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Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category

New 5-star review for “A Long and Winding Road”

Linda Brendle’s A Long and Winding Road: A Caregiver’s Tale of Life, Love, and Chaos cleverly uses a fifty-three day RV road trip as a vehicle for readers to glimpse the ups and downs of Alzheimer’s erratic world. This heartwarming story of a daughter’s devotion to her mother and father is inspirational. The author draws upon spiritual courage to meet nonstop challenges. She tempers the seriousness of the subject matter by sprinkling pages with humor. And, Linda Brendle flawlessly weaves her personal growth journeys to add depth to this enjoyable read. I highly recommend this work.

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On sale for 99 cents!

Blessings,

Linda

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Book Review: Roachville by Marianne Germain

Roachville Cover

About the book:

Translator Annika Roy is bored with life and just going through the motions when a mysterious artefact comes crashing into her lonely existence, forcing her to interact with the outside world again.

But there’s danger there, and Annika must decide whether to follow the handsome but shady Kenneth Tann on his obsessive quest, or to trust an enigmatic mother-daughter duo and their two aborigine bodyguards.

It’s a journey from the mundane to the weird—on a road with twists, turns, and more than a few bumps.

My review:

Roachville by Marianne Germain grabbed my attention from the beginning and is largely responsible for my antisocial behavior during family gatherings the last few days. This mystery with a touch of the paranormal kept me looking for moments when I could open my Kindle and see what happened next. Annika Roy, the quirky, sarcastic main character and her group of equally fascinating friends added humor, romance, and suspense to this fun read. For my old-fashioned taste, the author could have included less pot and alcohol, but I appreciated her restraint in leaving most of the details of the few intimate moments to my imagination. I would not hesitate to recommend Roachville, and I look forward to more of Ms. Germain’s work.

Marianne Germain Head Shot

About the author:

95% translator, 5% writer, Marianne Germain lives with her partner, their 2 daughters, one dog and a cat, in a small village in the South of France. She likes music, tennis and her electric bike.

Find the author on Facebook and Twitter

Buy Roachville at Amazon 

Blessings,

Linda

Book Review: Earth to Centauri: The First Journey by Kumar L

Cover Earth to Centauri

About the book:

The year is 2095. Voyager 1, launched in 1977 with its golden record, has been found by someone. They’ve sent a signal back to Earth.

With a newly constructed faster than light spaceship ‘Antariksh’, Captain Anara reaches the source of the signal, the nearest star to Earth – Proxima Centauri. Her crew includes novices such as Lt. Manisha, and seasoned professionals, including Commander Ryan. But before she can even meet with the aliens, Anara must clear obstacles on her own ship, including a recalcitrant Artificial Intelligence and inexplicable radiation, which threatens the safety of the mission.

The implications of what they find on planet Proxima B will resonate far beyond this first journey exposing Earth to dangers on an unimaginable scale. And then Captain Anara finds out that there was a secret buried aboard Voyager 1 by its creators.

My review:

SciFi is not usually one of my preferred genres, but I thoroughly enjoyed Earth to Centauri: The First Journey. This fast-paced space adventure reminded me of the original Star Trek series and kept me turning the pages. As a fan of flash-backs in my own writing, I enjoyed the way the author used them to weave the back story in with the main narrative. The characters and the interpersonal relationships were a little flat, also reminiscent of the Star Trek crew. In addition, there were a few missing prepositions and articles as well as a few incorrect idioms that made me aware that English is not the author’s first language. Still, I would not hesitate to recommend this book to any reader who is looking for an entertaining read, and I look forward to the next journey from Earth to Centauri.

 

About the author:

Kumar L Head ShotKumar is an engineer by education and passionate about manufacturing. He has spent decades in a full time corporate role. He is a tech enthusiast and social media newbie. He loves travelling and is fluent in 7 languages. With a Utopian outlook on the future and a desire to make science fiction a bit more realistic, he has brought out his first book ‘Earth to Centauri’.

Surprisingly, his books on science fiction are simple and easy to read and understand for a wide range of age groups. They are based on themes of adventure, thrill and drama with a positive outlook at what the future may hold for humanity.

He is currently working on the second book of the series to be released in December 2017 and translations of his first book to reach a wider audience.

