Tag Archives: Action

#BookReview of The Red Line by @WaltGreggAuthor

The Red Line

By Walt Gregg

Available on Amazon by clicking HERE.

A story with its beginnings pulled from the headlines of today and realistic events that could happen, The Red Line gives a scary look at a what if of the near future.

First of all, I liked the book overall. The pacing was good, and everything was well developed. However, for my own personal taste there was almost too much detail. I know the author intends to give a comprehensive covering of all the aspects of the what if scenario but I personally didn’t need to know the shot by shot coverage.

That being said, it was done well and you could feel the tension in each scene. There is definite realism in the story. I like that we don’t get all sunshine and roses throughout the book. We do get realities of war even when it hurts, and that hurt is to the plus of the author’s talent. You feel the losses that take place. I would recommend this book to anyone that really gets into war stories and likes to feel the action.

I recommend this book to anyone who really gets into a good war story with real events occurring.

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#Bookreview AS WINGS UNFURL by Arthur M. Doweyko (@aweyken) A book for readers who enjoy science-fiction that asks big questions, with religious undertones, and lots of action

As Wings Unfurl by Arthur M. Doweyko

Title:   As Wings Unfurl
Author:   Arthur M. Doweyko
ISBN13:  978-1940215778
ASIN:  B01HY589FG
Published: 19th  July  2016
Pages:  234
Genre:  Science-Fiction & Fantasy (I’ve found it classed under Alien Invasion and Military, Space Marine)

Description:

“… captures the reader’s attention with kick-butt action in a video game storytelling format.” ~ Publishers Weekly

“Apple Bogdanski, a disabled Vietnam veteran, worked in a secondhand books store. When a private detective takes incriminating photos of shape-shifting aliens in the act of transformation and sends the negatives to the owner of the bookstore hidden in a book among a shipment of books, Apple is caught between two groups of aliens-one of which studies mankind’s development and the other who wants to terminate mankind and claim the Earth for their own purposes. Apple has a helper, Angela, who appears just in time to save his life and make him appear to be a hero. Angela has a beef with the bad guys and she and Apple unite with a few good guys to take on the bad guys.

As Wings Unfurl is an entertaining science fiction novel based on the premise that an alien race planted the seed of the human race of Earth millennia ago and now watches quietly as we evolve. Apple is a fairly well developed protagonist who just wants to be left alone to deal with the hand life has dealt him on his terms. Angela is a member of the alien oversight group dedicated to observation. Strangely attracted to Apple, she must deal with a conflict between her duties, her sense of right and wrong, and her feelings. Dane, as the bad alien, has a single side; the discrediting and destruction of the human race for her own purposes. Yowl and Shilog are Tibetans who are caught up in the war between factions and who provide a notable twist to the ending. Both are far out of the world that they know, but both adapt amazingly fast to the developed world.

This book is entertaining reading for readers who love science fiction “what if” scenarios and readers who love action adventures in any form.” ~ Midwest Book Review

Applegate Bogdanski returns from Vietnam with a missing leg, a Purple Heart, and an addiction to morphine. He stumbles through each day, looking forward to nothing and hoping it will arrive soon. When he attempts to thwart a crime, he is knocked unconscious and wakes up to discover that people are once again calling him a hero, though he feels undeserving of the praise.

Apple returns to work and meets Angela, a mysterious woman who claims to be his guardian. Immediately, he feels a connection to her, which morphs into an attraction. But he soon discovers that Angela is much more than she seems.

Apple and Angela are swept up in a conspiracy that stretches through time and space. Together, they must fight to save everything they hold dear from an alien race bent on destroying humanity. 

Body of review:

I thank the author who contacted me thanks to Lit World Interviews for offering me an ARC copy of his novel that I freely chose to review.

I am not a big reader of science-fiction (perhaps because I don’t seem to have much patience these days for lengthy descriptions and world building and I’m more interested in books that focus on complex characters) so I was doubtful when the author suggested I review it, but the angel plot and the peculiarities of the story won me over. There are many things I enjoyed in this book but I’m not sure that it was the book for me.

As I’ve included the description and it is quite detailed (I was worried about how I could write about the book without revealing any spoilers but, many of the things I was worried about are already included in the description) I won’t go into the ins and outs of the story. The novel starts as a thriller, set in 1975. A private detective has taken a compromising photo and that puts him in harm’s way. Apple, the main character, seems to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, although later events make us question this and wonder if perhaps what happens was preordained. One of the interesting points in the novel, for me, was that the main character was a Vietnam War veteran, amputee (he lost a leg) and now addicted to Morphine. He also experiences symptoms of PTSD. Although his vivid dreams and flashbacks slowly offer us some background information, and the whole adventure gives him a new perspective on life and a love interest, I found it difficult to fully connect with the character. It was perhaps due to the fast action and the changes in setting and point of view that make it difficult to fully settle one’s attention on the main protagonists. One of the premises of the story is that Angela, the mysterious character who is his ersatz guardian angel, has known him all his life. She is oddly familiar to him, and she decides to give up her privileges and her life mission because of him, but as Angela’s interest in him precedes the story, there is no true development of a relationship and readers don’t necessarily understand why they are attracted to each other from the start.

