Trizzella The Witch of Woods Cove – a book review

Trizzella The Witch of Woods Cove – by: Sandra Harvey

Trizzella The Witch of Woods Cove is another example of Ms. Harvey’s non conventional, inspired, and creative approach to storytelling.   The main story of the book is told in a wonderful poem that spans over 76 Full color pages to tell that story of one magical moonlit night in Woods Cove.  Some people say rhyming books are easy to write, and this may be true to an extent. Everyone can find a rhyme for Sun right? -Did you just think Fun?  But,  every once and a while an author really comes through with a story that is told in Rhyme with no typical or forced rhymes.  This is  one of those books, the pace is almost hypnotic, there are no extra syllables, there is not a trace of the story being driven in a direction for the sake of keeping the rhyme alive, and their are no typical easy rhymes.  This is just FUN to read, it’s easy to get in the flow and to absorb all the humor, magic, and adventure while rhythmically flowing from page to page.  This book is great when read out loud, and did I mention it is FUN?
Some of the  other aspects of this book worth noting are: The Hand drawn cartoon art  matches the characters and story very well. The entire book is colored in blues, purples, and greens on black paper and is very soothing to look at and also creates a real feeling of night.    While the main story is written in rhyme, the characters also have non rhyming dialog with each other through the use of comic book style captions… What?  … Yeah you read that right! Comic Book style dialog and thought bubbles that tell a story all of their own. And in addition to that there are subtle words hidden in the background on some pages, that are not only fun to look for, but also convey a general message related to the story.  This combination of elements works amazingly well without one ever stepping on the other. This is distinctively a Sandra Harvey creation. How Sandra keeps  pulling out fresh and brilliant ideas I’ll never know.  I am currently trying to get her to sit down with me  for a YouTube interview.

In a way it is also a bedtime book, but it is a bed time book in which the children stay up and play all night, get lost in a scary fog, end up at a mysterious  tower, and actually do not go to sleep until the sun starts to come up.  This is yet another example of Sandra and her deep understanding of children.

 Another aspect of this story I found to be fresh  is through the Characters Annie Blue, and Lily. Through these 2 characters the book briefly  touches on abandonment and loss but manages to keep it light and comforting.
Trizzella has magical powers, she can talk to animals,  and cast spells but to her it is just part of everyday life.  Where Trizzella’s real magic power is, is in her heart and her sweet gentle soul.  She has a magic sewing needle that has the power to mend hearts and sew stars into blankets. Trizzella doesn’t  hesitate to use her magic to help out a hungry caterpillar who arrives at an apple tree before apple season, or to clear a scary fog.  This story has pirates, ghosts, adventure, food, fun, and an devious little kitty cat (with an amazing hat collection) who has decided his purpose in life is to destroy any chance Trizzella has for finding love.
Like every Sandra Harvey Book I’ve reviewed so far, this book is intended for children, but adults will love it too.

Trizzella The Witch of Woods Cove is available here.

There is also a collection of Free Trizzella cartoons available at
This is one of my favorite Ryhmes from the books.
Underneath the bookcase lives her strangest little cat
his room is full of pirate things like skulls, and books, and maps.
his name is Edward Villain.
He eats birds, and rats, and mice.
Trizzella calls him E.Vil because he’s really not that nice.
 He goes on vast adventures in his vivid little dreams
to destroy Trizzella’s chance for love
he plots and plans and schemes.
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Who is the Half Hearted Girl?

The Half Hearted Girl

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I want to tell you all about an amazing project I have been fortunate to observe from conception to  completion, It has been so much fun for me  to be behind the scenes and watch this all come together.

doorhalf

 

The Half Hearted Girl ( 2 words not hyphenated) is a black and white fully illustrated book. The story, writing style, and art are relevant to people of all ages, however I think the target audience is probably around 11-20 years of age.   I wish it was easier for me to classify this book, but it simply stands alone. I want to be clear that this book is by no means some Obscure novelty book. With a page count of just under 100 and with so many illustrations it is hard to classify by modern literary classifications.  I think of it more like a modern fairy tale. This is a book you would have seen in books stores 70 years ago.  It is similar to some of the works of Hans Christian Andersen as far as word count and art. I call it a modern fairy tale because their is no physical antagonist in this story. The challenge our Protagonist has to face is that of an internal nature.

