#BookBirthday “In the Best Interest of the Child” by Felicia Denise

Book Birthday_Best Int

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Best Interest 9

In the Best Interest of the Child is

number 2

years old!

Severely injured in an accident that forever changed her life, 10-year-old Olivia becomes Best Interest 9another faceless, under-served child in foster care. With no time to mourn or grieve, the young girl is easy prey for uncaring social workers and ambivalent foster families.

Olivia quickly learns to hold her tongue and mask her emotions. Even when exposed to neglect, bullying, and assault, no one seems to care. Holding fast to the teachings of her late father, Olivia ages out of the system broken, but no longer a victim.

Now a successful child advocate attorney, Olivia is a passionate voice for children. However, a routine case assignment by the court plunges Olivia back into the trauma of her childhood. If she doesn’t face her demons, a child will be sent into foster care.

Foster care for her young client is not an option. But Olivia’s emotional scars run even deeper than she realized. Reconciling with her past means Olivia must confront the one woman she blames for her battered soul.

A woman who has no idea who Olivia is.

NOTE: This book is intended for mature readers – 18+.

~~~

What Readers are saying…

“Each page left you wanting to read more to find out what would happen next.” -Kotrish W., Amazon review

“I’d recommend it to anyone who enjoys women’s fiction or contemporary fiction.” -Kathy G., Amazon review

“I can’t wait to read the next installment, and I highly recommend this book to everyone.” -A.C.M., Amazon review

Best Int 5 Stars

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EXCERPT

Olivia was far from an innocent.

She’d had her share of relationships… if you wanted to call them that. To her, they’d always been ‘friends with benefits’ situations, purely sexual. Starting out as casual meetings once or twice a week, she’d undoubtedly begin to hear words like ‘exclusive’ and ‘permanent’ creep into after-sex pillow talk, and she knew it was time to move on. Most of the men took it in stride—a couple became angry and accused her of using them. To which she would state the obvious. They had used each other. She had asked nothing more of them. The only exception was Kenny—Kenneth Lane Connors.

Olivia tried to break things off with him after he told her he was tired of meeting in hotels and wanted her to come to his home, but he would not be deterred. Olivia never felt threatened by Kenny, but he came pretty close to crossing the line from persistent suitor to stalker. She’d find him: standing next to her car when she left her office; sitting on the front stoop when she got home at night; standing in her favorite coffee shop, holding a cup of her special dark roast blend. Olivia finally acquiesced, more from the ennui of the situation, and agreed to trial dating.

She didn’t last two weeks.

At the end of their first week as a couple, Kenny surprised Olivia with tickets to sunny Miami, for a getaway weekend. She was genuinely touched, until Kenny mentioned that while they were there, the two of them would stop in and see Vonnetta and Kenneth, Sr.—his parents. Olivia not only flatly refused to even go to Florida she grabbed her bag, told him to never call her again, and stormed out.

While a few times Olivia felt as though she was being watched, she never saw Kenny again. And she was okay with it. There was no remorse, or heartache due to missing him. What she did have was even more resolve to not allow any man get close, her new unspoken rule was no man got more than three dates, period. No exceptions.

And then along comes Bruce Bellamy.

She had seen Bruce a total of three times, and each time, he’d left her speechless, flustered… and smiling.

~~~

Best Interest_Lunch Date

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Book Birthday banner

To celebrate its book birthday, In the Best Interest of the Child is

99¢

on ALL platforms September 30th and October 1st!

Amazonhttp://bit.ly/BestInt

All other retailersbooks2read.com/BestInterest

Add to Goodreadshttp://bit.ly/BestIntGR

~~~

#52weeks52stories “Liana”

Liana banner

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This young lady, Liana Daniels, is haunting my thoughts again. She’s talking about her sisters and her father, and about trying to please everyone and be the family cheerleader.

And how she almost lost herself in the process.

