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OUT NOW! THE HOT BOX - 8 Sizzling Thrillers by 8 Best-Selling Authors
Me-Time Tales by Rosalind Minett
Editing Surgery with Karen Perkins 25th January 2014
Review - Odium by Claire C Riley
REVIEW: Fugitives from Northwoods by Chris Bostic

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REVIEW: Hostile Witness by Rebecca Forster
AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Debbie A. McClure
REVIEW: The Forgotten Queen by Annette Mackey
5* Review: Thores-Cross by Karen Perkins
Author Interview: Karen Perkins

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OUT NOW! THE HOT BOX - 8 Sizzling Thrillers by 8 Best-Selling Authors


8 Sizzling Thrillers From 8 Best-Selling Authors

Only $1.99 / £1.29 - Limited Time Only!

A collection of thrillers, including: Historical, Military, Espionage, Paranormal, Crime, Mystery, Sea and Assassins
You're sure to find a favourite!




Steven Bannister - Fade to Black

John Paul Davis - The Cortes Enigma

C R Hiatt - Sanctioned Kill

David Leadbeater - The Razor's Edge

Andy Lucas - Race Amazon

Karen Perkins - Dead Reckoning

C K Raggio - Heron Park

Mike Wells - Wild Child

Me-Time Tales by Rosalind Minett


Me-Time Tales by Rosalind MinettI'm delighted to welcome Rosalind Minett to LionheART ChART, with her wonderful, original and highly entertaining book of short stories, Me-Time Tales.

Read on for more details, my review, a sneak peak and interview.

Rosalind Minett's blog is also highly entertaining and well worth a vist (or two, or twenty!): 
http://fictionalcharacterswriting.blogspot.co.uk/
and


ME-TIME TALES by ROSALIND MINETT 
Ironic short stories with a dark edge. All kinds of women unlocked. Inhibited Elfreda learns the beauty of a gorge.

Editing Surgery with Karen Perkins 25th January 2014

Cultural Cocktails with Janice Ross atblogtalkradiois holding an editing surgery with Karen Perkins of LionheART Publishing House on 25th January 2014. If you are preparing your book for publication, or still working on your first draft, and have any questions regarding editing or formatting, please complete the form below to submit your questions, which will be answered and explained on the show.
Any and all questions are welcome, whether regarding grammar, punctuation, the differences between UK and US English, or formatting for print, Kindle or Smashwords (including their new Epub checker).

Review - Odium by Claire C Riley

*****

Packed full of danger, suspense, sarcasm and rotting, walking corpses,Odiumis a hell of a read. I couldn’t help but feel for Nina and Emily from the first chapter as they escape the enclave that has become a prison. Thirteen-year-old Emily is ousted for stealing mouldy bread, but Nina cannot allow her to face the horrors beyond the walls alone and goes with her. Out of the frying pan and into the fire.

Nina is a heroine with a serious attitude as she battles the undead and tries to find a safe haven in this dangerous new world.

REVIEW: Fugitives from Northwoods by Chris Bostic

Click here to go to Chris Bostic's website
*****
This is a fantastic scenario with well-rounded and believable characters, eloquently written, with plenty of suspense and tension - exactly my kind of thing.
 
I was fully invested in the story and characters from the first chapter and felt desperate and hopeless at the plight of Penn, Rayburn et al. I was rooting for them to find a way out of a horrendous situation well before escape was mentioned, and stayed with them every step of the way.
 
Chris Bostic brought me into his characters' world so completely, I was alternately chilled and excited all the way through, and could not put it down.

REVEIW: Thores-Cross by Karen Perkins

Buy Thores-Cross from Amazon UK
*****
I almost had a problem with this book on account of its excellent writing. It is written in the first person, with alternate chapters told by Emma, a young married woman living in the 21st century, and by Jennet, an orphaned fifteen-year old living in the 18th century. After reading the first 'Jennet' chapter, I struggled to keep myself from skipping ahead and reading all the other Jennet chapters as fast as I could, forgetting about the overall flow of the story.

This is not a criticism of the Emma chapters; they are well-written and engaging.

Author Interview: Steven Bannister

Buy The Red Shoes from Amazon.co.ukAbout You & Writing:
 
Where did you grow up?:
I was born in Melbourne, Australia just off the main restaurant strip (not on the pavement, there was a hospital there) but grew up in the new, ‘family friendly’ northern suburbs where backyards were huge, the roads unsealed and kids ruled…or so it seemed to us. At age fourteen we moved south to the island of Tasmania following my father’s burgeoning career in construction management.

Where did you go to school?:
Early school was of course in Melbourne.

5* REVIEW: The Razor's Edge by David Leadbeater

Buy The Razor's Edge from Amazon.co.ukAs a big fan of David Leadbeater's 'Matt Drake' series, I was very excited to read the first of his new 'Disavowed' series – and now I have another literary hero in Aaron Trent.
 
Anna and Monika are best friends, trying to save enough money from their work as dancers in a gentleman's club to move to Miami and go to college. But the club comes under attack, Monika is abducted and Anna is left to take care of both their sons.
A friend of Anna's contacts the Razor's Edge, a team of three ex-CIA agents who, since their disavowal, do what they can to help out 'good people in bad situations' and they set out to find Monika and bring her home.

5* REVIEW: The Red Shoes by Steven Bannister

Click here to buy 'The Red Shoes' from amazon.co.uk
*****
A rebellious English lord (Devon Tremayne), a young mother and her child running from starvation in the Oklahoma dustbowl, a phalanx of mafia dons (all real, all heavily armed and all up to no good), and a beautiful actress, The Red Shoes has it all. Written with a clever and witty humour, I smiled throughout Devon's adventures as he foils a variety of nefarious mafia plots in his own inimitable style, and which had me laughing out loud more than once.
 

It was an absolute pleasure to read The Red Shoes, and I sincerely wish Steven Bannister every success. The Red Shoes deserves to do extremely well, and I'm in awe of the wit and humour Steven has invested into every page. My only disappointment was that it came to an end, as do all things good, and I'd like an encore please!

5* REVIEW: Evidence of Insanity by Carol Piner

Buy Evidence of Insanity from Amazon.co.ukA very personal narrative, that reaches out to touch the reader with a brutally honest, powerful and unique voice from the start.
Evidence of Insanity is written in the stream-of-consciousness style – a brave choice in my opinion, as is starting the first person narrative from within the womb, yet Carol Piner makes it work, and work well.
 
I love to read a book that takes me to places I haven't been before, and Evidence of Insanity not only does that, but makes Carteret County almost tangible (this from a Brit who has not yet travelled to the US).

5* Review - Thores-Cross by Karen Perkins

Buy Thores-Cross from AmazonAs a North Yorkshire lad, I simply had to read this.

I was astonished at the almost flawless narrative and beautiful flow of this story.
The startling, but extremely accurate use of language, only goes to enhance the period scenes within the book. I don't think someone reading from another area would realise just how precise Jennet's speech is.

As for the story itself, wonderful. We have the haunting intro, short and scary. Then, onwards to Jennet's awful circumstances. I found the whole experience with her father to be harrowing but quite brilliantly done.

Review - THORES-CROSS by Karen Perkins

Buy Thores-Cross from Amazon.co.ukThis is a popular format at the moment: a time slip with the present-day character manipulated by an adversary in the past. The structure has the two characters’ stories running simultaneously so that the reader alternates between past and present gradually picking up the threads which tie, if not strangle, the life of the main character in the present.

The setting of Thores Cross is eerie and compelling. A ruined village drowned under a reservoir, a house which seems haunted to a little girl who grows up to be haunted by its history.

REVIEW: The Beaumont Bequest by Lynne Jones

5 star *****

Rex Beaumont has died – his nephew, Patrick, entrusted with dealing with his estate, Heartsease. But Patrick is not to be trusted – he has had his heart set on his uncle's estate (or at least the money he thinks he can make from it) for a very long time.
 
