Posted in Book Review

4* Review: The Thing Is… Kathleen Gerard


Winter Blurb

Meredith Mancuso is depressed. Ever since the death of her fiancé, she has shrunk from the world. Even with her successful writing career, she’s not motivated to work. When her sister, Monica, begs for a favor, Meredith wants nothing more than to say no. But she’s ultimately roped into pet-sitting an orphaned Yorkshire terrier named Prozac.

Blessed with spiritual wisdom and a high IQ, Prozac is an active pet therapy dog. To heal broken-hearted Meredith, he rallies his fan club at Evergreen Gardens, an independent living facility, where he visits each week.

Prozac and the community of resilient older folks challenged by losses of their own propel Meredith, often against her will, back into the land of the living. Meredith learns that most people carry some sort of burden, but it’s still possible to find meaning, purpose, and joy—and sometimes, even love—along the way.


Winter Buy Links

Amazon UK


Winter My Review

The Thing IsI love stories where the animal characters take the lead and this is one of these. The aptly named Prozac is a Yorkshire terrier, in his current form, at least. Prozac is a dog spirit guide, who helps humans and when his current ‘owner’ is incapacitated, he is foist on the unsuspecting Meredith, with hilarious and often poignant results.

 Meredith is depressed and grieving. She doesn’t like dogs and this leads to some inevitable posturing as dog and human come to terms with one another. The other stars of this story are the residents of the Evergreen Gardens care facility. They all have a story and a tragedy and Prozac as the therapy dog helps them all but will this still be the case when he lives with hermit like Meredith?

There is gentle romance, a curious mystery and lots of fun in this story, which is unusual and intriguing.  It’s a story about acceptance, learning to adapt and not taking situations or people at face value. If you like your stories quirky with unique protagonists, then this one is for you.

 I received a copy of this story from Red Adept publishers via NetGalley in return for an honest review.

The Thing Is
by Kathleen Gerard
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Thing Is by Kathleen Gerard

Kathleen Gerard
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Posted in Book Review, New Books

5* Review of Ever Near Melissa McVicar

Ever-Near-800-Cover-reveal-and-PromotionalI was asked to review this Young Adult Paranormal novel by the author Melissa MacVicar. Before my review here’s what you can expect from ‘Ever Near’ the first book in the Secret Affinity series.

‘Love is ever near. But trouble is never far.

Nantucket Island is haunted, but only sixteen-year-old Jade Irving knows it. Ignoring the disturbing spirits isn’t an option, because one dwells in the enormous historic home she shares with her newly blended family. Jade is finding it more and more difficult to explain away Lacey’s ghostly, anguished tantrums, especially with Charlie, her gorgeous, almost step-brother, living right across the hall.

When a power-hungry ghost hunter tracks down Jade and blackmails her, Jade’s secret teeters on the edge of exposure, and her entire future hangs in the balance. If anyone finds out Jade can talk to ghosts, her life will be forever changed.

Can she save herself, free Lacey, and hang on to her tenuous connection with Charlie? Or will everything she ever wanted slip through her fingers?

Add Ever Near to your Goodreads

My Review

 Ever Near is a Young Adult Paranormal romance.

Teenage Jade’s unusual supernatural gift seems like a curse. It frightens her and interferes with her already complex life. Living on Nantucket Island with her mother who is about to remarry is complicated enough. Jade rarely sees her father or her paternal grandparents whom she loves and misses. Then there’s Charlie her soon to be step brother who she is crushing on. Fair Ever her new family home proves more challenging than she imagined. Only she can see the sad, tormented ghost who lives there.

Terrible nightmares threaten to reveal her secret and Charlie who sleeps across the hall starts to suspect something is amiss with Jade. As they become emotionally attached Jade’s gift threatens to destroy their new-found feelings.

Jade is a lovely character courageous and vulnerable as she battles with entities she cannot fully understand. She turns to the local ghost hunter for help but he only wants to exploit her gift. Dealing with him matures her and proves she isn’t a victim. Until Charlie realises her secret only in her journal can Jade record and make sense of what she sees. Charlie is a great young hero willing to support and protect Jade despite his misgivings about the truth of Jade’s stories.

The story is interesting and well paced and Jade’s observations about the community humorous. I particularly liked the descriptions of the ghosts which produced vivid images in my mind.
The plot is full of suspense as Jade faces conflict on all sides. Help from an unexpected person makes the ending of the story satisfying and believable.
Ever Near is a charming story with romance, humour, poignancy and suspense which make it an absorbing page turning read.
I received a copy of this eBook from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Melissa MacVicarMelissa MacVicar has lived most of her life on Nantucket Island. A true native, she’s able to trace her ancestry back to the island’s first settlers. After attending The Pingree School, she went on to graduate from Franklin and Marshall College with a degree in English. She also received a master’s degree from Boston University School of Social Work. When she turned forty, Melissa decided to renew her adolescent passion for fiction writing. Having once thought writing a novel to be an impossible dream, she’s proud to be achieving her childhood ambition.
Melissa currently lives with her husband and two children on Nantucket where she teaches 7th grade Writing Composition. When she isn’t teaching, parenting, and writing, Melissa enjoys running, eating expensive chocolate, and watching her beloved Patriots.