Tuesday Book Review: “Characters on the Green”

Book reviews are a great way for self-publishing authors to gain exposure. After all, how can someone buy your book if he or she doesn’t know it exists? Paired with other elements of your book promotion strategy, requesting reviews is a great way to get people talking about what you’ve written.
When we read good reviews, we definitely like to share them. It gives the author a few (permanent) moments of fame and allows us to let the community know about a great book. Here’s this week’s book review:

characters on the green j peter hoyer

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Characters on the Green

by J. Peter Hoyer

ISBN: 9781478756316

Synopsis*:

Witty, sarcastic, and humorously captivating. Real episodes with real golfers, and real funny. We called him “Mr. D,” not his correct name, but one that he liked. Mr. D was rich enough to own all the pineapple fields on Oahu, but he’d rather sneak out and steal a few pineapples instead. “Hank” turns out to be a virulent “Hank-Enstein” in the chapter of the same name. You will discover that the three “Patrick’s” have something more in common than their given names. “Doc,” not an actual doctor, and Nick, who may have been the inspiration behind the cable TV series, The Sopranos, are more of the personalities who are the focus of these chapters. There are numerous books devoted to professional athletes. For the game of golf in particular, readers can find publications about Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Tiger Woods, and many other pros. But what about the millions of amateurs who play the game? They are seriously overlooked-until now. “Great Chapters. Enjoyable and relatable for anyone who has spent any time around the game. Pete makes the many characters of the game we can all identify with come alive.” -Andy Weissinger, PGA, 2009 PGA Patriot Award Winner. “Pete’s lifelong love for the game has given experiences that any golf lover would enjoy. Read this and you will see why golf is more than a game. It has Character.” -Nick Zanca, Director of Golf, Kiskiack Golf Club.

 * courtesy of Amazon.com

Featured Review

“Characters on the Green” by J. Peter Hoyer is a humorous look at the people encountered by the author during his decades-long love affair with the game of golf. Hoyer indeed met some real characters – both his regular partners and random people added to his foursome by course starters, on golf courses across the country. These include good golfers and bad. More importantly, it includes many people who wouldn’t be considered normal in settings anywhere other than a golf course.

Hoyer is a shrewd observer of people, and able to pick out and describe those quirks and idiosyncrasies which create humorous stories. And, the stories are not by any means limited to golfers. Some of his better stories are of characters he met during his career in the Army and his tenure coaching young golfers.

The author’s sense of humor is not the rip-roaring, slap happy variety. It is much more dry wit and sarcasm. As an example, when given a cigar of the type once smoked by John F. Kennedy, Hoyer wrote:

“Now there were three things that JFK and I had in common: cigar brand, chronically sore, stiff lower back, and experience running an important organization. Mine was a hundred twenty-person Army Transportation Company. Kennedy’s position was a slightly larger organization of around three hundred million people.”

Perhaps the best section of “Characters on the Green” is that describing golf technology and overall golf tips. These are found in golf magazines, golf TV channels, and random tips from other golfers. Every one of them is “guaranteed” to add ten yards to each shot, or improve score by 10%, or provide some other dramatic improvement. Hoyer quipped that if a golfer had enough money to invest in all of the available technology, each with such a guaranty, the golfer would surely improve his score well enough to join the professional golf tour. The flip side of this is equally true, since every bad round of golf can easily be blamed on poor equipment. A golf partner of Hoyer once blamed a poor round of golf on his socks – the socks were simply too heavy!

“Characters on the Green” by J. Peter Hoyer is an easy-to-read journey through the author’s encounters with some interesting people – most of who were met by him on a golf course, but all of them skillfully described with wit and humor.

– reviewed by David K. McDonnell for Reader Views

Other Reviews

This is a fast read for anyone interested in learning about golf etiquette. It deals with the situations that I often wondered about, as a golfer of 28 years. For example, how do you deal with players when pairing up by the ‘starter?’ The author’s “no chit-chat” policy allows one to announce upfront that we are to enjoy this round, and that means we are not to be distracted by small talk. The vivid descriptions of various golf courses and first-hand knowledge of military standard operating procedures were meaningful and amusing to me, having gone “chairborne” for my two-year stint.

The author presented considerations to those who golf with bosses or clients. Playing with superiors has potential consequences when the boss expects without exception playing partners to keep to the weekly routine…short of an unexpected departure from this world! For those who see the golfing experience as an outdoor adventure, this book gives thought to appreciate some of the unexpected background sounds; or people’s peculiar habits; and the need to keep a singular thought at the ‘address,’

I recommend this book as a good mental tune-up for beginners and seasoned golfers alike.

 – reviewed on Amazon by Joe Mancuso

I just finished reading Pete Hoyer’s book, “Characters on the Green” and passed it on to another golfing buddy. I found the book to be very entertaining. I really enjoyed the chapter on golf gimmicks (so true). But my favorite chapter was about Pete’s experiences coaching a high school golf team. Having coached and tutored junior high and high school kids, I could definitely relate to this hilarious chapter.

– reviewed on Amazon by wizardbob2

Author Website

http://www.charactersonthegreen.com/


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Tuesday Book Review: “She’s My Dad”

Book reviews are a great way for self-publishing authors to gain exposure. After all, how can someone buy your book if he or she doesn’t know it exists? Paired with other elements of your book promotion strategy, requesting reviews is a great way to get people talking about what you’ve written.
When we read good reviews, we definitely like to share them. It gives the author a few (permanent) moments of fame and allows us to let the community know about a great book. Here’s this week’s book review:

she's my dad by iolanthe woulff

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She’s My Dad

by Iolanthe Woulff

ISBN: 9781432744052

Synopsis*:

“Don’t hate, Nicholas. Hate destroys everything. Don’t let it destroy you…”

For decades, ultra-liberal Windfield College has been a thorn in the side of Northern Virginia’s hidebound elite. When a teaching position unexpectedly becomes available, the school hires a former male graduate – now a transsexual woman named Nickie Farrell – as an assistant professor of English. Hoping to find peace, Nickie keeps her secret under wraps until ambitious lesbian student reporter Cinda Vanderhart outs her. And Cinda has noticed something else: both Nickie and a young townie waiter named Collie Skinner have a genetic quirk which causes their eyes to be different colors. Convinced that the similarity is no coincidence, Cinda begins an investigation to discover the connection between them.

Meanwhile, in a death-bed confession as she succumbs to years of brutality at the hands of her disgraced cop husband, Collie’s mother Luanne reveals that his birth resulted from an illicit affair she had with a long-vanished Windfield college senior named Nick Farrington. Shattered by his mother’s death, Collie turns for comfort to Robin Thompson, a gentle-hearted Christian co-worker at the upper-crust Foxton Arms restaurant. As Nickie is stalked by a pair of homicidal sociopaths, Robin finds herself entangled not only in Cinda’s investigative machinations but also a murderous plot by former U.S Ambassador and tycoon Eamon Douglass to eradicate the hated college with a suicide detonation of a Cesium 137 dirty bomb. Lives and secrets hang in the balance until everything comes to a head on the morning of Windfield’s annual spring picnic: April Fools Day.

Filled with richly-drawn characters and building to a stunning climax, SHE’S MY DAD is a story about the destructiveness of hate, the power of love, and the redemptive triumph of good over evil.

Like her title character Nickie Farrell, Iolanthe Woulff is a transsexual woman. A fifty-nine-year-old Princeton-educated English major, she lives in Palm Springs, CA, where for several years she wrote a column in a local magazine about the challenges of gender transition. As the eldest child of author Herman Wouk, storytelling has always been dear to Ms. Woulff’s heart. Her hope is that besides providing a suspenseful read, SHE’S MY DAD will help to dispel some of the widespread misconceptions about transsexual people.

 * courtesy of Amazon.com

Featured Review

Author Iolanthe Woulff has once again written about issues that impact all of us. She hits every point head on without sugar-coating anything. In this book, “She’s My Dad,” the author addresses hate, specifically blind prejudice and how each of us handles it.

In a small town in Virginia, a wealthy man disowns his son because of his sexuality, but this one surviving son is his sole heir. The son chooses to use his inheritance to build a university where all individuals are accepted without judgment or prejudice, however many of the local people are not happy with the ideals of the university.

In 1979, Nicholas Farrington had an affair with a married woman, and unbeknownst to him, they have a son Nicholas “Collie” Skinner. No one has heard from Farrington since he suddenly disappeared.

Now 25 years later a new engaging and dynamic professor Nickie Farrel, has been hired at a local liberal college. Nickie is hiding a huge secret–she is a transsexual woman. There are individuals threatening to expose Nickie’s secret and cause trouble for the school. Cinda Vanderhalt, an aggressive journalism student, will do anything to get that “big” story that will make her famous.  Eamon Douglas, a former Ambassador, is determined to get rid of that “fag” loving college and all the gay students and faculty.

The author provides powerful insight into the destructiveness of hate, the love of an abused mother, and learning that we all have basic needs and desires. We fear what we don’t understand. Many will not take the time to become more knowledgeable about these fears, but prefer to keep hatred and prejudices inside until they lose control and do harm to others.

Woulff’s characters provide amazing insight into the turmoil that we as individuals and society experience when others do not fit into our “accepted” roles. She provides very controversial topics, and subplots that will have readers re-thinking their stance on their values and beliefs.

Readers will come away from this read with new knowledge and hopefully more understanding and a better person. I highly recommend “She’s My Dad” by Iolanthe Woulff to everyone; you will remember this book long after you finish reading.

– reviewed by Carol Hoyer for Reader Views

Other Reviews

I picked this book up to read on a recent trip. I was intrigued by chapter 3 and had trouble putting it down by chapter 7. The story line is multi-dimensional and complex in its presentation. This book did a really great job of helping me to understand some of the complex social issues facing our nation and world today, and I am a better human being for having read it. My heart is more open to people of different social upbringing and sexual orientation after the author’s magnificent presentation of a side of an issue to which I had no previous exposure.

