Book Review: The Dunnes of Brittas: An Irish Family’s Saga of Endurance by Kevin Lee Akers

Author: Kevin Lee Akers
Release Date: 17th March 2021
Genre: Historical Fiction, Family Saga
Series:
Format: E-book 
Pages: 
Publisher: Bassett Street Press
Blurb:
The illustrious and ancient Dunne family has ruled over land in the heart of Ireland since time immemorial.

In the manor house known as Brittas, resides the family of clan chieftain, General Edward Dunne. His estate agent and cousin Peter raises his brood in the servant’s wing. These two related yet very separate branches struggle to secure their futures during the country’s darkest, most formidable years.

As Ireland is crumbling, the West is rising in Golden sunshine.

In 1848, San Francisco lures James Dunne and eventually his brother and sisters to literally create a new city out of sand dunes and gold dust.

The Dunnes of Brittas follows three generations of family who share in each other’s triumphs and tragedies finally discovering that their strength doesn’t derive from their separate branches but their common roots.

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The Dunnes of Brittas: An Irish Family’s Saga of Endurance by Kevin Lee Akers is an emotional journey about three generations of a family who are trying to navigate difficult situations through life and finding solace in each other’s company.

I liked reading this book because it had so many layers of complexity embedded throughout the story and mainly because the author has done a fine job with the overall characterisation. The story is good and the writing complimented it well.

Overall it made for a very engaging read and I would definitely recommend it to everyone who enjoys reading historical fiction and family sagas with complex plot and characters.

You can also read this review on:

Goodreads

Book Review: The Sweeny Sisters by Lian Dolan

Author: Lian Dolan 
Release Date: 28th April 2020
Genre: Contemporary Fiction, Family & Relationships
Series:
Format: E-book 
Pages: 304
Publisher: William Morrow 
Blurb:
Angels…
Death Stalkers…
ReaAn accomplished storyteller returns with her biggest, boldest, most entertaining novel yet—a hilarious, heartfelt story about books, love, sisterhood, and the surprises we discover in our DNA that combines the wit of Jonathan Tropper with the heart of Susan Wiggs.
Maggie, Eliza, and Tricia Sweeney grew up as a happy threesome in the idyllic seaside town of Southport, Connecticut. But their mother’s death from cancer fifteen years ago tarnished their golden-hued memories, and the sisters drifted apart.

Their one touchstone is their father, Bill Sweeney, an internationally famous literary lion and college professor universally adored by critics, publishers, and book lovers. When Bill dies unexpectedly one cool June night, his shell-shocked daughters return to their childhood home. They aren’t quite sure what the future holds without their larger-than-life father, but they do know how to throw an Irish wake to honor a man of his stature.
But as guests pay their respects and reminisce, one stranger, emboldened by whiskey, has crashed the party. It turns out that she too is a Sweeney sister. 
When Washington, DC based journalist Serena Tucker had her DNA tested on a whim a few weeks earlier, she learned she had a 50% genetic match with a childhood neighbor—Maggie Sweeney of Southport, Connecticut. It seems Serena’s chilly WASP mother, Birdie, had a history with Bill Sweeney—one that has remained totally secret until now.
Once the shock wears off, questions abound. What does this mean for William’s literary legacy? Where is the unfinished memoir he’s stashed away, and what will it reveal? And how will a fourth Sweeney sister—a blond among redheads—fit into their story?
By turns revealing, insightful, and uproarious, The Sweeney Sisters is equal parts cautionary tale and celebration—a festive and heartfelt look at what truly makes a family.

Book Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The Sweeny Sisters by Lian Dolan is a spectacular contemporary read which has a lot to offer to its readers. It is funny, heart-warming, emotional at times and conveys the strength of a bond of sisters in such a beautiful way that it is hard not to like this book.

Although this book was fiction, it did a pretty good job of convincing me otherwise. The characters felt so real and full of life and the story was so fresh and good that I wanted to believe it all to be true. And that is the best way an author can indulge a reader! The book was well-written and I loved the cover image of the book. The concept was good and the story-line very engaging.

I loved every bit of it and would recommend it to all contemporary fiction reads and anyone who likes reading about family and relationships in general.

You can also read this review on Goodreads and NetGalley

Audiobook Review: The Optimist by Roy E. Schreiber

Author: Roy Schreiber
Narrator: Gary Alexander, Sharyon Culberson, Joe Dempsey, Linda Gilllum, Dillon Kelleher, Patrick Zielinski

Release Date: 16th August 2019
Genre: Satire, Shortie, Play, Radio Show
Series: 
Format: Audiobook (Dramatic Reading)
Length: 1 hour
Publisher: Author’s Republic
Blurb:

This satirical view of college professors features a philosophy professor who believes logic will solve all problems from bringing justice to everyone to personal relationships. His problems include convincing his colleagues to unionize and dealing with a history professor who believes he is the 21st-century version of Henry VIII and an English Lit professor who believes she can become Ann Boleyn.

REVIEW

★★★

The Optimist by Roy E. Schreiber is basically a recording of a play released as an audiobook as I learned from the author himself during one of our emails. I was really excited to listen to it as I have never before listened to anything like this before, though being a fan of audiobooks, I simply couldn’t have passed on this opportunity anyway.

The audiobook is narrated by a number of narrators, which was obvious, but what really took me by surprise was how amazing it all came together. I’ve read a number of dramatic readings, and this one, right from the start itself felt like a very engaging read. I loved listening to this book almost as I loved listening to Narnia audiobooks!

Coming to the story itself, I felt that the plot was a bit complex for such a short narrative. Had it been longer, I think, it wouldn’t have been an issue as many aspects would fit nicely, but at it was a little over an hour, in my honest opinion, it felt a little crammed together. I did like the story, though I cannot say, unfortunately, that I loved it. Though it was pretty evident that the story and the book itself had a lot of potentials, I guess it just lacked in a couple of places in terms of clarity and plotting. Though, given the length of the book, I think it was worth reading.

I’d recommend this book to anyone who likes satirical works and doesn’t mind experimental stories.

You can also read this review on Goodreads

Book Review: Kaitlin’s Mooring by Carey V. Azzara

Author: Carey V. Azzara
Release Date: 3rd July 2018
Genre: Contemporary Fiction, Family Drama, Romance
Series:  
Edition: E-book
Pages: 208
Publisher: Glass Spider Publishing
Blurb:
Nothing is more horrific than losing a child, nothing more joyous than the birth of one. When grief intertwines with joy, it throws the Deveau family into turmoil.

Pregnant twenty-year-old Kaitlin Deveau leaves Boston University in a hurry when Henry, her grandfather, calls from Maine with devastating news. Bereft of hope, Kaitlin’s son, Christopher, becomes a life preserver, keeping the family buoyant. Henry, now Chris’s only male role model, teaches him lessons he uses throughout life. In the end, Chris and his adopted sister, Susan, must save their parents from the fate that took his grandparents–but the outcome is uncertain.

Review

★★★★

Kaitlin’s Mooring by Carey V. Azzara is a beautiful story about relationships and family.

This book was surprisingly good and I savoured reading every minute of it. The overall story was a feast and the writing was pretty good and the characters strong and believable. The character’s inner conflicts seemed real and they complemented the carefully woven tale very well. The beginning was slow but built up steadily and the ending proved to be apt.

Except for a few minor pacing issues, I enjoyed the book thoroughly. I’d recommend it to all contemporary fiction readers and to those readers who want to explore new authors and books.

this review is also posted on Goodreads and Amazon

Book Review: The Man You Scripted by Calvin Honors

 

32032973Author: Calvin Honors
Release Date: 4th September 2016
Series: –
Genre: Dystopian, Psychological Drama
Edition: E-book
Pages: 129
Publisher: Self-Published

Rating: ★★★★

Blurb:

2115 London
The city is overrun by organ traders in truck size hearses trawling the streets in the aftermath of the Hemo plague. Writer James Nolte meets Laila an X1 cyborg sent to scan humans for signs of Hemo.
Modern Day New York City
Internal Affairs agent John Azolo connects the dots from an unfinished manuscript to unravel a mystery surrounding his friend’s suicide. Detective Laila Carter, whom John audits, might just hold the key to both stories.

Review

The Man You Scripted by Calvin Honors is a Psychological Dystopian Drama based on a remarkably unique futuristic concept.

The fast paced book offers a lot for the genre lovers. It explores a unique writing style of combining two parallel, seemingly unrelated stories and then bringing them together to a great climax. The characterization was god and all the characters were relatable.

The writing style had a nice flow and made this book an easy and quick read.

I enjoyed reading this book and would recommend it to al the Dystopian and Speculative fiction buffs. This is one book you wouldn’t want to miss.


Goodreads and Amazon