Book Review: Rough Way to the High Way by Kelly Mack McCoy

Pastor turned long-haul trucker, Mack, struggles with grief and perceived failures as a minister while he is confronted with a mysterious hitchhiker, smugglers, and a determined killer. After an unbearable tragedy strikes his life, he sells everything he owns and buys a new Peterbilt truck, returning to the trade he learned decades earlier.

Hoping for some windshield therapy and peace of mind behind the wheel of his new rig, Mack gets neither after God nudges him to pick up a hitchhiker near the Jordan State Prison outside Mack’s childhood home of Pampa, Texas.

When his world is ripped apart, he seeks to run away from it all, going as far as to cut off communication with all but a handful of people. But he is pursued by God, who will not let him go. Unbeknownst to Mack, God is equipping His servant with tools to handle events his past education and experience could never have prepared him for.

The story unfolds as the hitchhiker enters Mack’s Peterbilt. The man reminds Mack of his father, a hard living, hard drinking oilfield roughneck who died in prison. God begins to do a work in Mack’s heart while Mack seeks to minister to his new passenger. But Mack soon rues the day he let the hitchhiker into his truck.

His old life in ruins now, Mack learns he has angered a new enemy who threatens to destroy his life on the road as well. Mack suspects he is being followed and is in the sights of a killer who plots a revenge no one could have seen coming.

God works His mysterious way in Mack’s life steamroller-style all the way to an ending that will leave the reader thinking about it long after reading The End at the bottom of the last page.

Rough Way to the High Way is the first of a series of novels about Mack’s adventures on the road as lives are transformed through his new ministry. The first life to be transformed as Rough Way to the High Way develops appears to be that of the hitchhiker. But God is working in Mack’s life all along, preparing him for a new ministry that will transform lives across the country.

Amazon

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free copy from the author through Book Sirens. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

Mack has decided he needs some “windshield time” after he loses his wife. He’s told it was suicide, but he’s convinced it was murder. The former pastor still lets God guide him through life, which is more than evident throughout his story. No matter what curve ball is thrown at him, Mack is able to handle it through faith and determination. He’s able to analyze events and is often one stop ahead of the authorities. It’s a good thing he’s working with them.

I enjoyed the names that Mack gives various people he comes across: Officer Pipe Cleaner, G-man, Officer Smiley, Mr. Tire Man, etc. I also liked the author’s writing style. It was fast reading with constant action. The one thing that irritated me was that everyone called him “driver.”

If you’re looking for a book that is good for your soul, look no further. This is a good first novel by the author, and I look forward to reading more of his work.

About the Author

Kelly Mack McCoy is a semi (pun intended) retired truck driver turned author. He spent most of his career behind the wheel of an eighteen-wheeler traveling extensively through forty-eight states gathering a lifetime of material for his books. Rough Way to the High Way is his first novel and the first in a series of novels about the adventures of trucker turned pastor turned trucker Mack McClain.

Book Review: Justice Gone by N. Lombardi Jr.

When a homeless war veteran is beaten to death by the police, stormy protests ensue, engulfing a small New Jersey town. Soon after, three cops are gunned down. A multi-state manhunt is underway for a cop killer on the loose. And Dr. Tessa Thorpe, a veteran’s counselor, is caught up in the chase. Donald Darfield, an African-American Iraqi war vet, war-time buddy of the beaten man, and one of Tessa’s patients, is holed up in a mountain cabin. Tessa, acting on instinct, sets off to find him, but the swarm of law enforcement officers get there first, leading to Darfield’s dramatic capture. Now, the only people separating him from the lethal needle of state justice are Tessa and ageing blind lawyer, Nathaniel Bodine. Can they untangle the web tightening around Darfield in time, when the press and the justice system are baying for revenge? Justice Gone is the first in a series of psychological thrillers involving Dr Tessa Thorpe, wrapped in the divisive issues of modern American society including police brutality and disenfranchised returning war veterans. N Lombardi Jr. is the author of compelling and heartfelt novel The Plain of Jars.

Amazon

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free e-copy from the author. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

It’s not often that I cry at the beginning of a book but with all that is going on in our country right now, the beating of the vet really hit home. While I’m not one to believe all claims of police brutality, I do know it happens and this time, although fictional, was definitely such a case.

Tessa is a counselor for veterans, and she can’t help but care for the men she counsels. When a man she’s been counseling is killed by the police, she and his father seek justice, since the city is obviously going to try to sweep this under the rug. And when another man she counsels is arrested for killing cops, she has her work cut out for her.

I like Tessa although I never felt a real connection to her. It’s obvious that she cares about people and wants to do all she can to make things right. Most of the other characters are realistic and unique in their own way.

After the shocking beginning, I felt that it was slow going at times. Other times it was a page-turner. I found the ending a surprise, so it definitely has a good beginning and a good ending.

Justice Gone is a good legal thriller that I definitely recommend if you can handle the beginning with the beating that is described so well.

About the Author

N. Lombardi Jr, the N for Nicholas, has spent over half his life in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East, working as a groundwater geologist. Nick can speak five languages: Swahili, Thai, Lao, Chinese, and Khmer (Cambodian).

In 1997, while visiting Lao People’s Democratic Republic, he witnessed the remnants of a secret war that had been waged for nine years, among which were children wounded from leftover cluster bombs. Driven by what he saw, he worked on The Plain of Jars for the next eight years.
Nick maintains a website with content that spans most aspects of the novel: The Secret War, Laotian culture, Buddhism etc.

http://www.plainofjars.net

His second novel, Journey Towards a Falling Sun, is set in the wild frontier of northern Kenya.

His latest novel, Justice Gone, was inspired by the fatal beating of a homeless man by police.

Nick now lives in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Book Review: The Circle by Mario Escobar

The famous psychiatrist Solomon Lewin has left his humanitarian work in India to serve as the chief psychiatrist at the Center for Psychological Illness located in London’s Square Mile financial district. Though well paid, the job is monotonous, and Solomon is also going through a rough patch in his marriage with Margaret. He begins scrutinizing the more mysterious cases of the center’s long-term residents hoping to find something worth his time. When he comes across the chart of Maryam Batool, a young broker from London who has lived in the center for seven years, his life will change forever. 
Maryam Batool is an orphan from Pakistan who became one of the most promising female employees of the financial institution General Society, but in the summer of 2007, at the start of the financial crisis, the young broker loses her mind and tries to kill herself. Since then she has been stuck, able only to draw circles yet unable to understand their meaning. 
A snow storm looms over the city at the start of the Christmas holidays. Before Christmas Eve dinner, Solomon receives an urgent call from the center to come at once: Maryam has attacked a nurse and seems to be awakening from her long stupor. 
Solomon heads downtown in the snow, clueless that this will be the most difficult night of his life. The psychiatrist does not trust his patient, the police are after them, and his family seems to be in danger. The only way to protect himself and those he loves is to discover what “The Circle” is and why everyone seems to want his patient dead. It’s a surprise ending and a mystery you won’t believe. 

What is hiding in the City of London? Who is behind the biggest business center in the world? What is the truth behind “The Circle”? Can Solomon save his family? 

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free e-copy from the author. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

Solomon has had a rewarding career as a psychiatrist but has now settled in London with his family and is the head of a psychiatric facility. He’s afraid that he’s going to be bored, and his wife Margaret is already bored. She loves her children with all her heart but she wants more. Their marriage is suffering but they both want it to work and are starting to take steps to improve it.

Suddenly, everything changes on Christmas Eve when a patient suddenly awakens from a stupor of 7 years. Solomon is called into the hospital when this happens but when he arrives, he finds a couple of the employees murdered and the patient awake but confused.

From this point on, I had to read the rest of the book in one sitting. It’s confusing at times but everything falls into place by the end of the book. There’s a lot of action and suspense. The ending was unexpected and one that I’ll remember for quite a while.

About the Author

Mario Escobar Golderos has a degree in History, with an advanced studies diploma in Modern History. He has written numerous books and articles about the Inquisition, the Protestant Reformation, and religious sects. He is the executive director of an NGO and directs the magazine Nueva historia para el debate, in addition to being a contributing columnist in various publications. Passionate about history and its mysteries, Escobar has delved into the depths of church history, the different sectarian groups that have struggled therein, and the discovery and colonization of the Americas. He specializes in the lives of unorthodox Spaniards and Americans. 

Book Review & Giveaway: Drone Strike by Joe Giordano

Book Title: Drone Strike: An Anthony Provati Thriller by Joe Giordano
Category: Adult Fiction, 290 pages
Genre: Thriller
Publisher: Rogue Phoenix Press
Release date: April 15, 2019

Content Rating: PG-13 + M (for graphic violent terrorist scenes, no sex, no f-words.)

 

Book Description:

Karim’s family is killed by a U.S. drone strike in Iraq, collateral damage. The Islamic State in the Levant exploits his rage, recruiting him for a terrorist attack on the U.S., and only Anthony Provati can stop him. Drone Strike takes you on a fast-paced adventure across the Mediterranean, into Mexico, finally arriving in the States. Drone Strike explores the psychological realities that seduce Karim to commit an act of terror, includes a love story between Moslem Karim and Miriam, a Christian woman he defends in Turkey and highlights the plight of Middle Eastern and Central American refugees.

To read reviews, please follow Joe Giordano’s page on Italy Book Tours.

Buy the Book:

 

 

 

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free e-copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

Drone Strike is a timely thriller that deals with terrorism. It’s not only the story of Anthony Provati tracking Karim down but how Karim became the man he is. An American drone kills his beloved family which causes him to go down a road of terror. The way that terrorist organizations are able to recruit and train people, taking advantage of people like Karim, is something that is realistic and a major problem that needs to be addressed somehow.

If you like realistic action-packed thrillers, Drone Strike is a good one, especially if you want to learn more about the cultures and situation in the Middle East.

 

Meet the Author:

As a former International Executive Vice President of 3M, Joe Giordano’s experience included running a business in the Middle East out of Athens, Greece. Born in New York, he’s had first-hand experience with the cultures and most of the locations in Drone Strike.

Joe’s stories have appeared in more than one hundred magazines including The Saturday Evening Post and Shenandoah. His novels, Birds of Passage: An Italian Immigrant Coming of Age Story (2015) and Appointment with ISIL: An Anthony Provati Thriller (2017) were published by Harvard Square Editions. Read the first chapters and sign up for his blog at http://joe-giordano.com/

Joe was among one hundred Italian-American authors honored by Barnes & Noble Chairman Len Riggio to march in the 2017 Manhattan, Columbus Day Parade.

Connect with the author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Pinterest

 

 

Enter the Giveaway!

Ends May 3, 2019

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Book Review: Thicker Than Water by Rachel McLean

 

Six years after floods made her family homeless, Jess Dyer has found safety on the wild North Yorkshire coast. Her sister-in-law Ruth is forging a role as doctor to their community of refugees and the rock around which the family revolves.

But the family is haunted by memories of the journey north and the loss of their mother Sonia. And their community is under attack from the local population.

When Jess answers a distress call at sea, she brings strangers to their village and puts Ruth in jeopardy. Jess must calm the community, mount a rescue mission and keep her brother Ben from tipping into insanity.
Will she succeed? And will she find Ruth before it’s too late?

‘Thicker Than Water’ is a gripping thriller about family, belonging and revenge.

Purchase Links:
UKhttps://www.amazon.co.uk/Thicker-Than-Water-gripping-belonging-ebook/dp/B07CVKXGRD
UShttps://www.amazon.com/Thicker-Than-Water-gripping-belonging-ebook/dp/B07CVKXGRD

 

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

I read The Division Bell trilogy and liked it, so I was happy to read Thicker Than Water. It took me quite a while to get into A House Divided (the first Division Bell book), and when I started this book, I was afraid it was going to be the same. Thankfully, I was wrong!

A community on the North Yorkshire coast has worked hard to survive after floods that wiped out their homes six years ago. They’re self-sufficient but on edge because they know there is danger lurking outside their community, and they always need to be on guard. At the same time, though, many believe they should help others in need. But how do they know when they can trust strangers?

Even with all of their precautions, they rescue strangers who are actually predators and they kidnap four of the women. Jess, the new leader of the community, heads a rescue party to save the women. Her sister-in-law, Ruth, is one of those kidnapped, and her brother is not dealing with it well. 

Meanwhile, Ruth is a strong woman and is determined to find a way to escape. The tension is intense as she makes her plans and deals with a man who she knows is going to rape her soon. Can she put him off long enough? She also knows there’s at least one other woman being kept captive. How can she save her? Or can she?

Thicker Than Water is filled with suspense as well as the complications of the relationships between characters who are realistic. I enjoy Rachel McLean’s writing and the more I read, the better it gets! I can’t wait to read Sea of Lies.  

 

 

Author Bio

My name’s Rachel McLean and I write thrillers that make you think.

What does that mean?

In short, I want my stories to make your pulse race and your brain tick.

Do you often get through a thriller at breakneck pace but are left with little sense of what the book was really about? Do you sometimes read literary fiction but just wish something would damn well happen?

My books aim to fill that gap.

If you’d like to know more about my books and receive extra bonus content, please join my book club at rachelmclean.com/bookclub. I’ll send you a weekly email with news about my writing research and progress, stories and bonus content for each book. And I’ll let you know when my books are on offer.

Social Media Links –
Twitter: https://twitter.com/rachelmcwrites
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/rachelmcleanwrites/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/rachelmcwrites/

Book Review: At the Edge of No Return by D.J. Adamson

At the Edge of No Return, psychological suspense—thriller, brings four characters to the edge of falling toward darkness or light. Has Elvis Colt, a serial killer, rolled the dice too many times; the Reverend William Meeks lost any chance for salvation; Jack Goodman, forever stuck at Horizon’s End, and behavior psychologist Dr. Georgia Jeningson making a fatal decision when trying to right a wrong which can never be taken back? This novel explores how quantum choices given at birth determine a leap of destiny. At the Edge of No Return offers more than just another story of murder, vengeance, and love lost. The novel explores what can take all of us to the edge.

 

My Review

I chose to review this book after receiving a free e-copy from the author. All opinions are my own and unbiased. I’ve read several books by this author so I was happy to read At the Edge of No Return.

The story takes place in the small coastal town of Seaward. It begins with Reverend Meeks murdering his wife. At first, he seems evil but is he or is he mentally ill? Dr. Georgia Jeningson would know. She has just moved into town to hide from a serial killer who killed her husband and is looking for her. Her new home is being haunted by Jack, the man who built the house. For some reason, he’s stuck in Seaward and doesn’t like anyone moving into the house.

All of these characters are loosely tied together in an inventive way. There is murder, mystery, and suspense around every corner. Jack also brings a little humor into situations at times. It would have been a little more suspenseful for me if Georgia had done less pondering.

At the Edge of No Return was an enjoyable read and I look forward to reading the next book.

 

About the Author

D. J. Adamson is the author of the Lillian Dove Mystery series and Outré, a science fiction-suspense YA. She is the editor of Le Coeur de l’Artiste, a newsletter which reviews authors and their work. She also teaches writing and literature at Los Angeles colleges. And to keep busy when she is not writing or teaching, she is the Membership Director of the Los Angeles Sisters in Crime, Vice President of Central Coast Sisters in Crime and an active member of the Southern California Mystery Writers. Her books can be found and purchased in bookstores and on Amazon. To find her, her blog L’Artiste, or newsletter go to http://www.djadamson.com. Make friends with her on Facebook or Goodreads.

Adamson “weaves this suspenseful tale that grabs the reader like the tornado at its core. It starts out slow, like a train leaving the station, then accelerates to a feverish pace, leaving you in a sweat.”

Book Review: Divided We Stand by Rachel McLean

 

 

Britain is a country under surveillance. Neighbours spy on neighbours. Schools enforce loyalty to the state. And children are encouraged to inform on their parents.

Disgraced MP Jennifer Sinclair has earned her freedom but returns home to find everything changed.

Rita Gurumurthy has been sent to a high security prison. When a sympathetic guard helps her escape she becomes a fugitive, forced to go into hiding.

To reunite her family and win freedom for her son and her friend, Jennifer must challenge her old colleague and rival, the new Prime Minister Catherine Moore.

Will Catherine listen to reason and remove the country from its yoke of fear and suspicion? Or will Jennifer have to reveal the secret only she knows about Catherine, and risk plunging the country into turmoil?

Purchase Links:

UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Divided-We-Stand-chilling-surveillance-ebook/dp/B07GNP3Y53

US – https://www.amazon.com/Divided-We-Stand-chilling-surveillance-ebook/dp/B07GNP3Y53

 

 

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

I read the first two books in this trilogy, A House Divided and Divide and Rule, and I was looking forward to finding out what happens next to Jennifer Sinclair. She was just released from a British Values Centre and she has no idea what has happened in the past 4 months outside those walls. She returns home to find her oldest son still in prison, her youngest son afraid to talk to her, and her husband overloaded having to deal with everything that’s been going on.

Not only is Jennifer’s family in turmoil but things have fallen apart in the country. Everyone is being watched, especially Muslims and their friends and families. The schools are being segregated and her former friend Catherine Moore is Prime Minister! She reaches out to Catherine refusing to believe she has become an enemy, but her husband believes she is wrong.

Meena, Rita, and Mark from the British Values Centre all have challenges of their own. Will they all survive this turbulent time? Although Jennifer wants to find her son at the very least, will she be successful? 

Rachel McLean’s writing flows well and the characters are well developed and complex. All three books are very good and they got progressively better. I definitely recommend this trilogy although beware…it’s scary to think that it could happen in these crazy times we live in.

 

 

 

Author Bio –

I’m Rachel McLean and I write thrillers and speculative fiction.

I’m told that the world wants upbeat, cheerful stories – well, I’m sorry but I can’t help. My stories have an uncanny habit of predicting future events (and not the good ones). They’re inspired by my work at the Environment Agency and the Labour Party and explore issues like climate change, Islamophobia, the refugee crisis and sexism in high places. All with a focus on how these impact individual people and families.

You can find out more about my writing, get access to deals and exclusive stories or become part of my advance reader team by joining my book club at rachelmclean.com/bookclub.

Social Media Links –

Twitter – https://twitter.com/rachelmcwrites

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/rachelmcleanwrites/

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/rachelmcwrites/?hl=en