Sunday, May 16, 2010

The Anonymous Bride by Vickie McDonough

Calling all would-be fiction writers--especially historical fiction writers. Stephen King's famous quote tell us, "if you don't have time to read, you don't have time or the tools to write." Here on Books to Write blog, we usually tell about craft books, but today I'd like to tell you of a fiction book called "The Anonymous Bride." I met author Vickie McDonough a couple years ago in Tulsa. She's a quiet, unassuming, talented lady, and her new book catches your attention with the first line and holds on to the last sentence.
In craft books, fiction workshops and online courses, I repeatedly hear to grab them at the beginning. McDonough starts with "Sometimes God asked difficult things of a man, and for Luke Davis, what he was fixing to do was the hardest task ever." Yep, my thoughts exactly. I wanted to read more. This book is the first in the Texas Boardinghouse Brides Series by Barbour which came out in April this year. I fell in love with the characters, not only the hero and heroine, but the hero's two cousins and four (count them-four) mail order brides.
Humor tantalizes the reader, but the book overflows with drama and suspense and a little "who done it," besides. The thing I liked best was there was no draggy downtime at the end. McDonough kept the reader eager for more until the end.
A question put to Vickie McDonough was how she got her start in writing. Here's her answer, "I have always been an avid reader, so I'm sure that influenced me to become a writer, even though I'd never planned to be one. A story started going through my head, and it got to the point where I wasn't sleeping at nights because of it. I decided to write it down, hoping it would go away and leave me alone. As soon as I finished that book, another one starting running through my mind. At this point I took a step back and started praying about my writing, and that's when I felt God leading me into the writing field."
I, for one, am glad Vickie couldn't sleep until she started writing them down for the rest of us to read. I got this book free but plan on passing it on to a writing friend specializing in historical romance. Then, I'll buy Vickie's next book.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Sworn to Protect by DiAnn Mills

I met DiAnn Mills when I stepped "out of the box" and signed up for her Mentoring Class. I've been a fan since that time.

Her latest book is Sworn to Protect which is book #2 in her Call of Duty series. Janet Brown, who took the Mentoring Class at my suggestion, wrote about the first book, Breach of Trust .

Sworn to Protect features a female Border Patrol Agent whose husband's unsolved murder haunts her. Her life is complicated by threats against her own life and her brother-in-law's resentment.

DiAnn states she rode with the Border Patrol to get a feel for the job. I feel like I have a greater appreciation for the dangers the Border Patrol agents face as part of their daily routine.

DiAnn also presents the plight of the illegals who are preyed upon by individuals who take advantage of them and exposes the tactics of those who traffic in humans and drugs.

The problems of the border are front page news. This work of fiction gives a glimpse of both sides of the situation without taking sides while weaving a story you won't want to put down.

I enjoyed this book as well as the first one and will be anxiously waiting book three in the series.

I ordered the book from my local bookstore and received no compensation from DiAnn Mills for writing this review.

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