reviews, interviews, fiction and more

Pipe and Slippers: With Catherine E. McLean

Good evening and welcome to my awe-inspiring aethenaeum of  praiseworthy pamphlets…or as some ridiculous personages have dubbed it – my lovely library.

I am the ghost known as Perilous Wight and here in the bowels of the city of Lancaster, in the disused tunnels of an underground train system that never was, I have made it my mission to collect every book that our self-proclaimed ‘supreme ruler f the universe’ and his mincing minions have banned from the bookshelves of the new world.

But this is not a public thoroughfare! If you have wandered in here on the ill-advice of a drag-dressed octopus and its dribbling Tea Fiend, let me advise you not to be so easily lured into a parlour by the promise of strange fruit. Well, you will find nothing sweet and alluring down here;   here there is only the dark and the damp, the flickering of candlelight and the ceaseless toil of a man who did not re-animate from the dead to be pestered by people wanting bedtime stories!

But wait…what’s that you have tucked away under your arm there? A bottle of The Green Fairy eh? Oh…. well, yes perhaps it is about time I put my feet up for a while, pipe and slippers and a little drop of something, the day has, after all been a long one. And I suppose I could read a very little something,

like this perhaps…

HeartsAkilter_w9882_300 Medium

Hearts Akilter    is a sci-fi/fantasy romance novella,  by my very dear friend,

Catherine EMcLean. It has received some marvellous reviews, like this one….

5-Star Reviews at Amazon:

“Because I am not a sci-fi fan, I was cautious about reading this book. Within minutes I was hooked. It is not so ‘out there’ that I would get lost in strange names, locations, and terminology. Catherine E. McLean brought the story to life with strong, diverse characters, emotions, and mystery. I really liked the quirkiness of Henry. I look forward to reading more from this author. — Becky F”


So, are yous sitting comfortably? Then I’ll begin….


HEARTS AKILTER by Catherine E. McLean

Bomb-Small w 2 hearts

Love, vengeance, attempted murder and a bomb…  No reason to panic.


A bomb. One inside the little robot? That didn’t make sense. Maybe it wasn’t a real bomb. More likely, some practical joke the geeks were playing on Marlee. Yes, that had to be it.

But could he chance the bomb wasn’t real? This was Kifel Space station, the Jewel of Sol, the gateway to the New World colonies. Thousands of people on board were at risk.

He willed his stomach and his nerves to steel hardness. He better check out the bomb.

“Marlene, I’ll need tools. I’ll have to go get them.”

Cheerily, Marlee replied, “No need.” She exited the lift but didn’t go far. She returned, pulling an antigrav skiff she maneuvered toward him.

On the skiff were two large and two small satchels bearing his stenciled name and ID numbers. His gear? “You took those from my classroom?”

“It’s where you left them, wasn’t it?”

Nothing like stating the obvious. “That classroom is sealed until the investigation and inquiry are made public. Off limits to all personnel.”

“I know, but you need tools, right?”

“And you just walked in and took my things!”

“Don’t panic. I accessed the maintenance tunnel behind the storage room. I’ll put your stuff back when you’re done. No one will be the wiser.”

He’d met many women, many techs, but Marlene Whatever-her-last-name-was, took the brass ring for forthright and gutsy different. And, damn him, he liked gutsy different.

What a stupid thought, especially when she scowled at him like that.


Hm? More? Who do you think you are Oliver Twist? No no no, I do not have time to read any more, if you wish to know what happens next I would advise you to purchase the book for yourself …


Hearts Akilter is available at these and other online booksellers:

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Barnes & Noble:



Or connect with Catherine on the aether net….

CEM Sweater

Catherine E. McLean lives on a farm nestled in the foothills of the Allegheny Mountains of Western Pennsylvania. In the quiet of the countryside, she writes lighthearted tales of phantasy realms and stardust (fantasy, futuristic, and paranormal) where a reader can escape to other worlds for adventure and romance. She is also a writing instructor who helps writers understand good fiction writing techniques so they can become published authors



Connect with Catherine:


Home Website:

Website for Writers:

Blog for writers:

New release, nonfiction for writers — Revision is a Process – How to take the Frustration out of Self-editing (Details are at ––description.html )

Online Writing Course for Pennwriters: February 2018 on “144 Aspects of a Novel” (

Individualized Online Writing Courses at Rimstone Concepts:   


Now then I really must insist you go, I have important work to be getting on with, not least repairing an embarrassingly large hole in my best lace petticoat….  Good Night!  Oh, er…leave the bottle though…

8 responses

  1. Thank you, my friend, for putting up your feet and enjoying a “very little something” with HEARTS AKILTER. But I’m curious – however did you get an embarrassingly large hole in your best lace petticoat? Wait. Perhaps it’s best I don’t know.

    Liked by 1 person

    November 10, 2017 at 3:06 pm

    • smithandskarry1

      My Dear Catherine, an honour as always to host you and your marvellous work! Do forgive the late response, sewing is not my forte and the light down here is dreadful. As for how I got the hole, well, running from the toshers of South London was evidently more of a challenge than the fabric was up to… or did you mean why was I wearing the petticoat in the first place? Well, why does any deceased gentleman dress as a young woman? Professional Reasons, my dear, Professional Reasons…


      November 21, 2017 at 1:19 pm

  2. Interesting post. Looks like a great book. Good luck with your release.

    Liked by 1 person

    November 10, 2017 at 4:00 pm

  3. sandratilley

    Loved this post. So entertaining and fun! Hearts Akilter sounds awesome! Best of luck and lots of sales!

    Liked by 1 person

    November 10, 2017 at 4:35 pm

  4. Congratulations! Looks like a wonderful book.

    Liked by 1 person

    November 10, 2017 at 5:44 pm

    • Hi, Jennifer – Thanks for dropping by and, yes, I think it’s a wonderful novella because Marlee is such a quirky character, but the robot, well, he almost steals the show! LOL

      Liked by 1 person

      November 13, 2017 at 3:28 pm

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