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Inquisitor (Witch & Wolf Book 2) by R J Blain

inquisitor“I have no idea what’s awaiting me, or what will happen when this all ends. For the moment I know this: there are sick people and they need curing.” ― Albert Camus, The Plague

“No one thinks of how much blood it costs.” – Dante Alighieri

“Can you please ask James to return to the lab?”
“I’m afraid that’s not possible, ma’am,”
“Why?
“He just locked himself in containment and started howling.” –
R. J. Blain, Inquisitor

When you are as old as Allison Victoria Mayfield Hanover, you realize that only are few things are truly immutable.  Blood and violence, horrors and hatred. And that one solid, totally immutable, truth of the universe: Everything eventually dies. Except, perhaps, for Victoria. Ah, but you see, someone wants, very much, to see Victoria dead. And they will do anything, kill anyone, to make sure that happens.

Which is a really crappy attitude when you realize who Victoria is. You see, she is the owner of Marrodin, one of the largest companies in the world. A company which goes out of its way to pay a hire those who have ‘special’ needs. You know the sort. Witches. Wolves. Single mothers.

Victoria is living in Atlanta as Allison Ferdinan these days, playing at being an accountant. Too bad money couldn’t buy me a life. Of course, sometimes what you wish for actually comes true – and too often in bad, very bad, awful sorts of ways. It started out as a simple favor for a client/friend, Mark. Let’s dress up and go to a party. You can be my fiancée!

Whoa. Hold the Phone!

Gack. Killing Mark in Central Park really probably isn’t the best idea. But what was a really Bad Idea? Yeah. You got it. Going to a Halloween party as the fake fiancée, only to find out that your fake mother-in-law-to-be is a real witch. No, I mean it. A Real. Witch. And if you want to drop the W and add a B, well, please feel free.

But the party isn’t the only thing wrong in Allison’s world. Pretty soon it seems the whole world is out to kill her. And when whoever it is that hunts her begins going after her employees, well, let’s just say that Allison/Victoria won’t let it stand.

Here’s a hint. Don’t tick off an ancient werewolf. You won’t like the outcome.

I loved this book so much I stayed up way too late into the early morning hours reading when I had to get up early the next morning. In fact, I liked it so much, I immediately downloaded the next one and started on it the next night. I am not saying there aren’t issues inherent in the writing. There are some continuity and relationship logic issues that were frustrating – but you all know how picky I am about that sort of thing. I still think you should at the very least pick it up on Kindle Unlimited for free the way I did. And I look forward to hearing what you think. This isn’t just another Paranormal – great character development, world building and a marked lack of the sort of sloppy writing that is so common in Urban Fantasy makes this series well worth the precious reading time if you like strong women characters. There are several between these pages!

About the Author

RJ Blain suffers from a Moleskine journal obsession, a pen fixation, and a terrible tendency to pun without warning.
When she isn’t playing pretend, she likes to think she’s a cartographer and a sumi-e painter. In reality, she herds cats and a husband, and obeys the commands of Tsu Dhi, the great warrior fish.
In her spare time, she daydreams about being a spy. Should that fail, her contingency plan involves tying her best of enemies to spinning wheels and quoting James Bond villains until she is satisfied.

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Whole Countries Who Despise Women – Though They Wouldn’t Exist Without Us

LPut yourself in her shoes | the human provinceet’s face it. Men, overall, absolutely despise women. They fear us, hate us, would just as soon see us tied up in a basement to be raped and abused, then forgotten until the next time they need to get off. Or get their food made. Oh, not all of them, certainly. There are men who follow this site who are wonderful, caring gentlemen. But the good ones? The good ones are so very, very few. As Foreign Affairs Reporter for the Toronto Star put it in her March 8, 2008 article, “These things are universal,” says Taina Bien-Aime, executive director of New York-based Equality Now. “There is not one single country where women can feel absolutely safe.”

Yes, the Middle East is a horror story for women, no matter their cast. But watching the first Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders  reminds me that, no matter how bad the treatment of women in the Middle East is, they aren’t the only guilty country. Hatred of women is worldwide. Women and children are not safe. Not in Thailand, where the first show is set (let’s face it, I have always thought Gary Sinise is a great actor. I am excited to watch this show develop. I just hope it lasts longer than Suspect Behavior. I really like Forest Whitaker as well – and Kirsten Vangsness as Penelope Garcia had a cameo on each of those as well…. I want to be Penelope in my next life) Horiffic Abuse Of Little Children In Middle East |

OK, off the point. It isn’t just “foreign” countries that hate women. American men are just as bad. Sex slavery is rampant here, with American women and children being victimized just as much as foreign women. Websites brag about how happy American men are with their  “submissive,” “malleable” foreign mail order brides, who can be treated any way the males want without fear of being punished for their brutality. No standing up for themselves or having personalities of their own like American women.

Women carry you in their wombs. They bear you for nine months, withstand the wear and tear of feeding your growing bodies within their own, and suffer the excruciating pain of childbirth. They raise you, feed you from their body and soul. And how is that love returned? With hate, brutality, torture, rape, murder. All that love, and this is what women have to look forward to.

I really believe that, until men learn to love and respect women, to love their children and wish to protect them and the women who bore them above all else, we will never settle as a species. We will never be able to live with one another on this tiny blue planet without totally destroying ourselves and the world we live on. Someone asked  me why I read so much Paranormal Romance these days, and why the particular authors I read. Honestly? There is so much evil in the world, it is refreshing to the mind and the soul to sit down with a good PR, where the men and women are both strong in their own right. Where men are what I consider to be real men, who not only love women, but respect them as well. Who will die rather than injure a child. And who realize that, yes, they may be physically stronger than women and children – but that their strength can be tempered with love and protection without being considered weak. Instead, their love and protection of those who depend on them makes them stronger in mind, body and soul.

 

Review: Defensive Magic, A Lost Library Novel, Book Three by Kate Baray

24771540When people want to win they will go to desperate extremes. However, anyone that has already won in life has come to the conclusion that there is no game. There is nothing but learning in this life and it is the only thing we take with us to the grave—knowledge. If you only understood that concept then your heart wouldn’t break so bad. Jealousy or revenge wouldn’t be your ambition. Stepping on others to raise yourself up wouldn’t be a goal. Competition would be left on the playing field, and your freedom from what other people think about you would light the pathway out of hell.”  ― Shannon L. Alder

“There are many hidden truths behind a lie” ― Arlin Sailesh Kapadia

 

It’s magic, Lizzie. Science twists and turns when magic is applied. Lizzy has learned a lot about magic since she first learned what she truly is – a magical being. In Lost Library: Book One of this amazing series, I wrote Kate Baray has written a fast paced, interesting book which I glad to say is much more story than ‘romantic scenes.’ Her magical world building is both unusual and comprehensive, and made me smile over the creativity. Book Two continued the story in the same magically creative manner. Now, with Defensive Magic, Kate Baray pulls out all the stops and sharpens the focus of her series as things come to a head – for good and bad.

Returning from Prague after Lizzie’s kidnapping and the near death of John and others, Lizzie and John are travel worn, exhausted, and barely functional. Which makes things worse as they walk into not one, but two challenges to John’s position as Alpha of the Texas Pack. Rumours had been coming hard and fast while they fought Worth in Prague, but when they arrive back in Texas, things are much worse than expected. For challenges aren’t the only problem. The saying is you aren’t paranoid if they really are out to get you. And someone – or multiple someones – is out to get John, and the Texas Pack. There are those who don’t want to 22041005move out of the middle ages when it comes to pack politics. And they are willing to do anything – even destroy the whole pack, to make sure that contemporary thought and management doesn’t bring the pack into the present day.

edd8a-spiritedlegacy-1900x2850But the problems aren’t  only internal. There are outside influences which are bent on destruction of the pack as well. But is it only the pack that is under attack? Or is something else happening? Are larger actions moving politics and magic, larger goals and intentions surrounding John and Lizzie? Evil magic, nasty politics, hidden agendas. And not surprisingly, things, and people, are once again not whom they appear. It’s all here, and done in Baray’s beautiful style. Fast, exciting, and eminently readable, this is a great series and well worth your reading time. You can read my reviews for Lost Library and Spirited Legacy – and of course, purchase these three books at your favorite outlet!

