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Posts tagged ‘Books’

BLACK FRIDAY SALE – Tatia’s Story Books #1 and #2

Book #3 is nearing completion. If you haven’t read the first two, if someone on your gift list hasn’t read them, or if you just want to read them again yourself, now is the time. Tatia’s Tattoo and Fallen Angel Salvage will be available in ebook for just $.99 from November 25 through December 1. Don’t miss out!

Tatia’s Tattoo, Book #1:

As a successful D.C. lawyer, Tatia’s mission in life was to destroy the sex trafficking trade in small-town America. She knew where to find it. She’d been there. With only apathetic foster parents to protect her, she fell prey to the local pimp. Trapped in the sordid underbelly of a small Texas town, she survived by sheer will. Her friendship with her fellow victim Cindy was the only light of humanity in the darkness until she saw a familiar face. Would Mrs. G, a mama bear of an attorney, still think she had strength and potential? Would Jesse, the young Christian tattoo artist and biker, still look at her with a twinkle in his eyes? Or would they both see only the mark of shame Eric had etched onto her forearm?

Fallen Angel, Book #2:

He ruined her life once; will he do it again?

Tatia and Jesse have a perfect life in Chicago. Her testimony put Eric in prison in Texas twenty years ago. How could anything go wrong?

A mysterious envelope invades their home with news of a trafficker’s parole, and a handwritten note asks the ominous question: Is Joy as brave as her mother?

An old black van. A missing child. Tatia and Jesse race through the city streets with a band of bikers while Johnny and Jade dig through the dark web and Detectives Nelson and Martin pound on doors.

Will it be enough? Or will Joy become another statistic?

Salvaged, Book #3:

Tatia’s family is recovering from Joy’s dramatic rescue when their quiet Sunday afternoon is interrupted by the doorbell. Madison collapses into Joy’s arms, bruised and trembling with symptoms of withdrawal. Who is this mysterious girl whose phone call saved Joy from kidnappers and traffickers? And why is a Chicago crime boss looking for her?



Kitty’s Story

Fallen Angel Salvage

Tatia’s Tattoo

Mom’s Long Goodbye

A Long and Winding Road

Book sale tales | by Linda Brendle

Published in the Rains County Leader on October 27, 2022:

Another FOL Book Sale has come and gone, and we are a tired but happy bunch of volunteers. Thank you to everyone who worked and everyone who shopped to make the event a huge success. Final figures have not been announced, but the first day was so busy that total sales, dues, and donations were expected to reach a record amount.

Most of the mechanics of the event are familiar enough to have become routine, so they no longer provide much writing material. However, the roadside signs are usually worth a story or two. Putting up the flag signs is especially challenging because parts seem to go missing from one sale to the next. They’re probably hiding in some corner, giggling along with the missing socks and plastic container lids. This time we couldn’t find the screws that tighten the tie-down clamps – a very important part, especially on a windy day. But creative use of duct tape came into play, and both signs survived both sale days without incident.

One of the best parts of the sale is the customers. Friends who only see each other twice a year at the sale renew friendships over a common love of books, and new friendships are formed because of the same common interest. The book sale is a much anticipated event for some families, and it’s fun to watch the children grow between sales. The baby who was still nursing a year ago is now walking, the middle child who was listening before is now reading on his own, and the older boy is now big enough to carry the boxes of books to the car without help. And another family will have a new book lover by this time next year.


Books – and Book Sales! by Linda Brendle

Published in the Rains County Leader on October 13, 2022:

Two weeks ago I wrote about the arrival of Fall. I listed some sure signs of the season, but one I failed to mention was the Friends of the Library Semi-Annual Book Sale Event. These sales signal the arrival of Spring and Fall as surely as the blooming flowers and the falling leaves. With less than two weeks until the October Sale, Facebook posts have popped up announcing the dates and times, and if you haven’t seen flyers in local businesses, you soon will. And all this excitement is about one thing – books. Gently used books of all genres are sold at unbelievably low prices, all for the benefit of the Rains County Public Library and its children’s literacy programs.

So exactly what are books, and why are they so important? Google describes a book as a written or printed work consisting of pages glued or sewn together along one side and bound in covers. Although people recorded their thoughts and actions on the walls of caves and stone pillars for thousands of years throughout the world, the first paper books are believed to have come from China. The paper was created from a pulp made of mulberries, hemp, bark, and even fish that was pressed flat and dried into sheets.

