Book Review: Woman in Shadow

Evocative Small-Town Thriller

Woman in Shadow
A novel by Carrie Stuart Parks
List price: $16.99

Carrie Stuart Parks, Artist, Author – Home

The small town of Targhee Falls, Idaho has a problem. A serial arsonist has been taunting the sheriff and someone else is hell-bent on sabotaging the remote guest ranch nestled into the wilderness outside of town. That’s where Darby Graham comes in.

After a leave of absence from law enforcement following a horrific accident that resulted in part of her lower leg being amputated, Darby’s detective skills are put to the test when she is assigned to go undercover and investigate the “oddities” happing at the ranch. The oddities in question range from busted pipes to accidental deaths that seem anything but accidental.

There is more than one criminal at work and Darby must outwit all of them. When a rockslide closes the road to the ranch trapping everyone on the property with a killer, Darby is forced to go for help. Does an amputee have the stamina to survive in the wilderness while being pursued by a killer? The short answer is yes, and the ending will surprise you.

Being an Idahoan herself, the author perfectly captures the feel and imagery of rural Idaho. Woman in Shadow is Christian fiction, but it doesn’t get bogged down in dogma or become overly moralistic. The book is first and foremost a thriller. As for the Christian aspect, it’s merely part of Darby’s character arc and plays well with the soul searching she inevitably undergoes after experiencing trauma and an amputation.

I’m giving this book two thumbs way up!

About the Author:

Carrie Stuart Parks is a multi-Christy, Carol, Golden Scroll, and Inspy award-winning author in addition to numerous other awards. She’s currently penning her tenth novel for HarperCollins Christian/Thomas Nelson. An internationally known forensic artist, she teaches courses in forensic art to law enforcement professionals across the US and Canada. Carrie is a popular speaker and presenter and has been the Special Guest at the Writer’s Police Academy, Early Bird Special Presenter along with Frank Peretti at the American Christian Fiction Writers, Keynote at the Oregon Christian Writer’s Conference, as well as presented at ThrillerFest, Daphne Du Maurier’s Kiss of Death, Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writer’s Conference, and numerous other conferences. As a professional fine artist, her paintings hang in a number of corporate and private collections. She has written and illustrated best-selling non-fiction art books for North Light Publishers.

Carrie will be in Moscow, Idaho presenting a workshop at the Palouse Writers Festival on Saturday, June 18, 2022 and will be available to sign books at the Books & Brews event that evening. Register for her workshop and see all the festival details here: 2022 Palouse Writers Festival – Palouse Writers Guild

 


Lake of Spirits: Payback in a New Novel

I recently completed a book review of Stuart Scott’s novel, Spirit Lake Payback for the December 2021 issue of IDAHO Magazine. The article is more than just a book review. It also contains some juicy tidbits on the history of Spirit Lake, Idaho. Both Scott’s novel and the current edition of IDAHO magazine are available from BookPeople of Moscow.

Purchase your copy directly from IDAHO Magazine:
Buy it now!
OR
Purchase only the article and review here:
Lake of Spirits – IDAHO magazine

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Book Review: The Spirit Transcendent

The Spirit Transcendent: Exploring the Extraordinary in Human Experience
By Mark Yama

List Price: $25.00

Available at BookPeople of Moscow: Buy it Now!
Available on Amazon: Buy it Now!

What happens when a licensed psychologist truly listens to his patients? His entire perception of reality changes.

In The Spirit Transcendent, Dr. Mark Yama, a psychologist from rural Idaho explores his patients experiences with an open heart and an open mind. Many of his patients suffer from severe pain, often resulting from horrific car accidents, chronic cancer, and even mauling’s by vicious animals. Through the pages of this book, Dr. Yama recounts their near-death experiences, intervention by angelic hosts, visitations from deceased loved ones, and brushes with demonic forces. Continue reading


Book Review: Kitchen Witchery

The Book of Kitchen Witchery: Spells, recipes, and rituals for magical meals, an enchanted garden, and a happy home.

By Cerridwen Greenleaf

List Price $19.95

I give this book 5/5 stars only because it is not possible to award it an entire constellation.

Delightful Workbook for Magical Women

This book kept me from languishing! While nearly everyone was bemoaning being locked-up, locked-down, and social distanced, I explored the magical world that was my own kitchen. The spells, rituals, and informational asides kept me entertained through much of the pandemic, nurturing both body and soul. Continue reading


Book Review: Ways and Truths and Lives

A novel by Matt Edwards
Expected publication date: June 5, 2021
Available for pre-order from Atmosphere Press for $16.54

Enter to win a FREE copy on GoodReads!

