An inspirational book.

                                    FAITH IS THE KINGDOM

When his marriage falls apart and his own faith is being questioned, David Andrews, a small town minister, begins to read In the newspapers, about pFaith is the Kingdom by [Rohde, Shirley S.]eople who have been touched by mysterious miracles, changing or saving their lives.  At the same time the name of Ben Joseph, an itinerant preacher, has surfaced in connection with some of the events.  Doubting his faith more than ever, and feeling the desperation of needing to put some tangible meaning to his calling, David sets out to find the illusive preacher.  What he learns about himself along the way puts new meaning to the term saving grace.


FAITH IS THE KINGDOM has been available on kindle at Amazon, but is now also available  in paperback for my readers who like the feel of  a book in their hands. Enjoy!












































































This collection of short stories, inspirational articles and others includes an interesting variety of topics in the short stories, also articles written for the Art of Marquetry and a few pictures of Marquetry. Many of the stories and articles have been published.. It was a time when short stories appeared on the pages of many magazines.

This book, formerly listed on kindle, is now available on paperback.

                                         MY TRAIL OF LEAVES

MY TRAIL OF LEAVES contains much of my earlier writing. I often look at it as ‘training’ for the novels to come. My first published work came right after I had completed an on-mail writing course for short stories by Writer’s Digest, the only formal writing course I ever had.  Some of the stories are drawn from my life’s experiences, some of them from my imagination, which I can honestly say, they all were.My Trail of Leaves Book cover

The inspirational articles came as a result of years of Bible study. The Marquetry Articl1es developed when I was asked to write for the monthly newsletter, and learning the craft, when I accompanied my husband to the meetings.

I hope you will enjoy the stories and articles. Let your imaginations soar!





In her search for her younger brother, Beth falls into an enemy camp.

                                  NEW PAPERBACK:  DESTINY’S DRUM

The war between the states often pitted brother against brother, and father against son. The rest often suffered as they tried to remain true to themselves.  How often the question was asked, but unanswered:  Whose side was God on in this terrible war?  The battles raged on, taking the young and the old, and in between, they also fell to a cause, whichever side they fought for. The innocent were swept along, sometimes at odds to their beliefs, sometimes adrift to any plan the North and South envisioned.

                                                DESTINY’S DRUM

Beth Anders, 16, disguised as a boy, leaves her home in Maryland to find her young brother, who has run away to enlist for the North in the Civil War.   In Pennsylvania, she is captured by Confederates and sent to the Colonel’s Destiny's Drum by [Rohde, Shirley S.]home in Virginia to help his family.  Beth finds the children are grown, spoiled and demanding. They make her life unbearable.  Only the oldest son, Captain Bowand, who has brought her to Virginia, seems kind and considerate, but he returns to his unit to fight in the battle of Gettysburg.  Beth’s life is a series of challenges. She struggles to survive her captor’s hatred. and to devise a plan of escape.  She didn’t expect to begin to care about the Bowand family.


DESTINY’S DRUM has been available on Amazon’s kindle, but is now also listed in paperback for you reading pleasure. Enjoy!











Previously on kindle , DESINY’S DRUM is now available on paperback

As well as kindle for your reading pleasure. For those readers who like to hold a book and like  to turn the pages this is  the answer for your need. Enjoy!!
























































































A mystery novel, now in paperback, as well as kindle at Amazon.

          I am  thrilled to tell you about my new paperback book now available on kindle at Amazon. This prequel introduces two of  the main characters and gives you a glimpse of the changes about to take place in their lives. The mystery that follows will leave you on  the edge of your `seat.
                                          Prequel to Charade

Amid the noise, the ringing phone could hardly be heard.  “Hey, Pearson, it’s for you. It’s your sweetie,” the voice announced loudly through the fifth floor of the college dorm. Someone else pounded on the door.  “Don’t tie up the phone. I’m waiting for a call,“ a  voice blared outside his room.Charade

“I don’t want to talk right now…cramming for the ancient history final.” Marsh stuck his head out of his door. “Tell her I’m tied up and can’t come to the phone.” He was bleary eyed with a pallor that said he was past tired. Usually considered a ‘hunk’, he was not up to his usually handsome image. Weary, almost beyond recognition,  but giving it all he had.

“Tell her yourself. I’m not your messenger boy, and hurry up.….third time this week. She’s soon gonna write you off as a no show.” A fist rattled his door.

Marsh came out of his cluttered room, standing in the chilly hall in his underwear, clenching his fists, disgust on his face. The phone dangled beside the box on a wall that was riddled with messages and numbers, written in desperation by well intentioned classmates.

Mash reluctantly picked up the receiver, glad the college had not yet gone to coed dorms, like some of the ones in other states. His underwear was frayed in several places.

“Yeah,” he blared into to the mouthpiece. He was having a bad day and he was wondering which, ‘sweetie’ was bothering him this time, since he  tried taking a break for final exams.

”Who is this?”

“You mean, which sweetie?” her sarcasm carried through the wall..

He finally recognized the voice as the cute little blond he had gone out with several  times.. “You know these guys, always joking.  Told you I had to study tonight.” He knew she was still mad by the tone of her voice. She expected him to drop everything, whenever  she called.

“Well, this can’t wait. I want to see you now. It’s pretty important,” her voice had taken on the petulant little girl act she used to get her way.

“Look Barb, I have to pass this exam. It’s a final. It’s the last one for the semester. Damn it. What’s so important this time?”

“All I can say is that you’ll be so sorry if you don’t show up. I mean it. Five minutes and you better be there.” The loud bang in his ear left no doubt in his mind. Trouble was brewing..


She was waiting at their usual meeting place near the campus bookstore, half way between their dorms. The campus light gave half circle to the nearby bench.

“Well, I’m here. What ‘s so important that will be worth me flunking out?” He was in no mood for her tantrums.

She offered her cheek for his kiss, instead of her lips.

“What have I done this time?” He pulled her closer.

“It’s what we have done, Marsh…you and me,” Tears spilled down her cheeks.

“Well, tell me. I’ve got to go study.” They sank to the bench and she cuddled up to him.

“Not now, Barb. You know what I’m up against. I can’t afford to flunk out. It’s  the end of the year. I an afford  to  take an extra semester.”

She blurted, “I’m late. I know I’m pregnant.  This changes everything for both of us. I have to tell Daddy. He’ll be furious.” She stared up at him. “Don’t you get it? Don’t sit there with your mouth hanging open.  Say something. There isn’t going  to be an exam tomorrow or any other day. When Daddy finds out, you are going to have to make  things  right.”

Marsh drew back on the bench and closed his eyes.  “What do you mean?”

“You are going to marry me, Marsh. End of discussion. End of  school. End of everything.”

“Wait, wait, wait. I know other guys who said….I’ve heard about …How do you know it’s me? I know I was drunk  one night but…?”

“Those guys are all lying. You know how  they love to brag. I never…I’m sure it’s you. No getting out of this. Tomorrow I have to face Daddy. I want to be able to tell him you will do the right thing and marry me.”

“Barb, I only have a year to go and then I can teach……how can I…? You know I’m in here by the skin of my teeth.”

“I’m sure Daddy will give you a job in his company…….I’ll be waiting for you after your  exam, though It really doesn’t matter if you pass, does it?”

“It matters to me.” He sat on the bench long after she left. Finally he walked slowly back to the now quiet dorm. Knowing he would be unable to sleep in spite of  his exhaustion. He spent the next few hours cramming for ancient history, which is how he thought of himself.


CHARADE opens to a  time twenty years later. Those two main characters are unhappily married, their discord affects family and friends, leading to a murder, and a mysterious disappearance. Give it a whirl. Can you solve the mystery as you read??



My New Book Is Available On Kindle and Paperback

The family story of upheaval and loss and a chilling effort to reclaim their loss.

Dear Friends,
The Mouth of the Lion by [Rohde, Shirley S.]


I’m writing to share the celebration of my new book! THE MOUTH OF THE LION has been released on Kindle and paperback at Amazon.. Please help me Share the joy by sharing  this great news. Thank you.






A decision had been made about the fur coat.

                                                     Chapter 84

The guests filed into the Martin’s living room, Carol and Hank, Cass and Pete. The last one to come was Jo, sporting a new hairdo and glamorous outfit. Jim and Jenny were instructed simply to bring their friends together for an unspecified reason. Emma and Mike would explain later. It had been a hand written invitation and they sat around making idle conversation with an air of expectation, for what, remained a mystery, even to the Martins.

“Where’s Trish?” Was the first question on everyone’s minds.

Jenny laughed. “Strange, but she and Moonie are at the Orpheum, for a traveling production of’ ‘Oklahoma.’ The tickets were a gift from Mike and Mother, the lucky ducks. I’ve heard it’s very good. Rodgers and Hammerstein can’t be beat. I’m envious And, by the way, we are calling him Ron now.”

Ted and his wife had just gotten out of a taxi. “Hi sis,” he kissed Jenny’s cheek. “I’d like all of you to meet my wife, Barbara.” He walked her to the center of the room and twirled the tall, shapely, brunette in front of them. She laughed, self-consciously.

“I guess we all know the reason for the gathering.,” he boasted “It must be the coat, though I can’t imagine the reason for the …crowd. Jenny could have simplified the whole matter some time ago.” He stole a meaningful look at Barbara, who sucked in her breath and smoothed her hair. He added, “Just hope it will be worth the trip from the city.”

Jo Cavalieri said, “Ï can’t imagine why all of us have been asked to come. It’s almost like the reading of a will.”  She shivered, remembering a time not long ago.

“I heard a car door,” Jenny jumped to her feet and opened the door. “Here are the newlyweds now.”

Emma’s hair was styled and softly tinted. She was radiant as she held onto Mike’s arm.

Ted stood up to greet her with a kiss on the cheek. “Mom you’ve been holding out on me.” He nodded to Mike and shook his hand.

“Look who is talking.” Emma stood, staring at Barbara. They both laughed and hugged. The doorbell rang again.

Hank answered and ushered in a young man. Another, followed with an assortment of boxes. He looked around, uncertain where to stack them and decided the only space was in the hall.

The older man greeted them and proceeded to select a box from the pile.

“See, I told you, just like a will.” Jo chuckled.

“The gifts will be presented in no particular order. But they are to be opened simultaneously, please.” He presented a box to Jo, and to each couple, including Mike and Emma.

“Now, everyone, open your gift”

Tissue paper was cast aside and shrieks of surprise filled the house. Jenny lifted a small sable stole from the box and buried her head in it and cried.

When the shock of each couple receiving similar fur stoles, Mike stepped up to say a few words. “Emma and I realized no one was going to be able to wear a full-length fur coat. It just wasn’t in the cards, so we had the furrier divide the spoils, so to speak.”

The women were wrapping themselves in fur and wiping their eyes.

Ted was the first to speak, “Oh, my God, Barbara. They cut it up. They cut it up?” He sat back weakly as Emma patted his hand. ”Take my word for it. Better this way than it was before, thanks to Mike.”

“We have so much to celebrate,” Jim held Jenny’s hand. What a wonderful way to thank everyone who helped bring Trish home.” He raised his glass to Mike.

The End



Trish’s homecoming was awkward for everyone.

                                                     Chapter 83

The homecoming was awkward on all fronts. Jenny and Jim had more or less expected Trish to spend every free minute with them, playing board games or being part of the canned laughter on the tv set. The novelty of being a family again, which they had never been before, grew tiresome. In a short time Trish escaped to her room with the mobile clouds and her own telephone, which had been a bargaining chip.

After a few days of trying some kind of normalcy, Emma and Mike returned from their delayed honeymoon. They had purchased a condo in Florida to spend their winter months and planned to redecorate Mike’s Taylor house. Immediately, they enlisted Trish’s talent for color and design. They also offered to hire a tutor so she could graduate with the rest of her class. For the first time since she had come home, Trish felt she could really stay there. At least Mike and Emma seemed more responsive to her need to get on with her life. She relished the chance to graduate with her class without ever seeing them again.

Several times Gwen came to visit. Trish appreciated her loyalty to help her get back home, but the visits were uncomfortable as the distance between them widened. Girl talk about high school crushes and the usual gossip, seemed out of place. Gwen could hardly begin to empathize with Trish’s scarred life. Her visits became more infrequent.

Moonie’s one visit was an embarrassment to all of them. Her parents had insisted on being present when Moonie came to see her. Any attempt at conversation was less than forthcoming. They spoke of the weather, what was new on TV, how school was going, and anything they could come up with to bridge the gap.  When Moonie stood up to leave, there was a sigh of relief from Jim and Jenny who simply left the room.

“Trish, how about a ride in my graduation gift? I know it’s a little premature but my parents old clunker died and they were going  to give me a car anyway……….I guess so they wouldn’t have to drive to the dorm next year.  What do you say? I’ll have her back in about an hour, Mr. Martin,” he said loud enough to be heard in the kitchen

“Trish will have to make that decision, Moonie.”

When he turned to Trish, she already had her coat on. Outside, in the cold air, Trish took a deep breath. ”Thanks, Moonie. I have felt so cooped up in there. They are so protective of me, it feels like I have a fatal illness. I am paying for running away. Just drive around the block and let me out. I’ll go for a walk.”

