Tag Archives: Adult Short Stories

#BOOK REVIEW BY @COLLEENCHESEBRO OF “TEARS IN THE SUN,” BY AUTHOR @JAOWENBY

Tears in the Sun

  • Title:  Tears in the Sun, A Short Story
  • Author: J. A. Owenby
  • File Size: 439 KB
  • Print Length: 16 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN:
  •  Publisher: J. A. Owenby
  • Publication Date: December 25, 2013
  • Sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC
  •  Language: English
  • ASIN: B00HBZOKY4
  • Formats:  Kindle
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Women’s Fiction, Drama, Teen & Young Adult, Parenting & Relationships

*The author gifted me a copy of this book in exchange for an unbiased review which follows*

From the Author, J. A. Owenby:

“A Short Story – Lacey, a senior in high school, has never heard of borderline personality disorder yet she lives with it every day. As she begins realizing her family isn’t as normal as she thought, she searches for help and answers. Those answers turn her world upside down, and she is left with making life changing decisions for not only herself but her mentally ill mother who she loves more than anything.”

Recommendation:

This is an entertaining short read that really takes your breath away. Mental Illness can be debilitating to a family’s structure and Lacey’s family is no exception. I won’t kid you, there are some scenes in this story that will affect you deeply.

I found the characters to be well thought out and totally realistic. I felt great empathy with Lacey as a teenager trying to cope with her mother’s religious obsessions which she forced on everyone, near and far, all symptoms of a deepening mental illness burgeoning out of control.

The one salvation for Lacey was Patsy, her mother’s lover who had bought the house with her mother years ago. Their relationship hints at a deep friendship and emotional alliance against the shame and humiliation forced upon them from the ravages of the mother’s mental illness.

All books start somewhere and J. A. Owenby shared with me that she wrote this short story in 2011. She worked with an editor from Writer’s Digest and decided to put it on Amazon a few years later. Jen said that after her short story was published she had many people reach out and ask for a full novel, so she finally wrote it.

Her novel will be released later this year and called, “The Truth She Knew.” The book will include Lacey, Mama, and Patsy from the short story, and additional characters. Jen adds that she addresses issues in the novel including mental illness, mental/physical abuse, and religious manipulation. Lacy falls in love for the first time in the novel and is able to summon all her strength to make some very difficult decisions.

As of the date of this review, Jen was not sure of a publication date for the novel. I understand it is in the hands of her editor. However, I am sure if you connect with her on her blog or social media you will be able to follow the novel’s progress.

This is one you won’t want to miss!

Character Believability: 5
Flow and Pace: 5
Reader Engagement: 5
Reader Enrichment: 4
Reader Enjoyment: 5
Overall Rate: 4.5 out of 5 stars

4.5 stars
J.A. Owenby

About J. A. Owenby:

J. A. (Jen) Owenby lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her husband and two cats.

She’s a published author of six short stories and is beginning her first full-length novel. J.A. doesn’t mess around when it comes to working with a professional team in order to present her best writing.

She also runs her own business and helps people find jobs they love as a professional resume writer.

She is an avid reader of thrillers, romance, new adult and young adult novels. She loves music, movies, and pop tarts. Her downtime consists of a beautiful summer evening, snuggling with her hubby outside underneath the stars. If it’s winter, listening to the rain and watching NFL football.

You can follow the events of her upcoming novel on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/JAOwenby, and on Twitter at J A Owenby, Author at https://twitter.com/JAOwenby. Look for J. A. Owenby on her blog at Jen’s Thoughts https://jenowenby.wordpress.com/.

Book Review by @ColleenChesebro of silverthreading.com

Colleen 1122016

Loves Lost author Sourabh Mukherjee Q&A

 

sourabh mukherjeeRW: Let’s start with a little about where you are from.

SOURABH: I am from India, born and brought up in the city of Kolkata. Kolkata is the capital of the state of West Bengal, located on the banks of the Hooghly river. It is the main educational, cultural and commercial center in the eastern part of the country. The Kolkata Port is the country’s oldest operating port. Kolkata was the capital of the British Government in India till 1911 when the capital was shifted to New Delhi.

RW: Let’s get right into your book today before we go into my other questions. Why the title Loves Lost for your book of short stories?

SOURABH: Loves Lost is a collection of three short stories in the Romance genre, all woven around the theme of lost love. There could be a variety of reasons why relationships do not work out but at the end of the day, as George Martin says, ‘When the sun has set, no candle can replace it’.

RW: What inspired the Loves Lost? loves lost sourabh mukherjee

SOURABH: My own take on love and relationships and my keen interest in the workings of the human mind account for the manner in which love and its rituals are conducted in my stories.

The stories in the book deal with human emotions that I feel most readers can relate to. Many of us have nurtured unprofessed love in our hearts for years, have struggled to cope with lost love, have allowed our inner devils to ruin relationships, and have found love when we least expected to. My stories grow out of such experiences and observations.

RW: Tell us about the stories we’ll find.

SOURABH: Loves Lost is a collection of three love stories that go beyond conventional ‘happily ever after’ endings and offer realistic views of the variety of emotions one goes through when love comes calling.

The story ‘Mine Forever’ is about a young, successful entrepreneur nursing a broken heart and seeking refuge in alcohol and his work. The story takes the reader to the after-party of a corporate awards function when the protagonist in his drunken stupor finds the woman of his dreams drop in to congratulate him on his success and resolves to win her back.

‘The Thing About Memories’ is about a man recovering from a near fatal accident with no recollection of the past. A brisk read with a lasting impact, the story reveals how a billboard advertisement brings the man face-to-face with a past best forgotten.

The protagonist in the story ‘Love Came Calling Again’ has a highly romanticized vision of love that is often disengaged from reality. When the harsh realities of life take a toll on her relationship, she meets a stranger on the Internet.

As the blurb sums it up, Loves Lost is ‘a collection of three contemporary romantic short stories that take the reader on a whirlwind journey interspersed with betrayal, separation, heartbreak and a smile or two.’

RW: What message do you think your book delivers to the reader?

SOURABH: The stories deal with human emotions that most readers will relate to. While the collection of short stories is primarily meant to be a realistic and at the same time an entertaining depiction of the various facets of love, I would feel my efforts have been rewarded well if the stories in the book motivate readers to realize the value of the gift of love (which not everyone is blessed with), ensure the honesty and sanctity of their feelings, and never let their inner devils ruin their relationships.

RW: Describe your book in one word.

SOURABH: Soul-searching

RW: Where can we get your book now?

Amazon Kindle US & UK.

RW: What is your background in writing, what makes you a writer?

SOURABH: I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. I have never really written for a purpose – it is just something I love to do. In my early childhood, I would spend hours writing (as well as making illustrations for my own stories). A number of my poems were published in children’s magazines back in the day. I continued to write through my teenage and later in college.

I kept writing in office magazines for a couple of years, but the demands of my career as an Information Technology professional and my travels across the world soon left me with very little time and creative energy to write fiction. I churned out technical whitepapers and non-fictional articles that got published in journals of repute like The Datawarehousing Institute (TDWI) Business Intelligence Journal Summer 2013 edition.

However, in the process, I grew as a person getting to observe people from widely varying cultural backgrounds and to study their emotions, their thoughts, their behavior from various perspectives. And stories began to grow all over again.

Also, writing is often a cathartic experience for me. It helps give vent to my emotions and create stories out of them. There is a bit of me in each one of my stories.

And a year back, I went back to writing fiction.

My first novella Nargis Through my Summers was published on Amazon Kindle in April 2014 and opened to 4-star reviews in Amazon and Goodreads. Loves Lost is my latest collection of short stories that was released on the 12th. of December, 2014.

cover2RW: What other books do you have to share with us and can you tell us a little about them? Do you have any full length novels in the works?

SOURABH: I would like to take this opportunity to talk about my book Nargis Through my Summers. Recipient of the Golden Pen Award in the Monsoon Romance Contest organized by a popular website in India, the novella is about a woman who moves in and out of relationships over the years, and a man who remains a silent and distant witness to the course of her life, with unflinching faith in the honesty and sanctity of his feelings for her.

The following are some of the comments the book has received over the last 6 months of its release:

A story which evokes yearning in our hearts, pushing the hands of time. Sourabh is economic in his choice of words, and allows the reader’s imagination to play. His style is that of a master story-teller and the build-up is strong. The end has a twist that rhymes well with the elevated level of this story. This is just the beginning; we want many more from you. Readers: THIS IS A MUST READ.’ – Amazon

This book is a must read for all romantics and “cynics” in equal measure. It’s a beautiful story, written in an extremely simple, subtle and poignant style. The way the story unfolded was beautiful yet unexpected’ – Amazon

A lucid read. I really liked how the author articulated the inner feelings of the protagonist. Also, must appreciate the in-depth description of emotions. I could almost visualize the scenes opening up and enacting in front of my eyes. It also got me nostalgic and took me on a trip down memory lane. The suspense of the story has been well kept under wraps.’ – Amazon

Oh what a treat it was! Just the right amount of text and right amount of storytelling. The ending was unexpected, but it made so much sense.’  – Goodreads

Just finished reading the story and have to say the ending was astounding! Really impressed. The buildup was awesome and the last chapter breath taking.’ – Goodreads

The book is available at Amazon US & UK.

RW: How do people connect with you through all forms of social media?

List links to all websites you have and social networks such as Twitter.

Facebook

LinkedIn

Google+ handle: thestoryteller1974

 

RW: Who are your favorite authors?

SOURABH: Jeffrey Archer is an all-time favourite. I think he is an institution when it comes to storytelling – whether it’s his novels or his short stories.

And then I have favourites by genres.

I have been a big fan of Agatha Christie – mainly because of Poirot’s methods of investigation, the witty repartees, the human emotions at the core of the crimes; and the laidback rural settings on the surface with undercurrents of malice and conspiracy in the Miss Marple stories. Among more recent authors, I like the Alex Cross stories by James Patterson – not just for the thrills, but also for the underlying human emotions. I loved Stieg Larsson’s works. I was floored by The Devotion of Suspect X by Keigo Higashino.

I absolutely adore Koji Suzuki’s books. I wish I could read his works in Japanese.

In the Romance genre, I have gone back again and again to Eric Segal’s works. I have Nicholas Sparks and John Green in my shelves and am very eager to read them.

Over the last couple of years, I have discovered Haruki Murakami and Gabriel Garcia Marquez – albeit in English translations of their works. And what a revelation! More reasons why I regret my linguistic limitations.

RW: What is your favorite beverage to drink, any kind?

SOURABH: It’s always black coffee, without sugar.

RW: What is your escape from writing when just needing a break?DSCN0670

SOURABH: I consider myself blessed to have a lot of empty space – parks, roads for pedestrians and trees – in my neighbourhood right in the middle of a busy city like Kolkata. Ditto for the surroundings of my office. A stroll in the evening with the wind in my hair makes all the difference. I also have a song for every mood, and music, for me, is a great stress-buster. I do manage to switch off when I want to and I consider myself lucky for being able to do that.

RW: What are you working on right now?

SOURABH: I am currently working on a novel which is a crime thriller on the surface but has a strong undercurrent of human emotions like love and betrayal at its core.

RW: What is your biggest tip for someone to getting published?

SOURABH: It is important to create real, identifiable characters in a story – unless of course one is writing a fantasy or a superhero story. Correct use of the language is essential. An author should ensure that a story progresses at a uniform pace – a story that slows down after an energetic start is a big let down. Finally, it is not about the length but always about the impact of a story. I have read 1-page stories that have left me thinking for days.

Recently, I wrote a guest blog for Elizabeth Grace on the motivation behind writing creativity that should also motivate someone getting published for the first time.

RW: What is your favorite word?

SOURABH: ‘Basically’ – I guess it comes from my inherent tendency to get to the bottom of matters.

 

And that my friends is basically the end of our time today with Sourabh. You may check out my review of Loves Lost here or go and check it out on Amazon here while you grab his book at the same time.

 

 

Ron_LWI

 

 

 

@RonovanWrites

 

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