Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Casting Light upon the Shadow: Right to Reply - The Tudors

Casting Light upon the Shadow: Right to Reply - The Tudors: This year I am launching a series of what I hope will be monthly posts, where three authors will give me their opinions on a particular era....

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Fables and Fairy Tales


Once Upon a Time…

What is it about this phrase that captivates our collective consciousness? We all love a fairy tale. Yes, guys you can admit it. We are all friends here. Is it the happily ever after ending? Surely it isn’t Prince Charming or the kiss that leads to bliss. Is it the thought of living with seven little men in the woods? No, it’s none of these, is it? We can make our own happy ending; we no longer need anyone to do it for us. As for the Big Bad Wolf, we can be the Big, Bad Cougar if we so choose, so why the enduring charm of the fairy tale? At this most magical time of the year, let’s take a moment to try and understand the mystique of the simple fairy tale. Those parables, myths, fables and legends which stay within our culture and bring meaning to us.

Why do these stories bewitch and enchant us? They are the same tales, retold and revised. From Cinderella to Snow White remixed into Beauty and the Beast and Pretty Woman. We watch cartoons, read books and comic books, watch movies, the children’s books evolve into the grown-up versions, and we still watch the movies, read the books and continue to love them. A sad, ugly little girl gets a chance to spend one night away from their usual humdrum existence. Let’s say she gets to stay out late, leaving a shoe behind, because she wants to get home before she gets caught…before the spell is broken.
Exactly what is it that resonates within us to make a story like this timeless? It is because we are that sad, ugly, scared little child. At one point in our lives, we have all been waiting for someone to notice how very special we are, behind those braces on our teeth and thick glasses. Fairy tales are our broken experiences- that is why they are classics. The stories continue to swirl and develop around us as we grow. As we break and mend, the stories do the same. They give us something to believe in, something bigger than ourselves.

Be strong.
Believe.
Find the beauty within.
Love.

Cinderella isn’t the only tale that charms us. The non-fiction story of Anne Boleyn intrigues to this day because Anne, as a young girl who wasn’t considered beautiful, still captured the heart of a king and changed the destiny of a nation and history itself, all for love. Although the story of Anne Boleyn had a tragic ending during her lifetime, the romantic concept remains with us to this day and has made her story with Henry VIII immortal, a love that time cannot erase.

Consider how many different ways stories like The Wizard of Oz, Snow White, Romeo and Juliet, Batman, Superman lure us…they all teach us lessons of right and wrong. The stories are rewoven, retold over the years. How do fairy tales stay popular for so long? We fill in the gaps with ourselves, and as our culture changes, we bring our stories with us. Each generation brings its insight, concepts and ideas into the paradigm. Thus has it ever been throughout the human experience. On a cultural level, we adapt as our society reinvents itself. Hence, the continuing popularity.

Sleeping Beauty awakens at the right moment.
Superman fights for truth and goodness.
Romeo and Juliet remind us that there is a love so bright, life itself becomes dim in comparison.

Fairy tales break the key rules of character development. With their quirks and strange nuances, the characters of fairy tales are one dimensional, when reading the traditional versions. The same could be said for many of our most retold stories. We project ourselves into the stories as a method of filling in the missing pieces. It is a process of identification…self-identification that brings the stories to life.

Could this be the attraction? When a character and a story gives us spaces, we fill them with our imaginations? With so much to explore, there’s no end to the possibilities, are there? The end results are personal and compelling.

If the ugly duckling can become a swan and the lonely child can grow up to conquer the world, anything can happen. Does the secret lie in the fact that we all want to believe in the magic of possibilities? We believe deep within ourselves that dreams can come true?


We continue to immerse ourselves in fictional, mystical realms filled with magical people and evocative fantasies, even if the story reflects a contemporary setting. Many yarns continue to enchant, no matter how often we spin them anew.


What story captures your imagination every time it is retold?

Tuesday, September 15, 2015


Chaos reigns in a lawless time filled with revenge and betrayals. Following the American Civil War, the Southern States are reeling under the revenge taken on them by the victors.
Casey King must change her name, fake a marriage and forget modern comforts to survive within the world she now finds herself - 1873 post-Civil War Reconstruction Era Chattanooga, Tennessee... a world full of violence and mystery.

The charismatic Dr. Garrett Cleighton, a mixed heritage Cherokee, decides to give her a part in his traveling medicine show. Casey takes a chance in order to hide her secrets. Dr. Cleighton could betray her or he might keep his promises. Can his band of musicians, entertainers and misfits keep Casey safe through the turmoil? Will she survive?

Author Hunter S. Jones mixes romance with Civil War drama and brings contemporary suspense to life in the setting of the Reconstruction South.

Slip into the past with Secrets from a Dangerous Time, Story 1. The journey begins today via Amazon.



