Book Blitz: Nargis by Hermit Pen @HermitPen @BookishBookie

About The Book

The book is a collection of 8 short stories, each unique and different from others, covering various facets of life, inspired by real-life characters and incidents.

The stories address contemporary social issues like loneliness, binge dating, domestic abuse, social media addiction, celebrity worship, and also contemporary environmental issues like pollution, dwindling water resources, declining fertility rate, chemical warfare, etc. 

The stories also attempt to illustrate the pain and wounds of contemporary political issues like lynching, conflicts, refugees, etc

All the characters seem very familiar and we can easily relate to them.


Book Purchase Links

Amazon
India
 | Amazon
USA



Book Excerpt


Nargis

It is 2030 and most of the water on earth is polluted.


In the beginning, it was industrial pollution that rendered most of the water beyond human usage, and then the water wars that followed resulted in the extensive use of chemical and biological weapons, which further left the remaining water sources toxic.


In less than 10 years, water had become the currency, and owners of non-toxic water source the new age kings, with their own militias, protecting their wells and supply chain.


Water trading was the most lucrative business now.


Namita


Namita had stopped thinking about resistance or confrontation long back. Domestic abuse and sometimes physical abuse had become part of life for her. She had accepted it. It was no secret either. Most people around her knew. It’s difficult to hide the scars, especially the physical ones. 


Lybched


Since that fateful day, he had wished for only two things. To meet the family of the boy he had killed and the people who had killed his brother. 


He couldn’t make up his mind as to what will give him the closure he needed. 


The atonement of his sin or revenge. Guilt and vengeance had been consuming him.


Neha


All she could manage was “Why are you good to me Shoeb? Why do you still stick around when everyone else has given up on me, and now you brought my child to me”.


Neha could not control anymore, tears started rolling down her cheeks. 


Shoeb softly spoke almost in a whisper to Neha “We have taken him out of the shelter and legally adopted him. We will raise him as our own now”


Banaras


He had plans of getting married next year. An arranged marriage. His parents in Hyderabad had already selected the bride for him. He knew nothing about the girl and was not interested to know either. He believed that arranged marriage will ensure that his parents will be taken care of in their old age, which was his prime responsibility, being the only son, as has been repeatedly hammered into his head, by the society, since childhood.


Lipsticks


The night was beautiful, a bit cold though to be sitting in the balcony in only a t-shirt, this had been her ritual, night after night. 


The silence at this time of the night is addictive. It calms the volatile souls and tames the inner demons. 


TikTok


Finally, she read out Waheed’s post aloud “I respectfully decline The Smith Award, which is considered no less than Noble prize, awarded to me for my thesis “Impact of Social Media on the Psyche of Celebrities”, due to the sad and unfortunate demise of a subject during the course of an experiment.”


Oh Syria!


Qasim, on the other hand, was sad, very sad. He had this foreboding that his days on his homeland were numbered and he won’t be able to return, ever. 


This was the home of his ancestors. Their graves were here. His father used to tell him that for centuries his family had lived in this town. 



About The Author



The author Mr. Hermit Pen is a regular contributor to short stories and articles for various anthologies, magazines, and own blog. 


Mr. Hermit Pen is a Business Consultant by profession with a degree in Engineering and an MBA. He is well-traveled, having spent half of his life outside India; he is presently based in Gurgaon, India.


He is a movie buff, music connoisseur, and a cricket fanatic.  He also closely follows politics and current affairs. He is a vocal advocate of education, human rights, and equality, and he occasionally dabble in social activism.


At the cusp of reinventing himself once again, Mr. Hermit Pen with all humility showcases his debut book, Nargis.


Catch up with Hermit Pen On


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The Murder Club (Miller Hatcher, #2) by Nikki Crutchley #RBRT #BookReview @NikkiCAuthor

Cover: The Murder Club
(Miller Hatcher, #2)
by Nikki Crutchley

 

The author sent me an ARC of this book (epub format) in exchange for an honest review (a member of Rosie’s Book Review Team).

