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Cancer

Entangled Proceeds 100% to Breast Cancer Research Through August!!!

bcrf logo
Click the link to visit the Breast Cancer Research Foundation
and learn about their incredible work in the fight against
Breast Cancer!

I am still working away on editing, so I am not going to be able to post much today. I do want to let you know that 100% of proceeds for sales of Entangled, a Paranormal Anthology, still go to benefit the Breast Cancer Research Foundation THROUGH THE END OF AUGUST! There is still time to buy the book for such an incredible cause. Besides, the book itself is incredible, so you can’t lose! And just think – Christmas in July – you can buy the book for those ‘hard-to-buy-for’ friends and family members (and NOT so hard to buy for also!) and feel good about your purchase!
Click the link above to read my review on Amazon and, if you would, please click the “This Review Was Helpful” button, and then comment on your purchase? It will help me draw attention to the book and the good work the BCRF is doing! Remember, at $2.99, it costs less than a single Starbucks Latte, and it does a whole lot more good for your body and your soul!

Review: Entangled-An Anthology to Benefit Breast Cancer Research

Entangled: An Anthology To Benefit
The Breast Cancer Research Foundation

Sometimes it amazes me.

entangled
Your purchase helps fund Breast Cancer Research.
Please click the cover to purchase!!!!!

With all that is bad with this world, that some people can be so generous, giving and kind. That is what happened here, as this wonderful group of authors gave generously of their time to write this group of amazing shorts, especially to benefit the Beast Cancer Research Foundation.

As a survivor myself of advanced Stage III breast cancer, I cannot tell you what a great help the Foundation was to me, and to others like me. My heartfelt thanks to all these women who gave a part of their hearts in these stories!

Proceeds from this wonderful paranormal, contemporary anthology, Entangled, are being donated to the Foundation in full. Please, purchase a copy. It costs less than a cup of Starbucks Latte, and these stories will nourish your soul. Thank you!

Halloween Frost
A Mythos Academy short story
Jennifer Estep
www.jenniferestep.com

Gypsy girl Gwen Frost has the gift of psychometry – the ability to collect images from things she touches. Pretty cool, if a little nosy at times. Hey, she is a teenager, what should we expect?

In this short story, Gwen and her friend Daphne, a Valkyrie, are primping out for Halloween when we first meet them. Well, at least Daphne is. Gwen? Well, not so much.

I haven’t read any of Gwen’s young adult tales previously, though I have heard nothing but good from authors I know and admire. Set at Mythos Academy, the stories revolve around a teenage girl and her friends, learning magic, how to fight and how to serve their ancient Warrior Ancestors. Having not read Jennnifer’s work before I would say that the overall feel is very ‘Percy Jackson’ though, from this short reading, I would say that should I read the first of the series, First Frost I believe I would like Gwen and her friends quite a bit more than I liked Percy.  One thing that does bother me about the story? Gwen apparently keeps getting her ashes pulled out of the fire by a “Big Strong Drool Worthy Spartan” – bummer. Girls rock, let’s see her Kick some butt, not get hers saved!!!! On top of that, Why is it the BOY teenage wizard characters get all the attention in the media?! No fair. I liked Gwen’s personality better than Harry’s too – shh… don’t tell anyone, I don’t want to be lynched! LOL

Cute story that gives you enough of a taste of the mythology and background to capture your interest and place Gwen and friends on your reading list if it isn’t already there.

Note: Jennifer Estep’s grandmother is a breast cancer survivor and this story was written to honor her strength and spirit, as well as that of other survivors.

The Fat Cat
Edie Ramer

http://www.edieramer.com

Another writer I haven’t previously read, Edie Ramer’s story, The Fat Cat was a perfect introduction to her writing. Funny, quirky and highly readable, Edie’s story is a happily-ever-after fairey tale with a healthy dollop of excitement to round it out.

Nikki just lost her loser boyfriend (thank goodness) and has decided that the perfect companion is no longer a man, but a cat. A young, healthy, female cat. After the loser boyfriend, she fully intends for her apartment to be a ‘penis-free’ zone! What she gets and where it goes from there is a fun romp of a tale with a surprise twist of an ending that left me uplifted and laughing. I believe it will leave you similarly touched.

Note: Edie is herself a breast cancer survivor. Though fairly young and doing all the right things for her health, Edie’s story is like many others who suffer this horrible disease. It strikes out of nowhere, destroying lives, families and souls.

Medium Rare
Nancy Haddock
http://www.nancyhaddock.com/

I have had the satisfaction of visiting with Nancy Haddock on Good Reads, and it has been a great pleasure. She is the person who originally introduced me to Entangled: A Paranormal Anthology when we talked about my own breast cancer, books, genres, writing and other ideas. She is a lovely person, inside and out.

Colleen Cotton worked her fanny off to get her degree and start her psychotherapy practice. However, finding clients was harder than she thought. Well, until she discovered a knack for ghosts. And then? Everything changed. Now, if it goes bump in the night (or the day, for that matter) Colleen can interact with it. And usually sooth it. Trouble is, once the ghost is gone, the client no longer needs her. Bummer.

In this short by Nancy, the ghosts are restless – not on behalf of others, as in a haunting, but rather on behalf of themselves. If the ghosts themselves are frightened, there must be something particularly nasty on the wind. And someone particularly handsome, and particularly slanderously rude stuck in her living room wing-back.

Now, besides the ghosts themselves having the heebie-jeebies, the legend of St. Augustine (a breast cancer and lymphoma survivor herself) has more trouble with her House Ghost Zavier who is spazing out in a most irritating manner. What is happening is a fascinating story, and brought me a great deal of pleasure. Mostly because Colleen is so likeable and her Da is a hoot. Will without a doubt add Nancy’s work to my read-list!

Note: Nancy lost her beloved grandmother to the ravages of breast cancer, as did far too many of her friends and family members. She begs that all women, young and old, do breast self-exams and have yearly mammograms, as well as living a healthy lifestyle.

Sweet Demon
Misty Evans

www.readmistyevans.com

What a cool thing to be – a Vengeance Demon! That is what Kali Sweet is, and her main goal in her existence is to protect humans. Oh, she can protect us from our own dumbass selves, but she can certainly try to save them from supernaturals. And working for the Bridge Council, the supernatural version of the Justice Department, lets her do just that.

Another author I hadn’t found before – how cool is that? This is the great thing about anthologies – you get to find all these wonderful authors you didn’t know about before you found their story amongst other little gems. And this one sparkled!

I adore it when stories and characters have a sense of humour, and Misty doesn’t disappoint. However, she weaves a deep layer of darkness through this story and has addicted me to her character. She will definitely be on my to-read list!

Note:  Misty managed a breast and cervical cancer-screening program for uninsured women. She also lost an aunt to breast cancer, and recently had a friend go through a double mastectomy.

Sian’s Solution
Dale Mayer

http://www.dalemayer.com.

Vampires and humans are living in a fragile balance in this young adult short story by Dale Mayer, another author I was unfamiliar with. Geeze! You would think I never read! Sian is a vampire whom you first meet as she works desperately to free her lover, Taz, a human, from the clutches of a “Blood Farm” the humans know nothing about. A farm where humans are hung, like sides of meat, and kept for their blood. Her determination to save Taz, and her strength, endeared her to me.

Sian and Taz are minor characters in Dale’s Vampire in Denial series. If they are indicative of Dale’s characters, I look forward to finding time to read more of her work.

Note: Dale’s aunt and two friends are breast cancer survivors.

A Bit of Bite
Cynthia Eden

http://www.cynthiaeden.com

Crossroads, Mississippi. The home and stomping grounds of Sheriff Ava Dushaine, but not exactly the first place you would think of for paranormal activities to be the norm. Werewolves and vampires, oh what a set of critters to try to enforce law and order upon. Oy. Especially when it’s been only ten-years since the ‘coming out’ party for the goolies and goblies and things that go bump in the night. And the dead bodies that are currently showing up in Ava’s county. But who is to blame? The wolves? The vampires? Or something even more deadly?

Note: Cynthia speaks of friends who have struggled with breast cancer. Thank you, Cynthia, for your contribution to this anthology!

Sinfully Sweet
Michelle Miles

http://michellemiles.net/

I love scones. My favorite is dark chocolate chunks with dried cranberry and walnuts. Yummers, yummers!! So, of course, with the first page of Michelle’s story including scones and cupcakes and tarts, (oh, my!) I was happy to settle in for this story.

Chloe O’Shea is a baker with a secret. She is a witch on the run, running from her previous coven. A coven filled with secrets. Secrets, and murder. Hiding in plain site amongst the humans as a baker and owner of Sugar Mamma’s Bakery, Chloe has been enjoying her new life. Well, until a sexy hunka-hunka burning man invades her bakery. And suddenly, Sugar Mamma’s is under siege, and Chloe’s new life is blown all to hell.

Note: Michelle has donated her story to this anthology to honour all those who have suffered from not only breast cancer, but cancer of all types.

A Night of Forever
Lori Brighton

http://www.loribrighton.com/

Who was Aidan Callaghan? A seemingly simple question. With a rather complex answer . . .

I have to admit, I am not a fan of, what do you call it? Regency romance, I believe? This story is set in 1859 England, so whatever that means is what I mean! Surprisingly, however, I found this piece quite entertaining and pleasant. My feeling on these pieces is based on a despite for a society that saw and treated women as belongings. Women of the period were often little more than pretty baubles, with no power and no recourse from brutality or ill usage. I suppose that is why I have never cared for these period pieces – women as toys, easily left behind as broken bits, crushed under the male heel. This is a fate Mary Ellen is terrified of, and with good reason. Her background is one of crushing poverty, and she has no intention of returning there. When she meets Aidan, she sees only that falling for him could put her right back into that place, and it terrifies her. But Aiden is so utterly fascinating, so intriguing; she can’t help but wonder what his story might be. And his story is one she could never have imagined.

This is another lovely addition to the anthology. I may not read others of her works, but I found this quite pleasant overall. Should you be a lover of period pieces, this is highly recommended. Or even if you, as I, are not a lover of same, you may still find it as enjoyable as did I.

Note:  Lori lost not only an aunt, but also a grandmother and a grandfather to cancer. This story was contributed to honour their memories, and to provide hope for those who still suffer.

Feel The Magic
Liz Kreger

http://www.lizkreger.com

Liz’s story is one I truly got a kick out of. Jenna is a Practitioner (a fancy title for a recognized witch) who has a big job to do. A weird, quirky job, but an important one, not only to her but to all Practitioners. Did I mention the weird part? Politics, backstabbing and nasty people, oh, my! A cat, a witch and a pimp walk into a bar . . .

This is a lovely little story, unusual and quirky, funny and well worth the read.

Note:  Liz is a 15-year survivor!

Breaking Out
Michelle Diener

http://www.michellediener.com

Guess what, Michelle? You did a kickin’ job with your very first Contemporary/ Paranormal short! A self-avowed historical fiction writer, Michelle has written a terrific short story full of action, close calls, and a heartrending take on military horrors. Each time I think the last story was the best I read in this anthology, each author seems to kick things up a notch, in a very good way.

Kelli has been imprisoned and tortured for three years, her small gift of telekinesis pushed beyond all limits, while ‘Dr. Greenway’ and the sadistic orderlies torture and abuse her and her gifts, twisting her mind and body. She is nearly beyond all hope, when a fluke occurs, and Kelli has a chance. What happens next is by turns exciting, heart wrenching, and disappointing – disappointing because I would happily buy a book based upon this short story and I am not sure that there are any plans for one!

Note: Michelle’s grandfather, mother-in-law and aunt died of cancer, and she states that any small part she can play in helping to find a cure for this disease is something she is proud to do.

Ghostly Justice (A Seven Deadly Sins Novella)
Allison Brennan

www.sevendeadlysinsbooks.com

Detective Grant Nelson has had a bad month. A. Very. Bad. Month. Demons, black witches, supernatural war. And he had to cover it up. Besides the fact that his girlfriend was massacred in the mess. Now, he has another job to do, and some people he truly doesn’t like are the only ones who will be able to help him; that is, if anyone can help him at all. Did I mention that Detective Nelson has had a bad month?

This novella is partway through Allison’s Seven Deadly Sins series. Though it doesn’t fit ‘exactly’ into the concept of returning the Seven Deadly Sins Demons to Hell, it still does an excellent job of giving you a wonderful feel of the story behind the story, and introduces you to Moira and Rafe, kick-butt demon hunters, as they return a favour for the wounded Detective Nelson. The story is fast paced and truly interesting, with a solid story line and great character development. I had read the first of Allison’s series quite some time ago, but never got time to read the rest. After reading this novella? I believe my TBR list (which is groaning under the weight) may have to have a new addition.

Note: As Allison puts it; we all know someone, and sometimes more than one someone, who has been stricken by breast cancer. Thanks to Allsion, and all the other incredible authors who donated stories to this anthology, funding is just that much closer to helping find a cure.

A True Advocate

As a breast cancer survivor, my heart hurts to know that Ms. Wetzel is gone. My deepest sympathies to her family and friends.

Breast Cancer Advocate

Everybody had something to say about Angelina Jolie during May. You couldn’t open a newspaper or magazine, or read a blog without hearing an opinion about her risk for breast cancer and her individual decision.  This dialogue was probably the biggest breast cancer conversation we have had as a nation so far.  Everybody had an opinion.

Me?  I couldn’t muster much interest.  I kept thinking about Maria Wetzel.  Her story wasn’t making the NY Times or CNN.  While Angelina was announcing to the world her tough decision, Maria was making the decision to enter Hospice care.

You didn’t hear about it in the news, but Maria’s story is also about courage, about advocacy and compassion, about empowering others, and about working to make the world a better place. Maria is the real deal, an advocate for those who would come after her. She is one-of-a-kind in intellect, spirit and heart. …

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May is Pet Cancer Awareness Month

blue buffalo cancer awareness

And I didn’t even know it. I saw a banner ad today from Blue Buffalo, which says that they are for more information). 

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My big-hearted Tolkein

Several years ago I lost my big blue lovebug, Tolkein, my Chow, to cancer. No matter that I gave them all their shots, fed them well, they got plenty of fresh air and exercise, they still got taken out by this horrible disease. He was with me for eighteen years, so we had a long run, but it was a horrible way to lose my poor baby. 

More recently, while I went through my own treatment for stage-three breast cancer, I also lost my beautiful Lily, a 105-lb white boxer, whom I adored.

The beautiful Lily Belle.
The beautiful Lily Belle.
Satie, with his best friend Charlie.
Satie, with his best friend Charlie.

To add to the pain, my gorgeous Satie, a Lilac Point Siamese, died from the same horrible disease. Lily passed in her sleep thanks to big doses of pain meds, but my wonderful veterinarian, Dr. Valori, from Table Mountain Veterinary Clinic, was kind enough to come out in the night and allow me to hold Satie while she took away his pain for the final time. I was at one of my own lowest points at that time, and Dr. Valori’s kindness was an incredible gift. (More about Charlie later, he has his own story.)

Please, help fight the horrible scourge of Cancer in our beloved friends and family members. Please visit the link above, or any reputable organization for more information. Also, don’t forget to check out Care2.com  for this and other ways we can help our four legged friends. Thank you!

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