Monthly Archives: September 2014

Welcome Guest Raani York, author of Dragonbride

I would like to welcome my guest, Raani York, author of DRAGONBRIDE. Grab your cup of tea, pull up a chair and enjoy me guest.

banner for rhani


(The Dragon Chronicles, Book #1)

Shalima, “Daughter of the Light”, was born under special circumstances. She was raised by her aunts instead of her mother because she needed to be prepared to fulfill the prophecies of the Old Scriptures, which told that she was the only Magician on Earth.

 Her aunts carefully prepared her for her obligations and her sacred duty. She will have to get married to the Holy Golden Dragon, the King of the Dragons, a huge Earth Dragon with magical talents. She cannot believe that she is the “Chosen One”, who has to protect the Dragon Species, all of Nature and finally the Earth. But when she turned into a teenager it seemed that the Old Scriptures were right.

Buy the Book:

on Smashwords:

As an Ebook for following formats: epub, mobi, pd,f rtf, lrf ,pdb, txt, html

The Paperback version on Amazon will be released very soon! More buyer’s links will be available within the next week.

author photo raaniyorkAuthor Bio

Raani York has been a high volume writer for years. She has published articles, letters, short stories, poems, continuation stories and descriptions of all kind. She also writes novels, some of which can found on her website.

 Raani has been educated in Switzerland and in the U.S. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration. She also obtained diplomas in Graphic Design, Color Studies and won a prize as a Logo Designer. She speaks four languages and several dialects.

Raani York works and lives in Switzerland and the U.S. and travels often.

Next to her writing and her cats, Raani likes reading, blogging, Martial Arts, skiing, horseback riding, sky diving and enjoys playing the classical piano.







FB Author Page:









The mountains possessed a dark but seductive beauty, and they lay in wait for the ones who came through the Fire Hell. The powdered white peaks of the sparkling black mountain-world watched for them with longing.

The Diamond Mountains gave the illusion of being much closer than they really were, and many a pilgrim had been lured to his death by the promise of riches hidden on their slopes. These mountains were so named because of the rough gems strewn about the black volcanic soil. When the sun shone overhead the gems made the mountains sparkle and shimmer brightly, and at night they made the moonlit mountains glow with a soft silver light.

People, blinded by both their greed and the tantalizing glittering of the sunlit earth, imagined that there was immeasurable wealth lying there on the ground, just waiting to be picked. However, the mountains never betrayed the secrets they held. None who had ever walked those slopes could find the diamonds hidden within the black soil, for the mountains protected themselves.

Although healthy forest still grew in the foothills, the undergrowth became sparser just a few hundred feet up, and then the treeline ended. Where stunted trees would normally grow the forest just stopped, as if some unseen hand had cut it short. All that remained were dangerously sharp, dry rocks. Just below the snowline, the rocks disappeared, and the glittering black soil took their place.

Moreover, at the summit it seemed as if the Creator of All Things had dusted the peaks of the fissured mountain range with powdered sugar, for they were covered with a deceptively soft-looking, yet extremely sharp-edged eternal snow.

The mountains never betrayed their secrets…

And if a wanderer were to climb those peaks, going up to the Fire Hell and searching to quench his thirst at a splashing mountain spring, he would find no cool, refreshing water. Instead, these living mountains would seek to frighten him by shrouding the ground with a mysterious fog that made it impossible to see where he was putting his feet. Pilgrims sometimes drowned in the sulfurous pools of water hidden within the hellish rocks when the fog appeared, and if they left the main trails, they would know true fear, for they would be led down treacherous side paths that seemed to take them somewhere, yet actually led them nowhere but to their doom.

The mountains never betrayed their secrets…

Though many thought they would find the cool relief of the shadows by early evening, the ascent would continue for another three torturous days. During those three days, their throats would scream for water, and their eyes would tear up in the swirling sand. Blown up by the hot desert winds, the sand burned as it fell upon a traveler’s face and skin. Eventually their limbs would become heavy, and they would barely be able to move; thus, the wanderers would be forced to crawl on, farther and farther, until sheer luck eventually brought them to civilization… to people.

In a canyon between two hills below the mountain range there was a village. It had no official name, but the people living there called it Alpcateçu, which meant Oasis of the Mountains. Anyone who wanted to climb the mountains had to pass through the village. A few taverns and inns surrounded the village fountain, where a market was sometimes held.

Some houses and huts had been built in the wide hills and even at the edge of the forest… and in one such place, hidden within the woods, almost four hundred feet past the deepest thicket and connected to the village only by a side path lay the place in which I had been born.



Better Parenting, Better Kids with author Nonnie Jules

Join Nonnie as she continues her BETTER PARENTING, BETTER KIDS blog tour.


I love watching Nonnie Jules interviewed by Nonnie Jules.

Rave Reviews By Nonnie Jules

Hello and welcome to “WHO’S ON THE SHELF?” with yours truly, Nonnie Jules!  Since we are a book club, you know we had to offer something that included a book shelf.  A lot of interviews merely cover an author’s work or an individual’s career stories.  Here on this “SHELF,”  we get down and dirty and ask the questions no other interviewer dare ask.  We ask the questions that you want to open up a book and find the answers to on your favorite authors and fellow book club members, but no one has dared to cover them.  WE get personal!  Because when you sit on the RRBC “SHELF,” YOU are an open book!

Today I thought I’d invite myself to sit ON THE SHELF.  I mean, I know how much you all want to know more about the person who writes such confrontational books as “SUGARCOATIN’…YES…

View original post 3,564 more words


I am very excited to help fellow Rave Reviews Book Club member and friend Nonnie Jules kickstart her BETTER PARENTING, BETTER KIDS Blog Tour. I first met Nonnie through twitter and immediately had to read her parenting guide, THE GOOD MOMMIES’ GUIDE TO RAISING (ALMOST) PERFECT DAUGHTERS. It is a great book and is a perfect gift for the new mommy. Please sit back and enjoy today’s guest. 

Hi, my name is Nonnie Jules and welcome to the 1st day of my BETTER PARENTING, BETTER KIDS Blog Tour. Today I’m being hosted by my fellow RAVE REVIEWS BOOK CLUB board member, Kathryn Treat. I am honored that Kathryn offered to kick off my tour as she was one of the first people to ever read my parenting guide, THE GOOD MOMMIES’ GUIDE TO RAISING (ALMOST) PERFECT DAUGHTERS. She loved the book so much that she, of course, gave it a 5 * review. Here is a snippet of her review: “This book could be applicable to parents of sons as well, and would make a GREAT baby shower gift for NEW moms.” Kathryn and I quickly became friends, and it was greatly in part because of our parenting values. She, like me, also has two (almost) perfect daughters and she could relate to many of the points I had laid out in this guide.

Many times, people are drawn to each other for various reasons, most often because of commonalities they share. But in my case, I often find myself surrounded by parents who have kids who are the total opposite of mine. I’ve come to realize that the reason is because our parenting styles differ greatly.

I won’t say that I’m a strict parent, but I will say that there are certain things that I won’t compromise on (whether the child is 5 or 25): respect and manners. That being said, I have zero tolerance for poorly behaved children (and poorly behaved adults, for that matter), disrespectful children and a lack of manners (for those kids who are of the age to “know better” in certain situations).

I am a firm believer that there are “some” things that children can come into the world knowing, but the major things have to be taught. From about 2-3 months after conception of both my daughters, I would often have conversations with them {in my tummy}, letting them know what would be acceptable and unacceptable when they made their entrances into my world. My husband would laugh if he walked by and I was having such a conversation with my “belly,” but hey, there was really a baby in there!

I can remember as if it were yesterday, repeatedly saying the following to them (while they were in my tummy):

“When you get here, you will not break mommy’s things”;

“When you get here, you will be kind and respectful to others”.

Little did we know that those “lessons” would produce two of the most incredible daughters ever! My husband now tells parents-to-be: “Be sure you start teaching them early…while they’re still in the oven baking, because it really works!” Well, it seems he’s not laughing at me now, is he? Instead, he’s witnessing about that which I knew early on. Call it my mother’s intuition if you want, but I knew, somewhere deep inside, that if I started “that” early, the results would be very different.