He can be reached on Twitter  or on Facebook 

Buy at Amazon

Blessings,

Linda

Book Review of A Long and Winding Road

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If you love bargains, the digital edition of A Long and Winding Road: A Caregiver’s Tale of Life, Love, and Chaos is on sale for just $.99!

A review by Mary Beth Magee of Reviews and Opinions and the Writing World: 

A book every caregiver should read by a woman who has been there

What do you do when the world you thought you knew starts shifting out from under you? 

That’s the dilemma that confronted author Linda Brendle. She faced a husband in career turmoil, a mother in the throes of Alzheimer’s and a father suffering from vascular dementia. As a potential cross-country move loomed, she and her husband made a decision to take an extended trip in an RV with her parents.

The result of that trip became “The Long and Winding Road.” Brendle moves back and forth between the trip and memories of past activities to show the way personal history influences personal present and perceptions. Her extraordinary memoir should be on every caregiver’s “must read” list.

As someone who has cared for a mother with Alzheimer’s, I identified immediately with Brendle’s situation. She doesn’t sugarcoat the problems, but she shows a path through them. Her poignant and heartfelt story can offer a glimmer of hope to anyone in the situation.

If you face a caregiving role, look for “The Long and Winding Road: A Caregiver’s Tale of Life, Love and Chaos” by Linda Brendle. The book will provide an understanding shoulder, a cheerleader and a frequent “I know how that feels” chuckle. Her deep faith perspective will encourage you in your own faith walk. I wish I had this book when my mother was still with me.

A LONG AND WINDING ROAD: A Caregiver’s Tale of Life, Love, and Chaos is the story of the chaos that happens when four people, two of whom have Alzheimer’s, spend fifty-three days in a 400-square-foot box on wheels.

A LONG AND WINDING ROAD: A Caregiver’s Tale of Life, Love, and Chaos

Available at:

B&N // Kobo // iTunes // Amazon // Smashwords

Blessings,

Linda

 

Book Review: The Grievance Collectors: A Sip of Death by Karla Hull

Cover A Sip of Death

About the book:

When a lifetime of grievances becomes unbearable, deadly consequences will follow. Revenge, secrets, and meticulously kept journals hold the key to solving the mystery of three unexplained deaths at Harrison University. Were these tragic deaths from natural consequences or is something more sinister lurking in the halls of HU? Dr. Bridget O’Leary, the new Provost at HU, doesn’t believe in coincidences. Although Bridget is tormented by the recent murder of her husband, she will have to put her personal pain aside and grapple with solving this puzzle before she becomes one of the victims.

While the HU campus is still dealing with the mysterious deaths of a student and two professors, an active shooter drill becomes an opportunity for attempted murder. Bridget realizes she will need to add a gun to her administrative toolbox as she works with Hazel Mars, a university police officer, Sam Adams, a city police detective, and Nathan Radford, a troubled student to find the person responsible for terrorizing the campus.

The Grievance Collectors: A Sip of Death is the first book in the series and although it is fiction, it may remind you of events and characters from your own university experience. Every university has its secrets.

My Review:

A Sip of Death by Karla Hull was an entertaining read and a good start to Hull’s venture into publishing. The characters were fairly well developed, and the plot was full of twists and surprises that kept me turning pages. That said, there were several issues that kept this from being a four-star offering. Because the plot was so intricate, the transitions from one thread to the other were not always smooth and were hard to follow. In addition, some sub-plots were introduced and then just disappeared. There were time jumps and point-of-view shifts that were a bit disconcerting, and some of the references to southern culture seemed a bit contrived and didn’t always ring true. Still, the story and writing are strong, and the issues I mentioned could be ironed out with the help of a good developmental editor. I did enjoy the book and would recommend it to mystery fans who don’t demand perfection. I look forward to reading more of Hull’s work in the future.

Author Headshot

About the Author:

Karla Hull is a mystery writer, professor, mother, and avid consumer of mysteries in books and film. She has spent 30 years working with students and faculty in a variety of university settings and incorporates humorous, poignant, and terrifying experiences into her mysteries.

After being an administrator at a university that experienced the murder of a young student, Karla vowed to write a complex mystery series that revealed some of the shadier sides of university life. Her characters operate in a university setting but they have the universal characteristics of greed, anger, revenge, and love that will resonate with with all mystery readers.

Find the author:

Twitter: @karlamhull
Blog: http://www.karlamhull.com

Buy the book at Amazon

Blessings,

Linda

Book Review: Chasing Symmetry (Riley’s Peak Series Book 1) by Tempeste Blake

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About the Book:

When art professor Bianca James tries to save a dying woman, the grudge-holding chief of police is all too quick to catapult her to the top of the suspect list. As if that isn’t enough, her ex-boyfriend’s younger brother, Finn Tierny, is assigned to the case, and she’s faced with a trilogy of dilemmas: go head to head with the chief, stop a cold-blooded killer on her own, or trust another Tierny.

Finn’s return to Riley’s Peak is bittersweet. He’s flooded with memories, both good and bad, as he battles doubts about being a cop, a cantankerous father, a jealous brother, and a drug dealer with a rap-sheet longer than the list of addicts he’s been supplying.

Threats escalate, the suspect list grows, and it becomes clear—the murderer’s resolve to kill Bianca is almost as strong as Finn’s desire to keep her alive.

Almost.

My Review:

Chasing Symmetry by Tempeste Blake is a venture into the world of art, academia, and intrigue. It is a world filled with interesting characters like Bianca, the art professor and unwilling crime scene investigator; Finn, the tough cop caught between his feelings for his prime suspect and his loyalty to his brother; and Helen, the ageless hippie/mystic next door. The story kept my attention from the beginning, making me look for excuses to pick up my Kindle again. I was a little disappointed in the climactic scene because many of the mysteries were exposed and explained through narrative rather than action. Still, it was a great read, and I look forward to reading Book 2 of the Riley’s Peak Series.

About the Authors:

When Nancy Smith and Cat Trizzino met in an online writers’ group, their individual styles blended to a shared vision. Though they live in different states, Nancy in Michigan, Cat in Maryland, their passion for well-crafted stories makes the physical distance irrelevant. Tempeste Blake is the result of their combined voices, an author who writes grab-the-tissue-box, heart-in-your-throat romantic suspense and loves to throw her characters into the deep end to see if they sink or swim.

Chasing Symmetry and Chasing Gravity, the first two stand-alone novels in the Riley’s Peak series, are currently available in paperback and ebook formats. Tempeste is busy crafting more stories inspired by the characters she’s come to know and love. Stay tuned to see who she pushes into the deep end next.

Please stop by http://www.tempesteblake.com to chat about the story, characters, or whatever. And if you’d like to share your opinion with other readers in a review on Amazon or Goodreads, well, there’s a double dose of good karma coming your way.

Find Chasing Symmetry at Amazon 

Blessings,

Linda

Book Review: The Borman Factor: A Nick Borman Thriller by Robert Lalonde

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About the book:

A member of the wealthy and influential Piermont family is brutally murdered in a public place. Two weeks after the assassination authorities have no witnesses, no leads and no motive for the crime.

The Piermonts hire Nick Borman, a specialist in corporate espionage, to bring the killer to justice. A tangled web of deceit unfolds as Borman discovers greed and corruption at the highest level.

From city hall to the depths of Toronto’s criminal underworld, Nick Borman is in hot pursuit of a cold-blooded killer.

My review (four stars out of five):

The Borman Factor by Robert Lalonde is a very entertaining read with exceptional moments sprinkled in. It is a bit uneven in the beginning, but the first chapter was very well done – tight, intense, relying on a well-told story rather than gratuitous gore. The next few chapters basically laid the groundwork and introduced characters, mostly through dialogue. Using conversation in such a major role requires a lot of finesse that was lacking in these few chapters. Although I detected some faint Sam Spade undertones, the stilted exchanges were a bit distracting.

Once the preliminaries were out of the way, however, and Nick Borman stepped into the spotlight, Lalonde shifted into a more narrative mode. The pace picked up and smoothed out, and I was able to lose myself in the twists and turns of this fast paced thriller. The Borman Factor is a promising debut into a new genre for the author, and I look forward to Book 2.

About the author:

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Robert Lalonde is the author of The Borman Factor (A Nick Borman Thriller, Book 1).

He is currently writing Jinxed (A Nick Borman Thriller, Book 2).

He lives in Ontario, Canada with his wife Marianne.

Find Robert here:

Website

Facebook

Twitter 

Goodreads

Find the book at Amazon 

Blessings,

Linda

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