Friday, April 19, 2019

“I Was Anastasia” by Ariel Lawhon – Fame as an Imposter


Ariel Lawhon takes us on a tour into one of the more psychologically curious cases in history in her novel titled I Was Anastasia, delving into the life of Anna Anderson.

Not long after the Romanovs were famously executed, a young woman was pulled from a canal in Berlin and began claiming to be Anastasia, who was supposed to be dead and buried. Thus began the woman's journey towards becoming potentially one of the most famous imposters in human history.

Thursday, April 04, 2019

“My Brother's Keeper” by S. S. Bazinet – To Run with the Beasts


The search for identity as a teenager is never easy for normal people, and S. S. Bazinet goes the extra mile to make it a million times more difficult for the sixteen-year-old Theodore in her novel My Brother's Keeper.

Having been abducted and raised by a sinister organization known as the WKA, Theodore is quite surprised when his real family locates him, revealing he is in fact a werewolf... one who might be able to turn the tide in the war between his kind and the evil organization hell-bent on destroying them.

Friday, March 29, 2019

“Winter World” by A.G. Riddle – Ice Age from the Void


A.G. Riddle is a true literary explorer seeking to push humanity to its limits and beyond, setting them on a desperate collision course with something beyond its understanding in Winter World . With a sudden ice age dawning on humanity entire swathes of land become uninhabitable and people begin dropping like flies, with anarchy reigning supreme.

Looking to the stars for a miraculous solution, the remnants of humanity find a massive mysterious object floating near Mars...whatever it is, our civilization's hopes of survival rest entirely in its hands.

Wednesday, March 06, 2019

“Cemetery Road” by Greg Iles – The Land of Hidden Truths

Cemetery Road by Greg Iles (Book cover)

Greg Iles has never had any problems depicting both the best and the worst of what the South has to offer, and in Cemetery Road he returns there once again to dive into a filthy pool of treachery and deceit.

It tells the story of Marshall McEwan, a journalist who returns to his Mississippi hometown of Bienville and ends up investigating two murders which turned the community inside out. As he is about to discover, the journey awaiting him has only begun to bare its dark and ugly teeth.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

“The Wartime Sisters” by Lynda Cohen Loigman – Raging Battles of Conscience

The Wartime Sisters by Lynda Cohen Loigman (Book cover)

War is an unimaginably complex beast and its repercussions often reach far beyond the battlefield in unexpected ways, something Lynda Cohen Loigman makes quite apparent in her second novel, The Wartime Sisters. In it, we are introduced to two estranged sisters who become reunited at the start of the Second World War at the Springfield Armory.

One lives as the wife of an officer, while the other is a widow working at the factory. The vast difference in the course of their lives breeds resentment between the two, embarking both on a journey neither could have imagined.

Thursday, January 24, 2019

“The New Iberia Blues” by James Lee Burke – Crucifix of Stardom


James Lee Burke Mixes Blood and Glamour


The differences between the people of this Earth might be too numerous to mention completely, but nearly all of us are united by a single strand: the desire to become famous, whether now or sometime in the past. Even if you have to go back to your childhood to find a time when you clamoured for it, negligibly few are those who completely escape its temptations. While many of us grow out of it and find value in a life of public anonymity, some stay behind to pursue the elusive dream of stardom, and in most cases, they are willing to make virtually any sacrifice for it. Needless to say, this is one path which led many people to their doom, attracting the greedy, courageous and foolhardy alike. In James Lee Burke's latest Dave Robicheaux novel, The New Iberia Blues, we make the acquaintance of one such tragically lost soul as the rotten bowels of the Hollywood underworld dig their way to the surface.

