Review: The Breadwinner ~ Stevie Kopas

The breadwinnerThe end of the world is not glamorous. In a matter of days the human race was reduced to nothing more than vicious, flesh hungry creatures. This three part story takes you into the world of the survivors, coming from different generations and different sides of the tracks, they all share one thing in common: who you once were can no longer determine who you will be in the face of catastrophe.

Samson, a once wealthy and powerful criminal defense attorney struggles to keep his family safe and keep his sanity intact when the world comes apart at the seams. Veronica, the high school track star races to get her brother out of the city and into the safety of Franklin Woods. Along the way we come across the struggles of finding solace, finding out who you really are, and making decisions in a post apocalyptic world. The Breadwinner is a three part story and the first book in a planned series that will leave you craving more.

4 Thumbs-UpThis novella length book is the first in a post-apocalyptic trilogy, and is a good start to what promises to be an interesting series.  Some readers may think that at 139 pages it couldn’t possibly set the scene for a gripping trilogy, and those readers would be wrong.

This type of post-apocalyptic themed novel seems to be all around us at the moment, but in this debut novel I found something I hadn’t come across before, a complete storyline and some very relatable characters.  The main protagonist is a strong man faced with unenviable choices and following a course of actions he may have thought himself incapable of before the collapse of the world he knows.  Through a skilful use of writing and rich development of the characters, this Author is able to give this books readers a thoroughly emotionally charged and realistic journey through their trials and tribulations.

The situations the Author places her characters in are well described and thought through to the point the reader is made to think and examine the way they would react in the same circumstances, and as I have said in previous reviews I do like a book that makes me think.

Although I am not a big fan of zombie novels, I am looking forward to reading the remainder of this trilogy and would, therefore recommend it to anyone who enjoys this genre of book or is an avid viewer of The Walking Dead.

divider

Advertisements

Review: The Box ~ H. Lovelyn Bettison

The BoxWhat’s in the box? Indy would sure like to know.

When Tom offers Indy two thousand dollars to transport a mysterious box across the country, she reluctantly agrees to do it. Accompanied by her ex-boyfriend, Koji, and flower child friend, Eve, Indy embarks on a journey that is bound to be anything but ordinary.

Not too long after their trip gets underway, they come to the realization that the box holds a force beyond their control. Will they make it to their destination? Will they lose their sanity or maybe even their lives in the process?

3 Thumbs-UpThis is an interesting little novella at just over 200 pages, and is definitely something one would want to pick up if they are looking for something new to read.

The storyline revolves around four characters and a cross-country road-trip which, in itself makes for an interesting read.  Although the book is well written and intriguing, the length of the novella is not enough to give any in-depth and engrossing back story to the characters, and it is told through the words of the main protagonist.  However, along the way, the Author manages to bring into the journey, so very interesting and very flawed sub-characters, which add to the tale very nicely. One thing the Author does achieve very well with the writing of his characters, is the feeling of their growth as the journey continues and they begin to learn things about themselves, and others, that they previously were unaware of; this gives a sense of reality to the characters, and also makes the reader wonder, how much do they actually know about the people they associate with, and is their view on the world they live in skewed by preconceptions.

The journey they take is written in compelling and curious ways that makes you keep reading on to an almost realistic ending that keeps the feelings of practicality and realism that are written in to the novella throughout.  The only issue I had with the Kindle version of this read were the typos that could have been picked up by a good proof-reader and/or editor, and this did detract from my enjoyment of this book.

I would recommend this book to readers of Murakami Haruki, and other Japanese contemporary Authors.

divider

Review: Dead Men & Cats ~ Aya tsi scuceblu Walksfar

Dead Men

The quiet, agricultural community of Shadow Island is suddenly beset by violence. A dead man and a live calico kitten are discovered floating in an old rowboat in Shallow Point Cove. Then Dan Uley’s bookstore is firebombed. With a black cat.

Both men were gay.

Sheriff Johnson, known to have harsh feelings toward gays, makes no progress in catching the culprit.

Megan Albright and Janie Sampson, a lesbian couple and long-time residents, fear the rash of violence is not over, and question the sheriff’s commitment to investigating the crimes.

When their friend, Dan, is gruesomely murdered, they know time is running out to find this killer for there is no telling who will be the next to die.

But, they never thought the trail would lead to a well-liked young man.

 5 Thumbs-UpThis novella is a debut work for this Author. I also have to mention for those overly sensitive folks again, that this book does deal with matters relating to the LGBT community, so if you have issues with sexual orientation you may not want to read further.  Regardless, or even because of this, I feel this Author may well be on their way to having their book spines rubbing covers with Hazel Holt and Laura Childs in the cozy mystery genre.

This is a cozy mystery of the best kind in this genre that I have read in a long time. The main character leads are both women, life partners, who just fit so comfortably into the role that this type of book demands of its ‘heroines’.  They are both extremely well written and well developed characters, with their back stories being leaked to us bit by bit as we progress through the novella.  There is no sudden rush of information, and no changing of the pace of the way of life these characters live, and at which pace the book was written.  They were so well written I wanted to drop by and visit with them, the next time I headed North through WA State; they were the kind of people I would gladly count as my friends, and enjoy becoming involved in adventures with.

The descriptions of the Puget Sound and surrounding area were exactly as they are in reality.  I live in this area so I was able to visualise where things were, or intended to be. I could see the areas of Seattle that were described; walking the streets and driving the causeway over to the Islands.

Like all books of this genre, it is fast paced and laced with twists and turns that make you think.  The Author also puts a lot of emphasis on her plot development, which is apparent throughout.  This is a gentle book with no graphic violence, profanity or explicit sexual scenes, and with the deaths contained within its pages happening out of the pages, instead of us having to live through each gruelling blow.  This novella does have one major difference to the usual cozy mystery, and that is the victims did not deserve to die.  To go into this more would be to have reveal spoilers, so to find out exactly what I mean you will have to read the novella.

I would highly recommend this book to all lovers of the mystery genre, cozy or not, as it is a fast paced novella, with several twists leading to a surprising conclusion.  I am looking forward to seeing if the female leads in this novella make an appearance in future works by this Author.

001