4/5, AUTHOR, Book Review, Fiction, K, Pump Up Your Book, RATING, Read in 2015, Review Book

2015.13 REVIEW – A Dream Called Marilyn by Mercedes King

A Dream Called Marilyn
by Mercedes King

Copyright: 2015
Pages: 167
Rating: 4/5
Read: March 28 – April 3, 2015
Challenge: No challenge
Yearly count: 13
Format: Print
Source: Pump Up Your Book Blog Tour
Series: N/A

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A Dream Called MarilynBlurb: In the summer of 1962, nothing could prepare Dr. Charles Campbell for his first meeting with new client, Marilyn Monroe. A reputable L.A. psychiatrist, he’s been hired by a studio executive to treat and subdue the star, no matter what it takes. Although he’s been warned about Ms. Monroe’s unpredictability, she’s not what he expected. Gaining Marilyn’s trust means crossing doctor-patient boundaries, and trying to separate fact from Hollywood-fed-rumors proves destructive to both Charles’ career and his personal life. As Marilyn shares her secrets and threatens to go public with information that could destroy President Kennedy’s administration, Charles’ world turns upside-down. He sinks deeper into her troubles than he should, but Charles becomes determined to help her, even though it means endangering Marilyn’s life and risking his own.


Review: If you have followed my blog for any time, you know that I am obsessed with JFK. Well, along with that obsession comes a side obsession with Marilyn Monroe, too. I’m just fascinated by what happened all those years ago and all the conspiracies that are out there. So when I was pitched this short novella, I immediately picked up on it.

Novellas are not something that I am used to reading, so I didn’t quite know what to expect going into it. I figured some 170 odd pages would be easy to take on (pregnancy brain is at its finest in my life right now) and it was Marilyn, so….. But at the same time, I didn’t know how something could be packed into 170 short pages.

But Ms. King makes it work. She takes a few characters and a few pages and just creates this really fun short novel. It really worked for me. I enjoyed it. I was totally entranced by Charles’ life. There’s so much going on with his personal life, and Marilyn definitely throws a wrench in the picture. And Marilyn is, well, Marilyn.

Honestly, I enjoyed my first foray into the novella world. This was a really fun read and I would highly recommend it to anyone!!


 

Mercedes KingAbout the Author: A founding member of Sisters in Crime Columbus, Ohio (affectionately dubbed SiCCO), Mercedes King can be found elbow-deep in research, reading, or enjoying the local bike path. Combining her love of pop culture with history, she created A Dream Called Marilyn, a fictional take on the last weeks of Marilyn’s life. With an unquenchable thirst for a bygone era, she’s also written O! Jackie, a fictional take on Jackie Kennedy’s private life–and how she dealt with JFK’s affairs. Short story fans would enjoy The Kennedy Chronicles, a series featuring Jackie and Jack before the White House and before they were married. Visit Mercedes’ website at http://www.mercedesking.com to find out more.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Blog | Contact

As always, I hope you take the time to visit the other stops on the tour:

Monday, April 6 First Chapter Reveal at Pump Up Your Book

Tuesday, April 7 Book Review at Books Reviews ETC.

Wednesday, April 8 Guest Blogging at The Story Behind the Book

Thursday, April 9 Interview at Examiner

Friday, April 10 Book Featured at The Literary Nook

Monday April 13 Interview at The Writer’s Life

Tuesday, April 14 Book Review at My Book Addiction and More

Wednesday, April 15 Interview at As the Page Turns

Thursday, April 16 First Chapter Reveal at Read My First Chapter

Monday, April 20 Interview at PUYB Virtual Book Club

Tuesday, April 21 Interview at Beyond the Books

Wednesday, April 22 Book Review at Tales of a Book Addict

Thursday, April 23 Guest Blogging at Lori’s Reading Corner

Friday, April 24 Interview at Pimp That Character

Monday April 27 Book Review at Quirky Book Reviews

Tuesday, April 28 Book Review at Deal Sharing Aunt

Wednesday, April 29 Book Review at Must Read Faster

Thursday, April 30 Book Review at My Life Loves and Passion

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Book Blitz, Pump Up Your Book

Book Blitz: Unnverving by Karen Gallahue

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About Unnerving :

UnnervingTitle: Unnerving
Author: Karen J. Gallahue
Publisher: AuthorHouse
Pages: 231
Genre: Suspense/Thriller
Format: Kindle

