Review: A Place For War (Z-Day #3)

Today is the official Release Day for this book. Daniel Humphreys is kicking it off by having a $0.99 sale on his first two books in the series at Amazon.com, so don’t miss out!

A Place Outside The Wild (Z-Day #1)

A Place Called Hope (Z-Day #2)

Now on to the review of Book #3!

A Place For War (Z-Day #3)A Place For War by Daniel Humphreys
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A spectacular conclusion to a series that puts the Zombie Apocalypse trope on its head.

I had the privileged of being a Beta Reader for this novel, so I did get a free copy. Nevertheless, the 5 stars are all earned.

A Place Outside The Wild & A Place Called Hope were great ZA books about making the best of the worst of situations and scratching to find a way to live.

A Place for War pushes past the survivor aspect straight to the in-your-face, take-back-what’s-ours, kick-those-zombies-in-their-teeth action of a mil-sf novel. Plot points are resolved, secrets are revealed, and the struggle reaches its climax. You won’t be able to put this one down, trust me.

I highly recommend this book, and the entire series to anyone who likes apocalyptic fiction, science fiction or just some good ole zombie fights!

Get a copy from Amazon. It’s in KU if you are subscribed, and you can read it for free on your Kindle (one book per month with Kindle Owner’s Lending Library) if you have Prime.

View all my reviews on Goodreads.


Oh, and if you happen to like intrigue, you can also get my book, eConscience Beta the same way.

But, if Science Fiction Space Adventure is more your speed, then you should check out my anthology, Horizons Unlimited: Volume 1.

Advertisements

Review: Tails from the Apocalypse

Tails of the ApocalypseTails of the Apocalypse

by Chris PourteauStefan Bolz, David Bruns, Michael Bunker, Nick ColeJennifer EllisHarlow C. FallonHank Garner, E.E. GiorgiDeirdre GouldEdward W. RobertsonSteven SavileDavid Adams

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

This is a collection of short stories… Tails… about what happens to the animals in the wake of an apocalyptic event. Post-Apocalypse or Inter-Apocalypse are tough times for people, but have you ever thought about what you would do with your cat in a zombie outbreak? What happens to Fluffy the bunny or Bubbles the goldfish when aliens invade? For our four-legged friends, their dependence on humans is the biggest liability they have in a cataclysm… catastrophe… dogvastation… cowlamity… OK, I’ll stop now.

Usually, I only give my own summary of what the book is about in my reviews. This time, though, I’ll let the book speak for itself as well, by quoting its own blurb. This is probably something I should have thought about doing a long time ago, but…

Anyway, here’s the book’s blurb.

The Doomsday siren calls on civilization’s last day. Natural disaster. Nuclear war. Pandemics. These are the ways the world ends.
Nobility. Self-Sacrifice. Unconditional Love. These are the qualities of the heroic animals in this collection.

The Walking Dead meets The Incredible Journey in 14 amazing tales by today’s most talented independent authors. Seven stories set in all-new dystopian landscapes. Seven stories set in the bestselling post-apocalyptic worlds of David Adams’s Symphony of War, Michael Bunker’s Pennsylvania, Nick Cole’s Wasteland Saga, Hank Garner’s Weston Files, E.E. Giorgi’s Mayake Chronicles, Deirdre Gould’s After the Cure, and Edward W. Robertson’s Breakers.

When the world ends, the humans who survive will learn an old lesson anew—that friendship with animals can make the difference between a lonely death among the debris and a life well lived, with hope for the future.

The actual story-telling in most of these was quite good. The structure was choppy in a few, but mostly the ones that were done with the animal as narrator. I found them fun. Of course, we are talking about apocalypse events, so most are of a sad bent. That being said, they are also very touching. I especially love the ones where the animals illustrate their loyalty to the humans for whom they care.

The only negative I have is that it was heavily dog-centric. I like doggos, but I’m a cat person at heart, so I would have liked to see more from that angle.
Now we get to the individual story reviews. The way I reach my overall rating is to review each story (0-5 stars) and average them together for the book. That brings this one in at 3.5 stars overall, and I call it a Tail Wagging Read.

Be warned, the individual reviews probably contain spoilers:

  • The Water Finder’s Shadow by David Bruns (5 star)

    Only special humans can find water in a dried-out future Earth, and their worth as anything but slaves is tied to that talent. One man finds that his talent is linked to his dog, but dogs don’t live forever.

