Friday, October 11, 2019

G1155 Book Review of Queen's Gambit by Bradley Harper

Name of Book: Queens GAMBIT

Author: Bradley Harper

ISBN: 978-1-64506-001-7

Publisher: Seventh Street Books

Part of a Series: Margaret Harkness Mystery

Type of book: 1881, 1897, communism, socialism, Great Britain, mystery, diamond Jubilee, Queen Victoria, Germany, diplomatic relationships, assassinations, family

Year it was published: 2019

Summary:

Spring, 1897. London. Margaret Harkness, now in her early forties, must leave England for her health but lacks the funds. A letter arrives from her old friend Professor Bell, her old comrade in the hunt for Jack the Ripper and the real-life inspiration for Sherlock Homes. Bell invites her to join him in Germany on a mysterious mission for the German government involving the loss of state secrets to Anarchists. The resolution of this commission leads to her being stalked through the streets of London by a vengeful man armed with a powerful and nearly silent air rifle who has both Margaret and Queen Victoria in his sights. Margaret finds allies in Inspector James Ethington of Scotland Yard and his fifteen-year-old daughter, Elizabeth, who aspires to follow in Margaret's cross-dressing footsteps.

The hunt is on, but who is the hunter, and who the hunted as the day approaches for the Queen's Diamond Jubilee when the aged empress will sit in her open carriage at the steps of St Paul's Cathedral? The entire British Empire holds its breath as the assassin, Margaret, and the Queen herself play for the highest of stakes with the Queen's Gambit.

Characters:

Main characters include Margaret Harkness, a woman of about 40 or so years of age who is best described as tough and an expert at cross dressing as a man as well as being talented with a gun. There is also James Ethington, an inspector who has recently become a widower and is trying to put his life back on track as well as his daughter Elizabeth who desires to become a detective and wishes for her father to see her as an adult. The antagonist, Hermann Ott/ Viktor Zhelyabov has had a tragic upbringing and is only doing what he thinks is right.

Theme:

Don't judge things by appearances

Plot:

The story is both in first person narrative and third person narrative. In first person narrative, it's from Margaret's point of view, while third person narrative is from the antagonists as well as from a detective's point of view. Also, this particular story takes place about nine or so years later from the first book, which focused on Jack the Ripper. I appreciated witnessing the Diamond Jubilee as well as getting to know Margaret Harkness. I sincerely hope that the author will pen more mysteries about her.

Author Information:
(From book)

Bradley Harper is a former U.S. Army forensic pathologist and Pentagon physician. A member of the Mystery Writers of America, the Authors Guild, and Sisters in Crime, he is a regular contributor to the Sisters in Crime bi-monthly newsletter. His first novel, A KNIFE IN THE FOG, was a finalist for a 2019 Edgar Award by the Mystery Writers of America for best first novel by an American author.

Opinion:

I previously had a chance to read the authors earlier mystery, A KNIFE IN THE FOG, a tantalizing mystery that involves Arthur Conan Doyle and Jack the Ripper, which was an intense and well written read. In Queens GAMBIT, Bradley Harper turns to Margaret Harkness, a character that heavily featured in the previous book. I have to say that I heavily enjoyed Queens GAMBIT, and loved seeing how well fleshed out Margaret was. ( and yes, both Joseph Bell, on whom Sherlock Holmes is based as well as Arthur Conan Doyle also had cameos in the story.) What also was unique is that Bradley Harper gives voice to the villain of the tale, detailing the reasons on how and why he ended up the way he did.

I was given this book for a review

4 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

G1147 Book Review of The Body in Griffith Park by Jennifer Kincheloe

Name of Book: The body in Griffith PARK

Author: Jennifer Kincheloe

ISBN:978-1-63388-540-0

Publisher: Seventh Street Books

Part of a Series:Anna Blanc Mysteries #3

Type of book: California, 1908s, detective work, women, prostitutes, police matron duties, relationship, family, murder, humor, traveling, treatment of genders,

Year it was published: 2019

Summary:

Los Angeles, 1908. Anna Blanc is a former so-so socialite, a flailing police matron, and a killer detective.

