By KJ Bagley


The Hierophants Bridge was written by KJ Bagley and published by Amazon Digital Services in 2014. You may purchase it at Visit the author on Facebook.


 The first book in the Kate Jordan series finds our young heroine thrust into a reality where the difficult choices are often made by the ones that feel the least qualified to make them. Trying to save the lives of those she thought lost and those she has never even met, Kate goes on a daunting trek into the unknown. The young woman that emerges from the rubble is forever changed from the child she once was.

The story starts off with Kate Jordan dreaming of a beautiful gray crystal lake, but just as she is ready to step closer to her dream place her high school track coach wakes her up from her day dream and impatiently prods her to the starting blocks.  But as Kate starts her run the lake is still etched in her mind and she bumps into a class mate on the track and tumbles to the ground. Kate is made fun of and laughed at. As a target of bullies, Kate struggles along and is supported by a few close friends, including her friend Derek, and of course her dad. Derek meets up with a confused and frustrated Kate and invites her along on a walk where she opens up about her day. Derek informs her that she has a lot more friends than she thinks and ushers her to a place that will change her life forever. Kate learns that her life was not what it seemed and soon she is in a world totally different than she grew up in.  A world of fantasy opens up to her, filled with amazing creatures and places that are very real. Kate now has incredible powers and now along with her many friends, she must find a way to defeat the evil in this new world and to achieve her goal of finding and saving her mother, who she thought had died when she was nine.

The author, KJ Bagley, creates characters and places that are likable and fun to imagine. The story has a good sense of conflict all the way through and the anticipation moves the reader along. There were a few places in the book however when I lost the flow of the story while trying to imagine the place, the plot and the intentions of the character(s) at the same time. Given all of this, the writing and storytelling ability of the author is good and will only improve as she continues with her writing career.

I give
The Hierophants Bridge 4 stars.

Please visit the author of this post: Tom Riddell:

KJ Bagley will be our guest on The Writers Lounge Blog Talk Radio Show on Monday November 24, 2014 at 7 PM Central Time- USA.

By Jim Allen

Nothing Is As It Appears- It’s All Smoken Mirrors was written by Jim Allen and published by Page Publishing Inc.  in 2014. You may purchase it at


Jim Allen, in this book, takes you on a wild ride through some of the greatest tragedies in American History. With the evidence and logic provided, the reader can come to their own conclusions as to which events exhibit cover-up and conspiracy.­

This book demonstrates that information the general public receives through media sources is often biased and manipulated in content from higher sources.

It’s a fast, easy read and will probably have a profound psychological effect on the reader. It will leave you with an imprint that “nothing is as it appears, it’s all – Smoken Mirrors!

Jim Allen is just another conspiracy theory nut, or is he? If you go anywhere online or offline and mention the subjects that he outlines in his book, you will most likely find someone in the crowd who pushes to the top of the conversation with a swagger and dead on certainty that we are visited by aliens, that the J.F.K assassination wasn’t accomplished by a lone gun man, that the weather is controlled by our government, that 9/11 did not happen the way we are being lead to believe and our monetary system and the wars we fight are not being run the way most of us believe either. We may spend a little time listening to this person and politely nod, say “yeah” and tip our drink to him as he prattles on but then in mere minutes, that can’t come fast enough, we’re back to talking to others about our lives and whether we should pick up cat food at the store or wait a few days. In the mean time this person walks away scratching their head in frustration- wondering if anyone really listened to what he was saying…  This person could very well be the author of this book.

I have said and many more have said that when you are approached by a person with a topic or comment that you don’t know too much about, like how do UFO’s fly and what really happened to that building in Oklahoma City in 1995, do some research!  The problem is…WE DON’T HAVE THE TIME! Which also makes the case that we will suck in and believe or not believe most of what people say today without researching it. Take the bombardment of political ads we see on TV today. For example: Out of 100 people, after watching 30 minutes of political ads on any given day- how many people will sit down and research even just one of them? Think about it…

And this is why we shouldn’t discount Jim Allen and what he is telling us in his book. Sure, the market is flooded with conspiracy books these days and it makes us go ho hum, another one?  Jim Allen has information that I have not seen published before. It’s well worth the read. It will make you think! It’s an easy to read book that will give you another view of these subjects that he talks about. Remember, it is about our history and our country. We should Listen, at least, to what the author has to say.

