Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Several Book Reviews -- Wednesday, April 17, 2013

I have read some great books recently. Here are a few titles you might want to check out.

What Matters Most by Bette Lee Crosby   
      This book is about a woman who wants to stay at home with her friends and her quilting group,
while her husband wants to retire and move to Florida. It is filled with funny incidents as well as the angst the woman goes through as she tries to come to grips with her husband’s desire.
            I enjoyed this book and it left me with a smile, even though there is some offensive language in it. I am a quilter, like the title character. This will be the give-away for my blog interview with Bette Lee on April 29. Winner can choose paper or e-book.

The Reunion by Dan Walsh:
            The 5th title by Dan that I have read since Christmas may have been the best. This one is about Aaron Miller, a Vietnam war veteran, lost and forgotten and working as a handyman in a Florida trailer court, estranged from his children and family, and Dave Russo, a divorced newspaper reporter, also alone except for his mother.
            As Dave searches for veterans to interview for his book about the Vietnam area, he discovers Aaron and several other people who add to the plot as the reader turns the pages faster and faster.
This is a great read that I hope you will pick up. You will love reading about believable characters and situations. Dan Walsh says there is talk about a movie deal for this one. This book left me with a feeling of satisfaction.
             I will interview Dan on my blog in June. The give-away that week will be another of his titles, The Deepest Waters, that I discuss in the interview.

I’ll Watch the Moon by Ann Tatlock:
            I have read at least five books by Ann Tatlock, and this is another great one. She writes historical novels about America in the twentieth century, each in the voice of a young girl who lived through that era. In this book, the girl is Nova who is a nine-year-old living in the late 1940s during the polio epidemic.
            Nova and her brother Dewey live with their mother in a rooming house, where their aunt is the owner/operator. The author introduces many colorful characters who board there. There are two old ladies who used to do Vaudeville, a German man who survived Auschwitz, and several others. Nova idolizes her older brother and wants to be with him all the time, and he is very caring toward his little sister. She loves to look through Dewey's telescope and learn about outer space.
            The author does a good job of getting into Nova’s head as she tries to understand the current events, and as she longs for a dad of her own.
             I highly recommend this book and hope you will read it for yourself. You can download it on your Kindle. A paper copy of this book will be the give-away when I interview Ann on my blog in July.

Angels at the Crossroads by Ann H. Gabhart:
            Ann’s husband sings in a gospel quartet, and he met Jerry, the main character in this book, at one of the churches where he sang with his group. After hearing Jerry’s testimony, Ann decided to write a book about him, and this is the result of that meeting.
            Jerry was a troubled youth who found himself in some undesirable situations. The ultimate was his arrest. Along the way, he met people he later called “angels” because they kept him from harm and even death, until he finally met Jesus and made Him his Savior.
            I read this book on my Kindle and found it to be very uplifting, and yet compelling. Ann’s interview on my blog is coming up in August. The give-away will be one of her books.

Into the Free by Julie Cantrell:
            I downloaded this book on my Kindle several months ago and re-read it this week. It is about Millie Reynolds, a young girl tossed and turned by the situations of her life. Her journey as she searched for freedom leads her to look for love and acceptance where she can find it.
        Though downtrodden, Millie keeps trying. She loves to climb the tree in front of her house, where she can look out on everything below and think about how big the world is.
            Her mother, an abused wife, has given up on life, but Millie perseveres, finding people to share with her—an old black slave who lives in a cabin near her, the town librarian who encourages Millie to experience life through books, a young Gypsy who travels through her southern town once a year, Mr. Sutton, the man who owns the place where she lives, and Bump, a young cowboy who worked with her dad.
             This is a book of sadness, yet victory, a coming-of-age story that deals with both hardship and hope.

Two books about abused children:
Castaway Kid by R. B. Mitchell and Amelia’s Story by D. G. Torrens
I read both these books on my Kindle.

Castaway Kid is about a boy whose mother took him to an orphanage when he was three and left him there. The book relates his memories and adventures throughout his life as he searches for understanding as to why she did this. One of the people who endorsed the book said, "The book starts out as a little boy's struggle with abandonment but quickly becomes the reader's own stuggle with universal themes of loneliness, fear, rejection, anger, bitterness, and how to forgive others and ourselves."

            Amelia’s Story: A Childhood Lost is about a girl whose mother neglects and abuses her and her siblings. It is very sad. I read the whole thing, even though it was difficult at times. It is a true story by a woman who wrote her memoirs so that her daughter could understand her better. It left me wanting to know what happened next. The sequel is titled Amelia's Destiny.

Readers, you still have time to go to my most recent interview Monday, the 15th, with Denise Jones and enter the contest to win her book Secrets Over Sweet Tea. Comment on that blog and leave your email address to be in the drawing. Follow my site to receive an extra in the drawing.

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