Tag Archives: West Virginia

Two Great Reviews

grandma and coraA great new review of The Dry:

5.0 out of 5 stars Simply awesome read, September 10, 2014
This review is from: The Dry (Paperback)
This is a book that you really don’t want to pass by. I expected a good read and ended up being more than pleased with this purchase.

We travel back to the late 1800s and we head to West Virginia. As it is now, West Virginia is the coal mining mecca in our story.

The challenge is, in our story, our main character, Elliot, is in search of his father. His father, a human rights activist went to WV to investigate stories of children being used to work the mines.

Sounds intriguing enough but the author really goes the extra mile so fasten your seatbelt.

We meet an assortment of interest characters. Nogard is one who will definitely catch your attention.

I liked Beulah, she was a great sidekick (no pun intended) and added a nice layer to the story.

Then we have a man and the pocket watch that he gives to Elliot right before he begins his quest.

There are more, shall we say unforgettable?, characters. I don’t want to give you a single spoiler but keep a close eye on Nogard.

If you are wondering about the significance of the insect on the book cover- you’ll understand soon enough as you begin reading.

I will say this – I think you will be as captivated as I was with this unique plot. There is a unique vibe to this read – the author is a true wordsmith.

I definitely want to read more by this author and hope to see additional books with similar plots from her as she has a real talent as a writer.

Worth every single one of the five stars.

And Here’s a new review for Deadly Thyme:

5.0 out of 5 stars I highly recommend this book to everyone, September 8, 2014
This review is from: Deadly Thyme (Paperback)
This Book Was Given To Me For An Honest Review

When I began reading this book I thought it was just another book. Was I ever wrong. This book is such a page turner it’s unbelievable. Once you begin to read it you will not be able to put it done until you finish it. It is about a woman and her daughter who are being watched by a person unknown to them. He sees Ruth (the mother) and believes it is his mother. He decides he must kill her. He takes her daughter without actually planning to. His “mother” continuously speaks to him and he continues to argue with her. During the search for Annie (the daughter) several other girls’ bodies are found. Other murders are committed also. There are so many twists and turns in this story that to tell you more I would ruin your reading of this book. It is truly a HAVE TO read. I gave it 5 stars but it really needs more than 10. I highly recommend this book to everyone. I look forward to seeing more works by R.L. Nolen.

If people have already reviewed your book why do I need to write a Review?

Reviews come in all shapes and sizes. It matters not how big it is. You only need 20 words for a review. I need reviews. It seems like such a small favor…but it is a huge favor. People buy things because of reviews. And people don’t buy things because of reviews. Reviews mean everything to each and every writer, even if they have 500 reviews. And believe me when I say that I would be happy with 70. Please go to Amazon or Barnes & Noble.com and tell me what you think. I sure do appreciate it. Really.

Time to announce the Novel


The Dry POSTER (2)






The time has come, the time is now… to announce the novel. TA DA!




I began this novel in 2004. Originally, the opening scenes included a fight between two men witnessed by a child and a mine collapse. These two events are not in the present novel. Sometimes an author must delete the best scenes in order for the story to move forward in a timely manner.


Don’t worry, the novel is full of things that will keep the reader turning pages.


The story is much like a Wizard of Oz story with a little boy as protagonist. He is sent on a quest (as Dorothy had to retrieve the witch’s broom), one that he does not want to go on. He does. All the plot elements are there. There are no flying monkeys. I don’t want you to be disappointed so there are giant insects. “For good or evil who is to say?”


Here is what the back cover says to explain in less than 200 words what the book is about:


West Virginia, 1895.


A deadly dry spell has left the earth parched and souls desperate. Crops are failing. Cities are starving. A missing newspaper man doesn’t account for much in times so terrible, except to the twelve-year-old son he left behind. When Elliot Sweeney discovers the search for his father has been called off, he boards a train alone to find him.


His quest leads Elliot into the depths of an abandoned mine, with a peculiar pocket watch, a blind burro, and a gutsy girl at his side. He discovers a world he never dreamed of, even in his worst nightmares, and lands smack in the middle of a war between two kingdoms. Monstrous insects, smiling villains, and dark riddles are everywhere. Deciding who to trust may prove to be his greatest challenge, while the fate of the world above hangs on Elliot’s choice.


Here is the link to Amazon where you can buy a book for yourself or a loved one for the New Year. May it be a happy one full of good reading!