Ex-heiress, Anna Blanc, is precariously employed by the Los Angeles Police Department, reforming delinquent children and minding lady jailbirds. What she really wants is to hunt criminals and be alone with Detective Joe Singer--both no-nos that could get her fired. On a lover's tryst in Griffith Park, Anna and Joe discover the body of a young gambler. Anna can't resist. She's on the case.

With a murder to solve and her police matron duties piling up, a young girl shows up at Central Station claiming to have been raped by a man from Mars. The men at the station scoff, but Anna is willing to investigate. Meanwhile, Anna begins getting strange floral arrangements from an unknown admirer. Following the petals leads her to another crime--one close to home. Suddenly pitted against Joe, Anna must examine her loyalties and solve the crimes, even if it means losing the man she loves.

Characters:

Main characters include Anna Blanc and Joe Singer. Anna Blanc is a formerly disgraced heiress who is the only legitimate daughter of a wealthy banker. She is stubborn, extremely independent and wants to do the impossible in her time: to solve mysteries and become a detective. She is also very loyal to family and will do whatever she can for them. Joe Singer is a police chiefs son who loves Anna and will do whatever he can to help her solve mysteries. He is also more level headed than Anna and often gives her great advice. Also yes, they are dating and Joe is hoping that Anna will marry him, and Joe tends to follow rules and regulations, trying to be fair.

Theme:

Nothing is what it seems

Plot:

The story is in third person narrative from Anna's point of view as well as Joe Singers. It can stand on its own, but i imagine that knowing Anna's background will make it a very delightful tale. In my opinion, the author has outdone herself because literally this Anna Blanc mystery just shone all over from the sharp and unpredictable plot twists to the intense rivalry between Anna and Joe over the mysterious new character in Anna's life. There is humor, mystery and fascinating historical tidbits of information as well as a curse. This is truly a worthy read to savor.

Author Information:
(From Book)

Jennifer Kincheloe is the award-winning author of THE SECRET LIFE OF ANNA BLANC and THE WOMAN IN THE CAMPHOR TRUNK. She lives with her family in Denver, Colorado where she does research on the jails.

Opinion:

First of all, it's a crime that Jennifer Kincheloe's Anna Blanc mysteries are not better known because honestly, for me, reading an Anna Blanc mystery is like rewatching my favorite TV show, I Love Lucy, except there is a twist to these mysteries: Anna Blanc is a very competent woman and Joe Singer just happens to be her sidekick. Seriously, why aren't these mysteries better known? There is a lot to love in this particular mystery which includes not only a plot involving prostitutes and the mysterious Black Pearl, but it also includes the heart, the sibling rivalry, and Anna being her bull-headed self towards a lot of scenes. These pages are literally gemstones embedded with words and a fun mystery if the reader is looking for a historical mystery that takes place at the turn of the century.

This was given to me for a review

4 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

G1158 E-Reading Book Review of Killer in the Band by Lauren Carr

Name of Book: Killer in the band

Author: Lauren Carr

ISBN: B01M193ICR

Publisher: Acorn Book services

Part of a Series: Lovers in Crime #3

Type of book: mystery, farm, music, band, talent, animals, horses, loyalty, horse sense, marriage, crime, animal whisperer, older woman/ younger male relationship, making peace, lawyers, study, determination

Year it was published: 2016

Summary: 

It's a Summer of Love & Murder!

Joshua’s eldest son, Joshua Thornton Jr. (J.J.) has graduated at the top of his class from law school and returns home to spend the summer studying for the bar exam. However, to Joshua's and Cameron's shock and dismay, J.J. moves into the main house at Russell Ridge Farm and Orchards, the largest dairy farm in the Ohio Valley, in order to rekindle a romance with Suellen Russell, the one-time leader of a rock who is twice his age. Quickly, they learn that she has a deep dark secret.

The move brings long buried tensions between the father and son to the surface—not the least of which being J.J.'s inexplicable dislike for his stepmother Cameron. But when a brutal killer strikes, the Lovers in Crime must set all differences with Joshua's son aside to solve the crime before J.J. ends up in the cross-hairs of a murderer.

Characters:

Main characters include Joshua Thornton and Cameron Gates as well as their adopted daughter Izzy and J.J Thornton and his first love Suellen. Secondary characters would be Poppy, Suellens band mates, a man who works at her farm as well as Noah. The characters are definitely fleshed out and are too human to be in the novel. The family relationship between them is very strong and they are there for one another and even for those who had bad experience with either lawyers or police.

