Monday, April 28, 2008


This is JORDAN DANE'S debut novel and Publisher's Weekly says "Dane's smooth style, believeable characters, and intense pacing will remind readers of Lisa Jackson, Lisa Gardner, and Tami Hoag". I read all of these authors, and love them, but to me this fabulous novel ranks right up there with Linda Howard. Here's the back blurb:

Burdened by grief, she hunts a killer

They never found her sister's body, but Detective Rebecca Montgomery knows her murderer is still out there. In the five months since Danielle went missing, there have been two more brutal abductions. A savage menace stalks the women of San Antonio, and the relentless detective will do anything to find him.

And a seductive stranger shadows her every move

But her latest case - the discovery of a young woman's remains inside the wall of a burned-down theater - plunges Rebecca from her grief into a brand-new nightmare. She soon meets handsome, mysterious Diego Galvan at the crime scene, and his shadowy connections will lead to her first break in both cases. But when Rebecca submits to his considerable powers of seduction, she will leave herself vulnerable to a merciless killer...and when he attacks, no one will hear her scream.

JORDAN DANE has captured the thriller genre right by the throat, and this book doesn't let go until the last page. I read the whole thing in six hours straight. I just couldn't put it down. With the above-average portrayal of a female police officer with real issues to deal with, to the "just right" alpha male hero, the plot tears along, careening from one twist to the other. Jordan has the right mix of a steamy romance with a touch of tenderness, and a thriller action story to keep you wanting more after the book ends.

Some "wow's" for readers: Jordan's website contains fantastic photos of the real places in San Antonio she uses in the book. Her book trailer is so well-done you'll dream of having one this good for your own novel. This book has been out since March 25th, so if you can't find it in stores anymore, search HarperCollins and you'll be able to order it online.

Her next book out is No One Left To Tell - coming April 29th - that's now, so hit your favourite bookstore, and then No One Lives Forever on May 27th. There're excerpts to both books at the back of No One Heard Her Scream.

This book is exceptional, no question. It's so exciting to find a new author who's work you just can't get enough off!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Finally Got The Pictures Up!

Here's a couple of my spindles to show you what I was talking about in my last few posts. The two with the pink fiber on them have 50/50 silk and merino wool on them. The one on the left is made of maple and is store bought. The one on the right is made of Walnut and is also store bought.

The other spindles were made by my dad out of exotic woods. The top picture is a bobbin on my Lendrum spinning wheel of plain grey wool which has a long outer hair in dark grey.

I was using my maple spindle Saturday p.m. watching the hockey game, which Boston won by a nose. :) Our company was routing for Montreal so were very disappointed. Anyway, just wanted to share what a spindle looks like in this day and age. I hope some of you check out those websites I mentioned. It truly is a relaxing hobby!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

The Unconditional Love of a Pet....

This is my golden retriever, Tessa. She's a purebred with a fabulous pedigree from both sides of the border. She's helped get me through the past three months of recuperation, and no doubt will help me during and after this next operation.

She's eight years old and still highly active. I spin her fur, and have enough saved up that I hope to blend it with some wool to make it stretch so I can either knit mittens for next winter, or a tam. (with our temperatures at -47 degrees this winter, dog fur should really help!)

I took pictures of my spindles, but am such a Luddite I can't download them from my camera! I'll have to wait till hubby wakes up and tells me how silly I am that I can't figure out ZoomBrowser. argh...

Anyway, when I get the pics I'll post some here so you can all see what I was talking about in my last post!

Friday, April 18, 2008


I'm sitting around waiting to hear when my shoulder replacement surgery's going to be booked. Hopefully, I'll hear next week. In the interest of keeping my mind busy I went through our boxes and dragged out my spinning wheel, my hand spindles, and an entire toy chest of fiber and spinning supplies. I'm missing a whole box from this move, which held other fiber that was precious to me (and preciously expensive!), but maybe it'll still turn up.

Hand spinning on drop spindles has been done for over 6000 years. The spinning wheel didn't come in to being until the industrial revolution in England/Europe when wool/linen/flax had to be produced quicker and sent off to the textile factories to be woven up for cloth.

Hand spindling takes some practice - I used to be very good at it but am now clumsy and a bit frustrated. I'm blaming it on my shoulder, although it's possible to use a hand spindle by holding it horizontally and spinning the fiber out that way, or by rolling the spindle against your thigh.

Spinning is very soothing and relaxing - you get in to a "zone" where the rhythmn of what your hands are doing becomes so automatic your thoughts can run free, or, if you're so inclined, can shut down. I think it's a perfect hobby for writers because of the stress-relief factor. If you're blocked and frustrated with a scene, plot point, or characters talking back at you, you can sit or stand for ten or fifteen minutes and spin. It'll put things on the back-burner as well as let you do something creative and artistic in another way.

Just going for a walk to relax from writing has never done it for me, although I know walking, running, going to the gym, etc. work for others. I'm recommending the following drop spindle makers/spinning wheel makers so you can browse some websites and check in to this wonderful hobby.

The Journey Wheel: Sheila and Jonathon Bosworth have been in the business for nearly twenty years. Jonathon does everything by hand, using exotic woods in all his products. He invented his own folding spinning wheel, and I personally knew a woman in my old spinning Guild back east who owned one. She loved it. I've also known people who own their drop spindles, which spin wonderfully and put out lovely yarn. They also offer specialy spindles from mammoth tusks, and mammoth teeth. I've got my name on their waiting list for a mammoth tusk spindle - it's about a three year wait! I also have my name on their waiting list for a "Moosie" spindle, which are made from moose antlers. That list is only a year long. :)

Grafton Fibers: another husband and wife team, they make the most beautiful spindles, accessories, and knitting and crochet hooks. Linda Diak used to have a new drop spindle per month which was hand-painted. She featured a different sheep breed a month, allowing sheep breeders to pick their own breed, or a favourite breed, and have it on a spindle. She's bringing back that series soon. In the meantime, you can feast your eyes on the lovely things they have available.

Golding Fiber Tools: another hand-craftsman, his custom and vintage drop spindles are amazing to behold. They are true works of art.

Jenkins Woodworking: this is another husband and wife team. Mr. Jenkins hand-tools beautiful crochet hooks, knitting needles, tapestry supplies, among other accessories. If you're a knitter or crochet-lover, you'll enjoy checking out this website as well.

Next week I'll post some sites where you can find videos on how to drop spindle. It's much easier to see it done, than to explain doing it! Meanwhile, everyone have a great weekend, and enjoy "web-shopping" if this ancient art appeals to you.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008


Today our beloved General Rick Hillier resigned as of July 1st/08. For my friends below the 49th Parallel, General Hillier is our Chief of Defense Staff and is responsible for all three branches of the Canadian Forces. He's led us through the last three years of the Afghanistan war (there - I said "war"), and brought amazing changes to how the military in Canada does things.

It was Hillier who bought us four C-17's so we could stop borrowing yours to transport our tanks and armoured supplies and soldiers to the Middle East. It was Hillier who fought the government on putting money into military housing, and resources for military families to be able to put up with long distance relationships when they have/had to. He brought back our morale, our pride in our Forces, and the awareness that we have a place on the world stage, and it's not just to sit by and do nothing.

My husband met him at a Wing function here in Winnipeg. The General was kind enough to spare a few words to an officer who he doesn't know personally. But, he took the time to show in a quick minute that he appreciated my husband as a military member.

The Canadian Forces haven't seen strong leadership like General Hillier's since before the Korean War. His boots will be hard to fill. We can only hope that his successor has half of his courage both on the battlefield and off it. He will be truly missed.


A friend sent me this spring picture of a marmot to cheer me up. I have no knowledge of marmot's, but this guy's cute so I thought I'd share with you!

Spring has finally come to Winnipeg - or WINTERPEG, as we locals call it. The grass is drying up and I can now take Tessa, my golden retriever, out back to the dog park. It's nice that it's right behind my house, because I still can't drive a car. I can't lift my arm out front more than to my waist, on a 45 degree angle out from my waist to the side, and forget about putting it behind my "behind".

My surgeon gave me the stunning news that I need a complete shoulder replacement - just like the hip and knee replacements you think of when you see senior citizens crawling along the mall with their walkers. I was so stunned, it took me four days to be able to share with my husband. The thought of going through another surgery, not being able to dress myself, feed myself, etc. was catastrophic. But, I'm over it now. It beats an amputation!

So, that's why my friend sent the marmot picture. It has nothing, absolutely nothing to do with anything. And isn't that the beauty of sharing with friends? I'm lucky to have quite a few of them. I hope spring has sprung, wherever you live!