The story, written in the third person, is told mostly from Apple’s point of view but there are also two other characters, from Tibet, Shilog, a farmer, and Yowl, what most of us would think of as a Yeti, but that we later learn is a member of a native Earth species. In my opinion, these two characters are more fully realised, as we don’t have any previous knowledge or any expectations of who they are, and they work well as a new pair of eyes (two pairs of eyes) for the readers, as they start their adventure truly clueless as to what is going on, and the situation is as baffling to them as it is to us. They are also warm and genuinely amusing and they offer much welcome comic relief. They are less bogged down by conventions and less worried about their own selves.

I enjoyed also the background story and the underlying reasoning behind the presence of the “angels” (aliens) in the world. It does allow for interesting debates as to what makes us human and what our role on Earth is. How this all fits in with traditional religions and beliefs is well thought out and it works as a plot element. It definitely had me thinking.

I said before that one of the problems I had with some fantasy and science-fiction is my lack of patience with world building and detailed descriptions. In this case, though, other than some descriptions about the Tibetan forest and mountains, I missed having a greater sense of location. The characters moved a lot from one place to the next and, even if you were paying attention, sometimes it was difficult to follow where exactly the action was taking place (especially because some of the episodes depended heavily on secret passages, doors, locked rooms…) and I had to go back a few times to check, in case I had missed some change of location inadvertently. (This might not be a problem for people who are used to reading more frantically paced action stories.) I guess there are two possible reading modes I’d recommend for this story; either pay very close attention or go with the flow and enjoy the ride.

I really enjoyed the baddie. Dane is awesome. I don’t mind the bad characters that are victims of their circumstances or really conflicted about what they do, but every so often I like a convinced baddie, who takes no prisoners and goes all the way. She is not without justification either, and later we learn something that puts a different spin on her behaviour (I didn’t find it necessary but it does fit in with the overall story arc). The irony of her character and how she uses human institutions and religions to subvert the given order is one of my favourite plot points and she is another source of humour, although darker in this case.

All in all, this is a book for readers who enjoy science-fiction that asks big questions, with religious undertones, lots of action and not too worried about the psychological makeup of the main characters. Ah, and if you love stories about Bigfoot or the Yeti, you’ll love this one.

What the book is about: On the surface, aliens, angels, and a battle of good and evil. At heart it deals with metaphysical issues (like the best science-fiction does) and questions of identity, and where humanity comes from.

 Book Highlights: The whole premise of the story, and the two Tibetan characters, Shilog and Yowl, that are a true joy. And Dane, the baddie.

 Challenges of the book: There are many quick changes of location and different points of view that might disorient readers. The story is set in the 1970s but there are a couple of anachronisms. There are some beautiful passages about Tibet and Shilog observes everything he sees with new eyes, but there is a paucity of description otherwise, even when discussing major plot points (the devices used to travel or the locations of their scape).

 What do you get from it: A challenge to preconceived notions and an interesting story with plenty of action. I also really liked the baddie, Dane. There’s more to her than meets the eye.

 What I would have changed if anything: Perhaps I would have tried to build up more the main characters, as for me, Apple comes across as quite disjointed and as if readers should know the type (perhaps so, but who is he?). We slowly learn a few things about him but the frantic pace of the action does not give readers much chance to delve on that. It is easier to empathise with Yowl and Shilog, perhaps because we feel as lost as they are. A stronger sense of place and time might also help.

 Who Would I recommend this book to?: People who enjoy plot over character, and who like science-fiction that makes you think. Also lovers of action and Yetis.

Ratings:
Realistic Characterization: 3/5
Made Me Think: 4/5
Overall enjoyment: 3.5/5
Readability: 4/5
Recommended: 4/5
Overall Rating: 3.5/5 

Buy it at:  
Format & Pricing:
Paperback $12.99
Kindle: $6.09

Thanks so much for reading and don’t forget to like, share, comment and CLICK!

Olga Núñez Miret

@OlgaNM7

http://www.authortranslatorolga.com

 

#BookReview of Forbidden by F. Stone.

