S. R. Cronin
Sherrie Roth grew up in Western Kansas thinking that there was no place in the universe more fascinating than outer space. After her mother vetoed astronaut as a career ambition, she went on to attended Northwestern University studying journalism and physics in hopes of becoming a science writer.
She published her first science fiction short story long ago and then waited a lot of tables while she looked for inspiration for the next tale. When it finally came, it declared to her that it had to be a whole book, nothing less. One night, while digesting this disturbing piece of news, she drank way too many shots of ouzo with her boyfriend. She woke up thirty-one years later demanding to know what was going on.
The boyfriend, who she had apparently long since married, asked her to please calm down. He explained that in a fit of practicality she had gone back to school and gotten a degree in geophysics and had spent the last 28 years interpreting seismic data in the oil industry. The good news, according to Mr. Cronin, was that she had found it at least mildly entertaining and ridiculously well-paying. The bad news was that the two of them had still managed to spend almost all of the money.
Apparently she was now Mrs. Cronin, and the further good news was that they had produced three wonderful children whom they loved dearly, even though to be honest that is where a lot of the money had gone. Even better news was that Mr. Cronin turned out to be a warm-hearted, encouraging sort who was happy to see her awake and ready to write. "It's about time," were his exact words.
Sherrie Cronin discovered that over the ensuing decades Sally Ride had already managed to become the first woman in space and apparently had done a fine job of it. No one, however, had written the book that had been in Sherrie's head for decades. The only problem was, the book informed her sternly that it had now grown into a collection of six books. Sherrie decided that she better start getting it on down paper before it got any longer. She's been wide awake ever since, and writing away.
One of Two
by S. R. Cronin
Everyone in the secret organization x0 would admit telepathy creates as many problems as it solves. Those problems worsen when budding psychic Lola discovers another group of telepaths helping a powerful media empire. This group is willing to destroy anyone capable of challenging them. Can the talented people Lola cares about learn to trust each other and work together in order to save the world?
Layers of Light
by S. R. Cronin
(5.00 from 1 review)
A Texan teenager develops an unusual ability when she becomes an exchange student in India. Once human trafficking touches her world, her mysterious talent shows hope for locating her friends. If she only knew what the talent was and how to use it. A stranger makes her an unexpected offer. He will train her to find her missing friends, but she will never be normal again.
Shape of Secrets
by S. R. Cronin
(4.50 from 4 reviews)
An idealistic shape changer at a pharmaceutical company discovers corporate secrets that hide surprisingly vile plans. Someone will kill to protect mysteries the company has worked so hard to hide. On a sales trip to the South Pacific, he is arrested, hunted by an unsavory boot camp manager, and finds love, all while learning how his unique abilities can keep him from being the next murder victim.
One of One
by S. R. Cronin
(4.40 from 10 reviews)
A Nigerian beauty searching for her captive sister seeks a fellow psychic to help her. What she finds is a cranky Texan who denies her own talents. An ancient group of telepaths known as x0 wants to ignore both women, but how can they? The sister's captors are turning more dangerous, and common links are forging these two radically different women together in ways that even x0 barely understands.
The Green Stone Tower
on July 21, 2012
This fun and ultimately hopeful book takes the reader along familiar paths lined with faeries, gods and magic powers but introduces enough twists and new ideas to satisfy a jaded fantasy fan like myself. As the fair haired singer Johnny makes his way from the normal lows of a young man's life in a half-real half-mythical world to ultimate love and enlightenment on the other side of the green stone tower, the author manages nice bits of political satire, takes well-aimed jabs at religious intolerance, and even gives unique insights into the character and motivation behind the "evil" god of shadow. Near the end, the book takes a dive into metaphysical concepts, and in my opinion such a direction does not usually go so well for a story. However, in this case philosophical riffs about the nature of life, death, time, and space are well enough handled to preserve the reader's emotional attachment.
I wish that 4.5 stars was an option here, because that is what I would like to give this book. I found the pace good, the characters likable, and the story enjoyable. Although the plot ties up nicely at the end, there clearly is a sequel coming and I will be watching for it.
Journey To Light: Part I of the High Duties of Pacia
on July 22, 2012
This is a complex and intriguing tale of politics, sacred duties and gifted chosen ones in a fictitious land with tantalizing parallels to our own. The strength of the story lies in the many rich characters and in enjoying the development of their only partially revealed destinies.
Because in this first book of three the author is weaving together several story lines that will certainly intertwine eventually, the reader has to be a little patient and be willing to not always move through the plot in a direct fashion. Some story lines are stronger in this first book, and better developed than others. My favorite, and the one that carried the book for me, involves an amnesiac fighter and a prudish sisterhood that will make anyone raised catholic chuckle out loud. Others, like the story of two quasi-human creatures who resemble a wolf and a bat, are sketched more lightly. I am sure more will come later.
A reader should consider this full tale to be a three book endeavor. After enjoying the author's wit and imagination throughout this first book, I am anxious to pick up the next one.
A Bear Tale
on Oct. 02, 2012
A delightful story about the clash between civilized expectations and the wild in each of us. I particularly liked getting bits of the various animal's points of view, and the author's obvious familiarity with the part of the country that she describes. Although told with a sparse poet's touch, this tale leaves room for wry observations about love, life and road repair. It's not a story without sorrow, but in the end it offers a hopeful message about the places where humans and the rest of the world meet.
Goddess-Born (A Tale of Two Worlds)
on Dec. 08, 2012
I thoroughly enjoyed Goddess Born. Although I also enjoyed Rush’s earlier Green Stone Tower, this is a richer book with more suspense and more levels of intrigue. I enjoyed the underlying political story with its surprising revolutionary who fights with her pen, and appreciated the two poignant love stories, only one of which can end well. The two goddess-born main characters are worth cheering on, both individually and together, yet this book counters their virtue with a thoroughly bad character to boo at, at least one morally ambiguous character, and one of the more horrible mythical monsters I can ever remember. It all takes place in a sort of 1700's-ish world that is believable without a lot of overt detail and into which both magic and revolution fit so nicely.
The book offers a few more battle details that I personally care for, and I struggled with gods and goddesses so powerful and yet so human, but these are minor quibbles and perhaps unique to me. Basically, this is a fun fantasy book with a good heart and underlying positive message. I was sorry to see it end.