CELTICLADY'S REVIEWS   

Friday, April 18, 2014

Literary Addicts Spring Into Books Event!!

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Welcome to the Spring Event April 18 - May 5
We are having a Book Blast and Virtual Book Party. Check out the books sponsoring and content below
GiftedCover


Even in a world of freaks, being a Firestarter is considered a dangerous Gift. Lucy was born with the ability to create and control fire. She longs to leave the human world for one filled with Earthshakers, Transporters, and Chameleons, to name a few. When she rejoins the circus, it’s everything she hoped it could be—new friends, a potential love interest or two, and a place where she can be herself. When troupe members begin turning up dead, however, Lucy is suspected of foul play. She must not only prove her innocence but also realize the full extent of her power. To find the real murderer, she must uncover the truth behind her father’s fiery legacy while figuring out whom to trust within her new circle. Little does she know the history of the Donovan Circus and its enemies might actually destroy the entire gifted world. Buy on Amazon


First-Impression


Chira Kelly thought she didn’t need anyone…until she met Ben. Because of one ugly rumor, Chira lives as an outcast at her school. Which is fine with her, because she works better alone. Always has, always will. And at least she has her one and only true friend, Tasha. When Tasha insists that they join a group to visit a possibly haunted abandoned old schoolhouse, she's wary, but joins her friend. Because of that decision, their lives are in jeopardy as a malevolent spirit targets the group. Tragedies and accidents pick them off one by one, and Chira finds herself drawn to the one person who can see the truth. But can he protect her? Buy on Amazon Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000032_00020]

Get into more TROUBLE with The Lynlee Lincoln Series Book Two. And Remember MAUCs Series One is Free Lynlee Lincoln isn’t just a witch, she’s also a Neutralizer. Her job is a juggling act to keep magical and undead clients out of trouble. But getting back together with her old flame throws one more ball into the mix and romance with a guy who has two kids can get complicated. When her old mentor asks her to investigate the goings-on of a dark witch, things turn messy. The witch is stalking supernatural creatures to collect ingredients for a potion that Lynlee can’t seem to figure out. To keep those closest to her from becoming the next victims, she may have to confront the demons within herself. Buy on Amazon

FINALUnquenchableSW

Nell Massler is a powerful witch from an ancient magical family. Before she was eighteen years old, she attempted murder—not once, but twice. Committed to a psych ward, she attempts to right her wrongs and almost loses her life. While she’s lost in a coma, Caruthers Initiative Institute develops a vested interest in waking Nell—and offering her a chance at redemption. Nell is given a fresh start in exchange for saving her fellow agent, Rafe Brooks. Keeping him alive and in hiding will require every ounce of her extraordinary abilities. Not falling head over heels for the sexy mind manipulator will take a miracle. It's when they uncover a plot to destroy the world that Nell will be put to the test... will she choose Rafe and to do the right thing? Or will she succumb to the temptation of evil yet again? Buy on Amazon Sweet-Oblivion-Cover-Art_new_2-22-2014When two worlds collide, nightmares become reality. Have you ever wanted to forget? Nariella Woodlinn has. Many times. Especially when her already frustrating life gets turned upside down by a mysterious boy who randomly shows up in her small town. And she can’t seem to understand anything about him, despite how much she tries. ?Nari hates everything about her life, except for her best friend Rydan, but now that they’ve been separated during their senior year of high school, she has to learn to make new friends without him. When strange, unexplainable phenomena start becoming an every day part of her life, Nari struggles to come to grips with reality. And with love. Get FREE on Amazon Control You - Jennifer SnyderKind hearted and naive, Paige Jacobs wants what every girl craves…to be loved. She uses this need to make excuses when her current boyfriend goes from being a tad jealous and slightly overprotective to stalker-ish. She isn’t that girl and Craig isn’t one of those guys. Things are fine. Perfectly fine. Until the moment a dark-haired, tattooed hottie with a snarky mouth walks into her life and tells her she deserves better. Confident and boldly spoken, Cameron Green has always been the guy bad girls can’t get enough of and all the good girls want to tame. He’s lived a lavish lifestyle filled with drugs, women, and alcohol up until his destructive path finally caught up with him. Now Cameron isn’t sure what to do with himself or how to dampen the longing for something more festering inside of him since coming out of his drug-induced haze. But when he meets a doe-eyed girl who gets past his walls like no other, everything about him clicks into place. Together the two learn there are emotions that hold within them all the power to control you. Buy on Amazon Destruction-Sharon BaylissDavid Vandergraff wants to be a good man. He goes to church every Sunday, keeps his lawn trim and green, and loves his wife and kids more than anything. Unfortunately, being a dark wizard isn't a choice. Eleven years ago, David's secret second family went missing. When his two lost children are finally found, he learns they suffered years of unthinkable abuse. Ready to make things right, David brings the kids home even though it could mean losing the wife he can't imagine living without. Buy on Amazon hand_new_rose_finalA dark shadow stalks the night, watching her—waiting to claim what is his. Seventeen-year-old Tayla Jonas longs for a simple life, but after a traumatizing family loss, she is forced to be both mother and sister to her cousins while caring for her mentally unstable aunt. Moving to her grandma’s quiet town of Cody, Wyoming, Tayla finds some normalcy with her quirky green activist friend, Chel, who spends no time converting her to vegetarianism. A few weeks into her new school, Tayla catches the eye of Kyle Harrington—the high school quarterback and resident millionaire—who can seduce any girl with his charismatic charm, including Tayla. But Kyle is anything but what he seems... Buy on Amazon Redemption CoverBe careful what you wish for. When the breakup of her family forces Grae White’s mother to move her two children from their privileged city life to her hometown in the mountains of Virginia, all Grae wants is to be invisible in her new life. But that’s rather hard when everyone knows that her father is the latest headline-grabbing white collar criminal, the most popular boy in school wants to take Grae to the prom, and then there’s that she lives in a haunted mansion. It would make anyone want to get away. Grae soon learns that a simple wish can reveal an unknown ability. Something more than curiosity spirals Grae back in time to seek the truth in the tragedy of a 200 -year-old murder. Along the way, she learns about history, happiness, and heartache in the lives of those who have lived on the property, including her own family. Her first journey reveals secrets that will lead Grae to further explore the legends of Graham Mansion. Buy on Amazon weeksebookIs eight weeks enough time to earn back the love of someone you've betrayed...the only one you've ever loved? Shelly has been in love with Cal since they started dating in eleventh grade. Despite everyone saying that the odds were against them, they got married after graduation and built a life together. Now, six years later, she is faced with the ultimate betrayal. Devastated, her first instinct is to call it quits… After a drunken binge at his best friends’ bachelor party, Cal betrays the one person who has always been there for him, his wife, Shelly. Terrified and realizing she might divorce him, Cal must come up with a way to prove to her that his love is true… Buy on Amazon Death of the Body_mediumI grew up in a world of magic. By the time I was ten I understood nature, talked to the trees, and listened to the wind. When the kingdom of men conquered my