Book Review: Poppy Woods




POPPY WOODS: Nothing could break her spirit by [Adam, Lilly]


Fans of Victorian fiction are sure to enjoy this novel by Lilly Adam.  The illegitimate daughter of Lady Margaret Hutchinson and her lover, Poppy enters a world of rejection and adversity.  Refusing to even look at her daughter, Lady Margaret pays her housemaid, Nelly Driver, to take Poppy away.  Nelly takes the baby toward the country hamlet of Hurst.  Along the way she stops to rest, but places the infant in a poppy field several feet away so as not to hear her crying.  A passing miscreant named Sidney Woods finds the baby and picks her up, intending to raise her solely as a house slave.  Because he found her in a poppy field, Sidney names the child Poppy.

Abused, neglected, and half starved, Poppy nevertheless exhibits an obedient and pleasant nature.  She finds favor with most of the townspeople and the kind-hearted Greenfield family in particular.  Mrs. Greenfield attends to Poppy’s hygiene and gives her some decent dresses to replace the rags provided by the Woods’.  This arouses Sidney’s ire, causing him to mistreat Poppy even more.  One day, in Poppy’s absence, Sidney kills his wife during an argument.  He tries to lay the blame on Poppy, but the townspeople rally against him and Sidney lands in jail.  The Greenfields open their home to Poppy and during her time there she falls in love with son Arthur.

Arthur, however, falls for the daughter of an Italian family who moves into the Woods cottage.  When a family emergency calls them back to Italy, Arthur follows, hoping to win his new love interest.  A crestfallen Poppy, feeling she has burdened the Greenfields long enough, decides to find work in the city.  Fate reunites her with Nelly Driver, who succeeds in placing Poppy with the Hutchinsons.

Here the story takes a darker turn.  Lady Margaret had not recognized Poppy at first but over time realizes the truth.  As laudanum addiction erodes her mind, her behavior becomes increasingly bizarre.  Poppy must endure Nelly’s death, a kidnapping that places her, as a galley slave, on a ship bound for America, and finally her return to Hurst– only to discover that Sidney has escaped jail and, along with Lady Margaret, now seeks to kill her.  Can she possibly escape?  Dare she hope Arthur will return to save her?

I really came to care for this heroine and to admire the heroic Greenfield family.  While the romantic element was there, it was not overplayed and the suspenseful plot twists kept me turning pages.  In my opinion, it is definitely worth a  look.

You can check the book out here.

© Everthedreamer, 2019 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without written permission from the author is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given.


How To Get Amazon Reviews For Your First Book

So thankful I came across this post. Reviews are something I have struggled with from the beginning. Thanks to Aidan for sharing!

Aidan J. Reid

I REALIZE IT’S BEEN A WHILE since I wrote anything remotely related to authoring. Yeah. It’s a word.

So, I wanted to take a moment to explain what I do to get reviews for my books.

What triggered this particular post was reading the RTE best reads of the year by Sinead Crowley. Some of the listed books are probably wonderfully written (certainly if you judged by the glowing testimonials by critics) but it’s a little depressing to see that they’ve received so few reviews, especially in the much bigger US market.

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Recommended Reads 1

I’ve read a number of books over the last several weeks, and three in particular really stood out, covering subjects ranging from true crime to humor and suspense to historical fiction.  Whatever your pleasure, one of these is sure to strike your fancy!

Corpsewood: A True Crime Like No Other, by Daniel Ellis.   What should have been an inspirational tale of transitioning from harried urban rat race to a simple idyllic life in the country describes instead the lurid, horrifying account of a dream turned into a nightmare.  Mr. Ellis masterfully chronicles Professor Charles Scudder’s metamorphosis from prestigious college professor in Chicago to a self-reliant farmer/survivalist in the dark woods of Georgia, his alleged ties to the occult and mind-control experiments, and the tragic events leading to his murder, which the professor himself depicted in a chilling self-portrait.  The book offers a factual and in-depth account of the police investigation, the arrest and trial of the murderers, and glimpses into Mr. Scudder’s private life, along with the author’s personal visit to the Corpsewood remains with one of the witnesses.  All in all, a gripping read that was hard to put down.


