Tag Archives: friend

Finding Common Ground: A Story of Brotherly Friendship: Growing up together, even when growing apart by Dr. Charan Surisetty (Book Review)

Finding Common Ground is a heartwarming and relatable story about the unbreakable bond between two brothers, Alex and Max. As they grow up, they discover that despite their differences, they always find common ground and stand strong together through the ups and downs of life. This beautifully illustrated book is a celebration of sibling love, and a reminder of the joy and comfort that comes from having a lifelong friend and supporter. With engaging storytelling and a touching message, this is a book that both children and parents will cherish.

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 I received a complimentary copy of this book from Reedsy Discovery.  I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.


Finding Common Ground is a heartwarming and relatable story about the unbreakable bond between two brothers. Alex and Max discover that despite their differences, they always find common ground and stand strong together through the ups and downs of life. 

As the brothers age, their interests begin to divide them. Space forms between them, literally and figuratively. They still love each other, but they lose their connection along the way. Instead of laughing with one another, they yell at each other. Fights brew, temps flare, and harsh words are spoken. Friends behave like enemies. 

Finding Common Ground focuses on siblings’ bond, but this story could’ve applied to any form of relationship. As people age, their interests change. Their viewpoints change as well. Most of us have said things in the heat of the moment that we regret. Alex and Max demonstrate that what’s broken can be fixed. Talk calmly. Listen. Apologize for mistakes. Learn from your mistakes. It won’t be easy, but a shattered relationship can be fixed if both parties are willing to try. 

I adored watching the brothers make up and sharing their interests with one another. Through storytelling, children learn to have an open mind regarding new experiences. It shows two brothers being there for one another during the most important moments of their life and helping each other through tough situations. Life will get hard, but they know (deep down) they can always count on the other to be by their side. 

As a mother, I teach my children to cherish their family and friends. I tell them to be apologetic when they’ve done wrong and accept a heartfelt apology in return. Again, this picture book is centered around two brothers, but the lessons conveyed pertain to any relationship. 

Amazon’s recommended reading age is 6-12. I would also recommend this book to four- and five-year-olds. They could follow the story and understand the beautiful message. The story was lovely, and so were the illustrations! 


Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤

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Meet the Author

Charan Surisetty: children’s book author capturing the bond between siblings. Inspired by my boys, my characters embark on fun adventures and learn life lessons. Join us on this journey of discovery and imagination! Check out my books on Amazon.

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A World Without Color: A True Story Of the Last Three Days With My Cat by Bernard Jan (Book Review)

One story. Two endings. Genuine and fictional. Which ending is yours?

What do you say to someone who is dying? And what do you say when that someone can’t understand a word you are saying? How do you comfort each other throughout… and beyond?

My love, if you go away in a few days, the world will lose its colors and darken like the land of Mordor. If you go away and leave me to wander aimlessly, alone in this sea become wild, like a ship with a broken rudder and drowned sailors, and if I don’t find comfort in the warmth of your body, clutched in my embrace at the end of the day, I’m afraid I won’t survive.

“I don’t regret anything. Marcel was not only my cat, he was my everything. My brother, my friend, my world shrank in a soft gray-striped furry ball.”—Bernard Jan

Powerful. Emotional. Honest.


(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) 

If you’ve ever loved and lost a pet then A World Without Color: A True Story Of the Last Three Days With My Cat by Bernard Jan will make you cry.

A couple years ago, I lost my best friend. He brought me so much joy and watching his body deteriorate broke me. I watched him slowing stop eating and drinking. I witnessed his hind legs give out. There were so many doctor appointments, so many meds, all to prolong his life.

Pets become a part of our day. They listen while we talk. We might pet them for comfort. They are our constant when everything else seems out of control. When they die, life seems to stop. We mourn them like we would a human. We miss their face, the sound of their voice, moments we could’ve had together if we weren’t so busy, and moments we’ll never have since they are gone.

Like Bernard, I never thought I’d ever get another cat. I too felt like I would be betraying my buddy. It took a while but my children convinced me to get another one. We eventually adopted two rescue cats.

I know one day I will have to make the decision to prolong life or put them down. There’s no reason to let a loved one suffer because we can’t or don’t want to let them go. Don’t let them live in agony.

There are some days I still swear I hear my buddy, see him out of the corner of my eye. I don’t get too sad anymore because I think he would be happy I have learned to love again.

Bernard, your words brought me many tears. The photo of Marcel made me cry even harder. Despite all these tears shed I must say thank you because it warmed my heart to see the love another person had for his own furbaby.


Heart Rating System:

1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 

Score: ❤❤❤❤

Kindle Purchase Link (US)

Print Purchase Link (US)

Kindle Purchase Link (UK)

Print Purchase Link (UK)



My pen name is Bernard Jan. I am an author – a novelist and a poet – from Croatia and I have released two indie books in English. 

“A World Without Color” is the honest true story of the three last days I spent with my cat while “Look for Me Under the Rainbow” in unique and gentle way sheds light on the plight of harp seal pups in Canada and warms the hearts of young adult and other readers concerned about our planet and its treasures with the idea that change is needed, change is possible, and change will come. 

My first books have been written at the beginning of war in Croatia in 1991, amidst the air alerts and illusory attempts when I wanted to believe and think that life is normal, that everything is alright with the world.

In my lifespan I have written and published five novels, two novellas, one book of poems and an essay in Croatian. Four of my manuscripts, together with my book of poems, are translated into English.

My passion for entertainment resulted in my becoming a partner of Tom’s Music Place, which was established in 2009 by my friend Thomas Carley Jr. with the goal to respect the music.

My need to help others came to the fore during my volunteering years: first in advocating for environmental protection, and then my volunteering, activism, work and advocacy for animal rights to the present day. I did some volunteering for the refugees, too, because suffering does not know about the borders and when it comes within your reach, in your yard, you simply have to do something.

As part of my animal advocacy activities, it has been a great honor and pleasure to translate “Eternal Treblinka: Our Treatment of Animals and the Holocaust” by Charles Patterson into Croatian language. I guess that makes me a translator, too, huh?







Please visit my website

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