Tag Archives: Drama

#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

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.

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@RonovanWrites

© Copyright-All rights reserved by LitWorldInterviews.com 2015

Book Review of a Romance. Violet Chain by J. Kahele. @JanelleKahele

Author: J. KaheleViolet Chain by J, Kahele
Title: Violet Chain
File Size: 1552 KB
Print Length: 243 pages
Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
Publication Date: July 17, 2015
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
Language: English
ASIN: B011WHGT9K
Text-to-Speech: Enabled
Word Wise: Enabled
Lending: Enabled
Formats: Kindle
Price: $3.99
Genres: Romance, Contemporary Fiction
 

As always with any Book Review, these are one person’s opinions. That includes the great, the good, and the bad.

Violet Chain is a story of two people on roads to recovery. One to recover her self-worth and identity, and the other his life as a man and not a character he plays in the playboy world he’s created.

I received this book to form questions for an upcoming interview and not to do a book review. And truthfully I wasn’t intending to do one. But one of the mottos I’ve put forth is “Read a book, write a review.” And with that in mind I could not keep from writing a review.

Violet Chain falls into the genre of Romance. Throw in some sex and you’ve got what you might think of as your typical fare these days. For me, I look underneath the surface of a story to the characters center, what’s driving them. I am not setting centric as much a I am emotional and thinking centric when I read a book.

The book starts off with Violet Townsend, the leading lady of the book, walking in on her fiancé in a sexual situation with another woman at their engagement party. For Violet, the world flips upside down and her journey begins to define herself as Violet Townsend and not the girlfriend of someone. She’s alone. She’s hurting in a deep way. This guy has messed her up emotionally and mentally. She doesn’t want a man.

Not even 48 hours passes and she meets Chain Alexander, millionaire playboy builder of malls across North America. Self-made man who likes to be in control and doesn’t know how to live any other way. That is until the night he meets his best friend’s fiance’s best friend, Violet. The two forces meet and almost everyone tries to stop the inevitable from happening.

While one person attempts to become emotionally detached, the other finds himself feeling emotions he’s never experienced before. And he can’t do a blessed thing about it. From one night stands to one woman dreams.

The characters are believable on the level in which they are played. They stay true to who and what they are as the story goes along and as the characters grow in their emotional lives. Kahele does a great job of character building and giving them layers of personality. The supporting cast is great. Some are humorous at times, some annoying, and some you think were written about people you know. And none of them are perfect. In other words, we get real, albeit on a big rich people scale.

But the rich are people to and they get just as screwed up in life as the rest of us and have to deal with it. That’s what the author Kahele has recognized. People are the same no matter what, take a relationship and just put it in a setting you want to. We can all connect with characters that are authentic on the base emotional levels.

I believe there were only a very few areas of concern with the book and that was the speed of change in Violet’s character, her apparent personality that is pointed to throughout the book differs greatly from this new Violet that we see. I kind of see how it works being that there is an emotionally stressful situation that perhaps cracks her a bit or flips a switch during certain moments. That part doesn’t really take away from the story as it progresses, but it gave me pause for a moment so I am mentioning it. This was perhaps the only big issue of character believability for me.

The part of Harrison, the cheating fiancé, was a bit repetitive to me in his scenes and annoyed me to no end. Now this annoyance was intentional I am sure. You are not supposed to like the guy.

The final area is the ending. Now there is a sequel coming in November, so the ending isn’t as final and shocking with that in mind. The new Violet isn’t liked by everyone in the book, unlike the old Violet.

My favorite take away from Violet Chain is Chain Alexander. That could just be the guy in me. Kahele describes certain situations and emotions from a man’s perspective perfectly. I could actually feel what Chain was going through. The writing was urgent at times when it needed to be to convey what Chain was feeling.

I guess that is really the great thing about the book, the pacing of the sentence structure and word usage. Kahele does a great job of switching between the soft and touching to the hard and edgy to carry you along where she wants you to go. She divides the chapters up between first person in the first half of the chapter being Violet and the second half being Chain. I have to say I like this better than the full chapters that are done much the same way. These are smaller bites and don’t take you away from the either character’s perspective for too long.

When J. Kahele gave me the book, she warned me about the sex in it being edgy. She knows of my sensibilities. All I can say to that is, lady, you don’t know me as well as you think. The sex scenes are well done without being over the top and unbelievable and graphic. Some of the situations are awesome. Oh that balcony. Mm, mm, mm.

Recommendations

For the most part this is a safe book for most adults. Nothing too extreme. The ending disturbed me a bit. I’ve taken about a week to think about it and been able to decide that with a sequel coming, I can handle it. I might ask to read the next one to see what happens. A lot of Kahele’s fans trust her and have no problems with it so far, so I’m going to trust her as well to handle it as well as she did the rest of the book.

Character Believability: 4Violet Chain by J, Kahele
Flow and Pace: 4
Reader Engagement: 4
Reader Enrichment: 3
Reader Enjoyment: 3
Overall Rate: 3.6

The Rating– First off, a 4 out of 5 from me is a great book. The score is lower than I expected, but I think the reason is the ending for me personally, and just little factors that took away from my own overall enjoyment. The book was well written, great layers to it. Don’t let a 3.6 keep you from the book. I am a tough reviewer.

About the Author

j_kahele_author.jpg“I am a proud mother of three daughters who are my absolute complete existence. I write to relieve the scattered thoughts that stream through my mind, constantly. My biggest downfall is that I am a huge procrastinator, which makes my life at times hectic!”

www.janellekahele.com

 

www.facebook.com/J-Kahele

J. Kahele on Google+

 

About the Reviewer

Ron_LWIRonovan is an author, and blogger 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 me 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 “THE POOL BOY’S BEATITUDE,” BY AUTHOR @MAGICMASTRMINDS

The Pool Boy's Beautitude

  • Title:  The Pool Boy’s Beatitude
  • Author: D. J. Swykert
  • File Size:
  • Print Length: 238 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN:
  •  Publisher:  Rebel ePublishers
  • Publication Date: July 23, 2013
  • Sold by: Amazon
  •  Language: English
  • ASIN:
  • ISBN-10:  0615824560
  • ISBN-13:  978-0615824567
  • Formats: Paperback and Kindle
  • Genres: Contemporary Fiction, Drama, Romance,

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

Welcome to Jack Joseph’s World

Jack Joseph is a conundrum. He possesses a Master’s degree in particle physics yet owns his own pool cleaning business. Jack appears to live within the constraints of his mind while pondering the dark matter of the universe. Jack even has high aspirations and would love to find the God particle, even though he dropped out of college when he found physics to be too tedious. You see, Jack just wants to live life his way.