    This is one of the best in the book. Warning: if you have ever watched a beloved pet grow old and fade away, this WILL bring you to tears.

  • When You Open the Cages for Those Who Can’t (a Breakers short story) by Edward W. Robertson (3 stars)

    A little girl who’s parents succumb to a Plague outbreak takes it upon herself to help the animals at a local shelter when the people don’t come back. She learns a harsh lesson about evil among the remnants of humanity, but true friendship in the form of her chosen furry peoples. This story shows promise for the series it is based upon, which I might need to check out.

  • Protector by Stefan Bolz (3.5 star)

    An act of kindness toward a wounded wolf cub in a time of desperation creates a loyalty that saves a clan. Quite a well-written story. It has good pacing and tension. Another teary eyed ending for me.

  • The Poetry of Santiago by Jennifer Ellis (5 stars)

    A long-lived cat adopts an antique store widower in doomed modern Pompei. The only cat-focused story of the book. It is well done, and the perspective of the cat felt almost perfect.

  • Demon and Emily (a Symphony of War short story) by David Adams (3 stars)

    A family flees an invasion by sentient alien bug-beings, but tragedy strikes on the way. The young daughter and her dog, Demon, end up with the army as they attempt to evacuate. This is a decent story, and I’m interested in the series because of it. I can only give it three stars though. I would like to it four stars, but the ending felt forced into a sad one when it could easily have been happy.

  • Keena’s Lament (a Weston Files short story) by Hank Garner (3 stars)

    An interesting take on the Flood of Noah from the perspective of a Watcher (a descendant of the fallen angels among men). He sees the building of the Ark, but doesn’t believe. He has a canine companion who witnesses the end with him. Entertaining, but I tend to frown on odd Biblical twists that contradict things.

  • Tomorrow Found (a Wasteland Saga short story) by Nick Cole (4 stars)

    A wanderer twenty years after the apocalypse searches for the past with the help of dog who keeps him going. Another great story in the book. Excellent glimpse of the world in a short story, with a character whose drive to complete his task has you rooting for him and his friend.

  • Pet Shop (an After the Cure short story) by Deirdre Gould (4 stars)

    A pet shop parrot named Surly Shirley finds friendship despite the zombie apocalypse, but her new friend might be too soft for this new world, especially considering the company he’s keeping. I liked the story, and I liked the portrayal of the parrot’s personality which is the reason I give it four stars. I do have to say that it’s only the premise that the infected can be cured that makes the human protagonist anything but a useless idiot in the zombie apocalypse. I can’t fault the storytelling at all, so four stars it is.

  • Kael Takes Wing (a Mayake Chronicles short story) by E.E. Giorgi (3 stars)

    A doomed falcon chick is rescued by survivors of the apocalypse and given tech upgrades and made part of the family. Although I never picked up what the apocalyptic event was, the story is fine without the info. It’s told from the perspective of the falcon, and is very interesting. Another series that might need investigating.

  • The Bear’s Child by Harlow C. Fallon (2.5 stars)

    A ‘feral’ human survivor of a disease apocalypse, a self-imposed outcast of her own clan, is adopted by a mama grizzly in her efforts to escape other ‘civilized’ humans who are out to exterminate all the diseased ferals. The story was decent, but it left too much unexplained.

  • Wings of Paradise by Todd Bareselow (0 stars)

    Quote from Paragraph 2:

    “Of the seven billion people living when the world ended, only a few thousand souls survived [snip…] Within six months, most of them were gone too, victims of the plague unleashed by the Earth’s core in retribution for a century of cumulative abuse. Fracking for oil and natural gas was the undoing of man.”

    No. Just No. I quit reading there. I refuse to pollute my mind with bull-crap.

    NO STARS FOR YOU!

  • Ghost Light by Steven Savile (4 stars)

    A planeload of passengers crash-land in Scotland when the nukes fall. They hope for and soon search for a reason to go on, but they really just want to go home.

    This one starts oddly. Then it continues oddly. The ending is a surprise that totally made me re-evaluate the story. It’s good, and I won’t spoil it for anyone.

  • Kristy’s Song (a Pennsylvania short story) by Michael Bunker (4 stars)

    A dog helps a man avoid totalitarian technocracy in a city on the Shelf of New Pennsylvania.

    I didn’t realize what world this was written in when I read it, but it made sense afterward. I have read the Pennsylvania series and it is quite good. Michael Bunk is a great story teller. This one is no exception.

  • Unconditional by Chris Pourteau (4 stars)

    A small dog who loves a small boy and considers him to be his twin, will stop at nothing and do whatever it takes to show his love, no matter what that means in a zombie apocalypse.

    Great story telling from the dog’s point of view. The ending is perfect… and shocking.

 

Review: Black Tide Rising (Anthology – Book #5)

Black Tide Rising (Black Tide Rising anthologies Book 1)Black Tide Rising by John Ringo
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

An anthology of stories in the Black Tide Rising universe created by John Ringo. A great mix of well known authors play around in the sandbox of the master of Mil-SF. It’s a great adder to the overall universe. Typical mix of good and mediocre found in an anthology, but mostly good. The final Ringo story also might leave you gape-jawed at the potential for things to come in the series.

TLDR: The Flint, Williamson, and last Ringo stories are worth the price of the book. These three get 5 stars. There are other good ones as well in the anthology. My average rating for the book is 3 stars (36 over 12 stories), and I call it a Worthwhile Read.

Individual story ratings below. Beware of spoilers (I try not to, but they are short stories, so…)

Never Been Kissed by John Ringo (2 star)

Very short. Musings of Faith about the fate of all the people she knew.

Up on the Roof by Eric Flint (5 stars)

An excellent story of a group of survivors who make an excellent choice to ride out the apocalypse atop a gasoline tank farm. Really good setup, detailed enough without being boring, and good character development in a short time. I would like to read a full novel about this group.

Staying Human by Jody Lynn Nye (1 star)

Missed the mark on several key points about the behavior of the zombies in this universe. Sentiment is all over the place and turns very preachy about being better and not seeking revenge against the ‘poor infected’. Waste of my time.

On the Wall by John Scalzi & Dave Klecha (2 stars)

Annoying. Some humor, but of the obnoxious variety. The entire story is dialogue, which makes it read like an episode of Gilmore Girls. One of the characters is such a douche that he needed to be thrown to the zombies.

Do No Harm by Sarah Hoyt (3 stars)

An ER nurse must come to grips with ‘kill or be killed’ as the hospital is overrun with zombies. Good story. Great character development for a short story length tale.

Not in Vain by Kacey Ezell (3 stars)

A group of cheerleaders and their coach must step up if they want to reach a safe haven in the zombie apocalypse. Excellent character development, but too short. I want more!

How Do You Solve a Problem Like Grandpa? by Michael Z. Williamson (5 stars)

Grandpa is a vet, but his grandkids think he’s a gun hoarder that needs an intervention… until the zombies hit. Best one in the book. Grandpa was right, and he ain’t taking no more of your crap, you little shits!

Battle of the BERTs by Mike Massa (3 stars)

Interesting story of the teams sent out to control infected on the streets of New York before everything gets completely out of control. This one ties in directly with events form Book 1 in the series.

The Road to Good Intentions by Tedd Roberts (3 stars)

A small town in the Blue Ridge Mountains could be a refuge for some, but only if they can keep outside influences from ruining things. One man struggles with his own religious issues as the local pastor calls his survival of the fever a miracle and sets him up as a beacon of hope. A decent story with good details, but the ending is abrupt and left hanging. The use of religion as a plot device is bothersome.

200 Miles to Huntsville by Christopher Smith (2 stars)

A post-war Vet turned cop, his dirty-cop partner, and the prisoner they are escorting find themselves in a cultish Hicksville, Texas as the final shoe begins to drop. I didn’t care for this one mainly because of the use of religion as a plot device. The writing and characters were ok, but the blurring of good/bad would not be something I’d want to keep reading for much longer.

Best Laid Plans by Jason Cordova & Eric S. Brown (2 stars)

A group of thieves are determined to rob the Louvre despite the zombie apocalypse. Interesting, but too short to get to know the characters well. The humor is quirky and not all that funny to me (others might find it more so).

The Meaning of Freedom by John Ringo (5 stars)

An interesting interlude that shows the true nature of the ‘beta’ zombies that has been hinted at in the main series. It raises a huge moral question, which I won’t spoil. This one is a thinker, unlike the ‘killing infected’ or ‘using infected for medicine’ questions that I found to be trite in the main series itself. This story is a must read for the series.

Happy Reading!

View all my reviews

Review: Strands of Sorrow (Black Tide Rising Book #4)

Strands of Sorrow (Black Tide Rising, #4)Strands of Sorrow by John Ringo
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Another winner in the Black Tide Rising series. This one finally brings the recovery of America back to the home shores. The hyper-effective Faith Marie Smith, who has now become the central character of the series, continues to push the limits of get it done action and zombie stomping. Luckily, she is surrounded by survivor types that come up with more ingenious ways to rid the land of its post-human plague.

The action in this one is almost non-stop. The logistics-speak is so finely woven with the next big zombie killing spree that you hardly notice it. I continue to learn new mil-speak each book I read, and I absolutely love to see what goodies that go boom will come from tackling the next hurdle in the race to save as much of humanity that remains. Characters continue to grow, and some new one get added to give yo more to like. Even the screw-ups seem to get a chance to shine.

From more guns on a helicopter than should ever be thought about, to tomahawks raising an entire host of infected, to the unparalleled bad-assery of an M1A1 Abrams (named Trixie of course) that pirouettes like a ballet dancer on a zombie juice slip-and-slide, this book will most assuredly peg out your kick-assometer! I give it four stars and call it a Kick Ass Read!

View all my reviews

Review: Islands of Rage & Hope (Black Tide Rising Book #3)

Islands of Rage & Hope (Black Tide Rising, #3)Islands of Rage & Hope by John Ringo
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

YES! Finally we get to a real Ringo ringer! This one was perfectly balanced in terms of action, character development, and that patented Ringo ‘Holy crap, how did you think of that! That’s so friggin’ cool’ factor. I got several ‘Hell, Yeah!’ fist pump moments in this one, and one hell of an ending!

The plot takes you from the Atlantic crossing from the Canary Islands to Gitmo. Then you have lots of different scenarios encountered during the clearance of the Windward Isles as they search for the ingredients to make vaccine for the sub sailors that are still trapped in self-imposed quarantine. The last two ‘missions’ are pretty awesome, but I won’t spoil those.

The main characters grow a lot in this one, and the Smith girls are still hyper-capable, but not as in-your-face Mary Sue as the last book. You get to meet some other folks that I found quite interesting, but I won’t spoil that for you. Hey, you even get to meet some royalty in this one!

Even the logistics portions of the book seemed to be more interesting and less info-dumpy that the last book. Probably because it’s interspersed with more action. And, thankfully, the mil-speak was much better explained in this one. I actually learned quite a bit.

I highly recommend this book, and it alone make the series worth diving into. I give it five stars and call it an Hoorah! Read.

View all my reviews

Review: To Sail a Darkling Sea (Black Tide Rising Book #2)

To Sail a Darkling Sea (Black Tide Rising, #2)To Sail a Darkling Sea by John Ringo
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Book 2 of the Black Tide Rising series is the continuation of the exploits of the Wolf Squadron, a rag-tag flotilla of ships and survivors of the zombie apocalypse. John Smith and his daughters Sophia (age 15) and Faith (age 13) continue to save as many people as possible at sea while pushing forward with plans to save humanity by reclaiming the land. First, they have to perfect their techniques for moving the fleet and clearing some beachheads.

The plot of this sequel is basically the continuing story of trying to get your ducks in a row… and the ducks are drunk. The hinted at objective from book 1, reclaim Guantanamo Bay and start manufacturing a cure, is postponed due to weather (hurricane season) and is only launched on the last pages. The rest of the story is about the re-establishment of military discipline & organization, and supply lines. It’s a book about logistics. It’s interesting, but it is also NOT much of an action adventure book. Sure, there are a few zombie encounters which keep the pacing decent, but the focus is heavily on military maneuvers, the reasons for following orders, and a lot of inside jokes that you almost have to BE military to understand. I am not, so they fell on deaf ears.

I also find that the Sophia & Faith characters are annoyingly Mary Sue. It’s difficult to suspend my disbelief at times, especially when they all start talking the same. The stilted replies of “Point” (meaning ‘You have a point.’) and “Works” (meaning ‘That works.’) from different characters is standing out so much that I cringe when I see it.

I like the series. I like the premise. I even like the logistics discussions. I just hope the third book is better with more action. I give this book three stars and call it a Mediocre Read.

View all my reviews

Review: A Place Called Hope

A Place Called Hope (Z-Day, #2)A Place Called Hope by Daniel Humphreys

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Apocalypse starts today! Z-Day is OCTOBER 18th, 2017.

The 2nd installment of Daniel Humphreys’ Z-Day series, A Place Called Hope, is even better than than book 1! Why stop when you’re on a roll, right?

I had the privilege of being a Beta Reader for this novel (yes, that means I got it for free, but I wold have bought it anyway, even if I hadn’t). Now you can read it too!

In fact, as of right now (10/18/17), you can grab Book 1: A Place Outside the Wild, and Book 2: A Place Called Hope, on Amazon for only $0.99 each! Go get them!

The pacing of this book is amazing. It starts with the obligatory opening ass-kicking scene, of course. Next, you get the beginning of a flashback tale that begins about six months after Z-Day from the perspective of a different survivor, Sandy. He has a very unique tale, and his journey is one of metamorphosis. It is much closer to a Walking Dead, in-the-thick-of-it survival tale. It is interspersed with the main story line which is now revolving around Pete Matthews, and his friend Charley (whose special nature makes him indispensable) who tags along as they join up with the remnants of the military forces of the U.S. that are trying to reclaim America for humanity.

The new characters you get to meet in this book, mostly military personnel, are ones you will find it hard to forget. Their heroic actions and their front-line humor will also stick in your mind.

A Place Called Hope is still a zombie apocalypse novel, but it is also a military science fiction novel. In fact, it is blended so well, that I found it un-put-downable. There is also the main underlying mystery of how the plague started, and what’s going on with the zombies NOW, that make it part intrigue as well. It’s a great book, and it will leave you wanting more!

I give it 4 stars and call it a Give Me More Read!

View all my reviews

Review: A Place Outside The Wild

A Place Outside The WildA Place Outside The Wild by Daniel Humphreys

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A Place Outside The Wild is not a typical dystopian novel despite its setting – eight years post zombie apocalypse – which I think makes it a unique read in the genre. The characters are fully fleshed (no pun intended), as is the world. There are twists to the plot that grabbed me by the collar and shook the crap out of me. The biggest flaw was the slow build up to said twists. It was never boring (good suspense), but it is very light on action (after the opening grab) up to almost the 70% mark. I like the work very much, and plan to read the next in the series.

The story is centered on a small enclave of survivors who have managed to ‘wait out’ the zombie life-spans (or so they believe) and scratch out a steadily improving life post Z-day. They have their internal struggles: politics, psychological and social issues, that are all consequences of the apocalypse. The society described in this book is totally believable and will suck you into itself.

The overall plot arc of the zombies and their origins is also a major deviation from most of the stories I’ve seen. You are given hints throughout, some of which I admit I questioned as odd at first, until the final shoe drops. When it does, it’s a Bozo the Clown sized sum-bitch that will leave you gaping at the ramifications!

Now for the ‘critical’ part of my review, which I almost hate to give because I know the difficulties in writing… but I started these reviews to remind myself about my feeling on the books I read, so… here it is. I have two things that keep me from giving the book the fifth star on Goodreads. They are related to pacing and conflict resolution.

Firstly, the drawback to having many small side arcs in the novel is that while they do help build tension and give the overall world more detail, they are also a bit dull to hold onto all the way to the end. All the side arcs fed the climax. If they had been a bit more self-contained I think they would have helped the pacing, giving it more of an ebb-and-flow of action and resolution.

Secondly, the resolutions in the end felt a bit dues-ex-machina in nature. The climax of the overall plot was exciting, but the side arc resolutions were a bit of a let-down, especially when I had already felt them to be a bit slow in the first place.

I can’t explain this well without spoilers, so let me smooth out the criticisms here for anyone reading this review… these are only slight negatives. The book is still getting FOUR STARS!

If you like being immersed in a world and surprised by new concepts to an already expansive genre, then this book is one you need to read. It puts a twist to the zombie origin story that has so much potential it will stagger you. It also doesn’t drag you to the depths of despair, but shows the resiliency of the human spirit in the face of unimaginable odds. Read the book. I give it four stars and call it a Great Read!

View all my reviews

Review: Arrival

Arrival
Arrival by Ryk Brown

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Arrival was a long drawn out read for me. It took me almost a month to find time to read it all. Partly due to life, but it was also a somewhat slow read in general. Not typical Ryk Brown fair. While he has become one of my favorite authors since I found his Frontiers Saga series; that does not make everything he writes an automatic favorite. This novel, while a decent story, was flawed in a few ways that were significant enough for me to barely be able to say ‘3 stars – I liked it’ vs. ‘2 stars – it was ok’ on Goodreads.

The characters, as always, were well conceived and written. Some attitudes seemed forced in a couple of them, but they were consistent which offset that somewhat. They did grow on me as they developed through the book, but not enough that I was totally pulled in to their plights emotionally (as I have been with characters in other Brown books).

The story is not bad. The crew of the Icarus, and advanced party on a planetary scouting mission, are sent to determine the viability of Tau Ceti Five. The final destination of the primary ship, the Daedalus – a multi-generational interstellar colony ship – depends on their findings. And of course, not everything follows mission nominal paths. What kind of Sci-Fi book would THAT be, right?

The landing scene is quite intense. This was probably the best part of the book. The cross-country escapades of two of the crew, as well as the discovery and triumph over unique natural environmental issues by the main crew were the main draws into the book for me. It’s what kept me reading to find out what would happen next.

The major problems I had were with the plot, and they are two-fold. One is that the prologue gives away a very important plot point, as well as shows part of the final outcome of the story. It spoiled something in the book for me. If you read it, you will most like see what I mean in the first few pages. It might not be that big of a deal for some, but it took away a lot of the dramatic tension of not knowing what might happen to the primary colony ship. The second is that certain important information regarding why the mission was not exactly equipped correctly is not revealed until near the 80% mark in the book. That fact threw me out of the story when I was reading, but later caused an ‘oh, ok, it makes more sense now’ moment. Unfortunately, my opinions of the book were already colored pretty heavily by that point. And there was really no reason not to tell the whole story up front as far as I could see.

If you really want to know what I’m talking about you can go read the SPOILER info of this review on Goodreads.

There were other little foibles like characters saying they had never felt cold before and the like that were an annoyance to me, but that mainly happened after I got initial disgust at them not having a water going boat in the landing equipment, and never testing the shutters on the aeorbrake system in 90 years.

So, TL:DR, It was an OK book that spoiled itself and therefore barely gets 3 stars and an Alright Read designation from me.

View all my reviews

Review: One Second After

One Second After
One Second After by William R. Forstchen

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book did two things for me. First, it scared the crap out of me, and secondly, it scared the give-a-crap out of me. What do I mean by such a redundantly crappy statement, you ask? Allow me to expound….

If we ever do experience a large scale EMP attack like the one described in this book… well, this little clip sums it up nicely.

[click here if can’t see the clip below]

Yeah, the book is written as a propaganda piece to an extent. I see that. I’m not stupid. I also realize that it is written to scare and to motivate (mostly to yell at your congress-critters, I suppose, but also to be prepared for survival). Well, it did scare me, but I’m afraid it demotivated me. I am fan of apocalyptic fiction, and have read a lot of it. I personally like to be prepared for natural disasters that might cause difficult times. I mean, Katrina did happen. Other things do happen locally. The events in this book though… all of the U.S. shut-down in an instant with no electric power (permanently for the most part), no working transportation (well, a bit, but not much), and for an extended period of time so that no food gets moved where it’s needed… Nope. I am not prepared. I cannot be prepared. I live in the wrong place, so if this happens, no matter how hard I try, I will only be postponing the inevitable. Thus, the demotivated give-a-crap-ectomy that I got from this book.


Now, don’t get me wrong, dear review reader, this book was a good book. It had a few foibles in the writing style that I had to forgive and grow accustomed to (yes, that’s a split infinitive, but I like it that way, so deal with it); however, the story was good. It was very emotional and sucked me in really quickly. It is already a bit dated, and the patriotic theme is layered on pretty thick. The main character is a retired colonel cum military history professor who is the only participating Yankee in a southern town’s Civil War reenactment group, so yes, he’s going to be pro Republic, and it’s going to show up. The characters are well developed, the plot and pacing are awesome, and I confess that twice the waterworks threatened. So if you like to be on the edge of your seat, have a good emotional pounding, and don’t mind your patriotic strings being played upon (if a bit out of tune), then you will find this book to be a page turner like I did.

That is why I give this one four stars and call it a Double-Edged Read.

Happy Reading!

View all my reviews