Tag Archive: female-authors



The Morning Star: A gripping, emotional and heart-warming story about a mother and child.The Morning Star: A gripping, emotional and heart-warming story about a mother and child. by Gita V. Reddy
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Gita V. Reddy is getting better and better at telling a good story, at developing characters full of human emotions. This was probably my favorite of all her books.

In this book, Gita’s main character, Sudha, must take care of a baby while fighting her own demons. Not her baby. And during the pandemic’s early days.

There are so many layers of psychological, cultural, and personal issues brought to the reader. These keep them wondering at the woman’s sanity. Or is this crazy deep, protective love vital for this case?

I love the people that Sudha meets along the way and the friends that become family.

Please send prayers to Gita and her family and all of India as the pandemic continues to ravage that country. I so look forward to the day when the world can go back to health.

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The Boy Who Was Left BehindThe Boy Who Was Left Behind by Gita V. Reddy
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Can you remember things that happened in childhood that impacted you? Did you interpret what was said or done around you? I can remember my aunt was trying to get me to eat. I was always a picky eater. Still am. So she pointed down the street of my grandmother’s house toward the dairy, “If you don’t eat, you’ll dry up and fly away, and the cows will eat you!” I ate.

I remember interpreting from a bedtime tale that castles were dragons. The nightmare that night caused me to scream out that there was a castle under my bed. Children can misunderstand words and deeds. The Boy Who Was Left Behind presents that theme. Here’s the blurb on the GoodReads and Amazon pages:

“Vimal lives with his grandmother. His parents, who are NRIs – non-resident Indians – leave him with his grandmother when he is two. Vimal grows up in Jaipur, happy and secure in the loving care of his grandmother. His parents are a blurred memory made up from short visits. When Vimal is eight, a phone call in the night turns his world topsy-turvy. His grandmother leaves him with relatives and goes to London.

Once again, Vimal is left behind – this time with a secret that is too big for a young boy.”

This book would be a great read-aloud for parents/teachers/counselors, and children. It could instigate conversations of help and healing.

Rarely do I share another review. Not because mine is so good, but rather I don’t want to overwhelm myself or others. If I put it out there, the readers would find others to read for themselves if it struck interest. But Grady’s Review on Amazon and GoodReads is super and tells what I feel about the author.

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Rise of Heroes (Artifact Hunters, #3)Rise of Heroes by S.M. Reine
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was a fun, fast read! If you have lived in Ms. Reine’s universe since the beginning, Seasons of the Moon, so much is familiar while Shatter Cage is only two books back. So revisiting while going deeper into the squirrel/man was so much fun!

I love when my favorite characters, dead or alive, or deity, make me happy. Dana McIntyre was one of my favorites. And she is mentioned a few times.

The adventure is fantastic. I think I read this in two nights. Thank you for another engrossing read.

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The Last Tea Bowl ThiefThe Last Tea Bowl Thief by Jonelle Patrick
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’m sorry it took me so long to review this. I read it while deeply into NaNoWriMo, so taking the time from my own writing seemed impossible. But finally, here I am!

I love Jonelle Patrick’s writing. I always find myself drawn in by her characters and the virtual travel to Japan. I am not much into mysteries because most involve murder and finding who did the murdering. This mystery goes histories deep, and it is to find what happened to the tea bowls and the artist who made them. My way of describing this story sounds rather boring. The author makes this an adventure in two parts of Japan’s history. All the characters seem real and in the now with the reader. Best of all, in this book, there is no murder, even though in war times. Meanwhile, we learn a little about modern Japan while being taught about people’s rituals and beliefs from three different generations of Japan.

I was sad to leave the book in the end. As always, I want to know more. Don’t worry. You feel secure by the ending. Our main character, who has had to research the feudal and WWII Japans, grabs your heart as she tries to keep family and soul together.

Great job with something quite different in this genre Ms. Patrick!

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So Bright the Stars (Shadow of Mars Book 2)So Bright the Stars by Cidney Swanson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Yay! Another well-done sci-fi/Mars book! I would have loved to read this as a teen but love just as much as a septuagenarian. This is the second book in this series. The main character is now on Mars and is trying to fit in with the society that is already there.