When I was in college, I made the decision that I didn’t want kids. In my mind, they were just too messy and too much trouble and I was going to lead this grand life where there would be no room for these little people. When I got married and became expectant with my first child, I began to see things differently. I looked around the world and I knew instantly, what I DID NOT want my daughters to become. I saw these children who were so ill-mannered, that even now I cringe when I hear a child call an adult by their first name without putting a “handle” before it…you know, “Mrs., Ms, Mr.” My skin crawls when I hear a parent calling out to their child and the child yells back, “What?” and I literally want to pull my finger nails off with plyers when I see a child throwing a tantrum in the store or a child being disrespectful, by “talking back” to an adult. {In my mind, I’m secretly willing the parents to leave them with me for just one hour and I would promise the return of a most well-behaved child}.

I detest rudeness, so do you honestly think that I would have rude children? Absolutely not. I’m called Ms. Manners in some circles, so do you think that you would ever see a child of mine exhibiting poor ones? Never.

We’ve all heard these two adages:

“The definition of Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.”

“If you want something you’ve never had, then you’ve got to do something you’ve never done.”

Well, I decided BEFORE my kids were born, that I was going to parent better. I knew that would be the only way for me to get the great kids that I now have. I was well aware that the parenting that I had seen before me hadn’t worked, and I knew this because of the great many poorly parented kids I saw, even within my own family. I was determined to break this cycle so I went back to my own childhood, and although I don’t parent entirely the way my parents did, many of my methods are, as they say, “from the old school.” This new age parenting, let me ask some of you {in the voice and words of Sarah Palin}, “how’s that working out for ya?” With the crime rate growing because of young kids, I would go so far as to say, “Not well at all.”

Parents, we have to cultivate better if we want to produce better crops. We have to spend more time on them, and without neglecting ourselves, less time on those things that shouldn’t be as important as they are.

I hope that you will follow me for the next 7 days as I give you more insight into how we can create a much better world and how better parenting can produce better kids. Even if you think this doesn’t involve you because you don’t have kids or your kids are grown, think of it this way: “I’m sure you have nieces, nephews, grandkids or even god-children” who you want to be the best. And maybe, just maybe, their parents aren’t able to read this message or the other ones I will be sharing. YOU can be their saving grace. YOU can be their messenger.

I look forward to seeing you on my next stop where I will have another great message waiting just for you!


Nonnie Jules is the mother of two beautifully kind daughters, who along with the help of her husband, have turned out to be two of the greatest assets to this world. THE GOOD MOMMIES’ GUIDE TO RAISING (ALMOST) PERFECT DAUGHTERS is her first published piece of work and two weeks after publication, it hit Amazon’s Top 100 list, where it reached the #7 mark. With all the violence which is being exhibited by some children today, it is her vision and goal to get THE GOOD MOMMIES’ GUIDE…into the hands of everyone who breathes around a child. She feels the only way we can make this happen, is if we are all working from a common blueprint. Ms. Jules strongly believes that every opportunity we are given with a child, should be a teaching one for us and a learning one for them.

So far, Ms. Jules has authored two other books: a novel which she released in November of 2013, entitled “DAYDREAM’S DAUGHTER, NIGHTMARE’S FRIEND” and “SUGARCOATIN’ IS FOR CANDY & PACIFYIN’ IS FOR KIDS!” where she shares her no-holds-barred style of teaching us all about support and social media. Her second parenting guide {THE GOOD MOMMIES’ GUIDE TO BULLY-PROOF KIDS} is due for release the beginning of January, 2015 and the sequel to her debut novel, DAYDREAM’S DAUGHTER, shortly after. (Both have been delayed due to her extensive workload with RRBC).


She is a fan of the well-written word, and so along with 3 partners, she started 4WillsPublishing Co. in November, 2013 to assist other writers in putting out their best work ever. By December, 2013, she had founded the RAVE REVIEWS BOOK CLUB where in less than a year, the membership has rapidly grown to well over 500. If you’re not a member yet, this is your personal invitation!

