Tag Archives: Amazon

American Civil War Soldier With His Horse

Review: Terms of Surrender

Terms of Surrender by Lorrie Farrelly is a historical western romance about a former captain in the confederate army, Michael Cantrell, and his search for redemption in the ranch lands of Wyoming.

Civil War Battlefield Horrors Had Broken Michael’s Spirit
Civil War Battlefield Horrors Had Broken Michael’s Spirit

In the months following the American Civil War, the battlefield horrors have broken Michael’s spirit. He saw his beloved brother Gavin fall, and heartache consumes Michael. With nothing left of his life except for his warhorse Jet, a saber, and an army issue Colt Navy revolver, he rides Jet to the western frontier.

Annie Devlin has overwhelming cares for such a young horse rancher. Her parents are dead and she struggles to make a home for ten-year-old brother Robbie. Annie’s powerful neighbor Elias Randolph covets her family’s pastureland, and he pulls dirty and deadly tricks to get her to sell.

Annie’s Neighbor Covets Her Family’s Pastureland
Annie’s Neighbor Covets Her Family’s Pastureland

Fate brings Michael to the siblings’ rescue when Randolph’s henchmen attack the two on their way home with a mud-stuck wagon of supplies. Michael wins this skirmish, but is near-fatally wounded.

Annie takes Michael home and tends the fallen confederate captain. Bringing him back from death’s gate is just the first of their harrowing adventures to protect the ranch.

Love blossoms between the northern woman and southern man, but the War Between the States is not over for some. Despite advice from Gavin’s ghost, the cards are stacked against Michael finding redemption and love in the Wild West.

Terms of Surrender is a tender love story about a couple in a harsh world. The tale unwinds through Michael’s eyes, and at times his anguish brought Lita tears. The romance was sexy and delightful, and the bad guys were ooh, so despicable. The scene descriptions were vivid and done well. At times Lita shivered from the chilly kiss of the Wyoming wind.

Gentle Readers who enjoy westerns and spicier romances would like the story. For others who love immersive worlds, just saddle up and ride on in to Terms of Surrender.

Terms of Surrender on Amazon US

Terms of Surrender on Amazon UK

Terms of Surrender on Goodreads

Lorrie Farrelly on Goodreads

Lorrie Farrelly blog and website

Psychic Magical Powers and Past Lives

Review: Outview

Outview by Brandt Legg is a coming-of-age fantasy about a teenager named Nathan Ryder and his struggles learning modern-day psychic magic.

Nate's Mother Committed His Brother to a Mental Hospital
Nate’s Mother Committed His Brother to a Mental Hospital

Nate has suffered for a year from paralyzing nightmares. In these night terrors he runs from enemies, but they always catch and kill him. He struggles to live a teen’s normal life with his best friends Kyle and Linh, but his father died four years ago and Nate feels responsible. The loss estranged him from his mother. Even worse, she sent his brother Dustin to a mental institution two years ago and she refuses to let Nate visit. Now the worsening nightmares have convinced Nate that he is going crazy like Dustin.

Kyle and Linh sneak him in to visit Dustin. They discover a lucid older brother who guides Nate to seek out their Aunt Rose and investigate their father’s death. Nate learns from Rose that his nightmares are the forerunners of exceptional psychic powers. His innocent Internet search about their father alerts a clandestine government agency. This agency, lead by an Agent Fitts, will stop at nothing to acquire Nate and his growing powers.

Nate Could Read an Entire Book in Seconds By Holding It Between His Palms
Nate Could Read an Entire Book in Seconds By Holding It Between His Palms

Outview is a dandy fantasy thriller. Woven throughout was an intricate and well-designed fantasy world of psychic powers and government shenanigans. Lita wished that she could just pick up a book, hold it closed between her palms, and absorb its knowledge the way Nate could.

The story’s ever-growing plot dangers made for an absorbing read. Brandt Legg used a deft hand in creating teens that were a pleasing blend of naïveté and intelligence. The story also had a nice balance of description and dialogue that kept things moving. Lita very much enjoyed the detailed descriptions of psychic magic, but some Gentle Readers might find them too lengthy for their tastes.

Outview is one of those excellent stories where Lita wanted to give it more than five stars. She cannot wait to read the sequel, Outin. Since Lita cannot absorb a book through her palms like Nate, she will read Outin from her Kindle the usual way.

