December 2010


Title: America
Author: Anne Azel
ISBN: 978-1-933720-79-1
Publisher: P. D. Publishing
Available At: Barnes and Noble; Amazon
Pages: 252
Price: $19.99
Genre: Short Story Anthology

Anne Azel is an accomplished writer who has won awards in multiple categories.  In America she has chosen to highlight the spirit of American lesbians.  It may be her best work yet.

America is a collection of short stories and vignettes about different lesbian couples.  Some of them are nothing but snapshots, while others are longer stories.  Some of them barely show a relationship beginning and others take the time to fully develop a story and the characters.  Those stories show the possibilities of what could be full length books.  What the stories have in common, besides being about Americans, is to show women at their best – loving, struggling and sometimes misunderstanding each other.  There are modern pirates, corporate raiders, tangents of memories and romance on a tropical island.  Each one reveals a different aspect of love and relationships.  In the mix the reader also is given a look at a cross section of American life.

Azel shows her skill as a writer when in the shortest pieces she's able to give the reader a complete picture with the right choice of words.  She proves that it's not how much is written, but how it's written.  The nice thing about an anthology is that the book can be put down after a short reading.  The catch with this book is that the reader won't want to put it down.

This book is worth the time spent with it.
Reviewed by Lynne Pierce


Title: Bloodlust
Author: Fran Heckrotte
ISBN: 978-1-934889-53-4
Publisher: L-Book
Available At: L-Book; Moon Horse Books;Amazon
e-Book: L-Book; Barnes and Noble
Pages: 307
Price: $19.95
Genre: Paranormal


is the second book in Heckrotte's Illusionist series and picks up the story when Yemaya and Dakota have returned to Yemaya's homeland in eastern Europe.  Someone is attacking the local villagers, killing some and leaving others in comas.  As they try to discover what is happening to these people, the women cover a lot of geographic territory while meeting new species and continuing to interact with the spirit world.  Always there are the wolves who serve their mistress Yemaya with loyalty and ferocity.  Ancient secrets are difficult to unravel and often dangerous.

The book weaves together different plot lines and that allows the introduction of a variety of characters, including an ancient species that lives off of human blood (not vampires), gods that have existed since before time began and a voodoo priestess with a decidedly nasty personality.  At times the story seems to be wandering off into random areas, but then they come back together to create a more complete picture of what is happening. 

Fans of paranormal stories should find this one entertaining.  It goes from the heavy, brooding atmosphere of eastern Europe to hot steamy nights full of mystery in New Orleans and there are enough other realm characters to keep the reader happy.  Heckrotte's writing has grown stronger as she has progressed.  Since there are unanswered questions at the end of this book, there are obviously further volumes.  It will be interesting to see where she takes these characters.
Reviewed by Lynne Pierce

Title: Chloe's Heart
Author: O. M. Aguilar
ISBN: 978-1451553765
Publisher: CreateSpace
Available At: Barnes and Noble; Amazon
e-Book: Amazon
Price: $15.95
Pages: 242
Genre: Mystery

If you like a mystery that isn't a disguise for a romance, this is the book for you.

If you like a mystery that keeps you guessing what the ending will be, this is the book for you. 

If you like a book that is populated with characters you're going to want to know more about, this is the book for you. If you like a book that has an absolutely perfect closing scene, this is definitely the book for you. 

Chloe's Heart is the first volume in the Shana Niguel mystery series.  It introduces the reader to private investigator Shana, her devoted and somewhat zany friend Guadalupe LeBlanc, rancher Kate Wolf and an intriguing supporting cast of family and friends.  Shana and Kate meet literally over the body of Kate's murdered friend Chloe.  Though they feel an immediate attraction it has to take a backseat when Kate's aunt hires Shana to investigate the case and possibly clear the man Kate believes to be the murderer.  Through twists and turns Shana will try to follow the clues that sometimes conflict and often don't fit together.  The case will test the ties of friendship and family that mean so much to everyone involved, but the ultimate cost may be the hope that Shana and Kate have for a relationship.  If Shana solves the mystery the way her employer hopes she will, then it might cost her Kate.  Integrity battles with emotions as Shana tries to stay true to her profession even if it means breaking her own heart. 

Aguilar has created a true mystery story that has a romance in the background.  Though the relationship growing between Shana and Kate is always there, it doesn't drive the story.  There is also a great deal of humor injected through the friendship that Shana and Guad share.  The reader will quickly realize that Shana is sometimes a lost soul and Guad, with all of her outrageous behavior, is the rock that keeps her centered.  Although Guad is straight, the reader will understand completely when Kate is confused that Shana and Guad might be lovers.  Their relationship is actually closer than that.   

What makes the book a winner though is the mystery.  The reader is presented with an opening scenario that seems a closed case; then Aguilar sprinkles in bits of information designed to take the reader in different directions.  Even if the reader begins to suspect the truth, the story will still draw you into other paths.  Not until the end do all of the pieces come together to reveal the truth. 

If all of the books in this series are this good, then an extremely entertaining new author has been added to the mystery genre.  The fact that her main characters are lesbians is just icing on the cake.
Reviewed by Lynne Pierce

Title: Collide
Author: Maria V. Cilletti
ISBN: 978-1-935216-14-8
Publisher: Intaglio Publications
Available At: Bella Books; Amazon
Price: $16.95
Pages: 219
Genre: Romance

is Renee Cardone's story of self discovery.  After her husband's death from cancer, Renee is left a widow with two teen aged daughters.  She finds comfort in the routine of her job at the local library.  It is at the library that she meets Dana Renato, a writer doing research for her latest book.  What follows is the story of their blossoming friendship, her daughters, and their life in Niles, Ohio.

Ciletti has done an excellent job of showing Renee's challenges as she adapts to becoming a single parent, copes with loneliness after losing her husband, and handles the perceived expectations of her family and upbringing.  In many ways, Collide is an adult "coming out" story, told with humor, and the twists and turns that life brings.  It's warm, real, and its characters could easily be  women we all know.
Reviewed by RLynne

Title: Eyes on the Stars
Author: Lynn Ames
ISBN: 979-936429-00-4
Publisher: Phoenix Rising Press
Available At: Phoenix Rising Press; Moon Horse Books; Barnes and Noble; Amazon
e-Book: Phoenix Rising Press
Price: $14.95
Pages: 262
Genre: Historical Fiction

Eyes on the Stars takes the reader to a part of history that has been ignored for too long. The WASPs (Women Airforce Service Pilots) were created during World War II to free more men for combat. Along with other duties, the women would train male pilots and sometimes act as test pilots for new fighter planes. Their service was ignored for many years and they have only recently received the recognition they deserved. That's where this story opens.

Jessie Keaton is attending the ceremony where the WASPs are being recognized by the government and meets the daughter and granddaughter of the woman she has loved for more than sixty years, Claudia Sherwood. Jessie and Claudia met during training and fell totally in love. They hoped to make a life for themselves by being stationed at the same post and at first things went fine, but a tragic event separated them. Now Claudia's daughter gives Jessie a collection of letters that her mother had written, but never mailed, over the years. As Jessie reads them, she reminisces about their experiences and realizes what they lost. Although both are in their eighties and neither is in good health, Jessie decides to make one more attempt to see if they can have a chance at happiness.

This is a good lesbian romance, but it has the added bonus of also teaching the reader some history. Ames captures the period perfectly. It's easy to feel the trials the WASPs went through, especially the opposition of male pilots and maintenance crews. The situations are portrayed so well that the reader can feel as if she's actually in the events. It's interesting to read about a time that is still close enough for some to remember, yet where expectations for women and beliefs about their abilities were so different. These women were trailblazers in more ways than one and Ames' appreciation for them comes through clearly.

The book also evokes the question "What if?" What if the times had been different? What if the women had not each let her version of pride get in the way? What if Jessie and Claudia had not lived long enough to finally be given the honor they were due and had the opportunity to find each other again?

This is the first brand new book from Phoenix Rising Press. If it's indicative of the type of books they will be publishing, this company has a promising future.
Reviewed by Lynne Pierce

Title: Falling Into Fate
Author: JM Dragon
ISBN: 978-1-935216-17-9
Publisher: Intaglio Publications
Available At: Intaglio Publications; Bella Books; Amazon
e-Book: Intaglio Publications; Bella Books
Price: $16.95
Pages: 232
Genre: Romance

Do you believe in spirits? 

Lorna Hirste does and it put her in a mental hospital. Lorna believes she hears voices that tell her which tombstones are going to be desecrated and she has to go to cemeteries to protect them.  Unfortunately, that led to an accidental killing and Lorna being unfairly confined for fifteen years.  Jenny Price donates time from her law practice to correct cases like Lorna's and, when she is able to obtain Lorna's release, Jenny feels responsible for helping her client to readjust to regular life. 

Susan Stark is a newspaper reporter and simply wants to write what appears to be an interesting story, if she can just get around Jenny's protective instincts.  Susan and Jenny are drawn to each other despite their constant sparring and find themselves involved in an investigation of Lorna's abilities.  When Susan has an opportunity to report from the frontlines in Afghanistan, the forced distance makes Jenny and Susan reassess their relationship.  Both of them have been robbed of their ability to trust in other people and what happens to Susan in the war won't help. 

