Wednesday, November 30, 2011

I'm a Winner!!!

Okay I know this is off subject for me, but I am so excited I can’t contain myself.

I just finished my NaNoWriMo Novel...Immortal Voyage....So as a surprise, I’m giving you the answer to the $100 question (Not really $100 but a chance to win a free E-copy of  Spell Checked) For the Romance Reviews YES party

Who did Lenni give a drunken kiss to?   The answer is Tam!!!
If I were Lenni I would want to kiss him too!

Bonus...I got my book trailer

Leave me with your thoughts and comments, I would love to hear from you!!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Guest Post by Jamie Salisbury - Elizabeth I: Sixteenth Century Diva

Please help me welcome the extraordinary Jamie Salisbury author of Perpetual Love.  She has been kind enough to do a guest post for me and on one of my favorite subjects “Elizabeth I”.

 Christine graced my blog earlier with a historical piece on Henry VIII (why does that song always plague my brain when I see his name?) as a “rock star” of his era. I am returning the favor by presenting Elizabeth I. Thank you Christine for giving me the opportunity.

With December fast approaching I am getting the “great golly washers” in anticipation of the launch of my second eNovel, “Tudor Rose”. This is the first in a series I’ve named “The Tudor Dynasty” series. I’ve been mildly amused by the comments that have come in already. Why? Well, people hear the name “Tudor” and they immediately conger up visions of the late Henry VIII or Elizabeth I and assume that “Tudor Rose” is a novel set in this era. As a history buff, the age of Henry VIII and a cast of other great people I embraced the feedback. I have dabbled in writing a novel set in that era. Not an easy task, but one I am researching.

If Elizabeth lived today I would place her right alongside Hillary Clinton, Eleanor Roosevelt and her descendent, Elizabeth II. If I were making her a female sixteenth century rock star, I would set her right next to the great Barbra Streisand. For she would have been not just a singer, but a woman with political ambitions. She was an extraordinary woman living in a time when the mere thought of a woman holding office much less becoming one of the most powerful women of her era would have been laughed at by her male counterparts.

Elizabeth was born in Greenwich on September 7, 1533. She was the fifth and last monarch of the Tudor dynasty. She reigned for 45-years, considered one of the most glorious in English history. She was quite well educated, spoke six languages fluently, having inherited her intelligence, shrewdness and determination from both her parents.

Perhaps her greatest contribution was that of making sure the Church of England was established and secure. Its doctrines were a compromise between Roman Catholic and Protestantism. Most of her subjects accepted the compromise as the basis of their faith. This probably saved England from religious wars like those France suffered during the second half of the century. Remember religion was (and still is in some cases) a man’s topic.

The arts flourished during Elizabeth’s time. She attended the first performance of Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”. I wonder what she would think of Will’s phenomenal success century’s later?

Her reign was also a dangerous one, not only for her but many others. A lot had to do with religion. After a papal document specifically released her subjects from their allegiance to her, she passed harsh laws against Roman Catholics after threats against her life were discovered. One such plot involved Mary, Queen of Scots. But we’ll save that juicy story for another time.

Of course one of the most well known facts about Elizabeth was the fact she never married. If she lived today, this fact wouldn’t even make headlines. In her time, well that was another matter indeed. Elizabeth herself chose to never marry. If she had married a foreign prince, he would have drawn England into foreign policies for his advantages; marrying a fellow countryman could have drawn her into factional infighting. Her last courtship was with the Duke of Anjou, who was twenty-two years her junior.

Elizabeth, or the ‘Virgin Queen’ as she became known (and if you believe that. . .)was a selfless woman who put her country and her people above her own personal happiness, for the good of the nation. She was in essence married to her kingdom.

She died at Richmond Palace on March 24, 1603 at age of 70, having become a legend in her own lifetime.

Indeed Elizabeth I was centuries ahead of her time.

So, getting back to my upcoming eNovel, Tudor Rose, I daresay I could envision Elizabeth in the part of Zara Middleton. Zara is a strong, educated, self-made woman living in the 21st century. Unlike Elizabeth though, Zara has love. . .

Please stop by my blog, leave a comment, just say ‘hi’. I’d love to hear from you.

 Jamie Salisbury

Author of Perpetual Love, Book 1 of the “Albert and Anne” series.

