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The History Major: A Novella
The History Major: A Novella
Price: $1.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You May Be Entering The Twilight Zone..., March 1, 2016
Don't be surprised if you think you've entered The Twilight Zone as you read this book... It's not the usual suspense, because both the reader and the main character, has no idea what is going on... Is it just a really bad trip from drinking so much the night before? Or, maybe, somebody put something in her drinks that were causing these hallucinations? Dare you proceed?

Amanda Green was waking to her first day of classes. But she awoke so hung over that she could not move...the room smelled musty, sour--probably she got sick from all the vodka. She called out to her friend, Danielle, to shut off the lights but nothing happened. Then she felt a lump under her and came out with her cell phone--17 missed calls! Most from her mother! Hey, we just separated, she can't possibly need to talk to me! She called to her friends, but nobody answered. Then the phone rang...her mother again... She was hoping it was Patrick. Would they ever be able to get over the big fight they'd had? She thought she saw something out of the corner of her eye... She wished Patrick was here; he always took care of her...

Finding out her roommate was not one of her friends--and somebody she already couldn't stand--was bad enough. But when she finally got around to looking at the schedule for her first class and saw it was History, she exploded. She hated history, had not signed up for it, and was not about to take it... First stop was to get out of the class. She saw a group of women who sat busily working, while one came to help her. Amanda explained that she had not signed up for History... To make that long story short, she was told everybody had to take History...and if she didn't go, she would be late... Apparently it was very important on this campus to be on time, since everybody seemed to imply something was important about it...

Walking across the campus was confusing as the buildings seemed to disappear much more quickly than they should. She finally reached the building for the History class, which she decided she would attend today and then work on getting out of it later. She watched as what seemed thousands of students entered the building, all going to a large lecture hall, which must have been huge! The students were pressing, picking out back seats so fast that soon, Amanda found herself in the first row, right in front of the teacher podium. She looked around the room, but was not able to see any of her friends who were also entered in the school. At last, she did enter into a conversation with the boy sitting next to her...

And he helped her get over the shock when the instructor walked in... Because she was looking at a man in his sixties with thinning hair but a full beard making him appear like a homeless man. But more shocking was that he was wearing a toga and leather sandals flapped against the stage floor...

Weird...Strange... there are no other words to best describe the book, except maybe horrible...because at some point there was a loud pounding on the entry door, so loud that it seemed the door would break down... The student next to Amanda turned around and seemed to put up his hand and the banging stopped. When she looked at him for an explanation, he merely said that if a student is late, he is not allowed into the class that day... told you there was something strange about being late...Actually Amanda didn't believe much of anything that was going on. And even Nick Fortune, with whom she started to spend time with, seemed to give her strange answers to most of her questions...

No wonder, the whole story will confound you, stunning you with an ongoing ease of wonder...What in the world is going on?

Thankfully, finally at the end, readers become aware of that very thing... But in the interim, Amanda is taken into various historical scenes, seemingly literally. And as each historical event occurs, something she sees, sets her into a flashback of her own life. But she can't quite figure out why... Nor can she escape from the monster that seems to always be there, just out of the corner of her eye...

OK, I have to admit I hadn't a clue! In fact, I was relieved as the book got more toward the end. For someone who always asks the question "Why?" as I have done throughout my life, I found it difficult to become accustomed to not knowing and not even being able to guess what was happening. It was disquieting for me. Yet I could not stop reading until the book ended! I had to get the answers to the question on the back cover--Is this the mother of all hangovers or is something bigger happening?

Dare you...Can you endure the suspense of not knowing through an entire book? If you've read Cash before, you already know that he moves fluently from one genre to another--from one style of story to a completely different one next. I won't say this is a favorite, but I must acknowledge that from the very beginning it intrigued me...Note: I had entered The Twilight Zone and escaped happily... This novel is multi-genre, but closer to horror, I think. Check it out! There is an underlying learning experience to be had if you are astute.

Thought-provoking, stunning, fascinating... but not an exciting read... You decide, but I must commend the author on once again surprising me with his ability to conceive of an idea and create an entire story surrounding the idea. History? Wasn't my favorite subject either...LOL...

GABixlerReviews
ARC provided by publisher


Mags and the AARP Gang
Mags and the AARP Gang
Price: $2.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sage Advice and Actions From the AARP Gang! LOL, February 29, 2016
I loved this book. You could think it was because of my age, and maybe that is true. As Mags says, most people aren't old enough to remember the time when women weren't "allowed to control their bodies or their purse-strings..." For me, I'm constantly amazed that what was accomplished in the last century seems to have been totally put aside and women are once again beginning to fight for basic rights...Oh, you may not realize it if you didn't know our history...at least that's how Mags feels and I certainly agree.

Mags doesn't have too many female friends but I think we would get along very well...I was never the type that was sugar and spice and everything nice. Mags, too, with her father's help, early in her life became independent and adventurous. When she met the perfect man, they began those adventures together! But now he was gone, though her heart was still with him.

Mags was 83 and fortunate to have become a live in a small group of mobile homes where all the residents were elderly. She had become good friends with a few of the residents. One was her neighbor who brought over his paper to save her money while she fixed him lunch every day. And that day, the newspaper confirmed that they might be losing their homes!

Dawn Redwood Estates was in financial trouble! What could be done?!!! The owner of the Estates had guaranteed that their costs for living there would be kept as low as possible and his son had agreed... So had the previous mayor who turned his head away on any problems that may have arisen.

But a new mayor saw the potential of the site and immediately started an investigation to enumerate safety violations and other issues that needed to be fixed. Raymond had to take out a loan to do everything, because none of the residents could afford to pay for their share and, besides, his father had promised... That day Raymond had called a meeting of the residents. Raymond brought them up to date. They were going to be given more time--so they could find other places to live! Their worst fears were right...They would all lose their homes!

Everybody was depressed as they worried how they were going to find some place to move, at the cost they were now paying... Until Harvey had an idea. And after he had thought about the details, he talked to Mags... He wanted to rob the town's bank! So after convincing Mags, they proceeded... But the stress must have become too much for him and Harvey had died...

But before he'd died, he'd made one major mistake....He'd ask a woman who was already in the stages of Alzheimer to drive the get-away car... Mags was not only upset by losing one of her best friends, she knew she'd never have the money to find some place else to live. She decided to go ahead with the robbery, with her leading the plan. Besides if she got caught, she would do what Harvey had said he would...Give himself up to the law. Mags figured she'd at least have the jail to live in...

Sooooo, get ready to see what happens when a small group of octogenarians plan and executive the AARP Gang Heist! Think something like the Keystone Kops scenes....slowed down due to the gang's ages... Right?

Actually, there turns out to be much more drama in getting the money needed to save their homes! A few twists and turns and you have everybody moving faster than they knew they could. And the final ending was ingenious, due to Mags, of course. While I'm not sharing much about the other gang members, let me just say that their relationship was based upon love, friendship and loyalty and makes the ending all the more sweeter! Mags deserves a series! You just got to check this one out! The author has done a fantastic job in creating the variety of elderly characters within a small community. The Gang members were perfect...so was the setting... The appointed lawyer was also a special character who I would be happy to have as my own! Kudos to Nancy Jarvis! All in all a wonderfully delightful read!

GABixlerReviews
Ebook Provided for Review


In the Mind of Revenge (The Shamed) (Volume 1)
In the Mind of Revenge (The Shamed) (Volume 1)
by Liv Hadden
Edition: Paperback
Price: $9.99
22 used & new from $5.93

5.0 out of 5 stars Totally Unforgettable, February 28, 2016
Immediately I must say that this novel is incredibly stunning. It will capture you but you will not become part of this story. You will not fall in love with the main character and wish the best for her throughout the book. What you will be is caught in her web. She spins a web tightly; even captured, you will not try to escape.. She's telling you her story and as dreadful as it might be, still you read on. You cannot help yourself. You may shiver at some of the book, sometimes even tears will come to your eyes. You will wonder how could this happen? Yet, in the back of your mind, you know it does, or it could, and that is what captures you. You need to learn what happens to this character... You pray for her, because you cannot love her...

Shame had been given her name by those who had bullied her in school. She had been teased, ridiculed over and over. But it was only when she was attacked and nearly died that she thought of revenge...and began to act on it...

Would you have guessed that one of the ways she began to cope was through poetry. She had cried when abused. She had hidden within a large coat and hood and tried to stay clear. Then one day on the bus, her mother had come to protect her. It may have been her only way out, but she still knew that they had won and that was on her. Until later that day she found a poem by D. H. Lawrence...

Shame got her tattoo...and she got her revenge... She was changed, in more than one way after she had nearly died in the hands of those who'd assaulted her. Readers will see her revenge...and perhaps even understand. I seem to have a bit of need for revenge in myself, so I had not only sympathy but great empathy for Shame. Most of my comments are from within the first 7 pages of the book! But there is so much more to come. And as I read, I began to form a prediction of how this series was going to move forward... I can't wait to see if I'm close or, maybe, even right!

Hadden's greatest talent is in conceiving her main character and then wrapping her within everything necessary to have a young girl become happy with the name Shame--and then prove it by her actions...

Beware of Shame...When you hurt her, she doesn't die...

Honestly? If I tell the truth on this one, I have to say it's a Must Read... Without saying more about this tragic, astonishing, but unforgettable book, I can only say that I read this book over a month ago but the impact, the emotional suspense, and the final ending are still fresh in my mind... I can't wait for the next book! In the meantime, see my full article at Book Readers Heaven today during blog tour...

GABixlerReviews
ARC Provided
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Melissa
Melissa
by Dr. Jonathan Taylor
Edition: Paperback
24 used & new from $5.77

5.0 out of 5 stars Enthralling Drama Circling Music, Death, Physics and More!, February 26, 2016
This review is from: Melissa (Paperback)
According to the author, this book is based on true events...perhaps... There are other reportings of strange noises coming out of the sky around the world. However I didn't take the time to research further...Whether based upon true events or not, the story presented is quite extraordinary--even strange. Yet what happens following the phenomenon is not unique--sad, but true.

You see, a young girl, Melissa, died after a long, terrible fight against the cancer that had invaded her tiny 7-year-old body. Immediately after she died, neighbors heard strange noises coming from what seemed to be outside, coming from the sky. There were all types of descriptions--whether each heard something different or whether they used different words to try to describe it--there were no neighbors in the community who did not hear the noises and were compelled to go outside. That screeching noise evolved into some soothing music that nobody could identify...

All of the neighbors said they felt a peace, good feelings when the music started--some even hugging each other, smiling and loving the people in the community, who were previously not close friends. Everybody at home that day had left their homes and joined others outside. All except the Comb family, who heard nothing, and who stayed in their home, grieving, during the entire time period.

As with many individuals who are caught in some sort of celebrity, soon all types of spectators and news staff were crowding into the neighborhood. I'm not going to go into that except to say that it was very hard on the grieving family to have that kind of turmoil that not even the police could eliminate. So it was natural that the grieving period of the family continued much longer than could normally be expected...perhaps... Readers do not really learn that from the book.

Those who came wanted, of course, to understand the phenomenon and learn what caused it. Me? I thought it was supernatural. You know, the heavens crying out over the pain of the child... Perhaps...but that's really not what the book is about...

The parents and a step-sister to Melissa are the survivors. What happens to them is really the story.... Initially, they could not help but be caught up in the search for an explanation. Finally, they were trying to identify the music..

While that investigation was going on, there were unsettling happenings in the Comb's household. Mr. Comb had felt that some of Melissa's favorite music should be played during her funeral... Finally he decided he should be the one... A little past history is important at this time. Mr. Comb had been called a musical child prodigy when he was very young, but when he arrived in his teens and his skills were not expanding, he was no longer called a genius. His interest in practicing fell as he grew older and soon all he did was listen to his daughter play for he and Melissa... On the day of the funeral, after not even opening the piano and playing over the selections after not having played for many years, he was struck "dumb" and unable to move his hands beyond the beginning notes nor to speak...

Thereafter he kept the piano locked and refused to have Serena play... He also quit his job and sat in front of the television, sometimes even when it was not turned on.

Serena was having her own grieving problems. She and Melissa had spent hours together, especially with Melissa listening to her playing the piano. Now being cut off from the piano intensified her loss and memories of Melissa. Especially when she received a note about Melissa's death, stating that her death was Serena's fault.

An interesting side plot was Serena's time in school and with her best friend, together with Serena's crush on the Physics teacher... which leads readers into a Physics lesson on entrophy. Later Serena brings the possible relationship of music to the laws of thermodynamics... There is a depth of intellectual stimulation you do not normally find in fiction. Let me assure you, however, that the author has expertly incorporated both principles from physics together with music appreciation in a totally understandable and exciting fashion. It did not, however, explain the phenomena of the music that suddenly came out of the sky in Spark Close. It remained a mystery, but one unsolved that didn't bother me.

From this reader's perspective, it is amazing to say, that the phenomena was secondary to the drama that erupted because of it. There is much to ponder and consider over and over as a result of reading the book. Do humans need something startling to happen to us in order to find the person we really are? Or, like those who came and stared at the places, the homes, where the phenomena occurred, are we willing to sit on the sidelines and watch to see what happens? A perplexing, thought-providing book that, I think, won't be for everybody. Classical music, in particular, plays a significant role in the novel. On the other hand, if you'd like to learn more about classical, this is an exciting way to do it by merging the words with the music itself...which I did with many of the pieces...

If this review sounds the least bit intriguing, I urge you to check this quite extraordinary novel out! I was enthralled with the unique circumstances and characters! Highly recommended...

GABixlerReviews
Paperback provided for Review


The Victim
The Victim
by Eric Matheny
Edition: Paperback
Price: $19.95
29 used & new from $4.24

5.0 out of 5 stars An Agonizing Read--Agonizingly Suspenseful!, February 24, 2016
This review is from: The Victim (Paperback)
Reading this book was agonizing--agonizingly suspenseful! The title for one thing caught me as I tried to figure out--who was The Victim! In fact, it may be impossible to figure it out by the end of the book...it changes! It was only when I got almost half way into the book and some things were revealed that I began to sink in to the story... No kidding, the suspense, as they say, was killing me! LOL

The book opens in 2003, when a terrible vehicular accident with a RV, driven by a man who was drunk, crashed and plowed into the back of a car, actually almost on top of it. Getting out, the man saw that there were two people in the car that are not moving. Thinking they are dead and wanting to cover himself, he set both vehicles on fire...

Movement to 2014 takes place next and readers go back and forth in history for a short time. We meet the main character, an attorney working in the Richard E. Gerstein Justice Building in Miami Florida...He's renting space from a well-established lawyer and picking up cases from him, working to build his reputation. Anton Mackey is happily married with a new small child. His only problem at the time is that Gina, his wife, is suffering from depression after the birth. Although she is in counseling, there has not been a return to the closeness between the couple. This was compounded by an accident with the baby, when she was left in the car, while her mother was in the house and had been so tired, she fell asleep... It was only when Anton had come home that he'd found the baby. Gina couldn't seem to forgive herself...

Anton is a defense attorney and readers watch as he moves "slowly" on his cases to delay actions as much as possible--is this man ethical, we begin to wonder or is this the real pace with cases? Readers have the opportunity to learn about multiple cases as Anton handles pieces for various clients. The thing is--there are clues from right at the very beginning that will slip by you, only to come back and haunt you--wasn't that name mentioned earlier? What was he into? It's convoluted as law is...so don't worry about it, just enjoy!

This becomes especially visible when the criminals he's defending are not satisfied with the pace at which he's working. Like the son of a rich man who's been spoiled all his life and does not want to spend time in jail, and who is his new client for a domestic disturbance case for which he's just been hired.

Daniella Avery, the battered wife has come to hire him to defend her husband who is now in jail, indicating that she wants to ensure that he at least gets a fair trial. Anton begins the usual procedures, but this doesn't satisfy the husband who has been imprisoned...and wants out on bond immediately...which he probably won't get due to the severity of the case... But while that is going on, Daniella contacted Anton and invited him over... At first, Anton points out that even though she has paid for his services, he is her husband's lawyer and would not be discussing his case with her...but it soon becomes clear that is not the reason for her asking him over... And with little coaxing, Anton succumbs to her charms, as they say...thinking about how long it has been since Gina and he were intimate.

And that's when the real trouble begins...

Now you may think I've added spoilers to my review, but that just isn't the case... This book is so intricately folded with twists and turns that I've barely given a taste of what's happening!

The book gets into gang activities, juvenile policing, freeing innocent victims, murder, betrayal, and more, all of which are wrapped up tight, as a surprise, that will leave you surprisingly speechless when you read that next chapter!

The emphasis on how the continuous posting to Facebook adds on a dimension of danger that criminals use for tracking individuals is quite realistic and true to life. In fact, the whole story brings together a series of "every-day" events that would not surprise anybody...until you see how they've been carved into the story, with their concurrent results!

This is one legal thriller you won't want to miss if you enjoy the legal world. The ending is not surprising after all that happens. But, for me, I'm curious enough to consider what at least one sequel would be with Anton Mackey as the main character once again. Let me know what you think! This one is highly recommended, even with a page count nearing 500!

GABixlerReviews
Paperback provided for Review


The Runner and the Robber
The Runner and the Robber
by Robert Sells
Edition: Paperback
Price: $13.95
7 used & new from $10.85

5.0 out of 5 stars Grandfather and Grandson Make Great Team Solving Mystery..., February 23, 2016
This book is listed as young adult, but because of the topic of Alzheimer's, I want to highly recommend it for both teens as well as adults. The angst caused by those family members who are affected by this disease is heartbreaking to consider. You love the individuals with the disease, but there are still feelings of guilt that come when family members suddenly become caretakers well beyond taking care of somebody physically ill.

It wasn't surprising then, when, after just losing his father, Bill Taylor was forced to relocate with his mother to take care of her husband's father, who had developed Alzheimer. Because his mother was now the only breadwinner, she had to work, which left Bill having to care for his grandfather all of the time when his mother left.

Now he was in school, but really couldn't get involved due to this personal responsibility at home. Later, he would admit to himself that he'd been so angry that he hadn't really tried to make any friends or try to enjoy his new school activities...

But an eighth-grade student and neighbor had looked up to him, which was alright; but Bill knew hanging around with a young kid wouldn't help getting friends. It did help, though, when his Mom later called the police about the man who had accosted her son on the road, and the officer they sent happened to be his young friend's father...

Finally, Bill did notice a girl in his class--only problem is that she was dating one of the main football players. Still, they connected when she asked him to help her with one of their classes... Interestingly, when she came over to study at his home and met his grandfather, she shared that there was someone in her own family with the same disease. Her being quite comfortable around Bill's grandfather helped greatly in sharing and beginning a relationship.

Of course, not to the liking of her boyfriend...

Gramps had gotten worse when his son died. When Bill and his mother visited him at a local care residence, they were both upset with the conditions in which he was living. Immediately, she decided to relocate and move in and care for Gramps at home. Now she was working as much as she could because the pay scale for nurses in this country area was well below what she'd been making. Bill, of course, had been given no option. He would need to watch and care for Gramps, ensuring that he didn't wander away and get hurt...

Normally, Gramps was no problem. He had a habit of sitting at the table with coins which he counted and separated in stacks, over and over... it was this habit that Bill noticed the most when the investigation got going...when the man who had accosted Bill was murdered... and they learned that he had been a part of the men who had performed a 1992 Brink's Robbery heist!

Remember for a brief time Nancy Drew hooked up with The Hardy Boys? Well, I was reminded of those fun mysteries when Bill, who finally wins over to have Sarah as his girlfriend, start an investigation on their own...mostly led by Sarah!

Sarah comes from a rich family with a lawyer for her father. But thankfully she has not become spoiled and enjoys the time with Bill and Gramps in their small log cabin. But when she gets interested in solving the case, she certainly takes the lead! And succeeds in getting them into some serious trouble! But with her by Bill's side, he becomes braver and starts using some of the fighting skills he'd been taught by his father...

Even when he's fairly certain that Gramps was involved with the heist in some way...

Even when he meets up with the Mafia...

In many ways, readers will recognize this book as the cozy murder mystery style. We get to know the characters, especially, the three main teen characters, and become invested in their lives. And yet, there is Bill's mother and grandfather who are facing totally changed adult lives that they would never have wanted or planned for. The family commitment and loyalty comes across strong, even while Billy stews about the changes to his life--at least until he meets Sarah!

Even the Mafia characters had recognized that Gramps would be no help to them in tracking the money...but Bill and Sarah succeeded where all others had failed in communicating with Gramps! A triumphant story showing some things are possible when you work harder to find the solutions! I loved it. Pics, excerpts expand review at Book Readers Heaven...

GABixlerReviews
Paperback provided for Review


King Harald's Heist (King Harald Mysteries Book 2)
King Harald's Heist (King Harald Mysteries Book 2)
Price: $2.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Andy and Harald Make Great Mystery Solvers for Cozies..., February 19, 2016
In the second King Harald Cozy, Audry takes readers into a murder mystery in the present that is based upon a long ago story. Harald gives us a clue almost immediately, although the significance only is speculative at that time. After all, how could Harald know that a once pristine Magazine, which happened to be dated 1955, might be of value...or that a green slip of paper which proved to be a thousand dollar bill which apparently had been mislaid long ago, according to the owner, could become a very important clue. Harald hadn't even gotten to taste the green paper!

Want to check out King Harald's first adventure? Click over to my review after you've finished this article! That one stumped me and this one had so many that could be the guilty one(s), that you'll keep guessing throughout the book!

Background plots in small-town America include Andy's sister going into business, creating a restaurant which will have a studio for Andy on the second floor...with Andy being called on to work at the restaurant when needed...

While his aunt talks him into running as temporary mayor to fill a vacancy until her son can run for the formal position. Some of the activities for the new mayor add greatly to the entertainment for readers as he deals with this new very socially demanding role. Of course everybody knows Harald so he's a partner in these events...

But the real problems occur with a college professor who is researching for a new book and has contacted the two sisters who lived on either side of Andy. They beg him to talk to the writer for them since they claim he is trying to accuse them of past historical activities that are not true, coming across in a serious fashion when she added they wanted him to do whatever necessary to stop his story! Andy agrees to meet but is presented with potential historical information that could very well be true! And that's also when Harald found what later was another clue--a garden gnome to chew on. I loved this little added touch to the story, which lightened the visit, at least that first time Andy and Harald was at the professor's home...

So who discovered the murdered professor? Andy and Harald of course. Harald had wandered away from home, went to the garden where he'd found the nice chewy gnome and had brought it home with him...just so that Andy would discover it and call to let the professor know he was bringing it back...But it was already too late...

Much is happening in New Bergen for Andy to keep himself and readers busy learning about, but he still found himself involved in solving the murder...only to have another one added... OK, I admit it. I didn't guess whodunit! That's twice Richard Audry has stumped me! Great!

I must admit I have a special place in my heart for cozy mysteries. There is always just enough mystery to keep me interested in solving it...but cozies are more about the people, the characters who inhabit the town where murder just happens to occur to break up the ongoing town activities. Especially in a series, I become interested with the characters...and Andy has won my heart already, especially when he gets his heart involved with a femme fatale (in a small town? Yes, she's visiting)...

There are millions of cozy readers out there...King Harald adds a dash of dog heroism for those who enjoy animals as main characters like I do...I'm already predicting that Andy will be a shoo-in for mayor in the next novel...what do you think? Hey, check this fun mystery with surprising ending activities that will result in a totally satisfying enjoyable book! Highly recommended...

GABixlerReviews
Paperback provided for Review


The Anonymous Signal (INTEL 1 Book 3)
The Anonymous Signal (INTEL 1 Book 3)
Price: $2.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ranked Favorite From Author For This Fan...Easily 5+, February 18, 2016
Wow! It's probably because I've been working with different types of computer systems all my professional life, that I found the latest by Erec Stebbins to be so fantastic...and horrible... Fantastic because of his details and imagination in concocting the story... And horrible because it could happen in reality to a greater or lesser extent than here in his book... which were truly disastrous events...

Stebbins is brilliant and uses the expertise he's developed together with his creative genius to move from one book to another in various genres and areas of interest. I've only had the time to read 5 of them over the years, but I did and would still highly recommend his books.

The First Strike was toward company CEOs and politicians, sometime using drones. These scary little mechanical creatures had been acquired by the thousands and will terrify you in some of the scenes as completely unmanned machines kill and destroy. But consider them as merely hors-d'oeuvres to the main meal...An unstoppable worm eating up and through the world-wide Internet... eating through corporate files, government information systems and on to Wall Street and other markets...it was unstoppable... Soon phones were gone, utilities...while money was being moved out of all accounts never to see seen again...

Rioting began in the streets as transportation was down and people were going without food...

Stebbins begins his book in the midst of of United States Armed Forces Special Tribunal, which is the Plaintiff, versus John Savas, Defendant. Set before The Anonymous Event Commission... There is a certain arrogant attitude established by the writer right at the beginning. You see, the very people who worked diligently and had "saved the world" were now being put through "hell" because of the way they handled things. OMG, Bureacracy at its finest..."Thanks for saving the world, but now, we need to pick all of your actions apart to cover those of us who couldn't--save the world that is..." Stebbins' outstanding choice to frame his book in this fashion lends so much more credibility to what happens--again leading readers to the horrors of the "possibilities..."

Special Agent John Savas is the head of the team that some were saying had gone rogue... Duh, so while all communication was down, the bureaucrats expected to be totally kept in the loop on what the assigned group was doing to stop the disaster. I loved the sarcastic and emotional amazement expressed by those giving their depositions...

Be prepared for a complex, fast-paced, story that still provides readers with detailed information on what was happening and what was being done to investigate who was behind everything.

I enjoyed John Savas as the leader and coordinator but there were three exciting heroes who actually responded to the primary activities. One was a brilliant computer genius and a husband-wife team that had earlier been declared criminals and wanted by the government who were brought in by Savas... Kinda supports many of our concerns about actions of government officials, since those three heroes disappeared after all the work they'd done, without any praise or thank yous...in fear of their lives...

What I'm trying to point out is that in the creation of the book, I believe Erec Stebbins has done everything possible he could do to make the story one of the most realistic books you may ever read. It my opinion, it would make a Armageddon techno-thriller movie that would prove to be a major success! And extremely believable, given the time frame and technological advances and connectivity now present across the world.

The only thing that breaks the realism is the villain...because he is just a flawed, even though brilliant, human. And that's what makes the book fun!
Readers gain sufficient background about this character to learn that he was born a genius, well beyond the capability of his parents to control him... And unfortunately he turns out to be a psychopath with, perhaps, a god complex... In any event, I loved the connection developed between the hero computer whiz and the villain computer whiz... Because, no matter how he had been prepared, and no matter what hardware and software he had acquired, she beat him every time! After meeting the Daughter of Time in his trilogy, I have come to greatly admire Erec Stebbins for his strong female characters. He has continued that recognition in this novel with my and, I am sure, other women's gratitude.

In fact, one of Stebbins greatest abilities in his writing is in his character development. While at the same time, his brilliance and expertise brings forth some of the most unique science fiction stories I've ever enjoyed. They are intense, dynamic and complex enough to force the reader directly into the world he's created. If you don't plan to enter in right at the beginning, you might as well forego starting his books because he'll leave undisciplined readers behind...He's that good!

But don't let me scare you, for those who are into Computers? This is a must-read! Could you beat the anonymous signal that may end the world?!

GABixlerReviews
Paperback provided for Review


Lonesome Cowboy
Lonesome Cowboy
by Frank Lowe
Edition: Paperback
Price: $17.91
22 used & new from $17.91

5.0 out of 5 stars Intriguing Family Drama Well Worth Consideration..., February 17, 2016
This review is from: Lonesome Cowboy (Paperback)
The first word that comes to mind to describe this Drama is lovely...appealing to both men and women in sharing of deep love for both friends and loved ones. Although listed as a thriller--I would not consider it that, rather a family drama that has a number of fascinating characters, and two sets of cultural backgrounds that sets up a wall between two lovers. Can it be breached?

Kyle, the son of a country singer, becomes the primary character. He has admired and been best friends with his father since he was young and had quickly begun to learn guitar and sing with him. Then he had become their manager. Without knowing it, Kyle had scheduled them to play in Red's home town! With that, it brought not only an unexpected welcome for Red's return, but also many surprises for Kyle, one of which was that they had been using an alias name! Kyle was finding details out as old friends came to talk to Red and became more and more anxious about what had happened many years ago in this town...

Red had chosen not to sing Lonesome Cowboy for his own loss, but in having Kyle sing solo that first night, it started a following and subsequent movie career that may have fulfilled Kyle's long-term goals, but certainly made him realize that things were moving too fast... But there wasn't a choice now, for Red had a stroke and was rushed to the hospital, with the later recommendation that he give up working. Now Kyle was the only bread winner for the two of them...

Readers will like Kyle. While he's comfortable as his father's sidekick, he was not anxious to be on his own. Yet, because of his quiet, relaxed performances that complemented his beautiful voice and good looks, his following of fans grew and grew. When he was offered a film, he felt he had to accept to keep money coming in. But even then, his warmth and kindness, plus his ability to speak Spanish, soon made he and the director friends. With his help, they were able to salvage a movie that really had less than a great story.

In the meantime, with the acceptance of Red's return, except by a few people who weren't well liked by the community, Kyle was able to continue their gig and the two men decided to make their stay permanent...

Which led to meeting Miranda and her wealthy family from Mexico. Kyle fell in love with Miranda at first sight. Without going into details, however, a tragedy occurred which resulted in the family's return to Mexico. He and Miranda kept in touch, but Miranda early had told Kyle that she would never be able to marry someone who was not Mexican... But Kyle was not willing to accept that decision...

The book has two sub-plots about love between men. This is the second book I've read with a similar theme where confusion has arisen, apparently because of the changes in homosexuality laws, that seems to have denigrated or sullied the potential of close friendships between men that has nothing to do with sex. How sad. Fortunately, the author has shown both the positive and negative sides so that readers realize that philia (friendship) love between men is quite natural and does not lead to eros interaction. Kudos to the author for spotlighting this important matter.

Lowe's descriptive talent for the two primary settings, peopled with appropriate complementary characters moves this story forward in a gripping fashion to attract readers' immediate attention. The intrigue of the hidden as well as the continued movement by Kyle into new challenges kept my interest piqued and anxious. I'm not a fan of the usual soap opera drama common to television, so I do want to point out that the book is definitely family friendly and will reveal deep loves, family loyalty and dedication. A heartbreaking as well as heartwarming story well worth your consideration.

GABixlerReviews
Paperback provided for review


Each Day I Wake: A gripping psychological thriller: US Edition
Each Day I Wake: A gripping psychological thriller: US Edition
Price: $2.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Captivating, Compelling Psychological Thriller!, February 15, 2016
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I met Seb Kirby through reading Take No More which was an exciting thriller ride into the art world... But this latest book, with the psychological framework has moved him into an area in which he has excelled! Let me say right upfront--Wow! You've got to check this one out if you are into psychological thriller/suspense!

The book opens with the main male character in the hospital with almost total amnesia. I say "almost" because while he sleeps he remembers--he remembers beautiful women who are taken to a place which appears to be a library. The man and young girl have sex, but the man then strangles the young girl. Is this a scene from his own memory? He doesn't believe he would commit adultery... but how can he have these memories?

It was hard to imagine waking up and not knowing who you are... The police sent an officer, but could tell him nothing--no witnesses had been found but they did find that he was full of narcotics... Did he know anything about that? But then to begin having dreams--dreams so real that it seems you are the person watching young women being murdered--would be absolutely terrifying!

It was his wife that had been looking for him, Janet Markland, who told him he'd been gone from home for 10 days. His name was Tom and the woman, who he didn't recognize, told him she was looking forward to taking him home... Even coming home did not help, however. Tom didn't remember anything, but his wife began to share about their life and tell him small things that might bring back memories, even their favorite song had not yet done it, however.

But he did have another dream. This time the girl's name was Margot... and the script went as before, except this time, he could see something different. On the arm of the man was the tattoo of a red rose! Tom hurried to the mirror in the bathroom. No! He didn't have any tatyoos... Tom was not the man in his dreams!

With relief so real, he was now able to consider what he should do about what he was experiencing. His psychologist was not too helpful in this regard.

Thinking he was feeling better, he decided to go for a walk, without telling his wife...He knew where and what locations he passed, even though he didn't recall when he saw them, but then a flash of memory and he was back in the water, afraid of dying... Fortunately a man stopped to check if he was alright and it broke his flashback sufficient to allow him to deal with it... But it made him just that more determined to find out what had happened! Who had caused him to be in the water around the Wharf?

Back home, watching television, he saw her--Cathy! It was a news item about the girl in the first dream--about Cathy who was missing from her home and her mother was making an appeal. He called his wife to watch and told her it was one of the girls he'd dreamed about, but his wife was hesitant to support his involvement, remembering that his psychologist believed they were false memories...

Tom had not been impressed with his psychologist and was not about to share anything further about his dreams... He was ready to act; he would talk to the police... But he knew that they would naturally suspect him...and that he would continue to work to discover who had tried to kill him...and see if and how it was connected to the murder of the young women in his dreams...

The added dimension of the main character not having his personal memories increases the suspense for readers since we are finding out only what is occurring within the limitation of Tom's knowledge. The story captured my attention immediately and kept me enthralled until the final page. One interesting method by which the author brings clues is that Tom's wife had kept a scrapbook of Tom's news articles...By that he was able to learn much about his career and he then discovered he had moved into a new area--securities fraud--that he'd not been involved with in the past...

Another dream--this time he watches Rebecca die...and notices more about the hands of the murder--his fingers did not match Tom's. Now he was positive he was not that man. And the only way to clear himself was to find the murderer...

I loved this one. Kirby's rhythm of inserting dreams along with Tom's finding out more about his past, claims full attention to determine who the criminal(s) might be... A captivating and compelling read!

GABixlerReviews


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