BOOK AWARDS 2019

I have been very quiet on my blog this year. Keeping up with social media on Facebook and Twitter, writing more books and (attempting to) market them plus the twice a week blogging wore me out. Life also gets in the way too, and I’ve even ventured out of the house a few times in between.

However, as I do every year, I could not ignore sharing my favourite books from 2019 with you.

In no particular order, over the next 4 weeks these are the reads that have blown me away over the last 12 months. The books I didn’t want to end, where I was in awe of the author’s skill, or, the story was simply amazing.

OF KNIGHTS AND DOGFIGHTS  Ellie Midwood

DOG FIGHTS

In 1938 four young men join the flying school at Schwechat near Vienna. From different backgrounds, they all share a love of flying for the freedom and the danger. We meet Johann and Willi, complete opposites, Rudi and Walt who is half Jewish. When war breaks out, they are sent out to fight for Germany in Europe, North Africa, and later on the Eastern Front. Not all of them survive the war, but long before it is over, they begin to question the reasons and rationale and whether they are fighting for the right side. They have doubts about the Nazi regime, the sanity of Hitler and the lies and propaganda they are expected to believe.
When I chose this book to review, I was not sure I would enjoy it as much as this author’s other novels. I am a great fan of Ellie’s work and this is one of her best. She did not disappoint. This is not a ‘man’s’ book despite its detailed description of the dog fights, the handling of the planes and the aerial tactics. Topics of friendship, beliefs, morals, and comradeship are all explored as these teenagers fly one mission after another. The slow dawning of what part these brave young men were being forced to play on the chessboard of an insane man’s dreams was masterful. In places I smiled, in others, my eyes filled with tears. Ms Midwood knows how to spin her words as she takes you to the desert in North Africa then to the frozen wastelands of Russia. She pulls no punches in describing the brutality, the gut-wrenching scenes against the backdrop of a shameful period in history. What made this book really special for me was the realization that while the Nazis / Germans have been vilified for the part they played in World War II there were many fine, upstanding people who did not share those beliefs and stuck to their values until the very end and even beyond. I was amazed to read that the two main characters were based on the lives of real people who flew for the Luftwaffe. I can’t praise this book highly enough. It stands head and shoulders above any other World War II novel I’ve ever read.    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07KX56ZJK

AMONG THE MASAI  Juliet Cutler

among masai

Among the Masai by Juliet Cutler is a memoir recounting the two years the author spent living and teaching in Tanzania at the end of the 1990s. Arriving with preconceived ideas and expectations, nothing was as she had imagined. She describes her feelings of being ‘on show’ her white skin making her very conspicuous, the shock at the levels of poverty, the comparison with the society in which she had grown up. While there were mental challenges to adjust to there were also the practical problems too – shortage of water, no internet, lack of familiar foods and necessities, the dangers of the local wildlife. Traveling with her fiancé, Juliet was seconded to the first Secondary School for Girls catering to the Masai, a partly nomadic tribe spread across Kenya and Tanzania and viewed by other tribes in those countries as primitive. It had taken months of negotiations to set up and run a school.

Like many young people traveling overseas to third world countries to work among the disadvantaged, Juliet’s wish was to help educate and uplift the lives of the young girls she was employed to teach English. Fresh out of college, with little experience she had no idea what to expect. This book is beautifully written and should be on the prescribed reading list for all schools to create an understanding of a culture that is so often misunderstood. I could relate to her experiences, applaud her soul searching and her questioning of whether foreign aid is a blessing or a curse. She understands the fine balance between imposing an alien culture and gently easing young people into the modern world. Encountering practices such as FGM, child marriage and girls sold for a few cows were a culture shock and she shares her sorrow and triumphs with the young girls she grew to love. As she says, you will always have Africa inside you. A wonderful book, it made me laugh and cry as I feverishly turned the pages. A book written with love which showed great empathy.  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07L973RQM

THE LAST CALIPH  by T L Williams

last caliph

The Last Caliph is the fourth book in the Logan Alexander series and it takes the reader from the United States to Turkey and Syria as Logan goes undercover to track down the current Caliph who is continuing to run ISIS operations. While the President of the US has announced that ISIS has been defeated and is preparing to withdraw the American troops, Logan and his old allies at the CIA are not convinced. At great risk to himself, and despite strained relations between himself and his wife, Logan arrives in Turkey with the idea of crossing the border into Syria, with the help of a young Muslim woman who supports the extremist regime. The subplot involves Logan’s brother in law and adds an extra twist to the book. This is an excellent, on the edge of your seat story, the pace and action never let up. I was compelled to read this at almost one sitting. The book is crammed with technical details which only someone who was totally familiar with weaponry, aircraft and espionage techniques first hand could produce. This lends the book authenticity and takes it out of the realm of the usual run of the mill spy story. The author has created a believable character in Logan Alexander. While accomplishing his mission, he remains down to earth and human. There is no extraneous detail, just enough to inform the reader without slowing the story which gallops from beginning to end. I loved the realism, the possibility that the events could take place and all the loose ends were tied up and followed through.       https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07P222SRH

If you would like to see the books I write, hop over to my web page and read all about them. I’m multi-genre so there is something for everyone.

https://lucindaeclarkeauthor.com

Three more books next week.

 

 

 

 

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Christmas Book Fair – #ParanormalYA Roberta Eaton Cheadle, #Thriller Lucinda E. Clarke, #History Jack Eason, #YA Darlene Foster

via Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Christmas Book Fair – #ParanormalYA Roberta Eaton Cheadle, #Thriller Lucinda E. Clarke, #History Jack Eason, #YA Darlene Foster

Amie: An African Adventure by Lucinda E Clarke

I don’t remember seeing this before Tanya – thank you so much 🙂

T. R. Robinson Publications

51-ano4yiflFrom the start readers will recognise this author has an excellent command of words. The way the scenes, emotions, tensions, etc. are conveyed draws the reader in enabling them to easily visualise the situations, disappointments, apprehensions and fears the protagonist, Amie, encounters and experiences. Occasionally it may appear the author is going to go into too much detail however, she never does. The information provided enables the reader to fully comprehend what is happening without every minute and unnecessary aspect or detail being drawn out. The reader is never left wondering. The words more than paint a picture.

It is sometimes possible to mistake this for a memoir, which it is not. For example, the disappointment felt on a family visit is heartfelt and realistically imparted. The author is evidently an acute observer of people and life. It is also clear she has drawn upon her own experiences.

It would…

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Lucinda E Clarke

A great idea to feature books that travel the world and help build bridges through greater understanding. Thank you Rebecca 🙂

Bendideia Publishing

Bendideia Publishing welcomes Lucinda E Clarke today, and she’ll talk a bit about her award-winning Amie in Africa series.

  • Amie African Adventure
  • Amie and the Child of Africa
  • Amie Stolen Future
  • Amie Cut for Life
  • Amie Savage Safari

Link to Amie video  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MhMEGM9apRM

Who Is Amie

About the Books

Location: The stories are all set in the mythical country of Togodo, a cross between Kenya, Tanzania, Botswana and South Africa. I also include a visit to Zimbabwe and to Durban where I lived for many years.

Genre: Adventure / thriller

Audience: Suitable for teens onwards, very little swearing or sex. I’d be happy for my grandchildren to read them.

Time period: set in the 1990s through to modern day.

LUCINDA IN VIENNA

Interview

Tell us a little about Amie African Adventure.

After I wrote my personal autobiography where all the facts were in place, I stepped out of my comfort zone and wondered…

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Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – New Book on the Shelves – A Year in the Life of Leah Brand: A #Psychological Thriller by Lucinda E. Clarke

A huge thank you to Sally for her tireless work helping other authors. She is the best

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Congratulations to Lucinda E.Clarke on the release of her latest book A Year in the Life of Leah Brand: A Psychological Thriller and for the terrific reviews it is already receiving.

About the book

Leah’s nightmare began the day the dog died.

A few years earlier a fatal car crash took the lives of Leah’s beloved husband and their two babies, leaving her disabled. Life looked bleak. She was approaching forty, unemployed, broke and desperate.

Then she met Mason. He was charming, charismatic, persuasive, and a successful businessman, well respected in the community. His teenage daughter did nothing to welcome Leah into the family, but life is never perfect.

Then, two years into her second marriage, Leah Brand’s world is turned upside down; inanimate objects in the house move, her clothes are left out for the rubbish collection, pieces of furniture change places, there are unexplained noises and hauntings.

As…

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Layman’s guide to understanding scientific research

Love these – the real truth!

bluebird of bitterness

“It has long been known…” I didn’t look up the original reference

“A definite trend is evident…” These data are practically meaningless

“While it has not been possible to provide definitive answers to the questions…” An unsuccessful experiment, but I still hope to get it published

“Three of the samples were chosen for a detailed study…” The other results didn’t make any sense

“Typical results are shown…” This is the prettiest graph

“In my experience…” Once

“In case after case…” Twice

“In a series of cases…” Three times

“It is believed…” I think

“It is generally believed…” A couple of other people think so too

“According to statistical analysis…” Rumor has it

“A statistically-oriented projection of the significance of these findings…” Wild guess

“A careful analysis of available data…” Several pages of notes were obliterated when I knocked over my coffee mug

“It is clear that additional work will be required…

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Book Launch for Silent PayBack ~ Can you help?

Let’s support our other writers – this is sure to be a great read.

anita dawes and jaye marie

I never thought this day would come, but here it is!

Sink or swim, Silent PayBack is now out there, waiting for me (and lots of other people, God willing!) to promote our socks off!

SPayBack.jpegA city on edge… a detective on shaky ground…

A serial killer roams the streets of Brighton, hunting for the next victim.
When the case lands on detective David Mallory’s desk, will his battle against his secret demon prevent him from bringing this vicious monster to justice?
As the body count rises, Mallory finds himself sinking under the weight of his heavy secret – one that could jeopardise his job and his reputation.
With the pressure building, can the troubled detective reconcile his issues and solve the case before more women die?

Now on Pre-sale!

Pre order banner.pngAt long last, Silent PayBack is finished and now on Amazon for Pre-sale until 22nd October at the reduced price…

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