September Book Reviews Part One! @stacitroilo @MarciaMeara @MaeClair1 @WordDreams #IARTG #ASMSG #WritingCommunity #BookReviews #RecommendedReading #WhatToRead


The Nine (Astral Conspiracy, #3)
by D.L. Cross

I’m really enjoying the Astral Conspiracy Series. The thrilling pace hasn’t slowed down one bit in “The Nine.” Landon Throne is a fantastic character who is at the center of the story and key to helping humanity. His flaws, abilities, and inner conflicts make him very real, and I can’t help but root for him. There’s more insight into the aliens. I was particularly fond of one and can’t wait to read more about the alien in future books. One storyline was chilling and cruel. I yelled at one point, which shows how well Ms. Cross creates believable characters that I care about. The Nine reminded me of the current conspiracy climate. Full of action with well-written exciting ongoing stories, this makes for a compelling page-turning read. I can’t wait for book four to see what happens next. Five-Stars!

Eclipse Lake

by Mae Clair

I love Ms. Clair’s books, which means I’m working my way through her catalog. Although there was no paranormal theme like her current books, “Eclipse Lake” had mystery, family dynamics, and some romance, which completely captured my attention. Dane Carlisle had changed since he was a troubled teen. He’s a good father and runs a successful business, but he wants to reconnect with his brother Jonah. The strain between them seemed so real to me I had my fingers crossed they’d work it out. Dane’s son, Jesse, was determined to find out his dad’s secret, and Ellie, the photographer, made an impression on Dane. Then comes the discovery of a dead body and a lawman who had a chip on his shoulder, which added the layers that made this read intriguing. This is a great book to read on a lazy summer day or curled up next to the fireplace. I found it to be a page-turner, wondering what would happen next. The twist at the end completely surprised me. If you like a mystery with action and a budding romance, this is the book for you! Five-Stars.

Against All Odds (Book 3 of the Crossroads Trilogy)

by Jacqui Murray

I’ve read the first two books in the Crossroads Trilogy and loved them. So, I was eager to read the conclusion in “Against All Odds.” It kept me reading late into the night or until I couldn’t hold my eyes open anymore. I’ve gotten very attached to this group trying to find their home in 850,000 BC. Xhosa, the leader, had her flaws, but also her strength and bravery. Pan-do’s compassion and insight made him an excellent advisor for Xhosa. But it was the wolves who always had my full attention. The research that went into the story shines through as I read it. I could easily see the world through their eyes and imagine how it was to live in those times. Their food sources, shelters, and relationships felt very real to me, thanks to Ms. Murray. The enemies are chilling for many reasons that I won’t give away. Although this could be read as a standalone, I recommend going back and reading the previous two books first. This is a great read for those who enjoy prehistoric fiction and those that like a good story. I highly recommend it. Five-Stars!

A Boy Named Rabbit (Wake-Robin Ridge #2)

by Marcia Meara

I read the first Wake-Robin Ridge book and had been looking forward to continuing with the series. It was good to see Mac and Sarah back, but the new character, Rabbit, stole my heart. I fell in love with his innocence and wisdom. If I could have reached into the book and hugged him, I would have. The world, through his eyes, is a place I want to live. He was raised away from the world, in the woods, by his grandparents. He believed people were evil, but on his grandmother’s deathbed, she let him know there are good people too. She sent him on a quest to find one of those good people. His growth inspired me as much as it inspired those he encountered. There were some heart-wrenching parts along with some endearing ones, and I deeply felt each one. I highly recommend this book and look forward to continuing the journey with Rabbit. Five-Stars!

The Stones (Astral Conspiracy, #2)

by D.L. Cross

“The Stones” starts where “The Gate” ended. Landon has come back with information that might help with the Astrals from the Akashic Records. Others with him have their own knowledge, and they, for a good reason, don’t trust each other. This adds to the book’s tension. Landon is a favorite character of mine, flaws and all. He has the feel of your average guy that no one believes but is still trying to do the right thing. In this story, Quinn won my heart, and I wanted to know everything about him. But the focus is on Landon by the aliens and different fractions of humans. There’s constant action while they are busy fighting aliens, and at the same time, there are power grabs and religious beliefs that undermine a straight path forward. Ms. Cross pays attention to details and fleshes out some alien, history, and conspiracy theories that I enjoy. I can’t wait to read book three to see how this plays out. Four-Stars!

NOTE: It’s that time of year again, the peak of our fire season in the Sierra Foothills. So, if I disappear a day or two it might be a power shut down during high winds to prevent more California fires. We are expecting shut down this week.

I only post my 4 & 5-star reviews. If I don’t like a book, I won’t finish it. It doesn’t feel right leaving a review in that case, but I have been known to email the author:) Life is too short not to enjoy every book you read!

Embrace your inner child by reading a good book! D. L. Finn

40 thoughts on “September Book Reviews Part One! @stacitroilo @MarciaMeara @MaeClair1 @WordDreams #IARTG #ASMSG #WritingCommunity #BookReviews #RecommendedReading #WhatToRead”

  1. You have been so busy, Denise. These reviews are amazing. I gotta get busy since the only one I’ve read is Eclipse Lake by Mae Clair and I totall agree with your review.

  2. Wonderful reviews, Denise. Like John, I’ve only read Eclipse Lake thus far, and it was excellent. I look forward to reading all the books. Thank you for the added nudge. ♥

    1. Thanks Gwen:) All good reads and I really enjoyed. I wished I had more time to just read and catch up.

  3. You’ve been a busy reader! I’ve read both The Stones and The Nine and enjoyed them immensely and Eclipse Lake is one of my favorite books by Mae.

