Movie Review

Cinema Sunday (9) | November 15th – 21st

I originally created Cinema Sunday last year so that each Sunday I could step away from books and do a review of a movie that I’ve recently watched instead. I love movies so much because they bring stories to life. If you want to participate in this blog meme, feel free to use my banner, and don’t forget to link back to my Cinema Sunday section on my blog! I can’t wait to see your posts! 

I’ve decided to change things up a bit though. Instead of doing one big review, I’ve decided to do mini-reviews for all the movies that I’ve seen during the week. You can put your own spin on Cinema Sunday, by doing one or multiple reviews. By simply talking about all the movies you’ve seen during the week. By talking about movies you can’t wait to see! I want everyone to feel like they have room to be creative. To make this blog meme work for everyone who loves movies and wants to talk about them.



Freaky (2020)
⭐️⭐️⭐️1/2
I went and saw this movie in theatres and I had a blast. It’s Freaky Friday with an even freakier twist. There was so much gore and suspense but I was laughing at almost every scene. Vince Vaughn pretending to be a high school girl was absolutely priceless. I’m not going to lie, the usual tropes were very present, but I was laughing so hard, I couldn’t bother to care.


Peppermint (2018)
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
I can’t believe the ratings for this movie on rotten tomatoes. I thought it was incredible. Maybe it’s because I was obsessed with Jennifer Garner when she played a double agent in the TV series Alias, but watching her kick ass again made me so happy. Jennifer Garner is amazing, she can take on any roll. I have a hard time not loving a movie if she plays the main character. Oh, and this a tear-jerker, just saying.



6 Underground (2019)
⭐️⭐️1/2
This movie was all over the place. I never knew when it was the past or present being shown on screen. As soon as I thought I knew what was going on, I was thrown back into another time. I did however love the action and the interaction between characters. I do still wish that Dave Franco was more prominent in the film though.


What movies have you watched this week? Let’s chat about it all in the comments! And don’t forget to put your links to your Cinema Sunday post in the Link Wizard!!

Movie Review

Cinema Sunday (8) | November 8th – 14th

I originally created Cinema Sunday last year so that each Sunday I could step away from books and do a review of a movie that I’ve recently watched instead. I love movies so much because they bring stories to life. If you want to participate in this blog meme, feel free to use my banner, and don’t forget to link back to my Cinema Sunday section on my blog! I can’t wait to see your posts! 

I’ve decided to change things up a bit though. Instead of doing one big review, I’ve decided to do mini-reviews for all the movies that I’ve seen during the week. You can put your own spin on Cinema Sunday, by doing one or multiple reviews. By simply talking about all the movies you’ve seen during the week. By talking about movies you can’t wait to see! I want everyone to feel like they have room to be creative. To make this blog meme work for everyone who loves movies and wants to talk about them.



The Possession of Hannah Grace (2018)
⭐️⭐️⭐️
Oh my lord this movie had me terrified. It takes a lot for me to scream while watching a horror movie. But the Possession of Hannah Grace definitely succeeded. I do understand why some people hated this movie since it has all the horror tropes. But I have to give credit where credit is due. If a movie makes me scared shitless, I’m going to say it was a good movie.


Scooby-Doo (2002)
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Scooby-Doo is such a nostalgic film for my boyfriend and for myself. We watch it twice a year and always find ourselves laughing and having a great time. There’s just something about this movie and the cliché script that makes us so freaking happy. I don’t know what I would think of this movie if I didn’t watch it as a child. I probably wouldn’t love it as much, but that’s what childhood favourites are all about. Giving fond memories of the joy you had watching it as a child.



What movies have you watched this week? Let’s chat about it all in the comments! And don’t forget to put your links to your Cinema Sunday post in the Link Wizard!!

Book Review

It’s Time for A Change…

Hello all, I hope you are doing well. I thought I would take the time to chat with you about a decision I’ve made in regards to my blog and other social media platforms that I use to talk about books.

I created Escape 2 Fiction in early 2017 when books were what I used to cope with the unhappiness in my life. I was literally escaping, which is why I chose that to be the title of my blog. I will always consider books as my saviour, because stories really got me through times where I couldn’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. But I no longer need to escape. I’m at a point in my life where I can finally say that I am happy where I am. I don’t see books as an escape anymore. I see them as wonderful works of art that I get to experience. So, with that in mind, I’ve decided it’s time to change. It’s time for my blog to grow as I have. I want to look at my blog and not see my past, but the person I am today.

I’ve decided to change my name to The Mermaid Reader. I live in the smallest province in Canada, surrounded by ocean waters and red sands. I am always in the water swimming through the waves, or on the sand reading a good book. The Mermaid Reader fits me better, since I have grown from the person I used to be.

I want to thank all of my readers for sticking by me throughout the years, I truly cherish each and everyone of you. I hope you will stick by me as I continue to grow into the reader and blogger that I want to be. Love you all

Jessica,
The Mermaid Reader

Readathon

Reindeer Readathon Announcement!

I am so excited to tell you all about this amazing readathon! I would like to say however that I am only a participant in the readathon, and I am choosing to do an announcement post so that you all can have a chance to sign up too!

The Reindeer Readathon takes place from December 1st to December 31st 2020. You will have a whole month of fun by reading and completely prompts to help your assigned team earn points and ultimately win the readathon. If you love a good competition, I highly recommend you join!

There are 5 hosts this year, which means 5 teams! Once you sign up for the readathon you will be assigned a team. Here are the hosts and their announcement videos.

Erik (Team Mistletoe) – https://www.youtube.com/c/BreakevenBooks
Hilary (Team Snowflake) – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCOat…
Donna (Team Nutcracker) – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCatP…
Savy (Team Stocking) – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC9WS…
Amanda (Team Candy Cane) – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCvGZ…

Are you convinced that this is going to be an amazing end of the year readathon? Here is the sign-up form ! You can also head over to their twitter page to see more. And you can buy a Reindeer Readathon Bookmark!! It’s so cute!

Onto the prompts! There is a prompt for each one of Santa’s reindeer. And each prompt has a set amount of points that you can win for your team! Each time you complete a prompt you can submit your points here.

DASHER – 15 PTS A book with a one word title.
DANCER – 10 PTS A companion novel or a sequel (as in a dancing parter).
PRANCER – 15 PTS A book with a map in it.
VIXEN 25 PTS OR 20 PTS A book with a fox on the cover. (Alternatively, a strong female lead).
COMET – 30PTS A book you find intimidating.
CUPID – 10 PTS Read a genre that you love.
DONNER – 15 PTS A book with something hidden inside (under the dust jacket, chapter heads, art etc.)
BLITZEN – 20 PTS A book with some sort of struggle (internal struggle, war, battle etc)
RUDOLPH – 20 PTS A book where the main character doesn’t seem to fit in (outsider, misfit).

Bonus Prompts:
CHRISTMAS STAR: Read a book that has 500+ pages
SLEIGHING IT: Complete all Reindeer Challenges and Christmas Star to get this bonus, and then you can redo a reindeer challenge to win more points for your team!

There is also a group buddy read of The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V. E. Schwab. Click on the link to join the group!

And thank you to the reindeer readathon sponsors that have made it possible to give 3 randomly selected members of the winning team a prize. As well as a prize to the winner of Trivia Night! Watch Eric’s video to learn more!
Zachary Ryan: https://www.amazon.com/Zachary-Ryan/e…
Maya Lemaire: https://www.mayalemaire.com
Furever Home Friends: https://fureverhomefriends.com/?fbcli…
Melty Magic Wax Melts: https://meltymagicwaxmelts.wixsite.co…

Here are some frequently asked questions about the readathon:
Q: Can I use one book for multiple prompts?
A: No. The reason for this is because we want it to be a little extra competitive!

Q: Can I do one prompt multiple times to gain extra points?
A: No. With the exception of the Sleighing It bonus, you can only do each prompt once.

Q: How many times can I get the bonus points?
A: You can redeem each bonus only once.

Q: How many times can I do the Sleighing It bonus?
A: Just once.

Q: Is the Christmas Star bonus its own prompt?
A: No. It must be applied to one of the books you used for a reindeer prompt. **TIP: If you want to aim for the Christmas Star bonus (which is awesome, by the way – go you!!), plan ahead! This means that you must choose a book for one of the reindeer prompts that is 500+ pages. Unfortunately, if you read a 500+ page book after you’ve already completed the prompts, you can’t count it for the Christmas Star bonus – sorry!

I really hope you join in on the fun! If you do let me know in the comments which team you were assigned too!




Book Review

Review | Ashfall by Mike Mullin

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Ashfall
Author: Mike Mullin
Series: #1 Ashfall
Published: October 11th 2011
Publisher: Tanglewood Press
Pages: 466
Genres: Science Fiction, Apocalyptic
Rating: 5 Stars

Synopsis

Under the bubbling hot springs and geysers of Yellowstone National Park is a supervolcano. Most people don’t know it’s there. The caldera is so large that it can only be seen from a plane or satellite. It just could be overdue for an eruption, which would change the landscape and climate of our planet.

For Alex, being left alone for the weekend means having the freedom to play computer games and hang out with his friends without hassle from his mother. Then the Yellowstone supervolcano erupts, plunging his hometown into a nightmare of darkness, ash, and violence. Alex begins a harrowing trek to search for his family and finds help in Darla, a travel partner he meets along the way. Together they must find the strength and skills to survive and outlast an epic disaster.

Review

I remember picking up Ashfall from the library multiple times over the years and I never got around to reading it. After the first chapter, I began to realize that I missed out big time.

All these years, I thought Ashfall was about Zombies. I think that’s why I kept reading other books instead of this one. I’m not a big zombie fan, except for The Walking Dead. Needless to say, I was wrong. This book is about a boy named Alex who sets off to find his family after a volcanic eruption leaves his home in pieces. Alex’s family went to visit their uncle for the weekend, leaving Alex home to deal with the chaos alone. He begins the treacherous journey to his uncle’s house, dealing with all his misfortunes along the way.

Ashfall sucked me in from the very first page. Each chapter posed a new threat, leaving me at the edge of my seat. I simply couldn’t turn the pages fast enough. Each time a new character was introduced, I didn’t know what their intentions were. My heart raced for at least three-quarters of the book

Every tiny moment had such descriptive detail, which didn’t leave much to imagine. It was written so perfectly, I could see the story happening in my mind. Some scenes had my gut turning in knots out of horror and disgust. The graphic gory scenes were hard to handle at times. Other scenes had me smiling with content and relief for the characters. Alex and Darla were perfect. I love how much they grew throughout the book. Having to rely on themselves for the first time had me nervous. I was rooting for them the entire time. There were a few times that I found myself screaming at the book or ranting to my boyfriend about how unfair things were for my favourite characters. I was so invested.

I feel like my words can’t possibly do justice in describing how amazing this book was. Ashfall will be in my top ten of the year for a fact. Ashfall will be my go-to recommendation when someone is looking for a thrilling survival story. Ashfall will be the book that I pressure all my friends to read. That is how much I loved this book. I’m giving it 5 stars for obvious reasons. If you can handle a little gore, this intense survival thriller is for you, and I highly encourage you to read it. I can’t wait to continue with the series.

Mike Mullin’s first job was scraping the gum off the undersides of desks at his high school. From there, things went steadily downhill. He almost got fired by the owner of a bookstore due to his poor taste in earrings. He worked at a place that showed slides of poopy diapers during lunch (it did cut down on the cafeteria budget). The hazing process at the next company included eating live termites raised by the resident entomologist, so that didn’t last long either. For a while Mike juggled bottles at a wine shop, sometimes to disastrous effect. Oh, and then there was the job where swarms of wasps occasionally tried to chase him off ladders. So he’s really glad this writing thing seems to be working out.

Mike holds a black belt in Songahm Taekwondo. He lives in Indianapolis with his wife and her three cats. His debut novel, Ashfall, was named one of the top five young adult novels of 2011 by National Public Radio, a Best Teen Book of 2011 by Kirkus Reviews, and a New Voices selection by the American Booksellers Association.

Movie Review

Cinema Sunday (7) | November 1st – 7th

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I originally created Cinema Sunday last year so that each Sunday I could step away from books and do a review of a movie that I’ve recently watched instead. I love movies so much because they bring stories to life. If you want to participate in this blog meme, feel free to use my banner, and don’t forget to link back to my Cinema Sunday section on my blog! I can’t wait to see your posts! 

I’ve decided to change things up a bit though. Instead of doing one big review, I’ve decided to do mini-reviews for all the movies that I’ve seen during the week. You can put your own spin on Cinema Sunday, by doing one or multiple reviews. By simply talking about all the movies you’ve seen during the week. By talking about movies you can’t wait to see! I want everyone to feel like they have room to be creative. To make this blog meme work for everyone who loves movies and wants to talk about them.



A Christmas Prince (2017)
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
This movie was so cute. My Christmas spirit was shining after watching this story unfold. I’ve been meaning to watch A Christmas Prince since it released but I never got around to it during the holidays. This year, I made sure it was the first Christmas movie I watched. I am so glad that I did, because it was the perfect film to start off my holidays. Filled with Joy, Romance, and a little bit of deception, A Christmas Prince made my heart warm. I couldn’t wait to watch the next one!


Good Luck Charlie, It’s Christmas! (2011)
⭐️⭐️⭐️
This film has a lot of nostalgia for me, as I watched it for the first time when my sister came home for the holidays. I remember laughing and having such a good time with my big sister. I decided to re-watch it this year to bring back some good memories, and it was pretty good! It is a family channel movie, so some scenes are way over done and some scenes didn’t even need to be in the film at all. But I didn’t mind, because this movie holds a lot of fond memories.


A Christmas Prince: The Royal Baby (2019)
⭐️⭐️⭐️1/2
This was such a cute sequel. I don’t want to spoil to much of the series, so I am just going to say that I really did enjoy it, but the first movie is still my favourite! Don’t watch the trailer if you haven’t watched the first or second one yet!
I didn’t realize till after the movie was over that I just watched the third film in the series instead of the second. I’m unsure if I am going to watch the second one now, because I already know what happens after it, but we will see.


The Craft Legacy (2020)
⭐️⭐️⭐️1/2
Even though I’ve been enjoying so many holiday movies in the past week, I had to add at least one horror to my list. The Craft doesn’t really qualify as a horror in my opinion, but it had spooky vibes. The plot is about a group of girls discovering their powers as they continue to hone their craft. (See what I did there?) It was refreshing. For once, after the main character moves to a new school, girls treat her kindly instead of the usual tropes. I wish we got a little bit more closure in the end, but I overall enjoyed the film quite a bit! I guess by now you’ve probably guessed that it doesn’t take much to please me when it comes to movies.

What movies have you watched this week? Let’s chat about it all in the comments! And don’t forget to put your links to your Cinema Sunday post in the Link Wizard!!

Book Review

Review | Chosen by Kiersten White

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Chosen
Author: Kiersten White
Series: #2 Slayer
Published: January 7th 2020
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Pages: 353
Genres: Paranormal, Fantasy
Rating: 4 Stars

Synopsis

“Will get Buffy fans up in their feels.” —Entertainment Weekly on Slayer

Nina continues to learn how to use her slayer powers against enemies old and new in this second novel in the New York Times bestselling series from Kiersten White, set in the world of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Now that Nina has turned the Watcher’s Castle into a utopia for hurt and lonely demons, she’s still waiting for the utopia part to kick in. With her sister Artemis gone and only a few people remaining at the castle—including her still-distant mother—Nina has her hands full. Plus, though she gained back her Slayer powers from Leo, they’re not feeling quite right after being held by the seriously evil succubus Eve, a.k.a. fake Watcher’s Council member and Leo’s mom.

And while Nina is dealing with the darkness inside, there’s also a new threat on the outside, portended by an odd triangle symbol that seems to be popping up everywhere, in connection with Sean’s demon drug ring as well as someone a bit closer to home. Because one near-apocalypse just isn’t enough, right?

The darkness always finds you. And once again, it’s coming for the Slayer.

Review

I read the first book in this duology as soon as it was published, and I loved it. As soon as I heard that this duology was going to be based on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, I added it to my TBR immediately. I’ve never read from Kiersten White before, but I figured that this duology was the perfect place to start.

Chosen is the continuation of Artemis and Nina’s story of battling demons and protecting their loved ones from the evil that goes bump in the night. I took to the twins in the first book Slayer, as they were fierce and loyal, and they protected one another no matter the cost.

However, in Chosen, things are a little different when Artemis decides to leave her family behind and venture out on her own, to find herself and to come to terms with the fact that she will never be a Slayer.

This book didn’t miss a beat. I was thrown right back into the chaos of a Slayer’s life, leaving little time to process all the action and betrayal that brewed in every chapter. Characters that I grew to love turned into people I didn’t even recognize. No one was safe from corruption, which made this story quite interesting.

Nina was by far my favourite character. She remained loyal and selfless while battling her inner demons. Her strength was remarkable, and I rooted for her until the very end. Her twin, however, lost my respect. She was annoying and whiny, and not even close to the same character she was in Slayer. She made my blood boil, and I wish that she wasn’t so prominent throughout the book. I understand why Kiersten White took the direction she did, I just wish it wasn’t at the expense of a character I’d grown to love. 

Overall this book was very enjoyable. The action was non-stop, and I couldn’t stop reading if I tried. There were a few plot points that I guessed, leaving little room for surprise, but the storyline itself made up for the poor plot twists. I’m giving Chosen four stars. I wish that the author was planning more books for this series, but sadly that is not the case. I plan on reading more from Kiersten White in the future.

Kiersten White is the New York Times bestselling author of the And I Darken trilogy, the Paranormalcy trilogy, Beanstalker and Other Hilarious ScarytalesThe Dark Descent of Elizabeth FrankensteinSlayer, and many other novels. Kiersten lives with her family in sunny San Diego, California, where she perpetually lurks in the shadows. Visit her at http://www.kierstenwhite.com.

Movie Review

Cinema Sunday (6) | October 25th – 31st

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I originally created Cinema Sunday last year so that each Sunday I could step away from books and do a review of a movie that I’ve recently watched instead. I love movies so much because they bring stories to life. If you want to participate in this blog meme, feel free to use my banner, and don’t forget to link back to my Cinema Sunday section on my blog! I can’t wait to see your posts! 

I’ve decided to change things up a bit though. Instead of doing one big review, I’ve decided to do mini-reviews for all the movies that I’ve seen during the week. You can put your own spin on Cinema Sunday, by doing one or multiple reviews. By simply talking about all the movies you’ve seen during the week. By talking about movies you can’t wait to see! I want everyone to feel like they have room to be creative. To make this blog meme work for everyone who loves movies and wants to talk about them.



Fantasy Island (2020)
⭐️⭐️1/2
I watched this movie as soon as I saw that Lucy Hale was one of the actors. I love her so much, and Truth or Dare was one of my favourite horror movies last year. This one fell a little flat for me. It was well executed, but I didn’t find the actors very convincing, like it was all some big joke that people were dying. I get that horror films are over the top. But this one went way above and beyond being over the top.


The Holidate (2020)
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
This movie had me laughing and crying. Emma Roberts is phenomenal no matter what role she takes on, and this movie was no different. She killed it. The characters were hilarious and heartfelt and it was the perfect fall movie to watch curled up in my blankets. I love romantic comedy’s in general, but this one is definitely going on my favourites list.

What movies have you watched this week? Let’s chat about it all in the comments! And don’t forget to put your links to your Cinema Sunday post in the Link Wizard!!

Movie Review

Cinema Sunday (5) | October 18th – 24th

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I originally created Cinema Sunday last year so that each Sunday I could step away from books and do a review of a movie that I’ve recently watched instead. I love movies so much because they bring stories to life. If you want to participate in this blog meme, feel free to use my banner, and don’t forget to link back to my Cinema Sunday section on my blog! I can’t wait to see your posts! 

I’ve decided to change things up a bit though. Instead of doing one big review, I’ve decided to do mini-reviews for all the movies that I’ve seen during the week. You can put your own spin on Cinema Sunday, by doing one or multiple reviews. By simply talking about all the movies you’ve seen during the week. By talking about movies you can’t wait to see! I want everyone to feel like they have room to be creative. To make this blog meme work for everyone who loves movies and wants to talk about them.


I’m quite shocked to say that I have not watched any movies this week! Between catching up on some books and enjoying my local Halloween events, I simply haven’t found the time to sit down and submerse myself into a movie.

But just because I haven’t watched any movies this week, doesn’t mean that I am not excited to see what you guys have watched this week! Leave your links down below!


What movies have you watched this week? Let’s chat about it all in the comments!