Purchase at AMAZON

“You’re telling me that Ralph Kendrick, the bogeyman of my worst nightmares has escaped from jail?” Eyes wide and unbelieving, Fiona Morgan asked the detective standing at her front door. She reached for the door frame to steady her wobbly legs. When she was ten years old, Fiona Morgan and two Girl Scout friends stumbled across Ralph Kendrick murdering a young woman at a Minneapolis park. At his trial when he was convicted of Rose Wilson’s murder, Kendrick threatened to kill all three young girls if he ever got out. Now, twenty years later, Fiona discovers that Kendrick has indeed escaped from prison, and he may have wealthy connections. She hires a bodyguard, Ted Collier, veteran police officer to protect her. Matters get worse for Fiona when she finds out that Kendrick knows that she is an identical triplet. He has told other inmates he doesn’t know which one testified. So he’ll eliminate all of them. This means five women are at risk. Two days later, Tory Girard, one of Fiona’s Girl Scout friends, is found dead in Minneapolis. Tension builds as Fiona and Ted try to stay safe and track Kendrick down before he can kill or hire someone to kill again.


About Karen Gallahue

Karen J. Gallahue is a former occupational therapist who now satisfies her overactive imagination by writing stories of suspense. She lives in Naperville, Illinois,with her husband,Greg. Her previous book is Murder with a French Twist.

There is also a rafflecopter giveaway opportunity in conjunction with this book blitz. You can find that HERE.

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Book Spotlight: White Rogue by David Fett MD, Stephen Langford, and Connie Malcolm

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ABOUT THE BOOK – White Rogue by David Fett MD, Stephen Langford and Connie Malcolm

White Rogue 7

Title: White Rogue
Genre: Spy Thriller
Author: Dr. David R. Fett, Stephen Langford and Connie Malcolm
Publisher: CreateSpace
Pages: 254
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1481995510
ISBN-13: 978-1481995511
Purchase at Amazon

Cold War era biological experiments are resurrected and after Boston experiences a seemingly inexplicable bio-terrorist attack, the Center for Disease Control’s Dr. Davie Richards and Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent Paula Mushari once again join forces to uncover who is behind it. An obscure reference to a Dresden project found amid crash site evidence marks them both for execution. Paula and Dave are forced to leave Boston in the middle of the night and head to Washington, D.C.,where they soon find that anyone they contact also becomes the target of assassins. When the daughter of the CDC’s director is taken hostage, Dave and Paula come face to face with an evil that forces them to question the very nature of duty and service to country. With the help of one man, they learn the true meaning of dark operatives while they desperately try to stop another bio-attack from happening.


About the Authors

David Fett 7DR. DAVID FETT, a board certified ophthalmologist, received his BS and Masters from MIT before earning his MD from Dartmouth Medical School. He now runs a private practice in Los Angeles and serves as an assistant clinical professor at UCLA School of Medicine. He lives in the Los Angeles area with his wife, Randi, and their four children.

 

 

Stephen Langford 7STEPHEN LANGFORD is a veteran writer/producer of over 150 hours of primetime television. He has also ventured into screenwriting and fiction. He lives in the Los Angeles area with his wife, Sandy, and their two daughters.

 

 

Connie Malcolm 7CONNIE MALCOLM is a recovering journalist who worked on The Globe and Mail in Toronto. She has worked previously on ten books of nonfiction authored by her husband, Andrew. She lives in the Los Angeles area with her husband and the youngest of their three sons.

Book Blitz, Pump Up Your Book

Blog Tour: Continuance by Marta Tandori

Join Marta Tandori, author of the suspense family saga novel, Continuance, as she tours the blogosphere August 5 – September 27, 2013 on her first virtual book tour with Pump Up Your Book!

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ContinuanceABOUT CONTINUANCE

When seven-year-old Ethan du Maurier, only son and heir of New York City real estate tycoon, Alexander du Maurier, disappears during school recess, the FBI quickly determines that his disappearance was an abduction. Within hours of a special news bulletin airing nationwide, the FBI’s hotline is inundated with anonymous tips relating to sightings of a little boy matching Ethan’s description outside a historic Savannah building, now a newly-renovated eatery. The FBI quickly assembles a task force and searches the premises but instead of finding little Ethan, they stumble upon the century-old remains of what appears to be a murdered man hidden in a pirate’s tunnel under the historic building.

With her restaurant on temporary lockdown pending the FBI’s forensic investigation, owner Annie Eastwood researches the history of the building she inherited, hoping it will shed some light on the identity of the murdered man, but what she uncovers are bits and pieces of a horrible scandal that nearly destroyed the du Maurier family over a century ago. With hopes for Ethan’s safe return dwindling by the hour, Annie finds an unlikely lead in an old classified ad from a Boston newspaper which connects the events of the past to the present-day abduction of Ethan du Maurier—and to the identity of his abductor. Determined to rescue little Ethan before time runs out, Annie quickly realizes that the boy’s abductor will stop at nothing—even murder—in order to exact his revenge.

