Friday, December 30, 2016

The Dead of Winter (A Piper Blackwell Mystery Book 1)

Author Jean Rabe
reviewed from e-book

Who is the Christmas Card murderer?

 There's a new sheriff in town, but not everyone is pleased. In fact, two detectives are upset, to say the least. Daughter of the retired sheriff, relations are a bit taut in the office. There is little criminal activity in the small town of Santa Claus, but things are about to change rapidly. As one body after another is found, tension builds in both the town and the office. The only thing in common, of all things, is Christmas cards. What is the connection between the victims and what is the connection between the cards?  I can easily see the frustration as they keep missing by a thread what that connection is.

I loved this first book in the Piper Blackwell series, I think the series will do well.
Excitement, frustration, detection, all here for a fascinating read, what else can you ask for?

Friday, November 18, 2016

The Dexter Quigly Codices by Nicholas Benedict

reviewed from e-book

A delightful fantasy, completely unexpected
This book took me by surprise, and I loved it. Great adventure for young teens and preteens (and sometimes for grandmothers like me, too). Thirteen is a difficult time for many shy and internalized youngsters. For Dexter Quigley who is thirteen, is lonely, a bit awkward, and feels he doesn't fit in anywhere; he has no close friends and now to make things worse, he and his parents are moving to a completely unknown future far from his old home.

But this is a story of empowerment, too. The fantasy has already begun though he doesn't know it. He makes a friend on his first day in the new location. Bailey is also thirteen but very outgoing and since they are both on summer vacation, they have lots of time to get acquainted. But there are some very strange things happening in the woods and pastures of Miniscule, Wisconsin,...And what's with all these birds and animals surrounding him so often? Who is Iggus, the strange Raven who comes to his windowsill at night, the first forest creature to approach him, and how does he know Dexter? The animals in the Miniscule area seem to have amazing knowledge. Nicholas Benedict has created a wondrous world.

I read this book in a day, not that I rushed but I was so fascinated. There are bits of history, lots of mystery and mystical happenings. Dexter is about to become a Very Special Person. I highly recommend this book for numerous reasons, not the least of which is the fantasy presented featuring what first appear as normal animals, although some, such as the phoenix, are actually known for their fantasmic reincarnations. Dexter is poised for a great learning experience as he witnesses small miracles in himself.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Nightmares Can Be Murder (a Dream Club Mystery #1)

by Mary Kennedy
published by Berkley

This unique dream club series is a nightmare come true
This is the first in a new series by Mary Kennedy, a Dream Club Mystery and does a good job of introducing us to the main characters and the Dream Club. Haven't heard of Dream Clubs? What about Dream Hopping? Yes, these activities do have a following. Suppose you dreamed you were in a train, traveling somewhere unknown, and you see people you recognize, but don't know why they are there. Are you really having the same dream as someone else? Or did you just find yourself in someone else's dream? This is dream hopping, or one variety of it.

Taylor, who has lived her life in an orderly and deliberate way as a freelance business consultant, has come to visit her sister Ali back home in Savannah and hopefully help her with her bottom line. Ali owns and operates a vintage candy store with a serious lack of customers. The sisters are as opposite as can be. This night is an example. It's a steamy hot night and Ali has been baking delicious treats for her weekly group, the Dream Club. As the evening goes along,Taylor, who never dreams, is having a difficult time keeping her disbelief in check. Some members try to interpret, others feel dreams are just symbolic, and then we have the dream-hopping Sybil. I was even amazed to find one of my own recurring dreams mentioned...must be common!

Great start to a new series! Just before the evening breakup, Persia blurts out that she witnessed a murder in her dream and how real everything seemed to be. Some things are very clear yet some are just brief images. As she finishes, it is clear that her dream of murder sounds very real. Samantha Styles, a detective in the group, quickly goes into alert mode. Is this a murder that has happened or did she miss something? She begins asking questions, which draws more information out of the dream: The victim is a man, loud music is blaring, the man eats and collapses in mid-meal. Has this happened or is it a portent? Sam is not sure believes in this 'dream stuff.'

The next morning as Taylor and Ali are involved in trying to make the store more viable by adding soup, salad, baked goods, and other items to entice the palate when customers come in to Oldies but Goodies for their nostalgic choice of sweets. When Gina stops by to ask about a key to the dance studio across the street; why is he not open for his students? What they find is a murder excruciatingly like Persia's dream discussed the night before. The dream has become reality as Chico, the Latin dance instructor, is found dead. How did what appeared to be an innocent yet confusing and frightening dream become a reality?

