Saturday, April 11, 2015

DOG BONE SOUP, A Boomer's Journey


Dog Bone Soup A Boomer’s Journey

By Bette A. Stevens

Author Bette A. Stevens writes a debut novel taking place in the 1950s and 60s, filled with Americana and historical fiction. Referred to as ‘Boomers,’ the people of these decades set the pace and tenor of future generations.

Shawn Daniels might have been a typical boy in the ‘good old days’ had his father not been an abusive, wife beating drunk, spending his money on liquor, while allowing his family to live in poverty, lacking indoor plumbing and electricity. Still Shawn has dreams and fortitude enough to withstand the bullying by his peers, being called ‘white trash’ by his community, and is able to withstand all the obstacles thrown in his path. His brother, Willie, tends to be lazy and a dreamer, but still helps out when the family is starving, by chopping wood, and helping his mother manage the house and care for his younger sisters, Annie and Molly.

The author deftly flashes forward as the story opens. Shawn is preparing to head off to Army boot camp during the Vietnam War. Enlisting might keep him from being sent overseas and give him some job training. After a life of struggling, Shawn sees the light at the end of his personal tunnel. As he stays up with his Mum through the middle of the night, looking through old family pictures, his story unfolds.

This is a realistic charming, yet heartrending story reminiscent of  ‘Huckleberry Finn,’ by Mark Twain. Author Stevens manages to portray this period of history with clarity and truth. Most amazingly her characters, while suffering more than today's civilization, enduring a myriad of harsh circumstances, there is little self-pity among them. If ever a people made lemonade from lemons, it was the boomers.

Amidst the hardship, including the nightly Dog Bone Soup, there are also times of adventure, playfulness and fun — as if Shawn and his generation are blessed with an innate ability to cope with daily setbacks; never losing hope and continually forging ahead aiming for better days.

Author Bette A. Stevens writes a book full of heart and wisdom, a book that YA/adult readers will treasure and cherish. This generation in particular needs to read the book to learn what hard life was like, giving them the skills to adapt to the problems of their own generation. Dog Bone Soup, A Boomer’s Journey is a journey that the reader wishes would never end.

Micki Peluso, author of . . . And the Whippoorwill Sang          

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

THE SCENT OF MY SON, IN GOD WE TRUST


THE SCENT OF MY SON, IN GOD WE TRUST

By Adrienne Miranda

In the heat of the summer on July 20, 2006, a mother's life is forever changed by one phone call. Her ex-husband says the words no parent can bear to hear; “Our beautiful baby boy is gone." Their son Joseph Anthony Miranda has just been run over and killed By a Bobcat on the construction site where he works. His mother, brother Rob, and family's grief and agony know no bounds, as they are held together only by their deep faith and trust in God.

Later as Joseph's mother begins to ask questions of the police, the company he works for, and his coworkers, there is a veil of silence and denial of wrongdoing which clearly implies to Adrienne that something is amiss.

And so begins her years of searching for the truth behind her beloved son's untimely, horrific death and what she feels and knows in her heart is a homicide. The author takes readers on a heartbreaking journey through grief, flashing back to the years of Joseph's life before he was killed. There can be no closure for this family until the truth behind Joseph's death is uncovered and brought to light.

Adrienne works tirelessly, strengthened only by God and the Scriptures she's memorized from her Bible, in her ongoing search for truth and justice. It helps keep her busy as she suffers through the sorrow that only the death of a child can bring; yet she is continually blocked by deceit and lies, even from police and investigators that she trusted. The deeper she digs, the deeper the mystery and suspense grows, reaching into Mexico, and involving the FBI and high government officials. While the coroner confirms assault and homicide, both upper and lower arms of the law and courts refuse to accept this as truth. Local police initially agreeing, change their stories. Calls are not returned, cooperation from all avenues is denied.

Author Adrienne Miranda writes an intense account of the injustice which destroys a young man so full of life — with plans for a happy future — as she continues to this day to demand justice and dignity for her son. How deep does this outrageous cover-up go and how far-reaching, implicating officials right up to the higher levels of government. Yet Joseph's death certificate confirms “that his manner of death is homicide and his cause is assault."

This is a story worth reading as author shares not only the life and death of her precious son but details an incident which could happen to other parents. Her story is meant to eradicate the wrong done to her child and warn others of what might someday befall them. The author feels that with God on her side, justice will prevail.

