Monday, October 24, 2016

MYSTERY MONDAY: Von has been the keeper of the family secrets for half her lifetime. THE JAM SETTER BY SUSAN DOWNHAM

Title: The Jam Setter
Author: Susan Downham
ISBN: 978-1-62420-117-2

Genre: Women's Fiction
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 3

Von has been the keeper of the family secrets for half her lifetime. She has kept them close to her heart but after a visit from her favourite niece she decides it is time to share them. As the secrets are shared, two distant families collide. Von leaves her picturesque haven of Port Arthur on the Tasman Peninsula in Tasmania for Scotland. Her niece Jennifer travels with her. It is in Scotland that she finds her own peace as she puts the family’s secrets to rest. As everyone reveals their own truth about the past, Jennifer, Von’s niece finds love in the most unlikely of places.


Von Ellis loved playing bowls. She had taken it up after her husband passed away, and to her amazement, loved it. She wouldn't admit to anyone she wished she'd taken it up years earlier when her knees were in better shape and her joints didn't ache so much on winter mornings. Von had never been the sporty type, more the traditional homemaker type. A handful of close friends and Dougie by her side, she hadn't thought she needed anyone else.
When she first joined the local bowls club, she thought she would never fit in. It was her old friend Gwen who insisted she join. Gwen needed something to keep her mind busy, and besides Von knew she couldn't just stay at home moping about being shitty with the world because she lost her Dougie. Though some days were still a struggle she now had new reasons to get out of bed.
She had to admit she was shitty with the world. There seemed nothing fair about the whole thing. Dougie retired, they had plans, and they had a whole life to live together without the burden of a mortgage, children to raise or school fees to pay. The freedom of being children free often brought couples unstuck, and over the years Von had seen a few parents split once the kids left home. They had a name for it now, empty nest syndrome, but back then when she and Doug found themselves as empty nesters she didn't have a fancy name for it, but she knew it smelt like freedom. Not that she had ever felt burdened with the children, far from it, she'd loved being a fulltime mother and never regretted the choices she made. When they found themselves alone, she and Doug thrived. Not long after they had the house on their own her cycle slowed to almost a stop. This did wonders for their sex life. She knew for others it didn't always work that way, but for Von, who always suffered, she felt like she had been born again, a whole new woman.
They'd talked about Doug's retirement for the five years before the day finally arrived. They bought a campervan second hand, and Doug fixed it up so it looked brand new, and inside they revamped it so it had every mod con they could think of. Von, a list maker, made a list of the things they already had that they would need to pack into the campervan and another list of what they would need to buy. She had lists stuck inside the cupboards of what food would be going where so she knew what food would fit. It made Maureen laugh and tell her there were supermarkets on the mainland. Von knew this but she had concerns about being stuck out on the Nullarbor without enough food to eat. She hated to go hungry and didn't want to ever do that again.
They had been into the city to the map shop and spent an hour with the lovely lady who helped them choose a plethora of maps and travel guides. They had three maps pinned up around the lounge-room and made notes on them all, as they worked out the route they intended to take. Doug had friends he'd worked with who spent four months a year in a caravan park in Queensland, and they marked out a month to spend with them. Von also had a sister who moved to Alice Springs in the early nineties and they made plans to visit her.
When they had first told Maureen and Kathryn about their big adventure, the girls weren't very interested, but as the date edged closer, so did their nerves. Maureen didn't want them to go at all. She was worried who would look after the children if she and Eric wanted a night out. Kathryn just worried her parents were too old and too clueless to manage such a trip. They never had anything positive to say about their parent's plans. Steven simply shrugged his shoulders, and as long as he wasn't needed to do anything, he didn't care. He'd always been like that even as a toddler. He was only concerned with what was going on in his world and not with what was going on outside of it. Because he seemed different to the girls, Von asked her doctor about him several times but she told her Steven was just Steven and all children were different.
