Book Review for A GIRL ON A BIKE by Susan Emmerich

Title: A Girl on a Bike
Author: Susan Emmerich
Publisher: Second Wind Publishing, LLC
Genre: Essays
ASIN: B00UVVM6Q4download

A Girl on a Bike
by Susan Emmerich

Book review by Nicole Eva Fraser

Susan Emmerich’s irresistible reflections and vignettes are beautifully written—fresh, well-paced, well-crafted—and she has an astonishing gift for writing intensely personal essays with universally relatable notes. Emmerich calls life like she sees it; she writes direct, clear-seeing, non-fluffy prose, always with underlying wonder and gratitude for a world that brings both deep pain and amazing joy. In more than one essay, her openness to reveal her own flaws and fears brought tears to my eyes—tears of solidarity, and tears of happiness to have discovered this kindred spirit. I agree 110% with the reviewer who said this book should be on the New York Times best seller list! It will definitely be a birthday gift for my girlfriends this year.

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07-2014-nicole-eva-fraser-230x280Nicole Eva Fraser received her MFA in creative writing from NEOMFA consortium in northeast Ohio, and graduated summa cum laude from Baldwin-Wallace College with a double major in English and communications. She is an adult-literacy activist in Cleveland, Tanzania and Malawi. She runs 10Ks (slowly), used to speak French, and often can be found putting her foot in her mouth. Fraser is the author of It’s the Hardest Thing in the World and I Don’t Think It’s that Simple.

 

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Book Review for APRICOTS IN A TURKISH GARDEN by Carrie Jane Knowles

Title: Apricots in a Turkish Garden
Author: Carrie Jane Knowles
Publisher: Second Wind Publishing, LLC
Genre: Short Stories
ISBN: 978-1630661090
Apricots in a Turkish Garden

Apricots in a Turkish Garden
by Carrie Jane Knowles

Book review by Nicole Eva Fraser

Carrie Knowles is a great writer, pure and simple, and her gifts shine in this collection of short stories with a crazy-quilt of characters we can recognize and identify with. In her stories, conversations are key—imagine! People talking face-to-face and on the telephone to each other! People conversing at length without their minds and eyes wandering to their smart phones! Knowles brings her individual characters, their relationships, and their realities to life so richly, through her heart for people’s stories and her ear for real conversations. What impresses me most is that the stories flow so naturally, without hiccups, false notes, or contrivances. Knowles wields her writing prowess quietly and effortlessly. These stories brought me back to the land of the living.
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07-2014-nicole-eva-fraser-230x280Nicole Eva Fraser received her MFA in creative writing from NEOMFA consortium in northeast Ohio, and graduated summa cum laude from Baldwin-Wallace College with a double major in English and communications. She is an adult-literacy activist in Cleveland, Tanzania and Malawi. She runs 10Ks (slowly), used to speak French, and often can be found putting her foot in her mouth. Fraser is the author of It’s the Hardest Thing in the World and I Don’t Think It’s that Simple.

 

Book Review for I DON’T THINK IT’S THAT SIMPLE by Nicole Eva Fraser

Title: I Don’t Think It’s that Simple
Author: Nicole Eva Fraser
Publisher: Second Wind Publishing
Genre: Psychological Fiction
ISBN: 978-193810159

I Don’t Think It’s that Simple
by Nicole Eva Fraser

Book review by Maribeth Shanley

Ms. Fraser’s writing is excellent and her book well executed. I must admit, I did not like her main character, Evan, which made reading difficult. I found him to be arrogant, full of himself, narcissistic, yet, so insecure that he could never commit to anything, especially himself. I felt Ms. Frazer’s character, Julia, expressed everything that was wrong with Evan when she said about her own life, “Life is all mine now –to fly or fall — it’s up to me.” She said this while all Evan could think of was himself. Not my type of person at all.

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MaribethMaribeth Shanley lives in Myrtle Beach, SC with her husband Bob Bibb.  They have three furry and three feathered children.  Maribeth is now retired from McCormick and Co., Inc. of the famous spice brand.  Once retired she decided to try her hand at writing.  “I’ve always loved to write and dreamed of becoming a writer.  Never did I imagine, however, it would actually happen.” Shanley is the author of the novel Crack in the World, which is based on her own experiences as a sexually abused child.

