Juliette’s Book Club: Magpie Murders, Spooky Pie, and The Best Pie You Will Every Bake or Eat.

It is time for another meeting of Juliette’s Book Club. Today our theme is PIE.

2020 has sucked in so many ways, starting with fires in Australia, and now fires in California with a pandemic, stupid nasty politics, and an assortment of other bullshit we’ve had to deal with. That includes crappy books. I can’t even count the number of books my husband and I have started in 2020 and not finished because they were THAT BAD. These included books by so called best selling authors.

On my way down to visit my daughter earlier this month I unfortunately left my book at the airport in the security area. Ugh. It was a good one too. Double Ugh.

Fortunately my child has the good fortune of living near a bookstore. There I picked up Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz.

I can’t put this book down. We have a WINNER. It is a book within a book, done inthe most brilliant and clever way. Magpie Murders is so much fun. I haven’t finished it yet so if you have don’t give away the ending. As you can see in the photo my bookmark is still in it.

Here is the official description:

When editor Susan Ryeland is given the manuscript of Alan Conway’s latest novel, she has no reason to think it will be much different from any of his others. After working with the bestselling crime writer for years, she’s intimately familiar with his detective, Atticus Pünd, who solves mysteries disturbing sleepy English villages. An homage to queens of classic British crime such as Agatha Christie and Dorothy Sayers, Alan’s traditional formula has proved hugely successful. So successful that Susan must continue to put up with his troubling behavior if she wants to keep her job.

Conway’s latest tale has Atticus Pünd investigating a murder at Pye Hall, a local manor house. Yes, there are dead bodies and a host of intriguing suspects, but the more Susan reads, the more she’s convinced that there is another story hidden in the pages of the manuscript: one of real-life jealousy, greed, ruthless ambition, and murder.

Masterful, clever, and relentlessly suspenseful, Magpie Murders is a deviously dark take on vintage English crime fiction in which the reader becomes the detective.

Thank you Anthony Horowitz for writing a book I don’t have to throw in the recycle bin.

Halloween is almost here so once again I have to mention my favorite Halloween book Halloween Pie by Michael O. Tunnell and Kevin O’Malley.

When the kids were small we checked this out from the library all year long. Then one day we checked it out only to discover some little puke had ripped half of the pages (some completely gone) and used a purple crayon on the rest of the pages. Of course the adult who’d been in charge of the spawn didn’t tell the librarian about the destruction and offer to replace the book. At that point I got my own copy of the book.

This is a wonderful tale of a witch who baked a pie and all of the graveyard ghouls who said “GIVE ME SOME PIE.” There is even a recipe in the back so you can make your own Halloween Pie.

Everyone loves pie, or at least they should. Even Vampires who can’t tolerate sweets well love pie.

So with that introduction I’ll introduce you to the BEST cookbook ever:

BAKED, New Frontiers in Baking by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito, with photographs by Tina Rupp.

I heard (don’t correct me if I’m wrong) that these were the guys who invented salted caramel.

Everything in this beautiful book is amazing. If you follow the instructions you will think you’re a Food TV Star. You’ll be doing the happy dance. Everyone around you will be doing the happy dance.

If you have just one book for baking BAKED is the one book to have. Trust me on this one.

Now I feel like I’ve gained 20 pounds just writing this post.

I’ll see you soon for another meeting of Juliette’s Book Club.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

Juliette’s Monday Book Club: Books I Read To My Kids

Some books will always be favorites even when we’re all grown up.

Vampire Maman

When I was a child there were a lot of books with pretty pictures, but it has been in the past 50 years that the children’s book industry has blossomed into something truly magical and inspiring for both children and adults.

I’ll put links to Amazon and other sites on here, but I found out about most of these books by word of mouth or GOING TO MY LOCAL LIBRARY. Libraries ROCK – I urge you to GO to your local library and take advantage of all of the useful services they provide. You can also find many of the out of print books on eBay or used book stories (real life and online.)

Sammy the Seal by Sid Hoff

We found an old copy of this at our local library sale. What a find! Sammy the seal decides to go to school but finds it isn’t really the best…

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Juliette’s Book Club: Apocalypse A GO-GO!

