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Celebrate the Spring Equinox with Mungai and the Goa Constrictor

In Children's Books, Mungai and the Goa Constrictor, Young Adult Fiction on March 20, 2013 at 9:58 pm

On 20th March, 2013, we experienced the wonder of the Spring Equinox 

To celebrate this, and the significance of this passage to Mungai and the Goa Constrictor, you could WIN an Amazon Gift Card worth $25 

The Vernal Equinox

“Bravery is when you walk into a battle you are not sure of winning” – Jeffrey Fry

A great battle occurred during the Spring Equinox of the year of 2011, the year of disgruntlement. Tired of domination, deception and destruction, Mungai’s minions rose in rebellion against their oppressors and attempted to reclaim what was rightfully theirs, ours and that of future generations. They fought using every resource at the tips of their fingers, claws, hooves and paws. They fought in the jungle and they fought in the forest. They fought without fear and they fought with courage in their hearts.
The battle raged on with casualties on both sides until…

Find out who the victors are, and what becomes of our heroes, by getting your own copy of Mungai and the Goa Constrictor on Amazon.

Meet all the endearing characters – well, not all are endearing; some you wouldn’t wish to meet on a dark night, and some you may rue the day you ever met them at all. But unfortunately, if you haven’t already, you may well encounter at least one of them at some time in your life.

“Be careful who you trust, the devil was once an angel” – Unknown

To enter; answer the following three simple questions correctly and you could win a $25 Amazon Gift Card (All answers can be found in the excerpt below)

  1. Who gave the signal to commence battle?  a) Crow-Crow  b) Caw-Caw  c)  Claw-Claw
  2. What is the Oracle’s real name?  a) Forest Grump  b) Shriek  c) Edgar
  3. What did Gerald, the Oracle and Felicity hide in their clothing?  a) Feathers and bones  b) Guns  c) A goodly supply of bananas

Please leave your answers (e.g. 1a ) in the comments section with your contact details

The competition closes at midnight (EDT) on 31st March, 2013

The winner, randomly chosen, will be announced here on APRIL 1st – NO JOKE!

*

An Excerpt from Mungai and the Goa Constrictor – Chapter Twenty Seven – Operation Equinox  

The reptiles, animals and birds were gathering silently in the clearing.

“Now that we’re all here,” said Caw-Caw, breaking the silence, “the time has come. We must all go to our battle stations.  Is everyone prepared?”

All the creatures nodded.

“Does everyone know what he or she must do?”  Caw-Caw continued.

They nodded again.

Then out of nowhere came a voice.  “COMMMPANY…HALT…AIMMM…oops! so sorry…‘TENNN…SHUN.   Captain Gerald Rupert Horatio-um-Peanuts (he added again very quietly) Brice-Copperbottom at your service…SIR.”

The Oracle’s, aka Edgar’s, ‘spirit sense’ had kicked in, and he was able to know where they were all assembling, and since no word had been received as was promised, he had alerted Gerald and Felicity. Suspecting they might be left out if they did not invite themselves, they had come along to ‘do their bit’.  Edgar looked surprisingly sensible, having lost the feathers and bones, and now being dressed in green and clothed like his companions.

“Um…we won’t need those,” said Caw-Caw pointing at the long sticks that made noises and killed. “But you are most welcome.”

“Don’t worry.” Gerald reassured him. “We’re not allowed to have the bits that do all the damage. These are just for show. Keeps the enemy on its toes, don’t you know!”

Caw-Caw briefly introduced the newcomers to the others, and decided they would be best placed inside the paper mill, preferably up in the rafters. They would be able to climb through the opening at the top of the mill without being seen. There, they could wait until they were needed.

“Organise that in no time,” said Gerald. “COMMMPANY…ATTT…EASE.  Private Felicity…you take the right…Gunner Edgar you take the left…I’ll take the middle.”

“Reminds me,” started Edgar, “of the time I was forced to take on a gorilla.  Big devil too!  Couldn’t escape that time!  Gerald tried to organise that, as well.  Gorilla didn’t like him all…reason I got into trouble in the first place. Called him a…”

“Yes, yes, Edgar, but we need to keep moving.  We’re running out of time.  Captain Gerald, ready your troops to take up their positions,” interrupted Caw-Caw before the rest all surrendered to boredom.

Gerald stood to attention again, and saluted. Then, without Caw-Caw seeing, they managed to hide the guns under their clothing.