~~~

#52weeks52stories: Week 39

Word prompt: cutting

Word count – 535

Reading time – 2 mins, 4 secs

~~~

Knowing her father would be at a job site and her two sisters still in class, Liana Daniels skipped her sixth period chemistry class and rushed home and straight to her bedroom.

Taking the shoe box from the back of her closet, Liana sat on the floor and stared at it. She knew even wanting to do this meant she had emotional problems. There wasn’t much on the subject of self-harm at the library, but Liana vividly remembered two phrases — personality disorder… and schizophrenia.

Suddenly angry, Liana ripped the top off the shoe box. She wasn’t crazy… she wasn’t! She just didn’t understand why her family had to suffer so. Why did her mother go away? How could she leave her daughters? And her dad… even when they managed to all have fun and laugh together, she could still feel his sadness.

She thought the family might get some relief from Sophia, her rigid rules, and need to control when she went off to college. But Sophia came home most weekends… and sometimes popped in during the week. Reina was acting out and getting into trouble all over Granger, and Neema was painfully shy and withdrawn.

She couldn’t add to her father’s growing list of problems with his girls. He needed her to be strong.

Feeling tears burning in the corner of her eyes, Liana removed the single-edge razor blade from the shoe box. Without hesitation, she slipped off the cardboard sleeve, held out her left arm and in a slow, deliberate motion, made a two-inch cut.

Liana didn’t cut too deep, yet she was amazed at the amount of blood… and how she felt! Expecting the burn or sting of pain, she instead felt relief… and euphoria! Making another cut right next to the first, she leaned her head back and closed her eyes. Gone were the jumbled thoughts and the near panic. Gone were the feelings of guilt and doubt. It was as though a suffocating fog had cleared allowing her to breathe again.

Ten minutes later, feeling light and refreshed, Liana used the gauze and antiseptic she’d also placed in the shoe box to clean her cuts. When she finished, the cuts appeared to be two faint scratches on her arm. Satisfied, Liana wrapped the used razor blade and bloody gauze in a piece of clean gauze and put the tiny bundle in a small brown paper bag.

She returned the shoe box and its contents to the back of her closet and slipped the small bag into her coat pocket. She would have to throw it away on the way to school tomorrow.

Relaxed for the first time in days, Liana stretched out across her bed. The books she’d read were wrong. What she had done wasn’t wrong. She hadn’t used drugs or hurt anyone. She had not caused five minutes’ worth of trouble. And she was not crazy. Liana knew she just needed a little relief… a temporary crutch to get by. She didn’t plan to make cutting a regular thing or do it forever. Just until her family was happy again.

Just until she was happy again.

A few short minutes later, still thinking about her family, Liana fell into a deep, dreamless sleep.

 

 

 

 Image from Pixabay

©2018 Felicia Denise, All Rights Reserved

Happy Birthday, Truman Capote!


Truman Capote

Truman Garcia Capote born Truman Streckfus Persons, (September 30, 1924 – August 25, 1984) was an American novelist, screenwriter, playwright, and actor. Many of Capote’s short stories, novels, plays, and nonfiction are recognized as literary classics, including the novella Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1958) and the true crime novel In Cold Blood (1966), which he labeled a “nonfiction novel”.  At least 20 films and television dramas have been produced of Capote novels, stories, and plays.


QUOTES

“Failure is the condiment that gives success its flavor.”

“Life is a moderately good play with a badly written third act.”

“Venice is like eating an entire box of chocolate liqueurs in one go”

From Wikipedia and MomAdvice.

Song Lyric Sunday | “Looking For a New Love” by Jody Watley

Song Lyric Sunday banner

Song Lyric Sunday was created by Helen Vahdati from This Thing Called Life One Word at a Time. For complete rules or to join in the fun, click here.

The theme for Song Lyric Sunday this week is “search.” 

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Like Adele in my Song Lyric Sunday post on Nesie’s Place, 80’s pop queen, Jody Watley, is also searching, but not for a clone… for a new love!
Looking For a New Love is totally trippy, bouncy 80’s. Watley, a former featured dancer on Soul Train, and a member of the group, Shalamar, took the single all the way to number two on the BillBoard Hot 100 and number 1 on the R & B chart. The song is ranked as number sixteen for 1987 and was nominated in 1988 for the Grammy for Best R&B Vocal Performance, Female. It didn’t win, but it did help Watley take home the Grammy for Best new Artist.
Fun Fact:  In the song Looking For a New Love, Jody kicks her old lover to the curb, saying, Hasta la vista, baby! The phrase became an instant hit on answering machines, but would become a part of pop culture when actor, Arnold Schwarzenegger spoke the words in the 1991 film Terminator 2: Judgment Day.
Fun Fact: Jody Watley is the goddaughter of music legend, Jackie Wilson.

Enjoy!

See my Song Lyric Sunday selection on Nesie’s Place.

~~~~~

Disclaimer: I have no copyrights to the song and/or video and/or hyperlinks to songs and/or videos and/or gifs above. No copyright infringement intended.

Looking For a New Love

by Jody Watley

My Ten Favorite Books Blog Challenge

LogoI was invited to participate in this challenge by blogger Abbie Johnson Taylor. Here’s how it works. Think of your ten favorite books and write them down. Then invite three other bloggers to create their own lists of ten favorite book titles and invite three other bloggers and so forth. You can read the guidelines here.

Below is my list of ten books. I must admit this was HARD. At first, a dozen titles popped into my head and they kept coming. Certain books were more important to me during certain periods in my life, so I ended up writing a few down, then the mister randomly selected ten. They’re not in any particular order.

***

1. The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
2. Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll
3. The Color Purple by Alice Walker
4. Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien
5. One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
6. Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
7. Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
8. Devil in a Blue Dress by Walter Mosley
9. The Coldest Winter Ever by Sister Souljah
10. The Bible 

***

The three bloggers I am inviting are L S Fellows, Taylor Love, and D.E. Haggerty. Of course anyone else is welcome to submit favorite book titles. I look forward to reading about them.

“Life just has a way of dumping too much on us at once… “

Still thinking about the situation with her eldest son, Lenore Porter absently drove home. Pulling her vehicle into the garage, she exited and went through the garage’s rear entrance to her back door… and found Duncan sitting in the old swing near the Sugar Maple tree. He shook his head slowly without meeting her gaze.

“I’m sorry, mom.”

“I’m glad you’re safe, sweetheart.”

“I shouldn’t have run away like that.”

“You were upset. Looks like you still are.”

“I’m not crazy, mama… I’m not.”

Lennie’s chest tightened. He had not called her that since second grade. Sitting her bag at the back door, Lennie walked over and took the swing next to Duncan. They both rocked in the silence until Lenore spoke.

“Most people who go to counseling aren’t mentally ill, Dunc. Life just has a way of dumping too much on us at once,” she touched his hand, “the drowning feeling you mentioned? You’re overwhelmed. It happens to us all at some point during our lives.”

“Have you ever felt like you were drowning, mom?”

“Not drowning so much as… helpless.”

“What’s the difference?”

“Well, don’t take this as clinical or anything, but I knew the problem and I knew the cause. I just couldn’t fix it.”

“Dad.” It was a statement, not a question.

Lennie’s smile was bittersweet. “Yes.”

~~~

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~~~

Free, a Novella flyer

Interview with Sarina Chandler from the upcoming “Family Matters (In the Best Interest of the Child, Book 2)”


Good day, WordPress bloggers and authors! Today we welcome a very special guest to the blog—Sarina Chandler, from the upcoming Family Matters (In the Best Interest of the Child, Book 2). Sarina is the mother of Books 1 & 2 protagonist, Olivia Chandler.

SC: Excuse me?

FD: Yes, Mrs. Chandler?

SC: Well… technically, I was in book 1, too.

FD: Yes, ma’am you were. But only in a flashback or two, and you weren’t… um, yourself. I thought it best to not approach the subject.

SC: Oh, please! Now you sound like my daughter, not approaching the subject! I was crazy as a loon, out of my mind, off my rocker! It’s not as if I planned it or wanted to be committed to an institution and leave my daughter.

FD: Of course not, ma’am. I’m sorry.

SC: Please call me Sarina… and I’m the one who should be apologizing. I shouldn’t have been short with you. It’s just… I’ve missed most of Olivia’s life and a big part of my own. It angers me, I just have no one to be angry with.

FD: May I ask… when did your mind begin to clear?

SC: It’s been… about a year.

FD: What was the first thing you remembered, Sarina?

SC: *Looks down, fidgets with hands* The accident.

FD: Sarina, if this is too much for you…

SC: No, it’s fine. I’m fine. I’ve been silent for a third of my life. I need to talk, but if you don’t mind, I’d like to share that story first with my daughter. I owe her that… she deserves that.

FD: Not a problem, Sarina. Glad to hear Olivia is coming to see you.

SC: Well…

FD: Sarina?

SC: I don’t know for a fact she is coming.

FD: Pardon?

SC: I talked with Willis a few weeks ago. Willis Benson, the administrator of my husband’s estate. He and Olivia are close. I asked him to see if my daughter would visit me. But… it’s… been a few weeks now, and nothing.

FD: I’m sorry.

SC: Ugh! Stop apologizing already! Olivia and I were separated twenty-eight-years ago! I can’t expect her to make a quick decision for something like this.

FD: Why do you feel it’s such a difficult decision for her?

SC: Felicia, you know the last time I saw my daughter she was a ten-year-old. We had no other family and when I voluntarily came here… Olivia spent time in foster care. I’m told she last visited me five years ago… and I didn’t know who she was. I’m sure she has some resentment issues with me… and I can’t blame her.

FD: Is there a specific reason you want to see your daughter, Olivia, other than simply a mother missing her child?

SC: *Sighs* I need to apologize to her… for leaving her. While it wasn’t intentional or could have been changed, I still left her. Even if she never forgives me or sees me as her mother, I have to say the words.

FD: Why is that so important to you, Sarina?

SC: I had… issues with my parents. Before Ben and I married, I hated them. Afterward, I reached out to them for a fresh start but was ignored. I gave up, but if my mom had softened just a little and acted like she cared about me, I would have been there for her. It never happened. I don’t want to hide behind the walls of this place and allow Olivia to believe I don’t love her. I must try.

FD: I’m sure you will, Sarina. I’m sure you will. I hope Olivia decides to see you.

SC: So do I, Felicia.

FD: Thank you for visiting with us today, Sarina. I know it wasn’t easy.

SC: It’s easier than accepting I’ll never see my child again. She just has to come.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Child-advocate attorney Olivia Chandler has made major progress in overcoming her childhood trauma and issues with abandonment. However, her refusal to see her mother is having a negative impact on her new romance with Bruce Bellamy and everyone Olivia is close to.

Olivia enters specialized counseling for adults who suffer from childhood trauma but hinders her own progress when a major loss sends her spiraling back into the emotional comfort of the shadows in her mind.

With her sanity at risk, Olivia Chandler needs answers to break free from the traumatic stress which holds her captive, but the answers lie with the one person Olivia refuses to see.

Sarina Chandler.

Olivia Chandler’s journey continues in Family Matters (In the Best Interest of the Child, Book 2), coming soon.

Family Matters cover

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Find out the back story.

Best Interest front cover

In the Best Interest of the Child

“I can’t wait to read the next installment, and I highly recommend this book to everyone.” -A.C.M., Amazon review

Amazon UShttp://bit.ly/BestInt

Universal Linkhttps://www.books2read/BestInterest

Goodreads button

 

Logo

Lenore Porter wants to share her story with you…

Free w/review

With her marriage over long ago and her adult sons living their own lives, Lenore Porter decides to sell the cold fortress she worked so hard to make a warm, loving home.

A short, final inspection of her former home turns into a confrontation with ghosts from the past, and decisions and events Lennie felt she’d dealt with and moved on from.

Free, a Novella is a short, clean read recounting one woman’s determination to not be broken by life or lose her identity.

~ Buy Links ~

99¢

Add to Goodreads

Amazon US

Amazon UK

Amazon CA

Amazon AU

Kobo

Google Play

Smashwords

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iBooks

