Posted in Book Review

Book Review: Where The Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls

“After the last shovel of dirt was patted in place, I sat down and let my mind drift back through the years.  I thought of the old K.C. Baking Powder can, and the first time I saw my pups in the box at the depot.  I thought of the fifty dollars, the nickels and dimes, and the fisherman and blackberry patches.  I looked at his grave and, with tears in my eyes, I voiced these words: “You were worth it, old friend, and a thousand times over.”” ~Wilson Rawls, Where the Red Fern Grows

Where The Red Fern Grows by Wilson RawlsWith a question I posed on a social media site about dogs willing themselves to die, a good friend suggested I read Where The Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls.  Having to deal with the fact that my dog is doing just this, I downloaded this book and began to read.  The book just validated my belief that dogs can will themselves to die.

This book review on Where The Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls is about a young boy’s journey to own his own set of coon hounds to hunt with.  He saved his money and was able to purchase two dogs.  The story follows Billy and his two dogs, Old Dan and Little Ann, on their journey of hunting, understanding, and love.

Published in 1961, this novel has been read by many people over the years.  It is a timeless story of determination and love, especially in a young boy who has set his mind to wanting something.  Wilson Rawls captures the essence of what loving unconditionally means and this book will take you on an emotional roller coaster.  The book is written in first person, which I am not a fan of, but it works for this storyline.

Joy, Pain, Determination, Anger, Trust, Understanding, and Love are just a few emotions you will read and feel throughout this book.  This story gave me hope in knowing that my dog will always love me even if he is ready to leave this world.  It helps you understand the connection a true owner has with their dog(s) and how that connection speaks clearly even when words are not spoken.

I give Where The Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls 5 out of 5 Bookmarks, Dear Bloggites.  If you have not read it, pick it up and be prepared to have your heart changed by a boy and his dogs.

Happy Reading!

~4-Ever, P


Posted in Book Review

Free Book Download-One Day Only: Rachael, Did You Know? by Veronica Sites

Hello, Dear Bloggites.  For one day only (TODAY), you can download Veronica Sites book Rachael, Did You Know? free at

Rachael, Did You Know by Veronica SitesVeronica is an aspiring writer who shares her love for Christ and a young lady named Rachael who has suffered a great loss when her brother dies.  This book covers the journey of the times Veronica spent with Rachael and provides Veronica’s insights into how God would explain the loss and grief that Rachael feels.

Veronica loves Christ and she loves helping others and along this journey, she learned her true calling to be a Chaplain and help others for the rest of her life.  Veronica has continued serving others just as Christ served His people and has made countless impacts on people in every walk of life.

If you have loved and lost, this book is for you.  The pearls of wisdom that Veronica Sites shares throughout this book will give you comfort and a better understanding of the grief process whether you are a believer in Christ or not.

Take advantage of this free book download for today and follow the link above and get your copy of Veronica Sites book Rachael, Did You Know?

Happy Reading, Dear Bloggites!

~4-Ever, P

Posted in A Dog's Life

Royal T’s Lord Baden Powell-A Journey Farewell

Royal T's Lord Baden Powell-A JourneyIMG_20150730_001409It is never easy or good to have to say good-bye to a loved one.  I have been blessed with not having to experience very many losses but I write this blog post with a heavy heart and tears in my eyes, Dear Bloggites.

On August 7, 2015, I am going to have to say good-bye to my heart, Baden.  These two photos show him at 3 years old (photo to the left) and now, ten years later at 13 years old (photo to the right).

He is ready to leave this Earth to the next beyond.  Since his dental surgery to remove all his teeth to alleviate a nasty infection that was running through his body and made him blind in his left eye, he has gotten tired.  He still has the infection and it is wracking his body to no end.  He looked at me last night with the eyes that said, “We had a good run, Mom.  But I am ready to go and am only hanging on for you.  Please fix it.”

After that look, I promised him that I would schedule him to go to his forever sleep.  I told him I was ready even though his look was dubious toward me.  It is breaking my heart.  He has been in my life since he was 5 weeks old, I have known him since he was 3 weeks.  He has supported me on all my endeavors with the fervor only a dog can have.  He has helped nurse me back to life after my near-death accident in 2005 and now it is my turn to support and help him by making it all go away and making him better.