Follow me at:

Twitter: @JamieRSalisbury


Friday, November 25, 2011

Guest Post by Olivia Hardin- What Aztecs could learn from Monkees

Most of us connect the ancient Aztecs with human sacrifices, but the Aztecs also had a very clever means of keeping up with their deities’ demand for blood.  Somewhere along the way an Aztec ruler came up with the idea of a war strictly for that purpose.  The point wasn’t to kill, but to stun the enemy so that you could proudly march him back to your home state for sacrifice.  Two rulers would agree to appear with their best warriors on a chosen field of battle at a chosen time to engage in a “Flowery War.”

I mean what a great scheme, politically speaking!  The stronger Aztec state could use the war as both a means of subjugating its neighbors and also a very effective way to keep its own warrior class tough and practiced, all while satiating the gods demands for blood.  If you’ve got to feed the gods anyway, why not conjure a way to get something more in return? C’mon, let’s share the love…er, blood.

Can you imagine being one of those warriors?  I mean you’re not putting your life on the line to protect your country from an attack or to avenge some slight against your people.  Your job is to bring back captives for sacrifice to your gods and to risk the prospect that you might become a sacrifice to some other guy’s gods.  At the end of the day the rulers would get together, exchange totals, slap each other on the back for a job well done then attend to sacrificing the other’s strongest and best men.

Now let’s digress a moment.  There’s this crazy obscure song by the Monkees called “Zor and Zam”.  I always thought it was a pretty dumb song until I gave it some thought.   Basically the song tells the story of how the King of Zor sends a message to the King of Zam and says, “Hey, let’s have a war.”  King Zam agrees but when the appointed time arrives… two little kings, playing a game, they gave a war and nobody came. 

Now why the heck didn’t the everyday Aztec warrior think of this?  It’s because to an Aztec, being sacrificed on the alter was an honor, a privilege, the most “flowery” sorts of death a warrior could be lucky enough to receive.   You get to go out forever revered as a hero while you’re still in your prime.  I mean, what’s worse than becoming an old has-been Aztec warrior, right? 

About me:

Olivia Hardin is a Texas girl and a writer of anything that catches her fancy.  Her first book, Witch Way Bends, a paranormal romance, should be published by the end of this month. 

Blog Site:

Follow me on Twitter @oliviaH_writer 

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Guest Post: Slow Boat to Purgatory's Vernon Baker

For a short time begining Jan 4 2012 Slow Boat to Purgatory is free on Amazon.
So first off I would like to thank Christine for allowing me to advertise-I mean guest post-on her site. Before I get into the meat of the post I’d like to share a message from today’s sponsor, The Idiots Guide To Killing Demons, Hell-Hounds and Fallen Angels. That’s right, it is possible for a mere mortal to whack a veritable pantheon of otherworldly beings as long as you follow this simple manual and you have friends with certain skills that take seven hundred years to develop and fine tune. For a mere $9.99 on you too can learn the secrets of world class demon killers like Gaspar de Rouse, Alex Donovan and Dominicus Bureau from the book Slow Boat to Purgatory.
Of course you could just order Slow Boat to Purgatory from for $2.99 and get all the same information and a fun exciting tale that is garnering some nice reviews. All proceeds from the sale of both Slow Boat to Purgatory and The Idiots Guide to Killing Demons, Hell-Hounds and Fallen Angels, will be donated, by a not so circuitous route from Vernon Baker’s hands, to Pottery Barn for Kids, Gymboree and anything starting with Fisher and ending with Price.
Okay with that out of the way I present The Boat Man and Slow Boat to Purgatory...

And lo! toward us in a bark

Comes on an old man, hoary white with eld,

Crying, “Woe to you, wicked spirits! hope not

Ever to see the sky again. I come

To take you to the other shore across,
Into eternal darkness, there to dwell

In fierce heat and in ice. 

