Susan Marie Molloy

Life in the Oasis


Date Night: At the Movies – Last Flag Flying

  1. Yesterday morning, I worked in our bead shop after having a bowl of Raisin Bran® and Cheerios® with a light spritz of skim milk. I was on my third room temperature cup of black joe, and was tired of taking photographs of beads and writing product descriptions.

My beau remarked, as he was pouring his next cup of java, “You want to go to the show? What time? Ten? One? Fo–?”

“One,” and I rushed to comb my hair and put on my face (Chicago lingo for putting on make-up).

We bought our tickets at the theater window, and since there was an hour and a half before the show started, we treated ourselves to lunch at a restaurant in the town square. Then we went to the show—

Last Flag Flying” was the movie, and wouldn’t you know it: I liked it very much (despite the vulgar language. My beau told me that, yes, men talk that way.) Basically, the story is about a father who looked up his two closest buddies in the service during Viet Nam, and the three go on a very personal mission. The way I saw it, this mission was three-fold: humanistic, spiritual, and patriotic. The three actors – Steve Carrell, Bryan Cranston, and Laurence Fishburne – worked beautifully together. Their characters were believable, I felt the camaraderie that skipped three decades without missing a beat (almost), and darn it, I want a sequel.

Without giving away the plot, this movie addressed trust, love, parenting, friendship, spirituality, and, well, men being men. That is refreshing, a movie that depicts men as men and not milk toast wimpy males. I like that.

The most hysterical scene in the movie was when Carrel, Fishburne, and Cranston where talking and laughing to beat the band. I – along with most of the audience – laughed along with them. It was worth the tears in my eyes and the hearty laughing. In fact, that scene reminded me of the 1930 Laurel and Hardy movie, “Blotto,” where they were laughing hysterically, thinking they were drinking wine, but Anita Garvin clandestinely replaced the wine with tea. Good times.  Innocent fun.

All in all, I highly recommend seeing “Last Flag Flying.”

I told my beau that the Bryan Cranston character (“Sal Nealon”) reminded me so much of him.

He noticed that, too.

©2017 Susan Marie Molloy and all works within.



BOOK REVIEW: “The 20s Girl, The Ghost, and All That Jazz” By June Kearns

The 20s Girl Picture CoverStraight out of the box, I found this novel fun and delightful to read. Englishwoman Gerry discovers her Aunt Leonie left her half a share of a Texas ranch, and an inscrutable Texan, Cooper, is somehow part of the deal.

June Kearns does a wonderful job with moving the story along at a perfect pace, and she is clever with awakening all the senses by utilizing flawlessly written words. I saw the colorful silk dresses and felt their melting softness; I smelled the fruity-spiciness of Mitsouko perfume; I was curious, wary, excited, and thrilled at the ups and downs of the relationship between the exuberant Englishwoman, Gerardina Mary Chiledexter (a.k.a. “Gerry”,) and the enigmatic Texan-with-no-surname, Cooper.

At first, I was a little chagrined at June Kearns’ writing style. The half sentences and phrases threw me off at the beginning, and I wasn’t sure if this would be a good read. However, I continued, determined, and discovered that much of what she wrote is, indeed, thoughts that ran through Gerry’s mind, and that we ourselves think and converse in such a manner. Does anyone think to themselves, or even speak to other in complete, perfectly grammatically correct sentences? Not always. Sometimes. Mostly. Indeed. Let’s move along—

What I was impressed with was Kearns’ knowledge and obvious well-researched history and social aspects of the 1920s world. She was right on about societal conventions, clothing, fashion, and even right down to perfumer Guerlin’s Mitsouko. That perfume, indeed, was a fairly new scent (introduced right after World War I) and was popular, too.

Kearns’ descriptions of England and Texas are picturesque and authentic. I felt I was in the cool, green English countryside and in the dusty, stifling heat of Texas. Even the brief allusions to Gerry’s ocean voyage and the undulating feel was something to which I could relate.

The romantic scenes are tastefully written and leaves all the details to the reader. To me, that is a sign of a truly gifted writer. Bravo!

I warmed up to Kearns’ writing style as I turned each page, I actually grew to care quite a bit about all the characters, living, dead, human, and beast. There were funny scenes and scenes that made me giggle, and I grew so curious about Archie, that, well, I’d like to see his story in a future Kearns novel. I would like to get to know him better.

All in all, I highly recommend “The 20s Girl, The Ghost, and All That Jazz” by June Kearns for anyone who likes the 1920s era, loves a little sweet romance, and relishes a mystery and intrigue.

This is a novel that I’ll pick again off my shelf and read.

©Susan Marie Molloy, and all works within.


BOOK REVIEW: “Love Aflame”

Thrice again, Pamela Beckford captures love in all its intricate forms in this, her third solo poetry publication, “Love Aflame.”

“Love Aflame” takes the reader to every level, every form, every interpretation, and every emotion that could possible exist between lovers. As in her two previous poetry books, “Dreams of Love” and “Love: Lost & Found,” the poems are arranged such that if savored and read in order, the reader comes away with a love story. Conversely, each poem can stand alone as individual works that need no others to bookend it.

Her titles are well-thought out, skillfully descriptive, and temptingly provocative: “Igniting Flames,” “Edge of Ecstasy,” “Intoxicating Scent,” “On the Shelf”, “Do You Ever?”, and “Vulnerable,”. Each is touching and formidable, alluring and tempting invitations for readers to savor the verse.

And, what verse! Pamela expertly captures impassioned emotions with an ease that makes the reader comfortable and eager to turn the page to delight in more.

I highly recommend Pamela Beckford’s “Love Aflame” for anyone who was loved, loves, wants to be loved, or just loves love and being in love. “Love Aflame” would make a thoughtful Valentine’s Day gift, too. Why not pick up your copy and read it with your love over a sensual candlelight dinner?

I also recommend picking up her other love poetry books, “Dreams of Love” and “Love: Lost & Found.” All can be found on Amazon.

©Susan Marie Molloy, and all works within.


BOOK REVIEW: Poetry by Pamela Beckford

Over the next few days, I will be recommending several fabulous books that I read this year and that I believe you will like, too.  These books will make absolutely thoughtful gifts also, and I invite you to follow my links below to read my reviews in their entirety.

Today I am showcasing three of Pamela Beckford’s poetry books.  She is a writer who beautifully articulates what love is.

The first, “Dreams of Love,” is a superb collection of thirty-one poems that not only touches upon the varying facets of a relationship, but is also a powerful timeline of the changeable levels of growth in a relationship. Simply put, “Dreams” can be read in no particular order as stand-alone poems; conversely, if read in order, it presents a love story.  Follow this link to read my full book review —-> DREAMS OF LOVE By Pamela Beckford.

In the other, “Love: Lost & Found,” Pamela intelligently captures love and relationships; there is a mature allure in each line, in each scene, in each description of togetherness and estrangement. The reader is allowed to use his or her own imagination of what is transpiring at any given moment.  Follow this link to read my full book review —-> LOVE: LOST & FOUND By Pamela Beckford.

Lastly, Pamela penned a collection of poems in collaboration with Kirsten A. in “Voices of Nature,”  where the reader feels the sea and seasons, butterflies and birds, wind and sunsets, flowers and stars. Pamela and Kirsten give us their view of Nature in myriad forms, thus helping the reader to see our world in a focused, yet enriched, infinite manner through other eyes.  Follow this link to read my full book review —-> VOICES OF NATURE By Pamela B. and Kirsten A.

These books are found on Amazon; I provided the links below:

Dreams of Love

Love: Lost & Found

Voices of Nature

Pamela also writes on WordPress.


© Susan Marie Molloy and all works within. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material and any works here on this site without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.


BOOK REVIEW: Love Lost and Found

Summer days are still with us, and they can be hot and heavy. Some romances are like that, too. If you want to add superb and tasteful piquancy to your library, Pamela Beckford’s “Love: Lost and Found” is for you. This is seventh in my series of book reviews; I hope that my recommendations inspire you to read these books as the spirit moves.


“Velvet Kisses.”

Of the nearly one hundred poems in “Love: Lost and Found,” these two words are mated perfectly in just half of one line in the double acrostic poem, “Love or Lust.” They stand out as one of the most weighty and passionate-driven images any poet or writer can share.

“Velvet Kisses.”

We feel the softness of lips touching lips, we experience lips caressing skin, we are aware of lips sweeping across bodies with compulsive gentleness and full richness. These are luxurious kisses described with just two effortless words, and they stand out for me as intense demonstrations to exhibiting love.

Pamela Beckford is a remarkably talented writer. After reading “Voices of Nature” (a co-authorship between her and Kirsten A.), and “Dreams of Love” her solo authorship, I was undeniably expecting more delightful poems in “Love: Lost and Found.”

And Pamela did not disappoint.

She has an exceptional style in which she conveys varying emotions and sentiments between two people in a complex relationship, and more particularly in this collection, the thoughts, dreams, desires, and understanding the speaker conveys throughout each poem.

One of the more striking poems is “He.” Here we see the juxtaposition of this relationship at a point in time:

“He is my everything
I am his plaything.

“He is my world
I am his toy.

“He is my number one priority
I am his second choice.

He is my day and night, sun and moon
I am his amusement.”

In just four unfussy stanzas, we see her realizations: a two-sided relationship, serving definite opposite purposes for both parties, both tangible and intangible. We understand her perspective of an ethereal significance to this relationship – He is important to her, something beyond the here and now, otherworldly, infinite emotional love. Conversely, we recognize his attitude – She is less important, a toy, a secondary thought – when there is a thought to be had.

Pamela intelligently captures love and relationships; there is a mature allure in each line, in each scene, in each description of togetherness and estrangement. The reader is allowed to use his or her own imagination of what is transpiring at any given moment.

The author makes this collection of poems enjoyable to read by the fact she employs varying styles of poetry: acrostic, ehteree, tanka, senru, for example. In fact, “Tantalizing,” an etheree, is fun to read aloud with the alliteration of the “t” that begins each line. Moreover, it is an edification to learn what other styles of poetry exist. This collection is diverse, indeed.

I highly recommend “Love: Lost and Found” by Pamela Beckford. I encourage readers to savor every poem, and find the love lost and the love found.

You can find “Love: Lost and Found” through Amazon — CLICK HERE.

© Susan Marie Molloy and all works within. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material and any works here on this site without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.