Micki Peluso, author of . . . And the Whippoorwill Sang

Saturday, March 28, 2015

NEW ANNOUNCEMENT REGARDING . . . AND THE WHIPPOORWILL SANG


I'm happy and excited to announce to all my friends and followers who have not yet had the pleasure of reading my book . . . And the Whippoorwill Sang that the book will be available for 99 cents on Amazon Kindle beginning: March 30th 8AM PST through April 6th PST. Be sure and grab your copy before Kindle runs out — just kidding — electronic books can't run out. Those preferring the print version can find it on Amazon for around $13. Try to take advantage of the offer before the craziness of Passover and the Easter Season begins.
This is the story of two teenagers in love. Micki’s dysfunctional mother convinces the two of them to elope to Elkton, Marylyn and marry in a double ceremony with a man her mother barely knows. This begins the story of Micki and Butch, who go on to have six children and an outrageous life, filled with animals both tame and feral, and wild escapades including a cross-country trip to Nevada in which everything that can go wrong does.
Returning to their home town in Pennsylvania, they buy 100-year-old farmhouse complete with rats, bats and wasps as well as their own ghosts. Life is wonderful for this family filled with laughter, filled with love. On a sunny summer day in late August, their 14-year-old daughter, Noelle, the child whose wacky sense of humor and love, wove the fabric of the family together, was killed by a drunk driver. That day the laughter died.
Micki promises her dying Noelle that she will make sure that the world knows who and what she was by writing a celebration of her life rather than a eulogy of her death. The result of this promise is . . . And the Whippoorwill Sang, a story of love, loss and survival, with the humor of ”Cheaper by the Dozen,” and the heart of “To Kill a Mockingbird.”
For those of you who choose to read this story, please let me know what you thought of it and if you can leave a short review. You can use the links below to order from Kindle and use the fan facebook page to watch the video of the characters you will be meeting in this book.

 

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

AN EXCERPT FROM . . . AND THE WHIPPOORWILL SANG


     School started and Fall, as always, descended upon us at once, mourned again by the whippoorwills, that who had to migrate to warmer lands. I had come to grips with the ghosts; whether true ghosts or poltergeist activity by my wacky teenagers. The house blew a lot of fuses that strangely, flew clear across the large basement, a good thirty feet—which baffled Butch. It happened mostly on weekends when he was home to change the fuses and always in the middle of a good television show. 

Butch had traded the white pickup truck, aka camper, for a ridiculous looking UPS truck, painted a bright orange. Inside, it was nicely furnished as a large camper, with a kitchen, bed and bath. It had two comfortable, large swivel chairs in front which made for comfortable driving. He’d had enough of New Jersey and took a job in Massapequa, Long island, working for a Ground Round Restaurant, as General Manager. It was about an hour and a half from our old home in Island Park, Long, Island. Our friend, Danny, from Benny’s, had also moved back to New York and told him about the job. The traveling time was longer than from New Jersey, but Butch was more comfortable and loved the job. It was similar to what he did at Benny’s, except more a family style restaurant—a cross between fast food and fine dining.

     That Sunday he left early for his long ride back. The younger girls and I were all home watching the movie,”Halloween,” when we heard odd thumping sounds from the basement. The ghosts never appeared there, and I feared an intruder had come in through the unlocked basement door. I grabbed the shotgun and put a shell into it, hoping not to have to use it and break my shoulder or hip. I peeled Nicole, who had wrapped herself around my legs, to keep me from going downstairs, off me and made her sit down and be quiet. I snapped my fingers for Sheba to follow me downstairs, although the usually good watchdog hadn’t barked at the noise. I quietly opened the door to the basement, warning all the kids to stay on the couch. They actually obeyed. Maybe it was the sight of me brandishing a shotgun. Sheba stayed behind me, brave dog that she was—watching my back, I supposed. I tiptoed down the steps, scanning the basement, shotgun ready to fire, when I saw a large potato at the bottom of the steps. I held my fire. The menacing spud had fallen off the pantry shelf and thumped down the basement steps. I tried to bribe the kids to secrecy, but never lived down the story of the night that Mom nearly shot an Idaho potato.

 

AN EXCERPT FROM . . . AND THE WHIPPOORWILL SANG




Monday, February 23, 2015

BIG 99 CENT SALE ON AMAZON--DON'T MISS IT!!

. . . And the Whippoorwill Sang Kindle   reduced to .99 US Amazon 3/30/15, 8AM  PST--4/ 6/15 12AM
PSThttp://www.amazon.com/Whippoorwill-Sang-Micki-Peluso-ebook/dp/B007OWPBGK/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1424658104&sr=1-1&keywords=Micki+Peluso+kindle

 
UK   FEB 32 - FEB 28


 I invite all my friends and followers to take advantage of this spectaclular sale in both the UK and later on Amazon US.  Those of you wanting to read . . . And the Whippoorwill Sang can now buy it for 99 cents. This is a story most of you will enjoy and I promise the story--a true family story, will stay with you long after finishing the book. Those inclined to read this promise to my daughter, could also post a short review which would be greatly appreciated. To know more about the book before buying, read my reviews which will give you an idea of what the story is about.
 
