Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Are you prepared to feast with your enemies?

Every year, I work hard to prepare a perfect Thanksgiving feast. At times, the thought of quarrels flaring up between family members during this feast may dampen my enthusiasm. Maybe you face similar concerns in your festive meal, do you? Imagine how much more explosive the occasion may become, when the feast is a royal one, and the family members are those who would like to throw you off your throne, take your place, and obliterate your legacy.

With this in mind, here are three excerpts from the three volumes of my trilogy, The David Chronicles. Each excerpt describes a royal feast in my heres life with its underlying intrigue.

For an entire week following the wedding I have found myself obliged to come to the royal dining room, to be presented before the entire Kish clan as the groom, the Husband of the Princess. Tonight is the seventh night, which—to my relief—marks the end of these festivities, the last dinner. 
Blessed with the questionable pleasure of addressing them I bow low, lower, lowest in the proper manner, according to the relative position of each one in the chain of succession. 
Alas, there are so many of them! All sitting around, using their embroidered dinner napkins to fan their faces because of the intense heat from the fireplace, which is much too close for comfort. They are waiting tensely for the king to arrive before they may start to feast on the lavish food, heaped on elongated silver trays set at precise, measured intervals along the dining table.
The king’s wife, Ahinoam, daughter of Ahimaaz, sits next to the empty royal seat, and his concubine, Rizpah daughter of Aya, at the opposite end, far down the table. The king’s eldest son, Jonathan, sits next to his mother, followed by his brothers, Abinadav, Malchishua, and the youngest one, Ish-Boshet, who was accidentally dropped from his crib by a nanny some years ago, so his legs are broken. Rizpah’s sons, Armoni and Mephiboshet, sit opposite Michal and me. 
And then, there is Merav.
Hair pointing up, bust pointing forward, she greets me by blowing a little kiss from across the table, while her husband is looking the other way. 

Excerpt from Rise to Power, just before King Saul throws his sword at David.

🍷🍷🍷🍷🍷

At my command, the doors of the largest hall in the compound are unlocked. Their hinges are rubbed with oil, so there will be no creaking sounds, no annoyances. This is the perfect place for celebration, which is why we never used it up to now, for lack of reason to do so. 
I tell everyone to come in and mingle, never mind if they belong to the tribe of Judah or the tribe of Benjamin. We are true brethren now, as we were always meant to be. We are family. We are of the same blood.
Newly acquired, sumptuous rugs are spread across the stone floor. Wall sconces are set aflame, so the place glows with color and warmth. Large pillows, embroidered with silk threads, are brought in, so we can all recline upon them, and relax into a sense of luxury. Lavish food is served. Wine starts splashing into cups.
I trust, perhaps foolishly, that generous hospitality removes the divisions between us, and ushers in a new era. 

Excerpt from A Peek at Bathsheba, just before King David's general executes his ally, which throws the country into civil war.


🍷🍷🍷🍷🍷

The messenger takes a gulp, raises his eyes to me, and for a long time, he is watching me watching him.
At last I say, “Speak!”
And in a careful, measured manner of speech, he says, “I come from Absalom’s feast.” 
“Describe it for me, in detail. I want to know exactly what happened, from the beginning.”
Words start gushing out of his mouth as if a dam has burst open in him. “At the beginning,” he says, “this was the most joyful, sumptuous affair I’ve ever seen. It was set outdoors, in full view of the shearing of the sheep. Local musicians danced along the space, which separated our table from the next one. They played merry tunes, and we were all singing along together. The sound was interrupted by nothing except a little bleat, here and there.”
“Was there a big crowd?” I inquire. “How many of Absalom’s friends were present?”
“Dozens of them! They huddled together, sitting along the wooden benches, chinking their cups against the surface of the table, so the servants would hurry up already and bring wine and beer.”
“And the prince, Amnon? Was he sitting there, among them?

Excerpt from The Edge of Revolt, just before the guests kill Amnon at Absalom's command, execution style.


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Tuesday, October 16, 2018

I fell headlong into that hole of emotions

“Well,” Stephen said as we walked out of the alley, our hands linked together. “They will never forget us.”

I giggled, my face still flushed from the exertion. “Maybe they will hire us out. I think we made a good impression.”
He drew me closer, until our arms brushed each other as we walked back to my building. “I think we make a good team Becky.”
“Me too,” I murmured. Never would I have done the things tonight we had done in public, but Stephen had this way about him that made me want to join in. It wasn’t just mindless silliness we had gotten into, but a genuine good time. 
“Well,” Stephen said turning me toward him. “Here we are.”
I looked up at the building, surprised and a bit disappointed that we are already here. “I-I really enjoyed myself tonight.”
“Even if the original was a bust?” he inquired. 
I nodded. “Even so.”
He reached up and brushed a strand of hair away from my face, stealing my breath as he did so. “I will look at the schedule. I still want to take you dancing.”
“Okay,” I said breathlessly, looking into his eyes. A night in his arms surely had to be something special. “Sounds like a plan.”
“Good,” he said, his hand drifting down my cheek. I closed my eyes against the softness of his touch, my entire body shivering from the inside out. Oh, how easy it would be to invite him up to my apartment, to bask in his soft touch all night long. But I knew regret would be between us in the morning, that we rushed something special and I didn’t want that to happen. 
I was determined to take this slow, even if it killed me. 
“May I kiss you Becky?” he asked softly, his eyes searching mine. 
My breath halted at his tender expression, his simple question. Oh my god, was he really asking me? I had never had a guy ask me if they could kiss me. “I.”
“Too soon,” he said, stepping back. “I understand.”
“N-no,” I answered, closing the gap between us. “It’s not too soon.”
His expression changed, and his hands slid up my arms, leaving goosebumps in their wake. I shivered under his touch and closed my eyes in anticipation, my lips parted softly. I wanted him to kiss me. His lips were soft on mine, so light that I could barely feel them. 
But my body reacted anyway, the flush spreading from the roots of my hair to my toes. I felt wonderful— I felt alive.
When Stephen deepened the kiss, I fell headlong into that hole of emotions, allowing myself to be carried away by his kiss.