He is still the grumpy ol’ ‘tupid dog I love; growls at me when I go give him a kiss or even look like I am going to touch him while wagging his tail.  That is our game.  He loves me and I love him and my heart will be forever broken once he is gone.  I will always remember him as my dog with the attitude but the heart of gold.

Ragonk will help comfort me when I have to tell Baden good-bye.  I have been blessed by having this Boy-O come into my life and he gives me joy even though I hurt in my heart.  See, back in December, 2014, Ragonk wandered into my garage with no tags and looking very scared and skittish.  He has not left since.

I told my sons, Travis & William, and my daughter-in-law, Tori.  Tori called me up and we had a good cry and laugh.  William’s response (as expected by his Autistic brain) was, “Oh, Wow! He’s my brother.”  I told him, “Yes, he is and he will forever be your brother, just like Travis.”  My wonderful sister, Debbie, also called me up.  She has loved and lost many pets and knows what I am going through.  She, too, cried with me while laughing about my grumpy ol’ dog.

I know I will have full support from all my family and friends.  They all know Baden well and how much he means to me.  I know this separation is temporary, because I do believe dogs and all other animals go to heaven.  I know that once he is gone, he will be happy because the pain he feels in this life is temporary, he will be a spry little dog once again sitting by the gates until Momma comes home to heaven with him.

I Love You, My Baden!  Thank You for the Amazing Journey and Your Unconditional Love! 🙂

~4-Ever, P (Momma to you, Baden, Baden)

Posted in Book Review

Book Review: The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon

“Madness is Always a wonderful excuse, don’t you think?  For doing terrible things to other people.” The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon~Jennifer McMahon, The Winter People

Hello, Dear Bloggites! 😀  I just finished a book that I am thinking about suggesting to my book club I am a member of at the next meeting.  I have not suggested any books yet because I am a firm believer that what you suggest or recommend is a reflection up you.

We have not picked a book for December and they like to read something associated with winter or Christmas.  Well, The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon, does take place during the winter season and is split over two different decades.  The premise of the book is about strange deaths and murder that took place in 1908 and about a present day disappearance that is tied to those deaths and murder.

The Winter People storyline is surrounded around a town and a woman’s journal entries that reveal a way to bring the dead back to life.  The problem with bringing dead people back to life is the risk factor of not knowing what might actually be the thing in the body that comes back.  Several lives are intertwined around the deaths and murder and you go on a virtual teleportation from the past to the present throughout.

I did enjoy this book.  It was slow-paced, however, it felt like you had two stories in one novel because of how the author, Jennifer McMahon, wrote the book.  I have never read anything from this author and this book appears to be her sixth of seven novels she has written.

The story begins with Sarah writing in her journal in 1908 thinking about her daughter, Gertie, and reminiscing about her past and current situation.  The entry she was writing was about her Auntie that was the local medicine woman or witch doctor, however you prefer.  Auntie passed down all her secrets to Sarah because she did not have any children of her own.  In present day, we meet a young lady named Ruthie who lives in the home that was once owned by Sarah and her husband, Martin.  Ruthie’s Mom suddenly disappears one night and leaves Ruthie in charge of the farm and her younger sister, Fawn, while trying to figure out what happened to her Mom.

As the story unfolds we meet Katherine, who is also in present day, and is suffering from the loss of her son and husband.  As the fates swirl, Katherine and Ruthie cross paths because of their tie to Sarah’s journal.  Each person is bound together by the words Sarah has written in her journal about her loss and the secret passed down to her by her Auntie.  Mystery, murder, and mayhem are found within the pages of Sarah’s journal as well as throughout the book The Winter People.

I give The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon 3 out of 5 Bookmarks.  I feel this book will be a good read for the book club as well as you, Dear Bloggites! Happy Reading! 😀

~4-Ever, P

Posted in Book Review

Book Review: The Dead Key by D. M. Pulley

“No matter how many times you move or how big and fancy your house gets, you’re still stuck with yourself.” ~D. M. Pulley, The Dead Key

Hello, Dear, Bloggites.  Long time no review…LOL Today’s book review is on the first novel of a new author, The Dead Key by D. M. Pulley.  As you all know, I am more forgiving of first time authors if for no other reason than I hope that once my novel is published, people will find that same forgiveness as they read my work.

The Dead Key by D. M. PulleyThe Dead Key is a novel about a building engineer, Iris Latch (cute little play on words there with the last name, gave me a giggle), who is assigned the large task of mapping out a huge bank that was closed down in 1978.  The bank sat vacant with no activity because it closed all of a sudden without any warning.  As Iris wanders this bank she comes across a single key found in a desk drawer.  Since the bank was closed all of a sudden, there were many personal items left by employees as if they just disappeared one day.

Bored with her life and job, she decides to reach out to the lady whose name was on the desk that held the key.  This inadvertent move finds Iris knee-deep in more questions than answers; and as she walks this bank, she decides to investigate further on what happened back in 1978 forcing the bank to close and lock its doors all in one day.  As her amateur investigation starts turning up more questions than answers, Iris realizes she has opened up a can of worms that has many key players who have disappeared or died of questionable means.

The basic plot of the book is very intriguing.  I did enjoy the storyline, however, there were sections that dragged too much and broke the momentum of the book.  This drag factor made it hard for me to truly get into the storyline and empathize with the characters in the book.

The story toggles back and forth from 1978 to 1998 which is the current year that Iris lives in the story.  I usually do not like headers with dates because many times the authors do not keep it succinct and it becomes somewhat confusing to the readers, but D. M. Pulley did a really good job with keeping the timelines and toggle factor smooth and flowing with the book.  Kudos to that! 🙂

The book itself received the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award in 2014 and that is actually what made me pick this book to read.  Amazon recommended it as a reading I might enjoy and I did enjoy it.  Way to go Amazon!  I do see a lot of potential in the author, D. M. Pulley and will continue to look for new novels by her to see how she matures and evolves as an author.

I give The Dead Key by D. M. Pulley 2 out of 5 Bookmarks.  The storyline is good but does drag in places.  If you like to encourage and support new authors, I do recommend you read this one and keep an eye out for more books by D. M. Pulley.

Happy Reading, Dear Bloggites!

~4-Ever, P

Posted in Book Review

Free Book Download-Final Day: Water Runs Slowly Through Flat Land by Cliff Jones

Hello, Dear Bloggites.  Today is the last day you can download Cliff Jones’ Water Runs Slowly Through Flat Land for free at

Water Runs Slow Through Flat Land by Cliff JonesCliff is an Up and Coming Writer and decided to offer his first book for free over the holiday weekend.  Today is the last day to download it.  I did a book review (I believe it was my first) on the book Water Runs Slowly Through Flat Land and I don’t think I gave it much justice (still getting my book reviewer pumps broke in).

If you like to read new authors or are interested in the life of a social media journalist, this book is a good read.  Cliff Jones has worked in the social media journalist field for several years and so his writing comes from a place deep inside him and that place is shared throughout his book.  The good times, the bad times, the slow times, the fast times, and the dangerous times.

Take a moment to share the support and love for writers and especially for Cliff, he deserves it.  I know he has some more books in the works and I, personally, cannot wait to read them.

Happy Reading, Dear Bloggites!

~4-Ever, P

Posted in This & That

In Times of Trouble, Give A Little Chuckle

“Why do we laugh at such terrible things? Because comedy is often the sarcastic realization of inescapable tragedy.” ~Bryant H. McGill

“If by chance some day you’re not feeling well and you should remember some silly thing I’ve said or done and it brings back a smile to your face or a chuckle to your heart, then my purpose as your clown has been fulfilled.” ~Red Skelton

As I write this blog I am sitting in the hospital room with my Mother thinking about all the other times we have sat up here in the past six months or so. It is no fun when your Parental Units (AKA Parents) are getting old. Even though they feel young in their minds still, their bodies carry on that fun dance of “No You’re Not.”

One of the best qualities of my family is that we all have a sense of humor and find those chuckling or laughing moments in even the direst of situations. Perfect example, several months ago, my Mom was doing her duty as a dedicated Catholic and was walking in from the pouring rain to the church foyer for Ash Wednesday. When she stepped into the foyer, her foot caught on the temporary carpet and she fell on her right knee and broke her femur (thigh bone) right above the knee and the bone broke through the skin.