    1. I have been Joan:) Although some nights I just need to sleep…lol. I saw a review of Eclipse Lake and was reminded I hadn’t read it yet, so glad I did.

    1. I want to read the prequel to your series, now, Jacqui! Never thought I’d like prehistoric history as much as I do now thanks to your fantastic books.

      I’m waiting on Staci’s book 4 until I see book 5 out, so I can read them back to back:) It’s a great series.

  4. Wow, how lovely to be included in this stellar group of writers, Denise! I’m so happy you enjoyed Rabbit’s tale so much. I’d love to take credit for it, but that little boy basically told me every single thing to write! 😀 He talked me through two more books, and is still talking to me to this day, but I’ve learned not to answer him in public. 😉

    I’ve read the first Astral Conspiracy book, and have the second on my Kindle, but am waiting for the rest so I can binge read them all at once. (My favorite way to read a series.) And I love everything of Mae Clair’s I’ve ever read, including this Eclipse Lake. Her Hode’s Hill series is a huge favorite of mine.

    I haven’t read Jacqui’s books yet, but have the first in this trilogy awaiting me on my Kindle. Really looking forward to digging into the series.

    SO much good reading ahead of me! As I’ve said before, I’m going to have to live to be 125 to get to them all, especially if I keep taking time off for writing my own. 😀

    Great post, Denise! Thanks for including me. 🙂 <3

    1. I’m glad Rabbit found you to talk to. He’s going to be a favorite character for me.

      I agree about Mae’s Hode Hill series.I’m waiting to read Staci’s book 4 & 5 together. I’m sure you’ll enjoy Jacqui’s series.

      I think I will have to live to be around that age too just to finish what I have on my Kindle. That doesn’t include all the new books that will tempt me.

      It was a great reading month, as is this month. I’m enjoying myself with all these great books.

  5. Congrats to all the authors on these awesome reviews! I’ve read all except Jacqui’s book (it’s on my Kindle) and loved them.
    Stay safe with the fires, Denise. I’ve been seeing frightening footages on the news. {{hugs}}

    1. You’ll enjoy Jacqui’s latest:)

      Thank you Jacquie:) This is the scary time of year for us here. Just got the call that our power will be shut off tomorrow, so hopefully that keeps more from happening. It must have been so scary for those people who had to be helicoptered out. Hugs back xo

    2. That’s the down side to it. since most information is passed on facebook through several groups and we are out of cell phone signal range here. But if land phonelines are working someone would call us. Plus the police have a high/low siren they will driveby with, which means go now. Also, if working, I figured out a way to get wifi up with generator. This has only been going on the last couple of years in my 30 years living here. The northern coast has been tugging lately 🙂 xo

  6. Thank you for including Eclipse Lake among your reviews, Denise. I am so delighted you enjoyed it.
    I’ve read The Stones, The Nine, and a Boy Named Rabbit and was riveted by all of them. I’m also looking forward to reading Jacqui Murray’s entire series. I wish I had more time in my day for reading!

    1. I really did enjoy it Mae and glad I saw the review that reminded me I hadn’t read it yet! Yes, all good reads. I want to finish all of the series. I’m with you I wish I had more time for reading, but sleep does call. xo

  7. I took the weekend off. Coming back to this post is a wonderful surprise. Thank you for the kind words about my work. And for including me in this list of quality writers.

    I lived in California for a few months, and it happened to be this time of year. I remember the rolling blackouts and the poor air quality and the constant threat of fire and evacuation. Please be safe.

    1. Glad you could enjoy the long weekend, Staci:) It’s a great series that I can’t wait to finish.

      It’s become a difficult time of the year in CA. We’ve lived in our house for 30 years with only a few minor fire issues. The last few years, each year gets worse. It’s hard to live in constant readiness to evcauate. We are staying safe and inside with the poor air, thanks xo

  8. You’ve had a great bunch of reads for September so far! I’m reading The Stones right now, and what a ripping pace! I’ve read Mae’s and Jacqui’s books and have Marcia’s on my kindle. Lol. We have the same tastes in reading it seems.

    And be careful with those fires. We’ve been keeping an eye on the news. This year seems particularly horrible. <3

    1. Been a fantastic couple of months of reading. I always pick up a new read from your reviews. Can’t go wrong with any of these books.

      I hope you are staying safe in Oregon. I can’t believe our entire coast is on fire! My son lives in Eugene and has been updating me. I agree this year tops off some really bad ones. xo

      1. The nearest fire is about 50 miles from us and small, but we’ve been socked in with smoke. It’s inescapable, even inside the house. These fires are terrifying. They’re everywhere. California is being devastated. 🙁 Stay safe.

  9. What a great collection of your reads and reviews this month. I have a couple of these books on my Kindle but haven’t read them yet. Stay safe. We’ll have a while to go before the fire season is over. 🙂

    1. You will enjoy them when you are able to read them, Miriam:) I know this is only the beginning of the fire season. I keep hoping we’ll get a year like in 94 when it started raining in middle of Sept and didn’t stop until we had 100 inches. One can hope! Stay safe too. Thankfully the weather has cooled down. xo

  10. This is another post that somehow wound up in my SPAM folder. I enjoyed your reviews of these awesome Story Empire writers’ books, plus Jacqui! Thank you for sharing.

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