Book Tour: Rain City Lights

Cozy Book Box Giveaway: US Only*Signed Copy of Rain City Lights*Lux Throw Blanket*Hand-Crafted Candles

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Book Tour: My First Animal Moves

Welcome to the book tour for My First Animal Moves by Darryl Edwards. This book will get kids and parents moving!

My First Animal Moves: A Children’s Book to Encourage Kids and Their Parents to Move More, Sit Less and Decrease Screen Time

Genre: Children’s Books/ Sports/ Illustrated Books

Publication Date: September 20th, 2021

Publisher: Explorer Publishing

Nathan loves to play, but he loves his video games more.

Can a trip to Animal Moves land convince him there’s more fun outdoors? Best-selling author and speaker Darryl Edwards has created this fun adventure inspired by his passion for encouraging kids to move in an ever-increasing sedentary environment.

MY FIRST ANIMAL MOVES

Discover the joys of animal moves with your little cubs in this first book of movement. Join Nathan and his cute, but sometimes lazy, dog as they crawl, jump and balance their way through the animal kingdom re-enacting moves designed to emphasise fun. It’s all in this exercise for kids book that focuses on family fun boredom busters.

HELPING KIDS MOVE AND GETTING KIDS OFF SCREENS THROUGH FUN ANIMAL PLAY

✓ Do you want to make physical activity for kids fun?

 Are you looking for ways to help your children develop strength, coordination and balance?

✓ Do your children love learning about animals?

 Are you worried about too much TV and screen time?

✓ Do you want to teach young children about the importance of physical activity?

✓ Would you like easy and fun fitness games to include in your day?

My First Animal Moves is your answer. Play along together, keeping everyone healthier and happier, promoting physical, mental and emotional well-being. You’ll all release more mood-enhancing hormones as a result, which help you feel good every day.

It’s written by professional movement coach and award-winning author Darryl Edwards who is best known for his groundbreaking TED Talk “Why working out isn’t working out“, viewed over a million times worldwide. My First Animal Moves distils the ideas in his bestselling Animal Moves book and Animal Moves Fitness Decks into a colourful picture book for children.

Available on Amazon

About the Author

Darryl Edwards is a former investment banking technologist turned movement coach and author. He is the founder of the Primal Play Method and a physical activity, health and play researcher.

The Primal Play Method fuses evolutionary biology with the science of physical activity and play psychology.

Darryl wants to inspire humans regardless of age, ability or disability to transform their health by making physical activity fun and engaging.

His work has featured on documentaries, TV, radio, podcasts and international press.

Darryl is author of the best-selling book “Animal Moves” and has released a range of fun fitness cards for adults, juniors, infants, office workers and fitness professionals called the Animal Moves Decks.

He regularly presents as a keynote speaker at events worldwide. His April 2019 TED talk “Why working out isn’t working out”—has now been viewed over a-million times.

Darryl resides in London, England and publishes about playful living at PrimalPlay.com.

Primal Play | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram 

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New Book: The Resurrectionist

Welcome to the book tour for The Resurrectionist by A.R. Meyering. This tale is sure to inspire chills!

The Resurrectionist “Inspired by the true story of the Burke and Hare murders”

Publication Date: July 3rd, 2020

Genre: Supernatural/ Horror/ Fantasy/ Based on Real Life Characters

Scotland, 1854

On a skinny, forgotten road in Edinburgh stood a shop without a name—a shop that could be found only if one had previously been led to its door. William, who was blind, rapped his knuckles on the door. The shop owner opens the door and says, “I recognize you. You’re the thief who slithered away while your partner swung by his neck.”

William begs the woman to break the curse that has been set on him that prevents him from dying. The curse, says the woman, cannot be broken, but it can be displaced. Is your death so precious to you that you would destroy one more innocent life to get it? The life of your own child?”