The Beaumont Bequest is an absorbing novel, extremely difficult to put down. Lynne Jones expertly weaves a number of stories together to create a beautiful and detailed tapestry of words and worlds, and I was gripped by each.

Another 5* Review - Thores-Cross by Karen Perkins

Buy Thores-Cross from AmazonIf you read mystery/thrillers with historical and supernatural elements, Thores-Cross should be at the top of your list. This book is very well-written, well paced and the characters are wonderfully developed. And like all good historical fiction, this book is very detailed when it comes to the time, setting, lifestyle, and character traits you'd expect from modern and 16th century England.

In a nutshell, the main protagonist, Emma (a novelist), is mysteriously compelled to write the story of a young girl that lived and died in the Moors where Emma currently resides.

Review: The Legend of Buddy Hero by Adam Oster

The Legend of Buddy Hero by Adam Oster5 stars *****
 
Quirky, funny and addictive: Adam Oster has introduced me to a new type of fictional hero, effortlessly combing the depths of human nature along with the peaks; the disgust of human depravity with the honour and pride of altruism and fighting for what's right.
 
We are introduced to Buddy as a no-hope drunk – his only saving grace and hold on humanity is his sister Maggie. She's the one who will take him in, dust him off and get him back on his feet – his very own guardian angel.

5* Review: Thores-Cross by Karen Perkins

Buy Thores-Cross from AmazonThores-Cross is to begin with a haunting story of love, betrayal and revenge, and lives are intertwined and with the present and the past.

The book is cleverly set out weaving backwards and forwards between history and the present and bringing the two stories to an almost unbearably dramatic peak, before coming apart before your eyes. 

This isn't the sort of book I normally read, but I was lucky enough to read some of Karen's previous work and fell in love with her pirate adventures. 

5* Review - Africa Has a Future by Peter Mutanda waNdebele

Buy 'Africa Has a Future' from Amazon


5 ***** stars. 

I read "Africa has a Future" by Peter Mutanda with true interest and I must admit that I was caught from start to finish.
I want to emphasize the reading of the past, present and future of Africa, from Zimbabwe's independence in 1980, which combines perfectly the personal perspective and objectivity of the events in an understandable and smart language. 

Magnificent preface and introduction. I felt, at all times, in communion with the author to present the keys that enable the continent to self development through its natural resources and democratic freedom.

5* Thores-Cross by Karen Perkins


Buy Thores-Cross from AmazonI was trying to decide what to use in the title when I decided to say exacting what was in my mind. Thores-Cross by Karen Perkins is not only a stunning book but is so well written and so well laid out that you truly do not have a moment to gather your thoughts until it's all over. Then, you want to go back and read it all over again.

It would be so easy to tell you the entire story to show you what I found so impressive, but I cannot do that because I would have to write a whole book about her book.

5* Review: Thores-Cross by Karen Perkins

Buy Thores-Cross from AmazonI love historical novels and it's a pleasure to read one as beautifully crafted as this.

The story centres on Emma, a present day writer, and Jennet, a girl living in the 1770s, struggling after the death of her parents. Although the two are separated by more than 200 years, they are nevertheless inextricably linked. Just how they are bound together, is gradually revealed by altering between Emma's present day narrative and Jennet's historical one.

The historical details and use of dialect in Jennet's narrative really bring the time period to life and portray the gritty realities of her day to day life.

Book Launch: - Thores-Cross by Karen Perkins


A haunting novel set in the North Yorkshire Moors about isolation, superstition and persecution.Thores-Crossfollows the stories of Emma, a present day writer, and Jennet, an eighteenth century witch.
 
Emma Moorcroft is still grieving after a late miscarriage and moves to her dream house at Thruscross Reservoir with her husband, Dave. Both Emma and Dave hope that moving into their new home signifies a fresh start, but life is not that simple. Emma has nightmares about the reservoir and the drowned village that lies beneath the water, and is further disturbed by the sound of church bells – from a church that no longer exists.

Africa Has a Future: - 5* Review



In Peter Mutanda waNdebele’s book “Africa Has a Future,” we must come to terms with the destruction wrought by both politically legitimate, and repressively illegal land grabs. Dispossession, poverty, famine, ecological degradation and human rights violations take shape as colonial and post-colonial devices, aimed at self-enrichment, disenfranchise the poor within the Global South zone. Not that power-grabbing and political wrangling have burst forth as some new multi-headed monster in our midst.

Dead Reckoning by K A Perkins

I could taste the salt on my lips, hear the creaking of rigging and the wind hitting the sails and feel the Caribbean sun warm my face as I read this wonderful book by K.A. Perkins. Smart, well researched and oh so very readable, this is a great tale of romance on the high seas.

Leo takes to the pirate life years after watching his mother's brutal murder at the hands of a trio of ruthless pirates. Gabriella flees to a ship filled with a cargo of slaves in order to escape her abusive husband. They meet when the slave ship is captured by Leo, who is now the captain of his own pirate vessel.

Former Black Panther Assata Shakur Added to FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorist List


The FBI added Assata Shakur to its Most Wanted Terrorist List on 02 May 2013. In addition, the state of New Jersey announced it was adding $1 million to the FBI’s $1 million reward for her capture. Shakur becomes the first woman ever to make the list and only the second domestic terrorist to be added to the list. Assata Shakur, the former Joanne Chesimard, was a member of the Black Panther Party and Black Liberation Army. She was convicted in the May 2, 1973 killing of a New Jersey police officer during a shoot-out that left one of her fellow activists dead.

UniverSoul Reflections by Peter Mutanda

Peter Mutanda's UniverSoul Reflections is so much more than a book of poetry. This marvelous collection of stories comes across as an autobiography of sorts - rich in vision, setting, history and emotions. I thoroughly enjoyed sharing in Mr. Mutanda's 'Reflections' on life, events and circumstances. His poetry sparks a connection to readers, drawing you into his deepest thoughts about life. A definite must read!

Keep up the great work, Peter Mutanda!

For Love or Money? by Graham Blackburn

A well-crafted, witty British farce guaranteed to cheer almost any reader up – no matter how bad a week they've had – yet this is a difficult review to write. I could wax lyrical about this book for page after page – but I don't want to give anything away and spoil any of the myriad delightful twists and turns.   

Written with a chatty, friendly style it is hard not to warm to, plus a clever use of language and whimsical humour to send up the British class system.   

The Noisettes: Bring home the music, Shingai

The Noisettes’ dazzling front woman Shingai Shoniwa tells Phiona Okumu that she’s excited to be homeward bound.

Shingai Shoniwa speaks exactly how she sings – smokey, syncopated south London – on Hey, Hey, the Dennis Ferrer-produced monster hit from which most on this side of the world will recognise her voice. Three years ago, LA Reid – the music mogul and former chairperson of the Island Def Jam Music Group – flew Shoniwa and her indie-rock band the Noisettes from the United Kingdom to perform at an industry party he hosted in New York City.

REVIEW: Bountiful Creek by Steven B Weissman

Well written with an authentic voice and a wry humour, Bountiful Creek transports the reader to nineteenth century America, apparently effortlessly – which of course is both the mark of a great book and a great writer.   

In 1861, Martha Somerville is 18, and delighted to receive an offer of marriage from Wilby Winterborne - but she is no silly romantic, and it is very clear that Wilby has his hands full. Despite having admired him from an early age, she sets him a challenge. He must raise $50 to buy a parcel of land to farm and settle in one place rather than follow the nomadic-like lifestyle he has enjoyed up until then.

Snoop Dogg is dead, long live Snoop Lion

He is the former pimp married to his childhood sweetheart; the shrewd businessman who smokes 30 joints a day.   

Snoop appears, as if by magic, in a puff of his own smoke. The rapper, actor, gangster and stoner extraordinaire has reinvented himself as a reggae-singing messenger of hope. Snoop Dogg is dead, long live Snoop Lion. We meet in his management office in Los Angeles, an enormous warehouse dedicated to all things Snoop. On the walls are huge Snoop posters, to the left is the Snoop television studio, where two near-naked women are chatting, and to my right is an old-fashioned video with a stack of Snoop VHSs lined up alongside it.

Zanzibar music legend Bi Kidude dies


Zanzibar's famed singer Bi Kidude, renowned for her haunting voice and energetic performances, has died.  


Kidude, a legend in East Africa, was thought to be around 100 years old. She died on Wednesday at her home. "She has died, we are making funeral arrangements," her nephew Baraka Abdullah Said told Agence France-Presse. He said his aunt had been confined to bed for the past several months. Kidude, whose real name was Fatuma binti Baraka, and who performed and toured up until very recently, was best known for Taarab music, which combines Arab and African influences.

REVIEW: The Forgotten Queen by Annette Mackey

*This review contains minor spoilers of the early portion of the book*   

The Forgotten Queen is a delightful and clever retelling of the legend of King Arthur. It opens at the birth of Avalon in the magic waters of the lake. Her mother, Lady Vivien (the Lady of the Lake) is horrified at the beauty of her newborn and 'dispells' the majority of it, with Avalon's father, Merlin, helplessly looking on. Lady Vivien believes excessive beauty to be a curse that would get in the way of Avalon's destiny.

Paulo Coelho shares 'values' with new book despite harsh criticism


Coelho's latest novel weaves a story that takes place in the past while the ideas it explores, he says, are more relevant than ever to the present. 

Manuscript Found in Accra is set in 1099 in Jerusalem on the eve of the crusades, where a wise man known as the Copt dispenses philosophical guidelines for living to an audience of Christians, Jews and Muslims gathered to ask questions and listen. "You still have the same problems right now that you had back then," Coelho, author of the international best seller 

REVIEW - Why She Left Us by David Dennis

Told through the diary and memoirs of five narrators, Why She Left Us is a darkly chilling tale of wasted life, exploring the psychology of the book's events and their effects on the survivors as well as the different ways people deceive themselves as well as others.   

The narrators' voices are powerful and unique as they recount the events leading up to a number of family tragedies: Monica – despairing, depressed and suicidal, though unrepentant despite being locked in a hospital for the criminally insane.

REVIEW: Ailsa by Andrea Taylor

Ailsais a stand-alone book in the De Amerley Trilogy and opens at a graveside in the Scottish Highlands. Ailsa and Edward were childhood friends until Edward's estranged father died and he and his mother left Scotland for De Amerley Hall – his mother's childhood home. He left the ten year old Ailsa with a kiss and a promise of betrothal.

Ten years later, he returns to Scotland for Ailsa's mother's funeral, feigning forgetfulness of his promise and cursing the fact that Ailsa has grown into a beautiful woman.

Thores-Cross Competition Winners Announced!

Congratulations to Helen Rowles, Candy Westphal and Tracey Andrews who have all won a print copy of Thores-Cross!   


They all chose cover number 2, which will be used when the book is published 1 June 2013, and will be contacted separately by email.   


Thank you to everyone who took part in the competition. For another chance to win a free copy, pop over to goodreads and enter the giveaway, or click on the box below.   


THORES-CROSS 

A haunting novel set in the North Yorkshire Moors about isolation, superstition and persecution,

The Next Big Thing Blog Hop

Welcome to The Next Big Thing. My writer friend, Dakota Douglas, recently tagged me for a ‘chain’ blog entitled ‘The Next Big Thing'. The deal is that I answer a few questions about my current work-in-progress, then I invite other authors to do the same. A bit like a chain letter, except it is only focused on an author’s work-in-progress. Dakota Douglas was tagged previously by Sherrie Lowe. I've included details of their blogs so you can explore the answers to the questions. The authors I have chosen have been tagged below my answers.