Forbidden Book Cover Image4_stars_goldBook Description

Captain Sharif’s police compound has been breached. Fifteen Americans murdered. CIA agent Frank Hutchinson has proof the cop is lying and has him in his crosshairs, eager to exact revenge. Captain Sharif must please his corrupt superiors; and yet see justice served, and abide by the Koran. He’s in hell, with no way to escape – either be buried alive or suffer Allah’s wrath. In the balance hangs the life of Eliza MacKay, witness to the massacre. He’s drawn to her courage and discovers her ‘take no shit’ personality warrants respect. Even so, her struggle with PTSD may get both of them killed. Desperate, Sharif initiates an act more forbidden and fatal.

Forbidden Banner Image

Book Review

One thing about Forbidden by F. Stone you need to know is that it’s set in the year 2047 and the Muslim countries in the Middle East with a few exceptions have formed into one large nation. I think of it like the old Soviet Union. Iraq is the center of power and that’s where this story takes place.

You quickly forget about the future setting because everything in the story is still very much present day except for the political setting, which doesn’t play a huge part in the story.

I really liked the book. There were definite elements that needed to be handled well, especially with CAPTAIN SHARIF’S faith. The author has obviously done her homework and that shows up primarily around how Sharif handles his interactions with ELIZA MACKAY.

But enough about that. This book is action from the beginning to end. A great who is doing what to whom. I’m pretty good at figuring things out but was surprised in the end about who was not involved in the murdering of the 15 Americans.

The writing is fast paced and I read it in a day because of not wanting to put it down. Throw in the romance elements and you have a well balanced story that gives you a chance to breathe between the action moments. The romance part isn’t overplayed and doesn’t detract from the story at all.

MacKay’s traumatic history and PTSD are used to great effect in the relationship between her and Sharif. Some of it is a little unexpected but overall I think it was exactly the way it should have been.

I recommend the book for thrill seekers and action junkies.

Book Review by Ronovan.

Get FORBIDDEN on AMAZON by clicking HERE.

#Book #Review of Counterpart by @HSchussman.

Counterpart by H. Schussman4_stars_goldI’ve reviewed H. Schussman’s work here before. It  was El Tiburon and I gave it 4 stars. You can even read the interview I did with her by clicking here.That was her second book. Now I’ve read her first novel which you can get on Smashwords in any format you like.

Her first book is Counterpart. In this outing we get to meet Schussman’s characters CIA Agent/Travel Agent SEAN MCGEE and Doctor JANET “SPORT” WARRICK. The book starts off with Sport picking up a friend at work in a jewelry store when a robbery takes place. She foils one of the bad guys who doesn’t see her at first. Then the owner shoves a box into her hands and tells her to get it to Sean McGee. A chase ensues by the main bad guy but Sport gets away. I’m not spoiling it for you. If she were caught there wouldn’t be much of a story, now would there?

The story itself is very good. Great pace, if I had started this book during the morning after breakfast I would likely have finished it before bed. There are details about Sacramento that hint at first hand experience. Also other travel experiences that are obviously pulled from the author’s own extensive travel life. Trust me, she knows about the Americas, north, south, and central.

Once Sean and Sport meet up it is one thrill ride after another with CIA agents, FBI agents, Secret Service, and more. Even the California Highway Patrol gets involved. And don’t get me started on the Club Med moments.

My favorite character is Sport. She comes by the name for good reasons, which are revealed in the book, so I won’t tell you here. She isn’t a short girl to mess around with, even though Sean really wants to. Both find there is an unexpected attraction that neither really knows what to do with, what with a CIA agents life style and a young doctor’s not being all that great for starting a relationship. The question is, do both survive the whole thing to make it to a relationship at all?

Fast paced, guns, chases, assassinations, bad guys, Russian doubles, political look-a-likes. This one has it all. Oh, and there is even some kissing involved. I had to mention it for the tough guys reading this. We can’t even get a good shoot ’em up book without kissing thrown in. (Just kidding. I wrote a romance.)

This one is good for all types of readers. Enjoy it. It’s only $1.99 at Smashwords right now. I will say that there are some editing moments that were missed, but they don’t take away from the reading experience. (I edit books so I pick them up.) Get the book, then check out El Tiburon on Amazon.

Click the images to go and check out the books. And follow her on twitter @HSchussman for her latest happenings.

Counterpart by H. SchussmanEl Tiburon by H. Schussman

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NEW BOOK! The Land of Look Behind by @AaronBlaylock

The Land of Look Behind

by

Aaron Blaylock

“I just finished the book during my lunch break and the words that come to mind are incredible and awesome!!! I have been an avid reader of Mystery Novels for more than 40 years. I have read dozens of books from many of the great author’s including Agatha Christie, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Ellery Queen etc. And I can honestly say that this book is in the same league as anything I have read from any of the greats.”-5 Star Review

“The interesting character development at the beginning made you feel like you knew them personally.” 4 Star Review

The Land of Look Behind by Aaron Blaylock

Book Description

“When Gideon, a former missionary, discovers a mysterious drawing tucked in an ancient journal he returns to Jamaica with dreams of finding a centuries old treasure.  He quickly learns there are those who would kill to keep the treasure secret. This thrilling adventure takes you deep into Jamaica’s treacherous cockpit country and back in time for a spine-tingling mystery you won’t be able to put down.”

