#BookReview The Horse Thieves and Other Taleso f the New West by Patrick Scalisi

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My father had always told me stories about the West and loved watching Western movies with me, so this book was a nice reminder of my childhood when I got it in the mail.

This novel followed a few different stories (or tales) in the Western region. I found the novel was easy to read and quick to read, but at some points it was not easy to hang on to. The stories had their moments where I was addicted and couldn’t put it down, but there was also a few points in the book where I wondered why I was continuing to read it.

The first story, The Horse Thieves, seemed to begin in a random spot, and I felt like a better introduction could have been made. Since these are shorter stories and not complete novels, I understood why the story had to start out how it did, but I still felt a little cheated for an introduction. The chapters were nice and short, and continued to move at a good pace. I felt like some of the wording felt like anyone could have written the story, and I wish there would have been a little more description (but that is more of a preference I have for in depth descriptions and shouldn’t be held against the short stories). I didn’t exactly like the ending to the first story, and I felt it was a little too short. A little more action would have made the story a lot more interesting, but that’s just my opinion and shouldn’t be held against the novel either.

I thoroughly enjoyed the second story, The Quick and the Dead, and I don’t have much to say other than I wish there was more! It was a very pleasant read!

For the rest of the stories, they sat in between the first two. At some points I felt the story moved faster and I enjoyed it more (like The Quick and the Dead) and at other paragraphs I felt a little cheated (like The Horse Thieves). I did enjoy the plots of these quick reads and I highly suggest the author continue making stories like these, except I would love to see them increased in length.

I give this selection of stories four out of five stars, due to the first story not helping me cling to the entire novel. I hesitated in the first story about continuing to read it, which shouldn’t happen within the first few chapters. The novel was a nice Western gem! A good read!

I received this novel for free through Good Reads First Reads.

 

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#BookReview Hidden Fires by Sandra Brown

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This book took WAY to long to read for me, if I’m being brutally honest.

Normally I am SO OBSESSED with a romance novel that can get me away from the world and take me to my dreamy state of mind, but this book didn’t do it for me. It was a little disappointing, but I still think this is an excellent book by Sandra Brown. It didn’t help I was cramming for exams and was worrying my days away about how my marks would look, so my lack of relaxation wasn’t totally Sandra Brown’s fault!

This book is centered in 1800s Texas, and we’ve got a preacher’s daughter and a rebellious man. Isn’t this just the stereotypical norm for a really great, mind numbing romance? To some people, that’s the worst norm in the world, but sometimes that norm just gets me! I loved that this book took me back to the past and away from my problems. Sandra Brown’s speaking tone in this novel gets you in and gets you hooked!

This is apparently one of her older books (I hate to admit it was made before I was born… 1994…wow), so I’m very tempted to pick up a more recent one. Most likely, her talent has increased the more she has written. It does stand the test of time (if you ask me), but it’s historical fiction so that helps it out a lot.

Was this book mind blowing? No. It didn’t knock me off my feet like some romance novels do, but I like that it was simple, sweet and to the point. It’s a good book to just sink away from the world in, if that’s what you are looking for.

It fits close to the “good girl, bad boy” stereotype, but with a little more “cheese” factor in it. It will tear at your heart strings a bit as well!

Overall, this book was a nice, melodramatic, romance novel. I definitely want to pick up more by Sandra Brown (and luckily I have another hiding on my shelf…) in the near future.

Three out of five stars!

I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

 

Photo from Goodreads.

#BookReview The Winter Family by Clifford Jackman

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The Winter Family by Clifford Jackman

This book reminds me of Games of Thrones if it was set in a western setting. There’s lots of death, and lots of interesting drama to keep you interested.

I’m not crazy into westerns, but I love reading in different genres so I don’t get bored reading the same old, same old. So this read was refreshing, even if I’m not the typical “target audience”.

The book’s setting is around civil war time, which is not a setting I see often of (at least in the books I typically read). For me, this setting worked well within the story. I enjoyed reading all of the descriptions of the locations and people of the time and Clifford Jackman did well within this setting.

While this book is fictional, a lot of the scenarios that happen in the book (brutal, almost R rated scenarios I might add) were situations that happened to people. It was incredible to read, but it rips your heart out knowing some of this did happen to people back in this time. The history was on point despite being fiction. It’s not totally Wild West fiction if my review makes you believe that, but it’s a “western” style near the Civil War (not men on horses shooting everyone like those old movies).

I definitely want to see Clifford Jackman write more – I thought this book did well within it’s genre and was a good read. He was skilled at writing blood and war without a hero or antihero. It was just a novel following someone’s life in a dark western-esque era. It didn’t knock my socks off and turn me to the western genre, but it was worthy read I’d recommend or suggest my local library pick up for other readers.

On point Clifford! Keep up the good work! I can’t wait to see you grow as an author!

Three out of five stars.

I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

 

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