Tag Archives: Book Reviews 5 Star

Book Review: White Is the Coldest Colour (Dr David Galbraith #1) By John Nicholl

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White Is the Coldest Colour is a thought-provoking, dark and gripping psychological thriller that moves briskly from the beginning to the end. Nicholl draws incisive attention to a number of disturbing issues that explore humanities seemingly unlimited capacity for evil.” https://walkerputsche.wordpress.com/

The story is set in 1992 and follows Dr David Galbraith, a vicious and predatory paedophile who works as a child psychiatrist in the South West Wales Area. Galbraith who has avoided detection for over thirty years is forced to keep his true nature secret from the world at large, as he has already murdered one child in his sound-proofed cellar at his family home and is looking for more unfortunate victims to fulfil his obsessive and grotesque fantasies.

Anthony Mailer, a seven-year old boy becomes Galbraith´s new patient and next major fixation. Anthony is referred by his GP to be counselled by Galbraith, as he develops various behavioural problems just after his parent’s separation. The Mailer family however are unaware of the horrific threat that awaits them at the hands of Galbraith and are equally unprepared that they must fight to try and stay alive against a number of life-threatening odds?

This novel is entirely fictional and draws upon the author’s experiences as a police officer and child protection social worker and exposes the real risks and harm that sexual predators inflict on their victims and is dedicated to survivors everywhere. I was literally blown away by this book and can’t wait to read the chilling sequel.
My Ranking: 5 Stars

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The Thief and the Sacrifice: By Kevin. C Bennett

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“The Thief and the Sacrifice is a fast-paced fantasy adventure that transports readers back and forth to some fascinating worlds, where creatures are alien, giants are among giants and humans have the ability to change their forms.” https://walkerputsche.wordpress.com/

The story begins when G.I. Floyd Sandburg is left stranded in a cave after his capture from the Nazis in Afghanistan during WWII. Sometime after his capture Floyd discovers an ancient pen sized artefact that has the power to help him escape and transport him to place to place, location to location and time zone to time zone. Floyd finds himself in a struggle that has been in place since evolution and his only chances of survival are to avoid capture as the ongoing threat of a horrifying death awaits him if he fails to save Earth and his own soul in time as he questions what will be required of him in the coming days? Unaware that his entire salvation lies within the artefact and his choices will have considerable consequences of a theological magnitude.

Bennett successfully weaves two unique tales together that will give the reader a real insight into what a person with good morals may do when they are given too much power. The other tale gives the reader some idea of what the world may have been like before the deluge of Genesis. I would definitely recommend this book to fans of Sci-fi and fantasy, and to anyone who enjoys a highly imaginative story with strong characters, places and events that’s rooted in reality, theology and human nature.

My Ranking: 5 Stars

RedEye: Fulda Cold: A Rick Fontain Novel By Bill Fortin

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“RedEye: Fulda Cold is a suspenseful, hard-hitting and astonishing piece of military history that is set in 1969 West Germany and explores the reality of what happened on the border between the conflicting forces of East and West that I knew very little about until now.” https://walkerputsche.wordpress.com/

Rick Fontain tells us about his exciting adventures through a first person narrative that allows the reader to travel with Rick from his initial induction into the army, following him on his journey where he and his team are stationed near the Fulda Gap to prevent an invasion or attack from Russia.

As a reader, I felt that I could connect easily with Rick on his incredible journey as he takes you by the hand and doesn’t let it go until the last page. Fortin does a remarkable job of describing the people and the landscape of the late 1960s, while throwing more light onto the tactics that the American military deployed to contain Russia in the Cold War. I certainly hope that this isn’t the last we have heard from Rick Fontain, and do hope that there is a sequel in the near future, as I cannot wait to read more of this young hero’s adventures and more of his infectious good humour.

Finally, I would also like to add that Fortin has put together a remarkably well written story with a vast amount of meticulous research and footnotes that detail the timeframe of when and where things take place. I found this to be tremendously helpful as it strengthened my understanding and added to my reading pleasure.

My Ranking: 5 Stars

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BANKRUPTING THE THIRD WORLD: How the Global Elite Drown Poor Nations in a sea of Debt: By James & Lance Morcan

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“Father-and-son Lance & James Morcan draw the reader’s attention to some of the lousy and downright dirty economic tactics used against poverty-stricken nations!” https://walkerputsche.wordpress.com/

The authors expose corruptions within the international financial aid organisations and their arrogance and general superciliousness towards their third world ´clients´ and research the impact it is having of being the recipient of substantial financial aid from the west. This book also questions whether or not, the International Monetary Fund, World Bank, USAID and many other large international aid organisations help or counteract the world’s poorest people.

