Tina's Sunflowers at Sunset

A haunting tribute from the creative minds of film composer Edwin Wendler and Vocalist Aeralie Brighton.

Carve your name on hearts, not tombstones. A legacy is etched into the minds of others and the stories they share about you.”
― Shannon L. Alder


A sea of sunflowers bloom in the sprawling fields of Biltmore Estate. I imagine Tina strolling past the radiant rows of upturned faces…her own spirit outshining their collective smiles. I imagine this is what her heaven must be like…the final glowing streaks of her amazing soul penetrating the sky with a brilliance that echoes a life well-lived…a good life. I imagine her heart is bursting with pride over a family she adores…watching them still, as their future takes shape. I imagine her witty banter as she beams down at us, her friends, while we honor her memory in a myriad of creative ways…our own hearts reaching across the great divide to say farväl min vän…farewell my friend…


In a memorial tribute to Tina, I’m publishing audiomachine‘s groundbreaking TREE OF LIFE: Branching Out collaborative story, featuring 26 authors (including Tina), in ebook format on Amazon, launching this September! Stunning book cover designed by gifted graphic artist and composer, Ryo Ishido.

TOL Cover_Final

All proceeds of the TREE OF LIFE ebook will benefit the Downey Education Fund set up for Tina’s two boys, which you can also donate to directly.

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Architects of Illusion (Echoes of Olympus, #1): Secrets of the Sphinx

Castle in the Mountains by Gray Artus

Castle in the Mountains by Gray Artus

Welcome to Olympus, where the Muses of Greek Mythology are charged with the responsibility of discovering, inspiring, and guiding the young incarnations of legends past until they once again take the form of greatness.

Embark on an enchanting journey through Architects of Illusion (Echoes of Olympus, #1), a YA fantasy novel series inspired by my backyard neighbors, Biltmore Estate, in honor of George Vanderbilt‘s extraordinary legacy. 

Join me, and a cast of brilliant film composers, as we awaken your imagination to the magic of the mountains during this year’s international A to Z Challenge (representing #TeamDamyanti).

For a detailed PHOTO TOUR of Biltmore Estate, including the iron entrance gates and pillars perched with four early 19th century French stone sphinxes, click HERE!  Want to read more? Visit my A to Z “Sneak Peeks” page!

Secrets of the Sphinx

THE FOUR limestone lionesses rose from their pillared perches, stretching the stiffness from languid limbs. One by one, they pounced upon the pavement, their human mouths curved in menacing grins.

“For the record,” I muttered under my breath, “I think this is a terrible plan.” Conri and Seok slipped between us and the beasts, nodding their heads in silent agreement. Only Tari seemed to keep her cool.

They edged closer, circling us like sharks, the clicking of their stone paws against the pebbles tapping out the steady rhythm of our downfall.

“We were told to seek your counsel,” Tari announced boldly, though her hands were balled at her sides to steady their shaking.

The slinking sphinx nearest me growled through her crumbling crevices. I’d be testy too, if I was missing half a nose. “What you seek, you must not find,” she snarled.

“A world in darkness you will bind,” growled another, her wicked tail whipping through the air.

The sphinx eyeing Seok purred, her dry tongue darting past cracked lips, “Pawns have the power–the key to unwind.”

A gravely voice roared from the fearsome feline behind me, “And undo the demise of all mankind.”

© 2014 Samantha Redstreake Geary



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