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Smashwords book reviews by Nancy Eriksen
- Shared Emptiness
on May 30, 2011
In a world of long lived Catholicism the choices are never easy. When the oldest son, the “Golden Boy” is terribly injured no one knows where to turn except the Church. The Church, as often happens; falls short. By a mile or two.
In Shared Emptiness, author John Brinling shows us both sides of the coin. The daughter, outshone on every level by her older brother, who clings to Mass as a life jacket. Mom who has grown up in the Church and feels herself damned for thinking of killing her only son. Dad who isn’t as strict on going to Mass (even if right across the street) but loves to play the horses and loves his family even if he does a piss-poor job of showing it. Then the aunts and uncles and cousins weigh in and they are as torn as the Carters. They have their own issues of pregnancies, dead children, unloved spouses and are getting no answers there, either.
Chris Carter somehow kept this whole group connected. He wasn’t a staunch Catholic, either’ but his grins and personality tied them all up in a nice, neat bow and delivered them to each other. When Chris is hurt and ultimately survives in a vegetative state; everyone at one time or another thinks of pulling his plug. Can one of them actually do it and face retribution from God? Can his agnostic fiancé get up the nerve to free herself from a lifetime of servitude?
This book brings to light many levels of compulsion from the Church, each other and our parents. Brinling has written a special novel and I do encourage all of you to read it. It’s a large story, but it needs to be to explain our needs and wants through the Carter family and its satellite characters.
- Divine Intervention
on July 20, 2011
Divine Intervention has nothing to do with the Holy Spirit, let’s get that out of the way right off. It does have to do with a group of people who have a bit extra in their genetic make-up: and they all work for Matthew Divine. Ben can read minds with a touch, Natassia read the last moments of someone’s life by being with their corpse and Jasi, well; Jasi reads fires.
Someone is burning folks up around Victoria, B.C. and the Divine crew is sent to investigate. The killer left behind a “clue” in form of a Gemini lighter. Just like the one Jasi received in the mail awhile ago. Hmmm. Upon arrival they are immediately saddled with Brandon Walsh, top fire scene investigator and ‘way better looking than someone has a right to be.
There are several suspects, many thoughts from the fires and corpses and it all seems to link to a very nasty foster mother named Charlotte Foreman. But Charlotte did in a fire a month ago along with a 4-yr old girl she was caring for. Who was out to get Charlotte and then also caused a local Doctor to burn to death?
Ms. Tardiff does a great job of winding plots, sub-plots and lust around our heroes. This plus the interesting futuristic gagets used by the team make the book a great summer tale of murder, mystery and other things. Even better – book 2 in this series – Divine Justice came out in March so you can get them both and continue on! Enjoy!
- Tempest (#1 Destroyers Series)
on Jan. 07, 2012
Hurricanes. Since Katrina, everyone older than 7 knows what a hurricane is and what they do. They
think. Actually, according to the Natural Law, Katrina was a girl who was born a Tempest. All Tempests
names come up once in their life and that is their turn to destroy and kill or, if they’re kind-hearted to
try not to.
Janelle and her dad had just moved to Florida from Michigan. Mom had passed away years ago and Dad
had a new job. Janelle was amazed by the power and force of Hurricane Gary – the first one she’d been
in. She was scared to death and, when she went out in the street to view the damage, she met a
stranger her age. Named Gary. Things didn’t click just then but they did soon after!
Janelle learns that dad had ulterior motives in hauling her to Florida. Everyone seems to have them in
this book. She also learns that the little spiral birthmark she has is shared by many beings and that her
grandmother’s name is Camille. (Remember her????)
This story really caught my attention. Janelle and Gary make it a Y/A novel but other things keep adults
interested as well. Since this is a “part 1” kinda of book I’m hoping Holly will let me read parts 2+.
- Bedtime Stories for Cats
on Jan. 07, 2012
Cat owners everywhere rejoice! Amy Neftzger has written the ultimate storybook for your fur-babies.
This small novella contains seventeen tails of cat-dom. Want to know how to fool the yapping dog – it’s
in here. The evils of baths – got it covered! “There is great evil in bathing a cat….a lot of shampoos for
pets are fruit scented…..bathing your cat is the same thing as basting it in jam before sending it off to be
This book is hilarious although, to be fair, it is also true. My three boys (Spike, Spot and Sparky) show up
in many of the life lessons written here. If you have your own cats or wish you did – this is your book.
The critters will like the stories, too!
- Bird of Prey: A Horror Novella
on Jan. 14, 2012
When Buck Sanders tells his best friend something has to be killed he isn’t kidding! Taking all of his friends along, armed and potentially one hell of a car wreck waiting to happen; they mount up and go after the biggest bird Buck has ever seen. The boys have absolutely no idea of what’s waiting for them but they’re about to find out.
Tommy has always taken Buck at his word. Alaska is a state that creates good friends – folks you can rely on – and Tommy has always believed what he’s told by his favorite bar owner. Buck saw the creature while looking for metal to fix his roof.
When they get to the abandoned building, the boys are
amazed at all the rooms, corridors and messes they see and the scratching noises they hear – everywhere. What finds them is the cause of the terror.
I may have just read Sci-Fi Channels newest movie! What a lot of terror in a short story. If you like chills, thrills, blood and guts this is your new book! Won’t take you long to read but the images will hang around for awhile!