Friday, November 29, 2019

BOOK: Madison's Christmas by Carol Ann Kauffman

Madison's Christmas
by Carol Ann Kauffman

Christmas is Madison’s favorite holiday, but this year is different. She has to face it alone, without her father and her best friend sometimes-boyfriend Bob, amid the problems of running her own high-stakes business and dealing with family issues.

Does grief always win out over joy during the holidays?
Can the spirit of Christmas lift a heavy heart?

Madison's Christmas is the first in a series of three Madison Rand books. 

Amazon Buy Link:
 Madison's Christmas

“This is a sweet, short story about an woman who is emotionally fragile during the holiday season. She finds love in the most unexpected way. I smiled often as the story developed. It was adorable!” 
$.99 #Christmas #mistakenidentity

The second in the series is Christmas at Star Lake, which is already out. I am working on the final book in the series now and hope to have it out in the late fall of 2020. 

Thursday, November 28, 2019


Dear Gentle Readers,
From  all of us at Vision and Verse, we wish a very Happy Thanksgiving. We hope you get some rest, spend time with those you hold dear, and eat too much! We hope you are full of love and gratitude.
Please know that each and every one of you who stop by everyday to see what’s happening on this little art and author blog are appreciated.

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

INTERVIEW: Suspenseful Contemporary Author Cynthia B. Ainsworthe

Cynthia B. Ainsworthe
St. Petersburg, Florida, USA

Good morning, Cynthia, and welcome to Vision and Verse. Can you tell us a little about what you've written?
My romance books are steamy, yet not quite erotic. “Front Row Center” is a tome length novel of over 290,000 words.

Four books in the Forbidden Series:
“Front Row Center”, Their attraction is electric. Their affair—explosive. And their love—devastating to those around them.
It starts at a concert. Taylor Allen, a happily married businesswoman, finds herself attracted to world-renowned singer and bachelor, Larry Davis, who feels his only love is his music, is drawn to Taylor in the audience. Sparks fly between them. Is this merely lust, or the beginning of love?

“Remember?”,takes you on a journey fraught with danger, passion, and shocking surprises.
Famous singer Larry Davis’ tour schedule has brought him to London, England, where he continues his desperate search for his lost wife, Taylor. Chances of finding her seem bleak, until he discovers a woman named Lady Tiffany Bradford. She looks like Taylor. Is she a mere illusion?

“Forbidden Footsteps”,Peril lurks in the old-world historic streets and shadowy back alleys of Paris, and brings Cindy to question her sanity and heart. Is finding true happiness worth her life? Fleeing her violent past .Cindy Hastings' bright future turns dark. Her romance with wealthy hot French rock star Jean-Claude LeGrand uncovers his dark secret with his exotic sexual tastes..His friends run the risk of murder.

“Dangerous Reach”,Amelia’s “no fear” approach puts her in deadly peril. Is the chance for a meaningful life worth the risk of devastating consequences? A modern duchess in a loveless marriage trades her salacious London lifestyle for the glamour of the Hollywood red carpet when she agrees to visit famed movie producer, Trenton Lowe. What starts as a carefree sojourn in Malibu turns ugly as evil intent.

Two cookbooks in the Tasty Temptations series:
“Front Row Center’s Cooking With Passion”,Unique gift! Discover the passion for not only cooking, but for enriching the joie de vivre! Recipes that create delicious entertaining and romantic conclusions. Whether cooking for two or more, easy dishes turn an ordinary eating experience into a memorable event. Luscious pictures of recipes, gorgeous photos of men, and a romantic story thread after each recipe spice the cook’s imagination.
“Cooking With Passion”.Want more adventure in your culinary endeavors? More spice to stir up those creative juices? How about a hunky shirtless man in your kitchen? Cooking with Passion has a playful approach to cooking with delicious over 114 recipes that range from American to European. 139 full-color photos. No longer will meatloaf be that boring dish or fish have that same old sauce. Friends will beg for the recipe!

My cookbooks take a light romantic approach. There are hunky shirtless men throughout the serious recipes. At the end of each recipe is a story thread under the heading “Cooking break” that starts after the first recipe and ends after the final recipe entry.

All my books are available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords.

About Forbidden Series:                   
Dive into the maelstrom pool of lust, passion, romance, crime, and psychological danger with any of the books in the Forbidden Series. When the hunger for lust and the quest for power collide into devastating consequences, lives are forever changed. The Forbidden novels provide much more than a typical romance. Characters are just as complex as the plots are developed. Steamy love scenes dangerously change the dynamic and raise the stakes to treacherous levels. As one conflict is resolved, another emerges with striking, and sometimes deadly results. Psychological warfare is not beyond a villain’s grasp. If that doesn’t render the desired result, there is always a bullet, poison, or whatever is handy. 

