Category Archives: IndieAuthor Book Reviews

Book Review! “Little White Pills” by Jodie Esch

 

PERSONAL RATING SYSTEM:

CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT – ****
PLOT   – *****
FLOW – ****
GRAMMAR/EDITING *****

ON A REVIEW SITE:
5 STARS

Indie-author-book-reviews

I am completely taken off guard by how much I loved this book! I wasn’t sure if I was going to like reading about a teenager. Having a pre-teen myself I figured it was going to be more than annoying. 

Never have I been happier to be proven wrong! The story and the characters drew me right in. 

Steph is a 10th grader who is perfect. Only she isn’t. Her parents put so much pressure on her that eventually she has no other option but to “turn herself off” by using pills. 
Things start to spiral out of control when her drug connection disappears from school before her final order can come through.

Will her friends and family be able to help her or is she doomed to lead a life dependent on the *Little White Pills*.

I loved Steph. I felt like she was a real person. Her struggles are something I think a lot of teenagers will be able to relate too.
Or, if you are like me, you will enjoy it as an adult!
Rachel was another one of my favorite characters and I  just realized that there is a whole book on her.
And it is FREE as I write this post – woot! So, go snatch it up  and read them both. I know I will be!

Download “Little White Pills” NOW!

Little White Pills – Amazon UK

BLURB:

In Little White Pills, Book #2 of The Girlfriends Series -Tenth grader Steph Baxter has it all, perfect looks, perfect grades and a perfect life. She’s a model high-school student and a member of the cheerleading squad. But in her quest for excellence, she makes dangerous choices. Soon her simple solution becomes a complex problem. Follow Steph and her best friend Rachel as they cope with Steph’s unexpected journey. Can Steph find support before it’s too late?

 

Book Review! “The King of Sunday Morning” by J B McCauley

PERSONAL RATING SYSTEM:

CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT – ****
PLOT   – *****
FLOW – ****
GRAMMAR/EDITING *****

ON A REVIEW SITE:
5 STARS

 

This book reminded me of something my husband would love to read. Ya know, if he read…..Don’t judge me, he has a lot of other awesome qualities! 😛

If you like gangster movies like my husband, then you will absolutely love this book.

I’m not going to go into a summary, because there is so much else to say! Just check out the blurb below to see exactly what the story is about.

The beginning is quite confusing. The story draws you in almost immediately, but you are left wondering exactly why you are being jumped around timelines (be VERY sure to pay attention to the year at the top of the chapter so you know where you are).
If you are persistent you will be rewarded by a very unique story. I am from the United States, so the Australian/European perspective was quite interesting and I really enjoyed it.

The book was very long, both in page count AND the years it spanned. I can not believe the kindle edition is only .99 cents! Clearly the author wants his story to be heard by as many people as possible. His loss is your gain! Don’t miss out on this one.

One word of caution before you go out and impulse buy =) If you are sensitive to strong language and/or violence then you may want to take a pass on this book. The cussing wasn’t anything that was thrown in just for shock value, it always has a place in the story. 
BUT it is a story with gangsters……there are a LOT of places for it!
It also has explicit sex scenes, however they aren’t the usual sexy/erotica style. Just very explicit.  

Overall it is a solid five stars! Highly recommend. 

Download “The King of Sunday Morning” NOW!

BLURB:

The King of Sunday Morning is a geezer. Not in the traditional sense of the word as in old man. This geezer is a face, a wannabe, a top notch bloke. He is the greatest DJ that never was. He should have been. Could have been. Would have been. Now becoming a has-been.

Tray McCarthy was born into privilege but with the genetic coding of London’s violent East End. Having broken the underworld’s sacred honour code, it is only his family’s gangland connections that save him. But in return for his life, he must deny that which he has ever known or ever will be and runs to Australia where he is forced to live an inconsequential life.

But trouble never strays far from Tray McCarthy and eventually his past and present collide to put everyone he has ever loved in danger. He must now make a stand and fight against those that are set to destroy him and play their game according to his rules.

Set against the subterfuge and violence of the international drugs trade, The King of Sunday Morning is the tale of what can go wrong when you make bad decisions. Tray McCarthy has made some of the worst. He must now save those he holds dear but in the process gets trapped deeper and deeper into a world where he doesn’t belong.

“I want three pump-action shotguns, about twelve sticks of dynamite and a blowtorch”

THIS BOOK CONTAINS EXPLICIT LANGUAGE, FREQUENT DRUG USE AND SEX SCENES – NOT RECOMMENDED FOR PEOPLE UNDER 18 YEARS OF AGE

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Book Review! “The Sanctioned” by CJ Kinder

 PERSONAL RATING SYSTEM:

CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT – ****
PLOT   – ****
FLOW – ***
GRAMMAR/EDITING ***

ON A REVIEW SITE:
4 STARS

This book is set well in the future. It starts in the year 3000 something.
A LOT has changed between now and then.

