FOR JACK R. PYLE:
Of Jack R. Pyle's The Death of Adam Stone: "A Southern
family laced with evil and an untimely death means trouble for the cousin who'd like to learn the truth. Tense suspense that
takes off running and never lets up." Elizabeth Daniels Squire, Agatha Winning Author
Ibsen, move over!
Reviewer: J. Stephen McDaniel, M.D.,
Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Emory University School of Medicine from Atlanta, Georgia, US
If you identified with Ibsen's "Hedda Gabler" and Nora in "A Doll's House" early feminist plays in which love alone
promised a woman happiness and sin against one's society didn't count, you will love Black Horse White Rider.
With historical accuracy, Jack R. Pyle's version pits funloving, teenage abolitionist Elizabeth Chadwycke, falling in love
with and marrying philandering, southern plantation slaveholder, Clay Greenleaf. The pace is deadly as Clay slowly, steadily,
passive aggressively, tethers his bride, until the leash is so short, she wonders if she controls even her own thoughts.
Resistance carries a hefty legal price: Clay will get custody of their two daughters, whom he rarely sees and doesn't
even like because they're not boys. When Elizabeth finally escapes with the girls, powerful Clay seeks revenge. The chase
takes the reader through a labyrinth of surprises to an ending so rewarding (yet predictable), it couldn't be guessed!
Don't miss this great read!
THE SOUND OF DISTANT THUNDER
What happens to the average citizen when
fails to deliver justice? There is always a developing anger, a resentment, a disappointment. Finally, there
is a cold, sullen reconciliation--an acceptance that "the system" has not done its job.
in the mind of the independent thinker, the rugged individualist, when justice goes awry? What happens to the person
who already feels his freedom has been eroded by daily intrusions of the law?
The Sound of
Distant Thunder is a fictional story,
but what happens to the Prices and the Pendleys echoes the thunder we hear when
smart lawyers and bad laws combine to make a mockery of the legal system.
Set in a fictional county
in Western North Carolina, Jack R. Pyle tells a tale that is all too real; a tale that makes us stop to think of what might
be our own reaction to a personal injustice.
All the members of the Pendley clan are faced with
a murder of their youngest and the failure to convict the killer. We'd prefer not to hear it, but this is an injustice
that could happen to any of us in today's world. We can understand the emotions that are involved because we are
allowed to see inside the heads of the people involved in this intricately plotted story of a senseless killing.
While this is a classic story of murder and revenge, it is also a tale so close to home that we must test our own reaction
to a similar situation that could occur in our own lives. These are real people caught in the web of fate.
The Sound of Distant Thunder is recommended as a thought-provoking story as well as a good read. The use of
seven points of view is unusual, but this is an unusual novel.
THE GOLD BUG OF FARROW POINT
Publishers, Boone, NC
Reviewed by schuyler kaufman, author of Dear Mouse...
Prompted by Poe's famous short story, George and Ellen Hilton decode a mysterious
note while vacationing with their parents on Florida's Gulf coast. This young-adult mystery features smugglers, a baffling
cipher, and a girl who does the brain work while the boy blunders into the villain's toils, updating the classic Nancy Drew
/Hardy Boys tradition. Pyle casts the story in first person, alternating the point of view between big brother George and
his sister Ellen.
Pyle's protagonists seem to be in their early teens. Ellen is old enough to
enjoy window-shopping and beauty treatments; George is at least a year older, but doesn't have a driver's license. Even as
they team up like chopsticks to solve the mystery, they bicker and one-up each other like real siblings. One of Pyle's best
lines comes when Ellen spots George racing home, having earlier slipped away without bringing his sister (a family no-no):
"He was in deep trouble. I couldn't wait to tell him."
Pyle gives both kids somewhat mature vocabularies
for their ages. After George fails to look as if he's window-shopping, Ellen tells him, "Oh, boy, am I disappointed in you"
(a simple "Sludge-brain!" would have worked for me). When Ellen tries to coach him in decoding the note, George protests,
"Yes, but the letters in this code--or in any equal number of words--are not going to follow the order of the Printer's Frequencies."
Although some passages read rather heavily, such as Ellen's step-by-step descriptions of her (somewhat flawed) decoding process,
the story is a good yarn. Unlike traditional mystery heroines, Ellen reports George's disappearance the minute she knows
of it, rather than dashing off to "rescue" him without telling anyone.
Generous elder relatives
may want to buy this book
for young readers who thrill to secret codes and young detectives.