The Missing Book Review

It feels like I’ve been reading a lot of suspense and mystery novels lately and two of them have been set in Bristol: The Missing and Odd Child Out. Thankfully, all of them have been exciting and fun to read.

The Missing by C.L. Taylor is told from a mother’s perspective and it’s utterly heartbreaking. Claire’s fifteen year old son has gone missing six months ago and there are no clues as to where he went or if he was kidnapped or ran away. Is he dead? Is he sleeping rough somewhere? Someone has to know what happened to him, but the police are stumped, and Claire is starting to suspect her family.

The Missing
I received a free copy of The Missing in exchange for an honest review. You can buy your own copy at HarperCollins.

Claire is unreliable as a narrator because she keeps having blackouts and finding herself in strange places after being triggered by something that disturbed her deeply. Throughout my reading of the book, I suspected every single person, except for the person who it actually was.

This psychological thriller is a little long, but you’ll be sucked in from the first page. You feel so deeply for Claire and her husband and older son, while they deal with their youngest missing for six months. You don’t want to suspect any of them, but you can’t help but feel that something just isn’t quite right at home. No family is perfect, and something is deeply wrong in that house, but you just can’t put your finger on it until things are revealed near the end. The ending is a little rushed, especially after so much build up. It feels good to know what happened, but everything is cleared up very quickly.

If you’re looking for a good Christmas gift for an avid suspense reader, The Missing should be on your list.

About The Missing

• Paperback: 496 pages
• Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks (November 7, 2017)

The Missing has a delicious sense of foreboding from the first page, luring us into the heart of a family with terrible secrets and making us wait, with pounding hearts for the final, agonizing twist. Loved it.”—Fiona Barton, author of The Widow

A harrowing psychological thriller about a missing teenage boy whose mother must expose the secrets within their own family if she wants to find her son—perfect for fans of Reconstructing Amelia.

You love your family. They make you feel safe. You trust them. Or do you…?

When fifteen-year-old Billy Wilkinson goes missing in the middle of the night, his mother, Claire Wilkinson, blames herself. She’s not the only one. There isn’t a single member of Billy’s family that doesn’t feel guilty. But the Wilkinsons are so used to keeping secrets from one another that it isn’t until six months later, after an appeal for information goes horribly wrong, that the truth begins to surface.

Claire is sure of two things—that Billy is still alive and that her friends and family had nothing to do with his disappearance.

A mother’s instinct is never wrong. Or is it…?

Combining an unreliable narrator and fast-paced storytelling, The Missing is a chilling novel of psychological suspense that will thoroughly captivate and obsess readers.

Purchase Links

HarperCollins | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

About C. L. Taylor

C. L. Taylor is a Sunday Times bestselling author. Her books have sold more than a million copies and have been translated into twenty-one languages. She lives in Bristol, England, with her partner and son.

Find out more about C. L. at her website, and connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Odd Child Out Book Review

Holy cow. This book. All of the intrigue and suspense.

Odd Child Out shifts perspectives very often, switching between Noah, DI Clemo, Sasha, and Maryam and Nur. DI Clemo’s portions are the only ones in first person, but seeing the story unfold from several different points somehow ups the intrigue. You still don’t know exactly what happened even though you’re getting a lot information from a police perspective, from the victim and his family, and from the suspect and his family.

Odd Child Out
I was given a free copy of Odd Child Out in exchange for an honest review. You can order a copy at HarperCollins.

Noah was found floating in a canal in Bristol and Abdi won’t talk about it. Noah is in a coma and can’t talk about it. No one knows what happened to these boys. DI Clemo is fresh off a leave of absence after a case that involved a kid and went horribly wrong. He and his partner need Abdi to tell them what happened, but Abdi seems like he’s in shock and like there’s also something else wrong with him. What did he see to send him into such a shock?

Hiddensee Book Review

I was lucky enough to see Wicked when I was in 7th grade and it was with the original cast in Chicago – except that night Elphaba was played by the understudy so I didn’t actually get to see Idina Menzel play her. But I did see Kristin Chenoweth play a dazzling Galinda! It was an amazing show that left me star struck. Everything was magical and the music still captures me.

