March Book Reviews

Hey, Readers. I’m way behind on posting reviews. Matter of fact, I was behind on writing them. Lesson learned – don’t wait until days or weeks later. Because of my procrastination, my reviews are shorter than usual. I’m also going back to posting them once a month rather than weekly. Because I didn’t post at the end of February, there are a few books I read during that month.

Variety is the Spice of Life by Sally Cronin

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Variety is the spice of life and Sally Cronin did a wonderful job in putting together this eclectic collection of short poems and flash fiction. But don’t let the length fool you. The stories and poems are well-written. Proof that a lot can be said with so few words.

Like with any collection, I had my favorites. Of the poems, “Face in The Mirror” is something many of us can relate to. “Kinship” is about the bonds we form with others—family and friends. It is especially touching as Sally dedicates the book to the online writing community in which she has played a huge role in bringing together. Of the short stories, I loved, “The Neighbourood Watch” and “Miss Lloyd’s Robin.”

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the poems that are snapshots from Sally’s garden. This book is an easy and quick read, but nonetheless delightful, and one I highly recommend.

The Blessing Way by Tony Hillerman

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Having become interested in books featuring Native American characters, I read my first Tony Hillerman novel last year—one of the Leaphorn and Chee novels. I enjoyed it, so I decided to pick up the series from the beginning.

This book, first published in 1970, didn’t disappoint. Writing styles were different in those days, and at first, the pace seemed a little slow but picked up. Although Joe Leaphorn is the main character, his friend Bergan McKee plays a big part (and has more action) than Joe. It’s always a plus for me when I’m kept guessing until the end, and I did with this book.

I look forward to reading more of this series.

Redemption by Gwen Plano

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Redemption is a mix of family drama and thriller. When Lisa returns home for a visit, she’s barely in the door when someone murders her father and severely injures her mother.

Lisa, her brother Trace, and family friend Ryan set out to discover the truth. Neither sibling has fond memories of their father and the secretive life he lived.

The action is well-paced and the characters well-developed. The message of redemption at the end is a thought-provoking one that reminds readers of the importance of forgiveness.

Vampire of the Midnight Sun by Priscilla Bettis

Rating: 5 out of 5.

This is a short, easy-to-read duology. Although listed as horror, there is nothing overly graphic. The first story is set in the Alaskan Wilderness and follows two friends who try to make their way back to civilization after a failed rafting trip. I like the twist on the title. Can vampires live in sunlight? If you believe they can’t think again.

The second book was set in drought-raged Texas when a wildfire threatens a town’s existence. I loved how the author used an old steam locomotive to enhance the plot—and the suspense.

I recommend this to anyone who enjoys horror stories that don’t go over the top on graphic images.

Wake-Robin Ridge by Marcia Meara

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I read Meara’s Riverbend series a while back, and I’m not sure what took me so long to begin this debut novel.

Wake-Robin Ridge is a mix of suspense, romance, and paranormal. Set in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, the author did a wonderful job of describing the setting. I felt as if I was right there to see the beautiful sights and smell the delicious scents of autumn.

This is a dual-timeline story, set in the 1960s and in the twenty-first century that wraps up in a satisfying ending. Highly recommended for readers who enjoy books set in different timeframes.

Sorrowful Soul by Harmony Kent

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Sorrowful Soul is the third collection of poems in Harmony Kent’s Soul Poetry series. The subject of this collection, grief, is something we will all face at one time or another.

Each section takes readers through the stages of grief. Some are hard to read, but most readers can relate to the emotions associated with the loss of someone you love.

I recommend all three books in this series.

That wraps it up for this month. I’ll have more reviews to share in April. Happy reading, everyone!

65 thoughts on “March Book Reviews

  1. Excellent reviews, Joan, and good for you for catching up. I’ve read all of these except for Hillerman’s novel. What a great bunch of books from our community. Congrats to all the authors. And somehow WordPress unfollowed you, so I’m back on track now. Happy Reading and keep up the reviews!

    Liked by 4 people

    1. We do have a wonderful writing community, Diana. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

      WordPress is forever doing strange things. Staci has followed my blog (and others) dozens of times, only for WP to remove her. I’m pretty sure it’s done the same to me for some blogs I follow.

      Liked by 3 people

  2. I know what you mean about being behind on book reviews, Joan. I try not to let it happen, but I’ve got three to write today – two of them are for books listed above. Congrats to the authors!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I’ve posted all on Bookbub and Goodreads, but I’m posting to Amazon on different days. When I do two or three the same day, they tend to hold them for some reason. Weird!

      Sounds like we have similar tastes in reading.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks so much for including my very first book, Wake-Robin Ridge, in with rest of these super writers and their works, Joan. I’m so glad you enjoyed WRR, and I hope you’ll like things even more when Rabbit comes along and usurps the entire series. (For the better, I think!) I’ve just finished reading & viewing Redemption, which I loved, and am looking forward to reading the rest of these, too.

    I’m YEARS behind on my reviews, but now that I’m restricted to staying at home for a while, I’ve promised myself to do at least ONE a day until I’ve caught up a bit. Once you fall behind on them, it’s difficult to catch up again, but I’m determined to do so!)

    Great post! 😊❤️

    Liked by 4 people

  4. Fantastic reviews, Joan! I can join you in adding my recommendation for four of them. I loved Variety Is The Spice of Life, Redemption, Vampire of the Midnight Sun, and Sorrowful Soul. Congratulations to these authors!

    Liked by 4 people

  5. Joan, thank you for including Vampire of the Midnight Sun! I’m thrilled you liked it.:-)

    I’ve read and enjoyed several of these, and you’ve piqued my interest in the other two. Intriguing reviews, Joan!

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Wow, what a wonderful surprise for me this morning! Thanks so much for sharing your fantastic recommendation for Sorrowful Soul. It’s an honour appearing alongside such wonderful books and authors. I loved Sally’s and Gwen’s books and rally need to get to all of Marcia’s Wake Robin Ridge series and Priscilla’s books. Congratulations to Marcia, Gwen, and Priscilla. Thanks for your reviews, Joan 💕🙂

    Liked by 3 people

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