He didn't have any learning difficulties, in fact he was quite the opposite, he seemed to learn at an accelerated rate and adapted to the IT world like a fish to water. It had never been something either Von or Doug understood. He just understood how anything electronic worked, pulled things apart and fixed them and when he got into computing he learned how to write complex programs. He'd wanted to join the army straight out of high school, but Doug wouldn't hear a thing about it. He had older cousins who fought in the Second World War and neither of the two nephews who had been drafted into the Vietnam War came home. He was as patriotic as the next man, and if there was a war in his own backyard, he told Steven he would fight. He wasn't going to let his son go off and fight someone else's war in a foreign country. Steven waited until he was in second Year University, and then he enrolled. He came home with the paperwork all filled in; being over eighteen he didn't need his parents' permission or approval.
Doug told Steven he was a bloody fool and walked out of the house. Von cried and tried to talk Steven out of it. It didn't matter as his mind was made up. Now he was forty-six and still working for the army. He'd been deployed in all the hot spots and now he was in a consulting role, which Von didn't understand. His last mission had him travelling to the Middle East acting as a political advisor.
After Doug's funeral the girls decided, without consulting their mother, that the house in Stewart's Bay would be sold and she would go and live with one of them. Maureen wanted her more than Kathryn, but Kathryn was keen for her mother to visit for a month in the January school holidays. Neither of the girls thought to involve Von in their plans. They even talked to a real estate company to arrange an inspection before telling their mother of their plans.
Von had been livid, and she wondered how she managed to raise such self-obsessed insensitive girls. Prior to the real estate agent turning up unannounced on a Wednesday morning only weeks after the funeral, Von had been thinking of asking Maureen if she could spend two nights a week with her and Eric and the children, so she wasn't completely on her own.
The day the real estate agent turned up Von wasn't sure what he was doing there. Still she made him a cuppa then showed him through the house. He was impressed and told her so when they sat on the front porch with him talking about how the values of the houses in the area had gone up. It had once been a haven for holiday makers who built little shacks for the summer holidays. With an aging population, many people moved permanently into the area. This pushed the prices to new sky high levels. Von clicked what was going on half way through the house tour, and after a cuppa and pleasant chat, she'd given the real estate agent his marching orders. He apologized and explained how Maureen had contacted him and told him she wanted to sell. She denied her own need for company by vowing never to sleep under her daughter's roof again.
That was what Doug loved about her; she was pig headed, stubborn, honest and real. That's what he used to say about her. She always stuck to her guns. Staying at Stewart's Bay was the same thing. She stuck to her guns and wouldn't be moved by anyone. She wished she'd been able to just pack up the campervan and take off as she and Doug planned, but she couldn't. It wouldn't have been the same without him. They'd planned to go skinny dipping at Monkey Mia, make love in a tent at Uluru, make love in the ocean at Cable Beach and a lot of other things that included being naked and being in love. At fifty-six, when Doug's heart gave way, people were surprised because they thought him to be much younger than his years. His mother had been the same.
She missed the sex, Doug had been a very demanding husband, and she always enjoyed being naked with him. Of all the things about Doug she could miss, it was lying naked in bed with him, feeling his arms wrap around her from behind him hard against her, rubbing himself on her bottom or back. Sometimes it used to drive her spare that he wasn't more romantic in the bedroom, and now it was the one thing she missed the most.