However, all of the brilliance of Jack is dimmed with the way he chooses to perceive the world. Jack thinks that life is governed by random coincidences. To that effect, he lets his life spiral into chaos. With a failing marriage and a wife who wants a divorce, Jack slips into the black hole of alcoholism. Mix in casual sex with multiple clients and drugs to soothe the pain of too much alcohol, Jack continues his descent out of control in a controlled world.

Jack’s Bondage Continues

After Jack’s wife Elle, kicks him out of the house, he finds solace with Rosemary, one of his clients who uses sex, alcohol, and drugs to manipulate him into her version of the perfect man. Jack in his randomness, allows the situation to proceed even though he realizes he has sold out his soul for this pitiful existence. Jack is polarized by his dependencies, unable to break free.

One drunken night, Jack meets Sarah. There is an immediate connection, something that Jack has never experienced before. Jack is smitten and when a DUI lands him in jail, he is forced to face his demons and reconcile his lifestyle to the lovely Sarah.

My Recommendation:

To me, Jack Joseph was a likable guy even though he had enough failings to make any woman run the other way. There was something about him that was intriguing and drew me to him. I found many of Jack’s viewpoints made me uncomfortable and most of his life choices were mind boggling. Although, that is what made me want to read more. I really wanted to figure this guy out and see what made him tick.

D. J. Swykert makes Jack a real person. Written in the first person, Swykert has Jack display credible addict tendencies that sometimes were shocking in their authenticity. I found myself wanting Jack to get better and to find his way through his addictive personality and lifestyle. Sometimes I felt his desperation and pain. Other times I wanted to kick him in the teeth for all of his stupidity. The next thing I knew, I liked the guy again because I finally realized, there is a little bit of Jack Joseph in all of us.

This was an excellent read and I would recommend it to anyone looking for a book that makes you think about the intricacies of life in general. The story moves along quickly and the dialog makes you feel like you are in the room overhearing the characters. You feel this story through Jack’s eyes, flaws and all. Jack really got under my skin!

DJ Swykert

Author, D. J. Swykert

Character Believability: 5
Flow and Pace: 5
Reader Engagement: 4.5
Reader Enrichment: 4
Reader Enjoyment: 4
Overall Rate: 4.5
About D. J. Swykert:

DJ Swykert is a former 911 operator, and wolf expert, living in Northern Kentucky, USA. His short fiction and poetry has been published in: The Tampa Review, Monarch Review, Sand Canyon Review, Zodiac Review, Scissors and Spackle, spittoon, Barbaric Yawp and BULL. His novel, Maggie Elizabeth Harrington, won a literary competition with The LitWest Group in Los Angeles in 2002.

Make certain to connect with D. J. through Twitter @MagicMastrMinds

And Facebook at David J. Swykert

His blog at Magic Master Minds.com

Book Review by: @ColleenChesebro of silverthreading.com

Colleen 10.21.14

 

 

#BOOK REVIEW BY @ColleenChesebro OF FACES OF A SMALL CITY BY AUTHOR @PaulStearsNews

  • Title:  Faces of a Small City
  • Author:  Paul Stears
  • File Size:  879 KB
  • Print Length:  322 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN:
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
  • Publication Date:  December 11, 2014
  • Sold by: Amazon
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00QJI5VL0
  • ISBN-10: 1505349648
  • ISBN-13: 978-1505349641
  • Formats: Paperback  Kindle
    Goodreads
  • Genres:  Contemporary Fiction, Romance, Drama

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

Recently graduated from University, James is excited to get on with living the rest of his life. His existence in Canterbury seems to crawl by and his prospects are slim. With no job, no girlfriend, and without a place to call his own James drifts, all the while self-medicating himself with alcohol and women that mean nothing to him. One night, celebrating at a local pub with friends, James has a chance encounter with the elusive and stunningly beautiful Maisie. For James, Maisie is the stuff dreams are made of and he can’t shake her memory from his mind. He can’t wait to see her again, although it seems they are never in the right place at the same time.

Maisie has insurmountable problems of her own to contend with as her mother continues to lose touch with reality. Maisie struggles to live up to the demands her mother places upon her. Much like James, Maisie is floundering in an adult world while desperately trying to get on with the business of living and finding her own identity.

James and Maisie’s stories wrap around each other while both live in the small city of Canterbury. Their lives intertwine through their friends, families, and life circumstances.  Jakes, the narrator of the story leads you into the contemporary lives of Canterbury’s younger population who are filled with hope at the beginning of their adult lives.

Recommendation:

“The Faces of a Small City,” is Paul Stears debut novel. Although, the book starts out slowly, I found myself swept up in the descriptions of Canterbury, the people, and the many life situations that are thrown at the characters of Maisie and James. It was easy to identify with both, James and Maisie as each seemed to be real characters with strengths and weaknesses just like the rest of us.

A true coming of age love story, Stears does a marvelous job depicting and adding depth to the characters featured in this story. Many times I found myself reminiscing about my own first love experiences and how it felt to be that young again. Throughout the novel, a message of hope resounds in the face of formidable life obstacles. I really enjoyed seeing James and Maisie grow up and enter the next stage of their lives.

If you enjoy contemporary love stories with the backdrop of an English city to add culture and ambiance, you will enjoy this book. It is a quick read that will leave you feeling hope that there truly is someone out there for each of us, sometimes found right in the small city we live in.

