The Week: 26th October – 1st November

Tuggeranong Canberra Australia Sunset 28th October 2015 Sonya Heaney Gowrie Sky Clouds Spring Garden Nature

Wednesday’s sunset in Canberra

Halloween Gowrie Tuggeranong Canberra Australia Sonya Heaney Jack-o-lantern Pumpkin Orange Glitter Sparkles

Halloween… We’re trying in Australia. This is the first year younger generations won out over the older generations’ “We’re not celebrating that American holiday!” whingeing! In the Canberra region we actually did some decent Halloween celebrating on the weekend!

I was so thrilled last night. We went out to dinner at Italian & Sons for a different reason, but while dropping people off on the way home I saw plenty of Halloween parties and decorations. We’ve finally embraced it!

Even though we were out all evening, we did a few decorations:

Halloween Gowrie Tuggeranong Canberra Australia Sonya Heaney Oksana Heaney 31st October 2015

Shameless self-promotion: you can buy my Halloween designs HERE.

It’s a little late for this year, however!

Magpies Tuggeranong Canberra Australia 29th October 2015v Sonya Heaney Birds Native Animals Nature

Here are our idiot magpies I accidentally tamed, and now they hang around ALL day like they’re pet dogs or something! Whenever they want a snack, they turn up, do this, and then look at me and wait for their reward:

I complain about romance authors and readers who say I don’t watch the news because I don’t like hearing bad things. Because, seriously, that’s pathetic, and I bet when something bad happens to them they want people to care!

I can’t care about everything, but two things that matter very much to me are Ukraine, and the treatment of women in India (my family was based there for some time, and while the women were begging us to raise awareness of these issues, Westerners were too busy loving Bollywood dancing to listen or care). People probably remember all the fuss made about that gang rape case a few years ago, but what most don’t realise is that that sort of thing happens EVERY DAY.

This week, some men in India dug up the body of a woman who died from complications from a miscarriage, and raped her, and then left her body naked and twenty metres from her grave. I’m so sick and bloody tired of any little thing in certain countries making international headlines, but nobody ever hears about this sort of stuff! Articles about it: #1 #2

A very good site to read more about female infanticide and dowry deaths and general misogyny in India is 50 Million Missing. The blog’s name refers to the number of women who have disappeared from India’s population. It’s a shocking statistic, and is the number one reason I’m totally against legalising sex-selection for parents.

A Noble Masquerade (Hawthorne House #1) by Kristi Ann Hunter

I reviewed A Noble Masquerade recently, but here is another review of it that I think is spot-on. Especially important is the mention of the North American evangelical Christianity forced into Regency England. This is something Christian publishers do all the time, and it’s ridiculous. Different country, different era, and a different sort of Christian!

My review of Forever His Texas Bride (Bachelors of Battle Creek #3) by Linda Broday

Forever His Texas Bride (Bachelors of Battle Creek #3) by Linda Broday

My review of Wait for Me (The Outback Bachelor Ball #3) by Sarah Mayberry

Wait for Me (The Outback Bachelor Ball #3) by Sarah Mayberry

My review of Cold-Hearted Rake by Lisa Kleypas

Cold-Hearted Rake (2015) by Lisa Kleypas

My review of Forever and Always (Cactus Creek Cowboys #3) by Leigh Greenwood

Forever and Always (Cactus Creek Cowboys #3) by Leigh Greenwood

Cover Love

The Lodger by Louisa Treger

Femicide in India

My family was based in Bangalore in India for some years, but until a week or so ago nobody back here in Australia was interested in hearing me talk about crimes committed against women and girls in the country. It’s sad that it took such a horrible crime for people to start caring.

This is an interesting piece with some hard facts in it. Go and read!

