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THE DEAD KEY: A Mystery & Thriller Award Winner ~D.M. Pulley

“ ‘The board of the bank is made up of every old money man in town.  No project gets built in Cleveland without someone from the bank being involved.  Every project that lost money had a board member of First Bank of Cleveland at the helm, but the feds can’t put a case together.  City council won’t provide corroborating witnesses.  Judges won’t grant search warrants.”  He shook his head, exasperated.” (Loc 4599 of 6682)

2014 WINNER – Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award – Grand Prize and Mystery & Thriller Fiction Winner.

The DEAD KEY was not a high-speed page-turner, rather the story built upon the measuring tape and efforts of a very young recent engineering graduate and her new job, documenting a very old bank, which had been locked and abandoned in 1978 – December 1978.  The 15 story huge building had captured the interest of some developer and they needed architectural plans for the new designs and expectations.  Iris the recent graduate of Case Western Reserve University is hired to complete the survey and get the plans processed, and then translated to the computer as fast as she is able in the summer of 1998.

I went to High School in Cleveland, moving there from a State of 3 million people to a City of 3 million people when I was 16.  I found the city grey and ugly and so dirty.  My Father was constantly explaining it was Industrial and depressed; the flowers and trees seemed to be depressed and the snow grey and dirty.  I loved sitting in on lectures at Case Western Reserve University and on Saturdays spent the day in the Hough Area working in the Homework club with new readers and later in the day with seniors that needed housekeeping or shopping completed for them.  I learned that the vegetables in the Hough area were not fresh nor- the same price as out in the suburbs. I won a Microwave oven from the Cleveland Illuminating Company with a whole package of new innovations for the kitchen after taking their class.  I gave the package to the Hough Area schools because my high school thought it was demeaning to want to know about these kinds of products.

Why does my story make any difference, because Iris, our main gal in the story is sullen, and bored and trapped in her situation and feels the same as I found people in the late 60s.  Iris is definitely depressed until she starts to use her mind and is scared by the strange things and sounds going on in that old and dark, dank, hidden bank.  Iris feels she is being followed and talked too though the duct work and as though messages are being left for her from Beatrice Baker, a very young secretary in the Audit division of the Bank.  The story begins to build on Beatrice in 1978 and Iris in 1998.  The tension builds with flies and spiders and tunnels and noises and strange and cryptic writing.  I don’t want to leave out the dirty old men and their born to wealth children, the snobbery and the power / control issues all experienced from the secretarial pool and the people working on survival mode.  Lots of womanizing and Mad mannish drinking and roughing /threatening folks who are doing the work.

Cleveland crashed because of the dirty old wealthy men in 1978

I was excited that there was a bit of discussion about Mayor Dennis Kucinich and Nixon’s laws for the white and wealthy, but very little and that made me sad.  Iris and the author keep those discussions small and focus on how they might be reflected on the building and the outcomes for the future.

As Ohio is on the royalty list for voter suppression and economic inequality – especially for women and ethnic groups there is quite an exciting opportunity for more books from this State of Being and such a depressed environment.

About the Author (from the cover)

“D.M. Pulley’s first novel, THE DEAD KEY, was inspired by her work as a structural engineer in Cleveland, Ohio.  During a survey of an abandoned building, she discovered a basement vault full of unclaimed safe-deposit boxes.  The mystery behind the vault haunted her for years, until she put down her calculator and started writing.  THE DEAD KEY as the 2014 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Grand Prize Winner.  Pulley continues to work as a private consultant and forensic engineer, investigating building failures and designing renovations.  She lives in Northeast Ohio with her husband and two children and is currently at work on her second novel.  Visit her website at www.dmpulley.com

TLC Book Tours  sent me an un-proofed/uncorrected digital copy for review.  Digital copies are being offered for free on Amazon on the first few days of the book tour.

Related:
In Doubt 
Accidents of Marriage
The Fixer
Duke City Hit 

DOG CRAZY: A Novel of Love Lost and Found ~Meg Donohue

“Packed with deep emotion and charming surprises, DOG CRAZY is a bighearted and entertaining story that skillfully captures the bonds of love, the pain of separation, and the power of our dogs to heal us.”  (Book cover)

DOG CRAZY came my way via TLC BOOK TOURS for review and it was a delightful addition to a very busy week.  The uncorrected proof came in paperback form and just tucked into my carry bag for a week of medical appointments (“Growing Old is Not for Sissies”~ Jack Benny) and my husband even dove into it when he was the designated driver and water bottle handler.

