Tag: #bookreview

Book Review: The Sun Will Always Shine by John R. McKay

Not long ago I featured author John R McKay on my Northern Reads series. I was so fascinated with his WWI novel, The Sun Will Always Shine, that I had to read it.

Oh, friends, I’m glad that I did. I was introduced to McKay’s work with his WWII novella, V for Victory, so I was hoping for great things, and he delivered.

What I love about McKay’s writing is his ability put you into the shoes of the characters, and he did it straight away. His characters are nuanced and I felt I was in the middle of the dysfunctional Davenport family with man about town but abusive father Alfie, his cowering wife, sympathetic but abused daughter, and two sons, Charlie and Harry, that have a love/hate relationship with their father.

It’s a tale that sucker-punches you from the beginning until the heartbreaking end. Brothers Charlie and Harry have different ways of coping with life and conflict, and their actions after their father mysteriously disappears, including their reasons to join up in the Great War are prime example.

Every character in The Sun Will Always Shine is so well-developed that just like in life, while we think we have someone figured out, we truly never know them.

McKay’s evocation of the time and place beautiful and his local knowledge of his native Lancashire is on full display. While I’m not a huge fan of battle scenes, it’s clear that the author’s research is impeccable. What drives this story, however, are brothers Charlie and Harry. Their experiences during the war set against the lives they are trying to leave behind will keep you reading.

I was so hooked into this novel that I read it easily in a day or two. Well recommended. Five stars.

The Sun Will Always Shine by John R. McKay

To purchase on Amazon, click here: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01IVBN25E/ref=dp-kindle-redirect?_encoding=UTF8&btkr=1

Book Review: Death on the Danube: A New Year’s Murder in Budapest by Jennifer S. Alderson

Today’s blog review features the first cozy mystery debut on the blog and it comes from award-winning author Jennifer S. Alderson.

Death on the Danube: A New Years Murder in Budapest (Travel can be Murder Cozy Mystery Series Book One) by Jennifer S. Alderson (Traveling Life Press, Nov 2019)

Disclosure: Please note that the links below are affiliate links and at no additional cost to you, I’ll earn a commission. When you purchase books using my Amazon affiliate link, they compensate me, which helps make this blog possible. Know that I only recommend books that I personally stand behind, or feel could enrich others’ lives.

Rating: Five Stars

This is the first book I’ve read of award-winning author Jennifer S. Alderson, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Her characters shine as former investigative journalist turned tour guide puts sleuthing to the test as she has to unravel a case of murder amidst a group of seemingly wealthy guests through the cultural beauty of Budapest.

I immediately fell in love with tour group owner Dotty and her friend Sally, as well as the Fabulous Five: a group of five widows who travel together regularly. Characters Carl, Helen, and Tom were all shifty as I worked to unravel their facades.

I normally can guess the murderer in most stories, but Aldersan had me guessing till almost the very end, a true testament to her craft.

If you like your murder served with a side of culture and brandy, pick up Death on the Danube.

To purchase: