Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie #Wordle 281

A dose of fetish. Good friends. An incomparable muse.

Image by S. Hermann & F. Richter from Pixabay ~ Poem by A Dawes
Her winter green smile 
disturbed the words in my head
I remember the pledge we made
To stay longer, greedily
Enjoying each other, the forest
Hid all trace of us
High on love, hidden by mother nature
The stone in my shoe reminding me
She isn’t real…

©AnitaDawes2022

Our Review for Between the Vines by Staci Troilo ~ #Contemporary Romance ~ @stacitroilo

When you grow up on a vineyard, you learn the grapevine can’t always be trusted.
Elena Santucci is one of the best wedding planners in the Keystone state—ironic, as she doesn’t believe in love. Why should she? Rumors cost her all meaningful relationships, sending her into the arms of one loser after another until she swore off men entirely. Now she spends her days helping brides put together dream days… even though she suspects they’ll all lead to nightmares.
Aaron Kennedy looks like a tough-as-nails cop, but he’s got a marshmallow for a heart. One that’s recently been roasted over the coals by Heather, his former fiancée. After discovering her affair with his best friend, he broke off his engagement and swore off women—at least for a while. When his sister asks for help with her wedding plans, he can’t say no. Then he learns the wedding is at Blooming Valley Vineyards, and his former crush is the event planner. Maybe this is fate telling him not to give up so quickly.

Just when Aaron starts to break through Elena’s icy shell, Heather comes back into his life with an unbelievable story—one Elena seems to support. Rumors travel the grapevine faster than he can make sense of them. He needs to discover the truth before his one chance at happiness withers on the vine.

Find your copy HERE

Our Thoughts

I don’t often read romantic stories, for like Elena, the heroine of this story, love hasn’t been kind to me.

On a good day, I do still look for it, which is why this is the second story I have read in the Keystone Couples Series.

Romance is a funny thing, so many things can ruin your chances.

Unusual circumstances, strange coincidences and jealous people almost wrecked every chance for Elena, and my heart went out to her as she struggled to create perfect fairy-tale weddings for other people in the course of her job, knowing she would probably never walk down the aisle herself.

Luckily, love will usually find a way, for even the most stubborn of hearts…

All three stories in the Keystone Couples Series were wonderful romances and well worth reading…

No Such Luck by Staci Troilo~ #Contemporary Romance Fiction ~ #Review ~ @stacitroilo

Seeds of luck usually wither. The rare one grows and blooms.


Piper Seidel has one thing going for her—a red carnation given to her by Tommy Burnett in the tenth grade. It might have dried over the years, but it’s still her good luck charm. Losing it sets her life in a downward spiral, forcing her to return to her hometown where she comes face to face with her high school crush.


The years have been kind to Tommy, who looks better than ever. Unfortunately, Piper is at her worst, continually embarrassing herself whenever he’s around. The only plus? Her long-time friend, Jack Rhodes, still lives in town. Since she last saw him, his legs have grown longer, his biceps thicker, and his shoulders broader. He was always the brother she never had, but now she can’t help noticing him in an unsisterly way. Jack is every bit as caring as he’s ever been—until her bad luck drives him away, maybe forever.

Piper needs a new good luck charm, and fast, before she loses her final chance at happiness.

Our Review

It was the title of this book that attracted me, mainly because when it comes to luck, it always seems to run out when it gets to be my turn! I am ever searching for a HEA, so I thought it would make a change to read about someone else’s misadventures and I am really glad I did!

No Such Luck is the first of the new Keystone Couples Series, beautifully written and totally romantic and if all the stories that follow are like this one, they should do very well!

New Release: No Such Luck by Staci Troilo #Contemporary Romance Fiction @stacitroilo

I have started reading Staci’s new book and loving every word, but couldn’t wait to tell everyone about it! My review will follow in due course…

Piper Seidel has one thing going for her—a red carnation given to her by Tommy Burnett in the tenth grade. It might have dried over the years, but it’s still her good luck charm. Losing it sets her life in a downward spiral, forcing her to return to her hometown where she comes face to face with her high school crush.


