Tag Archives: military

Review of “Rescue Me: Escape From Reality series” – Sara Schoen

Mia Daniels is running away.

She’s leaving her family, her job, and her life behind, all to get away from her past. With no plan, she packed her suitcase and took off for a town where she thought she’d be safe. She should have known she wouldn’t be safe anywhere…

Gage Greystone is running from his family name.

His family has owned the town for generations, but he doesn’t plan to take it over from his father. He has a dream to save others; from the treacherous hiking trails or from themselves. Maybe that’s why he’s so attracted to the newest resident of Escape, Mia. She seems to be silently begging to be rescued. From what, he doesn’t know, but he’ll do anything to rescue her.

But this rescue may be impossible for the decorated emergency serviceman…


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As I traveled through the camping ground and the wellness camp, I could see what Lottie meant by a slow start to summer. There was room for well over one hundred and fifty hikers, and that didn’t include the trailers I’m sure drove through occasionally, at the camp site. The wellness camp had about ten cabins with what seemed like only one being used and a lot of open space.

I made a point to travel through the wellness camp slowly so I could possibly find Kelsey and see if she wanted her bike back, but I only saw a few girls who looked to be about fifteen. They were lacing up their hiking boots while others were preparing for a swim. A few waved at me as I passed, others seemed shy and looked away from me. I tried not to be offended. To them I was an outsider, someone they should stay away from. Just like he had taught me to do. I waved back regardless and continued my ride over Faith Bridge. I could see the town crowning over the hill to my right, but the well-defined hiking trail to my left beckoned me.

Lottie can wait a little longer, I decided with a smile. Turning my front tire toward the dirt path, I took off with the girl’s excited laughter and shrieks from entering the cold-water echoing around me. Their voices faded behind me as trees thickened around me, wrapping me in a cool, shadowy blanket, shielding me from the sun, and silencing everything around me until I was left with only my thoughts.

A few months ago, leaving me to my thoughts would have been dangerous. Maybe even suicidal. In the past few years, I had gone through more turmoil than I thought possible, and it seemed like the pain was never-ending. No matter what I did, I couldn’t escape bad news.

I thought I had found the one, the person I was meant to be with, the one who’s supposed to be by my side for the rest of my life, but then it all fell apart. “It’s over, Mia.” I had been trying to fix a broken relationship; cheating, fighting, and abusive, manipulative behavior. I should have known it couldn’t be fixed, but I didn’t want to give up on him. I thought we loved each other, but it turns out that had been one sided too. “Mia, stop. You’re embarrassing me and you’re embarrassing yourself. It’s over, Mia. I don’t love you, I don’t think I ever did. You’re someone I settled for, you’re nothing. It’s your fault this happened, not mine. Now it’s time to move on. I have, and you should too.”

Trees moved past me in a flash as I peddled faster, taking my memories with them. But once those were gone, I was left with a harsh reality. The same ex who had told me I wasn’t worth anything and would never amount to anything is chasing me to ruin the life I had created without him. I shook my head as the path took a turn. Stop thinking about it. It’s over now. The small flickers of sunlight through the leaves and the light at the end of the tunnel of trees echoed my thoughts; a new life, one without him.

I broke free of the trees and came out on a stunning overlook. The path settled against the edge of one of the mountains, giving me a great view of Peak View, a small town the bus had stopped in for a short time, and the surrounding landscape. It reminded me a lot of Escape, but with more shopping, a high school, a military base, and more homes. It’s going to be packed in the upcoming months. Not that I could blame anyone for wanting to visit. I had been here only a few days and I already loved the little town. Even as I looked over the lush green landscape, I didn’t feel as far from my family as I had when it came to Wes. For the first time, in a long time, I genuinely felt at home. I didn’t feel the need to look over my shoulder. This is the place for me. This is where I can finally heal and move on. This is exactly what I’ve been looking for.

Taking a deep breath of the fresh mountain air, I realized I couldn’t wait to move on. I’d dive in head first, even if it meant accepting another gift I didn’t deserve from Lottie. If this is what they do, then I should accept it. It’s time to move on. Whether he wants me to or not. Turning my bike around to head back to town, I took one last glance at the overlook. The sun hanging over Peak View, the mountains keeping us concealed, and everything in me was screaming for me to take a leap of faith. And that’s just what I’ll do. I pushed away from Mountain Side Height lookout and headed toward town, thanks to the helpful signs on Morning Glory’s trail. I left feeling the best I had in years…I’d return when my life turned to shit again. As it inevitably would.


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


Every day, every minute, people are starting their lives over. Some choose to build a new life in a town close to home while others move out of state or even out of their country. Any move, no matter the distance, can be nerve-racking; however, relocating because you’re hiding from an abusive ex takes the stress of the situation to a whole other level. Abuse, in any form, can reek havoc on your mental state. I am not surprised Mia was skittish with dating again. She’s literally running from the past, trying to stay one step ahead of Wes.

While embarking on a new life in Escape, Colorado, Mia let her guard down and formed relationships. In this small picturesque town, she found support, acceptance, friendship….. a home. The quaint town had accepted this “outsider” as one their own. I know a lot about little towns so I can relate to a small community banding together. They do help each other out and secrets are few and far between.

Sara painted small town living to a tee. She also created a hidden treasure many vacationers would love to unwind at for days, week, or longer: breathtaking mountain view, tranquil lake, numerous hiking trails, caves to explore, etc. It’s a nature lovers dream destination. 

It was Mia’s dream come true, too, until her past caught up with her. After three months on the run, Wes did find her. For me, I thought their confrontation would’ve been more nail biting. Everything was leading up to their monumental moment so this was Mia’s time to shine. Now was the time for Mia to take the bull by the horns and make her stand. Unfortunately, she didn’t and I felt disappointed by her lack of action. I wanted her to take the power away from him. In the end, it all worked out but not in the way I was foresaw. But hey, she still got her happily ever after and that’s what matters at the end of the day. 


Heart Rating System:

1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 

Score: ❤❤❤1/2


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Sara Schoen is a Biology major at James Madison University who was born and raised in Northern Virginia. She has been an adamant writer since she was young, and now enjoys reading, ghost hunting, and traveling. She hopes to have readers find solace in the worlds and characters she creates and in some cases provide a cautionary tale. Sara plans to continue writing and explore various genres in the future.


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Book Release / Review / CONTEST: “A Major Seduction: The Colonel’s Daughters” – CJ Matthew

Happy Release Day, CJ Matthew!!! 


Kari Phillips has sworn off alpha men, thanks to a childhood spent raising four sisters while her dad served in the air force and her mom was unable to cope with his deployments. Vowing never to follow in her mom’s footsteps, Kari has become a driven, successful attorney. On her way to Tokyo to rescue her best friend’s wedding, she meets a cocky F-15 pilot headed to the same ceremony. When he finagles a seat next to her on the flight, she vows if he gives her any grief, she’ll shove him out of the emergency exit without a parachute.

Major Steve Shorner, a patriotic warrior fulfilling his lifelong dream as a fighter pilot, is finding it tough to live down a couple of practical jokes. Before he heads to Tokyo to be his buddy’s best man, Steve’s commander assigns him to a no-win project in Japan, and links the outcome to Steve’s tryout for the Thunderbirds, the AF’s elite demo team. But after a chance meeting with a beautiful redhead at the airport, Steve acquires a new goal—convince the sexy, workaholic lawyer to bend her rule against military men.

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As the airport security line slowed, Kari’s cell phone rang somewhere deep in an out-of-reach pocket. The tote bag shoulder strap took another dive and abruptly stopped its fall with a heavy jolt on her elbow. What was it with this bag? Now, with every movement, the bulky monster bumped into her knee.

Kari stopped. Bending over to dig for her phone, she followed the “New York, New York” ringtone. “Damn it,” she whispered.

“Need some help?” A deep voice rumbled from somewhere close. She glanced up. Way up. And stared. The man…gorgeous. A magazine model? Maybe not with that blond hair cut extremely short. Uh-oh. Possibly the first strike against him. He looked military.

As an air force brat, she knew how frequently men with domineering and controlling traits joined the service. Her own mother had been hard-pressed to cope with her dad, the Colonel’s, overpowering personality. Since Kari was determined not to follow in Mom’s footsteps, she simply avoided men in uniform.

Still, she had to admire the man’s strong chin and classically handsome features. Her gaze slid down to broad shoulders, trim waist, then stalled. Darted back up. Whoa, his eyes were the exact color of warm chocolate.

Wait…here was half a strike. His eyes were framed by impossibly long lashes. Unfair, wasted on a male.

He met her gaze, smiled, and said, “Could I help with the bag while you find your phone?”

Her heart cart-wheeled. As his smile grew, a deep dimple appeared in each cheek, punctuating his full lips. Wow, a tall, helpful man with sexy dimples. Her phone quit ringing. Kari felt the telltale warmth of a blush spread across her neck and up her face.

Locating her cell, she shook her head at her tall neighbor. “Thanks. I’ve got it now.” Seeing the picture of her baby sister, Deborah, on the screen, Kari punched Recall.

Since the hunk behind her only scored one and a half strikes, she surreptitiously completed her inventory and reached her verdict: the man was a total hottie. But what about the drastic buzz cut? If it wasn’t military, he might be law enforcement. Not worth the risk.

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


Kari and I had one thing in common, we are both former Air Force brats. I remember some fun times on the military bases when I was a kid. Memories I will always cherish. As I was reading “A Major Seduction”, I began to think back on those days and found myself smiling. Thank you for that, CJ. 

Also like Kari, we both had a father who was a very dominant man. The Colonel liked things his way, a bit controlling, and I could relate. After dealing with the Colonel and her ex-husband commanding ways, she became quite touchy and would turn to anger rather swiftly. That’s were we part ways. I don’t react that way and I assumed Kari, as a lawyer, would be better at schooling her reactions/emotions. As a top notch lawyer, going for partner, she should be able to handle uncomfortable situations better. She reacted harshly on more than one occasion when it came to Steve. She misread his actions/intentions on more than one occasion and overreacted accordingly. I’m thinking she might benefit from a bit of therapy because I don’t see this issue resolving without some sort of assistance. 

Now lets discuss Steve….. He had a marvelous sense of humor. Him reciting the preflight checklist so he could “last longer” was very humorous. Whatever works to hold off the BIG O! He also had a sweet romantic side which he demonstrated on many occasions. (Chapter 41 and Chapter 43, for sure)

I can’t end this review without touching on the reason why their path’s crossed in the first place –  the wedding. Between the bachelorette dinner/party, florist, baker, caterer, chapel coordinator, musician , rehearsal dinner, and fixing scheduling conflicts, I can’t believe anyone had time to shag. But if anyone needed and deserved coitus it was these two. He was on a foreign base dealing with issues to reinforce his role as a prime candidate for the Thunderbirds. And Kari, she was juggling wedding duties, trying to make partner, and having to deal with Momzilla and the groom’s vile older sister. Now, Momzilla did find tolerable thanks to General Robert Harlson. He charmed the pants off her and the wedding party couldn’t have been happier. 

As for Kari and Steve, they did get their happily ever after but it required compromises, which any great relationship will have many of. And, to avoid spoilers, I won’t tell you what those compromises were. Read the book and find out for yourself. 🙂


Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 

Score: ❤❤❤❤


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As a thank you for taking the time to read the sneak peek/review of A Major Seduction: The Colonel’s Daughters (book one), CJ is offering ONE LUCKY person a chance to win a SIGNED COPY. A great prize to keep for yourself or to surprise your spouse, lover, best friend, or any bookworm in your life.

To be eligible for a chance to WIN THIS PRIZE, all you have to do is leave a comment below. It’s really that simple! Contest is open from now until Saturday, midnight (central time).

Winner will be posted below (on a comment) Sunday (10/16) morning so don’t forget to follow the posting through your email and to come back and see if YOU ARE OUR LUCKY WINNER!! 


Best of luck to you all!! 



CJ Matthew grew up in an Air Force family traveling and living all over the US and around the world. It proved to be the perfect experience for gathering ideas for future books. And for meeting real life heroes and heroines in uniforms and flight-suits. She spent her high school and university years in California, which inspired her love of marine life, and the Pacific Ocean.

A Major Seduction is the first book in CJ’s contemporary romance quintet titled The Colonel’s Daughters. Each book features one of the five sister’s story. Born in different countries around the world, when each of the daughters happens to return to her country of birth, she’s meets her true love, and is forced to confront her destiny.

In CJ’s paranormal romantic suspense series Dolphin Shore Shifters, the most current release, Toxic Tide is book 5. The series features a pod of dolphins living in the Santa Barbara channel off the coast of California, who are capable of shifting to human form. While posing as real humans, the dolphins work, through their oceanic conservation corporation, Save Blue Water, to protect their oceans at any cost.

Her romantic suspense series, The Paladin Group, launched with Deadly Reboot. The books are set in a small southern town, and star wounded air force veterans, men and women warriors turned civilian attorneys and investigators determined to continue their rescue work.

A member of Romance Writers of America (RWA), Georgia Romance Writers (GRW), and Kiss of Death, CJ lives and writes near a lake in the woods northeast of Atlanta. When she isn’t writing or reading romances, CJ spends time with her two grown children, their spouses, a brilliant grandson and a feisty cat named Max.

Schedule permitting, CJ loves to travel, to discover new favorite places and to meet new friends in both the US and around the world.

Max flatly refuses to travel.

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Review of “Lady Gallant” – Gini Rifkin


Disowned by her father and still mourning the death of her fiancé, Josephine Posey joins Florence Nightingale’s brigade of nurses bound for the Black Sea. Thousands of British soldiers desperately await these angels of mercy and a new life awaits Josie. Amidst the chaos of death and despair, she finds a spark of hope, lighting the flame once more inside her soul.

In search of the truth, Garrick Allen, one of Britain’s first war correspondents also journeys to the Crimean Peninsula. To him the soldiers seem all but abandoned by Queen and country, and as he smokes his cheroots and makes friends with a bottle, he writes his bold but honest dispatches for The Times. Not wanting anything more than to finish his job and go home, Garrick is blindsided by a nurse with attitude who offers him a new slant on life and a reason to love.

(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique)  
With any war, we are well aware of the horrors the brave men and women face on the battlefield. However, we sometimes overlook or take for granted the doctors and nurses who treat the fallen soldiers. They, too, feel the pain of combat. They get attached to their charges, lose friends, and push on to “fight” another day. 
In Lady Gallant, Posie fought to heal the soldiers while attempting to keep their spirits high. A prime example was the Christmas tree she procured for them. She didn’t have to but it was in her nature to go the extra mile. 
Mose (her invaluable helper) was equally dedicated to his job, too. It was a shocking and sad moment when Cholera took hold of his body. The love bestowed upon him while in his sick bed was extremely touching and showed his worth in the eyes of his friends. 
Garrick: He started off gruff but it didn’t take long before he showed us his romantic side. He could easily be described as a  knight in shining armor because he literally rescued Posie on more than one occasion. 
The last time solidified their relationship which ended with……. you guessed it, a happily ever after. 
Now if I had to change one thing about this story is would be to add more moments with Posie’s best friend, Gemma. 
Their interactions added a bit of lightness to a rather (at times) intense story. 
Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
 Score: ❤❤❤1/2

Gini Rifkin writes adventurous romance, past present, and into the future. Her settings include the American West, Medieval England, Victorian England, and contemporary fantasy. When not reading or writing, she has the privilege of caring for a menagerie of abandoned animals including ducks, geese, rabbits, goats, donkeys, and cats. She was born and raised in Illinois where she went to school to become a registered nurse. When struck by wanderlust, she moved to Colorado and met her husband Gary. They shared the journey for 30 years, spending vacations canoeing, doing Mountain Man reenacting, and traveling around this great country. Although Gary has passed on, he left her with the skills to soldier on alone, and a little bit of him lives on in every hero she creates. Her writing keeps her hungry to keep learning new things, and she considers family and friends her most treasured of gifts.



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Review of “Bringer of Chaos: The Origin of Pietas” – Kayelle Allen

  • Print Length: 189 pages
Two enemy warriors: one human, one immortal. 
Different in belief, alike in spirit, marooned together on an alien world.

  • Imprisoned and in isolation over a year without food or water, the immortal Pietas survives. Though broken in body, his intellect and will are intact, thanks to Six, the special ops warrior who captured him, but kept him sane. The warrior had no hand in his deprivation and, like Pietas, was betrayed by his own kind. When Pietas is abandoned on an alien world with nothing but his honor–and Six–he must find and rejoin other immortal exiles. After centuries of war, Pietas detests humans and kills them on sight, but he is too damaged to continue on his own. Though he despises needing help, he allows Six to nurture and restore him to full strength, and then accompany him. As they cross the planet together on foot, the immortal begins to wonder if he has found his first human friend, or if Six is loyal only because Pietas could keep the others from tearing him to shreds. This human will either be his closest living friend, or the one whose betrayal will trigger all-out vengeance by the most powerful immortal ever born.

  • Immortal. Warrior. Outcasts. Traitors took everything. Except their honor.


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

As a fan of science fiction and fantasy, I was eager to dive into Bringer of Chaos: the Origin of Pietas. Based off the book summary, my expectations were set high. Certain aspects of the story caught my interest, but then, several sections dragged on and didn’t reach their full potential. 
High points: Kayelle invented the Ultras. Whose abilities would astound anyone. They heal quickly, diseases don’t affect them, can survive any wound, and can be “reborn”. Only two ways ensured their death was permanent. 1) Immolate, freeze and then shatter the Ultra. 2) Put the Ultra through a bone shredder. 
During Pietas captivity, he never met his true death. Actually, he was reborn 1000 times over and, according to him, that’s almost worse than dying. Imagine your body wasting away, perishing, coming alive again, & repeat. I can see why Pietas had no love for humans — Until he met Six (not his real name). 
Six started off his adversary but things changed in the year it took them to reach Sempervia. Once they landed, Six became the hunter, caregiver, protector, comrade and, most importantly, a friend to Pietas (or as Six dubbed him, Pi). 
There on Sempervia, I felt Kayelle could’ve done so much more for the readers. She could’ve added more scifi elements to this science fiction tale. I expected more trouble with the elements. Heck, give me a battle with unknown creatures on the island. Something. Anything. 
We did see a storm, numerous birds, and cats but that’s it. But basically, there was nothing really holding my interest. 
I, once again, had such high hope things would pick up when Pi finally reconnected with the other Ultras in chapter 24 but nope, nothing. In chapter 26, they discussed creating a plan to secure food, shelter, and a way home. 
That’s where the story ended. 
No closure but a set-up for book 2,  Bringer of Chaos: Harvest of Blood. 

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

Kayelle Allen is a best selling American author. Her unstoppable heroes and heroines include contemporary every day folk, role-playing immortal gamers, futuristic covert agents, and warriors who purr.



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Review of “Deadly Reboot” – CJ Matthew (CONTEST INCLUDED!!)

In honor of FLAG DAY, June 14, and all the veterans who served under OLD GLORY, CJ Matthew and I are offering a star spangled contest featuring Deadly Reboot, Paladin Group book 1. 
But before we dive into the rules to enter, first we’d like to introduce one of the prizes — Deadly Reboot. 


Still risking their lives…The Paladin Group. Ginger Odom has sworn to become self-reliant… Until she is arrested in a small town and framed for the murder of a police officer. Seems everyone in the community wants her behind bars, regardless of the truth, so her aunt enlists the help of the Paladin Group. A team of wounded former military men and woman, now civilian lawyers and investigators, they rescue people in serious trouble. Hale Peters is determined to ignore his knee injury… The former Air Force Pararescueman, wounded during a rocket attack on Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan, accepts his first reboot for Paladin. His mission—keep Ginger safe until he can prove her innocence—becomes a bigger challenge than expected when he and Ginger clash over who’s in charge. The Devil Dogs just want to help… The group of older veterans steps up to assist, but when Ginger’s life is threatened by the real killer, Hale and Ginger need to work together if they hope to stay alive.

(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique)
Despite the lack of “Who done it” in this mystery novel, I actually really enjoyed it. Why? Because of the cast…… plain and simple. 

CJ didn’t have a group of young, buff, 6-pack sporting, Dwayne Johnson look-alike, guys handling the case of “Who really shot Officer Ivey?” 
Nope, she had military veterans, men/women injured in battle working the case. Heck, the youngest man from the Devil Dog crew was 64. Heck, they even had a beagle (Grunt) getting into the thick of things. 

Favorite Devil Dog –> Hale, lead investigator. He walked with a cane and used it as a weapon, too. Oh yes, he’s still pretty badass!! 
Seriously, you couldn’t find a more diverse cast of characters. 
With that said, there is something I would change about Deadly Reboot(small gripe). I wasn’t a fan of the county and town’s name being so closely related. Erinville and Erin County. I thought a bit more imagination could’ve been used here, but really as Shakespeare once said, “What’s in a name?”
Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤❤



Now that we’ve gotten the review out of the way, I wanna know WHO IS READY TO WIN?
Ladies and Gents, CJ is offering ONE LUCKY WINNER a spectacular
prize package. 
In it, the winner will receive the following items: One Paladin Group coffee mug, a SIGNED PAPERBACK copy of Deadly Reboot, a DR book mark, a fancy DR key chain. In addition to these wonderful prizes, CJ will also be tossing in a few Flag Day extras in celebration of the national holiday.


And guess what? This amazing contest is open to anyone; no matter
where you call home!! 
To enter, all you have to do is leave a comment below answering one of these questions.

A.) What I love about my country?
  B.) Tell us about the special veteran in your life?
C.) What branch of service (and country) do you serve or did serve?
You’ll have until Wednesday (midnight, central time) to enter. THURSDAY morning, I will post the winner’s name and attempt to message you. Please
follow the comment thread or check back on THURSDAY to see if you are the lucky recipient of this amazing prize package. 

CJ Matthew is the author of paranormal romance suspense series Dolphin Shore Shifters. Her debut novel, Blood Tide, features a pod of dolphins posing as humans that work through their oceanic conservation corporation Save Blue Water, based in Santa Barbara, California, to protect the oceans at any cost.
CJ grew up in an Air Force family that travelled all over the U.S. and around the world. She spent her high school and university years living in California, which inspired her love of marine life and the Pacific Ocean.

A member of Georgia Romance Writers (GRW) Romance Writers of America, CJ lives and writes near a lake in the woods northeast of Atlanta. When she isn’t writing or reading romances, CJ likes to travel and to spend time with her two grown children, a brilliant grandson and a feisty cat named Max.

Website Link
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Review of “Dear Dad” – John Hazen

John Foster is a product of the ‘60s. The question is: which ‘60s? Leading a sheltered, cozy life growing up in the small town of Fairbrook, Massachusetts, John is plucked from his secure cocoon in 1969 and dropped into the maelstrom of the Vietnam War. As he witnesses and participates in the horrors of war, John literally feels his very soul, as well his will to live, eroding away. His redemption only comes after he is seriously injured and awakens to find himself in 1862 Tennessee where he joins General Grant’s troops in the days leading up to the Battle of Shiloh, one of the Civil War’s bloodiest conflicts. As his father, a decorated World War II veteran, had always told him, he discovers that it is possible to be part of something larger than himself. His humanity is ultimate restored after he embarks on a dangerous mission to make right a brutal wrong from his past.


(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) 
If you like movies such as Platoon, Hamburger Hill, or are a wartime history buff in general, then this is the book for you. Dear Dad has not one but two wars featured in a tale that took on a Twilight Zone feel around mid-point. The plot twist happened again around the 215 page mark, when another blast sent him home (literally and figuratively). 

The story didn’t end there. Ghosts from John’s past came back for a visit and it was not a happy reunion. I won’t say anymore (read the book).

BTW: this book does end with a HEA and a WTF moment. 

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


Connect with John via his website or on Twitter.

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Review of “Journey of an American Soldier” – John Hazen


In 1920, the chance to travel to India on a business trip is a great boon for a smart and talented young man. Until he wakes up in a Calcutta jail, framed for murder. Benjamin Albert is a brilliant rising star at his firm, a war hero and a loving husband and father. But when his own government turns its back on him and leaves him to rot in prison 8,000 miles from home, his wife Catherine must take matters into her own hands and battle a ruthless and unscrupulous corporation abetted by a corrupt colonial government. Timeless issues like racism, anti-Semitism, nationalism and women’s rights are exposed during Catherine’s race to save Benjamin.


(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) 
First thing I liked about Journey of an American Son was the multiple strong roles (male and female) created by John . Hirsch (Harry) traveled to America with his family for the opportunity of a better life. Starting over is hard but starting over in a foreign land, that’s takes guts and determination. Traits also found in his wife (Molly), son (Ben), Catherine (Ben’s wife), and Sergeant Jones. 
As a matter of fact, this whole tale kept showcasing their strengths in some form or fashion. The four mentioned above had their share of joys and their share of losses. John wrote a book that didn’t just touch of the bright moments of a person(s) life. So if you are looking for a upbeat story, then I’d pass on this. However, if you want to “live” through their struggles right alongside them, then I suggest going for the ride. It sure as hell is a bumpy one, but one I think you’ll like. 
John is, if nothing else, a very detailed writer. Case in point, the trench scene. The action practically exploded off the pages. 
One last thing I’d like to remark about: I’m a fast reader but Ben’s capacity to fly through the pages was astonishing. 550 pages in 45 min and can retain all the info/recite it verbatim…. Seriously, that is quite a feat. 
Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤
PURCHASE LINKS:  Paperback / Kindle
Don’t let the gray hair fool you; writing keeps me forever young! Author of four acclaimed suspense novels and working on more!
Connect with John via his website or on Twitter.


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Author Showcase / Interview and Review of “Fava” – John Hazen

Welcome, John Hazen!!

1. For those who might not be familiar with you, would you be a dear and tell the readers a little about yourself? How did you get your start in the writing business?

(John) Writing a novel had always been one of those things I always wanted to do but never got around to do. I’d always had these ideas floating around in my head that I thought would make great premises (e.g., what would happen if a person stumbled upon one of the 30 pieces of silver given to Judas? Or, how can you compare two diametrically opposed wars like the Civil War and Vietnam? Or, what would happen if one of the “Pillars of Islam” were removed?), but I never acted and used one of these as the basis for a novel. It was about fifteen years ago that I got my first laptop and I decided it was time to put my downtime on the train back and forth to work to profitable use. I started to write. Over that time I’ve completed and published three suspense novels: Dear Dad, Fava and Journey of an American Son. I’ve just submitted my fourth novel, Aceldama, for publication.


2. All writers fear the dreaded “block”. Please tell us how you handle it.
(John) I’ve encountered some level of block on each of my novels. I’m not an outliner. I’m more of a “make it up as I go along type of guy.” While I think this approach is right for me and has some advantages such as spontaneity, it also lends itself to going down a path, getting to a certain point and then saying to myself: Where do I go from here? The way I usually handle it is to put the book aside and work on some other project. The blocks eventually resolve themselves. For one of my books, I even had a proverbial 2:00 AM “Aha moment” when I woke up with an idea on how to move forward. Luckily, I had pen and paper by my bedside to jot down the idea so that it didn’t flee my brain come morning.

3. Contrary to what some people envision about a romance writer’s life, it’s not all glitz and glam. Well not for the majority of us. With that bubble sadly busted, when you’re not writing, how to do you spend your time?
(John) Well, I do have a day job in the field of environmental protection to pay the bills, but people don’t want to hear about that, I’m sure. In general, I like doing things with my best friend, my wife Lynn. We love to travel. Paris has been like a second home to us over the years. We also like to play tennis, go for walks and watch TV together. Whatever I do, I’m always on the lookout for new book ideas, I’m afraid.

4. I know many writers, such as myself, keep their pastime/career a secret. Do those close to you know you write? If so, what are their thoughts?
(John) When I first started writing, I did keep it to myself but since I’ve gotten a few books under my belt, I let anyone and everyone know about my writing. Working with a small, independent publisher, I’ve had to do a lot of my own marketing and promotion. With all the Twitter and Facebook self-promotion I do, I’m often surprised if someone doesn’t know that I’m an author. The reactions I’ve gotten range from surprise to pride, but they’ve always been positive.
(Kameron) Congrats!!


5. Will you share with us your all time favorite authors? If you’re like me, it’s a long list so give us your top ten.
(John) My absolute all-time favorite book is To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. I was chagrined that Go Set a Watchman was released, but I don’t hold it against her, instead chalking that up to a greedy publisher brow beating a nearly 90-year old woman into releasing it.
Other favorite authors, not necessarily in this order, include:
J.K. Rowling
John Steinbeck
Stephen King
James Michener
Leon Uris
Doris Kearns Goodwin
Laura Hillenbrand
James Patterson
John Hazen

(Kameron) Great list of authors. I love you included yourself. We should always be our greatest champion/supporter.


6. If you could choose one book to go to the big screen, yours or otherwise, which book would you choose and whom would you love see casted in the parts?
(John) I’ve been told by more than one person that they thought my book Fava would make a great movie. One recent review noted that she loves it when a book makes her go “ Wow, I didn’t see that coming!” That’s what I like in a film as well. It’s also topical and current, has great action and believable characters. I’d go with Eva Longoria for the lead, Francine Vega, Bradley Cooper for FBI Special Agent Will Allen and Johnny Depp for the brilliant but off-the-wall Alan Westbrook. Might as well shoot for the stars, right?
(Kameron) That’s a superb cast!!

7. Would you care to tell us what you’re working on now? That is if it’s not top-secret information. If so, just whisper it in my ear. I swear it’ll go no further.
(John) Well, as I mentioned earlier I just sent my latest novel, Aceldama, to my publisher with the hope of having it released in the spring. It’s a fantasy/suspense novel with a religious overtone that involves a coin, a curse and a murder. Getting it into publishable shape has been consuming my time of late, although I am also helping a friend write a screenplay of a book he has rights to.

8. Where can we find your stories and is there a particular reading order?

(John) My books can all be found on Amazon, and no, they are all stand-alone novels and do not need to be read in any given order. The links for the books are:
9. Would you please share how your present and future fans can contact you?
(John) Probably the best way to contact me is via Twitter @john_hazen. I’m very diligent about keeping up with my notifications and messages so if you reach out to me, I will get back shortly.
10. Before we conclude this enlightening interview, do you have anything else you’d like to share? The stage is all yours.
(John) I just want to thank you for this opportunity. As I said, independent authors have to spend a lot of their own time promoting and marketing. The idealistic and unrealistic side of me says that this is not needed. “My books are good and they should sell themselves,” I tell myself, but alas, it doesn’t seem to work out that way. It’s therefore especially appreciated when I come across outlets like your blog to get my name and my works out there. I hope I’m able to pique the interest of at least a few possible readers who’ll look me up and give my stories a chance.

(Kameron) Thank you John gracing us with an interview and thank you ladies and gents for poppin by. Before you run off to the real world (again), let’s take a quick gander at one of the books John mentioned above, Fava.



The biggest story of Francine Vega’s career could end her life…or start World War III. Francine is a rising TV news reporter in New York City. Despite her brains, beauty and a growing following, she is stuck covering local interest stories. That is until her career literally hits the jackpot when the winner of a $450 million dollar lottery tells Francine that he is committed to using his new fortune to avenge his brother’s killing at the Pentagon on 9/11. His seemingly crazy plan is backed by more than just money-he is in league with a ruthless and powerful Army Colonel gone rogue, religious extremists and co-conspirators in the highest levels of government. Francine teams with FBI Special Agent Will Allen, one of the few people who believe the threat is real, in a desperate race across three continents to stop the plot before it’s too late.

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

As I was reading the first several chapters of Fava, I kept thinking it was coming across as a hate book. Alan Westbrook, Reverend Malcolm McKenzie, Colonel Lawson and their followers set out to eradicate Mecca for their own personal reasons. They were condemning/punishing an entire country/race/religion based off the horrendous actions of the few. 
Reverend McKenzie’s motto “No Cheeks Left” went viral and his “sheep” began taking matters into their own hands while Alan and Lawson used Alan’s lotto earnings to plan their own vengeance. This is where the plot unfolds and the TRUER MESSAGE is unveiled and I realized this WAS NOT a hate book after all. Thank goodness for that!! 
I believe the point of  Fava is NOT to spread hate but to reinforce the idea of not punishing the whole for the actions of the few. 
I think you can agree/hope innocent people SHOULD NOT be sentenced to the same fate as the guilty parties. 
Think about this….. If we laid down the hammer on an entire nation/race/religion based off the actions of a group of people then imagine how many people would be left walking the Earth. 
Not many, I tell you that. 
Ponder that a moment and then read this book. 
Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤

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Author Showcase and Review of “From a Soldier’s Perspective” – Michael Lee Womack

Website: www.womackpoetry.com
Twitter: @WomackPoetry
Facebook: www.facebook.com/AuthorMichaelLeeWomack

On the seventeenth day of February 1987, author and poet Michael Lee Womack was born in the small town of Sanford, North Carolina. While coming up through elementary school, middle school, and high school Mr. Womack was extremely shy. Michael Lee Womack was extremely shy, but he had a love for the ladies. His love for the ladies would eventually give birth to his love for poetry. Whenever he was in middle school and high school he was specifically known for writing poems for every beautiful woman that he was too shy to speak to. 

In the summer of 2005, North Carolina Author& Poet “Michael Lee Womack” graduated from”Lee Senior High School”. Approximately one month later from reaching this landmark in his life, this young man became a part of something bigger than anything that he had ever been a part of at this time of his life, the “United States Army”. He enlisted into the United States Army on the 30th of June 2005. From there, he would embark on a journey unlike any other. He attended One Station Unit Training at Fort Knox, Kentucky so that he could serve his country as a 19 Delta Cavalry Scout. 
Upon the completion of his training at Fort Knox, Kentucky the United States Army assigned him to the 3rd Squadron, 4th U.S. Cavalry Regiment of the 25th Infantry Division. In the years of 2006- 2007 he would deploy as a “Calvary Scout” with 3rd Squadron 4th U.S. Calvary Regiment located out of the Pacific Island of “Hawaii,”. 
In the year of 2008 this hard working soldier was ready to move on to another duty station. His next landing spot in the army would once again be Fort Knox, Kentucky. While there he would spend the next year of his life in the 1st Squadron, 16th U.S. Cavalry working as the OPFOR that assisted in the training of freshly new army lieutenants. After spending the first three years of his army career serving honorably as a “Calvary Scout” this trooper sought to learn another skill. 
The great southern state of “Georgia” would soon be his next home as he continued his journey onto the home of the “United States Army Signal Corps” , also known as “Fort Gordon”. It would be there in which he would learn the skills required to be a “25 Sierra” “Satellite Communication Systems Operator/Maintainer”. 
After obtaining the knowledge required to carry out the duties of his new occupation he would continue to “soldier on” to “Fort Stewart, Georgia” home of the 3rd Infantry Division. As soon as he made way to his new Army family, “Charlie Company 4-3 BSTB” he deployed with them to Ramadi, Iraq in support of “Operation New Dawn” from the summer of 2010 to the summer of 2011. 
Three years after that he would see his army career come to a close, and on the 27th of May 2014 he was medically retired from the military. Upon his departure from the military Mr. Womack would have problems adjusting to civilian life, however, his first love, a.k.a. “poetry” saved him. Through your reading of his newest published book, “From A Soldier’s Perspective” he hopes that you gain much insight from it on what life was like for him as a soldier, as well as what life has been like for him as a veteran.
As soldiers who have just returned from war, we fight a separate war daily in an attempt to leave the war behind. Many soldiers, just like myself, come home from war only to fight a separate internal battle, with debilitating illnesses such as post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression. It was important for me to share my story not only for myself but for those who have fought, for those who have fallen, and for those who continue to wage war in order for the United States of America to continue to remain free. The price of freedom is not free. 

War is chaos, and many soldiers bear the scars from it for the rest of our lives.


 (review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) 
Unless you walked a mile in a soldier’s “shoes”, you can’t fully understand what their time deployed has done to their psyche and bodies. Yes, family and friends live with the aftermath right alongside them. However, loved ones can’t fully understand what’s going on in the soldier’s mind. The battles they still face well after their time of war is over. 
I have no doubt Michael’s poetry won’t have you appreciating a soldier’s job a bit more. 
I simply couldn’t pick a favorite poem. For me, they all were touching — so many emotions pouring from his heart/mind into ours. 
Thank you, Michael. Thank you for opening up to us, letting us in, and sharing your time over there and civilian life will us. 
My only negative point to address (which I brought up to him) was the pricing of the paperback/hardcover. He stated he had no control over it. I highly suggest reading this but, for those who are watching their wallets, I would opt for the kindle version. 
Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤❤


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Review of ‘Broken” and “Twisted” – Cynthia Eden

Release Date: March 31, 2015
Publisher: Avon Romance
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Series: LOST, Book 1
The first novel in New York Times bestselling author Cynthia Eden’s sizzling LOST series introduces the Last Option Search Team, an elite unit that must protect the only surviving victim of a serial killer.
Ex-SEAL and LOST founder Gabe Spencer is accustomed to the unusual in his job. But when knockout Eve Gray steps into his office, he’s rattled. For the mysterious woman is a dead ringer for the heiress thought to be the latest prey of the serial killer who goes by the name Lady Killer.
When Eve awoke in an Atlanta hospital, her past was a blank slate. Then she recognized her own face in the newspaper and vowed to learn the truth. Determined to confront the nightmares hidden in her mind, she never expects to find a partner in Gabe.

As Gabe and Eve work together, their explosive attraction becomes irresistible. Gabe knows that his desire for Eve is growing too strong, bordering on a dangerous obsession, but nothing pulls him away from her. And when another Eve lookalike disappears, Gabe vows to protect Eve at all costs. While Eve may have forgotten the killer in her past, it’s clear he hasn’t forgotten her.

—–> REVIEW <—–

I kept ping ponging between two suspects in this opening tale of the LOST series. I was 95% sure I knew who the whackadoodle was; however, that pesky 5% was nagging at me. I was doubting myself and, for that, I say fan-fucking-tastic job Cynthia. You knew how to spin a suspenseful tale. I loved every moment of it. 

It also made me think “blondes really don’t have all the fun”. If I wasn’t grateful before for being a brunette, I am now. 🙂
Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 

Score: ❤❤❤❤❤
Release Date: April 28, 2015
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Series: LOST, Book 2

In the second seductive LOST novel from New York Times bestselling author Cynthia Eden, an obsessed Last Option Search Team agent goes looking for trouble—and finds her in the Big Easy.
Dean Bannon comes to New Orleans for one reason only: to track down a missing sixteen-year-old girl. That’s before he meets the drop-dead gorgeous con artist who makes him want to lose his legendary control.
With her past, Emma Castille doesn’t claim to be psychic. She just notices things other people don’t. Like the fear in a runaway’s eyes—or the pain in an ex-FBI agent’s heart. Her chemistry with Dean is blistering, but Emma follows her passion . . . not someone else’s orders.
Then a madman breaks into Emma’s home and leaves a twisted message: You’re next. Now Dean refuses to let her out of his sight until he pries every last secret from her full, sexy lips. And suddenly Emma’s aching to give him everything he wants.

—–> REVIEW <—–
Despite the fact I figured out the twist to “Twisted” long before the stars of the show did, it didn’t deter from the greatness of this tale. Seriously, Cynthia dropped enough “clues” for the readers to solve the mystery before Dean, Emma, and the LOST team. However in this instance, the suspense wasn’t about who the whackadoodle was. No, it was about how the story would end and where because we all know the serial killer would not go quietly. What would be the fun in that if he did? 🙂

Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 

Score: ❤❤❤❤1/2
Release Date: October 27, 2015
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Series: Book 3
In New York Times bestselling author Cynthia Eden’s latest novel featuring the Last Option Search Team (LOST), one agent is forced to face her past as she uncovers secrets about the man who may be the key to her future.
Criminal psychiatrist Dr. Sarah Jacobs is all too familiar with the kind of bad boys who belong behind bars. But the dark, dangerous man she meets in the New Orleans underworld is a new kind of ruthless, and all too irresistible.
Jax Fontaine doesn’t claim to be a good guy, but he’s loyal to his own code and brutally honest about what he wants. He and Sarah may be worlds apart, but when they’re skin to skin, nothing matters but the heat between them.
And when a deranged killer targets Sarah, Jax will do whatever it takes to keep her safe. . . .

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