Maggie Brennan is making big changes in her life by leaving her mom and dad who live in Philadelphia and moving to a new apartment in San Francisco; starting a Pet Bereavement Therapy Practice on her own.  The apartment is within her former roommate’s home so not everything is new.  Maggie’s mother is agoraphobic and has not left her house without heavy medication for nearly 30 years.   Maggie also has her trusty dog Toby to help her make the transition.

Maggie sets out in San Francisco to make the connections to start her practice and finds an animal rescue group who refers her first clients and she is able to do lots of volunteering for them on their website.  Apparently, Toby was only meant to assist with the move and the actual living this new life with Maggie was not on the list and he becomes ill and dies.  This causes major problems for Maggie and threatens to ruin this new opportunity.

Along comes a very “INTERESTING” young woman who believes her dog has been stolen and does not want any therapy for her missing dog, just assistance in walking SF to find him.  With Anya in need and with “the assistance of a poodle, a mutt, and Basset retriever named Seymour” the funny, poignant story begins to unfold creating healing.

This story had a gentle voice in the telling, and I would have loved to take this story and my own pooch to the beach to savor.  It so reminded me of the Women’s Magazines full of short stories that my mother loved to read in the late afternoon with a cup of tea.  This tail/tale is about 255 pages long and I could pick it up and put it down with out losing the story line or any of the dog identities.  It was an easy to read study of how we humans handle loss and fear and that everything changes with one step at a time.  Very entertaining – DOG CRAZY.

MEG DONOHUE is the USA TODAY bestselling author of HOW TO EAT A CUPCAKE and ALL THE SUMMER GIRLS.  She has an MFA in creative writing from Columbia University and a BA in Comparative literature from Dartmouth College.  Born and raised in Philadelphia, she now lives in San Francisco with her husband, children, and dog.    (From Book cover)

Meg Donohue Facebook

Related:
Short Leash
Merle’s Door
The Language of Hoofbeats
WILD 

THE ORGAN TAKERS: A Novel of Surgical Suspense ~Richard Van Anderson

“”Richard Van Anderson’s experience as a surgeon at the UW Medical Center gives him the ability to write a convincing debut thriller. The Organ Takers focuses on the moral failings and sociopathic behavior of corrupted medical practitioners. The verdict: Read if you like surgery and a standard thriller, but do not expect to trust your doctor after reading this.” –The Daily at the University of Washington”

THE ORGAN TAKERS was a very interesting read and I could not put the PDF/ Kindle book down.  I read the book in the hospital while undergoing a series of tests. I was glad my copy was in my Kindle (as the cover and the title might have worried the others in the waiting area) and I would not recommend one read this thriller in the hospital – the surgery details were very intense and I was worried about what my medical team was not telling me.  I think it raised my blood pressure a point or two.

There is a very exciting part to the story in that several surgeons have figured out how to grow cloned organs for transplant patients.  Now that was exciting to think about, how they were going about the research was terrible and their lab’s fundraising techniques were horrendous.  So many lost everything, and others were driven to the limit of their capacity.  The greed factor certainly destroyed the happy factors of life.    It was a fast read, and I learned a number of things I did not know or understand before.  Although I would not have picked this book, I was very pleased to be asked to review this book and I contemplated the ethical implications  and what corrupts some folks and not others. Fascinating.

Larissa Ackerman | Claire McKinneyPR, LLC
larissa@clairemckinneypr.com
41 Main Street Suite B, Chester, NJ 07930

Larissa sent me a PDF copy of this book which I translated to my KINDLE FIRE and I was able to read the book early.  This was a bonus to have my copy ahead of the schedule so that I could squeeze it into the schedule when I had more time to read. Writing is intelligent and the author’s surgical skill plays out well in his story telling.  My only problem was I could not underline or book mark pages on the translation and I have become a bit lazy in my note taking – get out those 3×5 cards !

I highly recommend this suspenseful book to those who love medical reads and good writing.  If you have a queasy stomach about surgeries and medical ethics, I would probably not put it on the list.  The writing is very top notch and will not leave scar tissue and side effects for years to come.

About Richard Van Anderson from the book cover:

“Richard Van Anderson is a former heart surgeon turned fiction writer.  His surgery training took him from the ‘knife and gun club’ of LSU Medical center in Shreveport, Louisiana, to the famed Bellevue Hospital in Midtown Manhattan.  His education as a writer includes an MFA in creative writing from Pine Manor College in Boston, Massachusetts.  He currently lives in Seattle, Washington with his wife and two sons.

