AUTHOR: Sharon Cupp Pennington
MANGROVES AND MONSTERS (second edition released 9/21/2013): For five long years Charlie Cooper’s love survived while he searched for Angeline St. Cyr, the supermodel presumed dead. Will finding her cost Cooper his life?
MANGROVES AND MONSTERS, CHAPTER ONE
Wounds heal in stages. Numb one day, ants crawling under your skin the next. Itchy in the sweltering heat; achy in the cold. Weird. Charlie Cooper scratched the three-inch scar in his shoulder where he took a knife’s blade during the botched kidnapping of a student nine years ago.
Despite a Herculean effort by police, the poor boy died anyway — a few months shy of his eighth birthday.
“Sorry, kid.” Cooper yanked off his New Orleans Zephyrs cap and tossed it in the bistro chair next to him. Sorry for what? Christ. That he survived three days in an abandoned well, and his student didn’t? That he carried this damn scar as a constant reminder he failed to save the boy?
That only a few years after the abduction, still blinded by revenge, he couldn’t see the jewel he’d found in Angeline St. Cyr? Almost five years had passed since the auto-pedestrian accident that reportedly killed the supermodel — reportedly being the operative word. Which brought him to the only reason he had journeyed to Jacqueme Dominique, an island the size of Vermont, located east of the Lesser Antilles.
Call him fanatical or foolish, delusional even, but he had never bought into the hype regarding Angeline’s sudden death and subsequent cremation that her boss had fed to the press.
If Cooper saw her again, he knew he would recognize Angeline no matter how horrendous her scars. Hell, they’d lingered in his bed the entire weekend before the accident, and he had memorized every delectable inch of her.
Charmed by Angeline’s quirks, Cooper had both cursed her annoying habits and admired her tenacity. He had loved the supermodel, and loathed her. Now he only wanted the truth, even if it left him twice devastated. (To visit my website)
Can love, the very thing successful children's author Braeden McKay wants no part of, be the one force greater than any adversary - even a hoodoo curse?
HOODOO MONEY - EXCERPT
Sweating profusely, Lee Allen Dalrymple carted his 280 pounds up a second flight of stairs. “Damn elevator,” he huffed. “Been on the fritz more times than not since I moved into this overpriced apartment.” But a broke-down elevator was the least of his aggravation. Braeden McKay had fl at refused to give him the crime scene photos from the Dodding murder. “Bitch.”
New shoes pinched Dalrymple’s swollen feet. His head ached. Perspiration stung his eyes and plastered his white shirt to his back under a suit jacket that cut into his shoulders.
“McKay’s the cause of all my misery.” He lumbered through the door of his darkened apartment juggling mail, his laptop, and battered valise.
During this most recent trip to Texas, he had called forth every ruse concocted in nineteen years of free-lance journalism. Three days of impromptu meetings, deep-fried meals, and all-out groveling, and he hadn’t worn her down a lick.
He kicked the door shut, and the vibration skewed the lithograph on the wall next to the framed dust jacket of The Stoning of Renzo De Benedictis, his one and only bestseller. “Integrity’s for Boy Scouts,” he grumbled. People had lewd appetites, and satiating those appetites had made him a lot of money.
He couldn’t recall any other time a woman had looked him straight in the eyes and told him her conscience wasn’t for sale. But McKay leaned across a glass of expensive merlot, shook his hand, and said in that irritating drawl of hers, “My decision is final, Mr. Dalrymple. Herbert Dodding is dead. I can’t change that. But neither will I contribute to a tell-all book that will follow those boys for the rest of their lives. You understand, sir, I’m sure.”
Like hell, he understood. (To visit my website)
Like most writers, I always had a head bursting with scenarios and a drawer, shoebox, folder of unfinished manuscripts. My first short story, "McTammany's Bed of Roses," appeared online in The Emporium Gazette, Issue 46, February 2003. With that sale, I earned enough to buy a novel in the paperback section at Wal-Mart or a couple of trade-ins at the local paperback swap-n-shop.
But I was a published author at age 54--and I was flying!
Why did I wait so long? I grew up during a time when parents believed daughters should take typing and shorthand, master a keypunch machine, become competent fodder for the secretarial pool. You can't make a living as a writer, you know.
So I worked in office and museum and university settings, where I typed words dictated by others. I became a file clerk, an executive secretary, an office manager. I married my favorite protagonist -- no regrets there--raised three most excellent children, who later blessed us with five most excellent grandchildren. But in my head and heart, the dream still simmered. And my favorite protagonist knew this. When I left my last job, he said enough, and threw his full support behind me.
