Spiral: The Salzburg Saga Book 1 by D.U. Okonkwo ~ Review

Spiral pic

Spiral: The Salzburg Saga Book 1 by D.U. Okonkwo

The three books in this Saga basically form one continuous story. You will want to read these books back to back because of that. There is no segue. The first story stops abruptly and the next one continues. The book Spiral is aptly named. A normal situation where three young lawyers take a corporate jet sponsored by their largest client to participate in a networking event goes all wrong very quickly once they get into the air.

The story is written from basically two points of view, that of Jake’s, the pilot of the jet aircraft, and that of Nina, one of the lawyers in the group. As the situation on the jet becomes tense, we get introduced to all the characters as they interact with each other. Each person has a history which is revealed as the adventure continues and which keeps this event popping with intrigue and interest.

Spiral quote1

There are two major settings: on board the aircraft and on the ground in the mountains of Austria after the jet crashed. The story line keeps us focused on the effort to survive a horrible situation. And while they are just trying to survive, the situation just continues to spiral out of control, getting worse and worse as time lapses. By the end of this first tome, two of the party have died.

There is continuous action in this first book. The pace is rapid enough to keep you reading without being able to put the book down. The author writes an effective buildup to the tension among the group, since there are people to blame and people who are innocent bystanders. At first, it’s unclear exactly who is who. That type of suspense propels the reader right into the next book.

Spiral quote2

The author is very effective in building suspense slowly and painfully. I just couldn’t put this book down once I got started. I was immensely grateful that both books were in the same volume so that I could proceed to part 2 of the saga.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary review copy of this book from AXP Books on behalf of the author. I was not required to write a review, positive or otherwise. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


Discount Christian Books, Bibles and Gifts

Free Novel


Join My Reader Rewards Club with Tyndale House Publishing to earn free stuff




Gospel eBooks | Free & Discount Christian e-Books for the Amazon Kindle


Challenge Participant


Tyndale Blog Network




Blogger Badge 2 (260x125)


Visit The Book Club Network, Inc.


Join Smiley360



Christian book finds


Moore Family Films




A Promise to Protect: A Novel (Logan Point series Bk 2) by Patricia Bradley ~Review~

A Promise to Protect by Patricia Bradley

A Promise to Protect

A Promise to Protect is the second book in the Logan Point series. The first book is Shadows of the Past, the author’s debut novel. If this book is an indication of Ms. Bradley’s writing style, then I’m hooked. I need to get the first novel to read, and then hope the author’s books come out quickly.

Sheriff Ben Logan has followed in his father’s footsteps and become Sheriff of Bradford County. His father had served the county for many years, and only ended his service when he was shot at close range. Miraculously he survived but his recovery has been slow. In addition, he suffered a stroke and couldn’t speak or communicate well, so he was unable to tell his son, Ben, the details behind the shooting. But Ben could tell by the expression in his eyes that he was still alert and cognizant. In the meantime, Ben has been acting sheriff awaiting the elections to make his job permanent. But a series of dangerous events began to threaten the town, his close friends, and Dr. Leigh Somerall and her son TJ. Dr. Somerall’s brother, Tony had called the sheriff to meet him somewhere he considered safe. Over the phone, he told Ben he had some information the FBI and the US Marshalls would be interested in on a flash drive. He also hinted that he may have more information on his father’s shooting as well. But when Ben arrived, Tony was dying, shot in the chest. His last words to Ben was an injunction to protect Leigh.

Dr. Leigh Somerall was an ER doctor at Logan Point’s hospital, Bradford General. She had returned to her home town to finish out her contract to pay off her student loan at her brother’s request. Once finished with her loans, she would be free to follow her dream to work at Johns Hopkins, a teaching hospital in Baltimore. If she survived being around Ben Logan, that is. She and Ben had a history going back ten years when they attended high school together. Though they had gone to different colleges, one summer they came back and worked at the same place. They had dated and fallen in love. But once Fall came around they went their separate ways again. Now here she was in her home town again, a widow with a young son, living with her brother in their grandparents’ house.

A Promise to Protect quote1

Sheriff Ben took his responsibilities seriously. Not only did he have to solve Tony’s murder, but he had to find why someone was threatening Leigh and her son’s lives. He had to determine if there was a connection between the threats against her and the ones that seemed to be aimed at him. Leigh didn’t want to be around Ben very much, so as much as she could she avoided him. He still insisted she have an escort wherever she went. Sometimes it was Ben. She was afraid that eventually he would find out a ten-year-old secret that could disrupt her life and her son’s.

From the first page, this book is filled with action-packed suspense, mystery and tension. We wonder who killed Tony and why? Where is the flash drive Tony was concerned about? Who is Armero? Who is making threatening calls to Leigh? Why is Sheriff Ben Logan being targeted? Who shot his father, and is it related to Tony’s death? And with all this, Ben has to deal with Leigh’s return and his attraction to her. I enjoyed trying to solve the mysteries along with the sheriff. The author provides a few clues, but not too many; what’s given is not too obvious or blatant, so that at the conclusion there were plenty of surprises for the reader.

A Promise to Protect quote2

I felt the balance between the action and character development was just right. Both Leigh and Ben had issues to work through that threw up barriers to their growing relationship. One barrier in particular bothered me, however. In an incident where Ben was a life guard at the lake beach area, one of the boys in his charge drowned. Even though he followed procedures exactly, the boy was lost. Since then, he has had panic attacks at moments where there may be triggers. To me this sounded more like the result of PTSD because of the flashback moments. No law enforcement officer should keep this a secret, but seek help for the symptoms and their cause, because not doing so puts the people he is trying to protect at risk. I felt this should have been written a little differently.

Other than that one issue, I loved the book and the premise. The author has created believable characters that come alive in the pages. We empathize with them, hurt with them. The action is riveting. The author has also done remarkable research so that the hospital scenes with the doctor, and the ambulance scenes felt authentic. I am eagerly looking forward to the next book from Patricia Bradley.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary review copy of this book from Revell’s reader’s club blog review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


Discount Christian Books, Bibles and Gifts





Moore Family Films




Tyndale Blog Network




Visit The Book Club Network, Inc.


Raina’s Choice (Western Justice Bk. 3) by Gilbert Morris ~Review~

Raina’s Choice (Western Justice Bk. 3) by Gilbert Morris

Raina's Choice

Raina’s Choice is a simple tale of two people caught up in circumstances outside their control. Both were seeking freedom from drudgery and imprisonment. Both found each other and sensed a rescuer in the rough, a potential savior of sorts. Both leaned on each other in their direst moments and in turn found a friend. Both searched for more out of life and eventually found purpose.

Tyler Kincaid was a rough and tumble man, a drifter who worked where he could to survive. He ended up working on the railroad in Mexico where he eventually got caught between two sides in a revolution. He was thrown in prison, along with his friend, Jim, and left to work in the mines until their death. Being a gringo did not stand in their favor. But his resourceful friend arranged escape for the two of them. Jim gave his life so that Ty would find his freedom, something Tyler never forgot. Ty eventually arrived in Texas and worked several jobs to earn his passage further to the northwest. He was unaware, however, that the Mexican government had put out a notice of arrest and reward on posters.

Raina's Choice quote3

Raina Vernay grew up in the Silver Dollar Saloon, La Tete, Louisiana, that her mother owned. When her mother passed on, she left ownership of the saloon to both her daughters. Raina’s sister Roxie married a hard man whose only interest was to get his hands on the business. He made life miserable for both women, especially for Raina, who had grown to become a beauty. Her brother-in-law made it clear, as Raina approached adulthood, that he wanted her. She was desperate to get away, but had already been caught once trying to flee. So she waited for an opportunity to escape. One evening, she met a surprisingly thoughtful stranger whom she overheard talking about his journey northwest to the Oklahoma Territory–Indian Territory. But before he made it to bed that night the sheriff of La Tete arrested him when he recognized Ty from the wanted posters.

Raina's Choice quote2

However, all this gave Raina an idea for a plan of escape. Even though Ty was in jail, she managed to get him out, sell her part of the deed for the saloon to the town’s lawyer, and escape that same night hiding under a pile of straw on a horse-drawn wagon. But that was only the beginning of Ty and Raina’s adventures.

What drew me most in this wild west tale was Ty Kincaid’s integrity of character. He was not a stranger of hardship, cruel circumstances and the unfairness of life. Yet in spite of all that, he would get back on his feet and try again to make the best of a situation without complaint. When he worked, he worked hard. He took care of Raina even after they reached their final destination, Fort Smith, in the Oklahoma Territory. He had a core of trustworthiness that made him a strong person. In much the same way, Raina was also a person with steel in her make-up. She was an intelligent woman who was not afraid of hard work or of serving others when she needed to. She was especially persistent in her efforts to find her father in this new land.

Raina's Choice quote1

But sometimes a person’s greatest strengths can become one of their greatest weaknesses. This was true of Ty. His persistence, stubbornness and self-sufficiency were great qualities, especially once Ty took on the job of Marshall out in Indian Territory. But it also built a wall between him and God. There is no question in my mind that the author built into this story great moments where God was seeking Ty out to be His own. It is one of the things I admire most in this author’s writing. He doesn’t expend a lot of words about the spiritual side of this book. Instead, he demonstrates the tug-of-war through events and incidences. Ty was a bit too hard-headed, so God had to allow a few things to shake him up so he would listen to His voice. This is what makes the second half of the book so suspenseful, filled with anticipation, tension and tragedy.

While there was a lot to enjoy in Raina’s Choice, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention some of the disappointments I felt as I followed the story line. I was a bit disappointed in the rough writing style the author employed. Taking into account common speech patterns of the characters, I felt the remaining narrative faltered in grammar and immature sentence structure. Sometimes conversations fell flat, narratives were not as insightful as they could have been, and interpersonal relationships remained shallow when opportunities for more depth were passed over. In a some instances, I saw a few inconsistencies in the story line, although it wasn’t too noticeable. It did catch my attention. Overall, the book is a pleasant read, but does not hold a place among my favorite books.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary review copy of this book from Netgalley on behalf of Barbour Publishing Inc. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Please help support my blog by clicking on any of the following affiliate links. Thank you!


Shop Amazon – Trade In with Three Easy Steps


Shop Amazon – Get Up to 80% Back When You Sell Us Your Books


Shop Amazon Gold Box – New Deals. Everyday


Shop Amazon Warehouse Deals – Deep Discounts on Open-box and Used Products


Shop Amazon – Essential School Supplies


Sign up here to join Tyndale publisher’s Reward Program


For the month of September, 2014, use the code: DVD20 when ordering, to get an additional 20% off!!

Moore Family Films



click here for Emergen-C information




Visit The Book Club Network, Inc.


Tyndale Blog Network