Sunday, April 22, 2018

Signs in the Rearview Mirror: Leaving a Toxic Relationship Behind by Kelly Smith

Signs in the Rearview Mirror: Leaving a Toxic Relationship Behind by Kelly Smith
What kind of person ends up in a toxic relationship? And why does she stay? This searingly honest novel answers both those questions head-on. Coming out of a failing marriage, Kelly turns to Gabe out of fear of being alone. Her gradual slide into danger is at once terrifying and inevitable, and the steps she takes to get out of it will both inspire and offer hope.
In Signs in the Rearview Mirror: Leaving a Toxic Relationship Behind we have Kelly Smith, a talented well put together woman. She is separated from her husband whom she has 3 children with. She sees an old school mate, Gabe, on Facebook and reluctantly friends him. They begin a relationship, but Kelly is mourning her divorce. She can’t talk to Gabe about it because he has a bad temper and won’t understand. As the story progresses we learn about Kelly’s difficult childhood with her alcoholic father. Gabe reassures her that she need not worry about alcohol problems with him, but he lied. In fact, he lied about many things.
Out of fear of being alone, Kelly stays with Gabe. But things get bad and he begins to abuse her. He calls her horrible names and is jealous of her every move. Kelly continues to stay with him. In the beginning the signs that Gabe was abusive were there. But she ignored them because she didn’t want to be alone and she was excited about her new relationship with Gabe. She begins to live in a whirlwind of abuse, name callings, one sided apologies and a cycle that never ends. How did she get herself into this situation? And how can she get out?
Signs in the Rearview Mirror: Leaving a Toxic Relationship is one woman’sfirsthand account of what it’s like to live in the cycle of abuse and how she got there in the first place. She had the best of intentions but made small choices here and there without thinking of what was really going on. She was blinded by the idea of love and spending her life with someone that seemed to be loving and caring. But things began to slowly change. Eventually she was being put down, manipulated, controlled and called the most horrible names, on a regular basis. She tells of her inspiring and brave escape from the abusive Gabe. Kelly also gives us her back ground from her previous marriage and her childhood. It is a very compelling and interesting read.
This is a poignant look at how easy it is for one to get sucked into an abusive relationship. It was not Kelly’s fault, she was manipulated, lied to and led into what she thought was a relationship of mutual care and love. It wasn’t until after the fact that she began to be mistreated. I really empathized and had compassion for Kelly, although she doesn’t write her story in a “feel sorry for me” way. She is very graceful and owns her own mistakes. This is an inspiring story, full of hope and a must read for those that are trying to break out of the cycle of abuse. If you are in a toxic relationship, this is the book for you. I enjoyed it immensely. It is very well written and composed. I was caught up in her story and read the book straight through in one sitting. I highly recommend Signs in the Rearview Mirror: Leaving a Toxic Relationship Behind by Kelly Smith to all readers.
Purchase Signs in the Rearview Mirror: Leaving a Toxic Relationship Behind by Kelly Smith @Amazon

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Quest to the Unknown by Annelies George

Quest to the Unknown by Annelies George
Quest to the Unknown revolves around up-and-coming Dutch reporter Jessie Golden, ready for her first holiday with business mogul and playboy Carlos Gomez, with whom she is engaged in a budding romance. Her journey begins when she finds a folder full of information on a mysterious woman named Nancy and her son Paul, leading her to an unexpected quest. Soon thereafter Jessie is confronted with a series of unexplainable supernatural occurrences. She realizes there is no such thing as coincidence, although she can’t unravel the true meaning of her quest nor her link to Nancy and her son.
At the same time Jessie believes Carlos’ father has ties with some questionable characters. Startled by a series of unexpected events she reaches out to Ed Turner, Carlos’ right-hand man. In order to protect the one she truly loves, Jessie starts an investigation that points to the murky world of the mob. When a stranger is constantly following her, Jessie’s life is in serious danger. Can the ones she implicitly confides in, still be trusted?
The first part of the Jessie Golden 21st Century Earth Series, introduces the main characters of the saga in an intriguing story of exceptional mother love, the far reaching consequences of choices in life, genuine feelings, blind faith and brutal deception, set in a multitude of countries in today’s fast moving business world.
Quest to the Unknown by Annelies George is book one in the Jessie Golden 21st Century Earth Series. In it we have Jessie Golden, a Dutch journalist at Kruger Publishing, responsible for a business magazine. After ending a fifteen year relationship, she is tasked to interview Carlos Gomez, a playboy and powerful businessman, in which she falls in mutual love with. But Carlos is not the only one that is attracted to Jessie. Then she finds a folder in her room with information about a curious family in which she immediately feels a connection to. After finding numerous leads in the documents, she and her friend Angelina embark upon a journey that leads her to an energy healer named Nancy. Through Nancy she learns of her mission. Then she checks out Nancy’s son Paul and discovers a link between them.
She also has other missions that are more tedious. Her journey leads her to various countries. She has a story with Carlos’ father, Sancho, who is involved with the mob and insider trading and he may, in fact, be trying to destroy his son’s businesses. Carlos declares his love for Jessie and they become engaged to be married. Is Carlos the right one for Jessie? Little is what it seems and Jessie has to determine the truth, including Carlos’ extreme feelings for her. As situations are revealed, Jessie moves forward towards her life altering mission. During her travels she has some supernatural encounters. Is all this a coincidence? To top it all off, someone is following Jessie and her life is in danger.
Quest to the Unknown is the first in an apocalyptic series by Annelies George. It is filled with mystery, crime and the supernatural. The author does an exemplary job of creating characters that are realistic and interesting. Moreover, the suspense in this novel is nail biting and riveting. There is rape murder, drug lords and violence. It keeps readers on the edge of their seat with its intense suspense and mystery. The characters are well developed and multifaceted. I became invested in their lives. There were even parts where I cried. Annelies George did a great job of developing the characters with their particular personalities. I truly became steeped in Jessie’s life as she is determined, independent, with keen investigative prowess. She is loyal and successful in all that she does which will make good for immediate and future missions. I became emotionally entrenched in Jessie’s life and her missions and their outcomes. My heart went out to her many times.
The plot and storyline flow with ease even though it is intense and powerful. It is fast paced and fully engaging. The characters help weave together a story that is an extreme combination of uncertainty, science fiction and romance. There are many mysterious questions that inevitably must be figured out and answered. Annelies George writes an involved and engrossing mystery that grabbed my attention from the start and wouldn’t let go until the end. And even then, I am looking forward to the continuing saga.
The scenes to introduce each chapter were written well and I was able to easily follow along. The descriptions gave me a keen idea of the locations, the people and their surroundings. This novel is excellent and well composed. There are no grammatical errors which made for an enjoyable smooth read. With a strong female protagonist, mystery, adventure, drama and suspense I was totally hooked and engaged. I couldn’t put it down. It’s a real page turner. I fully anticipate the second book in the series.
Quest to the Unknown is a must read, 5 star saga, with more to come.
Reviewed by Chick Lit Cafe
Purchase Quest to the Unknown by Annelies George @Amazon