London 1895

In 19th century Scotland surgeon Edgar Price has only days to live. He has become host to a revenant that will corrode both his body and soul. Edgar’s fatal mistake has not only doomed him, but also released six more of these malignant wraiths onto the world. In his remaining time, he has vowed to stop the revenants from claiming other victims. His perilous travels lead him to the Witches’ Wood, a haven for a sisterhood of powerful enchantresses. There he meets Ainsley, who is also racing against the clock to save her life and will go to any lengths to spare the life of her lover Colleen from the grief of losing her. Despite their mutual dislike, Edgar and Ainsley find that the only way to traverse the twisted, otherworldly labyrinths that the revenants have created is to work together. Their mission becomes further complicated when Edgar begins to develop feelings for Fana, the guardian goddess of the Wood in spite of Ainsley’s forbidding warnings to stay far away from her.

Though THE RESURRECTIONIST is a work of fantasy, many of the settings and elements are based on fact. Horror and fantasy intermingle in this novel inspired by the true story of the Burke and Hare murders.

From 1828-29, Irish immigrants William Burke and William Hare were responsible for the murders of sixteen people in Edinburgh. Their methods generally involved luring a victim to Hare’s boardinghouse, where they plied them heavily with alcohol before suffocating them. They were motivated by greed, selling the corpses of their victims to a local surgeon, Robert Knox. Each victim was publicly dissected, and Dr. Knox is largely thought to have been complicit in the crimes.

During their ten-month killing spree, William Hare’s common-law wife, Margaret Laird, was pregnant with their child. Hare was pardoned for his crimes due to his confession and condemnation of his accomplice Burke, who was hanged and publicly dissected as punishment.

After being pardoned, Hare, Margaret, and their infant are thought to have escaped to Ireland. It also has been rumored that William Hare was thrown into a lime pit and subsequently suffered blindness before becoming a beggar. The victims in THE RESURRECTIONIST are also based on real life people.

Reminiscent of Tess Gerritsen’s The Bone Garden, THE RESURRECTIONIST explores a real-life horror story through a riveting supernatural thriller that is guaranteed to hook readers from the very first page.

Available on Amazon

About the Author

A.R. Meyering was a graduate student studying philosophy. She has worked as an English teacher in a small town in Kumamoto Prefecture, Japan. Her dark fantasy novel, Unreal City, won a Literary Classics International Book Award gold medal for YA horror and a Moonbeam Award bronze medal in YA horror. While doing her undergrad in English she studied abroad in Edinburgh, focusing on Scottish occult literature and folklore. 

Sadly, A.R. Meyering passed away in 2021.

A.R. Meyering

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New Book: Theo and The Secret of Elshon

Welcome to the book tour for Theo and the Secret of Elshon! This is the second installment in Melanie Ansley’s Book of Theo series and fans of Chronicles of Narnia and Watership Down will love it. Read on for more details and a chance to win a paperback edition of Theo and the Forbidden Language!

Theo and the Secret of Elshon (Book of Theo #2)

Publication Date: November 18th, 2021

Genre: YA Fantasy

A rabbit with the secret ability to read. An axe wielding bear. A warrior princess.

Together, they must find the fabled Library of Elshon, and fight the human empire bent on turning animals into mindless beasts of burden.

In the sequel to the award winning “Theo and the Forbidden Language”, Theo, Brune, and Indigo must find the infamous and feared muskrat, Orjo the Terrible. For only he can lead them to the legendary Elshon, a lost library in a land where reading and writing are punishable by death. At Elshon, Theo hopes to find the cure to Pacification—the empire’s power to make animals mute and mindless.

But can they find the Library and its hidden powers before Theo’s enemy, the vengeful human warlord Ornox, hunts them down? Can they even trust the notoriously conniving Orjo? It’s a race against time and overwhelming odds as Theo and his team must test their friendship, courage, and wits to uncover the secret to defeating the empire. For fans of Redwall, the Chronicles of Narnia and Watership Down comes a fantasy adventure about faith, self-acceptance, and the power of the written word.

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Excerpt

Theo and his friends, the warrior rabbit princess Indigo and the bear Brune, are forced to drink with Orjo (a sly muskrat) in order to persuade him to lead them to the fabled Library of Elshon.

***

“There now! I suppose we should toast.” Orjo raised his cup. “Last to drain has manure for brains.” At their stiff expressions, he sighed. “Mankahar is losing its sense of fun along with its freedom, is it? You’ll never get me to take you to the Library if you don’t drink.”