As you can see, she is an Author on the move and if you’re interested in keeping up with her, here is her contact info and a good pair of running shoes would help as well:

Twitter: @nonniejules

Facebook: Nonnie Jules, Author


My 4 Golden Rules of Writing – Nicholas Rossis

Allow me to introduce Nicholas Rossis, friend and fellow Rave Reviews Book Club board member.  I enjoy his blog for all the writing tips he has to offer.  Nicholas is known for his Pearseus Trilogy and The Power of Six. View is Amazon Author Page to learn more about his writing.

My 4 Golden Rules of Writing

Found on

Found on

I’ve been wanting to write this post for a while now. The main reason is that I keep coming across several writing rules that make little sense to me. Then, I came across a gem of a post by Constance Hale, “When Shakespeare Committed Word Crimes” on TED.

Constance confirmed what I long suspected: when there is tension in a language between what comes naturally and the rules, it’s because someone has tried to shoehorn the language into their idea of conformity.

Does this mean there are no rules? Not at all. It just means that the ones we are taught in workshops and classrooms are not necessarily the ones that matter to actual readers – as opposed to teachers, agents and editors. So, here are my golden rules; the ones no fiction writer should ever break, in my view:

Rule #1: Don’t let your writing get in the way of your story.

I know I say this all the time, but it bears repeating. Fragment your sentences. Throw caution to your wind. Have fun with the language. As I’ve said before, I write in English because I love the language and its flexibility.

Our language is in a manner barbarous

Its barbarity, as the poet and critic John Dyrden characterized it in 1693, is what it makes it so darn appealing to me. So, I understand the need to preserve the language’s beauty, but don’t throw out the baby with the bath water. Respect and treasure its imperfections, its wildness.

“Our Language is extremely imperfect,” Jonathan Swift, writer and dean of St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin, complained to the Earl of Oxford in 1712. “Its daily Improvements are by no means in proportion to its daily Corruptions; and the Pretenders to polish and refine it, have chiefly multiplied Abuses and Absurdities.” And that wasn’t all, Swift added: “In many Instances, it offends against every Part of Grammar.”

So, offend against grammar, if that’s what it takes. Be creative. After all, grammar only has one true aim.

Rule #2: Grammar’s aim is to make the written word as clear as possible.

Everything else stems from that need. Active voice is considered more immediate than passive one, hence the “rule” that is should be preferred. Or, consider use of comma, the one thing that’s bound to create more arguments than anything the Middle East can throw at us. In the example of

“Let’s eat gramma” vs. “Let’s eat, gramma”

it is a comma that separates vegetarians from cannibals. However, use of the (in)famous Oxford comma won’t significantly alter the reader’s comprehension. Therefore, all related arguments are classified in my mind under “pedantic, safe to ignore.” Just use it consistently throughout your manuscript, and I promise you: there’s a grammar book somewhere in the world swearing that your way is the only correct one!

As for the rest of the rules, here is what Ben Yagoda has to say in his excellent post, “7 bogus grammar ‘errors’ you don’t need to worry about” (I only mention five here, to encourage you to check out his post for more information):

1. Don’t split infinitives

The rule against splitting infinitives — that is, putting an adverb between the word to and a verb — was pretty much made up out of whole cloth by early 19-century grammarians, apparently because they felt the proper model for English was Latin, and in Latin, infinitive-splitting is impossible.

However, English is not Latin, and infinitives have been profitably split by many great writers, from Hemingway (“But I would come back to where it pleases me to live; to really live”) to Gene Rodenberry (“to boldly go where no man has gone before”). So, it’s okay to boldly do it.

2. Don’t end a sentence with a preposition

The idea that it’s wrong to end a sentence with a preposition (from, with, etc.) was invented by the English poet John Dryden… in 1672. He probably based his objection on a bogus comparison with — you guessed it — Latin, where such constructions don’t exist. In any case, there is no basis to the rule in English grammar, and, once again, great writers have ignored it with no great loss to their prose or reputations. On a memo criticizing a document for committing this “error,” Winston Churchill allegedly wrote: “This is the type of arrant pedantry up with which I will not put.”

