Monday, August 31, 2015

Illinois Lottery Winners Are Not Lucky by Frank Fontaine

As a former resident of the Chicago burbs, I still keep up with Illinois politics and news.  The lastest horror story revolving around fraud and corruption is the Illinois Lottery.  Illinois and all states for that matter who sell lottery tickets rely on sales.  It's an easy source of revenue.

Illinois resident Danny Chasteen won 250K on a scratch-off ticket.  He was told that he would receive his winnings in four weeks.  Five weeks later Illinois Lotto called to tell Danny that they could not send the money until state budget issues were settled.  Apparently he is not alone in having the wind taken out of his sails.  The state comptroller cannot issue checks over 25K until the "resolution."  Big winners are given an indefinite IOU.
So how much does the state of Illinois make off of lottery sales?  Experts believe on average that states set aside sixty percent of lottery income for prize money, twelve percent for administration fee and advertising, and keep the rest for ..... education?  That's been a claim for years, a claim without proof.  No one seems to know where the lotto revenue goes.  The public schools may not reaping the rewards.
In 2013 the Illinois Lottery sold 2.9 billion dollars in tickets.  After prize money, expenses, and a Capital Projects Fund (not sure what that is-something to do with soil and erosion), there was 656 million dollars left designated for the school fund.  Much of that money does go to schools, but it's a tiny percent of what the schools require to stay open.
What will happen to the Illinois Lottery?  I believe it's fraudulent to sell tickets without any prize money in reserves.  The Illinois Lotto should be closed down until they can guarantee prizes.  This would be illegal with any other kind of business.  What next?  Will bonds be honored?  What about state financial institutions?  Sounds like an episode of American Greed.  Leave a comment and don't buy a lotto ticket in Illinois-it might be your unlucky day!

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Goddess Fish Presents-Reap and Repent Tour by Lisa Medley

by Lisa Medley

This book is FREE during the KDP Select Tour, August 17 - 21
10.00 GC-Leave a Comment to Win!



They see death. Can they share a life?

Ruth Scott can read the energy of every person she meets. Then she meets Deacon Walker. She can see his ice-blue eyes, his black hair, and his gorgeous face. But this beautiful stranger has no aura.

Deacon is just as unsettled by Ruth—and, having spent more than two hundred years ushering souls to Purgatory, Deacon is seldom shocked by anything. As he helps Ruth to understand her true nature, she awakens desires that he decided long ago a Reaper can’t afford.

A demon invasion forces Deacon to confront the darkness in his own past even as he fights to save the human souls he’s charged to protect. When he’s taken captive, his first concern is for Ruth. But Ruth just might be able to save herself—and the Reaper she can’t live without—if she can learn to wield her newfound powers.



What does a guy have to do around here to get some service? Deacon Walker marveled as he glared at the undulating queue of grotesque reapers in front of him.

For all that’s holy, move the hell along already.

It had been a long week, and it wasn’t over yet. He needed to make at least one more pass through the hospital circuit before he could call it a day. He could already feel the tug of a freshly departed soul. Again. People were dropping like flies lately.

He massaged his brow, trying to soothe his exhausted patience as the line inched forward at a snail’s pace.

He was worn thin. Over the past few weeks, three demon soul poachers had popped up in his fair city of Meridian like poisonous mushrooms after a hard rain.

While it wasn’t unheard of for one to slip out from Hell every now and then, three was a nightmare.

When it got topside, a demon’s M.O. was to steal a human body, poach a few souls from the dead and dying, and then make its merry way back to Hell, taking its host’s soul along for the ride. The only way to save the souls a poacher was carrying was to behead the host with a scythe. Not a pretty thing to do, but the poor suckers were too far gone by then to survive anyway. No human could withstand the pressures of being ridden by a demon. And it was worth it to save a handful of souls, not to mention inconveniencing the demon.

Deacon refused to lose any souls from his territory. At all. So far the score was Deacon, 3. Demons, 0.


AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Lisa has always enjoyed reading about monsters in love and now she writes about them, because monsters need love too.

She adores beasties of all sorts, fictional as well as real, and has a farm full of them in her Southwest Missouri home, including: one child, one husband, two dogs, two cats, a dozen hens, thousands of Italian bees, and a guinea pig.

She may or may not keep a complete zombie apocalypse bug-out bag in her trunk at all times, including a machete. Just. In. Case.

Find Dark Urban Fantasy, Paranormal & SciFi Romances here at my Amazon Author Page

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Monday, August 17, 2015

Where Wolves Talk by DL Lewis-Goddess Fish Presents

by D.L. Lewis
.99 Bargain!!!!!!  Leave a comment-10.00 GC!


Kitten, an American tabby residing in England, is a frustrated cat. He knows his place in the world: he was born to kill. Killing, after all, is what felines are supposed to do. Confined within his Lady's house, however, the young fellow is deprived of the opportunity to hunt live prey. The mansion is a sterile playground for a predator; offering nothing more than furniture which allows itself to be brutalized far too easily. The ambitious cat is bored and hungry for a challenge.

Kitten learns of a passage hidden in his Lady's library: the Door, which leads to an unknown world. The cat has been told that the source of all evil dwells openly in this place. The feline is eager to fight the sinister personage and goes through the Door with no hesitation.

The tabby finds himself in what appears to be a forest like any other in England. It doesn't take long for him to learn that this is a very different place.

Written in the basic style of classic stories like THE LORD OF THE RINGS, WATERSHIP DOWN, and THE CHRONICLES OF NARNIA, this novel can be appreciated on different levels. To some readers, it's an allegorical tale: thought-provoking and filled with symbolism. To others, it's an adventure-filled page-turner.



First Horse, snorting and puffing, began to prance in place before her general and the tabby. Sinewy legs of solid muscle kicked high to break sharply at the knee and then dropped, like slow springs, only to bounce back into the break again after the first contact with the ground; as though the equine’s alabaster hooves feared the gentle kiss of the earth, yet couldn’t resist seeking it, over and over again. Erupting out of the controlled prance and into wild self-expression, the filly turned and kicked up her back feet in celebration of giddy feel-good happiness. One big jump-kick, two big jump-kicks, one near-somersault, and she dashed forward into an abrupt gallop that halted as soon as it had begun; chunks of disturbed earth flying into the air as hooves dug into terra firma for a flashy halt. In a final explosion of showing off, the quadruped kicked her hind feet up so high that Kitten feared the equine might tumble forward into a spine-shattering roll. First Horse wasn’t so foolish as to perform such a self-destructive feat, however, and brought her heels back to earth a millisecond before her equilibrium reached the endangered point. Standing suddenly quiet, she bowed her head to her superior.

Wolf’s tail drummed against the ground in an expression of appreciation for the athletic show. “What’s got into my girl today? Did you find a field of oats and stuff yourself into this tizzy of excess energy?”


AUTHOR Bio and Links:

D. L. Lewis lives in northern California with a cello, four cats, and a crow named Harold. Where Wolves Talk is her first published novel; followed by Something in the House—California Gothic, Doppelgänger, and Fighting Back.

Where Wolves Talk is on sale at 99 cents (for a limited time) at Kindle and iBooks.

Author Blog:

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Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Book Review: Brad Thor's Hidden Order

This novel is one of Thor's Navy Seal/CIA/Private Security Scot Harvath series.  You don't have to read all of Thor's books to get into this novel.  He briefly reiterates Scot's biography and other continuing characters.  Each novel is not reliant on the other novels of the series.

In Hidden Order, Scot Harvath is hired by the Federal Reserve to quietly track down a killer.  The Federal Reserve wants to hire an "outsider" to lead the board, but their candidates keep winding end up brutally murdered.  The Federal Reserve believes that the murderers are part of a terrorist organization who want the Federal Reserve to dissolve.  Each murder leaves several clues throughout history that focus on the nefarious beginnings and dealings of the Federal Reserve dating all the way back to the Boston Tea Party.  Scot Harvath eventually figures out who is behind the murders and finds the time for love with a cop in Boston.
My Review: I am a huge fan of Brad Thor.  Like all of his novels, he deftly inserts interesting conspiracy theories that have been around throughout history.  In Hidden Order, I learned that the Federal Reserve is not a governmental entity.  I also learned that the Robber Baron's of the 1800s rigged the banking rules to keep borrowers at the mercy of the banks.  
Many people feel that the Federal Reserve has no place in America or the world and has somehow managed to get involved on a global level with exception to a few countries such as Iran and Iraq.  I loved how Thor went back as far as the American Revolution by inserting the public statements our forefathers thought about centralized banking.
Thor kept his main character, Scot Harvath, consistent in dialogue and motivation.  Besides the bank conspiracies, I really liked his humor throughout the book.  The characters made many smart-ass comments.  Thor did his homework once again and presented an entertaining novel packed with fascinating facts!  The only criticism that I has was this-the resolution of the story seemed confusing and filled with holes.  Nonetheless, I thoroughly enjoyed the book and recommend it to anyone who likes conspiracy theories.  4/5 Stars

Monday, August 10, 2015

Goddess Fish Presents: Mage Assassin by KR Yaddof

by K R Yaddof



Lauren Trinidad is the best private security money in the League of European Nations can buy. She's been trained by her father for her entire life to protect the good guys from the bad. But when the good guys seem to be working for the mad man responsible for blowing the world into chaos and her family is suddenly the bad, she is forced to choose between what she is taught to do and what she thinks is right.

