Monday Mystery Mime

Every week, our friends at Feathers and Toast produce a mysterious mime for you to guess. Well, not you, because you never guess, or if you do, you keep it to yourself, which we can only assume is because you do not need any accolade or self esteem boost. Well, good for you, carry on just as you are.

Those people who did take the time to guess, and guess correctly last week were Janet Martin and Deva Palmier, who both correctly guessed toothpaste being squeezed. Well done.

Here is this week’s mime. We will give you the answer next week so you can see if your silent guesses are correct, or, if you do need a little boost, pop a guess in the comments.


Guns – A Poem By Jane Jago

Guns don’t kill people, he said

With a wag of his hoary old head

Can’t we make him confess

That the deaths would be less

If he had knitting needles instead

© jane jago 2017

To see the complete list of Jane Jago’s books go to:

Badger’s Next Batch of Book Reviews

I know, I’ve been quiet on the old book review front lately, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been reading, oh no. So here, for your viewing pleasure is my latest batch.  Since it’s been a while I’ll run through how my grading system works for those who might have forgotten. I grade out of ten, because I don’t believe that five is enough to represent the variety of books available. Because Amazon and Goodreads only give you an “out of five” option, some books which don’t get ten from me, will nonetheless get five on these sites, but I will explain how I come to my conclusion for each book. So, without further ado, the reviews!

Dying to be Roman, by Jane Jago and E.M. Swift-Hook

I loved the concept of this before I read it. Alternative history which explores the concept of “what if the Romans never left”.  The world created here is intricate and has many neat touches, like still having the Colosseum, and gladiatorial displays, lions and more!  The problem for me was that I felt the world building was done at the expense of character development, and whilst the characters clearly had complex histories, these histories were revealed in a very short space of time in a way that wouldn’t naturally occur in normal relationships or conversation.  Equally I felt that the relationship was rather forced along, because that was what was supposed to happen, and I failed to feel any chemistry between the two main characters or see how they were attracted to one another.  That said, the crime solving in a different reality was a fun idea, and we met some interesting characters that I hope to learn more about in future books.

In conclusion, a good idea that would have benefited from more development of characters and plot, but definitely a world I will revisit in the sequel. This gets seven out of ten, or three out of five.


Syncopated Rhythm by Erik Schubach 

I won an audio copy on this in a competition in a Facebook group, and as I never win anything, it was very exciting.  I haven’t done audible before, and I downloaded an app and everything, it was all very high tech.  I won the book after reading an interview with Erik, and I remember thinking he is writing for all the right reasons, but being dubious as to whether he would be able to write convincing queer women.  I am pleased to say that he does a bang up job, and I did not question the characters or their motives once.  The story skipped along nicely, never once leaving me bored, and the narrator did a great job differentiating all of the characters.  I had to smile at how much of a concerted effort was made to diversify ALL of the characters, but I did think he did a great job reflecting all genders, sexualities and disabilities.  There were typos and repeated words, which I noticed through the narration, but that didn’t grate me as much as they would have had I been reading it, as it is hard to turn off your editor head.

So, in short, I liked the concept, and the story as a bit of escapism.  Not great literature but good entertainment, and for that and a decent narrator who deserves a nod for a good performance it gets eight out of ten, or four out of five.


Batwoman Volume 1: Hydrology TP by J H Williams III

I quite enjoy a graphic novel every now and again (I may have mentioned already) and Batwoman was downright brilliant, actually.  Not many of you know this, as I keep it to myself, but I am actually Batman.  Without any of the gear, money, dashing good looks or sidekicks, but in spirit at least, but Batman has such a long history, it just seems a bit daunting to know where to begin.  Batwoman is new, and I can start at the beginning and follow her journey.

The artwork was fantastic, the story compelling.  I loved all the subplots and twists they managed to squeeze into a short book.  I read it in two sittings and it left me wanting to know what happens next. My only criticism is that it was too short!

So, that’s nine out of ten for this, or five out of five.

The Rose Thief by Claire Buss

This is a brilliantly clever book that had me gripped from the beginning.  It is an homage to Terry Pratchett in its witty writing style, yet so utterly unique in story that you will wonder where on earth (or beyond) the writer found her inspiration.  The world is so intricately built that you can visualise every step the characters take on their journey, and the very British humour had me laughing out loud in places.  This is another one where I felt that the romance could have spent more time developing, as it struck me as a bit sudden, but the characters all had such unique and cleverly drawn personalities that I was just enjoying them for what they were.  If you like Pratchett you won’t be disappointed, this was a fabulous read and gets nine out of ten, or five out of five.


