driven to Distraction by Olivia Dade
Diablo Lake: Protected by Lauren Dane
What We Talk About When We Talk About Love by Raymond Carver

March – 5
A Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood*
The Monster That Stole My Underwear by Kate Cleary
Wolves’ Triad by Lauren Dane
What It Takes: a Kolwalski Reunion Novel by Shannon Stacey
Beyond Control by Kit Rocha

April – 3
World War Z by Max Brooks*
Return of the Earl by Sandra Schwab
Under Her Skin by Adriana Anders

May – 3
The Demon Prince by Anne Aguirre
Wolf Summer by Sionna Fox
Rebecca by Daphne De Maurier

June – 7
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
Pack by Jeanine Frost
For the Bear’s Eyes Only by Kathy Lyons
Dear Ijeawele, or A Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Hidden by Loic Dauvillier, Marc Lixano, Greg Dalsedo
Feathers by Jorge Corona and Jen Hickman

July – 2
The Selection by Kiera Cass
Radiance by Grace Draven

August – 8
Frostbite by Richelle Mead
Rhapsodic by Laura Thalassa
Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
Shadow Kiss by Richelle Mead
Hard to Handle by Christine Warren
How to Tame a Beast in Seven Days by Kerrelyn Sparks
Ms. Marvel: Crushed by Wilson, Miwazawa, Bondoc
The Dark Tower: The Gunslinger v. 1

September – 9
The Walking Dead Book One by Robert Kirkman
Chew vol. 1 by John Layman and Rob Guillory
The Walking Dead: Book Two by Robert Kirkman
Maximum Ride by James Patterson and Narae Lee
Chew vol. 2 by John Layman and Rob Guillory
Chew vol. 3 by John Layman and Rob Guillory
Saga vol. 1 by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples
A Seditious Affair by K. J. Charles
Yuletide Truce by Sandra Schwab

October – 10
Saga vol. 2 by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples
Saga vol. 3 by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples
The Bridesmaid and the Hurricane by Kelly Maher
An Extraordinary Union by Alyssa Cole
Daring Fate by Megan Erickson
Phoenix Warrior by Ella Drake
Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
Lost Stars by Claudia Gray
The Elite by Kierra Cass
The One by Kierra Cass

November – 3
Emma by Kaoru Mori
Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds
Hamilton’s Battalion: a trio of romances by Rose Lerner, Courtney Milan, and Alyssa Cole

December – 8
True to the Highlander by Barbara Longly
Beary Christmas, Baby by Sasha Devlin
A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E.Schwab
A Christmas Gone Perfectly Wrong by Celia Grant
Emma vol. 2 by Kaoru Mori
Superman Wonder Woman Power Couple vol. 1 by Charles Soule and Tony S. Daniel
The Silent Duke by Jess Michaels
The Duchess Deal by Tessa Dare

Economies of Scale
Photo by Cindi

It has been quite a long time since I wrote a post about libraries, but in case you missed it, I am working in one again. It is good to come home to the profession that always had a large piece of my heart. There will probably be more library posts, in addition to writing posts, in this space. You’ve been warned.

Last time I served at a library, I was at a large top tier research institution. I did a lot of things, but the things I did were specialized.

Now, I work at a small community college in a rural area and I do a little bit of everything. I am the Acquisitions, Technical Services, ILL, and Circulation Departments. In addition to this, I do reference, teach information literacy classes, and sit on campus committees. In a small place, it is safe to say you do all the things because that is what keeps the doors open and things running smoothly.

The scale of things here is different. Sometimes that is frustrating and sometimes is it awesome. After three months at my new job and in my new town, I have some observations.

When you get down to the marrow, everything here, good and bad, comes down to scale.
Photo by Jerome Vaillant

Wyoming is a big state of mostly rural areas. Even libraries in larger towns*, serve a significant population of people who live in remote areas. I live in a decent size city, for Wyoming, and it only claims a little less than 18,000 residents. Much of our community is rural. Even if you live in the city, you still have to drive two hours to find major retail stores. The distance between service hubs is a problem of scale.

Because most libraries are serving small rural communities, they are themselves small and rural. The wealth of information out there in the world means that the libraries can only collect so much because access costs $. This is a scale problem that is not unique to small libraries. The libraries here have worked to solve that by having an efficient ILL and electronic resources sharing system within the state called WYLD. Wyoming’s libraries are adequately funded, from what I can tell, but they still struggle. Even though they are getting funded, it is never enough. Well funded on a smaller scale is still a small amount of money.
Photo by clement127

The other issue is technology and, boy howdy, is this an issue. Remember when I said Wyoming libraries tend to serve a rural population? In technology terms, this means we serve a population that often does not have high speed internet, but might have a smartphone if they are lucky enough to live in an area with coverage.I have heard a saying often that Wyoming is ten years behind in most things. I think that is an accurate assessment.

