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Martha A. Cheves RSS Feed (Charlotte, NC)

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A Portrait to Die For
A Portrait to Die For
by Radine Trees Nehring
Edition: Paperback
Price: $16.00
16 used & new from $9.80

5.0 out of 5 stars for important works of art like those in the Port View portrait collection to be ..., May 22, 2016
This review is from: A Portrait to Die For (Paperback)
"Beginning around the time of the Revolutionary War, it was the practice, mainly in Europe and the British Isles, for important works of art like those in the Port View portrait collection to be copied in folios of mezzotint prints. Imported folios (large books or folders) of English portraits provided late 18th Century artists in this country with models for elegant poses and gestures that could be used by their sitters, and also with ideas for beautifully developed background scenery. Prints in the folios are normally close reproductions of the original, and Crystal Bridges' Library is fortunate to own a number of these folios. If you have time after viewing the Port View portraits, visit the library and study the books of prints on display there. One of the mezzotints you'll see is a portrait of young twins. Each child holds a bouquet of daisies. The original of that print in the gallery below is one of the Port View Historical Society's true treasures. I suggest, for fun, you study both the original portrait and the print carefully. Do you find variations between the two?"

This was part of an article written by Reporter Maylynn Brewer after her visit to the Crystal Bridges Library. Apparently she had seen a difference between the original and its copy and this article is about to cost her her life as well as her brother Mark's life. Then Maylynn disappears.

Carrie McCrite is a volunteer at the Crystal Bridges Library. She too has noticed a difference between the two pieces of art. Carrie has a tendency to get herself involved in other people's problems and this difference is piquing her interest. Henry has insisted that she not get involved. Her past involvements have come very close to costing not only her own life but his as well. But... when Henry's younger half sister Catherine becomes involved with the search for Maylynn her fiance Rob, who is Carrie's son, also joins her and of course Carrie and Henry can't allow them to play detectives by themselves.

This book picks up pace as the story goes along, especially when a Port View truck is hi-jacked. What was in the truck? Painting sales are discovered but are they sales of the real thing or copies? If they are copies, how are the buyers being convinced that they are the real thing? I found this book very enlightening as to how the art world works, but I also found it to be a very spellbound mystery.

Princess Adele's Dragon
Princess Adele's Dragon
Price: $2.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars love and even a witch who can cast some pretty ..., May 18, 2016
When she arrived at the opening into the mountainside the creature used to enter and leave the mountain, she pulled out her sword, said a prayer. She took the first step inside the cave to face her destiny. As she worked her way down the cavern, the heat rose from deep in the cave... She stopped to rest and heard a sound coming from below. It sounded as if someone was crying. It tugged at her heart for an unknown reason. I wonder if the dragon trapped someone. It's the saddest thing I've heard in a long time... In a moment's time, the ground trembled in a rhythmic fashion. That meant one thing. The beast was on the move. At least, the crying stopped.

Princess Adele has gone in search of the dragon that has been destroying the surroundings. Her brother King Robert has been told by his advisor Lord Ashmore that the only way to tame the dragon is to sacrifie a girl child. Adele is determined that isn't to happen so she's gone in search of the dragon herself in hopes that she will be able to slay him. What she finds isn't something she would have ever expected. The dragon she finds quickly becomes "Princess Adele's Dragon." And he will protect her as well as her brother's kingdom to the end.

Princess Adele's Dragon is a book full of treason, friendship,love and even a witch who can cast some pretty mean spells. The real deceit comes when Adele and her brother find that two of the people they trust the most are out for one thing - to make the kingdom their own. They must hang on but at what cost?

This book may sound deep but it is really an easy read. It moves fast without losing your interest and attention to the events taking place. I think it's a book young readers would enjoy. I did.