Most of us don’t spend much time thinking what it would be like to have been born the opposite gender, or born with the feeling of being assigned one physical gender with the inner feeling of belonging to the opposite gender. Today’s society has little room for the small minority of people with gender identity issues. Because they are in the minority does not make them insignificant and unimportant.

What the author accomplishes by telling her story allows her to demonstrate the universal truths that bind us together as a human race – despite our differences in beliefs, ethics, politics, etc. we all have the same basic needs and desires, and our differences pale in comparison to our similarities despite how things may seem at first glance. We fear what we do not understand. I now understand things I did not prior to reading this book. I will probably be forever changed, in a good way, for having read and understood this book and the point of view it portrays.

 – reviewed on Amazon by Sidney D. Lehr

I just finished “She’s My Dad” and I thought it was excellent. It got me very wrapped up in the characters early on and kept me that way right through the whole book. Well, as it was, not through the WHOLE book! Seems I didn’t really know what “Epilogue” meant and ended the book before I read that part. Being so wrapped up as I was and anxious to see how things ended, bad over evil I hoped, where I ended caused me so much anger that I threw the book on the floor! God, it couldn’t end this way!! It just couldn’t! It was 11pm, I turned off the light and rolled over trying to sleep. The next day I read the Epilogue! It’s probably not recommended that one read She’s My Dad that way but looking back it set me up for a wonderful high! I loved it all through the book and highly recommend it. Definitely not too long for the story that was told.

– reviewed on Amazon by InfoSeeker

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Tuesday Book Review: “Help! I Have a Brain Injury”

Book reviews are a great way for self-publishing authors to gain exposure. After all, how can someone buy your book if he or she doesn’t know it exists? Paired with other elements of your book promotion strategy, requesting reviews is a great way to get people talking about what you’ve written.
When we read good reviews, we definitely like to share them. It gives the author a few (permanent) moments of fame and allows us to let the community know about a great book. Here’s this week’s book review:

Help! I Have a Brain Injury: And It Feels Like I've Dropped Out of the Sky" by Kay Pratt

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Help! I Have a Brain Injury: And It Feels Like I’ve Dropped Out of the Sky

by Kay Pratt

ISBN: 9781478718079

Synopsis*:

WHAT do you know about brain injury? How does it happen? How does it affect one’s life? What does it feel like? How long does it take to recover from a Traumatic Brain Injury? Will a survivor ever be the same again?

WHAT are your beliefs about the future of someone who’s sustained a Traumatic Brain Injury? The answers to these questions are as broad and unique as the individual’s who have sustained brain injuries. “In my own experience as a TBI survivor, I have come to understand that the degree to which we recover can be measured not only by our physical reality, but, by our personal and caregiver’s belief systems; after all, if, we are cognitively and physically able, what we believe, shapes our every outcome!” Kay Pratt.

In this Book, TBI survivors share the answers to these questions and more through the voice of their experience. It is with sincere hope that by doing so, your understanding and beliefs about brain-injured individuals will be broadened and your perspectives enlightened.

 * courtesy of Amazon.com

Featured Review

“Help! I Have a Brain Injury: And It Feels Like I’ve Dropped Out of the Sky” by Kay Pratt is one of the most amazing, informative and well written books I have read on this topic. Having had multiple mini-strokes in August of this year, I wish I had this book in hand afterwards.

The author shares her experience in her ten year recovery from her brain injury as well as the stories of others. Little did I realize all the anger, depression and loss I would feel when I lost the ability to write, walk and do small, everyday tasks. I am sure many going through this feel the same way.

Pratt and others talk about the pain, fear, anger and depression and the long road of physical, occupational, and sometimes emotional therapy to learn to walk and talk once again. What impressed me was in each story or discussion, Pratt includes a section on Important Takeaways – how one deals with the loss, anger and changes in our lives. Believe me, recovery will not happen overnight, and you will come to rely on many professionals, as well as family and friends to help in this process.

As a Psychologist, I found the information in this book to be very helpful, full of supportive tips and resources. It is very well researched, and provides information I hadn’t even considered. The examples Pratt provides on the impact of domestic violence and brain injury caught me off guard. Her statistics, lack of treatment and diagnosis was shocking, although it shouldn’t be. The undiagnosed impact of brain injury may be a reason why some women choose not to leave an abusive relationship; brain injury makes it difficult to get a job and be self-supportive. She also relates that according to some sources pushing a diagnosis may have unintended consequences such as being used against the women in custody battles.

What many people do not realize is that children who are abused may suffer from mild to severe TBIs (traumatic brain injuries). It is imperative to assess children for dizziness, change in personality, and change in behavior, and determine if they should be returned to a violent home. That means that caregivers, family or friends need to be observant and say something.

Part 5 of Pratt’s book, entitled Brain 101! includes vital information about what TBIs are, statistics, parts of the brain impacted and what that means. She goes on to discuss coping with challenges, length of time for recovery and provides numerous resources.