Author Aaron BlaylockAaron Blaylock, author of The Land of Look Behind, was born and raised in Arizona. As a child he grew up in the shadow of the Superstition Mountains in the far east valley. Later he attended Mesa Verde High School in Citrus Heights, CA, where he lettered in football. He attained the rank of Eagle Scout in the Boy Scouts of America and has remained active in the scouting organization for over twenty years.

Currently he and his wife Lola live in Mesa, AZ, and are raising their four children. When not working, writing, or serving at church Aaron volunteers as a soccer and baseball coach for his children and enjoys chasing a small white ball around a golf course.

His storytelling draws heavily on his love of history, adventure, his faith, and his own life experiences.

Order The Land of Look Behind on

Amazon or at Barnes & Noble

 

 

El Tiburon by H. Schussman #Book #Review by @RonovanWrites

I received a preview copy of this book from the author for an honest review. Here it is.

CIA Agent Sean McGee is normally a laid-back guy. Even on a mission, he takes things in stride and does his job. His latest mission is to set up cameras in the compound of a drug lord in Guatemala. It sounds simple. Then El Jefe, the drug lord of all drug lords in Guatemala, decides to kidnap Sean’s wife, Sport, to use against him. Sean changes his plans.

Read that paragraph and you miss the real story of El Tiburon.

  • Thriller-YES
  • CIA Agents-YES
  • Covert Marines-YES
  • Drug Lords and Double Agents-Check Check

El Tiburon by H. SchussmanOne thing you also get is the inclusion of fleshed out roles for women as integral parts of the story, the mission, and more, not a plot device for the macho man to rescue.

Why do I make a point about women?

In many books, the writer throws a woman into a role that the reader can tell was written for a male, and the name was changed for some reason. The writer doesn’t do anything to make the character a woman except for that name change. Schussman goes through the process of creating parts and roles for each woman involved. Believe me; women are essential to the success or failure of McGee’s mission. (Writers, it’s not that difficult to write women. Even I can do it. If I can, anyone can.)

A thriller needs to have three qualities to make me happy.

Relationships

With any book I enjoy, it must have relationships. In a thriller, the action serves as the setting to relationships, and that is what H. Schussman does with El Tiburon.

This book isn’t about taking down a drug lord, it’s not even about taking down the king of the drug business of the Americas, El Tiburon, The Shark himself. This book is about not messing with family, friends, and loved ones.

Not only is their Sean’s wife Sport being put in danger, but his partner Gary develops feelings for a change. Dr. Janet McGee, Sport, ends up caring for a people group that no one else seems to bother with, ignores, or doesn’t even know exists.

Realism/Research

Two of my favorite authors are John Gardner and Clive Cussler: the first for his realistic handling of the spy genre of James Bond, Herbie Kruger, and Secret Generations, and the second for his research and attention to details. With El Tiburon all three of those aspects come together.

Learning

Schussman also does the third thing I enjoy in a book; she teaches or reveals something that I didn’t know about before in a culture or society. She’s definitely done her homework for this novel. There were certain parts I went to the search engines and did my own searching. She hadn’t made things up.

Recommendation

Given time I’ll read this book again. As I started to read I had a difficult time getting into the book. The prologue and the first few paragraphs of the first chapter are only a couple of pages long, so when you begin reading, keep reading. But once past those couple of pages and reading where the main characters begin I started enjoying things in a big way. The prologue does give some information that’s useful and maybe gives a sense of immediacy to the book, and the beginning of the first chapter lets you know about one of the characters involved.

RATING

Character Believability: 3.5
Flow and Pace: 4.5
Reader Engagement: 4
Reader Enrichment: 4.5
Reader Enjoyment: 4
Overall Rate: 4.1

Author: H. SchussmanEl Tiburon by H. Schussman
Title: El Tiburon
File Size: 618 KB
Print Length: 315 pages
Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
Publisher: Vinspire Publishing (Dec. 31, 2015)
Publication Date: December 31, 2015
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
Language: English
ASIN: B018ZVID8Q
Text-to-Speech: Enabled
Format: Kindle
Price:  PRE ORDER $3.99
Lending: Enabled

ABOUT H. SCHUSSMAN

I am a writer living in Northern California. My husband and I travel about 8 weeks a year, and during that time I try to hunt down an internet cafe to tell my story. Usually twice a week . . . depends on where I am. I also am a physical therapist specializing in brain disorders and brain injuries . . . challenging! Anyway, I like to write, so if you like to read (and comment if you like) this is the blog for you. Check out my new espionage, full size novel titled ‘Counterpart’ available at http://www.smashwords.com. My newest novel, El Tiburon is now being published with Vinspire Publishing. It should be available next year sometime.



