Sunday, March 28, 2010

SONS OF THUNDER by Susan May Warren

On occasion, we will feature books by other authors that we'd like to recommend. Here's some information about SONS OF THUNDER by Susan May Warren. Be sure to check out details for a special contest at the end of the post. . . .

Sophie Frangos is torn between the love of two men and the promise that binds them all together. Markos Stavros loves Sophie from afar while battling his thirst for vengeance and his hunger for honor. Dino, his quiet and intelligent brother, simply wants to forget the horror that drove them from their Greek island home to start a new life in America. One of these “sons of thunder” offers a future she longs for, the other—the past she lost.

From the sultry Chicago jazz clubs of the roaring twenties to the World War II battlefields of Europe to a final showdown in a Greek island village, they’ll discover betrayal, sacrifice, and finally redemption. Most of all, when Sophie is forced to make her choice, she’ll learn that God honors the promises made by the Sons of Thunder.

Friday, March 26, 2010


By Stephen Bly
A 10-year-old boy. Six old cowboys. A '49 Plymouth with open trunk. A lady in distress. Adventure happens on a rainy afternoon in 1954 Albuquerque.

Cowboy For A Rainy Afternoon will be released June 2010 and it proved to be one of my most fun projects. The story originates straight out of my heart. Sometimes readers think the Old West reigns as ancient history. . .the 1800s seem a long way back from 2010. This novel helped me see that I may not have been born 100 years too late.

Here’s the scenario. A 10-year-old boy visits with his grandfather and his retired pals in 1954 at The Matador Hotel in Albuquerque. Every week these five senior cowboys play cribbage. They’re delighted with the added audience of “Little Brother,” so they spout tales of the old days. In their 70s to 90s, one of them was born during the Civil War. All of them cowboyed from the late 1880s to 1940s. They own first-hand stories of the Old West.

On this rainy afternoon, the lad's spellbound with the adventures. Meanwhile, a drama unfolds in the lobby that propels the men and lad into their last cowboy stand. A lady’s in distress. They pile into a ’49 Plymouth with open trunk to see what they can do. Told from the boy’s point of view, years later as an adult, he admits that he falls in love for the first time that day with Miss Diane Anderson.

I think of it as a reminiscent account of real cowboy life, much the same as Andy Adams’ book, The Log of a Cowboy, written in the early 1900s. What makes it personal: I was 10-years-old in 1954. Though this is not my story, I grew up on ranch in California where I heard many accounts of the old days, sometimes from my dad, often from my grandfather. It’s like I’m right there in the room with those old-timers. Maybe I am.

The Old West wasn't that long ago. For many, it's just one generation away.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010


Janet Chester Bly

Take a quick 2-part test.

First: My life right now is mostly: boring. . .just the right balance of work and play. . .crammed with trying to catch up. . .mental chaos. . .social strife. . .hard to describe. . .mixed with contentment and concern.

Second: I could be more at peace if only. . .which things would change? Do you need to list more than three conditions? The higher the number, the lower your P.Q. (Peace Quotient).

What’s bothering you the most today? Make it a habit to assess each day one thing that prickles your mind or strews thorns on your path. Pay attention to inner and outer layers of stress—the surface, most obvious themes and the underlying topics that prick your peace. Listen to yourself ruminate. What’s your dominate emotion? And why?

The goal is to open up to peace, to God: “God’s Spirit makes us loving, happy, peaceful, patient, kind, good, faithful, gentle, and self-controlled. There is no law against behaving in any of these ways” (Galatians 5:22 CEV)

taken from "31 Days To Win The Fight For Personal Peace"
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Sunday, March 21, 2010


On the trail with Stephen Bly

Tate Aragon asked to look in the glove compartment of his pickup for a tube of deworming paste. I couldn’t find it, but I did discover a rusted spur rowel, a hatchet head, three 12 gauge shotgun shells, an “I Like Ike” campaign button, a petrified half a cheeseburger, an elk-head carved bar of soap, a Susan B. Anthony silver dollar with a hole shot through it, and a rubber rattlesnake. Tate explained, “That’s where I stow my dofunnies.”

Dofunnies—a cowboy’s name for trinkets carried in his war bag, usually tucked in the center of his bedroll. The old time trappers and scouts coined a similar word for anything fancy, whether shirt or boots or hat: fofarraw. Some fellas packed around plenty of dofunnies and fofarraw, that often slowed them down on the trail. We’ve got a junk drawer in our house for such things, where we toss odds and ends we don’t need, can’t use or don’t know where else to put them, but can’t bring ourselves to throw them away. No harm in that, as long as this stash doesn’t rob us of the space needed for more critical items.

Sunday, March 14, 2010


Janet Chester Bly

Some days feel like a torture chamber. So much detail to remember. Unrelenting duties. The constant threat of sudden nasty news. Plans interrupted. Unexpected demands step up the stress. Even too much of a good thing can boil the blood pressure.

And then there’s those moments you believe that everyone’s against you. In fact, the world is against you. That’s not being paranoid. It’s the gospel truth. You can’t always make the world of woe go away. 

But you can fight for inner peace.

“In this world you will have trouble,” Jesus said. But don’t take it personal. Fight for peace instead. Peace is not automatic. You’re flesh, not steel. But you got to want it enough to go after it. That may demand radical change—a turn in direction, a lifestyle revision. “Seek peace and pursue it” (1 Peter 3:11).

You may not get it perfect the first try, but you’ll make progress. Along the way, anticipate some pain. Expect more than a few explosions and starting over again. How much practice depends on your faith, your endurance, your wired personality factor.

Meanwhile: A) Study The Book. B) Steady your focus. C) Aim to stay in God’s will.

Janet Chester Bly
Taken from “31 Days To Win The Fight For Personal Peace”
Download the full program at 

Thursday, March 11, 2010


Butch Cassidy & The Sundance Kid (1969), stars Paul Newman, Robert Redford, Katherine Ross. Great old time sepia/nickelodeon/silent movie opening. Great intro line: "Some of what follows is true." Very good cinematography...shadows & camera angles. Classic finale. Affable criminals, but good does triumph over evil.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010



I could tell A.C. Buchanan was a dally man. It wasn’t the bow legs, the tan line across his forehead, or the calloused hands. It was, rather, the missing tip of his thumb that gave him away.

Cattlemen out west can be divided between those who tie their ropes hard and fast and those who dally. One group ties the end of their rope to their saddle horn before they ever leave the corral. For instance, when they rope a steer out on the range, in order to doctor it up, all they have to do is toss a loop over the critter and get their pony to shut it down. The steer dashes toward safety, but is brought down hard when he reaches the end of the rope. This way he’s not lost, unless the rope breaks.