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Now available in paperback!

Goin’ Extinct Too
Apocalypse A GO-GO!

It was so much fun the first time, we decided to take another stab at ending the world in as many creative ways as possible.

When we began work on our second apocalyptic anthology in early 2019, long before the world had ever heard of COVID-19, we never would have dreamed that toilet paper and hand sanitizer would become symbols of the apocalypse.

The pandemic pushed our release to a later date than anticipated. We assumed readers had more important things on their minds and might not be in the mood for apocalyptic fiction at that time. The lockdown allowed our writers more time to write, resulting in a larger collection of stories than originally anticipated. The backdrop of the pandemic colored the mood of some of the pieces, as you will see.

We think of this book as the Extra-Big Bonus Pandemic Edition, written in a reality stranger than fiction.

Stay safe, wash your hands, and may your quarantine dreams be sweet ones.

~ The authors of WPaD

Be sure to pick up a copy of the first Goin’ Extinct. (If you haven’t already done so)

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Available in paperback and electronic ebook versions on Amazon, Good Reads, Barnes and Noble and other fine online booksellers.

 

We are Writers, Poets and Deviants, AKA WPaD.

We are an independent publishing group made up of writers who collaborate on thematic anthologies to raise funds for MS research.

We meet on the internet to share ideas and challenge ourselves to write in different genres. The stories and poetry we compose are compiled into books, which are sold to help raise funds in support of group members who live with MS.

To date, WPaD has published twelve books, with a thirteenth already in progress. Wanna know a secret? Number thirteen will be our Paranormal anthology. 

Books by WPaD:

Goin’ Extinct Too (apocalyptic ~ published in 2020)
Creepies 3 (horror ~ published in 2019)
Tinsel Tales 2 (holiday ~ published in 2018)
Weirder Tales (bizarre ~ published in 2018)
Strange Adventures in a Deviant Universe (science fiction ~ published in 2017)
Creepies 2 (horror ~ published in 2015)
Goin’ Extinct (apocalyptic ~ published in 2014)
Tinsel Tales (holiday ~ published in 2013)

Dragons and Dreams (fantasy ~ published in 2013)
Passion’s Prisms (romance ~ published in 2013)
Creepies (horror ~ published in 2012)
Nocturnal Desires (erotica ~ published in 2012)

Stock up for summer reading, or stock up for fall and winter. We don’t know what might happen next but at least we’ll have some great stories from WPaD (Writers, Poets, and Deviants.)

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  • Happy Reading
  • Wear a mask
  • Social Distance
  • Kiss a Vampire
  • Be kind
  • Check in on those who might need extra help, might be extra lonely, or be technically challenged.
  • Talk to your kids.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

Tales of Love and Romance (to warm you up on a cold winter night)

A hot book for cold winter nights. The ultimate in romance!

A hot book for cold winter nights. The ultimate in romance!

There are those times when you just want to escape from the day and wrap yourself in romance.

Romance for a Good Cause

Aside from writing this blog I also write short stories for the WPaD group – Writers, Poets and Deviants. This month we’re going to offer my favorite “Passions Prisms” for only $0.99 (electronic download.) The price is cheap but these are anything but cheap romance stories.

A portion of royalties will be donated to Multiple Sclerosis research in support of a fellow writer who lives with MS.

VM_Tellias and Eleora

– A Greek god seeks out a woman he once seduced…
– A tragic letter from 1910 chronicles a young woman’s quest to find her lost love…
– A terminally ill teen finds forbidden love with Native boy.
– A historian travels to the past and finds herself in the arms of Benedict Arnold.

Enjoy these stories and many more in this passion-filled collection of short stories and poetry from the writers of WPaD.

Love can be many things.
For some, it’s sweet and sensual. For others, it’s tragic and painful.
Just as a prism transforms a beam of light into all colors of the rainbow, love blooms to its full potential, taking on a different shade with every heart through which it passes.
The stories and poetry in this book are as diverse as their composers. You will find a bit of everything in here, from tenderness, sensuality and magic to the inevitable darker sides of romance – pain, tragedy and deceit.

Passion’s Prisms is our salute to romance, presented for your enjoyment.

