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Genealogy web sites can be great sources of historical data. I came across The Account Book of Thomas Morgan of Carmarthen from the 18th century. This is an article on the book, and I wish the book itself were available on line as it wo...
Genealogy web sites can be great sources of historical data. I came across The Account Book of Thomas Morgan of Carmarthen from the 18th century. This is an article on the book, and I wish the book itself were available on line as it would be a wonderful resource for daily cost of living. But there is quite a bit there for the curious, and here are some tid-bits. Thomas Morgan seems to have a large Welsh parish, though there's no indication of his annual stipend. Over time, he becomes short of money and has to economise and then move. At times he tries to farm. So the following expenditures may be extravagance.In 1755, he pays for his servant James Howell to have: To trimming his coat 1s.6d To pay for waistcoat 3s.0d For velvet 3s.0d For linnen 6s.0d  For shoes 1s.6d It's a bit surprising his manservant needs velvet, isn't it? Perhaps he wanted a fully turned-out footman. Evidence of aspiring beyond his means? In 1761 he paid his maidservant Susan Hanmer £1.15s.0d per annum, had her shoes mended for a shilling and bought her a silk hat for 4s.4d. Other purchases included a cotton gown, handkerchiefs, whale bone and even a pair of garters. So the wage was truly on top of all expenses, but was Susan getting special perks? That silk hat is suspect.  There are some clear lists, such as this. Seven cane chairs £0.17s.6d One Brass Pan £1.6s.7d Five Pewter Dishes £0.8s.4d Twelve Pewter Plates £0.11s.0d Two brass candlesticks £0.3s.9d Two Iron Pots £0.6s.0d Two small casks £0.2s.0d I wonder why a brass pan was so much more expensive that seven chairs. Any ideas? Weighing and balancing costs in the past is both fascinating and puzzling. In 1750 he bought the following articles and paid eight shillings to have them transported to his home. That was, note, around a quarter of the annual wages for his maid. Again, chairs seem cheap. Why is a baking stone so expensive in comparison? One Bedstead and Curtains £1.15s.0d. Six leather bottom Chairs £0.9s.0d One Press and one elbow Chair £0.18s.0d  Fire shovel, tongs and grate £0.5s.0d Baking Stone 2s.6d.Saucepan 6d. £0.3s.0d Bedcord 1s.4d. flower box 4d.  (Flour, I assume.)pepper box 2d. One Decanter 18d. Waterglas 3d.  One bottle of mustard 7d. and Pot 3d.Three Single Deal boards £0.6s.6d A glimpse into an 18th century life. Do you have any observations on the relative costs, or comparisons to various costs today? I'm working in the Regency world now, but this was all right in the time for Seduction in Silk. Cheers, Jo
about 2 hours ago
You know we love all things Otherworldly here on Harlequin’s Paranormal Romance Blog — and we have some scoop about Harlequin paranormal news happening elsewhere on the web! Check out the links below for a Returned flash mob,...
You know we love all things Otherworldly here on Harlequin’s Paranormal Romance Blog — and we have some scoop about Harlequin paranormal news happening elsewhere on the web! Check out the links below for a Returned flash mob, Nocturne reading challenge, a debate about zombies and more… 1) Take a Trip to Nashville with the Krewe of Hunters! New York Times bestselling author Heather Graham blogs about her new paranormal thriller The Night is Forever on the Harlequin Blog. 2) To celebrate the publication of Jason Mott’s debut novel, The Returned, a flash mob of 150 people gathered in front of the New York Public Library to read the book. Check out a photo on Shelf Awareness. 3) Why does Gena Showalter say she wanted to “Blame Men” when reinventing the myth of Pandora in her Lords of the Underworld series? Find the answer and more in her Q&A on Zola Books. 4) Harlequin Nocturne, our paranormal romance line, is Harlequin’s series spotlight for October! To celebrate, the Harlequin Community is hosting a Nocturne Reading Challenge. Your goal: the read both new Nocturnes out this month, Claimed by the Demon by Doranna Durgin and Out of the Night by Trish Milburn. Click here to join the discussion! 4) Is the zombie trend still fresh…or should it stay dead for good? Check out the debate between two SF & Fantasy fans from Harlequin debate on our Zombie books page and weigh in with your thoughts in the Community discussion.
about 6 hours ago
I admit to being a typography fan — that is the science and art of the shape of letters and how they look on the page. I’ve learned just enough to know I don’t know enough, and enough (so I like to think) to spot good a...
I admit to being a typography fan — that is the science and art of the shape of letters and how they look on the page. I’ve learned just enough to know I don’t know enough, and enough (so I like to think) to spot good and bad examples. These days, authors need to be more aware than ever about the effective use of fonts, so it’s something that sticks with me. The fonts chosen for any project not only convey an instant emotion, they convey a message. That emotion and message can be strengthened or considerably weakened by font and typographic choices. Fonts can be elegant, or noisy, or fun, or mocked (comic sans, anyone?). They can convey the tone of a document before we’ve read a single word. A font can instantly identify something, say, The New York Times. They can give you a headache, make you squint, or leave you uncertain about the difference between letters. Is that a lower-case L or the number 1? Microsoft, infamously, in my opinion, used just such a font in some of its early server software. With computers, the difference between l and 1 are huge. To this day I remain baffled by the decision to use a font with ambiguities like that. Typography has been in the news lately in the form of the observation that dyslexics reading a page with fewer words on it find it much, much easier to make sense of the letters. And by page, is meant screen. People with dsylexia AND a smart phone or table, can increase the font-size and decrease the noise on the page, and thereby make it easier to read. See this Marketplace report of August 21. While there’s a link to audio, the summary has a good synopsis of the findings. To all the people who scorn eBooks just because they’re not paper, here’s proof that the technology has benefits, and huge ones, that paper books don’t offer. If I need or want to read with a smaller or larger font at any time in my reading experience, I can do so. I do not need to buy the large print edition. This is sans serif. This is serif. In mulling over the subject of this post, I did some Googling. There are websites that claim the sans-serif (no curly-cues) was invented in the early 1800′s and was called the “egyptian font.” This is only sort of true. (see Wikipedia.) Sans serif lettering goes back to ancient alphabets, but it was, indeed, during the Regency period, that sans-serif fonts became what you might call a thing…and that’s even though there were sans-serif fonts developed in the mid-1700′s. Sans-serif letters began to appear in printed media as early as 1805, in European Magazine. However, early-19th-century commercial sign writers and engravers had modified the sans-serif styles of neoclassical designers to include uneven stroke weights found in serif Roman fonts, producing sans-serif letters.[3] In 1816, the Ordnance Survey began to use ‘Egyptian’ type, which was printed using copper plate engraving of monoline sans-serif capital letters, to name ancient Roman sites. I will leave you with this thought: Technology has made it trivial to examine typefaces of the past. Call it evil or the greatest think since sliced bread, but Good Books with it’s image view of the books they scanned, means we can leaf through the typographical past with ease. Do you have a favorite font? I am very partial to Palatino.
about 10 hours ago
'The Duke's Proposal' will always be a significant title for me. My very first book, 'The Unconventional Miss Walters', published in 2005 is special in the same way. 'The Duke's Proposal' is the first new title for over two years. I was ...
'The Duke's Proposal' will always be a significant title for me. My very first book, 'The Unconventional Miss Walters', published in 2005 is special in the same way. 'The Duke's Proposal' is the first new title for over two years. I was beginning to think I would never get back into that wonderful feeling a writer has when they are in the middle of the book. I have spent the past 18 months putting up my long backlist on Amazon – this requires a lot of rewriting and editing but the characters and story are already there.I needed to write the next part of my WW2 book Barbara's War as I had several enquiries from readers as to when it was going to be published . I'd originally said it would be out October 2013. I thought it would be easier for me to start with a Regency as I've written so many of them. 'The Duke's Proposal' is the result and I'm thrilled with it. Writing this was exactly what I needed to get my head back into creating – I'm now a quarter of the way into the second part of Barbara's War. I love it when I can spend every waking moment living the lives of my characters. I had begun to think I had lost this ability, but now I know I haven't.Here is an extract from the first chapter – Lydia Richmond is thrilled because a cavalry Regiment has just moved into the area. She intends to enjoy the company of the officers and considers that there's no need for a season in Town:Less than twenty minutes later Lydia was on her way home delighted to have found an exact match for the forget-me-nots sewn to her ball gown. She nodded and smiled at several acquaintances that didn’t stop to pass the time of day. Fortunately the gaggle of girls and moved elsewhere, no doubt to discuss at length the arrival of the regiment.Usually she chatted to Jenny when they were out together, but today she wished to mull over something that had been said to her earlier. When she had denied speaking to the duke, she had told a falsehood. His grace visited at least once a week, usually to impart some local news to her mother or offer advice on her investments. Although she was usually present, she rarely spoke directly to him herself.He was nearer her mother’s age than hers, and although scrupulously polite and unfailingly charming, she found him unnerving and difficult to converse with. He was – he was a formidable man. He stood more than two yards high and his shoulders were extremely broad. He wore his dark hair short, an uncompromising style which suited his demeanour. He treated her more as a child than a woman grown and she was grateful for this. Being teased and talked down to meant she was not expected to join in the conversation and thus show her ignorance of adult matters.Her lips curved as she recalled the last time they had met. He had ridden over on his latest acquisition, a magnificent bay stallion, and had invited her to give an opinion on the animal. She had been about to go inside after a brisk walk around the lake. Her face had been hot, her hem mired and her boots muddy – hardly an appealing sight. She had mumbled something complimentary and scuttled in like a frightened rabbit. His laughter had followed her and she didn’t blame him one jot for finding her a figure of fun.On her return she ran upstairs to remove her gloves and bonnet and replace her walking boots with indoor slippers before hurrying down to the drawing room to share the exciting news. She burst in only to find her mother was not alone.The duke stood and greeted her affectionately. “Miss Richmond, what a delightful surprise. I understood from her ladyship that you had gone to the village.” His expression was bland but she could see amusement dancing in his eyes.“I am back now, your grace…” She faltered and her cheeks suffused with colour. Why was it she always sounded like a pea goose when speaking to him?“Indeed you are, my dear, and looking quite delightful too.” He raised an eyebrow and glanced at a sofa reminding her etiquette demanded he remain on his feet un
about 11 hours ago
Having just attended the Indie Romance Convention in Nashville last weekend, I had plenty of time to watch other authors, readers, and bloggers interact. Chat. Laugh. Dine together. And talk about BOOKS! What did I learn? Here's my advic...
Having just attended the Indie Romance Convention in Nashville last weekend, I had plenty of time to watch other authors, readers, and bloggers interact. Chat. Laugh. Dine together. And talk about BOOKS! What did I learn? Here's my advice for both writers and readers:Readers Attending a Conference:1. Don't be afraid to approach writers! We're human beings too, just as normal (or abnormal lol) as you! Plus we're readers as well. We love to talk about books!2. Bring pens/Sharpies and something for authors to autograph. I signed bags, bookmarks, and t-shirts and loved the unique ways readers wanted to remember the writers they met.3. Plan to buy books! By that, I mean you should probably try to decide your budget ahead of time, and then make sure you bring enough $$ to cover it. Also, depending on your means of travel, figure out how many books you can bring back home. I talked to few readers who were disappointed that they could only fit a couple of books in their bags on the flight home. I also met a reader who was leaving clothes behind at the hotel so she could fit her books instead! Love it.4. Ask questions. About anything! Ask writers about their books. Ask bloggers about getting free books and writing reviews. Ask the host about freebies. Ask the hotel about late checkouts and added amenities. If you don't ask, you'll never know what you might get!*****************Writers Attending a Conference:1. Plan ahead as much as possible. Know where you'll be meeting for the different events, where your panels are being held (if you're on them), and what time you should arrive to set up for any signings.2. Talk to everyone you can. Writers, readers, bloggers, exhibitors...get to know others. Even if you're out of your comfort zone, this is a great chance to reach out and both learn from others' experiences AND give your own writing a little boost. BUT...3. Don't just self-promote. Enough said, right? No one likes an author who only talks about her own books.4. Don'y overspend on swag (all those bookmarks, pens, shot glasses, masks, candies, etc.). This isn't the place for a long discussion on what swag drives readers to buy books (do a Google search & you'll find plenty of those). But the best way to target your consumers is to write good books and then to talk about those good books to readers and potential readers. You can spend a lot of $$ on bookmarks...but has a bookmark alone ever convinced you to buy a book?Above all, have fun! Where else but book conventions can you meet other lovers of all things written?
about 11 hours ago
So what is going on around here??  Still revising, still WIPing, still packing for next weekend’s move.  Seriously, I hate moving!!!  Where did all this stuff come from?  How will I ever get it all packed?  I need one of those Rege...
So what is going on around here??  Still revising, still WIPing, still packing for next weekend’s move.  Seriously, I hate moving!!!  Where did all this stuff come from?  How will I ever get it all packed?  I need one of those Regency yard sales Gail talked about a few days ago…. In the meantime, I’m reading a very interesting book, Sara Wheeler’s O My America! Six Women and Their Second Acts in the New World, all about women in history who found new lives and new beginnings in America.  I always love histories of women who lived their lives outside the lines.  It includes Fanny Trollope (mother of Anthony, she wrote a bestseller that has a scathing review of American manners and craziness…I’d love to see what she had to say about the government right now), actress Fanny Kemble, who married a Southern plantation owner and wrote moving about the tragedy and complexity of slavery, famous traveler Isabella Bird–and Jane Austen’s niece, Catherine Hubback, a woman I knew very little about. This is what Wikipedia has to say about her: “Catherine Anne Hubback (1818 – 25 February 1877) was an English novelist, and the eighth child and fourth daughter of Sir Francis Austen (1774-1865), and niece of Jane Austen. She began writing fiction to support herself and her three sons after her husband John Hubback was institutionalized with a breakdown. She had copies of some of her aunt’s unfinished works and, in 1850, remembering Austen’s proposed plot, she wrote The Younger Sister, a completion of Jane Austen’s The Watsons. In the next thirteen years, she completed nine more novels. She emigrated to California, USA in 1870. In the autumn of 1876 she removed to Gainesville, Prince William Co, VA, where she died in 1877. Her novels, which enjoyed some popularity in their time, are no longer well-known. Her most important contribution is to literary history where she, and later family, perpetuated Austen family history.” But it sounds like there was so much more to her life.  The 8th of 11 children of Frank, one of the Navy brothers, she was born the year after Aunt Jane died.  She married a respectable, prosperous attorney, had 3 sons, gained a reputation as a good hostess–then her comfortable, expected life shattered when her husband went insane and had to be committed to an asylum.  Catherine, left with her sons to raise, took to writing (it seems someone said “Hey, you remember Aunt Jane?  She had this unfinished manuscript.  Why don’t you finish it?” and she did her own version of The Watsons to start).  She wrote vast Victorian tomes of about 800 pages, which I have never read or even seen, and she herself knew they weren’t all that great.  But they put food on the table and sent her sons to school, which is all she wanted.  When her eldest son moved to San Francisco, then a half rough-and-tumble frontier town and half up-and-coming cosmopolitan city, with a strong Spanish flavor, she went too.  And she made a whole new life for herself in a whole new place.  (There’s a good post about her on the Austen Authors blog, too) It looks like there is a volume of her letters, An Englishwoman in California, which I’m going to look for.  And now back to revising… Who are some adventurous women you admire??
1 day ago
BLURB He scared me. He thrilled me. And after one touch, all I could think about was getting more… Makayla never thought she’d set foot in an elite mixed martial arts club. But if anyone needs a medic on hand, it’s the...
BLURB He scared me. He thrilled me. And after one touch, all I could think about was getting more… Makayla never thought she’d set foot in an elite mixed martial arts club. But if anyone needs a medic on hand, it’s these guys. Then again, at her first sight of the club’s owner, she’s the one feeling breathless. The man they call Torment is all sleek muscle and restrained power. Whether it’s in the ring or in the bedroom, he knows exactly when a soft touch is required and when to launch a full-on assault. He always knows just how far he can push. And he’s about to tempt Makayla in ways she never imagined… BUY LINKS Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Against-the-Ropes-ebook/dp/B00DDWIT3M/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&sr=&qid= Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/against-the-ropes-sarah-castille/1114780664?ean=9781402284854 Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-ca/books/Against-the-Ropes/TCwqSHCxhU-23ajhtUZjyw BIO Recovering lawyer, karate practitioner, and caffeine addict, Sarah Castille worked and traveled abroad before trading her briefcase and stilettos for a handful of magic beans and a home near the Canadian Rockies. Her steamy, contemporary romantic tales feature blazingly hot alpha heroes and the women who tame them. AUTHOR LINKS Website http://www.sarahcastille.com Facebook: http://www.facebook/sarahcastilleauthor.com Twitter (@sarah_castille): http://www.twitter/sarah_castille.com Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6920675.Sarah_Castille Newsletter: http://sarahcastille.us5.list-manage.com/subscribe?u=873de882785693c01f022e6a1&id=55ccf58aa3 Amazon Author: http://www.amazon.com/author/sarahcastille
1 day ago
Title: Just One Year (Just One Day #2)Author: Gayle FormanExpected publication: October 10th 2013 by Dutton Children'sSource: ARC courtesy of the publisher for an honest reviewGoodreads/Amazon"The heartrending conclusion—from Willem’s PO...
Title: Just One Year (Just One Day #2)Author: Gayle FormanExpected publication: October 10th 2013 by Dutton Children'sSource: ARC courtesy of the publisher for an honest reviewGoodreads/Amazon"The heartrending conclusion—from Willem’s POV—to the romantic duet of novels that began with Allyson’s story in Just One DayAfter spending an amazing day and night together in Paris, Just One Year is Willem’s story, picking up where Just One Day ended. His story of their year of quiet longing and near misses is a perfect counterpoint to Allyson’s own as Willem undergoes a transformative journey, questioning his path, finding love, and ultimately, redefining himself."First line: "It's the dream I always have: I'm on a plane, high above the clouds."Thoughts: I swear, there is nothing like that feeling you get after reading a truly exceptional novel. JUST ONE YEAR is everything I hoped for and believe me when I say I had high hopes for this novel. This book will have you questioning fate, how things just fall into place, and the other side to every story.First off, if you couldn't tell from the summary, JUST ONE YEAR is Willem's story. One of the biggest cliffhangers in JUST ONE DAY has to be what in the world happened to Willem. Where did he go? Why wasn't he there to meet Ally-Lu? Was that blasphemous teacher-tour guide right? Are all men truly scum? Well, JUST ONE YEAR will answer all of these questions and much more. This novel is basically a puzzle waiting to be solved. While you know the general ending, you still have to figure out how he got there. I have to mention how spectacular Willem's journey truly is. Willem's tale, much like Ally-Lu's, involves travelling and self-discovery. His story, in my personal opinion, is much darker than Allyson's. Though they're both attempting to figure out who they are and where they'll end up, Willem is also dealing with the loss of a loved one and trying to reconnect with those he let go along the way. You get to experience him recapping his thoughts on his journey with Lulu and how he felt about her. He most definitely had me swooning all over the place. Not even gravity could hold me down. If I ever questioned Willem's motives before, I stopped after reading JUST ONE YEAR. I may not know how I feel about hagelslag, but what I do know is that I truly adore Willem. Even after finishing this novel, I'm still remembering certain scenes and wanting to reread them over and over again. Needless to say, this is a book you'll rush to finish, and then reread just so you can experience it just one more time.Overall, I believe fans of JUST ONE DAY will fall in love with JUST ONE YEAR as easily as I did. Dare I say this is possibly my new favorite book by Gayle Forman? My only complaint is even though I cherished the ending and believe it to be well-rounded, I couldn't help but want more. I didn't want the story to end but alas, everything must come to an end. With all this said and done, I highly recommend JUST ONE YEAR to all fans of contemporary YA and good books in general. If you haven't yet, get your hands on this book as soon as possible. You'll regret it if you don't.Rating:5 StarsFavorite Quotes:“Sometimes fate or life or whatever you want to call it, leaves a door a little open and you walk through it. But sometimes it locks the door and you have to find the key, or pick the lock, or knock the damn thing down. And sometimes, it doesn’t even show you the door, and you have to build it yourself. But if you keep waiting for the doors to be opened for you... I think you’ll have a hard time finding single happiness,let alone that double portion.” “I’ve since come to understand that the universe operates on the same general equilibrium theory as markets.It never gives you something without making you pay for it somehow.”“Loving someone is such an inherently dangerous act. And yet, love, that’s where safety lives.”
1 day ago
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1 day ago
v\:* {behavior:url(#default#VML);} o\:* {behavior:url(#default#VML);} w\:* {behavior:url(#default#VML);} .shape {behavior:url(#default#VML);} Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4...
v\:* {behavior:url(#default#VML);} o\:* {behavior:url(#default#VML);} w\:* {behavior:url(#default#VML);} .shape {behavior:url(#default#VML);} Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 st1\:*{behavior:url(#ieooui) } /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-qformat:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:11.0pt; font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif"; mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-fareast-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-fareast; mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;} TOUR GIVEAWAY DETAILS: Lea is giving away the following prizes at the end of her tour:   GRAND PRIZE:  $25 Amazon gift card   RUNNERS-UP:  Three (3) runners-up will each receive an eBook of BULLET TO THE HEART.  a Rafflecopter giveaway  Rafflecopter Link (use if the HTML code does not work) http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/share-code/NDk3NGE1NDcwMTI3ZDNiOGM2NTQyNzVmNDFiMGJjOjEzMQ==/   BOOK SPOTLIGHT INFO: No Mercy Series: No mercy received. None given. Bullet, Arrow, Bone & Blade Turn your back, but you may live to regret it. Four women, weapons of a war they didn’t begin. A bond forged in hell, each would die to protect the others. Until they’re separated and must fight the forces that seek to destroy them. To find their way, they will give any piece of themselves to the battle. Raised on a mother’s milk of hate and revenge, it would take a love stronger than time to bring them back from the edge.   BULLET TO THE HEART Series:  No Mercy, Book 1 Publication Date:   10/3/2013 Publisher:  Taliesin Publishing   Book Blurb: She was born to love then taught to kill. She has become everything but is no one. Known only as Bullet she was long ago forced to shed the name her parents gave her. Changed, molded and trained to kill with sharp-shooting efficiency she is one of The Collective’s most valuable assets. In a cadre of killers, Bullet is death waiting but her time for vengeance has come.  He was loved and then he lost. He has become a hunter in search of revenge.  Everything was taken from Rand the day a bullet ended the lives of his beloved wife and daughter. He has searched for their killer seven long years and may have her in his hands. Rand has suffered but now the time has come to make The Collective pay or die trying.  Joy and sorrow are two sides of the same coin. Retribution draws them together but before all is said and done they will learn love can either break you or make you stronger.  ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Lea Griffith began sneaking to read her mother’s romance novels at a young age. She cut her teeth on the greats: McNaught, Woodiwiss, and Garwood. A firm believer that love makes the world go round, she still consumes every romance book she can put her hands on, but now she writes her own.   Lea lives with her husband and three teenage daughters in rural Georgia. Two dogs, a cat, and a Betta fish named Coddy George complete a family always in motion. When not working at the EDJ, she’s usually at her keyboard, using every spare second to write. Science fiction, paranormal and contemporary romance, oh my! Nothing is off-limits when it comes to her writing.   Website:  http://www.leagriffith.com/ Facebook Profile: http://www.facebook.com/lea.griffith.58 Facebook page:  http://www.facebook.com/LeaGriffithWrites?ref=hl Twitter:  https://twitter.com/LeaGriffith Goodreads:  http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6913695.Lea_Griffith  Lea
1 day ago