The Violin Man’s Legacy – a review

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The Violin Man’s Legacy – Jack Calder Crime Series #1
by Seumas Gallacher

Purchase copies here

Jack Calder, ex SAS and a man with a troubled childhood history, now works for a security company ISP which is investigating who is behind the ambush of a routine delivery of diamonds from Johannesburg to Utrecht. An injured security guard is certain that the criminals were Chinese. Jack’s boss Julian Townsend asks attractive widow and head of Hong Kong’s branch of ISP, May-Ling, to help him. May-Ling’s informants tell her the diamonds have arrived in Hong Kong and that the two criminal Half Moon brothers, Jonnie and Jimmie, are behind the heist. Jack flies to Hong Kong on the trail of the Half Moon brothers, who for years have evaded arrest, and finds more than he bargains for when he meets May-Ling.

A well researched international thriller, fast paced, and with the author’s obvious knowledge of Hong Kong. I did get a bit lost a couple of times as there are more characters than my brain could handle all at once, but on the whole it was a good entertaining read.

I have given the book four well deserved stars.

Stevie Turner
(This review has been published previously on Stevie’s blog in the post, Go Read Me Campaign’ Review of ‘The Violin Man’s Legacy’.

Both Seumas Gallacher and Stevie Turner have been previously featured on Reading Recommendations.

One Woman’s Island – a review

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One Woman’s Island
by Susan M. Toy

Purchase copies here

One Woman’s Island, a new novel by Susan M. Toy, like the “Island in the Clouds Cocktail” found within its pages, is a wonderful mixing of two distinctive cultures into a tasty blend of mystery and intrigue.

One Woman’s Island delves into the clash of two cultures that can only be seen from the perspective of someone hoping to be engulfed by life in a seeming Caribbean paradise to escape her first-world problems, only to find all is not as it appears.

Like one of the key ingredients of the cocktail, whipped coconut cream, at first look, it seems like something we know until it is tasted, much like island life.

Throw in a splash of rum, a dash of chocolate, a bit of Canadian sensibility in the form of maple syrup over hot or cold espresso, and you have the essence of One Woman’s Island, a novel that brings together very diverging characters and lifestyles into a wonderful cocktail that entices all of one’s senses in a smooth, but at times bitter sip. A truly enjoyable read that will leave you wanting more, much like an Island In the Clouds cocktail.

D. Erkelens
(This reviewer was the first to review a book, my first novel Island in the Clouds, on this blog.)

And here is the recipe, reprinted from the book, with permission from the author. 😉

Recipe for Island in the Clouds Cocktail

This is a recipe I developed to celebrate my first novel. It combines two of my favourite ingredients – chocolate and coffee. My Caribbean roots are reflected in the use of rum and coconut cream, and my Canadian side by calling for a drizzle of maple syrup.

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1-2 shots of amber rum
1 Tbsp chocolate syrup
½ cup espresso, hot or cold
Whipped coconut cream
Maple syrup

May be served either hot or cold.

Mix together rum, chocolate and espresso and add ice if you wish to drink this cold. Top with whipped cream and drizzle with maple syrup.
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D. Erkelens and his wife Sharon had all the necessary ingredients on hand, so they decided to try my Island in the Clouds Cocktail and declared it to be delicious! As Sharon said, “How can you go wrong with coconut and chocolate? Tossing in some rum is just a bonus!”