Book Review—Twist of Faith

Twist of Faith Cover

Twist of Faith is a stunning story that turns on the eternal question, “Who Am I?” And it’s something that the heroes—if you think one of those exists in this novel—and the evildoers have in common as they go about their daily business. For me, the book reads like a madman’s dream where photographs can come alive, and the dead can speak. It’s a well-thought-out tale of intrigue and revenge—mostly revenge—that surprisingly leads to a high body count for a book that is not really a police procedural.

There’s a lot of anger in this tale, and I think the author was able to channel it in the lissome, paradoxical character of Ava. Though she defies reason, we want her. Bad. And maybe it’s the allure of danger that surrounds her. Or it could simply be that she was raised French and Catholic. Either way, watch out.

If you like the strange and mysterious, then grab this book. And you might want to crack open a nice Château Lafite Bourdeaux to put yourself in the mood.

You can find this review at Goodreads.

Book Description
When family secrets are unearthed, a woman’s past can become a dangerous place to hide…

After the death of her adoptive mother, Ava Saunders comes upon a peculiar photograph, sealed and hidden away in a crawl space. The photo shows a shuttered, ramshackle house on top of a steep hill. On the back, a puzzling inscription: Destiny calls us.

Ava is certain that it’s a clue to her elusive past. Twenty-three years ago, she’d been found wrapped in a yellow blanket in the narthex of the Holy Saviour Catholic Church—and rescued—or so she’d been told. Her mother claimed there was no more to the story, so the questions of her abandonment were left unanswered. For Ava, now is the time to find the roots of her mother’s lies. It begins with the house itself—once the scene of a brutal double murder.

When Ava enlists the help of the two people closest to her, a police detective and her best friend, she fears that investigating her past could be a fatal mistake. Someone is following them there. And what’s been buried in Ava’s nightmares isn’t just a crime. It’s a holy conspiracy.

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Book Review—Pocketful of Bones

Pocketful of Bones Cover

Pocketful of Bones is a quiet story in the way Psycho and The Lottery are quiet. At least, that’s what I was thinking as I made my way through this marvelous and absorbing tale of villains, victims, and valentines. Maybe unsettling is a better description. One minute, someone is having a conversation, and the next, they are dead. And it’s hard to know where you stand with well-drawn characters like Tibba and Finny because, at times, someone can at a moment’s notice turn from victim to villain. And someone who you thought might be conniving turns out to be sweet and loyal.

For me, the best thing about the novel was, I really didn’t know what to expect. For the record, I’ve had my fill of serial killers. So, as the bodies piled up in Pocketful of Bones, I was surprised at the logic and—dare I suggest it?—the correctness of it. The story unfolds as though Fate itself were guiding mother and son to their inescapable destinies. And along the way, they planted the annuals. In short, they were born for this.

If you’re looking for a satisfying read that both perplexes and horrifies in a Canadian sort of way, I suggest you read this book. And remember: anyone is capable of murder; some see it as just another tool in the toolbox.

You can find this review at Goodreads.

Book Description
Finnegan MacGillivray, red-haired, freckle-faced social pariah, finds solace in his mother’s garden while she entertains “dates” in his home. When an accident takes the life of a friend, Finnegan buries the evidence amid the purple dead nettle and bougainvillea, and unearths a treasure trove of human remains. Did his house rest atop an ancient burial ground? Or was there a killer tucking him into bed at night?

His fascination with bones grows as fast as his obsession with his mother. She rejects his advances, and he escapes to the other side of the country. Years later, he returns to his childhood home, to the secrets and the guilt and the bones — and to fulfill his destiny.

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Book Review—Stillhouse Lake

[Stillhouse Lake Cover]Let me start out by saying that Rachel Caine is an excellent writer. Her prose is concise, controlled, and chillingly violent when the occasion calls for it. This is the first book of hers I’ve read, and I enjoyed it immensely. I especially liked her protagonist, Gina Royal, who is single-minded in her determination to protect her children and herself from the memory of her soulless ex-husband and the thousands of trolls now pursuing the family on social media. Quite a challenge for a former housewife whose main concerns used to be centered around seeing her children off to school and putting dinner on the table.

If you like tense thrillers, I can say with confidence that you will enjoy Stillhouse Lake—with one caveat. For me, when someone says “serial killer,” I expect a high body count. I mean, that’s kind of what they do, right? And though Gina’s ex-husband, Mel, does live up to his reputation, most of it is in backstory. In fact, Caine spends most of the first half of the book on Gina’s inner life. By the time we get to the new peril she finds herself in, we know her intimately—a good thing if you enjoy believable characters. I only wish the author had peppered the introspection with a bit more action, that’s all I’m saying.

All in all, a terrific read. Can’t wait for the next book in the series.

You can find this review at Amazon US.

Book Description
Gina Royal is the definition of average—a shy Midwestern housewife with a happy marriage and two adorable children. But when a car accident reveals her husband’s secret life as a serial killer, she must remake herself as Gwen Proctor—the ultimate warrior mom.

With her ex now in prison, Gwen has finally found refuge in a new home on remote Stillhouse Lake. Though still the target of stalkers and Internet trolls who think she had something to do with her husband’s crimes, Gwen dares to think her kids can finally grow up in peace.

But just when she’s starting to feel at ease in her new identity, a body turns up in the lake—and threatening letters start arriving from an all-too-familiar address. Gwen Proctor must keep friends close and enemies at bay to avoid being exposed—or watch her kids fall victim to a killer who takes pleasure in tormenting her. One thing is certain: she’s learned how to fight evil. And she’ll never stop.

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Tell Me When I’m Dead—A 99-Cent Slay Ride to Hell!

[TMWID Axe Detail]Sale runs 10/17—10/31/2014

Happy early Halloween!

If you’ve been waiting to read Book One of THE DEAD SERIES, here’s a great opportunity to pick it up for a buck, starting Friday. That’s right.

Forty-three reviews—almost every one five stars. Zombies, wackos and paramilitary nutjobs. It’s all here.

And if that’s not enough, here are a few choice  quotes …

“A FIVE STAR gorefest and a must read.”
“A wild slay ride into hell.”
“Dead awesome!”
“A hard-hitting splattergore zombie thriller.”

I’ve decided to keep the book on sale through the 31st. So what in the name of all that is holy are you waiting for?!

Oh, yeah, the blurb.

Tell Me When I’m Dead
Everything was fine until that horrible night when Hell came looking for Dave Pulaski and the good people of Tres Marias.

It wasn’t supposed to go this way. Dave was a changed man. He regretted the years he spent lost and drunk, hanging out with his best friend Jim. When he met Holly, a beautiful, strong-willed woman, she made him her mission. Now two years sober, Dave was on top of the world.

But on that night, Dave’s old friend shows up drunk. While driving Jim home, Dave swerves to avoid a rabid dog. They crash. When Dave regains consciousness, Jim is gone. Only a bloody hole in the windshield remains.

Missy, a woman Dave cheated with months before, suddenly decides she wants him back. He needs to get rid of her before Holly can find out. Meanwhile, people in the town are coming down with “the jimmies,” a mysterious illness that leads to death.

Only they don’t stay dead.

They come back as shrieking flesh-eaters. And so does Jim. As Dave tries to convince Missy to leave him alone, Jim finds them. Instead of helping Missy escape, Dave runs. Missy gets infected, and now she wants revenge.

The contagion has spread, and Black Dragon Security is brought in to restore order. Soon they discover that in addition to the outbreak they must battle the Red Militia, a paramilitary group led by a charismatic madman. And as conditions in the town deteriorate, it’s clear that the Black Dragon supervisor is coming unhinged.

In the midst of the mayhem, Dave, Holly and a group of armed soldiers and civilians must find a way to survive. But how can they? Dave is this close to drinking himself into oblivion. Missy is after him—even though she’s no longer human. The hordes of undead are growing and security forces are outnumbered. Hell has arrived in Tres Marias.

Nowhere is safe.

Grab Tell Me When I’m Dead and follow Dave, Holly and their friends as they fight against looters, paramilitary crazies and the undead. And remember—if the zombies don’t kill you, people will.

[Tell Me When I’m Dead Cover]

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