Samantha is on the case and once answers are made to her questions, Ali proposes to have an immediate emergency meeting of the Dream Club to see if anyone has come up with any inspiration from their dreams during the night, anything that may lead to what happened. This was a surprising book, with twists and turns leading to an unexpected perpetrator, an eclectic or perhaps eccentric group of women, the people and locale tinged with sweetness of the South and an interesting premise.

Monday, November 14, 2016

A New Witch in Town (Maybe Two) (A Modern Tale about the Witches of Springsville Book 1)

reviewed from e-reader
Enough to make me want to read more; quick read 
Lighthearted and different, the entrance of the two unsuspecting new witches was certainly different. With one being a young child, this book is suitable for all ages. Never has a Queen been received so uniquely. I do hope later books pick up the pace a bit but definitely a quick, fun read to begin the series.

Jump Cut by Libby Fischer Hellman

by Libby Fischer Hellman

A thriller that will keep you enthralled, a wild joyride into terror
This new Ellie Forman book took me to a place of excitement, creativity and secrets; the creation of a video to be played in sections, 'chapters' as Ellie puts it, for a huge aeronautic corporation is very well written, as Libby Fischer Hellman turns out another fascinating storyline of probable murder and plenty of mayhem thrown in the works. Libby has a definite feel for her characters, they always come alive (or dead as the case may be.) I always like to learn something new from a book, and learn I did. I thought the work on the video editing, how and what was done was very interesting, and certainly looked forward to seeing what 'Waldo', Gregory Sparks, was up to. Why did he show up in so many places on this corporate video? He said he was a consultant, but who does he really work for? Why is he asking so many questions if he is indeed a consultant? Why is his visibility in the video a cause for Ellie's work to be shut down immediately?

Now, fired and miserable, Ellie will begin to pick up the pieces and try to learn what happened. Taking action as she always does, she sets up a meeting with Gregory, meeting where their various El trains intersect. But, why is he so late? Screams and panic sound the alarm as she approaches the point where his train should be coming in. She's not going to get any answers here. As she accidentally discovers a flash drive she knows could only have come from him, she pockets it. Now she hopes to learn the truth about why she was fired.

Here the pace picks up substantially and the reader is thrust into a roller coaster of terror. A thriller that will keep you enthralled with espionage, spies and kidnapping. Her associates trying to keep her safe yet solve the puzzle include her boyfriend and her daughter as well as the police and the FBI, because this has suddenly become an international case. Luke fears for Ellie's life but has some good connections. Ellie suspects phone-tapping, computer hacking, and the ever-present shadowing of every movement she makes. Libby Fisher Hellman knows how to get your adrenaline going and turns it up with a different version of what she does so well. IEDs, encrypted files, hacked computers, lots to keep the reader on high alert in this one. We always know what Ellie Forman is prone to do, but we never know just what it will be from book to book. So glad she is back, she is a solid character and often unexpected.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Good to the Last Death: A Carol Golden Novel

by Alan Cook
reviewed from e-book

This, the fifth novel in the Carol Golden series, is packed full of suspense and terror. Now married to the man who saved her life, Rigo, Carol learns from his parents that they are afraid that he is missing, and they think an old girlfriend may have a hand in his disappearance. But why?

Once again Alan Cook has combined a tantalizing and mystery with a terrifying determination. Rigo has been kidnapped for a surprising reason, radical insanity with little culpability or restraint, the terrorists are blind to humanity and certainly lacking in human reason, although they believe they are saving the planet. And there lies the problem, but is their group doing anything good? Or are they spelling doomsday. Carol is in tracking mode with her spy-in-training friend Jennifer, racing to find Rigo, and stop so much more from happening than she can imagine.

This book is completely different from others in the series but packing a punch as always, and often with the ring of plausible authenticity. The team that has Rigo is extremely focused on what they are setting out to do and time is running out. Another strong story-line from the author.  5 stars

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Winter's Destiny by Nancy Allan

reviewed from e-book

They say that everybody has a double, and maybe it's true. Amy, a professional architect, certainly begins to think so when one of Oregon's coast storms batters the house and a woman appears in her window looking exactly the same as herself, except for the fact that the woman was bleeding. Who was she? Certainly not a relative she has ever known about, none look like she does. With power going on and off, winds howling and rattling the house, she locates a flashlight to find the woman who obviously needs help.

What is it about these storms that come so suddenly and cause not just damage, but seem to create chaos with the inhabitants? When the sheriff receives the call, he is already dealing with one of these weird events. But when he gets to Amy's home, he is greeted by her rather obnoxious husband, a doctor, who declares nothing happened, there was no woman. How then will he explain the trail of blood? Even the tracker dog picked up the trail. So begins an interesting journey of long-kept secrets, wild car chases, foot races, and deadly villains. This book is an unusual thriller with a long history and a heart-stopping finish. Nancy Allan has kept me in her grip from start to finish.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

1600 Trump Avenue: Against All Odds - a Political Prophecy

written by Les Pendleton
reviewed from Kindle

A prophecy in the making? Or an entertaining spin on US politics?
This is a book of fiction, but how close to the truth is it? Who really runs the country indeed? I found this book to be entertaining, rife with possibilities, suspense and more. The addition of lives and thoughts of veterans, particularly of the Viet Nam era was excellent. As a Canadian born in WWII, there were many interesting thoughts presented, some of which have been rolling around in my mind for some time which increased the possibility factor. On the other hand, some conversation by Trump seems too smooth. That said, most interaction came through as truly possible, maybe even probable. Overall, it is a fairly brilliant piece of work and covers a lot of actual history as well as historical probabilities and what reads as near truth. I thought it was well-produced, clean, often factual and a great wake-up call, entertaining, terrifying and suspenseful. 5 stars

Friday, August 12, 2016

The Witnesses (BookShot) by James Patterson and Brendan DuBois

authors James Patterson
             Brendan DuBois

Quick read, confusing at times, fast-paced and suspenseful otherwise
I found this book to be confusing yet left me guessing throughout. I didn't feel a connection in the beginning. I kept trying to figure out what on earth this family was under protection for, what could they have done or seen to create this situation. An archaeologist, a freelance writer, and their two children plus their keeper are holed up in a strange house in a small town (seems like a deadly town to me). Suddenly removed from their site in Tunisia by US helicopter without knowledge of what they have done leaves me wondering, too. This is an interesting book regardless. Beginning with a very unusual death, the main characters outside of the family seem to be odd to say the least. The rules the family must go by are to be strictly adhered to and they are under their "keeper's" constant scrutiny. But he is in fact their protector. Former/retired police officers also play a role, sometimes bringing some humor to the storyline. Overall, in the end I found some answers, but also questions. That said, there is a feeling of wishing it hadn't taken so long. Also, there appear to be some loose threads. Still, I read the book in one go, there was certainly suspense and it did keep my attention throughout. I would certainly give these authors another go, either singly or as a duo, to see if this is just a result of two authors.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Doom With A View - a Psychic Eye Mystery - by Victoria Laurie

an Obsidian Book published by Penguin

Whether you believe or not doesn't matter, the fun is in the reading. I think this 7th book is my favourite of Victoria Laurie's Abigail Cooper Psychic Eye series. To be honest, I haven't read many but the conflicts and characterizations in Doom With A View are so hilarious, yet serious at the same time. When Abby is teamed up with an FBI hardcore unbeliever as the lead investigator and her so cool PI partner Candice, you just know things are going to get volatile. But with three missing teens, whose parents are politicians, there is no time for personal feelings. This is a fast-paced suspense, especially in regard to the political angle, and the urgency of Abby's psychic feelings. Not to make little of the case, when I say hilarious I am referring to the attitudes of the three main players, not the case itself. Abby is so clued in with her "crew" as she calls it, I felt that when they don't seem to tell her anything she becomes very unsure of herself, but fortunately her personal "live" friends are there to upright her canoe so to speak. This includes her live-in boyfriend who is also an FBI agent, but one who's got her back. I was not expecting the end. I loved this book!