I give  Nothing Is As It Appears- It’s All Smoken Mirrors 4 stars.

Please visit the author of this post: Tom Riddell:

Jim Allen will be our guest on The Writers Lounge Blog Talk Radio Show on a date to be announced in November.



By Kevin Folliard

Valentine Terror Tales was written by Kevin Folliard and published by Amazon Digital Services in 2013. You may purchase it at Visit the author on Facebook.


Presented as romantic precaution, these fourteen frightening tales of love gone awry will put the chill on any date night. From demons and monsters to criminals and creepy crawlies: nothing is deadlier than the human heart.
For all those moments of relationship woe, these stories of treachery, mistrust, and blind passion will remind readers of all ages that singlehood is safety.

Valentine Terror Tales is a compilation of 14 stories of love gone wrong or love gone spookily and hauntingly right for those of us who hunger for a good scare at this time of year or any time of year.  As I read his latest collection of shivery tales, I realized that this author is still able to entertain at a very high satisfying level.  Being a writer is one thing but being a writer and a good story teller are important skill sets which work hand in hand in producing a book that leaves you wanting for more. Kevin Folliard has definitely delivered in Valentine Terror Tales.

All of the stories in this book maintain a level of interest that will keep your trembling white knuckled hands glued firmly to this book but I did have some favorites that stood out more than the others.  Instructions On Love was an extremely interesting story about Cupid with a different ghoulish slant of course. Bright White Light was another tale of special interest to me- so much so that I would hope that the author might consider the subject novel material one day.  Just a little bit lower on the rating scale: Blind Date was so quirky good it left me wondering:  How did the author come up with this one!?  Love Bites, The Better Half, Karma and Tease also held favorite lofty positions in this review.  

As a reviewer there are some aspects of these books that are hardly ever mentioned but should be. In this case, the illustrations within the book are extremely well done and the cover is exceptionally well done and very attractive to the eye.  The cover alone helps to take the stories within to another level. The saying goes: “You can’t tell a book by its cover” but with this book, you can. The content within is just as pleasing and fun to read as the cover is to look at.

Kevin Folliard is someone who would be great to have to tell stories around your campfire but if that’s not possible, buy his books including this one. You definitely will not be disappointed.

I give  Valentine Terror Tales 5 stars.

Please visit the author of this post: Tom Riddell:

Kevin Folliard will be our guest on The Writers Lounge Blog Talk Radio Show on Monday October 27, 2014 at 7PM Central Time-USA.

By Elaine Chissick

Ties That Bind  was written by Elaine Chissick and published by CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform in 2014. You may purchase it at the author on Facebook.


As the only daughter of an Italian family living in America, Alexandra Dinapoli has everything she could ever wish for, except what she really wants. Leaving everything behind, Alexandra moves to the City where she bumps into Gabriel Harland, an enigmatic Chief Assistant DA but their love affair is cruelly cut short when someone from Alexandra’s past surfaces in Gabriel’s life, threatening to reveal what she has tried so hard to hide. Will a relationship forged in a moment of panic spark a love that will conquer all? Ties That Bind is an erotic story of romance, told from both sides.

Everyone at some time or another has day dreamed of how we might run into the love of our lives. Fate has a funny way of revealing itself. When Alex literally runs into Gabriel on a city sidewalk hot coffee flies and almost immediately a hot steamy love affair begins. But secrets are kept and the relationship falters. Will the passionate erotic love return or will it be lost forever?

The author of this tale paints a wonderfully detailed story between two people, their families and their beautiful and affluent surroundings. The story flows very nicely and the characters in the story are believable and interesting to follow. Details of place and body movement; especially during the erotic scenes in the story are amazing and breath taking. The emotions will pour over you in this one so be prepared. The only flaw I found in the story was a lack of conflict in the first 25% of the book. But conflict picks up after that making for a very interesting read. This is the authors first novel and her skills as a writer in this first attempt is to be highly praised- it’s just a beginning to a wonderful future as a writer and accomplished author.