Dante Alighieri

Charon, the boatman - you really don't want to meet him.
The first time I saw Gustave Dore's 1860's illustration of Charon, which is part of his collection of Dante's Inferno illustrations, I was hooked. Before it was the book cover and title inspiration for Slow Boat to Purgatory, it was the driving force behind the disparate stories and characters that now populate the book.  Like Dore, who was so captivated by the inferno he chose it as the subject of his first compilation of illustrations, I found myself drawn to the enigmatic being who, oar in hand, was tasked with providing that proverbial last ride.
An immortal Templar knight named Gaspar De Rouse had been ghosting around the darker corners of my mind, and I'd written   snippets of phantasmal battle scenes between the immortal knight and all sorts of cuddly creatures and beings like hell hounds, fallen angels, and homicidal mortals. It was that picture of Charon, though, which gave rise to the mythology underlying the tale of Gaspar and set my creative juices free.
Inspiration, or as I like to call it conjuring, sometimes comes from the most unlikely places.
Perhaps this is as good a place as any to describe Slow Boat To Purgatory for those who haven’t read it yet.
Slow Boat, the first in a series introduces us to three men.  
Gaspar De Rouse, a Templar Knight born in the mid 13th century. He is the epitome of the noble Templar, committed to God, the order and to the defense of the Holy Land. In 1291, at the battle for Acre, he is given the location of a priceless relic and tasked with protecting it. Before he can fulfill his mission he's murdered by another member of the Templar order trying to gain control of the relic. Enter an Archangel who resurrects him and, for a price, offers a chance at redemption.
           Dominicus Bureau is a French priest who is a member of a modern day Templar order that still searches for the relic. He’s been on the trail of Gaspar and the relic for decades.  He carries a silenced .22 caliber pistol and uses it - often.
Alex Donovan, a retired navy seal, learns of Gaspar when his grandfather dies leaving him, not only a vast fortune, but an ancient book telling the story of the immortal knight. Alex is thrust into the midst of the ages old war, a war between good and evil, heaven and hell.
           Slow Boat to Purgatory shifts back and forth between the times of the crusades, the sixteenth century, and the present, telling the stories of three men, and the collision of their individual fates.

When asked to describe Slow Boat, I call it a paranormal thriller although it definitely crosses the lines of several genres so perhaps I need to come up with something like “paranormal-religious-escapist-horror-spirituality-treasure-hunting-thriller. One reader described it this way, “If Anne Rice and Dan Brown had a love child, Slow Boat would be the result”. I laughed but it makes sense.

Thanks again Christine and I look forward to hearing from your friends and readers.

Vernon Baker

Thank you, Vernon for a great guest post.  Don't forget to check out Vernon's Blog, Website and Slow Boat to Purhatory on Amazon.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Guest Post: Liz Schulte Author of Secrets

I would like to welcome guest author Liz Schulte to my blog.  Congratulations on the release of “Secrets”!

Secrets Revealed Clue #6

Secrets Cover

Blurb- While Olivia Martin observed life through her camera, the abyss gazed back at her. She discovers mysterious men follow her around, people close to her are dying, and her dreams are no longer her own as she falls head over heels for a perfect stranger. A chance encounter leads to an obsession that could destroy everything she has ever known or loved. Olivia is about to find out there is a lot she doesn't know and sometimes what you don't know can kill you.

Excerpt- Too much thinking, too early in the morning. I pulled my heavy legs out of bed and stretched away the stiffness of sleep. Surreal was the only word to describe my life and dreams the past few days. Shuffling towards the kitchen to get a drink, I was met with smell of breakfast and coffee. This was getting ridiculous! People had to stop breaking into my house. I tiptoed towards the kitchen, my heart quickening as I tried to glimpse my most recent intruder. I needed to know whether or not I needed to call the police.

In honor of the release of Secrets (Guardian Trilogy Book 1), Liz Schulte is revealing 6 secrets of her own. Join in the scavenger hunt for a chance to win an ebook of Secrets and Dark Corners and a $15 gift card to Amazon! All you have to do is collect the answers to all six clues then head back to and post your answers in the comment section of the Scavenger Hunt post. Happy hunting!

Clue #6- My mother has always been a huge British history buff. She named us after the Kings and Queens of England, which might be the reason I sometimes use a horrible fake accent and proclaim I was born in the wrong country. My name sake was the last monarch of the Tudor dynasty. (Back to Liz Schulte’s Bat Country

For more fun release day activities and giveaways please check out Liz’s facebook page

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Nephilim – Evil Giants or Error of Human Translation?

There is very little written information about the Nephilim that exist and with most of it coming from a few minuscule verses in the bible, is it any wonder that humanity strives to find out who they really were, or in most cases make up their own crap about the Nephilim.  Like I did in “ImmortalVoyage 

One of the problems I have is the information itself.  The bible has been translated so many times its context cannot be relied on as fact.  Even the name Nephil is open to translational debates, which leads us to question the validity of their description in the first place.

They are described as the offspring of sons of God and daughters of man.  In other words, God had children that were not human....Man may have been made in his image, but according to this definition the human male is not a “Son of God”.  Oh and wait...they were giants according to the translations.  By this logic, shouldn’t Jesus have been a giant too?

Now let us step back for a moment and see how this all might have played out.  A son of God walks into a bar, the cave sluts are all drinking whatever fermented in their goat stomach bags since yesterday, when one of them pipes in, “Hey, nice wings you got there.”  And nine months later, she’s trying to push out a giant baby.  Yeah...I’m confused too.

Scenario number two – The Nephilim are the sons of God, but still got jiggy with the daughters of man, so God made them leave, which to sounds a bit hypocritical to me, especially since the whole Jesus incident.

Is it just me or does anyone else see a problem with Nephilim as described in biblical text?  What is your image of a Nephil (Wings, no wings, giants, demon...)? 
C.G. Powell
Author of Spell Checked: Book One of The No Uncertain Logic Series
Follow me!   Facebook | Website | Twitter | Goodreads
Buy my book    Amazon | Barns & Noble | Smashwords


Friday, November 11, 2011

Henges and Atlantis Vs. Katy Perry and Zooey Deschanel

I’ve had a revelation this week as I researched Atlantis for my book “Immortal Voyage”.  As I looked through the photos of Neolithic henges in Ireland, I noticed that henge design itself is very reminiscent of descriptions of Atlantis.  You have a main center surrounded by channels and concentric rings.  Could early man have seen Atlantis off their coast and assimilated its architecture as a means of honor its god like inhabitants?  Or maybe they just like circles, like the wheel...Oh wait, they didn’t have the wheel at that time....

Nobody knows for certain the reasons man began to build henges and whether the intentions were artistic or religious, the main reason man began to build really big shit in the first place, the fact is that henges and Atlantis bare an uncanny resemblance....but then again so do Katy Perry and Zooey Deschanel, and they are not related either...At least I don’t think they are.

My whole point to this story is that you should not discount any theory, no matter how absurd it may be.  Because sometimes on this flat world of ours we have been mistaken, and fact has proven more than once, that it can be the more ludicrous than any fiction our imagination can cook up.

 What is your theory about Henges?   Did Atlantis exist?  And are Katy Perry and Zooey Deschanel really secret sisters?

 Please leave me with your thoughts and arguments...I would love to hear from you either way!!!!   

C.G. Powell
Author of Spell Checked: Book One of The No Uncertain Logic Series
Follow me!   Facebook | Website | Twitter | Goodreads
Buy my book   Amazon | Barns & Noble | Smashwords

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Teaser Tuesday - Excerpt from "Immortal Voyage"

Excerpt from "Immortal Voyage"

The summer was over and fall winds made their arrival.  Rowe sat in his private chamber, with Jaren and Kale, debating the latest clan meeting.  It had been eight months since he talked to Sarik, and still he had no word on his decision. In the meantime things were beginning to spiral out of control.  During his visit to Hy-Brasil, Dugun lorded over the clan as if Rowe would never return.  At one point, even Kale was ready to put an arrow through him, but Jaren talked him out of it as it might start a war between Canulis and Eir, something Rowe had strived to avoid.

“My Laird, the clan can wait no longer.  You must select an heir, or they will choose one for you,” Kale bellowed, slapping his hand on the table. “And if you leave that oaf in charge again I will kill him myself,” Kale said, gritting his teeth as he fisted his hands.

“And I’m not going to stop him this time,” added Jaren sternly.

“I understand your frustration, but I need more time.  If you just give me more time, I promise all will be well and an heir will be chosen,” Rowe pleaded.

Letting out a deep calming breath, Kale responded, “You know I believe you Rowe, but your clan is losing faith in your ability to rule, so I worry.”

Rowe sat silently, his hand on his chin as he mentally hashed out a plan.  “Kale, is there any way you can convince Tam to court Lenni, I need for him to buy me more time?”