About the Reviewer

Ronovan Hester is an author, with his debut historical adventure novel Amber Wake: Gabriel Falling due out in Valentine’s Day of 2016. He shares his life as an amnesiac and Chronic Pain sufferer through his blog RonovanWrites.WordPress.com. His love of poetry, authors and community through his online world has lead to a growing Weekly Haiku Challenge, a  Weekly Fiction Prompt Challenge, and the creation of a site dedicated to book reviews, interviews and author resources known as LitWorldInterviews.com.

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

@RonovanWrites

© Copyright-All rights reserved by LitWorldInterviews.com 2015

Thom Tate Spear Garden @ThomasATate #BookLaunch

How would you like a chance at a signed copy of the first FULL-LENGTH  Blake MacKay Spy Thriller by Thom Tate?

“A coup is brewing inside the last dictatorship in Europe. Belarusian Prime Minister, Oleg Shorets is devising the ultimate assassination, using a devastating new weapon to fake a terrorist attack and kill Spear Garden by Thom Tatethe Belarusian President, Vladimir Solonovich. With plans to blame it on Al Qaeda, the more collateral damage, the better. Thousands will die.

Meanwhile, when the CIA discovers that weapons used to kill two U.S. border guards are from a former Cuban general turned gun dealer, Hector Vasquez, they decide to send their most lethal weapon, covert operative Blake MacKay to take him out.

Blake uses his charms on the general’s daughter, Adriana, to get close to complete his mission. After being discovered, he makes a daring escape with more questions than answers. Blake uncovers a deeper plot involving an Al Qaeda weapons dealer, a corrupt European prime minister, and a traitor inside his own organization.

After a disastrous raid on an Al Qaeda safe house, Blake finds the key to start unraveling the mystery. It forces him back to Cuba where only one person can help him decipher what he’s discovered; the daughter of the man he recently murdered.

Take a ride with Blake from Cuba, to Afghanistan, Belarus and Eastern Europe in this non-stop action thriller.”

Click HERE to visit Thom Tate’s Facebook Page-Covert World by Thom Tate for all the updates, contests, and surprises that may be associated with this and other book releases.

The BIG announcement is:

Spear Garden is being released Friday, December 18 on Amazon.  And the first 15 who purchase the book and write a review on Amazon, get a FREE copy, signed and sent to them. That way you have the signed copy, and can give the other copy to a friend and share the work of Thom Tate.

AND

If you visit his facebook page you get a discount code from his update dated 12/17/15 that’s  good through the end of the year for 15% off!!!

Visit his facebook page to get all the details HERE.

Levant Mirage by @OliverFChase “It’s so possible, it’s scary.” #Book Review

  • Author: Oliver F. ChaseLevant Mirage by Oliver F. Chase
  • Title: Levant Mirage
  • File Size: 3416 KB
  • Print Length: 309 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Pearl River Publishing Group; 1 edition (October 15, 2015)
  • Publication Date: October 15, 2015
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B015G7TWYQ
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Formats: Paperback & Kindle
  • Pricing: $13.99 & $3.99
  • Genres: Action, Adventure, Thriller, Suspense, War

I received a copy of this book for an honest review and I’m glad I did.

Levant Mirage takes snapshots from the headlines of the past few years to build a character and combines it with frighteningly realistic possibilities to give a story you pray never happens.

35 year old U.S. Army Major Adam Michaels is no James Bond, nor did he ever set out to be. What is he? He’s a man who rejects the easy path that being the heir to a shipping empire gives him in order to join the military, serve his country, and be a father. Right, no money other than what he makes as a Major in the Army. You don’t see jet flying, limousine riding, womanizing and all of that. I would trade in the 10 year old Corolla for something a little better though. Tap into the trust fund already.

Finding himself used as a scapegoat for a foreign relations nightmare, Michaels works out his days in the Pentagon pushing papers, and paying alimony, child support and the mortgage on his rising political star ex-wife’s house. You see the everyday life to some extent leading up to the changes in life the military can throw at you. You don’t control you in the Army. And there are times when that twists the guts out of Michaels.

Michaels is of a dubious parentage, with his father not being who he thought he was, but upon finding out explains a great deal. This in part leads to his choice of path in life. He wants to be his own man. He doesn’t want to be identified with a past that isn’t really what he thought it was.

But part of that past comes back in one night and changes a quiet world into a search to find the defense against a missile guidance system he created that is now in the hands of terrorists. Which terrorists? Who is the enemy? You won’t believe it. Or you will believe it but be surprised.

The believability of Levant Mirage is what makes it so freakin’ scary at times. Perhaps the guidance system isn’t real, or I hope it’s not. But I’m sure there is something like it out there. The enemy Michaels must fight against is out of this world. If he fails, billions die. If he succeeds?

Chase writes with detail and a knowledge base that gives the story realism. You are able to submerse yourself into Levant Mirage and you don’t get pulled out by oddities and unbelievable scenes. Some scenes are high energy and amped up, but still possible.

Being honest, the amount of detail is incredible at times and I could have done with a little less of the technological speak, but it doesn’t take away from the story. In truth, it adds the believability—you don’t have these leaps from action to intellect in the span of a few seconds. Okay, maybe you do but for a whole different reason, but I’m not giving those parts away. Ah, that does remind me of one scene that did cause me pause and have to reread in order to get it clear. In part, that was due to the surprise of those involved.

I enjoyed the handling of the terrorists. As you read you’ll develop ideas but never get to comfortable, you never know what is going to happen next, who is going to happen, or what the truth is until it’s almost too late. But there are clues along the way.

Recommendation

I would recommend Levant Mirage to those who like believable action thrillers. Clive Cussler’s Dirk Pitt and other NUMA series books come to mind, but not that fantastical or off the charts. Where Cussler takes you over the edge of believability at times, Chase keeps you here on earth and scares the life out of you with reality you can find in your neighbors living room.

Character Believability: 4Levant Mirage by Oliver F. Chase
Flow and Pace: 4
Reader Engagement: 4
Reader Enrichment: 4
Reader Enjoyment: 4
Overall Rate: 4

 

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About the Author

olvier-chaseOliver spent five years in a police department working narcotics and SWAT, and the next 22 in the FBI. Now he’s the author of Marsh Island, Blind Marsh, the first two installments of the Hirebomber Series. And now Levant Mirage, releasing Oct. 15, 2015.

oliverchase.net

https://oliverchase.wordpress.com

facebook.com/oilverchase

https://twitter.com/OliverFChase



About the Reviewer

Ron_LWIRonovan is an author, blogger and former educator who shares his life as an amnesiac and Chronic Pain sufferer though his blog RonovanWrites.WordPress.com. His love of poetry, authors and community through his online world has lead to a growing Weekly Haiku Challenge and the creation of  LitWorldInterviews.WordPress.com, a site dedicated to book reviews, interviews and author resources.  For those serious about book reviewing and interested in reviewing for the LWI site, email Ronovan at ronovanwrites (at) gmail (dot) com to begin a dialogue. It may not work out but then again it might.

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

@RonovanWrites

 © Copyright-All rights reserved by LitWorldInterviews.wordpress.com 2015

#BOOK REVIEW BY @COLLEENCHESEBRO OF HOSTAGES OF VERA CRUZ BY AUTHOR @GRADYMILLER

Hostages of Vera Cruz

  • Title:  Hostages of Vera Cruz
  • Author:  Grady Miller
  • File Size: 599 KB
  • Print Length: 113 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN:  1499545320
  •  Publisher: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Publication Date: August 27, 2014
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  •  Language: English
  • ASIN: B00N49QBN4
  • ISBN-10: 1499545320
  • ISBN-13: 9781499545326
  • Formats: Paperback and Kindle
  • Genres: Mystery, Mystery/Suspense, Thriller, Romantic Mystery

* I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review which follows. *

And so it began…

Peter Vandervoort, a wealthy photographer living in Mexico with his girlfriend, Xochitl, take part in a photography exhibit presenting some of Peter’s photos from around Vera Cruz. One of the photos Peter includes in the show, reveals a grainy image of a child being abducted which lends credence to the rumors circulating that organ trafficking is happening in the city. The photography exhibit fails and Peter falls into a deep depression over the rejection of his work; unaware that there are ulterior motives to the failure of his show. He has no idea what he has stirred up with that photo of the child abduction.

To bring Peter out of his depression, Xochitl suggests a trip to the local carnival. While they are getting ready to go to the carnival, Peter receives a telephone call demanding the photo of the child, including the photo negative. Visibly shaken, Peter keeps the negative with him and the couple attends the carnival. In all the gaiety of the carnival atmosphere, Peter and Xochitl end up getting separated. Peter becomes a victim of foul play, although Xochitl has no idea of what has actually transpired. She searches for Peter for days and is unable to locate him.

The suspense builds!

While Xochitl is searching for him, a drugged Peter awakens in the midst of the real organ harvesters where he witnesses the horrors taking place amongst Vera Cruz’s children. Realizing that he is next in line to have his organs taken from him, Peter escapes and makes his way back to Xochitl.