We don’t know when the first person first recorded his thoughts in symbols – perhaps God taught Adam to write in the Garden of Eden. After all, He told Moses to write down the Creation story and following events, and He personally etched His Ten Commandments in stone so we would hopefully remember and obey them. He apparently thought the written word was important, so here are a few other reasons that books are important to us today.


It’s not just a book sale | by Linda Brendle

Published in the Rains County Leader on April 28, 2022:

Another Friends of the Library Book Sale has come and gone, but it wasn’t just another book sale. During preparation for the fall sale last year, publicity chairman Marsha Rakestraw declared the sale to be an “event,” and so it has become.

Setup, which begins on Tuesday of sale week, has always been something of an event, but it was much easier this year. Having signed up for the first shift of the week, I arrived at the City Centre at 8:00 am expecting to walk into an empty space and begin setting up tables. However, several members and their husbands had already arrived, and almost half the tables were already set up. By the time the Road and Bridge crew arrived about fifteen minutes later and began bringing in boxes of books, the tables were in place and waiting to be filled. And I had done little more than help with table placement and stay out of the way.

The next three hours were a flurry of unboxing and sorting. Experienced volunteers coached newcomers on how to sort and display the books in a manner that led one customer to make this comment: “This is the best organized book sale that I’ve ever seen.” When David picked me up for lunch, there was still a lot to be done, but there were lots of people still working with more arriving all the time. I intended to return on Wednesday afternoon to help finish up, but by the time our ladies’ Bible study was over, set up was finished. All that was left to do was to rest up on Thursday and be ready when the doors opened on Friday.


FOL Sorting Team is Ready for a Break | by Linda Brendle

Published in the Rains County Leader on April 21, 2022:

Every week two or more dedicated members of the Friends of the Rains County Library meet at the Book Shed to go through accumulated donations and sort them in preparation for the next FOL Semi-Annual Book Sale Event. The Spring Event is happening this week at the Emory City Centre at 735 North Texas Street (Hwy 19) from 9 am to 5 pm on Friday and 9 am to 2 pm on Saturday – and the sorting team is ready for a break.

The team is headed by Jane Dillon and Alice Kissell and also includes Cindy Cooper, Marsha Rakestraw, Shirley Eversult, and Jim Dillon who provides transportation for picking up donations and muscle for moving and stacking boxes of books. When asked about the biggest problem the team faces, Jane Dillon immediately answered, “Space – that and the fact that most of us are over 70.”

One might expect the heat and cold to be a problem, but the team has that covered. Books were originally sorted and stored in the green-topped shed behind the Library, and an extension cord was run from the Library. But when the operation outgrew the space and a larger shed was installed on the other side of Doris Briggs Parkway, the team asked for and received wiring. Dillon says that fans and/or space heaters keep the temperature bearable, but most sorting is done in the morning to avoid the afternoon sun that shines directly on the shed door.


The case of the missing book! by Linda Brendle

Published in the Rains County Leader on February 16, 2022:

Agatha Christie

From the time I read my first Agatha Christie novel, I’ve been a diehard mystery fan. In addition to Dame Christie, I’ve read a  lot of Dick Francis, all of Sue Grafton’s Alphabet Murders (and was broken-hearted when she died before writing Z), and all but a few of Robert B. Parker’s works. The list includes James Patterson, David Baldacci, Terri Blackstock, Joel C. Rosenberg, and many more. I’m also a fan of TV sleuths like Perry Mason, Columbo, Kojak, Magnum PI, Hawaii 5-0 (the original), Hill Street Blues, CSI, NCIS, Black List, The Mentalist, and Elementary. There are many more, but you get the idea.

When I began writing my first suspense/thriller novel, legal and illegal dialog and descriptions of criminal activity seemed to flow from experience rather than research and hours of reading and watching. That’s why, when we had our own little mystery at the Brendle house, I felt competent to handle it without consulting any of my fictional detective heroes.

One of our current favorite authors is Michael Connelly, especially his Harry Bosch series. At the Friends of the Library Book Sale last April, I found six or seven of his books that we hadn’t read. I also found a number of books by a new author to us – Harlan Coben whose main character is sports agent and amateur detective Myron Bolitar. I brought home a total of sixteen books. I divided the books between us, stacking half on my night stand and half on David’s with the earliest books on top and proceeding down in date order. When either of us finishes a book, we pass it to the other and it goes on the bottom of our to-be-read pile. After we have both finished a book, it goes into a donate pile to be returned to the Friends of the Library for the next Book Sale or to be placed in one of the Little Free Libraries around town.

A few of nights ago David picked up the next book in his pile, but after reading a few pages, he said, “I think I missed a book or two. This one is ten years later than the last one, and Bolitar has a son I didn’t know about.” It was bedtime, so I found an unrelated book he hadn’t read, and put off the investigation until the next day.



Sunset Valley Creations is the publisher of Clean Fiction, a quarterly magazine that offers reviews and a to-be-read list of Christian fiction and clean secular fiction. From now through January 31 they are holding a Best Bookstagram Contest. Although Kitty’s Story isn’t fiction, she is so cute they allowed her to submit an entry. Help her out by going to https://www.sunsetvalleycreations.com/vote and voting for entry #6!

Blessings and Meow!

Linda and Kitty

Christmas around the Square | by Linda Brendle

Published in the Rains County Leader on December 2, 2021:

After a COVID cancellation last year, Christmas around the Square is returning to downtown Emory this Saturday from 8:00 am to 9:00 pm. I had participated in this annual tradition twice as a vendor, and Christmas 2021 didn’t seem complete without it. I’m looking forward to being there this year, but I’m a little nervous since there is a slight chance of rain, and paperback books don’t fare well in damp weather. Hopefully, the weatherman will have pity and revise the forecast.

It’s not just my inventory that would be subject to bad weather. Over thirty other vendors will display their wares around the Courthouse Square, and that’s just part of the fun. There will also be tacos, a rodeo, JJ’s Texas Twirlers, story time from 5-6:00 pm, a live nativity presented by the United Methodist Church from 6-7:00 pm, a Christmas parade at 7:00 pm, the official lighting of the Rains County Christmas tree, Rhythmic Productions Music by DJ Calvin Hickerson, pictures with Santa, and much more.

Based on pictures of trees, lights, and other festive displays that have been appearing on Facebook for several weeks, it seems that many people are already well into the spirit of the holiday. But if you are having trouble feeling Christmas-y, this festival is a great way to banish the Grinch-y feelings and kick start some Christmas cheer. Past experience tells me there will be lots of smiles, laughter, hugs, and shopping going on between the live entertainment and other planned activities.


The Problems Behind the Sale | by Linda Brendle

Somehow I’ve gotten behind and haven’t posted in almost two weeks. Time to play catch up! This article was published in the Rains County Leader October 28, 2021:

Last week I wrote about the amazing success of the Friends of the Library Book Sale and how smoothly it went. That was true, but the sale wasn’t without problems. Most of the problems landed in the lap of Cheryl Watson, our facilities coordinator – and me. Her responsibilities included picking up keys to the City Centre, opening and locking up, and coordinating the delivery and pick of books and equipment.

The plan was simple: Cheryl would pick up keys at the EDC office on Monday, Oct. 11. On Tuesday Jane Dillon would meet the Road and Bridge crew at the book shed by the Library to pick up books and equipment and Cheryl would open the Centre for volunteers to begin setting up. On Monday the 18th, Road and Bridge would pick up the equipment, unsold religious books which would be donated to Love Packages, and books reserved for Little Free Libraries, and Peter Adams of Gladewater Books would pick up remaining unsold books. Cheryl would return the keys to the EDC office, reserve the Centre for April, and the sale would be over. But there were problems.

#1 – Because of family illness, Cheryl wasn’t available until Saturday the week of the sale, but I stepped in. Problem solved.


Book Sale Events | by Linda Brendle

Published in the Rains County Leader on Thursday, October 21, 2021:

The Friends of Rains County Public Library held their semi-annual Book Sale last Friday and Saturday. Publicity Coordinator Marsha Rakestraw had labeled the sale as an “event,” and her prediction proved to be true.

The book sorting team had warned that, because of the generous donations in recent weeks, some boxes might arrive at the City Centre unsorted. However, volunteers worked extra hours, and all inventory was broken down by fiction, non-fiction, children’s, and religion when the Road and Bridge Crew delivered several loads to the Centre Tuesday morning.

More volunteers made quick work of arranging tables, and unboxing and further sorting the contents into more specific categories.So much was accomplished so quickly that we knocked off at 1:00 pm on Tuesday. We began again on Wednesday morning, completing the finer sorting and adding genre and pricing signs throughout the room. Shopping bags were set out, and the check-out area was arranged. By shortly after noon, we were almost ready with only a few last-minute tweaks left for Thursday morning.

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