Captain David Trinidad is the best soldier the New Republic of Texas can find to pull off a secret mission that will decide the fate of the small country. He’s been raised in his military family to do anything to help his homeland. But when he discovers he is the only chance at saving someone he loves, he has to choose between the only two things in his life that he's never doubted.

Meagan Trinidad is the best assassin the United Countries of America has for hire. She has walked the tightrope between making her father proud and protecting those she cares about for a while. But when her work threatens to destroy her friends, she must choose between the familial loyalty that has guided her whole life and the promise of being loved for who she is and not what she does.

  “I told you I was working.” Lauren tried not to snap. Zachary obviously wanted to forget their earlier fight about whether or not it was too dangerous for her to protect the new prime minister. But Zachary didn’t give up that easily. “I was doing my job.”

“I thought you only had to stay through the prime minister’s speech.”

“I did, but I saw a few suspicious characters before I left, so I stopped them from killing everyone.”

“Oh, you did, huh?” He smiled that charming grin that made her forgive him for anything.

“Yeah, because I’m smooth like that.” She couldn’t help but smile back.

“Sure you are.” He laughed and crossed the room to her. “You’re hurt.”

“It’s nothing,” she lied. Even her teeth hurt.

“Here.” He gently took her face in his hand. He blew a thick lock of her chestnut hair back. He ran his finger over the bruise and whispered, “Curatio.”

White-hot magic radiated from his thumb into the center of the pain and slowly flowed over her face, leaving cool relief in its wake. Her hand joined his as she felt her healed face. Her skin was smooth and no longer sore.

“Thanks.” She kissed him softly. His lips felt warm, soft, and familiar. His hands immediately pulled her to him. She stopped him by putting her hands on his chest. “I need a shower.”

“Shall I join you?” He cocked a platinum eyebrow.


AUTHOR Bio and Links:

K R Yaddof was lucky enough to take a few writing classes at the University of Iowa Writer's Workshop when she was there as an undergrad getting her degree in cinema. Now she lives in Denver, CO with her husband, two kids, and one fat cat.

KR is currently finds time to write while staying home with her two small children. If you want more MAGES, cross your fingers for her children to start sleeping through the night!

Buy Links:


The author is awarding a randomly drawn commenter via Rafflecopter a $20 Amazon/BN GC and a randomly drawn commenter via Rafflecopter all three books in the MAGE series.

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Saturday, August 1, 2015

Brave New World: My Review of Aldous Huxley's Masterpiece

Listened to Brave New World via audio CD so I'm putting a disclaimer on the incorrect spellings of characters, phrases, and settings.  Many neo-intellectuals like to refer to this book when talking about the future and conspiracy.  I finally got around to reading it.  Some schools mandate this book into their curriculum.

Brave New World has many themes, but the main themes are the future based on scientific advancements a.k.a. progress, declining morals, and New World Order.  The book was written in 1932.  Eighty-three years later Huxley's words are still topical, chilling, and prophetic.
The book takes place in the future or 600+ years A.F.  The A.F. stands for After Ford.  Space travel/global flight is only part of the setting.  In England, one of the twelve districts of the world, Huxley describes a totalitarian government filled with citizens who are born with genetic modifications and put into a caste system.  The caste is comprised of Alphas (the smartest), Betas (pretty smart, Gammas, Deltas (not too bright), and Epsilon (the most stupid of all).  People are not born from mothers, but born from synthetic wombs after genes are modified.  The people chosen to be Epsilons are given less oxygen while in the womb to ensure they will be mentally slow, enjoy their menial work and never complain.  Once born, babies are conditioned through sleep therapy, constant repetition of phrases, and negative reinforcement to accept their place in the social caste.  For example, Alphas cannot hang out with Deltas or Epsilons are electronically zapped when curious about books or everyone is put on the planet for everyone sexually speaking.  Sadly, the latter part begins at six or seven years of age when children are encouraged to act in an inappropriate sexual manner during recess time.  Families, politics, and art are banned.  All work encompasses science with constant progress being the goal of the world.  Some of the perks include a "happy" society, peace, health, and security.
Citizens are encouraged to have sex during their free time with as many partners as possible.  Part of the conditioning revolves around birth control.  Pregnancies equal social suicide.  Besides sex, citizens of the higher orders can go to bars, golf, and even take trips around the world.  A big part of the society is drug use.  When citizens are in a bad mood, bored, depressed, or even want to celebrate, they take a pill called sona.  They have an allowance of six sonas per week, but there is an exception to that rule within the story.  There is only one religion they are allowed to partake in which has something to do with Henry Ford.  A lot of touchy-feely cliches and phony inspirational exaltation take place.  The main characters are Lenina, Bernard Marx, John the Savage, and his mother, Linda.