Monday, January 14, 2019

“The Things We Don't Say” by Ella Carey – The Inauthentic Testament

The Things We Don't Say by Ella Carey (Book cover)

Ella Carey Present Life in a Painting


Most of us don't really enjoy thinking about what our lives might amount to at the very end, but the reality, perhaps a tad sad, is most of our journeys will become memories. Over the years many events and people pass us by without leaving any lasting trace to remember them by, only the workings of our own minds. For this reason, many of us cherish the truly unique and special objects to which we attribute a personal symbolism and emotional value, objects which stand as a testament to a segment of our lives. But what if, one day in our old age, we were to discover one such testament to be a lie? How far would we really go to find out the truth about ourselves? This is precisely the question Emma Temple is asking herself in Ella Carey's The Things We Don't Say.

Thursday, December 13, 2018

“The Night Crossing” by Robert Masello – Beyond the Shroud of Evil

“The Night Crossing” by Robert Masello (Book cover)

Robert Masello Reintroduces Bram Stoker


Countless authors have tried to make a name for themselves over the thousands of years humans have known how to write and read, but unfortunately very few succeeded in transcending time, their works staying relevant and revered regardless of the era. Bram Stoker is one of the more modern authors to have achieved this distinction, creating a horror icon in Dracula which still persists strongly to this very day. When one's name becomes so well-entrenched in the annals of history, it becomes tempting to see them as larger-than-life, perfect subjects for works of fiction... something perfectly exemplified in Robert Masello's The Night Crossing.

Saturday, November 24, 2018

“The Storyteller's Secret” by Sejal Badani – In the Wake of the Fall


Sejal Badani Brings us to India


Tragedy is a sadly inescapable aspect of existence, but unfortunately it strikes some far harder than others. There are entire philosophies, theories and schools of thought about mending the human mind and helping it recover from the worst of hardships and misfortunes. While we've certainly made progress on this front in recent decades, it remains a topic largely clouded in mystery where we are still far from finding a one-size-fits-all approach. Different people must often find their own ways of dealing with grief, and for some this means rekindling with their cultural roots. At least, this is the approach chosen by the main character in Sejal Badani's The Storyteller's Secret.

Tuesday, November 06, 2018

Interview with Nina Romano – Inexhaustible Inspirations


While there are a few careers where it is possible to learn everything there is to, authorship fall as far from this category as humanly possible. Virtually every single author, whether they've written a hundred novels or a hundred words, will admit they always have more to learn and new horizons to explore... it's a never-ending journey towards knowledge. Though Nina Romano definitely doesn't hold all the answers, she has been walking on this path since her early years and possesses a certain aptitude which can only come through time and experience: she understands herself within the context of her work better than most others. In our interview with her, we discuss her methodology as an author, how she approaches the writing of a book, and the many milestones she has traversed in her literary life.

Monday, October 29, 2018

“Pronto” by Elmore Leonard – The Sins of the Accountant

Pronto by Elmore Leonard (Book cover)

Elmore Leonard and the Runaway Bookie


Though logic dictates we ought to be imagining the world of organized crime via large men in suits smoking in dank, poorly-lit basements, the reality is a bit less romantic than that. As it happens, even organized crime wants to stay under the radar and within the confines of the legal world as much as possible, which means they need to have regular civilians working for them. Bookmakers have for a long time now been a favourite “venue of investment” for criminal enterprises, being businesses which can deal in large and irregular amounts of cash. Needless to say, not all bookies came out unscathed from such arrangements. In Pronto by Elmore Leonard, we actually have a bookie who not only works for the mob, but also likes to skim a bit of cash off the top... and the FBI are trying to make him flip over on his boss.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

“City of Endless Night” by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child – The Headless of the Metropolis

Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child Craft Another Mystery


Collaborations between authors seems to be an increasingly common practice in the digital age, mostly due to the fact communication has evolved to the stage where it's at. It allows various smaller authors to join forces in hopes of increasing their chances at writing a quality novel and gaining recognition. Perhaps more relevantly to our case, it also opened the door for well-established authors to cooperate in hopes of combining their strengths to create something which would outclass what either of them can do on their own. Douglas Preston and Lee Child have already worked together on some occasions and their works have certainly been on the original side of the spectrum, and recently they have returned to the fore once again with City of Endless Night.