QUESTIONS

The main theme of this story is about love and soul mates and how meeting another person can sometimes help us become a more complete person ourselves. The story follows the life of The Half Hearted Girl and her quest to seek out wholehearted things.  When one day she discovers something special.  ( I do not wish to be more detailed about her discovery for Spoiler reasons) This discovery sends her off on an adventure.  The author now tells a  parallel story of The Half Soul Boy. Who one day also discovers something that leads him off on an adventure of his own.   Layered inside of the main story line is a  coming of age tale with some very significant and meaningful  insights about life, the emptiness we all feel inside at times, and the great mortal coil . There is a real  longing so many of us feel to try something new, to meet someone new, to go someplace new, and to find out what is over the horizon.  We often think that somehow we will find what ever it is we are missing if we just keep looking, but somehow  it’s always just one more step away.

signtop400dpi

We choose the path that leads to the right, and after we have been on it for a while we think we should have gone left instead. So we go back and go left, and after being on the left path for a while we think we should have probably stayed on the right path all along.  Often times as humans be do not appreciate who and what we have around us, and how amazing our lives are until we seek out the unknown. What do most of us find out there beyond the rim of the world?  Well, some of us do find our Soul Mates,  but we also find  the answer to our own unique question, the same question that set us on our journey to begin with.  The answer more often than not is that all we need, all we love, and all that matters was always there all along we just needed to see the world and to gain knowledge; we just needed to meet new people to gain experiences, so that through comparison we can see who we are, where we come from, and what matters most to each of us.

Adventure-Book

We often get restless and start feeling trapped. This is something a lot of us deal with all of our lives. Perhaps we feel like the daily routine is like  living with half of a heart or half,  of half of a soul.    Sometimes we just have to get far enough away from those things, those people, and those places  and to realize there is nothing out there in the unknown that we will find under some rock that will somehow complete our lives and make everything perfect. Even when we find the one thing we seek it always comes with a choice.  After all isn’t life often about giving up something you want, for something you want more?

That is my own interpretation of the story,  I do feel the author may have had a more literal meaning in mind,  but that is one of the wonderful things about every story I have read from Sandra Harvey.  Ultimately it is for you to decide.

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Do not miss out on this incredibly wonderful and life changing story, with amazing illustrations by Calum Jones.

available on amazon 1

 

 

 

 

Who is the Half Hearted Girl?

The Half Hearted Girl

hhg

 

I want to tell you all about an amazing project I have been fortunate to observe from conception to  completion, It has been so much fun for me  to be behind the scenes and watch this all come together.

doorhalf

 

The Half Hearted Girl ( 2 words not hyphenated) is a black and white fully illustrated book. The story, writing style, and art are relevant to people of all ages, however I think the target audience is probably around 11-20 years of age.   I wish it was easier for my to classify this book, but it simply stands alone.  It is by no means some Obscure novelty book. With a page count of just under 100 and with so many illustrations it is hard to classify by modern literary classifications.  I think of it more like a modern fairy tale. This is a book you would have seen published in books stores 70 years ago.  It is Similar to some of the works of Hans Christian Andersen as far as word count and art. I call it a modern fairy tale because their is no physical antagonist in this story. The challenge our Protagonist has to face is that of an internal nature.

QUESTIONS

The main theme of this story is about love and soul mates and how meeting another person can sometimes help us become a more complete person ourselves. The story follows the life of The Half Hearted Girl and her quest to seek out wholehearted things.  When one day she discovers something special.  ( I do not wish to be more detailed about her discovery for Spoiler reasons) This discovery sends her off on an adventure.  A parallel story of The Half Soul Boy is told and of course one day The Half Soul Boy discovers something that leads him off on an adventure of his own.   Layered inside of the main story line is a  coming of age tale with some very significant and meaningful  insights about life, and the great mortal coil.  The emptiness we all feel inside at times. The longing so many of us feel to try something new, to go someplace new, and to find out what is over the horizon.  We often think that somehow we will find what ever it is we are missing,  but it’s always just one more step away. 

signtop400dpi

We choose the path that leads to the right, and after we have been on it for a while we think we should have gone left instead. So we go back and go left, and after being on the left path for a while we think we should have probably stayed on the right path all along.  Often times as humans be do not appreciate what we have around us, and how amazing our lives are until we seek out the unknown. What do most of us find out there beyond the rim of the world?  Well, some of us do find our Soul Mates,  but we also find  the answer to our own unique question, the same question that set us on our journey to begin with.  The answer more often than not is that all we need, all we love, and all that matters was always there all along we just needed to see the world and to gain knowledge; we just needed to meet new people to gain experiences, so that through comparison we can see who we are, where we come from, and what matters most to each of us. 

Adventure-Book

Often humans get restless and start feeling trapped. Perhaps like we are living with half of a heart or half of a soul.    We just have to get far enough away from those things, those people, and those places  and to realize there is nothing out there in the unknown that somehow makes our lives perfect, because even when we find the one thing we seek it always comes with a choice.  After all isn’t life often about giving up something you want, for something you want more?

That is my own interpretation of the story,  I do feel the author may have had a more literal meaning in mind,  but that is one of the wonderful things about every story I have read from Sandra Harvey.  Ultimately it is for you to decide. 

as

 

Do not miss out on this incredibly story, with simply amazing illustrations. 

available on amazon 1

 

 

 

 

All we are saying…

Is give peace a chance.

Well maybe that is the problem right there, people who want peace are by nature not going to be aggressive, you can say it all you want, but the people who need this message are not listening. The problem is you can not fight for peace, you can’t force someone to be peaceful. You can not tell someone who has been hating someone else for so many decades to stop hating them, when they are so consumed by hatred they do not even know why they started hating them in the first place. So forcing peace on the world can never happen. But that does not mean Peace can never happen, it’s just going to take courage , far more courage then it takes to hate and destroy. People are going to have to start trusting again, and stop looking at human life as a statistic on a screen in a war room.

YES! Special interests groups do control the media, and they show every country a different story, none of which are true.

Every single time we go to war, every single time we are told by the media that American has to respond to the current “Evil Nation”. That nation is being told the same thing about us or about the nation they are in conflict with. If your an average American you have a sense of pride and patriotism, you believe that we are a righteous force protecting the world and bombing the bad guys. You believe in pick up trucks, shotguns, and country music and that somehow we are gods chosen people and we are always right in everything we do. Well I am here to tell you that you are wrong! a good part of the world sees us as warmongering , self obsessed, glutenous pigs, that will go to war with anyone that disagrees with us. So you see it’s a matter of perception, of media, and of government propaganda.

It is ignorant to think that once you cross some made up line on the earth , the people that live on the other side are so different than you that the only way to deal with them is to kill them.

Does it even matter where, why, or who? Isn’t it simply a violation of Humanity itself to kill for any reason? Your God does not want you killing, and even if you do not have a God, your soul , your heart, and the very essence of humanity and the universe itself does not want you killing either.

I have believed for some time now that there are 2 difference species of human beings on this planet. There is nothing about war and violence that seems Human to me at all, there is no part of me that wants to kill, or bomb, or rape. This might seem like a very negative post, but in fact from my perspective It seems the less evolved humans make up a very minor part of the Global Human Population, yet somehow they are the ones with the power. We are all one regardless of race, sex, and religious beliefs. I know more people that think this way then do not. So why are we still killing each other over things like invisible lines drawn in the ground, oil, and what or who we chose to worship? Because a handful of primitive humans consumed by power, lust, hatred, and greed are running the world? Well it is time to take the world back and reclaim and redefine what it means to be a Human. But how do we get started?

Hooray for Marvel

It’s about time we see some big name superheros portrayed by non white characters. No Spawn does not count… I am impressed Marvel had the guts to break out of what has become such an incredibly stale industry, and try something different.  The new Captain America being portrayed as a black man, and  the new Thor being portrayed by a  women that’s armor is not made by Victoria Secret is a huge step in the right direction in my opinion. It’s about time Comic Industry! Marvel you have my attention for the first time in over 2 decades.

 

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Remember life before social media and selfies?

Recently I got into a brief conversation with someone on Facebook about selflies.  After I made the statement: ” Please stop taking puckered lip selfies everyplace you go,  God knows we have enough of them already.”  The young women replied by telling me that a lot of these people are lonely, a lot of them take these pictures to help themselves feel less lonely.  I can see her point to some extent.  But the Duck-lipped-fawn-eyed pose the women do,  and the Smolder-faced-squinting-glare that men make is for lack of a better term… Silly. These people are taking the same picture over and over, day after day, and sometimes hour after hour. It seems part of these peoples brains must not be functioning properly to think that this is normal. Most of these pictures either take place in a bathroom medicine cabinet mirror, or are just at the end of the persons reach, so they are so up close you can not even tell the persons location. So clearly these pictures are not about “Look where I am today” – They are more likely about “Look at me, Like me, do you think I’m Attractive?” 

When this started, I just dismissed this behavior as  pure teenage vanity and pop culture.  This was something that just 5 years ago people were not doing this at all, it started with teenagers (Who by the way are not doing it anymore).   Remembering my teenage years I can acknowledge that I did all kinds of dumb things. I also took part in some really stupid events, and had some really stupid ideals about life. So it was easy for me to over look these Selfies as things kids were into. This like most things teenagers are into would surely only last for a few months until it was deemed not cool anymore. Then it would be sure to pass from existence, with only an occasional joking reference to remember it by, much like the mullet. 

(I can’t tell you how thankful I am that I did not have a camera phone or the internet when I was a teenager to document my stupidity.  My teenage behavior only exists in my memories and the memories of a few of my friends.)

What started as a bit of teenage culture has turned into an epidemic. This is no longer teenage girls looking for approval and compliments,  or teenage boys showing off their fit stomachs, not  anymore…  This has turned into something that these teenagers parents have started doing. These are grown men and women, And they are not just doing it occasionally. So what is this really all about?    

 

I would make the case that if this is rooted in some sort of loneliness, that a lot of these cases of loneliness are actually self-inflicted, and are a direct result of social media addiction, as there is nothing really social about social media at all. Of all of your Friends, and Followers, how many of them do you actually see in person, or do things with outside in the real world? The continuing breakdown of society year after year seems to just grow stronger, and it is being fueled by cheap and easily accessible technology. As we delve further and further into digital life,and are further and further removed from organic life where will we end up 10 years from now?  We are already replacing cashiers with machines, things like this removes us from interacting with other humans, and intern removes us from our own humanity. 

 

There can be a lot to be said about this cheap, easily accessible, and over-saturate world of technology being a form of brain washing,  while our governments and the leaders of the world  fight wars, drain our resources, and refuse to listen to the people of the citizens of the world, we find complacency in the escape we make into the  fantasy worlds of: social media, world of warcraft, and, netflix.  80 percent of world lives in Poverty, with no hope, and no quality of life.  But hey…. Here is a free phone to keep you from thinking about your situation.   The rest of the world is made of people who actually can pay their bills , put a little in the bank for a rainy day or a family vacation.  while the .1 percent live in God like wealth, with 10 families that control the entire global economy. People do not even know how to make eye contact anymore, or have a conversation without a screen involved, or leave their homes without technology in their pockets.  So how on earth are these people going to stand up for change, and make a difference.  How are people who are so dependent on technology ever going to be able to be away from it long enough to make their voices heard? (okay I am getting a bit off subject now,  Ill try to come back to this in a later post)

I see so many children trying to get their parents attention while their parent sits on their phone ignoring them.

This problem goes far deeper then me being annoyed by people taking pictures of themselves. I love technology, I love video games I even love being able to have silly debates on facebook, or writing this blog that probably no one is reading.But, I do not let any of those things replace life, real experiences, or real friendships. When I leave the house, I leave my phone in the car. When I go to sleep I turn the phone off.  And guess what nothing bad has happened! I haven’t missed anything important, and there was no emergency I was unable to respond to. I worry about people , I worry about humans, I am not trying to put anyone down , I am not trying to attack anyone.  There are people I have known personally for years,  that I know for a fact  have created their own loneliness through media addiction, not the other way around. I am not here to judge anyone, as I am far from a perfect human being. However we do not allow people to lay in bed all day when they are depressed, we recognize the problem and do what we can to help them. Selfie addiction has been proven to be an OCD like addiction behavior that can lead to diminishing quality of life, depression, anxiety, obsession, eating disorders, exhaustion, and in some very rare cases even suicide attempts. Why is it not okay for a depressed person to lay in bed all day, but it’s okay for a media addicted person to not be able to take step without checking their phone or taking a picture of themselves? This is not about Self portraits. People have been taking self portraits since film cameras, and painting them before cameras even existed. This Selfie issue I have, is not about if you take a picture of yourself doing something fun, or with a friend. It is about the people who are doing it non stop every hour. This is not healthy, and someone needs to wake them up. I have a “friend” that has posted over 2000 selfies in a 3 month period of time. There is a new picture of himself just about every hour yesterday including one of him during the middle of a medical exam. I am sorry but this goes far beyond loneliness. We have interventions for alcoholics don’t we?