Technology is an issue for most of the businesses I have come in contact with. If they have a website, and that is a HUGE if, they have a terrible UX and are often not mobile compatible. Very few corporations are on any kind of social media outside of facebook, if they have that.

This lack of technology use comes into sharp relief at the reference desk. Multiple times this semester, I helped students who were barely able to use a mouse and navigate Windows, much less the web and Blackboard. These students were expected to take classes which had major online components. To say they were lost would be a gross understatement. What shocked me the most is that these were not older adults coming back to school. They were my age (I am 39) or younger. I have lived in an urban area and worked in service jobs all my life and I have never been exposed to this level of technology illiteracy in my life. It was and is shocking to me.
Photo by clement127

On the positive side, I live in a small town with all the quirks associated with a typical western small town. Everyone knows everyone else. Our lives are all connected in one way or another and I have found this to be a welcoming, friendly place.

All of these observations have raised the following issues and questions that I want to explore:

  • How can I use readily available technology (free/cheap) to serve students who may have limited connectivity?
  • Are there tools that can make their lives a little easier that require a low learning curve?
  • How do I need to shift my own instruction and interactions with my new population in mind?
  • What does advocacy for information look like in a place where information is not always accessible or affordable?
  • How can I help students see beyond the small worldview of their experience to the greater world beyond in the way I teach and the choices I make for the library?
  • What can I learn from my new community that will make me a better librarian?

*The largest city in Wyoming is Cheyenne which currently holds a population of 64,019. To me, no matter how you slice it, that is a small town.

#notRWA17 – Super Series Plotting Thread

At the end of July, I participated in a thread on Twitter called Super Series Plotting: how to plan a series and when to let the plan go. It was an interesting way to use Twitter and there were some lively conversations all day around the threads being posted.

I created a Twitter moment to the series plotting thread which you can read and enjoy. You can read a ton of great threads and comments under #notRWA17 on Twitter. Olivia Dade, who writes steaming hot librarian romances that I ADORE, gathered all of the website and links of the authors who participated.

There are a few major points about my thread I also wanted to list here:

Make a series bible from the beginning. Your bible can take any form, digital or physical, but do not wait to do this. Start it the moment you start dreaming up your series, the world it inhabits, and the people who live there. You do not want to be halfway through the first book and realize you can’t remember what you named the shopkeeper’s wife who has popped up again or what color her hair was. I also find this useful for my main characters. I sometimes write notes about them, that come in handy later, but have forgotten since I jotted them down.

Make a plan, but be flexible. Have a plot and character arc planned for each book and for the series, but don’t be upset if you have to condense or expand. Most of an author’s time is spent rewriting which means changing things.

Find what works for you. You may be able to write every day for five years on the same series. Some of you just don’t have the steam for that and need to do something in between. Figure out what makes you a better writer and try to make those conditions happen.

Dispatch From Sheridan

This is the beginning of my third week here and I can tell you without a doubt that Sheridan, WY is a lovely and extremely friendly mountain town. I was expecting the small town cuteness. I was not expecting the level of friendliness that greeted us.

As a Texan, I am accustomed to Southern hospitality, but I am coming to learn that the South may have nothing on the small, midwestern town. Everyone I have met, from Mr. R’s coworkers to the checkout people in the stores, have been kind and talkative. They are all eager to share tidbits about this town that I now call home. It has been amusing, though I did have a Target lady-like encounter on one of my trips to Walmart that amused me greatly.

The view from our front windows.

I have set up a small table and comfy chair in the front mudroom, so I can drink my tea or coffee and look at the mountains in the morning. It will mostly likely be my new writing area once I start my normal morning routine of waking early before the family to write.

Blacktooth Brewing Company‘s production area.

Mr. R gets to work every day doing something he loves. In the picture above, you can see the brewhouse and some of the barrels they are aging. The staff at the brewery is fantastic and we feel blessed to be part of their family. I accepted a position as a Library Specialist at Sheridan College Kooi Library last week. I start at the beginning of the semester. The views from the college are ridiculous so expect an equally ridiculous amount of pictures soon.

This statue is called Flower Dancing in the Wind.

There are plenty of interesting and quirky things around Sheridan. On almost every corner in the downtown area, there are metal statues. Some of them are beautiful, like the one above, and some are silly, like the one of a buffalo licking its butt.

A view of the Big Horn Mountains from the Big Horn Polo Fields.