Since I am still early in my recovery, I showed this book to my Occupational Therapist, and she now has it in her hands to share with others. “Help! I Have a Brain Injury: And It Feels Like I’ve Dropped Out of the Sky” by Kay Pratt is a must read for all professionals, family members, friends and those who have diagnosed TBI, or not.

– reviewed by Carol Hoyer for Reader Views

Another Review

If you or a loved one has experienced a brain injury you most likely feel as if you are suddenly hurtling down a never ending road of pain, confusion, hard questions and a roller coaster ride of emotions, as you try and decipher the clinical terminology from well-meaning experts, as well as face the reality of what is. Given how brain injuries impact one’s life and those around them, it is hard not to be overwhelmed with fear and doubts at the long road ahead, let alone the day to day journey.

HELP! I Have a Brain Injury And It Feels Like I’ve Dropped Out of the Sky! by Kay Pratt is the result of all that she has learned throughout her 10 year journey and recovery from the time of her own brain injury to the present day. This is her third book in her HELP series on dealing with brain injuries and it answers quite possibly any and every question you might have on the topic. The book is extensively researched and thorough in it’s discussion of all aspects of brain injuries, from the first steps to take following the occurrence and diagnosis, the physical and emotional health concerns following the injury, understanding brain trauma, the importance of advocating for one’s self and tips on coping with daily challenges as you move forward in your recovery journey. Yet you never feel like you are reading about a medical issue nor do you ever feel inundated with medical terms. Ms. Pratt breaks everything down into a conversation between ordinary people. The book is about you, whether you are the patient, a family member or friend. It is always about you and your own personal journey.

Ms Pratt recounts as well moments of her own journey, the obstacles she faced and how she dealt with them. Also included are the personal stories of other brain injury survivors. On page after page Ms. Pratt’s inner grace, strength of spirit, wisdom and compassion infuse the book and her words with hope and give one the courage to go on, even when confronting what seem unsurmountable odds. I cannot say enough about how invaluable this book is for anyone suddenly finding themselves facing the unexpected reality following a brain injury.

 – reviewed on Amazon by reluctantmuse

 


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Tuesday Book Review: “Highway Odyssey”

Book reviews are a great way for self-publishing authors to gain exposure. After all, how can someone buy your book if he or she doesn’t know it exists? Paired with other elements of your book promotion strategy, requesting reviews is a great way to get people talking about what you’ve written.
When we read good reviews, we definitely like to share them. It gives the author a few (permanent) moments of fame and allows us to let the community know about a great book. Here’s this week’s book review:

highway odyssey alexander flint

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Highway Odyssey

by Alexander Flint

ISBN: 9781432766696

Synopsis*:

Highway Odyssey began in the summer of 1978 with a man and his seven year old son. They drove from New York to Colorado in search of adventure. The man soon realized that he was searching, not for adventure, but for his identity. Having recently been separated from his wife of fifteen years and having five kids together, the man was emotionally overwhelmed by the change in his status.

What was originally planned to be a short visit with old friends turned into an understanding of his responsibility in his position as a single father.

Flint found matters of interest among the culturally diverse families he stayed with and many interesting characters along the way. These events led him to understand the struggle with the self doubts that originated with his rejection from his fifteen year marriage.

Backpacking to the high altitude snow fields of the Grand Teton Mountains in Wyoming, turned into an event that made his seven year old son a candidate for the Guiness Book of World Records. This occurred with the challenge of climbing over a closed pass, without any technical gear, on to Hurricane Pass.

Highway Odyssey covering a period that reaches well back into the nineteenth century and the lives of his ancestors, is based on thoughts drawn into his memory as he drove thousands of miles across highways. Such was his enjoyment, that Flint continued this marathon trek over twenty four consecutive summers. Sitting behind the wheel of his custom van in 1978, Flint begins the examination of his identity.

From rodeo riding, motorcycle touring, competing in hundred mile bicycle road races, pedaling on single track mountain trails with his fat tire bike to ghost towns and overnight horseback trips on the isolated Colorado Trail, Flint found his nirvana.

Through the close connection with his children, the deaths of friends and his parents, this man comes to realize the priorities in his life..

 * courtesy of Amazon.com

Featured Review

“Highway Odyssey” by Alexander Flint is the story of a man attempting to discover himself. The year was 1978 and he found himself a single father after his recent divorce. He started traveling with his seven year old son. Together they made adventures: back packing across the Grand Tetons in Wyoming. The trek was not without dangers; they did not posses practical gear but managed to conquer Hurricane Pass. Alex recounts who they visited. He shares old friends and new ones. The descriptions of the places and people bring them to life. I felt as if I were looking at them myself. He expresses the cultural difference between families and embraces it. To some degree this is a travel journal, yet it is so much more. This book offers great insight. “Highway Odyssey” is a fascinating read through two decades of a man’s life. The reader looks through a window at his marriage, is privy to his emotions and watches as the metamorphosis of his being takes place. He faced his self doubts and overcame them. By reaching back into the past of his ancestors, Flint found himself and became a responsible single parent. For twenty four years Flint continued to travel and seek adventures.