 

Book Review for I DON’T THINK IT’S THAT SIMPLE by Nicole Eva Fraser

Title: I Don’t Think It’s that Simple
Author: Nicole Eva Fraser
Publisher: Second Wind Publishing
Genre: Psychological Fiction
ISBN: 978-193810159

I Don’t Think It’s that Simple
by Nicole Eva Fraser

Book review by Carrie Jane Knowles

Nicole Eva Fraser’s beautifully written and fully realized novel of one man’s struggle to find his own life story, I Don’t Think It’s That Simple, will keep you up all night turning the pages! And, as you read on way past your bedtime, you’ll find yourself hoping Evan’s last chance to choose to do the right thing will both open his heart and give him courage to seize the love he has been searching for his whole life.

Nicole’s wonderful characters that she’s carefully wrapped in fine polished prose make this book simply a great read!

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Carrie Jane Knowles has been a freelance writer for the past forty years. She has published widely in both fiction and non-fiction and has won a number of prestigious writing awards, including: Midland Authors Poetry Award, the American Heart and Torch Award for Creative Journalism, and Glimmer Train’s Very-Short Fiction Contest. She is the author of Apricots in a Turkish Garden.

Carrie and her husband, Jeff Leiter, live in Raleigh, North Carolina. They have three children.

 

Book Review for THE HARDEST THING IN THIS WORLD by Nicole Eva Fraser

Title: The Hardest Thing in this World
Author: Nicole Eva Fraser
Publisher: Second Wind Publishing
Genre: Drama, Mainstream
ISBN: 978-1938101595
download (1)

The Hardest Thing in this World
by Nicole Eva Fraser

Book review by Susan Emmerich

In “The Hardest Thing in This World”, Nicole Eva Fraser weaves a drama of love, loss, and the complications of family relationships. Fraser’s descriptive style creates an image that is FELT by the reader, and in telling the story from each character’s perspective, she manages to remind us that our individual experiences never paint the whole picture.

When the meaning of the title was revealed, I found myself both reflective and moved to tears. Fraser’s tale of how we are influenced by those both living and passed, touched my soul deeply. But Fraser does not stop there! Hold on, as it is a ride that will surprise you til the end, and make you think about the human heart and its vulnerability. “The Hardest Thing in this World” is a novel that will stay with you long after the last page.

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Susan Emmerich is not a writer by training and discovered her love of words late in life.  In her first career as a licensed social worker, she worked in the areas of family violence and adoption.  When her own daughter became school age she made the leap to school guidance to take full advantage of snow days!

While having coped with multiple losses in her life, Susan did not really take notice of their collective impact until her first menopausal mood swing.  It was then that she found writing and biking to be the best medicine for a wounded soul.  She currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio and is still discovering miles of new bike trails.

Susan is the author of A Girl on a Bike: Musings on Life, Loss, and Hot Flashes. 

Book Review for CRACK IN THE WORLD by Maribeth Shanley

Title: Crack in the World
Author: Maribeth Shanley
Publisher: Second Wind Publishing, LLC
Genre: Fiction
ISBN: 978-1630661014

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Crack in the World
by Maribeth Shanley

Book review by Nicole Eva Fraser

Maribeth Shanley wrote Crack in the World from her personal experience, intensifying the story’s chilling realism. Shanley’s characters and their relationships are drawn and developed with detail, authenticity, and feeling. Main character Emily ultimately frees herself from her father’s abuse — but that doesn’t immediately free Emily from the effects of the trauma she endured for years. Her trusted friends support her in her recovery process. The frank sexual content may be too much for some readers; the story and characters will ring true to survivors; and for those who have been spared that kind of suffering, the book offer a window into their reality.
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07-2014-nicole-eva-fraser-230x280Nicole Eva Fraser received her MFA in creative writing from NEOMFA consortium in northeast Ohio, and graduated summa cum laude from Baldwin-Wallace College with a double major in English and communications. She is an adult-literacy activist in Cleveland, Tanzania and Malawi. She runs 10Ks (slowly), used to speak French, and often can be found putting her foot in her mouth. Fraser is the author of It’s the Hardest Thing in the World and I Don’t Think It’s that Simple.