He reached for her hand. “I really want to spend an hour with you, if that’s what I’m allowed.”

“You really don’t have to, you know. I realize I am damaged goods.” She stared out at the passing scenery.

“We were just getting to know each other, Trish. I’d like to know more about you and forget about what just happened.”

Tears welled in her eyes. She tried to look at him. “I can’t think of anything to say.”

He pulled over and held her for a long moment. “Maybe you won’t even like me, but I am asking you to get to know me, that’s all.”

“I just can’t imagine why anyone would want to bother with me. It’s more than I can ask.”

“I was starting to like the girl who was trying to find her place in life.”

“Do you expect gratitude? Do you think I’ll be an easy mark after what I’ve been through?” She pulled away from him and had her hand on the door handle.

“I’m not that kind of guy, Trish. That’s why we have to get to know each other and trust one another.”

She looked up and saw the hurt in his eyes. Her hand flew out to his. “I’m sorry, Moonie.” For a moment they were caught in each other’s embrace.

The hour went by as they spoke of his college plans and her dream of interior decorating. When Trish got out and opened her front door, she felt she felt more confused than ever.

Her mother was waiting for her, an anxious look on her face. She blurted,  “Mike and your grandmother just stopped in. She asked me for the coat, because Mike had paid the tax, she figured it was hers.” Jenny collapsed onto the sofa. It’s not that I could have worn it anywhere, but……just having it was……”




Trish discovers herself in rehab and wonders what the future holds for her.

                                                   Chapter 82

Days seemed endless in the rehab center. There was love and kindness, and with help,Trish began to sort out her new feelings from the old programmed ones. She realized that the new ideas were also programed ones, indelibly marked on her brain from the days in the farmhouse in the coal regions of Pennsylvania. As the weeks progressed those new ideas became the germination of responsive thinking, which eventually became her own. Her own thoughts were filled with her father and mother and Emma and Mike. She wondered if any of these people would ever be in her life again. Her days were empty now, unable to actually see her family for the first few weeks. She spent hour after hour, trying to find herself in the darkness, not knowing exactly what it was she groped for, hoping with all her heart there would be something worthwhile in the end.

She heard the chime of the front door as she sat alone in her room. In a few moments her parents stood in the doorway. They looked pale and thin, as though these months had its toil, had taken away their youth and vitality. Trish recognized the pain was gone from their faces, but the new look was of the raw courage it had taken to face her. She watched as their eyes darted around the room. Finally those eyes descended on her.

She waited there. Her face had lost its hardened veneer. Her hair had been cut and styled and waved around her ears. Only her eyes retained their haunting depth of what she had endured.   A smile broke across her lips for the first time.

They both spoke at the same time. “You look great, we’re so glad to be here. Mike and Emma wanted to come but we were afraid it would be too much.” Arms enfolded her and spoke what words couldn’t.

“What are the plans, Dad, Mom?”

“We haven’t made any, Trish. We were waiting to hear if we could be a family again.” Jim cleared his throat and continued to hold them both.

“Are Grandmom and Mike married yet?”

“About a month ago. They are planning to vacation in Florida….they want you to go with them.”

Trish sat on the bed. “We would be quite a threesome, two newlyweds and a partial granddaughter.” She attempted a laugh.” The counselors say I can be discharged in about two weeks.” She looked away. “I wouldn’t blame you if you didn’t want me back.”

Jenny stepped forward. “That’s why we’re here, Trish. We want to try to be a family again, if you’re willing. Your father and I have mended our fences. I even told him how Rawley was blackmailing me. Everything has been out in the open, including how unfair I have been to you. I want us to be mom and daughter again, in every possible way…if you can ever forgive me.”

Jim stepped up. “We have all made poor judgments, Trish. Mike has been a terrific help. He paid the tax on the coat. He is going to fund me so I can go to police school. You are the missing piece to our puzzle. Please, come home with us in two weeks.”

It was a tearful goodbye, each promising to make the transition as smooth as possible. In spite of the promises, Trish had a lump in her throat and a cold feeling in the back of her neck. She hoped she could measure up.

Jim looked a little uncomfortable. “Just for your information, there have been two of your high school chums hanging around for word of your release. One of them is Gwen, who has been a constant help to us.”

Trish had a puzzled look on her face. “Who else would even care?”

Jim coughed. “He calls himself Moonie. You must know him.”

When they left, Trish was sitting in the middle of her bed with a strange look on her face.



Trish’s home coming was not what they expected.