Highly recommended! I would love a positive response on Amazon if you like my review. 😉

amazonBigaddtogoodreads amazonUK  amazon-ca

Review: Sweet Deception by Angel Nicholas

Sweet Deception: HarperImpulse Romantic Suspense - Angel NicholasAnyone who cannot come to terms with his life while he is alive needs one hand to ward off a little his despair over his fate… but with his other hand he can note down what he sees among the ruins. – Franz Kafka

Truth is everybody is going to hurt you: you just gotta find the ones worth suffering for. – Bob Marley

Sweet Deception. It sounds like one of those “Boy meets girl. Boy saves girl from minor problem. They all live HEA. The end.”

I wonder who decided on that title? Because, though there are six five star and one four star very-well-deserved reviews, the people who are expecting a simplistic story are going to be disappointed, and the readers who would pick up a powerful, contemporary suspense/thriller would not normally pick it up offhand. And this is a powerful book. Oh, the whole HEA romance thing is in there – though it might have been better served in another novel. Just my opinion, because I found that it distracted from the overall story line.

Ally Thompson’s life is boring. Go to work in insurance claims, come home, have dinner, pour a glass of wine and read a book in bed. (Hey, that is my life!) Tired of listening to all the fun that her coworkers had over the weekend on Monday mornings, she decides it is time to do something adventurous. Well, not too adventurous, but riding a roller coaster is a start, right? Ensconced in the “special” seat at the rear of the coaster she finds herself seated next to (of course) tall blond and sexy detective “Surfer Dude”. When one of the riders is murdered and thrown from the car, Greg the Surfer Dude saves her life (of course) and thus begins a much more serious contemporary tale than I had expected based on the cover and title. In a word, this is one thrilling book – but it is also excruciatingly current in what is, to me, the best sort of way. Angel Nicholas rips the blinders off of modern issues that many would like to ignore – or pretend don’t exist in the first place.

Drug running, human trafficking, sex trafficking, dirty cops – all play a gut wrenching role in the tale. And this is why I would have been happier with the book if it left out Ally pining over Mr. “I’m too gutless to have a real relationship but I am more than happy to bang you blind – and if you try to have a relationship with anyone else I will stalk you and show up on your doorstep” Guy. Yeah, yeah, he finally “comes around” several months after the end of the ‘action’ – and yeah, yeah, she takes him back. Meh. It detracts from the importance of the book itself as it tries to pull in both the romance and the suspense crowd.

The person expecting a ‘sweet’ romance isn’t going to like this. There is brutality, rape, sex slavery of both adult women and children, (two instances of which Ally is forced to watch, as “training”), and several scenes where the heroine is subjected to the worst kinds of humiliation, though she is not actually raped.

Yes, yes, I know. I get psychotic over books that depict rape and sadism – but my problems with those books are where the actions are presented as being “acceptable”. This isn’t that sort of book. It brings into the light things that society would rather keep hidden, stripping off the blinders and making the reader truly see.

Something else it brings to light? How our government will allow these things to continue to happen as they “build their case” – no matter the suffering that women and children go through as the “case” is built. Sometimes YEARS of torture, rape and sometimes death – which can honestly be a blessing given what they are subjected to day after day. All enslaved  by monsters, of course. But the real monsters? The ones who live next door – who have wives and children and jobs, who attend PTA and host cookouts in the back yard and birthday parties for your children. And who slip away at odd hours to rape and brutalize women – and of course, children the same age or younger than their own little ones.
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So. My recommendation? READ. THIS. BOOK. But don’t expect “sweet and cuddly.” Expect realism, expect truth, expect good writing (well, except for the romance part – IMO Ally would have been better off sticking with being the strong, wonderful woman she was, and she does create something truly wonderful with her life before Greg comes back around) than sticking around for Mr. “It’s All About Me” but there was finally a HEA so those that wanted it got a sweet ending.

