Well, okay maybe not “ridiculous”, but definitely showcasing the difference between a really good writer and one whose work, in my (seldom) humble opinion, doesn’t quite make the grade. The first one of my 30 reads and reviews for 2017 is an incredible yarn written by one Helen B. Henderson. I’ve read a number of her books, most of them Dragon stories which, while equally wonderful, don’t qualify for this blog because they weren’t 2017 reads. I’ll undoubtedly review them at another time, but here’s the one I’ve most recently read, though not the one she’s most recently written. I often find myself playing catch-up with writers whose books I’ve discovered and gotten started on their back-lists.
So, here is my review, Number one of the 30 I’ve promised for 2017–
By Helen B. Henderson
This beautifully crafted novel is filled with fascinating characters, both two- and four-legged, both magical and worldly.A strong, independent and talented woman must choose which realm holds her future. A man of many different abilities is forced to bury his love for her in order to protect her from evil.
The scruffy dock-hand Captain Ellspeth of Sea Falcon hires to help unload her vessel’s cargo, turns out to be Lord Dal, a mage, soon to be her passenger. When he must use his magic to save the ship, he nearly dies. In her desire to save the handsome and intriguing magician, Ellspeth soon finds her own, untapped and hitherto unsuspected powers struggling to surface. Try as she might to suppress them, they are alive and a great threat to the captaincy she’s spent much of her life striving to attain, for as everyone in her world knows, ships, the sea, and magic are a bad mix. Will she have to give up one to retain the other?
Windmaster is undoubtedly one of the best books I have ever read. It kept me reading long past my bedtime, despite my iPhone’s attempt to tell me what to do. Trust me, if you’re an avid reader, never sign up for that iPhone “bedtime” feature app. The developers may mean well, and have my best interests at heart, but since I was about eleven years old, I’ve chosen my own shut-eye-time, if not my wake-up time. Next, if I dare, I plan to delve into WINDMASTER LEGACY, the sequel to WINDMASTER.
And now, review Number 2, for 2017
SOMEONE ELSE’S DAUGHTER ***
By Linsay Lanier
As I said above, the following novel is not exactly ridiculous, and it may be grossly unfair of me to compare the work to one of a writer so much more adept with a plot whose talent far exceeds what Ms. Lanier managed to convey. In truth, I did enjoy SOMEONE ELSE’S DAUGHTER, a mystery with a romantic theme, though the problems it presented with regards to the writing quality dropped it from a possible 4 stars down to three.
Miranda Steele is bold, brash and independent, as well as tough, and maybe a little too roughly spoken, but she wasn’t always that way. When her brutal, sterile husband took her newborn daughter (born as the result of a rape) and put her up for adoption, then threw Miranda out with nothing, not even shoes, she made two life-changing decisions: She would not be bullied, beaten, or taken advantage of ever again–and she would find her daughter. She learned self-defense and has practiced it well in the new life she concocted for herself. Her search for her child has already taken over a decade when she ends up finding the body of a murdered child. While afraid the dead girl might be hers, she can only cling to the hope it’s someone else’s daughter. She teams up with the area’s wealthy, powerful, and handsome Private Investigator to find not only the murderer, but her own child. Her affair with the man can, she is certain, go nowhere, but that’s all right with her. She has yet to complete her self-imposed task and is determined to finish it, not allowing the desires of her body to sway her from the path she has chosen. Ms. Lanier does provide a sneaky twist at the end that made the read well worth-while. It just took a long time to get there.