                                                Chapter 81

They drove home in two cars, Hank and Pete in the rental, and Jim and Trish and Cash, in the other.  Cash was dropped off at the airport. They had parted awkwardly. Trish cried on his shoulder. He shook Pete’s and Hank’s hands and he thanked them for their dedication to get Trish back. When Jim stepped up, they shook hands and Jim clasped his shoulder. “Thank you, my friend. I know I wasn’t always the easiest to get along with. But you gave me my daughter back and I thank you for that.”

“There are few who like my methods, but I knew what I had to do. You eventually came around. “There was a sly smile on Simmon’s face, and he broke into a hearty laugh. “You’re a good man, Jim. Now it’s your turn to fill my role.” He was still laughing while Jim had gone silent.

When they arrived home Emma and Mike were making wedding plans. They went into the kitchen so Jenny could have a moment alone with Trish and Jim.

The three of them stood around uncertainly. Finally, Jenny put her arms out. Trish hung back until Jim took her hand and placed it in Jenny’s.

“It’s all so strange. The house seems so big. I feel so small. How are you, Mom?”

Jenny had tears in her eyes. “I am so glad you’re home.”

“It’s only for a few hours,” Jim said. “Simmons made arrangements at a rehab facility. We must have her there by 2:00.” They sat in separate seats, still not comfortable with each other.

“Someone wants to see you before you go, Trish” As if on cue, Emma and Mike came into the room. They greeted her warmly but didn’t touch her.

“Mike and I waited until you came home to announce that we are getting married when you are here for good.”

“I’m not sure when that will be,” Trish was not the bubbly young woman they knew.

“You are going to have your room to yourself again,” Emma said.  “Mike paid the tax on the coat” There was a moment of uncomfortable silence. Mike reached out and briefly held her hand.

“Can we go now, Dad?” Trish was pale and ill at ease.

“‘Of course, Trish. Everyone wanted to see you first.”

When they had gone, Jenny was the first to speak. “I think you should go ahead with your wedding. I don’t think Trish wants to be part of that celebration. I believe she can’t think of anything but her recovery right now.” Her face had lost the look of excitement at having her daughter home. She cried silently.

“I think you are right, Jenny. She’s a different girl, almost a stranger. She didn’t give us what we all waited for. Once again, we were all thinking of ourselves That first embrace, that the old Trish would have gladly exchanged. We must give her time.”

Her words hung in the air like strands of hemp, heavy and unwieldy. Jenny drew her legs up onto the sofa and wept while her mother sat dry eyed and grim. Mike drew into himself.



Trish finally comes to realize the error of her ways.

                                                   Chapter 80

By the end of the week there was a noticeable change in Trish.  She ate some of the hot meal Pete had brought from the restaurant. She asked questions of Cash and listened intently when he answered her. She sat in the chair, no longer hostile and tense, but a broken young woman who still hated them all, but most of all, herself for being so gullible. Her sluggish mind began to think again and the pain of it made her panic. The long hours and little sleep were wearing her ragged. She begged Cash to let her sleep and rest. When he grudgingly consented, she fell into the sleeping bag with relief.

The next day found her refreshed and argumentative. Cash cursed himself for allowing her too much time to muster her strength, but hallway into the day she broke down sobbing, sorry for the misery she had put all of them through. She asked to see her father for the first time.

Simmons walked out of the door and yawned, “Any beer left, Hank? I sure worked up a thirst.” Jim, you can go in for a little while. She actually asked to see you. See if you two can strike up a conversation.”

Jim had been pacing nervously. He stared at Simmons. Finally, almost reluctantly, he entered  the room and closed the door. Trish looked up at him from her seat. How long was it that she looked at him without the hate in her eyes? She stood up and a tired, tearful smile hinted at her mouth. He put his arms around her and for a long time neither of them spoke.

“Dad, I’ve been such a fool.”

“You don’t have to say anything, Trish, we’ll have lots of time to talk later. The important thing is you know I’m here for you. We are all here because we care.”

She was crying again. She slumped down on the wooden folding chair she had grown to despise. “I hope Mom can forgive me.”

“She’s hoping you will forgive her.” Emotion tightened his throat. “There’s nothing to forgive. No one blames you for anything. Your Mom has gone off the booze, She’s a different  woman. She wants you to forgive her. You simply lost your way. We all did, and it drove you away, the last thing any of us wanted. We want to be a family again, if you will let us.”

“I can try, Dad. I feel like I’ve just come back from the dead.”

He helped to her feet again. “Trish, I know you are exhausted. Try to rest now. We will talk later,” Abruptly, he left her standing there. Alone.