Member Book Reviews – #RRBC

Welcome to RRBC Member Reviews!  We know you’ve probably shared it on Amazon (or, maybe Amazon took your review down and are refusing to put it back up for whatever reason), but we’d also love to know what you thought of the RRBC books you’ve read.

Please leave the title of your book, the author of the book and your review (along with your star-rating) down below in the comments section.  Before you leave, we’d also appreciate you clicking the share buttons on this page and sending it to all your social media platforms!  Members who have had reviews removed from Amazon will get credit if they share their reviews here.

Happy Reviewing!

Flipping Over Honest Reviews

 

850 thoughts on “Member Book Reviews – #RRBC”

  1. I’m on a reading roll! Over the weekend, I reviewed three short stories. We certainly have some talented authors in this club!

    “And the Music Played,” by Nonnie Jules. Greed, betrayal, romance, and detective work are successfully combined to create a short story that grabs the reader and doesn’t let go. We meet each character, as he or she tells the story through his or her own point of view, and what a story it is. Giani is married to Lena but loves Christine. Christine is in love with Giani, but married to an abusive older man. Lena, loves Giani’s money, and also loves the attention of other men. Felons, hit men and a couple of cool detectives complete the cast of characters. Although predictable, the end is satisfying and justice triumphs, which always makes me smile.

    “Turn the Light On” by Pat Garcia. “Turn the Light on” is a well-written short story that creates an unusual twist within an unusual romance. Della spends a year of her life involved in a relationship with a man to whom she’s never spoken, never met and whose name she doesn’t know. She thinks of it as a game. Dinners at different tables, within view of each other, but without conversation are the highlight of their unique relationship. However, when Della discovers that her personal bank account has been accessed, she becomes worried. Is her elusive friend responsible? When, by accident, she discovers the identity of her dinner companion, it frightens her, and she wonders if she will be able to escape from the game. The answer becomes clear, when he finally confronts her, and I was gripped by the escalating tension during that confrontation, and cheered the ultimate result.

    “Unhinged,” by John Podlasky. I remember drive-in movie theaters and I also remember the release of “Night of the Living Dead.” The author did an excellent job setting the stage for a five star story that brought back some five star memories. Those grainy old films, with the tinny outdoor speakers could turn the fright level up high, as it did for two teenage boys, who became “Unhinged” in this must-read short story.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Good day all. I posted my 5 star review on Pat Garcia’s first book Turn the Light on and wished I had more stars I could add as an option. Simply Superb Pat. It is now on Amazon and begins… Author Pat Garcia creates a compelling short story in her first book release! Della Cartwright is an ideal, believable character who finds herself in the middle of a strange situation born of loneliness and a chance at a relationship…

    Everyone grab a copy of a unique story; Take, care

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Happy Friday, all! I just completed a 5* review for Pat Garcia’s new book, TURN THE LIGHT ON. Here it is in its entirety which can found on Amazon and other book-related websites:

    What’s it like to have weekly dinners at fancy restaurants with a man that doesn’t allow you to sit at the same table or even converse? His method of communication is to leave marked passages in different books on your table. This ‘game’ has continued for over a year and Della, a black fifty-something-year-old, heavy-set woman, knew nothing about him. However, he knew quite a lot about her.

    This morning, on the news, Della saw a story about a group of terrorists who were killed by a specialty anti-terrorist government group. The specialists were all hooded, yet Della swears that one of them is her weekly dinner mate because of his unique eye color. Shortly afterward, upon her return home, she finds him sitting in her dark living room, and they speak to each other for the first time. He is still cryptic about his intentions, but all her questions will soon be answered.

    The author does an excellent job at setting up the descriptive scenes, adding sentences such as a plane flying overhead, curtains blowing in the breeze, and many others. One criticism is that at the beginning of the story, the author refers to a parking lot as a ‘car park’ which led me to believe that the story was taking place in Europe, then the rest of the story uses the American equivalent. I would think that the references should all be one or the other. I might be wrong…

    Otherwise, TURN THE LIGHT ON is an intriguing story that keeps readers guessing about her dinner mate’s intentions. It flowed well and was error-free. Great job, Pat. Looking for more of your stories in the future.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Good Morning John,
      Thank you for the five-star review. I sincerely appreciate it and I loved how you expressed your thoughts.
      Thank you also for the criticism also. I agree with you. I have a hard time staying in the same English language because so many of the people that I deal with here in Germany speak different English languages. My South African girlfriend often laughs about our misunderstandings even though we’re speaking the same language. Then I have a dear Scottish friend where I just seem to get lost. I have to be more watchful about that and I thank you for pointing it out.

      I also got Amazon Germany approval for the review I did on Unhinged. I gave it 5 stars and I have posted it to this blog in a separate post.

      Have a great weekend, and I hope to see you at Raters Not Haters.

      Shalom aleichem

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Amazon posted my review of Karen Black’s story, Treacherous Love: A Short Story of Misdirected Love, Feb. 24, 2021
    https://www.amazon.com/review/R2LAKWFCS8MEC8/ref=pe_1098610_137716200_cm_rv_eml_rv0_rv

    Here is the text;
    Author Karen Black has pushed the secrets of domestic violence to the forefront with her work of fiction, Treacherous Love: A Short Story of Misdirected Love. Depicting an insincere love fueled by jealousy, the author challenges the idea that the male rather than the female in a relationship always initiates domestic violence. Told from the husband’s point of view, Black reveals how wife Rochelle wreaks havoc on the home by abusing her husband Ethan.

    The author has put her degree in criminal justice to good use by creating believable characters and a scenario that reveals what happens in some homes behind closed doors. The conclusion is credible, though some readers may be surprised by how the story ends.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I reviewed “The Enigma Factor,” by Breakfield and Burkey Murder, romance, cyber crime and international intrigue are combined to create an excellent read. The writing style and realistic situations drew me in from the first pages, but when organized crime entered the story, my enthusiasm increased. The authors do an excellent job of character development, with personalities varied and memorable. As the tension builds, the story explodes. We learn about the family business, and some surprising connections among a few of the major players. I hope Nikkei makes a future appearance or two.

    I am a technological klutz. This novel, however, provided an education in cyber crime that, while a bit frightening, was quite interesting, and completely understandable. This initial installment of a twelve book series is the first techno thriller I’ve read, yet it may have me hooked on that genre, at least for The Enigma series. Well done!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Good afternoon! I have posted my 4****Star review of TURN THE LIGHT ON by Pat Garcia. Here is my review which is now on Amazon.com and also has made it to NONNIE’S RAVE REVIEWS forum!!!…

    4****Stars!!  The Light Is On For Me!

    When I opened this cute little read, my lips began to curve into a smile from the first paragraph. I knew then that the rest of the story would hold me until the very end – and I wasn’t wrong.

    Della Cartwright is a top-notch professional in her industry and damned good at what she does. But, when she takes up meeting with a stranger whose name she doesn’t even know, who then pulls her into doing things she would have never done before, she begins to question everything about herself and her life.

    The creation and unfolding development of the characters, Della Cartwright and Alessio Terracina, made me believe that they were real-life strangers, entangled in a weird, yet steamy connection, that left me hot with anticipation of what would happen next between them.

    There was only one teeny portion of the read that I didn’t find plausible which is the reason it doesn’t get 5 stars from me and it’s not even worth me getting into. It could be me and if that is the case, I don’t want anyone else’s review to be based off of my opinion.

    I don’t think I’ve ever read a book from a first-time author that was this put together… this well-written… this good!

    TURN THE LIGHT ON by Pat Garcia is a quick little read that will leave you salivating until the publication of her next written work of art!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Good Morning Nonnie,
      Thank you. It honors me that you took the time to read my book, and it makes me very happy to know that it made it to the Nonnie’s Rare Review Forum. That is a great honor.
      I am so happy to be a part of RRBC and RWISA. As I told Jan Sikes in my comment to her, I can’t seem to stop shedding tears this morning. They’re tears of gratitude for being a part of this organization. It is good to be here.
      Shalom aleichem

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Good Morning Nonnie,
      The honor of receiving NONNIE JULES’ SEAL OF APPROVAL made my day, yesterday. I think I looked at my iPhone for about fifteen minutes before it registered in my mind, that the seal was for Turn The Light On. I am extremely grateful. It will take time to sink into me. I am still in a daze.
      I know that there is still much to do, but it feels so good to see rays of Sunshine in my life and You and all the people at RRBC and RWISA have been some of the people who have made that happen.
      Take care and have a lovely weekend.
      Shalom aleichem

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Good Morning Jan,
      I have just read your review on Amazon.com, and I am blown away. To be honest, I have been shedding tears every now and then this morning. Not because of sadness, but because of a deep-felt appreciation for the. people in this organization. So thank you for your time and effort. It makes me want to give my best in all that I do.
      Shalom aleichem

      Liked by 2 people

  7. Good day all. Amazon accepted my 5 star review of Carnage in Singapore by Randall Krzak. Great story that begins … This is the second novel by Author Randall Krzak I have had the good fortune of reading. This story feels like it is pulled from recent headlines with locations and name changed to protect people and countries.
    The first chapter starts off gripping the reader with the vivid journey of escape

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Good Sunday All, The snow is melted in Dallas and repairs are underway for so many people. Took a pause and finished my 4 star review on Amazon of One Chance Encounter by Joy Lilley. My first time reading her work, thanks Joy. It begins …Author Joy M Lilley crafts this contemporary romance between a woman who has a harsh life and her favorite American movie star.
    Moyra French grew up in a poor family in Britain post World War II. It was a time when illnesses like tuberculosis had a cure that was nearly worse than the disease. She was diagnosed with this as a preteen and underwent therapy and isolation that impeded her educational progress and earnings potential.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Hi all, Amazon finally accepted my 4 Star review for Lost and Found by Maretha Botha which I was delight to learn was part of a previous RRBC Short Story challenge. It begins… Author Maretha Botha has a flair for fiction that gives a lesson. Miranda and Marisa are sisters, but their personalities and approaches are vastly different. One is caring, and one is self-centered. Marisa and Jonah have their wedding the next day…

    Liked by 2 people

  10. I read “Sleighed” by W. J. Scott, and thought it was delightful. When magical “glitter sprinkled from a ceiling fan” lands on an elf, or anyone for that matter, unexpected changes can occur, and in this adorable children’s story, they do. The resulting the transformation is a bit unsettling at first, but all is well that ends well. This short story will delight youngsters and bring a smile to the face of adult readers, particularly those who remember the magic and mystery of Christmas.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. On February 15, 2021, I reviewed “Sleighed” by W. J. Scott. When magical “glitter sprinkled from a ceiling fan” lands on an elf, or anyone for that matter, unexpected changes can occur, and in this adorable children’s story, they do. The resulting the transformation is a bit unsettling at first, but all is well that ends well. This short story will delight youngsters, and bring a smile to the face of adult readers, particularly those who remember the magic and mystery of Christmas. Well done!

    Like

  12. I also completed Unhinged: A Micro-Read by John Podlaski. What starts out as a simple job at a local drive-in movie facility for two teenagers will haunt them for the rest of their lives. I don’t like to do spoilers, and since this is a novella, it won’t take you long to become immersed in this riveting story.

    John shows a brilliant writing style which will appeal to a wide range of tastes. Highly recommended and I look forward to reading more of John’s work!

    Liked by 2 people

  13. The Enigma Factor: A Techno Thriller (The Enigma Series Book 1) by Charles V Breakfield and Roxanne E. Burkey is a fantastic blend of romance, drama, crypto-capers, crime, and adventure. With a well-designed plot and plenty of action scenes, this will definitely appeal to those who enjoy the genre. Look forward to reading more of Charles and Roxanne’s work!

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Good morning all, Burrrrr. I posted my Amazon 5 star review for Dream Wide Awake by CJ Zahner . It begins – Author CJ Zahner lays the foundation for a suspenseful book using a creative license of dreams. The Government’s Dream Project is over, but the long-range impact was unknown.
    Character development is powerful and believable, from the six-year-old Mikala discussing her dreams with her father, Detective Jack Daly, to the Monster Man. …

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much for the great review, Rox! I so enjoyed being on Eye on the Book. I was honored to be with you and the other Rave authors. So thankful to have found this group. Stay safe, stay warm, and read on, everyone.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Happy Wednesday to all. I’ve just completed a review for DOG BONE SOUP: A BOOMER’S JOURNEY by Bette Stevens. Here is my 4* review on Amazon:
    DOG BONE SOUP: A Boomer’s Journey by Bette Stevens is about a dysfunctional family trying to survive in the 50’s and 60’s. The father, a self-appointed “King of the castle” is an abusive drunk, the mother tries her best to keep the family clothed and fed, Shawn and Willie are the oldest two boys who along with their two sisters do whatever it takes to etch out a living. They are also a proud bunch, refusing food donations from the Church or handouts.

    The story is told from Shawn’s POV, he is bullied and teased all through school because they are poor and their father is a known drunk. The ramshackle home they live in has no running water, cooking and heating the home also requires firewood. Shawn learned early in life how to fish, chop wood, and bring in water from the stream for washing and cooking. He also witnessed his father striking and beating their mother but was too afraid to get involved. To escape the wrath, the kids would run off and seek out new adventures to entertain themselves. Shawn is a hard worker who takes on odd jobs to help put food on the table. The title of this book is the name of a soup the family eats for days on end (boiled dog bones, onions, carrots and potatoes).

    During his senior year in high school, Shawn finally stands up to his father and the school bullies for the first time. His mother gets a divorce and the family is finally free of the abusive father and husband who only sat around drank beer, and watched TV after work. That is, of course, if he wasn’t in the local bar getting drunk.

    Shawn wants to make a life for himself and pursues joining the military…this is just as the war in Vietnam is beginning. His uncle tries to talk him out of it because of the horrors he’ll witness, confidentially sharing why his father drinks – to forget about the horrors of war that he fought in.

    It’s a tale of a mother’s love & sacrifice and the coming of age story of a young boy in a small town. The story flowed well but I did encounter typos and missing words throughout the book. If you think you have it bad, you should read this story to see how those who do have it bad are able to cope, dream, and hope for a better life.

    Liked by 2 people

  16. I posted a review of Marian Longnecker Beaman’s “Mennonite Daughter: The Story of a Plain Girl” on Amazon just now. I will post the link when Amazon posts it. Here’s the text:

    Marian Longnecker Beaman’s book is more than a memoir: It’s the story of patience, perseverance and potential. As a child in the Mennonite faith, Marian knew no other life. She followed what her parents and previous generations had done before her. She wore modest clothing and the prayer cap covering her head, denoting her as a member of the Mennonite faith. The author deftly explains the origins of the Mennonites as a part of the Anabaptist movement, originating from Zurich, Switzerland, in 1535. In 1683, she writes, a “trickle” of them emigrated to Pennsylvania as part of William Penn’s “Holy Experiment,” which offered them greater economic opportunity and religious freedom in the New World. Thus, her own ancestor, Ulrich Langenegger, emigrated from the Netherlands in 1733 on the good ship Hope. Marian includes her family tree and several lovely photos in this memoir as well.

    Marian shares her physical life between two homes–that of her parents and that of her grandmother and her Aunt Ruthie. While at her grandmother’s, she’s able to “be herself”; while at home, she’s always in trouble, it seems, since her father thinks she has “braids, rains and a big mouth.” Marian describes beatings and wonders why she can’t predict when her da will explode. He’s definitely of the “spare of the rod and spoil the child” school of discipline–except he didn’t react to her sisters’ misbehaviors in the same way. She was always puzzled about that.

    But when she’s at her grandmother’s house, life is far more pleasant. She and her sisters play dress-up with red hats and other props they find. They play “wedding” and other terrific childhood make-belief games.

    Throughout all of this, Marian’s inner self is questioning everything. Her mother’s only goal in life was to become a housewife. Would Marian ever be satisfied with that role?

    Tales of encounters with tomatoes, enticing food aromas (yes, I got hungry reading about them), a stinky hobo, the kindness of others, as well as the nastiness of men in power run throughout this memoir. Marian uses these building blocks throughout her life to complete her metamorphosis.

    This delightful memoir is enchanting. I recommend it highly.

    Liked by 3 people

  17. Good afternoon All! I posted my long overdue 5-star review of Mennonite Daughter by Marian Beaman on Amazon. It begins: Author Marian Beaman shares her coming of age story that highlights the support and love of family. From the cover alone, you know this girl is special. Author Beaman provides insights to a child raised within the framework of a Mennonite Community in Lancaster County, PA….

    Hope you are all well and healthy.

    Liked by 3 people

  18. I just reviewed THE EDGE OF MEMORY by Maura Beth Brennan on Amazon. The link isn’t live yet, but I will add it when it is. Here’s the text:

    Harriet’s a survivor living in New Jersey That is, until the lawyer for whom she’s working as a temp dies and she’s left without a job. She’s not sure how she’ll pay the rent or keep her cat in cat food until, by chance, she meets Agnes, a wealthy widow, whose great passion is enjoying and supporting the arts and other important non-profit causes. Agnes asks Harriet if she’ll accompany her–with pay–to the museum. When Harriet agrees, she apologizes for the condition of her car. “Oh, no, dear, we’ll take the Mercedes.” Harriet cannot believe her luck.

    Thus begins the tale of Harriet the paid companion to Agnes, a relationship that develops into much more than a mercenary one. They become close–so close that an outside observer might think that Harriet is Agnes’s granddaughter and not her employee. Agnes has no idea of Harriet’s traumatic past, the one in which her stepfather murdered Harriet’s mother before her eyes. Nothing seems to matter to Agnes, as she invites Harriet to “summer” with her in Maine at her gorgeous seaside home.

    Agnes has only one remaining relative, a nephew, Alex, to whom all her fortune will go upon her death. Harriet has no claim on–no does she want–any of the contents of Agnes’s will; however, when Alex arrives for the weekend with his girlfriend du jour, he becomes immediately becomes suspicious of Harriet’s motives. He’d set up the previous companion by convincing Agnes that the woman last summer was a thief, and had her fired. His goal is to do the same to Harriet.

    Harriet has terrible dreams about her mother’s murder and other traumas in her past life. She says she’s done with men after an abusive relationship in her past. But is she? A chance encounter in the Maine village may change her mind.

    I don’t want to reveal more about this book because I don’t want to give the plot away. I couldn’t put this book down. The author’s writing is solid, with decent character development. She uses the technique of Harriet’s writing in a diary to reveal her past so that Harriet can speak in the first person rather than changing the point of view of the entire novel. I was impressed with that. The author also leaves “breadcrumbs” here and there to provide the reader with clues as to where the story will progress. Harriet’s an eavesdropper in a few occasions, but she only hears a few words here and there and doesn’t get the full story. Her insecurities blow up in her face, which add to the story. This, too, is a strength to this novel.

    I would have liked to have heard more of the actual conversation between Agnes and Harriet on their drive to Maine, which, I think, is where the true bond between them must have formed. Agnes just seemed to know intuitively what Harriet needed at every turn, and vice-versa.

    I wanted to give it four-and-a-half stars, but obviously, Amazon doesn’t allow that. I really enjoyed this book and hope that this author has something new to read. Very soon.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Wanda, I thought I had left a reply, but it’s not here (can I say my dog ate it?) I want to thank you for reading my book and for your wonderful and detailed review!! Thank you so much!

      Like

  19. Hello everyone! I just finished reading Blood on the Chesapeake by Randy Overbeck and completed the following 5-star review on Amazon.
    What a fun ride this was. Wonderful character development, twisty storyline, and great writing made this an enjoyable book.

    New coach and teacher Darrell Henshaw encounters a school ghost, H for Hank. H is trapped between worlds while seeking justice over the circumstances of his death thirty years prior. Darrell becomes enamored with the spirit’s sightings and the school’s history. He isn’t quite sure who in the town or administration to trust, but he motors on, researching H’s death. He finds himself in grave danger after several people involved lose their lives.

    Inspired to take this job because of a breakup with his girlfriend, when Darrel meets the spunky Erin Caveny, this story heats up. Erin jumps on board to investigate Hank’s death.

    Without a spoiler, I’ll say Overbeck masterfully combines a tale of social justice, love, and the paranormal. If you like a good paranormal romance, you’ll love this story because its plot is meatier than most.

    Loved! Five stars. Looking forward to reading Overbeck’s next novel.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Happy Friday, all! I’ve just completed a review for ACE CARROWAY AND THE HANDSOME DEVIL by Guy Worthey on Amazon and elsewhere. Here’s my 4* review:
    Ace Carroway and the Handsome Devil starts out slow. In the preceding book, Ace disappears when her plane exploded in SE Asia, and there she is, alive, in the first chapter without explanation. She gathers her friends from the first book and convinces them to become a part of her new detective agency, C. Carroway & Associates. It is at that time that Ace divulges what happened after the explosion, her face now showing healed scars on the side. She also hires Mrs. Fiiona Figgins as the secretary, who doesn’t take any bull from anyone. Ace also decides to “come out” and is featured in a local concert, hoping to entice Darko Dor to show himself.

    Two new characters fall upon Ace, a dashing suiter with flowers and dinner invitations and a costumed super-hero who bumbles into the scene and attempts to rescue Ace from this “evil” suiter. There are mixed signals occurring while the team is trying to find Smugglers Crossroads where they hoped to find links to Mr. Dor.

    Inside the dilapidated and closed tunnel system near the docks, the team runs into a giant guard and locates a human rat among other discoveries. Ace barely survives being crushed during her pursuit of a man who tried to take her heart – literally.

    Fast read without a cliff hanger at the end this time. Darko Dor is still out there somewhere, perhaps book four in the series will bring them together again?

    Liked by 2 people

  21. Hi all, posted my 3 star review on Amazon for Carl Prescott and the Riddle of Satan’s Cube by Karl Morgan. Karl Morgan creates a unique story with an intricate world that disrupts space, time, physical and spiritual frameworks. The main character, Carl Sandberg Prescott, is a teenager with magical abilities. ….
    You can read the rest on Amazon. It is my first book of Karl’s and I am looking forward to his next one.

    Liked by 2 people

  22. Happy Sunday all! I finally took the time to complete writing my 5 star review and posting it on Amazon for Bravura by Lisa Kirazian. My comments begin, Lisa Kirazian creates a novel about the passions of youth and the power of music weaving the lives of students attending the Royal School of Music in the late 1950s.

    I was captivated and just sorry it took me so long to finish the review. If you haven’t read it, Put it on your list today.

    Liked by 2 people

  23. Happy Saturday everyone! I joust completed a review for SLEIGHED: A CHRISTMAS CHILDREN’S TALE by WJ Scott on amazon. Here it is:
    What a magical adventure an elf had on his first day on the job. He reports for duty on his new assignment but is pulled out at the last minute to feed and groom the reindeer as the stable staff was tied up in caring for a sick Rudolf. One rule the elf broke when leaving the factory is that he failed to wash his hands of the accumulated magic dust from inside. As a result, he has a transformation when his magic dust mixes with Mrs. Claus’ magic potion for the reindeer.

    His adventure lasts the day and he returns to his job the following evening. Of course, nobody will believe his story. This is a fun read and is recommended for all ages. Great job WJ Scott.

    Liked by 2 people

  24. I have posted a five-star review of “Ghostly Interference” by Jan Sikes on Amazon. Here’s the text:

    “Ghostly Interference” unravels the tale of the unlikely meeting between self-described computer nerd Jag Peters and biker chick Rena Jett after Jag nearly runs her candy-apple red Harley off the road while driving his car. He thinks it’s a guy, so he follows the bike to a biker bar to apologize for his negligence. He walks into the bar and discovers he’s way out of his element (make that WAY OUT OF HIS ELEMENT) and realizes that the biker in question is a tiny, feisty woman named Rena Jett. He’s automatically intrigued with her and doesn’t quite understand why. They obviously come from vastly different worlds. She’s mouthy and even obnoxious to him as he makes an attempt to apologize for his absentminded driving. They exchange words–not always pleasant–and as he attempts to leave the bar, he’s followed by two aggressive bikers, one nicknamed Buffalo, who will show up later in the story. Jag sees a soldier in full camo battle gear, complete with a rifle, near his car and wonders what that means. Just as Buffalo is ready to get to Jag and beat him to a pulp, something happens. Apparently, the mysterious soldier kicked Buffalo’s proverbial butt just in time.

    As the intrigue between Rena and Jag grows, Jag learns that Rena and her brother Sam had been given up as kids by their mother and tossed around in foster care. Rena has secrets she doesn’t want to reveal, leading to trust issues. Sam was her rock and he was killed in Afghanistan by a roadside bomb. Jag wonders: Was he the soldier who saved him from what could have been a brutal attack from biker Buffalo?

    The author skillfully weaves a tale of people who come together despite being from two different worlds, facing unpredictable obstacles with the help sometimes of people on earth and a person who cannot rest in his grave unless he makes sure his sister has someone to love. Rena’s not the only one with secrets, as Jag’s seemingly calm earth mother, who’s an expert gardener and yoga teacher, has a few of her own.

    I have read two of Jan Sikes’s other books, and I simply could not put this one down. Her ability to weave plot with language is enchanting. I found two things that hit home to me. One of the metaphor of someone being as excited “as a banty rooster,” which was an expression my late grandmother used to say, the other was that Jag’s “birthday” was October 8, which is the same as my son’s. Coincidence? You as the reader should decide.

    Liked by 2 people

  25. I have posted the following review for The One Awakened (Chronicles of the Diasodz Book 5) by Yvette Calleiro, on Amazon UK:

    5* Unexpected ending
    Chronicles of the Diasodz has been an eye-opening series that kept me hooked throughout. By the start of this last book, I thought I knew how the story would end, but there were further surprises in store. This delightful fantasy continued at break-taking speed and captivated me once more as the complex plot unfolded. It was so intriguing and well written that I did not want it to finish. When it did, there was an unexpected ending that wrapped up the various threads but left me wanting more. The author mentioned she has other stories planned, based on the characters from the Diasodz world. I look forward to reading them.

    In conclusion, a sincere thank you to Yvette Calleiro for writing such a marvellous set of books. They took me away from the sad times we are experiencing and left me with a sense of optimism for the future.

    Liked by 1 person

  26. Hi, everyone! I have just posted an enthusiastic five-star review on Amazon of Brazos Wind, by Jan Sikes. I loved this feel-good but realistic story, and the beautiful descriptions utilized by the author – she made me hear this landscape as well as see it. Leaves crackled, leather creaked, wind whipped – for me, this added so much to my enjoyment of the tale. I also appreciated that the ending was ambiguous, leaving us to finish the story in our minds. Or – maybe a sequel? The only jarring thing for me (and this is not in the review) was Jan’s use of the title “Ms.” for the heroine, Savannah. I am not aware of that being used in the 1880’s when the story was set. But, a minor detail, and the story as a whole was wonderful. Enthusiastically recommend!

    Liked by 1 person

  27. I have posted the following review for The One Revealed (Chronicles of the Diasodz Book 4) by Yvette Calleiro, on Amazon UK:

    5* Back on track
    After experiencing some minor niggles with the third book, this fourth in the series was right back on track. There was a return to the intertwining storylines, twists and turns of plot and fascinating character development that the author executes so well. The prophecies took on extra meaning and added more confusion at the same time. Emotional connections to the characters became stronger and sympathies ebbed and flowed as the story progressed. I found myself absorbed, eager to turn the pages and discover what happened next. The ending was full of suspense and motivated me to download the fifth book, ‘The One Awakened’, keen to find out how this fantasy would develop in its final stages.

    Liked by 1 person

  28. I just posted a 5-star review for Shirley Slaughter’s revision of Ou Lady of Victory Church. You can find the full review here: https://www.amazon.com/review/R3OIL8O93LIX9U/ref=pe_1098610_137716200_cm_rv_eml_rv0_rv

    “We do not know our history, and we don’t always know when we are living it until someone writes about it,” asserts Shirley Harris Slaughter in Our Lady of Victory Church (2020). In a saga reminiscent of former First Lady Michelle Obama’s beginnings with a mother thoroughly invested in her children’s education, author Slaughter records the story of Our Lady of Victory Church, originating in 1943, which also birthed a school, a credit union, and a lively congregation in the 1950s and 1960s in which the author participated.

    Author Shirley Slaughter writes as both historian and memoirist, recording historical facts along with her own experience as student and later proponent of the church and school. She often includes personal accounts in the narrative as in the case of Almeta “Dolly” Caruth-White, a young black girl growing up in Detroit in the era. As the interview informs, when Dolly’s mother wanted to send her to a particular school for a good education, the priest asked, “Wouldn’t she be happier with her own kind?” Jim Crow segregation was evident not only in schooling but also in choice of church to attend. The author notes that “the priests perpetrating the racist acts never thought that they were doing anything wrong, so the offenses were never dealt with.” Written with a strong voice, this book seeks to expose the wrongs of racism and entitlement and sets forth a clear vision of “what should have been.”

    The book is divided into four sections: Personal Perspective, the Pioneers, the Catholic Community, and The End of an Era. There is a tone of sadness in the book as when the author laments the demise of a once vibrant church victimized by the demographic, social, and economic forces around it. The book helpfully includes a list of references, glossary of terms and list of organizations. In spite of its demise in 1982, the detailed history of Our Lady of Victory Church: the Saga of an American Catholic Community lives on, thanks to the heroic efforts of this author, Shirley Harris Slaughter.

    I cheer the message of this well-researched book and applaud the author for her courage in writing it.

    Liked by 1 person

  29. Hello again! I just completed my 4* review of ACE CARROWAY AROUND THE WORLD by Guy Worthey. Here’s a copy of what is on Amazon:

    ACE CARROWAY AROUND THE WORLD by Guy Worthey is book 2 in the 5-book series. The story opens with Ace’s father being killed and a new character, Detective Drew Lucy, feeling strongly that Ace either committed the murder or had something to do with it.

    The first book in the series introduced her “teammates” who now lead successful professional lives, only Bert chose to stay near the family after their rescue in the first book. Ace seems to be a guest character in this story, unlike book one where it is told from her POV, here, Drew Lacy tells the story.

    Surprisingly, their nemesis in book one, thought to be killed, might not have died and could be orchestrating this entire event. Darko Dor and Uwe are mentioned, but is it possible they’re back for revenge?

    Compared to the first book, I thought something was missing, mostly because of the change in POV. I was expecting Ace to tell the story and continue with her “Snarkiness”. Instead, it turns into a “who done it” detective story and Ace pops in periodically. Nevertheless, I do recommend ACE CARROWAY AROUND THE WORLD for all ages. I would also suggest that readers read book 1 first to better understand this storyline.

    Mr. Worthey has left us with a cliff hanger at the end of this story, so as expected, I will be downloading book 3 to continue the adventure.

    Liked by 1 person

  30. Happy Sunday! I just completed by 5* review of ACE CALLOWAY AND THE GREAT WAR by Guy Worthey and posted on Amazon. This is it in its entirety:

    Ace Carroway & the Great War by Guy Worthey is an entertaining and fun read. Cecilia Carroway is 16 yrs. old and lies about her age to join the military to fly planes during WWI. She is much smarter than her age suggests, shoots down 10 enemy planes and achieves the status of an “ACE”. She is promoted to captain and takes her squadron for a mission over Germany. Ace is shot down, taken prisoner, and jailed with five other POW’s. Being a young “dame”, she has to prove herself to the other captives, her resourcefulness and cleverness quickly win them over. Ace finds a way to hinder the German war effort by booby-trapping the planes they are forced to build in a factory, develops an escape plan from their prison, and then leads them across the country to freedom. The ultimate goal is to break into a heavily defended and secret airbase that she remembered seeing during her last flight and steal a plane to fly them back to England.

    The author does an excellent job in keeping readers within the era, his technical knowledge of the war makes it more authentic and realistic. There are many twists and turns along the way and readers are forced to continue reading well into the night to see what happens next.

    I thoroughly enjoyed this story and quickly downloaded book 2 in the series. Although Ace Carroway and the Great War is classified as YA, I’d recommend it for all ages. Great job Mr. Worthey!

    Liked by 2 people

  31. I’ve posted a 5-star review for “Sleighted: A Christmas Story” by Wendy Scott. It is a clever book that would appeal to elementary-aged students and challenge them to learn new vocabulary. An example of humorous dialogue when Tinsel is shown the reindeer stables follows: “Nasty ailment. Rudy will be grounded for a week. Sneezing and sleigh-flying aren’t a wise mix. Santa warned him not to snort those snowballs.” The tale contains vivid, sensory descriptions that stimulate your imagination. “Tinsel rubbed his fingertips together, and the glitter exploded into miniature fireworks.”

    The illustrated Christmas tale is one that both elementary, school-aged children and adults will enjoy reading. Highly recommended.

    For the full review, see https://www.amazon.com/gp/customer-reviews/R3GWZNNG37WLMN/

    Liked by 1 person

  32. I have posted the following 4-star review on Amazon, BookBub, and B&N for Tena Stetler’s A Demon’s Witch, today 1-23-21.

    I admit I worried about reading this as I’ve never read a fantasy book with demons, angels and vampires. What a great surprise. I enjoyed it immensely. Couldn’t wait to get back to it every time I set it down.

    This is also the first novel I’ve read by Tena Stetler but it won’t be the last. I felt an instant connection with the main characters, Bruce and Angie, whose romance unraveled like a well-told love story. Stetler also has a charming way of drawing you into the lives of the story’s minor characters, such as Willow, Owen, and in particular, I loved Matiah. Always an eye out for who was good and who, wicked, I loved the storyline and ending, too.

    If you’ve been tempted to try a fantasy novel, this is a great book to begin with. Told from the inner workings of the magical realm, it has an every-day factor to it as well. Two business owners crossing paths. Great read.

    Liked by 2 people

  33. I have posted the following review for The One Betrayed (Chronicles of the Diasodz Book 3) by Yvette Calleiro, on Amazon UK:

    4* Parallel timeline
    The first two books in this series achieved such a high standard that it surprised me when this third one fell short. The author set herself a tremendous challenge by writing about a parallel timeline to the second instalment. This pulled me back in time and disrupted the earlier continuity. The character development and twisting storyline remained well crafted, and I loved how the shape-shifting elements developed. But there was some annoying repetition, and the story dragged in places. I also found myself re-reading sections where I had to check the meaning or point of view. Despite these minor niggles, I am keen to continue my Diasodz journey and have already started number four in the series, ‘The One Revealed’.

    Liked by 1 person

  34. Hey everybody! I just completed a review of COLUMBIAN BETRAYAL by Randall Krzak on Amazon. Here is my 5* review:

    I thoroughly enjoyed reading COLUMBIAN BETRAYAL by Randall Krzak. What’s stronger money or family? I guess it all depends upon who the person is. In this case, Olivia Moreno is the current head of the Barranquilla Cartel in Columbia and to her, family comes first followed by the business. ISIS is looking for a foothold in South America and heading a cartel would be a good place to start. Several people are planning to overthrow Olivia and take over the cartel for themselves. But everybody is double-crossing everybody else. Even the head of a CIA division plans to double-cross Olivia to fatten is own bank account without fulfilling his end of the bargain.

    AJ and her team are searching for a terrorist group that is planning to attack the U.S. Through their actions, they encounter Olivia and take her into protective custody. Leaving her in Cuba while searching for her kidnapped twin girls. There are so many twists and turns in this complex storyline but the author does a marvelous job at bringing everything together at the end. This is my third book by this author and he has not disappointed me. Highly recommended for readers interested in CIA, drug lord, and terrorist type of stories.

    Liked by 2 people

  35. I just reviewed “While the Bombs Fell” by Robbie Cheadle on Amazon. Here’s the text of my review:

    While the Bombs Fell is not exactly a memoir and not exactly fiction. It’s told through the eyes of Elsie, a young girl in a World War II British village. She and her large family have to find ways to deal with the trials and tribulations of war-time rations and shortages, as well as keep an eye out for “Gerry,” which is what they call the German Air Force, for air raids in their village. Elsie’s father runs a dairy and seems to work all the time with his cows. Her mother is something of a miracle worker, finding ways to put food on the table every day, even if it seems as if there’s nothing in the cupboard.

    Elsie and her siblings, along with several other friends, find ways to amuse themselves when they aren’t doing chores to help around the farm. They like to go swimming in a secluded place where they can kind of sneak into. One day, one of the kids cuts his foot. These are the days prior to tetanus shots; the child develops lockjaw and dies. It’s one of the tragedies Elsie watches with her young eyes. It’s a sadness she will carry with her for the rest of her life, it seems.

    I couldn’t help but think about how modern-day American children might react to being asked to work as much as Elsie and her siblings did, as well as to cut corners on what they could have to eat. How could today’s American children think of ways to amuse themselves if their electricity were to be cut off or restricted, interfering with their ability to watch television or play video games? The children in this book had to make true sacrifices for their country, but their parents made even more sacrifices as they found ways to trade things they made or grew with people on the black market or through other avenues so they could have a little extra coal, for example–or they would find other ways to keep warm in the winter. Or they kept the proverbial British “stiff upper lip” as they were cold when the coal ran out.

    This book is an interesting read and provides an inside look at wartime England. The fact that it’s a recreation of memories and not exactly a memoir doesn’t bother me. I would like to see this as required reading in American middle schools so that those children might get an idea of how things were during wartime for children of their own age. Some of the vocabulary might be unfamiliar to American children, but it would be worth their while to learn those words as well.

    Overall, I enjoyed the book and would recommend it to readers who want to learn history through the eyes of a child.

    Like

  36. Here is my 5-star review of Sleighed: A Children’s Christmas Tale by W.J. Scott
    This is a cute book for children which captures the magic and fun of Christmas. Tinsel is a new elf who is being assigned to his first task in Santa’s workshop when he is unexpected re-assigned to help groom and feed the reindeer. Their usual caregiver is busy looking after Rudolph who has snow-fever.

    In his rush to start work, Tinsel forgets to wash up properly and leaves the workshop with magic dust clinging to his fingers. His forgetfulness has unintended consequences and Tinsel ends up on the journey of a lifetime.

    This short story is full of fun characters, lovely and colourful illustrations, and some simple humour guaranteed to make small children laugh.
    Amazon link: https://www.amazon.com/review/R6AJQQRI7BGQT

    Liked by 2 people

  37. Hi everyone–I just posted my five-star review of Jan Sikes’s “The Convict and the Rose” on Amazon. Here’s the text. I read and reviewed the first book in this series, “Flowers and Stone,” in which Darlina Flowers and Luke Stone fell in love. This book, “The Convict and the Rose,” continues their love story with a huge barrier that gets in the way: Luke is now in federal prison, facing a huge sentence for a crime he didn’t commit. Darlina remains desperately in love with him, dreaming of him and his special touch, while Luke keeps telling her that she’s young and should try to find someone else. Every “someone else” she finds doesn’t measure up to Luke. On the other side of things, Luke dreams of Darlina every night while he deals with the horrors of prison. His fellow bandmate, Red, is in the same prison, having been convicted of the same crime. At lest they have each other.

    For medical reasons, Luke’s transferred to a prison hospital in Springfield, Missouri, Red goes as well to have an eye operation. Darlene’s able to get his address in Springfield and begins writing to him again. Their letters become more and more intense, yet Luke continues to tell her to find another man and get on with her life.

    Luke continues to write songs and send them out to Nashville musicians, including Willie Nelson, hoping that someone will record one of his songs and make a hit out of it. That’s just the beginning of what he accomplishes in prison. I won’t divulge more of the plot because I want people to read this book.

    The author’s writing is outstanding, the plot keeps moving, and the story holds together well. I also enjoyed the sprinkling of music and interviews from actual publications in the book. This book impressed me, and I intend to read more from this author.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I did! And it’s interesting to me that Luke went to prison for a crime he didn’t commit, as did one of my characters in “Empty Seats,” Jimmy Bailey. The follow-up novel I’m working on now explores what happens when Jimmy gets out of jail. It’s been slow going, but, after reading “The Convict and the Rose,” I’m re-inspired.

        Like

  38. I just posted a four-star review for Jan Sikes’s “Flowers and Stone” on Amazon. Here’s the text.
    True confessions before I write this review: I’m not always attracted to romantic novels. However, I was drawn to this one because I’m a huge music fan.

    This is the story of Darlina Flowers, who grew up in a strict religious environment. She and one of her sisters left home, much to the dismay of their parents, and struck out on their own. They get jobs and are living independently. Darlina. In addition to her “day” job, she’s a part-time go-go dancer at a music venue. She decides to go to a country music club one night and meets one of Texas’s more famous rebel-rousing country bands, Luke Stone. Despite every warning from many people, and despite a large age difference between the two, Darlina becomes attracted to Luke, who lives a wild life of drinking, music making, womanizing, taking drugs and traveling from music club to music club. Much to the chagrin of her parents and against all warnings from everyone she knows, she and Luke become involved. Deeply involved.

    Luke and some of the members of his band, the Rebel Rousers, have a secret Darlina doesn’t know about. While things between Darlina and Luke are going well, he has to drop her like a hot potato in order not to involve her in the secret.

    I won’t reveal anything more about the plot because I don’t want to give anything else away. The writing is outstanding and the plot is solid. While the author leaves a few subtle clues about what might happen, these are sprinkled in appropriate places and provide cues instead of hitting the reader on the head. The romantic parts (prefer to my first sentence) are written sensitively and appropriately. I loved the musical references sprinkled throughout the book as well.

    I would recommend this book to anyone who’s looking for an interesting plot, solid dialogue and just a great story. I’m looking forward to reviewing the next book in this series.

    Liked by 3 people

  39. I read Breakfield and Burkey’s short story, “The Jewel.” A welcome diversion from every day chores, “The Jewel” is a perfect companion to an afternoon cup of tea. Ecstasy at the birth of a child is tinged with the tragedy that there can be no more children. A tender rekindling of romance is interrupted by an attempted assault, but the violence opens a door to a chance for an answer to unspoken prayers. This lovely, well-written short story is about determination, hope, and most if all, love. It is a quick, uplifting read that will convince you to smile. I enjoyed it and recommend it.

    Liked by 2 people

  40. Greetings everyone! I reviewed “Stardust” by Maura Beth Brennan and totally enjoyed it.

    A retired librarian, Maeve is a good hearted woman who looks forward to Halloween and her annual party where the children look forward to the stories she tells. Riding her bicycle through the neighborhood, she is a familiar sight.

    When she intervenes in an attempt to stop an assault, she becomes a victim, along with a stray kitten, who soon shares her home. The kitten reminds Maeve of a cat from her past, and that reminder leads to another memory that opens up a new world for Maeve. Although her new life is not without some sacrifice, she understands that it is meant to be and embraces her gift.

    Since one of the characters is a cat, that added to my enjoyment. I think most stories are better with a furry critter involved. Good versus evil, with a bit of magic, “Stardust” is an engaging short story. Well done, Maura!

    Like

    1. Karen, thank you so much for reading my story and leaving such a great review! You have given me a boost today! I love putting critters in my stories/books – most of them are based on our own or our daughter’s actual pets, but not this one. Thanks again for the review!!

      Liked by 1 person

  41. My 5-star review of Sahara Heat by Maura Beth Brennan
    Sahara Heat is an entertaining and well written short story about a woman, Sahara, who has recently been acquitted of the murder of her husband and one of his best friends. Sahara, previously known as Alice, had endured a miserable childhood due to her family’s poverty. She was rejected by her classmates and excluded from their social groups until her father eventually left and her mother and her moved away from the town. Later in life, Alice returned in triumph to the town with the new name of Sahara and as the wife of the wealthiest man in town.

    Nothing is simple in life, however, and due to her infidelity, Sahara’s circumstances looked set to change until she takes things into her own hands and finds a solution to her problems.

    Sahara is a calculating and hard-hearted woman, intent on maintaining her place among the wealthy. She is, however, a product of her former circumstances and for that reason I liked her and was pleased to see her selfish husband and the unkind and self righteous people of the town get their ‘come-uppance’.

    This story was fast paced and fun with a few good twists along the way.
    Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/review/RG2T5E0OB4URQ

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Robbie, here is another review where I see my comment doesn’t show on this page, when I swear I left one. I am starting to think they are out in space somewhere – sometimes WordPress does weird things when I try to post! But, I so appreciated your wonderful review and thank you for reading my story!

      Liked by 1 person

Comments make our hearts soar!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s