5 Interesting Links for 10-13-2017

Note: Videos may auto start with sound so be prepared.

Primitive (Innovation)

A demonstration of how to make sandals out of available plants to protect your feet in a forest. It reminds me of my sister’s string work, only with bark and cane fibers. (Includes a video.)

Advice (Life)

A list of comments from older people that they offer as advice to the younger folks based on their life experiences. Not all of them clicked with me, but they are worth hearing even so. Continue reading

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The Love Experiment by Ainslie Paton

The Love Experiment by Ainslie PatonI’ve been reading romance since my early teens, so you might imagine I’ve read a few. There are common themes, no question, but each book is a different spin on the theme, which is what makes them fun to read. The Love Experiment, however, takes two common themes and turns them on their head in a way I don’t remember seeing before.

This is a sensual contemporary romance about a famous man and a career woman…sort of. See, there’s no doubt Jackson Haley is famous, but he’s not playboy famous. He’s famous for doing deep, investigative reporting that uncovers wrongdoing and brings the criminals to justice while helping the victims of that crime. He doesn’t care about fame, but rather feels his role is to defend the city against those who would do it wrong. He’s a crusader in a world where evil has already won in the name of profit, but he’s nothing more than that. He has committed his life to the job and believes that’s all there is.

Derelie Honeywell, on the other hand, is new to the city and determined to succeed here. She left her small town paper because she didn’t want to settle for the familiar, but she’s finding much about city life just doesn’t appeal to her. It doesn’t help that the online content position she’s hired for gets no respect from the print reporters, and Haley’s the worst of them, in part because she respects what he has accomplished. Still, she’s not ready to admit failure until she’s experienced city life to the fullest.

Their publisher throws the two together as a punishment for Haley’s back talking, but that’s where the story takes an interesting turn. Continue reading

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Spotlight on Seeds Among the Stars Plus a Multi-Author Giveaway

Shafter (Seeds Among the Stars) eBook CoverReaders often compliment me on how my characters feel like real people. I achieve that sense through my worlds, which exist in full form somewhere in the back of my brain. This drives how my characters act and react as well as adding depth to the events.

For Seeds Among the Stars, the series’ world starts in the microcosm of Ceric colony so I thought I’d give you a glimpse into how the colony became what it has when you arrive there. Skip to Giveaway

Modern day Ceric little resembles the colony planning done on Earth. While colonization in Trina’s time is a matter of dropping into folded space to turn a generations-long voyage into months, that wasn’t the case for the original colonists, a mix of wealthy adventurers, business owners, and recruited staff. They left a tech-heavy planet with unending population issues to establish a technology-enhanced paradise.

Where the wealthy expected luxury, many of those from less privileged ranks hoped to see their family businesses flourish when demand on Earth had shrunken to the realm of the ultra-rich.

This was definitely the case for the original Samuel, whose family raised horses and had as far back as anyone could remember. The same contacts that afforded him this opportunity grated on his nerves when he could look at the family history and find their stables meant something, whether supplying the sturdiest mounts for war or the fleetest for races. But with the overcrowding and space at such a high demand, his stock had dwindled, and his only customers kept these magnificent beasts confined to tiny arenas and even smaller stalls. At least the wealthy were willing to pay the credits to keep his family tradition going, but at what cost?

Samuel saw hope for his horses: wide open pastures, real purpose instead of toys, and everything his family had stood for restored. Continue reading

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5 Interesting Links for 10-06-2017

History (Reading)

A cross between marginalia and highlighting, this article provides examples of manicules from old texts.

Philosophy (Employment)

This article is a direct demonstration of the change in philosophy that is crippling our country. Though it singles out Apple, very few of the leading US companies do not employ the same tactics from the social environment to the economics, and understanding this difference is crucial to changing the trend. Continue reading

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The Ace of Clubs by Patricia Loofbourrow

The Ace of Clubs by Patricia LoofbourrowThe Ace of Clubs is the third book in the Red Dog Conspiracy and a very complicated novel for oh so many reasons. If you haven’t read the series, be aware there will be spoilers not for this book but for the ones previous to some degree so choose whether to read on with that awareness.

When I first finished the book, I thought I didn’t like it, but while I’d like to have seen Jacqui take a more active role at times, it took a bit to realize my issue wasn’t with the book at all. The series is a futuristic steampunk, noir, crime family epic with all the Dickens elements I adore of privilege, underclasses, and society running at multiple levels often oblivious of each other to some extent. The characters are nuanced and complicated. They don’t always make the right choices (or sometimes ever) and seem a little too willing to sacrifice others in the name of themselves, but what’s key is they are true to their own character, consistent in their inconsistencies, and often enough infuriating in their decisions.

The Ace of Clubs is very true to these parts, especially Jacqui’s lack of control over her life and the consequences her hidden rebellion enact on the lives of those around her. Sure, the main story focuses on the inquest into the destruction of the zeppelin, but it’s what the inquest brings into the open that forms the heart of the novel. This is a story of betrayals, both those known and unknown. It raises questions of duty when the target of that duty is innocent and not the one who forced Jacqui into the situation, but he is the one harmed should she reject her unwilling duty. Continue reading

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