Six Million Accusers: Catching Adolf Eichmann by D. Lawrence-Young

Six Million Accusers: Catching Adolf EichmannSix Million Accusers: Catching Adolf Eichmann by D. Lawrence-Young

“Six Million Accusers” is a historical novel reliving the hunt for, and capture of one of history’s most evil criminals – a leading Nazi named Adolf Eichmann.

Having disappeared after WWII, members of an Israeli organization search the world for Eichmann, hoping to one day capture one of the men responsible for brutally massacring millions of Jews, and others. Following any tip possible, eventually they discover a Jewish father and daughter who swear Eichmann quietly lives in their community, under a new name. The search for Eichmann ramps up, and the agents begin to fervently believe they have found their man.

As they get closer and closer, a plan must also be created to capture Eichmann, and secretly transport the villain back to Israel. Is it really Eichmann? And if so, what complications may arise that might destroy their plans to have this notorious Nazi held responsible for his crimes?

“Six Million Accusers” is based on historic detail, and David Lawrence- Young does an excellent job reliving the hunt for, and capture of Adolf Eichmann. Well written and easy to read, “Six Million Accusers” should be a staple of the educational discussion of WWII and the aftermath. –Goodreads

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I really don’t feel like I’m going to do this book justice by writing a review, but at the same time, it deserves a review. I usually will not award five stars to a historical fiction. I am almost always disappointed in them, no matter how much research was done before the book was written. This is a case where this book would get more than five stars if I were able to give it.

Nazi War criminals have been on the telly a lot lately. Through old black and white films and descriptions and accounts written by those who survived the terror, we have learned quite a bit. Still, I feel like most of the time, we watch these things on the History Channel or in films and we seem to be removed from the reality. We see the images and we know that it is not fiction, but never feel like it could happen to us. Those who went through it do not touch us on a deep, emotional level most of the time. That is where this book comes in. If you want to see the lives of people who wanted retribution for these heinous crimes up close, this book will give you that.

Yes, this is a fictional account, but I guarantee you that once you begin reading, you will forget. A lot of meticulous research went into this book. A lot of man hours of studying and learning about what actually happened make this an extraordinary read. This author also has a knack for story telling and character creation. I broke down more than once during this book, which is a rarity for me.

Although Eichmann’s name is displayed prominently in the title, this book is actually more about the dedicated group of people who came together to bring him to justice. The novel doesn’t focus as much on his reign of terror as it does the years after and the search to satisfy “six million accusers.” I thought the way this was written made it feel very personal and easy to relate to. The author did an extremely good job of filling in the voids in Eichmann’s history and making it believable.

What I came away with after reading this novel, was a sense of just how much it took to take this man down. He may not have looked like much, bookish, what today we might call a geek. He may not have felt guilt nor remorse for his actions–he was doing as ordered, by his own admission, but I came away from this book with a sense of awareness. There is darkness in this world. There are evil people who commit senseless acts of violence and genocide. Yet, there are people who will work tirelessly to make this world a better place. I think this author not only understands that, but it one of the good ones.

I would encourage anyone who has an interest in this subject to read this book. I loved it.

This review is based on a complimentary copy from the publisher and provided through Netgalley. All opinions are my own.

 

Salvation by W.A. Heisler

SalvationSalvation by W.A. Heisler

Salvation is a fast-paced book of horror garunteed to raise the hairs on the back of the neck. It’s style has been compared to the works of Stephen King and Dean Koontz. Salvation begins with a frantic phone call to Father Brian Halloway from Eric Parkins, a parishioner in his church, who is desperate to find answers to his wife’s strange behavior following the death of her mother. It seems to Halloway that the woman is simply having difficulty coping with her grief, and nothing seems out of the ordinary. Until he is told about the “thing” in the basement. And how Sylvia changes after nightfall. It is then, the priest begins to worry. After witnessing Sylvia’s disturbing and violent behavior for himself, Halloway comes to the conclusion that something has gone horribly wrong at 1312 Lafayette Drive. Fearing for the safety of the couple, Halloway enlists the help of his longtime friend and fellow priest Father Michael Constantine, a priest chosen to fight the deadliest of wars, and the keeper of New York Dioceses’ darkest secret. It is then the dark war begins. Constantine, joined by Father James Connelly, a young priest eager to prove himself to his mentor, along with Halloway, Sylvia’s husband, and her brother, Mark Barnett, a doctor who is hiding his own dangerous secret set out to engage the invading entity. The men quickly come face to face with a savage, brutal being that snakes its way into the darkest depths of their psyches in its unyielding and vicious attempts to destroy them and all who participate in its “game.” The book climaxes with the entrance of Arandavius, a dark, tragic figure, fallen with Lucifer after The Great War. A fallen angel who walks the earth and claims hismission is to send the demon back to its “Realm.” A being Constantine knows has held one title since his expulsion. Arandavius: The Overlord of Legion. Constantine finds himself trying to save a woman who is now caught in the middle of a vicious game of cat-and-mouse between two demons-one, a brutal, sadistic being who holds the life and soul of its victim in its clutches-the other, the most savage and merciless of Legion’s warriors. A game both beings are willing to play out to its explosive and bloody end. Welcome to darkness. Welcome.to the game.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really liked this book!

The horror genre can go either way for me. Sometimes I really like the idea, but the execution seems off, or the book is too bloody and gory. It is hard to find a horror novel that keeps up an intense pace without coming off as silly or losing speed as it goes along. This book never slows down and is interesting right to the very end.

If you have ever read a book and wished that you could keep one of the characters as a friend or ally once the book is finished, then you will know what I mean when I say that I was sorry to see fallen angel Arandavius go. He was the type of character that you can’t help but love. He should get his own series.

The author did a fantastic job of coming up with an original idea about what happens with fallen angels and creating a scenario that made me stop and think. I was very impressed with the possession scenes as they stayed consistent throughout the story and didn’t waver. I didn’t want to go to sleep with the light off.

This book takes what happened in the exorcist and makes it look like a mild case of PMS. I appreciated that the author was able to make this possession not only span the entire book, but involve multiple characters. I was pleasantly surprised by the way the story unfolded. I expected most of the cast to be wiped out before the end of the book, and that did not happen. I love it when you can’t predict an ending.

The only thing that left me a little disappointed in this novel was that Eric and Sylvia didn’t get more of the stage for their last act. For a story that was built surrounding them from the beginning, I thought thy should have been followed up a bit more before the close of the book.

This is an excellent book, and even for those who aren’t a particular fan of horror, I think this could still be appealing.

Recommended.

This review is based on a complimentary copy from the publisher and provided through Netgalley. All opinions are my own.

The Art Restorer by Julian Sanchez

The Art RestorerThe Art Restorer by Julián Sánchez

Enrique Alonso travels from his new home in Manhattan to San Sebastián, Spain, to attend the reopening of the San Telmo museum, where his ex-wife, Bety, works in public relations. There he meets American Craig Bruckner, a retired art restorer studying the museum’s collection of works by Sert—a contemporary of Picasso and Dalí who worked for the most famous billionaires of his time and whose mural American Progress graces the walls of Rockefeller Center. When Bruckner is found drowned in La Concha bay, Bety suspects foul play and Enrique agrees to help her look into the man’s death. Their investigation reveals a mystery connected with Sert’s checkered past, which provides fertile ground for the new thriller Enrique is writing, and the plot develops in parallel to his research.

Enrique and Bety’s reconstruction of the artist’s clandestine activities during World War II leads them to Paris, Barcelona, and New York, and in the process forces them to face their own past. But they are not the only ones interested in Sert’s work, and it appears there is more to his paintings than meets the eye.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

“The Art Restorer” Is a very relaxing, well written book with a lot of careful mystery.

This is my first work by Julian Sanchez, as I did not read the first book in this series. I don’t think that it is necessary to do so in order to understand this book. There are frequent references to things that happened previously, and I felt like I had enough of an overall picture of the main character’s life to navigate this book just fine.

Whilst I greatly enjoyed this book, there are a few strange passages, where the sentence construction seems off, but that is likely due to translation. For the most part I found this to be a well-paced, interesting journey.

The setting is beautifully described and from the very beginning, the idea that the main character is such a real, down to earth type of person permeates the story. I felt close to him from the beginning, and as a result felt close to the characters he cared about.

Knowing that he is battling his own inner demons and trying to make decisions about his life was a good aside to the rest of the story he is a complex character with a big heart and a conscience that wills him to do the right thing in all situations. Most of the events that happened were believable and there is quite a lot of excitement after the first third of the story, where most of the setup happens.

I was very impressed with this book. If you are a fan of art history, captivating backdrops and imaginative writing, I am certain you will enjoy this novel.

This review is based on a complimentary copy from the publisher and provided through Netgalley. All opinions are my own.

That Night by Chevy Stevens

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That Night

That Night by Chevy Stevens

As a teenager, Toni Murphy had a life full of typical adolescent
complications: a boyfriend she adored, a younger sister she couldn’t relate to, a strained relationship with her parents, and classmates who seemed hell-bent on making her life miserable. Things weren’t easy, but Toni could never have predicted how horrific they would become until her younger sister was brutally murdered one summer night.

Toni and her boyfriend, Ryan, were convicted of the murder and sent to prison.

Now thirty-four, Toni is out on parole and back in her hometown, struggling to adjust to a new life on the outside. Prison changed her, hardened her, and she’s doing everything in her power to avoid violating her parole and going back. This means having absolutely no contact with Ryan, avoiding fellow parolees looking to pick fights, and steering clear of trouble in all its forms. But nothing is making that easy—not Ryan, who is convinced he can figure out the truth; not her mother, who doubts Toni’s innocence; and certainly not the group of women who made Toni’s life hell in high school and may have darker secrets than anyone realizes. No matter how hard she tries, ignoring her old life to start a new one is impossible. Before Toni can truly move on, she must risk everything to find out what really happened that night.

But the truth might be the most terrifying thing of all.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I enjoyed this book a lot. There were a few times when the writing felt a little stiff and formal, but the depth of the characters and the ability of the author to show us the past and the present without it becoming confusing was very good and made up for the minor quirks here and there.

For me, the most fascinating part of this book were the portions where prison life was discussed. The detail the author included kept me interested in the life of the main character and wondering what would happen next. Rather than having a main character that spent a lot of time feeling sorry for herself and the wrongs that were done to her, she was proactive and witty and I was happy to support her.

The plot of this novel is complex and keeps you guessing about what really happened many years ago, until the very end. I like mysteries as much as the next person, but it was the human element of this story that made me love it. I felt close to the characters and that feeling grew as the story progressed. There are a lot of mysteries out there, but this one is told in such a way that you feel you are there, going through the same things as the characters.

If you like books that will stay with you when you are finished reading them, then this would be a good one to choose. Beautiful writing, haunting story, recommended.

This review is based on a complimentary copy from the publisher and provided by Netgalley. All opinions are my own.

 

A Good Year for the Roses by Gil McNeil

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A Good Year for the Roses: A Novel by Gil McNeil

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

 

This is one of those novels were when you beginning reading it, you will be hard pressed to stop. The wit and clever nature of the author are quite apparent even early on in this book and it makes for a delightful read.

I enjoyed the plot, the characters and the overall story very much, but what made me want to keep turning pages the most, was the relationship between the main character and her children. There were so many times during this novel that I laughed out loud and nodded my head in agreement. My boys do so much of the same thing and I felt I could easily identify with her position.

Very much a woman’s novel, this is perfect for those who have loved and lost, and those who seek a new path in life. Gil McNeil is a master at getting inside the mind and heart of the reader and displaying human qualities in her characters that make it easy for the reader to connect with them.

There is a lot of humour in this book, which I liked very much. Even during serious situations the author managed to lighten the mood with her ability to toss out random phrases and thoughts that make you laugh.

For a book that is heavily dialogue driven, you definitely want to see good dialogue. That happens here and it felt very natural and not forced.

This is an excellent book, and I would recommend it to anyone who likes stories of courage and family.

This review is based on a complimentary copy from the publisher and provided through Netgalley. All opinions are my own.

The Language of Silence

The Language of SilenceThe Language of Silence by Anna Michaels

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

3.5 stars

This is at once a difficult book to read and an easily flowing tale that will captivate your senses and make your heart bleed for the main character.

The difficulty is not found in the writing style. The author has crafted a beautiful book full of memorable characters that capture your heart and make you really feel for them and their various plights. The main character is a strong female protagonist but does not come off as a staunch feminist. She has a layered personality including a light and silly side that makes you love her.

The difficulty comes in the subject matter. If you have read other books about abused women, such as Black and Blue by Anna Quindlen, then you know how traumatic reading such novels can be. This book is at times heart-wrenching, but beautiful just the same. Any woman who has been in an abusive relationship will no doubt find something to identify with here.

Family and friendships and unlikely bonds take centre stage in this novel and remind us that not all family has to be blood relation. The history of the circus and the demons it possesses makes for an interesting and fulfilling side story that I thought worked really well.

Where I felt this book went awry, was the ending. This was such a serious book throughout, and I expected a big finish where the bad guy got his in the end. I never felt that happened. His goodbye was perhaps creative, and most definitely original, but not altogether believable. In fact, I thought it bordered on silliness. I was left with questions about the safety of the main character and her child.

Still this was a book worthy of the time to read and I will always be happy I had the chance to do so. It is very special to me, for many reasons. I would encourage others to give it a read and form their own opinions about it.

This is the kind of book you want to share with someone you love. Life, second chances, courage and the bravery we don’t always believe we possess until we have to face a situation that draws it out of us are all prevalent themes in this book.

This review is based on a complimentary copy from the publisher and provided through Netgalley. All opinions are my own.

The Stories We Tell by Patti Callahan Henry

The Stories We Tell

*Watch this blog in the near future for an interview with this author :)

The Stories We Tell by Patti Callahan Henry

Bestselling author Patti Callahan Henry is back witha powerful novel about the stories we tell and the people we trust.Eve and Cooper Morrison are Savannah’s power couple. They’re on every artistic board and deeply involved in the community. She owns and operates a letterpress studio specializing in the handmade; he runs a digital magazine featuring all things southern gentlemen. The perfect juxtaposition of the old and the new, Eve and Cooper are the beautiful people. The lucky ones. And they have the wealth and name that comes from being part of an old Georgia family. But things may not be as good as they seem. Eve’s sister, Willa, is staying with the family until she gets “back on her feet.” Their daughter, Gwen, is all adolescent rebellion. And Cooper thinks Eve works too much. Still, the Morrison marriage is strong. After twenty-one years together, Eve and Cooper know each other. They count on each other. They know what to expect. But when Cooper and Willa are involved in a car accident, the questions surrounding the event bring the family close to breaking point. Sifting between the stories—what Cooper says, what Willa remembers, what the evidence indicates—Eve has to find out what really happened. And what she’s going to do about it.A riveting story about the power of truth, The Stories we Tell will open your eyes and rearrange your heart.

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The Stories We Tell by Patti Callahan Henry

Reading Patti Callahan Henry is like taking a breath of fresh air when you need it the most. Her stories are charming and deeply thoughtful, the kind that are impossible to put down.

“The Stories We Tell,” is a book that is hard to describe. The writing is beautiful and the plot is much different than expected once you get into the heart of the story. There are a lot of fictional accounts of family and the issues that families face, but this one was so finely crafted and emotional that no matter what I say in this review, it will not do it justice.

If you like stories where the main character lets you in fully, to their heart, to their world and lets you see the side of them that most books do not, this would be an excellent choice. Right up to the last page I wasn’t sure exactly what was going to happen.

This book has a bit of mystery in it as well as a strong foundation of family and friendships. I loved that the author gave the main character such an unusual profession. The business she ran tied perfectly into the feeling of this novel.

Overall, this was an immensely satisfying read by an author who I believe is only getting started wowing us with her abilities. If you are looking for a great book, this is it.

This review is based on a complimentary copy from the publisher. All opinions are my own.

Jane’s Melody by Ryan Winfield

Jane's Melody (Jane's Melody, #1)Jane’s Melody by Ryan Winfield

New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestseller–

What boundaries would you cross for true love?

That’s the question a grieving mother must answer when she takes in a young street musician she believes can shed light on her daughter’s death—only to find herself falling for him. A sexy but touching love story that will leave you both tantalized and in tears, Jane’s Melody follows a forty-year-old woman on a romantic journey of rediscovery after years of struggling alone.

Sometimes our greatest gifts come from our greatest pain. And now Jane must decide if it’s too late for her to start over, or if true love really knows no limits.

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I really wasn’t sure what to think of this book, honestly. I spent a couple of days thinking about it and how it affected me before I decided to write this review.

This novel has moments that will make you laugh out loud, make you cry and make you stop and think, which to me are the hallmarks of an excellent book. Still, there were times when I felt the characters were needy, selfish and a bit juvenile. The reactions to certain situations caught me off guard and made me wonder if they would have really behaved that way or not.

Caleb was a man of the house one minute and a quivering emotional mess the next. We never really find out all that much about his life before Jane and that made me wonder how he got to be who he was.

The love story in this book is displayed in an affectionate, yet highly sexual way. The love scenes are quite intense and dramatic and very frequent toward the middle of the book, so if you like spicy sex scenes this one will fit the bill.

Overall, this is a strange book to have to classify. Part of the time I thought it was utter brilliance, and the rest of the time I thought it was okay. I did very much enjoy the way Jane grew throughout the story.

This review is based on a complimentary copy from the publisher and provided by Netgalley. All opinions are my own.

The Land of Honey by Chinenye Obiajulu

The Land of Honey by Chinenye Obiajulu

9781590951798- Front main (3)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Land of Honey by Chinenye Obiajulu, is a very emotionally deep novel about the bonds we form with those we love and the trials we face attempting to make a place for ourselves in this world.

I was impressed with this book early on for a multitude of reasons. The author does a good job explaining things that readers outside of the culture she describes may not recognise, and yet she never makes you feel as though you are being spoken down to. I appreciated that she took so much time introducing the character’s situations, but that she didn’t miss a beat when it came to unfolding the story at the same time.

Immigration is a tough and sensitive subject with many layers and opinions, so setting a book around the subject was a risky choice. I thought she handled it very well. This is a story that is both eye opening and heartfelt.

As the reader, you get to explore the emotions of the characters as well as experience the obstacles they face as the book moves along. The decisions they make throughout this book will make you stop and consider your own choices in life and how they have affected you and those you care for.

One very impressive thing about this author’s writing style is the way she allows her characters the ability to grow and change. You feel as if they have matured and become more aware of themselves by the finish. This, to me, is the sign of a talented author. Her characters are three dimensional and interesting.

This is a book that I think readers of literary fiction will love, and will want to share amongst those who are close to them. I recommend that you read it and see what you think.

This review is based on a complimentary copy from the author. All opinions are my own and no other compensation was received.

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Sinful Folk by Ned Hayes

Sinful FolkSinful Folk by Ned Hayes
A terrible loss. A desperate journey.
A mother seeks the truth.

In December of the year 1377, five children were burned to death in a suspicious house fire. A small band of villagers traveled 200 miles across England in midwinter to demand justice for their children’s deaths.

Sinful Folk is the story of this treacherous journey as seen by Mear, a former nun who has lived for a decade disguised as a mute man, raising her son quietly in this isolated village.

For years, she has concealed herself and all her secrets. But in this journey, she will find the strength to claim the promise of her past and find a new future. Mear begins her journey in terror and heartache, and ends in triumph and redemption.

The remarkable new novel by Ned Hayes
Illustrated by New York Times bestseller Nikki McClure
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

When I first saw this book, the medieval aspect caught my attention right away. Still, I figured that for a book of this time period, I expected a lot of boring miles of description and historical references. I was wrong. This book was anything but boring.

The main point of the story was revealed right away, allowing the characters to have a justified reason for their actions and their desperation to solve the crime before them. I greatly enjoyed the way Ned Hayes described the world of these people and how he chose to tell the story from a single perspective. That must have been a difficult decision for the author when there were so many important characters that were vital to the story.

One thing that caught my attention about this story was the way the main character dealt with her grief. In too many books we see either strict vengeance or grief and sorrow, but rarely do we see laughter, mirth and the variety of other emotions this author used to display her feelings.

I was fascinated by the journey and the revelations of those who travelled together in search of justice and wisdom. I realised when I was half way through this book that it was taking me virtually no time to read it. The sign of a good, interesting story.

I would recommend this book to anyone interested in the historical period. Great read.

This review is based on a digital ARC from the publisher and provided through Netgalley.