The Lacey Blue Series About Animals and Animal Issues - Fiction

Book #2

The second book in the Lacey Blue series is now available at Amazon in paperback  or Kindle.  Lacey Blue and the Rejects is set in the Great Desert of the American Southwest. It's a story about an unwanted child and her animal friends finding a forever home. When Meg dies in a car accident, but is then revived, she is changed forever. She now has the ability to talk to and understand animals.

Meg is a ward of the state and has never known her own mother or what it feels like to be loved. Because she keeps running away and is arrested for shoplifting, Meg is ordered to perform community service work at an animal shelter on a ranch. Being shuffled from foster home to foster home has left Meg with a heart as hard as flint, but when she starts to hear the animal's stories her hardened heart begins to soften. She soon forms a bond with Lacey Blue, a retired greyhound, and other animals she meets in her work.

Then her world is turned upside down when she learns that animals are disappearing. When the evil men who are stealing the animals find out that she is on to them they chase her into the desert. But Meg isn't alone, she has Lacey, Dusty a retired race horse, Shiplap, a cat who thinks he's a pirate, and his long suffering sister, Nadine to help her.

While they hide in the desert, trying to avoid the men who wish to silence her, the Rejects Club begins to make plans for a forever home. Unfortunately, they aren't exactly sure what a home is all about. Then the net tightens and once again, they are forced to flee with several close calls.

Finally, Meg and Lacey must overcome their fear in order to rescue their friends. Meg must face the evil men and somehow figure out a way to stop them. This fast paced supernatural adventure will keep you turning pages until the exciting conclusion.

Book # 1

You can order my book Two different ways.  But before you order a copy or copies, maybe you'd like to know more about it.  The paperback version is 5" x 8" and 234 pages long.  It's a book that can be enjoyed by a wide range of ages.  It is meant to be entertaining while also raising awareness about adoption, animal rights, and the prevention of cruelty to animals.  I hope readers will find it fun to read as well as uplifting and inspiring.

I've added a page with a description, excerpts, and also a page with a list of the characters.

One of the reasons I wrote this book was because I care so deeply about the animal abuse, such as dog fighting, that is going on in our world.

I did write about these issues in the book and hope to bring more public awareness while also entertaining the reader. Why not just write a non-fiction book about such serious topics? There are plenty of good non-fiction books and articles about animal abuse, animal rights, etc. There are more ways to inform and enlighten, however, than just reporting the facts or editorializing, though I am certainly not criticizing either of those methods.

Non-fiction books can also be powerful tools for social change. The book, "Black Beauty," by Anna Sewell, is an example of a book that changed the world. It was a fictitious autobiography of a horse and helped to change the laws of Great Britain while also raising the consciousness of the whole country. Another good example is, "Beautiful Joe," by (Margaret) Marshall Saunders. It was a work of fiction based on a real dog. It was the first book written in Canada to sell over 1 million copies.

While I'm not in the same class as those great writers, I do hope that Lacey Blue's book will make some people think more about our human - animal interaction. I also hope they will find it inspiring and fun to read.
Now I guess I better get back to work on the next book in the Lacey Blue series. You can read more about Lacey below...

The photos you see of me are by permission of Matthew and Carrie Noar, the humans who live with Blueberry, aka Reward Terry the real life model for Lacey Blue.  You can read more about me at Tales and Tails


Saving Baby Snapping Turtles, A Moral Choice

As I was walking in Stetson, Maine today, I found a baby snapping turtle. The little guy or girl was only about an inch in diameter. It is October 4th, late for turtles to be born, in my opinion, but I'm no turtle expert. I've seen them hatch in September before, but never October. As I surveyed the weeds at my feet, I found three more of the little ones struggling through the weeds and along the road toward the pond just down the hill.

In Maine, female turtles sometimes lay their eggs in the sand alongside roads that are close to brooks, rivers, and ponds. Then, when the offspring hatch, they make a dash, if you can call what those little ones were doing a dash, toward the water and safety. Unfortunately, they often wind up in the road and get killed by traffic.

