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Read an excerpt from Muffin (House of Assignation Series) Part 1

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When school let out, I walked across the busy four lane road to get to McNichols Road. I had thought up a story to tell my uncle when I got home to explain how late it was when I arrived. There were numerous fast food restaurants on McNichols, and if I got lucky and was hired, I wouldn’t be that far from home. I hadn’t decided how I was going to hide getting a job from my uncle, but I was mentally working on it.

By the time I got home, it was seven-fifteen in the evening. Even though I knew Pumpkin didn’t really care about me, I knew he would still give me a hard time about the time of night I was coming in.

To my surprise, the house was dark and quiet when I opened the side door that led to the kitchen. Tired from walking to several different restaurants filling out applications, I hung up my coat on the hook by the back door and retrieved my back pack from the floor where I had dropped it and headed for the kitchen. I flipped the light switch on in the kitchen and stumbled backwards when I saw my uncle sitting in a kitchen chair with a belt in his hand.

“Hi, Uncle Pumpkin, what’s up?” I said, looking nervously at the belt he held. Pumpkin had never hit me before, but as the money began to run out, he became meaner and meaner. He began yelling at me for small things like not replacing toilet paper in the bathroom, even when he knew that we were all out. I could have bought some toilet paper at the dollar store, but then he would want to know where I got the money from.

“You think I’m stupid, don’t you, Muffin?” he began. “Every night you come home later and later. When you do come straight home from school, you try to get back out. I should have known that your fast ass would go boy crazy as soon as my mama died. It’s hard enough to keep up with you, but I’ll be damned if you think you’re going to bring home a baby.”

Fear gripped me when he stood and tightened his hands around the leather belt.

My grandmother never hit or spanked me, so I wasn’t used to being hit. My mind was racing a hundred miles a second, trying to think of something to say so that he wouldn’t hit me with the belt. I had intended to keep my job search a secret, but I didn’t want my uncle beating on me either. My seventeen-year-old mind quickly reasoned that if I told him about my job search he would understand since it was his suggestion that I find a job in the first place.

“I haven’t been with a boy or anything. I went looking for a job. Remember yesterday you told me I needed to find one,” I told him.

I slung my book bag on the floor and pulled out the business card the manager at Burger King gave me and held it out for him to see.

Without warning, the belt whipped through the air and struck me on my back and left shoulder. The sting of it caught me off guard, causing me to fall back against the sink. When I saw his arm go up again, I threw my hands up to block the next blow. When the belt struck my arm, a large welt rose on my skin.

“I don’t give a fuck where you went. You better have your ass in my house before it gets dark. Do you hear me?” Pumpkin said angrily.

“Yes, I hear you,” I said in a trembling voice.

“When you start working, I want a copy of the schedule and every dime you make is to go on bills around here, too. Your days of staying in my house for free are over.”

I only needed to make it until August. Then I would be on my way to college, and my uncle wouldn’t be able to keep telling me how lucky I was that he was willing to let me stay in his mother’s house nor would he be able to beat on me.

I wanted to remind him that since my mother wasn’t dead, she was part owner, too, which gave me a right to stay there as well. I kept my thoughts to myself though because it would only make things worse.

I really didn’t know my uncle, and all I wanted was for us to get along with each other long enough for me to finish high school, and then I would be out of there.

I hadn’t seen much of my uncle while I was growing up. When Nana was alive, he would stop by and borrow money from her, but he never interacted with me. In fact, he usually ignored me. Even when I would say hello, he would turn his head and act like he didn’t hear or see me. I had never done anything to him, but he just seemed to not like me. That’s why I was surprised and suspicious when he offered to look after me when Nana died.

He acted like he was so fond of me when Aunt Mattie or any other family members were around, but as soon as they left, he cursed at me and told me to take my ass somewhere.

I knew Pumpkin was a no good drunk because Nana told me herself, which was why I never told him that I received a social security check from my father’s death. When Nana died, I knew right away that I was going to need “mad money.” Mad money was what Nana called the money every woman should have saved just in case she got mad and wanted to leave. It was obvious to me that I could only put up with my uncle for so long before I was going to get mad and want to leave.

Aunt Mattie knew it, too, and she agreed with my idea to not tell Pumpkin about my social security check. My check was only three hundred and eighty-two dollars a month, and I was saving as much of it as I could for college expenses. I only spent small amounts on food and toiletries when necessary.