My rating:  ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (five stars)

Plot
(by Goodreads)

A dead body. An anonymous letter. This is only the beginning.

‘Not all evil, on the surface, is ugly and menacing. It doesn’t always lurk in city centres after dark. It mows your lawns, frequents your local pub, takes its kids to school and contributes to communities.’

When the first letter arrives saying that ‘tonight it begins’, journalist Miller Hatcher ignores it. But then the body of a murdered woman is discovered, strangled, a scarf around her neck.

Cassie Hughes has always vowed to find the man who murdered her mother. Cassie knows he’s out there and wants him to pay, and Miller agrees to bring the cold case back into the public’s eye.

Logan Dodds has been obsessed with true crime ever since his sister was murdered thirty years ago. He has turned his obsession into a career and has created the True Crime Enthusiasts Club and his newest venture, True Crime Tours.

The lives of Miller, Cassie and Logan – all affected differently by murder – become entwined as The Scarf Killer, desperate for infamy, and Miller’s attention, makes his mark on the small town of Lentford.

 

Genre(s): > International Mystery & Crime (Kindle Store)
> International Mystery & Crime (Books)
> Women Sleuths (Kindle Store)
Series: Miller Hatcher, #2
File size: 304 pages
Release date: >>> 2020-08-31 <<<

 

Teaser


Kahu nodded ‘What’s up?’

Miller withdrew the two letters from her bag. She’d already been home to get the other one she’d received on Friday.

‘Take a look at these. That first one I opened on Friday night, but it’s dated the day before. I didn’t really think much of it. Just another crazy. This one here,’ she said, handing over the other envelope, ‘was hand-delivered to the office by the looks of it. Not sure when. Probably last night when the office was closed or early this morning. I guess It could’ve been delivered over the weekend.’


My Opinion

This book reintroduces you to Miller Hatcher, a young journalist who moved back to her deceased mother’s house; sober for quite a while and working at the local newspaper, she starts receiving anonymous letters.

With “The Murder Club” (2nd in the Miller Hatcher series), Nikki Crutchley has created another gripping as well as a chilling story with a plot that keeps its promises. It is a plot that kept me glued to my eReader, drawing me very close to Miller and to Kahu. Nikki Crutchley created a well-elaborated suspense story with a complex and likeable heroine – as well as a colourful variety of further important characters. Miller and the others are believable, complemented by the aptly written plot. There is a lot more to the story than simply good versus bad; there are some insights into the human behaviour that will make you wonder. It is a highly enjoyable read with authentic characters, interesting turns, and a great flow. A memorable book to read again, written by a new author to watch out for!

This is a book for you if you like intriguing suspense, feisty heroines, believable characters, and if you appreciate cleverly elaborated stories.

Highly recommended!

In brief:

Cover ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (five stars)
Writing ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (five stars)
Plot ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (five stars)
Characters ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (five stars)
Mood Suspenseful
Pace Fast
POV Third person – past tense
Language :mrgreen: – 😳  (some mild swearwords)
Violence 😳  (some violence)
Sexual content :mrgreen: – 😳  (some activities without details)

 

About the author

After seven years of working as a librarian in New Zealand and overseas, Nikki now works as a freelance proofreader and copy editor. She lives in the small Waikato town of Cambridge in New Zealand with her husband and two girls.

Nikki has been writing on and off her whole life and recently has had success in flash fiction. She has been published in Flash Frontier, Flash Fiction Magazine and Mayhem Literary Journal. Crime/thriller/mystery novels are her passion. Nothing Bad Happens Here is her first novel (but hopefully not her last), set on the Coromandel Coast of New Zealand.

Connect with the author:

Please take a look at my statement on reading in My train of thoughts on …reading.  Now I am asking you.  🙂

My questions for you bibliophiles:
What about you?  What did you think about “The Murder Club”?  Or – if you did not yet read “The Murder Club” – are you now interested in reading it yourself?