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

About Paul Stears:

PAUL STEARS has recently released his debut novel, “Faces of a Small City.” Graduating from Canterbury University in 2010, he spent his time working and writing. Born and bred in Kent, UK, he lives to write. You can follow him and find out more information about him at his blog: paulstearsauth.wordpress.com.

Please make certain to connect with Paul Stears through his Twitter @PaulStearsNews.

Book Review by: @ColleenChesebro of silverthreading.com

Colleen 10.21.14

 

BOOK REVIEW BY @COLLEENCHESEBRO OF “SECRETS OF HALLSTEAD HOUSE” @READEANDWRITE

Title: Secrets of Hallstead House

Author: Amy M. Reade

ISBN 10:  1601833008

ISBN 13: 978-1601833006

Published: Kensington Trade (July 1, 2014)

Pages: 224

Blog: amreade

Author webpage: amymreade.com

Genre: Romantic Suspense, Family Drama, Woman’s Fiction

Secrets Of Hallstead House (eBook)

Nurse, Macy Stoddard is desperately looking for a new beginning. Loss has become her sole existence after the deaths of both of her parents. To make matters worse, her fiancé deserts her just when she needs him the most. Now she finds herself totally alone in the world. To turn the corner of tragic life events, Macy decides to take a position on a remote island in upstate New York where Alexandria Hallstead, the elderly mistress of Hallstead House needs the care of a qualified nurse.

Immediately, Macy is enamored with the natural beauty of the island and the uniqueness of the old house. She enjoys caring for Alex Hallstead and the elderly woman values her friendship on the remote island. Not long after Macy’s arrival it becomes apparent that the rest of the family and servants do not want her there. A mystery drifts about Hallstead House encircling Macy, drawing her into the delicate web of family intrigue. Shrouded threats from the housekeeper and other family members begin to escalate into random acts of unexplained violence.

Macy turns to Pete McHale, Hallstead House resident handyman and boat captain, who becomes her ally in solving the mystery that permeates the island. What Macy didn’t bargain for was falling in love, or discovering the deep, dark family secrets that threaten to engulf her forever.

Author, Amy Reade

The descriptions of the Thousand Islands in upstate New York on the Saint Lawrence River were absolutely glorious. I thought Amy Reade’s words painted vivid images of the sea and the haunting beauty of the islands and the river near Hallstead House. She depicts in her writing, grand homes that dotted these islands with rich tales of the occupant’s failures and achievements. To me, this added story telling augmented a realistic twist to the unraveling events in the story.

The Secrets of Hallstead House is Amy Reade’s debut novel. This book is an enjoyable and comfortable read, much like the gothic suspense novels by Victoria Holt I read as a young woman. For me, Macy’s journey about finding herself and solving the mystery was satisfying and all I needed within the confines of the story.

So come on! Grab a cup of tea, settle in your favorite chair, and visit Hallstead House. Oh, and by the way, don’t underestimate the nature of the mystery that lurks within these pages. I never figured out the end of the story beforehand and was pleasantly surprised at the end!

Edited: Previously stated as free until June 5, 2015. The free download offer has ended.

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

Buy it at: Amazon
Format & Pricing:
Paperback: $15.99 US
Kindle: $.00 US “FREE”

Goodreads

 

 

 

 

@ColleenChesebro

www.SilverThreading.com

An @COLLEENCHESEBRO BOOK REVIEW OF “Trails in the Sand,” by @PC ZICK

Trails in the Sand

Title: Trails in the Sand

Author: P. C. Zick

ISBN: 1481255797 (ISBN13: 9781481255790)

ASIN:  B00ANVD6DE

Published:  January 10th 2013 by Createspace

Pages: 410

Genre: Contemporary Fiction, Women’s Fiction, Family Drama

Author Website: pczick.com

Do you like to travel? Then jump aboard, because “Trails in the Sand,” immediately propelled me into the Deep South to the state of Florida where mangrove swamps and the Gulf of Mexico beckoned and lured me into their mystique. Grab a fan, it might get hot!

The story begins with a mysterious death in 1956. It is that one single event which brings to the forefront long buried family secrets with roots deep in the sands of time, and laid to rest in the true southern tradition. These secrets reveal a pivotal connection to past and future events.

Caroline is the protagonist, an environmental journalist who left home as a young woman to pursue her dream of writing. Caroline’s sister focuses on betrayal with the love of Caroline’s life, Simon. The sister manages to marry Simon, instead of Caroline, who vows to never return because of her broken heart.

Years later after Caroline’s sister dies, Caroline and Simon are reunited in their friendship and love for each other. They marry, and revel in their new found happiness. Their lives are finally complete.

To complicate matters, Simon’s adopted daughter is resentful of her Aunt Caroline marrying her father. This leads to family strife and disagreements. However, nothing is as it seems in this tale of family intrigue. Those family secrets haunt the family and eventually lead them on a journey to discover the truth and to find acceptance from the past.

Throughout the family struggles that ensue, Caroline the journalist, is embroiled in the reporting of the BP oil spill in the Gulf. Her skill in writing about environmental disasters shows firsthand the death and destruction that was forced upon the wildlife in the Gulf area. At immediate risk are the endangered sea turtles whose existence is paramount to the survival of the species.


Author: P. C. Zick

I absolutely enjoyed how the author was able to weave current events into the story. The Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill, and the events surrounding the Massey Mine accident were integral parts to the telling of this story.

The survival of the sea turtles is a vital issue where I live in Pensacola, Florida. The rich descriptions and explanations of their plight renewed my interest in environment concerns along the Gulf Coast. Our own Gulf Islands National Seashore offer volunteer opportunities that I now wish to explore since my awareness of the issues that affect native wildlife.

The family struggle that was at the central heart of the book endeared me to the characters. I was able to identify with the crippling family treachery and how it almost destroyed them all. Beyond that, I found that I wanted these characters to succeed and heal from the toll the deception had on all of them.

I found that I could not put this book down. I wanted to keep reading until I reached the last page. I was woven into a web of deceit and scheming from the portrayal of the characters. I found it hard to pull away, I was so drawn in. It seemed as if the characters haunted me from afar. I literally read this book in about three nights.