Outview on Amazon US

Outview on Amazon UK

Outview on Goodreads

Brandt Legg on Goodreads

Brandt Legg website

Alice Invites Lita to a Mad Tea Party

“Wrath” Takes Honorable Mention in Readers’ Favorite Contest

Lita is delighted to tell Gentle Reader that the 2014 Readers’ Favorite International Book Award Contest named Wrath, Prequel to Tredan’s Bane as the Honorable Mention Winner in its Fiction-Short Story category.

Wrath, Prequel to Tredan's Bane - Honorable Mention Winner in the 2014 Readers' Favorite International Book Award Contest
Wrath, Prequel to Tredan’s Bane – Honorable Mention Winner in the 2014 Readers’ Favorite International Book Award Contest

Readers’ Favorite gives readers a resource for quality book reviews. Their annual book award contest offers authors the opportunity to gain recognition and exposure of their books.

This year, Readers’ Favorite honored one of Lita’s Enchanters of Sye stories. They named Wrath, Prequel to Tredan’s Bane as an Honorable Mention Winner in their annual book awards contest. Here is their 5 star review of Wrath.

Lita rushed over to Alice’s place to tell her good friend the news. “I am so discombobulated,” Lita said. “I forgot my handkerchief. I feel like a hobbit setting out on a grand adventure!”

As Usual, the Cake Made the Girls Grow
As Usual, the Cake Made the Girls Grow

Alice insisted they celebrate with a mad tea party. As usual, the cake made the girls grow, bump their heads on the ceiling, and giggle.

The tea from the bottle labeled “Drink Me” shrunk them to the size of dormouse. Then  they played the game of I Spy Things That Start with the Letter M until it was time for Lita to go home.

Readers’ Favorite reviewers have said kind things before about Lita’s stories. One reviewer described Wrath as “Lita Burke brings a magical world to life with a deft and economic use of words and imagery that is really quite remarkable.” Another reviewer gushed this about Tredan’s Bane: “The story is very intriguing and, at the same time, exciting.”

The award-winning Wrath, Prequel to Tredan’s Bane is now FREE on Amazon US, Smashwords, and Barnes & Noble. Don’t wait—indulge yourself now with some tea, cake, and Wrath.

Wrath on Amazon US

Wrath on Amazon UK

Wrath on Smashwords

Wrath on Barnes & Noble

Wrath on Goodreads

Wrath on LitaBurke.com

Read more about Wrath in “Finalist in 2014 Readers’ Favorite Contest.” Don’t stop after reading Wrath. Continue your visit in Lita’s Enchanters of Sye fantasy world. Find out more about Tredan’s Bane, read the back cover blurb, revel in Chapter 1, watch the book trailer, and then have Tredan’s Bane join Wrath on your Kindle, Nook, or iPad/iPhone.

Winter Vineyard Thriller

Review: The Field of Blackbirds

The Field of Blackbirds by Thomas Ryan is a thriller about Jeff Bradley, a former New Zealand military man, and his dangerous quest to find a missing friend.

A Dispute Over a Family’s Vineyard
A Dispute Over a Family’s Vineyard

Jeff’s business associate Arben has travelled to Kosovo to see into a dispute over his family’s vineyard. Jeff gets a message from his panicked friend, and then suspects the worst when Arben disappears.

In a swirl of corrupt officials and honest friends who are almost impossible to tell apart, Jeff looks for Arben in the post-war city. Double crosses and shadowy events turn Jeff’s search into a dangerous plunge into the Kosovo bitter weather to find the truth.

The Field of Blackbirds is a well-written journey of desperate people struggling to regain their humanity in the soup of crooked local politics. Mixed in was a ghost intelligence agency on a relentless pursuit of an international terrorist.

A Swirl of Corrupt Officials and Honest Friends
A Swirl of Corrupt Officials and Honest Friends

The taut plot had twists to the end. Thomas Ryan’s well-drawn characters made Lita cheer their successes and also doubt their motives. The story’s sense of place was so well-defined that at times Lita felt the numbness of Jeff’s gloveless hands, and she wrinkled her nose at the sour odor of fear.

The Gentle Readers who love thrillers that make them stay up all night would enjoy The Field of Blackbirds. Be sure to wear gloves while reading this book to keep Kosovo’s frigid winter from nipping your fingers as you turn the pages.

The Field of Blackbirds on Amazon US

The Field of Blackbirds on Amazon UK

The Field of Blackbirds on Goodreads

Thomas Ryan on Goodreads

Thomas Ryan website and blog

Fey-Folk at the Lily Pond

Review: The Water Lily Fairy

The Water Lily Fairy by Mary Ann Vitale is a children’s fantasy about a fairy that brings secret gifts to a village.