I love this book. Flint discovered what some never do…what is most important in life. I found this book easy to read and it held my attention. It is much more than this man’s travel journal; it is the search for identity. I envy his free spirit and ability to face the challenges of life and overcome them. I find this book inspiring.

– reviewed by Rita G. for Readers’ Favorite

More Reviews

Those of us in the family who know and love “cousin Alex” have always considered him a Renaissance man ; loving single dad of 5, Grandpa, Marine Corps officer, teacher , gymnastics coach, fitness enthusiast, runner, hiker ,adventurer, martial artist and writer. In Alex Flint’s new book “Highway Odyssey”, he takes you along on his own personal journey with him, a journey of body ,mind and spirit.And he tells it warts and all, not ever attempting to smooth over the rough edges, which has always been his style.The chapters of his yearly treks to the Rockies and Grand Tetons were beautiful. You feel as if you were standing next to him, taking in this indescribable beauty. And the stories of his travel companion, his 7 year old son were priceless. I also enjoyed the stories of his, and my, quirky, eclectic, talented and most of all, loving family. He indeed paints a lovely family portrait which brought back tender memories for me. Alex is brave enough to take the pain head-on also. His stories of heartbreak of divorce from his wife and a disruption of the status quo with the loves of his life, his children, were heart wrenching as was the retelling of the excruciating pain of watching the demise and passing of his beloved parents, my much loved aunt and uncle. Alex has always been a guy to not only take on challenges, but be the point man and make sure that all with him not only get thru but come out the better for it. Years ago , I was invited to make that grand journey to the Tetons and Rockies with him, and I foolishly declined thinking I had more important things to do . I regret my error of lack of foresight to this day! Thankfully, I have a second chance now with this book . I strongly recommend you jump on the back of Alex’s Harley or into his van “Darth Vader” and take this 260 page odyssey. You won’t regret it.

 – reviewed on Amazon by Stephen R. Zimmermann

It was wonderful to read this book and relive all the great memories of traveling with my father. I remember sitting around the campfire with the Canhams and hearing Stu proclaim “we’re making memories”. As a child I wasn’t sure what he meant, as an adult I know exactly what he was talking about. The precious times we spend with family and friends is what life is all about. As the author’s son, this book holds special meaning to me, but it’s a book everyone can enjoy. We could all relate and appreciate remembering meaningful people and experiences. It’s a great read.

– reviewed on Amazon by Alex and Shalini

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Tuesday Book Review: “The Paymaster”

Book reviews are a great way for self-publishing authors to gain exposure. After all, how can someone buy your book if he or she doesn’t know it exists? Paired with other elements of your book promotion strategy, requesting reviews is a great way to get people talking about what you’ve written.
When we read good reviews, we definitely like to share them. It gives the author a few (permanent) moments of fame and allows us to let the community know about a great book. Here’s this week’s book review:

the paymaster adeed dawisha

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1st Place Winner in the 2018 Reader’s Favorite Awards Mystery Category

The Paymaster

by Adeed Dawisha

ISBN: 9781478783152

Synopsis*:

George Haddad is a deeply conflicted man. A doyen of Washington’s high society, he is also a life-long member of a terrorist organization. George resolves his inner conflict when he discloses secret information to Tessa Barnard, a young television reporter, who soon finds herself treading a treacherous path of intrigue and deception involving murder, abductions, and brutal assaults. Someone is determined to silence her. Is it foreign terrorists, or does the danger emanate from somewhere much closer to home? Meanwhile, George Haddad himself becomes the object of the boundless cruelty of his organization’s star assassin, and he has to make a fateful decision that could cost him his life. He knows the odds are heavily stacked against him. A tightly written and intricately plotted novel, with many twists and unanticipated revelations, The Paymaster is hard to put down.

 * courtesy of Amazon.com

Featured Review

The Paymaster is an exciting exploration of terrorism and counterterrorism, a twenty-first-century thriller done right.

Adeed Dawisha’s fast-paced novel The Paymaster unites a former nationalist and an ambitious journalist to take aim at one of the modern world’s biggest problems—terrorism.

George Haddad is a veteran of a nationalist terror organization, a former idealist who spent his young life sipping black tea in bombed-out warehouses in the Middle East. Now, with a mansion and a family in Virginia, Haddad has grown bored, tired, and despondent. He seeks to combat his ennui by aligning himself with Tessa Barnard, an aspiring investigative journalist who is stuck in West Virginia.

The initial purpose of their meeting is to expose Emilio Luciani, a man posing as an Italian but who is really a Hezbollah terrorist, Nizar Saleh. Haddad wants Barnard to unmask the man while he is in a secret meeting with the CIA, but one murder throws the entire scheme off of the rails.

The Paymaster is a quintessentially modern thriller set in some unexpected places. Besides the usual milieu of Washington, DC, the East Coast megalopolis, and the jet-set spots of Europe, the story also touches down in frozen Chicago, small-city West Virginia, and during the heady days of the 1979 Iranian revolution. It is an entertaining journey, the main thrust of which is that the worlds of terrorism and counterterrorism are far more entwined than most people think.