Monday Mystery Mime

Every week our friends at Feathers and Toast perform a mystery mime for you to guess.  We announce the answers and the winners the following week.  The winners are never you lot, because you don’t enter. We know you’re there, lurking, so why don’t you just have a go? Ah, what’s the point.

Last week’s mime was a bubbling cauldron. Hadie Mansfield, Paul Uhler, Melissa Spors Hubbard and Linda Henderson Eubanks all guessed correctly, so well done to them.

The clue for this week’s mime is something you squeeze a couple times a day, like that’ll help. Anyway, it’s below.

And Feathers and Toast also provided our #MemeMonday meme this week. It’s like they’re taking over!


A Monday Poem

I must tell you there is no surprise

When big men touch other folks’ thighs

If parliament is shocked

We should just say: oh f**k

It’s been happening under your eyes

© jane jago 2017


To see the complete list of Jane Jago’s books go to:

7 Questions

Today’s 7 Questions are with Leslie Owen, actor, writer and literary agent, so of course we had many probing and deep questions for her to consider, including her taste in sandwiches and how she feels about dressing up dogs.

1. How did you become a literary agent? Were you a writer first?

I first published at 16, but I wrote the first story I remember writing at six.  My mother claims I wrote before then.  I was a stringer for several newspapers, wrote my own sports column, and had a New England Press Association Pass at 16.  I graduated from university with a degree in writing and English Lit, and instead of going to Brown for grad school, got a job as an editorial assistant at Harcourt Brace Jovanovich in NY.  Then I was hired by Henry Morrison, Inc (agent to Robert Ludlum, David Morrell, et al) as a PA and became director of foreign rights & a junior agent.  I was still writing, short fiction and libretti, involved in the opera world.  I’ve always worked in publishing until I moved to Florida and started teaching.  Now I do both.  And write.

2. What do you look for in a submission, what advice would you give to desperate, erm, aspiring authors?

I’m looking for something that excites me, something I know there’s a market for, something I know I personally can sell.  I’ve repped both adult books and children’s books, so it’s just a matter of finding the right clients.  I’m a boutique agency, very small, still getting started.  I have about 10 clients, almost more than I can handle without help.  Advice?  Write a good story.  Good stories will always sell.  Work on your craft, read widely, network.  Traditional publishing is always 3 years ahead, so anything trending now is already over.

3. Someone said you do a spot of acting, what’s that about then?

I started working in the world of opera when I was still in university, in order to write libretti.  I took play-writing classes from Edward Albee and learned the theatre from the ground up.  I’ve done props, lights, sound, tech, stage managed, directed, and lately, I’ve been performing with First City Shakespeare, a Shakespeare troupe here in Pensacola which supports our sister organisation, one of the oldest teen Shakespeare companies in the US, Southeastern Teen Shakespeare.  Just got done with 32 performances of our Halloween show, which is our biggest fundraiser for Setsco.  I’ll be writing for 24 Hour Theatre next.

4. Do you have a writing project at the moment? Tell us about it?

I’m finishing my third novel, The Mortal Part, with 25,000 words or so to go.  It’s the story of Scottish actor Sir Hugh Ross, 72, who comes home from the market and the gym one Monday to find that his beloved husband, actor/jazz singer Jonathan Weir, 58, has died in bed, from complications of diabetes.  The story follows the first year of Jewish mourning for Hugh (Jonno was a practicing Jew), from sitting Shiva to the unveiling of the headstone. 

5. What are you most proud of?

Currently?  When I said hi to Jane Yolen at DragonCon — it’s been quite a while since I’ve seen her — she told me that children’s books needed me to come home.  In general, though, I think I’ve gotten some really good writers and books published, and my children’s science book, Pacific Tree Frogs, was a top ten pick in Canada.

6. How do you feel about pet couture?

My little sister dresses up her three dogs and two of her cats.  I think it’s weird, but her photos are always amusing.  I own a Bengal and value my limbs.  The most my Border collie ever tolerated was a bandanna after her grooming. My other cat, Ole, was a feral rescue, and he’d probably hide under the bed for the rest of his life if I put a costume on him.