With numerous research and invaluable references, the authors present what is wrong with the aid industry and equip readers with an underground knowledge to question why these barbaric aid policies of Western Governments, private companies and central banks are in place.

My Ranking: 5 Stars

PALE HIGHWAY: By Nicholas Conley

 

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“Pale Highway is an ambitious, heartbreaking and out of this world Sci-Fi story of one man’s struggle to save humanity, while working against the clock to save his own mental degradation!” Catherine Rose Putsche Book Blog

Gabriel Schist, a rugged genius, who in his younger years developed the vaccine for AIDS is now spending his remaining years in a nursing home with few memories that Alzheimer’s have stole from him. However, when one of the residents comes down with a gruesome virus that nobody seems to want to find a cure for, only cover it up, Gabriel, tries to convince the heads of the nursing home that he is the only man who can find a vaccine/antidote to destroy the virus, unaware and unprepared that the virus may not be what it seems to be and that the threat to destroy humanity may soon become a reality if Gabriel cannot find a solution in time before his own mental and physical deterioration take place.

It is not often that my own words escape me as I try to recount the beauty, the true understanding of such a devoted man who struggles to hold off his own real-life manifestations to save everyone around him. Conley, has created a memorable, life-like and loveable protagonist who will stay with me for a long time and I have no doubt that this story will have an impact and raise awareness to each and every reader out there who has lost, or is losing someone in their lives’ to this despicable disease, as I and so many others have.

My Ranking: 5 Stars

Corruption of Power: By George Eccles

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Synopsis:
Independent troubleshooter, Alex Leksin, is recruited by Prime Minister Saidov when the plan to reduce Russia’s reliance on an ever more hostile Europe is put at risk. Hell bent on expansion, President Karpev’s strategy is first to shift the markets for his country’s vast energy resources to the East and Saidov has been charged with overseeing a planned pipeline for Russia’s oil through Turkmenistan and Afghanistan to access these markets. Failure could mean catastrophe, spreading the conflict raging in the Middle East to Russia’s own borders.

Fearful that the pipeline deal might be tilting off course, Leksin has only twelve days to report back before Karpev is due to sign the pipeline contract with the Turkmen President in Ashgabat.

His investigation begins in Moscow at the conglomerate responsible for planning and funding the pipeline. Once the province of larger-than-life oligarch, Lev Usenko, the group is now run by his daughter, Vika, the woman Leksin was once to marry. Trickier still is the prospect of dealing with her embittered brother, Max.

Against a background of political corruption, state-sponsored terrorism and increased Taliban insurgency, Leksin moves on to Turkmenistan, one of the world’s most sinister countries, right at the heart of Central Asia. Initially his enquiries reveal nothing to cause alarm. Other factors, though, suggest otherwise: wherever Leksin goes, someone tries to kill him; people in a position to help him are assassinated; and information turns out to be misinformation.

And when at last he discovers the truth, he finds himself unsure of whom he can trust as the stakes get frighteningly higher.

George Eccles photo

Author Bio:
George Eccles, writing as G W Eccles, graduated from the London School of Economics with a law degree and subsequently became a partner in one of the major international financial advisory firms.

In 1994, George left London to move to Russia and Central Asia during the tumultuous period that followed the breakup of the Soviet Union. His work involved extensive travel throughout Russia, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan – often to places with restricted access to foreigners. During his time there, he advised a number of real-life oligarchs how best to take advantage of the opportunities that became available as regulation crumbled and government became increasingly corrupt. Against this background, while his novels are fiction, many of the anecdotes and scenes are inspired by actual events.

His first thriller: The Oligarch, was awarded a Silver Medal both at the Global E-book Awards 2013 and at the Independent Publishers Book Awards 2013, as well as being selected as IPPY Book of the Day.

George is married and now lives with his wife in a hilltop village not far from Cannes in the South of France.

LINKS TO AUTHOR:

Website: http://www.gweccles.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/gweccles

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/george.eccles.52

WHERE TO BUY:

Corruption of Power on Amazon: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Corruption-Power-G-W-Eccles-ebook/dp/B018XXLKAE

Interview with George Eccles:

