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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

King's Traveling Man Called "Deviant Thriller"

The Traveling Man 
 Series: The Travelers: Book One
Author: Michael P. King
Genre: Crime Thriller
ISBN-13:9780986179600
Purchase The Traveling Man  
Reviewed by Kirkus Review
Husband and wife con artists must get back on their feet after a scheme goes spectacularly wrong in this criminally good debut by King.
Married hustlers Tom and Patty (or, at least, those are their aliases) arrive in a small town alongside their partner, Buddy Ray, with the intention of pulling off a lucrative con—selling contaminated lakefront land for a high price. Everything proceeds according to plan, until Buddy and Patty go against Tom’s instructions and take on a doomed side deal. From there, things take a dangerous turn, and Tom and Patty are left to pick up the pieces of their business and personal relationship (and heal more than a few physical wounds). After taking a monthslong break, the couple tries to get back in the game—with similarly messy results. On the spectrum of grays, these two are much closer to black than white. They cheat, steal, manipulate, blackmail and even kill when the moment calls for it. Yet readers might still find themselves white-knuckling their books (or e-readers) when the pair is in a tight spot. Despite the couple’s more questionable values, Tom and Patty’s relationship is based on love, loyalty and trust, and even they have their red lines: “We don’t scam civilians. Rule number two. We use them; we pay them; we stay out of jail.” Charismatic, levelheaded Tom is especially likable despite his criminality. It also doesn’t hurt that Robert and Pamela Johnson (as they call themselves in the second half of the book) are more than once pitted against an even more cutthroat thug who makes them look like the good guys. Surrounding them is a cast of superbly sketched characters whose competing motives constantly trip up their plans, such as Marcie, the overconfident, small-time real estate agent they’ve looped into their land-sale con. With a story every bit as intricate and entertaining as the personalities who fill it, King’s uncommonly solid debut is a must-read.
An absorbing, deviant tale of redemption.
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The New Book Review is blogged by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. It is a free service offered to those who want to encourage the reading of books they love. That includes authors who want to share their favorite reviews, reviewers who'd like to see their reviews get more exposure, and readers who want to shout out praise of books they've read. Please see submission guidelines on the left of this page. Reviews and essays are indexed by genre, reviewer names, and review sites. Writers will find the search engine handy for gleaning the names of small publishers. Find other writer-related blogs at Sharing with Writers and The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Reviewer of Western Novels Gives Nod to Detour Trail

Detour Trail
Author: Joy V. Smith
Fiction: Western / Historical Novel
ISBN 978-1612355702
Purchase Detour Trail at the publisher or Amazon

Reviewed by Bill S originally for Julies Book Reviews
 
It's rare that you find a Western written by woman. Maybe that's why it's been labeled an historical novel as well as a western.  Historical novels often have a character from history play a part in the story. I don't think that's true in this novel unless I missed something. It's not important. What is important is that the story rings true and this one does.
The western novels I've read have usually been written by men with an emphasis on the "wild and wooly" dimension of the Wild West. The "Detour Trail" has plenty of violent moments but what I also found engaging was the emphasis Ms. Smith gave to the town building and housekeeping aspects of what pioneers had to do.
Many novels and films today make their female protagonists equal or superior to men when it comes to defending themselves. Lorena Emerson, the lead woman in this novel, is one of them. What I like about her is she's a balanced character. Tough as nails when she has to be with a warm and caring touch when needed. Women have been homemakers because of childbearing, but there is much cultural evidence of their history as leaders in community development. Too bad so many  men don't share.
Like all westerns I've read there are good guys and bad buys including renegade native Americans. What I found here that I didn't find in others was what went on when it came time to build a community. How people worked together and learned to respect the differences among themselves. In that regard there is a lesson for what's going on today in the streets and even the churches.

Besides writing a good story Joy V. Smith has given us something to think about when it comes to the respect most pioneers had for each other. More than a history lesson the respect shown in the characters of the "Detour Trail" is needed in the here and now.
4 Stars

MORE ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Joy V. Pagadan also blogs media tidbits at http://pagadan.livejournal.com/


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The New Book Review is blogged by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. It is a free service offered to those who want to encourage the reading of books they love. That includes authors who want to share their favorite reviews, reviewers who'd like to see their reviews get more exposure, and readers who want to shout out praise of books they've read. Please see submission guidelines on the left of this page. Reviews and essays are indexed by genre, reviewer names, and review sites. Writers will find the search engine handy for gleaning the names of small publishers. Find other writer-related blogs at Sharing with Writers and The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Former Reader's Digest Editor Gives Sci-Fi Book Huge Thumbs Up


 Title: Rarity from the Hollow
 Author: Robert Eggleton
 Author's Web link: http://www.lacydawnadventures.com
 Genre: Science Fiction / Fantasy
 ISBN: ISBN-10: 1907133062
ISBN-13: 978-1907133060
Reviewer's Rating: 5 of 5 stars
Available in paperback or as an e-book. Purchase links:


Reviewed by Temple Emmet Williams originally for the Warrior Patient blog

The most enjoyable science fiction novel I have read in several years

Rarity from the Hollow by Robert Eggleton is the most enjoyable science fiction novel I have read in several years. Who could think of an intergalactic handbook for entrepreneurs? Who could turn a tree-hugger into a paranormal event of death-defying significance? Who could create characters so believable, so funny, so astonishingly human (and not)?

Robert Eggleton, that’s who.

I put this book on my iPhone, and it followed me everywhere for several days. Strangers smiled politely at my unexpected laughter in the men’s room toilet stall. They looked away as I emerged, waving the IPhone at them as if it might explain something significant.

Oddly, the novel explains a great deal that has become significant in our society. Rarity from the Hollow is satire at its best and highest level. It is a psychological thriller, true to traits of mankind (and other species). It is an animal rights dissertation (you will laugh when you understand why I write that). It celebrates the vilest insect on earth (make that Universe).

The characters created by Robert Eggleton will bug your brain long after you smoke, uh, read the final page. Thanks for the laughs, the serious thoughts, the absolute wonder of your mind, Mr. Eggleton. A truly magnificent job.


MORE ABOUT THE REVIEWER:
Temple Emmet Williams is an author and former Reader’s Digest editor. He reviews books for the blog, Warrior Patient. 




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The New Book Review is blogged by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. It is a free service offered to those who want to encourage the reading of books they love. That includes authors who want to share their favorite reviews, reviewers who'd like to see their reviews get more exposure, and readers who want to shout out praise of books they've read. Please see submission guidelines on the left of this page. Reviews and essays are indexed by genre, reviewer names, and review sites. Writers will find the search engine handy for gleaning the names of small publishers. Find other writer-related blogs at Sharing with Writers and The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Midwest Book Review Managing Editor Reviews The Frugal Editor

 In The Frugal Book Promoter, I advise that authors choose promotions and marketing tools that fit their title, their personalities, and their pocketbooks.  Recently I have also learned it's a good idea to be kind to oneself and adapt to the circumstances of one's life. The campaign I had planned for the release of the second edition of The Frugal Editor  in paperback is far more casual (and scattered!) than the one I had planned because my husband fell from our roof and broke his vertebrae (four of them!), So, as a full time caregiver,  I'm taking my own advice and doing a what we might call this a dribble campaign. Here is the latest review from Beth Cox the new managing editor of The Midwest Book Review.

The Frugal Editor
Carolyn Howard-Johnson
From the HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers
HowToDoItFrugally Publishing
www.howtodoitfrugally.com
ISBN: 9781505712117
 $17.95
Genre: Nonfiction/Writers/Marketing
288pp, 

Review by Beth Cox, Managing Editor of Midwest Book Review
Reprinted with Permission from her June newsletter, the Beth Cox Report

June's Book of the Month is about the writing and publishing trades.
Writing/Publishing books are regularly featured in the Jim Cox Report,
 so I rarely spotlight them here, but this one is exceptionally worthy:

Editing is the process of selecting and preparing written, visual, audible and film media used to convey information. The editing process can involve correction, condensation, organization, and many other modifications performed with an intention of producing a correct, consistent, accurate and complete work. The editing process often begins with the author's idea for the work itself, continuing as a collaboration between the author and the editor as the work is created. As such, editing can involve creative skills, human relations and a precise set of methods. There are various editorial positions in publishing. Typically, one finds editorial assistants reporting to the senior-level editorial staff and directors who report to senior executive editors. Senior executive editors are responsible for developing a product for its final release. The smaller the publication, the more these roles overlap. In the book publishing industry, editors may organize anthologies and other compilations, produce definitive editions of a classic author's works (scholarly editor), and organize and manage contributions to a multi-author book (symposium editor or volume editor). Obtaining manuscripts or recruiting authors is the role of an Acquisitions Editor or a commissioning editor in a publishing house. Finding marketable ideas and presenting them to appropriate authors are the responsibilities of a sponsoring editor. Copy editors correct spelling, grammar and align writings to house style. Changes to the publishing industry since the 1980s have resulted in nearly all copy editing of book manuscripts being outsourced to freelance copy editors.

The Frugal Editor: Do-It-Yourself Editing Secrets for Authors is a complete course of instruction under one cover. From editing query letters to editing final manuscripts to the editorial chores of marketing, The Frugal Editor covers the complete range of editorial tasks and responsibilities -- including common mistakes and errors to avoid. Thoroughly 'user friendly' from beginning to end, The Frugal Editor is ideal for the novice author, and would prove to be of immense value as an instructional reference resource for experienced authors, publishers, publicists, and freelance copy editors.


Bethany Cox
Managing Editor
The Midwest Book Review
http://www.midwestbookreview.com

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The New Book Review is blogged by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. It is a free service offered to those who want to encourage the reading of books they love. That includes authors who want to share their favorite reviews, reviewers who'd like to see their reviews get more exposure, and readers who want to shout out praise of books they've read. Please see submission guidelines on the left of this page. Reviews and essays are indexed by genre, reviewer names, and review sites. Writers will find the search engine handy for gleaning the names of small publishers. Find other writer-related blogs at Sharing with Writers and The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Thriller Recommended by US Review of Books

Four Pieces For Power
Book one in the Vendicatori Series
Author: Marc Estes
Author's Web site: marcestes.net
Publisher: Trafford
Genre: mystery/suspense/thriller
ISBN: 1490727140
Buy Book Link: getbook.at/vendicatori

Reviewed by Anita Lock originally for US Review of Books
 

"Both shared in the amazement of how two complete strangers could become such bitter enemies without even a single exchange of words."
 
Andrew Correo learns the truth about his deceased grandfather and the involvement he had with the Vendicatori, a powerful organization developed to protect the Correo family's fortune. But in order for Andrew to claim his inheritance as the next Correo heir, he must compete in a challenge against Robert Stavero, an unknown contender and master of disguises. The object of the challenge is for the winner to procure all four pieces of the puzzle that will reveal the "final destination, and the largest prize in the world." Questions remain whether or not Andrew can keep this perilous competition a secret from his sister and mother, as well as outwit his maleficent opponent.
 
Awarding winning writer Marc Estes has produced a suspenseful story that has a James Bond feel to it. The first in a series of Vendicatori novels, Estes' third person narrative is a rapidly paced page-turner filled with unhackneyed character scenes between his sister's upcoming wedding; the contest and Andrew's nerve-racking encounters with Robert, his maniacal antagonist; a bit of romance; and other supporting characters—a few that may seem harmless now but could easily turn into future villains in subsequent sequels. Aside of the constant influx of juxtaposed scenes, Estes not only draws readers into the plot's action, but also into the lives of a well-developed cast that goes beyond Andrew, Estes' principal character. Good examples are Brad whose mother and sister were brutally murdered and Jenna who has a thing for Andrew. Estes' thriller closes with a mind-boggling cliffhanger. Earmarked to be a best-seller, there is no doubt that Four Pieces For Power will keep readers on edge till the very end.

 
MORE ABOUT THE AUTHOR
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The New Book Review is blogged by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. It is a free service offered to those who want to encourage the reading of books they love. That includes authors who want to share their favorite reviews, reviewers who'd like to see their reviews get more exposure, and readers who want to shout out praise of books they've read. Please see submission guidelines on the left of this page. Reviews and essays are indexed by genre, reviewer names, and review sites. Writers will find the search engine handy for gleaning the names of small publishers. Find other writer-related blogs at Sharing with Writers and The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Author Consultant Loves New Memoir

Title: The Crazy Floridan and the Birds...or the Search for
Feather Presents
Author: Jean Williams
Author Website: featherpresents.wordpress.com
Twitter: http://twitter.com/featherpresents
FB fan page: https://www.facebook.com/Featherpresents?fref=ts
Book trailer: N/A
ISBN:978-1511489256
Genre: Creative nonfiction (memoir written in 3rd person)

Reviewed by: Teresa Morrow

This book, The Crazy Floridian and the Birds..., gives the reader
insight from a woman whose purpose is about sharing love, pure
and simple. She shares her journey from childhood to adulthood
and seeking who she is and her place in the world while finding
what matters to her. It a heartfelt story that showcases love
for people as humans at its core as she incorporates her
discovering of bird watching and how it fills her with joy.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jean Williams is an autistic woman who grew up the only child of
brilliant parents who never sought a diagnosis for her, seeing
her only as difficult, problematic and an under-achiever.
 Diagnosed as a young adult, Jean struggled for years with
issues of self-esteem, and never even hoped to find self-love.
 An unfulfilling career as a Software Engineer, and difficulties
making and keeping friendships added to her view of herself as a
failure.  Realizing finally that she never had to live up to the
ideals of her parents - and looking to find and live only toward
her own ideals has finally helped her to live her a life of
happiness.


ABOUT THE REVIEWER
Teresa Morrow, The Spiritual Author's Cheerleader, is a writer's coach and online book marketing consultant. She hosts "Inspiration Nation Radio" where she shares inspiration through the world of words. She is also the author of
Life Lessons from the Heart and Healing from Broken Trust: A Journey of Transformation,

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The New Book Review is blogged by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. It is a free service offered to those who want to encourage the reading of books they love. That includes authors who want to share their favorite reviews, reviewers who'd like to see their reviews get more exposure, and readers who want to shout out praise of books they've read. Please see submission guidelines on the left of this page. Reviews and essays are indexed by genre, reviewer names, and review sites. Writers will find the search engine handy for gleaning the names of small publishers. Find other writer-related blogs at Sharing with Writers and The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Reviewer Says Poldark Has a Rival

Title: The Apothecary's Widow
Author: Diane Scott Lewis
Website: http://www.dianescottlewis.org
Genre: ​historical mystery
ISBN-13: ​978-1771453677
Buy at Amazon
Five-star review by Anita Davison
Format:Kindle and Print
 
MINI SYNOPSIS 
Who murdered Lady Pentreath? The year is 1781, and the war with the American colonies rages across the sea. In Truro, England Branek Pentreath, a local squire, has suffered for years in a miserable marriage. Now his wife has been poisoned with arsenic. Is this unhappy husband responsible? Or was it out of revenge? Branek owns the apothecary shop where Jenna Rosedew, two years a widow, delights in serving her clients. Branek might sell her building to absolve his debts caused by the war—and put her out on the street. Jenna prepared the tinctures for Lady Pentreath, which were later found to contain arsenic. The town’s corrupt constable has a grudge against Branek and Jenna. He threatens to send them both to the gallows. 

REVIEW
Reviewed by Anita Davison originally for Amazon and Historical Novel Review
Set in 18th century Cornwall, all Jenna Rosedew’s husband left her was an adolescent apprentice and a struggling apothecary shop. When Lady Pentreath’s death is deemed murder, Jenna is the first person to come under suspicion as she prepared all the dead woman’s medicine. But why would Jenna poison someone at the risk of her own livelihood? When Branek Pentreath has reason to call on Jenna, he informs her is he is putting up the rent of her shop, or does he too think she killed his wife? Jenna finds herself attracted to the man, but any connection between them could be construed as motive for murder.

Ms Scott Lewis’ portrayal of a couple trying to come to terms with conflicting emotions in an unsympathetic setting is thoroughly enjoyable. Jenna is no simpering female with no clue as to where to turn, she has her own methods of protecting her livelihood, and being accused of killing one of her clients isn’t something she is going to accept without a fight.

Branek Pentreath is also gravely misunderstood. He is not simply a heartless, ruthless mine owner, but a man of principal struggling with a failing business, suspicion from his neighbours and a growing attraction to a woman he shouldn’t even have noticed.
Ms Scott brings all the threads of this heart-warming story together into a satisfactory ending. I hope to hear more about Branek and Jenna.

 
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The New Book Review is blogged by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. It is a free service offered to those who want to encourage the reading of books they love. That includes authors who want to share their favorite reviews, reviewers who'd like to see their reviews get more exposure, and readers who want to shout out praise of books they've read. Please see submission guidelines on the left of this page. Reviews and essays are indexed by genre, reviewer names, and review sites. Writers will find the search engine handy for gleaning the names of small publishers. Find other writer-related blogs at Sharing with Writers and The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor.