In a Cottage In a Wood by Cass Green

This was the first novel of Green’s that I have read, but it will surely not be the last. We begin in England, with Neve, a ne’re do well woman who enjoys a carefree lifestyle of the bar life. She has recently become homeless and is overstaying her welcome at her older sisters home.  After another drunken one night stand, she walks through bitter cold and meets a woman named Isabelle on Waterloo Bridge. Isabelle forces an envelope upon Neve and then after a cryptic message, jumps into the icy Thames River to her death.  

A couple of weeks later, Neve discovers she is the sole heir to a cottage in Cornwell, left to her by Isabelle.  She takes a train and is filled with romantic thoughts about her new life, but someone else has other plans.  The cottage is actually dilipated, rundown and quite spooky.  This city girl has no idea of the monster in the woods, watching her.

This story is gripping and full of twists and turns.  Difficult to put down and wonderfully, unexpected ending. Its such a joy to find a novel that has lots of unpredictability. Green’s writing style is easy to read and very enthralling.  Move In a Cottage In a Wood to the top of your TBR (To Be Read) pile!

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We won`t ever `get over` significant loss

Emerging From The Dark Night

Grief

I found this quote online a few months ago when I was writing a post on grief.  Since it comes from one of the people who lived on the frontline with those who were dying or had loved ones who were, I trust Elizabeth Kubler Ross.

I was so fortunate to come upon some posts on complex grief a few days ago and I have reblogged several of them.  Another one I read said that in our modern society the full impact and purpose of grief is not fully understood, so when we are grieving we are most likely not to be helped to express it.  We are often shut down by those who think they are well meaning.  We can be avoided or looked at askance.

When I was at one of my lowest points following the end of my marriage 11 years into sobriety and had with that…

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Before Evil by Alex Kava

From the author’s note:

“I never intended to write a series. I know that may seem difficult to believe, especially now after twelve books featuring FBI Special Agent Maggie O’Dell—fifteen, if you consider the Ryder Creed series which includes Maggie. Many of you have heard me talk about this before. When I wrote my debut novel, A Perfect Evil, I intended for it be a standalone novel. To be honest, I didn’t even read series novels back in those days. A Perfect Evil became an international bestseller, and suddenly, my publisher at the time, insisted I write a followup novel. If that’s what readers wanted, then of course, that’s what I’d write.”

If you haven’t yet started the O’Dell series, this is the launching pad as it’s the prequel to A Perfect Evil. If you have started reading the series, then you’re going to enjoy this book. Many of our questions are answered, about the serial killer Albert Stucky, Dr. Gwen Patterson, Maggie, etc.

The story has FBI agent and profiler Maggie O’Dell out in the field for the first time. She is up against serial killer Albert Stucky, and in a fascinating, compelling, action packed story, we learn more about our heroines idiosyncrasies and her strength. Maggie is an intelligent, driven woman and I very much enjoyed this well written suspense filled tale sure to be on the best seller’s lists.

I loved the ending, but my only gripe is that the ending wasn’t more elaborate. Too many of the “well, how did that happen?” And “what now?” sort of questions.

Thanks Alex for giving us the prequel to a wonderful series. I look forward to many more.

My Buddy Jay

He’s one of my first friends here and has helped soooo many times! He’s a brilliant writer and oh so funny. One thing I love about his writing, it’s always fresh. His ideas, his thoughts are original and often make me ponder. I’m proud of him. Hopefully I am sharing this correctly!

His Novel: Watching a Glass Shatter to be Published! – http://wp.me/p8c7Vu-2N

Unbridled by Jacqueline Oby-Ikocha

Unbridled

Jacqueline Oby-Ikocha

I began reading poetry back when I was about 8.  I had a certain type I liked – “free verse” they called it.  It didn’t rhyme, it didn’t have meters and cadences.  What I considered poetry was the flowing words that would capture, break, open, touch (any or all) of your heart.  Grasping your soul in tight clenches so that your breath can’t even escape, for someone else has felt this same way that you have and put it together in a rhythm that no dance could ever accompany it.  The first book of poetry I had, my mom gave to me on a birthday.  I still have it.  I started writing poetry at the age of 10 and at the age of 12 had won contests and had a public showing of my written words on display at a local mall.  I’m telling of this, because, well, I’m critical of other poets.  And it takes a LOT of talent to catch my attention.  I’m a curmudgeon.

That being said, Jacqueline was looking for support for recently published book of poetry.  I told her I would be happy to review it and it would be an honest review.

The synopis: Unbridled is written for souls hurting, for healing and becoming. It is served to be well-thumbed and mulled over. Written in free verse each poignant poetry vibrates with a life of its own. Bold and uncensored verses that talk about societal issues of rape, domestic violence, sadness, infidelity, racial discrimination, sex, depression, loss, pain, femininity, grief, suicide, womanhood, relationships, love, resilience, courage, anger, mental health, pedophilia, child abuse, break up, conflict, loneliness, aging, life, lust, optimism, Poverty, Race, Death, Justice, Beauty, Endurance, Faith, Dreams and Empowerment. The author’s words epitomize the poetic impulse to capture concentrated images from experience and observing life’s moments; impassioned, ecstatic, sad, fiery, sensual; they are naked intimate expressions saying as much as they can say in few words.

First, I do want to say that some of the poems may be triggering for those recovering from abuse.

Second, I want to say, this is beautiful poetry.

The free verse is strong, descriptive, haunting, lovely.  Jacqueline paints with her words. like an artist.  This is no Monet, this is a Helen Frankenthaler with her bold marks and colors.  There is a section which is written in relation to abuse and some of it is very dark.   Darkness is gut wrenching at times, but the light of hope that shines through is blinding. My heart agonizes for the girl who has lived through excruciating torment.  But the woman she has become?  She is an Amazon; a warrior of her own heart.

I am very moved by Jacqueline’s words.  I already have my favorites and it’s amazing how Jacqueline reaches in and I feel warmth.  The last 20 poems are exquisite and delightful.

I give this book a high recommendation, for yourself, for a friend… maybe for an Amazon you know.

Thank you Jacqueline.  You are amazing.

And my friends, please reblog this to everyone you know.  Jacqueline’s story needs to be read.

 

Two Girls Down by Louisa Luna

​Wow! I hadn’t heard of this author before, I believe she’s mostly written YA books. And for a debut thriller novel, this is outstanding!

The story is about two young sisters who going missing from a mall parking lot in Denville, NJ. The family hires bad ass bounty hunter Alice Vega, who enlists the help of local former cop Max Caplan. Together they stay 3 steps ahead of the already overworked police force.
All characters were well developed, the story was engrossing and a very well written who-done-it.  I could easily see (and hope for) a series with Vega.  
I very much enjoyed and recommend reading as soon as it comes out January 9, 2018.
Thanks to NetGalley, Doubleday and Louisa Luna for ARC in exchange for an honest review.

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