Although he is a scholar who specializes in the troublesome politics of the Middle East, Dawisha does not write like a pedantic professor. Indeed, The Paymaster moves at a quick clip, with concise, utilitarian language far outpacing fancy linguistic displays.

Characters are believable, though Barnard conforms to a certain stereotype. She is almost amoral, a careerist who seems mostly driven by a desire to get the heck out West Virginia. Although she certainly grows in maturity as the novel progresses, she is not as artfully drawn as the conflicted Haddad.

If Haddad is emblematic of real terrorists, or of terrorists who have lived long past their prime, then your average bomb maker or cell functionary is a lot more conflicted than news reports would suggest. Haddad and Barnard make for an exciting team, while the expert assassin hired by Haddad’s former comrades makes for a threatening adversary.

The Paymaster is an exciting exploration of terrorism and counterterrorism, with the daily monotony of both captured in between cinematic shootouts and cat-and-mouse games. This is a twenty-first-century thriller done right.

– reviewed by Benjamin Welton for Foreword Reviews

More Reviews

“The Paymaster” by Adeed Dawisha is an exciting and electric mystery/thriller that submerges readers deeply into the plot and leaves them guessing until the very end.

The story begins with George Haddad, a wealthy man of deep political influence in Washington DC, who is actually a member of the Revolutionary People’s Front, a Middle Eastern terrorist organization.  Attending a budget meeting of said organization, Haddad’s mind was not in the meeting as he was preoccupied with other matters: not being late to his daughter’s Christmas’s show, and making ‘the call” to Tessa Barnard. This call would finally put an end to his life of conflict by sharing the secret information he knows with the T.V. reporter. But instead of realizing peace of mind for himself, divulging the secret information puts Tessa in mortal danger and makes him a target within his organization.  Efforts to keep this information under wraps set the tone for this thrilling, intricate adventure.

Adeed Dawisha created a well written thriller with simple, engaging dialogue, and a fast-paced integrated plot that flows beautifully, keeping readers from putting it down. As much as I like to brag on how I always am able to figure out plots, I must admit, this one did have few surprises for me. Dawisha truly knows how to master pace and plot in a way which unravels unexpectedly. His characters are not just genuine, the way he built them with dialogue and description made them come alive in my mind. Dawisha also features impeccable writing skills within the action scenes as I could picture things happening vividly in my mind as clear as having it play on a screen in front of me.

I can’t recommend enough “The Paymaster” by Adeed Dawisha. It is an awesome five-star read. A thrilling and intriguing page turner that made me jump from my seat more than once. I will definitely look out for more work from this author!

 – reviewed by Michel Violante for Reader Views

This spicey thriller with multiple surprises includes characters drawn from the FBI, the CIA and television journalism, covering and uncovering international secrets and dirty deals with shady organizations from abroad. Murder, sex, betrayal, vengeance, redemption — even confirmation hearings — this fast-paced story has plenty of human interest. Lots of fun!

– reviewed on Amazon by Stephen Nimis


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Tuesday Book Review: “Greed Disease”

Book reviews are a great way for self-publishing authors to gain exposure. After all, how can someone buy your book if he or she doesn’t know it exists? Paired with other elements of your book promotion strategy, requesting reviews is a great way to get people talking about what you’ve written.
When we read good reviews, we definitely like to share them. It gives the author a few (permanent) moments of fame and allows us to let the community know about a great book. Here’s this week’s book review:

greed disease by ted folkert

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Greed Disease

by Ted Folkert

ISBN: 9781478790822

Synopsis*:

This book is about the impact of greed on our livelihood and on the sustainability of our planet. Greed exercised by the rich and powerful and the behemoth corporations provides challenging obstacles for the working class of our society – growing income and wealth inequality and exacerbating worker exploitation. Even worse, it endangers our planet, threatening the life-sustaining habitat that enabled life and which is essential in sustaining life. Without corrective action, the ultimate result does not look promising for our future. For most of us members of our society, as we go about acquiring the essentials for living a comfortable life, doing business is not a level playing field. Dealing with the normal deception and dishonesty in advertising and marketing, and navigating the cleverness of the rentier element of society can be treacherous experiences for the powerless working-class. Kind of like swimming with sharks. Lots of books have been written about the world of finance, the banking industry, and the enormous power and influence that has silently matriculated to those who occupy the control of money. After all, some say that “money is the root of all evil.” H. L. Mencken is attributed to having said: “If they say it isn’t about money, it’s about money.” Someone said: “money talks and baloney walks.” When bank robber Willie Sutton was asked why he robs banks, he replied: “because that’s where the money is.” Willie isn’t around to rob banks any longer, but there are lots of others ready, willing, and able – not with a gun, perhaps, but in more clever ways. This book is about money and the power and influence that accompany money, the quest for power and influence that drives the quest for money, and the changing mindset of humans as evolution progressed from a quest for food, shelter, and safety to an incessant search for and capture of comfort and pleasure. It is about the impact of the growth in population from a few thousand people on the planet to several billion people on the planet and the progressing destruction of the planet for human habitation as deception and dishonesty have become commonplace and greed consumes us all.

