Thank you to author AJ Alexander for the gifted copy of Desolation. All opinions are my own.
noun 1. a state of complete emptiness or destruction. 2.anguished misery or loneliness.
Before La Famiglia gave me purpose, desolation ruled my existence. Pain was my constant companion until I met Francesca Giordano – the Boss’s daughter.
My mission is to protect her, at any cost.
With a price on her head, I will tear down heaven and hell to protect what’s mine.
AJ Alexander is a new to me author and I am SO, SO glad that I discovered her!! In this book, AJ Alexander writes of a mafia princess and the man who is tasked with protecting her. Since this author was a new to me author, I had no idea what to expect walking into this story. However, at 84 pages, this novella did not disappoint. This book started with action and the action continued throughout. AJ Alexander pulled me in from page 1 and didn’t let go until page 84. I enjoyed the characters that AJ Alexander created and their interactions with each other. I also really liked how quicklyAJ Alexander explained the the history of the characters and then continued on with the meat of the story. AJ Alexander writes in a way that makes you believe that you are part of the action and adventure of the story and makes you like the characters instantly. I was actually sad that this book was so short, and would have loved for it to go on longer. I am so glad that I discovered AJ Alexander and can’t wait to read more of her books!!!
This month I partnered with The Review Crew and author Jake Kaminski to read and review Shadow Wolves. This book was a gifted copy, and all opinions are my own.
Meet Ethan Crowe, a Lakota Sioux tracker who spent a career with the Delta Forces and the Defense Intelligence Agency. Crowe’s story begins in the hellish nightmare of Bosnia, where as a young scout for a Ranger company, he and two other Native Americans help track down the Skorpions, a Serbian militia committing genocide on the local populace.
The action shifts to the present and the southern border of the United States. Powerful Mexican drug cartels are utilizing vast stretches of the border to send billions of dollars in illegal drugs into the US. Powerful drug lords preside like kings over their empires, secluded and untouchable in their remote mountain fortresses.
Killing fields are being found on both sides of the border. Homeland Security needs a solution. General Darren Evans has been asked to form a special team of Native American trackers to combat the cartels where they are most vulnerable in the Arizona borderlands. The group is to be called the Shadow Wolves, and General Evans knows exactly the man to lead them.
Crowe is lured out of retirement to the Arizona desert. An elite team is born, comprised of tough, dedicated Native Americans from tribes across the United States. Within the team are two remarkable Apache women-fierce warriors who will become the soul of the Shadow Wolves. They will battle the vicious Zetas, moving through the desert landscape like ghosts.
A mysterious figure sits on the throne of the Zeta cartel. Known only as Yaotl, he claims pure Aztec blood. He lives by his own rules in complete disdain for the laws of the West. A gruesome series of murders and the discovery of twenty young girls being sold in the desert set the stage for a confrontation between the feared Zetas and the Shadow Wolves.
The Shadow Wolves will follow a blood trail that takes them all the way to the corridors of power in Washington, DC.
WOW!!! This was a heavy book. There were so many feelings and questions that arose as I read it. Jake Kaminski is an absolutely amazing writer…I think he was made to write this book. While I don’t generally read historical fiction, when I read the synopsis of this book, there was something that pulled me in, telling me this was an important one to read. I am so glad that I paid attention to that little voice. Jake Kaminski writes of the horrors that are seen by those trying to protect the borders of the US and stop the illegal import of drugs and women being sex-trafficked. This book was eye opener for sure. There were so many carefully constructed details and back stories that Jake Kaminski crafted to make the book what it was. Normally when I read historical fiction, I feel like I have no idea what is being talked about, but in this book, Jake Kaminski provided enough details and back story to help me understand exactly what was going on and therefore I felt like I was right there, in on all the action, and part of the team. Although I am unsure how much of this book is true and how much is fiction, what I do know is this book is reminiscent of what we see today at our US boarders. The pain and torture of girls and women of all ages being sex-trafficked (an now boys as well). The duty to protect our boarders at any cost. And the illegal activity of trying to sneak drugs over the boarder and into the US. This book was so well written and captivating, that I was sad to see the book end. That is the one thing I did not like about this book…that it ended too soon. I wanted more of the story. I wanted to know what happened to the Zetas and Ethan Crowe and his crew. I just felt there was so much more to tell and the book wrapped up too quickly with so many unanswered questions.
