Handbags, Books...Whatever

Handbags, Books...Whatever (http:/vickibatman.blogspot.com) is the website of Vicki Batman, sassy writer of sexy and funny fiction.

Avid Jazzerciser. Handbag lover. Mah jongg player. Yoga practioner. Movie fan. Book devourer. Choc-aholic. Best Mom ever. And adores Handsome.

HBW Calendar

  • 02/29 - Handbag
  • 02/25 - Vicki
  • 02/22 - Handbag, Vicki
  • 02/18 -
  • 02/15 - Valentine's - The day after
  • 02/10 - Black Authors Day
  • 02/08 - Handbag, Jo-ann Carson
  • 02/05 - Movie Mom
  • 02/03 - Travels, Marsha West
  • 02/01 - Handbag, Joanne Guidoccio
  • 01/29 - Book, Tina Donohue
  • 01/27 - Kinder Kids, Vicki

February 9, 2016

When Black Women Fall, 2/8-14 featuring L Penelope #RssosSisters #MFRWorg #Blackliterature #covertalk #giveaway

The When Black Women Fall promo features romances in the contemporary, historical, paranormal, science fiction and fantasy, and erotica genres. The two requirements for inclusion are that the heroine must be of African/African-American descent, and she must fall in love: same race, interracial, LGBT, aliens, cyborg—doesn’t matter to us, as long as it’s a black woman falling in love!
For the week leading up to Valentine’s Day during Black History month, Heartspell Media is spreading the word about “When Black Women Fall” — a week-long promo featuring romances with African-American heroines.
When is it? February 8-14, 2016. The week leading up to Valentine’s Day during Black History month.

The Unwashed Cover by L Penelope

I recently read this story about how bestselling middle-grade author Rick Riordan (of Percy Jackson fame) had no recourse when several of his international publishers whitewashed the covers of his books and portrayed a black character as white. He complained, but even for an author of his stature and sales, the correction took far too long.

A day or two later, an author in a Facebook group lamented that her cover was whitewashed by her small press. This is in no ways new, and it never stops being infuriating.

I turned on the TV yesterday and caught a clip of some movie where Blaire Underwood was being beaten by the police for literally no reason. The movie was set in the 1950s. My husband and I just looked at one another — no words needed to be said. It seems we’re still fighting the same battles over and over.

I’ve been told that I was very “courageous” for putting black faces on the covers of my books. This made me indescribably sad. Will white readers feel like my books aren’t “for them” because they don’t feature people who look like them on the covers? Have I ever felt like a book wasn’t for me because of the lack of diversity on the cover? That I wouldn’t be able to relate or enjoy it? Of course not. And my philosophy is to start as you mean to go forward. As an artist (and a control freak) I want to create and through my work begin reshaping the world in the way I want it to be.

I made decisions regarding my covers that many believe will impact sales for a variety of reasons, but mostly because I just like seeing black people on my covers. And having my covers represent the characters in my books. To quote a Twitter poster “the melanin is winning.” And since I self publish, I can do whatever I want. I don’t have to shout into the void and not be heard like Riordan or Ursula LeGuin or the many other authors whose books have been whitewashed over the years and continue to be so.

One day representing my reality the way I live and perceive it will stop being “courageous” and just be normal. Until then, I’ll put whoever I want on my covers and be grateful I have the freedom to do so.
Maia-It's hard to be normal when you see the dead everywhere. So I gave up. I just focus on staying out of their way. But the guy haunting my roommate is different. He’s impossible to ignore, and now other people can see him too.

He says my roommate is the only one who can save him from an eternity of torment. But one night he follows me into my nightmare and rescues me from my demons. Now he’s all I think about. This must be what it's like to fall... for someone who can never be mine.

Caleb-A lifetime ago, I found my soul mate in the human world. But being angelborn means I don't have a soul. When I lost my one true love, I lost my future and my freedom. Now, I have a second chance — she's been reborn and I must gain her love again or serve out the rest of my eternal sentence alone.

But this time I am a fugitive with powerful angels hunting me, and I'm running out of time. You only get one soul mate, and mine isn't the broken, scarred girl, who sees what no one else can. She's a distraction I can scarcely afford — but I'm unable to stay away from her.

Find Angelborn at: Amazon   B&N    Apple   Kobo   ARE

Enter When Black Women Fall giveaway at: Giveaway!!!

Thank you so much, ladies, for visiting with me today and talking about book covers. L. Penelope's cover for Angelborn is outstanding.

February 7, 2016

#Handbag Monday - Romantic Suspense author Jo-Ann Carson with & a book! #MFRWorg #RssosSister #shoesrock

If it's Monday, it's
Handbag Monday
where we're showing off our favorite accessory
and a book
with author Jo-Ann Carson
A purse to fit my life into...
My cat purse is fifteen years old and even though its vibrant blues have faded, I love it as much as the first time I laid eyes on it. The design by Laurel Burch appeals to the cat and art lover inside me. The one who wants out.
I used it exclusively as my go-everywhere purse for two years. Large and solidly built, I could carry a whole tomcat in it if I chose to, but instead it held an odd collection of the bits and pieces of my world. I thought initially that I could fit my whole life into it, or at least what I needed to get by. As time passed the small knitting projects, which I tucked into one corner, started creeping out and taking more space, until the purse became my knitting bag. I always smile when I look at it, partly because of the aesthetic of the beautiful cat design, but mostly because it holds so many memories and my knitting. 
Maggy Malone, a curvy, blond, blues singer with a sultry voice and a razor sharp mind is starting her life over after a lousy marriage… when a dying man tells her a dying secret 
Walking through a dark alley at three-thirty in the morning wasn’t smart, but Maggy Malone didn’t have a choice, or at least not one she liked. A bone-numbing, cold wind off the Salish Sea hit her face as she opened the back door of the Black Cat Blues Bar. Pulling her jacket close to her body with one hand, and holding her guitar case in the other, she descended the stairs into the inky darkness of the night. But after her first step, she checked over her shoulder.
Vancouver in November—endless gray skies and drizzle. The waning moon slipped behind layers of dark clouds, leaving little light to help her on her way. She quickened her pace. A warm glow beckoned from the street lamp, just a hundred yards away. Her scalp tingled as if a dozen spiders slipped across it. She took a deep breath of the salty night air.
What the hell. She could handle a few minutes of fear. Singing in the best blues bar on the coast had been her life dream. If it meant getting up close and personal with the creepy, back alley on occasion, then so be it. Her shoulders tightened.
Stepping over dirty needles, used condoms and Micky D wrappers left behind by the people who shared the alley—the prostitutes, the addicts and the homeless—she tried not to let the sadness of their lives reach inside her. But the stagnant stench of rotting garbage and urine turned her stomach. If only it would really rain, then the city would be washed clean.
Where are the street people? Usually there’d be one or two around at this time of night, huddled against the cold, brick walls with only a blanket to keep out the cold and misfortunes of the night. Something felt wrong. She couldn’t put her finger on it . . .  but something. She looked over her shoulder again. No one.
A chill crawled slowly up her spine. She adjusted the weight of her canvas guitar case into her other hand and prepared to run. She wasn’t sure what she would be running from, but just in case. A woman in an alley has to be ready.
It had been a long night. She should never have descended into this God forsaken alley. Friggin Frank. It was his fault. She took a deep breath as her eyes darted in every direction. The feeling of darkness, much darker than the night around her, picked at her senses. Her throat tightened and she couldn’t swallow.
I’m just scaring myself. The lights of the street were only a few yards away. Everything will be fine.
Then she saw the body lying still in a pool of blood. A silvery spike protruded from his chest.

Find Black Cat Blues at: Amazon
Thanks, Vicki, for hosting me today. You are not only a great writer, but also a great friend to other writers. Hugs… Jo-Ann (www.jo-anncarson.com)
My pleasure, Jo-Ann! Now, I want to know who out there is a dog or a cat person? Or both???

February 4, 2016

Movie Mom on 45 years #MFRWorg #RssosSisters #anniversary #elephantintheroom

Movie Mom

A couple are planning their 45th anniversary party when the husband receives  news that a former girlfriend's body has been found in Switzerland, setting in motion the wife's doubts about their marriage.  
My thoughts: I really wanted to see this movie. Charlotte Rampling is a superb actress. The film really focuses on the actors portraying their emotions and we can see and feel them. My newspaper gave it an A, but I thought maybe B+ because I didn't quite buy into her character's doubts. I believe people can have many loves in their lives. I don't think his past is her past, although his does shape him. The big elephant in the room is if he has been married to her for 45 years, is that enough? Do we have to know every minute detail of our spouse's past?
This one can be viewed for great acting and that is well deserved of notice.
FMI: Wikipedia

February 2, 2016

Maine travels with #romanticsuspense author Marsha West #MFRWorg #RssosSister #beautifulvacations

Let’s travel with...
Marsha West, a retired elementary school principal, is also a former school board member and theatre arts teacher. She writes Romance, Suspense, and Second Chances. Experience Required. Her books are available at all e-stores and in print at Amazon and from her.

My January release, ACT OF TRUST, Book 2, The Second Chances Series is set in the fictional town of Griffin Harbor, Maine. I’m a Texan. My heroine is a Texan. You may wonder how I could set the book in a place in which I don’t live.
My husband and I have traveled to Maine many times over the years. In fact, one year we went twice! To Camden for our anniversary in June

and then again to Moosehead Lake for our more traditional fall trip in October.
Maine a looooong way from where I live. No matter how we cut it, we’re a whole day getting there. The sun first hits parts of Maine before any other part of the US. Maine is a huge state with a wide variety of terrain. You can see mountains, forests, lakes, sand beaches, and of course, the ubiquitous rocky coast of Maine in the Barry Manilow song. Even its largest cities, Portland and the capital Bangor are on the smaller size especially when compared to a Dallas, Houston, or even Fort Worth.

In Texas, we’ll get as cold as Maine (without the snow), but it will only be for a week at most and then could be followed by days in the 70s (as it is today when I write this post!) I admire the hardiness of Mainers, and I’m constantly blown away by the incredible Maine vistas. If you haven’t been, you need to make plans to go now.
An inheritance changed everything.
Mildred stopped and nailed Kate with a beady-eyed stare. “You do plan to turn over the Thompson land to the Conservancy Trust, don’t you?”
“I don’t know yet, Mildred. My daughter’s coming to visit, and then we’ll decide together what we want to do with the land. It’s possible she’ll want to keep it in the family. Be a nice place for her to get away from the hectic-ness of New York City.”

“Liddy would be pleased with either the Trust or you keeping it in the family, but she’ll haunt you if you sell to Holland.”
Kate leaned away. The venom in the woman’s tone made Kate’s heart rate trip up and her hands grow sweaty. Mildred completely believed her statement, enough to cause Kate nightmares.
“She’s giving every option plenty of consideration,” Jim jumped in. Was he afraid Mildred’s hard sell would reverse Kate’s leaning in his direction?
“I’ve had my say. Good night to you both.”

Find Act of Trust at:  Amazon
Find Marsha West at: Website
What state do you think has the best picture postcard landscapes?

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