Falling Into Fate has a number of interesting threads in the story.  It starts with an investigation into the paranormal, but it doesn't stop there.  Other threads include the responsibility of the press, the damages that can be done to people in relationships and the tragic costs of the war in Afghanistan.  The threads twine together to create a story that is engrossing and well told.  It's not that one part of the story is more compelling than another or that the characters are more unusual than in any other book.  It's the way the pieces blend to tell the story that makes the book worth reading.  Take any one of them out and it's a lesser story, but in this context the result is greater than the sum of its parts. 

JM Dragon is an experienced writer and it shows in this book.  Falling Into Fate is probably her best effort so far.  Dragon has paced the story very well and allows the relationships to develop slowly and in a realistic manner.  It's also nice to read about two women who are mature in how they deal with issues and not the giddy or silly characters that seem prevalent today.  This is a book that delivers the value of the price it costs in the story it tells.
Reviewed by Lynne Pierce

Title: For the Love of Miss Bard
Author: P. Crow
ISBN: 978-9802257 9-2
Publisher: Peddler's Group
Available At: Peddler's Group; Moon Horse Books; Barnes and Noble; Amazon
e-Book: Peddler's Group
Price: $14.95
Pages: 184
Genre: Matinee Romance

Kathryn Bard and Alex Trout meet when Alex's daughter Samantha is a student in Miss Bard's kindergarten class.  Despite some initial resistance, their strong attraction soon leads to a romance.  As their relationship develops they have to worry about a stalker who is determined to separate them.  They hope to build a life together, but someone else may keep that from happening. 

The basic story in For the Love of Miss Bard is a routine romance and all right for some light reading; however, the reader is going to have to overlook a number of problems.  The book needed a good proofreader.  There are numerous sentences where grammatical mistakes are made and words either are left out or extra ones are put in where they don't belong.  Facts in the story aren't consistent either.  For example, on one page Kathryn says she's been watching Alex jog for three years, then two pages later, she says it's been five years.  The characters say they don't want the child talking at school about their relationship, but don't hesitate to include the child in activities or show their affection in front of her.  References are made to other characters that aren't explained and no story is given as to why Alex has a child.  These are simple mistakes that should have been corrected and they happen enough to be irritating.  The author also uses the same phrases and words repeatedly, creating a sense of redundancy. 

The most serious problem however is the initial relationship between Kathryn and Alex.  The idea that a teacher would have an affair with a student's parent violates educational ethics.  To have the school know about it and not only leave the child in the classroom, but not reprimand the teacher, stretches credibility too far.  Any teacher or parent reading this book should find this issue jarring. 

For the Love of Miss Bard is a good story that could have been a better book.  It's reminiscent of those online stories that show strong potential, but also demonstrate a number of errors that needed to be cleaned up.  This book would have been well served by a better editing job.  If the reader is looking for something quick and easy to read, this book will serve, but there is a lot to ignore in the process.
Reviewed by Lynne Pierce

Title: From A Distance
Author: CL Hart
ISBN: 978-1933720-75-3
Publisher: P. D. Publishing
Available At: Moon Horse Books; Barnes and Noble; Amazon
Price: $20.49
Pages: 288
Genre: Action/Adventure/Suspense

Kenzie LeGault found the order and honor that her life was lacking when she joined the US Army and she was eager to accept when she was asked to join an elite force of covert assassins.  Kenzie would save the world by killing the people who threatened it.  After a while though, her assignments begin to bother her because something doesn't seem right about them.  When she is sent to Mexico to kill American student Cori Evans, for the first time Kenzie disobeys her orders and decides to find out why someone would want the seemingly harmless woman dead.  That decision will send them fleeing across Mexico and into the US pursued by other members of Kenzie's own unit.  Women who began as enemies find friendship and more as they have to depend on each other for survival.  Kenzie is determined to discover who has betrayed her trust and Cori is determined to go wherever Kenzie does. 

CL Hart has created an engrossing and exciting adventure in From A Distance.  This is one of those books that, once you start reading it, is impossible to put down.  The pace is fast, which accentuates the suspense of the story, and the characters are interesting.  Hart weaves together political corruption, misplaced patriotism and deception to create a plot that seems outrageous and plausible at the same time.  The pressure that the two women feel is constant and creates tension in the story that radiates out to the reader.  Kenzie is perfectly portrayed as a woman who is both heroic and tragic at the same time as she travels with her dedicated and irrepressible sidekick Cori.  These are women living on the constant edge of disaster; yet they find ways to persevere.  