Excerpt from Monsters in my Closet
By Margaret A. Daly
Included in Love Under Fire


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Monday, October 15, 2018

Not Quite the Story You Remember from BibleSchool

Just discovered this in-depth review by Aurora Dawn for my Historical Fiction novel, Rise to Power:

on October 13, 2018
In this unorthodox and thoroughly entertaining story, Uvi Poznansky tells the early story of the biblical David and his time in the service of King Saul. Told by David himself, in his own words, the story peels away the gloss and glory recorded by the historians who wrote the Bible and reveals the main characters in this saga as he saw them, with all their warts and wantonness.
Poznansky's Saul is spoiled, jealous and more than a little crazy and her David is a sharp witted, often self-depreciating schemer, determined to fulfill the prophet's predictions for his destiny. The story covers the early days from his arrival in Saul's court to his first meeting with Bathsheba.
A riveting and uncompromisingly honest story , Rise to Power will give you hours of entertainment and forever change your view of the story of two of the pivotal characters in the Old Testament.

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Marriage, Death, Spy Games, and Love

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Joseph Mahoney

Golden Valley, AZ USA

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 Marriage, Death, Spy Games, and Love 

Overall  ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
    
5 out of 5 stars
Performance  ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
    
5 out of 5 stars
Story  ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
    
5 out of 5 stars
Reviewed: 10-15-18
Marriage Before Death: WWII Spy Thriller. Still Life with Memories, Book 5. Written by Uvi Poznansky and narrated by Don Warrick. Once again Ms. Poznansky has crafted another beautiful story that opens and closes with Lenny and Natasha facing a truly terrible and difficult future. This again causes Lenny to remember the amazing life together they have shared and how they have survived challenges in the Second World War.

Ms. Pozansky created an amazing world where that was vivid and so detailed. This chapter in the life of Lenny and Rochelle/Natasha was truly amazing set against the backdrop of the French Resistance. The fast-paced action and the spy games were something that was truly attention holding for the listener.

The narration by Don Warrick was once again excellent. This is his fourth performance in this series and has done a masterful job with these characters. His timing and nuances for the details of each character makes for a truly amazing performance. The production quality of this audiobook is excellent Ms. Poznansky published this performance and the audiobook is crisp and clear through the entire performance.
I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review. Did you find this review helpful? If so, would you please take a moment and select the 'helpful' button below? Thanks so much! 

Thursday, October 11, 2018

It Could Have Been This Way

Love this short and sweet review for A Peek at Bathsheba:

on September 30, 2018
While I am a careful Bible student and can rehearse the biblical details of this story, I appreciate that this fictional account may well tell a story that is closer to the full truth than many might admit. You'll enjoy reading this book.

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

I will have him

When I was sure I was presentable, I left our room, locking the door behind me, and walked around to the front of the building. I’d forgotten to get my wages from Imelda and did not want to disappoint my mother by coming home empty-handed.
I saw no need to knock, so I walked inside. It was very quiet and I assumed that Imelda was in one of the back rooms, her workday over. I longed to get home – to do my chores alone and think about what had happened between Micah and me that afternoon.
Not wanting to disturb or frighten the missus, I walked quietly into the room. I started toward the back when I heard someone yelling.
“I’ll have what is mine!”
It was the old man and there was anger in his voice. I froze.
“You cannot have him” Imelda screamed. “I have told you this. Without the boy, there is no girl, and I have invested much too much time to let that go easily. No, old man. You must find another or wait for the next cycle.”
Confused and a little frightened, I took a step forward and now could see them. The old man was halfway out of his chair, the cane he always carried, but never used, pointed at Imelda. His face was full of malice and I cowered in fear just from beholding it.
But that was not the end of it. Imelda stood but five feet away – her arms outstretched, fingers bent in impossible directions, as if her bones had melted and reformed in some strange, inhuman way. Her face, like that of the old man, was set – anger flashed in her eyes.
“I will have him,” the old man reiterated, his cane now undulating as if it were a serpent come to life.
Terrified, I took a step backward and, in error, knocked something from one of the shelves to the floor. It landed with a thud so loud I thought my eardrums would burst.
Both Imelda and the old man turned to stare at me. My heart pounded.
Imelda waved her misshapen hands and, suddenly, it seemed as if all the air had been sucked out of the room. My head grew heavy as everything around me lost shape, blurring as if in a heavy rainfall or fog. Bile rose in my throat as my knees grew weak and I found myself kneeling on the floor, my head in my hands.


Excerpt from The Turning
By Linda Watkins
Included in Love Under Fire


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