I am looking forward to reading your comments.  🙂

Karen_RBRT

rosies-book-review-team-1

 

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The Girl Who Wasn’t There #RBRT #BookReview @NickClausen9

Cover: The Girl Who Wasn’t There
by Nick Clausen

The author sent me an ARC (mobi format) in exchange for an honest review (a member of Rosie’s Book Review Team).

My rating:  ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (5  stars)

Plot
(by Goodreads)

A young girl disappears without a trace.
The police have no clue as to what might have happened.
The severed family is thrown into despair as weeks go by, and still no sign of her.
The girl’s older brother begins looking for her on his own.
Soon he becomes convinced that a supernatural being has taken her.
Unfortunately, it turns out he’s right …

The Girl Who Wasn’t There is a gripping supernatural thriller.

Genre(s): > Teen & Young Adult Monster Fiction eBooks
> Teen & Young Adult Ghost Stories eBooks
> Teen & Young Adult Mythical Creatures eBooks
Series: n.a.
Length: 292 pages
Release date: 2020-04-01

Teaser


Lisa says something.

Andy opens the book.

>fight back<

Andy is very surprised by Lisa’s answer. “What do you mean, should I … shove her back? No, I can’t. She’s a girl.”

>bring her here>

Andy bursts into laughter at how unexpected the line is, then he looks around guiltily. Luckily, no one is around to hear him.

“Why would I bring her here? What would you do to her if I did? Beat her up? You’re only a ghost, remember?”


My Opinion

The story starts when Andy leaves his little sister outside the library. When he returns some minutes later – she is gone.

With The Girl Who Wasn’t There”, Nick Clausen has created an intriguing plot about a boy who wants to save his sister; he is soon convinced that she has been abducted, and luckily gets unexpected advice at his favourite location. “The Girl Who Wasn’t There” comprises authentic characters with sufficient depth; I got very close to Andy and his mindset. Nick Clausen introduces his characters with care. I had a great time reading – this is a very compelling read; I was drawn into the story right away, close to Andy and his allies. The plot offers food for thought, still keeps me thinking. There were some surprising turns, and I was fascinated to see in what manner Nick Clausen’s story reaches the finishing line.

The cover is great – perfect for this story.

This is for you if you like thought-provoking stories and teen and young adult horror and mystery.

A remarkable story to read again.

Recommended.

In brief:

Cover ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (five stars)
Writing ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (four stars)
Plot ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (five stars)
Characters ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (five stars)
Mood Suspenseful
Pace Steady
POV Third person – past tense
Language :mrgreen:  (some mild swearwords)
Violence 😳 – 😡  (some violence that might be disturbing)
Sexual content :mrgreen:  (n.a.)

About the author

I write chilling horror and apocalyptic tales so that I don’t need to work a real job. I grew up reading Stephen King and still haven’t fully recovered. My books have been published in four different languages, and I’m currently working on ending the world in my zombie series Dead Meat.

I was born in a small country far, far away where people eat a lot of rye bread and are generally suspicious of success. I learned English thanks to Netflix and audiobooks. Originally, I wrote in my native tongue, but I switched to English in 2018 to reach more readers.

I married my public-school sweetheart and we recently had a son who looks so much like me I fear he’ll never get a date, the poor guy. My stories are fast-paced and thrilling and hopefully never boring. You should check them out, if you haven’t already.

Connect with the Author:

Please take a look at my statement on reading in My train of thoughts on …reading.  Now I am asking you.  🙂

My questions for you bibliophiles:
What about you?  What did you think about The Girl Who Wasn’t There”?  Or – if you did not yet read The Girl Who Wasn’t There”  – are you now interested in reading it yourself?

I am looking forward to reading your comments.  🙂

rosies-book-review-team-1

 

Odd Numbers by JJ Marsh #RBRT #BookReview @JJMarsh1

Cover: Odd Numbers
by JJ Marsh

 

The author sent me an ARC (mobi format) in exchange for an honest review (a member of Rosie’s Book Review Team).

My rating:  ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (4  stars)

Plot
(by Goodreads)

The Guilty Party meets The Secret History

Can you forgive a friend?

Strange things bring people together. Like a tragic death.

Over two decades, five friends reunite every other New Year. They celebrate, grieve and heal. Memories grow dusty and the nightmare starts to fade.

On the 20th anniversary, in a remote snowy chalet, old doubts surface.
Wounds reopen and morality comes into question.

Is friendship a safety net or a tie that hobbles to the past?

They thought they knew each other’s secrets.
Did they miss the biggest one of all?

When history is rewritten, they must act to preserve the future.
A fatal decision means this reunion will be their last.

A psychological drama with beautifully portrayed characters and an intricately woven plot. The suspense emerges between the lines, grabs you softly but never lets go.

Genre(s): > Contemporary British Fiction
> Action & Adventure Literary Fiction
> Psychological Literary Fiction
Series: n.a.
Length: 199 pages
Release date: 2020-05-01

Teaser


“I still cannot believe it will be twenty years,” said Lovisa, her gaze on the mountains across the water.

Of all of us, Lovisa was the one who wanted to talk about it the most.

“I know. Weird how it turned out that the first time I got to organise was the twentieth anniversary.” I paused, thinking back to 2009 in Mallorca, one of the happiest reunions we’d had. “Twenty years. Sometimes it’s like a bad dream.”

She looked at me, her eyes the colour of the bottle of Bombay Sapphire. “I’ve been seeing a counsellor again. First time in fifteen years I felt the need.”


My Opinion

The story starts in 1999 when six friends (Clark, Dhan, Gael, Lovisa, Mika, and Simone) want to celebrate the Millenium close to Prague at a cabin by a lake.

With Odd Numbers”, JJ Marsh has created an expertly woven plot, an intriguing novel of five friends who cope with the death of the sixth friend. “Odd Numbers” comprises authentic characters with sufficient depth; Gael is the one I took to the most; my sympathies for her friends underwent slight changes as the story evolved. JJ Marsh delicately introduces her characters. I had a great time reading – this is a very compelling read; I was drawn into the story right away, close to Gael and her friends. The plot offers food for thought, still keeps me thinking. Even if I anticipated some outcomes, I was intrigued by the way JJ Marsh directs her readers there.

I could imagine this a perfect plot for the “Fantasy Film Festivals” (they are known for unusual stories).

The cover is great – perfect for this story.

This is for you if you like thought-provoking stories and psychological fiction.

A remarkable story to read again.

Recommended.

In brief:

Cover ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (five stars)
Writing ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (four stars)
Plot ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (four stars)
Characters ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (four stars)
Mood Suspenseful
Pace Steady
POV First person – present/past tense (character-depending)
Language :mrgreen:  (decent enough)
Violence :mrgreen:  (none to speak of)
Sexual content :mrgreen: – 😳  (some clear mentions, not too many details)

About the author

Jill grew up in Wales, Africa and the Middle East, where her curiosity for culture took root and triggered an urge to write. After graduating in English Literature and Theatre Studies, she worked as an actor, teacher, writer, director, editor, journalist and cultural trainer all over Europe.

Now in Switzerland, she writes crime and literary fiction to entertain readers with enthralling stories and endearing characters.

Her Beatrice Stubbs crime series topped the Amazon best sellers in “International Mystery & Crime” in Australia, Canada, the UK and the US.

Connect with the Author:

Please take a look at my statement on reading in My train of thoughts on …reading.  Now I am asking you.  🙂

My questions for you bibliophiles:
What about you?  What did you think about Odd Numbers”?  Or – if you did not yet read Odd Numbers”  – are you now interested in reading it yourself?

I am looking forward to reading your comments.  🙂

rosies-book-review-team-1

 

The Cat Detectives in Russia: The Case of the Missing Fabergé Egg (The Inca Cat Detective Series, #9) by R.F. Kristi #BookReview @incabookseries

Cover: The Cat Detectives in Russia: The Case of the Missing Fabergé Egg
(The Inca Cat Detective Series, #9)
by R.F. Kristi

 

The author sent me an ARC of this book (mobi format) in exchange for an honest review.

