JUSTICE FOR ALL

51JlGjlw0OLElizabeth Holt is a tough prosecutor…a champion for victims of the vile creatures who choose evil over good, especially when the victim is a young girl. This story breaks your heart for her on one page, then has you cheering for her success on the next. If I were in the victim’s shoes, Elizabeth Holt is who I’d want on my side every time. She plays to win.

Set in this reader’s backyard, Elizabeth Holt’s quest to find the man who is attacking women and leaving a trail of victims behind had me holding my breath and double-checking the locks on my windows.

JUSTICE FOR ALL, the first in the Holt Foundation Series by USA Today Best-selling Author Chris Patchell, is a consuming read that held me captive until I finished it. Ms. Patchell’s writing is so smooth, it allows the characters to take center stage and captivate the reader on page one.  I look forward to reading the rest of the series, IN THE DARK and DARK HARVEST. I love it when I find a favorite new author!

NEWBERRY SIN

39740058C Hope Clark’s Newberry Sin is the perfect balance of intrigue and suspense, of heartwarming and heartbreak. This is Book Four in the series. I read each of the first three as they were released and I couldn’t wait to find out what was happening in the life of Carolina Slade.

Carolina Slade can be her own worst enemy and her best defense. Solving crimes might not be her obvious talent, but she gets it right in the end. Carolina Slade is a federal agent for the Department of Agriculture trying to stay out of hot water and still do her job when she is sucked into the world that is Newberry, SC.

Like all small towns, Newberry has its share of characters. Slade finds herself drawn into the thick of it between her boss who seems out to derail her and a murder within the first few pages. Slade’s sense that all is not right pulls her in deeper, and it might just cost her everything before its over.

I was vested in Slade’s survival from page one. Hope Clark makes you forget that these people are fictional characters. I still find myself thinking about Slade as if she were a real person.    Hope Clark has four books in another series, Edisto Beach, featuring a former Boston Detective, Callie Jean Morgan.  Equally good. You will want to read them all!!

SHADOWS OF HOPE ~ Georgiana Daniels

Shadows of Hope by [Daniels, Georgiana]

Shadows of Hope by Georgiana Daniels is a heartfelt tale that pulls you in and holds your attention from beginning to end. She allows you to walk with both Marissa and Kaitlyn through the most challenging of events in each of their lives, and yet they are tied together for the remainder time by love.

I found myself rooting for both women despite what could have been a life-destroying chain of events.

I appreciate Ms. Daniel’s sensitivity regarding the subject matter and the way she tells a heart-rending story with great love and compassion. It’s a heartwarming story filled with love and compassion, and second chances.

Close To Home ~ Robert Dugoni

Close to Home (The Tracy Crosswhite Series Book 5) by [Dugoni, Robert]

 

I have read all of Robert Dugoni’s work since I discovered him several years ago. I am especially enjoying the Tracy Crosswaite Series, and his latest book didn’t disappoint.

Brilliantly written, Close to Home ushers us into Detective Tracy Crosswaite’s world, our world—my city, as she investigates a murder. Her investigation sheds light on the real problems we all face regarding opiate addiction in our communities and even our own families. In trailing the murderer, Tracy exposes the growing opiate underworld while reminding us of the humanity of those caught up in it–those we are afraid to look at and those within our own homes. Dugoni allows us to see the dark side of opiate addiction, its effect on everyone it touches, and yet he reminds us we can find humanity in the middle of it all as we reach out to help those caught up in its web.

I am looking forward to reading the next in the Series, A Steep Price, due out in June 2018!

 

The Last Thing She Ever Did~Gregg Olsen

I recently had the pleasure of reading Gregg’s latest release. It is one of the best I’ve read 519H3L8E94L._SY346_(since his last one) and raises the bar for all the books to follow in 2018. I follow several authors regularly, and Gregg tops my list of favorites. In The Last Thing She Ever Did, the opening paragraph sets the stage for a ride you won’t forget. I think I actually held my breath at times. His pace is driving and quick, the tension high from the opening pages to the end.  The questions kept coming but he is masterful at not giving the answers immediately which pulled me in deeper, a skill I would love to learn by reading his work. I enjoyed this immensely and dedicated two days to read it, knowing it would place me in a vortex the minute I opened the book. FYI- It didn’t take two days…it’s that good! I highly recommend this book!

Cara’s Place, and mine.

My first venture out of the gates. It’s been a long process since I put the first line down on paper. I will say it is rather  intimidating, putting yourself out there for others to catch a glimpse into your heart and soul, hoping their responses are kind. I never realized just how personal it would feel until I clicked the PUBLISH button. Sending my fledgling offspring off into time and space without knowing how it would be received left me holding my breath. I can now say I am an author, not just a writer, though they are both one and the same. I am published, I have a ISBN, it is official.

After PUBLISH came the What-ifs, like swallows, they circled me around for days afterward, flitting in and out of view.

What if…no one notices?  I am new to marketing, at least from this side of it. Sure, I’ve watched many commercials and know I am part of someone’s target audience. I even like being convinced to spend my hard-earned money on things I think will improve my life. But! How do I do that from the other side of the fence, now that my book is the item to be sold? How do I get people to notice my book in the vast sea of books out there to be read?

What if…no one buys it?  That, I will admit is the smallest what-if  that swirled around me. I want readers, not buyers. Why do I want that? I want to touch someone’s heart through my words, to inspire, to warm them, to comfort them, and even, to help them grow a little. Before I can do that, they have to be drawn to want that input from me, to think it is worth their time and investment to read my book. Buyers will come, readers are earned.

What if…they read it and don’t like it? The perfectionist in me yells it’s not ready yet, you can do better.  It took seven years from the first words on the page to the published version. The delay was not in the writing or the editing, but the feeling like I would never measure up, that what I had to say wasn’t worth reading. Cara’s Place endured years of neglect because of those fears. But there comes a time when one has to look fear in the eye and do it anyway if there is to be any hope of moving on. As the Nike ad says, Just do it! (swoosh!)

I am well into finishing my second book, the third outlined and waiting in the wings, titles and themes for more line up beyond that. They are like children, each unique in their own right, each with their own path to walk. They will each take their place on the bookshelf and become what they are meant to be. But first, Cara’s Place had to step out onto the stage, into the spotlight, to make room for the those coming behind. Will they read it and like it? Time will tell. Even if they don’t, I will keep writing in hopes that one day, someone will like the next book, or the next.

Stay tuned!

 

 

 

Passing the Baton

 

Saddened hearts in the writing world, losing two greats in one day. Harper Lee and Umberto Eco. Both had such a passion for writing, and yet neither of them published most of their works.

Umbero Eco, author of The Name of the Rose, published many of his masterpieces. He was a beloved college professor, intellectual and prolific writer. His photographs reflect a man happy with his life. Yet, a large number of his books remain unpublished because he either grew bored with them, or just did not complete them. His published works were successful. One wonders if we will yet see the others in print now that he is gone. This has been the year for finding lost books and poetry.

Harper Lee has two published works to her credit. To Kill a Mockingbird  published  with her blessing. The other, Go Set A Watchman, remained hidden, for reasons we will never know. The work was recently discovered clipped to the back of the copy of her first book. It remains a mystery whether she consented to its publication. That is a question for historians to ponder now.

What I find more interesting was the friendship between Lee and Truman Capote. The story goes that she helped him research and edit In Cold Blood. It was published after Breakfast at Tiffany’s.  They were childhood friends, most likely drawn to one another because of proximity.  During the summers, he visited his aunt who lived on her street. They each had a passion for writing.  It is well known that they parted ways shortly after Ms. Lee’s first novel became a success.  Some suspect that he sought the spotlight, she solitude, and they lost contact.  He died in 1984. I have my own theories about what might have happened.

Both Eco and Lee were reticent about their work, despite their great success. I share that trait. Not saying my work compares to either Ms. Harper or Mr. Eco’s in any respect. But I want my work to be that good. So I press on. I write because it feels good to write. I feel the same passion for telling a story, putting words down on paper. I am moved to write again and again, to try to tell the story with the same eloquence as Lee or Eco. Not for fame or fortune but to touch another’s heart and to connect on a deeper level, just as they did.

Thank you Harper Lee and Umberto Eco for sharing your passion with us.  You leave such a precious legacy.

Olivia

 

Valentine’s Day

♥   ♥   ♥   ♥

Today is the day when our thoughts turn to lve, whether we have that someone special to focus our attention on, or we don’t. What is it about this day that makes love more special than any other day? Hallmark profits soar today.  Everything is colored pink and red. Roses are the first choice of flowers, little candy hearts with words painted on, chocolates. I made heart-shaped pink pancakes this morning. What do those things have to do with love? 

What is love? A feeling, yes, but more so, action. Not just today, but every day. Going beyond yourself for someone else. Do they deserve it? Not always. Does that limit our action? Sometimes. But should it? Is that how you want to be treated and measured, by whether or not you deserve it? 

They say love is blind. Justice should be, but not love. Love should be able to recognize all the perfections…and the imperfections, and choose to stay anyway, knowing it will be returned in the same measure–boundless. That is true love. That is the love I seek, today and every day. That is the love I give, or want to give.

Tell those around you that you love them. Use your words today. Tomorrow, put those words in to action, at least one act every day. Continue to do so until the next February 14th when you will look back and see love, in all its glory. Want more of that? Repeat!

Happy Valentine’s Day.  

Olivia 

Hello!

Let’s walk a bit, shall we?  Like Dorothy and the Yellow Brick Road, we must begin at the very beginning if we are to be friends, you and I. I am Olivia. And you are?

We are on a journey, and it will take time to reach our destination. I prefer your company, rather than going it alone as some do. Interested?  Like the Walrus and the Carpenter, we will talk of many things.

Remember, this is a two-way street, and there may be times we feel we are headed in opposite directions, but really, are we? Perhaps I am only walking backwards towards the same goal. Intrigued?

Good. We are off to a good start!