2018 LUCINDA’S BEST BOOKS PART 1

For the third year I would like to share with you the books that I have enjoyed the most in 2018.

This is the first time I joined the Goodreads challenge and optimistically filled in 100 books. I will manage that, just, and I have reviewed all but two of them. And note, this is besides some beta reading and proof editing for author friends. Yes, I love reading.

These are not the only good books I’ve read this year, but those that have stayed with me long after I’ve put them down. These are the stories that either touched my heart, entertained me, taught me things I didn’t know or caused me to weep, sit and question.

I wish I could include more but I have managed to get the list down to 16. The first 5 this week in no particular order:-

tears of innocence

TEARS OF INNOCENCE  by T R Robinson

A HEART BREAKING STORY

The introduction tells us this is a true story and it is one of the saddest I have ever read. Don’t let that put you off buying it as it demonstrates the amazing resilience of one woman who, from one trauma after another from the age of 5 managed to survive against the odds. The author lived through World War II and the horrors of that time. Every time she thinks she has found safety and shelter, life throws her another curved ball. A brilliant tribute to a brave and courageous women you cannot help but admire more than any other writer whose biography I have read. Every woman should read this book and gain strength from it. I immediately bought the second book in the trilogy. This book deserves to be up there in the bestsellers once I started reading it I was unable to put it down.  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01DUSKEYU 

eVERY NOTHERS FEAR

EVERY MOTHER’S FEAR by  Joanna Warington

GREAT STORY

Having a relative who gave birth to a child after taking Thalidomide, I was drawn to this story. It recounts the lives of two women affected in quite different ways to the effects of this insufficiently tested drug. I had already decided in my mind what path the story was going to follow, but I was so wrong. It’s a well written book, fast paced and you cared about the characters Rona and Sandra – they are excellently portrayed. I admit to being a fan of this author and will buy and read anything she writes. Highly recommended, especially if you remember living during the 1960’s, there were so many references to life at that time it brought back memories.  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B078JX8559

origin

ORIGIN by Dan Brown 5 stars

GREAT!

Now I know that his writing has been panned by the literati, who pronounced Dan Brown couldn’t string two sentences together, but he writes great stories – stories that make you think and stretch your brain. And remember his books were picked up for Hollywood films something most of us only dream about. I enjoyed this book the 5th in the Robert Langdon series. The research must have taken days, I learned a lot and used my kindle dictionary many times. Well written, the story was fascinating although there were no real surprises at the end.  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01LXCD7FU

 

PONTIFEX MAXIMUS

PONTIFEX MAXIMUS   by Damien North

THOROUGHLY GOOD READ

I raced through this book, it was an easy read as the words flowed beautifully and I kept going page after page. It’s not often I finish a book and then go to look for the next one to buy, but this is the second time this week it’s happened to me. Be warned, this ends on a cliff hanger and if I’d known this I would have waited until books 2 and 3 were available before starting this one. An author after my own heart who isn’t afraid to kill off his main characters just as you get to love them. I also appreciated the in-depth knowledge of the higher workings of the Catholic Church. Good book, would recommend. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01M9DOBVX

THE PENCIL CASE

The Pencil Case by Lorriane Cobcroft

Much has been written about the indignities meted out to the Aborigines by the Australian authorities, but this is the first book I’m aware of that relates the injustices to white children. This a harrowing read, but I could not stop turning the pages. The book is so well written, I felt I was there with Paul and Jenny, suffering with them, feeling angry at how they were treated and routing for a happy conclusion. The writer takes you into the mind of Paul as he struggles to adjust, contain his anger and frustration as he attempts to cope with the demons who rule his life and his behaviour. The Pencil Case by Lorriane Cobcroft is one of those books which will remain with you long after you have read the last page. A sad story, beautifully told and I wish I could award it ten stars.  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00C4B9QLW

Next week the next 5 on my list.

Until then, take care

Lucinda

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MEET T R ROBINSON

I have made many friends through social media but there are two people who stand out as not only talented writers but as unselfish champions of other writers.  One is Sally Cronin and the other is Tanya Robinson.  I’ve read all of Tanya’s books (so I thought) and they take your breath away. Her experiences have been beyond incredible. I would strongly urge you to check them out.

TANYA AVATAR

My sincerest thanks to Lucinda for having taken the time to read and review my memoir series and for this kind feature.

I was born into a very loving family where, for my first few, sadly very few, years I enjoyed the privilege and security of wonderful parents and sisters. However, those idyllic years were to be short-lived and prior to the age of five I was thrown into a very cruel, violent world for which I was not in the least prepared. It all started with my beloved mother’s untimely death. It is not my intention to reiterate information that may be found in the memoir series but to simply try and explain how life has worked out for me and how I have reached the stage of life where I now find myself. Just a quick aside, some may question the fact I can clearly recall events from my earliest years and I mean earliest; from even before I could walk. This is because I have been blessed, though some may consider me cursed, with an amazingly accurate and detailed memory. It has even surprised me at times.

TANYA BOOK 1

Subsequent to my mother’s death I was not at all well. The family doctor as well as the family became concerned about my mental health and consequently, sent me away. That was when my troubles really started. Briefly, in an attempt to escape the inappropriate behaviour of a relative I ended up in the hands of the German Gestapo. World War II was in full swing and my homeland had been occupied. They discovered I was the daughter of a senior resistance leader and, upon the pretense of wanting to know where my father was, tortured me. This was despite me telling them I knew nothing: Father, in an attempt to protect the family, had never told us anything and it was true I knew nothing. However, though I was just a young girl they would not listen. I will not say more here. Subsequent to this, though they had left me for dead, I was eventually reunited with one of my sisters. Again I faced inappropriate behaviour and in an attempt to free myself ended up in a cruel and brutal marriage. The only highlight being the birth of my first son though, due to the violence, I subsequently lost many more children.

TANYA BOOK 2

I eventually escaped that marriage only to face further misuse and trauma from a variety of sources. Many, including my son (with exasperation), have often commented upon how naive and innocent I can be. It is true, despite all that has been done to me and all that has occurred in my life, I want to believe and trust people. I just cannot seem to change nor, if truth be told, do I wish to. I do not want to become a bitter or resentful person though the constant injustice and meanness of society do upset me. 

There, that is a little background to where I come from and who I am. All the cruel events left me feeling ashamed, contaminated and generally unclean. (As I have discovered since, many women who have faced similar domestic violence as I, felt they were responsible though, of course, they were not.) Naturally, I must acknowledge this impacted upon my confidence and made me wary of any human interaction. Nevertheless, I am a determined soul and would not permit myself to be put down or overcome by it all, especially as I had responsibility for my son’s welfare. However, I am a private person and for many years ensured no one ever knew my story. I always limited and curtailed personal discussions. As far as I was concerned the events of my life would cease and die with me. So, considering all this, why have I published the memoir series? Over the years many have confided in me their own life tales and I came to appreciate my experiences and that of many of my ancestors were anything but normal. Should I tell the tale? No! It was too shameful. Too embarrassing.

TANYA BOOK 3

It took many years but eventually, I realized it would be wrong for our stories to be lost. Society really could benefit from knowing the truth; if for no other reason than to hopefully provide help and inspiration for those who have faced, or are facing, similar circumstances. I have been circumspect with content and have intentionally omitted some of the more awful, graphic experiences: I have suffered enough in my own life and have no wish to cause others upset or stress by relating all the horrors. What I have shared I consider sufficient to hopefully help others overcome their own situations. If nothing else, I would like people to know it is possible to escape from even the most constrained existence. Also that it is possible to go on and have a reasonably successful life. I have to admit I am truly surprised I survived and have made to this day. If it can happen to me it can happen to anyone!

TANYA BOOK 4

The above may imply my life was always full of brutality, cruelty, and meanness and in truth, much of it has been. Nevertheless, and though indeed I have experienced more than most, there have been lighter, even some fun, moments which I also share in the books.

 I sincerely hope many of you will never have to face what I did and, for those of you who have or are, you will find some solace and help in what I share.

When I researched Tanya’s author page on Amazon, I discovered she had written two more books I wasn’t even aware of. So those are going on my TBR list right now.

Tanya describes herself as an independent author of memoir and biographical fiction, but she is so much more than that. A very courageous and brave woman whose life story simply takes your breath away. I recommend you look up her books on her website.

https://trrobinsonpublications.com  

This is the link to the first book in her memoir series.

And, if you are a writer, Tanya’s blog is full of lots of helpful hints and information, I also recommend that. She writes in such a way that even a techie dummie like me can understand.

Thank you for being my guest this week, Tanya you are just such an amazing person.

Till next time, take care

Lucinda