Monday, June 08, 2009


Well, we didn't get 200 guests, but we did have well over 100, in spite of the weather. The rain started sprinkling earlier than expected, but it held off on the downpour until after six, and by then the party had pretty much emptied out. Jesse and his dad had set up the party well with a tent, a tarp, and the screenhouse, there were three areas to stay out of the rain. Lots of food (we'll be eating leftover hamburgers and brats for a few more days), and lots of fun. Doogie and his friends left around seven for another party, but some of our close friends stayed and played a karaoke style game on Playstation 2 until after 11 pm. I have to say, that overall, it was a good day.

And I have to add this: I am so grateful for my ex-husband Doug and his wife Denise. I know that may sound crazy, especially to anyone else who has experienced divorce, but Jesse and I have a great relationship with them, and our kids reap the benefits of it. Doogie's entire family was invited to the event, and we shared the cost of food and soda. Our families mingled throughout the day without any bad feelings. It hasn't been an easy process to move from bitter divorce to where we are today, but Doug and I both worked hard to make sure that the kids were always our first priority. Today, if a kid gets in trouble and grounded at one house, they will get the same at the other house. We call each other to discuss discipline issues as well as things like parents' night at games. Saturday morning, Doug and Jesse worked outside setting up chairs and the music while Denise and I cut up veggies and fruit in the kitchen. I fully recognize what a rare and wonderful relationship God has blessed us with. I also think that my children are doubly blessed by not just two loving parents, but by four of them.

by Travis Thrasher is a gut-wrenching, spine-tingling story of suspense and horror. Dennis Shore has been facing writer's block since the death of his wife over a year ago. That's trouble for any writer, but when you are the next best thing since Stephen King, it could be career ending. Dennis took the extreme step of turning in a manuscript sent to him by a fan and claiming it as his own work, and on the eve of its release, the real author, Cillian Reed, has come calling to claim what's owed flesh. Congratulations Travis, you are the first author to give me a wake up gasping and shaking nightmare in a really long time! Thrasher keeps Dennis and the reader guessing as Cillian amps up the stakes in his quest for recognition. And the twists, when they start coming, are switchback curves taken at breakneck speeds. There's an unexpected depth to this novel in Thrasher's dissection of the life and work of an author. Dennis' writing helps him process personal tragedies, but when he steals someone else's work, he brings a whole new tragedy not only on himself, but on his loved ones as well. Thrasher doesn't give in to horror movie/book cliches, and the hero at the climax is very unexpected. This is definitely not a book to read late at night (like I did!). Save it for on the beach on a sunny day when you are completely surrounded by people!

I'm starting a new book contest today. The Sisterchicks series by Robin Jones Gunn is one of my all time favorites! Each book is a stand-alone featuring a pair of women on a trip to somewhere exotic. Full of friendship, faith, and fun, these books are perfect summer reads. If you would like the chance to win Sisterchicks in Wooden Shoes, send me an email before 10 pm on Thursday, June 11th. I'll announce the winner and post my review here on Friday. Good luck!


Anonymous said...

For unpredicted and dark, try Chris Kape's "A Diary of Wsted Years," published by Eloquent Books. New writer, really dark novel, full of unexpected. It's worth it.