“Good. Well now that’s settled, let’s go…and may good prevail,” said Caw-Caw.

The creatures had been turned into an efficient and formidable fighting force.  Together they were battling a common cause.  Even those who were natural enemies had become friends and allies, each one honoured to share in this campaign. They moved forward with pride and dignity.

Word came that Mungai and Goa hadn’t moved the lair yet, so the plan remained the same, and Duggit’s contingency plan remained unrevealed.

The creatures moved towards the lair, peeling off as they each reached their positions, until the only ones left, as they approached, were the deer and wolves.  Absolute silence was now maintained. Wilbur and Wily had come with them, ready to pass on information and progress. Akanya and Kaya were outside the lair waiting for their own signal, as were the deer.   Duggit and the other two-legs were also in position now, having made their way successfully to the undergrowth.  They too waited in total silence.

Still observing the silence, they saw dawn break, without the chorus, and Caw-Caw raised his wing.  In his claw he held a long branch which he swept in an arc from right to left in front of the rising sun.

Operation Equinox had begun.

“In battle it is the cowards who run the most risk; bravery is a rampart of defence” – Sallust

*****

Catalina Egan and Jolie DeMarco’s   4covert2overt in 33 days

Jo Barker’s   J R Barker 101

Charina SM’s The Book Keepers Blog

Christine Corretti’s The Chronicles of King Big Bear

*****

Read more about Mungai on his Website 

Buy Mungai on amazon.com    Buy Mungai on amazon.co.uk 

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Celebrate the Spring Equinox with Mungai and the Goa Constrictor

In Books, Mungai and the Goa Constrictor on March 18, 2013 at 2:38 am

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Coming soon … 20th and 21st March, 2013

WIN a $25 Amazon Gift Card and grab a copy of Mungai and the Goa Constrictor at the special Spring Equinox price of 99 cents (A saving of $2)

*****

The Spring Equinox takes place on March 20th when Mungai and the Goa Constrictor will be celebrating the anniversary of their own battle, Operation Equinox, with a $25 Amazon Gift Card giveaway and a price reduction on the book. Further details coming soon…

Amelia Curzon will also be appearing simultaneously on the following sites. 

Catalina Egan and Jolie DeMarco’s   4covert2overt in 33 days

Catalina Egan’s   The Bridge of Deaths

Jo Barker’s   jrbarker101

Charina SM’s The Book Keepers Blog

Christine Corretti’s The Chronicles of King Big Bear

Fun interviews, amazing features and stunning reviews – come over to some great blogs and say hello!

 

Mungai and the Goa Constrictor by Amelia Curzon - Book Cover

The Chronicles of King Big Bear Features and Reviews Mungai and the Goa Constrictor

In Books, Mungai and the Goa Constrictor on March 15, 2013 at 1:03 am

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Wow – Another 5 star review for Mungai and the Goa Constrictor!

I have just been featured on the fantastic blog of my dear friend, author and artist Christine Corretti.  Not only that, Christine has posted the most amazing 5 star review of Mungai.

Please all go over to her blog and read.  There are loads of other great stuff to see too.  Well worth a visit!

The Chronicles of King Big Bear

Mungai and the Goa Constrictor featured and reviewed on The Chronicles of King Big Bear

Wow, life is good! – ‘Mungai’ has been given yet another 5 stars!

In Book Reviews, Mungai and the Goa Constrictor on January 14, 2013 at 2:06 pm

I have just received the most spectacular in-depth review for Mungai and the Goa Constrictor. My heartfelt thanks to the very erudite Jane Whiteoak for taking so much time to write this review. I hope many of you will find the time and the irrepressible urge to read it. 

