Book Review: Cuts & Collected Poems 1989 – 2015 by Maria Haskins


Cuts & Collected Poems 1989 – 2015

by Maria Haskins

5/5 stars

There is something about a poetry collection that spans the entire length of your life. Maria Haskins has been writing as long as I have been alive and her talent is beyond seasoned. The passion, words, and emotion behind every poem are astonishing and mesmerizing. But perhaps her own words describe it best:

take me with you
take me even farther
away from the fire.


Book Review: After Death by Jacqueline E. Smith


After Death

by Jacqueline E. Smith

5/5 stars

The third installment of Cemetery Tours did not disappoint. In fact, it appointed… hard! I felt the same excitement as when I read the first. Smith’s ghosts, action, and characters sync incredibly well together. And the dialogue never misses a beat. I feel like I’ve known Kate, Michael, and Luke for ages. I can’t think of a moment I did not thoroughly enjoy (a carnival was perfect ghostly setting by the way). Romance, intrigue, and another jaunt with America’s favorite ghost, Eugene Brinkley? I think I’ll read the series all over again. Maybe you should too!

Book Review: Insomnia’s Ink by Susie Clevenger


Insomnia’s Ink

by Susie Clevenger

5/5 stars

Susie Clevenger is a seasoned poet, writing with all the force of years behind her. I have probably read this book three or four times already (to be honest, I’ve lost count). There is a high mastery of structure and emotion in her verse from which the reader cannot easily escape. I find myself drawn back to the comfort and truth she delivers so readily. Tremendous poetry for those who wish to understand and feel.

Book Review: Boy Band by Jacqueline Smith


Boy Band

by Jacqueline E. Smith

5/5 stars

Boy Band surprised me. I wasn’t sure going in if I would connect with the characters of a modern boy band. Author Jacqueline Smith however is a tremendous writer with a gift for storytelling. Her characters are rich, successful, influential, but still relatable. There’s something very human in their struggle for acceptance and love. And I never knew how lonely or lost people at the top could feel. Add to this the relationships: oh, god, the relationships! They were a rollercoaster ride but I won’t give anything away. My favorite part of Boy Band was that though there was a degree of humor and YA silliness, the author was not afraid to get serious: whether it was the crushing double-edged sword of success or the pitfalls and ramifications of normal breakups. There are also several other observations on life that I found interesting. Whether you’re a girl, a guy, young, or old I think you will find something to enjoy in this book. It’s fascinating to look behind the music and be a part of the band.

Book Review: Groovy Cool Writing Techniques by Cinta Garcia de la Rosa


Groovy Cool Writing Techniques

by Cinta Garcia de la Rosa

5/5 stars

I thoroughly enjoyed Groovy Cool Writing Techniques. It felt unlike other books on writing: informative, fast-paced, even humorous. I primarily write poetry and the exercises helped inspire me as well. No matter what your medium of writing, I think everyone can benefit from reading through the author’s explanations. You will understand not only how to get through writers’ block, but why you have it in the first place. I found this particularly enlightening. My favorite part however was book itself: from the front cover on you realize it will be fun. I liked the light and friendly tone, that was never condescending or confusing. It was clear that the author cared and wants her readers to enjoy the writing process.

Book Review: Broken Places by Rachel Thompson


Broken Places

by Rachel Thompson

5/5 stars

Some poets are born, but most are made. I believe Rachel Thompson possesses an inner-strength transcending both ideals. Perhaps her poetry would not be possible without her story, but that is immaterial. She was born and makes a difference. I am not a survivor of sexual abuse, but I feel the intensity of her writing and the strength that it provides. There is courage in the ability to speak that I know others will find because of Broken Places. I better understand the enormity our actions and indifference can cause to victims of abuse. And I find solace in the truth and beauty of her words that touched my soul. If you like great writing or poetry, please give this book your time. It will be well worth it. Two of my favorite passages were:


can a ghost of air and dust
hold me now?


It’s beautiful, this hill we climb
To the quiet, most private silence of our souls

Book Review: Between Worlds by Jacqueline E. Smith


Between Worlds

by Jacqueline E. Smith

4/5 stars

I am not usually a fan of sequels, but author Jacqueline E. Smith has found new ways to challenge her characters. Michael, Kate, Luke, and Brink (my favorite ghost) are incredible as they investigate and unearth the mysteries behind Stanton Hall Manor. Relationships are tested and romance emerges despite overwhelming circumstances. The second half of the novel where they encounter the terrifying and dangerous ghost Sterling was by far my favorite. I also enjoyed the first half and the development of Kate and Michael’s relationship. There were only a few reservations I had: I would have liked to see more ghosts in the lead-up to the climax. I understand the characters and stories are moving forward, but Michael has an amazing and exciting gift. I think more ghosts could have helped or provided interesting obstacles along the way. Perhaps Brink could find a ghostly girlfriend as well. He is my boy after all and I hate to see him lonely. Between Worlds however is a fantastic novel and engaging read I highly recommend. I cannot wait to read the next installment.

Inhale the Night #poetry sale

My latest poetry collection Inhale the Night is on sale for .99 from November 3rd to 7th.


Book Description:

Join Ben Ditmars, author of Night Poems and Haiku in the Night, on his final journey through the Midnight hours. Explore and breathe with him as night descends and stars emerge into new memories. Through free-verse, epic, and haiku poetry, some roads are darker than others….

Buy link:






FREEBIE from Ciara Ballintyne!

My friend Ciara Ballintyne is giving out free advance copies of her next book. Be sure and sign up.


STALKING THE DEMON ~ Advance Review EBOOKS by @CiaraBallintyne #HighFantasy #FREEBIE
Available for a limited time

FREE Advance Review ebooks (Review Copies only)

Amazon ebookcover 4500x2820

(Book 2 in the Seven Circles of Hell)
by Ciara Ballintyne

Date of Publication – 22 September 2014
Genre: High Fantasy (Adult)
About the Book
Alloran lost his hand to thwart his renegade friend–but the world is still going to hell.

Six months after Ladanyon’s defeat, Gisayne is fading away from a baffling illness. Alloran is desperate for a cure, but he has a secret–the seven circles of hell are unstable. His worst fear is that the terrible mirror spell cast upon Gisayne has wrought some connection between her and the demon dimensions.

As everything Alloran loves races toward destruction, he does the unthinkable and refuses to obey the council of wizards. The only people who can help him are the two research assistants assigned by the council–but he knows he can’t trust them.

All the answers are locked away in the last place anyone wants to go: hell.

Add it to your Goodreads TBR here.

eARCs may not be identical to the final published version and therefore may contain some minor editing and typographical errors prior to the final proofread. eARCs are expected to be available 2 weeks prior to the publication date. Interested? Sign-up now!


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