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for a realistic review. All thoughts are my own, and I am very happy to recommend it! If you like my reviews, please let me know on your country’s Amazon.com! I post to US, CA, AU, UK.

Review: Ashes and Arsenic by S.M. Reine

23505850Too much self-centered attitude, you see, brings, you see, isolation. Result: loneliness, fear, anger. The extreme self-centered attitude is the source of suffering. – Dalai Lama

Greed is not a financial issue. It’s a heart issue. – Andy Stanley

Cesar Hawke isn’t really much of a witch in the eyes of his coworkers at the Office of Preternatural Affairs. I mean, come on – the guy has massive sneezing attacks when he comes in contact with magic – nothing like a witch being allergic to magic. And he is a potions witch, not a pumped up spell slinger. Well, he ‘is’ pumped up with strength spells every morning, but that is neither here nor there – after all, being the new aspis for his boss, Director Fritz Friederling (and you really should read the previous book where he was awarded that dubious honour) he needs every leg up he can get.

It has been a really bad couple of months for Cesar, Fritz, and the OPA. And things are about to get a lot worse – especially for Cesar. Because his black-sheep brother, Domingo, is up to his old tricks again. And this time? Well, let’s just say death and destruction is once again raining down on Los Angeles – and Domingo is right in the middle of it. Cesar and his grandfather, Pop, tried to save Domingo in the old days. But this time? Well, this time there may be no saving him – or any of those who surround Domingo. Including his family.

Once again S.M. Reine has written a book of beauty and power that is both creative and interesting on many levels. Not only the paranormal writing level, but in her interest in and understanding of the lengths that family will go to in order to protect their members. Even when the member in question doesn’t really deserve their support.

There are convolutions on top of convolutions in this newest book of the Preternatural Affairs series (This is book 6, you can enjoy this one without reading the others, but the whole series is so enjoyable there is no reason not to read them all!)

saraAbout The Author:

Hi everyone! My name is Sara, and I’m the New York Times Bestselling Author of urban fantasy known as SM Reine. I collect swords, cat hair, and typewriters (which I do use for writing!). You can usually find me writing on my treadmill desk at 2am whilst listening to dubstep. Yes, dubstep.

If you would like to know the instant I have a new book available, you should enlist in my Army of Evil! I’ll only email you when I have a new release, which is generally no more than once a month. I can’t write any faster than that. 🙂 http://smarturl.it/armyofevil

List of my series:

WAR OF THE ALPHAS (coming soon)
Omega
Beta
Alpha

SEASONS OF THE MOON (completed)
Six Moon Summer
All Hallows’ Moon
Long Night Moon
Gray Moon Rising

THE CAIN CHRONICLES (completed)
New Moon Summer
Blood Moon Harvest
Moon of the Terrible
Red Rose Moon
Darkmoon
Of Wings and Wolves
Alpha Moon

THE DESCENT SERIES (completed)
Death’s Hand
The Darkest Gate
Dark Union
Damnation Marked
Dire Blood
Defying Fate
Paradise Damned
Deadly Hearts (prequel short story)

THE ASCENSION SERIES (completed)
Sacrificed in Shadow
Oaths of Blood
Ruled by Steel
Caged in Bone
Lost in Prophecy
Torn by Fury
Sins of Eden

PRETERNATURAL AFFAIRS (in progress)
Witch Hunt
Silver Bullet
Hotter than Helltown
Shadow Burns
Deadly Wrong
Ashes and Arsenic
Once Darkness Falls (coming 2015)

TAROT WITCHES (in progress)
Caged Wolf
Forbidden Witches
Winter Court (coming 2015)

Tomorrow Is Thanksgiving – Time To Change It To “Thinksgiving”?

