Saturday, February 1, 2014

Envelop: Red by K. Baskett: Tens List and Excerpt



My 10 Least Favorite Foods 

About eight years ago, I embarked on my journey as a vegetarian. It started off gradually, with only avoiding red meat initially, and I steadily restricted my diet more and more until arriving where I am now: a strict vegetarian (no meat of any kind) who eats vegan about 90% of the time. So, it would be easy for me to fill up this top ten list with ten different meat dishes and call it a day - but what’s the challenge in that? To keep things truly interesting, I will allow only one carnivorous item to grace this list, and that would be:


1. Spaghetti Meat Sauce (With Hamburger). I realized I was pregnant with my second child the night my spaghetti with meat sauce made me hurl. Until that point, it was probably my favorite thing to cook, and eat. That night though, the meat in the sauce literally made me sick. Of course, it was only the hormones causing me to have such a violent physical reaction, but what that experience did to my psyche was irreversible. Throughout my pregnancy, meat of any kind made me so violently ill that this alone was what made me decide to go ahead and eschew red meat altogether. It was the auspicious start of my vegetarian journey. ;-)

2. Bananas. Oh, how I wish I liked bananas. They are so convenient: A fruit that comes in its own to-go package! Full of potassium and low in calories they can be a perfect addition to most any meal. I just can’t stomach them. I think it’s the softness and sweetness of a banana that is so off-putting to me. But then again, maybe not,  because I also can’t stand banana chips, banana candy, any smoothie that uses bananas, banana bread, banana pudding… you get the idea. I even hate plantains.

3. Penn Station Artichoke Sub. I used to go to Penn Station all the time for this Artichoke Sub. I’m telling you - easily once a week, if not twice. That sub was so hearty and greasy and cheesy and, well… sinful. Paired with their fresh cut fries and I was in junk food heaven. Until that fateful night, about four months ago, when someone decided to make me an Artichoke Chicken Sub instead (I guess they thought they were hooking me up?). I consumed enough of it to actually, literally make me sick before realizing what had happened. Needless to say, since then I have not purchased another Artichoke Sub, and I always open all my sandwiches now, from anywhere, before biting into them. Penn Station lost a faithful customer with that mistake.

4. Fruit Cake. I love fruit. And I love cake. Together? Not so much. It’s something about big chunks of dried fruit suspended in semi-moist cake (with no icing, mind you) that just doesn’t feel right to me. Or taste right either.

5. Canned Vegetables. Because canned vegetables seem like the dull, boring, distant relatives to their fresh counterparts.

6. Radishes. Since I’ve gone veg, there aren’t many vegetables I don’t like (even the ones I used to hate before, like peas and carrots). But radishes are still just too bitter - and too purple! - for me to be able to enjoy them.

7. Eggs. And not because they are baby chickens. Eggs just gross me out. They always have, and I suspect they always will. However, I am not at all opposed to eating anything that has eggs as an ingredient. After all, my life would be incomplete without triple-fudge brownies.

8. Milk. Even as a child, I hated cow milk. It was just something about the smell and consistency that was revolting to me. One of the best things about going veg was my choice to also reduce dairy consumption and switch to soy or almond milk. Not only do those options simply taste better to me, I feel that I am making a healthier choice as well.

9. Oatmeal. I think my aversion to oatmeal started as a child - that time I was staying with my aunt and she made me a bowl of plain oatmeal (no butter, sugar, syrup, cinnamon - nothing!) topped with a splatter of milk (See #8 above). And then it got cold. I probably don’t even need to say anything more about that. Even now, when I have to, I can eat the really good varieties that have lots of brown sugar, nuts and fruit chunks mixed in - but oatmeal will never be my first choice for breakfast.

10. Boca Burgers. So maybe this one is a little unfair, but Boca Burgers are just too close to the real deal, both in flavor and texture. In my opinion, a Boca Burger tastes exactly like the hamburger patty it is trying to imitate - which for me is not a good thing.


My taste buds have altered so much in the eight years I have been a vegetarian, but it is interesting to me as I look over this list to realize that 7 of the 10 items on here have nothing to do with my dietary restrictions, and they would have made the list no matter what. I guess that old cliche is true: some things never change.

by K.Baskett


Release Date: November 30th, 2013.                           
Genre: Suspense                                              
Formats to buy: paperback and Kindle


Unemployed with no prospects, Dorian Wells is a young man trying desperately to stay afloat and be a good father to his toddler son. While already struggling to pay the bills and earn proper visitation with his child, Dorian’s tumultuous life is thrown into further upheaval when his mother is suddenly hospitalized.

On the verge of losing everything, it seems Dorian finally has a stroke of luck when he inadvertently learns of a potential opportunity with Jakkaru, a decadent, cut-throat organization that pays handsomely by the body count. Dorian’s lifelong friend, Rafe Ibadiah, is his ticket into Jakkaru and soon Dorian is training to be a professional hitman. But learning how to properly kill for a living is not as easy as it seems, and he quickly discovers the short arms of theory are a far reach from reality as the harrowing journey makes him question everything he believes.

The final test before full acceptance into Jakkaru is a contract Dorian must complete alone. Delivered to him via a small red envelope, the name inside propels the stakes of this dangerous game higher than ever before. Dorian will sacrifice anything for his son, but it’s not until he is ordered to do the unthinkable that he grasps the horrific depth of his commitment.

Award-winning author, K. Baskett, expertly weaves a chilling tale of suspense in Envelope: Red that culminates in a shocking look at the prickly nuances of loyalty. Gritty and authentic, Dorian’s story is ultimately a poignant examination of the human condition - what lies within the heart of us all.


The butler goes to the corner of the room where a small stand holds a glass carafe of water and crystal goblets. He pours some and hands the glass to me, then exits the room, clicking the door quietly closed behind him.
I take a shaky sip, and my parched lips scream with relief. The cool water helps to alleviate my perspiration as well, which has already thoroughly embarrassed me.
“Welcome, Dorian,” says the man seated behind the desk. He is large and stocky, with a bald head and bad skin. He observes me through black, beady eyes that don't seem to blink. “I am Mr Black, and this is my colleague, Mr Red.” He indicates the man flanking his ornate leather chair. Mr Red nods at me slightly. He is reedy with delicate wireframe glasses perched on his beaky nose.
“H-hello,” I stutter, biting down nervous laughter at the absurdity of their names. My hands tremble so badly I am very nearly spilling my glass of water. I set it down gingerly on the small table beside my chair.
“We understand you are here because you're interested in becoming a member of our prestigious organization,” Mr Black begins.
“Yes, sir.”
“I see,” Mr Black says thoughtfully. “Well, as I'm sure you might imagine, we have to know a few things about anyone seeking to join our ranks. Therefore, we have taken the liberty to peek into your background.”
My saliva dries up, making my tongue swell like a blowfish and stick to the roof of my mouth.
Mr Red lifts an iPad from the desk and begins to read from it. “Dorian Wells, age twenty-five. No siblings. Both parents deceased; most recently the mother, Verona Marshall, from an advanced case of septicemia. One son, Josiah Wells, just turned two. Josiah's mother, Milan Carter, age twenty-three. No significant work history, just a few minimum wage jobs here and there. Once matriculated at the local community college but no degree. Currently unemployed. Recently granted a full visitation schedule for son, Josiah, by the family court. Girlfriend, Sekoya Williams, age twenty-nine; dating for about a year.” Mr Red stops reading from the iPad and looks directly at me. “Congratulations.”
My stomach is turning somersaults hearing all this detailed intimate information; it's so surreal. The main thing that sticks out in my mind is that he said, 'both parents deceased.' I don't even know who my father is, and they apparently have not only identified him, but also discovered he is dead. I'm not sure what to say after this recitation, but I can tell they are waiting for me to speak, so I murmur, “Yes, sir. That's me.”
Mr Black laces his pudgy fingers together on top of the desk. “You should know, Dorian: that was the summarized version.”

The Author

Jack of all trades, master of none - save for the art of procrastination - K. Baskett lives by the motto, "Never do today what can be put off until tomorrow." K. firmly believes that you aren't really interested in the author's hometown, spouse, children or pets, and has therefore decided to spare you the details. No Greater Illusion is the author's award-winning debut novel. Envelope: Red, the second offering, is a gritty suspense-thriller releasing November 2013.

Get to know her at:


Twitter: @kbaskett1

Facebook: Envelope Red
                   No Greater Illusion

Other books from K. Baskett:
No Greater Illusion 
Genre: Dystopia
Finalist in the 2013 Next Generation Indie Book Awards


And don't miss her short stories:


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February 10: Deal Sharing Aunt: Review

February 12: Mythical Books: Author Interview

February 16: Vanilla Moon: Character Interview

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February 20: Reading For Fun: GP 

February 22: Desert Rose Reviews: Spotlight

February 24: That Girl Reads: Top 10 List

February 27: The News in Books: Review

February 28: Black Lion's Blog: Interview

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