Thursday, September 17, 2020

Pathfinding Women and the art of sequels with Tam May

Tam May started writing when she was fourteen, and writing became her voice. She loves history and wants readers to love it too, so she writes historical fiction that lives and breathes a world of the past. She fell in love with San Francisco and its rich history when she learned about its resilience and rebirth after the 1906 earthquake and fire during a walking tour. She grew up in the United States and earned a B.A. and M.A in English. She worked as an English college instructor (where she managed to interest a class full of wary freshmen in Henry James’ fiction) and EFL teacher (using literature to teach English to business professionals)before she became a full-time writer.

Her book Lessons From My Mother’s Life debuted at #1 on Amazon in the Historical Fiction Short Stories category. She is currently working on a Gilded Age family drama titled the Waxwood Series. The first book of the series, The Specter, came out in June 2019, and the second book, False Fathers, was released in December of that year. Book 3, Pathfinding Women is out now, and Book 4 will be released in December 2020.

Tam lives in Texas but calls San Francisco and the Bay Area “home”. When she’s not writing, she’s reading classic literature, watching classic films, cross-stitching, or cooking up yummy vegetarian dishes.

For more information on Tam May and her work, check out her website at www.tammayauthor.com. You can also sign up for her newsletter, which features lots of information on fascinating psychological and social history and subscriber-exclusive sneak peeks, giveaways, and polls. plus a free short story.

Guest Post

When I started publishing books in 2017, I had only a vague idea of what meant to write a series. My first book was a stand-alone short story collection (which I revised and re-released earlier this year as Lessons From My Mother’s Life, which you can find out more about here). After that book came out, I knew I wanted to write a Gilded Age family saga which became the Waxwood Series. I originally planned on writing  a trilogy. However, the series morphed into four books after I realized a prequel short story I had written as an early free gift for my newsletter subscribers needed to be Book 1 of the series. It was the story of “how it all began,” that is, how the protagonist of the series, Vivian Alderdice, begins her journey to uncover the lies, half-truths, and secrets tainting the family through the generations.

Most writers have an “I wish I would have known that before I started” moment, and mine was when I realized a series is not just a collection of books that share similar characters or locations. A series has a beginning, middle, and it has to work like a story. It has to have a climax and resolution and a progression of growth and change in one or more of the characters to satisfy the reader. Even if the books do not tell one cohesive story, they must be linked, and that link has to have causality. Author and writing teacher John Gardener explained it as the difference between “The king died, and then the queen died” and “The king died, and then the queen died of grief.”

I made this discovery after I wrote the second book of the series, False Fathers. That book is about Vivian’s younger brother, Jake, and his coming of age. I originally intended Book 3 to follow the pattern of focusing on different characters who had a connection to the Alderdice family, the family of my series. But after Book 2, I realized the central theme of the series was the way the family members find authenticity and truth after the façade created by the lies and secrets is exposed. The family metaphorically sheds its old skin for a new one.

Given that, I knew Book 3 had to continue that story arc.Book 1 was about Penelope Alderdice, Vivian’s grandmother, “where it all began.” Book 2 was about Jake and his journey. Vivian’s journey kicked off in Book 1, and then stalled in Book 2. So it was a natural progression to bring her back and continue her journey in Book 3, Pathfinding Women.

Pathfinding Women is now available, and you can find out more about the book and get your copy here.

Pathfinding Women (Waxwood Series: Book 3)

Author – Tam May

Publisher – Dreambook Press

Pages – 376

Release Date – 13 September 2020

ISBN 13 – 978-0998338507

Formats – ebook, paperback

Synopsis

There are paths in life we have no choice but to follow.

At the close of the nineteenth century,Vivian Alderdice is twenty-six, unmarried, and has no prospective suitors. Now the heiress of the Alderdice fortune, she has yet to fulfill her duty to her family and to society: to marry well and produce heirs.

Her brother’s tragic plight the year before left her and her mother on shaky ground with the San Francisco bluebloods of Nob Hill, and the only way they can re-establish their social position is to win the heart of Monte Leblanc, a wealthy Canadian in search ofa wife and looking to become a member of the exclusive Washington Street society.

But a young man on the train tells Vivian things about her grandmother that shake her to the core. Even as she is pursued by the debonair Monte Leblanc, Vivian can’t avoid ghosts from the past who send her on a journey she is reluctant to take.

Is there always light at the end of a dark and hellish path?

Author Links:

Website: https://tammayauthor.com/

Blog: https://tammayauthor.com/category/thedreambookblog

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tammayauthor/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/tammayauthor

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/tammayauthor/

Instragram: https://www.instagram.com/tammayauthor/

Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16111197.Tam_May

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Tam-May/e/B01N7BQZ9Y/

BookBub Author Page: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/tam-may

Thursday, September 3, 2020

Heart of a Warrior review Angela Couch

 Heart of a Warrior

Heart of a Warrior

Angela K Couch

Prism Books

Sept 1, 2020

American romantic history

$5.99 EBook

https://www.amazon.com/Heart-Warrior-Angela-K-Couch-ebook/dp/B0875NPKLZ

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/heart-of-a-warrior-angela-k-couch/1136867479?ean=9781522398608

$16.99 Print

282 pp

About the Book

All Christina Astle wants is to reach Oregon before her baby is born, but the wagon train is attacked, and her husband killed, stranding her in a mountain labyrinth. Raised in the East, within civilization’s embrace, survival is not a skill she’s learned. Neither is evading the lone warrior dogging her trail.

Disgusted by the greed and cruelty of men like his white father, Towan has turned to the simpler existence of his mother’s tribal people. He is not prepared for the fiery woman who threatens to upturn his entire life … and his heart.

 

My Review

Page-turning historical fiction, real romance in American history. Victims of greed on the Oregon Trail, Christina’s husband and his friend pay with their lives, leaving pregnant Christian at the mercy of murderers. It’s a matter of what or who will get her and her newborn first – the coming winter in the mountains, savage Shoshone, or uncouth trappers. But which are the bad guys and which are saviors?

Christina is one mixed-up woman, young and naïve, she must find the will to survive the wilderness with people who willingly take her in, despite their unfamiliarity with each other. The man who rescues her is just as mixed up, ethnically and culturally. Raised in the white world, Towan returned with his Shoshone mother as an adult, but never feels at home in either world, until he gives in to his conscious and helps a white woman. 

Both are lost souls, bound by mistakes and misunderstanding in their past and present and Christina’s adorable infant. Couch’s endearing historical romance doesn’t sidestep issues of racial injustice or violence, goes light on historical Shoshone village life, while creating an enjoyable, thought-provoking read.

 

About the Author

To keep from freezing in the Great White North, Angela K Couch cuddles under quilts with her laptop. Winning short story contests, being a semi-finalist in ACFW’s Genesis Contest, and a finalist in the International Digital Awards also helped warm her up. As a passionate believer in Christ, her faith permeates the stories she tells. Her martial arts training, experience with horses, and appreciation for good romance sneak in there, as well. When not writing, she stays fit (and warm) by chasing after four munchkins.


Monday, August 31, 2020

Through Healed Lenses blog tour

 



Write Now Literary is pleased to be organizing a two-week book tour for Through Healed Lenses by Adrienne’Quinn. The book tour will run August 24-Sept 4, 2020.

            

Genre: Non-Fiction    

 

ISBN-13: 979-8648414099

ASIN: B08DC1P8MY

      

                               Meet Adrienne

 

Adrienne Kelly, pen name, Adrienne'Quinn, is a practicing Acute Care Nurse Practitioner in Atlanta, GA. Adrienne's childhood included being raised by a single mother and growing up in a small town with a large, close-knit maternal family who heavily influences her upbringing and writings. She is a mom two a boy, Joziah and girl, Azariah. She is the CEO and founder of Gifting Love LLC, an organization that focuses on holistic mentoring through the use of spiritual and emotional education, as well as therapy services for adolescent girls. Adrienne started her therapy journey years ago and has become an avid supporter of counseling services.


 

                                                                                    About The Book

 

How often do you find yourself wondering why the same outcomes in relationships, be it familiar or personal, continue to happen to you? When is the last time you caught yourself feeling as if there was something missing? Or something more to life than your current predicaments? When was the last time you had a negative thought about yourself, that you could not comfortably say aloud because society would judge it by their skewed standards? Or how about a time when you felt defeated but had to keep moving forward for the sake of image or responsibility? In Adrienne ‘Quinn’s new book, every page answers, provides depth, and context to the above questions.

                                                

                                                Excerpt


Life is a slideshow full of relationships. The journey we experience with our parent, children, brother, sister, friend, teachers, strangers, significant other, and spouse are all relationships in which we learn to exist and navigate life. The people gifted to us by blood were, in some realm, ordained by God to guide and influence our life experiences. These life experiences do not always present as the most favorable or positive; however, they are a part of our story.

 

Connect Socially                       Purchase Link

 

 

 Facebook       IG       Website            Amazon

 

 

Tour organized by Write Now Literary



Lisa's Review

Adrienne Kelly’s new memoir journey to healing is a brutally honest look at her introduction to adulthood. She’s earned success in professional life all while figuring out how to navigate the tricky waters of relationships both romantic and platonic. She’s made mistakes and presents herself at her most vulnerable to let others know that bumps can truly be blessings in disguise.

Part Self-help and all inspiring, Kelly’s passionate heart and desire to show young people that life should be more than a constant struggle and overcoming issues, but one of standing firm in self-confidence, knowing who you are, your boundaries, and your goal line.

Written in intimate journal format with hard-hitting questions and moments of self-discovery, Through Healed Lenses is highly recommended for readers seventh grade and up.



 


Monday, August 24, 2020

Thrilling conclusion to Prayer Slayer murders with Clare Revell

Say a Prayer Whodunit Crime Thrillers by Clare Revell

Serial, 4 books

c. 2020

Pelican Ventures LLC

Ebooks, $5.99

Print, $15.99

 About the Author

Clare is a British author. She lives in a small town just outside Reading, England with her husband, whom she married in 1992, their three children, and unfriendly mini-panther, aka Tilly the black cat. They have recently been joined by Hedwig and Sirius the guinea pigs. Clare is half English and half Welsh, which makes watching rugby interesting at times as it doesn’t matter who wins.

Writing from an early childhood and encouraged by her teachers, she graduated from rewriting fairy stories through fan fiction to using her own original characters and enjoys writing an eclectic mix of romance, crime fiction and children's stories. When she's not writing, she can be found reading, crocheting or doing the many piles of laundry the occupants of her house manage to make.

Her books are based in the UK, with a couple of exceptions, thus, although the spelling may be American in some of them, the books contain British language and terminology and the more recent ones are written in UK English.

The first draft of every novel is hand written.

She has been a Christian for more than half her life. She goes to Carey Baptist where she is one of four registrars.
She can be found at:
http://www.revell124.plus.com/clarere...
https://www.facebook.com/ClareRevellA...
https://twitter.com/ClareRevell
http://telscha.blogspot.co.uk/
https://uk.pinterest.com/ClareLRevell/
https://www.instagram.com/clarerevell/
https://www.amazon.co.uk/-/e/B005NZT2O2
https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B005NZT2O2
http://pelicanbookgroup.com/ec/index....

Soul to Take, book #4

Buy on

Amazon 

Barnes and Noble

Pelican book store 

About the Book

Just when things couldn't get much worse, they suddenly do. With DS Zander Ellery in jail, his partner DC Isabel York fights to clear his name. Not an easy task when she is suspended from duty and the evidence against him is compelling.

Finally, pieces begin to fall into place, but to catch the Prayer Slayer once and for all, both officers must walk down a dark path where their very souls are at risk of being taken.

My review

In this final chapter of the Say a Prayer murders in the English village of Headley Cross, Detective Isabel York knows she’s on the victim’s list. The only person who believes her is her partner, Detective Zander Ellery, who’s in jail accused of the murders, and she’s been suspended from the case. But that doesn’t mean she can’t be sneaky about continuing her investigation from…home.

In this serial murder case of the victims being chosen by extremely tight circumstances and eerily similar habits, Isabel attempts to break the mold and hopefully distract the murderer—before he can kill anyone else, let alone her. A secret from her past has caught up to her, preying heavily on her vulnerabilities. News that should be happy smells decidedly rotten. And again, since Zander is jailed with extremely ripe evidence as to his part in the murder plot, Isabel is on her own, up against a gruesome murderer…who can’t possibly be Zander...could it?

Secrets abound as both Isabel and Zander come to grips with revenge, brutal lies, and graphic crimes committed to satisfy a wholly unwholesome appetite. It’s personal when the killer gets to family and close friends. Everyone is under suspicion, even church friends, and the tension may force them all to reconsider whether vengeance truly belongs to the Lord, or whether He needs some help carrying it out.

All the stories are told through Zander and Isabel’s perspectives, deftly done so that intuition and thought processes serve to illuminate and distract as these able detectives work diligently to solve a disturbing serial murder case.



Thursday, August 20, 2020

new romance from Robin Fuson

 

Worthless to Priceless

Robin Densmore Fuson

Buy on Amazon 

Ebook $2.99

Print $7.99

198 pp

July 2020

About the Book

At the tender age of thirteen, orphaned Jenny Low decides to take matters in her own hands and runs away from her captive life in a Ute tribe. Rescued from near death by a kindly teamster, Samuel Baunof, Jenny is sent to live with a family in Glenwood Springs, Colorado in 1886. She learns the truth of wickedness and runs again straight into true evil.

Meanwhile, Samuel holds his head up while facing life's cruelty head on. A few years later, he crosses paths with the orphaned girl he once rescued. Now a beautiful young woman, Jenny is a God-send in his time of need. Their trials aren’t over and Samuel finds himself tracking her through the wilderness where, unbeknownst to him, someone else is after her too. Will he get to her in time?

Can these two people with completely different backgrounds and beliefs help each other and those around them? Is Samuel able to rescue Jenny from the horror her life has been drawn into? Is his faith strong enough to help her understand that God loves her and didn’t abandon her? Jenny is challenged to accept love and forgiveness even when she feels the world closing in.

 

My review

Heart-achy love story between a young girl, brutally abused on the old west of Colorado, and a widower searching for someone to care for his young children.

It’s a familiar trope well-retold by a master storyteller. Fuson’s tales are always dramatic and life-changing no matter where or when they’re set.

Jenny has an almost True Grit aspect to her life, though she needs to kindness of others to help her escape the desperate circumstances she is in. After escaping from one horror and jumping into the next, this girl just can’t get a break until her life circles around to meet with the rescuer who thought he’d done a good deed.

Samuel has a good position as a teamster in Colorado; it’s just that he’s on the road for days at a time and when his wife passes away, he has three young tots to care for. Life is funny when it leads him back to the young girl he rescued from the desert. Horrified to learn the couple who took her in failed her dreadfully, and the next troubling circumstance she entered was even worse, Samuel was more than determined to see her safe.

Nicely told from both sides of gritty realism, romance readers will enjoy Fuson’s latest story.


About the Author

Robin recently moved to Tennessee with her husband Jimmy. Together, they celebrate with seventeen grandchildren. An award winner for romance and flash fiction. Robin is multi-published and writes stories on her blog for children. Robin is a member of ACFW, Vice President of ACFW Colorado Western Slope, and member of John316 Marketing Network. She enjoys leading a Bible study group and singing in two community choirs. Robin loves company and challenging her young guests to discover the many giraffes in the obvious and hidden nooks and crannies of their home.

Monday, August 17, 2020

Book 3 of Prayer Slayer with Clare Revell

Say a Prayer Whodunit Crime Thrillers by Clare Revell

Serial, 4 books

c. 2020

Pelican Ventures LLC

Ebooks, $5.99

Print, $15.99

About the Author

Clare is a British author. She lives in a small town just outside Reading, England with her husband, whom she married in 1992, their three children, and unfriendly mini-panther, aka Tilly the black cat. They have recently been joined by Hedwig and Sirius the guinea pigs. Clare is half English and half Welsh, which makes watching rugby interesting at times as it doesn’t matter who wins.

Writing from an early childhood and encouraged by her teachers, she graduated from rewriting fairy stories through fan fiction to using her own original characters and enjoys writing an eclectic mix of romance, crime fiction and children's stories. When she's not writing, she can be found reading, crocheting or doing the many piles of laundry the occupants of her house manage to make.

Her books are based in the UK, with a couple of exceptions, thus, although the spelling may be American in some of them, the books contain British language and terminology and the more recent ones are written in UK English.

The first draft of every novel is hand written.

She has been a Christian for more than half her life. She goes to Carey Baptist where she is one of four registrars.

She can be found at:
http://www.revell124.plus.com/clarere...
https://www.facebook.com/ClareRevellA...
https://twitter.com/ClareRevell
http://telscha.blogspot.co.uk/
https://uk.pinterest.com/ClareLRevell/
https://www.instagram.com/clarerevell/
https://www.amazon.co.uk/-/e/B005NZT2O2
https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B005NZT2O2
http://pelicanbookgroup.com/ec/index....

Before I Wake, book #3

Buy on

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

Pelican book store

About the Book

With trouble on the streets, DS Zander Ellery is under even more pressure to solve the case of the Prayer Slayer. His partner DC Isabel York is convinced she is being targeted, as all the postcards the Slayer sends are addressed only to her.

With Zander and Isabel pulled in different directions, the body count escalates, until the case explodes in a direction no one could foresee—Something that will test everyone to the limits of their experience and faith.

My review

Murder in Headley Cross, a typically quiet community in the English countryside has everyone on guard. The police don’t seem to be able to not only find the killer, they can’t seem to figure out how he seems to be playing the detectives on the case. Isabel and Zander, the assigned detectives, know the lines of the prayer and speculate on the number of murders the killer plans based on other evidence of stolen artwork, but deaths that don’t fit the pattern throw everything off.

Answers to questions about Isabel’s past creep from home life directly into work, and when other pieces of the puzzle begin to point in her direction as a target for murder, she struggles to convince anyone of her suspicions. Worse yet, Zander seems to be out of control, the whole case spins in a direction that surprises the readers. Following the clues first one direction, then another, will have mystery lovers tied up in knots waiting to see how the author deftly pulls it all together. Told through both Zander and Isabel’s eyes, we grow suspicious as each detective begins to piece the evidence and motives together in different angles. The story comes to a conclusion in book four.

 


Thursday, August 13, 2020

Pushing Robby by Kimberly M Miller

                                             Pushing Robby: An encore of music, life, and love

Pushing Robby: An encore of music, life, and love

Kimberly Miller

 

June 15, 2020

200 pp

Contemporary inspirational

Ebook $.99

Print $7.99

Buy on Amazon 

 About the Book

Rock and roll’s bad boy is back!
After rehab, losing his band, and nearly ruining the one relationship that ever meant anything to him, Robby Grant is finally on the right track. A new career, band, and most of all a perfect wife named Daisy can only mean one thing- the worst is finally behind him.

Until the honeymoon ends.

It only takes one phone call for the dark shadows of Robby’s past to threaten his newfound peace. Will Daisy’s love be enough to lead him, again, back to where he belongs?

Pushing Robby revisits the fun (and drama) from Picking Daisy- with most of the cast making a return to walk with the singer and his favorite lyricist through their wedding, and everything that comes after. Get ready for some fun with Robby, Daisy, Jazz, Sadie, Warren, and Uncle Nick—along with a few new characters to spice things up.
Time to Rock and Read!

My review

I adored this encore story to the very charming first story featuring Daisy, a shy, wounded wheelchair-bound songwriter who's introduced to the bad boy of rock 'n roll fame and their journey toward healing (Picking Daisy).  This book is the story of their new marriage and how far they still have to go, separately and together.

Although their story is somewhat idyllic as Robby has money to do whatever he wants, he's still a wounded child under all his bravado and newfound faith. Something from his past comes back to entangle his new life with his new bride. It's true: no good deed goes unpunished.

Lovingly written, joy oozes from each page. Even the punches, real enough, don't hurt long in this gorgeous story of music and redemption, and the "two are better than one" principle of learning and living life together, even when it hurts, and especially when we don't get our own way.

Told from both Robby and Daisy's perspectives, this summer read is a nice vacation with a moral. Suitable for teens and up.

About the Author

Kimberly Miller enjoys the seasonal weather in Pennsylvania with her husband, two daughters, and one ornery cat. She teaches writing and film courses, and in her spare time loves reading, watching movies, making jewelry, drinking coffee and eating one of God’s amazing gifts—chocolate and peanut butter.


Monday, August 10, 2020

Prayer Slayer Soul to Keep with Clare Revell

Soul to Keep

Say a Prayer Whodunit Crime Thrillers by Clare Revell

Serial, 4 books

c. 2020

Pelican Ventures LLC

Ebooks, $5.99

Print, $15.99

About the Author

Clare is a British author. She lives in a small town just outside Reading, England with her husband, whom she married in 1992, their three children, and unfriendly mini-panther, aka Tilly the black cat. They have recently been joined by Hedwig and Sirius the guinea pigs. Clare is half English and half Welsh, which makes watching rugby interesting at times as it doesn’t matter who wins.

Writing from an early childhood and encouraged by her teachers, she graduated from rewriting fairy stories through fan fiction to using her own original characters and enjoys writing an eclectic mix of romance, crime fiction and children's stories. When she's not writing, she can be found reading, crocheting or doing the many piles of laundry the occupants of her house manage to make.

Her books are based in the UK, with a couple of exceptions, thus, although the spelling may be American in some of them, the books contain British language and terminology and the more recent ones are written in UK English.

The first draft of every novel is hand written.

She has been a Christian for more than half her life. She goes to Carey Baptist where she is one of four registrars.

She can be found at:
http://www.revell124.plus.com/clarere...
https://www.facebook.com/ClareRevellA...
https://twitter.com/ClareRevell
http://telscha.blogspot.co.uk/
https://uk.pinterest.com/ClareLRevell/
https://www.instagram.com/clarerevell/
https://www.amazon.co.uk/-/e/B005NZT2O2
https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B005NZT2O2
http://pelicanbookgroup.com/ec/index....

Soul to Keep, book #2

Buy on Amazon

Barnes and Noble

Pelican Store

About the Book

As the body count increases and more paintings are recovered, DC Zander Ellery and his partner DC Isabel York are under increasing pressure to catch the killer the press have dubbed the Prayer Slayer.

A few tenuous links are all they have between the deaths of three young, pretty women. The new Chief Superintendent is only adding to the pressure and seems to be picking on Isabel more than any other officer.

Torn between his urge to protect his partner and his need to solve the case, Zander sits his sergeant's exams, hoping once they are over, he won't be so distracted. But a rocky relationship with his girlfriend and one more murder only adds to his stress.

My review:

In the continuing serial crime thriller by Clare Revell, Headley Cross is still under attack by a murderer who seems to be choosing his victims based on a prayer and paintings that represent famous scripture. Since the media got ahold of the case, they’ve named the murderer the Prayer Slayer, giving attention the police don’t want him to have. But they’ve held back certain pieces of information, especially clues that Isabel is uncovering.

There’s more to life for detectives Zander and Isabel than solving this murder, and when life begins to get in the way; namely Isabel’s past abusive boyfriend and current living situation, and Zander’s girlfriend justifiably demanding his time, the line between work and home begins to blur. A new voice is added to the mix of misogynist police folk, and Isabel isn’t sure she can continue to work well when few people respect any progress she seems to make.

The partners have determined the pattern the killer follows, but no matter how fast they work, the killer dodges their every move. In a strange twist, the deeper Zander delves into the case, the more unhinged he begins to sound. Told in alternating viewpoints from Zander to Isabel, the tension mounts. The story continues in book three.


Thursday, August 6, 2020

Memoir of a child refugee



The Boy Refugee

by Khawaja Azimuddin 

Memoir

160 pages

Published June 20th 2020 by Austin Macauley Publishers LLC

ISBN13 - 9781645361206

 

$3.99 eBook

$10.95 paper

$24.95 Hardcover

 

Buy on Amazon

Barnes and Noble 

About the Book

The Boy Refugee: A Memoir from a Long-Forgotten War is the story of a young refugee boy in the aftermath of the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971. The story chronicles his escape from war-ravaged Bangladesh to the relative safety of a barbed-wired internment camp in the foothills of the Himalayas, his day-to-day life as a civilian prisoner of war, and his thousand-mile, two-year-long journey back to Pakistan.

My review

This memoir takes the reader to a not-so-distant frightening episode in world history. Told from a grown-up emigre physician’s point of view, Dr. Azimuddin shares the story of his childhood spent as an innocent bystander caught up in war in the early 1970s.

Dr. Azimuddin makes the point that this period of world history is little-discussed or taught. I was in junior high when I learned about the new country of Bangladesh erupting from the former East Pakistan; how the Pakistani people had been divided across the expanse of northern India, and how they’d grown apart, almost into separate people with their own customs, language, and culture. But, eclipsed by the atrocity that was Viet Nam, not to mention upheaval in almost every other corner of the globe, attempted genocide in this out-of-the-way region has been pretty much treated as a civil war in world history.

Tensions had been mounting for years, but by the early 1970s, Pakistani people, some of whom had migrated from west to east a hundred years earlier, living and working in East Pakistan, were suddenly cast into the role of usurpers. The Bengali people, as those who lived in East Pakistan preferred to call themselves, decided they were being treated unfairly and rose up to split from Pakistan and form the new nation of Bangladesh. People who weren’t Bengali, even if they’d lived there for generations, were attacked in a genocidal campaign, and many businesses closed. Pakistani troops were sent, and India had little choice but to get involved. Those who could, fled, leaving behind every part of their lives—home, jobs, friends and sometimes relatives, as well as their future.

Azimuddin’s father had decades earlier moved from West Pakistan and found work in a jute factory, eventually becoming a manager. The family, parents and three children, watched the growing unrest, but chose to stay until they were forced to go into hiding. They eventually found shelter in an army cantonment, then were part of a rescue operation by the Indian government that began to move refugees back toward Pakistan. When Pakistan hesitated to receive its 93,000 rescued citizens back, the Indian government set up camps across northern India and treated the refugees, both civilians and Pakistani military personnel, as Prisoners of War. It is here that Azimuddin spent two years while Pakistan hemmed and hawed about accepting its people. Meanwhile, a vast number, as many as a quarter million non-Bengalis, or Biharis, were left in Bangladesh to their fate, only recently gaining some recognition.

As a child, Azimuddin’s perception of life in the refugee camp is perhaps colored by his innocence. Imagine going from a large home with servants to take care of one’s needs to a six by eight-foot bare cement floor for your family of five, walled off by your three suitcases and sleeping bag, and a couple of sheets. You share a large area with several families, and common bathrooms for women and for men, and a common tap for water. You are fed basically gruel three times a day. You are under guard day and night, surrounded by barbed wire which, if you touch, you are punished. You long for a chance to go on wood and coal runs that, even though constitutes hard labor, is at least a chance to get outside the compound. Azimuddin recalls the experience certainly not pleasant, but not overtly harsh. Most of the Indian guards were decent folk, and though rations, warm clothing, and education were barely adequate, it was enough. Social life, faith practices, rudimentary government carried on. The older children were allowed some rudimentary volunteer education; a tiny stipend was given out to spend at the canteen, mail was available; even an opportunity to hear some basic radio news broadcasts. But the people were faced with uncertain futures if they ever were freed from the camp.

Eventually the standstill ended and Pakistan lukewarmly welcomed these POWs. Azimuddin’s father had to begin life all over, having lost everything, including pension. Dr. Azimuddin says their years of deprivation changed them, and made them tougher, perhaps better able to withstand a slow jumpstart back into the workforce. The family was in somewhat better circumstances than others, since they had outside family support, but it was no less traumatizing.

This memoir is a fascinating read, and highly recommended for those interested in under-told world events.

About the Author

Dr. Khawaja Azimuddin is a gastro-intestinal surgeon in Houston, TX. He specializes in minimally invasive robotic surgery for colon cancer. He is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons, the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons, and the Royal College of Surgeons of England and Edinburgh. Though he has authored numerous scientific research articles, medical book chapters, and a surgical reference book, this is his first non-scientific work. In his free time, Dr. Azimuddin is an avid ceramic tile artist and many of his large-scale murals are installed in public places. He uses his passion for arts to help build bridges between communities.


Monday, August 3, 2020

New Murder series with Clare Revell



Say a Prayer Whodunit Crime Thrillers by Clare Revell

Serial, 4 books

c. 2020

Pelican Ventures LLC

Ebooks, $5.99

Print, $15.99

About the Author

Clare is a British author. She lives in a small town just outside Reading, England with her husband, whom she married in 1992, their three children, and unfriendly mini-panther, aka Tilly the black cat. They have recently been joined by Hedwig and Sirius the guinea pigs. Clare is half English and half Welsh, which makes watching rugby interesting at times as it doesn’t matter who wins.


Writing from an early childhood and encouraged by her teachers, she graduated from rewriting fairy stories through fan fiction to using her own original characters and enjoys writing an eclectic mix of romance, crime fiction and children's stories. When she's not writing, she can be found reading, crocheting or doing the many piles of laundry the occupants of her house manage to make.


Her books are based in the UK, with a couple of exceptions, thus, although the spelling may be American in some of them, the books contain British language and terminology and the more recent ones are written in UK English.

The first draft of every novel is hand written.

She has been a Christian for more than half her life. She goes to Carey Baptist where she is one of four registrars.

She can be found at:
http://www.revell124.plus.com/clarere...
https://www.facebook.com/ClareRevellA...
https://twitter.com/ClareRevell
http://telscha.blogspot.co.uk/
https://uk.pinterest.com/ClareLRevell/
https://www.instagram.com/clarerevell/
https://www.amazon.co.uk/-/e/B005NZT2O2
https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B005NZT2O2
http://pelicanbookgroup.com/ec/index....

Down to Sleep, book #1

ebook, 286 pages

Published May 7th 2020 by Pelican Book Group

ISBN13 9781522302773

Amazon 

Barnes and Noble 

Pelican book store 

About the Book:

DC Zander Ellery isn't sure which he dislikes the most: New partners, rookie female officers, or cases he can't solve. Right now he has all three.

DC Isabel York is fresh out of uniform and out of the proverbial frying pan into the fire as her personal and professional lives clash with her first case—ten stolen works of art.

When a postcard arrives addressed to Isabel with a cryptic message on it, it's just the beginning. The mystery deepens as the first of the stolen paintings is found alongside a dead body—bound and gagged and left posed in prayer at the place depicted in the postcard.

Are nine more murders coming? Can Zander and Isabel find the missing paintings and solve the murder before another victim falls?

My review

It’s always a little crazy jumping into a new series, but with Revell’s thrillers, you’re at home in Headley Cross, a place in the English countryside her fans have come to know and love well. Revell tackles a dark series of murders based of all things on a prayer tied to frightening imagery supposed to represent the bedrock of faith in gruesome artwork. Learning the ins and outs of British police departments is almost as intriguing and frustrating as trying to dig newly promoted Isabel York’s in-basket. No longer a beat cop, she’s a detective assigned to work with male colleagues who are a bit unsure of themselves and act out inappropriately. One prank they play is stuffing her desk mail with dozens and more junk, making it a chore to paw through. Missing a crucial piece of evidence makes it harder to start on a long and irksome, challenging case to beat a killer who is always one step ahead.      

Alezander Ellery, Zander for short, is in need of a new partner, though he hopes not for long as he studies for a test that will give him a career boost and a potential move to a new department. He’s willing to give Isabel a chance, but eventually learns that trust and respect have to be mutual to work. Things are going so well, and the pressure is on when the victims become people they know.

Told in alternating viewpoints, readers get an inside look at the pressure of solving a case of serial murders in a small community. This is a true series, and plays out over four books.

 

 


Thursday, July 30, 2020

Healing Faith by Pamela Gossiaux



Healing Faith

Pam Gossiaux

June 20, 2020

Tri-Cat Publishing

$4.99 Ebook

$14.95 Print

Buy on Amazon 

Barnes and Noble 

About the Book

A heartwarming story about trusting in your heart, even when it has been broken. By international bestselling author Pamela Gossiaux!

Faith is believing in something when the outcome seems impossible…

Rachel Walker’s husband left her for another woman, her parents are disappointed in her, and she is struggling with her job as a child psychologist. The only place she feels valued is at Three Hearts Ranch, the equine-assisted therapy center where she volunteers. It’s her safe space from the world.

Until Christopher Adler walks through the barn door. 

Christopher Adler is the only survivor of the attack that took the lives of the other men in his Humvee in Afghanistan.  Several years later, he has left a string of bad relationships and buried himself in a bottle until one cold night when he met God. Now, trying to turn his life around, he seeks help for his PTSD at Three Hearts Ranch. But he wasn’t counting on Rachel Walker – the girl he had hurt in high school– to be assigned as his therapist. 

Rachel detests Chris, and working together isn’t an option. But then Faith, an abused palomino mare, is brought to the farm. As they try to save her, old feelings resurface, and they start to question whether wounds can be healed and hearts restored. 

My Review

I love it when a story makes me cry. I’m not even a pet person. Gossiaux’s latest western Michigan-based horse therapy tale is much more than light romance. She touches on the very real trauma of adult-onset PTSD, as well as unfortunate consequences of teen angst and parental dysfunction. We all have choices, but sometimes I wonder what God is doing when He gives us enough room to…you know.

Rachel Walker is a psychologist whose specialty is working with children by day in a clinical setting, and volunteering on the side at an equine therapy center. The horse farm, her safe haven, grounds her when life overwhelms even the toughest human. Rachel’s friend/boss Gretchen at the clinic has given Rachel a lot of latitude to work out the lifelong anger that’s pretty much ruled every choice she’s made. Stemming from a devastating let-down in high school, Rachel has blamed every bad development on the one person who left her out to dry. But when that person, Chris Adler, shows up again a dozen years later and needing her help professionally, she faces more impossible choices. Now, Rachel’s boss/friend Kim, owner of the horse farm about to go under from potential financial ruin, isn’t about to let Rachel wiggle out of a responsibility to use her talent to help others. Especially when she’s Chris’s only hope of regaining a functional life.

When these lost and hurting souls team up to bring a special rescue horse named Faith back to face the world, they learn together that even if they can’t find a way to fix everything and everyone, a greater Presence will always have their backs.

Told in alternating viewpoints from Rachel and Chris, this story encompasses great love and the value of forgiveness no matter how hard it is to let go of anger, assumptions, and particularly the expectations we place on those we love. Beautiful story, well told, and highly recommended for those who enjoy chewy redemptive books.

About the Author

Pamela Gossiaux is the international bestselling author of the Russo Romantic Mystery series, the romantic comedy Good Enough, the YA novel Ordinary Girl, and the inspirational books, Why Is There a Lemon in My Fruit Salad? How to Stay Sweet When Life Turns Sour, and A Kid at Heart. She is also a keynote speaker, freelance writer, and teaches writing workshops. She lives and writes in Michigan near a wonderful university town with her husband, two sons, and three cats. Visit her website at PamelaGossiaux



Monday, July 27, 2020

Book Review WWI Canadian fiction with Jenny Knipfer


 

Silver Moon, By the Light of the Moon series, book 3 by Jenny Knipfer

Inspirational Historical fiction

self-published, June 30, 2020, 409 pp

Buy the book

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

Print: $15.99

EBOOK: $2.99

About the Book

Silver Moon, the third book in the series: By the Light of the Moon, paints a stunning and poignant picture of life on the home front in Webaashi Bay, Ontario, and of three men who are a part of the Canadian Expeditionary Force during WWI.

Shamed into joining the war, the tide turns for Luis Wilson when he is steered into the depths of espionage. Injured and presumed missing, will he lose his heart to the very woman who presented him with a white feather?

Oshki and Jimmy offer a grim perspective on life in the trenches. They despair of ever returning home to the women who hold their hearts.

Meanwhile, Lily fights for the cause in her own way and rallies the female troops at home as prejudices run high and the local cafe owner is accused of being a spy.

Will the women of Webaashi Bay receive their men back unscathed? Can the power of love win out over insurmountable odds? All this drama and more plays out under the light of a silver moon.

My Review:

The third book in Knipfer’s By the Light of the Moon series draws the reader into World War One on the European front and at home in Webaashi Bay, Canada. Although this story stood alone quite well, readers will be intrigued to see how the family drama developed in the first two stories plays out. This story felt comfortable for a first-time reader to the author, more like being welcomed by new friends. The setting, a time of need, camaraderie and survival, brings the large cast and reader together. I enjoy history, and Knipfer’s research and literary replay put me in place in Canada and the trenches of France and Belgium. 

Told from a dramatic starting point, Knipfer leads her readers through a web of time and place that slowly draws us toward a meeting point when all the timelines and character threads meld and move forward together. Three soldiers share their stories from the war front while the reader is pulled back in time to explain what led up to the events. I admit that the number of family members of each character and the time jumps from the start of the war at home to periods in between up to 1917 were somewhat jerky until I settled into intimacy with their unique voices and perspectives. In this case, I recommend that the reader simply let the stories unfold in their own time.

Luis is an artistic soul who joins up when challenged by a stranger, much to the surprise and dismay of his family. His First Nation friend Oshki then jumps on the bandwagon primarily to make sure his buddy stays safe. Their stories twine is precious ways. The third hometown boy’s story comes about some ways into the story when Luis’s sister Lily takes up a community effort to support the valiant men and begins not only a letter-writing campaign, but establishes a women’s civic club for mutual benefit among the citizens of the small Ontario community.

Knipfer’s sense of place and era were lovingly recreated as little-known facts emerge, such as placing citizens of German descent in internment camps during the war, much like was done to Japanese-descent citizens during World War Two.

Ultimately, Silver Moon is a story of forgiveness, second chances, prayer and patience. Although told through multiple characters, Lily and Luis carry the main threads. An epilogue wraps up this story line. Harvest Moon, the fourth in the series, is scheduled for release later this fall and I look forward to reading it.

About the Author

Jenny Knipfer lives in Wisconsin with her husband, Ken and their pet Yorkie, Ruby. She is also a mom and loves being a grandma. She enjoys many creative pursuits but finds writing the most fulfilling.

Jenny’s education background stems from psychology, music, and cultural missions. She spent many years as a librarian in a local public library but recently switched to using her skills as a floral designer in a retail flower shop. She is now retired from work due to disability.

She authored and performed a self-published musical CD entitled, Scrapbook of a Closet Poet. Jenny acquires joy in the journey as an author. Ruby Moon, the first title in her historical fiction series: By the Light of the Moon, earned a five star rating from Readers' Favorite. Her books are available in eBook and paperback formats through Amazon and Ingramspark.

Jenny holds membership in the: Historical Novel Society, Wisconsin Writers Association, and Midwest Independent Booksellers Association.

Jenny’s favorite place to relax is by the western shore of Lake Superior, where her novel series is set.