About Tasty Temptations Series:
Cookbooks with a difference! Who says a cookbook should follow the same old rules of food illustrations and recipes? Tasty Temptations offers entertainment for the cook as well as delicious recipes with photographs of luscious food, and mouth-watering pictures of hunky men along with a sizzling story thread after each recipe. Reward yourself or that special cook in your life with a culinary book offering serious recipes and entertainment that will cause whipping of that meringue just a bit faster while viewing handsome men and reading an intriguing romance. Multi-award winning author, Cynthia B. Ainsworthe fashions a unique and passionate approach in both her novels and cookbooks. She has received celebrity endorsements from famous actor Terri Garber (of North and South miniseries, playing Ashton Main opposite Patrick Swayze, among other television series such as Dynasty, Law and Order, and numerous others) and renowned Hollywood screenwriter, director, producer Scott C. Brown. 

What is your favorite genre to write?
Suspenseful contemporary romance with a strong criminal thread. Murder or the threat of murder raises the tension and stakes exponentially. I’m also a screenwriter.

Favorite food.
French cuisine with Italian as a close second.

Tea or coffee?

Pizza or ice cream?
Pizza with extra cheese.

Wine or beer?
Wine. Brandy Alexanders for the holidays.

Where would you like to visit?
France. Paris is my favorite city. England runs a close second. I’ve traveled to Paris at least 15 to 18 times in my lifetime.

Favorite musical artist.  Do you listen to music when you write?
Barry Manilow and the late Charles Aznavour are my favorite musical artists. I don’t listen to music during my writing but will play music when 
I’m stumped as to what should happen next in the plot.

What makes you laugh?        
Watching puppies and kittens at play.

Favorite work of art or sculpture.
“The Swing” by Edouard Fragonard. His use of light and dark always draws me in.

How old were you when you started writing?
I didn’t start serious writing until I was 58; it was a bucket list item that just took off. During childhood and teen years, I wrote stories and plays for my friends.

Do you plan out your book with outlines and notecards? Or just write?
I just write with the basic plot in my mind. As the characters develop, they let me know where they want their story to lead. I keep a separate document where I note the important events for each chapter and list my characters with their brief bios.

Describe your perfect evening.
A quiet dinner with my husband, us reminiscing about all the years we’ve been together.

Where do you get your inspiration?
Family and friends’ positive words are a great impetus for me to create. Barry Manilow’s advice “Do what you love and the rest will follow” was the driving force for me tackling the writing art form. His words turned out to be so true. My debut novel, “Front Row Center”, won the prestigious IPPY Award, and I have since garnered two additional writing awards for other works. Scott C. Brown, renowned Hollywood screenwriter, producer, and director, would like to see “Front Row Center” as a miniseries. I’m working with him on a screenplay for that book. The movie industry is a tough environment to break into. Still, if I don’t put in the effort, I’ll never know what might happen. I also have the support and endorsement of famous actress, Terri Garber of miniseries North and South (opposite Patrick Swayze), Dynasty, Law and Order, and many other appearances.

That is so exciting!!! Best of luck to you for a speedy miniseries. What do you do when you get a writer's block?
I watch a movie or a series such as Downton Abby. Also, House of Cards will awaken my creativity.

Who is your favorite author?
There are so many! I can’t pick only one. On the top of my list are: William Goldman, Herman Wouk, Danielle Steele, Trish Jackson, and John Rosenman.

Best book you ever read.      
Boys and Girls Together by William Goldman

Last books you read.
Way Out of Line by Trish Jackson, excellent and suspenseful and
Dark Wizard by John Rosenman, master at science fiction.

What would you do for a living if you weren’t a writer?
I’m a retired cardiac charge registered nurse.

Who is the one person who has influenced your personal life the most and why?
My loving husband has always been in my corner, having faith in me and encouraging me.

If you could sit down and have a conversation with ONE person, living or dead, real or fictional, who would it 
be and why?
William Goldman. He’s an award-winning author and an Academy winner for his screenwriting. His insight would be invaluable.
What advice would you give someone who aspired to be a writer?
Don’t listen to meaningless negativity. Constructive criticism should be valued and the purpose of that criticism should be objective and not subjective. Write what you know. Write from your gut.

Do you have some links for us to follow you?

Monday, November 25, 2019

ASTROPHOTOGRAPHY: The Milky Way Over Yellowstone by Dave Lane

"When asked about his astrophotography, Lane practically glows with awe in our astonishing, beautiful universe:
    'Get away from the light, drive out 20 -30 miles out of town and look up on a clear dark nite and you may see something that will forever change your life. This is what a galaxy looks like from the inside.'