I'm going to go out on a limb and say that the names Marx and Lenina or Lenin were not random.  I'm guessing Huxley chose them as an ode to communism.  Did he think that's where the world would end up?  Makes sense.  Democracy and capitalism can be unstable.  Factions emerge.  Politics are inevitable.  But with communism where no one is particularly special and no one has anything to take away, the rules change.  
There are some similarities like no religion and everyone working for the good of the state.  However, I am not sure of the economic structure of this set-up.  There seems to be no wealth, just a social hierarchy based on genetics not merit or family connections.
Most of the book describes the world, especially England, in the future.  But there is a story line.  Bernard Marx is an Alpha who hangs out with another Alpha.  The two men think too much.  Bernard's friend has the soul of a poet or artist but keeps his passion a secret.  With exception to manuals, informational texts, and some history books, every other kind of reading is censored.  Bernard also wonders if there is something more, something with value in life besides working and having sex for fun.  Bernard asks Lenina, a girl he wants to have sex with and actually likes, to go with him to an Indian reservation in America.  They keep these reservations in tact to study Indians for anthropological reasons.  Bernard asks his boss for the time off and his boss readily agrees.  His boss also mentions how he went to see the Indian reservation twenty years ago and brought Linda who disappeared and never came back.  Bernard takes Lenina to the Indian reservation in New Mexico.  She is not impressed.  The people are uncivilized, disgusting, and outright savages.  As they tour the reservation, they meet two white people who don't blend in.  One of the whites is his boss's Linda.  She tells him that she disappeared because she was pregnant, a social no-no.   Her baby is the other white named John.  Although raised without any genetic modifications and conditioning, John still does not fit in with the Indians.  Linda also does not fit in.  In the Indian culture, man and woman are monogamous.  Unaware of the social norms, Linda sleeps with many of the men in the tribe which leads to hatred from women tribal members.  Bernard has an idea-take them back to England with him.
Linda taught her son how to read English at the reservation.  One of the only books at his disposal was Shakespeare's complete works.  He grows up reciting romantic poems.  Lenina has caught his eye, but unbeknownst to him she's a sure thing and doesn't need any romance.  He can't believe how forward she is and calls her a whore when she tries to sleep with him.  
Linda no longer fits in with the world she once knew.  Depressed, she takes sona.  Some people, like Bernard's boss, find her more of a hindrance than a productive citizen and give her much, much more sona than the weekly allotment.  She overdoses and dies.  John the Savage goes berserk in the hospital and renounces the civilized society.  He takes refuge on an island and lives in a lighthouse.  England's citizens visit his sanctuary for entertainment, kind of like viewing him as the star of a reality show.  He hates the attention at first, but eventually invites them into his new life for one night.  They all take lots of sona and have a full-blown orgy.  Disgusted, John hangs himself the next day.  The reader is left wondering who the savage and who the civilized really are.  
What about Bernard, Lenina, and Bernard's friend?  I'm not sure what happened to Lenina.  She probably met a few dozen new guys to screw, but Bernard and his friend get fired from their jobs for questioning the authority.  They do not believe that the purpose of their lives is to serve the government and want more.  Both men are exiled to Iceland where they are free to read, study, and question the world.

Quite a story, huh!  Obviously this is a five star no-brainer.  Progress comes at the expense of freedom, religion, and family.  This is the kind of book that I will remember for a long-time.  I guess what I got most out of it was not the brilliant writing or profound themes, but the prophecy of where this world is headed.  Again, we are talking 1932.  Let's see where Huxley went right:
Test Tube Babies
Genetic Modifications (we got in plants and animals, only the naive would think that we don't "test" it on humans.  Hmmm...Wonder if Planned Parenting might be privy to this kind of work.)
Breakdown of Family Unit
Birth Control
Synthetic wombs (not quite there, but working on it with cloning)
One World Government (not quite there, but it's coming and it will be divided into sections under a totalitarian rule)
Sona (We know it as SSRIs such as Zanex and Prozac)
Government making us stupid (Think of our current educational system-especially math and history)
Censorship (US is using the "it offends me" as a way to censor)
Eliminating the Trouble-makers

Comments or questions welcome!  

The Bifurcation of Dungsten Crease

    Science Fiction Date Published: March 15, 2021 Publisher: Del Sol Press In the course of a morning, Dungsten Crease resurrec...