It was also something she never talked to the girls about. She grinned as she thought of what their faces would look like if she said to them I miss your father's hard penis rubbing against the back of me. She smiled and tried to focus on what was being said.
She wished this day was a bowls day, but it wasn't. Instead seated at her kitchen table yabbering on was her youngest daughter who arrived unannounced the night before, seemingly to chastise her for her lack of a decent diet and her obsession with beach walking.
Von did wonder who's business it was if she went beach walking or not. It was her life and she was feeling determined to live it out any way she chose to. Not that her children were at all happy with her decision. They were still on to her to sell the house and move back up to the city with one of them, permanently. Someday she walked up and down Stewart's Bay Beach, which was a short four hundred meters long. Other days she walked along Half Moon Bay Beach or Eagle Hawk Neck Beach or she went around to Premaydena and walked out there in the shallows. Mostly she walked with Gwen and Harriett, her two best friends.
Von was a lot of things, she mused to herself as her daughter turned the pages of the newspaper and sipped her coffee, but stupid was not one of them. Von was still eighteen in her head, young and virile and full of life.
"I am serious, Mum, it worries us you are down here all alone and, well, what if you had a fall or something?"
"If I have a fall, Maureen, I will pick myself back up and ring the ambulance."
"What if you can't pick yourself up?"
"Then I will pull my mobile phone out of my pocket and ring the ambulance."
"I don't think that is the answer, you have all those stairs off the deck. What if you slipped down those?"
"How old do you think I am, Maureen? I am only sixty seven."
"Only sixty-seven" she said, not keeping any of her sarcasm out of her voice.
"God, Mum, you will be seventy in a couple of years, but you think you are a young woman, and you aren't."
Von turned her back on Maureen and stared outside at the strip of bright green grass that was being flood lit by the sun pushing through the trees at the side.
She remembered it was Thursday, which meant Harold had to be coming to get the gardening done. She liked Thursdays, as she liked talking to Harold. At least he was close to her age and remembered all the things she did.
"Are you listening to me, Mum?" Maureen's voice interrupted her thoughts.
"Yes, dear, I am listening to you, and I get it, the three of you are worried about poor old me sitting down here, on the peninsula on my lonesome, about to drop off the perch at any day. It has just occurred to you that in three years I will be the ripe old age of seventy and you will need to measure me up for a wooden casket." She hadn't meant it to come out so sarcastic; she never used to be sarcastic. She found it was something that was coming with age, and it seemed it ran in the family.
"Mum, now you are being ridiculous. We are just worried about you all alone, and I have a big house. You could come and live with us up there," she spat. Von noticed what it was Maureen didn't say. She didn't say her husband's name. She thought back to the night before and she couldn't remember Maureen saying Eric's name once. She talked about the kids, about her charity work and about her friends, a subject Von neither cared nor wanted to know about, but apart from her asking Maureen how Eric was, his name hadn't come up.
"Oh, am I dear? Sorry, I do know how you hate me to be ridiculous," Von flicked the kettle on again and got two cups out.
"I don't want another cuppa, Mum," Maureen said, flicking the newspaper loudly.
"It's alright, Maureen, I wasn't getting a cup out for you," she said spooning the coffee in and turning the cups around so the handles were facing the outside of the bench.
"Oh, god no, Steven was right, you are losing it." Maureen said.
Von rolled her eyes, wondering to herself if stabbing her daughter was wrong. She knew it was but still the thought gave her some relief. She wondered what was going on with Maureen; she dared not ask her if it was change of life. The last time she mentioned the idea Maureen turned a horrible shade of white and nearly slapped her face.
She poured the boiling water in and gave the cup a stir, checking the clock up on the wall, the background around the numbers faded and the black plastic now grey in places. It had been a gift a long time ago from Dougie. Even though Maureen and Kathryn gave her new clocks over the years, she just couldn't bring herself to take this one down.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

ROMANCE SUNDAY: Justin Anderson and Diane Wallace have both travelled rocky roads in their relationships. OLD ENOUGH BY C. L. KRAEMER

Author: Christie L. Kraemer
ISBN: 978-1-62420-225-4

Genre: Suspense
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 4


Justin Anderson and Diane Wallace have both travelled rocky roads in their relationships. Patience and willingness to try again might just be the cure for their ‘never again’ attitudes.


Justin Anderson is recovering from a nasty divorce. An ex-wife who never has enough support income and precious little time with his daughter fill most of his days. When he spies an attractive, self-sufficient older woman, he is intrigued. But can he convince her not all guys are animals who need to be locked up?

With a gentle push from their bartender friend, the two face more intrigue than either thought possible in such a small town. However, each terror filled moment proves to provide the glue that brings them together.


Justin glanced anxiously at Mark.
"Don't worry," Mark leaned his lanky frame against the counter, "she's just having a bad day. Got a genuine flake of an ex-husband who's convinced she still loves him. Hell, he thinks every female he talks with falls in love with him. Guess he's bordering on the edge of stalking lately. Their divorce has been final for two years, but he won't accept she's moved on because she didn't jump into another marriage. If you're interested, really interested, have patience. Diane's worth the wait."
"Then why haven't you two…" Justin blushed letting the thought die. "Listen, I'm sorry. It's really none of my business."
"You're right. It is none of your business. But there's no secret about it. We dated once and realized we didn't want to ruin a good friendship. Diane's like the sister I never had. She's level headed, has no problem telling me when I'm being an ass and I do the same for her. I really think you two would get along. Let me try to talk to her again. You in a big hurry?" Mark nodded to the cocktail waitress waving to get his attention. "Gotta actually earn my pay. Be right back." He headed toward the waitress station at the end of the bar.
Justin turned his glass of beer around with his fingertips. He'd been coming into this club for about seven years and hadn't been attracted to most of the ladies who frequented the place. Diane's confidence first grabbed his attention. Her poise and overall demeanor spoke to the fact she was probably older than most of the bar's regular clientele. Justin smiled. I think confidence is as sexy as a great figure. He peered into his beer as though it were a crystal ball. The amber liquid was slightly cloudy and he couldn't tell anything except he was getting close to needing another beer.

