Reviews: Serafina and the Black Cloak

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If you have a child in middle school or you teach the grades 6-9 you might want to check out this weeks review. Serafina and the Black Cloak is a beautiful written suspense for young adults. Written by Robert Beatty, this novel is based at the Biltmore House in Asheville North Carolina! I love how Beatty took a little of history and made a fictional story out of it. What a great way to get our young students excited about part of our state’s history. Even though this story is more fiction than anything, Beatty describes the rooms at the Biltmore and the family that lives there, Mr. and Mrs. George Vanderbilt.

Serafina was raised in the basement of the Biltmore with her father. No on knew she was there and she only came out at night when all the other living souls were asleep. One terrifying night she comes across a man in a black cloak. She watches as children start to disappear in his presents. But whom can she tell? No one is supposed to know she exists. Then she meets Braeden Vanderbilt, Mr. Vanderbilt’s nephew. They have a new friendship that grows even with all the dangers that are going on. Serafina in drawn to the forest that her father has warner her to stay out of. There are great evils out there that are not safe for a young girl.

As Serafina tries to help find out who the man in the black cloak is and what is happening to those who are missing, can she keep herself and Braeden safe? This is a must to read. Whether in middle school or an adult, you will not be disappointed in this novel. The best thing I hear about this one is… Beatty is writing a second one making this a series!

Want to learn more about Serafina’s adventures at the Biltmore? Please check out the website for more information and to watch a trailer to the book.

http://robert-beatty.com/serafina-book-trailer/

Reviews: The Girl On The Train

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This year’s most suspenseful, exciting, and heart stop novel yet is on the New York’s Times Bestseller and there are many reasons to see why! The Girl On The Train written by Paula Hawkins is a novel about not believing what you are seeing and has you thinking about just how well you know people. After reading this novel about Rachel, a girl who travels the London’s railway on the local train daily, until one day her life is changed forever by what she saw, I believed it is genius with the way it ended.

Rachel is divorced, and has other battles that she finds herself facing daily as she rides the train in London every morning and afternoon. She sees the same faces in the homes as she travels by. The makes up stories about them to pass the time. One is of a couple she sees and has named them, Jason and Jess. But what she sees one day will not only change the life their life but hers and that of many others. As she goes to the police they half listen to her. She seems to have issues herself. Then by the end she is not sure if the things in her life she knows are true are really true. What has been made up and what is really fact.

The Girl On The Train is one of those novels that will have you on an emotional roller coaster all the way through to the very end of the book. It is a thriller that is full of suspense and one that you will want to read.

http://paulahawkinsbooks.com

Reviews:The President’s Shadow

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Beecher is back in Brad Meltzer’s latest novel, The President’s Shadow. It follows behind The Inner Circle and The Fifth Assassin from this amazing writer who is also a #1 bestselling author! A thrilling storyline that feeds you some history like the others but adds a little mystery to what might have happened with all of those involved. With characters like Beecher who you instantly for in love with, you find yourself at the edge of your seat wishing him the best.

 

 

Beecher White is a member of the Culper Ring and now the President needs their help. When body parts turn up buried on the White House grounds, The President looks to Beecher, who dislikes and does not trust him, to help find out who is involved. First is finding out how they got past all the security and cameras. With the rest of the characters from the first two novels, Beecher will not work alone. But can they find answers before it is too late? And just who will be the hero in the end?

 

 

If you pick this novel up without reading the first two you will be okay because it will be easy to catch who is who and what has happened so far. However, I recommend you read the other two as well if you haven’t yet because Brad Meltzer is just that great! The President’s Shadow will have you waiting for the next Beecher novel impatiently.

 

Heck out more about Brad Meltzer below.

 

 

http://bradmeltzer.com

Reviews: Ashoan’s Rug

UnknownToday I just finished reading a wonderful short story by Carrie Jane Knowles, a local author here in North Carolina. This is not the first book of hers I have read and I love her style of writing. In Ashoan’s Rug, Knowles took an object, a rug, and showed how it meant so much to the many lives it touched through the years. How many times have we walked through flea markets or antique shops and have seen something that might have been hand made and thought “what is the story behind this?”

Ashoan is asked by her mother to weave a rug for herself. Her mother had dreamed up the design that she should add to her rug. This was going to be the story of her future and the troubles that she will bear. Ashoan was born with a red birthmark that covered half of one side of her face. Her mother knew that any man that married her would not truly love her and her sweet, kind heart. This magic rug that was inspired from Ashoan’s mother’s dreams traveled from home to home meaning something different to each person who owned it. Many prayed on it and it wore the tears and burdens of those that felt its magic.

I highly recommend that you pick up Ashoan’s Rug as you will not be disappointed in this delightful short story. It will be one to cherish for years!

Reviews: Cozy Mysteries!

thSo for this week I want to pay contribute to cozy mysteries. I love them the most when it comes to my favorites. Some are a little corky, fun, and serious when they need to be. This week’s theme are mysteries on the sweet side. Syrup, cookies, and chocolate, what else could one want? All from Fresh Fiction with each link to follow. Enjoy!

My first one here is Cookies and Screams. And I thought making cookies were murder free.

http://freshfiction.com/review.php?id=45555

 


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Cookies and Screams is another one that I enjoyed. This is also so a sweet mystery but this time in a town known for its maple syrup. It is left up to Dani to find out who is vandalizing the local syrup production.

http://freshfiction.com/review.php?id=45905

 

 

 

 

th-2Michelle has to protect her reputation and that of her chocolates when another shop owner is found dead… with a box of Michelle’s homemade chocolates! Was she poison? Death is Like a Box of Chocolates is one great cozy mystery.

http://freshfiction.com/review.php?id=46076

Reviews: Apricots In A Turkish Garden

04e43a_fe6e083f8e7a4150b48f5395bd8b9475-jpg_srz_257_400_75_22_0-50_1-20_0-00_jpg_srz2Here is a local writer here in North Carolina who has written a collection of short stories that you are bound to at least say you know one person like the colorful characters that she has developed. Beautifully written, Apricots In A Turkish Garden by Carrie Jane Knowles has tales that will catch your attention with endings that will leave you in the state of wonder. It is like each one has a secret message about life. Most of the stories take place in the location of Raleigh with the southern touch that makes you think of the tales that grandma would tell you about those that use to live down the street or around the corner. This is a collection that you will definitely want to read in a cozy little chair by the fire with your warm cup of tea.

http://www.secondwindpublishing.com/#!carrie-jane-knowles/cfal

Reviews: The Competition

UnknownIn the novel The Competition written by Marcia Clark, Rachel Knight is a prosecutor who has made the news on other famous cases. Now she with the help of a police detective, Bailey Keller is out to find the shooters of the worse school shooting ever. However, it looks to be two students from the school who had taken their own lives in the school library. Though sometimes things do not look the way they seem. This duo will stop at nothing to get to the bottom once they find out that the two dead students in the library are not the killers.

This novel had so many twist and turns in the storyline that you did not get lost or confused. With Marcia Clark experience in real life with District Court System, her novel was so believable that you will find it scary! My favorite type of novel, full of suspense!

http://www.marciaclarkbooks.com