“You know his heart belongs to Wren, I doubt he would appreciate you playing games with his emotions Rowe,” Kale said with a shrug.

“Lenni refuses to be courted, because she keeps having dreams of a man she has never seen and thinks it is her husband to be.  My plan is not for them to marry, I know both of their hearts lay elsewhere, I just need to give the clan hope until I get my answer from Sarik,” explained Rowe.

“I will talk to him, but I don’t like getting the clans hope up falsely,” Kale flustered. 

“I don’t like it either, but they leave me little choice and I need more time.  I will talk to Lenni, I’m sure she won’t mind spending time with Tam as long as she doesn’t have to marry him,” Rowe reassured Kale.  He stood up from his chair, a sign that their business was done for the day.  “And Kale, I expect to see Tam over here this evening for supper,” he added.

With a slight bow from the doorway Kale replied, “As you wish my Laird,” before departing.

Within the hour Tam arrived at the great hall, ready to do his duty to Laird and clan.  He was greeted by Lenni, who despite her own yearning, really did enjoy Tam’s company.  The two sat by the fire discussing the arrival of Edric’s horses earlier that day.

“Tam, you should see the fine horse father has bought for me, she is the most beautiful beast you have ever seen!” exclaimed Lenni as her face lit up against the fire light.

“After Edric teaches you to ride, maybe your father would let me take you on a trip to the cliffs.  They are beautiful in the summer and I know you could use the fresh air,” he offered.

“Oh Tam, that would be wonderful, I have always wanted to see the cliffs, thank you,” she said, leaning over and kissing his cheek.

“Can you believe they are forcing us to spend time with one another, like it’s a punishment or something,” she laughed, nudging him with her elbow.

“I cannot say that I am completely saddened by this mockery, as I do enjoy your company.  Maybe it will keep us occupied enough from our own love sorrows, that happiness may show upon our brow once again,” he smiled, and then noticed that the cook was serving mead.  “Would you like some mead?” he asked before getting up.

“Yes, thank you.”

Tam walked across the hall and retrieved two cups of mead, on his way back he noticed his Laird standing in the doorway watching Lenni.  Tam looked him in the eyes and smiled, before giving him a slight nod of approval.  He sat back down beside Lenni, and handed her the cup.  Tam raised his cup to Lenni and said, “A toast to us, may our courtship be brief but memorable.”

“And if not for Dugun, completely nonexistent,” she added, before they both began to laugh.

“I should not be laughing at the cause of my broken heart.  If not for the fact that my father sent me to Monmalor to deliver salt, I think I would have killed him,” Tam confessed as he finished his cup of mead. “Would you like another one?” he asked, raising his cup.

“I really shouldn’t,” she replied, before laughing at Tam, standing before her with an exaggerated frown. “Very well then I shall have another,” she laughed as Tam grabbed her cup to refill it. 

He returned to the fire with a pitcher and their two cups in his hand.  The two of them sat by the fire laughing and drinking mead the rest of the evening. As the fire died down, Tam clasped Lenni’s hand in his, bent over and brought it to his lips.  Her face flushed with drink, she smiled at his gesture and moved closer, then threw her arms around his neck and kissed his lips.  Her kiss stirred something inside of Tam, instead of pushing away from her, he pulled her closer, losing himself in her desire, returning her craving with his own, until gently he melted away from her embrace.  He leaned his forehead against hers and closed his eyes as he softly caressed her face. “I must go Lenni,” he whispered softly before as he pulled away and walked out the room.

Lenni just stood there, her heart beating wildly as her mind swam with confusion.  What the hell just happened? she thought, sitting back down in front of the coals that still burned in the hearth.  She sat there motionless and alone, until Jael went looking for her, then walked her to their room and laid her on the bed. 

This is an excerpt from “Immortal Voyage” it is the book I am working on this month for NaNoWriMo.  Although I have ended this scene with a simple kiss between friends, the consequences of that kiss will affect them their entire lives.  Have you ever had a kiss you could never forget?  Tell me what you think of the excerpt or just stop by and say “HI”.  I love comments.