Traumatized by the kidnapping, Peter blocks the experience. He just cannot deal with the abduction and the fact that no one cares what is happening to the children of Vera Cruz.  Xochitl and Peter drift apart as the experience overwhelms him and their relationship. Troubled, Peter returns to Holland and the comfort of his parents.

Slowly, Peter regains control over his life.  He travels to France on vacation where a chance encounter brings him face to face with his old girlfriend, Michelle, a journalist struggling to give her career a much-needed reboot. Peter divulges his experiences to Michelle and together the two embark on a chilling investigation of what is really happening to the children of Vera Cruz.

Part mystery and suspense, part love story, the Hostages of Vera Cruz will keep you guessing until the very end.

Recommendation:

If you are drawn to romantic mysteries or thrillers you will love this novella. I found myself marveling at all the layers of romantic and suspenseful intrigue that surrounded the characters and their experiences. Grady Miller gives them breath with real situations that mimic life in a meaningful way. A novella at only 113 pages, I was mesmerized and could not put it down until all was revealed in the end!

Grady Miller

Author, Grady Miller

Character Believability: 4.5
Flow and Pace: 5
Reader Engagement: 5
Reader Enrichment: 4.5
Reader Enjoyment: 4.5
Overall Rate: 4.5

About Grady Miller:

Grady Miller’s humor appears frequently in numerous publications, including the LA Times and his popular blog at www.canyon-news.com. In “Lighten up Now: The Grady Diet,” Grady urges people to ‘count the laughs, not calories.’ He is the author of a nail-biting thriller, “The Hostages of Veracruz.”

Make certain to connect with Grady through his Twitter @GradyMiller

And Facebook at www.facebook.com/grady.miller.58

Book Review by: @ColleenChesebro of silverthreading.com

 

Tallos-Episode One (Season One) Interview with Granser Kelly.

RW: Tallos-Episode One (Season One) has some details very much set in the South here in the United States, is that from personal experience having lived in the area, why that area specifically, or will that give too much away of the future episodes?

GRANSER: I spent quite a bit of time there, actually. I wanted to begin the series in a familiar setting so to give it a sense of authenticity. The story as a whole will span the entire country and possibly other parts of the world. But I felt the southern states would be a good place for me to begin.

RW: What genre would you categorize Tallos?

GRANSER: I consider it Post-Apocalyptic Science Fiction. It’s also categorized in Action/Adventure, but that’s way too broad and vague, in my opinion.

RW: Where did the idea come from?

GRANSER: I was approached through a friend a while back to be part of a collaborative effort based on preset story guidelines. The rules for the world were already in place and all I had to do was come up with the particulars for my installment. It actually reminded me of writing fan fiction (not something I do).

Unfortunately, about the time I had the plot more or less mapped out, I had to withdraw due to other obligations. Later, once life calmed down a bit, I decided to revisit the story. I never did like the original world in which it was set, so I made some adjustments and brainstormed for a week or so. Once I had the basic concept in my head, the rest was easy.            

RW: For a post-apocalyptic story I think this is something that gives a different feel. Not that it’s my particular genre, but I am familiar enough with it to know what’s what. Did you set out to intentionally be different or did the story sort of lead itself in that direction? Were you the director or the guy typing what they characters told you to say?

GRANSER: It wasn’t intentional. Like you, I’m not what one would consider an expert in the Post-Apocalyptic genre. In fact, this is my first go at it. I think that in itself may lend to a more original feel, being that I’m not following any pre-prescribed guidelines.

Regarding my approach – I’m both. I try to be the character at times, but that’s not always practical, or even preferable, when you need to move a story along. You want to develop your cast of characters in a way that is believable, but you can’t allow it to bog you down and slow the progression of the plot.  

RW: Tell us about Jim Tallos? Who is he?

GRANSER: He’s an interesting mix of a selfish asshole and a brave hero. I didn’t want a “super soldier” protagonist with high morals and flawless character who can get out of any situation due to his Rambo-like kickassyness (yes, that’s a word) and MacGyver-like intelligence. But I needed him to be likeable too. I decided to use other characters to help me build his personality and develop him from situation to situation.

I can’t really say who he is exactly, as that is a major plot point.

RW: You somewhat touch on some social issues of today and how they are in the after-math. Again, was that something intentional?

GRANSER: Yes. Absolutely intentional. I loathe bigotry. Whether it’s homophobia, sexism, racism, or any other ism. I don’t intend to beat people over the head with my politics, but I do want to include that particular point in this story. I think that’s evident from the onset.

RW: Are there plans for, how can I put this, spinoffs? You’ve set it up in the first Episode where there could be other storylines pay out.

