J.D.R. Hawkins

One bullet can make a man a hero… or a casualty.

Archive for the month “February, 2017”

Holy Buckets!

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This past week has been crazy busy! I learned on Friday that my new nonfiction book is slated for release in June. I’m also re-releasing my first two books in the Renegade Series because I’m switching publishers. I just finished proofing one galley and now it’s on to the next. Plus I’m trying to get as many interviews and reviews as I can for A Rebel Among Us. Don’t be shy! If you would like a copy to review, please let me know and I’ll send you a free e-book right away! (Just tell me if you need it in Mobi or ePub.)

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Now for the big news: I started a Patreon page! It’s sort of like crowd-funding (Kickstarter, Go Fund Me) but with a twist. On Patreon, you are giving your support on an ongoing basis. You can pledge as little as $1 a month, which will be a tremendous help to me! Plus, you get loads of free stuff, and exclusive behind-the-scenes posts shown only to you! I’m only asking for your support because I know you are kind and want to help me succeed. You can also use it as a tax write-off! Please follow the link below to learn more about Patreon and why I’m asking for your help. Thank you so much!

https://www.patreon.com/jdrhawkins

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Release Blitz: A Way Back Into Love by Veronica Thatcher

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Title: A Way Back into Love

Author: Veronica Thatcher

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Publisher: Notion Press

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Blurb:

Nothing is perfect. Life is messy. Relationships are complex. Outcomes, uncertain. People, irrational. But love…well, that makes everything complicated. And when you are caught in a tangled web of secrets, lies, and complex affairs, someone is bound to get burned.

Emily Stevens is a spunky, spirited college girl whose life gets turned upside-down when she realizes she’s in love with her best friend of fifteen years, Derek Thorpe. As Emily prepares to confess her feelings to Derek, something happens one night which changes her life forever. Five years later, Emily finds herself in Boston, alone and heartbroken. Will she ever be able to forget the past? And what will she find when she returns home…to the man she left behind?

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32998245-a-way-back-into-love

Buy links: Paperback – http://www.amazon.in/Way-Back-Into-Love/dp/1946641170/

                                               https://www.amazon.com/dp/1946641170/

                             eBooks – https://www.amazon.in/dp/B06WRR5FN3

                                                https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06WRR5FN3/

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Author Bio:

Veronica Thatcher is an exciting new contemporary romance author. Ever since she was very young, she’s dreamed of becoming a doctor when she grew up. While still forging ahead with that, majoring in pre-med in college, she unwittingly stumbled upon a new dream—becoming a published author. Some may call her an introvert or a wallflower, but she has always found she could express herself better in written, rather than spoken, words. However, never in her wildest dreams had she envisioned she would pursue writing as a prospective career, not just a hobby. Her love for writing goes hand-in-hand with her love for a good romance novel—whether it be a feel-good, sweet romance or a dark, suspenseful one. When she’s not studying, reading, or writing, she is usually found blasting her favourite songs, sometimes singing and dancing along to them.  She dabbles in a number of activities, including painting, karate, singing and dancing. She is a huge chocoholic – probably the biggest – and she is an ice-cream junkie too. She considers herself technologically handicapped forever and has no shame in admitting that. She also deems chocolates her boyfriend, Patrick Dempsey the love of her life, and Friends her life!

Her first book, A Way Back Into Love, is slated for release in February 2017, and she hopes readers will enjoy it as much as she enjoyed writing it. You can reach Veronica through Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, Wattpad and Gmail.

Author Links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authorthatcher/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/merderlover1

Wattpad: https://www.wattpad.com/user/merder32

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16087807.Veronica_Thatcher

Excerpt:

Emily stepped back from him and shook her head. “Oh, you know damn well what I mean. You know what, Derek? I’m done having this conversation with you. I’m so done with this conversation and I’m so done with you,” Emily spat out angrily before brushing past him.

“Emily, wait,” Derek said, catching her by her arm. “Where are you going?”

Emily spun around and gave him a bitter look before looking down at his hand gripping her arm. “Leave my arm,” she said in a low yet threatening voice, “And why do you care where I’m going? It’s none of your business.”

Derek didn’t leave her arm in spite of her warning and said, “Em, you’ve had too many drinks. You can’t drive in this condition. I’ll drop you home.”

Emily jerked her arm free from his grasp and replied in a bitter voice, “Thank you, but no. I’m perfectly capable of getting myself home on my own. I don’t need you to drop me home. Do you get it, Derek Thorpe? I DON’T NEED YOU!” Emily yelled the last words, causing a few people to look their way.

