Week in Review – 26 November 2017

I’ve been working on some things ready for next year I have some of my favourite authors secured for The Bookshelf in 2018, I’m literally bouncing off the walls with excitement over who I’ve secured. One will close out the year with the final bookshelf of the year and the others will be taking part in early 2018. It’s very exciting. Don’t forget anyone can take part just head here.

I’ve been busy with the mental health side of things again this week. The campaign I’ve been working on with my volunteering role went live this week at an event attended by Bristol’s Mayor and a number of other influential people from various organisations within the City. I had a great conversation with the Superintendent in charge of Mental Health for Avon & Somerset Police, it was great to meet someone in a position like this so passionate about mental health. This week I’ve appeared on Made in Bristol TV News and BBC Radio Bristol Breakfast, it’s been a busy week! The video we made for this campaign is below.

NaNoWriMo has gone really well, I hit the 50,000 words to complete it yesterday. For my first NaNo, I feel quite positive with how I went, especially as I finished early. When I started the month I didn’t think I would complete, but I’ve felt really inspired as I’ve written this novel and other than a few days where I’ve struggled to get the word count out I’ve really flown through it. I now need to backfill some areas of the novel that need more depth, and there are some additional chapters I want to add so I will set myself a new schedule and get on with it after my holiday.

It’s my birthday tomorrow and as always I’ll be running a giveaway, this year is probably my best yet, I tied it in with the release of a fantastic book so I hope you’re all ready for this! The post will go up at midday tomorrow and the Rafflecopter will stay open for a couple of weeks.

I go on holiday for a week next Thursday so the blog will go quiet for a bit. knowing me I will be about on Social Media, I can’t help myself(!) but there will be no posts until I get home. The plan is to have a nice relaxing week and to read loads. I really hope that pans out. More than anything I’m looking forward to sun, lots and lots of sun!

You Had Me At Hello - Mhairi McFarlaneThanks as always to everybody who voted in this month’s TBR Topple poll. I’ve had a great run of books from these polls so far, so I’m really looking forward to picking up this month’s winner. With 42.86% of the votes, the winner was, You Had Me at Hello by Mhairi McFarlane. I’ll be reviewing it next month and the new poll will go up when I get home from my holiday so will be slightly later than usual.

Here are this week’s book updates:

Currently Reading

What I’ve Read

New Books

Bought / Freebies

Book Post



This week I have reviewed:

Four Star: and a Sixpence for Luck by Lilac Mills.
Five Star: A Stranger in the Cove by Rachel Brimble and Kiss My Boots by Harper Sloan.

Other Posts

I had excerpts from Istanbul Days, Istanbul Nights by Leonard Durso and Become the Force by Daniel M. Jones. The Bookshelf this week featured the very lovely Danielle from Books, Vertigo and Tea.

Music Monday this week featured Bon Jovi with a Thanksgiving-themed song.

I also took part in the Brotherhood of the World Award.

Next Week on BrizzleLass Books

#BlogTour: Become the Force by Daniel M. Jones & Theresa Cheung @TheAspieWorld @Authoright #Excerpt

It’s always fun to kick off a blog tour, but this one I’ve been looking forward to for a while. Daniel M. Jones is the founder of the Church of Jediism and this is his book all about the principles of living according to the Force. I am totally fascinated with the ways religions work, what people believe in etc and as a huge Star Wars fan that’s just increased ten fold with this one. I have an extract which I hope you enjoy and do follow the tour, there is tour schedule below.


Daniel M Jones founded the Church of Jediism in 2007, and it now has over 500,000 members around the world. This is the book his fans have been waiting for. In it Daniel outlines the Jedi perspective and provides practical tools for anyone interested in gaining a deeper understanding of how to use the Force in everyday life. The Force is a metaphor for the universal life energy that connects us all, and it can be both light and dark, good and bad. Now, more than ever, it is our responsibility to overcome the dark side. This book does not aim to convert but to inspire its readers to live a life of meaning and purpose according to the universal spiritual teachings from ‘The Way of the Jedi’.

Become the Force covers:

Daniel’s own fascinating spiritual journey and how overcoming personal struggles has awakened him to his purpose.
How Jedi teachings can empower mind, body, heart and spirit.
A comprehensive toolkit that will allow anyone to genuinely embrace ‘the way of the Jedi’.
Compelling reasons why the spiritual teachings of Jediism are relevant today.
A comprehensive explanation of Jediism as a spiritual movement (a universal desire for self-awareness, spiritual awakening, peace, love and harmony) rather than a religion.
Shows that it’s plausible that the Jedi-minded among us today might usher in a new spirituality and shift in global consciousness towards peace and harmony that is more powerful than any we can possibly imagine.

Become The Force - Tour Banner


This extract comes from fairly early in the book when Daniel explains with reference to his own life the importance of understanding the power of your thoughts.


If intelligence – and by that I mean curiosity – is the qualification or prerequisite for Jediism, becoming aware of the power of your thoughts to create your reality is the foundation stone or starting point. The journey begins with one step and thought control is that first step. Not taking responsibility for your thoughts allows fear to get the upper hand and when fear has the upper hand you attract negative situations, experiences and people into your life. This sounds like positive thinking but it is far more expansive and profound than that. It is understanding what your thoughts are and how to take charge of them so you become a living embodiment of the infinite power and potential of the Force.


The power of thought to create your reality and connect you to the living life Force is something I have felt many times in my own life.