“Trails in the Sand,” is part of P. C. Zick’s “Florida Series,” which includes the following books: “Tortoise Stew,” and “Native Lands.” I read all three books at the same time, and this was my absolute favorite.

RATINGS
Realistic Characterization: 5/5
Made Me Think: 4/5
Overall enjoyment: 4/5
Readability: 4/5
Recommended: 4/5
Overall Rating: 4.5

Format & Pricing

Buy it at: Amazon
Paperback: $11.22 US
Kindle: $.99 US

Goodreads

 


 

 

 

@ColleenChesebro

www.SilverThreading.com

 

A @COLLEENCHESEBRO #BOOK #REVIEW “THE MISTREATMENT OF ZORA LANGSTON” by @REBIRTHOFLISA

Mistreatment of Zora Langston

Title:  The Mistreatment of Zora Langston

Author:  Lisa W. Tetting

Website: https://rebirthoflisa.wordpress.com/

ASIN:  B00URD7AKI

ISBN 13: 9780996142908

Published:  1 edition (March 15, 2015)

Pages:  163 pages

Genre:  Young Adult, Drama, Black Fiction, Coming of Age,

*A copy of this book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review, which follows.

At the tender age of nine years old, Zora Langston loses the most important person in her life, her father.  This one event, sets off a chain of events that is mind-boggling.  Zora is left with a mother who despises her, a sister who hates her, and a brother who does not even acknowledge her presence.  The death of Zora’s father is further exacerbated when her mother’s boyfriend moves in and takes his place as the head of the household.

Zora struggles to cope with the harsh treatment she receives, as the youngest child in the family.  Naïve as she is, Zora is forced to cope with adult situations that propel her into a new path in her life.  Through all of this, Zora remembers the love and the many lessons from her father, while relying on her faith to help her survive.

Eventually Zora finds the love and understanding she deserves from her Aunt and Uncle, who embrace her into their family.  Haunted by her past, Zora is forced to face old abusers, and new abusers.  Nevertheless, life goes on, and through love and trust Zora is lead to the truth of what it means to be part of a family.

Zora Langston tells this story with all the wisdom a nine-year-old girl can share.  The reader lives through her, and experiences what the child goes through on a daily basis.  I was visually shaken after the confrontation with her mother’s boyfriend.  Zora handles her circumstances with the grace and dignity of a true survivor.  I was drawn into Zora’s world.  I felt her pain and neglect, and her joy and sorrow.  All I wanted to do, was grab this child, hug her, and never let her go!

Lisa Tetting

Author, Lisa Tetting

There is sexual abuse and violence portrayed in the book.  However, it is my opinion that the author portrays this abuse realistically through the words of young Zora.  This is Lisa Tetting’s debut novel, and I believe she achieves her goal of showing how prevalent this type of abuse is in our society.

I was moved beyond words at the treatment Zora endured.  However, I found Zora’s courage and motivation to move forward and heal from her wounds, the most important message in the story.  If you love family drama, young adult literature, and stories that give you hope about life, look no further.  Zora Langston will fill your heart.

RATINGS
Realistic Characterization: 5/5
Made Me Think: 5/5
Overall enjoyment: 5/5
Readability: 4/5
Recommended: 4/5
Overall Rating: 4.5

Buy it at: Amazon
Format & Pricing:
Create Space – Paperback: $10.95 US
Kindle: $3.99 US

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@ColleenChesebro

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BOOK REVIEW BY @COLLEENCHESEBRO OF “IF ONLY” @NORMABUDDEN

Title:  “If Only”if-only-norma-budden-review-colleen-cheseboro

Author:  Norma Budden

ASIN:  B00S4GV7OU

Website:  normasbooks.com

Published:  February 14th 2015 by Smashwords Edition

Pages:  204 pages

Genre:  Romance, Contemporary Romance, Paranormal Romance,

*A copy of this book was provided to me by the author in exchange for an honest review, which follows.

Demi and David first meet in high school, where they fell in love at a young age.  In no time, Demi is pregnant and decides to hide the truth from David about their child, because she does not want to influence his decision to go to college to become a private investigator.  Instead, Demi takes it upon herself to have the child and give her up for adoption.  This decision comes at a price to Demi’s psyche.  Years later, she begins to have visions of her daughter, and feels an unexplainable need to find her child now, at any cost.

Compromising matters further, Demi is married to another man and has two children with him.  Searching for her daughter has brought no leads from the current investigators, so Demi turns to the only man she knows will help her find their daughter – David, her lost love from long ago, who is now a successful private investigator.

Demi finally tells David about their daughter.  David is also married to someone else with two children of his own.  Breaking the news to their spouses creates a story of intrigue and suspense with more twists and turns along the way.

Sharing in the story, is the child herself, Renee who feels she cannot connect with her parents, and never has.  Always the outsider, Renee wonders as an only child, if she was adopted.  Before long, Rene starts having dreams and experiences an uncontrollable urge to meet a strange man – her father, David.  As events unravel, Demi and David tumble through a maze of second chances, reconciliations, and realize many losses along the way.  Eventually they find the love of a real family.

Norma Budden

Image credit: Norma Budden

I felt great empathy for Demi and David, as they longed for the child they never knew.  It was important that each character felt the pull of Renee, the missing link to their family unit, and the author was able to convey that message to the reader.  I was drawn to the paranormal aspect of the dreams that Demi, David and Renee shared.  I felt like there was an unforeseen force willing them all to find each other to complete their family.

“If Only,” tugs at your heart, and I found myself rooting for them all to find each other and become the family they were meant to be.  Even though some of the events were predictable, and much time was spent inside the heads of the characters; I found myself caught up in the over powering human desire of ‘belonging’ that the author conveyed in her telling of the story.

This was an uplifting story of change and growth between two adults who felt the need to atone for decisions made as young adults.  Our past always follows us, and Norma Budden leads her readers on a journey of love and acceptance one will not soon forget.