town, I was murdered by one of my own—the betrayer of my kind. But I didn't stay dead. I woke to find myself in a strange new world called Los Angeles. The only keys to the life I remembered were my father’s ring, my unique abilities, and the onslaught of demons that seemed hell-bent on finding me. Now I must learn who I really am, protect my friends, get the girl, and find my way back to my beloved hometown of Orenda. Buy on Amazon KoF NEW Amazon GR SWJoclyn Despain has been marred by a brand on her skin. She doesn't know why the mark appeared on her neck, but she doesn't want anyone to see it, including her best friend Ryland, who knows everything else about her. The scar is the reason she hides herself behind baggy clothes, and won't let the idea of kissing Ryland enter her mind, no matter how much she wants to. The scar is the reason she is being hunted. If only she knew that she was. If only she had known that the cursed stone her estranged father sent for her 16th birthday would trigger a change in her. Now, she is being stalked by a tall blonde man, and is miraculously throwing her high school bully ten feet in the air. Get for FREE on Amazon Ambers faerie tale for SW and BNYou asked for it, you've got it... Amber's story! If you haven't read Enlightened, it is recommended to read that book before reading this novella. As a matter of fact, if you haven't read it...don't read the synopsis of this book....or pay attention to the title. By continuing to read, you're taking it into your own hands that you're reading a spoiler. Don't write me and say you had no idea and now you're scarred for life. Nope, you can't say those things. Amazon Best Selling Series - age 13+ You're reading at your own risk. I'm warning you to turn your eyes and run and read the first two books before going any further. Get it for FREE on Amazon 2c4d41a532869294dced04542202f3fafd69ab6d-thumbFifteen-year-old Therese watches her parents die. While in a coma, she meets the twin sons of Hades—Hypnos (the god of sleep) and Thanatos (the god of death). She thinks she's manipulating a dream, not kissing the god of death and totally rocking his world. Than makes a deal with Hades and goes as a mortal to the Upperworld to try and win Therese's heart, but not all the gods are happy. Some give her gifts. Others try to kill her. The deal requires Therese to avenge the death of her parents. With the help of Than’s fierce and exotic sisters, the Furies, she finds herself in an arena face to face with the murderer, and only one will survive. Get it for FREE on Amazon INOPERATIVE FINAL  200x300Introducing a new series by Award Winning Author, Charity Parkerson: Generation Automation is upon us. The craving to own the latest and greatest technology in the name of convenience has created a world where man and machine live alongside one another in an unsteady peace. Humans still rule for now. However, an underground movement has begun that will change everything. For every arising enemy against humanity, a countermeasure is born-- Alexia is one of the few humans left who'd rather not have an android hanging over her shoulder all day.... Get it on Amazon   agelessseaThe crash was no accident. Fate carried Brady and his airplane to the isolated island where Karis was banished to live alone. She feared the worst as she sifted through the wreckage, sure that no one could survive. But there he was, barely breathing yet still alive. The closer she got to him, the more her powers awakened. He was like a magnet she was drawn to. Maybe it was the years alone that left her yearning for companionship, or maybe it was the taut muscles in his arms that beckoned her to come closer, either way she had a hard time controlling her thoughts. She knew things about him that he couldn’t remember, things that were blocked from his memory. He wasn’t from earth either, and she needed his help to save both of their worlds. But the closer she gets to Brady the more she knows her world is with him.... Get it on Amazon immortalvoyageBefore the time of the great pyramids, there was a place like none other, a city of glass and metal rising from the depths of the ocean. Shrouded in mist, the island of Hy-Brasil and its capital Atlantis lay hidden from the rest of the world by its people, a race of long lived, interstellar nomads. What secrets would you keep to save your kingdom? On the Queen’s deathbed, the sonless King Aldric is force into a promise to allow his five daughters to marry for love. A promise he wished he had never made,and one he will have to break, to save the kingdom from his squabbling, incompetent son-in-laws... Buy on Amazon   Edge-of-Eden-Mandie-Stevens-672x1024Anya thought she had an eternity to put her life back together after the Council of Alchemists exiled her. Just when she started to find her place in the world again, disaster struck. Someone witnessed the gifts she had tried desperately to keep hidden. Now the Council is back with an offer she can’t refuse: join them in their quest to take over the supernatural community or lose the life she worked so hard to rebuild. Trying to find a way out of helping the Council, Anya lands in a heap of trouble. A string of sacrifices that point directly to her. Now she’s on a path to discover a deception that could destroy the world as she knows it. With the life of her friends and loved ones on the line and Heaven and Hell on the brink of a Holy War, only Anya can put a stop to the apocalyptic nightmare. Coming in May. REB150Romantic Edge Books began when nine authors’ love of writing and reading collided. The genres in which they write may differ, but one thing remains the same: romance. Whether it’s panty ripping or stolen looks, the girls of REB know how to make their pages smolder.

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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Children of the Revolution by Peter Robinson Review and Giveaway!



About the Book

A disgraced college lecturer is found murdered with £5,000 in his pocket on a disused railway line near his home. Since being dismissed from his job for sexual misconduct four years previously, he has been living a poverty-stricken and hermit-like existence in this isolated spot.

The suspects range from several individuals at the college where he used to teach to a woman who knew the victim back in the early '70s at Essex University, then a hotbed of political activism. When Banks receives a warning to step away from the case, he realises there is much more to the mystery than meets the eye - for there are plenty more skeletons to come out of the closet . .




About the Author
Peter Robinson was born in Yorkshire. After getting his BA Honours Degree in English Literature at the University of Leeds, he came to Canada and took his MA in English and Creative Writing at the University of Windsor, with Joyce Carol Oates as his tutor, then a PhD in English at York University. He has taught at a number of Toronto community colleges and universities and served as Writer-in-Residence at the University of Windsor, 1992-93.

Series:
Inspector Banks

Awards:
* Winner of the 1992 Ellis Award for Best Novel.
* Winner of the 1997 Ellis Award for Best Novel.
* Winner of the 2000 Anthony Award for Best Novel. 
* Winner of the 2000 Barry Award for Best Novel.
* Winner of the 2001 Ellis Award for Best Novel.


My Thoughts
Children of the Revolution is a tale of murder and suspense with DCI Banks investigating a murder of a man who is found near his home. It is suspected that he was thrown over a bridge, landing by some unused railway tracks. The investigation takes Banks on a journey back into 70's, a time of political turmoil and unrest.It appears that there were a lot of people who knew the deceased back in their college days. Along with him, sifting through the suspects, are his colleagues, one of which is Annie Cabot. Twists and turns abound in the mystery and of course it is never who you suspect. This was the first DCI Banks book I have read, I did see the TV show DCI Banks of which I loved. Peter Robinson is an author that I intend to read more of. I recommend it highly.

I received a copy of this book for review and was not monetarily compensated for my review.

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Anybody's Daughter by Pamela Samuels Young Spotlight!


Title: Anybody’s Daughter
Author: Pamela Samuels Young
Genre: Mystery/Thriller
Publisher: Goldman House Publishing
Pages: 376
Purchase at AMAZON
Is Anybody’s Daughter Ever Safe?
Based on the real-life horrors faced by thousands of girls, award-winning author Pamela Samuels Young takes readers deep inside the disturbing world of child sex trafficking in a fast-paced thriller that educates as much as it entertains.
The opening chapter of Anybody’s Daughter introduces readers to thirteen-year-old Brianna Walker. She’s ecstatic because she’s about to sneak off to meet her first real boyfriend—a boyfriend she met on Facebook. But Brianna is in for a horrifying surprise because her boyfriend doesn’t exist. Instead, Brianna unwittingly becomes the captive of a ring of drug dealers-turned-human traffickers who prey on lonely girls from dysfunctional homes. But they’ve made a big mistake in targeting Brianna because she doesn’t meet either of those criteria.
Brianna’s Uncle Dre, a man with his own criminal past, is determined to find the niece who is more like a daughter to him. Rather than sit back and rely on police to bring Brianna home, Dre scours the dark corners of Los Angeles looking for her. He is stunned to learn that the trafficking of children isn’t just happening in other countries. It’s occurring at epidemic levels right in his own backyard.
Dre is not alone in his desperate search. Loretha Johnson knows this world well. A social worker who previously lived “the life,” Loretha now dedicates her time to saving as many young girls as she can find. She turns out to be an invaluable resource for Dre, who ultimately gets a lead on The Shepherd, a mastermind in the trafficking world whose every move is fueled by ego and greed. Dre vows to bring The Shepherd’s reign of terror to an end, even if he has to break the law to do it.
While Brianna makes a futile effort to thwart her captors, Dre is getting closer and closer to finding her. The woman he loves, attorney Angela Evans, knows the dangers faced by sexually exploited children because she represents them in juvenile court. Angela lends her moral support and, eventually, an important clue to Brianna’s whereabouts.
As he races against the clock, Dre ultimately comes up with a daring plan—one that puts many lives in danger, including his own. But will he find Brianna before it’s too late?
Kirkus Reviews called Anybody’s Daughter “A fast-paced, well-written thriller that’s grounded in important social issues.”

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ABOUT PAMELA SAMUELS YOUNG

photo_3When attorney and author Pamela Samuels Young isn’t practicing law, you can usually find her penning her next legal thriller. Described by one reviewer as “John Grisham with a sister’s twist,” Pamela is an award-winning author of six novels.
Pamela has always abided by the philosophy that you create the change you want to see. Fed up with never seeing women or people of color depicted as savvy, hot shot attorneys in the legal thrillers she read, the Compton native decided to create her own characters. Despite the demands of a busy legal career, Pamela accomplished her ambitious goal by getting up at four in the morning to write before work, dedicating her weekends to writing and even spending her vacation time glued to her laptop for ten or more hours a day. In the process, she discovered her passion.
Her debut novel, Every Reasonable Doubt (2006), won the Black Expressions Book Club’s Fiction Writing Contest, received an honorable mention in the SEAK Legal Fiction Writing Competition and was a finalist for USA Book News’ Best Books of 2006 awards in the mystery, suspense and thriller category. Her second novel, In Firm Pursuit (2007), was honored by Romantic Times magazine as a finalist for Best African-American Novel of 2007. Murder on the Down Low (2008), Pamela’s third release, was an “Editor’s Pick” by Black Expressions magazine and a finalist for the 2009 African-American Literary Awards in the fiction category. The Black Caucus of the American Library Association honored Pamela’s fourth novel, Buying Time (2009), with its 2010 Fiction Award, calling the book “a captivating, suspenseful thriller.” Attorney-Client Privilege (2012) was Pamela’s fifth legal thriller, followed by Anybody’s Daughter (2013), which examines the shocking world of child sex trafficking.
The prolific writer has also penned the short stories Easy Money, featured in the anthology Scoundrels: Tales of Greed, Murder and Financial Crimes (2012) and Setup, selected for the Sisters in Crime anthology, LAndmarked for Murder (2006).
A former journalist, Pamela began her broadcasting career with WXYZ-TV in Detroit and later worked as a news writer and associate producer for KCBS-TV in Los Angeles. Burned out by the news business, Pamela took a big and scary step a few months before her 30th birthday and entered law school—a long-held dream. Pamela currently moonlights as a mystery writer while working full-time as Managing Counsel for Labor and Employment Law for a major corporation in Southern California, specializing in employment law and social media law. Prior to that, she served as Employment Law Counsel for Raytheon Company and spent several years as an associate with the law firm of O’Melveny & Myers, LLP, in Los Angeles.
A graduate of UC Berkeley’s School of Law, Pamela has a bachelor’s degree in journalism from USC and a master’s degree in broadcasting from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. She formerly served on the Board of Directors of the Los Angeles chapter of Mystery Writers of America and is a diehard member of Sisters in Crime-L.A., an organization dedicated to the advancement of women mystery writers. A graduate of Compton High School, Pamela lives in the Los Angeles area and attends Hope in Christ Community Church in Compton.
Pamela is a frequent speaker on the topics of fiction writing, discrimination law and pursuing your passion. To read an excerpt of Pamela’s books or to schedule her for a speaking engagement or book club meeting via speakerphone, Skype, FaceTime or in person, visit her website at www.pamelasamuelsyoung.com or email her at authorpamelasamuelsyoung@gmail.com.