Select a place..any where in the world and you most probably have heard stories about a pair to be very wary of, like Mungai and the Goa Constrictor! Likely, you’ll have heard them directly, from the innocent victims left strewn aside in their wake. This is a story about nature, reforestation, gold mining, animals both two-legged and four-legged and the most nebulous kind of all… that of the cold and calculating… psychological nature.
Mungai, escapes from a zoo by literally biting the hand that feeds him, to obtain his freedom. Along the way he connects with a self-centered, narcissistic snake named Goa. They instantly mirror and gravitate to the lack of conscience in each other and recognize “possibilities” of a greater future together. They exist in this world only to use everyone that they encounter to their own advantage.
Mungai and the Goa Constrictor - A Children's Book by Amelia E Curzon - book CoverThey formulate a plan to exploit a group of unsuspecting animals, promising great rewards in the future, if the animals do as they request.
Having every faith in the pair, the animals work laboriously constructing tables, chairs and baskets out of wood with the promise of hope and prosperity for their respective families. They listen attentively to Mungai and Goa, as the two speak with authority and are quite erudite in their knowledge of the woodland surroundings and little gold treasures. To doubt their sincerity would be erroneous as the animals would have a falling out with their peers and thus be made to look foolish.
Through manipulation and cajoling the two cause confusion every step of the way. The woodland and jungle animals work together in good faith but they are gullible and unbeknownst to them are being terribly misled. Their gold mining endeavours, are necessary to pay for new equipment, used by humans to work at deforestation!
They’ve all been told by the amoral pair, that the “trees are too old” and need to be chopped down, in order that new ones may be replanted in their place. The animals have no concept that they are working illegally and are actually chopping down their own habitat. The two ring leaders start to show a few cracks in their armour however, when they begin to live in loftier and loftier residences. Each move is scrupulously planned, to be farther away from the ‘workers’ each time and with every move they have obtained, through smooth talk, even greater security.( e.g. wolves acting as security guards).
Finally, a very observant crow, becomes extremely suspicious and tries in vain to alert the diligent trusting foreman, the badger. Of course, the badger doesn’t believe a word that the crow tells him, as he has complete and utter “misplaced” trust in Mungai and Goa.
The book is very engaging as one ponders, if this dubious duo will ever be seen for what and whom, they truly are. Amelia E. Curzon has done us all a huge favour, by shining a spotlight on and enlightening us, to the damage done to our society by these unconscionable and despicable human beings. Her insight into this behaviour and relaying this message, through the depiction of animals is truly remarkable. This is an excellent book that would be advantageous and fascinating to read, for all ages. It is a real page turner and I highly recommend this book to all!

Jane Whiteoak – January 14th 2013

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Read all other reviews here

My Review of The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap by Paulette Mahurin

In Amelia Curzon Reviews, The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap on September 16, 2012 at 2:01 am

Extremely Powerful and Impacting…

I had been looking forward to reading this book for some time and was not disappointed when I did. In fact, I was hooked by the time I reached the end of the prologue. After that it was very hard to put down.

Mildred Dunlap lives in a small town in Nevada with her cousin Edra. Since childhood both have felt a fondness for each other which has now blossomed into a full-blown, if secret, relationship. At the time of the opening chapter (late nineteenth century), Oscar Wilde has just been imprisoned for ‘committing acts of gross indecency’ (homosexual activities) and the world has been alerted by telegraph.  The news, inevitably, reaches the small town of Red River Pass where Mildred and Edra live. Forever quick to judge, and mete out punishment and derision, the resident gossipmongers have a field day with this.  Mildred becomes alarmed at the pure hatred and prejudice projected by the tittle-tattles upon their hearing this piece of news. All her life they have ignored her kindness and generosity, and instead have cruelly focused upon her appearance and wealth.  If they were to find out her secret as well, she knew life would be unbearable for both her and Edra. As a result she sets out to mislead the gossips with her own plot, which has surprising consequences.

This carefully and beautifully crafted story is not just about the relationship between two women, it goes far deeper.  It is a story about inherent ignorance and discrimination in general.  It is also a story about tolerance, love, friendship and trust. Mahurin writes her characters in superbly and the reader is inclined to empathise with the more sympathetic characters of Gus, Charlie, Mildred and Edra, and to despise the hateful and hate-filled dogmatists like Josie, whose spite and bullying tactics are enough to make anyone shudder.

Written with total conviction and bucket loads of compassion, this is an extremely powerful and impacting novel which portrays a scenario not so very far removed from the society we live in today, and illustrates just how damaging preconception can be.

I highly recommend this book and am giving it the full 5 star whack

Why Tolerance?

In Guest Blogger, LGBTQPA on September 2, 2012 at 12:01 am

I was very touched and impacted when I first read this post by my latest Guest Blogger, the very eloquent and perceptive Paulette Mahurin. Having published my own book for teens, Mungai and the Goa Constrictor, my greatest hope has been to convey a message of forbearance and acceptance, which is why I chose such a diversity of species across the globe, knowing we are all part of mixed and integrated societies. Paulette speaks of the universal intolerance, persecution and oppression which motivated her to write her book, and the beliefs and preferences of many who feel that if the persuasions and choices of others contradict their own ideas of what is right and acceptable, there is a reason to hate.

