Dead of July – Reader Review

I want to share this reader review with you all. It’s a good review, but the main reason I am sharing it is because it’s the ‘reader reaction’ I aim for when I write. I want my books to draw emotion and feelings from those who read them. I want my characters to appeal to my readers. Enjoy this review and then hopefully you will purchase and enjoy my book.

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Dead of July by Sandra Thompson

The book introduces you to its protagonist, Sheila. Sheila has a special gift – she can see and talk to ghosts… We meet her in 1982, living and working in Dortmund with her husband, Les. Everything is pretty normal – until she meets a very young and desperate young woman. Anna is terrified by the man she lives with. Sheila immediately wants to rescue her. Suddenly, everything is different. Her home is haunted, and even at work she cannot go ahead in peace as usual. I will not tell you more about the story than shown in the Amazon plot description. This would spoil the fun of reading this book yourself.

With Dead of July, Sandra Thompson shows us Germany and a typical German base of the British Army. Each character is cleverly portrayed, the reader can relate. Some situations made me roar with laughter, other situations made me want to comfort Sheila. I had a great time reading Dead of July.

The Power of Good and the Poison of Evil

My dad was dead and I blamed myself, but life continued. My mum, bless her heart, was a pillar of strength. Her concern for me kept her going. I was trapped in a deep depression. My friends tried to help me, babysitting me for a while, but eventually they gave up and avoided me. I was relieved when they did. I didn’t want to talk to anyone.

A year passed and my depression lifted, or maybe I’d just become accustomed to it. A dark cloud distorted my vision. When I was alone my mind took me to dark and disturbing places. Although there was no sign of the Angel of Death, she was on my mind constantly. I became a hermit, a bottle of wine at home (a little too often) was the only company I needed. It was on one of my regular trips to the liquor store that I bumped in to Reverend Laybourn, our local Vicar. I hadn’t seen him since the funeral.

“Lucy it’s good to see you,” he said. He wasn’t looking at me as he spoke, but focused on something behind me, and then looked above my head. I guiltily clutched the liter of wine I’d just bought, wishing I could hide it from view. Was he judging me for drinking? Were his eyes raised above my head in prayer? “It’s good to see  you too. I’m having friends around for dinner, I must hurry,” I said, eager to explain the wine, and wanting to get home and drink it.

He looked at me and smiled, but with obvious concern. “You don’t need to explain why you are drinking. You’re troubled, I can see that. Drinking isn’t the answer though.” He focused on something behind me again. “Your mum asked me to talk to you, how about tonight?”

“I have friends coming around for….” I began.

“I don’t think you do. I’ll share a glass of wine with you.” he said. Reverend Laybourn had known me for ten years or more, he’d visited us often. Life was like that in a small village. He’d helped me through my teenage years, often popping round for tea and scones, sometimes just after my mum took the scones out of the oven. I often wondered if he could smell them from the church, which was at the back of our house. He was a good man.

The Reverend’s piercing blue eyes looked directly into mine. “Lucy, I can see whats troubling you. You must rid yourself of the evil that clings to you before it poisons your soul.”

The pressure on my chest was intense, squeezing the air from my lungs. I was suddenly very angry. Why is this stupid man of God interfering with my life. I don’t want or need him. He is going to spoil everything. 

I gasped for breath, my thoughts scared me. Where did they come from? Beside me Reverend Laybourn’s lips moved in silent prayer.

I have so many stories to write I’m not sure I have enough time left in my life to write them. My book Dead of July, is currently available on Amazon. Not sure if ‘Dark Angel’ will ever make its way into a book, but it’s fun for me to blog. Enjoy!

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Dead of July by Sandra Thompson

 

It’s good to be back!

I feel as though I’ve been gone for an awful long time. It’s been a welcome absence. There’s nothing like a good wedding and getting together with friends and family, but now its back to business.

Remember this book? It was my first short story. I took it off the shelves over a year ago because I know I can do better. I’ve re-read this book several times and decided to re-write it and tweak it a little before re-releasing it as young adult fiction. I always like the story a lot, most of it is true. Of course I have to embellish a little to keep the story interesting. Who wants to read a boring book? I’m pretty sure I’ll keep the same title. Hopefully it will be on sale before Christmas. Watch out for it. A Christmas present for a young teenager perhaps?

Girl on the Beach by Sandra Thompson

My current novel, Dead of July, is on sale now. Sales are slow, but I’m not exactly famous yet. When I am, the price will go up, so why don’t you give it a try while it’s still cheap……yes my sales pitch is awful.

http://amzn.to/1aXh4MdDead of July by Sandra Thompson

Thanks for stopping by and have a jolly wonderful evening. My glass of Rioja is taking care of mine. Cheers!

Does it alway rain at funerals? – Dark Angel

My dad’s funeral was the worst day of my life. Worse by far than my accident and hospital stay. The pain of his loss was unbearable. When my doctor asked me if I wanted Valium to get me through the day I didn’t hesitate. “Yes please,” I said “how many can I take before I sink into a coma?” She looked at me with concern. “I’m only going to give you two, and I want to see you back here next week,” she said.

My mum put on a brave face as we stood by the graveside, but she didn’t know what I knew. She hadn’t seen the awful black shadow hovering outside my window. Why did the Dark Angel linger? Why did she torture me? If she wanted to take my life, let her take it. I didn’t want to see anyone else die.

Does it always rain at funerals? It was miserable, but the raindrops hid my tears.

My brother put his arm around me. “Come on, be brave. He wasn’t a well man. This was his third stroke. We knew this might happen eventually.”

“I never got chance to say goodbye.” I said. My brother hugged me tight. “Say goodbye now, I’m sure he’s watching.”

“Bye Dad, I love you.” I said and looked to the sky. The clouds were dark and ominous. I looked away. My grief tainted my vision and made me imagine things that weren’t really there, or so I hoped.

Dark Wings

 The short stories I post on my blog are writing exercises for me. Dead of July, my first novel is available on Amazon. I’m currently working on a compilation of short stories and then I will write a much requested sequel to Dead of July.

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Dead of July by Sandra Thompson

Mr. Mercedes – Stephen King

Anyone who follows my blogs knows I am a HUGE Stephen King fan. I’ve read all of his books (some twice), and attended his book launch for Dr. Sleep in Boulder last year. It was an entertaining evening as he talked about his experiences as a writer, and read from his new book for us. He is a humble, down to earth and entertaining character. Dr. Sleep was a fantastic book and a great sequel to The Shining. Mr. Mercedes is another huge victory for Stephen King. The chapters are short, but gripping. I usually read in bed, and this book is robbing me of sleep. When I finish a chapter I say okay, I’ll read just one more, but one more becomes several more. Great book. His writing style changes a little in this book, but it works.

In my opinion Stephen King is a true master of writing. I read a great deal, but no one pulls me into a story the way he does. He could write about anything, but horror is his calling. The day he stops publishing will be a sad day for me.

220px-Mrmercedes

 

In a million years I will never achieve Stephen King’s mastery of writing, but I will continue to try. My first novel Dead of July is currently available on Amazon.

http://amzn.to/1aXh4Md

Dead of July by Sandra Thompson

Delayed Tragedy – Angel of the Night

Three months passed and my body healed. Dampness and rain made my bones ache, but for the most part my recovery was complete. Had the Dark Angel left me? I hoped so. I searched the shadows in the darkest corners of my room, but none of them bore wings. Dare I hope the evil winged one had moved on to someone else? My relief was short-lived. I sat in the window seat of my little apartment, listening to the breeze rustling through the leaves of the Aspen Trees. Leaves that were just beginning to turn gold, when the phone rang.

“Hello sugar, your dad forgot to bring the chocolate cake I made for you.” I’ll pop by with it in the morning if that’s OK.

It was my mam’s voice.

“Alright, I think I can wait until tomorrow for a piece of chocolate cake.  I didn’t know he was coming to see me tonight, did he just set off?” I asked

“No, he left about an hour ago, maybe he stopped off at the pub on the way. He thinks I don’t know that he pops in for a sneaky half of bitter sometimes. He’ll be there soon.” My mam replied and laughed.

“I’ll smell his breath when he arrives,” I said as I looked out of the window. Then I froze and almost dropped the phone.

“Lucy, are you still there?”

“Yes mum, I’ll call you back when dad arrives.” I said trying not to show the fear in my voice.

Across the road in the fading light stood the solitary figure of my dad. He was overshadowed by the dark awful image of an angel, a dark angel. Her wingspan was huge and everything beneath it shrivelled and died. A shower of leaves fluttered to the ground and instantly turned to dust.

I closed my eyes and and prayed my dad was safe. When I opened them again, I saw only falling leaves. I waited and waited, but my dad never came.

autumn

 

My first novel Dead of July is available on amazon.

http://amzn.to/1aXh4Md

Dead of July by Sandra Thompson

Dark Angel – An Awful Shadow

I was confined to my hospital bed for three long weeks while my body healed. I saw the dark angel no more. Had I imagined her? Did the combination of pain and drugs cause me to hallucinate? I hoped so, my life was better without her awful image. When I was finally released from hospital, it was not to my own little apartment, but to my parents home with the instructions that I must rest for another three weeks.

My body healed quickly, youth was on my side. My parents cared for me, enjoying having me home, but I felt smothered. I loved them and appreciated all they did, but I was 20, I needed to be back in my own little apartment, surrounded by my own things. Eventually I was given the  all clear to look after myself. My dad drove me home and got me settled, but was hesitant to leave me.

“Are you sure you’re alright? You know you can come home anytime you like. I don’t like leaving you here alone. What if you fall?”

“Dad, I barely need my crutches anymore. I’m fine. I can go back to work next week. I loved being with you and mum, but I need to start taking care of myself again. I’ll call you if I need you.”

“OK”, my dad said as he hugged me. I tried not to show him how much pain I was still in when he touched me. I think he knew, but said nothing. “You take it easy, call us every day so we know  you are alright.” My dad shivered as he spoke.

“Are you cold?” I asked.

“No, someone just walked over my grave I think.” He kissed me on the cheek and left. I watched out of the window as my dad got into his car. A storm came from nowhere, making me nervous. I didn’t like storms anymore. Lightening forked from the darkened skies. I rubbed my eyes, did I see an awful shadow where my dad’s car had been parked? I closed the shutters, not wanting to look anymore. I’m just tired, thats all.

Angel Shadow

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Dead of July by Sandra Thompson

 

 

 

 

This Way Madness Lies

I’m reading the last couple of chapters of a book by Thomas William Simpson entitled ‘This Way Madness Lies’. This book was loaned to me by a friend and fellow writer. I’ve never heard of Thomas William Simpson, but am captivated by his unique writing style. This is one of the best written and most intriguing books I have ever read. It’s amusing and clever. I would recommend it to anyone.

Stephen King’s new novel, Mr. Mercedes is tantalizingly waiting for me on Kindle. Usually I drop whatever I am reading when a new Stephen King book arrives, not this time. I have to see how this book ends.

If you want to read something a little different, try ‘This Way Madness Lies.’

This way madness lies

The Winslow clan of Far Hills, N.J., is your not-so-average dysfunctional upper-crust American family. The current generation includes Mary, a historian who communicates with ghosts of the family’s ancestors; Henry, who’s spent 21 years posing as his twin brother, Bobby, who switched places with him and got killed in Vietnam; Ginny, an emotionally ravaged failed actress; Barton, a closet homosexual sculptor and recluse; and Joseph, a Colorado cocaine playboy. “Wild Bill” Winslow, their father, a blustering 70-year-old real estate tycoon whose first wife died 15 years earlier falls down the stairs but doesn’t die, disappointing his gold digger second wife Bettina. He asks that his children be called home; it takes nearly 100 pages to convene the scattered siblings, partly because their ancestors, from colonial times to the near-present, are very much part of the action as both seen and unseen presences. Another Winslow scion, psychotic, estranged Edward, is a loose cannon, providing an element of suspense. A writer of great originality, first novelist Simpson creates scenes of dramatic power and fine ironic humor. Ultimately, however, the fatalistic connections between ancestors and living family members seem imposed and artificial. Literary Guild alternate. 

 

And then there is my humble first novel!

One day I’ll be famous!

http://amzn.to/1aXh4Md

Dead of July by Sandra Thompson

I’m Alive!

I opened my eyes, but saw nothing. Was I blind? I was confused! Where am I? 

And then I remembered the tornado, the crash, my death. My death? Where did that thought come from? My eyes began to focus and I recognized the stark impersonal surroundings. I was in hospital. My legs were elevated and wrapped in bandages. At least I have still have them. I thought. My back hurt a little, and my shoulder, but it was bearable. What am I forgetting? A memory scratched at the inside of my head, but I didn’t know what it was. Maybe I didn’t want to remember. The crash was awful, what could be worse than that? I moved my hand slightly and felt something in it. With difficulty I moved my head and saw a buzzer. Did I want to ring it? Did I want help?

Suddenly I was afraid. I didn’t want to be alone anymore. I pressed as hard as I could and then shut my eyes and waited, longing to hear the sound of footsteps. Instead of footsteps I heard slowly flapping wings. I felt a breeze against my skin and a chill on my face.

I opened my eyes.

Standing by my bed was the Angel of Death.

tumblr_static_large_angel_silhouette

“What do you want from me?” I asked.

She leaned forward and whispered in my ear, her breath as cold as ice. “You owe me your life. I will take it later, or that of another. You choose!” and then she was gone.

Alarms sounded and nurses ran into my room. I couldn’t breathe. Was I dying?

“Hello, Lucy, talk to us. She’s in shock. CLEAR.”

I felt a jolt of electricity and I began to breathe again. I was alive, for now anyway.

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Dead of July by Sandra Thompson