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Tuesday, April 15, 2014

The Power by Jeff Hennelly Book Boost & Giveaway!

The Power Book Boost & Giveaway!
"a heart-quickening novel that will thrill Michael Crichton fans and that T.C. Boyle readers will find wickedly smart"
About The Power
What if you had the power to heal others but it only brought you personal destruction and ruin? Would you still use it? When a street shaman meets a horrific demise on Dr. Austin MacLean’s ER table, Austin soon discovers a raw and irrepressible power. But when this power inflicts traumatic effects on three chronically ill children, families rush to accuse him, his colleagues condemn him, and the police begin to investigate in this affluent New Jersey beach town....and so do others when the children begin to show inconceivable progress. Dara Kleows, a local reporter, is the first to connect the children’s gradual healings back to Austin. The two develop a deep bond but Austin remains uncertain as to what this beautiful woman wants. Is she just after a story, or more? There are those who covet Austin’s “power” and at any cost, while Dara grows concerned by Austin’s headlong march toward his own perdition. What if you had the power to heal but people condemned you and supected its use? Would you still use it? Read The Power. You just might need it someday when you meet the One, or if that One becomes you.
Purchase The Book
*Only $2.99 on Kindle!*
About The Author
 
Jeff Hennelly now lives outside of Philadelphia, PA. He's been in the medical device business for over 20 years and has worked with hospitals, clinics, and alternate care facilities from Palo Alto to Prague. His articles and short stories have appeared in numerous trade magazines and journals. His latest novel, THE POWER has generated motion picture interest. His fascination remains for the human condition, behavior surrounding procreation, and in art that portrays a metaphor for life. Look for his new novel, THE 95 PERCENT in December of 2013.
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$50

Monday, April 14, 2014

Collector of Dying Breaths by M.J.Rose Review!


Publication Date: April 8, 2014
Atria Books
Hardcover; 384p
ISBN-10: 1451621531

From one of America’s most imaginative storytellers comes a passionate tale of love and treachery, spanning the days of Catherine de Medici’s court to the twenty-first century and starring a woman drawn back, time and again, to the past.
In 1533, an Italian orphan with an uncanny knack for creating fragrance is plucked from poverty to become Catherine de Medici’s perfumer. To repay his debt, over the years RenĂ© le Florentine is occasionally called upon to put his vast knowledge to a darker purpose: the creation of deadly poisons used to dispatch the Queen’s rivals.
But it’s RenĂ©’s other passion—a desire to reanimate a human breath, to bring back the lives of the two people whose deaths have devastated him—that incites a dangerous treasure hunt five centuries later. That’s when Jac L’Etoile—suffering from a heartache of her own—becomes obsessed with the possibility of unlocking Rene’s secret to immortality.
Soon Jac’s search reconnects her with Griffin North, a man she’s loved her entire life. Together they confront an eccentric heiress whose art collection rivals many museums and who is determined to keep her treasures close at hand, not just in this life but in her next.
Set in the forest of Fontainebleau, crisscrossing the lines between the past and the present, M.J. Rose has written a mesmerizing tale of passion and obsession. This is a gothic tale perfect for fans of Anne Rice, Deborah Harkness, and Diana Galbadon.

Praise for The Collector of Dying Breaths

“History, mystery, ambition, lust, love, death and the timeless quest for immortality…a riveting tale of suspense.” – B.A.Shapiro, New York Times bestselling author of The Art Forger
“Mysterious, magical, and mythical…what a joy to read!” – Sara Gruen, New York Times bestselling author

Buy the Book



About the Author

M.J. Rose is the international best selling author of fourteen novels and two non-fiction books on marketing. Her fiction and non-fiction has appeared in many magazines and reviews including Oprah Magazine. She has been featured in the New York Times, Newsweek, Time, USA Today and on the Today Show, and NPR radio. Rose graduated from Syracuse University, spent the ’80s in advertising, has a commercial in the Museum of Modern Art in NYC and since 2005 has run the first marketing company for authors – Authorbuzz.com. The television series PAST LIFE, was based on Rose’s novels in the Renincarnationist series. She is one of the founding board members of International Thriller Writers and runs the blog- Buzz, Balls & Hype. She is also the co-founder of Peroozal.com and BookTrib.com.
Rose lives in CT with her husband the musician and composer, Doug Scofield, and their very spoiled and often photographed dog, Winka.
For more information on M.J. Rose and her novels, please visit her website. You can also find her on FacebookTwitter and Goodreads.

Tour Schedule: 
Tour Hashtag: #DyingBreathsTour


My Thoughts
The Book of Lost Fragrances, Seduction and now Collector of Dying Breaths, M.J.Rose has done it again. Combining alchemists and perfumers in the perfect combinations to find the secret of using dying breaths to bring back a loved one. Is it possible?? I have no clue but reading these books sure makes the reader think that anything is possible. Alternating from 1573 in Barbizon France to present day, this is a dual story of Rene le Florentin, perfumer to Catherine de Medici and my favorite character Jac L'Etoile who is drawn into the life of Rene through her dreams and visions. 

This is a compelling and intriguing blending of mystery, murder,  passion and the unknown of which only M.J. Rose can do. It certainly kept my attention as her books always do and I was totally drawn into the story. The author takes the impossible and brings it to life. This is a very well researched continuation in a wonderful series. I highly recommend it and give it 5 stars!!

I received a copy for review and was not monetarily compensated for my review.

Retarded Girl Raised in Dog Pen by Lauren Leigh Spotlight!



Publication Date:  March 15, 2014
Genre: Fiction / Mystery 
Publisher: Sartoris Literary Group

Synopsis:

Baby is every adoptive parent’s nightmare—blind, paralyzed from the waist down, unable to speak, and diagnosed with developmental and intellectual disabilities. For the first 10 years of her life she is raised outside in a dog pen by a cruel adoptive father, a Mississippi deputy sheriff who values his bird dogs more than his daughter.

Retarded Girl Raised in Dog Pen is the story of Baby’s placement in a Mississippi mental institution for individuals with profound retardation after the brutal murder of her father and the arrest of her mother, and her desperate attempt to escape the institution.

Once the mother is convicted of murder and sentenced to death, the story takes a bizarre twist as mental health professions discover that Baby is capable of communication, despite being trapped inside a grotesque body that holds her prisoner.

How much does Baby know? Can she prove her mother’s innocence?

As the mother sits on death row, the clock ticking, a brilliant psychologist has the shock of her life when she discovers that Baby is not who she seems. The question is will the psychologist be able to solve the mystery in time to save the mother’s life?

Similar to One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest in the manner in which it reveals the inner workings of a mental institution, it is, in the end, about the triumph of intellect and passion over indifference and cruelty. It is written in the tradition of The Sound and the Fury and To Kill a Mockingbird, two novels that address the complex issue of intellectual disabilities.

About the Author:

Lauren Leigh is a mental health professional who has devoted her life to working with individuals with intellectual disabilities. This is her first novel.

Excerpt:

When Thad Vanderbilt arrived at the county jail, he was eating a hamburger that he’d picked up at the drive-through window of a fast-food restaurant. He took bites of the burger and sips from a cup filled with iced tea as he walked into the building and asked to meet with Rivers in a private conference room.
As she walked in the door, he was in the process of wadding up the paper wrapping around the burger. He tossed it into a nearby trash can and then took a sip from the cup, gurgling the last few drops from the bottom of the cup before discarding it. Left behind was a touch of mayo that stuck about an inch from the corner of his mouth. Rivers noticed it, but said nothing, not really caring whether her lawyer looked foolish or not.
Thad stood and extended his hand as she approached the table and sat in a folding chair. His fingers felt damp from the soft drink cup, and she wiped her hand against her jumpsuit. 
“I’m Thad Vanderbilt,” he said. “I’ve seen you around town, but I don’t think we’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting.”
“I’ve seen you in your convertible.”
Thad laughed. “Yes, and it will be paid for in another three years, just in time to trade it in for a new one.”
Rivers didn’t think that was funny and she did not respond with a laugh of her own.
Thad looked at a legal pad, reading over his scribbled notes.
“I see your husband was a deputy.”
Rivers nodded.
“And you have a little girl named Baby. Is that correct?”
“Yes. Have you seen her?”
“No, I haven’t. I understand she was taken away and placed at Silverstone Retardation Center.”
“That’s what the sheriff told me.”
“She’ll be well taken care of there.”
“I hope so. She’s not used to strangers.”
“They are used to people like her.”
“What do you mean, people like her?”
“You know, retarded.”
“Oh.”
“How do you want to plead on this?”
“What do you mean?”
“Guilty or not guilty.”
“Oh.”
Rivers didn’t answer, sort of drifted away, lost in thought.
“Did you hear me?”
“What?”
“Guilty or not guilty?”
“What’s the difference?”
“If you plead guilty, there is no trial and the judge decides your sentence. If you plead not guilty, you go to trial and listen to people say a lot of bad things about you, and then the jury decides if you are guilty or not guilty, and then, if you are guilty, they pass sentence.”
“And if the jury decides I am not guilty?”
“Then they send you home.”
“In that case, who goes to prison?”
“The prosecutor will decide if there is someone else he wants to prosecute. If there is, then he will go after them and try to get a conviction.
“Oh.”
“So what do you want to do?”
“Did the sheriff give you any information about Angus?”
“I don’t understand.”
“Did the sheriff give you any details about what happened to him?”
 “Sure.”
“Would you mind telling me what you know?”
“No problem.” He looked over his notes. “OK. They found his body yesterday, buried along the tree line of your property, about fifty yards from the dog pen.”
“Did he look upset?”
“Excuse me?”
“Did it look like he was upset over being dead?”
Thad paused again, this time to collect his thoughts. “Ma’am, when you’re dead I don’t think you necessarily look upset or not upset.”
“I see.” She lowered her eyes, looking down at her lap, where her fingers were intertwined in a knot. “Does it say anything about how he died?”
“Yes, ma’am, it says he was struck in the chest with an ax.”
“That all?”
“No, it says he was hacked on a little bit.”
“Do they have the ax?”
“Apparently, it was buried with him.”
Rivers sat quietly for a while. Then she put her hand on her chest, feeling her thumping heart. “Would you mind seeing after the burial?”
“That’s not really what I do.”
“Baby and I are the only family he’s got. If not you, then who?”
“Ma’am, you’ve put me on the spot.”
“I know that.”
Thad doodled on his legal pad as he struggled with her request. He had moved to Murphy County from Memphis, where lawyers played by a different set of rules. In Memphis, her request would have been laughed at, but not in a rural community where everyone knows everyone else, or if they don’t, they know of them or have heard stories about them.
“That’s not something I usually do,” he said. “But I’ll make an exception in your case.”
“Thank you.”
“But you still haven’t answered me.”
“About what?”
“About your plea.”
“Can I decide what goes on the tombstone?”
“I don’t know for sure, but assume that would not be a problem. You are his wife.”
“Will there be flowers?”
“Yes—if I have to send them myself.”
“That’s nice.”
 “I don’t mean to be rude, ma’am, but I need to know your plea.”
Rivers looked up, as if searching for the answer on the ceiling. Inexplicably, a serene look appeared on her face. “What will happen to me if I plead guilty?”
“It is a capital offense to kill a police officer, so the penalty would be death by injection.”
“I see.”
“Is that what you would like to do?”
“Yes, I believe it is.”

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