C.G. Powell
Author of Spell Checked: Book One of The No Uncertain Logic Series

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Alien Sexcapades

I as I fingered through photos of crop circles for my next blog post, I began to think about the one thing most of us do not consider when we think of extraterrestrial visitation.  Have Alien ever come to earth just to have sex? 
When most of us think of Aliens, this picture of body invading, reptiles, who have come to take over the word, one politician at a time, comes to mind.  Or maybe the army of squid like, exoskeleton covered, grays coming destroy humanity as depicted in Independence Day.  Either way I think we are missing another potential reason, why Aliens might want to visit Earth...Thrill Sex on a populated planet.
I don’t think I’m being unreasonable with this theory.  I mean these are the guys that can travel across space and time, and yet, emotional copulation is somehow unique to humans.  Does this mean that humanity will cease to have sex for fun the moment we begin to travel among the stars?  Is it an unwritten criteria that Aliens are required to uphold during visitations?  No Sex Allowed!
This is the conversation I envision might take place on board a space craft visiting Earth.
Meep:  Do remember the last time we came to Nazca to see the lines? 
Eep:  How could I forget?  It took weeks to get all the sand out of the cracks of my exoskeleton.  *blushes* This time, you’re on the bottom.

If you traveled to another planet, what would be on your mind?  Sex in a strange place or world domination, which by the way can be very stressful? 

Friday, November 4, 2011

Daylight Savings Time

Tomorrow is the end of Daylight Savings Time (DST) ...YAY!!!!  Those of us, who are at the mercy of it, should all rejoice as its reign of terror comes to an end.  Okay maybe not an end, but a six month respite.  It’s sad, but that one hour throws me off for six whole months, I mourn its loss and sinking into this dark depression.  I miss that hour like a lost friend.

So, imagine the joy I will feel tomorrow when my hour has returned and all is right with the world once again, reunited at last like a lover who has been absent.  Sometimes I just want to move to Arizona or Hawaii, neither of which observe Daylight Savings Time.

Anyone else suffer from DST depression?  Is it just me or does it all seem like a bunch of government sanctioned BS?  Would you move to avoid it?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Cleopatra – Death by Asp or Ass?

From the beginning Cleopatra had a bit of an ego.  Unlike many of her predecessors who refuse to speak Egyptian, Cleopatra not only learned to speak Egyptian, she represented herself as the reincarnation of the Egyptian goddess Isis.  First she ruled jointly with her father as coregent, then later her brothers whom she married....I know this was an Egyptian custom at the time, but it still grosses me out!  Ironically, none of them lived very long under her rule. 

Her father Ptolemy XII was already considered a bit of a looser and was described as a weak, self-indulgent man, a drunkard, and a music lover (this was not a good thing in the first century BC).  He lost his reign and was exiled to Rome from 58-55 BC and upon his return to Egypt; he promptly had his successor during his exile, his eldest daughter Berenice executed, and ruled for four years with Cleopatra before his death.

In 51 BC Ptolemy XIII, her younger brother, was made co-ruler and by 48 BC, at the urging of his regent Pothinus he attempted to depose of Cleopatra fearing she had become too powerful.  This did not go well for Ptolemy when Pothinus murdered the wrong person and pissed of Julius Caesar who had now become the lover of Cleopatra.  In the end Ptolemy XIII, Pothinus and Cleopatra’s sister Arsinoe IV all would end up dead and Cleopatra would rule unchallenged.  At the death of his older brother in 47 BC, Ptolemy XIV was made co-ruler with his sister Cleopatra, he only ruled in name until 44 BC, when it assumed he was killed by poison to make room for Cleopatra’s son with Caesar, Ptolemy XV Caesarion.

Upon Caesar’s death in 44 BC Cleopatra allied herself with Mark Antony in opposition to Caesar’s legal heir and nephew, Octavianus (later known as Augustus).  She and Antony had three children, twins Cleopatra Selene II and Alexander Helios, and Ptolemy Philadelphus.   After his defeat at Actium to Octavian’s forces in 31 BC, Anthony committed suicide.

For as much as Cleopatra had done to secure the continuation of her reign, I find her death by Asp to be a farfetched tale.  She was not one to go down without a fight, and I have a hard time believing that this feisty, mother of four, would have abandon her children to the hands of the enemy without a fight.  It is more likely she was killed at the request of Octavianus.

What are your thoughts, suicide or murder?  Was Cleopatra responsible for the deaths of her brothers and sister in her rise for power?  I would love to hear what you think, so please leave a comment.