I give Ties That Bind 4 stars.


Please visit the author of this post: Tom Riddell:

Elaine Chissick will be our guest on The Writers Lounge Blog Talk Radio Show on Monday October 13, 2014 at 7PM Central Time-USA.

By Elaine Chissick

Willing And Able- A True Story Of Adoption was written by Elaine Chissick and published by Amazon Digital Services in 2012. You may purchase it at the author on Facebook.


When I started to read this book I thought that it might not be much of an interest to me as I am not a parent and although I always wanted to be a parent, I am at an age now where the responsibilities of raising a child would be more than I would be willing to take on. I however was adopted by my grandparents so I can relate some to the subject matter.

As I began to read about the authors challenge of wanting children and the biological impossibilities of conceiving a child, along with the struggles that she and her husband went through, I found myself totally and completely absorbed in the story. When the couple finally received word that they could adopt, I realized that I was choked up with emotion and shouted out loud: YES!!  We are taken through all of the lengthy and overwhelming adoptive rules, legal steps and a personal narrative  that finally lead up to the couples dream:  Two young children, Julie and James, now have a home with “Mum and Dad”.

To tell a story takes talent but to tell a story and to hold a readers interest when the reader may not even be interested in the subject takes a special gift and ability. This is a story about a “family” and the unlimited love and determination of a couple to make a family and to make their dreams  come true. I could not put this book down.

I give Willing And Able- A True Story Of Adoption 5 stars.

Please visit the author of this post: Tom Riddell:

Elaine Chissick will be our guest on The Writers Lounge Blog Talk Radio Show on Monday October 13, 2014 at 7PM Central Time-USA.


By Brian D. Anderson


The Godling Chronicles- The Reborn Kingwas written by Brian D. Anderson and published by Longfire Press in 2014. You may purchase it at Visit the author at:


The gods, elves and humans have had their time with us but now the final battle of the war is upon them and the last word of this amazing and wonderful series is coming to an end. Gewey finally fights the Dark Knight and it is an epic battle that has all of the fast paced action and drama that you could ever wish for. Besides all of the incredibly interesting twists and turns in this story there are several colossal surprises that will awe and challenge your thinking as to where you really stand in the story. Who and what are you for? You will find out the answers at the end of this book. 

The author knows his craft and displays it with incredible sharpness in this last book. Everything is well timed and laid out to keep you reading. The pace of the story slows a bit in the middle but it soon picks up at the end when we learn the back ground history of the Dark Knight. The ending is incredible and beautiful and it’s an ending that Hollywood couldn’t match- but they should try!  This series should be made into a movie. It’s incredibly good and Brian D. Anderson has a long and successful future in front of him as an author. Go out and buy the entire series. It’s a story that you will be proud to display on your book shelf!

I give The Godling Chronicles- The Reborn King 5 stars.

Please visit the author of this post: Tom Riddell:

By Brian D. Anderson

The Godling Chronicles- Madness Of The Fallen was written by Brian D. Anderson and published by Longfire Press in 2014. You may purchase it at Visit the author at:


Gewey and his friends are back in book 5 still doing battle with the dark Knights army.   In this latest installment of the 6 book series where elves, humans and a god struggle against the dark forces that threaten to annihilate them, Gewey  comes to grips with who and what he is.  Not only does Gewey come to terms with his true self but his followers and friends are put into a place where their adulation for Gewey/Darshan is peaked- but is their admiration and worship of Gewey warranted? Is someone else responsible for the positive turn around in the war against The Dark Knight?  A new God is introduced that rivals or beats the powers of Darshan. This new God also praises Darshan and vows to work with him to beat the Dark Knight. But what will Gewey do with this new arrival? Can Gewey trust this God who also has a dark past?

Brian D. Anderson’s skills as a writer gets even better in this story, if that’s even possible.  The twists and turns in this story will keep your eyes glued to the page until the end.  The conflicts that chase down the main character are perfectly placed and the story continues to flow smoothly without a hitch.  All of the characters  are well developed and very interesting.  Once again, like the others, this book ends  and gives us much to think about in regards to our own morals and  the strength of the people in our lives.