All four of the turtles I found were either on the tar or making their way toward it. If they don't get killed by an automobile they often get eaten by a predator. While I have no business coming between a predator and its meal, I do think I should help baby turtles across the road or along it to the water. I carried my four charges to the water's edge and let them go. They scurried into the water. They will soon burrow down in the mud for a long winter's nap and emerge next spring.

Some people do not like turtles and blame them for eating baby ducks and fish. While it is true that baby ducks and fish may be on their menu, who are we to tell turtles what to eat? If humans enjoy eating ducks, then why shouldn't a turtle have the same rights? Some people will even go out of their way to hit a turtle that is crossing the street in order to kill it. This makes egg laying females particularly vulnerable.

Human tampering and the introduction of non-indigenous species has upset the balance of eco-systems all over the globe. Sometimes great harm is done by one careless person. Therefore, should I interfere with nature and help the baby turtles or should I let them fend for themselves? In my opinion, since some human beings go out of their way to kill them and we've built a road through their hatching grounds, it is reasonable for me to butt in and give them a helping hand. Maybe, in some small way, it makes up for the people who foolishly kill them.

I have another friend who has the same problem, dangerous encounters with humans. I call him Elvis. He is a porcupine that lives in the woods near my home and hangs out in my yard. Since I live far from a busy road I think Elvis is safe as long as he doesn't meet a hungry fisher cat, the only natural predator that will kill and eat porcupines The only other threat to his safety would be an encounter with a local nimrod with a gun. Some people believe that porcupines are destructive to forests and will shoot them when they get a chance. This is nonsense, and most people in Maine are kind and respect the environment and wildlife.

The people who kill for foolish reasons are a very small minority, but that doesn't make a difference to the animals they kill. While we may not think of wild animals very often, they have to think about us all the time, to be constantly vigilant, because any encounter with a human, whether he or she is toting a gun or driving a car, may be fatal.

It is interesting to note that one of the baby turtles I held in my hand may live longer than me if it has a chance. Once it has grown to a certain size the only thing it will have to fear is human beings. Snapping turtles have lived 47 years in captivity and in the wild it's thought that they live upwards of thirty years. I'll never know, if I'm lucky and if the turtles are lucky, I'll never see them again. Like many events in life, ours was a brief encounter that may have made all the difference to them and brought me a few moments of joy.


A Book Review of - Best Hikes With Dogs New Hampshire and Vermont

By Wil Langford

Best Hikes With Dogs New Hampshire & Vermont

By Lisa Densmore

2005 - The Mountaineers Books

paperback 253 pages

Guidebook/New England/Hiking

Any dog loving hiker who lives in or plans to visit New Hampshire or Vermont would do well to consult this book by an Emmy award winning television producer and writer, Lisa Densmore. The author gives first hand accounts of each of the 52 trails that she writes about in this very informative guide to some of the best trails in New England.

I couldn't think of any information that the author left out. There is an easy to use table at the beginning of the book. The Hike Summary Table covers the following subjects,

1. Hike 5 miles or less,

2. Open summit,

3. Mountain views,

4. Fire tower or viewing platform,

5. Ledges or cliffs,

6. Long ridge walk,

7. River, lake, or pond,

8. Waterfall,

9. Dog friendly shelter or campsite,

10. Good for senior dogs,

11. For fit dogs only.

The table includes all 52 trails/hikes that are covered in more detail later in the book. Along with information and tips specific to each trail, Ms. Densmore has also included lots of photos and maps. While hiking each trail she met fellow hikers with dogs and has included some of their photos as well.

Along with the description of each hike by the author who hiked each trail with her loyal companion, Bravo, a Chesapeake Bay Retriever, there are sections with information on the subject of hiking with your dog including subheadings of Getting Ready, Should Your Dog Go Hiking?, Fit For the Trail, Dog-mas, Leave No Trace, Hiker Responsibility Code, Ten Canons of Trail Etiquette, and Good Dog Sense.

