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~~~~Like Shards of Glass Excerpt ~~~



The love, whatever they felt, was fragmented from the beginning; in this scene, it all comes to the surface. The hatred, the naivete, the denial, the co-dependence; it’s all around them.

Chapter 16  Placarder
Monroe: Ashes in the middle of nowhere~

“Oh, what, Dominique? What? Depressed? Did you realize she’s old, and she probably didn’t want to live here, in this dead-end ass world, anymore?”

Reaching down to put on his coat, Dominique shrugged. “Forget it.”

“No.” Looking back at him, rising to my feet, I pointed up at him. “For a while now you been hinting at wanting to talk. At not being okay. I try to look at you and imagine – and it just pisses me off. You acting like things are so bad for you. I hate when you act like your life is just so bad. So weak!”

“You say a lot, lately. Complain a lot, I mean. And you sleep even more. It’s just too much.” Staring up at him, my chest was lighter from telling him what I thought; my heart was heavy as he raised his head to look into my eyes.

“Me?” he said.
“Don’t look at me like that.”
“I just wanted –”
“To be heard. Babied. What!”
“Heard? Isn’t that what people do when they care? Listen to each other? No?” He ran his hands over his face. “You don’t give. You just take, and you –”

“Go home, Dominique. Stiff your mother on bills. Judge your friends. Get high. Quit your job every other week. Skip funerals because it’s too much. Death is too much. Being a man is too much. Go use a messed up, desperate older woman, for all you can get out of her, and –”

“No! And Dominique, when she’s at the bottom of her rope, you tell her what she’s not doing for you! How worthless she is! God knows one foot’s already six feet under, now you bury her! Go on! Throw more dirt! Bury me!”

(…) He stared at me, stepped toward me, then backed away. His hands trembled at his sides. Whatever he felt, whatever I felt, our hatred toward what we’d become – all of it was at war – plain in the open.



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Enter to win bookmarks, print books, “shard” jewelry, a pre-made book cover, a gift card, and ebooks by authors Beth Kaufman, Ey Wade,

JD MaderLaurie BorisLaura LaRoche, Julie Frayn

David RowinskiRosanne Dingli,

Robin Owens, and Jackie Williams.


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Hello&Welcome, Andria!


Would you like to share a bit about yourself?

Hi! My name is Andria and I run a blog called the Military Spouse Book Review. It’s a little space on the internet for women who are connected to the military in some form (wives, veterans) who also happen to love books. We review books, interview authors, just geek out. You don’t have to be a military spouse to read the blog, comment, etc. Anyone’s welcome!  And we love all kinds of books; most are not military-related. But I do try to profile military spouses and female veterans who write. (www.militaryspousebookreview.com)

I’m also a writer myself — I have a novel coming out from Random House in 2016, but we keep changing the title! It should be nailed down in a few weeks.

When did you fall in love with reading?

When I was about four. My brother is six years younger than me, so I had quite a bit of time to fill there by myself before he came along.

Do you remember your favorite places to read throughout the years?

I love a sunny spot more than anything else. Reading with the sun hitting you just enough to make you feel cozy — that’s heaven! In front of a fireplace would be a close second. I would also say “on the beach,” but it’s been so many years since I’ve been on a beach without having to keep crazy vigilance over some small child or another, I can’t even remember what that’s like! Someday, I expect to enjoy reading on the beach again.

I read a great meme about “e-books versus paperback” … do you have a preference, or do you think it is silly that people can’t simply agree that both are great in their own way?

Yeah, that comparison IS silly. Of course they are each great in their own way. I know so many people who read e-books — on lunch breaks at work, while traveling, while waiting for their kids at practices, etc….. there’s a wonderful versatility to the e-book. In some ways an e-book feels almost more immediate, because the story can pop more easily in and out of someone’s day. It’s already on their phone or computer, so there’s less of a chance they’ll forget it at home, and if they’re on the bus or in the dentist’s office — there’s their book! Just waiting to whisk them into another world.


Do you have a favorite genre, or do you like to explore any and all books?

I’m definitely a literary fiction kind of gal.


What book has most inspired you, brought you to tears, or changed your perspective?

Oh, boy. I really loved The Odd Sea by Frederick Reiken. It’s a novel told from the point of view of a preteen boy whose older brother walks out of the house one day and never comes back. In the following years, the family tries to find him, tries to make sense of what has happened….it is so profoundly moving and beautiful.

Have you ever found a book so disturbing, that you couldn’t finish it, or had to leave it and come back?

Not really…. I think I can face most things pretty head-on. I remember reading Bastard Out of Carolina and having a hard time with that one, though. Some E. Annie Proulx stories have nearly given me nightmares: “The Half-Skinned Steer” — dear God.


Who are some of your favorite supporting characters? Antagonists?

Ohhh, good question! I love both Jeannie and The Colonel from Philipp Meyer’s The Son — they’re larger-than-life. Nick in The Great Gatsby. For hilarious minor characters, Maggie Shipstead’s Seating Arrangements had them in spades. For a really great antagonist, Zenia in Margaret Atwood’s The Robber Bride is just cold as ice and a thrill to read.


Are there books that you find yourself revisiting? (Either in your mind or literally picking up the book to reread it again and again).

Yes, yes, yes! I have some books I reread regularly because they make me feel something that I want to tap into again.

Have you ever absolutely adored an author, gotten to know too much about them or watched the writer in interviews, and been completely turned off? Even from reading their books?

Not really. I expect some major authors to kind of be jerks, so when I found out that one is, it’s almost a little delightful. Well, one exception: Salman Rushdie just seems so self-absorbed in interviews. He always talks about dating supermodels, and I’m like, Really?

If you could introduce two characters from two different books you have read, who would they be and why?

That’s fun! I’d like the Wife of Bath from the Canterbury Tales to end up at Clarissa Dalloway’s dinner party. She’d spice things up a bit.


Your favorite book to movie adaptation? Your favorite book to television series? What books are you excited to see on the big screen/as a television series?

I think literary fiction is really hard to take from book to film. Some of my favorite books have been made into abysmal movies. The Handmaid’s Tale and A Map of the World were both phenomenal books turned into dud movies.

As for films that worked — The English Patient, of course. The Wizard of Oz. Argo (that was an article first, not a book, but it was perfect movie fodder). Game of Thrones, I’ve only seen and not read, but I’m pretty hooked, even though it regularly offends my delicate sensibilities.

I just read that Philipp Meyer’s The Son is being made into a series for AMC, so I’m excited to watch that whenever it comes out.

Thank you so much for the questions, Rhonda! These were really fun to answer.

Thank you, Andria! Please, stop by and visit, again, soon!

Connect with Andria online:

The Military Spouse Book Review





If I’m anxious or sad, I look forward to art. If I am unsure, I create. If I am too tired to think clearly, I daydream about art. I do … and I’m not sorry. I  drown my sorrows in art and creativity. drownsorrows

My latest project, (my children’s book, which I wrote 2 years ago, and am now going through editing) is keeping my perfectly focused on … staying distracted and out of my head.

Thanks, author/illustrator Ey Wade, for beautiful artwork!

Sneak Peek:


art from “I am Special because I am Ty”

Quick post. Short and sweet:

People are so busy jumping down women’s throats, that I can’t even stomach it. There’s no way to justify (in general) the things abusers do, just to feel big and bad, or to heal their voids. And right now, I’m not talking about “provoking”. Not talking about how it’s wrong of a woman to hit a man or spit on him etc. All I’m saying, is that I hope and pray, one day, people will let go of remarks like: “Why did she stay?” “Why does she go back and forth?” “Who is stupid enough to marry and have children with someone who verbally/physically abuses him/her?”

If you take a moment, before blurting this out, you’d realize, this helps no one. And if you’re not speaking in an effort to motivate or inspire men/women to leave these situations, and you’re speaking with no sort of empathy, then why speak at all? I’ll leave you with this: ABUSERS PUT JUST AS MUCH ENERGY INTO BRAINWASHING, MANIPULATING, AND ISOLATING, AS THEY DO PHYSICALLY AND VERBALLY ATTACKING.

My inspiration struck me like a lightning bolt almost a decade ago, and it is the reason why I write: I noticed that many people were judging the woman who chose not to leave, assuming that she was weak, or saying that she deserved to suffer, if she was not ‘smart’ enough to leave. In my opinion, through everything that happens in life, we have to remember to relate to one another; that is what inspired my novel, Just Beneath the Surface.

The things being said bothered me, but the fact that those ideas were a misunderstanding, more than anything, inspired me. If I could change just one point of view, I thought to myself. This is when I created the first main character: a strong, confident woman named Kendall, who stumbles into a relationship that literally brings her face to face with death. I wanted to show the gradual transformation from Kendall’s initial confidence, to her frequently questioning herself, second guessing her instincts, then eventually losing her voice, and the essence of who she is.

quotekendallrecite-17934-1456724541-1e9am9q quotesand-when-you-stayed quotAt-least-he-apologizedQuotesCover-pic85death q-whatif-recite-625-661272602-ktt9ec thatfeelingwhen3  Just Beneath the Surface (Amazon)