1. What inspired you to write Corruption of Power?
Corruption of Power is the second in what I see as the Leksin thriller series, the first being The Oligarch. They are both based in Russia and what many people regard as Russia’s soft underbelly, the Caucasus and the Central Asian republics. I lived and worked in these regions for over ten years and, until fairly recently, still had business interests that required regular visits.
I think my inspiration to write thrillers set there stemmed out of my own personal experiences and observations. Life there, particularly business life, was very different. I was in Russia during the effective birth of the oligarchs when a weakened Yeltsin government sold the nation’s ‘crown jewels’ to a handful of individuals for a song. At this time, if you headed companies in certain industries (such as natural resources or banking), you ran a severe risk of a shortened life span. The man who lived in the flat the other side of the forecourt of my apartment block used to sit on his balcony and clean his guns on Sunday mornings. The IMF loaned over four billion dollars to Russia, which simply got ‘lost’ a couple of weeks later. In Central Asia, being based in Almaty in Kazakhstan, it took me three days every time I wanted to fly to Ashgabat to visit my office there, even though a direct flight (if there had been one) would have taken 2-3 hours. Judicial decisions were based not on evidence, but on the weight of the bribes. Large conglomerates ran major commercial activities ‘off book’.
To be honest, it was a gold mine for a budding writer.

2. Do you have a specific writing style?
I unashamedly write thrillers, so my style is to try and keep the action moving as fast as possible while, from time to time, giving the reader a chance to pause for breath. I keep the chapters short as a means of keeping the action flowing.
My hero is Alex Leksin, an independent troubleshooter, and whenever he appears in the book, the story is told from his point of view. If he’s not around and the scene includes one of the half-dozen main characters, then it’s told from their point of view.

3. How did you come up with the title?
Corruption of Power is a political thriller involving two governments: one Russian, the other Turkmen. Both are essentially corrupt, though in different ways; and both are looking to extend their power base, though again in different ways. In an earlier draft, I had the Lord Acton quote on the first page – “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely” – and a different title, but in the end I decided to reflect the quotation in the title but drop the actual quotation.

4. Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Not really, it’s a thriller and designed above all to entertain. Given the unfamiliar locations in which it’s based, I hope it will also give the reader an insight into these countries and life there.

5. How much of the book is realistic?
Corruption of Power is fiction, although the key premises that Russia is looking both to expand into some of its former states (e.g. Crimea and Eastern Ukraine) and to reduce its reliance on Western markets for its natural resources (e.g. the recently announcement pipeline to China) are real. Similarly the threat that ISIS poses is real – not just to Russian aircraft bringing holidaymakers back home, but also in the soft underbelly like Chechnya and Dagestan where there is a strong Muslim population, many of whom see Russia as the oppressor.
A number of the anecdotes in the book are real, and generally the locations used are all ones I knew well from my own time in the region.

6. Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
A lot of the frustrations that Leksin encounters are based on my own in the region (e.g. the discomfort of travelling, staying at the Nissa Hotel, being followed for the day by the KNB in Ashgabat).
The character of Leksin, and the role he plays, is certainly influenced by someone I came across when I lived in Moscow. He had a very similar job, being called in to sort out major business issues in an unconventional way – and in those days, there were plenty of major business issues. Large companies were haemorrhaging cash by the millions as management bled them dry and transferred corporate money into their own Swiss bank accounts.

7. What books have most influenced your life most?
All John Le Carre books (see below)

8. If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
John Le Carre. There are plenty of excellent thriller writers, but so far as I’m concerned, Le Carre is in a class of his own. If Leksin (as he develops) can be half as good as Smiley, then I’ll really feel I’ve achieved something.

9. What book are you reading now?
I’m just about to start Dictator by Robert Harris.

10. Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
New to me rather than new, perhaps, is Nick Louth, who had a breakthrough moment last year with ‘Bite’ which I thought was excellent.

11. What are your current projects?
I am in the middle of the third in the Leksin thriller series. It’s inspired by actual events: a group of individuals lost vast sums in an abortive Moscow investment, and then each of them met mysterious deaths. That is true. What’s fiction is that Leksin is brought in to investigate.

12. Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
Can I answer this by naming a group? The literary bloggers. I have been overcome by how willing people who run book blogs have been to respond to my requests to help promote Corruption of Power. All of them have been kind, helpful and encouraging, and I’d like to take this opportunity to express my gratitude.

13. Do you see writing as a career?
Yes, I very much hope so. I’m under no illusions about how hard it is to make a career in writing, but I’m keeping my fingers crossed that Corruption of Power will be sufficiently successful to kick-start it.

14. If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
To be honest, I don’t think so. I wrote and rewrote it so many times over quite a long period, and I am pleased with the result – at least, I think I am, though it’s the readers who will ultimately tell me whether I’m right to be pleased!

15. Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
I’ve always had an urge in the back of my mind to write, but until I stopped being based in Central Asia, I never had time. I should perhaps mention that, some thirty years ago, I wrote a series of books on corporate and employment law published by Tolley’s and Longman, so I was in some ways used to the discipline of writing and the process of going from manuscript to publication.

16. Can you share a little of your current work with us?
I think I’ve answered this in Question #11.

17. Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
The rewriting and editing process is definitely the most challenging. I’m quite methodical in my initial approach to a project and work from a quite detailed plan, so writing the first draft is generally not problematic. However, I’ve found that it takes me much longer to get from first draft to final draft than it does to get from a blank sheet of paper to first draft. It’s after the first draft is ready that the real work begins.

18. Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
As I mentioned, long before I started writing, I travelled a great deal in the regions in which my thrillers are set. A few months ago I returned to Moscow to update myself on how it had changed, to find out where people now ate, and so on, so that this could be reflected in the book I’m now writing.

19. Who designed the covers?
Peach Publishing. Inevitably we went through several drafts before we hit upon one with which everyone was happy.

20. What was the hardest part of writing Corruption of Power?
Changing the story to reflect changes in the geopolitical situation. When I started writing it, Russia hadn’t invaded Crimea, the Russian-encouraged separatists hadn’t started a civil war in the Ukraine, the West hadn’t imposed sanctions, the oil price hadn’t plummeted, the rouble hadn’t halved in value, no one had heard of ISIS and there was no civil war in Syria. All these developments had to be accommodated in the plot.

21. What were the challenges (research, literary, psychological, and logistical) in bringing it to life?
First, finding the time. I don’t write fulltime, I write in spurts. I try to keep up my other interests as much as possible.
Second, research. While most of the locations are places I know well, and while my previous work gave me an insight into the political and administrative background of the countries involved, things inevitably change – and without being on the spot, it requires considerable desktop research to keep up-to-date. Simple details matter – if a reader catches you out on one point, it casts doubt in his mind on the accuracy of the rest. Things change in little ways – when I was in Moscow a few months ago, I found the policemen were polite and Uber was thriving!

My Review:

“Corruption of Power is an action packed political thriller that is beautifully written and artfully plotted, with events mirroring actual real-life conflicts.” Catherine Rose Putsche Book Blog

This is the second instalment in the Leksin series and follows main protagonist, Alex Leksin, who is an independent trouble-shooter, recently recruited by Prime Minister Saidov and President Karpev, to investigate a planned pipeline deal that involves shifting Russia’s vast energy resources to the East. Leksins mission is to check the pipeline deal is above-board. Saidov wants Leksin to give the project a clean bill of health. However, Leksin only has twelve days to report his findings before Karpev is due to sign the pipeline contract with the Turkmen President in Ashgabat. Leksin begins his investigation in Moscow only to discover that the heterogeneous group that are responsible for planning and funding the pipeline contract are his ex-partner and her spiteful brother, Max. Leksins further investigations lead him to Turkmenistan, one of the world’s most sinister countries and from this moment onwards Leksin must be on his guard as he finds killers on his trail who will stop at nothing to eliminate him by assassinating the only people who can help him and that the intelligence he is given turns out to be false and misleading. Leksins mission for the truth leads him from one terrifying situation to the next where the risks of surviving get considerably higher.

This novel explores two governments, one Russia, the other Turkmen, both of which are corrupt and looking to expand their powerbases in different ways. Corruption of Power boasts an elaborate and complex plot, where the twist and turns are particularly surprising and plausible. The strength of the novel lies within the unfamiliar locations where it is based and gives the reader a real insight into the growth and culture there.

Eccles has fashioned a suspenseful and engaging story against the backdrop of political corruption, state-sponsored terrorism and increased Taliban insurgency that I am in no doubt reflect the times in which we live in today. Congratulations Mr Eccles, for bringing us a fundamentally flawed hero who in the face of danger combats adversity through bravery. I look forward to reading more of Leksins adventures.

My Ranking: 5 Stars

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The Boetie Legacy and a World in Peril By Robert A. Kezer

 

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The novel is set in Granada, Nicaragua, and follows main protagonist, Luke Canton. Luke is half way through his life with no income, a few friends and finds himself once again starting over in a foreign country. After 12 years of study and a PHD in Transformative Studies, Luke sets out on a mission to let people know that they have been mislead and he wants to empower them to understand that they have the power to change their world through the movement of nonviolent conflict for global transformation. However, his unique offering to the world to promote human sovereignty doesn’t go as planned as he encounters an unexpected romance that will challenge him in ways he never thought possible and perhaps encourage him to find his greatest purpose in life.

The Boetie Legacy and a World in Peril is a thought-provoking book that deals with difficult moral issues, global issues and exposes the misinformation being used to wield the public. This inspiring book gives people hope and courage to change their world and will equip readers with a better understanding of what nonviolent conflict is and how it can be used in the future to counter oppression.