Trouble in Mudbug (Ghost-in-Law Mystery/Romance Book 1) by [DeLeon, Jana]

Trouble in Mudbug, by Jana DeLeon.  Imagine going to your mother-in-law’s funeral, only to watch her climb out of her coffin–and then afterward she pops into your affairs at the most inopportune times!  Frustrated, you tell her off BUT–you’re the only one who can see or hear her, and in public you come off looking like an idiot or worse.  Someone murdered Helena Henry and she wants to know who and why.  Now someone seems bent on killing her daughter-in-law as well.  Add to the mix  a zoologist who’s not really a zoologist and a family friend who is anything but.  This delightful blend of suspense, humor, and spicy romance kept me turning the pages.


The River Of Corn by [Putnam, John Rose]

The River of Corn, by John Rose Putnam.  A fascinating story of Hernando de Soto’s relentless search for gold in the Carolinas, his brutalization of the native tribes, and a slave’s desperate flight to freedom with the beautiful Chicora queen de Soto holds captive.


Life Changes and New Promotions

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I’ve seen a LOT of changes these past few months, some good and others I thought I could never endure.  But looking back I see light and shadow, elation and despair, pain and jubilation all interwoven into the breathtaking tapestry composing my life.  Now, looking forward I choose to embrace life and dwell on the positive, washing bitter negativity into the past on rivers of forgiveness.  I cannot describe the liberation, the freedom, the excitement this new leg of life’s journey has brought me!

I’ve rediscovered my old love, the written word, as both reader and writer and will post reviews of books as I go along.  I am also offering a special end-of-summer $.99-sale on all of my Kindle books.  If you love fantasy and ghost stories, please visit my author page.

In the meantime, I’m working on the tale of how the ghost in my latest book, THE WINDWILDER HAUNTING, entered that unfortunate state.


© Everthedreamer, 2018 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without written permission from the author is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given.


Seeds for a story have finally bloomed!

sandy and MM

Remember this?  Well, the seeds this fire planted have finally bloomed, and at long last THE WINDWILDER HAUNTING, the first book of my BELLA series, is set for publication the middle of this week. . .

Once acclaimed the Crown Jewel of Twin Bridges, Washington, a derelict mansion with a sordid past sits condemned, awaiting demolition. At the eleventh hour its original owner’s great-grandson intervenes to rescue and restore it. But few rejoice, particularly those whose lives the malignancy within those walls destroyed.

When Philip Windwilder opens his home as a museum, Madelyn Springer eagerly signs on as a docent. Her life takes a spellbinding turn when she discovers a portrait painted nearly a hundred years ago of a woman bearing a remarkable resemblance to herself–a resemblance that arouses instant hostility from Lillian Carver, president of the Twin Bridges Historical Society, who remains determined to destroy Windwilder Mansion at any cost.

Madelyn’s intrigue with the enigmatic Windwilder plunges her into a rivalry for his affections with an influential and vindictive socialite. Madelyn redirects her energies to unlocking the mansion’s secrets, and as these come to light weird and frightening manifestations begin to haunt her. But what terrifies her most is that the people most involved in Windwilder Mansion’s affairs are losing their minds and that two of its original inhabitants still walk its halls.


Any history buffs will be happy to know that poor bedraggled house in the top photo has a happy ending and a BRIGHT future!  Learn all about Pasco’s Moore Mansion here!

© Everthedreamer, 2018 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without written permission from the author is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given.

Great to be back!


After a long hiatus I’m back in the saddle and rarin’ to go!

My fantasy trilogy, DARK LORDS OF EPTHELION, is on sale for $1.99 in the Kindle store in celebration of spring’s arrival!  I have also been working hard on finishing the first book of a new paranormal trilogy, BELLA: THE WINDWILDER HAUNTING, which is due to be out within three weeks.  I’m extremely excited about this new series!  I have wanted to write a ghost story for some time, and my involvement in restoring the house that inspired my book made the process double exciting.

Stay tuned for more posts, visit my author page here, and follow me on Twitter.

Bloom Where You Are Planted

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It’s tough to bloom sometimes.  Even in an ideal setting life has a way of throwing us a curve.  I’ve had an especially hard time lately, but today came across a post that served as both an inspiration and a reminder that everyone has their rough stretches.  I’d like to thank for this excellent post, entitled Bloom Where You Are Planted.  Click here to read.