The next section covers the essentials including, Gear, Canine First Aid, Wildlife Encounters, and Weather. At the end of the book, as well as an index, you'll find a list of resources and contacts. Even if you never plan on going on a hike on any of the trails mentioned in this book, it is an interesting and fun book to read. The descriptions of the trails and the pleasures of hiking with a canine companion are a good read.

This was an easy to use guide that I found very helpful and I'm sure that if you plan on taking your dog along on your next hike, you'll want to consult this very well thought out guide first. Definitely a four star book.

Wil Langford is a prolific writer. His short stories and books are available on Amazon as paperbacks and Kindle. Visit Wil's official author page at

Wil is the author of the Lacey Blue Days greyhound series at Lacey Blue A Greyhound Story. A fun and inspiring dog story with romance, adventure, and surprises.

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Lacey Receives the Best Book Award

Hi Lacey here,
Just wanted you to know that my book received an award and oh yeah, Bill did an interview that you can read at A Story Book World

Now that he got interviewed I spose there'll be no living with him for a month. We'll probably have to have the door widened just to get his head through it. Well there's always something.

A Dog's Purpose by W Bruce Cameron - More Than Just A Dog Story

By Wil Langford

In his first book, newspaper columnist W. Bruce Cameron tells the story of reincarnation as seen and experienced through the eyes of a dog. What makes this book so poignant is that the author really seems to understand how a dog would speak and feel. Sooner or later, anyone who has ever owned a dog has looked into those big brown eyes and wondered what he or she was thinking.

Many of us have also wondered about the meaning of life. What is its purpose? If a human life has a goal, then does a dog's life have a purpose? Dogs serve many functions in the lives of their humans from companion, security guard, baby sitter, to guide and herder. This is the species that is referred to as man's best friend and also, when someone is working very hard, they are said to be working like a dog. So in our lives they serve many purposes.

Perhaps the biggest question in life is, why are we here? Animal lovers may also ask, why are dogs here? According to author Cameron, it is reincarnation. The main character in this book starts out as Toby a hard luck dog that winds up being rescued by an unlicensed rescuer, but that ends badly. Our hero returns in his next incarnation in a puppy mill and suffers again, this time at the hands of a thoughtless owner.

Through each incarnation the main character suffers and grows through the experience just as those who believe in the many lives philosophy think each human grows from multiple lives. For a dog lover, it may be a little difficult to get through some of the sadder parts of the book and rest assured there are quite a few of them. You will want to have a good hankie or two at hand.

But in the end, the answer and meaning of all that suffering and pain is revealed. There are two cautions that should go along with this review, the first is that if you are deeply affected by the suffering of animals, this book may have a profound effect. Secondly, if your religious or spiritual beliefs find the idea of reincarnation as offensive or disturbing, you may also have a problem with this book.

There are quite a few books that try to tell a story from a dog's point of view. W. Bruce Cameron got it right with his first book. This reader is sure that people who love a good dog story and animal fiction will want to see more from this author. A good four star book.

Wil, writing as Bill Hart, is the author of the Lacey Blue Days greyhound series at Lacey Blue A Greyhound Story. A fun and inspiring dog story with romance, adventure, and surprises.

Wil Langford is a prolific writer. His short stories and books are available on Amazon as paperbacks and Kindle. Visit Wil's official author page at

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What's Wrong With Strong Women Characters?
Remembering Betty Ford

Throughout history, strong women have posed a problem for men and sometimes even for themselves. I can imagine there were a lot of people in high places that would have preferred that Betty Ford would keep her problem hidden from the world, but she didn't and her courage, as a leader, changed many lives for the better.

