The Trust by Ronald H. Balson

Being away from Ireland for 16 years had not eased the feelings a few of Liam Taggert’s cousins had for him.

Liam had moved to Chicago from Ireland 16 years ago on bad terms, and now that his uncle had been murdered, he returned for the funeral. 

What Liam returned to was his being chosen as the Trustee of his uncle’s will and a task that was both dangerous for Liam as well as his family.  There were a lot of stipulations set in the last will and testament for distribution of the estate as well as hard feelings because Liam had been out of touch and was now in charge.

Liam now wished he hadn’t answered that phone call not more than a week ago.  If he had ignored it, he may not be in the legal predicament he was put in by his uncle nor the danger it was causing the entire family both in Ireland and the United States.

Being Trustee carried a lot of responsibility as well as legalities family members didn’t want to understand. The family also couldn’t understand why Liam wouldn’t break the rules and tell them the details of the last will and testament of Uncle Fergus.

To further complicate things, the Taggert family was getting threats and notes indicating payback time. No one was sure who was murdering members of the Taggert family, but forty years of hatred, vengeance, and fighting still ran deep among the Northern Ireland residents.

The Taggert family was an interesting lot, and the murders and family mystery were intriguing.

THE TRUST is beautifully written and so well written that you smoothly move along and become captured in the story line and the characters.

If you enjoy books set in Ireland, mysteries, murders, and family drama, you definitely do not want to miss reading THE TRUST.

I truly enjoyed the book and found it difficult to put down. ​5/5

This book was given to me free of charge and without compensation by the publisher in return for an honest review.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

The information below including the photo is courtesy of Staci Burt and St. Martin’s.

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RONALD H. BALSON is a Chicago trial attorney, an educator and writer. His practice has taken him to several international venues. 

He is also the author of Karolina’s Twins, Saving Sophie and the international bestseller Once We Were Brothers.

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PRAISE FOR RONALD H. BALSON

“A heart-wrenching…triumphant story.” —The Chicago Tribune on Karolina’s Twins

 “Secrets, friendships, survival, and the Holocaust are woven together in Ronald H. Balson’s haunting Karolina’s Twins.”—Family Circle on Karolina’s Twins

“A new look at an old story…will stay with you long after you have finished it.” —The Huffington Post on Once We Were Brothers

 “Uplifting and moving, intelligently written…an unusual insight into human character.” —Library Journal, starred review on Once We Were Brothers

 “A page-turning read filled with despair and anger but with hope, love, and humanity at its core.” —Jewish Book Council on Saving Sophie

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COMMENT FROM ME

Karolina’s Twins and Once We Were Brothers were both riveting, engaging reads.  Both are reviewed on my blog
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Love and Other Consolation Prizes

Leaving your mother at age five, going with a stranger, and living in the bowels of a boat to America was not something anyone would wish for a child but what was done back in 1909.

Yung had to leave his mother because they both were starving, and her hope was for a better life for her son.

When Yung got to America, his name was changed to Ernest, and he spent his first few years at a school where he was always the underling even though a rich woman, Mrs. Irvine, was paying for his room and board.

One day Mrs. Irvine told Ernest she was taking him to the World’s Fair.  She didn’t take him to enjoy it, but to be auctioned off in a raffle as a strong, healthy boy.

Ernest ended up being won by the owner of a brothel as a houseboy, and the place he met his wife.

Now his childhood and his life before children and marriage were coming to light.  His daughter is a reporter and is investigating the World’s Fair and stories she heard about those who attended.  She knew her father had been there and wants to know everything.

Ernest didn’t want to tell his daughter his story because then she would find out about her mother’s life at that time.  It was a life that wasn’t anything to be proud of.  Gracie was now suffering from dementia, and Ernest was hoping she wouldn’t accidentally remember the life she led when she was young and tell her daughter.

We follow Ernest from his childhood to present day and learn what life was like for him in both times.  We get a well-researched glimpse into everyday living during the early 1900’s as well as the life in a brothel.

LOVE AND OTHER CONSOLATION PRIZES is another marvelous, stunning, beautifully told story by Jamie Ford with  characters that will steal your heart.

Mr. Ford knows how to tell a story and keep your interest with his meticulous historical research, his history lesson, and his superb writing style.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book – I hope you are able to also read it.  5/5

This book was given to me free of charge and without compensation by the publisher and Net Galley in return for an honest review.

The Space Between Words by Michele Phoenix

Jessica was talked into going to a concert at The Bataclan Concert Hall in Paris with her friend, Vonda, instead of to an art show with Patrick, and it proved to be the wrong choice.


Jessica and her friend were caught in the terrorist attack at the 2015 Concert Hall, but thankfully Jessica and Vonda were only harmed.

After Jessica was released from the hospital, her parents insisted she return home to the United States, but Patrick insisted more heavily that she stay in France and go on their planned trip.

While staying at a bed and breakfast and as she was antique hunting, a sewing box caught Jessica’s eye.

As Jessica pried the bottom of the sewing box off, she noticed a piece of red yarn sticking out from under the box’s bottom and found pages torn from a Bible that triggered something in Jessica’s mind that she couldn’t understand.

The Bible pages turned out to be a marvelous treasure with secrets of their own and also something that brought Jessica to a reality she hadn’t been aware of.

I was intrigued when Jessica found the sewing box and the pages of handwritten notes.  I love finding out origins of things and especially diaries or notes from a  real person.  

The pages from the Bible spurred the characters to do research and find family members who fled France during the time in history when The Huguenots were forced out because of their religious beliefs.

THE SPACE BETWEEN WORDS moved from present to past telling the story of the Huguenot persecution and their flight out of France.  This is another part of history I had heard about but never studied.

I didn’t know what to expect when I first started to read THE SPACE BETWEEN WORDS, but the story line quickly went from an OK read to a WOW read as the characters uncovered more history of the handwritten notes in the Bible pages.

THE SPACE BETWEEN WORDS also addressed Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

If you enjoy historical fiction, finding treasures at flea markets, a marvelous story line, and detailed character description, you will not want to miss THE SPACE BETWEEN WORDS.

Ms. Phoenix paired two horrific historical events and created a marvelous book that will stay with long after you turn the last page.  4/5

This book was given to me free of charge and without compensation by the author, the publisher, and NetGalley in return for an honest review.

Best Intentions by Erika Raskin

​Please visit my active blog:  http://silversolara.blogspot.com

Marti, the wife of a busy, important member of the OB/GYN hospital staff decides it is time for her to go back to work as a social worker.

Marti joins a new department at the hospital that helps unwed teenage mothers.

Marti gets completely involved in the lives of these girls and leaves her children’s care to her mother-in-law.

Meanwhile, Marti’s husband, Eliott isn’t happy she is working at the same hospital as he is.  Their marriage is a bit rocky to begin with, and this seems to cause more turmoil.

BEST INTENTIONS dragged for me for most of the book even though the writing was good.  There was confusion for me about where I was in the story.  One minute Marti was at a party or with her kids and the next minute she was with her attorney. I never was sure if she was in jail awaiting trial or out on bail talking to her attorney.

It was interesting, though, to get a glimpse into a doctor’s life both at the hospital and at home. The insight into a social worker’s life was an eye opener as well and frightening how medical mistakes could escalate into what happened in BEST INTENTIONS.

BEST INTENTIONS kept me reading because I wanted to see what the outcome of the trial would be, but I did have a lack of interest in the love affairs and other situations.  The last 50 pages that covered the trial were the best part of the book.

BEST INTENTIONS had good intentions as a book, but it just wasn’t a grab you story line for me.  3/5

This book was given to me free of charge and without compensation by the publisher in return for an honest review.

Glass Houses by Louise Penny

 A conscience – we all have one, but do we know what may be on another person’s conscience or even on ours that may bother us?

When a hooded figure appeared on the green in Three Pines and stayed without moving for three days, all the residents were tense and wondered what he was doing there.   Did the hooded figure date back to the historical Cobrador who collected debts?

Armand Gamache, Chief Inspector, kept an eye on the figure and could do nothing within his powers to remove him. But…why is Armand Gamache now on the witness stand testifying about a death that occurred during the time the hooded figure was present?

We follow the situation by being introduced to the trial and then back again to the events in Three Pines with the hooded figure standing on the village green. The trial has something going on besides the trial, though, and the judge seems to be picking up on it.

Louise Penny has given us another beautifully written, intellectual, intriguing plot that will have you glued to the pages, thinking about what a conscience really is and how it helps or hinders one’s choices, and feeling for Gamache as he must defend all that happened in the quiet village of Three Pines.

GLASS HOUSES had me confused during the first few chapters, but once GLASS HOUSES got going another fantastic Louise Penny read and outcome awaits you with the endings always being brilliant and unexpected.

Don’t miss reading the latest from Louise Penny.  4/5

This book was given to me free of charge and without compensation by the publisher in return for an honest review.

A Mother Like Mine by Kate Hewitt

Your mother returning after no contact for 20 years?  Would you be happy or resentful?

Abby was actually shocked that her mother came back to the small village of Hartley-by-the-Sea in England after being in New York.  Her mother, Laura, left when Abby was two, and rarely kept in touch.

Laura went on with her life without her daughter, and her mother  took care of Abby for her.  Her mother now has Abby as an adult and her grandson living with her since Abby’s fiancé was killed.

The Rhodes women own a coffee/ice cream shop and live in the attached apartment.

Laura’s return caused hard feelings for all and an upset in the living arrangements. 

The characters were believable in the sense that similar relationships do exist.

I loved Mary, the grandmother. 

Abby was likable. 

Laura wasn’t too likable, but became somewhat likable as the book continued.

A MOTHER LIKE MINE is a book that made me appreciate my mother and the love and care she selfishly gave to all eight of us.

A MOTHER LIKE MINE  was a bit slow for me and out of my usual genre, but I loved the setting of the book and the premise of the book was good. 

If you enjoy family interaction and drama, A MOTHER LIKE MINE is a book you will want to read.

ENJOY if you read the book.  4/5

This book was given to me free of charge and without compensation by the publisher and NetGalley in return for an honest review.

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GIVEAWAY:

The giveaway copy is “Courtesy of Penguin Random House.”

USA ONLY

August 31 to September 7

ENTER HERE

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Silver Threads by Bette Lee Crosby

When Drew Bishop gets the phone call any spouse would dread, he never knew how awful things would be.

Drew’s wife, Jennifer, was shot during a robbery simply by being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

The robber, Tom, had a twin that was in prison for worse crimes.  When the twin, Eddie, was released, the evil continued where they had left off because Eddie wanted revenge for the death of his brother.

The little that we read of Jennifer showed her to be the best mother, wife, and person anyone could wish for.

Drew was a hard-working man who did everything for his family.

Brooke was a sweet girl who had to deal with the loss of her mother who was her very best friend.

A life without her mother is extremely traumatizing for Brooke as she tries to work her way through it all and as her father tries to be both mother and father and still make a living.

Ms. Crosby’s books are filled with love and family and carry a theme of a sweetness for life. You are pulled in as always by the story line and the characters. 

The characters in SILVER THREADS were all lovable, gentle, and people you would love to have in your life except for Eddie who caused grief.

Ms. Crosby’s books are filled with goodness and a zest for life and knows how to turn bad into good.  I needed tissues for some of the parts because they were such heartwarming situations. 

SILVER THREADS was a beautiful, heartfelt read as all of her books are.

Don’t miss reading yet another touching, uplifting book by Ms. Crosby.

This book was given to me free of charge and without compensation by the publisher in return for an honest review.