Brune and Indigo each took cautious sips, while Theo couldn’t get beyond the smell. He pretended to drink, but kept his lips closed. Even so, he immediately wiped an arm across his mouth. Indigo made a guttural sound and nearly spat it back up.

“It tastes better once your tongue goes numb,” Orjo said, refilling their cups. “That’s the way. Now, who else knows you’re here?”

“No one,” Theo said.

“The sea bats,” Brune blurted. He looked surprised, then grimaced, as if trying to get the taste of the drink out of his mouth.

Orjo drained his cup again. “Good. Anyone else?”

“An otter rowed us here in his boat.” Indigo frowned, as if confused by her own words.

The muskrat chuckled at her expression. “Like I said, brew loosens the tongue, doesn’t it? So it sounds like you’ve exposed my whereabouts, and more than once. Doesn’t make me want to help you.”

“Even if it meant defeating the Urzoks?” Indigo pushed her cup away.

“That’s a noble cause. But I’ve found noble causes tend to be bad for your health.”

“The stories say you’re immortal,” the bear growled.

“I can live forever, if that’s what you mean. But that’s assuming something like a blade, let’s say, doesn’t find its way into my neck.” Orjo raised his cup. “To life! And longevity.”

At his expectant look, Brune downed his drink, and Indigo reluctantly pulled her cup back for a sip.

“How did you become immortal?”

“That’s a long story.” Orjo brushed Theo’s question away. “And I’m doing the asking here. Tell me about you, Griffinrider.”

“I never rode the griffin.”

Orjo made a sour face. “Some free advice, from one legend to another? Never spoil your reputation with truth, lad.”

“So your advice is to lie.” Theo sniffed his cup. It definitely didn’t smell like any liquor he’d known.

The muskrat put his eye to the bottle, then shook it and listened. “There’s a difference between lying and letting others believe what they want to believe. And I’ve enjoyed all the stories about you.”

Orjo stood, teetered unsteadily, and half walked, half groped his way to the cupboard, where he began to rummage for another bottle.

“You’re not the one who has to survive the stories.” Theo thought back to the bats. The exaggerations about him were almost more dangerous than the Urzoks themselves.

“True! My favorite is the children’s song.” Orjo pushed aside a jar, then pulled out what looked like another bottle of liquor. Not satisfied, he put it back and kept searching. “Aha!” He pulled out a third bottle and returned to the table. “Have you heard the children’s song? No? The gulls sing it once in a while when they pass through here, it goes like this:

The omatje’s riding now

Riding now, riding now

Theo the Omatje’s riding now

On his wings of flame.

Hide your gold and lock the door

Lock the door, lock the door

Hide your gold and lock the door

For Theo the omatje rides tonight.

“Infantile,” Orjo said, setting the bottle on the table and fishing out a knife from his pocket. “But catchy.”

“We need you to find the…” Indigo frowned, as if trying to herd her thoughts. “Library. And then I can kill you.”

Theo and Brune stared at her. She glared at Orjo. “There’s something in this brew!”

“I told you, brew makes conversation flow.” Orjo leaned forward. “So you want me to take you to the Library, and then kill me. Is that your plan?”

“No!”

“Yes.”

Theo had never seen Indigo drunk. She had the occasional cup of ale, he knew, but she was too keen on control to ever let it get any edge on her. But she clearly had no control of her words and seemed to know it.

“Well, Theo,” Orjo commented. “Seems you don’t know your own friends’ intentions. Doesn’t make me trust you.”

“Orjo, no one is killing anyone! We just want to find the Library,” Theo insisted.

Now Brune was swaying a little, eyes glazed. Theo had a sudden, random memory of his best friend Pozzi from Willago, who’d always argued that drinking brew was like sport. You got better at it with practice. How practiced was Orjo? Could he possibly outdrink a bear ten times his weight?

Pop.

Orjo had managed to work the wood cork out of the bottle and began refilling the cups. “The cups don’t lie, Theo.”

The cups.

Theo cursed his stupidity, and snatched the drink from Indigo’s paw. But it was too late. She slumped over the table. Brune stared at her, blinking.

“The cups…” The bear managed a slur of words and tried to stand, but his legs wouldn’t cooperate. Bottles and sheaves of paper flew as the giant crashed into the wall, then slid to the ground, blinking.

“You poisoned them!” Theo scrambled to his feet and put a paw to Indigo’s nose. She was breathing. Brune tried to push himself up on the toolbox, but only managed to knock it over before succumbing to the brew and lying still.

Orjo calmly poured himself another serving. “I said the brew wasn’t poisoned. And it wasn’t.”

“What do you call this then?”

The muskrat smiled. “A very simple truth tonic that I dipped the cups in. I needed to know who you told about my island. But if you manage to kill me, they’ll wake up with nothing but nasty headaches and the thirst of a four-humped camel.”

Theo clumsily freed Indigo’s sword from her scabbard, trying to keep his paws from shaking. “And if I don’t?”

The muskrat wiped his lips with his sleeve and stood. His smile, unlike his stance, was disturbingly sober. “Then I kill all of you.”

Available on Amazon

Theo and the Forbidden Language (The Book of Theo #1)

For fans of Watership DownRedwallLord of the Rings, and Dragon Riders of Pern comes a fantasy adventure about courage, friendship, and the power of the written word.

In the land of Mankahar, where reading and writing are punishable by death, a battle is raging. The human empire is robbing animals of speech using a poison called “pacification,” and is marching to the furthest corners of the land to enslave creatures large and small. The only thing standing against them is the Order, a society of free animals determined to defend their way of life. On the western fringes of Mankahar, the rabbit Theo hides a secret: he knows the forbidden language, the symbols used to “catch words”. When his village exiles him, he joins Brune, an axe wielding bear and loyal member of the Order, in the epic fight against the empire. But the Order’s cause proves dangerous. Whom can Theo trust, when the empire punishes those who read or write with death? Worse, his fellow animals view the written word as sacrilegious. As the war for Mankahar’s fate looms, Theo must risk everything to learn the full power of the forbidden language, or be silenced forever.

Available on Amazon

About the Author

Melanie was born in Windsor, Ontario to a Chinese mother and a Canadian father, and grew up in Shanghai, Hong Kong, Taipei, and Beijing. She spent grades one to three in a Chinese primary school with concrete floors and no heating, so when she moved to a school with carpets and its very own library, she thought she’d gone to heaven. She spent all her free time devouring books of every kind—including ones that most adults probably wouldn’t recommend for children. Animal FarmWatership Down, and The Chronicles of Narnia became staples, with a generous helping of Stephen King thrown inShe is currently a producer and screenwriter, with an MFA from USC in film producing. Over her diverse career she has directed a zombie film, been held at gunpoint, and had the good fortune to work with some of her idols. She lives with her husband and two impossibly energetic children in Ballarat, Australia.

Melanie enjoys writing dark fantasy stories about the power of language, self-acceptance, and the courage to stand up for one’s beliefs. Her first novel, Theo and the Forbidden Language, was the winner of Best YA at the 2018 IndieReader Discovery Awards, and the sequel, Theo and the Secret of Elshon, will be released November 2021.

Want to know about future releases and get a FREE book? Sign up to her reader’s list at https://www.melanieansley.com/subscribe

Melanie Ansley | Facebook | Twitter

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Song Lyric Sunday

NEWEPICAUTHOR

 This week the theme is songs that feature the lyrics of either Birth, Death, or Life. https://jimadamsauthordotcom.wordpress.com/2021/11/13/life-expectancy-at-birth/

The song I chose for this week is a favorite of mine. I used to sing it at karaoke at the Elks Lodge when my dad would bring me for dinner. I usually got a good laugh out of the folks there, as many of them were used to hearing Tony Bennett or Nat King Cole. It was fun. It is more about death than anything except if you pay attention Wanda finally found life! I guess I also loved this song because my mom’s name was Wanda!