Cidney Swanson has researched well to keep the story believable. Without making the story drab. She digs deep into her characters to bring them to life. As I am reading/listening to text-to-speech I find Ms. Swanson has me questioning ‘would I have done that? thought that?’ and the answers are sometimes obvious to the reader but not so much the main character, Penney. Other times the reader is in as much dark as Penney is.

I can’t wait for book three! Meanwhile, I hope you all get a chance to read the first series of Mars, Saving Mars which is more for the young adult, and then this series for adults as the character is an adult. But I see nothing that should keep a younger person from reading anything by Cidney. Enjoy!

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The ForetellingThe Foretelling by Alice Hoffman
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was a fun mythological story to read before bed. I always love an Alice Hoffman tale. I wonder if this could be made into a movie like Practical Magic? A tribe of women living their truth in their own time. And HORSES. Yep! All the fun things a fem could want to read about.

I may have to read this again sometime when escape isn’t my only intent. Or even if it is. I could jump into this world again. Maybe take it slower and absorb it more.

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Spirit WarriorSpirit Warrior by Ella J. Smyth
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Of the three books in this series so far, this is my favorite. I’m beginning to warm up to the characters and the story. With all there is going on in the world a nice fantasy can help give you a breather. So rather than making this review longer, I say, try the series. You might like it! By the way, I found these on Kindle Unlimited. Not a bad deal, huh?

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So Dark the Sky (Shadow of Mars Book 1)So Dark the Sky by Cidney Swanson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

WOW! Where were books like this 60 years ago when I was forced to read about adult male astronauts goggling over the Barbie Doll robots or aliens? I love Cidney Swanson’s writing and story-telling are excellent. And what a relief to read about an adult female who is accomplished in her own right, who loves and cares for her grandmother, and who needs to choose between her life long dream and continuing taking care of the woman who raised her.

It isn’t a spoiler to know she gets to travel in space. ‘Shadow of Mars’ is the series title and ‘So Dark The Sky’ book one. YAY!

As I always have to mention on a Swanson review, I loved her Saving Mars series for young adults. This new series is more adult but I know I would have loved it in seventh grade. How wonderful it must be for young women now to be able to enjoy science fiction and see people who are like themselves. A woman astronaut is a possibility now.

I want to write so much here because I loved this book so much. But I don’t want to take away from the readers’ experiences. I know I will read this again soon as I can’t think of a better way to get ready for book 2!

Enjoy, PLEASE!
Thank you, Cidney for writing a book for girl me! And I’d love more from Grandma’s point of view since I’m closer to her age.

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This is my second reading of the first book of this box-set Find my first review here.

This reading, I was surprised at how current this dystopian story feels. It was only a year ago that I read the first book. Yet now, this seems so scarily close. The author died in 2009, so it was before all of this. How prescient!

As I mentioned in the previous review, I didn’t know what happened after the end of the first book. The second fills in the holes of what happened with the daughter.

At the same time, I wasn’t happy with how the story goes back and forth in person and times, beginning with that second book. I think it is more noticeable when you listen to your books on text-to-speech. I think my eyes might have noticed subtle changes. But that was such a little thing that it didn’t lower my rating.

I cried at the end of the book. I felt I wanted more. I wanted to be with Lauren and everyone in the story longer. The author was excellent in how she created a religion and gave us the ways it grew. How she drew the reader in to know the main character so profoundly was amazing. Now I want to read all her books! I am a fan!!!!


The Space Between (Outlander, #7.5)The Space Between by Diana Gabaldon
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

That was fun. But so far from as long as I wanted. I don’t like short stories. I love a chance to get to know characters deeply. And though we met a couple of these earlier I wanted a lot more to their story. Even the newish ones I wanted to know deeper than given here.

Remember the Comte de Saint-Germain and Maitre Raymond? They’re back. I could do without the Comte. Maybe he is redeemable. But Raymond has some surprises.

Jamie’s nephew Michael, and his stepdaughter Joanie (Laoghaire’s daughter) appeared in this story also.

Either way, I would love to see a lot more of their life stories.

The most important concept, to me, was the possibility of time-travel into the future. Please bring this into a Gabaldon-size novel.

I want MORE!

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