 * courtesy of Amazon.com

Featured Review

“Greed Disease” by Ted Folkert is a business & economics book directed to all readers. The book begins with a definition of greed. In short it states that everyone has a level of greed that motivates us to work for our survival and our own goals. So a balanced amount of greed is actually ok, and maybe even necessary. It is an unbalanced level that can make ‘greed’ a disease.

During this introductory part of the book, the reader might feel the author is being a little repetitive, yet, I hope readers push through it, as I think this portion is the foundation of what comes next, and I believe that the reader will find it to be worth it. Following this introduction, the author presents readers with all current and real cases in our economy which reflects how the ‘greed disease’ was the catalyst to the victimization of the people by powerful business CEOs, banks, and politicians, to benefit themselves.  I found this portion of the book not only enlightening, but also entertaining as the author’s voice felt to me like a narration of different 20/20 cases. In the end of the book the author puts everything in perspective by taking the reader through the goals and missions of all the different US parties, and the implications this disease has on our world and way of life. As Folkert states in this book, “Our political mindset has been transformed into one of acceptance of deception…” I am a reader that agrees with him.

Ted Folkert has done an amazing job presenting readers with a short, to the point and plain language book that puts into perspective what we, the regular people, are letting happen in our economy, even though we are being victimized by it. The format he chose to deliver his message to readers is effective, entertaining, enlightening and impeccably written.  Readers not familiar with economic topics will feel a little more knowledgeable about past and current economic scenarios where unbalanced income and insatiable greed make themselves evident.

Overall, I found “Greed Disease” by Ted Folkert to be enlightening, entertaining, and thought provoking. Enough that it has motivated me to look more into what is going on currently in the news, and talk and voice my opinion and concerns to others. This fact alone illustrates vividly the five-star rating I give to “Greed Disease.” I definitely recommend!

– reviewed by Susan Violante for Readers’ Favorite

Another Opinion

GREED DISEASE, by Ted Folkert, is a compelling and comprehensive tour de force of the manifestations of greed, and impact it has on our global civilization. As we dwell on greed, it is revealed how it constantly undermines and conflicts with the common good, and the greater interest of society. It is an eternal and timeless struggle between mankind’s self-interest and base desires, driven by personal greed, at the expense of the common good. Greed dominates the world of banking, corporate management, finance, and politics, to name only the main players. Over time, it leads to a concentration of wealth and power in the hands of a smaller elite, at the expense of a decent life for the dwindling middle class. Yet, greed is nothing new, and not likely to disappear. However, the author explains that it has taken us to the very brink of a global crisis in climate change, water scarcity and depletion of resources that could literally challenge survival of humanity on earth. The author quotes Professor Jeffrey D. Sachs in his 2011 book—“The Price of Civilization” when he writes, “We exist in a bizarre combination of Stone Age emotions, medieval beliefs, and god-like technology.” He further quotes Professor Sachs, “Our challenges lie not so much in our productivity, technology, and natural resources but in our ability to cooperate on an honest basis. Will the super-rich finally own up to their responsibilities to the rest of society?” The author follows with a call to action and a detailed series of steps to offer hope for a national and global remedy. All of which is very pertinent to each of us, our children, and our grandchildren. Thus, this is a highly recommended book to read, and ponder, with careful consideration.

 – reviewed on Amazon by T.L. Needham


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Tuesday Book Review: “A Debt of Survival”

Book reviews are a great way for self-publishing authors to gain exposure. After all, how can someone buy your book if he or she doesn’t know it exists? Paired with other elements of your book promotion strategy, requesting reviews is a great way to get people talking about what you’ve written.
When we read good reviews, we definitely like to share them. It gives the author a few (permanent) moments of fame and allows us to let the community know about a great book. Here’s this week’s book review:

a debt of survival l f falconer

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2017 INDIES Finalist

A Debt of Survival

by L. F. Falconer

ISBN: 9781478787082

Synopsis*:

Shimji, a young Channel Island vixen, dreams to go where no Island fox has ever gone: to the place her ancestors came from thousands of years ago. By talking with a sea lion named Malibu and a seagull named Topanga, she finds the island’s harbor and stows away on a boat headed to the California coast. During her adventure on the main-land, Shimji befriends wild and domesticated animals. She learns from their different ways and thus gains knowledge of the world. Her curiosity satisfied, Shimji longs to return home, only to be discovered by humans. Scientists want to send her to a zoo. Can Shimji escape and find her way back to her island home?

 * courtesy of Amazon.com

Featured Review

It’s true that the most terrifying horrors a human being can feel are in the mind and A Debt of Survival by L.F. Falconer aptly justifies this. The reader is introduced to a very compelling character, Don Lattimore, a man who had his stint in the army and who retired to a quiet life in Diablo Springs, serving his community as a sheriff. He thinks his past has been buried and that he has moved on, but when he discovers evidence of evil activities in an abandoned house, he knows it is the beginning of a terrifying journey for him as he begins to live his worst nightmares. Possessed by a powerful evil that causes the death of people in his county, the sheriff has to pay the impossible price if he’ll save lives. The question is: Does he have the courage to do what he needs to do to stop this evil from consuming everyone around him?