I can not say enough how much I enjoyed this book. I am definitely excited to get my hand on Jake Kaminski’s new book “Ghostwalkers,” a sequel to this story that “will center heavily on Ethan Crowe and some of his team as they take their fight into the highlands of Central Mexico and into the “belly of the beast”.” To say I am excited for this new book is an understatement!
About the Author
Jake Kaminski is a pseudonym. A retired police lieutenant with twenty-eight years of experience, Jake has worked and supervised numerous task forces with the FBI, ATF, and the DEA. Highly decorated, he spent the majority of his career working undercover and then supervising undercover operations in South Florida, Latin America, Canada and the Caribbean. His team spent six years combatting both the Medellin and Cali cartels.
Following his police career, he spent fourteen years as a senior adviser for the U.S. Department of Justice, assigned to post-conflict countries in the Balkans. He was a member of a team tasked with preparing countries in the western Balkans for NATO accession. He has advised and trained foreign police and prosecutors on the following topics; undercover operations, war crimes, fugitive tracking, organized crime, and human trafficking.
Present—- He now divides his time between overseas consulting and writing. He is currently working as an executive producer for a reality police show in development for the Oxygen Channel. He has traveled extensively, living for fifteen years in Europe, including time spent in the war-torn battlefields of Bosnia, Croatia and Kosovo. He speaks several languages and holds a Bachelor’s Degree in both Spanish and French. Jake holds a black belt in Taekwondo and has trained fighting techniques to undercover agents around the world.
I am in a book club on Facebook called We Be Book’N. One of the Buddy Reads this month was the book No Exit. This book had been sitting on my shelf for a while and I had been hearing good things, so I jumped into the Buddy Read.
A kidnapped little girl locked in a stranger’s van. No help for miles. What would you do?
Meet Darby Thorne. A college student in Colorado, she leaves school to travel to Utah to see her dying mother. Darby is trying to beat the blizzard that is on its way, but unfortunately the blizzard is upon her faster than she predicted. With the roads becoming impassable, Darby is forced to pull over at a remote highway rest stop to wait out the storm. Darby enters the rest stop and finds 4 complete strangers.
All Darby knows about her mom is that she is “okay.” Desperate to call home, Darby struggles to find a signal. In her search, Darby makes a horrifying discovery. In the van parked next to her car is a little girl locked in an animal crate! At first Darby believes that she is just seeing things, but then her mind goes into overdrive…who is the child? Why has she been taken? How can she save the little girl?
In her struggle to save the little girl, Darby must figure out which one of the strangers is the kidnapper. Darby needs to save her life and the little girl’s, but the question is Who Can She Trust?
OH MY GOODNESS!!! Taylor Adams is a stellar writer! They weren’t kidding when they said he “diabolically ratchets up the tension with every page.” This was a book that was FANTASTIC from start to finish. This book pulled me in at page one and I could not put it down until I finished. Each time I thought I had figured out who the kidnapper was and how Darcy was going to save herself and the little girl, Taylor Adams would throw a wrench in my predictions taking the tension up notch after notch until I could not turn the pages fast enough!! There were so many twist and turns to this book that definitely left me on the edge of my seat. Taylor Adams writes in such a way that allows you to feel the stress of the situation and the stress of the characters. In addition, there were places in the book where I felt myself holding my breath wondering what turn the story would take next. This book was incredible! I cannot recommend it enough!!!
About the Author
Taylor Adams directed the acclaimed short film And I Feel Fine in 2008 and graduated from Eastern Washington University with the Excellence in Screenwriting Award and the prestigious Edmund G. Yarwood Award. His directorial work has screened at the Seattle True Independent Film Festival and his writing has been featured on KAYU-TV’s Fox Life blog. He has worked in the film/television industry for several years and lives in Washington state.