REVIEW: Limerence by Claire C Riley

Mia's fiancé, Oliver, is a landscape gardener who has been hired by the absent new owner to redesign the gardens of the Mansion – the only residence on the Island. Robert Breckt proves to be handsome and charismatic, able to charm strangers into getting into his car – and straight into danger. It is clear that there is much more to Robert Breckt than meets the eye, and he has Mia in his sights.   

The three protagonists meet as Oliver describes his new plans for the new garden to Mia.

Grandfather of African literature, Chinua Achebe, dies aged 82

Nigerian novelist Chinua Achebe, widely seen as the grandfather of modern African literature, has died at the age of 82.  

Achebe with Peter Mutanda and other African Students from the University of Leeds From the publication of his first novel, "Things Fall Apart", over 50 years ago, Achebe shaped an understanding of Africa from an African perspective more than any other author. As a novelist, poet, broadcaster and lecturer, Achebe was a yardstick against which generations of African writers have been judged. For children across Africa, his books have for decades been an eye-opening introduction to the power of literature.

Author Interview: Karen Perkins

Name: 

Karen Perkins

Website: 

www.lionheartgalleries.co.uk

Other contacts/social media sites:

Twitter: 

@lionheartg 

@valkyrieseries

Facebook:

www.facebook.com/LionheartPublishing

www.facebook.com/ValkyrieSeries

Link to Amazon page:

.co.uk:  http://bit.ly/kaperkins

.com:  http://bit.ly/karenperkins


Tell me a little bit about yourself and LionheART Galleries:

I started LionheART Galleries with my partner, Peter Mutanda, soon after we met. It had been his dream for a long time to own a gallery and sell African art, craft, jewellery and literature, and I'm disabled and was looking for something to do from home which I could build into a viable business, yet manage my health.

ZLHR Statement on the situation of Beatrice Mtetwa



On Sunday 17 March 2013, just a few hours after the constitutional referendum, it was business as usual in Zimbabwe with the unlawful arrest and detention of Beatrice Mtetwa – a Board member of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) and senior, much respected member of our legal profession. Beatrice was attending to a client whose home was being raided and was placed under arrest after requesting the production of a valid search warrant and inventory list for materials that had already been removed from the home by the police.

REVIEW: The Black Orchestra by JJ Toner

Berlin, 1940, and Kurt Muller finds the body of one of his co-workers, Kleister, slumped at his work station in the Communications Unit of the Abwehr. He supposedly committed suicide, but Muller is not convinced and the police (ORPO) do not seem interested in carrying out a thorough investigation. He takes it on himself to consult the head of his section about his concerns, but not only are his ideas dismissed, but also reported to Muller's uncle – Reinhard Heydrich, the head of the RSHA (Reich Security Headquarters, incorporating the ORPO, KRIPO, Gestapo, SD & SS).

Zim police charge lawyer with 'obstructing justice'

Rights lawyer Beatrice Mtetwa is being charged with allegedly "obstructing or defeating the course of justice".

Zimbabwe police arrested the country's most prominent rights lawyer and four senior officials with the prime minister's party on Sunday, a day after the nation voted in a referendum on a new constitution that calls for more protection against human rights violations. Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai's chief legal adviser, Thabani Mpofu, is accused of impersonating police by compiling dossiers on unspecified crimes, a police official said.

REVIEW: Damaged Girls by Janice G Ross

Stevie likes girls, and the younger the better – as long as they are legal. He's in his mid-thirties, and he won't sleep with a girl if she is 15 and 364 days old, but once she's passed that 16 birthday, she's legal and fair game.   Stevie's story is narrated by Morgan, a Director for a local community centre, and Stevie's friend. She wants to protect her girls from the likes of Stevie – whether they want to be protected or not – a difficult task, especially when 16 year old Jessica catches Stevie's eye – or is it the other way round?

REVIEW: Gone for a Soldier by Kathleen Kelly Garlock

Lucy Tessier has a problem – a problem that can only be solved with a knife – then shereallyhas a problem. Dressed in her brother's clothes, she enlists in the army as Rob Edwards in a desperate attempt to hide. At first she is suspected of being abducted, but knows that is only a matter of time before the real story comes out, that she stabbed her guardian when he raped her.   