The pervading spookiness of this gripping horror tale starts from the very first page. The reader already knows that he or she is in for a dreadful ride the moment they read the first sentences of the story. The plot is beautifully imagined and the author’s writing flows flawlessly; it is measured and so tightly knit that the reader will be blown away by the lyricism in the prose. It is impossible not to feel deeply for Don Lattimore as he struggles helplessly against his own demons. A Debt of Survival is the kind of book that makes readers spend sleepless nights. The drama is intense and the reader can feel their pulse rise as they turn each page. L.F. Falconer is a master at creating a plot that leaves readers engrossed and transported.

– reviewed by Divine Zape for Readers’ Favorite

Other Reviews

A Debt of Survival is an atmospheric novel and an engrossing entry in the horror genre.

A Debt of Survival by L. F. Falconer examines the price of war within an incredible character-driven supernatural horror ordeal.

In the idyllic town of Diablo Springs, Nevada, a gruesome crime takes a toll on Don Lattimore, the sheriff and an army veteran. The scene appears to be a satanic ritual to conjure a demon, but it is quickly written off as a harmless teenage prank—that is, until the town is rocked by mounting violence and grisly deaths.

For Lattimore, the deaths and gore usher in memories of his Korean War experiences and lead to vibrant hallucinations that threaten to unravel his sanity. Unsure who to trust, or even how to confront whatever force is wreaking havoc in his town, Lattimore comes to realize that everything is connected to the war and to himself.

A Debt of Survival is a polished horror story. The writing is sharp and adeptly shows instead of tells, such as when Lattimore is startled by an airplane-like noise and looks up at the moon; the sight causes him to reflect on Armstrong’s current lunar landing and a nightmare from his past. All in one line, the time frame is established and a sense of unease settles over the story. This all occurs outside of the horrific crime scene that has yet to be described, prompting the tension and fear to mount with each paragraph.

All the characters are vividly drawn to life, but none more so than Lattimore. Coping with PTSD and burdened by the duty to protect his family and community, his convictions keep his actions consistent.

Every piece of dialogue and action builds upon another to examine a man damaged by war while suffering from mounting horrors. Character tics like Lattimore’s tendency to quote his idolized father and favor his youngest son and dog over the rest of his family, as well as his discussions with exasperating colleagues, produce a protagonist worth rooting for.

As a horror story, A Debt of Survival excels. A strong and unique internal mythology draws from supernatural legends to add a layer of complexity to the story, which even so remains accessible. That same aspect of the story helps explain Lattimore’s personality and actions. From the intense descriptions of smell to the ramifications of the crimes on Lattimore’s mind and psyche, the horror is ever present.

A Debt of Survival is an atmospheric novel with undertones of social commentary; it is a unique and engrossing entry in the horror genre.

 – reviewed by John M. Murray for Foreword Reviews

 

I love a gripping horror story, so when presented with the opportunity to read “A Debt of Survival,” by L.F. Falconer, I jumped on it! Falconer takes readers on a thrilling ride in this complex, multi-dimensional tale, full of heart-pounding suspense and drama.

Set in 1969, the story follows Don Lattimore, Sheriff of Diablo Springs, Nevada, who finds himself knee-deep in the middle of an investigation involving gruesome satanic activity. Quick to write it off as a prank of the local teenagers, Lattimore cannot ignore the onslaught of murder and destruction happening in his town ever since the “conjuring.” There is something familiar to Lattimore in all this mire, and suddenly the ghosts from his time in the war come back to haunt him with vengeance. As memories of the war come to the surface, Lattimore can’t help but wonder if he’s seeing things and losing his mind, or if the demons are real? When a stranger arrives in town offering assistance, Lattimore is torn –not sure who to trust, or what path to take. In the end, will he be willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for the sake of his community?

“A Debt of Survival” was such an entertaining reading experience. The writing is impeccable, Falconer truly has a style all her own. She clearly knows how to show vs. tell–her descriptions drawing me directly into the plot with intensity and crisp detail. And, I do mean crisp detail – those with a tendency toward a weak stomach be warned – this author has no problem getting down and dirty with grisly particulars. The pace of the story is spot-on as well; I never felt like I was left hanging while waiting for something to happen, or driven through the story too quickly.

Another thing Falconer is right at home with is character development. Lattimore is a genuine protagonist who is well rounded with a diverse personality. He has no trouble being the bad guy when necessary if his convictions are tested, while at the same time being open-minded to learning new things and hearing all sides of a story. All of the characters are distinct, and readers will develop definite opinions about each one as the story progresses.

L.F. Falconer does an amazing job unfolding a clever, well-written story in “A Debt of Survival” with lots of layers, twists, and turns. Suspenseful, intriguing, and easy to follow, readers will be satisfied right up to the very last word. I rate this book an awesome Five-Star read and recommend to all horror fans and thrill seekers. You will not be disappointed.

– reviewed by Susan Violante for Reader Views

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