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Three Days to Forever (A Mac Faraday Mystery) (Volume 9)
Three Days to Forever (A Mac Faraday Mystery) (Volume 9)
by Lauren Carr
Edition: Paperback
Price: $14.84
11 used & new from $10.84

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Giant Step Forward - Best of Her Best for Author Carr, February 2, 2015
The Wedding is to take place on New Year's Eve. Everybody and anybody is heading for Deep Creek Lake and will stay at Spencer Inn... The countdown has begun--3 days to go before Mac and Archie will publicly commit to each other that they will spend the rest of forever with each other...

But what happened there in Deep Creek had already been corrupted, evolving from an incidents far away and many months ago... and the constant war with terrorists...and criminals alike...

Aside from the planning for the wedding--some of which is outrageously funny, if the events aren't happening to you, Mac has the first murder at his doorstep! A husband of a criminal is blaming Mac for the suicide of his wife who'd been jailed for murder. Mac knew the arrest and punishment was righteous, but the husband could just not accept it and wanted revenge...on Mac! He threatens to take Archie and started sending messages of harassment--until the husband is found murdered. With the evidence piling up that Mac is responsible!

Getting all mixed up in that investigation, individuals who are definitely professional assassins invade the Spencer Mansion! Interestingly, Archie's mother had come to the Mansion while Archie was getting things done for the wedding, and began by telling Mac that she would give their wedding 6 months and then went on complaining just about everything, including Gnarly who she claimed was filled with germs... Joshua and Mac had been scheduled to head for fittings of their Tuxes... As the gun battle erupts, the men break into the mansion--Joshua is shot, but they all still get out and to Joshua's van...and Escape!

But there are so many bad guys, readers will have no idea who is responsible for what, because wherever Mac's group goes, they are found! They discover that Joshua is on a secret mission and, when he calls into his boss, they send Murphy his son to finish that particular project!

Then Cameron, Joshua's wife, is assigned a high-profile murder case for the Pennsylvania State Police leading to one big mess for her! While an attempt to kidnap Jessica on her way to Deep Creek is made! Are they all tied in? Or, was the news of the big wedding bringing everybody there to settle old scores, of one kind or another?

What intrigued me was the cross-genres of this latest book! Actually, it has all of my favorites in this beautiful mix: Action, Mystery, Police Procedure, Romantic Suspense, and most of all Thriller. With this book, in my opinion, Lauren Carr has taken a major move in the complexity and diversity of her books. They are certainly not cozies any more, even if still listed that way for purposes of sales...

What is significant for me, however, is that Carr has seamlessly molded all the excitement of a thriller within the construct of that emotional feeling of cozies! We know and love her characters, we are excited when new characters come into play, but still within the family structure. For instance, I was thoroughly pleased when Jessica, Max's daughter, first met Murphy, Joshua's son! With an explosive rescue scene through to the surprise twist later, it was just like watching the relationship of a niece or nephew develop! But this one may be the hottest one ever for the Faraday family... Carr also throws one important secret that readers have known about for years...Now the Deep Creek community in the book will know... Cool!

I think one of the most impressive things about this book is that Carr has obviously done much research and includes more than the norm in helping readers see her perspective of headline events included. It is irrelevant whether the viewpoints differs from yours--the important factor for me is that individual Americans are watching, sharing their concerns! Yes, this is so finely woven into the story line, however, that many readers may exclaim--I didn't know that--but not miss a beat to continue quickly reading and turning pages

Carr has joined the outstanding authors who are not afraid to use their fiction to spotlight trouble spots within America and throughout the world. It is irrelevant whether the viewpoints is something that differs from yours--the important factor for me is that individual Americans are watching, sharing their concerns! ThisAt the same time, within some tense scenes, Carr has one of her characters throw out her famous one-liner zings that quickly pulls out a grin from readers and lessens the tension from what has gripped us, as if in reality... I am, bottom line, amazed at the giant step that places Carr comparable to significant authors whose name slips off our tongues like, for instance, Nora Roberts. Watch this author--she's moving quickly to where her goals are headed... Three Days to Forever has to be, in my opinion, the best of her best! Get it!

GABixlerReviews
Book Provided for Review


Letty's Story
Letty's Story
Price: $15.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Unbelievable Revelation of Child, and Woman, who Survived Japanese Invasion of Manila, January 30, 2015
This review is from: Letty's Story (Kindle Edition)
Leticia has written her story in a fictional third-person format that makes it so much easier for readers to enter her world. For instance, Leticia is a beautiful woman, but with the story written as it is, Letty is just the main character and is described as any character would be. She is able to share her pain, inner turmoil and feelings in an open, more realistic fashion. Readers will learn that this is a true story, written under a pseudonym for protection of the real people involved...

I found the novel very believable, so much so that I had/have a question for the author. Why did she subjugate her own story under her husband's in the second half of the book? Perhaps as a single woman, this was much more apparent to me, but since we are about the same age, it immediately struck me that her life was lived much more traditionally than my own. While I was troubled that Letty did not continue her wonderful work as a nurse after marriage, or if she did, it was not covered, I realized that in the role she was then in, it was, perhaps, entirely appropriate... Still, readers should be aware that the second half, in my opinion, which, of course, is not an appropriate way to evaluate the book, is really the story of Letty's husband, Ron. While her husband led a extremely challenging life, I personally would have like to have seen the entire story from Letty's perspective. Perhaps since my life has never been merged into one, it does make a difference...LOL??? Still, for many professionally involved women who are leaders and innovators, this is pointed out for their benefit as well... And, it makes the third-person choice a brilliant alternative to a true biography.

Another thought that crosses my mind in thinking about the book is that the title is probably not the best choice. Leticia was never a Letty-type of person, in my opinion, and you will quickly ascertain that. She's intelligent, ambitious, street-smart--a survivor, and a very determined woman of God...

She was just 5 when her home was bombed by the Japanese and her world changed completely. At first she was all alone as the building was struck and it was only later, after the bombing stopped, the planes left, that help came to rescue her from her room...She had endured everything alone, hurt, until the loud sounds left, so that what she now heard was bells, sirens, and...never-ending screams! Innocently as she went looking for her lost doll, she found herself right in the midst of those that we walking the streets, looking for love ones, and more...

It was after it was announced that MacArthur was leaving, that Leticia's story changed again...First, the Japanese came and school became a place to learn the culture, and demands, of that country. Bartering was the only way to keep alive and Leticia quickly became adept at both making bargains and then, as she called it, "taxing" the Japanese for what food they were taking from the family... Soon, though, her father decided they needed to leave and go to their parents' farm. But then, Leticia was left alone and both parents had left to go back to the city.

The only thing that saved that time for Leticia was that she had discovered the desire and power in reading...As well as a grandmother who loved her... There were family issues that kept coming up and Leticia found herself being shipped around to the homes of various relatives. She was able to pick up some knowledge of nursing, which was to lead to her future career...but, even that, had a tragic incident to overcome. She was only 11 when her aunt started sending her out to homes needing health assistance--the need was too great for just one person. But she was told to first visit a family with a very ill child. It had died while she tried to save it...and the parents knowing how hard she had tried, asked her to baptize the baby! Even then she was wise enough to know that it was more important that it be done than who was saying the words, so she repeated what she'd remembered from the one baptism she'd attended...

Leticia pushed herself hard and finally made it through nursing school and quickly moved up until she was charge nurse...That's when Ron, her future husband entered her life... Her reaction at that time was to call him an idiot... But he persevered and soon they were spending all of their time together, ultimately marrying. Ron's story becomes predominant at this point, with him going through years and years of schooling, each time completing everything successfully and gaining a professional reputation that was hard to match... But then his parents and his brother died from illnesses that he could not cure... What should have been many years of a successful practice and marriage changed into another world...When the stock exchange collapsed, the couple was faced with bankruptcy as others in the nation. It was clear that Ron was a brilliant man--Leticia was his greatest fan and supporter... The ideas came rapidly and continued...and some readers may benefit from some of this part of the story regarding "Money..."

Truly, this is an amazingly inspirational book that will touch individual readers in different ways, I am sure. One thing that is undeniable was that this couple was totally committed to God, each other, and to having a loving successful life. If you enjoy reading real life stories, biographies or memoirs, you should check this out right away... An unbelievable revelation of a woman who tackled every obstacle that was thrown at her, and kept playing defense on behalf of her husband whenever he needed--and vice versa, as well! A truly romantic and heartwarming love story!

GABixlerReviews
Paperback provided for review


Talon, Flight for Life
Talon, Flight for Life
Price: $4.95

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Adventure for Readers 9 to 99!, January 29, 2015
I loved this third book in the Talon Series by Gigi Sedlmeyer! I guarantee you will too! If you haven't already read any of the series, check out my reviews for the first two!

Matica is what we call in America a "Little Person." She is the daughter in a family of four who have moved from Australia to Peru to be missionaries. It was very hard for Matica because the Indians were either afraid of her or thought she was possessed...They didn't know that there were other people like Matica... Well, actually, during the stories, there is one little boy, but that is a sad part of the books, but does emphasize how the Indians reacted to Matica. Until... two large birds came into her life and, later, Talon, was born... Now the key thing was that, because of her size, Matica was able to fly on the back of Talon! That's now a long time ago and the three condors are just like members of the family, except for Matica's father who is not to sure about them...

By now, everybody knows about Matica and her condors! At least those who are Indians, because the news spreads rapidly through their communities... But, in the third book, Matica is scheduled to go to visit a large city, Cajamarca, with her father. The trip will be for 5 days...they will walk there...

Because of how she was treated when they first moved to their village, Matica is worried about traveling to other places, but they are planning a trip home to Australia, which she's not sure about either, and they need to go, make arrangements, and get supplies. In the past, only her father has made the trip.

The main fear, however, is that Matica will be away from her friends, the condors. She has seen them every day and flown with them. She knows she will miss them, but what will they think? The first thing readers will discover is that the condors are very intelligent. Of course, we don't know how they are truly, but in the story, most of what Matica says is understood and acted upon!

The other reason was because of the dream she had--she told her parents about it, but they didn't want Matica to become afraid... But was the dream really foretelling something? And then it was time to set off, but this time, Matica's sadness made the time much longer...She was hugging everybody as the condors watched. But even Matica was surprised when it happened! You see, they had been watching all this and then jumped down to participate. Matica hugged Tamo and Tima, planning to save Talon for last...but he wasn't waiting! Ok, a little mushy, but they all loved each other! LOL And, because this was the very first real embrace from the condors, Matica was hoping, although not totally confident, that they would join them sometimes on their trip. And they did!

An interesting thing happened for Matica's father, Crayn, as they started to walk. After Matica had gotten past being sad, she started noticing...everything! Crayn admitted that he'd not seen most of what she called attention to, since he had just walked, watching the ground. Well, there was just so much that Matica had never seen, her head must have been turning all the way around! Birds to the left of them... And Spider Monkeys to the right! So do you think Matica made friends with a monkey? You bet she did, and she even saw him on the return trip...

Now one important thing I'll mention before I move on...Matica had been very young when they moved to Peru, so she had forgotten any of the modern conveniences that were found in a large city. But the best was that all of the children already knew her and were very friendly! Readers will enjoy her reaction to, for instance, the hotel where they stayed...and the grocery store where they could find so many different varieties of the same thing... Just like I always thing--how do you make a decision which to buy?!

Ahhhh, but the excitement hasn't even started and it certainly surpasses all the amazing things Matica and readers had already learned about! Only one clue before I close...if you're in Peru, walking along, watch out for the Spiders!

There is an underlying story in this series about the need to evaluate people...and animals...by more than just their looks! How many of you have loved Beauty and the Beast. If you enjoyed the TV program as much as I did, surely you won't mind meeting... Talon and his family!

In case you haven't realized it since I'm sharing so much! I loved this book and am adding it to my personal favorites for 2015...So much to discover--in so many wonderful ways! Don't miss this one...It's a long novel but older children and teens, I think, will enjoy it just like we adults!

GABixlerReviews
Ebook provided for review
Comment Comments (5) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 31, 2015 8:24 PM PST


If You Were Me and Lived in...Peru: A Child's Introduction to Cultures Around the World
If You Were Me and Lived in...Peru: A Child's Introduction to Cultures Around the World
Price: $1.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Visiting Peru - Loving This Series!, January 28, 2015
If you were living in Peru, you would be living on the western coast of South America toward the Pacific Ocean. It has many different climates from the dry plains to the wet Amazon Rain Forest, and up into the high mountain range called the Andes...

If you lived in Peru, you might live in Lima, the capital of Peru. One third of the Peruvian population lives there. It is a large city with nine million people! People have lived in Peru for over ten thousand years and Peru has been home to some of the world's oldest civilizations.

Readers always get to meet children there! If you're a little girl visiting though, you might want to have your parents buy a Munecas to bring home! Yes? Lunch time and more Nuevos soles if needed! Papa rellena and Picarones for me please! Any time you are introduced to something of the culture you are given the name, how to spell it out by sound and then they are also collected for easy referral in the back of the book! In case you did guess, we bought a doll with money and then had lunch! Cool, right!

Well, there's lots more you'll learn about, but for me? I'm anxious to explore Machu Picchu - Want to Come?!Of course nobody still lives there, but you can imagine how they effectively used the land to make their living from this and other pictures that are included in each book from the particular country visited ! A lot of activity still at Machu Picchu since it's a major tourist site! I'd need about a month for the visit!

Kudos to Carole P. Roman for her continued enthusiasm and excellent research to create an introduction to the cultures around the world...for children and adults alike! Meeting the kids of the countries is a special treat for many of your fans! Highly recommended!

GABixlerReviews
Book provided by publisher


Doggie Delicious: A Chapter Book for Some Tasty Reading
Doggie Delicious: A Chapter Book for Some Tasty Reading
by Mary Jo Wisneski Johnston
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $24.95
22 used & new from $24.95

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Looking For Tween Lit with Animals Pics? This is It!, January 27, 2015
Have your children enjoyed meeting animals through picture books, but are now reading on their own and looking for more challenging stories. Still, picture books are so much fun, especially when they are full-color painted pages! Johnston, a reading specialist, has provided just the book for your tweens--children now yet into their older teens, but still enjoying the imaginative tales that gets them totally involved! Like a flying dog! OK, we know dogs can't fly, but... One of my favorite figurines given to me by a then young nephew, Brandon, is a flying cat! He proudly sits on my stove watching over me and all my live cats!

Well, that's exactly what Bibi desired, and then intended to do! Bibi was always wanting to help Mom at their ranch, but sometimes the critters would get away from her, climbing trees, or soaring into the skies! She wanted so much to rid the farm of those who would destroy his beautiful home... And then one day-- Bumps Appeared! And Later Wings! She soon got used to her new appendages. The first time she streaked after a squirrel and lifted two feet off the ground, she seemed surprised, then ecstatic! There was no stopping her now...

The author and her husband live on a hobby ranch--a Log Cabin just like me and my critters! In fact, as she, acting as the narrator, shares her story, it sounds much like what she would share as her routine life...as if talking to her neighbors, children or grandchildren... Had you ever heard of a hobby ranch? Perhaps after you learn about this one, you'll want to visit one! I sure would! Because you're going to read about some very exotic animals!

Now, depending upon the age of the child when you share the story, he or she may come up with words they don't know... By now, however, you should have either a printed dictionary or online access so they will have the opportunity to discover new words from this reading specialist, and help them improve their vocabulary! Cool, right?! And one other issue for younger children...the reality of dogs and their prey... Please be aware that part of the help Bibi gives on the farm may be more graphic than you can share for younger children, at least without parental involvement... and especially if they have not previously been exposed to the animal environment... On the other hand, it is a good way to explain to older children how to understand how some animals are really pests that must be eliminated...

The awesome thing about this is how Bibi actually came to live at the ranch! One day a stranger announced that a dog was born and that it was over there! I didn't immediately pick up on this part until reading further that a loved one had been lost due to age. She was a white-faced husky/ malamute mix, named Zephyrushka and they still had Koko, the nickname for Kochaniu (Polish for "sweetheart"). Well, if a stranger came up and told you that a white dog was waiting for you over there, and even if you have many other animals already, you are now curious enough to go look! Right?!

She went home, looked at the newspaper, saw the location was where the strange had pointed to as over there. She was, by now, curious and, as me, wondering about this coincident (you know, the ones I call God incidents)...So she and her husband made an appointment to go...over there...LOL!

Now readers are going to hear a lot more in the 35 full 8x10 pages that includes fantastic paintings illustrated by Malinda Raines... The book includes nine chapters, many of them identifying some of the exotic animals spotlighted in the book, besides Bibi! There's a lot going on at the Ranch, especially on scheduled Play Days! That's when, for instance, Bibi puts on a flying show for the neighbors and many of the other animals have special jobs or activities as well...

For now, I thought I'd introduce you to a number of them: These vultures many times just sit on a fence, or in a tree, and critique Bibi's flight lessons and practice for the show...Meet Amigo, the elegant white-wooled alpaca... Amigo was responsible for handing out three wishes! My favorite was Gremlin, who gives llama love...he runs the kissing booth!

And then there are Pampa and Daisy, Ms. Peanut, Lizzy Bet and Savannah Lexy, and so many more, including Koko who we met before. He has a photo booth and the lucky visitors get to choose a character's hat and pose with Koko for a picture to take home with them! I loved that idea and Koko really loves the camera... And, by the way, don't the animals at the ranch get really great names?! Can you guess what animal they would be based upon their name? No, well you'll see great pictures in the Fiction Book that is full of "imagination and play!"

And you can guess, also, that kids of all ages, or at least up to 99, are going to love the book too.

Highly recommended within the age accommodations mentioned... Children's book and videos are so important... Do ensure your children have sufficient time to devote to reading by starting their own library. This one certainly belongs there! Enjoy!

GABixlerReviews
Paperback Provided for Review


Mortal Threat: ISIS Steals Ebola Cure (Threat Series Book 4)
Mortal Threat: ISIS Steals Ebola Cure (Threat Series Book 4)
Price: $7.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best of Threat Series Spotlights Major International Issues!, January 26, 2015
When you choose to read The Threat Series by General A. J. Tata, you will know that the "alternative future" he presents for your thriller enjoyment is based upon his personal experience, analysis and knowledge of the world we live in...Today! The three major issues he covers in this fantastic novel are: Racial Tensions, Religious Doctrine, and Media Manipulation and Dissemination--Disinformation...

Mortal Threat, however, added another character--the daughter of Zach Garrett, and, for me, it brought the novels even closer to the type of thrillers I enjoy. One with a gutsy, strong, intelligent female character who... just...doesn't...quit!

Most average citizens would be able to identify those threat issues facing America and the world. But when an expert analyzes those issues and pulls them together to create a novel, albeit fiction, you can be sure that it should, in my opinion, be a must-read. The merge of headline issues added with his personal expertise results in a totally plausible adventure into the "what if" of national and international matters. I trust the author and know that he has a very real concern about the United States, no matter his political party, or his religion, which I do not know. That's important to me as I read this Threat Series. If it is to you, as well, Please do check out the entire series!

Zach and Matt Garrett, brothers, have been through some rough times, defending their country. Zach's daughter, Amanda, has joined the first in a different fashion. She is studying to become a doctor, but has been working in Africa, assisting in a research project, code named Nightingale... It is world-wide health issues that are being addressed by the project... When word leaks out, that there could be a miracle cure for HIV as well as Ebola, that's when those who are hungry for power stepped in...

Amanda had been working with Dr. King, who did his research in a different location while Amanda lived at the orphanage and clinic and had grown close and loved the children as her own--their safety was her first concern, so that when the trouble started, she took immediate action, as earlier been planned, to take the children and escape. It was Kiram who worked alongside her, showing him what to do, hoping that one day he would become a doctor, as she also hoped for Mumbato...Since HIV and Ebola surely led to death, it had been decided, with the patients' consent, that it was better to try the new serum, than to just wait to die...It was also Kiram who had first brought her a local ingredient that had been used to heal in the past. It was later that people started to be healed from both HIV and Ebola.

More than one agency was following the successes of the work at Mwanza. In fact, one of those groups, ISIS, had been watching it so closely, that Al Rhazziq Media not only announced the cure to the world, but had taken credit for it! A friend, Quizmahel, who was already physically near death, had agreed to be martyred for the cause and an arranged assassination took place after the announcement-- of course, blaming America... But a rival agency was also involved and both had their representatives out to gain and report constant information and/or gain ownership of the cure, taking whatever way necessary...

And in America, the second African-American president had been elected, who was already designated as a major player in this international game...

Because by that time, word was spreading about The Book of Catalyst... And slowly pieces of the Book started passing hands until word had reached President Barkum...

This is absolutely the best of the best for the Threat Series! There are three significant issues facing America that were placed into the right settings to allow each reader to see and understand what kind of actions are instigated, then blamed on some other group...and what happens when the disinformation becomes significant in our real decision-making processes. I loved it... Kudos to A. J. Tata for hitting those issues hard...and in such an astute manner to result in an exciting, edge-of-the-seat story! And a surprising, stunning ending!

GABixlerReviews
Ebook Provided for Review


Night Crossing: THE THIRD IN THE TRILOGY OF REMEMBRANCE
Night Crossing: THE THIRD IN THE TRILOGY OF REMEMBRANCE
Price: $2.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Last Book in Trilogy Explodes in Brilliant Conclusion!, January 24, 2015
After two such intriguing books, The Drawing Lesson and The Fate of Pryde, (Check out my reviews if you haven't read), I was almost prepared for what happens in the final book. What I didn't expect, however, was that the last book brought the total Trilogy into such an illuminating and, yes, I have to say, inspirational conclusion.

While readers met Rinaldo, a jealous artist and Pryde, a deceiving patron of the arts in the first two novels, the third brings, you might say, the fate of Wainwright into his own special light...

And it all comes about by a fantastic set of characters Alex was fated to meet...

Do you believe in fate--or. what I call God Incidents? Could this story have ever been true in this world? I don't know, but I like to think so.... The key thing is that, for Alex, he had always been looking for, and open to his light. I've had moments of being open to it...but never really chose to constantly be aware--to search for it... Perhaps there is still time for all of us...

Alex and Daphne had become close but two things happened that caused confusion, for both of them... Alex had been so excited about heading out on one of his adventures and wanted to include Daphne--taking her to Paris with him... But, as always, Alex had not been able to gets his words right with her... He had talked of their going to Paris, of togetherness, only to then announce it was a business trip. Daphne was crushed for she had been hoping for exactly what Alex had presented at first--a romantic trip and perhaps more...

Daphne withdrew and later left the message she had to return to New York. As an aside, while she was there, her partner began telling her of his feelings--feelings she'd never known he'd had... But, she decided it was maybe time for her to consider what he was offering.

For Alex, the adventure started, first from just watching the skies...

The jewels in the sky seemed to be forming, taking on a shape...

Of course, Alex immediately began to sketch the egg that had appeared in his vision... But not too long after, Jamie called about something he'd found in Pryde's files. Alex was astounded and then greatly excited to see that it was a picture of exactly what he'd seen as The Cosmic Egg. If somebody else had seen it, Alex just had to meet him... You know, if I had been Alex in such an exciting situation, I, too, would have forgotten about a dinner date... You can see where my sympathies lie...

The first encounter with fate was when he received a confirmation for a ferry trip in his name...which he had not scheduled... At this point, I have to stop and say that the steps which followed had me totally enthralled. I'm still not sure whether somebody was actually behind things, but it was very clear that there was a guiding force...

For the next thing that happened was that he met a woman on the train as he began his planned trip to Paris... Or, I should say, two women and one child. The mother and child he had helped when the child had hidden and was lost in a place where there were bats! The second was an older woman who sat down opposite Alex's seat on the train.

By now readers know that, instead of ignoring the woman, Alex kindly responded to Miss Trump's overtures. What he didn't realize, though, that he would soon be so engrossed in her story, that she soon presented him with strong feelings for her...

The young woman provided entertainment on the ferry and had done a Tarot read for the old woman, while Alex had asked, instead, for a song and listened to her wonderful voice singing Barbara Alan...

That was when the four of them all found themselves on the same ferry and in neighboring cabins... At least until the storm! The location of the four of them was on a low deck. Alex quickly took action to save them, first carrying the young child to the top and handing him over to be placed in the lifeboat. Going back down under protest, he first tried to save Miss Trump, but the woman refused,
indicating that Alex should save the mother so that her child would not become motherless...

Miss Trump was the only casualty...but her death set up the main story that will thrill and delight readers. One that is both memorable and heartwarming...one surely designed just as it should be by fate...???

I loved this one and added it to my new list of personal favorites for 2015! Do check out this Trilogy of Remembrance. It will surely stir your own memories, your inner life's thoughts, and provide inspiration to see and acknowledge what fate might have in store for you... Highly recommended. Mary E. Martin has presented a brilliant trilogy which could not have been anticipated by blurbs, front covers... Readers must experience it! Kudos For an Incomparable Conclusion!

GABixlerReviews
Book Provided for Review


The Fate of Pryde, the second in the Trilogy of Remembrance.
The Fate of Pryde, the second in the Trilogy of Remembrance.
by Mary E. Martin
Edition: Paperback
Price: $14.20
16 used & new from $11.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Extraordinary Addition to Trilogy of Remembrance, January 22, 2015
It was a routine introduction of an artist with a possible patron that begins this novel, but what Martin presents to readers is so well hidden... Reading along of normal actions within the art world may seem boring for some, tedious to others...But what that means is that you are missing the sense of mystery, the touch of the mystic and even sometimes the paranormal that surrounds this amazing merge of a fight between good and evil that will not only keep you in suspense until nearly the end but will have readers totally on edge wondering what in the world is going on...

While the first novel (see my review of The Drawing Lesson) certainly introduces readers to the artists' world, the main characters and a sense of how the main character, Alex Wainwright, lives--somewhat in a cocoon of aloneness where he interacts with none, other than his muse--sometimes to the detriment of some of his personal relationships. The Fate of Pryde is much darker, devious. Think Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde, except that Jonathan Pride is fully aware of his actions, spending his life trying to accept and justify his two faces...

Throughout the novel, readers meet individuals who speak against Pride, mainly wondering where his money is coming from and, even more, how he's choosing to spend it. He meets Alexander, however, in his own world--art, beauty, and his own contributions and quickly wins him as an interested participant in his next, desired project...

He wants to commission Alexander Wainwright to move into the creation of stained glass windows! Something about which he knows nothing and has never even thought of as a medium...

Alex was intrigued enough to consider the project, even to the extent of exploring how the craft was done and what materials he personally would need to use. I was intrigued, more, with why an award-winning artist would take a challenge to start anew in an entirely alien medium...

At about the same time period in the novel, Peter, Alex's friend, is involved with trying to adjust to his mother's loss of her husband and moving into a personal care facility. Alex, on the other hand, was invited to Pryde's home where he discovered that his home had also become somewhat of a personal care facility. Except that the individuals were all brilliant individuals who had been invited to Pryde's home...and wound up staying... They stayed years, still claiming they were free to leave at any time. Fortunately, Alex's own strength immediately put him on alert as he meets with other "guests" and recognizes their former fame in their professional fields...

Except readers discover that both of these facilities have a fourth floor...in which many are imprisoned. A strange comparison between Peter's and Alex's responses may make readers sit up and take notice, especially if you have family members in this type of retirement home...

Alex accepts the commission for the windows and one by one he has visions of what he would create for the windows... One of the issues that readers will be taunted by is the whole matter of whether or not people have had visions... What role this has in questions which arise from the title of the novel is ever present as we read, but even at the end we are left wondering... Alex had had visions before, which normally led to something inspirational in his work... But was that the same for all the people who were now living in Pryde's home?

This second novel is so complex, you will need to be alert to any nuance, no matter how small an issue it might be...Clues are hung tantalizing, caught only if the reader has fully engaged and entered into the novel. If you don't you will miss a brilliantly plotted story menacingly dark--but in the midst of the natural light that comes from the main character, Wainwright, a man who seems almost like an anti-hero but shares his light through not only his artistic endeavors, but in his dignity, grace and personality.

Enter into this fantastic novel openly willing to allow it to possess you, to watch a world that contradicts anything you may believe is real...only to face our own reality at book's end...

GABixlerReviews
Paperback Provided for Review


Buddy: Tech Detective
Buddy: Tech Detective

1 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Contains Misleading or Insufficient information for Intended Age, January 21, 2015
I'm participating in the evaluation of videos for children...a very important, perhaps, addition to our electronic world of today and the future.

The first point that struck me was that there was a very short intro to the use of a GPS...But instead of explaining what was happening, a tech gadget was thrown up in illustration... It seemed to me that some type of statement, such as--this gadget will help us find Ferdo--it's called a GPS--or something like that was needed...

This video was fun but not as educational as it could have been. The second point that struck me was that one particular color identification did not match the actual creature in the video...That is, the color green was used to paint the ferret so that the final match was an unreal sample...Shouldn't we be explaining why the ferret was painted in green? Or use a potential real color especially since the ferret in the video is brownish? My opinion, yes!

The overall video was enjoyable, but, finally, it threw in a personal pet peeve of mine...that is, making it funny when an individual falls...This happened often because the spills of paint caused somebody to fall over and over...

A child learns most of their basic conditioning factors within their early, formative years. Is it really funny when somebody falls, even though there's one tv show on which it happens over and over? I would not support this video for pre-school age children...

GABixlerReviews


Devil's Lake (Bittersweet Hollow Book 1)
Devil's Lake (Bittersweet Hollow Book 1)
Price: $0.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dedicated to Kidnapped Women Held in Captivity..., January 19, 2015
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Aaron Lazar has cared enough to want to help readers understand the horror and trauma experienced by victims of sexual captivity. The novel is very well done and reflects the author's empathetic abilities--his willingness to open up and try to experience what has happened to another individual. In my opinion, this is one of his finest book for that reason alone. However, it is a much darker story line for him. An important aspect of this story is that he used two entirely different characters in the victim role. This was extremely important to show that, just as we all are, each individual can react to trauma in different ways. One of the victims did exactly what I always thought I would try to do. Could I have achieved it, I have no idea. We all must try to prepare for such a tragedy, but... reality is an entirely different story...

It was two years before Portia was able to escape. She had tried, though, but every time she failed, her captor, Murphy, would restrain her even more. Most of the time, she was tied to the bed, unable to break free... But then there were the times she was forced to dress up as a nurse to care for him... and other times he'd even dress up himself... He was cruel, dragged her by her hair but had not forced himself...yet...

When she got home, she learned that her mother was in the hospital for cancer and her father was there with her, in New York... Portia was barely able to talk, was starved and didn't even recognize the young man that was there at the farm... Boone had been friends with her since childhood... now she was afraid of him and anybody else... Boone carefully talked to her, making sure not to get too close or touch her and he was able to get her to go to her old room... Slowly she began to gain strength then her parents flew home and she was immediately lost in the comfort of their love and safety...

Things continued to improve, but Portia was still afraid. She had knocked Murphy out, but had she killed him? Finally as she was able to talk about it, two of the men went to find the cabin, but he was not there, although they found proof that he had been there but apparently had not died...

The majority of the novel takes place after Portia returns home. Murphy is smart, dangerous and cunning and Portia guessed that he had done this quite often. There are several incidents where the emphasis is more on the criminal and we are faced to wonder how an individual gets to the point where they start to stalk women and kidnap them.

On the other hand, there are the other male characters in the story that do as much as they can to ensure the safety of Portia and later her sister when she and her husband come to the farm also. The book becomes more exciting and presents a totally surprising ending scenario that is guaranteed to grab your attention and hold on to what happens next!

This is not an easy story to read, except that it shows that, no matter how long, and no matter what has happened, we are able to make it through and survive, with help and love from family and neighbors... It is an important story--one that lets female victims know that there will also be someone, somewhere looking for them, hoping and trying to get them home.

And as Aaron has already expressed in his Dedication--May God be with each victim who finds themselves in similar situations...You will know whether you will want to read the story... It is highly recommended, for many reasons...

GABixlerReviews


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