Website: www.rvananderson.com

“And finally, the best way for a book to find its audience has always been, and still is, word of mouth recommendations.  So, if you liked the story, please consider telling others about it, either person to person, using social media, or (and this is the most effective way) posting online reviews at your favorite review site.  Thank you.”

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Related:
Healing and Prevention Through Nutrition 
Eat to Live 
Your Medical Mind  
The Signature of All Things 

THE SECRET OF YOUR IMMORTAL SELF: Key Lessons for Realizing the Divinity Within ~by Guy Finley

“Life will always give you something greater than what it’s asked you for, providing you’re willing to let go of that part of yourself that, for fear of the new, favors what’s old.  It’s impossible to cling to who you have been…and be free of yourself at the same time.”(page 75 – PDF copy)

This book review will be a bit different for me because THE SECRET OF YOUR IMMORTAL SELF is a very different experience.  I had a great fall last year and have been experiencing a great deal of pain; using most of the books I am reading as an opportunity to escape.  THE SECRETS OF YOUR IMMORTAL SELF has been my recent companion to all my Healing appointments and I am using it to let go of my pain and relax.  The PDF/ Kindle book is accompanying me to all my appointments and is a dedicated part of my late night sessions to let go of pain and allow sleep to heal.   It has not failed me and holds my thinking as I breath through the fiery interludes and provides focus.

I like the style of the book.  Short essays or stories, which open the mind to fresh thinking for the spiritual modes of our living, each followed with a Key Lesson to take away and contemplate.  I can freely add stories from my own life and personalize my own thoughts into key lessons, which allow me to let go and refresh.

Several years ago I reviewed Guy Finley’s book THE COURAGE TO BE FREE  and this book too was a good respite in reading while challenging my old assumptions.  When Eric Rafdal asked me to review Finley’s new book I did not hesitate.   I am not going to share more of my thoughts on this new book, rather I am going to put up Eric’s links and words, which will enable you to click into the larger launch program and receive the many free gifts being offered to the readers on the PR Tour – launch – March 12,2015

Eric’s first Note to include:

[Video] Announcing the worldwide release of best selling author Guy Finley’s new book The Secret of Your Immortal Self: Key Lessons for Realizing the Divinity Within. Discover the lost keys to a whole new and higher order of consciousness that lets you end painful problems before they begin! Learn the real secrets of how to be spiritually unstoppable.

PLUS today only… I’ve made special arrangements for you to receive 5 free gifts from Guy, including his groundbreaking new album, The Golden Rule of Self-Realization. Don’t miss this once-in-a-lifetime moment. Discover a life so extraordinary you won’t believe it’s happening to you.

Eric’s Launch letter:

The One and Only Thing That’s Missing From Your Life

Hi,

Something is happening today that could transform untold numbers of lives — including your own… and here’s how you can be a part of it.  Right now, as you read this, over 200 leading authors and experts are sending out this vital information so you and people around the world can start living fully, freely, and fearlessly. And it’s all happening today, March 12th.  Watch this stirring short video to find out what’s going on:   http://www.YourImmortalSelf.org/special/1793/

The big news is that my friend Guy Finley has written a new book that opens the doors to your brighter, more authentic life. It’s called “The Secret of Your Immortal Self,” and it’s being simultaneously released today in 142 countries. This book is so illuminating, and Guy is so well respected by his peers, that over 200 leading authors and experts are joining to spread the news. It’s a wave of enlightenment that’s racing across the planet right now.  If you’d like to learn the deeper secrets of your own self, and unlock all the love, vibrant energy, and confidence that lie within you, here’s the key — along with a FREE live webinar with Guy Finley, and over 120 additional free bonus gifts.

Visit this link now for all the details. This could be the turning point of your life.   http://www.YourImmortalSelf.org/special/1793/ 

All best wishes for true happiness,

Eric Rafdal

I am using this book right now to let go of the pain and find healing.  THE SECRET OF YOUR IMMORTAL SELF is definitely making a difference in my life and I wanted you to know about it and the special offers, which accompany this Book Release Campaign.  Thank you to the Life of Learning Foundation for sending this  book to me for review

About Guy Finley from the book cover:

“Guy Finley is the founder of the Life of Learning Foundation and author of more than forty books and audio programs on self-realization, including the International best seller – The Secrets of Letting Go.  Visit him on line at www.GuyFinley.com