Tag Archive: domestic-violence


Review:


The Carolina Diaries: Belle

by Darlene Winters

The Carolina Diaries: BelleThe Carolina Diaries: Belle by Darlene Winters
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I don’t know. This was hard to read. It is hard to review. It feels autobiographical. Though it–

I don’t do this often as I figure people will go read the blurbs themselves. But this and the reviews make me wonder if I read the same book.

“Her cousin wants to die. She has the whole roadtrip to convince her otherwise.

Darlene only knows of one way to help her cousin Belle after a life of disappointments–go with her on a cross-country road trip, head back to California where Belle was born… and where she intends to die.

But deep family resentments and drama rides with them across the country, shedding light on heavy themes like sexual abuse and depression, as well as religion and politics. Growing up in North Carolina, these cousins have a lot of stories to share: some sad, some comical, and some just down right disturbing.

If you enjoyed Little Miss Sunshine and Girl, Interrupted, you’ll want to read The Carolina Diaries with its unique blend of dark humor and even darker perspectives of life past, present and future; the real take-aways being how to cope and heal.”

I found no humor. I wish I hadn’t picked it up. It was exactly what I don’t want to read before bed. All the reality of our daily news lives during this pandemic. And though I agree with the author on a lot of stances, I couldn’t deal with it in my bedtime fiction.

My fault. I saw road trip, my first name, and didn’t read the description.

Maybe if I read it during the day I could see the humor in a suicidal cutter who had lived with so much abuse, of every kind, during a pandemic during the political turmoil of 2020. No. I don’t think so.

The reason I am not giving this a lower rating is the list of good books and ideas the author presents. Unfortunately, the way it’s presented makes me sure the ones who need the information will not see it. Still, there’s a chance I could be wrong.

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The Bluest EyeThe Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I wish I would have read this any other year but 2020. In a year I am reading to escape pain, depression and just trying to breathe through the smoke, this book took me deeper and sadder and more disturbed. I am sorry anyone has to deal with the many problems the main characters in this book had to go through. Though this was a historical fiction, much of the bigotry, and abuse goes on still.

Toni Morrison did the narration of her own book and kept the story alive. Her writing is known for the poetic prose. I did appreciate that, but I found it made the story even more disturbing. I do plan to read more of her books. But not right now.

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Priest of Skulls (Tarot Witches: The Raven Knights Saga #2)Priest of Skulls by S.M. Reine
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’m always excited to read another of Sara Reines ARCs. I must admit that I am happier reading about the old characters, like visiting with old friends. But I’m sure I am mostly alone in that. I think others prefer to have something new and exciting to read. Well, this one is for you.

That is not to say I didn’t enjoy this and the first book in this offshoot series. Ms. Reine was able to bring up some delicate and scary subjects in a fantasy setting and make some important points. If you get the chance to read this one please take the time to read the notes at the beginning of the book. There are warnings of what you will find inside. There are uncomfortable situations, even triggers if you will for folks that have had sex forced on them, rape. But it is worth the read for the empowerment given.

On an aside, there are, also, some very different forms of erotica that are — fun to read. Not what we’ve expected from SM Reine. But so different that, well, you know how the fae are! I can’t wait to read the next one!

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Still LifeStill Life by Isobel Hart
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

Though I finished this book about a week ago, I just haven’t been able to say something nice about it. And though I obtained this book through NetGalley for an honest review, I can’t give it a good one. But thanks anyway.

Give me a good mindless zombie story. Don’t give me a reason to read rape and abuse scenes and blame it on a virus. Please don’t read this if you have issues with either of those. If you can get past that you might feel intrigued to see what might happen in book two. Me? Not so much.

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The Mother's PromiseThe Mother’s Promise by Sally Hepworth

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Maybe if I don’t write a review, I can hang onto the charms and lessons of this book. No. That’s not right. Others need to read it and the only way to hang on to the knowledge in this book is to read it again.

I finished this book four days ago. That’s how long I had the above conversation with myself.

There is a nice blurb about this book on GoodReads. And the one on NetGalley had me seeking it out. I’m glad they let me read it. But here’s my blurb: A young teen with severe social anxiety only child of a single mother dying of cancer, a social worker who is a victim of abuse, a nurse who is finished with IVF unsuccessfully.

Sally Hepworth pulls these four females into a book that is hard to put down and hard to leave behind. And not only is it a great story, it is full of real life answers to some of the problems these fems deal with.

I want to thank NetGalley for letting me read this, again. I do plan on a second read. Please read it, especially if you have social anxiety, there are some good ideas in here and the author shows she knows how we feel who have it. There are triggers for cancer patients and abuse victims but they are handled well and give each of the other characters more depth.

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Bone Dry: An Action-Packed Medical Technothriller (The Gina Mazzio Series Book 1)Bone Dry: An Action-Packed Medical Technothriller by Bette Golden Lamb
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

My mother wanted me to be a nurse. I think she also wanted me to be a famous pianist. All I can claim is bad back and short fingers. From the time I was a teen, I could see I couldn’t be on my feet for very long. How I managed to cosmetologist for a year and a half, I don’t know. But mom had some things right. I love knowing how to read music because I love singing. And I do like the life in the hospital. I was a candy striper for a little while, and I saw that I like taking care of the patients. I like the drama of the hospital, and I love the miracle of science that is ever present in the hospital. Hence my addiction with things like Gray’s Anatomy and other medical shows. I even like the gruesome ER live dramas. If so when I saw this book on the freebies I thought I’d probably enjoy it. And I was right.

Warning: maybe not the best read for someone who’s dealt with cancer. I’d hate to think that the things that happened in this book could easily happen. But I suppose it’s possible.

This was an action-packed technothriller. Not so much a mystery. You know from the first page who is the problem. You just hope that the main character can figure it out and live through it. And yes, the main character is a nurse. I did like the character development in this book. And just a bit of a warning: this book may make you forget that there are other things to do in your house besides read.

Though I was able to pick this book up for free it is now $2.99 as are the other books in the series. As soon as I can afford it. I think I may try to read the rest of the series. I think it’s worth it.

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