Monday, December 3, 2018

DECK THE HALLS: A Holiday Anthology That Benefits The World Literacy Foundation

Title: Happy Holidays: Anthology of Short Stories 
Genre: Holiday Collection 
Benefits: The World Literacy Foundation 
Get it now: On Amazon!


The Happy Holidays Anthology is a collection of fourteen fun, funny or fulfilling short stories from all over the world. 
This anthology has been created for the reader who is caught up in the stress of the holiday season, providing stories that you can dip into at the end of a tiring day or perhaps while planning who will spend what day with which part of the family.
Fourteen authors each created a story especially for this anthology – with stern instructions to provide stories that entertain. This is all in support of World Literacy, so when you read this book you can feel good about supporting a worthy cause whilst having a chuckle!
Special Excerpt, 
Courtesy of Laura Baird, 
one of the contributing authors of 
Happy Holidays 

“Who’s that, mom?” Molly whispered.
“That’s Mary Anne,” her mother softly answered. “She’s the resident I’m worried about.”
“Are we going to go visit with her?”
“We certainly are. Let’s go see if we can talk her into joining us at the party in the common room.”
Molly nodded as she walked with her mom to the woman’s door. Angelica tapped on the doorframe and spoke gently, trying to get her attention. “Hello, Mary Anne, it’s Angelica. I was wondering if my daughter, Molly and I could come in and visit with you.” When she didn’t answer, Molly’s mom took the initiative to enter, walking to Mary Anne’s side. Dollop wiggled in her arms as if ready to run loose, but her mom kept the dog secure, quietly shushing her while stroking her ears.
While her mom kept talking, trying to encourage Mary Anne to join everyone, Molly took a moment to look around the woman’s room. It felt cozy and smelled like roses. There were a few pictures on the wall and small figurines on a table. A bookcase sat near the window, piled with what Molly thought looked like old books. One in particular caught her attention due to its vibrant green cover and an old fashioned picture of four ladies on the front.  It was “Little Women” by Louisa M. Alcott. Molly smiled, remembering the movie she and Joelle had just watched the night before, enjoying the story.
Just as she took a step closer to the books, Molly halted when Dollop let out a whine.
“I’m so sorry,” Angelica started. “I think I better get this little one outside for a moment.  Mary Anne, would you like to walk with us?”
“No, thank you, dear,” the woman answered, barely being heard.
“Okay. How about if Molly stayed and kept you company for a moment?”
Molly whipped her head around to look at her mom, suddenly nervous at the thought of being alone with a stranger. But her mom gave her a wink and a reassuring rub on the back. “I’ll just be a few moments.” Obviously her mom thought it’d be okay, so Molly felt certain she’d be fine. She just wasn’t sure what she should do, being more on the shy side; unlike Joelle, who could talk to just about anyone.
Molly watched her mom walk out the door before turning to look at Mary Anne who continued to silently rock in her chair. Looking closer at the woman, she took in her features of pure white hair nearly curled tight on her head. Delicate glasses rested on her small face. She was dressed nicely in brown slacks and a cream sweater along with brown loafers on her feet. Her pale hands were crossed in her lap, and Molly could see a simple gold band on her left hand.
As the silence drew out, Molly felt the need to say something. “You must like to read,” she started softly. “Your books are pretty.” She instantly cringed, wondering if Mary Anne would think she sounded silly for calling the books pretty. “Are those your favorites? They must be if you keep them. My sister, Joelle, and I just watched the movie “Little Women” last night. It’s a good story.”
“Movies are nothing compared to the book,” Mary Anne answered; her words soft, not unkind. She then turned to look at Molly, bright blue eyes shining behind her glasses. “I’ve read every one of those books many times over, and every time I find something new to appreciate in them”
“Really?” Molly asked in wonder. She couldn’t imagine reading the same book more than once. She’d never read anything that interested her enough to read twice, seeing as she could barely get through her reading assignments in school.
Mary Anne nodded. “Why don’t you open that book and see for yourself?” A smile transformed her face, making her eyes light up even more.
“O-Okay,” Molly said. She reached for the green book just the woman offered her to sit in the chair opposite of her. Molly took a seat and ran her hands over the cover, feeling the texture of the ridges and impressions. She then opened it, light swiping her fingers across the aging pages. She turned to the first chapter, and began reading aloud. “Christmas won’t be Christmas without any presents,” grumbled Jo, lying on the rug.
After reading several paragraphs, Molly looked up to see Mary Anne smiling at her, which instantly made her smile in return. She returned to reading, unaware that her mother had been standing in the doorway. Angelica also smiled before walking away, knowing that all was well.
About the Author 
Wife, mother, former U. S. Army, and dental hygienist, I can now add published author to the list. I’m slowly transitioning out of hygiene, hoping to make writing a full-time endeavor. After writing for many years, my publishing dreams came true in August of 2017 with the release of my debut contemporary romance, “Keyed Up”. Since then, I’ve had the fortune to work with several publishers, and as of June 4th, my eighth title will release.
I write in a variety of romance subgenres: contemporary, comedy, and erotic, with stories containing suspense and small-town romance in the works. I’m constantly learning, loving the journey, and all the amazing people I’m meeting. A voracious reader myself, I strive to put out stories I can be proud of and enjoyed by many.
I grew up on the East Coast and now reside on the West Coast, having lived in FL, GA, SC, MA, ID, and WA. Hubby and I hope to fill our passports with stamps from Scotland and Fiji, to name a few destinations. In the meantime, we’ll enjoy the beauty of the PNW.

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Get fictional - it's fun! Thanks for stopping by, and I hope to see you again soon!