The years have been kind to Tommy, who looks better than ever. Unfortunately, Piper is at her worst, continually embarrassing herself whenever he’s around. The only plus? Her long-time friend, Jack Rhodes, still lives in town. Since she last saw him, his legs have grown longer, his biceps thicker, and his shoulders broader. He was always the brother she never had, but now she can’t help noticing him in an unsisterly way. Jack is every bit as caring as he’s ever been—until her bad luck drives him away, maybe forever.

Piper needs a new good luck charm, and fast, before she loses her final chance at happiness.

Linda… The End of the Week…

Linda… Friday/Saturday

I am working from home today.

My boss rang twice to remind me about Saturday. No surprise there, he knows how I feel. I worked until lunch. I took my bike out for a ride and stopped at a greasy spoon, had the most amazing lunch. Spent an hour talking with an elderly lady who sat herself at my table. I think the universe is trying to push my buttons.

I managed to put my laundry on the line before I left. Should be dry by now. Stupid thoughts keep entering my mind. I decide on faded jeans, blue and white striped shirt for Saturday’s lunch.

I bike home on a full stomach, slower than when I had arrived. Why am I thinking about Saturday?

By rights, I should ring and cancel. I was beginning to feel itchy all over. Something didn’t feel right. I hung my bike on the hook in the hall, deciding to iron the laundry, clean house. If I didn’t know better, you would think I’m pregnant. Don’t worry, I not. The pill is a great liberator.

My mother would never have approved. Sex before marriage is not on. She was wonderfully old fashioned, dad too. You could say they were cast from the same mould, made for each other. Mum died aged 63, dad went soon after, leaving me alone. There are distant cousins, aunts I never knew. Didn’t need them then, nor now.

There isn’t a spot left to clean. I showered, retired early and tried to read a few chapters. The book was on the floor when I woke.

Saturday

I barely had time to shower, have breakfast. One last chance to think. Without realising it, I was pulling on my jeans, white sneakers, ready to go.

This time, he sent his driver to fetch me.

Before finishing lunch, he asked if I would mind coming to his home. I could feel the itch gathering strength, even so, I said yes. Lunch was great, he knew how to make me feel relaxed.

I had agreed. The drive took two and half hours to Hampshire and a small mansion. Derek, the driver opened the door. I tried not to let my mouth hang open. I couldn’t see any houses nearby. This put my itch into overdrive. Again, with the thoughts. The man could be a serial killer for all I knew. I could feel the virtual shaking of the head, don’t be daft.

We went through the large hall to his office, worked for three hours. So far so good.

‘Are you hungry?’ He said

I said yes, as I felt peckish. He sent Derek out for Kentucky chicken. This surprised me, as I thought he would have a cook hidden away below stairs. Over a large bucket of chicken, I asked if Derek lived there.

Two males, in such an isolated place was beginning to make me uncomfortable. I was told he lived over the garage, which was down the drive by the gatehouse.

Thanks, this didn’t help me much.

‘Would you like a tour of the house?’

I did. The tour ended in his bedroom. There was the biggest bed I had ever seen. Why would someone with no partner to speak of, need a queen-sized bed?

When Derek entered the room through an adjacent door, the panic struck. I ran and kept running until I reached the highway.

The first car to slow down, was Peter. ‘Get in, let me drive you home.’

Ignoring him, I climbed the embankment, intending to walk through the woods. Reaching the top, I turned to see the car drive away.

Climbing down, hoping to hitch a ride, I started walking.

I should have listened to my itch, my rule about weekends.

He turned out to be a good-looking fraud.

A lorry pulled over. I had to take a chance. I had no money. I needed to go home, take a shower, wash the bad feeling away. Soothe my thoughts with the idea that I had a near miss.

I didn’t read it wrong, did I?

I hoped he wouldn’t pull his work from us. The boss had threatened to sack me if I messed up. Fingers crossed; he would send the rest of his work in by courier as many of our clients do.

Sunday was all mine, time to shake it all off. Monday was a new day, hoping I still had a job.

Maybe I will let you know tomorrow…

© Anita Dawes 2021

We are really looking forward to reading your thoughts about Linda, people…

Did you enjoy reading it? and if not, why?

and while we’re on the subject, what would you like more of?