An evil queen and king have made life a living hell for most of the people. Unless you are rich, then your life is pretty much still awesome. 

Although things are so different, it was easy to believe and a lot of times I forgot they weren’t on earth anymore.
The world building was flawless. I felt like I was really there and never did I feel like to much or to little information was being shared.  

The characters basically jumped right out of the page at you. I loved Phin. Oliver and Harper were awesome, but Phin is definitely my favorite.

The ending makes you wonder what the next step is for many of the main characters. I can’t wait to see what the rest of the series has in store!

Download “The Sanctioned” NOW!

BLURB:

In order for the people of the Sanctioned to survive, they require food, supplies and medications from above ground. In order to achieve those things, they hold an Abundance every six months and gather all the essentials. For this Abundance, Phin, a highly respected teenager among them is picked to lead it. Seeing this as an opportunity to prove herself, she’s determined to complete it successfully. But when things don’t go as planned, she’s forced to end the Abundance early and head back to the Sanctuary. 

Desperate to make it up, she starts plans right away to include herself on the second Abundance.But when a mysterious male arrives the following day, her plans are put on hold as she finds herself assigned to be his mentor. Annoyed and inconvenienced by his presence, she does her best to dismiss him and get back on course with her own agenda. 

However, once the night finally comes for her to head out and rectify her previous failure, she finds herself vulnerable and having to rely on the very same guy she worked so hard to avoid. As the events of that night bring them closer together, she begins to let her guard down and starts to welcome his presence. As she soon finds out though, things aren’t always as they seem.

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Book Review! “The Doom Murders” by Brian O’Hare

PERSONAL RATING SYSTEM:

CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT – ****
PLOT   – ****
FLOW – ****
GRAMMAR/EDITING ***

ON A REVIEW SITE:
 4 STARS

To put it bluntly, I loved this book. To say it is a murder mystery wouldn’t do it justice.

There were so many layers to it, that it is hard to tell you about them all without giving away to much! 
Yes, it is a murder mystery and a very good one at that. There are clues throughout that lead up to a very satisfying ending you never saw coming.

The characters were amazing. Especially Jim Sheehan, the Chief Inspector. I loved the crime scenes. Not necessarily hearing about the gruesome murders, but just *being* there while the team tried to put all the evidence together.
It was very real to me, and I enjoyed getting to see the real side of a crime investigation team. They are like a family. 

The final layer that makes this book so amazing (at least to me, since I am a cradle Traditional Catholic) is the underlying story of the Catholic Church. It really put a new spin on the crisis it is going through at the moment. I can’t tell you any more than that, as I detest spoilers 😛

About the only problem I could find with this book is a few technical problems. For ME personally they aren’t a big deal. If one page suddenly goes to italics, or changes font, it doesn’t detract from the story as a whole.

Even if formatting problems make you want to throw your book/kindle, I suggest you just suck it up for this book. 
It really is that good!  

Download “The Doom Murders” NOW!

BLURB:

Prominent figures in Belfast are being murdered. The bodies are left naked and posed in grotesquely distorted shapes. No clues are left at the forensically immaculate crime scenes except odd theatrical props and some random numbers and letters concealed at each scene by the killer. How are the victims linked? What is the connection between these killings and a famous mediaeval painting of The Last Judgement? Chief Inspector Jim Sheehan is baffled. Faced with one of the most complex cases of his career, he turns to an eminent professor at Queen’s University and a senior cleric who is a biblical expert. With their help, Sheehan begins to piece together some understanding of the killer’s psychopathy but can he learn enough to identify the killer and put an end the murders?

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Book Review! “Weed Therapy” by Mark Paxson

PERSONAL RATING SYSTEM:

CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT – ****
PLOT   – ***
FLOW – ***
GRAMMAR/EDITING ****

ON A REVIEW SITE:
 4 STARS

I didn’t really know what to expect from this book. A sappy love story? A book that was the equivalent to seeing a marriage counselor?

It turns out that it is more a book about LIFE lessons than anything else. Yes, there is marriage advice in it, but overall that *marriage advice* can be applied to all of your relationships.

Kelvin Rockwell decided to go to the smallest of villages in Mexico thanks to the advice of some random stranger he met in a bar. 
He is so unhappy with his life and his failing marriage he is willing to go to somewhat extreme measures.