Theme:

Peace of mind is important

Plot:

The story is in third person narrative from J.J, Suellens, Josh's and Cameron's points of view. Just like her other mysteries, prepare for a wild ride as plots twist and twist and it isn't until the end that they become more sense. The story definitely focuses a lot more on the characters themselves and on mystery, but it seemed to have a serene atmosphere where laughter and family is emphasized. There are also a lot of heartwarming moments as well and it feels as if the characters are people you know. The mystery is definitely top notch and although details are given and detailed, its not until the end that the reader can tie up loose ends together and understand. 

Author Information:
(From iRead Book Tours)


Buy the Book:
Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble
Add to Goodreads
Meet the author: Lauren Carr is the international best-selling author of the Thorny Rose, Mac Faraday, Lovers in Crime, and Chris Matheson Cold Case Mysteries—over twenty titles across four fast-paced mystery series filled with twists and turns!

Book reviewers and readers alike rave about how Lauren Carr seamlessly crosses genres to include mystery, suspense, crime fiction, police procedurals, romance, and humor.

Lauren is a popular speaker who has made appearances at schools, youth groups, and on author panels at conventions. She lives with her husband, and two spoiled rotten German shepherds on a mountain in Harpers Ferry, WV.

Connect with the author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Instagram

Opinion:

Very recently I have read the prequels, and so far this novel is one of the best books I have read because in here Lauren Carr truly shines and pulls the reader into the story and the complex plot of murder. Things I loved about this novel are the well fleshed characters that she brings to the front of the story, well crafted and unpredictable mysteries where twists never go the way they are expected, and family. As far as I can see, this story takes place after I was introduced to Izzy in first Thorny Rose Mysteries, and in here as well I get a chance to meet J.J ( in some previous Lauren Carr's mysteries I met him, but this time I get to know him up close and personal. Also, i met him after this book was published, when he already met Poppy, so it's cool to add backstories to the characters.) The mystery is clean, and I loved getting to know the different pets and the huge role they played within mystery. I also loved the comedic elements of the story too.

This is for iRead Book Tours

BOOK TOUR SCHEDULE:

Sept 9 - Rockin Book Reviews - review of The Root of Murder / guest post /
Lovers in Crime series spotlight / giveaway
Sept 9 - Working Mommy Journal - review The Root of Murder / giveaway
Sept 10 - Life as Leels - review of Dead on Ice
Sept 11 - My Reading Journeys - audiobook review of Dead on Ice / giveaway
Sept 11 - Hall Ways Blog - audiobook review of Real Murder / giveaway
Sept 11 - Literary Flits - review of The Root of Murder / giveaway
Sept 12 - Elizabeth McKenna - Author - book spotlight / giveaway
Sept 12 - Bound 4 Escape - review of Killer in the Band (audible) / giveaway
Sept 12 - A Fountain of Books - audiobook review Dead on Ice
Sept 13 - Words and Peace - book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
Sept 16 - Svetlana's Reads and Views - review of Dead on Ice / giveaway
Sept 16 - Amy’s Booket List - review of Dead on Ice / giveaway
​Sept 16 - Working Mommy Journal - review of Real Murder / giveaway
Sept 17 - Hall Ways Blog - review of The Root of Murder / giveaway
Sept 17 - Laura’s Interests - audiobook review of Dead on Ice / giveaway
Sept 18 - Literary Flits - review of Killer in the Band / giveaway
Sept 18 - Read and Review - book spotlight / guest post
Sept 18 - Sefina Hawke's Books - audiobook review of The Root of Murder / series spotlight
Sept 19 - #Redhead.with.Book - Lovers in Crime Series book spotlight / giveaway
Sept 19 - Life as Leels - review of Real Murder
Sept 20 - Locks, Hooks, and Books - audiobook review of Dead on Ice / giveaway
Sept 20 - Nighttime Reading Center - audiobook review of Real Murder / giveaway
Sept 23 - Amy’s Booket List - review of Real Murder / giveaway
Sept 23 - Christa Reads and Writes - review of The Root of Murder / series spotlight / giveaway
Sept 24 - Fundinmental - review of The Root of Murder / giveaway
Sept 25 Laura’s Interests - review of Real Murder / giveaway
Sept 26 - Library of Clean Reads - review of The Root of Murder / giveaway
Sept 26 - FUONLYKNEW - review of The Root of Murder / giveaway
Sept 26 - Mystery Suspense Reviews - review of The Root of Murder
Sept 26 - Mystery Suspense Reviews - book spotlight / guest post
Sept 27 - Locks, Hooks, and Books - review of Real Murder / giveaway
Sept 30 - Amy’s Booket List - review of Killer in the Band / giveaway
Sept 30 - Svetlana's Reads and Views - review of Real Murder / giveaway
Sept 30 - Older & Smarter? - review of The Root of Murder / giveaway
Oct 1 - Bound 4 Escape - review of Dead on Ice / giveaway
Oct 1 - Dab of Darkness - audiobook review of Real Murder / giveaway
Oct 1 - Life as Leels - review of The Root of Murder
Oct 1 - A Fountain of Books - review of Real Murder
Oct 2 - Literary Flits - review of Real Murder
Oct 3 - Books for Books - review of Dead on Ice / giveaway
Oct 3 - My Reading Journeys - review of Real Murder / giveaway
Oct 4 - Locks, Hooks, and Books - audiobook review of Killer in the Band / giveaway
Oct 4 - Cuzinlogic - book spotlight / giveaway
Oct 7 - Bound 4 Escape - review of Real Murder / giveaway
Oct 8 - Amy's Booket List - review The Root of Murder / giveaway
Oct 9 - Kristin’s Novel Cafe - audiobook review of The Root of Murder
Oct 9 - To Thine Own Shelf - series spotlight / guest post
Oct 10 - Books for Books - review of Real Murder / giveaway
Oct 10 - Locks, Hooks, and Books - audiobook review of The Root of Murder / giveaway
Oct 11 - Pause for Tales - review of The Root of Murder / giveaway
Oct 14 - Celtic Lady’s Reviews - Lovers in Crime series spotlight / giveaway
Oct 14 - My Reading Journeys - review of The Root of Murder / guest post / giveaway
Oct 15 - Dab of Darkness - review of Killer in the Band / giveaway
Oct 15 - Bound 4 Escape - review of The Root of Murder / giveaway
Oct 16 - A Fountain of Books - review of The Root of Murder / author interview
Oct 16 - Buried Under Books - review of Dead on Ice / review of Real Murder / giveaway
Oct 17 - Books for Books - review of Killer in the Band / giveaway
Oct 18 - B for Bookreview - Lovers in Crime series book spotlight / author interview
Oct 21- Nighttime Reading Center - review of The Root of Murder / giveaway
Oct 21 - Laura’s Interests - review of The Root of Murder / guest post / giveaway
Oct 21 - T's Stuff - audiobook review of The Root of Murder / giveaway
Oct 22 - Dab of Darkness - review of The Root of Murder / giveaway
Oct 22 - Books Are Love - review of Dead on Ice / giveaway
Oct 23 - Books Are Love - review of Real Murder / giveaway
Oct 23 - Books for Books - review of The Root of Murder / giveaway
Oct 24 - JBronder Book Reviews - review of The Root of Murder / series spotlight / giveaway
Oct 24 - Books Are Love - review of Killer in the Band / giveaway
Oct 24 - Buried Under Books - review of Killer in the Band / review of The Root of Murder / giveaway
​Oct 25 - Jypsylynn - review of The Root of Murder
Oct 25 - Adventurous Jessy - review of The Root of Murder / giveaway
Oct 25 - Books Are Love - review of The Root of Murder / giveaway
Oct 25 - Svetlana's Reads and Views - review of The Root of Murder / giveaway
TBD - The Quirky Romantic - review of The Root of Murder / author interview / giveaway
TBD - A Fountain of Books - review of Killer in the Band
TBD - Svetlana's Reads and Views - review of Killer in the Band / giveaway

(Click here for giveaway)

4 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

Saturday, October 5, 2019

G1148 No Past Tense; Love and survival in the shadow of the Holocaust


Title of the book: No past tense; love and survival in the shadow of the Holocaust

Author: D.Z. Stone

Publisher: Vallentine Mitchell

Publishing Date: 2019

ISBN: 978-1912676-11-8

Summary:

No Past Tense is the biography of Katarina (Kati) Kellner and William (Willi) Salcer, two Czech Jews who as teenagers were swept up by the Holocaust in Hungary and survived Auschwitz and Mauthausen, respectively.