RATINGSIf Only Norma Budden Book Cover
Realistic Characterization: 4/5
Made Me Think: 3/5
Overall enjoyment: 4/5
Readability: 3/5
Recommended: 4/5
Overall Rating: 4.0

Buy it at: Amazon
Format & Pricing:
Paperback: $9.99 US
Kindle: $2.99 US

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@ColleenChesebro

www.SilverThreading.com

 

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#Book #Review by @RonovanWries of If Only by @NormaBudden

If Only Norma Budden Book CoverIf Only explores the results a revelation of a secret has on the lives of so many people that I don’t even know if the author, Norma Budden, realizes what she’s done. When 16-year-old Demi discovered she was pregnant, she made a choice. Sixteen years later, Demi Glenn, wife and mother of two, contacts the child’s father, private investigator David Alexander, as he is preparing to go on a family outing with his wife and twin daughters. Her reason for contacting David: she has this unexplainable feeling that his baby girl he never knew of, that she gave up for adoption, needs to be found.

What happens in the span of a few hours is real and surreal at the same time. You don’t want to believe what happens but you know it can happen. Through it all you want Renee, the 16-year-old girl who never felt a part of her family’s world, to be found and meet the family she never knew and the siblings she always wanted.

Being a father, I identify with David. I am a David. As I read the book I wanted to stop reading. At times, I needed to stop reading, but I agreed to read and I continued. Was the writing and story that bad? No, they were that good. They nailed the feelings and thoughts perfectly.

I am a David. As an amnesiac, there are memories I don’t normally have access to, feelings buried deep for whatever reason. Protection? As I read If Only, feelings came rushing to me, feelings I hope I forget, but feelings I need to recall, at times. That’s how powerful this story is for me.

Renee is just like her parents, like her father, like David. There is a connection between these two that plays out in the story; it is pivotal to it all. If not for that connection and how it is handled the story wouldn’t be what it is.

Lying in a hospital over a year ago, I wanted to die or, perhaps, I was in a world that I was so confused about I didn’t want to be there. I was visited by a face, a girl’s face and a girl’s voice. I came home, and even though memories are not there, my own investigation made discoveries. Here I am being as productive as I can be.

If Only by Norma Budden brings all of that back to me and more. Isn’t that what a book should do? Shouldn’t a book make you look at the world in a new way, a way to better understand, a way to step back and look at yourself?

Of all the books I’ve read this past year, even books I’ve written, If Only is possibly closer to elements of my own life than anything I could ever write.

I met Norma through an author and mutual friend, a former investigator. Just as an investigator friend of David’s helped him, this friend helped two people come together so one story could bring a man to mourn and rejoice, yet pray all is forgotten at the same time. I wonder how many times I’ve done that. How many times I’ve relived moments to thankfully forget them and then be reminded again and again.

I thank Norma Budden for honoring me with reading her book in advance of its release. As of the reading of this book, of all I’ve read so far this past year, this is now my top pick.

Amazon: KindleRonovan Writes Book Review of if Only

Author Site: NormasBooks.com

Genre: Drama, Paranormal, Adult, Young Adult

Character Believability–5
Flow and Pace –5
Reader Engagement– 5
Reader Enrichment–5
Reader Enjoyment–5
Review Rating Results–5

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#BookReview @FTThum – Straight Jacket by Adrian Deans

This book was published in 2013, I read it at the end of that year…and re-read it recently.

It deserves a review. Why? Read on.

straight jacket

Title:             Straight Jacket
Author:          Adrian Deans
Publisher:     High Horse Books (7 August 2013)
ISBN-10:        0646906259
ISBN-13:        9780646906256
Website:        http://www.adriandeans.com/
Pages:           Paperback, 278 pages
Facebook:       https://www.facebook.com/StraightJacket242
Genre:            Fiction – Crime

 

What’s it about?

“If God is too indifferent, or too non-existent to take care of His creation, then clearly it’s up to Me.”

This is Morgen Tanjenz, a lawyer with a God complex, or maybe Devil complex… or simply misunderstood? As he intervenes in the lives of those around him, his life intersects with Detective Sergeant Peter ‘Blacksnake’ Fowler who has problems of his own not least the woman he loves is having an affair. With a serial killer on the loose, Fowler is under intense pressure, and the pressure valve is sure to explode when taunted by the likes of Morgen?

This is an edgy crime novel set in Sydney – dark and interspersed with moments of humour. The protagonist and other characters are quirky and believable, a twist from the usual crime novel characterisations.  And what’s with the cicada on the book cover…and the reference throughout to these insects prominent in the Sydney-scape in summer?

Deans once again has enthralled his readers with his dark sense of humour and unusual perspectives. A book for those willing to explore difference and open to the less than beautiful side of life – its sexual overtones and drugs usage. Morgen is not a lovable character, I don’t think, but captivating.  I want to be on his side. Compelling read as I begin to invest in Morgen’s life – curious to know what happens to him, not wanting anything negative to occur to him. Persuasive writing.

Definitely a worthwhile book to read, especially if you enjoy intense dark crime novels with drama and humour.

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

Buy it at:

Amazon Kindle USD 5.27
Bookdepository Paperback Not available at present
Booktopia Paperback AUD 21.25
eBook AUD 4.50

 

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BOOK REVIEW BY @ColleenChesebro OF “The Recluse Storyteller” @SASSEVN

Recluse Storyteller

(Image Credit: Amazon)

http://mwsasse.com/

Title:  The Recluse Storyteller
Author:  Mark W. Sasse
ISBN:  1492241253
ISBN13: 9781492241256
ASIN:  B00FOBQ464
Published:  October 6, 2013 Kindle Edition
Pages:  239
Genre:  fiction, suspense, drama

When I first met Margaret Pritcher, the recluse storyteller, I was not sure what to think.  At first I thought she was a psychic, or even mentally challenged, because she somehow spiritually channeled deeply buried secrets from some of the apartment dwellers in her building by weaving their stories into her own life.  I was intrigued by her storytelling methods. 