The Fairy Hides in Plain Sight
The Fairy Hides in Plain Sight

One day a group of fairies fly by a pond filled with water lilies, and a curious fae lingers to see the playing children. She folds her skirt just so and hides in plain sight because she looks like a closed lily. The children are from such poor families that the fairy wishes there was something she could do to ease their dreary lives.

She stays hidden at the pond and overhears the grumbling of the villagers during the day, and then through the night scatters gifts in the streets to satisfy their wishes. For three nights she leaves increasingly wondrous presents. The fairy then does something unexpected.

The Water Lily Fairy is a simple story gently told. The book brims with lovely and colorful illustrations. It is a perfect book to read to a wide-eyed child before bedtime to bring dreams filled with shimmering fairy magic.

The Water Lily Fairy on Amazon US

The Water Lily Fairy on Amazon UK

The Water Lily Fairy on Goodreads

Mary Ann Vitale on Goodreads

Pan's World

Review: Dark Mountain

Dark Mountain by C. B. Pratt is a fantasy about a hero for hire named Eno and his adventures to free the enthralled mine workers of a deranged magician.

Pan, the Goat-Footed Deity
Pan, the Goat-Footed Deity

Eno, recently home from a quest in Egypt, resumes his interrupted trip to his aging mother. The path takes him through Pan’s domain, and the woodland god has a deadly bone to pick with Eno.

On a previous adventure, Eno slayed Pan’s three daughters in self-defense. To make amends with the goat-footed deity, our hero must endure the woodland god’s curse plus do a good deed for Pan’s children.

Slavers ambush and capture Eno, along with a young man named Gwern. A clever ruse turns Eno into a shift captain of a most peculiar mining operation under a dark mountain. Gwern’s enslaved people have labored for generations in the thrall of an ancient mage who hears voices in the mountain’s rocks.

A Mage Hears Voices
A Mage Hears Voices

After the workers unearth the rock speaker, Eno then must use his superb strength, wits, and a touch of Pan’s curse to battle the darkest threat yet to Eno’s world.

Dark Mountain is a fun fantasy romp set in the time of Greek gods, ancient Egypt, and medieval villages. C. B. Pratt uses a skillful hand to create a vivid fantasy world where the reader smells the manure of the farmyards and feels the tickle of foaming ale on the lips. The conversations with the moody Pan are especially delightful. The Gentle Reader who likes heroic fantasy told through the eyes of a thoughtful strongman would enjoy Dark Mountain. This is the second of Eno’s enjoyable stories that Lita has read, and she looks forward to immersing herself in Eno’s next tale.

Dark Mountain on Amazon US

Dark Mountain on Amazon UK

Dark Mountain on Goodreads

C. B. Pratt on Goodreads

C. B. Pratt website and blog

Simon’s Desperation and Regret

Review: If I Should Die Before I Wake

If I Should Die Before I Wake by Gabriel Boutros is a novella fantasy thriller about a hit man, his prey, and a most disturbing hunt.

Simon's Former Unforgiving Boss
Simon’s Former Unforgiving Boss

Simon Wallis, a former gangster’s accountant caught embezzling from his unforgiving boss, runs for his life. Killer for hire Frank Burke, a sociopath with a predilection for Hawaiian beaches, tracks Simon. Nightmares plague both men in their desperate chase-and-elude game that ends in an unforgettable showdown in Montreal.

If I Should Die Before I Wake plunges the reader into a noir world of shadows and pursuit. From the start, Simon’s desperation and regret taste like a shot of rotgut whiskey whose burn lingers too long in the gut. When we see the story through Frank’s eyes, the sensual and entrepreneurial criminal oozes self-confidence. This professional killer is despicable and fascinating.

But the killer and quarry share reciprocal nightmares. Each man crumbles as the hunt draws to its close. In the end, the disturbing dreams merge in a most unexpected way.

Boutros spins a dandy thriller that greatly satisfies. If I Should Die Before I Wake left Lita uneasy, glancing over her shoulder before pouring another shot of rotgut to calm her nerves. Lita recommends this story for noir fans who love thrillers mixed with a touch of unsettling fantasy.

If I Should Die Before I Wake on Amazon US

If I Should Die Before I Wake on Amazon UK

If I Should Die Before I Wake on Goodreads

Gabriel Boutros on Goodreads