War Boat

I just finished an edit and reload of Thomas Hollyday’s latest book War Boat to fix a minor typo.

Thomas is 77 years old and working on book 10 in his Chesapeake Bay mystery series!

He’s going strong! Quite inspiring.

Here’s a link to book 1 in the series which is FREE – 226 ratings and 4.1/5 stars!

New novel upcoming

War Boat is the story of John Thornton, a self-made wealthy young entrepreneur who inherits his ancient family shipyard in River Sunday, Maryland. To carry out a childhood promise he intends to find the local traitor who betrayed his grandfather’s ship, War Boat, to a 1941 U-Boat mass murder and sinking in the Atlantic. When he arrives in River Sunday, Thornton meets a feisty young archeologist, Clarissa Pebbles PhD. They uncover a long deserted camp of the pre-war German American Bund on land owned by the Henry business clan, who follow an ancient and violent Viking pagan religion. Unfazed by an attempt on his life, he and other shipyard friends uncover a mysterious shipwreck nearby and salvage clues of past Nazi terror. Thornton’s personal goals undergo radical change as he finds himself caring more for others, far more than he did as a cutthroat business success.

To be on our list for date of publication, contact our website solarsippers.com  for email address.

newsletter Thomas Hollyday writer May 2017

THOMAS HOLLYDAY                   author update. May 2017

A Chesapeake writer you won’t want to miss. See all his books at Amazon Kindle.

From Thomas Hollyday blog https://achesapeakewriterblog.wordpress.com/

“In his novel Slave Graves Chesapeake author Thomas Hollyday successfully targets the ever popular mystery and romance genres. A unique read awaits you with Thomas Hollyday’s new book Slave Graves.  Enter into the modern world of River Sunday, a Chesapeake harbor town where its characters match its past with its future. In this first book of the series, you’ll follow an archeologist’s transformation as he changes from a stuffy well contented professor into a man searching for his honor. He and his fellow historian, a female former student, fight for the right to uncover and preserve a terrible past discovered under the mud of an old farm. As financial and racial interests terrorize them, they realize once again the age old lesson in life. Truth comes with a very high price in murder. This week free introductory eBook at  http://www.amazon.com/Slave-Graves-Sunday-Romance-Mysteries-ebook/dp/B006C7581Q/

2016 Slave Graves score   Kindle  100 review 4.5 stars Goodreads 97 reviews   3.64 stars Kobo 13 reviews   4.5 to 5 stars Google Play   7 reviews   3.9 stars”



Enjoy this February 24 2017 interview of Thomas Hollyday on Delmarva Public Radio by Harold Wilson. In 2010, Wilson was named to the Editorial Board of the Delmarva Review. The Delmarva Review is a literary magazine published by the Eastern Shore Writers’ Association

The rainbird identity

“The Rainbird Identity”


When I was a little boy growing up in the Chesapeake region, I remember the big summer thunderstorms. We’d be out on our porch to enjoy the breeze. I was too small to get on the big green rocking chairs so I’d sit on the floor. As the storm arrived with its black clouds, the air would become heavy and our front yard would be very quiet. A solitary bird always began to call or sing. One time I looked up at my mother sitting in her rocker and asked her, “What is that bird?” She smiled and said, “That’s the rainbird telling us that the rain is on its way.” Of course, I was too young to identify the bird. Since then, I’ve always wondered about the type of bird that was speaking.


There are many legends in various cultures. The Chinese have had a rainbird legend since antiquity. It was called “shang yang.” The story goes that this bird advised the rulers that rain was coming and they did not heed. Those ancient floods killed many people. Chinese, following this legend over the ages, decided that this bird was a god and deserved to be listened to.  In Native American lore the rainbird was a harbinger of the rain needed for crops. This bird was especially important for the Western tribes living in desert terrain.


With all this legend suggesting bird forecasting talent, it is likely that birds might have something in their bodies that allows them to forecast rain. Scientists found that they do. Birds feel the changes in barometric pressure. With storms, the barometer goes down as we all know. Birds sense this. It is because of the Vitali Organ, a middle ear receptor that senses small changes in atomospheric pressure. (Duncraft.com)


So legend supports the existence of a rainbird and science tell us that birds have the capability. Now all we need to do is identify the specific breed that I, as a little boy, heard from my porch, long ago in the Chesapeake.


Everyone is entitled to his or her opinion as to the identity of this bird and there are certainly other bird types that could be chosen. I picked out five possible birds that could have been in that summer yard. Before the storm arrived, they could have made the loud noise to warn of the coming rain. These are the blue jay (cyanocitta cristata), the northern cardinal (cardinalidae), the gray catbird (dumetella carolinensis, the northern mockingbird (mimus polyglottos), and the American robin (turdus migratorius).




   Blue Jay                Cardinal                  Catbird          Mockingbird        Robin

Photos from Wikipedia.org: blue jay (mdf), cardinal©Dakota L., catbird©Peter Massa, mockingbird(©Ryan Haggerty), robin (mdf).



Then I compared the voices of these birds for loudness that could have been heard by a nearby small boy. These are available on recordings for listening in the data from Cornell Lab of Ornithology. (allaboutbirds.org)


Blue Jay:            loud jeer sound

Cardinal:          loud cheer sound

Catbird:            loud whistles, squeaks and a quiet mew sound

Mockingbird:    loud tchack sound

Robin:                loud cheer up sound


My choice for the rainbird identity is the Northern Cardinal. What is your choice? Listen to the sounds at the Cornell Lab site and make your own decision.



Thomas Hollyday author of books, cartoons, and articles. See his fiction and nature books at Amazon.com https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_5_11/156-5130182-9036153?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=thomas+hollyday+books&sprefix=thomas+holl%2Cstripbooks%2C137


A Vietnam veteran takes on a mysterious archeology dig in a historic southern town

#free SLAVE GRAVES #Chesapeake #archeology find angers historic town Tom reads https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aeTLkjjlTbA Buy    http://www.amazon.com/Slave-Graves-Sunday-Romance-Mysteries-ebook/dp/B006C7581Q/