~~~

Song Lyric Sunday | “Dreamlover” – Mariah Carey

Song Lyric Sunday banner

Song Lyric Sunday was created by Helen Vahdati from This Thing Called Life One Word at a Time. For complete rules or to join in the fun, click here.

The theme for Song Lyric Sunday this week is “sleep.” 

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I sleep so little, I have trouble relating to the concept anymore. But, when I do sleep, I dream. I used two of my fav dream songs last week for the picture/photograph challenge, so let’s move right to number three, Dreamlover by Mariah Carey.
Released on July 27, 1993, as the lead single from her third studio album, Music Box (1993), Dreamlover was written by Carey and Dave Hall. It experienced strong worldwide success, becoming Carey’s seventh chart topper on the US Billboard Hot 100, remaining there for eight weeks. It peaked at number one in Canada, and became a top-ten single in Australia, the Netherlands, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom.
The song pictures a protagonist calling for a perfect lover, her “dreamlover,” to whisk her away into the night and not disillusion her like others in the past.
The video was shot in upstate New York, during August 1993. It includes an appearance by Carey’s dog Jack, and shows Carey dancing in a flowerbed and field, swimming in a large pond, boarding a hot air balloon, and dancing alongside several shirtless male dancers.

Enjoy!

See my Song Lyric Sunday selection on Nesie’s Place.

~~~~~

Disclaimer: I have no copyrights to the song and/or video and/or hyperlinks to songs and/or videos and/or gifs above. No copyright infringement intended.

Dreamlover

by Mariah Carey

#52weeks52stories “Break Away”

Be image

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#52weeks52stories: Week 38

Word prompt: hunger

Word count – 182

Reading time – 45 secs

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Trapped among the chaotic masses

I’m jostled, kicked and pushed

My personal space invaded as others try to claim their own

My soul hungers for peace

And I rise into the arms of my family

Where I am sheltered and loved

But the shelter turns into suffocation

And the love turns into obligation

Old hurts are new again

And I am to blame

My soul hungers for peace

And I rise to the side of friends

Where I’m accepted and understood

By those who know me best

And have navigated the highs and lows

Of this life’s journey with me

But acceptance turns into jealousy

And understanding turns into the double-edged sword of betrayal

My soul hungers for peace

And I rise again, alone but not lonely

Enjoying the peace my soul craved

I look down

At the chaotic masses

At my family

At my friends

But they don’t see me

Because they’re not looking up

They’re looking down

Under the souls of their feet

Where they tried to stomp out my dreams

And crush my joy

 

I smile… and float away

 

 

 Image from Pixabay

©2018 Felicia Denise, All Rights Reserved