Thinking ahead


I guess I’m lucky in that I have always been aware of the potential of my thoughts or thinking to shape my life and what I attract into it. I have always sensed that I am not entirely at the mercy of external events or a helpless victim of circumstances. My parents and teachers may have been worried about me with my Star Wars obsessions and strange, antisocial behaviour but I was choosing to live my life on my own terms. I wasn’t able to conform to the expectations of others. In my mind I trusted that somehow all would fall into place and self-understanding would manifest if I simply put my energy into doing what I loved.


After leaving school I continued to educate myself and absorb as much as I could about religion, spirituality, science and the search for life’s meaning. I also formed my own band. I composed songs for the band, despite not being able to read music, and performed locally in clubs and pubs. I had but one agenda and that was to be creative and to ultimately use that creativity to energise and inspire others. Perhaps this desire to create has something to do with my Asperger’s, which was still undiagnosed at the time. I have – and still have – this overwhelming urge to ooze creativity 24/7. I need very little sleep. If I’m not creative or learning something new I don’t feel alive. I always have to be doing lots of things. If I’m not busy I am more susceptible to meltdowns. Keeping my mind active and constantly learning and creating is my way of being and I’m aware that not everybody reacts to life like that.


From the outside looking in I must have seemed like a young drifter without any formal qualifications, or a rebel without a cause, but that transition period in my life from schoolboy to young adult made complete sense to me – I was learning, growing and finding out who I was. There was no urge within me to settle for security. There was only one road for me and that was the road less travelled as it offered constant stimulation and opportunities to evolve. I trusted the universe would support my creativity, and support me it did.


All along I knew that everything in my life was leading me towards a greater purpose. I wasn’t sure what that purpose was but I never panicked because I knew that all I needed to do was let my creativity flourish and the universe would guide me. I trusted that the universe would send me the right person or the right circumstances or the right insight to take me to where I needed to be, in other words help me fulfil my purpose. That is exactly what the universe did.


Answer noted but not counted


I was first alerted to the Jedi census phenomenon in early 2001 by a family friend who told me about a worldwide email campaign urging people to write Jedi or Jedi knight as their answer to the religion classification question in their country’s census. My friend knew that I was a Star Wars obsessive and that this would definitely appeal to me. They were right. The census phenomenon did more than appeal to me. It inspired and enlightened me. I may not have been aware of it at the time as I wasn’t yet 16 but it sowed a seed in my mind and in my heart.


In the coming months and following years I watched the census phenomenon with increasing interest. It made me think about how brilliantly an online community could fuel people power and rock the establishment boat. I was fully aware that some declared themselves Jedi on the census as a joke. However, I also knew that there were many people, myself included, who didn’t think it was a laughing matter at all but a genuine expression of spiritual curiosity and identity.


The forces that be (government officials) took note of ‘Jedi knight’ as a religious choice on the forms but did not count it. This felt wrong to me as it certainly deserved acknowledgement and investigation as to why people were doing this. People were listing Jedi for a reason. I did some research and found that it wasn’t the first time that people had declared themselves Jedi on the Census. Perhaps this was to do with the dawning of the new millennium and the unfounded fears surrounding computers crashing because of the Y2K bug. Or perhaps it was simply because Star Wars: The Phantom Menace hit cinemas in 1999 bringing Star Wars nostalgically back into people’s minds and hearts years after the release of Star Wars: Return of the Jedi in 1983


For whatever reason, in the years that followed the 2001 census it gradually became clear to me that people were crying out for some kind of ethical and spiritual framework but established religion was losing its relevance. It was also beyond doubt clear to me that the internet was going to be a powerful force in everyone’s lives. It was certainly a powerful force in my life. I felt completely at home online, establishing myself as a popular figure on My Space (an early version of Facebook) in 2005. I knew social media had the potential to reach more people than any religious leader and an online community might just be the ideal medium for a spiritual message that was modern, relevant, engaging and empowering……..

About Daniel M. Jones aka Morda Hehol

Daniel M. Jones aka Morda Hehol is a philosopher, scientist and musician. In 2007 he became world famous when he founded the Church of Jediism at the age of twenty one. Since then he has appeared in many national newspapers and Time magazine, and has been interviewed by the BBC, Good Morning America, ITN and numerous other TV and radio stations. Daniel also has a degree in Chemistry from the University of Bangor, Wales. He is a member of pop punk band Straight Jacket Legends, whose debut album charted in Japan. He also dedicates his time to his the Aspie World YouTube Channel highlighting what life is like with Aspergers, after having been diagnosed in 2013. For more information please visit: https://thechurchofjediism.org/


About Theresa Cheung 

Theresa Cheung was born into a family of spiritualists and has a Masters in Theology and English from King’s College, Cambridge. She has sold almost half a million books and encyclopaedias about the psychic world, the afterlife and personal transformation over twenty years. Her spiritual books Heaven Called My Name (Piatkus 2016) and An Angel Healed Me (Simon & Schuster 2010) became Sunday Times Top 10 bestsellers and have been translated into thirty languages.


Book & Buy Links

TitleBecome the Force: 9 Lessons on Living as a Master Jedi
Series: N/A
Author: Daniel M. Jones Theresa Cheung
Genre: Non-Fiction | Religion
Publisher: Watkins Publishing
Publication Date: 14 November 2017
Review Format: N/A
Other Formats: eBook | Paperback | Audio
Pages: 176
Buy: Amazon UK | Amazon US | Waterstones | FoylesBook Depository | Speedy Hen | Wordery