7. Describe your ideal sandwich.

An honest-to-goodness Reuben from Katz’s Deli in NYC.  We do have a local deli that makes a good cream cheese, lox, tomato, red onion, and capers bagel (sesame seed).



Monday Mystery Mime

Once again, our friends at Feathers and Toast bring you the weekly mystery mime for your guessing pleasure. Have a go, put a guess in the comments, we won’t bite. Winners announced next week.

And last week’s mime was a pumpkin being carved and the winners were Richard Goldman, Linda Henderson Eubanks and Deva Palmier.  If you guessed it too, well done. Post a comment next time. What is actually wrong with you?!

Anyway. Here’s the mime…. honestly, we don’t know why we bother…

And Feathers and Toast are also bringing us #MemeMonday with this Halloween inspired Meme.


Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween from everyone at Newsnibbles.

If you haven’t entered our Facebook competition yet, click here to do it. You have until Midnight.

If you want something spooky (or just different) to read before then, the Sparkly Badgers of Facebook have come through again.  These books are all free today only, so hop over to Amazon and snap up some Halloween reading.

Don’t forget to thank the author by leaving a review!

Lineage: A Beginning by C H Clepitt

Dying to Be Roman by Jane Jago and E.M. Swift-Hook

Aaspa’s Eyes by Jane Jago

Only the Few by L.N. Denison

The Dragon Warrior of Kri: A Shiva XIV Story by Lyra Shanti

And released today (on permanent free) is

The Corpseriders: A Tale of Aegis Immemorial by SR Jones


A Nonsense Poem

Tweedleeast and Tweedlewest

resolved to go to war

For Tweedlewest said Tweedleeast

had really gone too far

And as they spoke, the silverbacks

hid ‘neath the bed and shook

For Tweedleast said Tweedlewest

would soon be brought to book

Tweedlewest and Tweedleeast

did huff and puff and shout

And women in suburbia

cried “who will help us out”

The Slavic eagle heard their cries

his wingspan blocked the light

Which frightened both our heroes so

they clean forgot to fight

© jane jago 2017



Sparkly Badgers Presents…

Halloween Spooktacular Giveaway!

Trick or Read…

Sparkly Badgers are a collaborative group of indie authors who meet once a week on Twitter, using the hashtag #SparklyBadgersUnite.  They love each other so much that they have also started a Facebook Group to share ideas and tips for the rest of the week!

One such idea was to celebrate the spookiest night of the year with a fabulous ebook giveaway.  Prizes include:

The Fated Sky by E.M. Swift-Hook
Tales from Suburbia by Claire Buss
Shiva XIV by Lyra Shanti
Norma Jean’s School of Witchery by Rose Montague
Murder in Absentia by Assaph Mehr
I Wore Heels to the Apocalypse by C H Clepitt
Hunting Darkness by Ian Bristow
Dying to be Friends by Jane Jago and E.M. Swift-Hook
Celebrity Gulag by M A Rice
Caligation by Brhi Stokes
Billion Dollar Mountain by Jane Jago

Unobtainable by Jennifer Rose
The Dragon Lady by Angelique Anderson
Quartet by Leo McBride

To be in with a chance of winning this amazing bundle of ebooks, simply comment on the embedded Facebook post tagging a friend you think would love to win two.  One lucky winner will win the entire bundle for them and their friend, straight to their Kindle!

Terms and conditions

By entering the giveaway you agree to the following.

Books will be provided to the winners in the form of a mobi to an email address provided by you.  No alternative prize will be offered. You agree to provide Newsnibbles with your email address for the purposes of providing the prize.  Some authors will be “gifting” the book directly from Amazon. You give Newsnibbles permission to provide these authors with your email address for the purpose of gifting you the book.

Winners will be drawn at random from all of the correct entries and notified via Facebook.

Books are provided by Newsnibbles, on behalf of the author, and are provided as is. Newsnibbles in not responsible for the content and or errors or discrepancies in the files.  Files are provided by the authors in good faith. You agree to indemnify Newsnibbles and its participating authors against any harmful effects ebook files may have on your computer/ereader, including, but not limited to viruses.

You agree to respect the hard work of the authors by not sharing any of the files with anyone else. If you love a book and want to share it, please go to Amazon and buy it as a gift.

Entries will close at midnight on October 31st, and winners will be announced the following day.  If you have not been contacted then you have not been lucky this time.

As always, Facebook is not responsible for the giveaway.