Dixie Chicks Lyrics https://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/dixiechicks/goodbyeearl.html

“Goodbye Earl”

Mary Anne and Wanda were the best of friends
All through their high school days
Both members of the 4H Club
Both active in the FFA

After graduation Mary Anne went out
lookin’ for a bright new world
Wanda looked all around this town
and all she found was Earl

Well, it wasn’t two weeks
after she got married that
Wanda started gettin’ abused
She put on dark glasses
and long sleeved blouses
And make-up to cover her bruise

Well, she finally got the nerve to file for divorce
She let the law take it from there
But Earl walked right through that restraining order
And put her in intensive care

Right away Mary Anne flew in from Atlanta
On a red eye midnight flight
She held Wanda’s hand and they worked out a plan
And it didn’t take them long to decide
That Earl had to die

Goodbye, Earl
Those black-eyed peas?
They tasted all right to me, Earl
You’re feeling weak?
Why don’t you lay down and sleep, Earl
Ain’t it dark?
Wrapped up in that tarp, Earl

The cops came by to bring Earl in
They searched the house high and low
Then they tipped their hats
and said “Thank You, ladies, if you hear from him let us know”

Well, the weeks went by and spring turned to summer
And summer faded into fall
And it turns out he was a missing person
who nobody missed at all

So the girls bought some land
and a roadside stand
Out on Highway 109
They sell Tennessee ham
and strawberry jam,
And they don’t lose any sleep at night
‘Cause Earl had to die

Goodbye Earl
We need a break
Let’s go out to the lake, Earl
We’ll pack a lunch
And stuff you in the trunk, Earl
Well, is that all right?
Good! Let’s go for a ride, Earl.
Hey

Well, hey hey hey
Ah, hey hey hey
Well, hey hey hey

The Sunday Whirl: 11/14/2021

You Again

It wasn’t like the days before
Where stones were hard
And breath was sour
It took a few tries, but I don’t mind
Spread a spark under my behind
But icy looks and legends lost
Enchanted forests full
A clue to find a friend thats lost
A feather of a gull
And once the brew is quickly made
Scented with the dew
I find that I am still enthralled
By the likes of you. 

©2021 CBialczak Poetry

Find the prompt here: https://sundaywhirl.wordpress.com/2021/11/14/wordle-527/

New Book: Pretty Deadly!

Welcome to the book tour for the highly anticipated novel by Kelsey Josund, Pretty Deadly! Read on for more info!

Pretty Deadly

Publication Date: October 26th, 2021

Genre: Dark Fantasy/ Fairytale Retelling (Not YA)

Publisher: Darkstroke Books

Cinna would quite literally kill for the throne.

She’s spent years forced to serve her wealthy cousins rather than attend society events alongside them, waiting for the chance to prove herself and exact revenge. When a ball is announced at the castle, promising to bring many powerful people to town, she seizes the opportunity to strike.

She bets her best friend, a small-time thief and con-man, that she can land a greater score the night of the ball than he can. They embark on parallel heists. But as their plots unfold, things begin to unravel: by the end of the night, the castle’s on lock down, a duchess is dead, a mansion has burnt to the ground, and Cinna hasn’t stolen anything. Or has she stolen something more valuable than gold and jewels?

Add to Goodreads

Excerpt

How interesting, Cinna thought. She had spent so many hours bent over a stove in the kitchen or crouched before the hearth, stoking flames carefully that refused to light. But she had prepared: this house was waiting tinder, ready to be consumed. 

She couldn’t hear the screams over the roar of the flames, but surely they were there. Strangely, she didn’t feel cheated to have not heard their voices. It was fine that they died in silence. 

It did not take long for the neighbors to begin streaming out of their own houses, and she did hear their screams. They swarmed around the flames, politely mute once they realized they could not do anything, full of awe before the enormity of the fire. Cinna blended into the crowd, nearly invisible in her costume. 

At last, just as she had always pledged she would, she watched the house fall in on itself.

Now Available on Amazon

About the Author

I am a software engineer and author living and working in Silicon Valley, California. I studied computer science at Stanford University, but I’ve always loved stories in all their forms. I approach writing fiction the same way I approach writing code: I like to know where it’s going, but I want to figure out the details as I go along. Good software is a lot like a good story, full of neat and clever solutions to tricky problems, beautiful at a granular level but also from a distance.

