Sunday, September 30, 2007

Review: Lottie the Half Vampire

Lottie isn't like the other members of her family. She doesn't share the health and golden hair of her mother and sister, she struggles with school and every so often she feels an ominous presence following her, which forces her family to up sticks and leave - except this time. The malevolent stranger that has been hounding Lottie since her birth finally catches her and Lottie is left with a difficult choice - leave her family willingly and go with this stranger, or subject her family to danger and be taken by force.

This is the first book in the Lottie series. It is a perfect introduction to the characters and sets the scene for an exciting set of books. Lottie is likable, her dilemma horrific and the story intriguing. I can't wait for the next book. Lottie is a real page turn and unputdownable.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Review: The Five Muses, An Anthology

Bee Gears with the Five Muses

I had a wonderful birthday today, with fantastic presents and great company. One of the highlights of the day was receiving this wonderful book of short stories. It contains seven stories by different authors and is introduced with a foreword by children's author Geri Valentine. The first story, A Fragment of Time, charts man's history with dragons after the flood. Dragons feature again in the second story, Flower, where an old man teaches his grand daughter about the beauty of life and is rewarded for his faith. In A Very Happy Birthday, Rags the dog describes her plan for the perfect day, and in Lily we meet an accountant who leads people back to God. Rubies are Dangerous is a haunting gothic tale twined with romance, set in Paris and concerning curses and the ballet. A Turgid Tale is inappropriately titled as it is an exciting and chilling story about druids and animal sacrifice. Dragons crop up once more in the final story, Falcon, which is a fantasy that will leave you wanting to delve deeper into its world.
I devoured the entire book in one sitting. Each story is engrossing and the threads of fantasy and horror that weave through the book give it a cohesive theme and make it a satisfying collection. I hope that this is the first in many such anthologies and I eagerly await more editions of The Five Muses.

Friday, September 28, 2007

30 Things to do before I'm 30

Tomorrow is my 27th birthday and as I am now nearer to the big three-oh than I am to twenty, I have decided to make a list of thirty things I would like to happen/think it would be fun to do before I am thirty. I've been asking people for their suggestions over the last few weeks and I'm going to compile my final list after the big day.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

More paintings

My most recent workFemale Harris Hawk,35 x 45 cms, acrylic on canvas

Rags, 40 x 50cms, acrylic on canvas

Book Pledge: 66/150

Submission Pledge: 8/30

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Baby Animals

I went to the zoo recently with Pamela to see the baby elephant. The new enclosure is lovely and the elephants seem much happier with their sand and swimming pool than they did with the plain concrete they used to have (of course, these are probably a new set of elephants!). I was cooing over one of the elephants for ages, thinking it was the baby, but it turned out it was a teenager and the difference was apparent when the real baby elephant shuffled out onto the scene. The older elephants were very protective of her as she stumbled around, pretending to be like the adults and trying to get a handle on how to use her trunk.

Asha the baby elephant

Talking of baby animals, I visited my niece Lily a couple of weeks ago. She had grown a lot since I last saw her, at nearly a day old. She was suffering from colic, so most of the time she was screaming and her face was red and scrunched up, but for a little while she unscrunched her face and looked really pretty. She has very long fingers and looks a lot like her dad. I was wearing a bright blue top and she kept on staring at me, I think because she could make out the colour.

Lily at 3 weeks old

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

My Painting

Because I have been doing so much painting recently, I thought I would post some pictures of the works I am particularly proud of.
This is a picture of Cori rearing (his welcome to Humphries). 30 x 40 cms, acrylic on canvas
This is a portrait of J.B, 20 x 25 cms, acrylic on canvas
A portrait of Janna. I call it Her Master's Voice, because I see it as her looking up at me, but other people think she looks really sad. 30 x 40 cms, acrylic on canvasGerry the goat, 18 x 24 cms, acrylic on canvas

Portrait of Cori, 25 x 35 cms, acrylic on canvas

All the original pictures are for sale and I also have a range of note cards and limited edition prints. I am available for commissions, so contact me for any further information on the above.

Monday, September 24, 2007


I can't believe it has been so long since I last posted! September is flying past. The start of the month was exciting as I got a couple of acting gigs and got to stay in a 5* hotel, which was very nice. I've also been throwing my energy into doing a lot of painting in a hope to supplement my (as yet non existent) income from writing. The painting is going very well and I am really pleased with the results. Because the pictures are turning out well, I am finding it very satisfying and rewarding, unlike my writing at the moment unfortunately. I'm working on The Mark of the Wolf and it is tough going. I've forgotten what it is like to write with abandon, enjoying the thrill of the work and satisfied with the outcome. It can't be like that all the time, of course, but it seems to have been a long time since it was like that with me. I feel like I'm doing lots of work with very little result and even though I know what I want the result to be, my work keeps on falling short of it by a long shot. That's life though, isn't it.