3. Don’t use “which” as a relative pronoun

The bogus idea here is that only that, never which, should be used to introduce so-called defining or restrictive clauses. For example, “The United States is one of the countries which that failed to ratify the Kyoto Protocol.” One again, this is totally made up. Geoffrey Pullum, co-editor of the authoritative Cambridge Grammar of the English Language, has written, “The alleged rule has no basis. Even in edited prose, 75 percent of the instances of relative ‘which’ introduce ‘restrictive’ relatives.” The culprit here seems to be the great language commentator H.W. Fowler, who popularized the notion in his 1926 book, Modern English Usage.

In fairness to Fowler, he merely speculated that if writers were to follow this custom (as he acknowledged they currently did not), “there would be much gain both in lucidity & ease.” Language sticklers took that and ran with it, and this idea reigned for most of the rest of the century. Even now, it has a lot of adherents. But it still doesn’t have any justification. One of the great sticklers, Jacques Barzun, advised in a 1975 book that we ought to avoid such whiches. But as Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary of English Usage points out, on the very next page Barzun broke his own rule, writing, “Next is a typical situation which a practiced writer corrects ‘for style’ virtually by reflex action….”

4. Don’t start a sentence with a conjunction

Except possibly in the most formal settings, there is absolutely nothing wrong with starting a sentence with And or But. A funny thing about the supposed rule against doing so is that no one has been able to find a book or authority that has ever endorsed it (with the exception of a single 1868 text turned up by the scholar Dennis Baron). But countless people feel this is unacceptable, possibly because the notion was pounded into their head by some middle school grammar teacher. Get over it!

5. Don’t use the passive voice

Passive construction can indeed propagate obfuscation, as well as wordiness, and thus should be used judiciously. But there’s nothing inherently wrong with it, and when the subject of a clause or sentence isn’t known, or isn’t as important as the object, passive voice can be just the thing. Tom Wicker’s classic New York Times opening sentence of November 23, 1963, would have been ruined if he’d tried to shoehorn it into the active voice. Wicker wrote: “President John Fitzgerald Kennedy was shot and killed by an assassin today.”

Rule #3: Creativity Trumps Conformity

English heading into the sixteenth century was a makeshift, cobbled-together thing. Since no fewer than eight conquering peoples had added to the vocabulary and shaped its syntax, it was a mess. Even worse, playwrights like Chaucer let newfangled words from the street amble onto the literary stage – newfangled and amble being two of them.

By the time Elizabethan dramatists sought expression for ever-more sophisticated sentiments, crowds cheered their linguistic daring. The Bard himself is responsible for so many of the words we use everyday, such as:

  • arouse,
  • besmirch,
  • bet,
  • drug,
  • dwindle,
  • hoodwink,
  • hurry,
  • puke,
  • rant,
  • swagger and
  • clodpoll (= blockhead, thanks Marian Beaman for this!)

Shakespeare also minted new metaphors, many now cliches, but fresh in his time:

  • it’s Greek to me,
  • played fast and loose,
  • slept not one wink,
  • seen better days,
  • knit your brows,
  • have your teeth set on edge,

But you didn’t have to be a Shakespeare to play word god. Everyday speakers in the Renaissance formed new words, often by adding prefixes and suffixes. Most of the words formed this way were nouns and adjectives:

  • Add –ness to bawdy and you get bawdiness,
  • Do the same to brisk and you get briskness,
  • Hitch –er to the end of a verb and you get everything from a feeler to a murmurmer.

New verbs could be had for the cheap price of a suffix, like:

  • –ize (agonize, apologize, civilize),
  • –en (blacken and whiten, loosen and tighten, madden and sadden)

I find this ability of the English language to create new words, to verb nouns, if you like, to be one of its most fascinating aspects, and one that should be treasured, not fought.

Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Waterson

Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Waterson

Then, in the midst of this linguistic riot, King James commissioned the Bible’s translation into English in 1604. England had just broken away from the Roman Catholic Church, so this anarchic tongue became a bastion of national identity.

Certain clerks and clerics in the eighteenth century longed for a less rustic language and took it upon themselves to craft a “Queen’s English.” They invented rules for this unruly tongue. The problem was, they stole the rules from Latin.