From, Mika McKinnon

Sunday, November 24, 2019

SCHEDULE: Nov. 25 - Nov. 29, 2019

Mon., Nov. 25 - ART: Astrophotography,
The Milky Way over Yellowstone by Dave Lane
(Article by Mika McKinnon -
Tues., Nov. 26 - BOOK REVIEW:
100 Wild Mushrooms, Memoirs of the 60's by Eva Pasco
Wed., Nov. 27 - INTERVIEW:
Suspenseful Contemporary Author Cynthia Ainsworthe
Thurs., Nov. 28 - HOLIDAY
Happy Thanksgiving 
from Vision and Verse
Fri., Nov. 29 - BOOK: Madison's Christmas
by Carol Ann Kauffman

Friday, November 22, 2019

BOOK: MacKalvey House by Carol Ann Kauffman

MacKalvey House

by Carol Ann Kauffman

Young American Michelle Rosemont visits England after college graduation and 
decides to stay. She takes a job as photographer for a historical magazine and 
falls in love with the extremely unpopular Kenneth MacKalvey, an older British 
author with a shady past. 

Old families scars resurface and play havoc with Michelle and Kenneth's relationship,
 as she struggles to come to terms with her father's abandonment and unforeseen 
family issues, as well as a ruthless redhead.

Dear Gentle Readers,
If you read Echo of Heartbreak, A Recipe for Life, then I think you will enjoy this one, too. It is not a sequel. In. fact, Echo of Heartbreak was a prequel.In preparing to write this book, I needed a clear picture in my mind of Michelle's mother, Melina Valentina Rosemont, because she is paramount to the formation of Michelle's persona. Her fears, strengths, and personality
are strongly tied to her mother.In the end, I had so much information on Melina, I thought she deserved her own little book, with recipes, tips on housekeeping and wardrobe 
planning, and insights on life. So, Echo of Heartbreak, A Recipe for Life came into being.

Amazon Buy Link:
Echo of Heartbreak 

What others say about MacKalvey House:
Amazon Buy Link:
MacKalvey House

Kenneth MacKalvey is a wealthy man. He inherited the family business, he has written many books, he is an artist 
and owns a art gallery. But most of all, he is known for his rude, bad mouth, nasty self. His reputation on a scale of 
1-10, is a 0.
Michelle Rosemount has only been in England for a short time. With a degree in Early Childhood Education, she left 
the states to start a new life. Working as a photographer for a historical magazine, she loves taking pictures of the 
manors, castles and ruins.
Michelle has read every book Mr. MacKalvey has written. She feels like she knows him , really knows him. She wants 
to be with him in every way possible. She deep down loves him. Kenneth heard her voice for the first time and knew 
that they belonged together and always have and always will. He is drawn to her.
Carol Ann Kauffman puts together the perfect English gentleman meets the beautiful American, but what she doesn't
 do is make it sappy. She shows how a true drawl to a connection can be, that opposites do attract. Come on you two, 
get it together!
The love story of Kenneth and Michelle isn't much different then most, on again, off again. But theirs has an evil red 
head to come between them and make matters way worse then expected. This red head relishes in all of it. All she 
wants is his name, money, house and children. Will she get any of it?
At one point when Michelle is swearing Kenneth off and needs a break from life, she heads to Italy with her best friend 
and aunt. She is enjoying the beautiful land around her, until there is a man set up for her. She gets very drunk, insults everybody and runs to the olive trees. This man follows and well, lets say they see the olive trees in a different way. 
This man stays in her life as a very good friend. He helps her start her own business and helps her to forget Kenneth 
by having her live with him, far away from Kenneth.
Who does Michelle end up with in the end? Well the ending was a huge surprise! I never saw that coming at all. Carol 
did a good job with subtle hints along the way that I didn't see until after I read the ending. Another fantastic story in 
the Time After Time Series! This series is a must read!


Thursday, November 21, 2019

PICK OF THE WEEK: Shampoo Bars

Shampoo Bars

Every now and then, a product comes along that just...clicks. And for shampoo bars, their time has come. When you stop and think about it, shampoo in the form of a bar makes perfect sense. We as  citizens of Earth need to cut down on our plastic consumption. This tiny bar replaces more than a few plastic bottles. I was immediately sold on the idea - for the rest of my family.

But ME? My hair is fine and some additives weigh it down. It is senior citizen hair, it needs tender, loving, gentle care. And this lovely blonde shade needs protection.

I bought a few shampoo bars at a terrific little soap shop called Madison de Savon in Hermitage, Pennsylvania. I bought a conditioner bar and a few other items. I particularly loved the Shower Steamer in lemon. It infused my shower with the loveliest, most invigorating lemon scent imaginable.

So one morning in a rush I grabbed the shampoo bar my sweet husband had been raving about and was pleasantly surprised at the scent and the small amount needs to produce a nice lather. I was not prepared for the deep shine and manageability my hair took on when dry. 

Fast forward a few days. I was completely hooked. No more shampoo bottles vying for my attention on the tiny shower shelf. And gone were the days of trying to open the bottle in the shower with wet hands or dropping it on the shower stall floor.

I bought shampoo bars for my friends and family. I was all too happy to announce it was the shampoo bar when someone told me they liked my hair. 

We both have short hair and got about eighty shampoos from one tiny round bar. The conditioner bar is still going strong from my initial purchase in September. I highly recommend you try a shampoo bar. This little shop in Hermitage, Maison de Savon,  also has an online catalog.

Maison de Savon: