A short recap of my reviews this month for adult and children’s books.
My first review in October wad for the latest book by JP Mclean – a paranormal thriller Blood Mark.
My review for Blood Mark October 2nd 2021
This is an excellent psychological, paranormal thriller that will keep you turning the pages to discover more of the story as it unravels.
The present day and the past are entwined in the intricate pattern that has wound itself around the body of a girl who believes that she was abandoned and been cursed all her life.
Her interactions with even her closest friend is impacted by her reticence to allow anyone to see her markings as she tries to make sense of dreams that vividly involve her night after night. The reader becomes totally engaged with the daily struggle to maintain some form of normality within a world that is judgemental of those who are different.
It is fast paced wth little padding to distract from the story which maintains the tension right to the last page.
The characters are very well portrayed and easy to take an instant dislike or liking too. As the mystery of the markings is unravelled, the pace of the story heats up bringing all the strands of the past and present together in a final heartstopping finale.
The author has done a great job in creating both the concept for this thriller and its execution and I can highly recommend.
Also by JP McLean
Next my review for Flashes of Life: True Tales of the Extraordinary Ordinary by Pamela S. Wight
My review for the collection October 5th 2021
How often do we hear the expression, or even use it ourselves, ‘I am just an ordinary person.’ In reality that expression could not be further from the truth.
This collection of flash stories is a delightful walk down memory lane with Pamela S. Wight, who shares moments from her childhood through to being a grandmother with humour and an appreciation of the small things that make up an extraordinary life.
Made extraordinary by finding an elusive middle initial,a dog who stood watch during a crisis, a small granddaughter who disrupts sleep delightfully, a fear of being in a steel cylinder in the air, a love of walking on beaches, a fiesty mother and a guy who makes a calming playlist for times of stress.
This is a reminder of family, empty nests, leaving homes and coming home, friendship, love of music, good food and the fears that might keep us awake at nights.
This collection of memories is a wonderful way to pay tribute to a life well lived, and I can recommend as a way to reconnect with the special moments in our own lives with a deeper appreciation.
Also by Pamela S. Wight
The next review was for the anthology The Shadows We Breathe, edited by Sarah Brentyn and featuring several contributing authors.
My review for the collection 10th October 2021
Wonderful storytellers take on the task of creating stories that haunt, bring hope and satisfy in stories, 100 word flash fiction and just 10 words.
That is a challenge all the writers excelled at and I found myself turning the pages eager to read the next gem.
I am familiar with the writing of some of the contributors but was intrigued to see that they embraced the dark side of human nature in some unexpected ways.
Difficult to single out any particular short story for special mention as they were all excellent but in the first section “What You Wish For” by Georgia Bell, “The Perfect Face” by D.Wallace Peach and “A Good Night Sleep” by Mary Smith. “Moment of Truth” by Maria Carvalho gave me goosebumps.
In the 100 word flash fiction…”Certainty” by Reena Dobson, “Fair Exchange” Ali Isaac and “A Woman Walking” by Sarah Brentyn were exceptional, as was Allie Potts 10 word interpretation of ‘Fold’
This will be much enjoyed by those who love short stories in all their forms and appreciate the skill it takes to create them in only a few words
Contributing authors – Sarah Brentyn, Georgia Bell, Maria Carvalho,Ali Isaac, D. Wallace Peach, Allie Potts and Mary Smith.
Next my review for the latest release by D.Wallace Peach..a stand alone fantasy The Ferryman and the Sea Witch
My review for the book 16th October 2021
Wow. This stand alone fantasy novel from D.Wallace Peach is fantastic. The author is known for her world building and creation of memorable characters, and does not disappoint with the worlds above and below the sea, and those who struggle to survive within them.
Deals have been made following a dreadful incident. Innocents must suffer to fulfil the terms of the agreement. A floating derelict world with a queen intent on survival, and a rich and fertile land with an unrelenting king, are connected by one ship and the Ferryman. He bears the burden of keeping to the bargain made to the Sea Witch for free passage between the two realms, and he has sacrificed much over the years to maintain this fragile peace between them.
There is deceit, side-deals and an undercurrent of violence that races towards a deadline set many years ago. Young lives are at risk, as are those who sail the dangerous waters ruled by the Sea Witch. There are heart-stopping moments when it seems that all is lost, and heart-warming interactions between humans and those beneath the sea that demonstrate the power of trust and love. However, those seeking their own version of justice will stop at nothing to to achieve satisfaction.
This is a love story, adventure, mystery and thriller rolled into a compelling and page-turning fantasy. Highly recommended.
A selection of books by D.Wallace Peach
Now my review of the recent poetry collection, Behind Closed Doors by Robbie Cheadle.
My review for the collection 23rd October 2021
A celebration of life and all its highs and lows.
As I get older I turn to poetry more to both read and write. Perhaps age and experience lends relateability to the words of others that describe their journey, sorrows, joys and humour. The ability to express those in short form is always admirable and Robbie Cheadle has done a wonderful job in capturing those moments in a variety of poetic formats.
Finding a life work balance is even tougher when you have children, but throw in Covid, isolation and working from home, it becomes a challenge to maintain a hopeful perspective about life. To counteract the challenges, hope is created in some lovely poems about nature, falling in love, weddings and love of a mother and father…
There is concern too, for the fate of the earth and its creatures with our rampant consumerism, and the unrecognised sacrifice of many behind the scenes who worked to safe businesses at a time of desperation for many.
Humour plays its role in throughout the collection and the Limericks are inspired. I enjoyed all the poems and tough to highlight just a few.. but I would like to mention these.
The Best Gift of All – a Christmas gift of rain for a parched South Africa
Inevitable side-effects of Zoom and working from home – a series of Limericks
He Walks Away – A mother’s bittersweet reactions to letting a son grow up and away.
Overall a highly recommended collection of poetry that will touch hearts and remind all that life is anything but predictable.
A selection of books for adults and children by Roberta Eaton Cheadle.
And the final review in October is for the children’s book by D.L. Finn – Tree Fairies and Their Short Stories
My review for the book 28th October 2021
A selection of other books by D.L. Finn
Thank you for dropping in and it would be great if you are leaving with some books.. thanks Sally.