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#In The Blink Of An Eye by Jesse Blackadder-Review 5-Stars #NetGalley

In the blink of an eye::.jpg 850.jpgFive-Star Novel by Jesse Blackadder–Coming 3/19/19

 

In The Blink Of An Eye is a beautifully written poignant story about the Brennan family and how each member survived after being crushed by a catastrophic loss. 

After being betrayed, Bridget decided that a move to, far away subtropical Murwillumbah, NSW was necessary. Fifteen-year-old Jarred and two-year-old Toby had no say, in the matter. And, Finn, didn’t dare voice his opinion.  

The Brennan’s were just finding their rhythm and enjoying their new start in life, when a tragedy, so great, struck, forever changing each one of their lives.  

To protect his wife, from crumbling under the heavy weight of guilt, Finn took the blame for the horrific accident. Bridget could hardly look at Finn, and banned him, from their marital bed. Jarred coped by withdrawing into his lonely adolescent existence. That was, until a friend, comforted Jarred; opening his eyes, shattering his world, but setting him onto the road to acceptance. 

In The Blink Of An Eye is a gripping, heartwrenching story, crafted with larger-than-life characters, raw emotion, and hope. Although this story is poignant, it is also heartfelt and enlightening. Bridget bathes in the healing love of Finn’s selfless sacrifice, Finn rejoices in Bridget’s forgiveness, and Jarred discovers freedom in acceptance. And I, closed this bittersweet book, with a smile on my face. This is the first book that I have read by this talented author, but it won’t be my last. Highly recommended.

Thank you, St. Martin’s Press and NetGalley, for my advanced review copy. I loved it.

~5 out of 5 stars~

 

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Bio (from author’s page on Amazon)

Yes, Jesse Blackadder really was born with that surname. An award-winning novelist, freelance writer and budding screenwriter, she is fascinated by landscapes, adventurous women and really cold places.

Jesse’s forthcoming novel ‘In the Blink of an Eye’ is being published by St Martins Press in March 2019. (It was published in Australia as ‘Sixty Seconds’ by HarperCollins in 2017). The novel was inspired by her childhood experience of her sister’s death in a swimming pool. 

Jesse has recently been jointly awarded the 2018 Australian Antarctic Arts Fellowship to write a television series and a junior novel series set in Antarctica, in partnership with screenwriter Jane Allen. The pair will live at Mawson Station over the 2018/19 summer.

‘Chasing the Light’ (2013), is historical fiction based on the true but forgotten story of the first women to reach Antarctica. Jesse won her first Australian Antarctic Arts Fellowship in 2011 and travelled to Antarctica to research the novel. 

Jesse’s novel, The Raven’s Heart, came about when she’d finally had enough of people asking if she was related to Rowan Atkinson. She travelled to Scotland to find the origins of the Blackadder surname and discovered the ruins of Blackadder House on the banks of the Blackadder River. 

Her first novel, After the Party (Hardie Grant Books 2005), made the Australian Book Review list of all time favourite Australian novels in 2010.

Jesse has been a writer in residence in Sitka Alaska, in the Australian outback and at Byron Bay, and has been a fellow three times at Varuna The Writers’ House, Australia’s leading residential program for writers. She has a Doctor of Creative Arts from the University of Western Sydney. Born in Sydney, she now lives near Byron Bay on Australia’s east coast. For more about Jesse please see her website at www.jesseblackadder.com

 

 

 

#The Things We Cannot Say by Kelly Rimmer–Review 5 Stars–#NetGalley

Things We Can Not Say 850.jpgOutstanding Historical Fiction Novel by Kelly Rimmer–Coming 3/19/19

 

The Things We Cannot Say is a bittersweet, unforgettable, and superbly-written novel. It takes place during the 1930s in Nazi-occupied Poland, and also in modern-day, America. This powerful novel is about loyalty, love, sacrifice, and perseverance. I quickly fell in love with the main characters and became engrossed in their lives. I was transported into the story with ease and found the book impossible to put down. I have never been disappointed by this talented and amazing author, and I don’t think that you will either.

In occupied Poland, the author develops for the reader, three main characters, Alina Dziak, her fiance`, Tomasz, and Saul, Tomasz’s friend. The author pens her larger-than-life scenes with enough authentic details that I felt as if I was living in occupied Poland. My anguished heart broke as I experienced life under the Nazis, as a Jew, a Catholic, and a rebellious outlaw.

The author transitions the reader into modern-day American life, seamlessly, with the same emotional pull and realism as she had with occupied Poland. With this portion of the book, however, the story revolves around Alina’s granddaughter, Alice, and her struggles with, Eddie, her beautiful but challenging autistic son, an absent but loving husband, and an entitled genius daughter. I loved many characters in this book, but my absolute favorite was Eddie. And in the end, it was Eddie’s words that brought me to tears.

 This book is a quality read, thought-provoking, and heartwrenching. I highly recommend it. —Five shining stars— from this reader.

Thank you, Graydon House Publishing and NetGalley, for my advanced review copy. I absolutely loved it!

~5 out of 5 stars~

 

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Bio (from author’s page on Amazon)

Kelly Rimmer is the USA Today best selling author of contemporary fiction novels including Me Without You, The Secret Daughter, When I Lost You, A Mother’s Confession and her most recent release, Before I Let You Go. She lives in rural Australia with her family.

For further information about Kelly’s books, and to subscribe to her mailing list, visit http://www.kellyrimmer.com.

 

 

#Day of the Dragon by Katie MacAlister–Review–#NetGalley

Day of the Dragon::.jpg850.jpgKatie MacAlister’s Newest Release–Coming 3/5/19!

 

Can a woman fall in love with a dragon? Thaisa would have said, no; but that was before, the leader of the Storm Dragons, Archer Andras, came into her life.   

When Thaisa’s boss discovered that a particular manuscript had been sold to Archer Andras, he was furious. He threatened to break every bone in Thaisa’s body and even hurt her grandmother if she did not retrieve the document immediately.

 Thaisa didn’t know that the Shadow Dragons were at war with the Storm Dragons, until Hunter, Archer’s twin brother, and leader of the Shadow Dragons, kidnapped her. When Thaisa began to unravel the mystery between the two brothers, she saw that she was about to play, an important role, in balancing the two of them. Who knew that dragons could be loveable as well as real?  

Day of the Dragon is an entertaining read and one that I enjoyed. Thank you, Forever (Grand Central Publishing) and NetGalley, for my advanced review copy.

~3.5 out of 5 stars~

 

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Bio (from author’s page on Amazon)

For as long as she can remember, Katie MacAlister has loved reading. Growing up in a family where a weekly visit to the library was a given, Katie spent much of her time with her nose buried in a book. Despite her love for novels, she didn’t think of writing them until she was contracted to write a non-fiction book about software. Since her editor refused to allow her to include either witty dialogue or love scenes in the software book, Katie swiftly resolved to switch to fiction, where she could indulge in world building, tormenting characters, and falling madly in love with all her heroes.

Two years after she started writing novels, Katie sold her first romance, Noble Intentions. More than fifty books later, her novels have been translated into numerous languages, been recorded as audiobooks, received several awards, and placed on the New York Times, USA Today, and Publishers Weekly bestseller lists. She also writes for the young adult audience as Katie Maxwell.

Katie lives in the Pacific Northwest with her dogs and cat, and can often be found lurking around online. You are welcome to visit her at http://www.katiemacalister.com

 

#I Owe You One by Sophie Kinsella–Review–5 Stars #NetGalley

I owe you one:.jpg 850.jpgDon’t Miss Sophie Kinsella’s Latest Humorous Novel–I Owe You One–Coming 2/19/19!

 

I absolutely love Sophie Kinsella’s books. She always makes me laugh and transports me into her world with ease. 

I Owe You One is an engaging, humorous, and well-written tale. Fixie was the youngest in the family, but by far, the smartest and kindest sibling.

Fixie loved working in the Farr family store, and like her mom, was invested in the business. Her older brother and sister weren’t, though. They were too interested in their own lives and how they appeared to the world, to bother with the mundane workings of a general store. But when their mother took off on a much needed, extended trip, the true colors of all three siblings came out.  

Fixie experienced hard and painful lessons in this book. She learned to open her eyes and see how people were taking advantage of her. Some people, unfortunately, Fixie discovered, won’t change, no matter how much their actions hurt people. But, for others, when shown the error of their ways, can and do change. Sometimes, the most loving thing to do is tough love. And, although, letting go is never easy, and often painful, it is many times the best thing to do. 

As in all books, there are loveable and not so loveable characters. I adored Fixie and Sebastian. The two of them are caring, funny, and very likable, as well as the employee’s in the store. Fixie’s siblings, Uncle, and first boyfriend, Ryan, not so much. 

I Owe You One is a funny, entertaining, and captivating tale.

Thank you, Random House-Dial Press and NetGalley, for my advanced review copy. I loved it!

~5 out of 5 stars~

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Bio (from author’s page on Amazon)

Sophie Kinsella is a writer and former financial journalist. She is the number one bestselling author of Can You Keep a Secret?, The Undomestic Goddess, Remember Me?, Twenties Girl, I’ve Got Your Number and Wedding Night, the hugely popular Shopaholic novels and the Young Adult novel Finding Audrey. She lives in London with her husband and family. She is also the author of several bestselling novels under the name of Madeleine Wickham. Visit her website at http://www.sophiekinsella.co.uk

 

#Daughter of Moloka’i by Alan Brennert–Review–4.5 Stars

daughter of Moloka'i:.jpg 850.jpgNew Historical Fiction Novel by Alan Brennert–Coming 2/19/19

 

 

Daughter Of Moloka’i is a well-written, poignant, and bittersweet novel. The story begins in 1916, in Moloka’i Hawaii, a place designated for people with Hansen’s disease (Leprosy). When Ruth was born to parents suffering from the disease, she was taken from them, within an hour of her birth.

Ruth was brought up in an orphanage, run by nuns, until she was adopted by Japanese immigrants, living in Honolulu. Ruth loved her parents but often wondered why her biological parents had given her away.

Ruth was content with her life in Hawaii until her Uncle convinced her father to move to California. The opportunity he was offered, was supposed to be, a wonderful one. It wasn’t. It was a scam. But after her father uprooted his family and moved to America, it was too late to turn back. Being taken advantage of was not the worse thing, that happened to Ruth’s family in California. WWII was about to break out, and with it, Japan’s bombing of Pearl Harbor. The President’s reaction to the Japanese invasion was to gather, isolate, and relocate all Japanese immigrants and their family members, to less than ideal internment camps. 

Everyone who was sent to these camps had given up their homes, farms, businesses, and belongings. Many of these people with Japanese parents and grandparents were US citizens, but sent to camps, just the same. 

Daughter Of Moloka’i is a compelling and engaging book, well-crafted and researched.

Thank you, St. Martin’s Press and NetGalley, for my advanced review copy.

~4.5 out of 5 stars~

 

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Bio (from author’s page on Amazon)

Alan Brennert is the author of the best-selling historical novels MOLOKA’I and HONOLULU, both favorites of reading groups across the country. MOLOKA’I was a 2012 “One Book, One San Diego” selection and HONOLULU was named one of the best books of 2009 by The Washington Post. PEOPLE Magazine said of his novel PALISADES PARK, “Brennert writes his valentine to the New Jersey plaground of his youth in RAGTIME style, mixing fact and fiction. It’s a memorable trip.” His work on the television series L.A. LAW earned him an Emmy Award in 1991 and his short story “Ma Qui” was honored with a Nebula Award in 1992. His latest book, DAUGHTER OF MOLOKA’I, is a follow-up to MOLOKA’I that tells the story of Rachel Kalama’s daughter Ruth, her early life, her internment during World War II, and her eventual meeting with her birth mother, Rachel. The novel explores the women’s 22-year relationship, only hinted at it in MOLOKA’I. It will be published by St Martin’s Press on February 19, 2019.

 

#Unmarriageable by Soniah Kamal–Review-4 stars-#NetGalley

Unmarriageable::.jpg 850.jpgPride and Prejudice in Pakistan

 

 

Unmarriageable is a well-written and enlightening, retelling of the classic novel, Pride & Prejudice. This book is set in modern-day Pakistan and is crafted with rich cultural details, natural dialogue, and humor.  