 

New Series on Book Tour

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Here is an awesome new series that is going on tour this week, and it looks like so much fun! Check out the info below to learn more about these novels.

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The Magician’s Workshop, Volume One

Authors: Christopher Hansen, J.R. Fehr

Published by: Wondertale, California

Ebook Publication Date: November 8, 2016

Paperback Publication Date: April 25, 2017 (estimated)

ebook ISBN: 1-945353-11-2

ebook ASIN: B01MQGHGBH

Genre: Coming of Age, Fantasy, Magic

Ages: 12 and up.

Length: 85,000 words / 290 pages

Buy/Media Links:

Webpage: www.oceea.com

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MQGHGBH

In Canada: https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B01MQGHGBH

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Magiciansworkshop/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32948256-the-magician-s-workshop-volume-one

Synopsis:

Everyone in the islands of O’Ceea has a magical ability: whatever they imagine can be brought into existence. Whoever becomes a master over these powers is granted the title of magician and is given fame, power, riches, and glory. This volume of books follows the journey of a group of kids as they strive to rise to the top and become members of the Magician’s Workshop.

Layauna desperately wants to create beautiful things with her magical powers, but all she can seem to do is make horrible, savage monsters. For years she has tried to hide her creations, but when her power is at last discovered by a great magician, she realizes that what she’s tried to hide might actually be of tremendous value.

Kai just wants to use his powers to have fun and play with his friends. Unfortunately, nearly everyone on his island sees him as a bad influence, so he’s forced to meet them in secret. When one of the creatures they create gets out of control and starts flinging fireballs at their town, Kai is tempted to believe that he is as nefarious as people say. However, his prospects change when two mysterious visitors arrive, praising his ability and making extraordinary promises about his future.

Follow the adventures of Kai, Layauna, and a boatload of other characters as they struggle to grow up well in this fantastical world.

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The Magician’s Workshop, Volume Two

Authors: Christopher Hansen, J.R. Fehr

Print Length: 273 pages

Publisher: Wondertale

Publication Date: November 22, 2016

ASIN: B01N988TW7

Genre: Coming of Age, Fantasy, Magic

Ages: 12 and up.

Buy/Media Links:

Webpage: www.oceea.com

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01N988TW7/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Magiciansworkshop/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33128294-the-magician-s-workshop-volume-two

Synopsis:

Return to the world of The Magician’s Workshop: Where Dreams Become Reality.

In Volume Two, the Festival of Stars has finally arrived, and the Color Ceremony is about to commence. As children from all over the islands gather to stand before a puller, one question remains: who will have a Color, and who will be found void?

Rejoin your favorite characters as they step forward and receive a label that will have the power to dramatically alter the course of their lives forever.

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Author Bios:

Christopher Hansen

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The first glimmering Chris Hansen had that there was far more to reality than he had ever imagined occurred six days after his ninth birthday. “Christopher!” cried a wise, old sage. “Life is full of deep magic. Miraculous things happen all the time and all around us, if you know where to look for them.” Full of expectation and childlike optimism, Chris began searching for this magic, prepared to be surprised and amazed by it. And he was: he found Wonder! Now he’s chosen to write stories about it.

J.R. Fehr

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When J.R. Fehr popped out of the womb, he knew there was more to the world than the four boring hospital walls that he was seeing. “Zango!” his newborn mind exclaimed as he saw people appear and disappear through a mysterious portal in the wall. As a child he found life wowtazzling, but as he grew older the cold water of reality hit him, and the magic he once knew vanished. After spending some wet and shivering years lost in a joyless wasteland, he once again began to see magic in the world. He writes because the Wonder of true life is far grander than anything he ever thought possible.

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Grow Up Messy!

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Here is a new MG/YA book that is on a blog tour. It looks really cute and I hope you get a chance to read it!

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Title of the book : Grow Up Messy!

(A Hilarious Coming of Age Series Book 1)

Author  : Paromita Goswami

Genre :  Middle School, Teen and YA

Publisher :  Ficus India

The Blurb :

Childhood is considered to be the best time of one’s life. What if you get a chance to live it once more with a five-year-old?
Misry, a naughty five-year-old girl, lives with her parents in a B.S.F border outpost near Indo-Bangladesh border. But with no schools and friends she feels very lonely. She tries to befriend some local village kids. But they find her incompetent in their rural antics. They nickname her Messy as most of the time she messes up their plan. Can Misry really be a part of the gang?
Set in the early eighties, join Misry in the adventures of her life.

Buying Links

Amazon kindle

 Nook  

Kobo

About the author

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Paromita Goswami is a writer and storyteller by passion and a rebel by choice. She says the world is full of stories and as a writer she loves to pen them down. Her work is not genre specific. From literary fiction to children book to upcoming paranormal thriller and women fiction, Paromita Goswami‘s books offer the variety of life to her readers. Grow Up Messy! is her second book. She debuted in 2015 with Shamsuddin’s Grave, a literary fiction. Besides writing, she is also the founder of reading club that enhances book reading habit in children. She lives in central India with her family.

fun facts about the book & the writing journey

  1. Misry’s character in the book Grow Up Messy! is that of an innocent child who depends more on her mother for her smaller needs. The best part is she expects her mother to be know everything just like the superwoman. She believes there is nothing which her Ma cannot do or hasn’t seen. So when she requests her mother to make Pinjiri, something which she had tasted for the first time elsewhere, it never occurred to her that Ma might not know about its preparation.

This particular scene from the book is very close to my heart. Although the entire episode is very funny but it actually depicts the trust of a child in the mother. Something which no one can ever challenge. I see my son in this episode sometimes.

  1. Children enjoy being dirty. We have done it so many times in our days yet as a parent if we see our child playing in the soil we try to stop him immediately. The same thing our mothers might have also done with us while we enjoyed. Isn’t it strange, when we grow up we follow our mothers so blindly.

There is an episode in the book where Misry plays in the muddy pool and ruins her fresh clothes. No doubt her mother is mad at her.

  1. Children have a very special place for animals in their heart. Whether they have pets at home or not but whenever they get a chance to pet an animal they will never stop themselves. I wish as we grow up we shouldn’t lose this emotion within us. It actually makes us more humane.

In the book, Misry befriends a sacrificial  animal as her pet what follows next is very       heart wrenching.

  1. As kids, our relationship with our first cousins is very interesting. Once in a year, during the school vacation we go to visit them. Whatever, time we spent together is always fun. We use to share things, study together, fight with each other and even share our little secrets. These moments are recreated when Misry visits her Dadu’s house. It is so much fun to have so many family members living under the same roof. Have you ever lived in a joint family or visited one?
  1. It will be a lie if I say I never had any difficulties in learning or rather mugging up the multiplication tables. This was one part that I always hated in Mathematics and the fact is no one said before that this multiplication table I will be using throughout my life. Yet when it comes to our kids we never fail to tell them how easy it is to learn the multiplication table. Was it really???

The book has a chapter for that too. Seriously dedicated to the Multiplication Tables.       How Misry and her family copes with it is something to watch out for.

Follow Author

https://www.facebook.com/authorparomita/

https://twitter.com/authorparomita

https://paromitagoswami.wordpress.com/

 

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Author Spotlight by Yours Truly

My novel, A Rebel Among Us, was featured yesterday on Renee’s Author Spotlight. Here is the post.

A Rebel Among Us by J.D.R. Hawkins

J.D.R. Hawkins is an award-winning author who has written for newspapers, magazines, newsletters, e-zines, and blogs. She is one of only a few female Civil War authors, and uniquely describes the front lines from a Confederate perspective.

Her Renegade Series includes A Beautiful Glittering Lie, winner of the John Esten Cooke Fiction Award and the B.R.A.G. Medallion, A Beckoning Hellfire, which is also an award winner, and A Rebel Among Us, which has just been published. These books tell the story of a family from north Alabama who experience immeasurable pain when their lives are dramatically changed by the war.

Ms. Hawkins is a member of the United Daughters of the Confederacy, the International Women’s Writing Guild, Pikes Peak Writers, and Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers. She is also an artist and singer/songwriter. She is currently working on a nonfiction book about the War Between the States, as well as another sequel for the Renegade Series. Learn more about her at http://jdrhawkins.com.

Connect with the Author

About the Book

After David Summers enlists with the Confederate cavalry, his delusion of chivalry is soon crushed when he witnesses the horrors of battle. Shot by a Union picket, he winds up at a stranger’s farm. Four girls compassionately nurse him back to health. David learns his comrades have deserted him in Pennsylvania following the Battle of Gettysburg, but his dilemma becomes much worse. He falls in love with the older sister, Anna, who entices him with a proposition. To his dismay, he must make a decision. Should he stay and help Anna with her underhanded plan, or return to the army and risk capture?

Get it today on Amazon and Smashwords!

Keep reading for an interview with the author:
When did you start writing?

I began writing when I was very young, and started out with songs and poems. From there, I advanced to children’s picture books (I did my own artwork) and novels. I developed an interest in the Civil War when I took a trip to Gettysburg. That trip made a profound impression on me and gave me the inspiration to write the Renegade Series.

What is the biggest obstacle you face as an author and what do you do to overcome it?

Finding time to write. It’s difficult because my latest novel, A Rebel Among Us, just came out, so I’m spending a lot of time promoting it.

Does your family support you in your writing, or are you on your own?

My family supports me 100 percent. My oldest son has read all my manuscripts and edited them, my mom has read my books and helped me research them, and my husband has accompanied me to many book signings and events.

What is the best compliment you’ve ever received as an author?

That my books are very well written.

Have you ever had a particularly harsh critique? How did you handle it?

I had one guy give me grief at a book signing because I didn’t know that much about the Navy during the Civil War. I tried to explain that I hadn’t researched that part of it because the Navy isn’t in any of my stories, but he got mad anyway and huffed off. All I could do was shrug.

What is the best writing advice you’ve ever received?

Don’t take criticism personally.

What do you enjoy doing aside from writing?

I am also a singer/songwriter, so I enjoy playing and performing. I also like to travel and spend time in the mountains.

If you were stranded on a deserted island, and you could only have five books with you, what would they be?

The Bible, Gone With the Wind, and my three books so I could continue writing the series and not forget any details!

How many books do you have on your “to read” list? What are some of them?

The Girl on the Train, Harry Potter books (I haven’t read any), and a book a friend asked me to read for a review, titled Henry’s Pride.

What is your writing process?

Each book takes me, on average, six months to research and six months to write. I like to listen to Civil War music when I write, because it helps put me in that time period.

Do you write about real life experiences, or does everything come from your imagination?

I combine both. In A Rebel Among Us, there is a scene where the main character, David Summers, cups his hands and whistles to make it sound like a mourning dove. My dad taught me how to do that when I was a little girl.

Do you ever base your characters on people you know?

Yes. I based the main character, David Summers, and his best friend, Jake, on my son and his best friend. I also combine characters with real people in my life, and take certain aspects of people’s personalities to create a character.

Have you ever gotten an idea for a story from something really bizarre? Tell us about it.

In A Rebel Among Us, the main character, David Summers, looks up at the night sky and watches the clouds morph into what he perceives to be the devil. This actually happened to me one night.

What was the hardest part about writing your latest book?

Describing the prison camp scenes. These were all taken from actual accounts and journals the prisoners wrote. To understand that these terrible atrocities really happened is heartbreaking.

Do you have anything specific you’d like to say to your readers?

I chose to write about the Civil War because this era is so fascinating to me. The country was mixed up on its views. It wasn’t just black and white, or north and south. I hope that, by reading my novels, my readers will learn something about the war they didn’t know before, and hopefully feel compassion for the characters.

My Valentine to You – Another 5-Star Review!

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Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone! I just received another 5-star review for my new novel, A Rebel Among Us. I can’t tell you how excited I am about this book! So far, it is doing really great in the ratings. Please let me know if you’re interested in reading it and writing a review, too, and I will be happy to send you an e-book. Thanks for your support! (The review is as follows:)

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There are romance novels and there are romantic novels. Romance novels are generally erotic, predictable, and formula-driven. JDR Hawkins (A Beautiful Glittering Lie and A Beckoning Hellfire) brings us in her latest work, A Rebel Among Us, a true romantic novel that is none of those things.

The Civil War is nearly two bloody years from its end. The Battle of Gettysburg has just been fought and has ended badly for Confederate cavalryman, David Summers, and his comrades in arms. Severely wounded and separated from his unit, David is carried by his faithful horse, Renegade, to a Pennsylvania farmhouse miles away from the scene of the carnage. There he is taken in by a late-teenage orphan, Anna Brady, and her younger sisters.

What happens next is a tale of extraordinary compassion that takes place during an era filled with violence, distrust, and bitterness. The story is beautifully written with plot line that is, at the same time, believable but yet filled with intrigue, conspiracy, and necessary deceit. The dialogue flows naturally as does the depiction of normal life on the farm during anything but normal times. We meet Patrick, the caring and helpful Irish bachelor who works a hire on a neighboring farm. We also meet Maggie Brady, the middle sister, torn between her love for her sister and her bitter feelings towards the South. There is Abigail, the child sister – caught in the middle of all of it but too young to really understand any.

I have read numerous Civil War novels and even written one myself. I can truly say that nothing I have either read or written has pulled me into the place and the moment in the way that Julie Hawkins’ story did.

You do not have to be a Civil War ‘enthusiast’ or even a history buff to enjoy this truly enchanting work. I highly recommend it and rate it a well-deserved five stars. I recommend also reading the first two books in the Renegade series before reading this one. I have yet to read A Beautiful Glittering Lie but I already know that it will not disappoint. I am also anxiously awaiting the fourth book in the series.

Greg Seeley

(Thank you, Mr. Greg Seeley!)

Posing With a Rebel Flag? Say It Isn’t So!

Every once in a while, something similar to the Civil War happens in current events. This is just one instance:

Austrian Opera Diva Criticized for Posing with Rebel Flag. 

In St. Petersburg, Russia the renowned opera singer Anna Netrebko has placed herself on the side of the secessionists in eastern Ukraine, by posing with a flag of the Federal State of Novorossiya (or “New Russia,” consisting of the Donetsk People’s Republic and Luhansk People’s Republic) during an event at which she donated 1 million rubles to the cause of building an opera house in the war-torn city of Donetsk.

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She posed with the flag and with Oleg Tsaryov, a former member of Ukraine’s parliament who sides with secessionists.

A spokesman for the foreign ministry in Austria, where Netrebko lives and has dual citizenship, said, “Her meeting with a separatist leader and having a photo taken in front of a separatist flag is highly problematic. Given the really difficult situation we are facing in Ukraine, this is anything but helpful.”

Austrian Airlines also severed its celebrity-endorsement contract with her, adding, “We distance ourselves from extreme political positions and the use of armed violence.”

Is it just me? Or does the Ukrainian secessionists’ flag look familiar?

The flag of New Russia, or Novorossiya, has been around for a few months. The Moscow Times reports that similarities to the Confederate flag are apparently not intentional.

They located the Ukrainian credited with introducing the design; he says he merely found it, in the Times’ words, “online somewhere.” And in such a manner is the course of history determined.

(Article courtesy of Dixie Heritage Newsletter, Feb. 3, 2107 ed.)

Charlottesville Votes to Disregard Its History

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Yesterday was a sad day for Charlottesville. In a 3-2 vote, the city council decided to remove the statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee from Lee Park. I, for one, find this to be an atrocity. What is removing a long-standing statue of an American hero supposed to accomplish? Who, exactly, is offended by a statue of Robert E. Lee? I don’t hear anyone speaking up specifically, and yet, we keep hearing about how “certain people” are offended. Who, pray tell?

During the vote yesterday, several people in attendance, both black and white, were asked if they found the statue to be offensive. All said they were not. Again, who exactly is offended by old statues of Confederate soldiers? (Not counting the politicians who came up with this idea in the first place and pushed the issue through.) The statue was erected in 1924, so it has stood in the park for nearly 93 years. And now, all of a sudden, some people think some other people are offended. Really? Give me a break!

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Lawsuits will undoubtedly follow, and I hope, for the sake of historical preservation, the statue remains in the park. It would cost the city taxpayers an incredible amount of money to move the statue, and for what? This is another shameful example of political correctness gone awry.

http://www.richmond.com/news/virginia/article_e41c6141-f6ae-5309-92d2-a4457d7b5fe4.html

http://www.cavalierdaily.com/article/2017/01/councilman-fenwick-to-cast-tie-breaking-vote-to-remove-robert-e-lee-statue

http://www.charlottesville.org/departments-and-services/departments-h-z/parks-recreation-/parks-trails/city-parks/lee-park

I Received Another 5-Star Review!

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My new novel, A Rebel Among Us, received yet another 5-star review. Again, thank you, everyone, for your continued support. I couldn’t do any of this without you!

on January 31, 2017
Anna Brady (18, Maggie’s sister) Maggie Brady (Anna’s sister) were babysitting for Abigail (little girl) & Claudia Burrows (little girl).
A confederate soldier had been found bleeding.
Gettysburg was just a few miles away.
Abigail had a pot of water on the stove.
While still recuperating, he told the girls his name; David Ezekiel Summers (18, Montgomery, AL, Morgan County).
David (Baptist) was slowly recuperating.He & Anna were starting to share life stories.
Lil (black girl), & Manny (black boy), had been hiding in the barn.
Aunt Sarah & Grace Burrows (Claudia’s mother) later came back home.
It was Anna’s 19th. birthday.
3/27/1864, Easter Sunday. David (19) had done quite well he had a farmstead & 60 head of cattle.

What dilemma where David & Anna experiencing?

(Thank you, Tony Parsons!)

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