~ * ~

Diane slipped off her barstool and marched toward him. This is ridiculous. She shook her head slightly. He's no different than any other man. The dive-bombing butterflies in her stomach threatened to destroy her bravado.
As she drew closer, she realized he was younger than she'd assumed. Make that young man. He puts his jeans on one muscular tan leg at a time. The closer I get, though, the more I can see I was right about his incredible physique. His plain cotton shirt strained over well-formed chest and arm muscles developed by hard physical work, not hours in the gym with weights. The spicy scent he wore sent Diane's hormones stampeding. God, this isn't fair. He smells yummy! She took a deep breath. I'd better do this before I lose my nerve.
Justin jumped when the five-dollar bill slapped down on the bar beside him. He snapped his head around to face flashing, fiery brown eyes.
"I believe this is yours. I pay for my own drinks. You'll need this later when the young ladies begin to arrive. I understand they require lots of these," she picked the five off the bar and waved it in the air, "to keep them interested."
Justin opened his mouth to reply, but Diane had turned on her heel and marched away, leaving him with his mouth gaping. He snapped his jaws closed and watched the rhythmic sway of her hips as she moved away from him. Whew. What a spitfire! Justin leaned back in his chair. She's going to be a challenge and I love challenges. He turned to face a smirking Mark.
Mark swept his arm in the direction of Diane's disappearing back, "I see you've met my friend, Diane Wallace. What do you think? Worth waiting for?"
Justin turned his glass. Looking at Mark, his eyes twinkled as he answered, "In every man's life there's one challenge he feels destined to take. She's mine. She's confident, takes nonsense from no one, including you, and she's a woman, not a girl, unlike most of the others who sit on the barstools in this place. I like older women. They don't need a man in their life."
Mark took a bar towel and absently wiped at invisible dirt. "Well, you're right on all counts. But be careful what you wish for because she has the ability to sting like a scorpion."
Moving away, he continued to wipe the bar as he gravitated toward Diane.
"You're a real piece of work, Diane. Personally, I like Justin. He's a helluva guy who'd treat you with respect. You know, that stuff Timmy hasn't got a clue about? Got to go. As you can see, the place is beginning to get busy and I have customers who need me."
Mark picked up his pace as the crowd started gravitating through the doors. The cocktail waitresses were congregating near the register, placing drink orders while the bar filled with townies and kids from the nearby college. The volume on the jukebox had amplified in relation to the volume of increasing chatter in the room. A blue haze of cigarette smoke curled toward the ceiling coloring the room in a muted glow. The happy buzzing of voices swelled as time drew closer for the band to play.
Diane picked up her glass and swirled the contents in the bottom. The frenetic atmosphere crackled, raising the hair on her arms. A stream of cigarette smoke blown her direction triggered a coughing fit.
A stocky man reeking of Jade East cologne and wearing multiple gold chains accenting a three-piece white suit suddenly occupied the barstool next to her. His dark dyed hair was heavily sprayed to hold a style he should have quit wearing in the seventies. Chain-smoking, he kept blowing smoke in Diane's direction.
"Hey, gorgeous, how about letting me buy you a drink?" An ugly sneer covered his puffy face.
"I buy my own drinks," Diane half turned toward the stranger just as he blew another stream of smoke in her face. She closed her eyes against the acrid stream and wrinkled her nose at the stale smell invading her senses. He reached out a nicotine-stained finger and touched her nose.
"You have a cute little nose," he said.
Grabbing his finger and bending it toward his arm, Diane glared at him. "I will break every bone in your body if you touch me again. Do I make myself clear?"
Wrenching his finger free, he smiled widely, revealing yellow tinted teeth. "You're quite a little pistol, aren't you?"
He turned to the bar and waved his hand at Mark. "Hey, bartender, bring the little lady a drink!"
This idiot isn't listening. She snatched her purse and jacket and slid off the stool. Her nose tingled in identification of the spicy aftershave she noted Justin was wearing.
"Gosh, honey, I'm so sorry, but you know Dave when he starts talking about fishing. A man could lose an ear. Want to dance to this song?" Justin stood wearing an apologetic smile and lightly touching Diane's elbow.
"Look, bud, I don't know what your game is but I'm buying the lady a drink. Take a hike." The Retro Man moved to get up.
Diane slipped her arm through Justin's, "I'd love to dance. Hey, Mark! Will you put my things behind the bar?"
Mark snatched Diane's purse and jacket set them on a shelf under the counter.
"Bartender, give me a gin martini, very dry. Oh, yeah, shaken not stirred." Retro Man swiveled his barstool to face the quickly filling dance floor.
Mark prepared his drink and set it on the napkin.
"Bitch," Retro Man muttered as he turned and grabbed his drink.
"What did you say?" Mark's eyes flashed.
"How does a young punk like him rate with an older broad like her?" Retro Man scoffed.
"I suspect he treats her like a lady."
"Hell, any broad who comes into a bar is looking for one thing and one thing alone, you know what I mean?" he sneered in Diane's direction.
"Yeah, I do. And I think you'll be a lot happier heading down to Club Nouveaux," Mark picked up the drink he'd just placed on the napkin and motioned to the door.
"You can't kick me out," Retro Man started to protest. "I haven't done anything."
Pointing to a sign taped at the center of the bar mirror, Mark read out loud. "We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone." Turning to the man he added, "I have just exercised my right. There's the door. Don't bother coming back." He nodded to a video camera in the corner, "we have your picture. I'm letting you know you've been permanently barred. Now take your money and go!"
Grabbing his bills from Mark's hand, Retro Man turned toward the dance floor. He glared at Diane and Justin smoothly flowing together to the slow music.
"This isn't over yet," he muttered. "We will meet again, little lady."

