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Twelve Red Roses in Verse

Twelve Red Roses in Verse, by Derek R. King, is a collection of poems with love as the common thread. True, deep unconditional love is celebrated and explored through each poem, along with the significance of the rose. Each poem is proceeded with a roman numeral drawn in roses and a short line stating the significance of the number of roses. Many themes run through these poems that relate to love allowing the reader to become emotionally connected to these poems.

Author Derek King celebrates passionate love throughout each poem, as well as the significance of a single rose. The accumulation of roses throughout the poems signified the growth of a couple’s relationship and the different stages you go through as a couple.

Throughout the fifty poems in this collection, readers will experience the ups and downs of relationships. From the exciting new relationship stage to being comfortable and growing with one another. Each poem expressed different emotions that people go through in a relationship until they reach unconditional love for each other. This sentimental book is overflowing with all the deep emotions that love can bring, which can sometimes be overwhelming as readers take in King’s deep and meaningful words.

The one poem that really struck me was Seasons. It is the last poem in this collection and beautifully sums up love. The challenges of life as it constantly changes, the different stages of our lives, and holding onto that love through it all are presented in these twenty-two lines. My favorite line is “And all the stars in between / to share my life with you / my only dream.” There are so many meaningful lines like this throughout the collection. Readers will be able to find a connection in this collection somewhere along the path that King takes them.

Twelve Red Roses is a heartwarming collection of poetry that will stir emotions and give readers something deep to think about. Whether you are single or in a relationship, this beautiful collection will make readers want to celebrate love in all its stages.

Pages: 110 | ASIN : B09NT4YC5N

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We Are All Perfectly Imperfect

Derek R. King Author Interview

Honey: Words to Heal & Mend is a captivating book filled with healing messages and images. What was the inspiration for creating this book?

That’s an interesting question. Julie shared with me the philosophy of Wabi Sabi along with the artform of Kintsugi and a number of her Instagram posts inspired by this. I was so taken by Julie’s love for those things I was inspired to write my poem, Kintsugi, which is published on Julie’s website.

The artwork that was chosen for this book is compelling and soothing. What was the process like choosing the images and lines that were included?

We always create based on our intuition, what feels right, and we knew we wanted gold to reflect the art of Kintsugi. However, Kintsugi is about fixing material things and we’ve taken that concept along with our inspirational quotes about healing and mending and applied Kintsugi to the human soul.

What is one thing you would like readers to take away from experiencing this book?

That we are whole, we are all perfectly imperfect.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

Amore: The Lighter Half Volume 2, releases May 5, 2022

The Enchanted Faerie Realm, releases June 9, 2022

Our Planets: Moons, Myths, and More, slated for this Summer.

Jaggy Little Babies, slated for this Fall.

Author Links: GoodReads | Twitter | Website


Honey: Words to Heal & Mend by Derek R. King & Julie L. Kusma is more than a book; it’s an experience. “Honey words” refers to inspirational, healing words that soothe and heal the soul. It’s a literary journey where the author brings you along through a clear motivational path of cognitive thoughts and worries, letting go of the negative and embracing ideas of joy and peace along the way.

As you turn each page of the book, you’ll find extraordinary artwork and visuals accompanying uplifting phrases and thoughts. Instead of leafing through each page or section of the book, you’ll find yourself dwelling on one, maybe two inspiring quotes or poetic prose at a time. It’s a beautifully illustrated coffee-table book that draws a sense of wonder and self-reflection in a more positive, engaging way.

One of the most motivational aspects of Derek R. King & Julie L. Kusma’s book is the overall theme, which is centered around the poem by Derek R. King, entitled “Kintsugi.” A portion of this poem is included in this inspiring book. Kintsugi, the Japanese art of repairing broken objects with gold, highlights and celebrates imperfection as a form of beauty. The power of this theme is in how we embrace and accept personal flaws and find the strength in these characteristics instead of viewing them as weaknesses.

This collection of stunning images and thought-provoking prose is the ideal gift. It’s a beautiful flow of motivational and healing words to create a sense of peace through meditation. Honey: Words to Heal & Mend allows you to slow down and absorb words and phrases of love and inspiration, which is an excellent way to hold onto the moment, relax, and reflect.

Honey: Words to Heal & Mend is a well-curated collection of striking images, art, and poetic prose to soothe your mind, soul, and body. This unique, beautifully arranged book proves the power of words and their inspiration can provide healing to those in need.

Pages: 84 | ASIN: B09L56G5MT

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Noir: [Or, When the Night Comes] by [Derek R. King]

Noir is the French word for “dark,” and in his first poetry book, Derek R. King takes us on a chilling and deeply emotional journey through the different forms of darkness. Using the French term as a metaphor for the less desirable but unavoidable elements of life, King paints a picture of what it feels like to be plagued by these entities. He explores the depths of depression, loneliness, grief, heartbreak, and despair.

King communicates his themes using a mixture of verve and solemnity. This combination strikes several emotional chords and ensures his words reverberate in your mind long after hearing them. It’s the sort of feeling you want to get from poems that touch on the aspects of life that are shrouded in darkness. This feeling helps us acknowledge that these dark elements exist. And instead of running from them or repressing them, we challenge them.

The beauty of King’s work also lies in the simplicity with which he writes. His words are not only vivid and piercing; they are also easy to grasp. King obviously paid attention to Hemingway’s reply to Faulkner’s criticism: “poor Faulkner, does he really think big emotions come from big words?”

Apart from King’s apt choice of words, he applies thoughtful figurative expressions that add color to his dark themed poems. He brings the concepts to life by pulling the emotions out of the dark corners of the mind and into the light where they can be properly felt and understood.

The authenticity with which King writes is also worth mentioning. He supplies an honest appraisal of the emotions which lurk in the crevices of our hearts. He’s raw, direct, and brutally candid, as he makes us feel what we feel but cannot acknowledge. There’s a dark side. It’s not pretty, but it exists, and King isn’t afraid to point it out.

I believe King’s book helps us come to terms with several unpleasant emotions. His work is an interesting read if you want to take a deep dive into the sea of self-awareness that few venture into.

Pages: 154 | ASIN: B08HSKJLGX

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Winter Chills: Ghostly Tales for Cold Nights

Winter Chills: Ghostly Tales for Cold Nights by [Lomas, S.J., Carter, D.B., King, Derek R., Reeves-Billing, Natalie]

Winter Chills is a collection of provocative short stories. The greatest thing about this compilation is how every story is distinct and consistently entertaining. Every author wrote wonderfully, creating captivating characters and engrossing stories. In any collection of short stories there is a balance between brevity and detail. Winter Chills is able to balance conciseness with intrigue through the use of excellent writing. Every author is engaging and great when narrating events. Winter Chills is an exceptional book that is perfect for short bouts of reading that will awaken your curiosity about ghosts and how humans relate with them.

‘Departures and Arrivals’ was the first story I read. We follow Holly as she goes to the train station. The beauty of this story was how raw the author was. ‘Departures and Arrivals’ by D. B. Carter is that kind of story that makes you feel every emotion the main character in the story experiences. The text is fresh, and the events are authentic. Holly went to a train station that was anything but a comfortable place. The reader stays with her as she waits for the train to come. Something happens, and spirits from the past surface while terrible events get exposed. The story is chilling and scary. I enjoyed the narration regardless as I found the plot to be freakish and genius. The first story in the book sets the right mood for the other stories.

The third tale, ‘The Holiday Party’, was my favorite of all stories. I enjoyed this particular story the most because of the combination of suspense and a little action in the story. Nick and Marcy are headed to a Christmas party where, like any other typical party, everything was expected to be pleasant. I anticipated the party to go well as friends and acquaintances get together, have fun and make merry. The story flowed well, with compelling conversations and a supposedly happy tale. I was not ready for the twist that would come when Marcy took a break from the party, only to get back and find something else going on. The author had me with the new development. S. J. Lomas ingenuity and imagination had me completely fascinated.

‘The Carolers’. ‘Go With The Wind’, ‘The Christmas Card’ and ‘Defying Convention’ were equally captivating stories. The reader gets drawn into the characters’ lives, and I found myself completely engrossed.

Each author bring their own style and inventiveness to the book. I especially appreciated how diverse the authors are, even when narrating somehow similar stories. Reading this book was an enjoyable experience. I recommend Winter Chills to readers who love short and exciting stories with some macabre themes.

Pages: 156 | ASIN: B07ZTT5KTR

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The Life and Times of Clyde Kennard

The Life and Times of Clyde Kennard by [King, Derek R.]

Many are remembered and revered for their contribution to the civil rights movement–some are more easily named than others. Clyde Kennard is one man among the countless individuals whose quiet contributions are often overlooked in history books, lectures, and museum descriptions of the most famous civil rights events of the 1950s. Clyde Kennard, a man with a right to an education in the United States, found himself in the throes of a battle to gain a college education in Mississippi while at the same time battling the oppressiveness of segregation, racism, and the fears of rural white America.

The Life and Times of Clyde Kennard, by Derek R. King, is the moving account of Clyde Kennard’s life and significant but virtually silent contribution to desegregate the South. King invites readers to absorb the details of Kennard’s life from his early days through his years serving in the United States Army. By establishing Kennard’s willingness to defend his country, King makes it clear to readers that Kennard is a man we should not slight in discussions of desegregation.

I am sure I am not the only reader surprised to hear of the part Kennard played in desegregating a southern college. King explains, in no uncertain terms, the exceptional number of obstacles placed in Clyde Kennard’s path as he attempted to apply and enroll in Mississippi Southern College near his own home in Mississippi. Authors like King are almost single handedly responsible for providing readers with otherwise hidden facts about heroes like Clyde Kennard and those who championed his cause.

In addition to telling Clyde Kennard’s own personal story of struggle, King includes details about the deaths of Reverend George Lee, Lamar Smith, and Emmett Till. While Emmett Till’s tragic story is one I had heard, I was completely unaware of the viciousness of his death and had no idea that his killers were so brazen as to later proudly admit their actions. These are the stories we all need to be told so history does not repeat itself. I, for one, am grateful to authors like King who continue to tell these stories.

Clyde Kennard was harassed and underwent one accusation after another as he fought to further his own education. I am horrified at the level of leading questions Clyde Kennard was asked by prosecutors when he was accused of robbery. Nowhere during his proceedings was he treated fairly. King has included the testimony within his story which makes the truth of Kennard’s battle that much more gripping.

It is and will forever be through books like Derek R. King’s that citizens of the United States see and feel the truth of where our country has been and the place we should all fear returning. Clyde Kennard’s story is one that should be told far and wide and given its rightful place alongside all other well-renowned heroes of the civil rights movement. Derek R. King has made a significant contribution to literature indeed.

Pages: 384 | ASIN: B07JPL1SBD

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