Mohammed Zeyara posted this on Facebook this morning. First, you must realize I have no real idea who this person is, he is simply someone who wound up on my ‘following you’ list. Huh. A guy with over a million followers is following me-how cool is that?

The forced removal of the Cherokee Nation took them 1,000 miles west to Oklahoma, but along the way thousands died from starvation, disease or freezing to death during the winter months of the forced removal. Some estimates say that 55% of the Cherokee Nation died as a direct result of the Trail of Tears. (A Little Matter of Genocide, Churchill)

Anyway, I was reading this, and it really hit home for me. My family on my mother’s side was Quapaw, a Native American Tribe. They were part of the “Great Removal” – the Cherokee Trail of Tears, (other tribes, including Choctaw and Quapaw were gathered up at the same time) carried out by the White Man, shoving us off our lands and into the barrens of Oklahoma onto “Reservations” (think the Japanese Prison Camps in the US during the World Wars).

I always think of this when “Thanksgiving” comes around. Needless to say, I am not a big fan of the holiday. Then I think of all the other atrocities in the world . . .

So, I wrote the following and posted it on Facebook. I think the concept is important enough that I am asking you to read it here. And maybe you will think about meeting my challenge?


A small body of determined spirits fired by an unquenchable faith in their mission can alter the course of history. – Mahatma Gandhi

Humans are, at base, savage beasts made more savage by their intellect – their ability to plan violence for reasons that have nothing to do with feeding their young or guarding their homes. They do it for power, glory, and wealth. Things a true “savage beast” would never consider. Animals kill for food and for the safety of their young and their family groups. Humans do it because they can.

 At one time or another every human “group” – Native American, African, Catholic, Jew, Christian, Hispanic, Celtic, you name it, have all been the ‘target’ of the rest of the world. Oh, and must I mention gays, lesbians, and women? As long as humans are determined to make themselves “better” than other humans, for ANY REASON we won’t evolve beyond savages, no matter how much “better” we put ourselves forward as being than anyone else.

Here is just one example that brings me immense pain. “White Pride” groups tell Hispanics that they should get out of “Their” country – and yet, this was Hispanic/Native American land long before the white armies came in and overran their country. If White groups want everyone “other” to go home, shouldn’t they load up the boats and go back to Europe? This is simply an example, not a rant, just a point – – – NO ONE  is without guilt, and NOTHING in this world will become better until we all decide to look beyond skin colour, religion, sex, race, and all those other “reasons” for fomenting hatred.

Maybe, for this Holiday season, everyone should consider meeting a person they most fear, whether because of their skin colour, race, sexual orientation, whatever, I don’t care. And I encourage you to sit down with them over a cup of tea and really get to know the PERSON. Are you brave enough to do that? To face your fears and prejudices, to reach out with your mind and heart and learn? You may be surprised to learn just how similar you are….I have no great love for Christians, for many, many reasons, but that doesn’t keep me from considering a local minister a dear friend. We share a love of gardening, of food and books and many other things that have nothing to do with her religion and everything to do with her being a genuinely good person. I cherish the things we share, and honour the things we don’t. Maybe, one person at a time, we can learn to accept our differences?

Review: The Santa Society By Kristine McCord

18709607

I did it. I read my first Santa book before Thanksgiving. Well, seeing as how I have been known to watch The Santa Claus in the summer if I am feeling particularly down, I suppose it isn’t that surprising. And I have to say, as a huge fan of the whole Santa thing, this was a great start to my Christmas Santa Book Season!

 

 “It is my duty to carry the Gift to the world, whatever the price.”

Erin Sinclair lives in the lap of depression, even if she does live in a town called ‘Christmasville.’ She left her home at eighteen, as many teenagers do, a victim of teenage angst and the guilt of her father’s death when she was ten. It wasn’t her fault that he was driving to pick her up from school in a snowstorm when he died in a car crash. But children never understand that they aren’t to blame when horrific things happen, do they?

Now, her mother is gone as well, and Erin missed the last decade she could have spent with her, living in New York and working as a court stenographer while her mother stayed in Christmasville.

I turned 30 years old the day I killed my mother.

Alone, depressed, drenched in guilt for allowing her mother to die from breast cancer at home as she wished instead of forcing her into treatment, and feeling as if her life has faded away in front of her eyes, Erin is irritated when the cowboy propped up in front of the coffee shop early one morning walks away from her, apparently leaving his overgrown ‘maybe mastiff(?)’ tied to a tree in front of the shop. Klaus is huge, looks like a cross between a mastiff and a chocolate lab and watches her sadly from the coffee shop window. Well, she can’t just leave him out in the cold, right? Claiming the dog isn’t his, at least the cowboy leaves her his business card with the number for his real estate office. She is more than ready to get on with her life, whatever it will be, just as soon as she sells her mother’s house and all the memories it contains.

Cue high, tittering elven laughter… (screech! Sound of tires coming to a sudden halt…)

Make that cowboy laughter! Well, what do you expect when Santa lives in the mountains of Idaho?! (Insert big grin here)

The Santa Society is a wonderful Christmas story, full to the brim with hope, faith and love. But it is different than the ‘so sweet it makes your teeth rot on contact’ stories you may have read before. Similar to It’s A Wonderful Life there is human evil here – pride, vanity, hatred, and a Society developed to protect the meaning of Christmas – which may just be the downfall of everything Christmas stands for.

Erin’s mother’s last wish was that she not lose her faith in Christmas, in love, or in the reason for the season. And Reason McCloud may just help her find those things again.

He’s the Reason for the Season.

Reason, or Santa Claus to those in the know, stands for everything that is good, right and truthful in humanity. But will the corruption of those around him destroy Santa, Erin, and the true meaning of Christmas?

This book is a total and complete joy to read, filled with hope and joy, but also suspense and terror, making it more than just another Santa story – in a Very Good Way!

Review: The Society of Imaginary Friends by Kristen Pham

societyI had an imaginary tormentor. He was made up by my parents whenever we would go on holiday to Porta Pollensa. He was `The Vampire Man’. He lived in a house with round windows, and my parents told me that, if I didn’t behave, he’d feast on my blood. When I go there now, I still cross to the other side of the road to avoid that house. I’m a 27 year-old man. – By Toby Manhire In The Internaut

My niece was around 6 years old but could talk really well. She grew quite fond of this imaginary character named Donney or Donee. She said he would only show up whenever Mommy and Daddy went to sleep. He said she would play with her and s***. Well, one night she was in the living room resting on the couch when I walked in the door. She shot right up looked at me with the most dead but evil filled stare ever and, I quote, said, “Donney, no! Don’t hurt him! No!” then went back to a comatose that would be followed by screams of horror. This is where it gets real interesting. One day I was sitting watching the television when she looked at me and said, “Sometimes, when I’m playing with Donney, we take of our clothes an jump on the bed.” I decided to ask her what Donney looks like (no, I didn’t have a clue what I was ******* doing) and this is exactly what she said, ” He’s tall, with black and red skin. He has worms crawling out of his eyes. He also has black teeth and black hair. He wears black clothes.” – An Ask Reddit reader

What is a girl to do, when her imaginary friend is plotting to kill her? When we first meet Valerie this is a very serious consideration for her – because Sanguina, the imaginary “friend” that has tracked her all her life isn’t a friend at all. And she is setting up Valerie’s foster brother, Daniel, to die. Sanguina, Valerie’s very own personal tormentor, who doctors considered proof that Valerie was truly, certifiably schizophrenic. And to make things worse, every time Sanguina shows up, Valerie has a seizure – and now, one more of these seizures and Valerie will die.

But things are about to get much worse – because Sanguina has a partner – and he is very, very real.

Pham has made me eat my words. Yep. I have said repeatedly that I am not a Young Adult' book reader. I have found that there is a lot moreteenager’ in `teenage’ books than I can handle. Well, imagine that! LOL

Really, when you think about it, excitability and end-of-the-world histrionics is what being a teenager is all about, and the proliferation of `Young Adult’ books on the market today is, in my mind, a wonderful thing. It not only encourages teens to read, but gives them an outlet, an ability for even the shyest to realize that they are not all alone, that what is happening to their minds and bodies is natural.

So, as I was saying, Pham has changed my mind about not enjoying YA with her book, The Society of Imaginary Friends. Yes, there is a YA feel overall, with it’s compliment of temper tantrums and attitude. But this is a lot more, a testament to the strength of a young girl and her friends as they begin a fight which ultimately will become a war – a war of magic and terror, of hatred and pain which will change the fate of not one world, but two – and possibly that of the universe itself.

There is much to like about Pham’s first in The Conjurors series. The characters, Valerie, Thai, Henry and Cyrus are all well written, well-developed characters. They are brave, but not too brave. Smart, but not too smart – they feel real. Through heartache and joy, they work together to do what needs to be done in order to not only survive, but to thrive. Society is a book filled with magic and wonder – and a lot of terror and madness as well.

I received this book from the publisher in return for an honest review. All thoughts are my own. Highly recommended.

Review: Thin Places by Diane Owens Prettyman

Heaven and earth are only three feet apart, but in the think places the distance is even smaller. – Celtic Saying

In prison, if you know how to get there, you can travel to those thin places. – Calvery, Death Row Inmate, Thin Places

thinplacesChloe Thomas lives a quiet life, fishing off the coast of Washington and Oregon, only unusual in that she is the only woman charter fishing captain in the area. A cash strapped charter fishing captain, at that. But she has a poorly kept secret in her small town of Clam Harbor. For the Clam Harbor Gazette says it all on the front page: Clam Harbor Resident Slated for Execution.

Of course, Chloe didn’t always know that her father was a convicted murderer, Her mother didn’t want her growing up knowing that her father was sitting on death row, so she picked the name “Gallagher” out of a book of Irish names, gave it to Chloe, and until her grandmother was on her deathbed three years ago, Chloe had never known that her father was dead.

Finn Tully is a loser, an addict and a liar, doing time in the Polunsky Unit in Huntsville, Texas. Working in the prison as a porter, Finn mops the floors of the halls of Death Row, and comes to know the man he calls “Calvery,” a death row inmate. Muling sugar for Calvery, for the production of “toilet bowl wine” Finn and Calvery become close.

This ended up a little risky for me, but in his situation, I figured he deserved a little hooch to wash down his bread and beans.

As Finn and Calvery become close, Calvery makes a final request of Calvery. Find his daughter, Chloe: You promised you’d talk to Chloe, Finn,” he said. “Tell her I’m innocent.” When Finn’s wife files divorce papers just before Finn’s release, one of many releases over his loser life, taking his daughter Lacy away from him, Finn decides to keep his promise and find Chloe. And possibly a treasure? But what kind of treasure?

The plot of Thin Places twist and turn, as redemption and betrayal, love and loss all pay a part, as do ghosts – both of those lost and memories of the past.

Overall, it took me a while to get into the book. Maybe because I really didn’t care for Finn at first. I mean, really didn’t care for Finn. And other than Chloe, I couldn’t engage with the other characters, so I sat it down for too long. But once I went back to it and started reading again (yes, because I promised I would) the story gradually began to flow, and ending up being a tale of loss and tragedy, mystery, romance and mystical insight.

Read past the first few chapters, and I think the book will hold your attention as well.

This book was provided to me in return for a realistic review. The review is late, but I enjoyed it after all. I would rate it more 3.5 stars overall.

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