My rating:  ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (four stars)

Plot
(by Goodreads)

An amazing adventure in Russia. Can one cat detective find the missing Fabergé Egg?

Inca the Siberian Kitty can’t wait to visit her homeland, Russia. The detective kitty learns that a local museum needs her crime-solving skills to track down a valuable stolen Fabergé Egg. With her trusty diary in tow, Inca leaps whisker-first down a trail of clues that leads into the famous Peterhof Palace located in Peterhof close to Saint Petersburg, Russia.

She learns about the country’s rich history and just how important it is to restore the famous Fabergé Egg to its rightful place in the Fabergé Museum.

With a little help from her furry family and friends, particularly the marvelous little robot, Jibo, Inca can feel she’s close to getting her claws on the valuable Egg… but it’ll take teamwork to save a priceless piece of history.

Genre(s): > Children’s Pet Books (Kindle Store)
> Children’s Explore the World Books (Kindle Store)
> Children’s Cat Books (Kindle Store)
Series: The Inca Cat Detective Series, #9
Length: 181 pages
Release date: 2020-03-28

 

Teaser


I went back to the fabulous golden egg and sat before it, trying to put some order into my baffled head. I could well understand why both Terrance and Solo had been stumped.

Suddenly a thought struck me.

If I had succeeded in entering through the chimney, couldn’t someone else have done the same?


My Opinion

This book sends Inca – a Siberian cat and her family to Russia; their mom and Fromage are honoured to present their new cheese creation. Knowing Inca and her way of thinking, you can guess that some important mission needs to be accomplished as well.

With “The Cat Detectives in Russia: The Case of the Missing Fabergé Egg”, R.F. Kristi has created another beautiful and heart-warming story of cats, their human Missy, further animals, and a mission. It is a very enjoyable read, you are drawn very close to Inca – if you are willing to let it happen. R.F. Kristi’s love for animals shows. She carefully elaborates the four-legged characters; the two-legged characters are of sufficient depth as well. Inca – charming sleuth and confessing Dr House fan – guides the reader through the story, making it a feel-good read. The story comprises likeable characters, an important mission, and it has a really good flow. It is the ninth book in a series and – as I also enjoyed the first and second ones, I am looking forward to reading more of the Inca series and the mysteries this amazing team of furry detectives solve.

This is a book for you if you like steady-paced, funny, and heart-warming adventure stories for children (8-12), lovely illustrations, if you love animals, and if you like interesting four-legged characters.

Recommended!

In brief:

Cover ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (four stars)
Writing ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (four stars)
Plot ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (four stars)
Characters ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (four stars)
Mood Hopeful, suspenseful
Pace Steady
POV First person – past tense
Language :mrgreen:  (decent)
Violence :mrgreen:  (none)
Sexual content :mrgreen:  (none)

 

About the author

R. F. Kristi is the author of the Inca Book Series. Her target audiences are children and animal lovers. The series is based on the escapades of a feisty Siberian kitty who considers herself a great sleuth.

Kristi holds a doctorate in economic development and has worked in several international organizations. She has travelled and lived in many countries around the globe. She is fluent in English and French.

Kristi lives in Paris with her family and two cats, Inca and Cara. She is passionate about animal rescue efforts.

For more information see:  www.incabookseries.com

Connect with the author:

Please take a look at my statement on reading in My train of thoughts on …reading.  Now I am asking you.  🙂

My questions for you bibliophiles:
What about you?  What did you think about “The Cat Detectives in Russia: The Case of the Missing Fabergé Egg”?  Or – if you did not yet read “The Cat Detectives in Russia: The Case of the Missing Fabergé Egg” – are you now interested in reading it yourself?

I am looking forward to reading your comments.  🙂


10 Statements – R. F. Kristi

Review:  The Cats Who Crossed Over From Paris

Review:  Christmas Cats

Review:  Cat Detectives in the Korean Peninsula

 

 

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