Covering their entire lives, weaving in first person ‘real time’ voices as if watching a documentary about themselves, the unique structure of No Past Tense provides a distinctive ‘whole life’ view of the Holocaust.

The book begins with their childhoods, education in Budapest, and 16-year-old Kati meeting 19-year-old Willi in the Jewish ghetto in Plesivec, a Slovak village annexed by Hungary in 1938. After liberation from the camps they returned to discover most Jews were gone, and the villagers did not want them back. In defiance, Kati took up residence in a shed on her family’s property, and in reclaiming what was hers, won Willi’s heart.

They lived as smugglers in post-war Europe until immigrating illegally to Palestine in 1946. Describing Palestine, they talk frankly about rarely addressed issues such as prejudice against ‘newcomers’ from other Jews.

Willi built tanks for the Haganah, the underground Jewish army, and supported the War of Independence but refused to move into homes abandoned by Palestinian Arabs. After discharge from the Israeli Air Force, Willi founded the country’s first rubber factory and headed the association of Israeli manufacturers at only 28.

In 1958, saying he did not want the children to know war, Willi convinced Kati to move to America. He did not tell her that punitive tax fines, imposed when the government needed money due to the crisis in the Sinai, shook his faith in Israel. Once in America, after a few bad investments, Willi lost all their money and for the first time Kati suffered panic attacks. But Willi rebuilt his fortune, while Kati rediscovered her courage, and started living again.

Author Info:
(From back of the book)

D.Z. Stone is a journalist with academic training in cultural anthropology. Her work has appeared in The New York Times and Newsday. A graduate of the College of William and Mary, she holds a Masters from Columbia University. She resides outside of New York City.

Personal Opinion:

As anti-Judaism and Holocaust denial resurges through the world, it's more vital than ever to present Holocaust survivors, and that is what D.Z. Stone does in this unique tale of a couple who met while in ghetto but then reunited and married and had a long and amazing life together. I found myself admiring and being in awe of Willi and Kati Salcer, especially their determination to thrive in the world that  dared to obliterate their families. In a way they remind me of my own grandparents, Gd rest their souls who have died weeks within of each other. The tale is non fiction, but is presented in a very engaging manner, with both sides giving thoughts and opinions about one another, a documentary being narrated by two people. I feel privileged to have read and gotten to know Willi and Kati Salcer.

This was given for a review

5 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

G947 Book Review of The Unity Game by Leonora Meriel

Name of Book: The unity game

Author: Leonora Meriel

ISBN: 978-1-911079-43-9

Publisher: Granite Cloud

Type of book: aliens, philosophy, evolution, thought, mathematics, ambition, unity, emotion, humanity, keys, modern times, heaven, afterlife

Year it was published: 2017

Summary:

WHAT IF THE EARTH YOU KNEW WAS JUST THE BEGINNING?

A New York banker is descending into madness.
A being from an advanced civilization is racing to stay alive.
A dead man must unlock the secrets of an unknown dimension to save his loved ones.

From the visions of Socrates in ancient Athens, to the birth of free will aboard a spaceship headed to Earth, The Unity Game tells a story of hope and redemption in a universe more ingenious and surprising than you ever thought possible.

Metaphysical thriller and interstellar mystery, this is a 'complex, ambitious and thought-provoking novel' from an exciting and original new voice in fiction.

Characters:

Main characters include David, an investment banker who is extremely ambitious, passionate and often loves to hide his roots and live the high life to exclusion of all else. There is also an alien being who has been injured and is trying to discover what his species have lost on its path to evolution, and Alistair who has had a happy life but must find secrets to save his descendants and the world. There are some minor secondary characters such as Alisdairs granddaughter, his wife, and the alien beings coworker I believe, with whom they discovered fascinating emotions.

Theme:

What is disparate is the same

Plot:

The story is written in third person narrative from David's, the alien's and Alisdairs points of view, although once in a while few other characters also contribute their points of view. To be honest the philosophy elements were a bit beyond me to understand, but still the connections and the message is something to be knocked out by. The strong points of the novel are the characters and the research the author has done to flesh them to life.

Author Information:
(From book)

Leonora Meriel is the author of THE UNITY GAME and THE WOMAN BEHIND THE WATERFALL. SHe lives in Barcelonoa, London and Kyiv. She has two children. Read more about Leonora Meriel and her work at: www.leonorameriel.com

Opinion:

I goofed. I got this book in 2017, and have finished it few years ago, but only now am I reviewing it. I have read the authors previous novel, THE WOMAN BEHIND THE WATERFALL, which feels home for me, and which I am still recalling fondly years later. THE UNITY GAME, however, tended to confuse me and at some points I ended up being frustrated that the connection between the characters wasnt revealed sooner. Because of the aliens it definitely had science fiction elements, but i think what most impressed me is how deeply she exposes the banker, David, and dares to show us his world and his thoughts. I sincerely hope that it's ok for me to mention that David was definitely a character that one either loves or hates. The alien world exploration as well as the afterlife exploration were also done well and made this a compelling read, although i wished thst the connection could have come sooner instead of later.

This was given to me for a review

4 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

G1101 The new evil; understanding the emergence of modern violent crime

Title of the book: The new evil; understanding the emergence of modern violent crime

Author: Michael H. Stone, MD and Gary BRUCATO, PhD

Publisher: Prometheus Books

Publishing Date: 2019

ISBN: 978-1-63388-532-5

Summary:

A CHILLING FOLLOW-UP TO THE POPULAR TRUE CRIME BOOK THE ANATOMY OF EVIL

Revisiting Dr. Michael Stone's groundbreaking 22-level Gradations of Evil Scale, a hierarchy of evil behavior first introduced in the book The Anatomy of Evil, Stone and Dr. Gary Brucato, a fellow violence and serious psychopathology expert, here provide even more detail, using dozens of cases to exemplify the categories along the continuum. The New Evil also presents compelling evidence that, since a cultural tipping-point in the 1960s, certain types of violent crime have emerged that in earlier decades never or very rarely occurred.

The authors examine the biological and psychiatric factors behind serial killing, serial rape, torture, mass and spree murders, and other severe forms of violence. They persuasively argue that, in at least some cases, a collapse of moral faculties contributes to the commission of such heinous crimes, such that "evil" should be considered not only a valid area of inquiry, but, in our current cultural climate, an imperative one. They consider the effects of new technologies and sociological, cultural, and historical factors since the 1960s that may have set the stage for "the new evil." Further, they explain how personality, psychosis, and other qualities can meaningfully contribute to particular crimes, making for many different motives.

Relying on their extensive clinical experience, and examination of writings and artwork by infamous serial killers, these experts offer many insights into the logic that drives horrible criminal behavior, and they discuss the hope that in the future such violence may be prevented.

Author Info:
(From back of the book)

Michael H. Stone, MD, is professor of clinical psychiatry at the Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons. The authro of ten books, including THE ANATOMY OF EVIL, he was formerly the host of the Discovery Channel series Most Evil.

Gary Brucato, PhD, a clinical psychologist and researcher in the areas of violence, psychosis, and other serious psychopathology, is the assistant director of the Center of Prevention and Evaluation at the New York State Psychiatric Center/Columbia University Medical Center.

Personal Opinion:

One of my guilty pleasures includes watching and being fascinated by true crime documentaries: that is the psychology behind actions. I am a frequent watcher of deadly women, fatal vows and even watched forensic investigation type show uploaded on youtube. I have heard of one of the authors` scales of evil, and grew fascinated by the idea that not all the crimes nor the people who commit them are the same. Also, years back, I recall reading DIALOGUES OF CRIME, which is a story about a young first offender being placed wih hardened criminals in 1970s because people at the time did not know better, and there was a debate he had with cop about it. THE NEW EVIL does break down the degradation and it's truly something that is worth reading whether or not you are a true crime lover. What is also remarkable is their take on why things have worsened, even if it's not a popular stance among the people of today. Whether or not you agree with authors, this is still an amazing road to travel.

This was given for the review

5 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

G1150 Book Review of The Third Daughter by Talia Carner

Name of Book: The third daughter

Author: Talia Carner

ISBN: 978-0-06-289688-9

Publisher: William Morrow

Type of book: Russia, prostitution, Argentina, shtetls, 1889-1897, south America, life, dancing, family, friends, tricked, Zwi Migdal, loyalty

Year it was published: 2019

Summary:

From the author of Jerusalem Maiden comes a remarkable story, inspired by little-known true events, about the thousands of young Jewish women who were trafficked into prostitution at the turn of the 20th century, and whose subjugation helped build Buenos Aires.

The turn of the 20th century finds fourteen-year-old Batya in the Russian countryside, fleeing   with her family endless pogroms. Desperate, her father leaps at the opportunity to marry Batya to a worldly, wealthy stranger who can guarantee his daughter an easy life and passage to America.

 Feeling like a princess in a fairytale, Batya leaves her old life behind as she is whisked away to a new world. But soon she discovers that she’s entered a waking nightmare. Her new “husband” does indeed bring her to America: Buenos Aires, a vibrant, growing city in which prostitution is not only legal but deeply embedded in the culture. And now Batya is one of thousands of women tricked and sold into the oldest profession in the world.

As the years pass, Batya forms deep bonds with her “sisters” in the brothel as well as some men who are both kind and cruel. Through it all, she holds onto one dream: to bring her family to America, where they will be safe from the anti-Semitism that plagues Russia. Just as Batya is becoming a known tango dancer,  she gets an unexpected but dangerous opportunity—to help bring down the criminal network that has enslaved so many young women and has been instrumental in developing Buenos Aires into   a major metropolis.

A powerful story of finding courage in the face of danger, and hope in the face of despair, The Third Daughter brings to life a dark period of Jewish history and gives a voice to victims whose truth deserves to finally be told.

Characters

While THE THIRD DAUGHTER was heavily peopled with various characters from Batya's family to her friends and family, I often feel that Batya truly stood out in the tale, outshining and out performing others. Batya is a loyal and devoted daughter to her family of parents and sister's, for she does whatever she can to help her family and often thinks and puts their needs high above hers. She is selfless and worries a lot about her chances to escape the life she is forced to endure. In addition to that she is also intelligent, a talented actress and a phenomenal dancer. There are other characters that play a role in her story such as her "husband" who is all too reminiscent of a peacock with an inferiority complex, her numerous friends such as Nettie and Rochel, the Madame and then Batya's suitors who demand she make a choice between her own needs and that of her family's.

Theme:

Don't judge others without knowing their stories

Plot:

The story is in third person narrative from Batya's point of view, and it moves in a linear line from the time her family survived a pogrom in 1889, to 1897. The novel not only gives attention to the function of shtetls in Pale of Settlement, but it also gives hints and discusses Argentina and prostitution at great length. For me the story was truly heartbreaking: especially how others treated  and judged prostitutes, and Batya in particular. Very often people in different cultures are seen as monolithic with nothing to stand out. But I am happy that TALIA CARNER has broken the mold with her tale.

Author Information:
(From the back of the book)

Talia Carner is teh former publisher of Savvy Woman magazine and a lecturer at international women's economic forums. This is her fifth novel.

Opinion:

The first time I came across the possibility of Jewish women as prostitutes was in Michael Gold's phenomenal novel titled JEWS WITHOUT MONEY. But I had nothing tangible to place on the barest of mentions about the Jewish women as prostitutes. THE THIRD DAUGHTER BY TALIA CARNER has given face and name to the organization, which is titled Zwi Migdal. I have previously read her amazing tale of my last year in Russia in HOTEL MOSCOW, and it was a tale truly full of grit, realism and goes deeper into the study of Jews living there at the time. HOTEL MOSCOW also features tension and worries, especially when communism disbanded. THE THIRD DAUGHTER contains different strengths from her predecessor: for one the character of Batya/ Esperanza is possibly the most heartbreaking I have ever come across. I also loved the details that were included when she talked about Batya's life in Russia, especially how well she painted the characters. While there is tension in terms of Batya's decision, I often feel that the novel isnt focused on romance, but instead is focused on family that characters built. I also appreciated that the novel uncovered an event that takes place outside of WW2, an event that apparently is all too important and relevant to ignore.     

This was given to me for a review

4 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)
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