GRANSER: I haven’t thought about it. When I started Tallos, I decided to model it after a television series format. This is why I’ve divided it into seasons and episodes. Each episode leads into the next, but I try to leave out the cliffhanger aspect one might find in full-length novels. It also allows for episodes which focus on the characters rather than the plot. In other words, I can have a cool idea for an episode which doesn’t necessarily move the plot along very far, yet still fits into the story.  

RW: Reading the book I can tell what Tallos likes to drink to relax but what does Granser Kelly like to drink when facing demons?

GRANSER: Love me some Jack Daniel. Oh, yes I do. My wife hates it – the Jack, not me drinking it – so I rarely run out.

RW: What do you say to people who read books like this with some of the scenes you write and say “Are you completely freakin’ messed up in the head to think of this stuff?”

GRANSER: I’d say they’re right. But who isn’t? The difference is that I’ve learned to express my psychosis in words and use it to tell stories.

RW: One thing I like about the story you’ve created is we have no idea what the problem is. Do you know the end of it all or are you along for the ride as much as we are for the moment?

GRANSER: I know the story to the end – a least to an extent. That is to say I know the main plot points – the major twists and so forth. But I allow for new ideas to take things in different directions. It’s actually one of the advantages to the format I’ve adopted.

RW: What authors influenced you in this particular area of storytelling? I guess it would be horror and some psychological influences.

GRANSER: None really. Post-Apocalyptic Fiction wasn’t a genre in which I had much interest until recently. I’ve always enjoyed Science Fiction, however. Asimov was a favorite as a teen – though his approach is far more optimistic than mine. I also love Frank Herbert, Orson Scott Card, Ray Bradbury, and on the more whimsical side Douglas Adams. This is naturally only a few names on a long list of great writers.TallosGKS1E1

RW: How many seasons can we expect from Tallos?

GRANSER: I’m thinking three for now. But that may change should the need arise. I wouldn’t want to end the story prematurely. And as the story will become increasingly complex as time passes, I’ll need to allow enough space to tie up loose ends without it seeming rushed.

RW: Are any of the people in the story based on any of your friends and if so do they know it?

GRANSER: Not specifically, no. Though like any writer, I draw from my own experience. My characters are a combination of personalities I’ve encountered over the years. Occasionally, I will write someone I know in. But it’s almost always an insularly character with little bearing on the over-all plot.

RW: What scares Granser Kelly?

GRANSER: Lots of things. I’m more or less a walking heap of character flaws, psychiatric neuroses, and phobias. I fear success, failure, clowns, baby pigeons, alligators, purple socks, aluminum foil, bats, things that aren’t bats, crowds, isolation, public speaking, public nudity, private nudity, sex (both the act and not getting enough), change, stagnation, and people taller than six feet. That’s the short list.

RW: How good are you with a gun and if you are good what is your choice?

GRANSER: I love to shoot rifles, handguns…whatever. Sadly, there is nothing safer than what I’m trying to hit.

RW: Tell me you write these things in broad daylight, because if I wrote some of these scenes at night I would have some serious issues sleeping? Not that they were gory or anything. In fact they were much more psychological in nature to me.

GRANSER: I don’t mind it. I had night terrors as a child, so I learned to pull myself back into a semi-conscious state when it gets too bad. Besides, my various phobias don’t differentiate between day and night.

RW: What does your wife think of the mind that produces something like this and does it concern her at times?

GRANSER: Let me explain something about crazy. A person’s crazy is like water inside a big barrel. When they meet, some people choose to just kick it over and spill their crazy all over everything – including the other person. The advantage to this is that there are few surprises down the road. You know what you’re getting into. Of course, if your barrel of crazy is too big you can wash the other person away and be left there alone with nothing but you and your crazy.

The other option is to take a ladle, dip it in the barrel, and show the other person your crazy a little at a time. The upshot is that you might not scare the hell out of a potential mate, and possibly have a miniscule chance of getting them to have sex with you. If you’re lucky, they might mistake your crazy for quirkiness and depth. This turns some people on – especially if they think you’re an artist of some sort. The downside is that should you take it to the next level, that person begins to realize just how much crazy has yet to be discovered. Hopefully by then you would have tricked them into loving you, and forced them to overlook the big barrel of crazy that seems to have no bottom. That’s me and my wife.

 

And there you have, folks. As far as I know, the very first interview with Granser Kelly. I do encourage you to read the book. I enjoyed the story and the idea a lot. You get a familiar feel about it but originality as well. Comfort with creativity combined. Can’t complain about that, right?

Click http://amzn.to/1B8GGPZ and get it now. Read my Review there and click the it was helpful button for me. That is, if it was helpful.

 

Much Respect,

Ronovan

Ron_LWI

 

 

 

 

 

@RonovanWrites

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