Even though this is a small town, there are plenty of things to do. One of the best polo fields west of the Mississippi is on a small town twenty minutes south of us. We went last week to watch a match. The vibrant green of the grass stretched wide under a blue sky, broken only by the ridge of mountains on one side and hills on the other. It was breathtaking. The polo game was also fascinating. Did you know that polo balls start out round, but are softer than most sports balls? I did not. After being in play, the balls show dents where they were hit.

A group of kids participating in the pig wrestling contest.

This is a small town, so there are some predictable small town activities. This past Friday, the boys and I attended the annual 4H pig wrestling contest. There was an arena full of mud and muck, a plastic barrel, squealing pigs, and packs of 4 fool hardy souls willing to wrestle a pig, butt first into the barrel. All for charity. The younger kids wrestled smaller pigs with the pig sizes increased as the size of the participants increased. It was messy and hilarious. I am happy to report that all the teams earning top scores included girls or were made up entirely of girls. The group that won the youngest division was a team of young ladies dressed in full ballerina attire.


There are parks everywhere in this town. The biggest, Kendrick Park, boasts a pool, an ice cream stand, horseshoe pits, a river, an amphitheater, and a playground. This delightful place is a five minute walk from my house. There are miles of pathways along the two major rivers in town for biking and walking. This town was made for being outdoors.

We have daily reminders that we live right next to a very wild place. Not a day goes by that we do not see some sort of wildlife. Mule deer, pheasants, and wild turkeys have already been frequent visitors to our front and back yards.

I am happy to report that we are settling in. I do not miss the heat or the traffic, but I do miss my friends and family. I hope you are all well in your piece of the ‘verse.

The Plagues Are Here

Today is the day that Plagues of the Heart goes live. You can order it from a wide variety of places:

ebookAmazoniBooks,  Google PlayKobo, Nook
print: Amazon, IngramSpark, B&N

I will be updating the links as they become live.

This is Dora’s story. She was the hardest to write so far because she is so tender-hearted and closed-off at the same time. Like her sister harpies, she has found peace in Turning Creek, but she has yet to find true redemption. In this book, we find out some secrets she has kept hidden that have left deep wounds in her psyche.

A couple years have passed in the story since the last book, Letters in the Snow, and you will see all your old favorites and what shenanigans they have been up to. Some of you may be sad that I skipped ahead, but some time needed to pass, both for this story to happen and for history to be correct. Plagues takes place near the end of the Civil War and some of the catastrophes in the book mirror things that were happening in the region at the time. In a couple weeks, I will post some historical notes for the nerds out there.

If you have yet to start the series, or know someone who would like it, the first book, Lightning in the Dark, is now permafree everywhere except Amazon. I am still working on making that change.

Have fun. Go read. Write a review. Thanks for reading, y’all.

Farewell, Faithful Friend: Titus Pullo Smith 2005-2017

Dear Pullo,

It breaks my heart that our family will be starting over in Wyoming without you. Even though you probably would have hated it, you never did like the outdoors, you would have loved being with us. We had you for eleven and a half years before old age and arthritis finally took too heavy a toll.

You were an adorable puppy and I adored you. Even from the beginning, your tongue was rarely in your mouth.

We took you camping, which you hated, and walking, which you also disliked. We even bought you saddlebags, which you wore like a champ even though you detested hiking.

There were a lot of things you loved.

You loved your family. You were an awesome snuggler, even if you hogged the bed or couch. Your favorite place was with your people.

Christmas was a favorite time of year for you. You especially loved scratching your face with the tree branches and snoozing amidst the presents.

You took three new additions to the family, two boys and another puppy, in stride. You were unsure about Wicket for almost a year before you decided you loved her and she could share the couch.

Thanks for bieng my first “kid and for always loving me. Today was the hardest good-bye I’ve ever had to say.

I love you, puppy dog.

Love, Momma.


Cover Reveal: Plagues of the Heart

I can finally share with you the beautiful cover of Plagues of the Heart, the fourth book in the Turning Creek series.


Colorado 1863

Dora Aello, descendant of brutal harpies, has built a life in Turning Creek where she can use her hands to bring healing instead of pain to others. Her new life helps her control the mistakes of her violent past but Dora is afraid she will not be able to keep them at bay forever.

With the blood of healers in his veins, Lee Williams could use his power over life and death as a way to gain wealth and social standing, but that was his father’s way, not his. He has come to Turning Creek to start over and prove that he is worthy to bear the burden of the power of Asclepius.

An ancient evil is unleashed on Turning Creek and it ravages the residents with a cascade of misfortunes. To save the town they call home, Dora and Lee must race to find the source of destruction and stop it before all is lost. Dora will have to relinquish the control of her nature and come to terms with her own desires or risk losing the lives of everyone she loves.

Pre-order it now!

Releases July 27, 2017

ebook: Amazon, iBooks Google PlayKobo

There is more great Turning Creek news coming soon.