Many a fan of this series will agree that it will be sad to say good bye to Gewey and his friends after we have read book 6, which is very close to it’s release date.  But we should be very happy to hear that this author has only just begun to write.  He is now hard at work on his next writing project: Dragonvein

I give The Godling Chronicles- Madness Of The Fallen:  5 Stars.

Please visit the author of this post: Tom Riddell:





With a team of nurses and doctors hovering over me and one wide eyed nurse calling for the paddles, all I could think of saying was “Don’t let me die…”.  But that sounded too cliché, so I settled for silence and hoped that the shock that they were about to give me would bring down a dangerously fast heart rate that was shaking my upper body like an unbalanced out of control washing machine. As I waited for the tech to arrive with the paddles, I was trying to calm my mind, hoping that might help bring down my numbers, which I was later told was close to 260 BPM.

In those frantic moments of activity involving my mortality I was peeking between the white coats that surrounded me hoping to at least glimpse the face of a loved one but I knew, if they had been there, that they had probably been told to move to the hallway to give the team more room to work on me. So, resigned to the tight fitting sights and sounds of the medical staff, I laid there, in my neck brace, propped up on my right side, feeling reasonably calm for a man who felt very very close to death.

It’s amazing how life works. Since 1993 until 2011 my life was as smooth, happy, content and routine as anyone could ever hope for.  Since 2011 I have faced many difficult challenges; from a failed marriage, to work place issues, to health issues.  In fact from December 2013 to present I have had to endure four separate serious medical conditions, along with the death of my father, all of which challenged my faith and left me in a state that had me less than enthusiastic for living life.  But even with all of the adversity that surrounded me I have always held onto the determination to follow through and see my problems to the end, no matter what. 

So, back to the hospital room: The nurse who was still wide eyed and who was still staring at the monitor, which was over my head and in back of me, asked me how I was feeling. The look on her face registered to me her thinking: This man should not be conscious or even alive right now. I answered, “My chest is shaking…” She replied quickly blurting out, “Don’t say anything more!” Apparently my talking had shot my heart rate up even further. The man with the paddles arrived and the nurse was back in my ear telling me, “We’re going to shock you to bring your heart rate down but it might hurt some okay?”  I nodded, “Okay. Do it.” 50 volts were applied. I said, “Ouch.”  I was no longer shaking that much from my heart beat and soon my rate fell to manageable levels. A few weeks later I met the tech with the paddles again and he told me, “You are a very lucky man…”  

So, after having surgery on my cervical spine- to open it up to allow more room for my spinal cord, I also had to deal with a complication from that surgery that could have ended my life. I am now healing and thankful that I am here now blogging about it.

I will now say what I didn’t say while I was laying in that hospital bed: “Don’t let me die.” I have a lot more living to do…. The medical team that worked on me deserves credit for keeping me here to enjoy the ride and so does God but I am reminded that this life we live is just a journey and we never know when it will end. It also reminds me of the lyrics of a song:

“Que sera, sera.  Whatever will be, will be. The future’s not ours to see
Que sera, sera.”

I hope you are enjoying your path in life.  Don’t forget to smile and laugh along the way. It’ll make life easier.


Please visit the author of this post: Tom Riddell: You can buy his memoir Pieces Of My Path (2009). Information on the site.

By PS Bartlett

Hope From The Ocean was written by PS Bartlett and published by Mythos in 2014. You may purchase it at Click book cover to purchase. Visit the author on Facebook.


When Owen Whelan revealed his secret, he was set free from a haunting past and an uncertain future for his son, Ennis. However, in order to know the true depths of his heart, first we must follow him all the way back to a dirt road on a chilly and bitter spring dawn in Ireland. Behind the locked doors of his memories and hidden beneath shame, hunger and eventually escape, we learn the true meaning of the proverb, “There’s hope from the ocean but none from the grave.” Owen’s journey will teach him that sometimes you have to cross that ocean not only to survive but to finally find love, life and become the man worthy of your own admiration and respect.

There are turning points in life you cannot come back from but if you’re brave enough, you can begin again.

As a prequel to the authors first book, Fireflies, this book will give you more than a glimpse into Owen’s past and it will explain a lot about the boy behind the man- as he grew up in Ireland. It gives us insight into the relationships that he had with his brother Dillion and also describes in-depth his relationships with his Uncle Dan and his family.

In order to capture the full story I would suggest reading Fireflies first but it’s not necessary as the story line will flow smoothly in whatever order you read them.

PS Bartlett shines in this book, just as she did when she wrote Fireflies. There are times when we will read books and we’ll look forward to finishing them to see how the story ends. As I read Hope From The Ocean, I found myself so enchanted with the story and its characters that I wanted the story to go on forever. The characters are so well developed it’s hard for me to imagine that they are not real. They literally come off the page and live right there beside you as you read. This is story telling at its ultimate best and this one, along with Fireflies, should not be passed over. Everything from the descriptions and dialect of the historical time period, to the wonderful love story that develops will have you craving more from this author.

I hope we have not heard the end of this story. It should continue…

I give Hope From The Ocean 5 stars.

Please visit the author of this post: Tom Riddell:

PS Bartlett will be our guest on The Writers Lounge Blog Talk Radio Show on Monday June 23, 2014 at 7PM Central Time-USA.



Life is like a game of chess. You look at a situation in life and hopefully, after some wise and intelligent thought,  you make the right move. Sometimes however you will make the wrong move, allowing your opponent, the dark side, an opening, which can ultimately lead to you being on the wrong side of check mate. And sometimes we decide to quit playing- and we forfeit our game.

This brings the question: Are there people and forces (bad karma) in life hell bent on toppling your king? The simple answer is yes, some people are ruthless in their pursuit of gaining what you have or if they can’t have what you have they become insanely jealous in your comfort and happiness.  And if they see you as some sort of a threat to their happiness and to their end game they will seek to bring your game to a complete and substantial halt. This can be done through words and or actions and with the birth of social media the check mate or the taking away of a piece of your life can sting even more when it’s put out in public.
As we become hunched over the game board of life trying to digest what has just happened to us and how to respond- let’s take a break and let me take you to a moment of my life that resonates greatly to the subject matter of this blog.

It was an early spring day, the sun was shining and people were out and about enjoying the weather.  I was twelve and was standing at a bus stop with my Pop in our small home town of Nedrow, NY. As we waited for the bus to arrive I waved and shouted hello to a few of  the passing kids who I recognized as “friends” and school mates. After my second or third sincere happy hello, my Pop turned to me and sternly said, “Why do you do that?”  I remember feeling confused at Pop’s tone of voice and question. I replied, “What do you mean, Pop?”  He said, “Why do you say hello to people that care little about you and wouldn’t even give you the time of day if you asked? Those kids don’t even like you…”  I was bewildered and hurt by what Pop was implying. I never considered the possibility that I wasn’t liked by some of my “friends” but Pop was a wise and intelligent man so I struggled to do my best to digest this- as we eventually boarded the bus and I went on with my day.  There are times in our lives that impact us in many different ways and this simple memory has huge meaning to me and how I have lived my life since then. It’s a moment in time that I have often thought about.

So here I am 46 years removed from that conversation and if Pop were still alive I would answer his question. I would say to him: “Pop, you were very perceptive on that day way back then. And for the most part, you were right- even today there are people who I have been friendly with and or considered close to me in my life  who for whatever reason have decided that they don’t like me and have turned their backs to me. Some have hurt me badly or caused me much turmoil.   But, to answer your question: I still say hello and will continue to be “friendly” with people who dislike me. It’s who I am but my good intentions and friendliness shouldn’t be confused with my intent to confront bad disrespectful behaviors or cheaters.  I won’t go out of my way to say hello to someone who dislikes me or wants to put me in check mate but I will continue to play the game….”

So I’m hunched over the chess board of life pondering my next move- as the dark opponent watches me from across the board.  It’s not an easy game and there are no guarantees that I will win but I will finish it to the end and I will enjoy the challenge.  Pieces will fall but I will strive to never regret a move- even if it’s a wrong one. We learn from our mistakes and we learn to play a better game next time.  And lately in life I have won more games than I have lost. Check…


Please visit the author of this post: Tom Riddell: