Mark Twain’s Connecticut Farm for Sale

What a beautiful house and property! I knew I should have played the Powerball this past week… The house was actually bought for his youngest of three daughters, Jane “Jean” Clemens. Mr. Twain lived next door for two years before passing.

You can see this beauty here: Mark Twain’c Connecticut Farm

This story was originally posted on abcnews.go.com and written by Joi-Marie McKenzie.

I love Mark Twain’s stories, although I have to admit I have not picked one up for a re-read in quite some time. Winter goals!

Coming Soon; Your October Book Box!

So, I have had this idea bouncing around in my head for the last month or so, of starting a Subscription Box Business. Featuring, of course…books.

And I searched all of the available ones already out there, and there are a bunch! One to never be deterred, I kept the idea in the back of my mind, still bouncing around on a daily basis.

I researched custom boxes, personalized shipping tape, printed tissue paper, what to call this business, how to start a subscription box business, what platform to use, etc. etc. etc.

Trust me, the list goes on, and on.

Do I use my already licensed business name of Books and Opinions, which I have trademarked, paid for, and created a logo for? Probably not. Enter more licensing and trademark fees, creating a new website, and giving myself one more thing to manage.

I have reached out to various authors for buying bulk quantities of their books for a specific month (I have a theme going on here!), and the response has been fantastic!

It is nearly September; school starts again in a minute, my weekly church activities start back up at the same time, and my oldest daughter is getting married the first weekend of October. Never one to give up, here is what I am going to do…

…I love Autumn, Fall, Halloween, October, November, I think you get the idea. So I have to have a box for October. And I do!

I just bought some great mystery books, and mystery magazines (think Alfred Hitchcock and Ellery Queen!). Add some Autumn Spiced tea, gourmet cookies or chocolate, and a handmade gift or two, all in the Spirit of Spookiness! I am still “building” this box, so some more items may be tossed in!

So I have some questions. If you could be so kind as to complete the attached 8 question survey, I would greatly appreciate it! You can find the survey here: Subscription Box Survey

You can also copy and paste the following link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/VYPGX5N

I would also love to hear about any subscription box success or horror stories you may have in the comments below!

 

Nancy Drew – The Series

Can you believe that I had never read a single Nancy Drew book while I was growing up? The same goes for The Hardy Boys. I’m not sure why, as I saw them every time I was in the library. Which was a lot.
What I was reading included The Boxcar Children, Encyclopedia Brown, and Alfred Hitchcock and the Three Investigators. Throw in some Beverly Cleary and Judy Blume, and you get an understanding of how I spent my younger years.

Judy Blume cover imageEncyclopedia Brown Cover ImageBeverly Cleary Cover ImageThe Boxcar Children Cover Image
I picked up 4 Nancy Drew books at my library this weekend; books 1, 3, 5, and 6. Of course books 2 and 4 were nowhere to be found. I’ll get those later if I come across them. I enjoyed reading these books. They are quick, and easy to read. I love the old-school storytelling and the nostalgia of the stories. No cell phones, internet, social networking, etc etc. All the things we cram our lives with now to make ourselves busier than we should ever be, are nowhere to be found here. I find a sense of comfort in these stories as well as the others I read while I was growing up.
My very favorite book growing up? This one~

Adventures of the Black Hand Gang Cover Image

What was your favorite series growing up, and like me, do you go back on occasion and read them again?

Night Mask – William W. Johnstone

Well, I know for a fact I have never read this horror story by Mr. Johnstone. When I bought it, I noticed many of the reviews discussed the high level of violence and depravity in the story. I was expecting it to be much worse than it was. It was right in line with most of the other horror novels he had written. I am guessing that those reviewers have likely not read anywhere near as many of Mr. Johnstone’s horror novels as I have.

Night Mask Cover Image

It is a rather lengthy story, but it certainly engages you right from the get-go and keeps those pages turning. I will not get into too many details since it really is quite graphic, and I always try to avoid spoilers whenever possible.

The main thing to remember about these stories is that they were written before there were computers in every home, DVD players, and cell phones. It is definitely part of the charm of why I enjoy these books.

Lani and Leo are police officers who are put on a case that will change their lives. What seems like one gruesome incident is just the tip of the iceberg. They are about to discover a killing club that has been active for decades.

As more and more bodies are discovered, more help gets brought in to assist the two officers. They soon realize there are people everywhere whom they should not trust, even in their own department.

Someone is using the local radio station to introduce subliminal messages to the listeners, who in turn fall under the control of a very evil pair of twins. What begins in one small town takes you from the East Coast to the West Coast, with a body count so high, it is the worst in history.

There are many characters involved in the story, so you definitely need to pay attention to all the different angles going on. In the end, it all comes full circle, and everything is tied together.

Definitely an intense read, but well worth the efforts!

If You Could Have Dinner With an Author?

Before I post my author, and I will tell you, I was arguing with myself for days; if you could have dinner with one author, living or not, who would it be?

I am expecting some familiar names, and please do not let that stop you from posting, because I would honestly love to have dinner with JK Rowling, Stephen King (hold the meal), or Mr. Patterson.

I would have loved to have had a face-to-face with Mr. William W. Johnstone, whom stoked my fire for writing when I wrote to him as a young teenager, obsessed with his books, and he replied, and we had a friendly relationship for several years.

That book right there; Sweet Dreams, put me on the path to loving books for the rest of my life!

And now I have a personal library in my house, and I am constantly hunting for the books I loved as a child. Alfred Hitchcock and the Three Investigators? They are gold now, because I cannot find a single one under $30.00, and my local library does not even carry them anymore 😦

So about that dinner…..who is it?

Carnival – William W. Johnstone

I am sure this is one of the few, if not only, William W. Johnstone horror novels I did not read as a teenager. If I did read it, I do not recall it. That does not happen with Mr. Johnstone’s books.

Carnival Cover Image

Martin Holland and his family live in Holland, Nebraska. A sleepy farming town where not much happens. At least, not much since that carnival about 50 years prior. That carnival that went down in flames, literally, killing over 100 carnival workers. Unfortunately, the residents of Holland were responsible for those deaths. Vengeance based on lies that were covered up by 3 powerful men who basically ran the town.

Vengeance against the carnival that did nothing wrong.

The carnival has returned, seeking vengeance of its own.

Martin has seen the changes in his wife, Alicia, and many others in the town. They were drawn to the fairgrounds where the carnival was being set up. Staring at the tents being set up, and the workers getting things in order.

Nabo was in charge of the carnival. The same Nabo that was burned to death in the carnival of 1954.

The closer the carnival gets to opening day, the more peculiar the town becomes. Martin and Doc Reynolds both sensed what was coming to the residents of the town. Martin discovers he has the “Insight”, something that has been in his family for generations.

Now it is up to Martin, and a small group of friends, to set things right in Holland, and put an end to the evil the carnival has brought to their town. Good versus evil, God versus Satan, and a small few versus so very many.

Although I started reading these books when I was 11 or 12, just a note that they are very, very gory. I am working my way through purchasing all of Mr. Johnstone’s books that I had as a teenager, so I can again enjoy these great horror stories.