Sunday, September 6, 2015

SECRETS from a DANGEROUS TIME


Chaos reigns in a lawless time filled with revenge and betrayals. Casey King must change her name, fake a marriage and forget modern comforts to survive within the world she now finds herself. An unprecedented storm hurls her back in time to Reconstruction Era in Chattanooga, Tennessee. She finds herself in a world full of violence and mystery.

The charismatic Dr. Garrett Cleighton, a mixed heritage Cherokee, decides to give her a part in his traveling medicine show. Casey takes a chance in order to hide her secrets. Following the American Civil War, the Southern States are reeling under the revenge taken on them by the victors. Does Dr. Cleighton keep his promises or betray her? Can his band of musicians, entertainers and misfits keep Casey safe through the turmoil? Will she survive?

Author Hunter S. Jones mixes romance with Civil War drama and brings contemporary suspense to life in the setting of the Reconstruction South. The journey begins in Secrets from a Dangerous Time, Story 1.
Look for the Kindle link as we prepare for launch on September 14, 2015. Shared via MadeGlobal Publishing. Cover design by Robin Ludwig. 

Saturday, May 16, 2015

PHOENIX RISING Excerpt by Hunter Jones #AnneBoleyn


 7AB
We walk down the steps from the Queen’s Apartments. Sir Kingston walks with me and the ladies walk behind us. The morning sun kisses my face. The daffodils are in bloom and the birds sing like any other radiant spring morning. Surely even Nature would know if the hour of death was approaching for an anointed Queen Regnant of England. It must be a sign of hope for me. I will be rescued at the last moment. This is all part of the public humiliation Henry wishes. He wants all to witness as I bow to his greatness, then he will pardon me for sins against the Crown and banish me to a nunnery, much like Cranmer promised.
If not, then I face the morning with courage. If I am to be punished, it is for my own sins. The last few years swiftly pass before my mind’s eye. What had caused the change? Certainly the miscarriage of a son had been a part of Henry’s outrage. But what made him turn against me in such haste? Again, the unseen troubadour’s voice pleads for the love of his lady; his song is as sweet as the one sung by the birds around me, yet as mournful as the questioning of my own heart.
The air crackles around me and I breathe in slowly, filling myself with a new energy and a prayer. I must balance and maintain a sense of equilibrium. Courage and strength are to uphold me; that is my silent prayer.
Henry surely hasn’t pledged himself to her, although he has always been much like a crow, in that anything dangled before him which glimmers will capture his eye. My heart breaks at the thought. If he had fallen for a woman of wealth, taste, or great nobility, I could forgive. But Jane? She is nothing. Bringing myself from the daydream, I see the crowd that awaits us as we move closer to the edge of the White Tower. There we will take a turn toward Tower Green. One way or another, either death or escape await me. I am ready to face whatever God wishes for me. All I pray for is an answer that will serve the greater good of the King, and an end to my pain.
JaneExcerptpicforblog
 The maid woke me as she walked across the room to light the candle opposite my bed. Hearing me move underneath the covers, I see her silhouette curtsy in the outline against the background of daylight peeking through the window.
“So sorry for waking you, my great and beautiful lady,” she whispers. I hear the trembling of fear in her voice.
“Oh, there is no need to worry yourself, my dear girl. This is the best of days to wake early. Thank you for waking me. I couldn’t be more delighted. Today is the day for which we have longed! You do me a very great favour. I am to be fitted for my wedding dress on this very morning.”
“Thank you, Lady Jane. May I bring you anything from the kitchens?” she asks.
“Not at this time, but would you move the covering from the window? I wish to invite the beauty of this day into our home and into our hearts. This is the day all of England has waited for. Today, a traitor dies and the King will be free to see his will done for the greater good of us all,” I say.
Now fate has led me to today. It is the wish of God and the King. I am to become the wife of the King of England. How could any woman think to maintain the affections of a man if all she did was meddle and rant about his business? This is an especially tiresome trait when his business is the future of England.
The tapping on the door let me know my ladies had arrived to ready me for the fitting of the dress the King had ordered. My time has come. All I pray for is the ability that will serve the greater good of the King, and an end to his pain.
(c) 2015

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Phoenix-Rising

PHOENIX RISING

The last hour of Anne Boleyn’s life…
Court intrigue, revenge and all the secrets of the last hour are revealed as one queen falls and another rises to take her place on destiny’s stage.
A young Anne Boleyn arrives at the court of King Henry VIII. She is to be presented at the Shrovetide pageant, le Ch√Ęteau Vert. The young and ambitious Anne has no idea that a chance encounter before the pageant will lead to her capturing the heart of the king. What begins as a distraction becomes his obsession and leads to her destruction.
Love, hate, loyalty and betrayal come together in a single dramatic moment… the execution of a queen. The history of England will be changed for ever.

Available globally on Amazon via Kindle and in paperback, May 19, 2015