Terrified of discovery, Lucy throws herself into army life. Drills, guard duty and hospital duties fill her days while she waits for an opportunity to desert and escape before her secret is discovered.

REVIEW: The Greatcoat by Helen Dunmore

Alec and Jimmy prepare for their 27 flying op over WWII Berlin. Alec hands Jimmy a ten-bob note – his winnings from a bet involving three WAAF and a bicycle. He puts it in his locker with a very special letter he has written to his wife and child, because he thinks they'll come back. Alec puts on his lucky gloves, climbs into his aircraft and takes off. 

Fast forward to 1952, and Isabel – newly wed to Philip, a hard-working doctor – is trying to make a new home in an old, dreary flat with shared facilities and a forbidding, sinister and downright unfriendly landlady.

REVIEW: UniverSoul Reflections by Peter Mutanda

I was asked by the writer to review this book and after some initial hesitation, I have now read all of the poems, over one hundred of them, and I am delighted and impressed with the quality of the writing and the diversity of the subject matter. I was reminded at times of the protest songs of the sixties, the poetry put to music of my young generation, but this book is far more sophisticated and compelling. I am pleased that I took the time to read them. 

The writing is very good and there are some real gems of use of language, for example, in `The Widow' in which the emotion is heartbreaking he says;

REVIEW: Ashalon by Rob Ussery

Bobby Lee is a normal 12 year old boy – until his mother dies. As the eldest sibling, he takes the brunt of the chores, as well as helping his brother and sister through their grief. His father is an undemonstrative man, struggling with his own grief, but does appreciate his eldest son and rewards him with a much coveted Macbook on Bobby Lee's 12 birthday.   

Bobby Lee begins to suffer a series of extreme headaches, and he starts to change. He is stronger, animals avoid him, and his eyes glow a light blue – until he drinks water and returns to normal.

REVIEW: The Absence of Falling Stars by H R Holt

Matthew Strong is a quiet man, a loner, a family man and profoundly affected by the War Between the States – especially his final battle. We meet him on the day of his death – a death brought by a wolf as Strong searches the sky in vain for a falling star on which to wish for life. He leaves behind a pregnant wife, Elizabeth, and two children: Rebecca and Thomas. His third child, Lily Rose, soon joins them, but Elizabeth leaves the three children orphans when she dies of a broken heart minutes after the birth.

REVIEW: Dancing to the Beat of the Drum by Pamela Nomvete

Born in Ethiopia to exiled South Africans, Bax & Corah, babysat by Uncle Thabo Mbeki (later President Mbeki) Pamela Nomvete had an unusual childhood. In her heart a South African, she had never seen her true home, living most of her life in the UK. Her parents campaigned against apartheid, a stance that led to them being forced to leave their eldest daughter behind in South Africa and a five year fight to get her back. 

Apart from 'Uncle Thabo', regular visitors were Chris Hani, Kofi Anan and Miriam Makeba.

REVIEW: Dead Reckoning by K A Perkins

When you're sick, as I've been these past few weeks, there's nothing better to do in bed but lie around, reading a Kindle book about a time long ago and characters that grow in your mind as well as your heart.

I'm thrilled to have met Ms. Perkins on Goodreads, where she posted about a pirate romance. Of course I had to give it a go! After all, I consider "Captain Blood" to be one of the best movies of all time. This book did not disappoint.

Ms. Perkins is a sensational storyteller, knowing how to grab your attention, and hold onto you throughout.

REVIEW: Why Live? by Kathy DiSanto

Kai-Lee is an historian who we meet when she is depressed after a profound realisation about the meaning of life. In a universe that is an endless cycle, where everything is recycled, "ideas, trends, fashions, political movements, and of course mistakes", people themselves are not; making history not only about every single person who ever lived, but dependent on each life lived. So each life, no matter how ordinary and insignificant in the grand scheme of things, can have a profound effect on human history.
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