A Tidal Wave of Murder #FridayFunReads #BookReviews #Inspiration

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Tidalwave: A Tracy Gayle Mystery

by Trish Hubschman

 

What Smashwords Says

 

Tidalwave’s tour bus bursts into flames while the band is relaxing on the beach. The band’s leader, Danny Tide, hires private detective Tracy Gayle to do some discreet investigation into the matter. She’s joining the band on tour as security chief. The arsonist is discovered, but much deeper, more dangerous things come to light as well: an assault, an attempted murder, and then two murders. Tracy is faced with far more than she bargained for. Her stint with the band goes further than just that summer tour. She is fully determined to protect America’s favorite rock and roll heartthrob, and they become the best of friends along the way.

 

Buy from Smashwords.

 

My Thoughts

 

I met Trish Hubschman several years ago when she joined Behind Our Eyes, an organization of writers with disabilities to which I belong. Her favorite rock band is Styx, and her passion for this type of music comes out in Tracy Gayle’s determination to protect Danny Tide. Trish’s realistic dialogue and surprising plot twists kept me engaged.

This is a good book to read while preparing for a colonoscopy or anticipating anything else unpleasant. From the first page, Trish transported me into the world of the rock band, Tidalwave. Having wanted to be a famous singer in my younger years, I found this story fascinating. However, I realized that my anal adventures were more preferable to being a famous rock star in danger and wondering who in the world would want me dead.

 

New! Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me

Copyright 2021 by Abbie Johnson Taylor.

Independently published with the help of DLD Books.

Front cover image contains: elderly woman in red sweater sitting next to a window.

Sixteen-year-old Natalie’s grandmother, suffering from dementia and confined to a wheelchair, lives in a nursing home and rarely recognizes Natalie. But one Halloween night, she tells her a shocking secret that only she and Natalie’s mother know. Natalie is the product of a one-night stand between her mother, who is a college English teacher, and another professor.

After some research, Natalie learns that people with dementia often have vivid memories of past events. Still not wanting to believe what her grandmother has told her, she finds her biological father online. The resemblance between them is undeniable. Not knowing what else to do, she shows his photo and website to her parents.

Natalie realizes she has some growing up to do. Scared and confused, she reaches out to her biological father, and they start corresponding.

Her younger sister, Sarah, senses their parents’ marital difficulties. At Thanksgiving, when she has an opportunity to see Santa Claus, she asks him to bring them together again. Can the jolly old elf grant her request?

***

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A Thought-Provoking Novel About Life #FridayFunReads #BookReviews #Inspiration

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The Midnight Library: A Novel

by Matt Haig

 

What Amazon Says

 

The New York Times bestselling WORLDWIDE phenomenon

Winner of the Goodreads Choice Award for Fiction | A Good Morning America Book Club Pick | Independent (London) Ten Best Books of the Year

“A feel-good book guaranteed to lift your spirits.”—The Washington Post

The dazzling reader-favorite about the choices that go into a life well lived, from the acclaimed author of How To Stop Time and The Comfort Book.

Somewhere out beyond the edge of the universe there is a library that contains an infinite number of books, each one the story of another reality. One tells the story of your life as it is, along with another book for the other life you could have lived if you had made a different choice at any point in your life. While we all wonder how our lives might have been, what if you had the chance to go to the library and see for yourself? Would any of these other lives truly be better?

In The Midnight Library, Matt Haig’s enchanting blockbuster novel, Nora Seed finds herself faced with this decision. Faced with the possibility of changing her life for a new one, following a different career, undoing old breakups, realizing her dreams of becoming a glaciologist; she must search within herself as she travels through the Midnight Library to decide what is truly fulfilling in life, and what makes it worth living in the first place.

 

Buy the book on Amazon.

 

My Thoughts

 

I was drawn to this book, being an author and reader. I like how Matt Haig reveals the majority of Nora’s back story through the lives she experiences when visiting the library. With believable characters and engaging plot lines, this book was hard to put down.

It reminded me of the movie, Ground Hog Day, in which Bill Murray stars as a reporter who lives the same day over and over again until he gets it right and stays in that reality. This isn’t exactly the case with The Midnight Library, but the ending is still satisfactory. Even if you’re not a philosopher, this book will make you think.

 

New! Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me

Copyright 2021 by Abbie Johnson Taylor.

Independently published with the help of DLD Books.

Front cover image contains: elderly woman in red sweater sitting next to a window.

Sixteen-year-old Natalie’s grandmother, suffering from dementia and confined to a wheelchair, lives in a nursing home and rarely recognizes Natalie. But one Halloween night, she tells her a shocking secret that only she and Natalie’s mother know. Natalie is the product of a one-night stand between her mother, who is a college English teacher, and another professor.

After some research, Natalie learns that people with dementia often have vivid memories of past events. Still not wanting to believe what her grandmother has told her, she finds her biological father online. The resemblance between them is undeniable. Not knowing what else to do, she shows his photo and website to her parents.

Natalie realizes she has some growing up to do. Scared and confused, she reaches out to her biological father, and they start corresponding.

Her younger sister, Sarah, senses their parents’ marital difficulties. At Thanksgiving, when she has an opportunity to see Santa Claus, she asks him to bring them together again. Can the jolly old elf grant her request?

***

Books

My Amazon Author Page

Facebook

Website

 

 

Poems Explore Slices of Life #FridayFunReads #Poetry #Inspiration

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Born from Stardust and Other Poems

by Victoria Zigler

Copyright 2021

 

What Smashwords Says

 

A selection of poems of various lengths and styles, exploring a variety of themes and subjects.

 

Buy from Smashwords.

 

My Thoughts

 

I met Victoria Zigler recently through ACB Community Calls, sponsored by the American Council of the Blind, offering a variety of activities held on Zoom. Tori, as she likes to be called, is not only a poet but a singer. She participates in the open mic and karaoke programs and co-hosts a weekly activity called Free to Be Me, in which participants discuss a variety of topics. If you’re blind or visually impaired and are interested in participating in these activities, you can email:  community@acb.org  and request a schedule of events.

I like how Tori groups some of the poems in this collection by subjects such as the beach, storms, and the pandemic. My favorite is “To Be Beside the Sea” because it reminds me of happy times when visiting my brother and his family in Florida and going to the beach. “When Mummy Missed Story Time” tugged at my heart, making me thankful I was not a small child during this pandemic. I also like how she begins her collection with the title poem, “Born from Stardust,” and ends with “In the Mountain Valley.” Even if you don’t like poetry, you’ll delight in the stories these poems tell.

 

New! Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me

Copyright 2021 by Abbie Johnson Taylor.

Independently published with the help of DLD Books.

Front cover image contains: elderly woman in red sweater sitting next to a window.

Sixteen-year-old Natalie’s grandmother, suffering from dementia and confined to a wheelchair, lives in a nursing home and rarely recognizes Natalie. But one Halloween night, she tells her a shocking secret that only she and Natalie’s mother know. Natalie is the product of a one-night stand between her mother, who is a college English teacher, and another professor.

After some research, Natalie learns that people with dementia often have vivid memories of past events. Still not wanting to believe what her grandmother has told her, she finds her biological father online. The resemblance between them is undeniable. Not knowing what else to do, she shows his photo and website to her parents.

Natalie realizes she has some growing up to do. Scared and confused, she reaches out to her biological father, and they start corresponding.

Her younger sister, Sarah, senses their parents’ marital difficulties. At Thanksgiving, when she has an opportunity to see Santa Claus, she asks him to bring them together again. Can the jolly old elf grant her request?

***

Books

My Amazon Author Page

Facebook

Website

 

 

Comedienne Shares Life Through Laughter #FridayFunReads #BookReviews #Inspiration

Image contains: Abbie, smiling.

I was saddened to learn recently of Betty White’s passing. Several years ago, I read and reviewed her memoir, If You Ask Me, here. Below is my revised review of this book. Rest in peace, Betty White.

 

If You Ask Me

by Betty White

Copyright 2011

 

What Audible Says

 

It-girl Betty White delivers a hilarious, slyly profound take on love, life, celebrity, and everything in between.

Drawing from a lifetime of lessons learned, seven-time Emmy winner Betty White’s wit and wisdom take center stage as she tackles topics like friendship, romantic love, aging, television, fans, love for animals, and the brave new world of celebrity. If You Ask Me mixes her thoughtful observations with humorous stories from a seven- decade career in Hollywood. Longtime fans and new fans alike will relish Betty’s candid take on everything from her rumored crush on Robert Redford (true) to her beauty regimen (“I have no idea what color my hair is and I never intend to find out”) to the Facebook campaign that helped persuade her to host Saturday Night Live despite her having declined the hosting job three times already.

Featuring all-new material, with a focus on the past 15 years of her life, If You Ask Me is funny, sweet, and to the point – just like Betty White.

 

My Thoughts

 

Betty White’s book is pretty good, especially if you get a recording of her reading it. I got some good laughs from this Audible book. I also couldn’t help laughing when I saw her on television as the scatter-brained Rose on The Golden Girls. She was also on The Mary Tyler Moore Show, but I was a little young when that was running. My mother watched that as religiously as I watched The Golden Girls.

In If You Ask Me, Betty combines her ideas on such topics as friendship, technology, and aging with anecdotes from her childhood, career, and work with animals. She talks about developing a friendship with a guerilla, meeting two whales, and adopting a dog rejected by Guide Dogs for the Blind. I can relate when she says how frustrating it is not to recognize a face, especially when the face belongs to a celebrity she meets at a party and thinks she should know. Being visually impaired, I have the same problem but don’t run into any celebrities at parties. Anyway, I recommend this book to anyone needing some good laughs.

 

New! Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me

Copyright 2021 by Abbie Johnson Taylor.

Independently published with the help of DLD Books.

Front cover image contains: elderly woman in red sweater sitting next to a window.

Sixteen-year-old Natalie’s grandmother, suffering from dementia and confined to a wheelchair, lives in a nursing home and rarely recognizes Natalie. But one Halloween night, she tells her a shocking secret that only she and Natalie’s mother know. Natalie is the product of a one-night stand between her mother, who is a college English teacher, and another professor.

After some research, Natalie learns that people with dementia often have vivid memories of past events. Still not wanting to believe what her grandmother has told her, she finds her biological father online. The resemblance between them is undeniable. Not knowing what else to do, she shows his photo and website to her parents.

Natalie realizes she has some growing up to do. Scared and confused, she reaches out to her biological father, and they start corresponding.

Her younger sister, Sarah, senses their parents’ marital difficulties. At Thanksgiving, when she has an opportunity to see Santa Claus, she asks him to bring them together again. Can the jolly old elf grant her request?

***

Books

My Amazon Author Page

Facebook

Website

 

 

A Humorous Christmas Story #FridayFunReads #BookReviews #Inspiration

Image contains: Abbie, smiling.

Note: I read this book and reviewed it here last year, but I hope you’ll agree it’s worth a second look.

 

Wishin’ and Hopin, A Novel

by Wally Lamb

Copyright 2010

 

What Amazon Says

 

Wally Lamb, the beloved #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Hour I First Believed, I Know This Much Is True, and She’s Come Undone, delivers a holiday treat with Wishin’ and Hopin’—an unforgettable novella that captures the warmth and joy of the holiday season. Poignant and hilarious, in a vein similar to Jean Shepherd’s A Christmas Story and David Sedaris’s The Santaland Diaries, Lamb’s Christmas tale focuses on a feisty parochial school fifth grader named Felix Funicello—a distant cousin of the iconic Annette!

 

My Thoughts

 

This book definitely reminds me of Gene Shepherd’s A Christmas story, which is one of my favorite movies. An eccentric French teacher, a zany Russian classmate, and a disastrous Christmas pageant create a delightful tale that made me laugh and laugh and laugh. From the beginning to the end, I found this book hard to put down. If you were a fan of The Mouseketeers way back when, and you like Gene Shepherd’s story, you’ll love Wishin’ and Hopin’.

***

I’m pleased to announce that this coming Monday, I’ll be interviewed on local radio station KROE about my new book and other topics. The program, called Public Pulse, will start at 9:10 a.m. mountain time. You can click here to listen. When you get to that page, you’ll need to scroll down to find the Play button.

 

New! Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me

Copyright 2021 by Abbie Johnson Taylor.

Independently published with the help of DLD Books.

Front cover image contains: elderly woman in red sweater sitting next to a window.

Sixteen-year-old Natalie’s grandmother, suffering from dementia and confined to a wheelchair, lives in a nursing home and rarely recognizes Natalie. But one Halloween night, she tells her a shocking secret that only she and Natalie’s mother know. Natalie is the product of a one-night stand between her mother, who is a college English teacher, and another professor.

After some research, Natalie learns that people with dementia often have vivid memories of past events. Still not wanting to believe what her grandmother has told her, she finds her biological father online. The resemblance between them is undeniable. Not knowing what else to do, she shows his photo and website to her parents.

Natalie realizes she has some growing up to do. Scared and confused, she reaches out to her biological father, and they start corresponding.

Her younger sister, Sarah, senses their parents’ marital difficulties. At Thanksgiving, when she has an opportunity to see Santa Claus, she asks him to bring them together again. Can the jolly old elf grant her request?

***

Books

My Amazon Author Page

Facebook

Website