As in her first book Facing Evil, CL Hart proves that a book with lesbian characters can appeal to a mainstream audience.  What drives the book is the suspense of the story and the interactions between the characters, not the romantic relationship of the women.  Fans of conspiracy, adventure, suspense or intrigue books will find this one thoroughly satisfying.
Reviewed by Lynne Pierce  

Title: From This Moment On
Author: PJ Trebelhorn
ISBN: 10) 1-6082-154-2; 13)60282-154-5
Publisher: Bold Strokes Books
Available At: Bold Strokes Books; Bella Books; Moon Horse Books; Barnes and Noble; Amazon
e-Book at: Bold Strokes Books; Bella Books
Price: $12.95
Pages: 234
Genre: Romance

Devon Conway is finally ready to stop running.  She started three years ago when a drunk driver killed her lover and the child they were going to have.  The only way Devon could deal with it at the time was to just disappear from everyone.  Now it's time to come home, face the people she deserted and try to put her life back together.  That includes dealing with her lover's cheating twin sister, her best friend Rhonda and their friend Katherine Hunter.  Katherine is a veterinarian who helps out at Rhonda's art gallery and she too has suffered loss.  Neither woman is looking for a relationship, but fate keeps putting Devon and Katherine together.  They might have a future if they can get around the past. 

This is a solid and familiar romance.  It deals with a well known topic, recovering from loss and moving on with your life.  Both Devon and Katherine are reluctant to do that so they work at building a relationship slowly, with insecurity and doubts.  The emotions they encounter are easily understandable and handled in a realistic manner.  As often happens, it will take another near tragedy to clear both of their minds. 

From This Moment On is a good story and reads quickly.  It should provide a few hours of enjoyable reading.
Reviewed by Lynne Pierce

Title: House of Cards
Author: Nat Burns
ISBN: 10) 978-1-59493-203-8; 13)978-15949932038
Publisher: Bella Books
Available At: Bella Books
Price: $14.95
Pages: 288
Genre: Romance

Reading House of Cards is like looking through a keyhole onto the underbelly of southern culture.  What we see there is a story of incest and abuse at its worse and a bunch of middle-aged Southern matrons passing judgment on their little town’s inhabitants.

Kaylen Strauder has always bucked the status quo, albeit, in unassuming ways.  As the story unfolds, we find that she has been freed of a loveless marriage by widowhood, but her life is rather aimless and unfulfilled.  The only person she can be somewhat honest with is her best friend, Jane Anne, but even that has its limits.  So when a young, exuberant woman named Eda Byrne comes on the scene to remodel Kaylen’s yard, these two women embark on a journey that both shocks and surprises Kaylen.  As the two women draw closer, Kaylen struggles with the price of the relationship and little does she know trouble is brewing that’s born of jealousy and the need to spread gossip.

Burns gives us an unapologetic rendition of life in a small North Carolinian town with all its warts.  But she also gives us a promise of love for someone entering the summer of her life.  House of Cards is a love story from a different perspective than most.  It has a raw truth about it.
Reviewed by Anna Furtado

Title: Liar's Moon
Author: Kate Sweeney
ISBN: 13) 978-1-935216-19-3
Publisher: Intaglio Publications
Available At: Bella Books
Price: $16.95
Pages: 235
Genre: Paranormal Adventure

Liar's Moon is a sequel to Residual Moon.  The story begins with Grayson MacCarthaigh in Ireland, learning to accept her destiny.  Her more black and white past as a police detective is still having trouble with the realization that the Celtic legends she grew up with are true.  Her friend, Corky, the historian, is helping her learn more about both the legends and her role.  Through it all, both are aware that Phelan Tynan, their archenemy, is plotting her downfall.

Sweeney has brought in new characters, including a formerly cloistered nun, and Elinora, a beautiful immortal.  Elinora, in particular, has been written with a light hand which provides the perfect foil for Sweeney's humor.  As Grayson and Corky work to solve the riddle of the Liar's Moon it becomes clear to them that someone is not whom they seem to be, leaving them looking at friends and acquaintances with mistrust.  They are also well aware that they must solve the mystery before the rising of the next Liar's Moon.

Kate Sweeney writes an engrossing story told with a very different twist.  Her characters are strong and believable, as are her wonderful descriptions of the Irish countryside.  This is the perfect series for an armchair traveler and or anyone who loves a rollicking good yarn.
Reviewed by RLynne


Title: Lily of the Tower
Author: Elizabeth Hart
ISBN: 978-1-59493-177-2
Publisher: Bella Books
Available At: Bella Books
e-Book: Bella Books
Pages: 262
Price: $14.95 e-Book $11.95
Genre: Regency Period Romance


Netherfield estate has long held a mystery shrouded in tragedy.  Local people try to avoid going there, but on a stormy night Agnes Headey needs shelter and Netherfield is the only place nearby.  Strange sounds in the night lead her to discover a dark story of a sister locked away in a tower for her immoral behavior with a servant many years before.  Agnes makes it her mission to befriend Lily Netherfield and discovers a woman who causes her to question everything she thinks she knows about herself.  Lily knows what challenging the conventional thought can cost a person and Agnes is awakening feelings that Lily has tried to repress.  Agnes knows she is expected to marry James Thornton and settle her future, but that isn't where her heart is leading her.  It will take great courage to free Lily from her tower and defy the path that society is insisting they should follow.

Elizabeth Hart has created a treat for fans of Jane Austen, Charlotte Bronte and the Regency period in England.  Lily of the Tower radiates the rich feel of a time when manners and social status defined the standards for happiness, not personal feelings.  There are also undertones of a Gothic romance.  A student of the era might argue that Agnes has more freedom than would be granted young gentlewomen of the period, but that's not enough to interfere with the plot.  The house is creaky, the servants are obedient and properly fearful and the master is just a little bit insane, or so it seems.

Lily of the Tower is a lush story set in a time when being a homosexual was not only illegal, but could result in commitment to an insane asylum.  The ways that Lily and Agnes battle with this reality makes for a very interesting and satisfying book.
Reviewed by Lynne Pierce

Title: Not Every River
Author: Robbi McCoy
ISBN: 10) 1594931828 13)978-1594931826
Publisher: Bella Books
Available At: Bella Books
Price: $14.95
Pages: 288
Genre: Romance

At first encounter, Claudine “Randi” Randall, Bureau of Land Management geologist in Yuma, Arizona, and Dr. Kim Gatlin, archaeologist and college professor from California, just don’t seem to be able to find common ground.  Randi thinks Kim is out for professional glory to the detriment of Native American culture and history and Kim is confused by Randi’s attitude.  Kim is in Yuma to study a group of little-know petroglyphs and Randi is concerned that the notoriety that may come from Kim’s research will ruin “her” artifacts.  However, as time passes, it’s clear that chemistry trumps attitude any day, and sparks fly between the two women at every encounter.  As the two main characters struggle with their personal demons, their encounters are filled with misunderstandings and miscommunication.

McCoy has given us a tale infused with the beauty of the Sonoran Desert and sprinkled it with interesting characters, from an eccentric miner to a gun-toting Native American woman.  Then she adds a dash of true reality, with a family of stranded immigrants who get into serious trouble while trying to run the border from Mexico.  The two main characters quickly become real to us and we easily root for them, but this story is a cliffhanger right to the very end so the reader will be hesitant to put it down.  Not Every River is a great read filled with the mystery of the desert and the uncertainty of a tentative blossoming love.
Reviewed by Anna Furtado

Title: Photographs of Claudia
Author: KG MacGregor
ISBN: 10) 1594931682 13) 978-1594931680
Publisher: Bella Books
Available At: Bella Books
Price: $14.95
Pages: 290
Genre: Romance

Leonora Wescott is a talented, but struggling photographer.  Her bread and butter is school photographs and, although lucrative, she finds controlling the large groups of children beyond her ability or interest.  When she meets a young teacher, Claudia, who is interning at one of the schools where she’s photographing students, she is struck by Claudia’s ability and dedication.  Although Leo is a very private person, who mostly keeps to herself, she finds herself opening to Claudia and the two become friends.  However, little does each woman know that they stir feelings in the other that are neither welcome, nor acceptable.


When Leo has a chance to win a coveted spot in a prestigious photography workshop, Claudia becomes her model and the two draw even closer together.  However, both women struggle with Claudia’s plans for the future to marry a wealthy entrepreneur and live as a member of the prominent San Simeon community.  Claudia struggles with the difficult relationship she has with her fiancé, and Leo struggles against wanting Claudia to give up her dreams of marriage to a man who under-appreciates her.


The story is artfully told from two very different points in time.  MacGregor skillfully hides details important to the story while making the tale no less interesting.  Finally, when these details are revealed, we are amazed and hope-filled that the story might be heading in a direction that finally brings happiness to the two main characters.  Photographs of Claudia is possibly KG MacGregor’s finest work yet.  It’s one of those offerings that lingers long in the mind and heart of the reader and it makes us smile.
Reviewed by Anna Furtado

Title: Raven Mask
Author: Winter Pennington
ISBN: 10) 1-60282-182-8
Publisher: Bold Strokes Books
Available At: Bold Strokes Books
Price: $16.95
Pages: 233
Genre: Paranormal Romance

Raven Mask
is the second novel in Pennington's Kassandra Lyall Preternatural Investigator Series.  In Raven Mask Pennington further develops the emotional relationship between Kassandra and her lover, Lenorre, Countess vampire of Oklahoma.  Cassandra also delves into the complex relationships of the others who live in Lenorre's mansion.  It's a testimony to the strength of Pennington's writing skills that readers never lose track of the plot even as new characters are introduced and others are more fully developed. 

Kassandra has been hired to help discover what has happened to Timothy Nelson, a boy whose body was discovered under suspicious circumstances.  As Kassandra gets involved in the case, she quickly realizes that there is a hidden agenda which threatens Lenorre.  What follows is an engrossing read involving vampires, werewolves, and some very hot, kinky sex and excitement! 
Reviewed by RLynne

Title: Soul's Rescue
Author: Pat Cronin
ISBN: 10) 1-935053-30 13) 987-1-935053-30-9
Publisher: Regal Crest Enterprises
Available At: Bella Books; Moon Horse Books; Barnes and Noble; Amazon
Price: $14.95
Pages: 157
Genre: Romance

Talia Stoddard is having a normal day on her way to work until a truck comes crashing through the front of the building and pins her in the wreckage.  This brings paramedic firefighter Kelly McCoy to the scene. Kelly becomes Talia's lifeline until she can be rescued and continues to visit Talia as she recuperates in the hospital.  Talia suffers from an inferiority complex with good reason.  She thinks she's too tall, too big and too black for anyone to love her, a concept she's encouraged to believe by her overbearing mother and former lover.  Kelly is determined to prove to Talia that she's wrong, if she can get around her mother.

Souls' Rescue is a standard romance and as such is not a bad story.  There's little suspense as to where the story is heading, but it's fine for a quick read.  There are some problems with the book however.  For one, the story is too short and things happen too quickly.  In the time it takes to cut Talia out of the wreckage, Kelly falls completely in love.  Characters aren't given time to develop and the book has a rushed feeling to it.  The most serious problem is the number of mistakes in the book.  Words and names are occasionally misspelled and some incorrect words are used, for example, when the truck knocks a "whole" in the wall. 

If the reader is looking for a story that will occupy a couple of hours of reading, Souls' Rescue will suit.  If you are the type of reader who is bothered by editing mistakes, you might want to try another book.
Reviewed by Lynne Pierce


Title: Water Mark
Author: J.M. Redmann
ISBN: 10: 1-60282-179-8
Publisher:  Bold Strokes Books
Available At: Bold Strokes Books
Pages: 281
Price: $16.95
Genre: Mystery


Water Mark
is the sixth book in the Micky Knight mystery series. It finds Micky Knight deep in the misery of post Katrina New Orleans. The title, Water Mark, refers to the black line on buildings, fences, cars, etc. indicating the height to which the flood waters rose. It could also, symbolically, refer to the survivors of Katrina, and how indelibly their lives were marked by the storm.

Micky is roused from her doldrums one dark night when she is sent to a deserted, formerly flooded neighborhood to retrieve a chest filled with family memorabilia. As she is searching out the chest, she hears some young volunteers at the house next door. They are Christian youth volunteers from the mid-west, and they have just discovered a body.

What follows is an intriguing tale as Micky researches the identify and history of the body, and gets involved with the youth group. These activities cause Micky to reach out to her friends for help and, in the process, to reconnect with them.

Redmann is particularly adept at showing Micky's anger, frustration and complete sense of loss at what happened to her beloved city. She also shows the reader how the problems in the aftermath of the storm lingered: months later the stop lights still didn't work; a cold winter hit and there was still no gas for heat; trashed areas of the city remained trashed. And, while dealing with all the aggravations, Micky is going through the internal struggles of how to deal with her ex-lover, whether or not she has the energy to help her friends through their losses, and whether or not it would just be easier to have another drink.

Water Mark is a rich, deep novel is filled with humor and pathos. It's exciting plot keeps the pages flying, while it shows that long after a front page story has ceased to exist, even in the back sections of the newspaper, it remains very real to those whose lives it touched. This is another great read from a fine author.
Reviewed by RLynne


Whatever Gods May Be
Author: Sophia Kell Hagin
ISBN: 1-60282-183-6
Publisher: Bold Strokes Books
Available At: Bold Strokes Book
Pages: 284
Price: $16.95
Genre: Adventure


Whatever Gods May Be is an exceptionally fine first novel.  Jamie Gwynmorgan, its heroine, grabs the reader by the heart in the first few pages, and never lets go. Jamie is a "throw away" child; daughter of an addict, abandoned into the foster system, she joins the Marines as soon as she turns seventeen.  Knowing "you have to win to be safe," she gets through a grueling basic training, and with her marksmanship, earns her way into scout/sniper training. 


Hagin does an excellent job of showing Jamie's grittiness and resiliency as she deals with everything the Marines throw at her.  She also shows how Jamie's background has given her the uncanny instincts to be a true survivor.   When Jamie's unit is sent to Palawan, the south most major island in the Philippines, the Marines must deal with the climate, the insects, the snakes and the enemy.


Readers also get a thorough explanation of the high tech gear used by America's fighting forces.  Hagin's explanations of the clothing, goggles, etc. makes the technology clear.  Her explanations don't, however, slow down this fast paced page turner, as we follow Jamie through her dangerous assignments, with barely time to catch our collective breaths.  With great character development and an exciting plot, this is sure to be a novel considered for the GCLS award for Debut Author
Reviewed by RLynne

Our Reviewers
Bios of Authors

Our Reviewers

Cheri Crystal
Cheri Crystal reviews lesbian fiction when she's not busy spending time with her family, working in healthcare, and writing her own lesbian adventures and erotic romances. She enjoys all types of intellectual and physical activities and considers herself lucky that she can immerse herself in the literary community at every spare opportunity. Cheri has many published stories in anthologies and online with .

She's written two novels and is working on a third that she hopes to one day publish. Her first solo anthology, Attractions of the Heart, will be launched in Provincetown during Women's Week. It has her brimming with excitement, pride and joy.

Cheri's Website:
Contact her at

Anna Furtado
Anna is a book reviewer and contributing author for Just About Write; and author of The Heart's DesireBook One of The Briarcrest Chronicles, a 2005 GCLS Goldie Award Finalist; The Heart's Strength, Book Two of The Briarcrest Chronicles; and The Heart’s LongingBook Three of The Briarcrest Chronicles.

Anna's Web site:
Contact her at

Lynne Pierce
Lynne Pierce is a life-long resident of Virginia who has spent the last thirty-two years trying to convince high school students that history is relevant to their lives and leading them through the process of learning to think for themselves about issues. Her main hobby since the age of five has been reading and she has spent the last ten years consuming every work of lesbian fiction that she can get her hands on. Lynne's reviews also can be read at
lesfic_unbound and

You can reach Lynne at

Tracey Richardson
Tracey Richardson is the author of the romance novels No Rules of Engagement, Side Order of Love, the Golden Crown Literary Society finalist The Candidate, and the upcoming Blind Bet. She also works as a daily newspaper editor. Visit

RLynne lives in the high desert of California, next to Joshua Tree National Park, with her partner of 24 years, and various four-footed friends. A semi-retired educator, she’s been reviewing books since 1992. Her reviews have appeared in various gay rags, including Mega-Scene, The Lesbian Teachers Network, Lesbian Connection, and others.

Contact her at

Author Bios

O. M. Aguilar
O. M. Aguilar's philosophy for writing lesbian literature is in line with her desire to portray strong and aspiring women by building on the enriching examples of intelligent, actualized lesbians, who live in mutual respect with friends and family of all persuasions.  Aguilar's books are first about people and relationships; the murder mystery is the essential conduit by which the characters become a part of each other and of the reader.  Her goal has been to create stories with characters that will not be left behind when the books are closed. Chloe's Heart, Double Legacy, and Circle Game are the first three books in the Shana Niguel mystery series.  The next book in the series will be Loves Me, Loves Me Not .


Aguilar and her partner make their home on the Southern California coast.

Lynn Ames

Lynn Ames is an award-winning former broadcast journalist, former press secretary to the New York state senate minority leader, former public information officer for the nation’s third largest prison system, and former editor of a national art magazine.  She is a nationally recognized speaker and CEO of a public relations firm with a particular expertise in image, crisis communications planning, and crisis management.  Her works include The Price of Fame, The Cost of Commitment, The Value of Valor, One ~ Love (formerly published as The Flip Side of Desire), Heartsong, Outsiders, and Eyes on the Stars.

Anne Azel
Anne Azel is a retired and world renowned forensic anthropologist who lives in Ontario, Canada, when she isn't traveling.  Her writing covers a variety of genres including mysteries, contemporary issues, romance and futuristic novels. Azel's work is known for the cultural diversity of the settings.  When she isn't writing, Azel enjoys kayaking, canoeing and skiing.  Besides forensic anthropology, she holds degrees in art history and archaeology.  Azel's hobbies include writing, painting and travel.

Nat Burns
After decades as an award-winning journalist, poet and playwright, it was natural for Nat Burns to turn to fiction, and to explore the lives and loves of lesbians. With a long history of reporting on the music scene in her monthly Lesbian News column, she’s an editor and proofreader who also spends considerable time as a systems analyst. She lives in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas with her partner.

Maria Ciletti
Maria V. Ciletti is registered nurse who lives with her partner in Niles, Ohio. She has had short stories published in anthologies and her first novel, The Choice, was a 2007 Lambda Literary nominee for debut fiction. The sequel to The Choice, Clinical Distance, was a 2010 Lambda Literary nominee for romance, and a GCLS nominee for romance.

Pat Cronin

Pat Cronin is a retired paramedic/firefighter who now works in IT. She enjoys reading and writing Lesbian fiction, and has published numerous articles for on-line E-zines and short stories for anthologies.  She now lives in Europe with her partner.  Cronin and her editing partner Verda Foster won a Golden Crown Literary Society Award in 2008 for their anthology Blue Collar Lesbian Erotica.  They also have done Women in Uniform: Medics and Soldiers and Cops, Oh My!  Cronin can be reached at

P. Crow
P. Crow lives in southern California with her partner and three children.  She has a BA in Liberal Studies and For the Love of Miss Bard is her first novel.

JM Dragon
JM Dragon was born in England and now lives in New Zealand where she shares her life with a multitude of animals.  She likes to write, garden and travel.  She is also the author of Echo's Crusade and co-author with Erin O'Reilly of New Beginnings.  You can reach her at

Sophia Kell Hagin

Sophia Kell Hagin lives in Massachusettes with her longtime love and business partner.  She is a self-employed IT market analyst and writer.   Whatever Gods May Be is her first published novel.  Readers can find a selection of her writings on her web site,

CL Hart
CL Hart resides outside of Vancouver, British Columbia, with her partner.  She enjoys hiking, kayaking and playing the guitar and banjo.  From A Distance is her second novel following the highly rated Facing Evil.  Hart's web site is at and her email is

Elizabeth Hart
Elizabeth Hart lives in southern California with her partner and their cats.  She is a bibliophile who surrounds herself with overflowing bookshelves containing fiction, herstory, history and geology.  Lily of the Tower is her first novel.

Fran Heckrotte
Fran Heckrotte lives in the Sunny South of the USA where she owns a small business. In her past careers she was a steno-typist, a police officer, a construction worker and a real estate agent.  She has panned for gold, flown planes and trained horses.  For leisure, Heckrotte enjoys water gardening, landscaping, camping, scuba diving, carpentry and going to the beach.  She can be reached at

KG MacGregor
A former teacher and market research consultant, KG MacGregor holds a PhD in journalism and mass communication. Infatuation with Xena: Warrior Princess fanfiction prompted her to try her own hand at storytelling in 2002. In 2005, she signed with Bella Books, which published Just This Once. Her books have won Goldie and Lambda awards.

MacGregor divides her time between her homes in Miami and Blowing Rock, North Carolina. When she isn't writing, she's either on a hiking trail, a golf course, or if she's really lucky, a cruise ship.

Robbi McCoy
Robbi McCoy is a native Californian who lives with her partner and two cats in the Central Valley between the mountains and the sea.  She is an avid hiker with a particular fondness for the deserts of the American Southwest.  She also enjoys gardening, culinary adventures and the theater.  She works full-time as a software specialist and web designer for a major West Coast distribution company.

Winter Pennington
Winter Pennington lives in Oklahoma where, in addition to writing, she works as a pet-care specialist and veternary assistant.  She is a practitioner of nature-based spirituality and the Celtic path.  She studies mythology from around the world.  Raven Mask is her second published novel.

JM Redmann
J.M. Redmann lives in New Orleans, just at the edge of the flooded area. She has written six published novels. The Intersection of Law & Desire, her third novel, won a Lambda Literary Award, was an Editor's Choice of the San Francisco Chronicle newspaper, and was featured on NPR's program, Fresh Air. Two of her other books, Lost Daughters and Deaths of Jocasta, were nominated for Lambda Literary Awards.

Kate Sweeney
A Chicago native, Kate Sweeney currently lives in Louisiana. An author of numerous books, several of which have won Goldie awards, she appreciates visits to her web site at

PJ Trebelhorn

PJ Trebelhorn was born and raised in the greater metropolitan area of Portland, Oregon. She now resides in eastern Pennsylvania with Cheryl, her partner of many years, and their menagerie of pets.  Her love of sports means she spends her time rooting for the Flyers, Phillies and Eagles when she isn't writing, reading or watching movies. 

PJ can be contacted at,
at her Website and on Facebook.