Barkat Binat was cheated out of his inheritance, by his brother. Financially, Barkat had no choice but to move his wife and five daughters, from their affluent neighborhood to a small town, Dilipibad. Barkat’s two oldest daughters, Alys and Jena, worked as teachers, and contributed to the household expenses, keeping the family afloat. 

The story follows the Binat daughters, their heartaches, humiliations, and joys, as well as the men who captured their hearts. Valentine Darsee was my favorite character. He’s a loyal, generous, and wealthy man. He did his best to win Alys Binat’s heart. She, however, much to Valentine’s dismay, was infatuated with, Wickaam, his good-for-nothing cousin. Wickaam was a devilishly handsome scoundrel and a shameless flirt. He left painful imprints on every heart he snagged.   

I found the story captivating, and the author’s descriptions of Pakistan’s culture fascinating, and educational. I did not like Mrs. Binat, at all. I found her to be controlling, conniving, and more than willing to marry her daughters off to the highest bidder. The many different personalities in this book are well depicted and add depth to the story. 

If you enjoyed Pride and Prejudice, and wouldn’t mind reading, a retelling of the classic, in a modern-day Pakistan setting, then this book is for you. A fascinating read.

Thank you, Ballantine Books and NetGalley, for my advanced review copy!

~4 out of 5 stars~ 

 

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Bio (from author’s page on Amazon)

Soniah Kamal is an award winning essayist and fiction writer. Her novel ‘Unmarriageable’ is a retelling of Jane Austen’s ‘Pride & Prejudice’ and set in Pakistan. Her debut novel, An Isolated Incident, was a finalist for the Townsend Prize for Fiction and the KLF French Fiction Prize. Her TEDx talk, “Redreaming Your Dream,” is about regrets and second chances. Her work has appeared in numerous publications including The New York Times, The Guardian, Catapult, The Normal School, The Chicago Quarterly Review, The Missing Slate, BuzzFeed, The James Dickey Review, Scroll.in and Literary Hub. soniahkamal.com

 

 

 

#The Best of Us by Robyn Carr–Review 4.5 stars–#NetGalley

The Best of Us::.jpg 850.jpgNew Fabulous Small Town Romance by Robyn Carr–Coming 1/8/19

 

The Best of Us is the fourth exciting book in Robyn Carr’s Sullivan Crossings Series.

Dr. Leigh Culver left a busy Chicago ER to open up a small town clinic in Timberlake, Colorado. Leigh was content with her new, slower, uncomplicated life, until a certain widower, Rob Shandon, charmed his way into her heart.  Although Leigh was happier than she’d ever been before, the fear of being dumped for another woman, nagged at her. Leigh had already experienced, that painful humiliation, and had no intention, of enduring that again.

Sixty-two-year-old Helen Culver waited until Leigh was well established, before becoming a full-time writer. And, although Helen never regretted sacrificing the prime of her life to raise her sister’s child, she was disappointed, when her niece, expected even more from her, than she’d already given. Helen never thought that she’d leave Leigh when she was in need. But sometimes the most loving thing to do was to let go; even though it hurt.

 Helen loved to travel, but to her surprise, her favorite place to be, was on a Chicago campground store porch, with her friend. Helen’s plan had always been, to spend her winters in a warm climate, but it was in the Colorado mountains, where Helen instead, found love, happiness, and so much more.  

The Best of Us is a compelling story about love, sacrifice, facing fears and living life.

Thank you, Harlequin and NetGalley, for my advanced review copy.

~4.5 out of 5 stars~

 

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Bio (from author’s page on Amazon)

Robyn Carr is a RITA® Award-winning, eleven-time #1 New York Times bestselling author of almost sixty novels, including the critically acclaimed Virgin River series. The third novel (THE FAMILY GATHERING) in her fan-favorite new series, Sullivan’s Crossing, will be released in April 2018. Robyn is a recipient of the Romance Writers of America Nora Roberts Lifetime Achievement Award 2016 and in 2017, VIRGIN RIVER was named one of the HarperCollins 200 Iconic Books of the past 200 years. Robyn and her husband live in Las Vegas, Nevada. You can visit Robyn Carr’s website at www.RobynCarr.com