I don't usually brag, but I'm happy to announce that I am the highest ranking author with the most sales for the past royalty quarter with my publisher, LspDigital publishing.com. In today's ecomonmy and with the competition, this is a huge honor and makes the hard work getting to this point, worth it--for me and for Noelle.
 
Thanks to you all for reading this and I hope you take advantage of this offer and the chance to read a wonderful, poignant book.
 
Micki Peluso
 
 

Sunday, January 25, 2015

How Do I Love Thee?

This is an article on the origen of St. Valentine's Day



February 14th sometimes signifies the first day of Lent, depending upon the date of Easter, and is also Admission Day in Arizona. Most people however, celebrate the day by sending comic or heartfelt Valentines to family, friends and lovers. People seem to delight in St. Valentine’s Day, as florists, candy stores, boutiques and card shops do a rallying business providing heart-shaped novelties of all variety. Chocolate, long known for having properties that produce a euphoric feeling similar to the bittersweet emotion of love, seems an appropriate gift for St. Valentine’s Day.
The origin of the holiday is uncertain
, but St. Valentine actually honors two Saints of the same name. One was a Roman priest martyred during the reign of the Emperor Claudius, the other, a martyred Bishop of Interramna. They were both buried in the Flaminian Way, which was later named the Gate of St. Valentine. Today the gate is known as Porta Del Popolo — the Gate of the People. The accounts of these men's lives are legendary, based on sparse historical fact. It is possible, researchers agree, that the legends denote different versions of the martyrdom of only one person. St. Valentine’s Day, as it is known today, is a lovers Festival, bearing no relation to these legends.
One theory as to how the name Valentine came to be applied to the day is founded on the belief in England that birds begin dating on February 14. Chaucer, in his “Parliament of Foules," says it like this: “for this was Seynt Valentyne’s day. When every foul cometh to choose his mate." Those disagreeing with this claimed that the connection between lovers and St. Valentine stems from a similarity between the Norman word “galantin," meaning a lover of woman, and the name of the saint. St. Still another theory contends that the lover’s custom dates back to the pagan Roman feast of Lupercalia occurring in mid-February young Roman men and women placed their names in a love urn from which their names were drawn at random. During the upcoming year, the young man would be the escorts of the women whose names were matched to their own.

The Christian clergy objected to this pagan custom and substituted the names of saints. Each person, the clergy hoped, which strive to emulate the saint drawn for them. The drawings were held on February 14, the feast of St. Valentine. Yet the drawing of names by young people on St. Valentine's Day continued long after the Christianization of pagan rites had been abandoned. The boy and girl paired by the drawing adopted the practice of giving presents to each other. Later the boy only gave to the girl; so started the custom of sending Valentines to loved ones.

St. Valentine's Day was widely celebrated in William Shakespeare's time, as this quote from Hamlet illustrates:
“Good morrow, ‘tis St. Valentine's Day,
All in the morning betime,
And I am made at your window,
To be your Valentine."

Paper Valentines with inscribed sentiments date from the 16th century. The first printed Valentine, issued in 1669, was probably inspired by “A Valentine Writer”, a book of verses offering help to those not articulate enough to pen their own rhymes. In England, the introduction of Penny postage and envelopes in 1840 popularized the exchange of Valentines and ornamental lace paper Valentines were in great demand. In the U. S., crude woodcut Valentines were fashioned by Robert H. Elton and Thomas W. Strong of New York, but most people preferred the lace paper cards imported from England.
With the establishment of the Post Office, the mail became swamped with Valentines each February. Comic Valentines, as well as coarse vulgar ones, cost only one cent. In the early 1900s, the Chicago post office rejected 25,000 cards on the grounds that they were improper for mail delivery. By the 1930s Valentine cards were primarily an activity for small children, who were taught to make the cards and decorations in kindergarten.

On one particularly gruesome Valentine's Day, the streets ran red with blood and the message given was not one of love. This notorious incident was “The St. Valentines Massacre," in Chicago on February 14, 1929. Al Capone’s gang, disguised as policemen, forced seven members of the rival “Bugs Moran” gang to stand against the garage wall with their arms raised. Capone’s mobsters methodically gunned the rival gang down.

recent years, St. Valentine's Day continues to gain popularity, as lovers and children eagerly await its arrival; perhaps because it breaks the monotony of the long winter. However, not all people recognize the holiday. One husband whose name I will not mention, chooses to totally ignore St. Valentine's Day, even when it falls three days after his wedding anniversary — but that's another story.