Friday, April 20, 2018

Diary of an Average Fairy by M M Hillman

Diary of an Average Fairy by M M Hillman
Teacher’s Comments: Vervain has made satisfactory progress and has achieved an average level in most subjects.
What do you think, Diary? Yes, I know it’s not a BAD report but words like SATISFACTORY and AVERAGE just don’t feel like me. I’ve looked up ‘average’ in the dictionary. It says: a middle place between two extremes, usual, normal.
I don’t want to be NORMAL, I want to be spectacular! I feel special inside. Does everyone feel special? Maybe it’s just normal to feel special and I’m not actually special at all.
Diary, do you think I can be average and special at the same time?
Vervain isn’t the smartest, the most stylish or the best at flying and magic – she’s just an average fairy. But when the magical kingdom is threatened by evil, she finds herself central to its safety. Through her anything-but-average adventures, Vervain learns that true friendship is precious and that ordinary folk can do the most extraordinary things.
Vervain shares these exciting adventures with her diary and confides her thoughts and feelings. She struggles with difficult emotions – fear, anger, envy, sadness, grief, yet infects us with her determination, her delight of simple pleasures, and her exhilaration at overcoming obstacles.
The author M.M. Hillman is a practicing therapist. Using a language of emotion that children understand, she invites us into a world of mythical creatures who are just like you and me. Amusing and sometimes very moving – a tale that neither children nor adults will forget.
Vervain is an average fairy who is barely tall enough to make it into Fairy School, but she does. She reluctantly begins Fairy School with a squeamish stomach and all. So she takes out her piece of rainbow, her secret weapon to cheer herself up. It fills the room with color – yellow, reds, greens and blues that dazzle so much. It calms her down. She writes in her diary daily. In it she shares her innermost feelings. She loves the simple pleasures that life holds for her.  In her diary, she talks about her exciting adventures and experiences. But she is just an average fairy, although she does feel spectacular and very special.
But soon the magical kingdom is in peril, and Vervain finds herself in the middle and able to help. She engages in adventures that are anything but normal.  She learns that friends are important and that, although she is average, she can do anything she puts her mind to. She is brave and helps to free the kingdom of the tyranny of Magowr.
Diary of an Average Fairy is anything but average. It is a fabulous tale about an average normal fairy that does great things to help the fairy kingdom. It has a message to middle grade and teen kids that it’s alright to be just average. And that being average doesn’t limit them from doing great things. Vervain expresses her many feelings of fear, anger and sadness in her diary. Her diary tells of her many experiences, good and bad, at school and during her free time.
I know that children will really relate to Diary of an Average Fairy. It touches, extensively, on all the issues and problems that middle grade and teens go through. It is exciting and entertaining with creatures, fairies and foes. The way that author M M Hillman describes things like the magical kingdom, the fairies, the creatures and the surroundings, is lush and rich. A true delight for the imagination and the senses. It is a splendid, beautiful place that any child will marvel in, and want to visit in this book.
Diary of an Average Fairy by M M Hillman is engaging, even for me as an adult. I loved it and I can see how any child, young or older, will love it. They will totally relate to it. The characters will remind them of themselves and their friends and even those that give them a hard time. They will relate to the various scenarios too. It will speak to their self-consciousness and to their insecurities. It will encourage them to be brave and show them that their feelings are normal.
The characters are great. They are genuine, well developed and have fun personalities with strengths and weaknesses. Children will see themselves in and relate to the various characters.
It is written extremely well. It is smart and easy to read. It is written in the form of a diary – Vervain’s diary. It completely works and is composed with skill and creativity. I love it when I read a book that is written so well in every aspect. It’s important that kids read books that are written and edited well. This one hits a home run in that area.
Diary of an Average Fairy is unique and beautiful fantasy tale. Its premise is original and authentic.
It has a positive message that kids will glean from. It truly is splendid with gorgeous descriptions and with a very entertaining delightful storyline. I recommend that parents get a copy of this book for their kids. They will really love, and enjoy, it. They will learn from it. Parents can rest assured that it will be very appropriate and fitting for their child.
Overall, Diary of an Average Fairy is a glorious, charming and delightful story that captivates the reader and causes them to see vivid scenery and fairies, to feel various emotions and to enjoy a story well told.
Chick Lit Cafe highly recommends Diary of an Average Fairy by M M Hillman
Purchase Diary of an Average Fairy by M M Hillman @Amazon
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Saint Harry by Maura Beth Brennan

Saint Harry – A Short Story by Maura Beth Brennan
Angie’s widowed Aunt Ida decides to embark on a career talking to the spirits, and use her powers to help her family and friends. Angie worries that something crazy might happen. And it does.
Angie has moved back home with her mother after a break up with her boyfriend. One day they find out from their Aunt Ida that Uncle Harry, Aunt Ida’s husband, has passed away. Aunt Ida is beside herself with grief and begins declaring what a Saint her Harry was. Aunt Ida always put Uncle Harry down and made his life hell. While Uncle Harry was the favorite uncle in the family, Aunt Ida, in turn, was a sour puss, and the least favorite in the family. Uncle Harry was a magnificent Uncle, He was sweet and generous, the opposite of Aunt Ida. Aunt Ida begins calling Harry, “Saint Harry.” She starts speaking well of him now that he’s dead. She declares that he was such a good and kind man and just a Saint. She even takes to praying to him and asking him to show her a sign.
One day Aunt Ida announces that she is going to visit Miss Maeve the local medium and spiritualist. This troubles Angie very much and she wants to talk Aunt Ida out of going. But instead, she accompanies her to the Miss Maeve’s house. After her visit with Miss Maeve, she says that she talked to Uncle Harry and that she has powers too. The medium then turns to Angie and tells her that good things are coming to her. What will happen next? Will good things come to Angie?
Saint Harry is a witty, laugh out loud, short story by Maura Beth Brennan. It is full of humorous antics and anecdotes. The storyline and plot are fully developed and well thought out. From the very first page, I was hooked and it kept me hooked throughout the entire story. Maura Beth Brennan has a knack for writing short stories that are full and fun and very entertaining. She packs a lot of cleverness and ingenuity into one quick read. I fully enjoy her stories and this one, Saint Harry, did not let me down.
Maura Beth Brennan has a way with words that makes them flow right off the page. The plots are always fulfilling with excellent endings. Saint Harry is right up there with some of the best chick lit reads. The characters are well developed and multifaceted. Once again, Maura Beth Brennan, packs a lot of personality and temperament into her characters, in one short story. I love the funny people that are in her tales. They make me laugh and laugh and laugh.
Saint Harry is one of those stories that leaves you smiling and uplifted. It is charming and enchanting.  The descriptions of the setting, the people and the objects are vivid and complete, so as to make the reader feel as if they are there watching on as the story unfolds. There are little twists here and there making it unpredictable. It is satisfying and complete with a great happy ending. One must read Saint Harry by Maura Beth Brennan.
Maura Beth Brennan is the author of the outstanding, mysterious, 5 star novel, “The Edge of Memory,” and the short stories “The Ex Chronicles,” and “Saint Harry.” We are looking forward to more books by this exceptional writer, Maura Beth Brennan.
Chick Lit Cafe highly recommends the sweet short story, Saint Harry by Maura Beth Brennan
Purchase Saint Harry by Maura Beth Brennan Now @Amazon
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Sunday, April 15, 2018