An illustration by W. W. Denslow from The Wond...
An illustration by W. W. Denslow from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, also known as The Wizard of Oz, a 1900 children’s novel by L. Frank Baum. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

From Hallowed Grounds 7

From my mother’s journal the summer of 1970:

At the Natural Bridge Caverns there were some chimes playing hymns. I felt like singing they were so lovely, but I’ve never felt confident enough to sing in public. So I kept silent. I wonder how God feels about my lack of courage?

We purchased some more apple candy to send to Bobby and Nannie. It reminds me of some candy I was given that had been made in Washington State. That taste takes me back to about 30 years ago.

A rainstorm has caught up to us. The wind is pushing against our car and trailer on the road. The gusts slap against us. The wind carries a whistling sound. We see a car with a camper attached stopped in the emergency lane. The jacks are down as if they are setting up camp right there. Two Texas cars pass us pulling campers, too.

July 9

Driving all day in bad weather. Nerves wrecked. Night is approaching so we pulled into a Quality Motel in Winchester, VA. The family room for six is clean and new. (Charged $24.96) It is cheaper than the Holiday Inn. The heavy rain seems unending. Must do laundry ($2.40) We ate a delicious chicken supper at the motel’s restaurant ($5.41)

July 10

Breakfast at motel restaurant – really good. The sun is shining today. Virginia is a pretty state. So is West Virginia. The Interstate 81 isn’t as nice as the Parkway but R said the parkway ended when we entered VA. Stopped at a Montgomery Wards and bought R a jacket ($6.23 cash). Stopped at a dime store to send package home, get cold drinks, and ice.($5.10) Farther down the road we stopped at Stuckey’s to get some gifts for Glenn and Caroline, souvenirs, state spoons, etc. ($14.24)

We passed through Hagerstown, Maryland but never saw a single “Welcome to Maryland” sign. In a little while we saw a sign “Welcome to Pennsylvania”. It was weird entering and leaving a state without signage letting us know about it. Our mileage is 53,485. We stopped for 13 gallons of gas (5.45) We ate lunch at the Red Barn. Drove through Caledonia State Park but decided not to stay (1.75) We stopped at Greenwood Hills, PA where R remembers he visited as a boy. It seems like it’s mostly old people. Roger Dunkerton Jr. was there – looks like my cousin Gordon Dunkerton did at the same age.

We set up the camper there at Greenwood Hills Conference grounds. They had a restroom, etc.

July 11

Got up and drove to Gettysburg, PA. Took the auto tour ($1.00). It was long. I sure hope it helps the kids with their history. The national cemetery is so quiet. The birds don’t even sing there. My impression is that there are many men buried in the tomb of the unknown soldier here. Lincoln was so great. I don’t know why they don’t say more about him on the tours here.

Went to the Cyclorama. It was very interesting. All those pinpoint lights were men. The room was full of the lights. They were white at first and as the battle progressed the lights turned red signifying that they had died. At the end the red light bathed all the people in the room.

The town of Gettysburg itself has had a terrifying year. There were three churches that were burned to the ground this year. Arson. The culprit is in jail. Something to do with race relations. It seems so peaceful to us. Just goes to show how we can be fooled by outward appearances.

Went to the Charley Weaver Museum. Filled with wooden carved scenes with sound and lights. Good. Delicious lunch at Pennsylvania Dutch Cupboard. (11.18) Becky just had to order shoo-fly pie.

We’ve decide to spend our nights here at Greenwood Hills while we explore the area. Five nights at Greenwood Hills (ck for $15.00), groceries (6.08), white gas (1.10)

July 12

Went to Sunday meeting (Plymouth Brethren) at Greenwood Hills – many old people. How are they going to survive? There were a few teenagers who led the singing. G. Bull was an excellent speaker. Roger was in charge of the food for the conference this year. We stayed to eat there at noon. ($10.10) It was okay, but not great. R went to the afternoon meeting while kids and I relaxed. In the evening we went for a hamburger supper at the Red Barn  (3.80), and got ice for the camper (.50). The Greenwood Hills night meeting was held in the chapel by the road. The seats weren’t as uncomfortable as the meeting hall this morning.

We said goodbye to the Daltons from Ft. Lauderdale, FL. They promised to visit us in Houston with their Airstream trailer. We said goodbye to the Dutch people from Holland (I think they live in Long Island).

This is what I know about saying goodbye to my brothers and sisters in Christ – I know I will see them again. If not here, then THERE.