Saturday, October 22, 2016

SCI/FI FANTASY SATURDAY: Two predatory ghosts terrorize film producer Paul Barlowe, his wife Samantha, and their son Andy when they rent an old farmhouse while Paul shoots a documentary film. THE HAUNTING OF AARON HOUSE BY JOYCE ZELLER

Title: The Haunting of Aaron House
ISBN: 978-1-62420-202-5
Author: Joyce Zeller

Genre: Paranormal/Women's Fiction
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 2


Two predatory ghosts terrorize film producer Paul Barlowe, his wife Samantha, and their son Andy when they rent an old farmhouse while Paul shoots a documentary film.


Paul and Samantha Barlowe didn’t believe in ghosts until they stay in a one hundred fifty-year-old farmhouse in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. While Paul is shooting a historical documentary film for the local tourist bureau, they are visited by two evil ghosts in need of a human couple to grow even stronger. The Barlowes become caught up in ancient folklore and the supernatural, putting their lives in danger. They seek the help of a local “Pow Wow” woman who can cast an ancient spell that will free them.  


The familiar darkness grew around Samantha; the same dream, repeated nightly, but never during the day. No. Not during the day. It isn't possible.
"Dreams don't come while you're awake." She tried hard to convince herself and stave off the encroaching darkness. Always the same, an old farmhouse with a maze of dark rooms. Determined, she clenched her teeth and fought the blackness, willing it to go away, but it engulfed her.
Her gut spasmed on the sweet, coppery taste of blood. Desperately she gripped the edge of the kitchen sink, swallowing convulsively to keep her stomach still.
"I will beat this. I am not going crazy. Somewhere there is an explanation. It has to be stress, or nerves, or something," she said out loud, trying to convince herself.
The phone rang. The blackness vanished. Thank God. A call this early had to be Irene, but she welcomed even her mother if it killed the dream. No mere demon could battle Irene and win.
"Hi, Mom." Keep it casual. "How is Nairobi?" Good. Voice not too shaky. Her mother proved sharp as a fox at picking up stress. "Oh, you're in France?"
Why not? Irene traveled constantly, a nomad with no permanent address. Sam frowned, irritated, wishing her mother wouldn't call before breakfast. Mornings were special, reserved for family. What time is it in Europe, anyway?
"What happened to Nairobi?"
Resigned to hearing a long story, she tucked the phone under her chin and set about assembling the makings of an omelet while her nerves settled into the morning routine. With cool efficiency she split a muffin and slipped it into the toaster, ready to go when Paul or their son, Andy, appeared.
"Yes, Mother," Samantha Barlowe, patient and dutiful, responded. Conversations with her mother required little besides occasional agreement whenever Irene paused for breath.
"So what are you doing in France?"
Irene, the perennial guest, lived shamelessly off the hospitality of her friends.
"Count de Coucy? Yeah, how fortunate you got invited to his party. He has a live-in psychic?" Sam huffed in disbelief. Not good. Her mother and a psychic meant trouble.
"Now hold on. You will not seek advice from this psychic about my vacation."
Sam's temper heated. Her mother simply could not stay out of her business since she had her own family. Throughout her childhood, Irene had blithely ignored her motherly duties—a little late to try for a relationship now.
"You can consult every psychic in Europe, for all I care, I'm not talking about this anymore. No way am I giving up the chance to live in a two-hundred-year-old farmhouse filled with antiques, even if it's only for  two weeks." Damn. Why had I ever mentioned the dream? Deliberately she changed the subject.
"So, tell me about this house party. It sounds exciting." Sam summoned patience for the recitation.
House parties by the upper classes were deadly dull, but Irene rarely required comment. Her opinions were sacrosanct and she scattered them casually, as though they were glass beads at a Mardi Gras festival.
Deftly, Sam stirred a pitcher of orange juice with one hand, while using the other to remove crispy bacon from the microwave.
"Uh huh," she muttered as she worked, bare-footed, wearing her usual morning dress of pajama bottoms and a sleep tee. Later she'd change into jeans and a t-shirt and tuck her short, blonde hair under a baseball cap. Suburban Chicago living required little else.
Oops. A pause at the other end of the phone meant her mother waited for an answer. What had she been talking about? Oh, yeah.
"Yes, Mother, the Biedermierer is perfect; the decorator is very impressed that I could get my hands on such fine stuff so fast. I told him my clever, globetrotting mother is my secret weapon." With no guilt whatsoever, she fed Irene's insatiable desire for flattery. Sam's passion for antiques had led her into a part-time career of antique finder for several decorator clients. She prowled continually.
"Oh, watch out for some French Empire when you get to Paris. I have another client with a yen for female figurines with clocks in their bellies."
Laughing, she opened the fridge to get the eggs, imagining her mother's look of displeasure at such a display of irreverence for costly objects.
"Good morning, Babe." Paul came up behind her and caught her in his arms, nuzzling the back of her neck. A tingle of sexual tension hovered, never far below the surface for either one of them. She leaned against him, loving the feel of his lean, muscular body, while savoring his strength and what she thought of as his "ready-for-the-office" smell; soap, after shave, shampoo and toothpaste. On weekends she preferred him unadorned; pure "essence of Paul."
"Morning, Irene," he said loudly into the phone, and gave her another hug before he settled onto a bar stool to listen to her conversation and drink the coffee she poured for him.
Sam gave him a wink while admiring the primitive masculinity she adored. The sharp angles and planes of his face were enhanced by his dark shaggy brown hair, worn slightly long. The razor-sharp intellect that reflected in his dark brown eyes gave him a predatory look that never failed to excite her. He lived, and loved, enveloped in an intense, passionate aura that he carried over into his career, making him one of the most sought-after, and successful, documentary film producers in Chicago.
Sighing, she turned her attention, once again, to the phone, rolling her eyes in silent communication. Morning phone calls from her mother were a given in this house.
"We'll be on our way tomorrow. We'll start shooting the film next Monday. Use my cell number. I'm not sure the farmhouse has phones." A pause, then she added, grimly, "Mother, come off it. The local chamber of commerce arranged for us to stay there and I'm sure they're reliable." Her mother really tried her patience. The woman was relentless.
"I'm not talking about this anymore. The dream is merely coincidence, not some message from the netherworld." Her voice reflected an assurance she didn't quite feel. Her heart rate rose, warning of anxiety simmering under the surface, ready to engulf her. No, she wouldn't give into it.