Tag Archives: Adult Fiction

Debut Novel, The Isolation Door by Anish Majumdar | TLC Book Tours

Cover of The IsolationAdvance Praise:

“Believable and inspires contemplation.”

Bookish Ardour Blog

“Anish’s language brims with the confidence and emotional gravitas of a seasoned author -there is that distinct cadence in the way he frames his words: always pleasing, calming, as he reels you deeper into his tale.”

New York Book Pundit

Synopsis: 

Neil Kapoor, 23, is desperate to create a life beyond the shadow of his mother’s schizophrenia. Years of successive relapses and rehabilitations have forced his father into the role of caretaker and Neil into that of silent witness. But there is no light within this joyless ritual, and any hope for the future rests on finding an exit. 

Amidst her latest breakdown, Neil attends drama school in pursuit of a role that might better express the truth of who he is. What started as a desperate gambit becomes the fragile threads of a new life. A relationship blooms with Emily, and each finds strength – and demons – in the other. New friendships with Quincy and Tim grow close and complex. But the emotional remove needed to keep these two lives separate destabilizes the family. Neil’s father, the one constant in the chaos, buckles under the pressure. Enlisting the aid of an Aunt with means and questionable motives, Neil plies ever-greater deceptions to keep the darkness at bay. But this time there will be no going back. As his mother falls to terrifying depths a decision must be made: family or freedom?

In this powerful fiction debut, acclaimed journalist Anish Majumdar shines a much-needed light into the journey of those coping with serious mental disorders and the loved ones who walk alongside them. Incisive and filled with moments of strange beauty, it marks the arrival of a unique voice in American letters.

[Synopsis and image via Goodreads]

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My Thoughts:

Anish Majumdar in his debut novel, The Isolation Door, stole my reader’s heart the moment I began to read his words. Majumdar has a writing style that is both lyrical and atmospheric from the perspective of great storytelling. 

Within the pages of this book, Majumdar tells a fictional story of a young man dealing with immense problems at home, problems which are not of his doing nor his solving, and yet Neil feels compelled to try to fix everything that has gone wrong. As I read along, Majumdar wrote so realistically as to cause me to forget these were not real people living next door nor was this a story about real circumstances. That is great writing!

Do not despair for Neil, however, he finds love and is able to float for a time between the two lives he creates for himself. On the one hand, his parents struggle with his mother’s mental health issues and on the other hand, Emily, someone willing to accept him for who is. And yet a time comes for decisions. A beautiful love story is centered in Neil’s struggle with his family’s life journey filled with disappointments and cruelties and his desire, like so many of us, to be set free from that life.

My Recommendation:  

If you are fond of reading a book which presents characters so real you believe the struggles in the book’s pages to also be real, coupled with a beautiful love story which gives hope to those who struggle in similar ways on life’s journey, then The Isolation Door is for your shelf! Pick it up soon and enjoy Majumdar’s beautiful writing.

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Listen to Anish Majumdar talk about the circumstances in his own family and life which led him to write The Isolation Door:

Meet the Author:

Anish MajumdarAs a child growing up in Montreal, Canada, Anish Majumdar’s first creative writing lessons came courtesy of his mother, a former English teacher. Witnessing her struggle with schizophrenia had a profound impact and inspired The Isolation Door, his first novel. His non-fiction work, appearing in many publications, has garnered Independent Press Association Awards for Feature Writing and Investigative Journalism. His short fiction has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. He lives with his wife, son, and a growing menagerie of pets in Rochester, NY.You can connect with Anish via the following:

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Book Details:

  • TLC Book Tours Tour HostFile Size: 577 KB
  • Print Length: 276 pages
  • Publisher: Ravana Press; 1 edition (January 25, 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00I29CL8A

Dates for the TLC Book Tour for The Isolation Door may be viewed here.

Disclaimer: I received an ARC of The Isolation Door from the publisher via TLC Book Tours in exchange for a fair and honest review. The opinions expressed here are solely my own.