My Ranking: 5 Stars

INTERNATIONAL BANKSTER$: The Global Banking Elite Exposed and the Case for Restructuring Capitalism (The Underground Knowledge Series Book 5) Kindle Edition By James & Lance Morcan

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Father-and-son Lance & James Morcan expose and outline the main problems behind the current crisis in global banking and finance and propose possible solutions for creating a fairer economic system.

The authors´ reveal fraudulent practises; despicable acts committed by some of the worlds privately owned banks that are alarming and arms readers with important underground knowledge about the global élite, the major players and their associates who stop at nothing to line their own pockets and put prophit ahead of the public. Not only do the authors’ expose a large number of corruptions, they also offer a number of practical solutions to the problems. Their ideas include Islamic banking, as it is considered to be a more honest and fairer alternative to conventional banking, restructuring capitalism and how crypto-currency will influence the economy in the near future.

INTERNATIONAL BANKSTER$ is a thoroughly researched and documented exposé on the financial shenanigans of the worlds hidden system of finance that should be required reading for anyone who is remotely interested in the tangled web of money, power and the current issues that surround and continue to dominate global banking.

My Ranking: 5 Stars

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BOOK REVIEW: DANE CURSE A BLACK CAPE CASE FILE By: Matt Abraham

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“Matt Abraham has written a unique suspense thriller that’s filled with superheroes, super villains, murder and deceit and follows an unlikely hero who will do his best to save the day, no matter if it costs him his life!”

The story starts when Dane Curse (A former black cape, turned PI) is asked to help find and undercover the mysterious death of Gold Coast City’s protector and the world’s mightiest hero, Pinnacle. Dane is hired by a firm called, The Sindicate (black cape mafia) who offers ten million dollars to the first investigator who finds the killer. With the odds stacked against him and fierce competition from three of the top investigators, Dane must fight against the clock to bring the perpetrator, or perpetrators to justice in a game where the stakes are high and several corrupt organizations, who want to rule Gold Coast, as well as the white and black capes fighting each other across the planet to eliminate one another. But as the body count rises, and a number of red herrings cause Dane to become implicated and framed as a suspect, he must fight to save his salvation, as well as serve the justice that’s needed to save a city that’s on the brink of civil war. The biggest question is will Danes invulnerability and super strength be enough to conquer three most powerful people in the world?

Dane Curse is a wonderfully crafted story, with colorful characters, an action packed plot that’s loaded with many unpredictable twists-and-turns. I was pretty much hooked from the start and look forward to reading more books in this planned series. I expect an exciting epic to be awaiting this credible hero.

My Ranking: 5 Stars
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Book Review: Into the Americas (A novel based on a true story) By Lance & James Morcan

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http://www.amazon.com/Into-Americas-novel-based-story-ebook/dp/B00YJKM51E/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top?ie=UTF8

“Father-and-son Lance & James Morcan have created a rich, immersive and informative story of two men’s courageous voyage and capture in the Pacific Northwest during the early 19th century. Startling, assertive and intense, it’s perhaps one of the most captivating true-life survival tales of all time!”

In the opening chapter the reader is introduced to the main protagonist, John Jewitt, an apprentice blacksmith, who dreams of travelling abroad on one of the great brigs that dock in Kingston upon Hull. John’s dreams soon come true when Captain Salter of the Boston witnesses John’s smithy skills first hand and sees an opportunity for John to work in the ships armoury. Unknown to John a life of enslavement and captivity awaits him along with another crew member (Thompson) by the fierce Mowachaht tribe in the Pacific Northwest. John and Thompson are taken captive by Maquina (Chief of the Mowachahts) as the Mowachaht tribe kill all the crew members of the Boston. John witnesses the decapitated heads of 25 of his crew mates lined up and wonders if he and Thompson will end up dying in the same fashion, until he learns the only reason Maquina keeps them both alive is that their trademark working skills are considered most valuable to the tribes future trading. John learns the Mowachahts are fierce warriors capable of the most barbaric forms of savagery, yet on the other hand they are proud noble people that can be capable of great kindness. Maquina soon forces John to marry a beautiful maiden (Eu-Stochee) who in turn tries to bind John to her savaged land forever, but John soon fears that he will never see a civilized country again and thoughts of escape are still ripe on his and Thompsons mind even after several barbaric beatings and escape attempts backfire.

Will John and Thompson ever find a way out to freedom? And if so, at what cost? Or will they perish in their desperate attempts, as the odds are greatly stacked against them?

My Ranking: 5 Stars