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  • Writer's pictureVeronica Cline Barton

Veronica's #WritersDiary: Marzo Madness

Arthur Conan Doyle

March, what a mad month it has been! The 3rd calendar page of 2024 is coming to a close--are your tiaras still in a spin? #MineAre

MIA royals and regal rumors have had the press and X in a mouth foaming, rabid frenzy of the absurd this month. Now that the sobering truth has been revealed, let's hope the trolls and ghouls slide back into their rubbish bins. #NoOneIsAmused

The ramp up of presidential, political spin heats up--with rambling rants, cringy gaffes, dementia mind-gaps, and loads of back-peddling/'splainin' from the leading candidates and their minions. Everything's fine, nothing to see here...#HereWeGoAgain

The mysterious monoliths have returned, sparking interest and speculations from the UFO/temporal- dimension crowds. And if you think things will return to normal in month 4, you obviously haven't read about the doomsday projections of what's to come with the April 8th solar eclipse. 👀 #BiblicalMuch

But today, all the Marzo madness is being swept from my little gray cells, because soon, it'll be time to #SailHo!

Our much-anticipated Mediterranean odyssey on Viking Ocean Cruises is just days away. The bags are packed (99.99%), the house and cats secured (saving up their hairballs to release upon our return, no doubt), and sight-seeing tours arranged. I can't wait to see this part of the world! Here are a few of the places that have been engrained in my brain the past few months for this trip... 👇

The skull-ish balconies at Casa Batlio in Barcelona have had my eye for some time...

Monaco and the French Riviera--I wonder if they have penny slots in the Grand Casino?

Magnifico Florence and a marble-man named David...

3 coins will be thrown in this fountain in Rome...

I spy, with my Venetian masked eye, a gondola ride in my future...

Vacay pictures incoming! Until next time, Adios, Au revoir, Αντίο, Doviđenja, and Arrivederci. It's Wednesday, time for #DearDiary:

Mystery and mayhem this month from the writers of X...

Author John Anthony Miller, The Secrets of Hickory Hill, 5

The mistress of the Hickory Hills plantation is harboring a lethal secret from her past. Slaves Billy Giles and Coffey Green dream of a new life of freedom. Daughter Annabelle loves a childhood friend, but her parents want her to wed an up-and-coming politician. When a new overseer is hired, will his cruel intentions lead to misery and horrible ends for all?

Author Miller weaves an intriguing mystery set in the antebellum world where the few have incredible wealth, and many lead lives where little hope for a better life exists. The human spirit can triumph over many trials, but in some cases, the best of intentions is not enough. Will a common enemy unite the dreams and plans of the residents of Hickory Hill?

This was a fascinating, historical mystery that lays bare the raw emotions and harsh realities experienced during the antebellum period. I found the characters compelling, the mysteries intriguing, and their emotions and dreams tugged at the heart. A captivating read, highly recommended!

Author K.D. McNiven, Who Killed Lilly Paine?, 5

An early morning run leads to a grisly discovery by Deputy Detective Maddy Dawson. She finds the body of a popular teen with a bright future on the banks of Miller Creek. Lilly Paine is also a family friend, which makes Maddy's job of finding the killer particularly difficult, and more devastating to the victim's family members as the clues unfold.

As she sorts through the clues and list of suspects, the investigation brings up dark memories from her past. Will Maddy be able to leave the painful secrets behind to find the killer?

Author McNiven weaves a suspense filled mystery that will keep you turning the pages. The suspects are many and the emotion filled hunt for the killer gripping. A highly recommended read for mystery fans! 

Author K.T. McGivens, The Murder of Major Pennington, 5

Emotions run high in Fairfield as reporter Katie Porter cover's a children's beauty pageant, misses her traveling beau, and investigates when a colleague is charged with the murder of her husband---a death that occurred five years ago. A neighbor's new accusations make for a tough situation for the accused widow.

Hopes are high and the pressure is on when a successful attorney with a family connection to fellow reporter, E.M. takes on the case. Will his roving eye for Katie derail the defense? Pressures on the pageant front and the murder investigation place Katie's job in jeopardy, will her reporting career come to an end?

Author McGivens adds another tale of mystery and intrigue to the Katie Porter series. The characters are a delight to follow, and I enjoy seeing how the friend's and family's relationships progress in the series. This is a top-notch mystery that will keep you guessing, highly recommended!

Author James Patterson, Holmes, Marple, & Poe, 5

The stakes are high for the new private investigation firm of Holmes, Marple, & Poe as they launch their business of solving high profile cases. Brendan Holmes is a master of logic and deduction and holds a secret which may bring him down, permanently.

Margaret Marple's powers of observation are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to sleuthing prowess. Auguste Poe has an eye for detail that often leads him on precarious paths. The detectives all have a secret past, leading to many challenges as they embark on this new venture. Will their collective talents lead to their firm's success, or on the blacklist as their investigations cross the police and FBI?

Murders, heists, kidnapping, and a hideous death pact put their sleuthing skills to the test. Author Patterson weaves a page turning tale of mystery and intrigue that will keep you guessing. I really enjoyed this tale--highly recommended for fans of mystery and suspense!

The Gentlemen, Wicked Fun!*

My, oh, my--what a wicked fun series this is. If you're looking for an action-packed, dark comedy/drama set in a fabulous, English countryside manor, look no further. The Gentlemen streaming on Netflix is a top-notch, must watch production from director, Guy Ritchie. And here I thought my escapades at Cherrywood Hall were a bit over the top, LOL. There's definitely a chicken suit in Max's future... #JustSayin

*Pic from The Gentlemen on X

Welcome to my world. Until next time, have a good one, and a fabulous April!

Crowns and Kisses,


P.S. Wishing you and yours a lovely Easter! Gemma and Rikkhe approve 💖👑

26 views2 comments


Mar 28

I hope you have a wonderful vacation, Veronica! I just returned from 8 days in Costa Rica and as much as I loved it, I'm ready to get back to the routine. What a line-up of book reviews! Obviously you've been sneaking some quality reading time.

I've been told I need to watch "The Gentlemen," but I haven't found the time yet. One of these days!

I wish you and your family a blessed Easter and a wonderful start to your April. Bon Voyage! xoxo

Veronica Cline Barton
Veronica Cline Barton
Mar 28
Replying to

Sounds like a fun trip, Amy! Thanks for stopping in--have a wonderful Easter! xo 💖👑

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