Book Review

Review | Girls on the Verge by Sharon Biggs Waller

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Girls on the Verge
Author: Sharon Biggs Waller
Published: April 9th 2019
Publisher: Henry Holt & Co.
Pages: 229
Genres: Contemporary,
Rating: 4 Stars

Synopsis

A powerful, timely coming-of-age story about a young woman from Texas who goes on a road trip with two friends to get an abortion, from award-winning author Sharon Biggs Waller.

Camille couldn’t be having a better summer. But on the very night she learns she got into a prestigious theater program, she also finds out she’s pregnant. She definitely can’t tell her parents. And her best friend, Bea, doesn’t agree with the decision Camille has made.

Camille is forced to try to solve her problem alone . . . and the system is very much working against her. At her most vulnerable, Camille reaches out to Annabelle Ponsonby, a girl she only barely knows from the theater. Happily, Annabelle agrees to drive her wherever she needs to go. And in a last-minute change of heart, Bea decides to come with.

Girls on the Verge is an incredibly timely novel about a woman’s right to choose. Sharon Biggs Waller brings to life a narrative that has to continue to fight for its right to be told, and honoured.

Review

When I picked up Girls on the Verge, I thought the story was going to be a fluffy contemporary involving a road trip and a little romance. There was a road trip, but there was nothing fluffy and romantic about this book. Girls on the Verge covers heavy-hitting topics, including abortion, the unjust laws in Texas that leave girls feeling judged and alone, and religion. This book shows just how far women are willing to go to fight for their rights in choosing what to do with their bodies. If you are triggered by these subjects or disagree with my opinion, I do encourage you to leave this review. I think that everyone is entitled to their own opinions and beliefs. And that we should all respect one another, instead of critiquing or trying to change another’s opinion. I hope you can understand what I am trying to say.

Camille finds out she is pregnant at 17 and has decided that she wants an abortion. This book is all about the lengths that Camille has to go to fulfill her wishes. My heart ached for Camille immediately. She was going through such a hard time in her life, and she felt like she couldn’t count on anyone. Her best friend didn’t approve of her choices, leaving a huge wedge in their relationship. Her parents didn’t know, because Camille was too ashamed to admit that she made such a terrible mistake.

This book brought out so many emotions from me. I was angry, sad and empathetic. I never knew what emotion would shine because it usually changed each chapter. There were so many ups and downs. These girls just couldn’t seem to catch a break.

I think this book has a very important message. It came out at a perfect time, as women are getting judged harshly every day for decisions that should be ultimately up to them. The law should not get a say when it comes to decisions that will affect our bodies and our future. I may not have chosen the same path as Camille. But I still support her decision because no one should be able to make it for her. Camille knows what she wants. And who are we to tell her she can’t?

I didn’t realize how much this book impacted me until I started writing this review. I applaud the author. She wrote a story that she believed in. She wrote a story on a very sensitive top that had high chances of getting judged and torn apart. But she followed her heart, taking a stand for the woman that can’t speak up for themselves. And I am proud to have shared her thoughts during this book.

I give this book four stars. It was very well crafted, and it opened my eyes to the fact that women don’t have equal reproductive rights throughout this world. I am very fortunate to live where I do, and I hope that one day women, no matter the age, will feel comfortable enough to express their desires and not be judged or mortified. They should be taken care of, as it is a very vulnerable time for them. My heart goes out to all the girls that were not listened to, that were forced to make a decision that they did not believe in, and that suffered because of it.

Sharon Biggs Waller is the Friends of American Writers award winning author of the critically acclaimed young adult novels The Forbidden OrchidA Mad, Wicked Folly, and Girls on the Verge. She writes for magazines about horses, chickens, and farming, and she’s a co-author of The Original Horse Bible. Previously, she worked as a riding instructor at the Royal Mews in Buckingham Palace and as a national park ranger at Indiana Dunes National Park, Grand Canyon National Park, and Cabrillo National Monument. In addition to writing, she is a dressage rider and trainer, a fiber artist, and a Planned Parenthood clinic escort. She lives on a 10-acre sustainable hobby farm in a ghost town in Northwest Indiana with her husband Mark, two horses, ten dairy goats, four cats, three dogs, ten laying hens, and a gaggle of geese.