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DRESSING A TIGER: A memoir ~Maggie San Miguel

Monday, October 10th, 2016

dressing-a-tigerDRESSING A TIGER is not a plain Ol’ memoir with a bit of spicing up, this is about a very interesting and sometimes disturbing life story mixed with a heavy dose of humor and a very spunky child who remembers so much.  Maggie is the youngest child in her family – much younger; her brother is 18 and her sister 16 when she arrives onto the scene.  Mom is fairly unstable and inconsistent and has almost no time for her youngest and Dad is a very busy man as the top negotiator for the Teamsters Union.  Maggie is not allowed to play in the front yard of their Connecticut home but the huge backyard with lake and below ground tree fort commands her attention.  Maggie loves to row her boat out to her private island and seize the day.

“Maggie San Miguel is a Past Life Regression Therapist, a Mediation Instructor and a Psychic Medium, appearing on the paranormal television show, STRANGE TOWN.  She has assisted law enforcement with a murder investigation in Texas.  She also makes pottery, paints and can cook a mean meatball.” (Cover)

Maggie San Miguel Facebook
Maggie San Miguel Web

The book is quite interesting and includes geishas’ in Maggie’s rowboat, and mob hit men taking a 4 year old to the dentist.  Because of their reclusive lifestyle, Maggie dotes on the “friends” of her father who come to the house to plot, drink and eat.  Jack Dahlstrom, her father, though of a Scandinavian heritage, learns to speak Italian and interact with the Italian families involved in controlling the East Coast.  His friends are folks he connected with during his time serving in World War II.  His wife a great redheaded beauty grew up in poverty and led a very tough life. When the stress levels were too high, she disappeared into alcohol and bed, including strange behaviors especially trying to kill squirrels.

“A father serving the Mob, hit men moonlighting as babysitters, an uncle in the Secret Service, famous politicians amongst family friends, a mother in need of shock therapy, and a kid who eavesdrops and remember it all. “  What a unique childhood!

“Her father’s prior knowledge of the Kennedy assassination and his unique friendships with Jack Ruby, John Connally, Henry Wade and infamous Mafia bosses Carlo Bambino, Sam Giancana and Paul Castellano is a story untold until now.” “…Dahlstrom collected an impressive array of friends and Mafia secrets that were never meant to see the light of day.  Maggie San Miguel has just opened the blinds.” (Cover)

I enjoyed this book from beginning to end and think it will make a wonderful book to share.  I highly recommend it and am grateful that Meryl Zegarek Public Relations, Inc.  sent me an advanced copy for review.

This book will be published October 26, 2016

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FINDING LIBBIE: A Novel ~Deanna Lynn Sletten

Thursday, October 6th, 2016

‘Happily Ever After’ is the start point of this review and my sharing about this author.  It is a good love story nicely written and was a grand rainy weekend read – very much on the sweet side!

Emily Prentice is busy helping her grandmother pack up the farmhouse and move into the city and a new townhouse.  Emily has taken a job as a clerk in a clothing store and put her plans on hold to help her boyfriend Jordan get his schooling completed right through his doctorate and as she helps her grandmother she is pondering where the relationship is heading and if she wants to make “those” changes to her life.  The two women find an old hat box in one of the closets that is full of old photographs of Emily’s father and his first wife!  What a discovery and it leads to a full story of figuring out what happened and how life sometimes does not turn out the way that one expects it.

FINDING LIBBIE is about high school sweethearts from two different sides of the social divides.  Jack and Libbie fall in love during their senior year of High School.  Jack is working a number of jobs because he wishes to go to school to be a certified mechanic.  Libbie is the high school sweetheart; Homecoming Queen and well cared for younger daughter.  Jack’s family lives on a farm, everyone works hard and they are friendly and well liked.  Libbie’s mother has lots of “episodes” and her older sister Gwen takes care of her Mother and her own husband and child.  Libbie is sensitive and no one is expecting her to go to college, have a career or work.  That is okay with Libbie because she just wants to marry Jack.  They celebrate a lovely wedding day with family and friends.

The story turns darker with discoveries about alcoholism, pill addiction, financial concerns and just plain hard work and exhaustion.  Libbie begins to have her own episodes and begins her own regime of self-medication.  Car accidents, hitting and hospitalizations now the secrets begin to fly out of control.  The couple is parted.

Emily just must find out what happened to Libbie after she hears the story and she is persistent, which creates an clever story on it’s own and as Emily pursues her own future begins to take shape and she takes hold of her own life.

Happily Ever After is good in this story and just left this reader pleased to have spent the weekend reading.  I think others will like it very much and particularly those who are ready for Happily Ever After endings.

deanna-author-photo-lake-union

“Deanna Lynn Sletten grew up on the sunny coast of Southern California before moving to northern Minnesota as a teenager. Her interest in writing novels was sparked in a college English class, and she has been writing in some form or another ever since. In 2011, Deanna self-published her first novel and has since published several more, both on her own and with Lake Union Publishing.

Deanna enjoys writing heartwarming women’s fiction and romance novels with unforgettable characters. She has also written one middle-grade novel that takes readers on the adventure of a lifetime. She believes in fate, destiny, love at first sight, soul mates, second chances, magic, and happily ever after—all of which are reflected in her novels.
Deanna is married and has two grown children. When not writing, she enjoys walking the wooded trails around her home with her beautiful Australian shepherd or relaxing on her boat in the summer.” (TLC)

Deanna Lynn Sletten Facebook
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Deanna Lynn Sletten Web

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MY COUNTRY ‘TIS OF THEE: My Faith, My Family, Our Future ~ Keith Ellison

Monday, April 7th, 2014

The First Muslim American Elected to Congress:

“When Americans are challenged, we generally rise to the occasion.  When we’re fearful, we generally become divided.  When we’re courageous and have good leadership, we unite.”


MY COUNTRY ‘TIS OF THEE is about being the first to do something.  In this book we discover the backstory of what it is like to be the first Muslim to be elected to Congress in the USA.  This is a significant story of how one accomplishes any action of being first to succeed. I believe the story is even more important because Ellison was born a US citizen and is from a family of many generations of US Citizens.  Minnesota’s 5th District Congressional Representative was born in Detroit to an educated couple and was the middle son of a family of 5 sons.  His mother is a devout Catholic and in a professional career, his father was a free-spirit and a psychologist.  One of his brothers is a Baptist Pastor and almost all have law degrees. Ellison became Muslim during college because the peaceful nature of the religion and the daily practices and study helped him center and mature as an adult.

“If I was going to complain about injustice, didn’t I have an obligation to try to fix it?  Complaining without offering a solution is whining.”

Keith Ellison went to college and then to Law School.  He went to fine colleges and participated in all the offerings.  He did not go to the Ivy League and did not attempt to be someone else.  He practiced law, got married, shared life with 4 children, worked within his community, and practiced his faith.  He recognized when he made miss steps and mistakes, acknowledged those actions and then worked to improve his balance.  He became an astute judge of comments and assertions which were false, racist, and sexist and he looked to educate and expose rather than shout and whine.

“Islam teaches that men and women are equal before God.  So why do we have these draconian laws subjugating women in some Islamic nations?  Because people confuse faith with customs, laws, and politics.”

I finished the book believing that Ellison was a good representative for his district in Minnesota and he was a focused individual about what was good for democracy and all the citizens of our country.  He is knowledgeable about many faiths, politics, communities and the law and I think he serves his country well and with great hope.  He represents his whole district and their needs and wants.  At this time, he is not one of the political “stars”, but rather a solid representative doing the best he knows how to do.  If he can remain in office, I believe we will eventually describe him as a Statesman for our time.

Net Galley sent an uncorrected proof copy of this book via KINDLE and asked that I review it.  It was an interesting story and I am grateful for the opportunity to read it and share MY COUNTRY ‘TIS OF THEE with my readers.

Keith Ellison on Wikipedia
Keith Ellison on Facebook

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