Saturday, June 11, 2016

David Winter Mysteries Book One - Fly Paper Soup by Cleve Sylcox

reviewed from e-book

Seven is supposed to be a lucky number...isn't it? Or is it? How many husbands have to die before you become a black widow? Is this wife unlucky (or her husbands)? Or is there more to it than we think. David Winters is about to find out when an old friend, a fellow Viet Nam vet, asks him to be his aunt's lawyer in a court case. Influenced by a real case in 1940, if this book is any indication of what's to come, this will be the beginning of an exceptional series. This will be a short review because the book is packed with everything a series could deliver. A lawyer (with the attitude of a '40s private eye and an eye to the ladies), an adventurous investigation, murder, mystery, confusing twists, humorous asides, and a surprising ending. If I say more, I may inadvertently spoil the plot. Cleve Sylcox certainly knows how to capture my attention. Trust me, this book kept me reading and is worth the adventure.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Run Girl (Ingrid Skyberg FBI Thrillers Book 1) by Eva Hudson

 by Eva Hudson
 reviewed as e-book

Never underestimate an 18 year old girl
Jayne Whitticker, Secretary of State, is about to board a special plane bound across the Atlantic on a highly sensitive mission. As the minutes tick by an imminent storm is brewing when suddenly she and her driver are stopped from boarding by an unexpected security breach. At the last possible moment, she finds herself with her teenage granddaughter and no time to change her flight plans but to take Rachel with her, possibly risking Jayne's entire career. As in most overwhelming teenage emergencies, there are options to what she is wanting, but time has run out, more than one storm is brewing, weatherwise and personal, and as Secretary of State, Jayne has no option. Talk about emotional blackmail! She must carry on with her mission negotiating a peace deal between three warring African nations  and will have to take the girl with her to Strasbourg and hire a private security guard to chaperone Rachel and keep her out of trouble.This incident could go down badly for Jayne's future if Rachel creates any waves.

Switch now to London where a training session is going on by the FBI's Violent Crimes Against Children program in the New Scotland Yard. Enter Ingrid Skyberg who has become a last minute fill-in. She has just arrived in London for this session. With high profile replacements and heads of departments scattered around Europe any number of things could go wrong, and they do. Partnerships are split up between strangers when there is a missing person search call-out. This is a high-level search that skips across countries. Ingrid and her wild-card partner must overcome differences and work together as FBI Agent and private International Security agent from the UK. The chase is on and it is not an easy one. This missing person always seems to be a few steps ahead. This was a unique book, I found it kept my interest and was both amusing and incredulous. A suspenseful chase full of red herrings. I enjoyed it as an introduction the series.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Forgotten Boxes by Becki Willis

based on e-book

This book was a delightful surprise to me. It had all the elements of mystery, murder, suspense, love, questions, darkness and light. There were several thoughts I had about what the mystery could be; at first I was wrong but the light switched on as the story flowed. Though the story unfolds between the past, 1983 to be exact, and the present, it definitely builds the story and is essential to the plot. When Charity Gannon inherits the very small house her Aunt Nell lived in for so many years in a small community in Vermont, she has no idea of the huge changes about to come her way. Why does her aunt have a bullet-riddled and bloody man's outfit hanging in the bedroom? What is the back-story of the presumed suicide of Charity's uncle? Oh, yes, and what about those forgotten boxes in the shed that were never delivered, is it too late to deliver them or would they be a happy surprise to recipients? Charity will soon find out. Who is that huge mountain man she meets in Dan's Market? Becki Willis' writing is very descriptive and brings to life the colours and features of a Vermont autumn. She writes with passion and beauty. Personally, I felt the switches of chapters to the past were fascinating, but I wouldn't have guessed what would come from the events of the past so many years later. Suspense, crime and trickery, sorrow and happiness, suspicion and clarity, and a beautiful romance.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Up Chit Creek - Kira Callaghan Mystery #1 by Catherine Astolfo

published by Imajin Books
A thoroughly enjoyable cozy mystery, fully fledged in a "Qwickie" book. I'm becoming addicted to the short but complete books on the market today. Catherine Astolfo's first Kira Callaghan mystery is no exception. Taking place in a retirement home owned and managed by Kira's sister Ailish, it is really quite heart-warming to see these seniors, many with difficult idiosyncrasies of the mind, enjoying their lives. I could relate. Life carries on at a humorous pace...slow and confused, especially when the Flower Pots get together. I even enjoyed the old-time music which brings out the best in the residents. But wait! Is there a murderer in their midst? Is there a murderer among the families of those dwelling at the home? Could someone on the waiting list be desperate enough to kill for a space at the home? Something is brewing and Kira, a journalist and former war correspondent is determined to get to the bottom of it. Catherine writes with humorous chaos; when Kira takes a break leaving Chittendom Creek (the infamous Chit Creek) for Burlington her description of the Vermont countryside is reviving, even in her haste. I loved this book and the promise of more. I was compelled to read it at one sitting.

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Infestation by Cheryl Kaye Tardif

published by Imajin Qwikies

This book will stay with you for a long time. It preys on your fears and phobias while at the same time surprising you with quirky changes of direction. I really enjoyed it, even though I know nightmares will be coming. I feel itchy and crawly as though the storyline reached right out to embrace me. Yet, there is humor as well. The terror builds as the "infestation" escalates. But what I thought was a great touch was the reasoning behind the horror. This book is a quick read and hard to put down so easy to read in one go. This is nightmare brought to life, phobias awakened, the kind of story you love to fear, the kind of writing that Cheryl Kaye Tardif does so well. Definitely pick up this book/ebook if you want a vibrant, living, terrifying story.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

When Blood Lies - a Nicole Charles Mystery

by Linda L. Richards
published by Orca Books Rapid Reads

A bit of a slow start, but I really liked the book. Rookie newspaper reporter Nicole Charles is finding her perfect job to be somewhat boring, for want of a better word. At least she has a place in the large newspaper she is calling home. Through the unexpected yet unquestioned death of the society reporter, she falls into his job. She trained to be a news reporter, what happened to reporting on crimes? What happened to following up leads? For that matter, what happened to working in her own office? The paper is downsizing, as so much media is, and much of the staff now works online from home. Working from home slightly compensates for lack of office space, but Nicole needs a desk to work at. Her best option appears to be an auction, where she finds the "perfect" desk. As bidding starts she is not the only one who wants this desk. Just as she reaches the final limit to bid, police storm in and arrest the other bidder! An extreme but fascinating interruption but fruitful because the auction must begin again. With the only other bidder gone, she gets the desk for a much lower bid.

Looking it over, she notices someone has tried to get into one of the locked drawers. Is the key lost? What could be so important in this drawer? Her brother Kyle joins her to bring the desk home, but once it is installed the search for what secrets it may hold begins. At the same time, their parents' home is broken into. Is there a connection? If so, what could it possibly connect to?

This book has a lot of surprises, a story of love and loss, crime and vintage wine, memories and misguided moments. For readers who know Vancouver, it will bring familiarity, well depicted. Activity escalates throughout Nicole's investigations. I enjoyed the book for all these reasons. I look forward to another Nicole Charles Mystery. I'm left wondering, what happened to the wine?

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Maisie Dobbs (Book #1 of the Maisie Dobbs series) by Jacqueline Winspear

by Jacqueline Winspear
published by Penguin Book

It is 1929, midway between two world wars as a young woman opens her investigative office. Maisie Dobbs, working under the name of Maisie Blanche, is a very unique person; educated, immensely knowledgeable, and intuitive; and, I think, a little psychic as well. She has many horrific memories of the Great War WWI, working as a nurse. Thus we begin to know her as an attractive and well-spoken adult who is not quite of the high class nor of the lower class, but somewhere in between. But who is she, exactly?

Jump back to 1910-1917 and we begin the journey with her. Her mother passed on and her father trying to support their young daughter and himself as a costermonger, he is no longer able to manage as bills keep piling up. Love is not enough to feed and clothe. A decision is made that changes everything but the love between father and daughter. I found myself drawn in to their hardship and the changes they deal with when she goes "into service" with Lady Rowan in a household that is not quite what one would expect of a Lord and Lady in this time period. The work ethic and hours spent are there, but Lady Rowan is actually in a period of change among the elite. The brilliance of this young girl is discovered and plans are made to accommodate learning with working within the house. Lady Rowan has determined that Maisie should be university educated.

I look at this book as an introduction to a fascinating young lady; one who cares deeply about people, intuits what they need and what she needs. We have followed her through childhood, working as a maid, going to university, leaving and joining the war as a nurse, and after the war, investigating a possible murder, leading to a lingering reminder of the war, the "walking dead" as her partner refers to it, the souls lost though the body lives on with its horrific scars both external and internal. As her investigation reaps the rewards of solving the case, she is about to embark on a career as a "Psychologist and Investigator" at the end of this first novel in the series, a career that gives the reader a taste of what is to come in future books. Though I have read a later book in the series and loved it, different as it was, I really enjoyed getting to know the younger Maisie Dobbs, her father and her "family" and can hardly wait to follow this fascinating person.