Margaret is an outsider in the world she lives in. A typical recluse, she worked at an online job to support herself.  She only went outside her apartment at night, when she thought she would not run into people she knew.  Her strangeness works for her benefit though, and I felt like I wanted to protect her because of the way she was portrayed. 

Not far into the book, I realized that she could not control when or where these stories came from.  They seemed to flow from her very soul, almost as if she was possessed.  Each of the stories Margaret told seemed to intertwine within each person’s own personal story.  With the reciting of each narrative, Margaret became weaker and weaker as her own life unraveled from her dedication to her story telling. Through the telling of these stories, Margaret and her friends find the wisdom to face their own demons and to accept themselves for the people they had become in this life.

From “Red Hat,” Mr. Cheevers, Mrs. Johnson and her twins Pam and Sam, to the Reverend Davies, and Janice, Margaret’s only living relative, I felt myself drawn into the intertwining threads of their lives and the moments that seemed to define each of them.  The story of the Vietnam Veteran gave me a glimpse into a world torn with war, split second decision making, and remorse at the hand of fate.  I was deeply moved by the journey each character took in the story telling. 

Mark Sasse writes with an unusual narrative, almost akin to stream of consciousness writing, which pairs nicely with Margaret’s personality. At first, I felt like the book was hard to follow.  Nevertheless, I found the characters to be mark_w_sasse.jpgintriguing, and the more I read the more I began to understand how the writing style was all about Margaret and the telling of her stories.

I felt the book emphasized how much we all share together in the realm of humanity.  Just as the lives of the characters in this book intertwined, so do our lives with many other people.  In addition, I felt that each character seemed to have a lesson to learn.  I could see that our lives are just that, a series of events which teach us something about ourselves we did not know to begin with.

I immensely enjoyed this book and the style that it was written in.  Mark Sasse’s attention to detail made Margaret and the cast of characters realistic in my eyes.  I would recommend this book to anyone who is searching for the answers and meaning in everyday life. 

 

Ratings:
Realistic Characterization: 5/5
Made Me Think: 4/5
Overall enjoyment: 5/5
Readability: 4/5
Recommended: 4/5
Overall Rating: 4.5
 

Buy it at:  Amazon
Format & Pricing:
Paperback:  $9.89 New
Kindle: Free

 

Colleen Chesebro

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She was never going back. #Book #Review of Deception by Eloise De Sousa @mello_elo

Title: Deceptiondeception_body_bag
Author: Eloise De Sousa
ISBN-10: 1291547955
ISBN-13: 978-1291547955
http://eloisedesousa.wordpress.com/
Pages: 234
Genre: Adult Crime-Romance

 

What’s it about?

Deception is a story about facing your past and learning to trust.

Amanda Glenson has a nice life working in a law firm in London while raising her 5 year old son Zachary. Unfortunately for her, a past that sent her fleeing from her home, her country on another continent, has finally caught up with her. There is no way around facing it; she must return home to Zimbabwe.

Enter Alex Edwards a lawyer brought in specifically to handle a situation in Zimbabwe for the law firm Amanda works for. Sparks fly between the two, only for Alex to discover he will be taken along for the ride into Amanda’s past, a coincidence that fate brings about. Two people with tainted pasts join together in a quest to find truth.

Highlights of the Book

236 pages of every kind of emotion keeps you reading.  The suspense makes you want to read it in one sitting. Who did what? How are Amanda and Alex connected? What is the Deception? And how does little Zachary play a role in the story?

De Sousa brings a realistic feel to the story and her imagery is perfect. She writes what she knows–London and Africa. Authentic in her knowledge of her environment, she carries you along on a tour of her image memories. This in part is what makes it a good, easy flowing read.

The deception title is all through the book in so many ways you have to keep guessing what is the deception. You won’t guess but you can try.

Romance, desire, heat, and all done well with taste and great imagery that gives you just enough to let you become part of the story, but not so much to drive you away from it. Very well done, classy.

Challenges of the Book

There are several interesting characters that could have greater depths in personality and add to the story. There were some opportunities for the male protagonist, Alex, to have done more on several levels. That being said some of the emotional aspects of the character were perfect.

What do you get from it?

Trust is a hard thing to do.

What would I change if anything?

I would have used Alex a little more and turned up either a bit more of the action or perhaps liked to have seen a little more intense dialogue exchanges to increase the tension that made the insides twist wanting more.

Who would I recommend this book to?

The book is classified as a Adult Crime Romance, but to me, it could also be classified as Suspense Drama. There are Romance elements in the book but are not driving points of the story. When Romance is part of the story, it is done very well.

Ratings:product_thumbnail.php4
Realistic Characterization: 5/5
Made Me Think: 3/5
Overall enjoyment: 3/5
Readability: 4/5
Recommended: 4/5
Ovearall Rating: 3.8

 

Buy it at:
 Amazon
Format & Pricing:
Paperback: 8.41 USD
Kindle: .99 USD
Alternate Purchsing:

Amazon U.K., Lulu.com

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Q&A Jo Robinson African Me & Satellite TV @jorobinson176

AM Cover V1 - CopyAfrican Me & Satellite TV

Jo Robinson

“Even though this is not the type of story I would normally read, I enjoyed the other three different themed books by this author (Fly Birdie, The Visitation and Shadow People) so much that I decided to try this latest one – and I’m glad I did, because it let me see yet another aspect of her talent as a writer.”-Chris Graham

The author has done a masterful job describing a wide range of characters. The artistic Suzette, the rugged men who work the land, the cook, maid, and tragic gardner – all have distinct personalities that leapt off the page. Enter the villainous couple who I wanted the smack from the moment I met them.”-Mark Myers

There is never a dull moment in the Hertzog household, which consists of Suzette, her loving husband Herman, their cook, Precious, the gardener, Christopher and their dog and cat who are like their children.
The novel is set in today’s Zimbabwe and Suzette, the main character – a white woman of Afrikaner heritage – cares a lot about justice and despises prejudice of any sort. Her problem is that she doesn’t want to rock the boat, is scared of most things but especially public speaking.
When the Shermans move in next door, with their ugly, racist and mean attitude, Suzette is beginning to find it difficult to contain her rage.”-Carol Balawyder

 

I met my guest today through what I call Blog World, the land of blogdom. We followed each other and enjoyed each others posts. Then I discovered she was an author and . . . of course . . . I had to ask for an interview. I don’t ask everyone, but she’s an amazing lady and I find her posts enjoyable and I needed to find out more. So without any more from me, it’s time to meet . . .

