New Year, Fresh Start, New Resolutions

Have you noticed how hard it is to get used to a new year? At least for me it’s always a challenge for the first couple of months when I have to fill in the date. Thinking back of my childhood, it’s hard to imagine I’m in 2020. I mean, back then, that was the future! In one of my favorite movies, Back to the Future, Steven Spielberg had imagined a much more evolved 21st century. According to him, by now we should all travel in space cars, have voice-command appliances, and eradicate most illnesses. Wasn’t he an optimist, back in ’86 when he made the first movie?

While we’re working on technologies that will eventually make all of these things possible, everything is moving slowly. And although we can definitely survive without flying cars and smart refrigerators, our quality of life depends on our health.

When we’re healthy we are unaware of how important this is. It’s only when we’re confronted with illness—or worse, death—that we start appreciating what truly matters in life. I’ve had such a terrible revelation right after Christmas, when I learned that a high school mate of mine died of cancer at the age of thirty-three. The news was shocking for all of us who knew him. We all hoped and prayed for a miracle until the last minute, but in vain. I can only shudder when I think of his poor wife and six-year-old-son, who have to deal with so much grief. I was touched by how many people jumped in to help them, morally and financially. It’s probably not that much of a comfort, but seeing this proof of kindness reassured me there’s still hope for humanity.

It’s a bitter irony that I have just finished a book where the hero is a researcher and fights to cure cancer. Although the book is a fictional suspense romance, a lot of the medical facts are true. With medicine advancing fast, I pray this terrible disease will soon be eradicated forever and stop being a constant threat to us and those we love.

In International Affairs: LONDON, Dr. Gerard Leon develops not one, but two cures for cancer, with the help of Linda, a beautiful and wealthy Italian artist. If in life we’re not guaranteed a happy ever after, one of the things we can do is look for it in books…

She has the money; he has the brains. In their quest to cure others, can they also heal each other?

Gerard Leon is a physician and researcher. Linda Coriola is an artist and philanthropist. After losing loved ones to this silent killer, they both fight cancer in their own way—her with money, him with scientific breakthroughs.
Neither expected to fall in love, but when they do, it’s hard, fast, and mind-blowing.
But they have a common enemy who will stop at nothing to see them fail. Can they give into their feelings, stay focused on their goal, and live to fight another day?

International Affairs: LONDON is the first book in a new series of suspense romance novels, International Romance Collection. I hope you will love these stories as much as I enjoy writing them!
If this isn’t in your New Year’s resolutions list, remember: stay healthy. When it comes to most illnesses your body will give you signs so you can do something before it’s too late–don’t ignore them! It doesn’t matter that you’ll keep your job, or get that promotion, or keep that relationship, or do whatever you want to do if you won’t live long enough to enjoy them. We can find love, build fortunes, make dreams come true, but the one thing we can’t buy is our health. It’s the most precious thing we can have. Take care of yourselves above all else. ❤

Here’s a photo of me on Christmas Day. I had the best time of my life during the holidays because hubby took two weeks off work, so we spent every minute together. We didn’t go to any parties or fancy events, we just enjoyed our time together cooking, watching TV, staying at home, shopping or just walking the streets and goofing around. 🙂

Death Of An Officer

RCMP funeral

RCMP funeral

On April 5th of this year, Const. Sarah Beckett, 32, died while on duty.

Earlier this week thousands came out for a regimental funeral, lining the roads along the procession route to a funeral in the West Shore Q arena. Red suited RCMP officers accompanied the black hearse, with a riderless horse, signifying a fallen police officer, walking ahead of the hearse, while an officer carrying her hat, walked behind.

Candle light vigils have been held in her honor and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau sent his condolences along with Premier Christie Clark, who also attended the funeral. Over 2,000 law enforcement officers, along with first responders, attended along with thousands from the general public.

I knew her. Not well, but by sight. When I came in the day she died one of the nurses asked me if I knew her and I didn’t know. She said I would because she’d been in many times. And as soon as I saw a photograph of her, I did.

She leaves behind a husband and two young children. My heart breaks for them. Yesterday they were a normal family and today a gaping hole has opened up in front of them. Family and friends will step forward to help, to fill the gaps.

But how do you replace a mother? How do you replace a wife? It’s not possible. They will have to find a way around their grief and to a new life, minus one.

None of the people I hear talking about her, are talking about her gun shooting skills or take down of dangerous criminals. Instead I hear people talking of her kindness and compassion.

She saw herself as both a mother and an RCMP officer. For that reason she moved a little faster when there was a call about a child, felt compelled to do more.

One young mother is remembering Sarah Beckett’s help in locating her young son when he went missing from his school. It was not a case of a child abducted, but a case of a child running away from school and towards his home, when things got a bit too much for him one day.

It was the mother in her, as much as the officer, that responded, coaxing the young boy out of his hiding place and talking to him about safety when she found him.

The people I’ve talked to, who knew her, all talk about her kindness, her ability to handle difficult situations with tact and humanity, so that even when she was asking someone to move along or telling them they couldn’t do what they wished to, they still felt valued.

RCMP Commissioner Bob Paulsen, praised her saying, “she was outraged by injustice and fought to make it right. She had no time for complacency and didn’t abide it. She had a knack for interviews and it followed a gift for engaging people. She was, in short, the archetypal modern Mountie. We will miss her.”

She will be missed. The world needs more Sarah Becketts.


The fourth in my Death By Chocolate Series, Soul Mates is out and available on Amazon.

Soul Mates CoverLove, romance and happily ever after. Isn’t that what we all want? The question is how far will someone go to get it? What happens when someone takes advantage? One of Maxine’s best friends, Tanya, has decided to open a dating service? What could possibly go wrong?