Petition To Stop Female Genocide/ Femicide/ Gendercide in India

In 3 generations, about 50 million women have been systematically annihilated from India’s population, targeted only because they were female…  And it is silent  and ongoing. The term “missing” is actually a euphemism that the Nobel Laureate, Dr. Amartya Sen, had first used in 1986, when he had served India the first warning. He had calculated that 37 million women were “missing” from the country. Since then the process of elimination of women from India, has only escalated.

Also on the rise are the dowry related murders of young married women, killed because their parents could not continue to meet the dowry demands of the in-laws.  Dubbed as ‘dowry deaths’ – these murders are generally gang-murders involving the husband, his parents, and sometimes his siblings. The victim is doused with kerosene and set ablaze in staged kitchen “accidents.” Or forced to consume sleeping pills, or hanged in staged “suicides.” Many young women are so tortured, they are driven to commit suicide.  It has been estimated that at least 25000 women are murdered this way, every year. The thousands who don’t die, live-on badly burnt and maimed, their lives destroyed.

Books – General Insanity – Cute

* Tag Team by Nicola Marsh is still free.

* For those in Australia, Bookworld is running all kinds of deals this week. 10% off everything if you sign up for their ‘passport’ (the whole concept is completely juvenile – they actually have a passport for members!), 5% off until Friday.

It doesn’t make books as cheap as – say – The Book Depository, but there’s a bigger range of local products.

* Following on from the insanity of the English teenager who was arrested and put behind bars for a burning poppy picture he put on Facebook, now two women in India are finding themselves in a similar position. Who knew you could be imprisoned for ‘liking’ a Facebook status?

I think the world has gone insane.

* And I just love these bookmarks from Etsy!

Woman in Ireland dies after being denied life-saving abortion

Last month, a woman was admitted to a hospital in Galway, Ireland. She was 17 weeks pregnant with a wanted child. She was experiencing severe back pain. She was found to be miscarrying the pregnancy.

A week later, she was dead.

Why? Because she ended up in a Catholic hospital, governed by an ethic that even a non-viable fetus doomed to die is more important than a living, breathing 31-year-old woman.

Read more:

HERE and HERE and HERE

And HERE. I cannot believe in this one the newspaper felt the need to stress she was married. What the holy hell is going on that a woman’s marital status is considered relevant in such a situation?

There is no denying that a lot of people in this world suck. None more so than those who use their religion to control and do horrible things to women.

This is one of the worst instances of this I have come across in a while. And, no, it’s not in some Third World country; it’s in the Republic of Ireland. How can politicians in America, in Australia, be so happy to demand things like this continue happening? How can women vote for this?!

You know what? I’m Christian – Catholic, to be precise. I can also see that a lot of things done in the name of Christianity are evil and wrong. I wish more Christians could think with their minds, not the science-free scaremongering they’re fed through church.

Paranormal Book Giveaway, a long interview with Hélène Young, and a shocking news story out of India

* Author Interview & Giveaway: Rosalie Lario & Blood of the Demon

Blurb:

Keegan lives to exact revenge on the evil demon who sired and abused him. When his father devises a plan to bring on the apocalypse, he and his three half-brothers, interdimensional bounty hunters for the Elden Council, are charged with capturing and delivering their father for punishment.

 

Art gallery owner Brynn Meyers has no idea that her ability to read memories embedded in objects and drain people of their life force means she has demon ancestry. Unfortunately for Brynn, she’s also the key to raising an ancient zombie army, which puts her on every demon’s Most Wanted List.And no one wants her more than Keegan’s father.

 

Keegan must protect Brynn from his father by any means necessary, but he’ll have to learn to harness the other half of his genetics-the far deadlier, uncontrollable half-when he starts to fall for the one woman standing between him and the vengeance he so desperately seeks. The one woman he’ll never be able to resist.

* A two-part interview with Australian suspense writer Hélène Young, whose latest book I discussed here. Part One. Part Two.

* A terrifying story of the very public sexual assault of a woman in India. While it’s sad someone just stood there and filmed, at least it has drawn some much-needed attention to a serious issue.