As a writer, strong female characters have caused some problems for me as well. It isn't that I'm afraid of them or don't know how to write about them. The problem is that I like to write about them so much, sometimes they take over my stories, like "Lacey Blue and Friends, A Greyhound Story." As a fiction writer I’m often asked, Where do you get your characters from? The answer is, they just show up. The story started out as a book about a courageous little greyhound dog, but suddenly her mother became a strong and wise female and then there was a teen aged girl who was dealing with a disability, a rocky romance, and loss.

Next there was her sister, the veterinarian, who was strong and spoke out for what was right, even though it would hurt her career. The next thing I knew another woman who lived alone in the desert and rehabilitated animals took on a very bad man and tried to stop a dog fighting ring. You get the idea? Each of these women have flaws and are vulnerable in some way, but when you think about the best and most memorable characters in fiction, aren't many of them dealing with a personal problem?

Betty Ford was a real live woman who was a lot like the characters in my head who become the characters in my books. I guess my respect and fascination with strong women started with my choice in mothers. My mother was a strong though seriously flawed human being. I make no excuses or even try to explain about my Mom, she was who she was and I was fortunate to have her in my life because she taught me a lot of things.

One of the most important lessons I learned from my mother, by her example, was that even strong willed and courageous people have serious problems or weaknesses, flaws. Betty Ford had an addiction, but despite her elevated social position in life, she admitted it to the world and showed us how a truly great woman handles a problem.

I have to admit that somehow, a lot of the things I write are written for the people in my life. I have a beautiful, bright, daughter who has already been described by some people as a force of nature. She has a strong personality, like her grandmother and some other women in the family. When I write, in a way, I show these characters to her and say, See, women can be strong and they can also admit their faults and weaknesses. Don't get sucked into the lie that the world tries to sell you that women can't be human and they have to be a combination of June Cleaver and a Greek goddess on a pedestal.

When I write about animals I think about all the animals I've been blessed to know in my life and their unique personalities and quirks. Some were strong and others were fragile, but they all had weaknesses and strengths. My animals have personalities, they aren't just props. Consequently, some of them, though seriously flawed, are also brave and courageous. We can learn from animals just like we learn from people.

If you've known a strong woman in your life, you may read one of my stories and see some similarities between my characters and that person. I like to think my books can be read by a whole family and each person will get something from them, other than just a good story. Strong women who face their demons make great characters. I've been lucky enough to know some personally and as a nation, we were lucky to have Betty Ford.

Lacey's book is available as an Amazon Kindle Book for just 99 cents...
Click here

Also available at Amazon in paperback...
Order from Amazon


A Canine Scholarship

Canine Club Academy Scholarships

The "Certificate Course in Canine Care" is authored by working
professionals in the dog industry. The aim of the course is to help
dog lovers succeed in dog-related careers through one-on-one
mentoring, hands-on projects, and business development tutoring.
Topics covered include training theory and practice, basic grooming,
setting up a dog-related business (e.g. daycare, obedience training,
walking/sitting, behavioral consulting, etc.), dog psychology and

Aside from the great authors, one of the unique aspects of the course
is the one-to-one association with a personal tutor throughout the
course.  All of our tutors are current working professionals,
handpicked for their own professional success and their ability to
pass on what they know.

Because the course is new, we are looking to pilot it with a group of
friendly, enthusiastic dog lovers. Along that line, we are offering a
number of full-ride and partial scholarships to individuals who want
to work in the dog industry.  Prior experience working with or
training/handling dogs is a plus, but we are also reserving a few
scholarships for people with little to no experience, who just love
dogs. The chosen candidates will take the course (12 to 24 weeks long
based on the student), and then give us feedback on the course, their
personal tutor, and the business toolkit. Scholarship recipients will
also be given professionally designed marketing materials, including a
business website (which we will host), and taught how to use them to
promote their new businesses. By the end of the course, with the help
of their tutors, they will have already started running their own dog
business (dog training, dog walking, dog daycare, etc.).

To be considered for the scholarship, please fill out a short online
application at