Ouch, right? Well, there happened to be a large statue of Jesus Christ right in front of where she fell, so me, being me, walked into her hospital room and said, “You know, Mom. When they say, ‘Fall at the Feet of Jesus,’ they did not mean it LITERALLY!” My Mom, Dad, brothers, and sisters all busted out laughing. It is what we needed to alleviate the worry and stress of what this fall and break would mean to my Mother.

So, I once again sit here, in the hospital room because this time, she was brought in to the ER with a severe headache, pain in her neck, shoulders, and chest. The ER doc (after several hours) decided there was something going on and he admitted her to the hospital. The going joke in our family is Mom is so determined to get all her kids together, she schedules her hospital stays around the holidays…LOL

As Mom sits and eats her lunch, we are enjoying the various members of the hospital who are coming in and making sure she is okay and if we need anything. This hospital staff are the best, and it is not because my parents are frequent fliers into their rooms. 😉

I think everyone tries to find some form of encouragement when times of trouble hits their lives and for us, giving a little chuckle or full out belly laugh is how we cope. It not only strengthens our family unit as a whole, it gives much relief to all the stress and worry that tries to take up residence in our minds and hearts.

My suggestion to you, Dear Bloggites, next time you are faced with a time of trouble, give a little chuckle. I promise, you will feel much better and more appreciative of what you have in your life.

~4-Ever, P

Posted in Book Review

Book Review: Rachael, Did You Know? by Veronica Sites

“There is no joy greater than to be part of an eternal life change.” ~Veronica Sites

“All people are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord endures forever.” ~1 Peter 1:24-25

Rachael, Did You Know by Veronica SitesHello, Dear Bloggites! 🙂  I have a non-fiction book review for you.  This review is for the book Rachael, Did You Know? by Veronica Sites.  I have had the pleasure of spending some time with Veronica and experiencing a seminar or two.  One of the greatest enjoyments I received during these seminars is watching Veronica do what she loves best: sharing her love of Christ and helping make a difference in people’s lives.

Rachael, Did You Know? is about coping with the traumatic loss of a close relative and how turning toward Christ can help you through the grieving process.  Rachael is a young teenager that Veronica helped encourage and mentor at the time she lost her brother, Stephen, unexpectedly due to a car accident. The book is also Veronica’s testimony about how this young girl helped her find her calling in ministry as a chaplain.

Dealing with a traumatic loss of any type leaves a deep, painful hole in a person.  Each person grieves differently and this book is a great tool to help strengthen your faith in Christ or help you turn to Christ as your Savior.  Veronica Sites provides some great tools to use to help cope with your feelings of loss in Rachael, Did You Know?

One of the cool things I noticed while reading this book was each new chapter started with, “Did you know…” as if the author is speaking to Rachael or more specifically, the reader of the book.  It made me smile each time I read the titles because I could just imagine Veronica talking to Rachael saying those words.  You, Dear Bloggites, know me, and anything that helps get my imagination juices going is a true joy to read.

Throughout the book you will read many passages from the bible that the author wants you to reference in regards to the topic she is writing about as well as pages to do mini-exercises and journaling to help you cope with the loss you are feeling.  Each person has their own unique way of mourning but most have a hard time putting into words what they are feeling or figuring out the next step to cope with their emotions.  This book helps provide steps to cope with the different stages of grief with the underlying understanding that they will come out of their grief a better person and a future mentor for others that will cross their path.

I am always saying that “only you can be the best you out there and no other can come close.”  This book has that same context of being a special person with a purpose in life.  A purpose that is meant to be a light to all who have the pleasure of entering into his or her life, be it a short-term or long-term time.

No matter what your religious belief is, I promise you will find comforting passages and great tools in this book to help cope with whatever is troubling you.  Even though this book is mainly for coping with the loss of a loved one, it still has little pearls of wisdom that you can take and incorporate into all struggles you may have in life.

I give Rachael, Did You Know? 4 out of 5 Bookmarks.  For more information on Veronica Sites you can visit her websites at or

~4-Ever, P