100 Dates and a Wedding by Steph Tumba

100 Dates and a Wedding by Steph Tumba
100 Dates & a Wedding relates the dating tribulations of a young French divorcee named Valerie Duval. It narrates Valerie’s dating experiences in London and shares the lessons she learnt from them. Her disillusionments, her joys, and her own ambiguities are shared without concession questioning how to deal with a break up after a long relationship? How to believe in love again after being defeated? Doesn’t everyone kiss a few frogs before reaching their happy ending? But the questions every woman wonder: How many dates does it get to find the “One”? 100? How many shags? Valerie won’t tell. How many mistakes made? Certainly plenty. Should you play the Game?
Valerie never understood the rules. So how do you meet the right one then? After a few slaps on the face. The road to love is not easy, but when you find it, you realize that somehow you enjoyed the ride, but more so adored reaching the destination. We must all go through this, c’est la vie! 100 Dates & a Wedding will make your heart laugh out loud; it is filled with raw emotions and evinces an incredible honesty in terms of storytelling. 100 Dates and a Wedding is moving and charming, is the perfect novel for a female of any age to engross herself into and delve into self-discovery through Valerie’s inspiring journey.
100 Dates and a Wedding is a fictional story based on author, Steph Tumba’s, real life events. In it we meet Valerie Duvall, a young French woman that has lived in London for three years now. She was married for seven years and is now divorced. Her two best friends, Camellia, sensitive and loyal, and Bianca, outgoing and sexy, help Valerie signup and create a profile on the dating site “”. Valerie is reluctant at first but decides to give it a try and creates her profile in hopes to meet someone she can have a real relationship with.
As she looks at the profiles of the men online, she starts to relax and have fun. With so many men to choose from, she doesn’t know where to start. So she decides to send messages to all of the ones that caught her attention. Right away there is action on her profile. She receives a hundred emails and a 300 winks from the eager men that are hoping to find a date. With her friend’s approval, Valerie begins to date. Will she find the love of her life – her soulmate?
What follows is a humorous adventure in the world of online dating and matchmaking. It is the story of one woman’s life, her marriage and divorce, her career, her life in London and her experiences in online dating and finding the love of her life.
100 Dates and a Wedding starts out with a humorous bang right from the beginning, as Valerie is having her divorce and birthday party on the same day. The things that go on at the party are laugh-out-loud-funny.
Then she starts dating and has many trials and tribulations with her dates. She goes from one date to the next excited and confused. She actually seems to find some keepers but then as time goes on and she gets to know them for one reason or another things don’t work out. Will she ever find the one who she will fall in love with and get married? You must read the book to find out.
I couldn’t put 100 Dates and a Wedding down and read it almost straight through. It grabbed my attention from the very beginning and I began laughing right away. It is engaging, fun and exciting. There are real moments when my emotions got caught up in the story, as it made me angry and sad at times too. But it’s mostly funny and definitely interesting, as the reader gets a peek into the author’s life. It is written very well with a bit of a French flair to it.
Author Steph Tumba did a magnificent job of describing the setting, which is in London, as I felt like I was there. I thoroughly enjoyed all the characters. They have interesting and quirky personalities. They are well developed and fleshed out and became real to me.
I know readers will enjoy 100 Dates and a Wedding, the story is original, creative, well written and composed. Because it is based on a true story of the author’s own experiences, it is very realistic and down-to-earth, yet very funny, amusing and especially entertaining. I loved the satisfying ending.
Chick Lit Cafe highly recommends 100 Dates and a Wedding by Steph Tumba to all romantic comedy lovers.
Purchase 100 Dates and a Wedding by Steph Tumba @Amazon Now

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Wrapped in the Stars by Elena Mikalsen

Wrapped in the Stars by Elena Mikalsen
Struggling with guilt over her sister’s death and the stress of her medical residency, Maya Radelis runs away to Scotland. A robin seems to lead her to an antique shop, where she finds a century-old engagement ring. But what is the ring’s history? She follows the slim paper trail, wondering if it is only coincidence that her dreams reveal the story of a Swiss woman physician who wore the ring during World War I. In Paris she meets fellow New Yorker David Fischer, a lawyer with family in Switzerland as well as America. He helps Maya follow the memories stored in the ring as they lead her around Europe. The attraction between David and Maya grows, and when they discover a connection between the ring and David’s family, they learn, bit by bit, more about the ring’s earlier owner. Will Maya’s own life have the same tragedy of lost love?
Wrapped in the Stars by Elena Mikalsen is a beautiful tale of love, anguish, and destiny, written with a touch of magic realism. It’s modern day time and Maya Radelis travels to Edinburgh, Scotland after a tragedy at her hospital where she is doing her residency. She is ridden with guilt and blame and is trying to escape her emotions. A robin emerges which leads Maya to an antique shop where she discovers a beautiful vintage moonstone ring. She is immediately drawn towards the ring and compelled to buy it.
She then begins to have mental flashbacks and memories, of a time in history, and that are not her own. She is entranced by the ring and finds herself traveling throughout Europe in search of the meaning behind the woman who previously owned the ring. While in Paris, she meets David, a New Yorker as well, and has an immediate attraction. David wants to help her with her search. From there, Elena and David travel to Switzerland where they discover they have more in common than they expected. They uncover a parallel connecting the ring to David’s family and begin to learn more about its original owner.
From there we begin to meet Rebecca, the ring’s original owner. It is back in time during World War l, 1911. Rebecca is a young Swiss woman that wants to become a doctor. She is determined, although her parents don’t support her decision to go to medical school. They insist that she find a husband and marry. During her time at medical school, she meets a poor Russian student and falls deeply in love. Out of his love for her, he gives Rebecca the ring. Does the ring have a connection between the two women? Is the ring magical?
Wrapped in the Stars is a passionate, engaging story that weaves two timelines together to form a beautiful tapestry of love and fate. It is full of history and intrigue. It is written with a unique voice and proficiency. I loved it and couldn’t put it down. The way that Elena Mikalsen so aptly combines the present with the past is beyond reasoning. She merges the two young women’s lives together in unanticipated and distinct ways. I was floored by the amount of historical research that was put into this story. We learn about the history of women in the field of medicine, the Russian Revolution, European social history and more. I learned a lot while reading this splendid novel.
The scenery is picturesque, defined and striking, as we are lead from New York to Paris to Switzerland and more.  I felt like I was there experiencing the same things as Maya and Rebecca. At the core of the book is an exquisite love story. A love that surpasses all boundaries and hindrances. It’s a mysterious magical tale that takes readers on a journey to beautiful places, and through time and history and back to the present day. I was hooked from the very beginning and remained engaged throughout the entire book. It is intelligent, yet easy to read. There are surprises and many things that I didn’t see coming which made it so interesting and entertaining. One would never know that Wrapped in the Stars is a debut novel. It surpassed my expectations and I highly recommend it to all avid readers.
Purchase Wrapped in the Stars by Elena Mikalsen @Amazon
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Friday, April 6, 2018