Two weeks earlier, I found a stack of mail thrown on the side of the couch. I took all of it upstairs to my room and sorted it all out even though some of it was wet from a wasted beer. I found notices from the light and gas company that my uncle hadn’t paid since he had arrived. The last payment the utility company received was three months prior when I paid them with the money I got from donations at Nana’s funeral. The only reason I paid the bill then was because Pumpkin said he would give me back the money if I did. I waited two weeks and then asked him for my money. He started cursing at me and telling me that if I asked him again I could get out of his house. It wouldn’t be long before the utilities would be shut off, and I still wouldn’t have anywhere to live.

It was obvious I wasn’t going to make it until the school year was over.

I watched Uncle Pumpkin walk out of the kitchen with a cocky swagger. I could tell he was proud of himself. If I had any doubts he cared about me, they had all just been removed.

I gathered my things and headed to my room. I needed to sit still and figure out what my next move was going to be.

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Should you self-publish or traditionally publish? 7 questions to ask yourself | Nathan Bransford, Author

Source: Should you self-publish or traditionally publish? 7 questions to ask yourself | Nathan Bransford, Author

You Make Me Feel Brand New by Chicki Brown-Book Review

YMMFBN - Final CoverOne year ago, personal chef Jan Davis signed her divorce papers after a miserable twenty-five-year marriage. She is single again, and romantic attention is as foreign to her as ancient Carthaginian cuisine. When she meets her new
client, sports management agent Mac Sinclair, who is eleven years younger, Jan’s life takes a complete turnaround. She’s thrilled, but everyone in her life isn’t as pleased.

Review

This book was phenomenal. It is a story of a woman who finally took the reins of her life into her on hands and leaves a dead in marriage. As soon as her life seems to be going the way she always planned, a gorgeous man falls in her lap. She has to decide whether to fight for this relationship or keep the peace with family and friends.

I would recommend this book to love story readers. It is a quick read and a page turner.

I gave this You Make Me Feel Brand New four stars.

4 stars

 

This book give free for review.

The Hidden Ones by Nancy Madore-Book Review

1201_BookCover_15.2LEGACY OF THE WATCHERS (The Series)
Thousands of years ago, something came out of the sky that changed the course of human history. Testimonies abound of these ‘angels’ and their hybrid offspring, the ‘Nephilim’ giants. These mighty ‘gods’ quickly rose to power, and the ancient world came alive with industry and culture. Many consider this period in history to be the ‘dawn’ of our civilization. People who lived as hunters and gatherers for hundreds of thousands of years suddenly began settling in one place, cultivating the land and even governing themselves. They invented irrigation, the wheel, protective armor and algebra. They somehow acquired knowledge of our solar system that even modern technology wasn’t able to confirm until the 1970s. Most importantly, they began to read and write. Yet an undercurrent of terror was spreading like wildfire, carrying whispers of ‘djinn,’ ‘daeva’ and ‘demons.’
The Watchers were supposed to do just that: watch. But humankind proved far too tempting and they ‘fell’ to earth, taking wives for themselves and even having children. But their children grew into unruly giants whose souls didn’t ascend like human souls, but remained here, on this earth. These errant Nephilim souls haunt the earth to this day. They are the ‘djinn,’ the ‘hidden ones,’ also known as ‘daeva’ and ‘demon.’ They have one purpose–to live. But to live they need bodies.
This chain of events has now reached the point where the djinn need more than just our bodies to survive. They must take back control of the earth, just as in the days when they ruled as gods.

THE HIDDEN ONES, Vol. 1
As CEO of her own thriving company, Nadia Adeire is flush with success, but a secret society dating back to the Essenes believes her to be one of the ancient djinn–the notorious demoness of Hebrew legend, Lilith. What’s more, they have reason to believe that she’s plotting a catastrophic attack on the world. Nadia is snatched from her ‘perfect’ life and trapped in a maze between a present day disaster and the ancient legends of the djinn. The only way out is to retrace the steps of her deceased grandmother, Helene. The deeper Nadia goes into the past, the harder it will be for her return unscathed. But it is the only way to stop the impending disaster that was set in motion five thousand years ago.

Review:

This is the first book I’ve been able to pick and completed in over three months and I am so glad that I did. The story had me right from the beginning. The characters where lively and realistic with obvious villains to love and hate throughout the story. This story pulls you in several different directions without confusing the reader. If you are a sci-fi reader and have a love for history, this story will definitely please the senses.

I can wait for the next installment. Nancy Madore definitely is an author to watch.

This book is available in paperback and ebook. Click here to pick up your copy.

I give this book four and half stars. I would have given it five stars but I absolutely hated the book cover.

four_half-stars_0