Monday, April 11, 2016

The Long Way Home by Louise Penny

Published by Minotaur Books

When Louise Penny writes a book, I always find it comforting. This may seem a strange word to use in light of the fact that her novels feature Chief Inspector Gamache and therefore feature a crime of some sort; murder, loss, injury, death. The author paints a picture as clearly as if she has been the artist. The fact that this book in particular features art does not detract from her word pictures. The Long Way Home is the 10th Inspector Gamache book with more to come.

At this time of his life, Armand Gamache is recovering from severe injuries to body and mind, as is his son-in-law and former deputy Jean-Guy. Both are no longer working for the Sûreté du Québec, but duty calls to them regardless. Armand Gamache and his wife Reine-Marie have found the perfect healing village of Three Pines, bi-lingual and calming, they purchased their home there a few years ago. This very small village might more easily be referred to as a neighbourhood, so close and welcoming the residents are. One would think that crime would never attempt to touch such a place, but no place is devoid of such things. But has a crime actually been committed? That is the question. Clara, what some might call a spontaneous artist, slapping paint on canvas with happy abandonment, is worried. She asked her husband to leave for one year and it is now past the time he should have returned. They are both artists, but with entirely different methodology. Why has he not come home? Is he dead or alive?

This book takes us inside the minds of several people, as most if not all the books in this series do. Louise Penny treats her creations as individuals she knows personally and that is what makes her books so comforting yet brilliant. We know these people. They are complete, flawed, righteous, giving, loving, supportive, in other words, they are Everyone in Anytown. As this story takes us through the growing pains of art and love, new discoveries about the population of these people are made. I love a book that teaches me something new, and this one teaches me a lot about art and its connection to heart and soul. It teaches me how to see into a painting.

Why can this group of friends not find Peter? It's almost as though he has stepped into a painting and disappeared. Yet, they are able to track his journey, but where will it take them in the end and what will they find? Clara, his wife, is sure she will find him but even the former Chief Inspector has little idea where and how to look. The journey takes this odd bunch of friends halfway 'round the globe and back. Though their journey has been extensive, it has been fruitful in an unusual way. Sometimes insight comes from surprising places. As some pieces fit together others fall apart. I loved this book for its depth of perception, its humour, its colour, its mystery, the many surprises, and the opportunity to get to know these characters and their village.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

E.Y.E. of the Scorpion (E.Y.E. Spy Mystery Book 1) by Cheryl Kaye Tardif

a Qwickie Book
Published by Imajin Books

A surprising book, looking at it from the perspective of the usual suspects and heroes. Personally I found the story very descriptive and therefore very convincing. A murder has been committed, with one very youthful witness who doesn't remember all he saw. Call in Eileen Edwards, ex-cop and exceptionally on point as a private investigator, one who worked with the Gang Task Force unit and is called in to help by the lead cop on the case. What is unique to this mystery and probable gang-hit, is that the witness is a young person in the wrong place at the wrong time. The purpose of the investigation is two-fold: who was the shooter, who was the witness and how can he be protected.

What a combination of characters Cheryl Kaye Tardif has brought together in this book! So many hurting and lost people, will they find closure to their current lives and discover a new future for themselves? From the bottom of the barrel, the very dregs of mankind, can they pick themselves up and live again? That is the root of the question as a backdrop to the crime and the author handles it with realism at the fore.

Eileen Edwards is a total exception to what one might expect of a private investigator. Though she is brilliant at what she does in investigation, she carries a lot of baggage, baggage that needs to be toppled over. The boy she must find to keep him alive is also carrying far more baggage than his slender frame should be made to bear. The past makes for a difficult beginning between these two lost souls. Can they work together or will it all fall apart? There are multiple surprises yet to come in this book, along with the fear of loss once more along the way. There are traitors and heroes and surprises, best of all, this is Book One of the E.Y.E. Looking forward to another, believe me, the ride is worth it, questions remain to pique our interest.

Sunday, April 3, 2016

The Methuselah Project - a Novel by Rick Barry

Published by Kregel Publications

A "what if" story that spreads its wings and soars. I found this novel to be absolutely fascinating. There is so much history, plausible or not, built into this book. So much to ponder. As a child myself during WWII, my interest deepened throughout. Growing up, I learned as others did, that there were many secrets, experiments, agendas, so to me, this book did have an abundance of historic fact, fiction, what-if.... Yes. What if Roger Greene had not crashed in his plane and lived only to be captured? What if German scientists had discovered a way to appease Hitler's plan for the Thousand Year Reich? What if one experiment actually worked? Herein lies the mystery, the complexity of the story.

The author, Rick Barry, has given us a full-blown history of one man's fight to return home to Indiana. This history is decades in the making. In the beginning there were seven,  Roger was Number 7. When the lab is demolished by heavy bombardment only Roger remains alive among the seven captives. What does this mean? Will he be rescued? One of his captors, indeed the scientist himself, eventually loosens up enough to provide the airman with reading material which included a Bible. His world opening up and giving him hope through many different writings provides enough to keep him sane, but for how long?

This is an adventure story unlike others. No dashing around, he is in a cage. But he has plans, and God on his side. And he is exactly the same in appearance as he was 70 years ago when he was captured. He is not even aware that the war is long over. On the other hand, is it really over for him? The opportunity he has been waiting for suddenly arises and Yes! he is free, at least he may be free, if he can just get out of Germany and to the US, but will anyone believe his story? This story has everything a person could want. A mix of everything: sci fi, romance, war, history, humanity, inhumanity, excitement, adventure, a book that will keep you reading as the world takes him through changes, terror, and more. A wonderful, entertaining and thought-provoking book with a surprise ending.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Epic Game by William Kowalski

Author William Kowalski
Published by Orca Rapid Reads

A rather strange book, but addicting; you have to keep reading, The start of the story is not quite what is expected, but lures the reader in with its unexpected changes of direction. A lonely young lady, Kat, raised by an addictive poker player father begins to realize there is more to life when her best friend Jodie, possibly her only friend, dies and leaves her 10-year-old son David to be raised by her until his father is able to come from England to get him.

In the midst of training for an epic poker tournament, this is not going to help her win, or so she thinks. Life is often full of surprises and the life Kat is about to embark on is no different. This is a very unique book, not like any other I have read in the past. There are many elements to the story which bring about changes in Kat's lifestyle. A fast read, short but sweet and full of energy. I really enjoyed it.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Deep Blue by Kathleen Duhamel

Published by Imajin Books
Reviewed from Kindle

 This delightful love story caused me to end up drinking cold coffee over two days of reading. That's how enchanted and involved I was with the story. There sat my once hot coffee beside me as I lost myself in the book. An adult romance, an almost historic rock star meets an artist from the hippy days in her studio as he peruses her paintings and purchases one, one that happens to be a happy memory of Claire's. These are two tortured souls who have found their way to each other and a blossoming romance that takes the breath away.

This is not a young couple but certainly a very young-at-heart couple who are both grounded in the past but have both suffered and overcome tragic events in their lives. It is so refreshing to find a story that is fun, sexy, and features a couple who meet as youthful seniors who have thought that part of their lives was in the past. No lack of connection with these two! There is so much of living, of fighting demons and disease, loss and discovery, I couldn't put the book down! Kathleen Duhamel has captured the hidden youth found in older people, so into each other, with so much love to give against all odds.

Rob, lead singer in a rock group "Deep Blue", at the age of 62 has faced the loss of his wife, substance abuse, loneliness but retains the love and respect of his daughter and her family. Claire, a talented artist at 58 has conquered cancer, but is very self-conscious of her scars. She is divorced from her cheating husband who abandoned her while she was recovering, and as I read I discovered just how spiteful and self-interested he was.

Claire and her best friend Denise have been BFFs most of their lives. They have also been huge Deep Blue fans all those years. With free tickets in hand they are off to a concert along with Denise' son Jude, also a fan. It doesn't take long for Denise to notice sparks flying between Claire and Rob.

I loved this story, and can hardly wait to read the next in this trilogy. I relate to it as a senior who doesn't think she is, and who grew up in the rock, soul, and rock & roll era when our parents wouldn't allow us to listen to it (can you believe it?) So much has gone into the basic story, it grabs you and doesn't let you go. Where will the relationship take us? Can the demons of the past be put to rest? I wonder.