Who wouldn’t love to learn some life lessons from a wizened old fake priest (don’t worry, it’s not as bad as it seems) in a small village that seems to be the only place in the world that has their priorities straight?

I figured that after Kelvin returned from Mexico and his visit with Father Santos,  things would go really well and all would be roses and chocolate.

In fact, quite the opposite was true. It showed exactly how hard, or impossible, it can be to salvage a relationship that has gone so far south.
Even with his kids it was a struggle to “weed out” what had choked their father/son relationship.

I don’t want to give away anything else, but it is a good solid story. It has many life lessons hidden throughout and a very real storyline.

I’m sure I will be reading this book again.

 

Download “Weed Therapy” NOW!

BLURB:

Kelvin Rockwell’s thirteen-year-old son, Spencer, is doing what
teenage boys do, ignoring his father and growing apart. His
four-year-old, Jason, is still planted firmly in his ‘mommy and me’
phase. And his wife, Holly, has spent years demonstrating apathy
towards their marriage. The emotional reward of family is
disappearing from Kelvin’s life.

In an attempt to find an answer to his unhappiness, Kelvin leaves his
family for a few days to visit Santo Cielo, a remote village along the
coast of Baja California. There, he experiences a life far removed
from his own and explores his frustrations with Father Juan Miguel
Santos, an old priest who shares his wisdom and life lessons.

The first lesson Father Santos teaches Kelvin is that a marriage is
like a garden. It must be weeded every day. Kelvin thinks back to a
comment Holly made years after they were married – that she
wasn’t comfortable with him – and they did nothing to resolve the
problem. The weed that Holly planted squarely in the middle of
their marriage hadn’t been pulled. Instead it joined other weeds,
choking the color out of their marriage.

Weed Therapy follows Kelvin as he searches his soul and his
memories in response to Father Santos’s lessons, including the
simplest of messages – that Kelvin deserves to be happy. Motivated
by the old priest’s advice, Kelvin returns home and attempts to put
the lessons into action, to replace the weeds with a beautiful garden.

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Book Review! “Dawning” by Olivia Stocum

 PERSONAL RATING SYSTEM:

CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT – *****
PLOT   – ****
FLOW – ***
GRAMMAR/EDITING *****

ON A REVIEW SITE:
 4 STARS

I couldn’t wait to read this as soon as I added it to my “To Be Read” list. It sounded amazing, and it held true to my expectations!

Triona MacAlastair is in love with Ronan. Unfortunately, her father is not as convinced as she is.

Her true love, Ronan, decided to leave for two years and come back a better man. Finally worthy of his Triona.

However, two years turns into three……and then four. Triona loses hope and begins to move on.

I felt that the struggles between Ronan and Triona were very real. I am pretty sure me and my husband have had similar fights. 
Overall, it was a great book and I definitely recommend it to anyone who loves a good romance. I am giving it four stars because there was a some repetition that could have been cleaned up, but it really didn’t detract from the story at all.

The end left me waiting impatiently for a sequel!

 

Download “Dawning” NOW!

BLURB:

Scotland, 1599. He abandoned her… She had failed to be enough for him. The empty space he left behind hollowed out her heart, and she wondered what to do with the rest of her life… 

When Ronan leaves the clan to seek his fortune, Triona MacAlastair fears she will never see him again. Four years later, a threat against her life forces her to depend on a mysterious, cloaked rogue known as Blackhawk. 

She knows he is capable of protecting her, but what is he hiding? Why does he refuse to show his face?

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Book Review! “Tournament” by Jennifer Goebel & Dagmar Jacisinova

 Personal Rating System:

Character Development – ****
Plot   – *****
Flow – ****
Grammar/Editing ****

On a review site:
5 stars

As soon as I found out about this book I knew I had to read it! I looooove soccer. It is the only sport I have ever played and the ONLY one I can watch. (Hey, I even know what off-sides is :P)

In this post-apocalyptic book soccer is *the* game.
In 2014 a nuclear war takes out most of the world. Alaska is the place where any survivors from the United States gather. There is a one world government and all the remaining countries have a soccer tournament to decide who the next world leader is.

I was hooked right from the start, because I just so happen to personally live under Norad….and I have always known with all the military bases and Norad being so close I would NEVER survive a nuclear war. This book just so happened to drive that point home.
I’m sure I will be able to sleep at night now >.<

The characters were awesome. I have twin nephews, and I can imagine them growing up to be a lot like Jason and Nate. One of my nephews even has a scar by his eye!
Definitely can’t forget Cassie. I love it when books have strong female characters. Girls that age sure need them!
The interactions were very real to life between all the characters as well. 

It was a great read for any young adult (or, um, adult!) ESPECIALLY if they like soccer…and even if they don’t.

The ending left you wanting more. Another book please! =)

Download “Tournament” NOW!

BLURB:

In 2014, a worldwide nuclear war demolishes a wide swath of the planet. Alaska, the only part left of the United States, joins with the other surviving countries to set up a Global Government. Its primary responsibility is to prevent another devastating war. Leadership changes every two years, based on the outcome of the only competitive outlet the survivors can agree on: a worldwide soccer tournament.

In 2044, 17-year-old twin soccer stars Jason and Nate are ready to play the game of their lives. But they soon discover that Alaska’s new president has some very special plans and winning the Tournament is the least of their worries.

For more details and to read the first chapter visit www.Tournament2044.com

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Book Review! “Ting and I” by Douglas Winslow Cooper

 Personal Rating System:

Story – ****
Flow – **
Grammar/Editing *****

On a review site:
4 stars

This memoir was a great read! I was looking forward to reading it since I first saw it.

Douglas and his second wife meet in college.  They are soon tore apart by parents and social pressures.
Reunited years later after both having divorced their their first spouse they finally find marital happiness.

Unfortunately by the time they were married, they only had a few good years before Tings MS started getting the best of her. After beating death several times (one time in particular) she is now  bedridden and highly handicapped.

This is a TRUE story of love and devotion. These two people love each other through thick and thin. Through the whole book you can just feel it.

I am only giving this book 4 stars because toward the end I felt it was a bit unfocused.
An example of how it was so unfocused, but still good: Douglas mentions  that Ting shares her mother in laws birthday. I’m not really sure why this was shared, something about astrological signs (yet, that still doesn’t make sense).
HOWEVER, I was glad he put it in the book because my husband shares my dads birthday. I can only hope that means we will be as devoted to each other as this amazing couple!

Overall I recommend it to anyone who is a TRUE romantic, and wants to read what REAL love looks like. Not the fluff Hollywood sells us on.

Download “Ting and I” now!

BLURB:

Love conquers separation,
prejudice, and quadriplegia

Tina Su and Doug Cooper met in a Chinese class at Cornell University in 1963. They fell in love, later married and lived happily ever after. Actually, it was not quite that simple. With both sets of parents opposing an interracial marriage, the couple separated and did not meet again for nineteen years. Tina went off to grad school at Harvard, married a scientist from China, edited for the Encyclopedia Britannica, had two sons, and felt trapped in a difficult marriage. Doug was drafted into the army, and afterward earned his master’s in physics from Penn State and a Ph.D. in engineering from Harvard. His first marriage (to a Caucasian woman who resembled Tina) failed. Eventually Doug contacted Tina, and the two declared their love. Interracial issues were no longer a problem; but her multiple sclerosis, with its likelihood of increasing disability, would cast a shadow on their prospects. Tina—with great difficulty and pain—left her marriage. Now together for more than twenty-five years, Tina and Doug have learned that while love may not conquer all, it has been crucial in successfully meeting the challenges of Tina’s progressive immobility, ultimately her quadriplegia and near death from an MS-caused pneumonia. More than a love story, this wry memoir has reflections on love and marriage, faith, professional ethics, at-home intensive nursing care, medical insurance, finances, and the exceptional character of a brave woman, written by the man who loves her, with tributes from those who admire her.

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Book Review! “The Sol of Jupiter” by Thaddeus J.

 Personal Rating System:

Character Development – *****
Plot   – ****
Flow – ****
Grammar/Editing *****

On a review site:
  5 stars

I had absolutely no idea what to expect when I started reading this book, as I have never read anything like it before…

It was so good! I can’t begin to describe how well written and flawless the story was.

Michaels, who has known he was gay since elementary school feels an undeniable attraction to his friend Sozio. The question is, does Sozio feel the same way? Or maybe more importantly, are they willing to put everything on the line for their relationship?

It was one of the best romances I have read it awhile. The characters and plot were perfect. If you want a book that has it all. Romance. Drama. Controversy. Did I mention drama? Then check out this book!

Some of the scenes you couldn’t make up, like when Sozio accidentally throws a knife into Michaels arm!

The end had me in tears. Especially when they mentioned their friend Kyle.

Loved it! Don’t miss out on this one.

Download “The Sol of Jupiter” NOW!

BLURB:

Turner Michaels is an idealistic junior enlisted communicator that wants nothing more than to successfully execute his duties. After being transferred to a light armored reconnaissance unit in the middle of the Mojave Desert, the young U.S. Marine starts to feel a bit overwhelmed and out of place from his usual role of support – that is until he is reunited with his old friend Jace Sozio. Reconnecting with one another is simple, but neither of them could have imagined the intense yet awkward attraction that would grow between them. Though admitting these feelings to one another poses a dilemma for the men, as neither wants it to threaten their close friendship.