Jo Robinson

Jo Robinson (2)

 

RW: Tell us where you’re from?

JO: I was born in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, but spent most of my childhood in Johannesburg and my

twenties in Cape Town.  After that I lived in Zimbabwe – out in the rural lands – until last year, when I

came back home to South Africa.  And very happy to be back, even though I’ll never forget the people

I met, the adventures I had, and the lessons that Zimbabwe taught me.

 

 

RW: And who would you say are your favorite authors?

JO: There aren’t many genres that I don’t like to read, so my favorite authors probably look a little mismatched.  I’ve always loved horror, with Stephen King at the top of that pile for me. 

Ever since I read Carpet People by Terry Pratchett when I was young, I’ve been madly in love with that man –I’ve read most of his books at least three times each. 

I’m a big sci-fi and fantasy fan too, so James Herbert, Asimov of course, Anne McCaffrey, and Piers Anthony are major faves. 

I also love Joanna Trollope’s gentle style of writing, and Philippa Gregory’s historical books.

 

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

JO: I very seldom drink anything other than water during the day – boring, I know, I know, but I’m a big fan of wildly colored cocktails with umbrellas and swizzle sticks in them for now and then, and champagne and orange with breakfast now and then is not a bad thing at all.

 

 

RW: What is your favorite word?

JO: Goodness!  I never knew I had one, but the first word that pops up now is love.  It’s the answer to most questions and problems after all.

 

 

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

JO: I started writing quite abruptly a couple of years ago.  I never thought about it, or planned it.  It just happened.  I was sitting at the kitchen table writing out a shopping list, and it went something like: Milk – Bread – Bog Roll – and then the first few paragraphs of African Me & Satellite TV happened. I’ve never changed them either.  The way they are now in the book is the way that they came out then.  I’d actually forgotten until recently, that I had just started a new job as a reporter for a small town newspaper when I was eighteen, and I got to interview the junior Miss Bethal and write up the article just before my mother passed away.  It was published without any editing and I got a pat on the back for a job well done, but things got a bit crazy after that and writing never occurred to me again.

Reading on the other hand – I did that all the time.

 

 

RW: What is your escape from writing when you are at that about to explode point?

JO: I have quite a lot of loves, and fortunately these days my writing helps to bring them all together.  I paint, and cook, and garden, and just lately I’m trying my hand at photography and digital painting too.  The art and the photography aren’t guilty pleasures because those two things will hopefully help with future covers and book projects, but being out in the sun, or spending hours in a kitchen full of gorgeous aromas are pretty good explosion stoppers for me.

(I have to intrude, I now want to be in her kitchen.)

 

 

RW: What genre does African Me & Satellite TV fall into?

JO: Fictional Drama

 

 

RW: Tell us a little about your book.

JO: It’s about heartbreak caused by hatred and racism, and about healing with love and courage.

“For many years Suzette has managed very well to live her life without actually taking part in

it, avoiding any possibility of pain by very carefully ignoring reality. Until something happens.

Something so terrible that she has no choice but to abandon her cocoon of safety.

After the brutal beating of an elderly domestic worker, Suzette takes her in, and sets off a chain of events that leads to devastating heartbreak. And then an unexpected hero changes everything.

Finally finding her voice, she speaks out, and her world explodes, culminating in the death of a very special man.

On her path to make amends, she discovers the story of his life, connects with the people of his past, and finds the chance to fully live her life once again if that’s what she chooses to.”

 

 

RW: What inspired the book?

JO: I saw a terrible verbal racist attack take place on a street in Zimbabwe.  White person screaming abuse – black person standing silently looking at the ground until the white person made an exit with screeching wheels bouncing off the pavement.  It sort of smacked me in the face then that we had all just stood and gaped.  Not a single one of us had uttered a word or stepped in, when somebody really, really should have.  The foulness of that incident stayed in the back of my mind for a long time, and eventually became the inspiration for African Me.

 

 

RW: Tell us about your main character(s) and what you think will them connect to readers.

JO: hey’re human, and they have flaws.  Suzette has quite a few to be honest, and until you get to know her you might want to give her a little shake or two.  Christopher has suffered a great deal in his life, and fallen at one of life’s hurdles, so he’s also flawed.  But they have strengths too.  I think that all of the characters in this story came to life with their own very distinctive traits – good, bad, or just plain odd, and I’m pretty fond of most of them, warts and all.

 

 

RW: Who would play your main character(s) in a movie?

JO: Funny you should ask that – it has occurred to me.  I suppose all of us scribblers consider that now and then.  I would go for Charlize Theron and Morgan Freeman – in fact they were made for these roles!  Hang on a bit – just off to email them…..

charlize_theron morgan_freeman

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

JO: That all humans need to respect all other humans as equals, and treat them as such, because at the end of the day it is the truth.  And that when some who feel so terribly superior to others have hatred in their hearts, and act out on it, only sorrow and loss can result.

 

 

RW: Describe your book in one word.

JO: That’s a sneaky one!  I think it will have to be “Live”, as in – Live your life.

RW: Where can we get your book now?

JO: There are several options:

Amazon

Smashwords

Barnes & Noble

iTunes

 

 

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

JO: Mainly through my blog, which is my favourite place to be online, and I have Contact Me pages there and also on my website.  Google+ is lovely and interactive, and Twitter is great for chats.  I don’t have much time to spend on Facebook these days, although I’m going to try and make some.  The problem with Facebook is that once you open it up, you fly through some sort of warped and twisted portal that turns what you think are minutes into hours. And of there is also Goodreads.

