Note to my readers-You may find all these reviews very short, but as a writer I know how hard it is to get readers to leave any review at all so I want to post an example of how easy it can be, and maybe more folks will leave reviews. A sentence, even a word is a great boon to the author.

Book Review of Acts Beyond Redemption by Suzanne Burke


Acts  Beyond  Redemption by Suzanne Burke is a must- read book. You will not want to miss this psychological thriller, clever mystery, exciting adventure novel and page-turner. The complicated plot with many turns and twists, keeps you on the edge of your assumptions throughout the whole story.

You will enjoy the covert operation scenes written with such credible believability in this thriller. The expertise adds to your feeling that you are inside the story and truly part of it. Perhaps S. Burke has a secret life other than just being an author!

She handles the characters in such an authentic way that you really want to know some of them better in real life. You find yourself identifying with them. Her character Sheila is quite memorable, but this woman is one you probably will not want to get to know better.She is a seriously scary person. Be warned-keep your distance from that woman. There are moments when you can almost admire this character’s cunning and ability to fool so many experts and prominent men of the world, but then her cruelty and inhumanity make you cringe. For a book however,  she is an exciting character. Be prepared, as she will evoke a variety of emotions from you as you read.

Burke weaves a web of facts and lies to tease and seduce you until you are obsessed with rushing forward to discover the answers. Reading while offering you more insight into the amazing mind of Burke makes you even less sure of your deductions as to the conclusion of this mystery. She leaves you guessing right up until the end. Good thing there is a sequel. In several days look for the release of Acts of Betrayal at Amazon. Getting anxious to grab a copy of my own and continue this frightening but addictive journey.





Book Review for Pearseus/Schism by Nicholas C. Rossis



This is a Prequel to the Pearseus Series. If you heard of the Perseaus Series by Nicholas C. Rossis you know how popular it is and for a good reason this work blends so many things together flawlessly. It is a combination of fantasy and Sci-Fi. It includes Greek mythology and history. Rossis has also created a most perfect study of human nature.

The plot starts with the crash of a spacecraft of humans from earth. One minute the Earthlings were celebrating New Years and the next they were counting survivors and grieving over their dead. The planet they now live on is amenable to their human physiology and they sincerely believe the original inhabitants are also not a threat.

Instead of concentrating on their great luck at surviving the crash and still being alive their human nature took over and they began to put into practice all the things that have killed off civilizations since time began. They began to quarrel and set up separate factions politically motivated but, not without the thirst for revenge. Of course, greed and power were the driving force in the struggle to come out on top and have their will imposed on others. Does any of this sound familiar to you?

The prequel is an introduction to the new world, its creators as well as those who wish to replicate Earth along with all its mistakes. The power struggle is evident as in any kingdom where all want to be in charge and reign.

A very good novel. I highly recommend it and the series that follows sounds very compelling to follow.







Did you hear about this great event? You didn’t? Oh no, where have you been? This is the most exciting thing that ever happened to RRBC and that’s saying a lot because the Rave Reviews Book Club offers excitement every day. You really need to check out this club. You will be amazed at all it does but, that is nothing compared to the support our members give each other. Want a place to fit in, a family who works toward your success, not just theirs? Here is the link to check out     This is the place you want to be but, I digress.

This virtual conference is open to writers and readers. It will be helpful for the most experienced authors and be a Godsend to the inexperienced beginner. The most successful writers will be presenting the sessions. Their long time experience will be evident as they explore topics like marketing. Now which author doesn’t need that information? Another topic will be how to format easily. Am I the only one who needs to confess to uttering a few not so ladylike words when forced to do that task? For those of us that blog, the session on that topic should be invaluable. There are so many more sessions to choose from but, register now. Here are the links you need to check it all out

*Conference Dates: December 1st thru 3rd

*Registration Deadline: November 23rd

*Registration Link:

*Pricing Link:

*Offered Sessions: Blogging For Success, Marketing 101, Formatting Made Easy, Social Media Dos & Don’ts (More sessions can be found on the website, if you would like a full listing.)

This conference is going to be all online so you can even come in your pajamas. It will be casual, fun and informative just like any other conference without the cost of travel and staying in an expensive hotel room. The sessions will be presented in different ways so it should never be boring and keep you interested.

If you only go to one writer’s conference this year-let it be this one. I invite you to check it out. Hurry and register since time is running out.


Book Review of The Elixir by Lori Soard


This book by Lori Soard called the Elixir is a mystery romance novel. It brings up such questions such as “What if a fountain of youth formula were found, would there be ethical considerations? Could this advancement be a good thing? Why would anyone be against a formula aimed at giving folks the opportunity to live longer?”

