Tag Archives: tragedy

Review: An Enlightening Quiche by Eva Pasco

An Enlightening Quiche

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Two headstrong women in their forties coming from different moral directions clash:

AUGUSTA BERGERON: Dysfunctional. Deceptive. Demure. More than meets the eye at face value, and stuck in a holding pattern, the town siren engages in reckless behavior she attributes to maternal abandonment, until she eggs-humes her mother’s quiche recipe.

LINDSAY METCALFE: Pedigreed. Privileged. Proper. Mourning the recent death of her mother, the historian-in-residence hailing from Boston, sets out to preserve the legacy of an impoverished mill, but gets more than she bargains for when taking a self-centered adolescent under her wing.

Their alternating first-person narratives relate how an heirloom quiche recipe and baking rivalry between two bosom buddies redress erroneous assumptions, misdeeds, unleashed secrets, and malicious intent—all of which wreak havoc, altering the lives of those affected from the fallout of a tragedy.

Rating: 4-stars

Review: 

An Enlightening Quiche by Eva Pasco is a contemporary fiction novel set for women everywhere. The drama of the two ladies inside is enough to keep readers, like myself, interested. A rivalry between bakers is fun to follow. The plot quickly escalates. It grew more intense with every page. There was a lot of depth added to this tale. This made it rich and more realistic. I found it quirky yet emotionally engaging to read. Each woman has something to add and take from this story. I love anything that digs into food, community, and secrets. The writer easily gave me the side of each protagonist. I could figure what each one was thinking. Their perspectives showed me how they might proceed with what was happening. It made it easier to follow their actions, and it made me feel like I was there witnessing it all. People can jump to conclusions all the time, but overcoming the obstacles and differences made this a good book. Overall, I would recommend it to other readers.

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Review: Long Black Veil

Long Black Veil

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Publishers Weekly’s Best Books of 2017

 

 

For fans of Donna Tartt and Megan Abbott, a novel about a woman whose family and identity are threatened by the secrets of her past, from the New York Times bestselling author of She’s Not There.

 

 

On a warm August night in 1980, six college students sneak into the dilapidated ruins of Philadelphia’s Eastern State Penitentiary, looking for a thrill. With a pianist, a painter and a teacher among them, the friends are full of potential. But it’s not long before they realize they are locked in–and not alone. When the friends get lost and separated, the terrifying night ends in tragedy, and the unexpected, far-reaching consequences reverberate through the survivors’ lives. As they go their separate ways, trying to move on, it becomes clear that their dark night in the prison has changed them all. Decades later, new evidence is found, and the dogged detective investigating the cold case charges one of them–celebrity chef Jon Casey– with murder. Only Casey’s old friend, Judith Carrigan, can testify to his innocence.

But Judith is protecting long-held secrets of her own – secrets that, if brought to light, could destroy her career as a travel writer and tear her away from her fireman husband and teenage son. If she chooses to help Casey, she risks losing the life she has fought to build and the woman she has struggled to become. In any life that contains a “before” and an “after,” how is it possible to live one life, not two?

Weaving deftly between 1980 and the present day, and told in an unforgettable voice, Long Black Veil is an intensely atmospheric thriller that explores the meaning of identity, loyalty, and love. Readers will hail this as Boylan’s triumphant return to fiction.

Rating: 3.5-stars

Review:

Long Black Veil by Jennifer Finney Boylan is an interesting novel. A thriller that holds a lot of action, intrigue, and danger. Explorations of murder, past secrets, and the truth are found among these thrilling scenes from their past. I was captivated. Jennifer Finney Boylan created a thick mysterious atmosphere in which I couldn’t deny. Her characters were believable. It was fun following them especially, Judith, as the intensity of the situation came unraveling from the past. Friendships tested, complex scenarios, and drama filled characters made for a fun read.

The pacing of this story was slow. Not quite up to my normal steady/fast paced environments that I usually love. The whole position of the friends locked up and things escalating out of control reminded me so much of Pretty Little Liars. I noticed that the book switches from past to future a lot. This was understandable as it explored the backstory of what happened to the cast of characters and what was currently happening to them now. Despite their past that haunts them as adults that they are now, I wasn’t that impressed with the rest of the current happenings of the story. Overall, it was good but not as good as I had expected.

 

 

Review: A Place at Our Table

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Kayla Dienner has suffered her fair share of heartache, which is why she vows to protect her heart at all costs . . . until she meets Jamie Riehl.

Along with his volunteer work at the local fire department, running his Amish farm keeps Jamie Riehl busy. He barely has time to eat at the family table, never mind find someone to date. But when he meets Kayla Dienner, he is smitten.

Kayla tries hard to deny her attraction to Jamie. After all, she’s spent the last year discouraging her younger brother, Nathan, from becoming a firefighter. The death of their older brother in a fire a year ago is fresh in her mind—she can’t bear the idea of putting her heart on the line every time the sirens blare.

Then tragedy strikes, and Jamie wants to extinguish any flame between him and Kayla. Can Kayla set aside her own fears to save the love she was determined to deny?

The first book in the Amish Homestead series, A Place at Our Table invites us to a quiet community in Lancaster County where love burns brightly no matter the cost.

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

A Place at Our Table by Amy Clipston is another satisfying read. Amy Clipston has done it again. Creating a tale that ignites heartwarming feelings and a thirst for more. Sweet and engaging from the beginning to end. I could not stop reading it. I have fallen in love with the Amish genre thanks to this writer. Her words are clean yet enticing. The characters are believable. And the plot rides smoothly.

A young woman lost a brother due to fire. Her younger sibling wants to be a fireman too. She tries with all of her heart to dissuade him of it. Then, there is a particular man who sparks her interest. Yet she is determined to keep away from him. Protecting her heart. Jamie is a firefighter. However, tragedy strikes and Kayla will have her heart put to the test.

Overall, I loved it. A Place at Our Table is tender, moving, and enjoyable. Lessons to be learned hidden inside…I highly recommend it to readers everywhere.

Review: The Summer that Made Us





Synopsis:

Mothers and daughters, sisters and cousins, they lived for summers at the lake house until a tragic accident changed everything. The Summer That Made Us is an unforgettable story about a family learning to accept the past, to forgive and to love each other again. 


That was then… 

For the Hempsteads, summers were idyllic. Two sisters who married two brothers and had three daughters each, the women would escape the city the moment school was out to gather at the family house on Lake Waseka. The lake was a magical place, a haven where they were happy and carefree. All of their problems drifted away as the days passed in sun-dappled contentment. 

Until the summer that changed everything. 


This is now… 

After an accidental drowning turned the lake house into a site of tragedy and grief, it was closed up. For good. Torn apart, none of the Hempstead women speak of what happened that summer, and relationships between them are uneasy at best, hurtful at worst. But in the face of new challenges, one woman is determined to draw her family together again, and the only way that can happen is to return to the lake and face the truth. 

Robyn Carr has crafted a beautifully woven story about the complexities of family dynamics and the value of strong female relationships.

Rating: 3.5-stars

Review:

The Summer that Made Us by Robyn Carr is a great read. At its center, lies a family struggling with their lives. Each one feels stressed. A past event has kept them torn apart. Now, in the present they go back to the place where all went wrong. Some want to forget it, while others want to remember the good that was there. Hope, fear, anger, and a sadness lingers on every page. I was taken into each character’s feelings. They felt hesitant about the future. Loss, death, and managing relationships both personal and in the family is a hard thing to juggle. I understood the characters’ actions. However, I didn’t feel as close to them as I have with other characters. Robyn Carr is phenomenal writer. Her stories have always inspired me. This book, is inspiring in many ways but the emotional entertaining connection wasn’t really there for me. I didn’t really want to dig deep in this tale. But I continued. The themes and points were on target. Just didn’t feel as engaging as Robyn Carr’s previous novels. The Summer that Made Us fits perfectly with the pages’ content. I do recommend this book. It drags some but it’s still worth reading. 

Review: The Faraway North

The Faraway North: Scandinavian Ballads by [Cumpstey, Ian]

 

Synopsis:

These ballads convey a fantastic vision of the world as it was imagined in medieval Scandinavia, with monsters and magic intermingled with the very human concerns of heroism, tragedy, love, and revenge.

The great hero Sigurd is joined in this collection by troll-battling warriors including Holger Dane, Orm the Strong, and others. There are dramatic scenes of romance, betrayal, and loss. Some of the ballads translated here are attested by paintings or maps that date from earlier than when the first full ballad texts were first written down in the 1500s. An adventure ballad relevant to the history of an Eddic poem is also included.

The ballads are storytelling songs that were passed down as part of an oral folk music tradition in Scandinavia. This collection brings many new ballads to the English-speaking reader. The readable verse translations succeed in conveying the rhythm, spirit, and imagery of the originals. The translations are mainly based on Swedish and Norwegian ballads, with some from Danish tradition.

For each ballad, there is also a short introduction with commentary and background information.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

The Faraway North by Ian Cumpstey has set me back to when I was in high school. I remember reading a lot more literature that covered these themes back then. I was excited and enticed. The title brought a lot of thought running through my mind. I wasn’t sure what to expect, until reading it. Ian Cumpstey has won my attention with his brilliant writing style. Adventure after adventure, I was thoroughly entertained. Each ballad, contained action, risks, and sacrifices. Interesting, engaging, and beautifully told. Absolutely, a must read for all. I can’t remember enjoying a piece of literature as much as I have The Faraway North. Overall, this book is highly recommended to readers worldwide.

 

Book Review: Onyx Webb Book 6

Onyx Webb: Book Six: Episodes 16, 17 & 18 by [Fenton, Richard, Waltz, Andrea]

 

Synopsis:

Welcome Back to the World of Onyx Webb! This is Book Six. (Episodes 16, 17 & 18)

Haven’t Gotten Entangled Yet? Please Start with Book One.

More questions get answered in Book Six and NEW characters are introduced, several others return.

Onyx Webb is a complex multi-genre mash-up that combines elements of supernatural suspense, crime, horror, romance, and more. The Onyx Webb series follows the unusual life of Onyx Webb along with a central group of characters in various locations and times.

The billionaire Mulvaney family, piano prodigy Juniper Cole and her brother Quinn, paranormal show hosts Cryer and Fudge, and a few others make up the core of the series. Written like a book version of your favorite tv series (think: supernatural soap opera like American Horror Story) each character’s story moves forward with most every episode. It may appear that the characters are entirely unrelated and yet episode by episode, the connections will become clearer. Like being an inch away from a spider web, with each book, the web will move further and further away revealing the full story of every character and most importantly, the stunning conclusion for Onyx Webb herself.

In Book Six:

  1. The serial killer has taken his ultimate prize.
  2. In 2010, Koda attempts to find the girl in the mirror by crossing over to the other side.
  3. Onyx Webb finally has a new person in her life but like most things, it does not last.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Onyx Webb (book 6) by both Andera Waltz and Richard Fenton is a continuation of the most amazing series on the planet. Once more readers are taken into this multi-genre suspenseful journey. A journey that swallows up readers and drags them into the action-filled scenes. Death, murder, and paranormal activity followed every page. Andrea Waltz and Richard Fenton have brought another masterfully woven tale to all. The characters are three-dimensional and will have readers hanging onto the edge of their seats trying to piece it all together. Characters like Onyx, Koda, Catfish, and Declan are also inside this 6th book. I loved following each episode with each group of characters. I felt like I was actually there going through it all instead of just reading along. The talent the writers have goes up and beyond. The anticipation of each new book is absolutely worth the wait. Onyx Webb Series (book 6) continues being held as my favorite drama adventure read. Overall, I highly recommend this compelling fictional world to readers worldwide.

 

Review: A Long Walk with Sally

A Long Walk With Sally: A Grieving Father's Golf Journey Back to Life by [Clark Jr., David]

 

Synopsis:

A parent’s worst fear and most unimaginable horror began on April 4, 2004. As his world was torn further apart, David’s only wish was to escape–to walk away–but how could he? How would he ever find the peace he so desperately needed?

On a golf course in Ireland, the answer came. Thus began a ten-year quest, taking David to 290 courses throughout the British Isles. As he was about to leave on his final trip, he looked out the windshield of his car and realized where he would find his peace.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

A Long Walk with Sally by David Clark Jr. is a memoir that will an impact upon readers everywhere. Readers will get to travel a father’s darkest journey. The loss of his only daughter. A loved child…now, taken from this world.  The emotional journey within this memoir is something to behold. It will not only capture readers’ interest but also their hearts. Sad, powerful, and inspiring. Who knew golf, one of the most boring sports to me could be therapeutic to a father? I was surprised. I learned something from this book. Readers, I know without a doubt will take something deep and thoughtful from this father’s experience and the way he dealt with handling his daughter’s death. A Long Walk with Sally shows us that we all handle grief and loss differently. This father found a way to cope, to come to terms with the loss, and found an inner peace. It was easy to connect with the father in this book. Well-written and poised in a way that readers will enjoy reading it. Overall, I highly recommend it to all.

 

Review: Duke of Golden Shire (King of Hearts)

 

Synopsis:

Nicholas Knight rises to Dukedom after his father’s recent murder. His rank leads him to meet two women. Angelina Leblanc, a mysterious courtesan from the British Isles, with hidden motives and a destructive secret. Then Genevieve Bissonette, a young debutante just presented at court with a nose for trouble. She often takes the duke with her on her reputation endangering escapades. One lands them down an irreversible path. Meanwhile, Nicholas has a friend with a nasty grudge spawning his hate in a festering wound of prior rejection. The man’s eerie obsession with his sister has come full circle since he’s now plotting against him one loved one at a time. Can Nicholas keep the women in his life safe? Will he discover who his enemies are as they continue to multiply? Who can he trust when even his friends are foes? Both women want and expect completely different things from him. One’s his fitted match; his undeniable equal and the other his perfect opposite. Loving two people is possible but is it obtainable? This is the world, where holding someone’s hand alone can break the delicate fibers of your reputation and reputation isn’t just image, it’s power.

Rating:  5 stars

Review:

The Duke of Golden of Golden Shire by Nicole Strycharz is one phenomenal read. Talk about wow…Instantly, readers are plunged deep into the plot…and straight into the characters shoes. I cried, laughed, blushed and felt frustrated in more ways than one. Readers will need a tissue box for this remarkable story. I couldn’t stop reading once I opened up the book. The heat, hot sex, and emotional journey, was a million times that of any other novel I have ever read.  Those most talked about movies that move the audience in ways that you can’t stop thinking about them…well, The Duke of Golden Shire is exactly that. I finished it in one night and haven’t stopped thinking about it since then…Nicole Strycharz is beyond talented. Her words pull readers in and then wrap a tight vine around them and keep them prisoner until the ending. OMG! The ending…I can’t say too much without spoiling it…but readers will be on hands and knees beginning for the next brilliant adventure. This was masterfully woven for all readers’ entertainment and I highly recommend it to readers worldwide.  I know for a fact that I simply can’t get enough of Nicole Strycharz’s writing…her characters will blow readers away.

 

Review: Shunned No More

 

 

Synopsis:

A Lady Shunned by All…

Lady Viola Oberbrook only wanted to forget the ill-fated early morning duel that took the lives of two young, wealthy, promising men of the ton and sent her fleeing for her father’s country estate. Eight years later, she has her life in order: a fulfilling business, a few trusted friends, and no plans to return to London society. What she doesn’t expect is to come face to face with her past.

A Lord Betrayed by One…

Brock Spencer, Earl of Haversham, only wants vengeance. Recently returned from his military service to the King, his plans include repairing his family estate, finding a bride, and destroying the girl responsible for the untimely death of his twin brothers. What he doesn’t anticipate is falling in love with the only woman who should never be part of his future.

An Impossible Match, Destined to Be…

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Shunned No More by Christina McKnight is a historical romance that swept me away. I loved following the main characters, both Lady Viola, and Earl Brock. These two have a shared tragedy from the past that continues to haunt them both. However, for Lady Viola, the past wrong was her doing…and the guilt of it still keeps her shunned away from London’s society…until her business in the country is ruined by a trusted friend. Then, there’s her father’s insistence that she goes back to London to find herself a husband. But Lady Viola isn’t ready to be put out in the open by an unwelcoming society. But her father won’t let it go. For Earl Brock, the event of both his twin brothers’ deaths has caused him feeling lonely after returning back home. His father died before Brok got to say goodbye. With London’s gossip column, it’s hard to let go of the family tragedy…until fate has spun him and Lady Viola aka the culprit of the trouble together. What happens next kept me turning the pages eager to read it all. Christina McKnight has masterfully brought out a tale that is heartbreaking, swoon-worthy, intriguing, and heart melting in the end. I couldn’t pass up on this fabulous read…the talent shines brightly on every page as the characters dilemma, worries, and struggles became my own. The heat and sparks that transpired between the main characters are stunning. I fell in love with Shunned No More. Overall, I highly recommend this new title to readers everywhere

 

 

Review: Somebody Else’s Business

 

Synopsis:

This journey of the unexpected begins with the deployment of John Willoughby. He writes a letter expressing his committed love to his fiancee Tiffany Adams, who misplaces the letter within an hour after receiving it. Through happenstance, Kelly; the wife of another relationship finds the letter while walking her dog. Enthralled by the expressive content, she takes the letter home with the intent of using it as a tool to rekindle the spontaneity in her marriage; from there the story unfolds, into a series, of destructive episodes. The words and expressions intended for one relationship are read and conveyed in another. As a consequence of being involved, in Somebody Else’s Business, the trust and fidelity in Kelly’s marriage have been compromised. The seeds of assumption are carried yet further by an unwary housekeeper Maria, who promulgates a discovery of baseless assumptions implicating her employer’s husband of infidelity. A confrontation ensues. Guilt leads to the fate of a husband and the destruction of two additional relationships. Overall 15 lives are devastated based on assumptions. The characters are methodically developed and sequenced to bring home the lesson of “Speculative Disqualification.” From tragedy and fate, a victim emerges as a hero for social consciousness. The storyline transitions ingeniously for a climatic twist. The lesson ends with the consolation of its beginning. Though we watch from the sidelines and are entertained by the characters wit, keep in mind “Somebody Else’s Business” is everything and anything that doesn’t pertain to you.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Somebody Else’s Business by Charlton James is a superb novel of drama, tragedy, and intrigue. Immediately readers’ attention is drawn by the curiosity of the character’s find and the reaction chain it causes. Relationships are on the line of breaking…destructive, emotional, and powerful tale of how someone else’s business gets picked up by another and another until the damage appears, and everything is never the same. Charlton James is a master at suspense and creating a novel that sparks, entertains, fascinates readers. The characters are well-developed and the pages are well-written in a way that will forever entice readers to its plot. Charlton James as a dramatic flare for creating the juiciest drama and trouble readers shall ever find. I fell in love with this talented writer’s words and the scenes that unfolded before me. Somebody Else’s Business is definitely a must read for those who love Pretty Little Liars, Downton Abby, and Manchester. Overall, I highly recommend this stunning story to readers worldwide. I promise once you read this you won’t be disappointed.

 

Review: Before the Fall

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Synopsis:
On a foggy summer night, eleven people–ten privileged, one down-on-his-luck painter–depart Martha’s Vineyard headed for New York. Sixteen minutes later, the unthinkable happens: the passengers disappear into the ocean. The only survivors are Scott Burroughs–the painter–and a four-year-old boy, who is now the last remaining member of a wealthy and powerful media mogul’s family.

With chapters weaving between the aftermath of the tragedy and the backstories of the passengers and crew members–including a Wall Street titan and his wife, a Texan-born party boy just in from London, a young woman questioning her path in life, and a career pilot–the mystery surrounding the crash heightens. As the passengers’ intrigues unravel, odd coincidences point to a conspiracy: Was it merely dumb chance that so many influential people perished? Or was something far more sinister at work? Events soon threaten to spiral out of control in an escalating storm of media outrage and accusations–all while the reader draws closer and closer to uncovering the truth.

Amid pulse-quickening suspense, the fragile relationship between Scott and the young boy glows at the heart of this stunning novel, raising questions of fate, human nature, and the inextricable ties that bind us together.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

WOW! Before the Fall by Noah Hawley is phenomenal…outright stunning. Readers will be sucked in deep from the first page and held captive until the ending. Truly a remarkable suspense thriller that shows readers what the media can do after a big tragedy occurs…Only two survivors. A man and one boy survive and readers will be blown away as the magnificent plot unfolds.

The mystery of what caused the tragedy to occur and the unending of media sharks makes this a compelling read. The suspense hangs like a thick and heavy blanket. Readers will keep turning the pages until they find out how it all ends. Inside this riveting book, Noah Hawley talentedly spins many wonderful themes that readers will enjoy. Many of these include fate, family, and betrayal. Before the Fall is fast-paced and one thriller that readers won’t be forgetting. Everything from the danger, disaster, and the two survivors will hold readers’ attention unlike any other book, known to man. Readers can easily connect, sympathize, and get lost, into this masterfully woven story. Overall, I loved this masterpiece by Noah Hawley, and I look forward to reading more by this writer.

 

 

 

Review: Sour

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Synopsis:

A re-telling of ‘Deirdre of the Sorrows’, updated to the modern day, re-imagined with bizarre local characters and set in a fictional Irish countryside. Hilarious, dark, thrilling, with a winding narrative native to the Irish countryside.

In a desolate Irish town, a local paper boy goes missing. Conall, a beetroot-faced, mule of a man, makes it his business to find the boy.

What starts out a small undertaking, unfolds into a journey of strange rural experience, bizarre natural occurrences and warped small-town morality, revealing the shocking tale of a young girl horribly imprisoned and two boys fixed on rescuing her. Fionn McCool, Cuchulainn and many more characters all make appearances!

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Sour by Alan Walsh is brilliant. I was amazed by this writer’s talent. The story was well-written. A funny yet highly entertaining novel that contains Irish mythology and a murder mystery. The characters are well-developed…they pop off the pages and bring the story to life. Alan Walsh will take his readers deep into the heart of his riveting book. There are so many interesting events that occur inside this stunning novel, readers won’t be able to stop reading it. I loved how Sour, captivates readers from the beginning and holds them prisoner until the end.

Sour is one fascinating journey readers everywhere won’t want to miss! Alan Walsh brings readers a refreshing novel with characters that will instantly become readers new favorite. I can definitely see this novel being used in classrooms…as new all time favorite piece of literature. I definitely enjoyed reading this tragedy and I highly recommend it to readers worldwide.  I look forward to reading more adventures by this writer in the future.  Truly a masterpiece that all will love.