Murder, She Wrote: A Date with Murder by Jon Land

Murder, She Wrote: A Date with Murder by Jon Land
Jessica Fletcher investigates a friend’s murder and a dangerous dating service in the latest entry in the USA Today bestselling Murder, She Wrote series…
Jessica Fletcher takes up the cause of her good friend Barbara “Babs” Wirth after Babs’ husband Hal suffers a fatal heart attack that Jessica has reason to believe was actually murder. At the heart of her suspicions lies a sinister dating site Hal had used while he and Babs were having marital issues–a site that may be complicit in somehow swindling him out of millions.
Jessica’s investigation reveals that Hal was far from the only victim and when his former business partner is also killed, a deadly pattern emerges. Jessica teams up with a brilliant young computer hacker to follow the trail but as she gets closer to the truth, two near misses force her to realize that she may very well be the next victim.
The stakes have never been this high as Jessica finds herself being stalked by the killer she is trying to catch. She must now set the perfect trap to avoid her very own date with murder.
Babs and Hal Wirth were hosting a Labor Day party on their estate in Cabot Cove, Maine. Towards the end of the party Hal as an, apparent, heart attack and dies. Mystery writer, Jessica Fletcher, which is Hal and Babs good friend, suspects foul play. When Hal’s former business partner, Eugene Labine, is also murdered, a lethal design begins to surface. Jessica, a mystery writer and amateur sleuth begins investigating.
Meanwhile, Babs discovers that Hal’s $10 million business was nearly bankrupt. Jessica secretly finds a note from Labine threatening to sue Hal. She uncovers a dangerous dating site that Hal frequented and suspects objectionable circumstances. Jessica is sure that there is a killer on the loose. She teams up with a gifted young computer wizard and goes to work to solve Hal’s murder. But she gets a little too involved and risks her own life in making a date with murder of her own.
A Date with Murder is an exciting fresh new installment in the Murder, She Wrote series starring mystery writer Jessica Fletcher. Jon Land has done a superb job in writing this latest book in the series. It is full of intrigue, mystery and danger. Jessica Fletcher is old fashioned but sassy and spunky. She gathers up friends and camaraderie’s to help her catch the killer. She gives the cops a real challenge, as she fervently works her own investigation. But she puts herself in danger, as she herself finds herself stalked by the killer.
A Date with Murder is well written and composed. In keeping with the original series, Jon Land has put his own unique style and talent to work in this beloved, famous series. It’s full of surprises and twists and turns. It is realistic and humorous too. There is a lot going on in this story as we go from Boston to New York and back to Cabot Cove where the real action lies.
The characters are all well developed and multifaceted. I love the way Land wrote the dialog between Jessica and the rest of the characters. Readers will fall in love with Jessica and the other characters is this story. I love mysteries and A Date with Murder is hands down one of the best ones I have ever read.
The storyline, along with the plot, is engaging, spellbinding and thoroughly entertaining.  The riveting mystery aspect and narrative of the story has been written with creative skill and great imagination. I couldn’t put the book down as it is mesmerizing and absorbing. It’s original and irresistible and pulled me in right from the beginning to the satisfying, unpredictable finish.
The descriptions and portrayal of the scenery and the people are excellently written, I felt like I was there looking on as Jessica and her friends feverishly work to catch the killer. Jon Land has proven himself in numerous other books that he has authored, and A Date with Murder is up there with his best. For mystery fans and fans of the Murder, She Wrote series, A Date with Murder is a fabulous installment that you can’t miss.
Chick Lit Cafe Highly Recommends A Date with Murder by Jon Land
Purchase Murder, She Wrote: A Date with Murder by Jon Land @Amazon