Who would be the one group possibly against its reaching the market? The thought only comes to light after several unexplained murders including the formula’s inventor. The Elixir has enough twists and turns to please the mystery reader. Every time you believe you know the killer, you find out your guess is wrong. But, isn’t that how every good mystery behaves?

If you throw in some spy stuff and a possible friendship turned romance, you have a lot of possibilities and that is just what Soard has done. You will enjoy the baby steps toward and the backward undoing of those steps in the search for the answer to do they want friendship or a lover’s relationship.

The plot is enticing enough to keep you reading and the hints are clear enough to keep you guessing.

I highly recommend this book to the romance readers and mystery addicts out there.


Eliot Parker Profile Pic (1)


Contact Eliot Parker        FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE  May 6, 2016


With writing, you jump off the cliff and find your wings on the way down- Ray Bradbury
Eliot Parker is the author of three novels: Breakdown at Clear River, Making Arrangements, and Fragile Brilliance. Fragile Brilliance was a 2016 Finalist for the Lords of Discipline Thriller Prize, which is affiliated with the Pat Conroy Southern Book Prize and SIBA. He also received the Bronze Award from the National Literary Habitat organization for mystery/thriller writing. He currently teaches writing and literature at Mountwest Community and Technical College in Huntington, West Virginia. Learn more at


Basebal1 (1)



FRAGILE BRILLIANCE: When off-duty Charleston police sergeant Ronan McCullough responds to the assault of a college student outside a downtown sports bar, he is brutally attacked and nearly killed by the assailants. As he struggles with the physical and emotional damage and doggedly pursues the perpetrators, his personal and professional relationships are strained to the limit; what he uncovers in his investigation takes him to heart of a deadly drug ring threatening the very core of the city.

Eliot 1 Original

MAKING ARRANGEMENTS: The death of Colin Madsen’s beloved father brings Colin home to the small town of Concord, Massachusetts, facing a decision to keep or sell the family funeral home. Colin himself has no interest in the business, but he wants to make sure his father’s legacy is continued. As Colin struggles with the decision, he reconnects with Ava, his childhood neighbor and friend. Colin and Ava seem like an ideal match, but when Ava becomes unemployed and takes a corporate job in funeral home acquisitions, the seemingly innocent move sets off a chain reaction of problems that threaten their relationship and the existence of the funeral home he wants to protect.

Eliot 2

BREAKDOWN AT CLEAR RIVER: Cullen Brewer, starting quarterback for the Clear River College Cougars, discovers that his senior year will be far more exciting than winning a few football games. He is suddenly shocked when the body of his favorite wide receiver, Dane Antonelli, is found in a dormitory stairwell. He links up with Serena Johnson, a student newspaper reporter, searching for the truth behind Dane’s death. As they explore ties to coaches and college administrators, Cullen and Serena find themselves facing perils more dangerous than they ever expected.
This book was a 2012 Weatherford Award finalist for Outstanding Fiction, sponsored by the Appalachian Studies Association.

Eliot 3

Amazon Link to Eliot’s Books:


Twitter: @E4419

Barnes & Noble:




According to an analysis of my name….

•Your name of Eliot creates an idealistic, sensitive nature and a desire for culture and the refinements of life.

• You would work best in a relaxed environment at tasks involving writing, mathematical, or analytical skills that require concentration.

• You appear calm to others, but at times you suffer inwardly with nervous tension.

• You can find it difficult to express your deeper thoughts and feelings verbally.

• It is much more natural for you to express your deeper thoughts in writing.

• A lack of positivity and confidence is a source of difficulty in making decisions in business dealings.

•Although the name Eliot creates the urge to understand others, we emphasize that it limits self-expression and friendly congeniality with a moody disposition.


Life is like a box of chocolates…you never know what you’re gonna get.

90% of life is showing up- Woody Allen.

One of the heart’s greatest exercises is picking someone up when they are struggling- Tim Russert

No matter what you do, do not congratulate yourself to much or berate yourself too much either. Your choices are half-chance, and so are everybody else’s- Kurt Vonnegut.

I wish to God there were more ambition in this country. By that I mean ambition of the laudable kind: excellence- John Adams

You never fail when you lose, you only fail when you quit- John Wooden.

Status quo is Latin for the mess were in- Ronald Reagan

Sometimes I wish I had been a banker, instead of a writer, but not very often- Andy Rooney

Author 1 (1)

THE PROSPECT: Shane Triplet is one of the best baseball prospects in the country. He has been drafted by the Cincinnati Reds and assigned to the Sheaville Loggers, a Reds-affiliated minor league team located in the depressed logging town of Sheaville, West Virginia. Shane’s arrival in Sheaville brings excitement and high expectations for the team and the town’s residents. However, Shane and his mother JoAnn have lived in Sheaville before.

When Shane falls in love with Olivia Mitchell, some dark secrets are uncovered, revealing a painful history between the Triplet family and Sheaville. Balancing the enormous expectations of success with the challenges of redeeming the Triplet family name will be the ultimate game for Shane, physically and emotionally.


When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
Growing up, I was a kid that loved to read and loved stories. I really got interested in writing when I was in junior high school. I won the school writing award in eighth grade and it was the first time that I really felt like I had some talent with writing.

How long does it take you to write a book?

About two years. It takes me about a year to write the first complete draft of a book and then that is followed by about six months of heavy revision and then another six months of more editing and polishing the manuscript. I write slow and since I teach English at Mountwest Community and Technical College, my writing time is divided between working with students, teaching classes, grading papers, and committee work. I find my most productive writing time is during Thanksgiving and Christmas Break and over the summer.

What is your work schedule like when you’re writing?

I write every day, usually early in the morning when my mind is fresh. I get up rather early before everyone in my house is up and stirring around. I will write for about 45 minutes to an hour each day. Some days, I will generate 250-300 words during that time. Other days, I might only churn out 20 words. However, I’ve discovered that if I chip away at the book a little each day (and write more heavily and intensely when school is not in session) then I can have the draft of a book completed within a year.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?

I write best in libraries. I have an office at home and will write from there most days, but some of my best writing comes from writing in libraries. There is something about being around the books and the quiet serenity of being a library that helps me think and helps me write. Plus, my cats (whom I love dearly) can’t bother me when I’m in the library and I don’t get distracted with needing to do laundry, run the dishes, etc.

How do your books get published?

Basically, from research. I look for publishers and/or agents that publish the types of books I write, which are mostly mysteries. Then, I send those folks query letters and sample chapters from my manuscript and then cross my fingers. Over the years, I have received a ton of rejection letters, but in most cases, something constructive was always mentioned in the rejection letter that helped me make changes to the manuscript and also helped me become a better writer. Writer should not be afraid to pursue all avenues when it comes to getting a book published. There are so many quality, independent presses that produce good books and are always looking for new authors.

Where do you get your information or ideas for your books?

From real people and real experiences. The old adage that “truth is stranger than fiction” is true. Many of the plots for my mystery novels are loosely based on real-life crimes and criminal scenarios that have actually occurred. The characters in those books either are related in some way to the people involved in the actual case or are based on people that I have met and spoken with at various points in my life.

When did you write your first book and how old were you?

The first book I wrote was called The Prospect, and it was written in 2008 when I was 28 years old. I had written some short stories that had been accepted for publication in the past, but The Prospect was my first book. I knew nothing about publishing books at that time, and it was self-published. The publisher has gone out of business and the book is now out of print. My first traditionally published book was Breakdown at Clear River, which came out in 2012 when I was 32 years old.
What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

I love movies, and I usually go and see one every week. I also love to read and spend time with my cats. I like to play basketball and travel as well.

Book Purchasing Links:

Breakdown at Clear River:

Making Arrangements:

Fragile Brilliance:

Ultimate Betrayal Just Released

Folks, I just released my new novel called Ultimate Betrayal. It is an e-book at present and on Amazon. It sells for $3.99. This is my very first novel and I felt compelled to write it after being overwhelmed, upset and frustrated as to the way our world is changing, especially relationships, and how cruel people can be to one another.

I have described this as a ‘what if ’book. It is like a perfect storm where several factors come together. Each one affects the other factor until an impossible situation develops that has no clear solution due to lack of money anywhere and wrong philosophies.


A brief teaser about what this story is about:

Amazing news is revealed that captivates the public. News so unbelievable that it excites most people because of its touted potential. An advancement that could change lives forever. But will it?

The story reveals many people that hope the latest technological advancement can make their lives better. They believe this is the answer long awaited. The answer to their very prayer. The solution is now a possibility for many problems and these people hold on to the promise of everything in their lives being good again.

It is a time when the fight is to the death in the battle of good and evil. The war now can go either way since hearts have grown so cold. Only those who truly care for their fellow man can offer solace to innocent victims. Those on the side of good are the solution for the evil that is spreading.

Yes, it is considered ‘end times’ since so many signs have already taken place but, the more recent total lack of love along with no conscience is still hard to believe. The world is truly a scary place now. Even harder to grasp is the fact that evil is being accepted as okay by those in charge.

But, it is human nature to want what we want. That is the problem. The solution to a crime explosion is more heartbreaking than the original issue.