Authors of Passion’s Prisms:
Mandy White, J. Harrison Kemp, David W. Stone, Daniel E. Tanzo, Diana Garcia, Marla Todd, A.K. Wallace, Marie Frankson, David Hunter, Robert Betz, Michael Haberfelner, Suzanne Parlee, Anand Matthew, Juliette Kings.

The stories and poetry in this book are as diverse as their composers. You will find a bit of everything in here, from tenderness, sensuality and magic to the inevitable darker sides of romance – pain, tragedy and deceit.

From historic romance, fantasy and contemporary stories, plus some like you’ve never imagined, there is something for everyone in this classic anthology.

We are WPaD (Writers, Poets and Deviants), a group of writers from all over the world who have come together to collaborate on a series of themed charity anthologies.

Passion’s Prisms is our salute to romance, presented for your enjoyment.

DOWNLOAD FOR ONLY $0.99 during the month of FEBRUARY.

http://www.amazon.com/Passions-Prisms-Tales-Love-Romance/dp/1482504804/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1391269883&sr=8-1&keywords=passions+prisms+WPaD

Note: This isn’t just some “girlie romance.” The stories are written by both male and female authors. There is something for everyone (guys like this book too)

Second note: The WPaD group has asked all readers to please leave a nice review with Amazon if you like this book. Thanks. J.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

Great Holiday Reading! GET SOME!

Take it from the Vampire…
This is truly the best Holiday Anthology out there. Give it as a gift or gift it for yourself. You’ll thank me later. Plus part of the proceeds go to MS research.

Merry merry,
xooxoxoxox Juliette

 

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JADE M PHILLIPS

Who needs something fantastic to read? Who wants something perfect for bundling-up-in-the-dead-of-winter-reading?
I do! I do!
Join me in grabbing this FABULOUS anthology which is full of magic, memories, some warm and some bittersweet. Tinsel Tales (Free for download right now, here) is a treasury of holiday-themed stories and poetry from the writers of WPaD. And WPaD is a group of writers from around the world who collaborate on charity anthologies for Multiple Sclerosis. They donate a portion of our royalties in support of a beloved fellow writer who lives with MS.
Did I mention that I am a participating author? Well, Yes I am! And I’m very proud of that fact! I have read this anthology once and am about to delve into it a second time! I’m not only boasting Tinsel Tales because my story Star Light, Star Bright is in it, but because it is truly wonderful and very hard to out down! Join me…

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Dragons and Dreams

Dragons and Dreams

Dragons and Dreams

Magic, myth and alien worlds all come together in this collection of short stories from Writers, Poets and Deviants.

~ A young witch and her talking dog must rid their home of unwelcome guests.
~ A pair of newsmen travel to Alaska to hear an astonishing tale of an encounter with an extinct creature.
~ A boy searches for the Edge of the World, uncovering the mystery of his grandfather’s disappearance in the process.
~ A troll hunter makes a startling discovery about his prey.
~ Dragons on an alien planet find friendship in an old man, but not all humans share his sentiments when it comes to the giant winged reptiles.
~ A lonely shapeshifter is the sole survivor of an Aztec king’s attempt at genocide of her race.
~ A pair of inter-dimensional explorers discover yet another new world and must face a horrifying beast.

Enjoy these stories and many more, in this exciting fantasy collection from the versatile and imaginative authors of WPaD.

This is a charity anthology. A percentage of royalties will be donated to MS research in support of members of our group who live with Multiple Sclerosis.

Includes works from: J. Harrison Kemp, Anand Matthew. S. E. Springle, Marla Todd, Diana Garcia, David W. Stone, Robert Betz, A.K. Wallace, Michael Faberfelner, Jade W. Phillips, Mandy White and Daniel E. Tanzo

Available on Amazon

http://www.amazon.com/Dragons-and-Dreams-ebook/dp/B00EK5T3XQ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1376580927&sr=8-1&keywords=dragons+and+dreams+wpad

As I read all of the stories and verse in this anthology I was blown away by how GOOD these stories are. And you all know that I don’t just blow pink smoke out to be nice.

~Juliette aka Vampire Maman