Purchase at:

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Add to Goodreads:

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ABOUT MARTA TANDORI

By the time Marta Tandori reached fifth grade, she was an avid reader and writer with a stack of short stories collecting dust in a box under her bed but it wasn’t until she began studying acting in her early twenties at the prestigious American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York that Marta realized acting wasn’t really her passion – writing fiction was. What followed was years of writing workshops as well as correspondence courses in writing for children through the Institute of Children’s Literature in Connecticut. She credits the award winning author, Troon Harrison, as the instructor who helped her find her literary voice. Marta’s first work of middle-grade fiction, BEING SAM, NO MATTER WHAT was published in 2005, followed by EVERY WHICH WAY BUT KUKU! in 2006. With her more recent endeavors, Marta has shifted her writing focus to “women’s suspense”, a genre she fondly describes as having “strong female protagonists with closets full of nasty skeletons and the odd murder or two to complicate their already complicated lives”. To learn more about Marta, visit her blog, The Marta/Kindle Project at http://www.martatandori.com.

Visit her website at http://www.martatandori.com

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Continuance Virtual Book Publicity Tour Schedule

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Monday, August 5 – Book review and 1st chapter reveal at Miki’s Hope

Wednesday, August 7 – Guest blogging at From the TBR Pile

Thursday, August 8 – Book reviewed at Kaisy Daisy’s Corner

Monday, August 12 – Guest blogging and 1st chapter reveal at Inside BJ’s Head

Tuesday, August 13 – Book review and Guest blogging at Queen of All She Reads

Thursday, August 15 – Interviewed at Review From Here

Monday, August 19 – Book reviewed at Love Books! Book Reviews

Monday, August 19 – Guest blogging and 1st chapter reveal at Cindy’s Love of Books

Tuesday, August 20 – Book featured at Beyond the Books

Wednesday, August 21 – Book featured at My Cozie Corner

Friday, August 23 – Interviewed at Book Marketing Buzz

Monday, August 26 – Book featured at My Devotional Thoughts

Tuesday, August 27 – Guest blogging at The Writer’s Life

Thursday, August 29 – 1st chapter reveal at Read 2 Review

Friday, August 30 – Interviewed at Broowaha

Wednesday, September 4 – 1st Chapter Reveal at As the Pages Turn

Friday, September 6 – Book featured at Tales of a Book Addict

Tuesday, September 10 – Guest blogging at Literarily Speaking

Thursday, September 12 – Interviewed at Literal Exposure

Friday, September 13 – Guest blogging at Between the Covers

Tuesday, September 17 – Book reviewed at Bless Their Heart Mom

Wednesday, September 18 – Book reviewed at Raven Reviews

Thursday, September 19 – Book reviewed at The Self Taught Cook

Friday, September 20 – Book reviewed and 1st chapter reveal at Authors and Readers Book Corner

Monday, September 23 – Book reviewed and 1st chapter reveal at Broken Teepee

Tuesday, September 24 – 1st chapter reveal at Books R Us

Wednesday, September 25 – Book reviewed and 1st chapter reveal at Literary Winner

Thursday, September 26 – Book reviewed at Create with Joy

Friday, September 27 – Book reviewed at Mary’s Cup of Tea

Friday, September 27 – Book featured at Emeraldfire’s Bookmark

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Book Blitz, Pump Up Your Book

Blog Tour: Angel Killer by P.J. Nunn

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ABOUT THE BOOK – Angel Killer by P.J. Nunn

Angel KillerThe death of a child is every mother’s nightmare.  But what if the child has no mother?  What if their little bodies are discarded like garbage and no one even seems to care that they’re gone?

Shari Markham, psychologist for the Dallas Police Department, knows what it feels like to be unclaimed and unwanted. She can’t turn away, even if it means demons dancing in her dreams at night.  But when her relentless pursuit of information to help apprehend this madman gets a little too close, he turns the tables, warning her that his next scheduled victim will be her own three-year-old granddaughter, Angel!