I hope you will check this out. You all know that even without an e-reader, you can read an e-book. Amazon offers a free app so you can read it on most any device such as computers, tablets and phones.

If you love reading, you should take advantage of the Kindle Unlimited program since you may read many titles for just a fee of $9.99 a month.

Also, you should know readers that any author needs your reviews. They can be short –just a couple paragraphs, they still help. Most of us are indie writers which means we do everything ourselves often due to cost. We write, publish, format, and promote our own books. Reviews are one of the tools we need to make our books successful.


Here is the book link:





Just published my older book as an e-book

book photo 


For many years I have been sitting on a book I wrote years ago about our experiences as full time foster parents. It is titled It Begins and Ends with Family. We ran a group home for up to 8 teens as a time. We got the ones who were the toughest most challenging discipline problems. We were their other choice before it was totally hopeless and they needed to go to a detention facility.

Most of our kids were boys, though we did have a couple of very young siblings who had been abused. And worked with girls in other capacities as well as fostering a couple. We also fostered in our own home and in the agency homes we worked through. We had received kids from many Midwest states and several different counties.

The book contains many anecdotes and descriptions of a few of the real life kids we worked with in a group home setting. Our parenting methods worked and so probation officers often handed us kids and said, “Just do your magic.”

I admit there was nothing magical about our methods but by today’s standards they would be controversial. They certainly were more unique and imaginative than many experts advised. We never were politically correct and methods that worked were more important to us than having others think we followed some approved ideas.

The kids were varied in ethnic groups as well as coming from a variety of homes. They all had one thing in common they needed more discipline and more love. They needed to be treated like human beings with consideration for their feelings and respect. They all had skewed ideas about relationships. In most cases their values and perceptions were not normal and their parents had never been parented correctly themselves.

My book recounts many incidents of violence, drug use, sexual perpetrations and theft. We relive the rules we ran our house by and the schedules we had to devise to keep our sanity with eight of these young men at a time in our home.

This book is only at Amazon in e-book form right now. If it evokes some real interest, I may consider putting into print format.

At this point you can purchase it or read it for free. Please spread the word for me if possible. Share on your social media outlets and if you read it, please review it. Thank you.

Please follow this link:






Personal Reflections: Our Athletic Grandson

From the time our grandson, Anthony, was tiny, he was athletic. Much like his dad, he performed well at any sport he tried. He excelled in most of them, in fact.

Anthony has done well at baseball, basketball, wrestling, track, but he really shines when he plays football. He is so versatile and flexible that he can play any position and the latest headline says, “he does it all.”

As much as this is a grandparent’s right to brag in light of his performance yesterday, stepping back and trying hard to look at this kid without prejudice, he is amazing.
Of course, I’m not impartial, he is family, blood of my blood and I love him like all the grandsons, fiercely, but the pride I feel for him is unbelievable because he succeeds at everything he does. His parents have been more than supportive and have always gone the extra mile to encourage and lift him up building his self-esteem so he has no problem with ever being afraid of trying new things or really putting himself out there.

In addition to being a fabulous athlete, he is a great student getting good grades. He is popular and has many friends. He is also just a nice kid in how he cares about other people. If you know him, you’re impressed and should be.

Yesterday, as our varsity football team played their arch rival and ended up winning back the coveted trophy and winning 27-13, he showed his versatility. I must admit the entire team has made a great turn around since last year and we have many great players, but unfortunately I’m only grand mom to this one, though I love them all.

I just thought it was time for a little praise so he never forgets how much he is loved.Anthony during game

How much of your characters are based on real people?

One of my very first projects since starting to learn to write fiction is to try and create characters. They need to be believable but, quirky enough to stand out, get your attention and set this book aside from others.

While struggling with this aspect of fiction I wonder how much of your character is based on a real person. How much do you keep from reality, how much do you change or embellish? Or are you so creative, the entire character comes from your imagination?

We obviously do not want our characters to be recognizable as to exact identity of a real person but, we wish them to have universal traits, challenges and problems.

I suspect most authors and writers combine the two methods. Their characters are based on a real life person, but changed enough to keep the writer out of trouble.

Recently I read a very long biography of Marcel Proust; he himself was quite a character and a unique personality. Much of what he left in his notes and letters indicate he used real people for his models. Sometimes, the characters were actually based on two or more real people taking traits from one and other identifying marks from another.

It seems to make it easier to start with a real person in mind and then make that character uniquely yours. Adding your own creative elements means you can create an even more complicated person than the one your character is based upon.

This is a pressing subject for me as I try to learn how to write fiction and any advice or point of view would be welcome. I believe all fiction writers have a method they use, but it would be so helpful to new writers if they had some direction.

Would love to hear your solution to this writing problem.