Taking things to a whole new level raises a number of other questions as well. First and foremost, would their peers accept them, or would they have to forever hide their relationship? And admitting their true feelings for one another is easier said than done. Their harsh supervisor is demanding and makes life miserable for the pair, and they also have a number of very good (though sometimes annoying) friends that make them question if they even need enemies. But with the help of their family and inspiring leaders the two will discover that loyalty and support are stronger than bigotry and misperception. Proving that the Corps indeed is a sacred brotherhood where men can trust one another with their very lives.

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Book Review! “Finding My Way” by Linda Brown

Personal Rating System:
Character Development – *****
Plot   – ***
Flow – ***
Grammar/Editing *****

On a review site:
 4 stars

This book is different than anything I have ever read before. I guess it is because the author opens up and shares her story with no reservations.

It will make you want to cry for the author when she was a child and reach through time to give her a heartfelt hug.

The other thing that is unique is even though I do not personally know the author in real life, after reading this book I feel like she is one of my close friends. (Of course, she probably doesn’t feel the same way!)

True stories always bring things to another level for me, and this book was no exception.
If you want to be inspired by one persons true story of how she rose above her situation and bettered herself then this is the book for you.

This an an unforgettable book, and I am sure I will be reading it again. I will DEFINITELY be on the lookout for other books by this author.

Download “Finding My Way” NOW!

BLURB:

Simply put this is my story. I have led a life filled with tragedy, neglect abuse and more. I have decided to lift the veil. Family secrets are told, skeletons taken out and the story told. Originally I began this project for myself. I had no intentions of publishing or doing anything with it. Then the more I thought about it the more I realized my story could help someone else. I decided to share my story with the hopes it could bring strength, inspiration or hope to someone else. If nothing else maybe someone may read and feel they are not the only ones or that they are not alone. Each of us has our own story to tell. I am choosing to tell my story to the world. Writing this book has been a journey. Many memories I had to relive while writing. Once again feeling the hurt and anger. But through this process I realized many things and have come full circle. When I began I thought my experiences are what made me the person I am. In the end I realized we are who we allow ourselves to be. We are not defined by our experiences. Reviews: as a reviewer, I would say, that the book offers a sometimes sad, sometime amusing, and often inspiring look at the tragic struggle than so many children face when raised by incapable, indifferent parents, those adults imbued with a sort of structural selfishness imposed by condition, society, and inability. What then makes this story most significant, is its demonstration of how this structureal selfishness, this inheirtance of poor and cruel parenting, and insect like survival can be spontaneously broken — whether it be by intelligence and insight, higher evolved empathy, or the foturne of the right combination of influences. In this regard, the book illuminates the depth of the pain and struggle, and the meanness of the adults in the main character’s young life, all the while reminding us through her first person narrative that instead of identifying with her aggressors, instead of passing on the parenting skills she was taught by example, she reached perhaps into her books, into examples of other lives encountered, but most definitely into her self to find a better way.I can read (and write) the most skin-crawling fiction without flinching, Linda, but when I peruse a true life account of an abusive childhood it always makes me weep – I’m a big softie, I guess, and a sucker for maltreated kids and underdogs of all kinds. In this case it was where little you was caged in with Uncle Bastard that brought the tears of anger, sympathy and empathy rolled into one..**
This is so moving. You convey your experiences and feelings as a neglected and abused child so well. **Linda, wow! It’s a great, tragic, but compelling story all the more compelling because it’s true. I loved this and will go straight on to the next chapter. **This shows the strength of human nature and I can’t help feeling the overwhelming sense of accomplishment you must have for writing your story. Not only can it help others to remember that they’re NOT alone. I have so much admiration for you, it’s impossible to put into words, but suffice to say that your gritty determination to endure and make sense of your early years shines through the entire story. You are an inspiration.**Wow, if you had told me this I couldn’t even have begun to imagine what things would have been like for you, but reading just one chapter of your soon to be novel opened up a whole new perspective for me.**This is really well written. There’s so much insight and depth of feeling, of being there. Its authenticity is undeniable and this allows the reader to bond with your story. The voice is pitched perfectly and while it’s filled with sadness, there’s that feeling that the narrator is going places with grades to match and dreams to conjure. Brilliant.**I am very impressed with your writing. It is poignant, sadly true to life situations,and yet interesting enough to read in spite of the worrying moments.**Keep it coming, I think you have a fan club here!

 

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