Purchase your copy at AMAZON

Title: Angel Killer
Author: PJ Nunn
Paperback: 286 pp.
Publisher: Dark Oak Mysteries
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1610090799
ISBN-13: 978-1610090797


About the Author

PJ NunnAs with most things, PJ Nunn’s career started out as something else entirely. She started out in retail then moved to property management. That led to teaching high school, then serving as a counselor and liaison to the local police youth services division. She also spent five years as chairperson of the Coryell County Child Welfare Board and spent years counseling abuse victims and serving law enforcement as a trauma counselor and consultant (something she still does today). When she moved to Dallas, a family illness caused her to leave a job teaching psychology at Dallas County Community College District to become a freelance writer, but found that a few favors she was doing for friends—writing press releases and setting up book signings—was better suited to her talents and her drives.

In 1998, she founded BreakThrough Promotions, now a national public relations firm helping authors, mostly of mystery novels, publicize themselves and their work. The business is thriving and PJ is excited about the release of her first novel, Angel Killer. PJ lives with her husband some of their five children near Dallas, TX.

Learn more about PJ and her work at www.pjnunn.com.

Connect & Socialize with PJ!

TWITTER | FACEBOOK


Excerpt:

Fog swirled around her, transforming everything into vague shapes and blurs. A small sigh escaped her as Shari parked her mocha Taurus next to the Grand Prairie squad car and got out. The sudden loss of heat prompted her to pull the front of her jacket closed against the damp air. Texas was never this cold in November. Sleep had been elusive. She’d just settled in when the jangling of the phone chased away warm, fuzzy dreams and replaced them with harsh, cold reality. Now the distant sound of thunder matched her mood and didn’t bode well for the crime scene. The sky, a creepy morning shadow with no delineation, met the ground while a fine mist settled on her without a single, discernible drop. Shari slammed the door and walked across the grass toward the officer securing the scene.

After more than a year as criminal profiler for the Dallas Police Department, she wondered if the time would ever come when she’d accept these early morning wakeup calls as typical rather than feeling as if she’d been thrown into a tornado. Emotional autopilot would kick in any minute though, separating her from the horrors to come and allowing her to function within the safe realm of clinical objectivity. At least that’s how it worked in theory.

“Morning,” she greeted the uniformed officer as he walked toward her, headed back to his squad car. He didn’t look any more cheerful than she felt. Nobody liked to work crimes against children.


I hope you will take the time to visit the other stops on the tour:

Monday, August 5 – Book Featured at Laurie’s Thoughts and Reviews

Tuesday, August 6 – Book Review at Miki’s Hope

Wednesday, August 7 – Character Guest Post at Moonlight Lace & Mayhem

Wednesday, August 7 – Book Review at The Self-Taught Cook

Thursday, August 8 – Guest Blogging at Inside BJ’s Head

Friday, August 9 – Guest Blogging & Book Giveaway at Darlene’s Book Nook

Friday, August 9 – Book Feature at Tales of a Book Addict

Monday, August 12 – Book Review at Mary’s Cup of Tea

Thursday, August 15 – Book Review at My Cozie Corner

Friday, August 16 – Character Guest Post at Books R Us

Monday, August 19 – Book Featured at Books R Us

Wednesday, August 21 – Book Featured at Confessions of a Reader

Thursday, August 22 – Guest Blogging at Lori’s Reading Corner

Friday, August 23 – Book Review at Literary Winner

Wednesday, August 28 – Book Review & Guest Blogging at Jersey Girl Book Reviews

Thursday, August 29 – Book Review at A Room Without Books is Empty

Friday, August 30 – Book Review, Interview & Character Guest Post at Melina’s Book Blog

Friday, August 30 – Guest Blogging at Read 2 Review

 

Book Blitz, Pump Up Your Book

Blog Tour: The Alchemist Agenda by Marty Weiss

Join Marty Weiss, author of the thriller novel, The Alchemist Agenda, as he tours the blogosphere July 1 – September 27, 2013 on his first virtual book tour with Pump Up Your Book!

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The Alchemist AgendaABOUT THE ALCHEMIST AGENDA

When Charlie Rocklin and his company Gold Diggers Exploration set out to recover a 17th century shipwreck, they discover an undocumented Nazi submarine with enigmatic symbols. Ariel Ellis, a femme fatale historian with a mysterious past, proves that the U-boat contains the key to a formula more valuable than any sunken treasure, and more deadly than any weapon that has ever existed. In this globetrotting international adventure, Charlie and Ariel uncover an accelerating tempest of secrecy, lies, and agendas, fighting not only for the truth, but for their lives. Weiss’s debut novel is a lightning-paced story with surprises at every turn, and shows us that our personal legends may be more real than we ever could have imagined.
Purchase at:

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Add to Goodreads:

goodreads

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ABOUT MARTY WEISS

Marty Weiss was born and raised in Chicago and decided that he wanted to make movies after spending a summer working on the set of John Hughes’ movie “Sixteen Candles.” After earning a B.S. in Journalism from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, and an M.F.A. in film and television from New York University, he directed national and international TV commercials for major Blue Chip brands as well as TV movies. He helmed his first feature film, “Vampires: The Turning,” for Sony/Screen Gems Entertainment – an action/horror movie that evolved out of John Carpenter’s “Vampires.” It was filmed in Chiang Mai, Thailand and released worldwide in 2005. Weiss has filmed throughout North and South America, Eastern and Western Europe, and Southeast Asia, and has garnered numerous industry awards. His screen adaption of his debut novel, “The Alchemist Agenda,” was the honored with the Best Screenplay award from Amazon Studios and is currently on their development slate for production. Weiss lives in Los Angeles with his wife Elisabeth and children Jasmine and Jake.

Visit his blog at http://www.martinishotfilms.tv

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The Alchemist Agenda Virtual Book Publicity Tour Schedule

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Monday, July 1 – Book featured at Inside BJ’s Head

Monday, July 1 – 1st chapter reveal at Rainy Day Reviews

Tuesday, July 2 – Book reviewed and guest blogging at Rainy Day Reviews

Tuesday, July 2 – 1st chapter reveal at Bibliophila, Please

Wednesday, July 3 – Book featured at Book Journey

Friday, July 5 – 1st chapter reveal at Mom with a Kindle

Monday, July 8 – Book reviewed at Miki’s Hope

Tuesday, July 9 – Book featured at Tales of a Book Addict

Thursday, July 11 – 1st chapter reveal at Read 2 Review

Tuesday, July 16 – Book featured at My Cozie Corner

Thursday, July 18 – Interviewed at Review From Here

Tuesday, July 23 – Book reviewed at My Devotional Thoughts

Tuesday, July 23 – Guest blogging at Rural Mom

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Pump Up Your Book

Book Blitz, Pump Up Your Book

Blog Tour: The Controlled by Becky Komant

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ABOUT THE BOOK – THE CONTROLLED BY BECKY KOMANT

Sarah Ruiz thought she had it all – until someone entered her life who was hell-bent on destroying her.

The ControlledSarah Ruiz is a business owner, a fitness trainer and a mom.  Married to the ever-so-charming and wealthy Alex Ruiz, Sarah appears to have the perfect life.  But behind closed doors, he revealed a side of himself that destroyed her love for him.  With five beautiful children and unable to leave her situation, Sarah knows she must make changes.

Sarah’s journey to freedom take a turn when a man, Gabe Benoit, promises to help her.  Thus starts a whirlwind of romance, intrigue, seduction, blackmail and manipulation.  No matter which way Sarah turns, she is backed into a corner before she can even realize it.  When she finally has promise of a better future, she must use every ounce of her strength to work her way through the web of lies and find truth on her journey to independence.

Purchase The Controlled at AMAZON.


About the Author

Becky Komant 2Becky Komant was born and raised in beautiful Kelowna, British Columbia. Spending most of her childhood years outdoors and playing sports, Becky’s passion for fitness was ignited. Working at a gym at the age of 16, she then went on to an advertising position at a local newspaper following high school. Soon after, Becky started her family and wanted to be more involved with her children. It was then that Becky followed her passion and founded a successful private training studio. Realizing that being a trainer was much more than just helping people physically, this lead her in the direction of becoming a certified life coach. Because of her fitness and life coaching career, Becky always envisioned writing a book. Overtime and thought, it evolved into her first novel, The Controlled. With more writing on the horizon, she hopes to inspire others on many levels. Becky continues to reside in Kelowna with her family.

Her latest book is the adult suspense thriller, The Controlled.

Learn more about Becky at http://www.beckykomant.com.


AUTHOR, Book Review, D, Fiction, Pump Up Your Book, Read in 2013, Review Book

2013.7 REVIEW – The Man From 2063 by Jack Duffy

The Man From 2063
by Jack Duffy

Copyright: 2012
Pages: 270
Read: Jan. 27-29, 2013
Challenge: No Challenge
Yearly count: 6
Format: Print
Source: Pump Up Your Book Promotions

The Man From 2063Blurb: I knew it. I knew it, he repeated to himself. A conspiracy. But who had planned the murder? Was Lee Harvey Oswald even involved? If only one could go back in time and solve the mystery. I have to pursue this, he told himself. Someone has to find out the truth once and for all.

On November 22, 2063 a new film finally proves a conspiracy was involved in the assassination of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy. Sean Zumwalt dares to go back in time to alter the course of world history and save JFK. But he soon finds that the truth is much more complicated than he ever could have imagined.

Based on actual events and forty years of research, The Man From 2063 will take you through the golds of time and historical conspiracies, leaving you wondering ‘What if?’


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Review: I have to start out this review by just stating that I am a total Kennedy junkie. I remember watching all the 40th anniversary Kennedy assassination shows back in 2003 from my dorm room. I was a college freshman. I think my roommate wanted to kill me because I essentially took over the television for the entire week – hey, it was my TV so she couldn’t complain too much. But she definitely thought I was nuts. And I probably am a little bit, but I have always been a little obsessed with the Kennedy family, but especially with the assassination.

So when I was pitched this book for the Pump Up Your Book Blog tour, I was immediately intrigued. I knew it was a book I would love. Mr. Duffy addresses the fact that his storyline is very similar to Stephen King’s 11/22/63. I actually DNF’d that book a while back. So I went into this book knowing that I once set aside a book that dealt with the Kennedy assassination and time travel … would I make it through this book?

Why, yes … yes I would! And I would end up truly enjoying it. From the first page it sucked me in. I had to know if Sean would accomplish his goal in preventing the assassination.

Overall I enjoyed this book, but there were two main issues that I must address: the dialogue and the middle section of the book. Let me start with the dialogue. One thing that I noticed was that Mr. Duffy started too many sentences with “Well…” It was to the point where it was a little overdoing it. The dialogue also felt a little forced in places. It didn’t flow very well at certain times. It didn’t take away from my enjoyment of this book, but it was definitely something that I noticed. Also, the middle portion of the book bothered me at times. The book itself is divided into three sections. It was really the middle section that bothered me  – the main character, Sean, was not mentioned once. I understood why this occurred because of the way Mr. Duffy set up the book, but I felt as if it kind of took away from character development. Once again, this was not something that made me dislike the book in any way, just another slight problem that I had (I’m big on character development).

Okay, so now that the “negatives” are out of the way, let me tell you why I actually liked this book a lot. It introduces a very interesting “what if” to the Kennedy assassination. I personally believe that there was some sort of conspiracy involved and while I felt like the conspiracy that Mr. Duffy set up is a little far-fetched (rogue CIA agent paying three mechanics (assassins) $1 million each .. where would an individual get that kind of money?), I felt as if it made a great storyline. You could also tell that Mr. Duffy knows the Kennedy assassination – he sure has done his homework! The book is very fast paced and exciting. I could hardly wait to find out what the outcome would be … if Sean would succeed and how it would affect the course of history. I read it so quickly, I just really enjoyed it.

Overall, I would highly recommend this book.


Jack DuffyAbout the Author:

Jack Duffy is an attorney from Fort Worth, Texas.  The Man from 2063 is his first book.  On November 22, 1963 he was in school at Bruce Shulkey Elementary when he heard the news about President Kennedy’s assassination.  His parents were at the breakfast in Fort Worth, Texas, that morning when President Kennedy gave his last speech.  In 1970 he saw the Zapruder film for the first time.  He has been researching the JFK assassination since then.  He has interviewed many eyewitnesses including Marina Oswald and several Parkland physicians who treated JFK.  He has met many researchers who have written books on the assassination.  He came up with the idea for a time travel novel in 1998.  He has one of the largest private collections of materials on the JFK assassination.  He graduated from Texas Tech University with a B.A. in Political Science.  He then earned an M.B.A from Baylor University.  He then graduated from South Texas School of Law with a J.D.  He is an Eagle Scout.

WEBSITE | FACEBOOK

Praise for The Man From 2063:

Although I reject the premise of “The Man From 2063″ that Lee Harvey Oswald did not kill President John F. Kennedy and that there was a conspiracy in the assassination, from a purely historical standpoint Jack Duffy has succeeded in writing a very clever and engrossing “what if” story surrounding the events of November 22, 1963.

-Vincent Bugliosi, author of Helter Skelter


**This review is posted in conjunction with the Pump Up Your Book! blog tour. I received a copy of this book to review in exchange for my honest opinion. I
received no monetary compensation.

AUTHOR, B, Book Review, Fiction, Pump Up Your Book, Read in 2013, Review Book

2013.10 REVIEW – The Aviator’s Wife by Melanie Benjamin

The Aviator’s Wife
by Melanie Benjamin

Copyright: 2013
Pages: 396
Read: Feb. 10-15, 2013
Challenge: No Challenge
Yearly count: 10
Format: Print
Source: Pump Up Your Book Promotions

The Aviator's WifeBlurb: For much of her life, Anne Morrow, the shy daughter of the U.S. ambassador to Mexico, has stood in the shadows of those around her. Then Anne meets Colonel Charles Lindbergh, fresh off his 1927 solo flight across the Atlantic. Enthralled by Charles’s assurance and fame, Anne is certain the celebrated aviator has scarcely noticed her. But she is wrong. Charles sees in Anne a kindred spirit, a fellow adventurer – and her world will be changed forever. The two marry in a headline-making wedding. In the years that follow, the fairy-tale life Anne once longed for will bring heartbreak and hardships, ultimately pushing her to reconcile her need for love and her desire for independence, and to embrace, at last, life’s infinite possibilities for change and happiness.

Drawing on the rich history of the twentieth century – from the late twenties to the mid-sixties – and featuring cameos from such notable characters as Joseph Kennedy and Amelia Earhart, The Aviator’s Wife reveals the dizzying highs and devastating lows of a complicated marriage. With stunning power and grace, Melanie Benjamin provides new insight into what made this remarkable relationship endure.


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Review: Wowzers. This has definitely been a great reading year for me and it’s only February 🙂 This is another book that I absolutely adored!!

Let me start by telling you what I knew about Charles Lindbergh before I began this book.

  1. He was the first to fly solo across the Atlantic.
  2. His son was kidnapped and eventually found murdered.

That’s it. That’s where my knowledge of Charles Lindbergh and his family ended. I had no idea what his wife’s name even was. I didn’t know that they went on to have 5 more children (Jon, Land, Scott, Ansy & Reeve).

And do you know what I came away with when I put the book down? The feeling of wanting to know more! And to me (and the author, as she states in her Author’s Note), that is the best part about historical fiction.

So now I suppose I should actually tell you about the book itself. (Other than that you should go buy a copy!)

The book starts out with introducing Anne Morrow and her family. Then it progresses with the short courtship of Anne and Charles. Then it goes on with the marriage, birth of their first child, kidnapping of Charles Jr., and then spends a lot of time of their lives in the aftermath of the kidnapping and murder of little Charlie, and then ends with Charles’ death.

But as Ms. Benjamin explains in her Author’s Note – this is really a book about the relationship between Anne and Charles. And I must say, that the way Charles is depicted in this novel – well, if that’s who he really was in real life, he was one very cold man. And that’s the nicest thing I could say about him. There were many times when I wanted to reach into the book and grab him by the neck to tell him to straighten up and act like a human for goodness sake!

For example, shortly after Charlie’s body was found, Anne was obviously having a very difficult time. Any parent would. But somehow Charles wanted her to throw it all under a rug and forget it. I was absolutely appalled. But I will say that when the book finally reaches its conclusion it makes you realize just how differently everyone grieves.

Throughout the book you are given glimpses into the future, to 1974 when Charles is on his way to his final resting place in Hawaii. And without giving away any spoilers, I can tell you that I was absolutely shocked by what Anne finds out at the end. However, that’s not to say it was completely surprising, giving the way that Charles appeared to be throughout his life and their marriage.

But Anne. Oh, Anne. What a woman she turned out to be. The reader really sees her grow from a shy, self-conscious young woman who is convinced that Charles must be mistaken in wanting to marry her – after all, her sister, Elisabeth was a much better candidate – to a strong mother who finally stands up to her husband once and for all. She really grows into her confidence. She finally writes that book Charles knows she’s capable of writing. She is the best mother she can be. And she stands by her husband, through it all. But when you finish this book, you will really have a great respect for exactly who Anne Morrow was. Because, honestly, I really do think that she was exactly what Charles needed in his life … she was, as he was fond of saying, his crew.

Overall, I highly recommend this book. I’ve definitely got my second candidate for my Top 10 reads list 🙂


Melanie BenjaminAbout the Author:

Melanie Benjamin is the author of the nationally bestselling Alice I Have Been and The Autobiography of Mrs. Tom Thumb.

Her latest book is the historical fiction, The Aviator’s Wife.

Benjamin lives in Chicago, where she is at work on her next historical novel.

Visit the Author:

WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK


**This review is posted in conjunction with the Pump Up Your Book! blog tour. I received a copy of this book to review in exchange for my honest opinion. I
received no monetary compensation.

4/5, AUTHOR, Book Review, D, Fiction, Pump Up Your Book, RATING, Read in 2012, Review Book

2012.34 REVIEW – The Sons of Jude by Brandt Dodson

The Sons of Jude
by Brandt Dodson

Copyright: 2012
Pages: 314
Rating: 4/5
Read: Dec. 19 – Dec. 24 2012
Challenge: No Challenge
Yearly count: 34
Format: Print
Source: Pump Up Your Book Promotions

The Sons of JudeBlurb: When Chicago detectives Frank Campello and Andy Polanski are assigned to investigate the murder of Trina Martinez it seems like an ordinary homicide. An unfortunate young girl in the wrong place at the wrong time has been brutally murdered. But their investigation is halted by a wall of silence, a wall formed by powerful interests that will render their inquiry a lost cause.

Then they enlist the support of reporter Christy Lee – and come under immediate fire. Polanski is arrested. Campello threatened. Christy is attacked.

It’s the case that every cop gets. The one that changes his life. The one where justice is elusive and the hunter becomes the hunted.


The-Sons-of-Jude-banner

Review: I took this book on vacation with me and I have to admit I was a little bummed that I chose my vacation as the time to read it – it was that good! I hated to put the book down once I started it.

This book starts off with a bang and never stops until the last page. As a reader I really felt for Frank’s character when we find out that he had just lost his partner and is almost immediately partnered up with another detective – and a “traitor” at that. But I think what I liked the most about the whole situation is that Frank really took the high road and worked things out with Andy. It was definitely a tough position for a cop to be put in, but it made me feel that Frank’s character really was a top-notch police officer. The job is obviously everything to him and it makes him come across as a highly likeable character. On the other side of it, Andy’s character is fleshed out nicely when Frank begins to open up. The reader learns that things aren’t necessarily as they seemed with Andy – and I liked that. So yeah, I really enjoyed the characters in this book as you can see.

I couldn’t help but chuckle at the way that Chicago politics are depicted in this book. Good old Chicago crooks politicians 😉 I was quite intrigued by what was going on with the politician and the predicament that he found himself in … going along with certain things in order to make his political career stronger. I thought it made for a good secondary storyline and definitely set things up in for the next book.

I always enjoy finding a new series (yeah, like I need any more of those!) and this one was definitely a good start to what I hope is a very successful series. I personally found the characters to be very well-developed. I look forward to seeing what happens with Christy and Frank as well as Frank and Andy. I think that Mr. Dodson has done a fantastic job setting up the characters for some very interesting storylines in future books.

Overall I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I felt that the writing was great, the storyline was interesting and the characters were enjoyable. I would honestly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good crime thriller.

Highly recommended.


Brandt DodsonAbout the Author:

Brandt Dodson was born and raised in Indianapolis, Indiana, which he would later choose as the setting for his Colton Parker Mystery series. Although he discovered in grade school that he wanted to be a writer, it would be another twenty-one years before he would put pen to paper.“I knew in fifth grade that I wanted to be a writer. Our teacher had given each of us a photograph which we were to use as inspiration for a short story. The particular photo I was given was of several young men playing handball in New York City. I don’t remember all of the particulars of the story now, but I do remember the thrill that writing it gave me.”

Later, while in college, one of Brandt’s professors would echo that teacher’s comment.

“But life intervened and I found myself working at a variety of jobs. I worked in the toy department of a local department store and fried chicken for a local fast food outlet. Over the course of the next several years I finished my college degree and worked for the Indianapolis office of the FBI, and served for eight years as a Naval Officer in the United States Naval Reserve. I also obtained my doctorate in Podiatric Medicine, and after completion of my surgical residency, opened my own practice. But I never forgot my first love. I wanted to write.”

During his early years in practice, Brandt began reading the work of Dean Koontz.

“I discovered Dean’s book, The Bad Place, and was completely blown away by his craftsmanship. I read something like 13 or 14 of his back list over the following two weeks. It wasn’t long after that I began to write and submit in earnest.”

Still, it would be another twelve years before Brandt was able to secure the publishing contract he so desperately desired.

“I began by writing the type of fiction that I enjoyed; I wrote edgy crime thrillers that were laced with liberal amounts of suspense. Over the years, I’ve begun to write increasingly more complex work by using broader canvases and themes.

Since securing his first contract, Brandt has continued to pen the type of stories that inspired him to write when he was a boy, and that have entertained his legions of readers.

“I love to write, and as long as others love to read, I plan on being around for a long time to come.”

Brandt Dodson’s latest book is the crime thriller The Sons of Jude.

This tour also has a Kindle Fire HD Giveaway – if you are interested, please go HERE for the sign-up.


**This review is posted in conjunction with the Pump Up Your Book! blog tour. I received a copy of this book to review in exchange for my honest opinion. I
received no monetary compensation.