I’m delighted to have an opportunity to write an article for Amelia E. Curzon’s Blog. Being that I am a NurseGuest Blogger Paulette Mahurin on Amelia Curzon's Blog - Carte Blanche Practitioner, specializing in women’s health, and have just completed a novel, The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap, about a strong female protagonist, a lesbian who is persecuted and bullied all her life. The motivation for writing the story is what I want to talk about here, oppression of lesbians in history, and feminine energy suppression in general.

World renowned author, Riane Isler’s international bestseller, The Chalice and The Blade: Our History, Our Future (Harper Collins San Francisco, 1987), has been hailed as one of the most significant works since Darwin’s Origin of Species. In it she elaborates on androcracy, government by male rulers, and the influence this has on gender bias. So rare is women rule, gynecocracy, that it survives mainly in myth.

Isler’s work was not from research in a didactic vacuum; she lived and understood oppression from an early age, when as a child her family fled Nazi Austria to Cuba (she later moved to the United States). It is this aspect that I find most intriguing about her, how did this influence her life and work? How does any experience, especially in our formative years, condition us? The latter question rhetorical, brings me back to my own research while writing my book.

In doing the research, the masculine dominant energy was pervasive, between the lines one reads of a women’s place, the labeling of our friendships toward what was tolerable, what was conservatively acceptable, and what was meant for oppression.

Through the years this changes, the balance shifts, while the feminine is gaining more of a stronghold, but what remains are the labels, which are still dangerous depending on where one lives in the world.

Women friendships in history have always been acceptable, hugging, handholding, and displays of attention, not frowned upon. In the 1800s women who could afford to live together but never married were considered spinsters, still socially acceptable. Where the tide turns is if a partnership were suspected of being, or labeled lesbian, then they were considered to be insane. The treatment was institutionalization, the therapy, rape.

When I started writing my book, based on the imprisonment of Oscar Wilde and the impact his two year prison sentence had on a lesbian couple, living in a small Nevada ranching town, I had to figure out how to show the oppression, the fear, that the lesbian couple lived under. This was really difficult because how do I write about what I haven’t experienced? Or have I? I sat with this, meditated on this, went back to the books on oppression of self-expression, and found my answer, society.

A society that supports a relationship (including the family unit), in a loving way, molds one type of personality. A brutal abusive society, group, takes its toll. This I can relate to and have experienced, my world view—a box that surrounds my soul with the should and shouldn’t do this or that, be this or that—gave me the backstory to create the story’s antagonist, a woman filled with unmitigated hatred toward anything that doesn’t support her ego.

Just this last week, I received a review of my book, from a women, pleasant and decent to communicate with, who gave my book a thumbs up and a thumbs down and went on to explain that the thumbs up:  the best characterization I’ve seen in a book, and I’m big on characterization. Great details and emotional aspects in capturing the feelings and turbulence of that time period with all the different topics mentioned. It was so sad to see how horrible the gossip girls were about the Jewish man in France. And the African-American in the government. Josie is quiet a character. (sic)

She then went on to say: My Rating: I give this a thumbs down because I don’t like and don’t support the Lesbian standards, and prefer to just not have anything to do with those people: whether its books, movies, riots etc. But I give it a thumbs up for being so well written by a woman who is married to a man. For a Straight woman, this was well written. (sic)

I wrote her back thanking her for her honest review and that I was extremely appreciative of us dialoguing, for it is in communicating that issues, large and small, can start to be resolved. After I wrote to her, I sat silently and wondered what causes one to feel/think this way, foreign from my live-and-let-live-as-long-as-you-aren’t-hurting-anyone attitude? I have no answer, not really, and so once again I sat back quietly and contemplated, this time, tolerance, and pray that those whose hearts hold hatred learn what it is.

Bio: Paulette Mahurin is a Nurse Practitioner (NP), specializing in Women’s Health. She has also taught clinic preceptors in the NP programs for UCLA and USC. While at college she won awards for two non-fiction stories she wrote. When not writing or helping rescue dogs, she likes to hang with her husband, Terry (a retired NASA Attorney) and their two dogs, Max & Bella ( rescued from kill shelters).

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