Review: The Lost Castle

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Launching a brand-new series, Kristy Cambron explores the collision of past and present as she discovers the ruins of a French castle, long lost to history.

A thirteenth century castle, Chateau de Doux Reves, has been forgotten for generations, left to ruin in a storybook forest nestled deep in France’s picturesque Loire Valley. It survived a sacking in the French Revolution, was brought back to life and fashioned into a storybook chateau in the Gilded Age, and was eventually felled and deserted after a disastrous fire in the 1930s.

As Ellie Carver sits by her grandmother’s bedside, she hears stories of a castle . . . of lost love and a hidden chapel that played host to a secret fight in the World War II French resistance. But her grandmother is quickly slipping into the locked-down world of Alzheimer’s, and Ellie must act fast if she wants to uncover the truth of her family’s history.

Sparked by the discovery of a long forgotten family heirloom, Ellie embarks on a journey to French wine country to uncover the mystery surrounding The Sleeping Beauty–the castle so named for Charles Perrault’s beloved fairy tale–and unearth its secrets before they’re finally silenced by time.

Set in three different time periods–the French Revolution, World War II, and present day–The Lost Castle is a story of loves won and lost, of battles waged, and an enchanted castle that inspired the epic fairy tales time left behind.

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

The Lost Castle by Kristy Cambron is an interesting historical journey. A young woman is wanting to learn everything she can about her family history. Her grandmother provides the clues but is slipping away fast into Alzheimer’s. The clock is ticking fast, and Ellie Carver must find the answers. Soon, I was following her as she traveled to a castle that has holds so many secrets. Many generations of women, and their historical time periods were brought to life in this engaging tale. Captivating and intriguing, I was hooked. The Lost Castle peaked my interest. What were the women’s lives like…and how it all ties in with the present, kept me reading. Ellie is a good character. Her personality makes her easy to like. Overall, I enjoyed traveling back in time with The Lost Castle. I recommend it to all.

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Review: The Sequel

Synopsis:

Maya Smock gets inside of a time capsule and travels back to 1944 Germany. A Nazi doctor forces her to meet his superiors, proving to them all that his invention works. Hitler studies Maya like a laboratory rat at his Eagle’s Nest and then introduces her to the Reptilians. She plummets deep into the hollow earth. Will she ever get home? Only Maya’s next novel can show her friends how to get her back.

As Operation Chrome expands, General Andreas steals more babies. He believes that he is saving them from an extraterrestrial agenda connected with World War II. The hybrid babies have grown.

They are here. They will take what is theirs.

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

The Sequel by Dina Rae is exactly that. It’s the sequel to her The Bestseller, novel. A series that is most interesting. A combination of both science fiction and conspiracies are formed here. While I have read several sci-fi books, this series still stands on top. The characters are unique. Take the leading protagonist…she is a writer and gets sucked into worlds that I haven’t even dreamed of…

Dina Rae is a talented writer. Her words create visual images of the scenes and sends me spiraling into her world of fiction. Creative, intriguing, and most of all entertaining. I love anything that involves WWII stuff. And this book has that. Elements of fantasy are shown on the pages as well. Time travel and human experimentation just to name a few. The Sequel has left me waiting to see what Dina Rae plans for next time. As always I’m guaranteed a lifetime of adventure, excitement, and suspense. Overall, I would recommend The Sequel to readers everywhere.

Review: A Hero of France

 

Synopsis:

From the bestselling master espionage writer, hailed by Vince Flynn as “the best in the business,” comes a riveting novel about the French Resistance in Nazi-occupied Paris.

1941. The City of Light is dark and silent at night. But in Paris and in the farmhouses, barns, and churches of the French countryside, small groups of ordinary men and women are determined to take down the occupying forces of Adolf Hitler. Mathieu, a leader of the French Resistance, leads one such cell, helping downed British airmen escape back to England.

Alan Furst’s suspenseful, fast-paced thriller captures this dangerous time as no one ever has before. He brings Paris and occupied France, to life, along with courageous citizens who outmaneuver collaborators, informers, blackmailers, and spies, risking everything to fulfill perilous clandestine missions. Aiding, Mathieu as part of his covert network are Lisette, a seventeen-year-old student, and courier; Max de Lyon, an arms dealer turned nightclub owner; Chantal, a woman of class and confidence; Daniel, a Jewish teacher fueled by revenge; Joëlle, who falls in love with Mathieu; and Annemarie, a willful aristocrat with deep roots in France, and a desire to act.

As the German military police heighten surveillance, Mathieu and his team face a new threat, dispatched by the Reich to destroy them all.

Shot through with the author’s trademark fine writing, breathtaking suspense, and intense scenes of seduction and passion, Alan Furst’s A Hero of France is at once one of the finest novels written about the French Resistance and the most gripping novel yet by the living master of the spy thriller.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Wow…immediately this powerful novel intrigues readers’ senses with fear, courage, and revenge. Alan Furst knows exactly what his readers expect and what they will want to read. His talent is found on every page of this fast-paced thriller. I loved how Alan Furst created a masterpiece surrounding the events of World War II. History fans will definitely enjoy reading this spy novel. As with all wars…the stakes are much higher in this war than any other. One of the world’s most evil dictators is behind all the murders, chaos, and fear that spreads like wildfire through France and the rest of Europe. A Hero of France brings to life one of the most popular historical moments of all time…World War II. Hitler is rising…and many brave souls are determined to bring down the Nazi leader. But it will be more than just going for justice…it’s revenge.  The sacrifices that will tear at readers’ hearts.

A Hero of France is about a man who leads a group of people in a resistance against the Nazis and to bring down Adolf Hitler. Going after this goal will prove difficult since they are all under surveillance. Members are separated and taken and it will take everything they have to come out of it all alive. The suspense builds as readers turn the pages. Every moment could be the destruction of them all. Amazing how one man was capable of changing his appearance so much that no one could recognize him at all. It made the Nazis search for him rather hard. Then there’s the romance…or true love between Joelle and Mathieu, the leader of the rebel group. He promises to come back to her and their home…but he must continue on his journey of getting out alive.  Danger…the threat of death is strong enough to keep readers guessing what will happen to or what happened to the some of the members. Some disappeared so well…that there are only rumors of what may have happened to them. The ending was brilliant…I enjoyed reading this historical thriller, and I highly recommend it to readers worldwide.

 

 

 

 

Review: Iris and Ruby

 

Synopsis:

The unexpected arrival of her willful teenage granddaughter, Ruby, brings life and disorder to 82-year-old Iris Black’s old house in Cairo. Ruby, driven by her fraught relationship with her own mother to run away from England, is seeking refuge with the grandmother she hasn’t seen for years.

An unlikely bond develops between them, as Ruby helps Iris to record her fading memories of the glittering, cosmopolitan Cairo of World War II, and of her one true love–the enigmatic Captain Xan Molyneux–whom she lost to the ravages of conflict.

This long-ago love has shaped Iris’s life, and, as becomes increasingly apparent, those of her daughter and her granddaughter. And it is to affect them all, again, in ways they could not have imagined.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Iris and Ruby by Rosie Thomas is a woman’s fiction novel that features that joys and sorrows of life. It dragged me instantly into life back then during World War II and then back to the present moment in the same Egyptian city. Cario. Iris goes about telling her 19-year-old granddaughter about her memories of her life while she still can…Ruby feels that helping her grandmother is something special…in just the time they are together the bond between these two women grow and tugs as readers hearts. Absolutely stunning and beautifully enchanting to read. Traveling far away without ever having to leave home and finding wisdom that comes with age as well as romance all inside this brilliant tale. Rosie Thomas is a writer whose talent shines with every page. I was lost immediately as the pages began turning and the story swallowed me up whole and took me along the two women’s journeys. Overall, I would highly recommend this story to all.

Review: The Cavendon Luck

 

Synopsis:

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author comes a captivating epic saga of courage and honor, following the aristocratic Inghams and the loyal Swann family who have served them for centuries.

It is 1938 in England, and Miles and Cecily Ingham have led the family in bringing the Cavendon estate back from the brink of disaster. But now, with the arrival of World War II, Cavendon Hall will face its biggest challenge yet. It is a challenge that will push the Inghams and Swanns to protect each other and the villagers and reveal their true capacity for survival and rebirth.

Told with Bradford’s deft, evocative prose and featuring a beloved cast of characters, The Cavendon Luck is a story of intrigue, romance, sorrow, and joy that readers won’t soon forget.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

The Cavendon Luck by Barbara Taylor Bradford reminds me so much of my beloved favorite British TV program, The Downton Abbey.  Both are about keeping the family place afloat during tough times. There’s always a disaster of some sort just around the corner and right after everything seems to be doing well. Barbara Taylor Bradford lures her audience back to 1938 where it all begins…The Cavendon Luck is an extraordinary historical fiction that will grab readers instantly with its intrigue and fascinating cast of characters. The emotional journey is quite a ride. Just as in real life, the roads get bumpy, tough or easy and joyous.

After reading this stunning new title by Barbara Taylor Bradford, I would love to see this turned into a big motion picture. The story brings readers in both emotionally and physically. The scenes are so vivid that they pop off the pages into the reader’s mind. The tightly knit family showered with so much love makes readers’ hearts melt into butter. The idea of war and what it might brings sounds alarms within the characters. It causes a curtain of suspense to hang thickly in the air as every page is quickly turned. Cavendon Hall is brought back and safe for the moment but how much longer will that last if war does set in? Readers will love the two families both the Inghams and the Swanns.  The tale is switched from telling it from the character’s point of view to the narrator’s. Excitement, danger, and livelihoods are all on a tight line where the Cavendon Hall is concerned. So many have put in so much to keep it going…World War II is just around the corner fear, death, and loss will soon be upon them all. Friendship, romance, and courage are all a part of this magnificent thrilling novel. I couldn’t put the book down…until I read it all. Readers will indeed fall in love with this second masterpiece by Barbara Taylor Bradford. Overall, I highly recommend The Cavendon Luck to readers worldwide.

 

Review: Lilac Girls

 

Synopsis:

Inspired by the life of a real World War II heroine, this powerful debut novel reveals an incredible story of love, redemption, and terrible secrets that were hidden for decades.
 
New York socialite Caroline Ferriday has her hands full with her post at the French consulate and a new love on the horizon. But Caroline’s world is forever changed when Hitler’s army invades Poland in September 1939—and then sets its sights on France.

An ocean away from Caroline, Kasia Kuzmerick, a Polish teenager, senses her carefree youth disappearing as she is drawn deeper into her role as courier for the underground resistance movement. In a tense atmosphere of watchful eyes and suspecting neighbors, one false move can have dire consequences.

For the ambitious young German doctor, Herta Oberheuser, an ad for a government medical position seems her ticket out of a desolate life. Once hired, though, she finds herself trapped in a male-dominated realm of Nazi secrets and power.

The lives of these three women are set on a collision course when the unthinkable happens and Kasia is sent to Ravensbrück, the notorious Nazi concentration camp for women. Their stories cross continents—from New York to Paris, Germany, and Poland—as Caroline and Kasia strive to bring justice to those whom history has forgotten.

In Lilac Girls, Martha Hall Kelly has crafted a remarkable novel of unsung women and their quest for love, freedom, and second chances. It is a story that will keep readers bonded with the characters, searching for the truth, until the final pages.

My Rating: 5 stars

My Review: 

Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly is a powerful story for readers everywhere. It’s war time and the Nazi are a real nightmare. Many have forgotten the horrors tha tmany have faced. Innocent lives struggling to survive the horrendous fate awaiting them. Inisde this historical remembrance tale, readers meet three women whose lives will forever change history. Martha Hall Kelly has brought readers a first hand glimpse into one of history’s most frightening memories. A novel that brings to life what these women and many others suffered.

Martha Hall Kelly’s debut novel, Lilac Girls, is symbolic of what happened in the past. Lilac being the flower that struggles through a harsh winter and yet still blooms later. Lila flowers grew in the back yard of one of the three women protrayed in this brilliant masterpiece. Readers will find three different paths crossing into one as they journey back to 1939. World War II was a terrible time. A time most would like to forget. Generations have no idea what it was really like during these times nor what suffering a majority of people were forced to take. Caroline, Kasis, and Herta are the three women described and relived in this stunning piece. Each one has a life so different than the others yet, all brought together. Death, loss, and fear were strong elements in this story. Yet love and hope persisted. I was moved with tears for all the lives lost during World War II. Overall, I highly recommend Lilac Girls to readers world wide.