Originally from Seattle, I love getting outdoors and living in places that allow me to escape to the mountains on the weekends, and I care deeply about the ecosystems that humans impact and that impact us. My writing explores these issues while also following classic coming-of-age arcs in science fiction and fantasy. I’m also very interested in stories and characters that complicate the traditional and familiar, leading me to fairytale retellings from unexpected angles.

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22 Years Ago…

Twenty-two years ago I was blessed with a baby boy. He was beautiful with a full head of dark hair weighing 9lbs 8.5oz. He left the hospital a few days later at 10 pounds!

I miss my baby more than anything…

Happy 22nd Heavenly Birthday Joey!

Coming soon…

The Joseph Bialczak Excellence in Mathematics Scholarship

To be awarded yearly at Three Rivers Middle College Magnet School in Norwich, CT

***Donations can always be made directly to me or on the GoFundMe page: https://gofund.me/409fa746


New Book: Walnut Street: Phantom Rider

Happy publication day to Sherrill Joseph! Today marks the release of Walnut Street: Phantom Rider, the next Botanic Hill Detective Mysteries novel! Read on for more info and the chance to win a fantastic giveaway!

Walnut Street: Phantom Rider (A Botanic Hill Detectives Mystery)

Publication Date: November 9th, 2021

Genre: MG Mystery/ Middle Grade (For fans of Nancy Drew type mysteries)

Objects of value have been disappearing from the Mayfield family’s rural California horse ranch. The Botanic Hill Detectives—Moki Kalani, Rani Kumar, and twins Lanny and Lexi Wyatt—are hired to come for a week to investigate.

Legend has it somewhere on the Mayfields’ forty-acre property is a long-lost gold mine. It was supposedly staked by thirteen-year-old Ben Mayfield’s five-time great-grandfather, “Papa” Mayfield, in 1875.

Adding to the excitement, a nervous Ben reveals a frightening secret to the detectives. At the ranch, he alone has seen a threatening black-clad figure on horseback whom he calls the Phantom Rider. Who is this mysterious person? Is he responsible for the thefts? Where is the lost gold mine? And what’s going on in the nearby, snake-infested ghost town of Rainbow Flats? The four intrepid detectives aim to find out.

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Purchase Paperback Here and eBook Here!  

About the Author

Sherrill Joseph will be forever inspired by her beautiful students in the San Diego public schools where she taught for thirty-five years before retiring and becoming a published author. 

The author has peopled and themed her mysteries with characters after her own responsible, role-model students, of various abilities, disabilities, races, cultures, and interests. She strongly believes that children need to find themselves and others unlike themselves in books if all are to become accepting, anti-racist world citizens. 

Her gift of lexical-gustatory synesthesia enables her to bring richer imagination to her writing.

Sherrill is the recipient of two Gold Awards from Mom’s Choice Book Awards, two Gold Awards from Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards, three awards from Story Monsters Approved, and numerous other children’s book awards. She is a member of SCBWI, the Authors Guild, and Blackbird Writers. Watch for many more adventures with the Botanic Hill Detectives!

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Win a signed, personalized paperback copy of Walnut Street: Phantom Rider, some matching book swag (bookmark & sticker), and a $10 Amazon gift card (US ONLY). Giveaway will close on November 12th!

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Book Review: The Daughter in Law

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Are you supposed to warm up to your mother in law right away or is it she who should warm up to you? Daisy is about to learn that warming up to Ben’s mother might never happen. 

Annie has raised her son Ben by herself and is so proud of the man he is becoming. It is always her and Ben but when Ben suddenly gets married and moves out Annie doesn’t know how to continue on her own. To complicate matters further, Daisy, his new wife, is pregnant with her son’s baby! It isn’t long after meeting Annie that Daisy is forced to move in with her mother in law, without Ben. But being catered to by Annie is not that hard to take and Daisy’s confusion about her relationship with her new husband have made Daisy happy to just move along through the motions. 

I give this story five out of five stars for the gripping plot and original characters that keep you wondering how long anyone could hang on. The characters were not as realistic as I would be able to fathom but then again I have never met anyone as in love with her son as Annie was. Will Daisy be like Annie when her baby is born, unable to be away from him or her? Is it such a bad thing?