So you can imagine why I’d immediately jump at the chance to review a book by William Morrow, the mind that made the world of Wicked before it was a world-wide renowned musical. Morrow is back with a new fantastical novel called Hiddensee, inspired by the timeless story of The Nutcracker. “Inspired by” is used loosely here. It’s not really a “holiday read” and it’s not the backstory of the Nutcracker or even close to the ballet with which most are familiar. It has more to do with Herr Drosselmeyer, the man who can make toys come to life.

Hiddensee
I was given a free copy of Hiddensee in exchange for an honest review. Get your own copy of the book at HarperCollins.

Readers might be disappointed if you’re expecting something as whimsical as the ballet or if you’re hoping to find Easter eggs about it in the story. Though if you’re completely unfamiliar with the ballet and the story of the Nutcracker and Clara, you can still enjoy this book. Prior knowledge of those stories is not a prerequisite for enjoying Hiddensee.

The imagery is particularly vivid – a particular skill of William Morrow’s, I think. It’s set in Germany in the early 19th Century and it reminds me of some Brother’s Grimm stories I read in a fairy tale course in college – I mean in tone, but they do make an appearance in the story. If you like German romanticism, you’ll probably like Hiddensee. If you don’t like German romanticism, it might be a little harder for you to appreciate it. The story can also run a little slow, so if you’re looking for a quick read to get you into the holiday spirit (sort of – German romanticism isn’t exactly…festive), then Hiddensee might not be for you.

But if you’re a person who loves fairy tales flipped on their head, you just might want to order a copy from HarperCollins.

About Hiddensee

• Hardcover: 304 pages
• Publisher: William Morrow (October 31, 2017)

From the author of the beloved #1 New York Times bestseller Wicked, the magical story of a toymaker, a nutcracker, and a legend remade . . .

Gregory Maguire returns with an inventive novel inspired by a timeless holiday legend, intertwining the story of the famous Nutcracker with the life of the mysterious toy maker named Drosselmeier who carves him.

Hiddensee: An island of white sandy beaches, salt marshes, steep cliffs, and pine forests north of Berlin in the Baltic Sea, an island that is an enchanting bohemian retreat and home to a large artists’ colony– a wellspring of inspiration for the Romantic imagination . . .

Having brought his legions of devoted readers to Oz in Wicked and to Wonderland in After Alice, Maguire now takes us to the realms of the Brothers Grimm and E. T. A. Hoffmann– the enchanted Black Forest of Bavaria and the salons of Munich. Hiddensee imagines the backstory of the Nutcracker, revealing how this entrancing creature came to be carved and how he guided an ailing girl named Klara through a dreamy paradise on a Christmas Eve. At the heart of Hoffmann’s mysterious tale hovers Godfather Drosselmeier– the ominous, canny, one-eyed toy maker made immortal by Petipa and Tchaikovsky’s fairy tale ballet– who presents the once and future Nutcracker to Klara, his goddaughter.

But Hiddensee is not just a retelling of a classic story. Maguire discovers in the flowering of German Romanticism ties to Hellenic mystery-cults– a fascination with death and the afterlife– and ponders a profound question: How can a person who is abused by life, shortchanged and challenged, nevertheless access secrets that benefit the disadvantaged and powerless? Ultimately, Hiddensee offers a message of hope. If the compromised Godfather Drosselmeier can bring an enchanted Nutcracker to a young girl in distress on a dark winter evening, perhaps everyone, however lonely or marginalized, has something precious to share.

Purchase Links

HarperCollins | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

About Gregory Maguire

Gregory Maguire is the New York Times bestselling author of Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister; Lost; Mirror Mirror; and the Wicked Years, a series that includes Wicked, Son of a Witch, A Lion Among Men, and Out of Oz. Now a beloved classic, Wicked is the basis for a blockbuster Tony Award–winning Broadway musical. Maguire has lectured on art, literature, and culture both at home and abroad. He lives with his family near Boston, Massachusetts.

Find out more about Maguire at his website and follow him on Facebook.

Start Without Me Book Review

I’m a sucker for holiday stories where the main character is going home to family where things have been tense in the past. Maybe it’s because it typically works out better than they hoped or maybe because I just can’t get enough of family drama and I don’t know why.

Start Without Me reminds me a lot of This Is Where I Leave You just in overall tone and probably because it’s the last book I read where a man goes home to visit his family and all hell breaks loose.

Start Without Me
I was given a free copy of Start Without Me in exchange for an honest review. You can get your copy at HarperCollins.

Adam is a former musician and a recovering alcoholic. He goes home for Thanksgiving after years of not attending the family gathering. He’s recently sober and just trying to take things one day at a time, but he’s afraid of messing things up again. He eventually bails on family Thanksgiving and goes back to the airport. Which is where he meets Marissa.

Marissa is a flight attendant and her marriage is rocky to say the least. She’s supposed to go to her in-laws’ house for a “picture-perfect” Thanksgiving (her father-in-law is a government official), but she was also invited over to her mother’s house – a place she hasn’t been in years.

Can you just feel the tension already? It’s great.

Adam and Marissa meet in an airport restaurant and Marissa ends up inviting him to her in-laws’ Thanksgiving. It doesn’t go well and more drama ensues.

Adam and Marissa aren’t always easy to like and you definitely never want to be in their shoes. In fact, reading their story is a little painful sometimes because they keep making bad decisions throughout the day. They’re both human train wrecks, really. And yet, I couldn’t stop reading. I read this book faster than usual because I just had to see what happened next.

Thanksgiving and Christmas are well on their way, so if you’re looking for a quick read that will prepare you for the worst and maybe show you what not to do, check out Start Without Me.

 

About Start Without Me

• Hardcover: 288 pages
• Publisher: William Morrow (October 17, 2017)

The author of the critically acclaimed The Book of Jonah explores questions of love and choice, disappointment and hope in the lives of two strangers who meet by chance in this mesmerizing tale that unfolds over one Thanksgiving Day.

Adam is a former musician and recovering alcoholic who is home for Thanksgiving for the first time in many years. Surrounded by his parents and siblings, nieces and nephews—all who have seen him at his worst—he can’t shake the feeling that no matter how hard he tries, he’ll always be the one who can’t get it right.

Marissa is a flight attendant whose marriage is strained by simmering tensions over race, class, and ambition. Heading to her in-laws for their picture-perfect holiday family dinner, her anxiety is intensified by the knowledge she is pregnant from an impulsive one-night-stand.

In an airport restaurant on Thanksgiving morning, Adam and Marissa meet. Over the course of this day fraught with emotion and expectation, these two strangers will form an unlikely bond as they reckon with their family ties, their pasts, and the choices that will determine their way forward.

Joshua Max Feldman focuses his knowing eye on one of the last bastions of classical American idealism, the Thanksgiving family gathering, as he explores our struggles to know—and to be—our best selves. Hilarious and heartrending, Start Without Me is a thoughtful and entertaining page-turner that will leave its indelible mark on your heart.

Purchase Links

HarperCollins | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

About Joshua Max Feldman

Joshua Max Feldman is the author of The Book of Jonah. Born and raised in Amherst, Massachusetts, he has lived in England, Russia, and Switzerland, and currently resides in Brooklyn.

Find out more about Joshua at his website, and connect with him on Facebook and Twitter.

The Fire By Night Book Review

Ever since I was in elementary school, I’ve always been interested in WWII stories. I don’t know what it is about that time period, but I’m always fascinated. Maybe it’s because my grandparents were alive during that time, so it feels like ancient history (to me) and yet it’s still close enough to be in some people’s living memory. Also, some of the stories are just bone chilling and awful and I can’t imagine how anyone survived it. Maybe I’m so fascinated because it’s like a study in the strength of human spirit.

The Fire By Night
I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review. You can get your copy at HarperCollins!

Teresa Messineo’s The Fire By Night is definitely a Don’t Miss Book if you are as fascinated by the WWII era as I am. It tells the stories of two nurses: Jo, at the front in France and Kay, a POW at a Japanese camp in Manila. It’s truly a story that shows just how strong women can be. Many war stories focus on the male soldiers and gloss over the fact that the nurses were just as entrenched in the war effort. They might not have been holding a gun and running at the enemy line, but they were seeing the horrific side effects of war and trying to put those men back together.

The Fire By Night showed the effects of war on the nurses in a way I’d never read before. They have PTSD, they’re starved, they’re trying to heal, and they’re trying to survive. They’re resilient and in pain, but they will go on because they have no other choice but to live for the millions who have died during the war.

It’s obvious that Messineo did her research while she was writing this book. The details feel so real (sometimes too real) but that only makes the stories better, of course.

The Fire By Night is raw, brutal, and doesn’t hold back. There were several nights when I read this before bed and I didn’t want to put it down. Be warned that you’ll want to devour this book in one sitting.

The only thing I wish was different was to see a reunion between Jo and Kay because they had gone through so much. I would’ve love to see them reunite after so long apart and after so much happened to them on opposite sides of the world.

 

About The Fire By Night

• Paperback: 336 pages
• Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks; Reprint edition (October 3, 2017)

A powerful and evocative debut novel about two American military nurses during World War II that illuminates the unsung heroism of women who risked their lives in the fight—a riveting saga of friendship, valor, sacrifice, and survival combining the grit and selflessness of Band of Brothers with the emotional resonance of The Nightingale.

In war-torn France, Jo McMahon, an Italian-Irish girl from the tenements of Brooklyn, tends to six seriously wounded soldiers in a makeshift medical unit. Enemy bombs have destroyed her hospital convoy, and now Jo singlehandedly struggles to keep her patients and herself alive in a cramped and freezing tent close to German troops. There is a growing tenderness between her and one of her patients, a Scottish officer, but Jo’s heart is seared by the pain of all she has lost and seen. Nearing her breaking point, she fights to hold on to joyful memories of the past, to the times she shared with her best friend, Kay, whom she met in nursing school.

Half a world away in the Pacific, Kay is trapped in a squalid Japanese POW camp in Manila, one of thousands of Allied men, women, and children whose fates rest in the hands of a sadistic enemy. Far from the familiar safety of the small Pennsylvania coal town of her childhood, Kay clings to memories of her happy days posted in Hawaii, and the handsome flyer who swept her off her feet in the weeks before Pearl Harbor. Surrounded by cruelty and death, Kay battles to maintain her sanity and save lives as best she can . . . and live to see her beloved friend Jo once more.

When the conflict at last comes to an end, Jo and Kay discover that to achieve their own peace, they must find their place—and the hope of love—in a world that’s forever changed. With rich, superbly researched detail, Teresa Messineo’s thrilling novel brings to life the pain and uncertainty of war and the sustaining power of love and friendship, and illuminates the lives of the women who risked everything to save others during a horrifying time.

Purchase Links

HarperCollins | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

About Teresa Messineo

Teresa Messineo spent seven years researching the history behind The Fire by Night,her first novel. She is a graduate of DeSales University, and her varied interests include homeschooling her four children, volunteering with the underprivileged, medicine, swing dancing, and competitive athletics. She lives in Reading, Pennsylvania.

Connect with Teresa on Facebook.

Unforgivable Love Book Review

I think the world is obsessed with retellings of classic stories: Ghostbusters with a female cast, more and more Spider-Man movies, etc. Unforgivable Love by Sophfronia Scott is no exception. It is a retelling of Dangerous Liaisons, a play that was turned into a movie.

Unforgivable Love
I received a free copy of Unforgivable Love in exchange for a free review. Click on the cover to get a copy!

The retelling takes place in 1947 Harlem, the summer Jackie Robinson starts his professional baseball career – a time setting which I found fascinating. We get to know Mae Malveaux, a wealthy heiress, who doesn’t seem to believe in love. She uses men for their affection and bodies and then throws them away when she’s done with them. You can imagine how angry (hurt?) she is when Frank leaves her to find a wife more to his tastes – a virginal Southern belle named Cecily.

Enter the revenge plot: Mae wants revenge on Frank for leaving her so she makes a deal with Valiant (Val) Jackson – a man with a shady reputation in Harlem, but a passion for Mae – if he makes virginal Cecily no longer a virgin, Mae will sleep with Val.

There’s more, but I don’t want to spoil anything.

Dryland Book Review

Dryland is a pun in several ways, and I love it. First, it refers literally to land, which for Nancy Stearns Bercaw, isn’t her natural place as a swimmer. She’s also in Abu Dhabi for most of the book – a desert. And it refers to be dry, as in sober. Nancy is with her family in Abu Dhabi and she finally realizes that she drinks way too much and that it’s actually a problem. Dryland is her journey to that realization, an examination of her past, and a look forward to what her life could be.

Dryland
I received a free digital copy of Dryland in exchange for an honest review. Pick up your own copy at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Books-A-Million.

This memoir was sobering (pun very much intended). I grew up with an alcoholic father and while I was young, it wasn’t that big of a deal, because I was little and didn’t know anything. As I got older and I watched him get sober (thank goodness), I prayed that that wouldn’t be my life someday. That I would be able to drink normally and know when to stop and be able to stop. Thankfully, I haven’t had a problem — yet. I’m not ruling out the possibility at only 24 years old.

Dryland helped me understand my dad better. On some level, I’ve always understood that alcoholics really can’t help it and they just don’t know how to stop once they’ve gotten started. But reading Nancy Stearns Bercaw’s memoir helped me finally get it. Whatever your problems are, alcohol will probably make you feel better, not care anymore, or at the very least, fall asleep and avoid it.

Dryland is honest, heart-wrenching, and an around the globe adventure. At times it feels like a close friend is opening up about the roughest part of her life and the adventures she’s had long the way.

I highly recommend Dryland for everyone to read, whether or not you have a personal relationship with alcoholism. It never hurts to gain a new understanding about other people. It might make the world a more understanding place.

About Dryland

• Paperback: 256 pages
• Publisher: Grand Harbor Press (April 18, 2017)

For swimming champion Nancy Stearns Bercaw, the pool was a natural habitat. But on land, she could never shake the feeling of being a fish out of water. Starting at age two, Nancy devoted her life to swimming, even qualifying for the 1988 Olympic Trials in the fifty-meter freestyle event. But when she hung up her cap and goggles after college, she was confronted with a different kind of challenge: learning who she was out of the lanes.

In this honest, intimate memoir, Nancy reflects on her years wandering the globe, where tragic events and a lost sense of self escalate her dependence on booze. Thirty-three years after her first sip of alcohol, the swimmer comes to a stunning realization while living with her husband and son in Abu Dhabi—she’s drowning in the desert. Nancy looks to the Bedouin people for the strength to conquer one final opponent: alcohol addiction.

Praise

“A brave, honest, adventurous memoir that keeps you turning pages as Bercaw travels around the world and rediscovers what it really means to win…at life.” —Leigh Newman, author of Still Points North

Purchase Links

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Books-A-Million

About Nancy Stearns Bercaw

Writer and national champion swimmer Nancy Stearns Bercaw is a seventeen-time NCAA All-American athlete and was inducted into the University of South Florida’s Athletic Hall of Fame in 2009. Her writing has appeared in publications around the world, including the New York Times, the Huffington Post, the Korea Herald, U.S. News & World Report, Abu Dhabi’s Tempo magazine, and ScaryMommy.com. In addition to Dryland: One Woman’s Swim to Sobriety, she is the author of Brain in a Jar: A Daughter’s Journey Through Her Father’s Memory and a contributor to Chicken Soup for the Soul: Living with Alzheimer’s and Other Dementias. She lives in Vermont with her husband and son.

Find out more about Nancy at her website, and connect with her on Twitter and Facebook.

Red Year Book Review

Historical fiction is always fun for me. I’m a big fan of series like Outlander because they deal so much with the past. Red Year by Jan Shapin is great for historical fiction lovers. What made this book even more fascinating for me was that I didn’t know much about China or the Soviet Union in the 1920s. Most of my education on that decade takes place in Europe and the United States.

Red Year
I was given a free copy of Red Year for an honest review by TLC Book Tours. Pick up your own copy at Amazon.

Red Year is a fictional story about a real life journalist, Rayna Prohme (who went to the University of Illinois! That’s in my home state!), who travels to China with her husband. While there, Rayna falls in love with a Russian agent, so you know that this book is just full of intrigue. Rayna needs a job and wants to be near Mr. B – her Russian agent, Mikhail Borodin – so she travels to Moscow and tries to get into the Lenin Academy, a Soviet spy school.

*INTRIGUE*

I love the idea for this story and the setting is unfamiliar but in the best ways. I’m all for women traveling the world and infiltrating spy schools. But I had a lot of trouble getting through the book. I didn’t “connect” with Rayna like I wanted, but maybe that’s okay! I don’t have to feel a personal connection to every character I read – it just means I’m not reading stories about characters exactly like me! I just felt that the history, the time period, and the politics were more vibrant characters than Rayna.

I’m still interested in Rayna, however. The 1920s and the Communist Party in China and Russia are subjects that Americans (or at least, I) know little about. I look forward to reading more books set in those places.

Overall, if you like historical fiction, you’re going to like Red Year for sure. It looks like Jan Shapin has written two other books in different time periods, so I’ll definitely be checking those out.

 

About Red Year

• Paperback: 286 pages
• Publisher: Cambridge Books (June 4, 2017)

Can a red-haired woman from Chicago single-handedly force Joseph Stalin to back down?

China, 1927. Thirty-three year old Rayna Prohme, accompanying her left-wing journalist husband, becomes the political confidant and lover of Mikhail Borodin, the Russian commander sent to prop up a failing Chinese revolution. In a bid to continue their love affair, Rayna hatches a plan to accompany Mme. Sun, the widow of the Chinese revolution’s founder, to Moscow.

But Moscow does not welcome the women. Borodin shuns them. Rayna’s stipend and housing arrangements are cancelled. “Go home,” she is told. But Rayna does not want to go home to an ordinary life, to her husband and Chicago. Instead, she applies to a Soviet espionage school that soon demands she spy on Mme. Sun. The Chinese widow is, by now, in grave danger as her exit visa is blocked. Rayna must make a choice — Borodin and Russia or Mme. Sun and China.

Praise

Set in Russian and China during the 1920s, this beautifully written novel tells the story of a true American dreamer—a woman who charged into danger in search of passion, justice and some money to pay her bills. A fascinating story. –Susan Breen, author, Maggie Dove mysteries

Purchase Link

Amazon

About Jan Shapin

Jan Shapin has been writing plays and screenplays for nearly thirty years, in the last decade concentrating on fiction. Shapin has studied playwriting at Catholic University in Washington, DC, screenwriting at the Film and Television Workshop and University of Southern California, and fiction writing at a variety of locations including Barnard College’s Writers on Writing seminar, the Sewanee Writers’ Conference and Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference.

Her plays have been produced in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states. She has received grants from the RI Council for the Humanities and has served as a juror for the Rhode Island State Council for the Arts screenplay fellowship awards. Two previous novels, A Desire Path and A Snug Life Somewhere, were published in 2012 and 2014.

She lives in North Kingstown, RI with her photographer husband. Learn more about Jan at her website, janshapin.com.

Dangerous Ends Book Review

This read was a little weird since it’s the third installment in a series and I haven’t read the first two books (I received a digital copy of Dangerous Ends in exchange for an honest review). But not reading the first two books didn’t hinder my reading experience at all. I felt like I knew and understood the characters without absolutely needing to read the previous books. This is a sequel that can stand on its own.

Dangerous Ends

I love me some crime novels and TV shows. Dangerous Ends by Alex Segura reminded me a little bit of Burn Notice because they’re both set in Miami – not a bad thing; I loved Burn Notice. Miami basically became another character in the book and I love when a writer can do that. I’ve never been to Miami, but I feel like I know it pretty well after reading this book, and it made me want to plan a visit (and then I remembered how much I hate humidity and closed the Southwest tab).

As well as being a crime novel, Dangerous Ends dabbles in historical fiction. Specifically, the 1950s in Cuba and the beginning of the Castro regime. At first, I didn’t understand the point of those interludes, but as I kept reading, I understood and appreciated their purpose. I tend to give away a lot of spoilers in my reviews, but I think in this case, I’m going to keep it a mystery.

If you love a good crime novel, Dangerous Ends is for you. You’re going to want to read it in one sitting, but I advise you to savor it a little.

 

About Dangerous Ends

• Hardcover: 320 pages
• Publisher: Polis Books (April 11, 2017)

Pete Fernandez has settled into an easy, if somewhat boring life as a P.I.. He takes pictures of cheating husbands. He tracks criminals who’ve skipped bail and he attends weekly AA meetings The days of chasing murderous killers are behind him. Or are they?

When his partner Kathy Bentley approaches him with a potential new client, Pete balks. Not because he doesn’t need the money, but because the case involves Gaspar Varela, a former Miami police officer serving a life sentence for the murder of his wife – one of the most infamous crimes in Miami history. The client? None other than Varela’s daughter, Maya, who’s doggedly supported her father’s claims of innocence.

As Pete and Kathy wade into a case that no one wants, they also find themselves in the crosshairs of Los Enfermos, a bloodthirsty gang of pro-Castro killers and drug dealers looking to wipe Pete off the Miami map. As if trying to exonerate Varela wasn’t enough, they find themselves entangled in something even older and more surprising–a bloody, political hit ordered by Fidel Castro himself, that left a still-healing scar on Pete–and his dead father’s–past.

Fast-paced, hardboiled and surprising, Dangerous Ends pushes Pete Fernandez into a battle with a deadlier, more complex threat, as he tries to shake off the demons haunting Miami’s own, sordid past.

Praise

“A real throwback to the kind of books I love. Segura captures the spirit of modern Miami with its complicated past and conflicted present. Pete Fernandez is the perfect hero to walk the mean streets of both worlds.”—Ace Atkins, New York Times bestselling author of Robert B. Parker’s Slow Burn and The Innocents

“Alex Segura honors the private detective tradition, but also expands it. With a rich setting and an engagingly complex main character, DANGEROUS ENDS is a tense, gripping exploration of what happens when a bloody past collides with a dangerous present.”—Lou Berney, Edgar Award-winning author of The Long and Faraway Gone

“A case with dark, unexpected twists.” —Publishers Weekly

“Alex Segura is one of the most exciting and vital voices in crime fiction today, and his Pete Fernandez series is keeping private eye fiction alive and kicking (serious ass) in the new millennium. His work does what the best crime fiction should do: take us down city streets we wouldn’t dare visit alone.” —Duane Swierczynski, Edgar Award-nominated author of Canary

“Like Elmore Leonard before him, Segura drags the darkness out into the hot sunlight. There’s a lot of heart in these broken souls.” —Brian Azzarello, author of 100 Bullets, Moonshine and Batman

Purchase Links

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

About Alex Segura

Alex Segura is a novelist and comic book writer. He is the author of the Miami crime novels featuring Pete Fernandez, Silent City and Down the Darkest Street, and Dangerous Ends, via Polis Books.

He has also written a number of comic books, including the best-selling and critically acclaimed Archie Meets Kiss storyline, the “Occupy Riverdale” story, Archie Meets Ramones and the upcoming The Archies one-shot.

He lives in New York with his wife and son. He is a Miami native.

Find out more about Alex at his website, and connect with him on Facebook.

My Glory Was I Had Such Friends Review

As soon as I read the back cover for My Glory Was I Had Such Friends, I knew that it was going to make me feel things. Especially since it’s a memoir, so everything was real in the book. Ugh, it just gets me right in the feelings.

My Glory Was I Had Such Friends cover
I received a free copy of My Glory Was I Had Such Friends in exchange for an honest review. You can order your own copy at HarperCollins.

Right off the bat, I knew this book was going to end happily. It had to, right? It’s a memoir about Amy Silverstein’s wait for a second heart transplant. Since the book was written, it means she gets the second heart at the end of the book. But, God, what a wait!

Amy and her husband relocate to California, because there’s a better chance of her getting the heart she needs. Shortly after this decision is made, she gets an email from one of her friends. It includes a spreadsheet that spans the time she’ll be spending in California. Every single day is filled in with a name.