What Haunts Me (Ghost Killer Book 1)
What Haunts Me (Ghost Killer Book 1)
Price: $3.99

5.0 out of 5 stars her dress hung below her knees with padded shoulders and semi-tailored waste line, Mary Jane shoes, May 10, 2016
“I noticed a woman of about thirty standing just off the sidewalk on the grass. Her appearance was right out of the 1940's; her dress hung below her knees with padded shoulders and semi-tailored waste line, Mary Jane shoes, hair neatly done up in side rolls. Yet, it wasn't the vintage apparel that stood out so much; it was that she was untouched by the light rain that was coating everything and everyone around her. Of course, it was also the Harry Potter glasses that she wore, and the fact that she seemed to be intently focused on John.

For no other reason but instinct, I raised the umbrella and gently jabbed it at her as we walked past. A look of horror filled her face, and then she swirled away into a grey mist, just like the ghost, or whatever he was, had done when I was a kid at Bobby's house. Now that I remembered it all, it occurred to me that John didn't have a lisp...anymore.”

George is a normal young man in his 30's. His mother had died when he was young, he was raised by his father, went to school, ended up becoming very successful in the real estate field and even bought himself a nice home on the top floor of a building that housed only one other person who was an elderly lady named Justine Wilkinson.

After getting over a bout of the flu George found his life changing before his eyes. He was seeing 'ghosts' that were haunting people and making them ill. He also discovered that he could poke them with a pencil and they would, for the lack of a better word 'die.' Then came the memories of his childhood. Apparently he was able to do this as a child but for some reason didn't remember it until now. These memories and the events now taking place in his life are wreaking havoc on his life and he doesn't know how to make it stop.

George is a GK or ghost killer. They come in all power stages and ranks with him being one of the best. But he ends up with a mission that has to be handled before the bad ghosts take over. This book is the perfect beginning for a TV series. If you like the Walking Dead you'll really love What Haunts Me. I'd love to see this picked up by a producer, yes it's that good.

Shattered Lies
Shattered Lies
by S. J. Francis
Edition: Paperback
Price: $15.99
19 used & new from $11.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful story of love and hate, May 1, 2016
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This review is from: Shattered Lies (Paperback)
"Miss Kate went up there. I went to check on her..." "What do you mean? You let her up there? Why?" he asked. "I didn't let her up there," Elsa said. "And why not? It's her house, too." "I Told you no one is allowed up there. No one." "Relax, Sam. I'm sure Miss Katherine didn't mean Kate," Elsa said.

"Damn it, woman! I told you when we first came here that Miss Katherine has rules..." "Why did you let her go up there?" Sam asked. I didn't allow her to do anything," Elsa said. "You still haven't told me what the big deal is." "It doesn't matter now." He moved to leave but she caught his wrist. "It matters to you and if it matters to you, it matters to me.".... Sam knew if Miss Katherine found out, there'd be hell to pay, but he couldn't physically make Kate leave. That left him without any other options.

Kate lived on the family plantation that her namesake grandmother Katherine owned. Kate was a veterinarian and took care of the animals as well as the farm itself. Her grandmother had raised her after the death of her parents and even after college and the death of her own husband, she still called the old place her home. She wanted to be no place else. So why was the attic off limits to her?

Kate knew something wasn't right. There were too many unanswered questions about her parents and the answer was in that attic. So after slipping the keys from her grandmother's room she went on a search through the attic. There hidden under some old boxes she found a small, blue journal that appeared to belong to her mother. She took it back to her room, read it and then went in search of her grandmother for the truth.

When Kate started asking questions I had no idea what she was going to turn up. I was truly surprised when I learned the answers to my own questions. I never dreamed her family secrets would turn out to be what they were. And I don't believe she had any idea as to the size of the can of worms she was about to open.

This book will make you stop and think. It will make you really understand that people do make mistakes but blood is normally thicker than those mistakes. And forgiveness is even thicker. A beautiful story of love and hate.

Starlight's Curse
Starlight's Curse
Price: $3.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars and she released great, heaving sobs of tremendous loss, April 26, 2016
This review is from: Starlight's Curse (Kindle Edition)
Ragged sobs ripped from her throat as she stood beneath the tree. She raised a shaky hand toward the body, her fingers reaching for a white rectangle pinned to a bright red turtleneck sweater... This was her baby... She dropped to her knees and curled forward. Her arms wrapped protectively around her body, and she released great, heaving sobs of tremendous loss. Her daughter hung from the branch of an elm tree.

Forty years earlier... Far off in the woods, he caught sight of a dozen men wearing white robes and peaked hats slipping between the trees. It was hard to make out. Their clothes blended in well with the snow on the ground.... "There Daddy" his voice wavered, cracking into an embarrassing treble. "The tree. Look at the tree. Daddy's head turned kind of slow like. His mouth dropped open when he spotted the three figures dangling off ropes on that ancient elm... He took off running, his aunt lived off the other side of the road, in a shanty cabin that was the polar opposite of Starlight Mansion.

Many times I've read a book that I said was a page turner, and they were, but Starlight's Curse was a book that I wanted to read through the night and even the next day if need be without putting it down. A lot of that is because I grew up during the time, 40 years earlier, when the Klan was active. Part of it was because I also grew up just outside Atlanta and spent many weekends in the North Georgia mountains. But the biggest part was that the story was so real. It wasn't fast moving but moved more along the time lines that it would actually take for the events and thoughts to happen in real life. This book took me in from the first page and held me there until the end.

Severed Threads (Volume 1)
Severed Threads (Volume 1)
by Kaylin McFarren
Edition: Paperback
Price: $10.51
35 used & new from $0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Chase’s treasure-hunting skills and the Heart of the Dragon he’s after are the only means to saving Rachel's brother from some r, April 23, 2016
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"Somewhere on board the ship is the gift Mai Le intended for her lover. According to ancient scrolls handed down by my grandfather, it was hidden in a handcrafted box disguised as a Chinese betrothal chest. After a thorough examination of the wood fibers and inscribed markings, there is no doubt in my mind. The lid your father found belongs to this box. The heart of the dragon must be hidden in the wreckage or buried somewhere close by. Prophecy foretells of a lion rescuing the dragon's heart. This is your destiny, Rachel. Your chance to turn your father's dream into reality."

Dr. Lao Ying schedules a meeting with Rachel Lyons in the hope of recruiting funds for lost treasure from the Wanli II ship. This is the mission her father Sam and his partner Chase Cohen had embarked on years earlier. After examining the items found so far, Dr. Ying is sure the Wanli’s burial place has been found. But the lack of funding could bring this excavation to a stop, and this is where Dr. Ying hopes to solve the problem. With Rachel's influence at the foundation she works for, the real search can begin. However, Chase Cohen's involvement creates a roadblock in this enterprising venture.

Rachel and Chase were a couple who shared a deep passion for the sea. Then, when Rachel needed Chase the most, he ran off and she hasn't seen him for four long years...that is, not until her meeting with Dr. Ying. She wants nothing to do with him or anything he might be involved in. Her brother Devon warned her about Chase before he disappeared, and now she realizes she should have listened. But as it turns out, Devon isn’t the smartest person in her life. He’s neck deep in trouble with money laundering and may end up in the ocean as shark bait. Chase’s treasure-hunting skills and the Heart of the Dragon he’s after are the only means to saving Rachel's brother from some really bad men.

This book is full of twists and turns. I would find a character that I started liking only to discover my first impression was wrong. Then I would come across one I didn't trust and soon realize I would want them on my side, especially if I were put into some of the situations in which Rachel, Chase and Devon find themselves. Severed Threads is chuck full of murder, drugs, bad guys, and a whole lot of suspense all the way to the end. For anyone who enjoys undersea mysteries, thrillers and adventures, this is the book to read!

Midnight Owl (A Joe Leverette Mystery Book 1)
Midnight Owl (A Joe Leverette Mystery Book 1)
Price: $2.99

5.0 out of 5 stars " she called out in a trembling voice that didn't sound like her own, April 17, 2016
"Who's there?" she called out in a trembling voice that didn't sound like her own. The light behind the door went out and the squeaking door opened slowly. A man stood there and looked at her. He was wearing a total-body rain suit, surgical cap and mask. Only his eyes were visible. "Hello, Heather," he said in a calm voice. "What do you want? Why are you doing this? Who are you?" she blurted out. "Now, now. I'm here to take you on an adventure. One that will allow you to pay for all the misery you've caused to a lot of people," he said with his calm voice. "I'm going to make sure you'll never hurt anyone again." He turned and reached for a pile of what looked like fabric straps from the table. They were four strips. He began applying one of them to each of her limbs, tightly, like a tourniquet, a few inches below her torso.

Later... "I was walking my dog and he got upset. He pulled me over there," Amy said, and with a shaky finger, pointed to the black mass at the shore. "When I got to it, I saw it was a woman's leg."

Amy was just one of the unfortunate who had her day destroyed with the finding of a body part. Throughout the day others would discover the remains of what would turn out to be a woman which had been mutilated with her body parts being placed in garbage bags and dropped off at various places. All of the finders were strangers to each other yet they all had one thing in common... a dream.

If you like suspense, this book will throw it out to you with page 1. I don't believe I've ever read a book that began as deadly as this one did. I don't believe I've ever read a book that caught me up in the story with the 1st page. This book did both. It kept me in suspense to the very end. I had no idea who the killer, or should I say mutilator, was. And I'll not reveal any information that might give you a clue. I will tell you that you are in for a total surprise at the end. Now I can't wait to read book #2 in this series to see what will happen next and how Author Viv Drewa will entice me into waiting on the edge of my seat for book #3.

Vital Temptations: A Heart's Betrayal
Vital Temptations: A Heart's Betrayal
Price: $0.99

5.0 out of 5 stars His beautiful complexion and perfect lips and teeth were an added ..., April 11, 2016
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The two chatted for several minutes as Bethany continued studying him. Something about him reminded her of her dad, who always told her to look for a sense of humor in a man. His beautiful complexion and perfect lips and teeth were an added bonus; she loved a man who took pride in his oral hygiene and nails. His pearly white smile sparkled at her when he spoke. Bethany sensed that he was much younger than the guys she usually dated and she was unimpressed that he came to the conference unprepared; nonetheless she accepted his offer for lunch since she hated eating alone.

Dr. Bethany McNeal has just met the love of her life - Dr. Brent Anderson. Both are attending a conference at the Seattle Children's hospital. The unprepared Dr. Anderson takes the only available seat left which is next to Bethany.

Just a couple years earlier Bethany had found herself in a relationship with a man she really loved and trusted. Turned out trust was the last thing he should have been given. They parted ways with her being extremely cautious when it came to men. Brent finally broke through the wall she had built and she had fallen so in love with him that she knew there would be no other. But... Brent came with secrets, both past and present. Secrets that should end any feelings she has for him. When she finally learns what he has been hiding from her the pain is unbearable but nothing can kill her love.

As I read Vital Temptations I found myself rooting for Bethany. Hoping she would open her eyes and see what was going on around her. Hoping she would listen to her best friends Danielle and Caleb. Listen to them when they tell her there are other women. Listen when Danielle introduces her to Charles who falls heavily for her. This love story will keep you in suspense all the way to the end, wondering what is going to happen to Bethany. I knew how I wanted it to end. I'll not tell you what I hoped for but will tell you that it didn't end the way I wanted it to which is good because I think it ended just the way it should. I had a hard time putting this book down and if you're a fan of a good 'what is she going to do' you'll be glad you picked this one up.

The Brazen Shark (Clockwork Legion Book 3)
The Brazen Shark (Clockwork Legion Book 3)
Price: $4.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Legion's interference in the creation of these vehicles has taken a turn for the worse. A group of samurai have captured one of, April 4, 2016
The men took their stations with samurai keeping careful watch. Legion continued to calculate reasons for the airship's capture. A mission to discredit the emperor's power and gain popular support seemed a high probability. Usurping the throne directly also ranked high. Either possibility could precipitate further warfare and involve either the United States or Russia.... Legion, you have abandoned me. Although Mendeleev remained silent, Legion had no problem hearing his thoughts. Legion considered and after a moment, decided to speak. "We have not abandoned you. We have been watching and calculating possibilities."

"Why didn't you stop the samurai from taking the airship? Certainly you can see what a disaster this would be for our goal of world unification."

"We could not stop the samurai without taking over their minds and bending them to our will."

Legion remembered assorted names for himself. Most were simple combinations of letters and numbers which identified the different machines he once occupied, but some held ancient meanings. Perhaps one had even been his name as a corporeal life form. He was nothing but a swarm of microscopic machines that reproduced asexually. Over the millennia he had watched solar systems form as well as thousands of species destroyed in a microsecond. His main goal in being though was the unification of earth and its people. This goal has taken him into the minds of a small circle of humans that he has helped by expanding their ability to create items that he feels is needed for them to succeed. Two of these items became the first air ships and fast moving water ships.

Legion's interference in the creation of these vehicles has taken a turn for the worse. A group of samurai have captured one of the air ships owned by the Russians. For some time their intended use for this ship is unknown even to Legion. When their agenda is made clear, it's up to the humans he contacts to save the world from a major war that will put an end to the unification they all desire. But can he do this without interfering into the minds of others?

The Brazen Shark was a book that I will say I wouldn't normally have chosen... but... once I started reading I had to continue to see exactly where it would take me. It took me to a world that is called earth but with an entirely different history. One that actually had me wondering if there really is a 'Legion' out there that is powering the minds of those who create what most of us can't even imagine. Could Einstein have been one that was contacted by a being like Legion? After reading this book it just might be possible.

Murder by Design
Murder by Design
by Betty Gordon
Edition: Paperback
Price: $8.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars David Farrell - Vietnam Vet - law student - engaged - having an affair Karen Matthews - law student - in her 40's - in love with, March 24, 2016
This review is from: Murder by Design (Paperback)
...drifted into sleep, loud music, cigarette smoke, pink and blue lights, dancers, and David's intense eyes all swirled around her, catching her in their coils before moving farther and farther away... Harshness of grating metal ripped through the silence invading her consciousness. She bolted upright, "Whaaa...who? Who's there?" Terrified, she ran into the kitchen and grabbed one of the knives from the drawer. As she moved toward the edge of the wall where she could see, the knob turned. Her hand tightened around the base of the knife as the door opened. She stared in disbelief at the shadowy figure filling the doorway.

Meet the characters:
Paul Barlow - Homicide Division - Houston Texas - Paul is in the middle of finding a rapist who takes the victim's shoes as a reminder of his deed.
David Farrell - Vietnam Vet - law student - engaged - having an affair
Karen Matthews - law student - in her 40's - in love with David Farrell
Sharon Berg - an impressionable young woman infatuated with David Farrell - wears a Vietnam coin, a keepsake form her deceased brother, around her neck which grabs Farrell's attention
Vicki Sanders - Karen's roommate - hates David Farrell
Kim Lowry - David Farrell's fiance - works for Delta - gone a lot

Now that you've met most of the characters I'll go ahead and tell you that one of them will be raped and one will die.

When I started reading Murder by Design I wasn't hooked in the beginning but I had a feeling it would eventually grab me. Well it did and it didn't take long. I found myself both agreeing and disagreeing with Detective Barlow as he tracked down who he believed to be the rapist as well as the murderer. His main suspect was taken all the way into trial and I was still not sure. Then the big bomb hit and I will tell you that I was and wasn't surprised. I suspected the person but not the how. This is a really enjoyable book.

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