Nevertheless, these rules have been sanctified in books and repeated by people who ignored the history of English. They have been passed down by generations of schoolmarms (and schoolmasters).

Rule #4: As long as it has a beginning, a middle and an end, it’s a story

We humans are simple creatures. We love our stories, our myths and our tales. Since ancient time, as long as our ramblings have a beginning, a middle and an end, they’re accepted as stories. Anything else could be the incoherent babble of a drunkard just before he passes out.

So, stop worrying if your story is ready to be shared with the world, because the commas in it may be misplaced and you use more passive voice that you “should.” Stop fretting that you start your lines with a gerund, or your book with a dream. That your sentences are fragmented. Or that you start with conjunctions or end with prepositions. These aren’t even real rules. And stop trying to impress editors and agents.

Instead, focus on writing, then writing some more. And on sharing with the only people that really matter: the readers.

meli (19)

When you read these lines, I’ll be on my way back from my holidays. So, please forgive me if I take longer than usual to answer any comments! If I do answer you straight away, please remind me that I’m driving and I should keep an eye on the road! 🙂

nicholas rossis

Outshine: An Ovarian Cancer Memoir

I met Karen Ingalls over a year ago and soon discovered that we had something in common. We were survivors! Karen writes about her battle through Ovarian Cancer in her memoir. I found her positive outlook amazing despite what she went through. Karen is also a very strong advocate for Ovarian Cancer Awareness. September is Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month. In honor of this month, I have asked Karen to be a guest. Sit back as she tells you about Ovarian Cancer: The Whispering Disease.



 breast cancer awareness





               CAROL CHANNING,

                      KATHY BATES,

                             CORETTA SCOTT KING,





This cancer does not discriminate as to age, fame or fortune, education, general health, or race. It is a world problem that will claim the lives of 140,000 women this year.


Early detection is key to survival. 

PLEASE, if any one of these symptoms occur daily for 2 weeks, see your gynecologist. Keep track of them on a chart similar to this one, or download Dr. Oz’s chart at:



     Rate your pain from mild to severe:  

1    2    3    4    5    6    7    8    9    10



      How much do you eat before feeling full:  

           100%     75%     50%     25%



      How often do you urinate:

             (1-3)    (4-6)    (7-9)    (10 or more)



      Measure your abdomen to determine any increase in girth:

             (1-2″)     (2-4″)    (3-4″)    (5 or more inches)




       Painful intercourse    Unexplained weight gain   Change in bowels


       Increased fatigue        Persistent indigestion, nausea or gas




                        Breast Cancer    

                                                  Colon Cancer   

                                                                        Ovarian Cancer


A pelvic and rectal examination, a transvaginal ultrasound, and a CA125 blood test are the recommended procedures to determine if ovarian cancer might be present. PLEASE see a gynecologic oncologist if this cancer is suspected due to your symptoms, family history, and test results. BE YOUR OWN ADVOCATE.



                                             LET’S GET THE WORD OUT…


karen ingalls



Karen Ingalls is a retired registered nurse with a master’s degree in human development and psychology. She is the author of two books and numerous magazine and journal articles. 

outshineAll proceeds for her award winning book, “Outshine: An Ovarian Cancer Memoir,” go to gynecologic cancer research.


Her weekly blog is about health/wellness, relationships, spirituality and cancer.

Meet Guest Author John W. Howell

John and I are fellow members of Rave Reviews Book Club. I have My GRL in my TBR list.

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

Tim BurdickFirst of all thank you Chris for allowing me the opportunity to talk about a subject which I have some familiarity, but not full understanding. I am, of course, referring to me. A basic introduction of who John W. Howell really is needs to start in Detroit Michigan. This is where I was born and yes continued to live there until my first job took me to another part of the state. Being as old as I am now has caused the childhood memories to be a bit fuzzy and I guess the first defining moment of my young life came when I was told my father had gone to heaven. I was ten years old and didn’t have a good idea of where heaven was or how I could visit him there. I soon became aware that what the family was trying to say is I would never see…

View original post 880 more words