Sunday, April 1, 2012

Book Reviews: Stevie-girl and the Phantom Pilot, Romancing Olive & The Secret Staircase

Hi all,

(This post was modified on 4/10/13 to reflect the republishing of Ann Swann's novel.)

I love to read and I read a lot! Before I bought my Kindle, I read every big-name author I could find that I liked and once I had read my way through all their books, I was stuck waiting for a new one. Luckily, owning a Kindle allows me access to many new Indie Authors that I would not have otherwise known existed. I've had the opportunity to read so many great books by talented authors who maybe don't yet have a huge following, but definitely should. So, I'd like to share with you three of my favorite books so far from Indie Authors. As I read new authors, I plan on sharing their books with you in the future. Here we go...

Cover by Tugboat Design
Stevie-girl and the Phantom Pilot by Ann Swann

Stevie-girl and the Phantom Pilot is meant for a younger audience but I really do believe that anyone age 10 to 110 will love this book. It is a beautifully written story that keeps you interested from the first page to the last. Author Ann Swann is a talented writer and I look forward to reading more books by her. Here is a description of the book:

Book Description:

What do you do when a phantom needs your help?

A small plane crashes into Jase's backyard, and before long, he realizes the ghost of the pilot is haunting him. Jase needs help to rid himself of this supernatural visitor. When he sees his friend, Stevie, entering the town's legendary haunted house, he's certain she's the one who will have the answer to his problem. But will she help him? Would you?
My 5 Star Review:

Stevie and Jase are 12-year-old kids with a problem - a ghost is haunting Jase's house.

It's the late 1960s and Stevie (a girl) is trying to find her place in the world in a small town in Texas. Her best friend has moved away and she is in desperate need of a friend. Jason-Lee enters. He sees Stevie go inside a decrepit haunted house and decides she is the person who is best suited to help him with his problem - a ghost! He begins to tell her his story of the plane that crashed in his parent's field and the ghost-man who is now haunting him. The trouble is, he doesn't know why he is being haunted and he needs help finding out. Stevie and Jase begin an adventure that uncovers some town secrets that have long been buried.

I just loved this book! Even though it is meant for kids ages 10 and up - I think any adult who loves to read would enjoy this story, too. The author, Ann Swann, has a beautiful writing style that you can't help but be impressed with as well as the knack for telling a great story. You get such a wonderful feel for the time period and the characters are so real you can believe they live next door to you. I don't care if you are 10 or 110 - this book is well worth the read. I can't wait to read more from this talented author.

Romancing Olive by Holly Bush

If you like romance novels, you'll love Romancing Olive. Holly Bush creates memorable characters who you will fall in love with before they even know they are in love. It is a time-period story, so expect the story to have the flavor of this time period. Here is a description:

Book Description:

In 1891, spinster librarian, Olive Wilkins, is shocked to learn of her brother’s violent death at a saloon gaming table and her sister-in-law’s subsequent murder, traveling far from her staid life to rescue her niece and nephew, now orphans. She arrives to find the circumstances of her brother’s life deplorable and her long held beliefs of family and tradition, shaken.

Accustomed to the sophistication of Philadelphia, Olive arrives in Spencer, Ohio, a rough and tumble world she is not familiar with, facing two traumatized children. Her niece and nephew, Mary and John, have been living with a neighboring farmer, widower Jacob Butler, the father of three young children of his own and a man still in pain from the recent loss of his wife.

Real danger threatens Olive and Mary and John while Jacob and his own brood battle the day-to-day struggles for survival. Will Olive and Jacob find the strength to fight their battles alone or together? Will love conquer the bitterness of loss and broken dreams?

My 5 Star Review:

I absolutely enjoyed reading Romancing Olive. This book is the perfect women's fiction book. It contains the right blend of romance, drama and action which makes it difficult to put down. The characters are realistic and believable and the story is well-thought out. You find yourself falling in love with Olive, Jacob and the kids quite easily. Author Holly Bush did a wonderful job bringing the past alive and keeping each character in context to their time period. I look forward to reading more of Ms. Bush's work.

The Secret Staircase by Melanie Jackson

I love how Melanie Jackson writes! She has such a beautiful style that flows so smoothly that it makes reading a delight. And her stories are just fun to read! I enjoyed The Secret Staircase immensely and also enjoyed book two in the series, Twelfth Night. Here is a description of the book:

Book Description:

A strange inheritance leads Tess MacKay to an island in Maine. In her unknown relative's ancient house, she discovers that the sins of the past are very much alive and able to be visited on the children. Smugglers and pirates and an old curse are not just things of the past, but dangers and mysteries to be reckoned with today.

My 5 Star Review

I thoroughly enjoyed The Secret Staircase by Melanie Jackson. Ms. Jackson has a beautiful writing style that makes you not only enjoy the story, but also appreciate the art of writing. Her characters are so well thought out that you feel like you know them personally and the story line is given to you in small doses until you can't wait to see what happens next. I just couldn't put this book down. The perfect blend of mystery, suspense and intrigue. I am now hooked on Ms. Jackson's books and cannot wait to read book 2 in the series.

I hope you will try one or more of these books and enjoy them as much as I did.


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