Smooth as Barrel-aged Whiskey

James Dall is an alcoholic slacker whose weaknesses are women and whiskey. He tells himself that he’s a good guy because he goes to church every Sunday. Not the same church. And never long enough for the congregants to get to know him. He makes a habit of arriving late and leaving early. Truth is, he’s just there for the free coffee. His free-time is dedicated to writing the great American novel and chasing women. Continue reading


Book Review: The Witch’s Book of Self-Care

 

The Witch’s Book of Self-Care

By Arin Murphy-Hiscock

$14.99 available on Amazon

 

This book changed my life!

This book came to me at an exceptionally low point in my life. I was juggling three jobs, one of which required me to deal with a gas-lighting supervisor, was experiencing chest pains and hypertension, and sleeping maybe four hours a night. To say I was burnt out was an understatement. With the help of this book, I set healthy boundaries, quit what was an undeniably bad job, lost 52 pounds, and saw my blood pressure drop 30 points.

In The Witch’s Book of Self-Care, the author quickly addresses the common misconception that self-care involves sitting on your laurels, eating bonbons, having spa days, and engaging in retail therapy. Self-care takes work in order to have a lasting impact on your life. This is not a book to be read in an afternoon. It needs to be savored, taking as much time as necessary to master each task before moving on to the next topic. Continue reading


Book Review: Gritty, Grisly and Greedy

Gritty, Grisly, Greedy: Stories Inspired By True Crooks And Crimes From My 28 Years As A Fed.
A collection of short stories by Stuart L. Scott

$14.95 available on Amazon.

It’s rare to get fiction and nonfiction all in the same book, but Stuart Scott artfully manages to do both.  His book includes 13 short stories, ranging from well researched accounts of actual events, like the “The Easter Massacre Mystery” that occurred in Pullman, Washington in 1949 to fictionalized accounts of events using characters loosely based on parolees he supervised over the years, like “Pinky and the Piper,” the story of a botched bank robbery in Priest River, Idaho. Continue reading


Book Review: The Winter King

The Winter King, a novel by Christine Cohen
Available from Amazon for $16.99 (Hardcover)

A Delightful Winter Read

I picked up an autographed copy of this book at an author signing event at BookPeople of Moscow.  It can be a little frightening to try a new author, but Christine Cohen did not disappoint.  Being a person who also dislikes having other people’s winter holidays thrust upon me, I found the main character’s resistance to winter festivities not only relatable, but a delightfully refreshing character trait.

Being an impoverished fifteen-year-old kitchen maid is tough.  Survival is even more difficult when the entire village believes your family has been cursed.  Yet, this is Cora Nikolson’s lot in life.  And she knows exactly where the blame lays, with the Winter King.  The God cursed her family, took her father’s life, and brought them to the brink of starvation.  Cora has no love for God, King, or country.  She despises religion and the Aldormany who carry out the Winter King’s cruel edicts.

After her mother loses her position as head cook, Cora takes on additional work as a housemaid, hoping the extra wages will keep her family from starving.  While dusting shelves in the library, she overhears a conversation between the Master House Steward and the High Aldorman.  They are discussing a book containing secrets regarding the Winter King.  Despite repeated attempts, they have been unable to destroy the book and it is imperative that no one in the village learns about its existence. Continue reading


Book Review: A Sharp Solitude

A Sharp Solitude, a novel of suspense by Christine Carbo
Available from Amazon for $12.99

Best Book I’ve Read All Year!

I picked up this book at random while perusing the library shelves and gave it little thought as I tossed the audio book into the front seat of my car.  It turned out to be the best book I’ve read all year.

In the Flathead region of Montana, a journalist has been murdered and FBI Agent Ali Paige is determined to find the killer. Unfortunately, the detectives with the County Sheriff’s Office have fingered Reeve Landon, the father of her child, as a person of interest, resulting in a conflict of interests that keeps her off the case. As the noose tightens, Ali must decide if she is willing to betray her partner’s trust in order to save the father of her child.  To avoid the law, Reeve escapes into the wilderness where he ultimately meets with disaster and needs to be rescued of the very agencies he’s been trying to aviod.  Continue reading


Book Review: Snow City

Snow City, a novel by G. A. Kathryns  
Available on Amazon for $12.99

Hooked from the first sentence!

“Sometimes one has to dream very hard to keep oneself sane.”  From the moment I read the opening line in the prologue, I was hooked.  As the book progressed I wondered, who is really doing the dreaming?  What reality is she trying to escape?  Is this a futuristic dystopian SciFi novel or an exposé on mental illness?  And who is that dead girl?

Snow City is the creation of Echo Japonica, a reclusive guitarist, who strives to live in a perfect world.  A world that she created.  Unfortunately, the nightmares of reality spill into Echo’s dream of perfection for Snow City.  Those nightmares threaten to cause the entire system to collapse, taking Echo with it.  As Echo puts is, “Here [at the Blue Rose] I can be the simple, black-garbed and blonde-braided guitarist I was months ago, before gangsters and lost ghost have entered my life.  But gangsters and lost ghosts have entered my life . . .” Continue reading