 

RW: Do you currently have representation? If so who, and if not describe what qualities you would like in an agent and what you would bring to the relationship.

JO: I’ve never looked for an agent or publisher, and the couple that offered didn’t look overly fantastic to me.  I’ve worked very hard to learn what I know now about independent publishing, so I would have to be offered a very good deal to hand over the reins to any of my work, and with my control issues I don’t think that I’d be easy to work with.  I wouldn’t like to work with me that way.  Apart from my short story with Springbok Publications I only represent myself.  Like it like that.

 

 

SP2 The Hunger - Version 1 2

 

RW: What are you working on right now?

JO: I’ve had a lot of major interruptions to my work this past year and things have piled up, so I’m working on polishing three books at the moment, and I’ll publish all of them within weeks of each other probably.  The Hunger is the second book in my Shadow People series.  Emmaline, which is the first in my Ghost Writer collection, and a third, which even though it does have a title, I probably won’t share that until I publish it.  Or maybe I will – just not yet.

 

RW: What book are you reading at this time?

JO: I have a large pile of indie published books that I’m reading my way through to review right now on my Kindle, but at the same time I’m slowly reading the paper version of Further Along The Road Less Travelled by M. Scott Peck.  I loved the first book, and this one is also the kind of book that takes time to read in little bits, because of all the long pauses to stop and think a while.

 

 

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

JO: Write it and then do it.  For an indie published writer, my advice would definitely be not to publish the book that you’ve been slaving away on for years first.  Publish a shorter story to begin with to learn the ropes a little, figure out how things work, see how other authors are marketing their books, and then head on in with your novel.  Especially if you don’t already have much of an online presence -you’ll be to talking to the wall if there’s nobody in the room to buy your book.  Also, don’t be shy to ask for help with the technical bits.  Writers are kind souls, and they are mostly all willing to help you with your first time round.

 

 

RW: If you could have written any book that exists, other than your own, what would it be and why?

JO: I can think of a couple that I would have liked to have watched being written so I could get inside their authors heads, but I can’t think of any that I would have liked to have written myself – apart from Harry Potter because if I had I’d be rolling in dough and have all the time in the world to write my own stuff, and not have to worry about crusts of bread and so on.

 

~~~~

I would like to thank Jo for agreeing to the interview today and I am going to be begging for her to come back when it’s time for the release of her new books. I think when she described her book in one were she was describing what she does. I think we can all agree that Jo Robinson does live a life to its fullest.

 

GET HER BOOKS Starting Saturday September 20, 2014 for .99 and FREE for Kindle. See our other note about it.

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Much Respect

Ronovan

 

 

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One decision can be a life changer: Book Review of The Convenience of Lies by @KCastilloBooks

Title: The Convenience of Lies
Author: Kimberly Castillo
ISBN-13: 978-9527114476
ISBN-10: 9527114470
Website:  http://www.kacastillo.blogspot.com/
Pages: 242
Genre: Young Adult (YA) Romance/Suspense/Drama

It’s 2013 and Mackenzie begins a letter to her old friend Kira. It’s 10 years after the events that changed their lives. The book then begins with new girl in town, Mackenzie and local girl, Kira as best friends forever, and then there is Ramon, a crush and ex-boyfriend in a small California town. The three send us on a trip of real teen life and feelings mixed with some unexpected surprises along the way with a group of vandals and thieves thrown in who make their attacks personal. Who has it in for these three friends?  This story is told in an authentic teenage voice as Mackenzie Fairbanks recalls that particular summer before her senior year in high school.

The book flows well taking the reader  from one chapter to the next. It is an absorbing  read, well written not only in story but in structure and grammar as well. The author conveys vivid emotions and dialogue throughout the book, with captivating prose for example, scenes describing a character’s intoxication and the resulting actions that are spot on. I like the fact you don’t notice the writing. You are in the story and there are no odd moments where you wonder what is that word doing there.

The emotional content within the book is realistic and appropriate as scenes transition well.  The emotional jolt near the end is handled exactly right, as one would expect such a situation to be in real life. The emotional moments throughout the book are presented in an amazingly genuine teen/coming of age point of view.

The story keeps ones attention and you want to see what happens and to whom.

Was I surprised by events in the book? Not entirely as the author provided sufficient clues for the discerning reader to figure things out.

Just to let those who might purchase this as a gift without reading it first, there is some profanity used, but we are talking about teens. Some teens of certain environments grow up using certain language while others do it to be cool. I believe the author handled this well as she doesn’t have every character do it, an excellent job in my opinion. And to be honest, if there hadn’t been any profanity it would not have been an authentic book.

You are inside the main characters head a lot, but that’s to be expected in the type of story being told. This is a diary type of story. The only time I really had any problems with it was in the very beginning where things were being set up for us to know what is going on. Once past that first chapter or two of setting things up, the story takes off and you are ready to go.

Reading The Convenience of Lies shows you what is possible inside the life of teens. And I do mean what is truly possible. Having been a teacher and youth pastor I know what can happen. The reader will identify or recognize the struggles teenagers encounter in their world, how they perceive themselves, and that lessons have to be learned in their own time no matter how painful they may be or who they may hurt. Do you lose a best friend, a crush, a dream?

Read The Convenience of Lies by Kimberly Castillo and experience a slice of teenagers’ world through what happens to Mackenzie and her friends.

The elements about where McKenzie is as an adult and how she got to that point are things you need to think about as you read the book. The Convenience of Lies is more than you think if  you know what to look for going in.

If I were to categorize the book it would be difficult to say. Young Adult? Yes. Marital Issues? Yes. Although not a category. Domestic Abuse? Yes. That can be defined in many different ways so don’t jump to a conclusion there.

Ratings:

Realistic Characterization: 5K.A. Castillo/5

Made Me Think: 3.5/5

Overall enjoyment: 3.5/5

Readability: 4/5

Recommended: 4/5

Ovearall Rating: 4

Buy it at: Amazon

Format & Pricing:

Paperback: 10.46 USD

Kindle: 2.99 USD

Author Kimberly Castillo

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