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on April 18, 2015
How is it that I have just discovered Aaron Paul Lazar and For Keeps? This was a great mystery with touches of time travel that were made vivid and believable. Sam Moore is a retired doctor who gets pulled into a murder, becomes a suspect, and is surrounded by elements out of his control. Go along with him as his life is turned inside out, and enjoy the thrill ride as he works his way back to "normal". I thoroughly enjoyed this book and the element of the green marble that helps piece everything together! If you love a good story with real characters and elements of tension, humor, and love, this book is for you. This is book 3 in the Sam Moore mysteries so I better get reading on the others! Loved the story!
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on August 31, 2012
For Keeps is a unique addition to the Sam Moore mystery series written by Aaron Lazar. For those unfamiliar with the series, Sam Moore is a retired doctor who is a reluctant participant in unraveling mysteries tied to his family. A mysterious green marble, found in his garden years before, is a conduit to the afterlife where he can commune with his long dead brother, Billy. In For Keeps, Sam faces the most important and demanding murder investigations: the violent death of an ex-lover, inexplicable execution of a dear friend, and the demise of a beloved family member.

The pace of the novel is a rollercoaster ride with so many thrilling dips and climbs, you read the book on the edge of your seat, biting your fingernails. The "who-done-it" part is actually resolved within the first fifty pages. Even the motive is known. The book then revolves around Sam's futile attempts to use the mysterious properties of the marble to go back in time and tweak events so he can still save three lives so important to him. Sam learns that even slight changes in the past can have dramatic changes in the present. Each subsequent `present' turns into a nightmare for Sam. With Billy's help he manages to invoke one possible future which can fix some problems, but adds new parts to his `present' life which are confusing.

The tension Aaron Lazar establishes in the first part of the book is physically exhausting, especially after the final murder occurs. Each trip to the past will have the reader praying for some miraculous resolution. Be warned, once you start reading this book, it is nearly impossible to put it down.

I suggest starting it on a Saturday morning so you might have a chance to get your weekend responsibilities completed on Sunday.

I highly recommend this novel for young and old adults.

Robert Sells
Author of the Return of the White Deer
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Dr. Sam Moore, retired physician, is drawn into a murder mystery by his friend, Lou, the county coroner in their small town.

As first one, then another murder happens, the link to Sam himself seems to suggest a dark and evil presence from the past.

But how many more people will have to die before Sam discovers what is happening?

How does a green marble with strange connections to Sam's childhood and his deceased brother Billy help Sam figure out the mystery? And how, when tragic events occur, will that same marble help Sam return to the past and correct the mistakes that have cost him everything?

An intriguing, time-traveling mystery, For Keeps (Sam Moore mystery) is a story about correcting mistakes, learning from the past, and starting over. Four stars.
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on August 22, 2012
For mystery lovers, For Keeps won't disappoint. There are plenty of deliciously gruesome twists and a fast-paced narrative that makes this book perfect for any reader looking for an engaging and quick read. The story includes a number of thread, including life-after-death, Satanism, the paranormal, domestic violence, and mental illness. Although Lazar pulls no punches with the plot - there is plenty of blood, cadavers, and no shortage of bad guys, somehow he manages to keep the work warm, leaving the reader energised, rather than drained by it all. Part of that is due to the exceptional characterisation of Sam Moore, who drives the action through his integrity and family orientation. He's just such so nice! This becomes obvious early on in the story as Sam sees to one of his former patients whose blood sugar is low. At times, the supernatural elements do stretch credulity, but because of the strength of the characterisation and the clean, rapid progression of the plot line, even a stoical, naturalistic type reader like me is willing to suspend judgement and just go with it. After all, it feels good. For Keeps is a beautifully written novel that will delight existing Sam Moore (and Aaron Lazar) fans, while drawing in new readers looking for a truly enjoyable mystery experience.
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on May 5, 2015
Nothing better than a Aaron Paul Lazar book to read!
Each one of his series of books, will catch you and draw you into the story.
The best part, is that you learn enough about those involved in the story, to be able to read them independently.
Sam Moore, a retired Doctor, is a very likable man. Being dragged into a murder investigation will make him dwell on past actions, coming back to him in his later life. Will his green marble and his deceased brother, help him resolve this?
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on July 6, 2013
I can't write a "proper" review, so I will say simply this- if you like to dream of a little supernatural happiness & believe in true love, if you don't believe that heroes have to be under the age of 30, this book & the entire series is for you. To add to that, Mr. Lazar paints the most detailed & lush scenery so much so that you can nearly smell the gardens & feel the textures in your mind. Don't miss out, grab the first of the series & I guarantee you will be asking Aaron Paul Lazar to keep bringing us more!
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on October 12, 2012
In the latest Moore Mystery, Aaron Paul Lazar has made it a little racy, lots more personal, and quite, quite lovely... When Lazar uses magic, he uses it to the ultimate! Paranormal Fantasy at its finest...

And that's just about all I'm going to say about it...Unbelievable! But, quite, quite lovely...

Sam Moore, hopefully, is not a new character to many of you. But, just in case, he is a retired doctor, married and father of two...

Or, at least that was true until creative genius Lazar wrote For Keeps...

Because our beloved husband and father once had a very racy interlude. He had told his wife,Rachel, about it, but he certainly wasn't prepared to have that woman appear in his life about 20 years later!

Especially dead...

Sam had been called by long-time friend and coroner to the scene of the murder. Lou had noticed that his name had been circled in the telephone book lying open near the bed and decided to get him there to have a "heads-up" before the police discovered there was a link.

Sam wasn't quite sure he remembered Ginger as she looked that day, but then saw a piece of jewelry that reminded him of the fling he'd had during his one and only spring break... Ginger had been engaged and had told him that they could only be together during that vacation, though Sam had been interested in much more...

But soon he had met the real love of his life and been happily married since then...

In the meantime, he had a connection with the murder and Lou wanted to discuss the case with him over a meal...or two... But Sam was downright jumpy to talk to her because Lou had admitted to having a huge crush on him in college and was touching him with no apparent reason when they met...

Rachel and he talked about it and Rachel suggested they stop and see her; Rachel staying in the car so that he could rush in, clear things up and get back out quickly. Sam saw Lou's car still at the morgue, but the janitor indicated nobody was there. Sam searched and finally found her--dead!

A green marble is the conduit for the paranormal magic in this series. The marble connects Sam with his deceased brother Billy. The problem was that usually Billy took him into a scene from the past to give clues to Sam, so that he must always be alone to talk. There had been a number of times Billy had been trying to get his attention, but Sam had not been able to respond to him..

That had happened the day he went home and found that a third murder had occurred...and all seemed to be connected to Sam himself! Suddenly, he couldn't take it any more!

Aaron has a special way with all his books, building his characters around family life, relationships and familial love. Readers become well acquainted with his characters, especially if they follow the series. I had missed reading the last book and was constantly seeing the effects of that omission in Beth's life especially. You can bet I'll be backtracking to catch up!

There are expanded paranormal activities in For Keeps and a new character with prescient skills, which could lead to fascinating events in the future, especially since she already knows about Sam and Billy! I think every time I read the latest from Aaron Lazar that I pick it as my "very favorite" but knowing him, he's just going to make me repeat that phrase over and over. So I'll just close with the fact that there is a reason why I love all the books by Lazar... His books are like potato chips, you can't read just one before you want to reach for another!

Add this author to your "Fav" list like I have!

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on September 16, 2012
I was lucky enough to receive this novel to review from the author a few weeks ago. I don't get to read very many books which don't included werewolves and vampires so this was an excellent change of pace.

For Keeps is the third book in the Sam Moore Mystery series. Even though this is the third novel it works perfectly as a standalone. I never once felt lost or confused about the characters, like can sometimes happen in a series. The main character, Sam, is instantly lovable. He reminded me a little of one of my favorite old tv shows about a mystery solving priest.

Now being a retired Doctor, Sam thinks he is called to look at a dead body for his expertise. Instead that one body opens up a slew of tragedies all centered around Sam himself. At this point it is important to mention the paranormal aspect of the novel. Sam is able to comunicate with his brother who passed away when they were children. Somehow with the help of a very special marble Sam is able to not just talk with his brother but travel into the past.

In previous mysteries this traveling has helped Sam solve a few crimes. This time around Sam hopes to take it to the next level. He wants to go back in time and stop a tragedy. Is it even possible? There is only one way to find out.

Beyond the mystery and time travel this story has a raw emotional quality that is to rare in todays novels. Sam and his family try to cope with a terrible tragedy and suffer through the stages of grief in such a way that you can truly feel their pain.

This novel was a total win any way you look at it. Once I was a bout four chapters in I found it hard putting it down. :)
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on August 8, 2012
I like many others, have read every book that has become available by this author in ebook form. When several books are all coming out close together I, like others, worry if the author is going to lose that special touch that all great authors seem to have. Will the story itself be believeable? If it is part of a series, will the author keep true to the characters themselves as well as not making this new plot take off in a complete opposite direction into another stratosphere? Will the dialog feel real, applicable to the time period and situation? Will I, as a reader, continue to admire the protagonist in all his imperfections? Yes! Yes! Yes and Yes!

I will not give away spoilers but to say I had concern when a catastrophic happening occurs at about 39% into the story. I became worried that the tale would become heavy and depressing and possibly rush to an ending. I have found several authors that turn on that "now where did I put my eyeglasses" attitude where as a reader I feel like we are taking a side quest that many times has nothing to do with the true plotline. I should not have worried because this author knew where he was headed. When an author accomplishes a work such as this, I feel that he or she is truly engaged and has accepted the responsibility as a true caretaker of the characters, the story itself and even the reader. This special trust that has occurred in this book is far and few between when it comes to some of the books being put out there in droves.

Don't know how he does it, but Mr. Lazar writes from his heart and applies those personal feelings and viewpoints with an absolute enchantment that I have not found in any male author and only a few female authors. He has truly become one of if not my favorite current author.

Thanks Mr. Lazar.
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on August 22, 2012
Sam Moore is a retired doctor with a wife that has MS, one daughter and one son, and 3 grandchildren. He is enjoying his retirement with his family, friends, and his beloved garden. One day while out buying more plants he receives a phone call from his friend/former colleague, medical examiner Lou. She asks him to come to the local Inn; she has a murder victim she needs his help/opinion with. Upon arrival and looking over the victim he realizes that he knows her. Back during his med school days while on spring break in Miami he had a brief fling with her. The murder of this woman, one he knew briefly in his younger years really bothers him...a lot. Within a few days another person he knows is murdered followed by a loved one.

Sam has in his possession a green marble that he carries in his pocket; one that allows him contact with his murdered brother. With this marble and the help of his brother, it allows him to do some remote viewing and sometimes even interact with the past. He decides that he will use this marble along with the help of his brother Billy to go back in time to try to prevent these murders and get his beloved back. Unfortunately things are not that simple and every time he changes something in the past the future is impacted in ways he never anticipated and not for the good.

This is a story about the `what if' question we all have thought about one time or another. What if we could go back and make different choices? We all have at one time said to ourselves `if I only knew then what I know now'.

This is the 1st book in the series that I have read and I must say "wow". Mr. Lazar is such a gifted writer that even though I started with book 3, I thoroughly enjoyed this story and could barely put it down until the last page was turned. He does such a great job with the old question and gives it a refreshing point of view while making everything so believable and entertaining. He really is a gifted storyteller that he does with words what a painter does with paint...the pages are his canvas. He illustrates such vivid images with his words that we can smell his flowers, taste his vegetables, feel the sand beneath our feet and most importantly feel the love he has for his family and friends that we end up rooting for Dr. Moore on his quest for justice and saving those he holds dear. Without a doubt 5-stars.

Anita (The Kindle Book Review)
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