Little Joe, Book One of Round Rock Series by Michael E. Glasscock III

Little Joe Cover, book written by Michael Glasscock IIISynopsis: 

When Little Joe Stout survives the car accident that took his parents’ lives, he is sent to live with his maternal grandparents in the small town of Round Rock, Tennessee. Orphaned and missing his Texas home, Little Joe is reluctant to adapt. But his grandparents, especially his grandmother, are up to the challenge of raising him despite their own struggles. Soon, childhood friendships are forged in the oddball duo of Sugar and Bobby, and—with the help of a new canine companion—Little Joe begins to see that his new home offers the comfort and love he thought was lost forever.

Set against the drama of World War II and the first sparks of the civil rights movement, Little Joe’s new home is a microcosm of America in the 1940s. A frightening incident with a Chinese motorist traveling on the wrong side of town, the migration of troops across the countryside, and a frank discussion of Jim Crow laws are just a few of the local events mirroring the radio broadcasts that bring the news of the day into his grandmother’s kitchen.

Little Joe begins a four-part series from Michael E. Glasscock III that explores the intricate social cloth of Round Rock, Tennessee.

(Cover image and synopsis via Goodreads)

My Thoughts:

Recently I selected Little Joe by Michael E. Glasscock III from my To Be Read pile looking for a charming story, hopefully intriguing characters, and a lighter tale than I have read lately. When I selected Little Joe, I realized it was Book One of a Four-Part Series. Reading Little Joe hasn’t charged me with the will to read Book Two.

Growing up in Nashville, TN, which is near the region Glasscock uses as his central geographic point, I was impressed with the accuracy of his descriptions of Hwy. 70, the impact of fog along its narrow lanes and shoulders, and the intensity of rain storms and the amount of water drenching highways.

The depicted region is captured well so I anticipated good character development and an emotional read based on this nine-year old boy’s sudden transition from his parents to his grandparents. Not having had grandparents who were still alive when I was born, I always enjoy a book with beautiful grandchildren/grandparent relationships.

Nothing could be farther from the situation in Little Joe. Although his grandmother is a strong Christian woman and is quite pleasant to those among her community who are African-American, she is quite bigoted when it comes to Catholics. I waited for the author to tell me why, but he never expanded on this. Perhaps it will come in Book Two.

Under the circumstances of his parents’ sudden death, I expected a softer heart from the grandmother and not such harsh judgments and punishments. I did not like her character at all.

During a time when emotion could have filled paragraphs and perhaps pages, it was sadly lacking. I did not feel that Little Joe was given an opportunity to grieve for his parents as a child should and likely would have, nor did I get the sense that, other than with his two young friends, was he allowed to be a boy child.

All in all, I was sorely disappointed with this book and have a difficult time recommending it to anyone else to read. If I were in the habit of assigning ratings to book in my reviews, Little Joe receives 2 stars.

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Meet the Author:

Glasscock, Michael E III, AuthorFor the first eight years of his life Michael E. Glasscock III lived on his grandfather’s cattle ranch a few miles south of the small community of Utopia, Texas. At the beginning of World War II, he moved to a small town in Tennessee not unlike the mythical Round Rock portrayed in his fiction series. Michael decided to study medicine, and he graduated from the University of Tennessee Medical School at age twenty-four.

Nashville, Tennessee, was the site of his otology/neurotology practice, where he was associated with Vanderbilt University as a clinical professor, and where he continues to be part of the faculty as an adjunct professor. He retired from full-time clinical practice in 1997 and moved back to Texas where he continues to work as a consultant for three major medical device companies. He currently resides in Austin, Texas.

(Image and bio via Amazon)

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DETAILS ABOUT THE BOOK | DISCLAIMER:

  • Series: Round Rock (Book 1)
  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Greenleaf Book Group Press (June 1, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1608325660
  • ISBN-13: 978-1608325665

I received a copy of Little Joe from Greenleaf Book Group Press via NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review. The opinions expressed here are solely my own.

The In-Between Hour by Barbara Claypole White

The In-Between Hours Cover“Tree frogs croaked a concerto, and snuffling came from the compost pile. The raccoons were out in force. Above, an expanse of night sky shimmered with stars. Man, he’d forgotten the glory of Southern nights–how he was drawn to the stillness, the raw energy. As a kid, he’d loved reading or writing in the middle of the night. Unless there was a storm to whip up her craziness, terror tended to come with the light, when his mom was awake.”

~ Barbara Claypole White,
The In-Between Hour

Synopsis: 

Bestselling author Will Shepard is caught in the twilight of grief, after his young son dies in a car accident. But when his father’s aging mind erases the memory, Will rewrites the truth. The story he spins brings unexpected relief…until he’s forced to return to rural North Carolina, trapping himself in a lie.

Holistic veterinarian Hannah Linden is a healer who opens her heart to strays but can only watch, powerless, as her grown son struggles with inner demons. When she rents her guest cottage to Will and his dad, she finds solace in trying to mend their broken world, even while her own shatters.

As their lives connect and collide, Will and Hannah become each other’s only hope—if they can find their way into a new story, one that begins with love.

 (Image and synopsis via TLC Book Tours)

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My Thoughts:

The In-Between Hour is an emotional and intense story of surviving tragedy, grief and loss. Each of Barbara Claypole White’s characters is facing a struggle: Will the loss of his five-year old son, Will’s father Jacob the loss of his mental faculties due to Alzheimer’s, Hannah the potential loss of her son Galen to his drug and alcohol additions.

White’s first paragraphs caught my attention, and she didn’t let go until the last page:

Will imagined silence. The silence of snowfall in the forest. The silence at the top of a crag. But eighty floors below his roof garden, another siren screeched along Central Park West.

Nausea nibbled–a hungry goldfish gumming him to death. Maybe this week’s diet of Zantac and PBR beer was to blame. Or maybe grief was a degenerative disease, destroying him from the inside out. Dissolving his organs. One. By. One.

With these words, White introduces us to a story filled with grit, emotion, pain of loss, and love. Each chapter pulls the reader along through the story with a sense of hope for these people who are hurting.

We all want such stories to end with a positive conclusion, and White doesn’t disappoint, but I am not charged with telling you what that ending is. You, the reader, must discover this when you read The In-Between Hour.

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My Recommendation: 

The In-Between Hour has a little something for everyone: tension, mystery, struggling characters, and a bit of romance. Included in the cast of characters are the curious yet interesting personalities of people like your next door neighbor. And the author shares some vivid scenes from the North Carolina State Natural Area which includes Occoneechee Mountain, an incredibly beautiful place. Please don’t miss this wonderfully crafted story by a gifted writer.

TLC Book Tours Tour Host

CLICK HERE TO SEE BARBARA’S OTHER TOUR STOPS

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Meet the Author:

Author Barbara Claypole WhiteI grew up in rural England, studied history at York University, and worked in the London fashion industry before falling in love with an American professor I met at JFK Airport. Twenty-five years later, we live in the North Carolina forest with our award-winning poet / musician / lyricist son.

I love all things gardening and all things OCD. My debut novel, THE UNFINISHED GARDEN, is a love story about grief, OCD, and dirt. TUG was Simply Books # 1 Romantic Book of 2012, and a finalist in the 2013 Golden Quill, Write Touch Readers’ Award, and New England Readers’ Choice Beanpot Award contests. THE IN-BETWEEN HOUR follows in January 2014.

I blog about the writing life at bookpregnant.blogspot.com and girlfriendbooks.blogspot.com, and parenting an OCD teen at easytolove.com

For more information, please visit my website, barbaraclaypolewhite.com.

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DETAILS ABOUT THE BOOK | DISCLAIMER:

Publication Date: December 31, 2013
Publisher: Harlequin MIRA
Genre: Literature, Adult Fiction
Kindle: 554 KB | Printed: 834 pages
Source: NetGalley

I received a copy of The In-Between Hour from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review. The opinions expressed here are my own.

Love Unfeigned by Nadine C. Keels

Love Unfeigned Cover“Sight was no longer physical. She paused, her dark, questioning eyes now on an unmoving search for something unseen and meagerly remembered. What was it, and what had triggered its arousal? She had the sudden urge to call out a name, to get something’s–someone’s–attention, but she wasn’t clear on what name it was that she should be calling.

“She might have stood there for an instant too long if her own attention hadn’t, at that moment, been seized by a vehement shout somewhere behind her, issued by an identifiable, masculine voice she hadn’t heard in years.

Lorraine!”

~ Nadine C. Keels, Love Unfeigned

Synopsis: 

Love to the chords of a classic jazz band…

From the first time Lorraine, a plucky and competitive girl, contends on the playground against Isaiah, an impish boy whose smile gleams in more ways than one, the two of them can’t help knowing each other. Neither can they avoid passions and misfortunes lining the path to young adulthood, and when the breakup of Isaiah’s family disrupts the haven he’s shared with Lorraine, their natural relationship is eventually threatened by jealousy, grave trauma, and abandonment. As one year follows another, and another, what might it take to reunite these two companions in love: love undeniably real and unbounded by time?

“Everything didn’t have to turn out perfect. I just wanted you there.”

 (Synopsis and image via Goodreads)

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My Thoughts:

Love Unfeigned, a novella, seizes the reader’s attention immediately with the use of words like those shared in the quote above. Nadine Keels, a first-time author for me, writes with poetic vibrancy using words and language in such a way as to entice her reader to come along and keep turning the pages.

The story of Lorraine Tyson and Isaiah James, whom she calls “Braces Boy,” begins in grade school. Isaiah spends quite a bit of time with his friend, Lorraine’s brother, Earl. And the three become a tight little group.

These three childhood friends captured my heart immediately, but more so Lorraine and then Isaiah as they began to show signs of caring for one another.

Lorraine’s character is spunky, not to be challenged by a male of any size or age and willing to challenge anyone that she can do something she believes she can. Yet, there is a hint of a loving and compassionate young woman developing as the story grows. I loved that she called Isaiah Braces Boy when his braces glinted with sunlight the first time she met him on the playground.

And Isaiah was at no loss for loving characteristics. Keels developed her characters richly, and I was drawn into Isaiah’s character as he subtly attempted to let Lorraine know how he felt about her, even before they were old enough to know what romance was all about. Not to be outdone, Isaiah adopted a nickname for Lorraine: “Itty-Bit,” reflecting her small stature.

At points along the way, I had to pause to inhale Keels’ exquisite choice of words, her descriptive scenes and language, and the play she created among the various other players in her story. Keels has definitely been gifted in the craft of fiction writing.

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My Recommendation: 

If you enjoy reading a good love story, one built around a love that cannot be denied, you must read Love Unfeigned. Nadine Keels is a writer to be followed. If this book is any evidence at all of her ability to compete with other writers, Nadine Keels will be on our TBR piles for some time. Don’t miss this book!

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Meet the Author:

Nadine C. Keels, AuthorNadine. A French name, meaning, “hope.”

Spreading hope to her readers and audiences, author, editor, and speaker Nadine C. Keels of Seattle, Washington is well-known for The Song of Nadine, the powerful lyrical poetry seen in four of her several books, heard in her dynamic spoken word presentations on both local and national platforms, and found on her spoken word album, Hope. Lyricized.

Drawing from her lifelong passion for highly enjoyable and transformational fiction, Nadine has written Love & Eminence: A Suite of Stories as well as two novels and a novella, Love Unfeigned. In response to inquiries from other aspiring authors, Nadine put together a simple reference entitled Write Your Genius, Genius! A Rather Quick Guide to Book Writing. Being the founder of Prismatic Prospects, a communication company based in Seattle, Nadine has served as editor and co-editor for a number of titles, and it is her aim to be a proven wellspring of inspiration for creativity and innovation in the marketplace.

(Bio and image via Goodreads)

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DETAILS ABOUT THE BOOK | DISCLAIMER:

Kindle Edition
Publication Date: February 27, 2013
Publisher: Smashwords
Genre: Adult Fiction, Christian Fiction, Christian Romance
ASIN: B00F0SDCGG

I received a copy of Love Unfeigned from the author in exchange for a fair and honest review. The opinions and recommendations expressed here are my own.

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