Recommended Books



Getting Ready to Travel

by Llewellyn McKernan

Published by Finishing Line Press

$14.99 plus shipping

Cover Art by Judith A. Lawrence
This book's a dipsy-doodle dizzy trip that “could have been co-authored by Mother Goose and William Blake,” says George Ella Lyon, Poet Laureate of Kentucky, in her blurb on the back cover.

Marc Harshman, Poet Laureate of West Virginia tells you: “Prepare to be astonished as you travel through these poems, where what’s considered is not leisure but life, death, and purpose.”

Meredith Sue Willis, author of many well-known novels, including “Oradell at Sea,” also adds: “To take this journey is to make a surprising spiritual preparation for our own life journeys. 

                    This is Sunshine Hill
                    where I sit
                       for a spell.  I ponder
                sundogs, the smell
                   of a leaf, over-ripe
apples, the sour
      and the sweet.

              I reflect on crime.
               I examine dirt.
                   I take off my laminated
            lemon-colored skirt.
                I take off my blouse,
it’s pleated, it’s simple.
     I watch
          the clouds,
     how they shift
and glow.

                I dance with joy.
          I know what I know.

                               —Llewellyn McKernan

"Dahlia's in Bloom"  by Judith A. Lawrence
 "Under the EL"  by  D. T. Cook

A story of love and redemption in the Kensington section of Philadelphia, PA.
Can be purchased at

D T Cook - Under The El
"Monte Carlo Days & Nights," by Susan Tepper

The relationships between beautiful women and powerful men, already complicated, are further compounded when the heroine is fiercely sexually attracted as well as in love with her wealthy part-time suitor, who promises he will never marry her, preferring the pursuit of beautiful women as toys for pleasure. She lives a life both interior and exterior. One in which she withholds her true thoughts from him fearing and resenting his dismissal, and another in which she plays his game as if complicit to his desires and whims. 

                                 —Judith A. Lawrence

A five star review currently by 28 readers
Can be purchased at

Excerpt from "Monte Carlo Days & Nights," 'Poodle'

I’m spooning in the most incredible soup. Cream of sorrel. I almost want to order another bowl. I love this soup so much, I say.

Too rich, he says. Placing his salad fork on the service plate. Be sure and leave room for your duck.

I will.

I suddenly feel like a child who’s been reprimanded at the table. I scrape the remains of my soup carefully from the bottom of the bowl. He’s usually quite calm. Though something minor, like scraping the bowl, can set him on edge. He’s watching me with one eyebrow raised. I’m careful not to slurp what’s left. I tell him that he has supersonic hearing.

What makes you say that? he wants to know.

I’m not sure.

It’s amazing I can hear at all, he says. 

Two Excerpts from Under the El by D T Cook   
No one accosts a Kensington family walking together. The neighborhood’s drug addicts and desperate homeless know the consequences of such a foolhardy act. The husband will surely fight for his family without the burden of mercy or concern of legal consequences. He will fight with the same rules his opponent lives by, but with more sincerity. And Kensington women are not bashful in conflict. They are, pound for pound, more dangerous than their men. As Sally and Ned and young Harry walk together in the night to Jimmy’s viewing, they are safe in a jungle sort of way. They are safe and protected by the oldest strength on earth, they are protected by each other.

Jackie makes the following Friday evening at his steak shop special. Even so, every Friday at Jackie’s is weird and bizarre. The new man’s face scares some of the late-night drunks as he mops and wipes. 

“Keep cleaning, keep cleaning,” Jackie tells Ned.

Sylvia is, as always, immaculate and pleasant. The customers, direct descendant’s all of P. T. Barnum’s original sideshow, would not call themselves bizarre, could not spell bizarre. Tonight is special because Jackie appears to have been abducted, willingly, by aliens. Tonight Jackie is supernatural.

Natural Kensington law has always always dictated that only a gruff, unshaven, thoroughly slovenly man of Jackie’s exact description could work and prosper on this corner, on this Avenue. Tonight, however, a supernatural event has happened and national law has been broken. 

Behold: Jackie has been standing before the takeout window and politely asking, “May I help you?” What’s more, he is clean-shaven, in a clean apron, wearing a clean, white paper cap, and most astonishing of all, he is without an unlit cigar stub in the corner of his mouth. His new cap bears the proud logo on both sides: Polish Paints Cover The World.

The crack whores, a hardened lot who are exposed to the perverse often, have been talking about Jackie’s Change, as they have come to call it, from Front and York Streets to Allegheny Avenue—their entire working area sanctioned by the police—all night. One of the newer, less respectful girls even dares to ask if Sylvia is pregnant. “But Jackie,” she reasons, “What else would make you clean up like this?”

William E. Dempsey's Book 2 of his Jake Bodine crime series is now selling in paperback and e-book formats on  On amazon search, type in Books by William E. Dempsey. 

"Jake Bodine, in the tradition of Robert B. Parker’s Spenser, is a somewhat laid-back private investigator, but fully capable of delivering a Sunday punch, pulling a trigger, or employing his ever-ready stiletto.
In book-two of the series, the vivacious Maggie O’Brian, claiming the police have wrongly accused her of murdering her wealthy Irish husband, hires Jake to prove her innocence. The case takes him from Florida to Ireland and England, but the evidence piles up against her. The intrepid Jake pushes on, uncovering lies, deception, betrayal, and a ruthless killer bent on revenge. While in Ireland, he meets his soul mate, and true love quickly blossoms, then faces a life-altering showdown."

Bio: William E. Dempsey began his military career as an electronics technician in the navy. He served aboard the destroyer U.S.S. Blandy (DD 943) in the Atlantic and Mediterranean fleets during the early nineteen sixties. He made several deployments to the Caribbean and Naval Station Guantanamo during those turbulent years. Bill left the navy after one enlistment.

After college, he received a commission in the army. He served four years, then made an interservice transfer to the air force. Upon graduation from the Air Command and Staff College, the Surgeon General of the Air Force appointed him Chief of Combat Casualty Care Analysis at Headquarters, USAF, where he served during the first Gulf War. When that crisis ended, he remained at the Pentagon as an Emergency Action Officer on the staff of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, in the National Military Command Center. In that capacity, he served as a military liaison to the Central Intelligence Agency. Upon retirement from active duty, he became Manager, Air Force Security Forces Officer Training Courses.

William and his wife, Kathleen, both retired and returned to Central Florida in 2005. Several years later, he began writing, basing the stories on his wide variety of military experiences. He has completed five historical fiction novels based on the Mike Stafford character. The first published was “Betrayal at Bahia de los Cochinos,” a novel of the Bay of Pigs invasion. “Blockade: the Quarantine of Cuba” and “Deception at San Cristóbal,” followed, both based on the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962. “Revenge at Dealey Plaza” explores possible connections of the missile crisis to the assassination of President Kennedy. The last of the series, “Che’s Last Stand,” traces the revolutionary leader’s failed attempt to spread Cuban communism to Africa and South America.

“Blood on the Rhine” introduces a new crime fiction series in 2018, featuring Jake Bodine, a private investigator who plays loose with the rules. “The Widow O’Brian,” released in late 2018, is Jake’s second published adventure. All stories are available in paperback and e-book form at and worldwide through various Amazon web sites.

Bill is a member of the Florida Writers Association, Daytona Writers Group, the Daytona Area Writers, U.S.S. Blandy Association, U.S. Naval Institute, and a lifetime member of the Military Officers Association of America. 

"Private Investigator Jake Bodine lands a big case when Maggie O’Brian, a seductive millionaire, walks into his office. Maggie’s husband Finn was murdered in their mansion. While Maggie insists on her innocence, the Florida Police think otherwise, and Maggie needs Jake to help clear her name. However, as Jake uncovers information about Maggie’s past and Finn’s business dealings, it becomes clear that the hunt for the true killer won’t be easy. The investigation forces Jake to travel all the way to Ireland, where Finn’s massive dairy company is based. While in Ireland, Jake gets closer to learning the killer’s identity while also falling deeply in love in with a beautiful Irishwoman, Siobhán. Jake’s personal and professional life intertwine as Siobhán stays by his side throughout the investigation, and great danger surrounds the couple as they come face to face with the murderer."
William E. Dempsey's book 1 and 2  of the Jake Bodine series earned a four star review from Red City Reviews, the New York City literary review house.
​"The second book in Dempsey’s Jake Bodine series, The Widow O’Brian is full of suspense and romance. Like a James Bond storyline, many attractive women pop up throughout the book desiring Jake’s attention. For instance, prior to meeting and falling for Siobhán, Jake has a short, steamy fling with Maggie. Amidst the exciting chase to catch Finn’s killer, there is an overabundance of attraction and lust. While a few scenes in the book might feel unduly over-the-top within a different mystery novel, Dempsey makes them work for his own sensational crime story. Set in the year 1986, Jake’s investigative strategy doesn’t rely on the help of smartphones or other modern technology, which is part of The Widow O’Brian’s charm. Instead, Jake is an old-school detective putting in the hard work to follow the clues—wherever they may lead."