Now my short stories have appeared in numerous online and print venues, with anthology contributions to The Rocking Chair Reader in the Coming Home edition (2004) and Family Gatherings (2005), A Cup of Comfort for Weddings: Something Old, Something New (2007) and Good Old Days Magazine (March, 2007). My debut novel Hoodoo Money (The Stolen Nickel Series, #1) was released in second edition on September 21, 2013.
One of my earliest fiction heroines was Nancy Drew. I couldn't get enough of her. Nancy was self-confident and clever and always, ALWAYS eyeball deep in trouble. Oddly, she was the direct opposite of me. Hoodoo Money is the kind of romantic suspense novel I loved to read then, and still do. Hopefully, I've succeeded in filling its pages with enough mystery to spark the imagination and ample romance to stir the heart. With a dose of sizzle thrown in for good measure.
My novels are set in contemporary Louisiana and Texas, so there's plenty of southern culture and visits to local "hot spots."
For a change of pace, I cooked up Caribbean love and adventure in Mangroves and Monsters (The Stolen Nickel Series, #2) also recently released in second edition. I'm hoping the third installment, Reparation, will be available by Spring 2014.
May your seasons be filled with many, MANY great reads.
I just finished HOODOO MONEY, and I can't wait to buy the 2nd book in the series. Very well written, great characters, fantastic plot. A wonderful thriller with romance woven through it, and I cannot wait to see what happens next! I'm a huge fan. ~ D. Wilson, Amazon.com
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The plot is well thought out. It is not predictable at all. The author is a master at character development. I couldn't wait for her second book to hit the market, and I was not disappointed by it. Mrs. Pennington can't write fast enough! I especially enjoy that the secondary characters from the first novel, become the main characters in her second offering. I hope this continues to be the case in her book soon to be released. If you enjoy a great mystery/love story you should definitely read Hoodoo Money. ~ Marsha Bass, Amazon.com
MANGROVES AND MONSTERS . . . Sharon C Pennington has written a wonderful novel with fully-developed characters. Her tropical island setting is a backdrop for an exciting mystery that continues with characters from her first novel Hoodoo Money. I do not want to give any of the twist and turns away all I can say is that this is another wonderful romantic suspense from a talented writer. ~ Rockin' Reader, Amazon.com
As of September 2013, HOODOO MONEY (The Stolen Nickel Series, #1) & MANGROVES AND MONSTERS (#2) are now available in 2nd editions for Kindle & print. New publisher, new cover designs, new $2.99 price!
REVIEW: The Great Bellybutton Cover-Up by Susan Ross
The Great Bellybutton Cover-up was first created for a sheep-shearing event at the Fanshawe Pioneer Village in London, Ontario. The story opens with our heroine, Violet, winning the County Fair Sheep Beauty Contest. But Violet’s celebration is short-lived when Farmer Shepherd’s sheep shearing takes place.
Shorn? Oh my! What’s a beauty queen to do when her award-winning fluffy white wool is gone and her bellybutton exposed for all the fair-going public to gawk at?
Well, this beauty queen gets inventive. Cotton candy, feathers, balloons? There’s no stopping her. Violet’s attempts to resolve her predicament in a ladylike manner are creative, colorful and full of humor!
The illustrations in The Great Bellybutton Cover-up are simple yet beautifully done by Megan Stiver and will surely spur children’s imaginations to come up with even more creative ways for Violet to find solutions to her problem. I can only imagine the conversations that will follow this clever read. Ross then tops off her tale by offering parents (and teachers) a step-by-step, interactive craft “How to Make Your Very Own Violet” to do with their children.
Yep, The Great Bellybutton Cover-up is the total package — and it’s a delight I would highly recommend to teachers, parents and grandparents of children ages 3 to 9. (The older children will love reading this book themselves.) Nothing but five stars for this book will do.
Susan Ross has also authored The Kit Kat Caper, Say Please to the Honeybees and The Rose and the Lily. You can learn more about Ms. Ross and her future projects at www.susanross.ca. The Great Bellybutton Cover-up is available through Amazon.
Total number of awards: 3
|Award||Date awarded||Reason for Award|
|2010 Site Supporter||2010-08-17||Thanks for supporting the PolkaDotBanner in 2010! Your 2010 support icon will appear on your profile in the awards tab.|
|2010 Web Supporter||2010-04-03||Thanks for spreading good words about the PDB out on the web.|
|Star Author||2010-02-20||2009 Star Author award honors authors who have provided ongoing support to the PDB.|
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