Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Beach Tale: "A Ghost Story"

<<note...this story was previously posted on this blog on Halloween, 2011, but it is one of my favorites so I'm dusting it off for a repost today!  For those of you who haven't read it yet, this is a TRUE ghost story from where we used to live, Newport, RI.>>

The time…1673
The Place…a 100 acre farm in Portsmouth, RI (currently the site of The Valley Inn, pictured on the left.)
          The situation…Thomas Cornell, a farmer aged 46, had a lot of hungry mouths to feed.  He was the father of four sons from his first marriage, two children (with a third on the way) from his second marriage to Sarah, plus his widowed mother Rebecca, age 73.  All nine people lived under one very tiny roof.  And, while Thomas did all the work, Rebecca owned the farm and thus controlled things. 

Monday, October 29, 2012

Beach Read: The Ghost

It’s that time of year, and I wanted to find a spooky tale for your spine-tingling pleasure.  This one is the spookiest romance I have ever read, a brand new release from a brand new author, just in time for All Hallow’s Eve.   

Book Title: The Ghost
Author:  Sandra Brown Rarey
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Setting:  New England Coast
Format:  E-book
Pages:  144
Publication date:  October 17, 2012
Publisher:  Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
Opening Line:  Elizabeth Barrett’s house sat on the edge of a promontory that jutted over steep cliffs like a bony finger pointing at something beyond the foaming, angry seas.  Or, perhaps, beckoning something unknown to come closer. 

Friday, October 26, 2012

Beach Chat with Sandra Brown Rarey

Name:  Sandra Brown Rarey

Recommend a Beach Read: The Blond Leading the Blond. The last time I read at the beach it was this book, the second time around. It is 100% entertainment. I've read it 3 times now and I am beginning to feel like Ellery is my neighbour.  Or maybe me. I can't wait for book two. (editor’s note:  I did NOT pay her to say that! Really!   But in the interest of full disclosure, she is one of my critique partners who read the book back in its infancy--and awful-cy!  And it’s a better book for her insights!) 

Most cherished beach memory:    Not cherished, but the most memorable:

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Beach Tale: Let's Get Physical!!!

Sorry, I couldn't find a G-rated version of Olivia Newton John's "Let's Get Physical" video, so you're going to have to sing the song to yourself, as it is the audio background to today's post.  Okay, all together now, "Let's get physical, physical.  I wanna get physical..."

A reminder of where we left things two weeks ago:

The questions everyone has been asking is, "How did you come to have a truckload of boxes and what did we plan to do with them?" 
          I have procrastinated about writing this particular episode in our “little” construction project, because it brings back painful memories.  I don’t mean mental pain or emotional pain or spiritual pain.  I mean physical pain!  The type that the mere thought of lifting your little pinky brings tears to your eyes.   
          Oh wait, there I go again getting ahead of myself. 

Monday, October 22, 2012

Contest Announcement

Congratulations Kym!  You are the winner of Chocolate for Breakfast, Martha Reynold's debut novel!  She will be contacting you soon to arrange e-delivery.  Thanks to all who stopped by over the weekend and special thanks to all who left a comment! 

There will be more contests this fall so be sure and come back to the beach every Friday for a Beach Chat.
~Jayne O

Beach Read: The Secret Adversary

Being a mystery-lover since my Nancy Drew days, you’d think that would grant me automatic enrollment into the Agatha Christie Fan Club.  But I think the first A.C. I read had something to do with Egyptian tombs or something and didn’t interest me in the least so I forsake all of her books.  But as an adult, with a much more mature reading palate, I gave an old Miss Marple a try, and loved it.  That led me on to Hercule Poirot and now I might be considered to have achieved Super Fan status!  But it wasn’t until a rainy Sunday a few weeks back when hubby and I wondered into a Barnes and Noble before the movie started and I found my first Tommy and Tuppence book…on the clearance rack, no less!  A lucky day for me!  

Book Title: The Secret Adversary
Author:  Agatha Christie
Genre:  Detective Story
Setting:  Post World War I England
Format:  Hardcover
Pages:  302
Publication date:  2008 version of the 1922 original, complete with footnotes explaining some of the archaic words and phrases
Publisher:  Mud Puddle, Inc.
Opening Line:  It was 2 p.m. on the afternoon of May 7, 1915.  The Lusitania had been struck by two torpedoes in succession and was sinking rapidly, while the boats were being launched with all possible speed.  

Friday, October 19, 2012

Beach Chat with Martha Reynolds

It's with great pleasure I introduce to you a new author who's first book Chocolate for Breakfast was recently released.  You can enter to win a free copy of this book for your Kindle by leaving a comment.  Good luck to all.  And now, without further ado, I give you...
Name:  Martha Reynolds
Recommend a Beach Read: I loved "Night Swim" by Jessica Keener
Most cherished beach memory: We had a beach house for a week when I was about ten. It was within walking distance to Sand Hill Cove, a lovely beach well-suited for kids and families. Traipsing back at the end of the day, skin tight from sunburn, Mom soothing it with Noxzema (the smell of Noxzema still reminds me of that time). Sand on the floors and in the bed. Chowder and clam cakes from the nearby restaurant, eaten outside at a picnic table. And falling asleep to the sound of the foghorn from the lighthouse.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Beach Read: "Room for Improvement"

If you were (or perhaps still are) a fan of those home makeover shows, and love a good “Dating Game” scenario and enjoy a laugh-out-loud read to tuck into your beach bag on your next day at the beach, then you are going to LOVE this book! 

Book Title:  Room for Improvement
Author:  Stacey Ballis
Genre: Chick Lit
Setting:  Chicago, with a brief trip to glitzy LA
Format:  Trade paperback
Pages:  294
Publication date:  2006
Publisher:  Berkely

Opening Line: I’m on all fours, on a rug of questionable cleanliness, fumbling in the dark for my boots. 

Friday, October 12, 2012

Beach Chat with Larissa Reinhart

Social media is a great thing…otherwise how would I discover all these great new humorous mysteries written by up and coming new authors?  Like the woman who stopped by to “chat” today…

Name: Larissa Reinhart

Recommend a Beach Read: This is an old romantic suspense, but has a great “beach” location. Mary Stewart’s THIS ROUGH MAGIC, which takes place on the Greek island of Corfu. Lots of intrigue, a touch of romance, and even has a dolphin!
Most cherished beach memory: My family and I lived in Nagoya, Japan, two years ago. We loved living 30 minutes from the beach and 30 minutes from the mountains, so we spent plenty of time in both places. At the time my girls were six and four. We celebrated the 4th of July at the beach. I had planned to BBQ and set off fireworks for the children that night. After spending the day lazing on the beach, we got ready to grill and realized it wasn’t allowed on the beach. At dusk, we had to hike across a bay bridge and then carry all our stuff down an embankment next to the water, but it was worth it. The kids had so much fun shooting off fireworks while the dads grilled. Our own little 4th of July celebration in Japan.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Beach Tale: Hot Hot Hot

          For those of you new to this blog, I am sharing the trials and tribulations of our home improvement project to finish off the unfinished room over the garage ourselves.  It’s been a fairly easy journey so far as our role has pretty much been limited to scheduling sub-contractors and making sure the doors were unlocked so they could do their work.  But we were about to enter into the true “do-it-yourself” phase of this undertaking, and things were about to get hot.  And I don’t mean that in the romantic sense.  I mean in the end-of-summer-in-southern-Virginia-working-inside-a-small-space-with-no-a/c hot.  Here’s my video theme song for this segment: 

Monday, October 8, 2012

Beach Read: Misery Loves Cabernet

Maybe you can’t “judge a book by its cover," but I’m willing to buy a book based on the cover and give it a try.  Or maybe it was the title that caught my eye.  Either way, while wandering the book aisles of Target, this book practically jumped into my cart.   I was not disappointed. 

Book Title:  Misery Love Cabernet
Author:  Kim Gruenenfelder
Genre: On the Chick Lit side of women’s fiction
Setting:  Los Angeles/Hollywood   
Format:  Trade paperback
Pages:  358
Publication date:  2009, re-released May 2012
Publisher:  St. Martin’s Griffin New York
Opening Line: Do not read and reread a man’s text message, or e-mail, or listen to his voice message, over and over again.  Do not try to delve into his words for hidden meaning, or call your friends to get their opinions on “what he really means.”  It’s a message, not the Constitution—you’re not supposed to study it.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Beach Chat with Maria Hudgins

Once again we're sitting down with an author for a cozy little chat with...

Name:  Maria Hudgins

Recommend a Beach Read: Skullduggery, by Aaron Elkins

Most cherished beach memory: The day at Nags Head when the fishermen pulled in their nets on the beach in front of our cottage and tossed the fish into their truck. But they didn't want the crabs. Soon there were big healthy crabs crawling all over the beach. We chased them down with tongs and big pots and collected enough to feed 10 people for dinner. For free.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Beach Tale: "Color Me Indecisive"

          Time to add some COLOR to the place!  So today’s installment is brought to you by Cindy Lauper’s “True Colors.”  Take a listen:

          The next phase of our “little project” involved tiling the bathroom, painting the interior and selecting a floor.  In that order.  And what do these three things have in common?  They all required decisions relating to color.  I had been avoiding making the biggest decision of all, but now the time was at hand. I needed to dream up a “color scheme” for the project. Something that would connect each of the four spaces with the other without overpowering the tenant. Something bold yet subtle.  Something timeless yet contemporary.  Something that screamed “beach house” yet whispered “my house.”   Rather a tall order for a neophyte decorator like myself.   

Monday, October 1, 2012

Beach Read: "Death of a Second Wife" by Maria Hudgins

The Dotsy Lamb Mystery Books combine my two favorite things: travel and cozy mysteries.  This time author Maria Hudgins took me on a vacation to the Swiss Alps!  And it was great fun!    

Book Title: Death of a Second Wife (Dotsy Lamb
     Mystery Book #4)
Author:  Maria Hudgins
Genre:  Cozy Mystery
Setting:  Switzerland, in a remote chalet in the shadow of the Matterhorn
Format:  Hardcover
Pages:  268 
Publication date:  July, 2012
Publisher:  Gale CENGAGE Learning
Opening Line:  “Are you serious?”