The Road Ahead by Hali Broncucia

The Road Ahead by Hali Broncucia
A viral epidemic has wiped out 99% of the world’s population leaving scientist Heather Morgan to fight off thieves and scrounge for food and shelter near Denver, Colorado. When Heather befriends the young, na├»ve Jodi, she learns that a biotech company in San Francisco is rumored to have created a vaccine. Together, the women trek by foot to find the lab. After suffering a near-fatal attack, Heather and Jodi find a safe haven on a farm with two young men, Cam and Elliot. Their security is short-lived, however, when irrevocable consequences threaten Heather’s mission. Will Heather be able to overcome loss and tragedy to find the vaccine or will she let sorrow overtake her and turn back? How many lives are worth the risk for a hope that rests in only a rumor?
Heather Morgan is a biological engineer working on a vaccine to treat a deadly virus. She wakes up due to a nightmare at three in the morning. Readers quickly discover that the virus has wiped out 99% of the human population. Alone, Heather must survive. She searches and scrounges for food and shelter. Her survival skills are tested. Soon she meets a young inexperienced woman named Jodi. Heather learns that there is a “rumor” that a San Francisco biotech company has created a vaccine.
Together, Heather and Jodi, begin the long journey on foot from Colorado to San Francisco. Along the way they are attacked, but survive. They soon find shelter on a farm with two young men that they meet, Cam and Elliott. However, tragedy strikes and Heather’s mission is threatened. Will Heather have the strength to carry on to find the vaccine that is only rumored to exist?
The Road Ahead by Hali Broncucia, is a compelling post-apocalypse story that will keep readers engaged from start to finish. Heather is a refreshing, strong female, lead character that readers will love. She is tough and capable without seeming too powerful and unrealistic.
The diminishing population of infected humans that are forced to survive is engrossing and intensely intriguing. The scientific aspects are exceptionally interesting without being too intellectual; that it goes over reader’s heads. It is acutely obvious that much research was put into this novel. The survival details are particularly thought-provoking.
In The Road Ahead, the characters are few, which I found to be refreshing. Their motivations, personalities and temperaments are driven home in this engaging story. They are well developed and multifaceted. They are all realistic and down-to-earth. There is a character for every reader to love.
The Road Ahead is unpredictable with twists at every turn. Heather and her friends must journey a desolate, dying dark land while facing danger at every step. I loved this dystopian story. It is filled with love, loss, danger, scientific intrigue and the feat of survival in a post-apocalyptic, uninhabitable world. The emotions invoked upon the reader will not be soon forgotten. This story left me wanting more and I am hoping for a sequel or a trilogy.
I totally recommend The Road Ahead to all post-apocalypse fans and to those who crave a great read by an exceptional writer, Hali Broncucia.
Reviewed by Chick Lit Cafe