Look Twice (Ingrid Skyberg Book 8) by Eva Hudson – #BookReview – Women’s Detective Fiction

Book Blurb:

Look Twice by Eva HudsonA double agent. A double cross. This time, Ingrid is in double trouble.

When Special Agent Ingrid Skyberg discovers an undeveloped roll of film left behind by her predecessor in the FBI, she isn’t sure what to make of the strange photos he took. A map of Scotland, an out-of-print book, a rare bird, a cluster of Post-It notes, an office party… do these images have something to do with crimes he committed as a Russian double agent known as ‘Skylark’?

Ingrid starts digging and becomes convinced that – far from being a traitor – her predecessor was just another victim of the mysterious Skylark who has killed many times to protect his identity. When a case file she has been using is suddenly deleted from the system, Ingrid knows that Skylark is now watching her… and the race is on to find him before she becomes his next victim.

Look Twice is a high-octane spy thriller that will have you on the edge of your seat, flipping the pages to find out if Ingrid can survive her most ruthless opponent yet. 

His Review:

Running for your life with a friend is brutal. Outrunning you best friend is survival. Ingrid had only been a teenager when she and her best friend were running from a killer. She had outrun her friend Megan and now Megan is dead. Guilt still lingers after twenty years. She had only seen a face in the dark and couldn’t identify the killer.

Look Twice by Ava HudsonAndy Scott is on trial for killing a number of young women. Could he be the killer? Her mother, Svetlana, is convinced she should know the killer’s face, even after twenty years! He was the potential candidate for Prime Minister and now is on trial for twelve murders. Svetlana calls at the most inopportune times during investigations. An ignored call is a personal affront from a bad daughter.

Being a successful and efficient FBI agent requires a strong support team. The team goes up and down from your position. Ingrid is very well organized but keeps having her effective assistants transferred from her. Administering her position requires her to keep a constant eye on her support staff. Zeke, her newest assistant, is enduring yet another epileptic seizure. Triggers for epileptic seizure can be something as simple as a faulty electrical connection.

An envelope of old photographs found in the ceiling is a clue to the killer. They refer to a person named Skylark! Who is this unidentified Skylark? The hunt for the identity of Skylark takes many twists and turns. Meanwhile, Svetlana gets more irritated by her daughter’s lack of attention to her phone calls. Can the case against Andy Scott be fully investigated in spite of Ingrid’s distractions?

CE WilliamsAn entertaining novel that will keep you guessing at every turn. 4.5 stars – CE Williams

We received a complimentary review copy of this book from the author and publisher through NetGalley that in no way influenced this review. These are his honest opinions.

Rosepoint Publishing: Four point Five Stars 4 1/2 stars

Book Details:

Genre: Women’s Detective Fiction, International Mystery & Crime, Espionage Thrillers
ASIN: B099NXP3NQ
Print Length: 375 pages
Publication Date: September 6, 2021
Source: Publisher and NetGalley
Title Link: Look Twice [Amazon]

Add to Goodreads

Eva Hudson - authorThe Author: Eva Hudson was born and grew up on a south London council estate. Before she started writing full time, she worked as a local government officer, singer, dotcom entrepreneur, portrait artist, project manager, graphic designer, web designer and content editor.

In 2011, her first novel – The Loyal Servant – won the inaugural Lucy Cavendish fiction prize from Cambridge University. She published the first of her chart-topping Ingrid Skyberg Thrillers in 2013 and never looked back.

ABOUT INGRID SKYBERG

One of the toughest Special Agents ever to come out of Quantico Ingrid Skyberg is tenacious, resourceful, virtually indestructible and just a tiny bit out of control. Assigned to the US embassy in London, Ingrid is on the case when an American citizen gets into trouble… or winds up dead… or is accused of a crime they didn’t commit. Whether she needs to wear combat fatigues or a cocktail dress, Ingrid Skyberg always gets the job done.

She’s a strong female protagonist, perfect for fans of action-packed thrillers with a twist.

[NOTE: Eva Hudson died in 2015 of cancer. Her books, this protagonist, this series is being continued by Jo Monroe. Please see her sweet, emotional testimonial at EVA HUDSON.]

©2021 CE Williams – V Williams V Williams

Traveller Probo: Traveller Book 2 (Traveller Series) by Rob Shackleford–#BookReview – #TimeTravelScienceFiction

Rosepoint Publishing: Five Stars 5 stars

Traveller Probo

Sunday, Sept 12, I introduced Traveller Probo, Book 2, of the Traveller series and included a quick review of Book 1, Traveller Inceptio along with my first installment of a multi-part review of Book 2.  Please join me as I review the third (and final) installment of this master journey.

Book Blurb:

Would you survive if sent one-thousand years into the past?
Development of the Transporter saw highly trained researchers, called Travellers, successfully sent one-thousand years back in time to early medieval Saxon England.
Traveller Missions now mean enormous national prestige and the recovery of priceless lost artefacts and knowledge, so nations vie for the use of the Transporter and more daring Traveller missions are planned. Politics and power soon come into play.
To study lost peoples and civilisations, Special Forces researchers have to be even better trained, equipped and prepared to put their lives on the line.
While Michael Hunter continues to build a life in Saxon England, the tragically injured Tony Osborne finds his resurgence in a mission to ancient Byzantine Turkey, a mission Professor Adrian Taylor joins to better outmanoeuvre his calculating academic colleagues.
From the misty shores of New Zealand to the shining splendour of the ancient Byzantine Empire, it is proved how sending modern researchers into the past carries enormous rewards and tragedies.

Book 2 – Part 2 – (Redux my review)

Following the explosion of interest from many nations with the bucks to pay for a mission with the Transporter, decisions are made for a mission to be made to the Byzantinium Empire, with back-up missions to the Ukraine/Russia and the Mississippi (near St. Louis, Missouri) in the US.

Still keenly aware of the disastrous mission to New Zealand, new cautions, men, and equipment are set to monitor the safety of the Travellers. Unfortunately, the Ukranians that were fully vetted have managed to steal the Transporter assigned to them along with the kidnap of several of the Travellers amid the outcry of the Russians.

The main characters again shift slightly to those who will be sent to the new locations and periodically reverts to the continuing story of Michael Hunter of the original Traveller mission to Saxon Aengland. He is chafing over the continued invasion of the original purpose of the mission to the shift of military and political goals.

Book 2 – Part 3 (my review)

Traveller Probo by Rob ShacklefordHunter is deeply settled in Giolgrave with his pregnant native wife, Tatae. The traditions and superstitions of her people regarding the process of childbirth is examined in detail, culminating in the birth of their daughter. Separately, it is requested that he lead a training mission in the woods surrounding the village that he deeply opposes.

There is a strong rift of subterfuge in the background with most of the teams’ participants being the unwiser, the professor delighted in the wealth of history and storied leaders seeing little beyond his academic interest. The latter third of the novel discloses the ugly inhumane treatment of persons with stomach-turning descriptions of torture.

As many of the Traveller teams appear to become pawns in a game of monstrous profits, maneuvering, and power, the narrative continues to examine the moral rightness of invading peoples of a millennia in the past. The original goal of no interference, contact, or involvement is thrown out of the window in the rush to gain new objectives.

The conclusion ends with shocking developments in the Byzantium Traveller mission as well as the revelation of an introduction to 1st Century Judaea. It is an obvious cliff-hanger to the next installment. The research and writing style as well as the characters, both loathsome and pleasant, make this a totally immersive novel, one that obviously has more roads to travel. The storyline is engaging, non-stop action, fascinating historical detail combined with hapless but sincere characters. Who is real antagonist? The reader is just beginning to get a glimpse—and it’s not pretty.

I would suggest your starting with Book 1, but if this grabs you (and it should), it could actually work as an immersive standalone. 

I received a complimentary review copy of this book from the author and these are my honest opinions. This is an extended adventure into time-travel you won’t want to miss. Highly Recommended.

Add to Goodreads

Book Details:

Genre: Time Travel Science Fiction, Time Travel Fiction, Science Fiction Adventure
ASIN: B0938K6MKP
Print Length: 506 pages
Publication Date: April 22, 2021
Source: Direct author request

Title Link(s):

Amazon   |   Barnes & Noble  |  Kobo

Rob Shackleford - authorThe Author: An English-born Australian, Rob Shackleford has lived in New Zealand and Papua New Guinea, with a varied career that has included Customs Officer, Scuba Instructor, College Teacher and management roles in too many places.

With degrees in the Arts and Business, he is mad keen on travel, Scuba diving, Family History, martial arts, astronomy, and playing Djembe and Congas. Despite that, he is actually not that boring.

Rob is father of two and has made his green escape with his lovely lady into Australia’s Gold Coast hinterland.

©2021 V Williams V Williams

Happy Thursday!

Can you pick a winner? #TuesdayBookBlog

Can you pick a winner?  

The official start of the autumn season begins tomorrow.

Goodreads Choice Awards 2020Along with the beginning of the Fall comes the annual push for Goodreads Choice Awards nominees. With over 5.6M votes cast, the winners of the 12th Annual Goodreads Choice Awards were announced last December 2020. The opening round began late October. This is the only major book awards decided by readers. Decided.

So, I must ask you: If there are three rounds of books to vote, the opening round, the semifinal round, and the final round, where do the books to vote on come from in the first place? (Not from the readers?)

No, from Goodreads.

According to their analyzation of “millions of books added, rates, and reviewed” on Goodreads, fifteen books are initially nominated in each category.

Books published between November 18, 2020 through November 17, 2021 will be eligible this year. And these books are based on an average rating of 3.5 or “higher at the time of launch.” Ouch! At the time of launch! (Must have had major buzz at launch!)

There are twenty categories, in everything from General Fiction to Picture Books. A book can be nominated in one of the specific genre categories as well as the debut novel category. If you’ve been following my blog, you know my favorite category is Mystery & Thriller. Yes, I voted if I saw a book I read and liked.

The categories in which I chose a nominee were Best Fiction, Historical, Memoir & Autobiography, and Mystery & Thriller. Of those, I had my picks hit third or better my ratings three stars to five, and I had a total of six winners.

The breakdown is as follows: (Links below to my blog review.)

Rosepoint Publishing Goodreads Choice Award picks

In An Instant
The Pull of the Stars
Green Lights
The Sun Down Motel
The Searcher
One by One

Have you been keeping a tally of your favorite books by month or quarter? Will you vote? I have been fortunate in that I’ve gotten several of the above from NetGalley as well as the audiobooks from my local library audiobook selections and obviously I was not in agreement with many readers. How did you fare in your selection of the winners?

Are you looking for a few of your favorites to show up on this year’s list?

©2021 V Williams V Williams

Autumn at Rosepoint Pub

Fatal Solutions (A Crossword Puzzle Mystery Book 3) by Becky Clark – #BookReview – #cozycrafts

Rosepoint Rating: Five Stars 5 stars

Book Blurb:

1 ACROSS: HUMAN REMAINS

Fatal Solutions by Becky ClarkCreating crossword puzzles for the Chestnut Station Chronicle won’t allow Quinn Carr to quit her diner waitress job any time soon. But it does provide an outlet for her organizational OCD, and also lets her leave subtle hints for police chief Myron Chestnut, an avid puzzler, when his investigations need some direction. Some mysteries, though, leave even Quinn stumped—like the property deed she finds in her grandfather’s old desk. The document lists Quinn’s mother as the owner of some land on the outskirts of Chestnut Station, but Georgeanne refuses to discuss it.

8 LETTERS, STARTS WITH “S”

Quinn visits the site, located near a World War II Japanese internment camp that’s since been turned into a museum. There she unearths a weathered Japanese doll…and a skeleton. Before she can uncover a killer, she has to identify the victim. Was it an inmate trying to escape? A guard? Or someone closer to home? As Quinn fills in the blanks, she finds an unexpected link between her family and Chief Chestnut’s—one that could spell more deadly trouble…

My Review:

The third in the Crossword Puzzle Mystery series and these just keep getting better.

Fatal Solutions by Becky ClarkQuinn and her best friend Loma find an old skull on a piece of property that Quinn was checking out. The property is by a WWII Japanese Internment Camp in Colorado turned museum.

The author has created fully developed and very unique individuals and we get an additional perspective of the support characters as Quinn go about quietly trying to solve several puzzling problems. Who did the skull belong to? Why was it there? And what of the Daruma doll found nearby? Why does her mother deny the property?

I get a kick out of the imaginative, quirky characters Ms Clark has crafted—so real, including her mother with the outrageous food recipes, police chief Chestnut, and the old boys at the diner where Quinn waits tables. Now there’s a bunch to draw to!

Quinn struggles with several problems. First, she has OCD. Not just the kind where you straighten objects, or check something twice. I’m talking real, classic, debilitating OCD and she creates crossword puzzles for the local paper on the QT. Once she’s given a puzzle, such as the bones on the property her mother is denying, and the Daruma doll she is beyond compelled to answer the questions. The sessions with her therapist are always fun as well.

There is a strongly connected sense between she and the support characters. They know one another, like, appreciate, and enjoy each other. I enjoy the author’s wacky sense of humor and turn of phrase.

I received a complimentary review copy of this book from the publisher and NetGalley and these are my honest thoughts. (Crossword puzzles and her mom’s crazy recipes at the back.) I was also given the opportunity to read the first two and thoroughly enjoyed Punning With Scissors as well. Currently on pre-order and I recommend you do so.

+Add to Goodreads

Book Details:

Genre: Cozy Crafts & Hobbies Mystery, Cozy Craft & Hobby Mysteries, Amateur Sleuth Mysteries
Publisher: Lyrical Press
ASIN: B08Z65YYV3
Print Length: 208 pages
Publication Date:  November 9, 2021
Source: Publisher and NetGalley 

Title Link(s):

Amazon   |   Barnes & Noble  |  Kobo

 

Becky Clark - authorThe Author: Becky Clark is the seventh of eight kids, which explains both her insatiable need for attention and her atrocious table manners. She likes to read funny books so it felt natural to write them too. She surrounds herself with quirky people and pets who end up as characters in her books. Her stout-hearted dog keeps her safe from menacing squirrels, leaves, and deer, but not plastic bags. Those things are terrifying.

Readers say her books are “fast and thoroughly entertaining” with “witty humor and tight writing” and “humor laced with engaging characters” so you should “grab a cocktail and enjoy the ride.” They also say “Warning: You will laugh out loud. I’m not kidding,” and “If you like Janet Evanovich, you will like Becky Clark.”

Becky won the 1st place “Best in Category” Mystery & Mayhem Award from the Chanticleer International Book Awards for Fiction Can Be Murder, book one in the Mystery Writer’s Mystery series.

Visit http://www.BeckyClarkBooks.com for all kinds of fun. While you’re there, be sure to subscribe to her “So Seldom It’s Shameful” newsletter. You’ll hear about new releases, get the chance to win fabulous prizes, find out about book promotions from her and others, read interviews from new-to-you authors, and more. (As you might have gleaned from the title, she won’t inundate your inbox, either.)

If you want to connect more often, join Becky’s Book Buddies on Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/groups/beckysbookbuddies/

Follow Becky Clark here on Amazon, on BookBub, and at Goodreads. If you enjoy her books, she’d swoon if you left a review. Yes, swoon.

©2021 V Williams V Williams

The Silent Witness: (Detective Amanda Steele Book 3) by Carolyn Arnold – #BookReview – #noircrime

Rosepoint Publishing: Five Stars 5 stars

Book Blurb:

It’s 4 a.m. when her mom shakes her awake. “Get up baby, we’re going to play hide and seek.” The little girl presses back into the dark space, holding her breath as she hears the shots ring out. She knows she’s next…

The Silent Witness by Carolyn ArnoldWhen the bodies of a local family are discovered on a quiet street in the small town of Dumfries, Virginia, Detective Amanda Steele takes charge of the case. Brett and Angela Parker were shot three times each, leaving no hope of survival, and their tidy suburban home has been ransacked. But there is no sign of their beloved six-year-old, Zoe.

Zoe is the same age as Amanda’s daughter was when she died, and Amanda can’t bear the thought of another little girl in danger. She’s organizing a search for the child, when she notices something strange about the ottoman at the foot of the Parkers’ bed. She opens it to find Zoe, mute and traumatized, but alive.

With Zoe completely uncommunicative, Amanda must find another way to untangle what destroyed this seemingly perfect family. It’s clear that the killer is searching for something the Parkers had, and until she has this monster behind bars, Amanda fears that he may return for Zoe. When she learns that Brett Parker cut short the family’s recent lakeside vacation, she wonders why. What happened at that lake house, and did it ultimately get them killed?

Amanda heads out to Lake Chesdin on the feeling it might be key to the case, and when she finds a cell phone in the murky waters next to the Parker cabin, she knows she’s made a breakthrough. But then terrible news reaches her from Dumfries; Zoe has been taken from her school playground.

Someone wants to silence the Parker family for good, can Amanda catch them before the little girl she’s desperate to protect pays the price?

His Review:

Brett, Angela and their daughter were in the wrong place at a bad time. How could their first family vacation turn out so wrong? Brett loved to take pictures but the pictures he took that fateful morning should not have happened. Frantically he had the women in his life hide in their master bedroom.

The Silent Witness by Carolyn ArnoldAmanda Steele is a first-rate detective who loves her job. One of the down sides of the job is investigating horrific crimes. Her working relationship with her office is basically great except for her boss. For some unknown reason her boss seems to hate her and puts her down every chance she gets

Investigating the murder scene Amanda notes they are a young couple with a child nearly the age of her own. The couple is killed by apparent professionals and the little girl is nowhere to be found. Was she staying with relatives or had she been away for a weekend with a friend? The child named Zoe is found in a storage ottoman in the dead couples’ bedroom.

The killings had occurred quickly and efficiently, but why? Thankfully her mothers’ last act was to hide the child in the ottoman. Terrified she did not make a sound and stayed totally still. The killers had overlooked her. Can Amanda keep the child safe while investigating the crime?

Ms. Arnold builds a strong case for methodical investigative tactics. Her heroine is hobbled by the responsibility to keep young Zoe safe while investigating the deaths. She is aggravated by the fact that the papers in their zeal to report sensational crimes mentioned that the child was the only one to escape the massacre.

This tale develops at a fast clip and I found it hard to put the book down. The total lack of compassion or sympathy toward the two victims and their daughter raised a deep wish for revenge against the killers. How can someone kill a young mother in the same room as their daughter with no worries about the future of the child?

Amanda had lost her own daughter in a tragic accident in which she also lost her husband! She is torn between placing the child in Child Protective Service and possibly adopting her. Zoe is her daughter’s age.

CE WilliamsThe book is compelling and I applaud the author for her skill in story telling. 5 stars – CE Williams

Certainly not the first book reviewed for this author. I also enjoyed a few of the last, including Book 1 of this series, The Little Grave. We received a complimentary review copy of this book from the author and publisher through NetGalley that in no way influenced this review. These are his honest opinions.

Book Details:

Genre: Noir Crime, Serial Killers, Organized Crime Thrillers
Publisher: Bookouture
ASIN: B09236T3JF
Print Length: 324 pages
Publication Date: September 24, 2021
Source: Publisher and NetGalley
Title Link: The Silent Witness [Amazon]
Barnes and Noble
Kobo

Add to Goodreads

Carolyn Arnold - authorThe Author: CAROLYN ARNOLD is an international bestselling and award-winning author, as well as a speaker, teacher, and inspirational mentor. She has several continuing fiction series and has many published books. Her genre diversity offers her readers everything from cozy to hard-boiled mysteries, and thrillers to action adventures. Her crime fiction series have been praised by those in law enforcement as being accurate and entertaining. This led to her adopting the trademark: POLICE PROCEDURALS RESPECTED BY LAW ENFORCEMENT™.

Carolyn was born in a small town and enjoys spending time outdoors, but she also loves the lights of a big city. Grounded by her roots and lifted by her dreams, her overactive imagination insists that she tell her stories. Her intention is to touch the hearts of millions with her books, to entertain, inspire, and empower.

She currently lives near London, Ontario, Canada with her husband and two beagles.

©2021 CE Williams – V Williams V Williams

Traveller Probo: Traveller Book 2 (Traveller Series) by Rob Shackleford–#BookReview – #TimeTravelScienceFiction

Traveller Probo

Book Blurb:

Would you survive if sent one-thousand years into the past?
Development of the Transporter saw highly trained researchers, called Travellers, successfully sent one-thousand years back in time to early medieval Saxon England.
Traveller Missions now mean enormous national prestige and the recovery of priceless lost artefacts and knowledge, so nations vie for the use of the Transporter and more daring Traveller missions are planned. Politics and power soon come into play.
To study lost peoples and civilisations, Special Forces researchers have to be even better trained, equipped and prepared to put their lives on the line.
While Michael Hunter continues to build a life in Saxon England, the tragically injured Tony Osborne finds his resurgence in a mission to ancient Byzantine Turkey, a mission Professor Adrian Taylor joins to better outmanoeuvre his calculating academic colleagues.
From the misty shores of New Zealand to the shining splendour of the ancient Byzantine Empire, it is proved how sending modern researchers into the past carries enormous rewards and tragedies.

Book 2 – Part 1 – (Redux my review)

New Zealand won the rights to receive the second team but is quickly discovered by the local Maori natives and the New Zealand Traveller mission ends on a tragic note resulting in litigation, public media, and private scrutiny.

After the initial (Saxon) mission, the public became avid voyeurs of historical life through the reality TV show (“Hunter in Saxon England) which spun off an entire industry including licensed merchandise. There are stringent new rules and regs designed to avoid the catastrophic New Zealand mission also sparking new moral arguments of invading the peoples of a millennium ago.

The decision is made that the team of researchers should next go to the Byzantine Empire where it was possible to discover art and architecture, music, and food.

Book 2 – Part 2 (my review)

The demand for the original Transporter explodes as knowledge of the equipment and possibilities spread and the ability to duplicate the original Transporter proceeds. Debate continues regarding the fair use of the machine as well as the extent of the contact with indigenous peoples.

Traveller Probo by Rob ShacklefordThe machine is jointly owned and funded by Helguard Security, Woomera Technologies, Transporter Corp., and the British Military. The decision had been made that the third mission was to be to Byzantinium Empire. However, there are multiple nations now vying for a Traveller slot and the political shift moves strongly to the US with a Mississippi Traveller mission (to the ancient city of Cahokia—near St Louis, Missouri), as well as to the Ukraine/Russia. A duplicate Traveller machine is apparently successful and already in contention.

The POV shifts from main characters and locations to background subterfuge and skips back again to the original Saxon Aengland location and succeeding Traveller mission locations. In addition, separate humanitarian as well as military missions, such as the Project Healthy Giolgrave mission are forming and taking place, the latter against the wishes of the original Saxon Traveller, Michael Hunter, wherein they are bringing modern day medicine to the citizens of 11th Century England. (A huge no-no!)

I would suggest your starting with Book 1, Traveller Inceptio, but if this grabs you (and it should), it could actually work as an immersive standalone. 

Tune in for Part 3 for the wrap up review and my rating on Thursday, Sept 23 as I journey one thousand years into history with the Travellers.

I received a complimentary review copy of this book from the author and these are my honest opinions. There is more to come.

Add to Goodreads

Book Details:

Genre: Time Travel Science Fiction, Time Travel Fiction, Science Fiction Adventure
ASIN: B0938K6MKP
Print Length: 506 pages
Publication Date: April 22, 2021
Source: Author request

 
Title Link(s):

Amazon   |   Barnes & Noble  |  Kobo

Rob Shackleford - authorThe Author: An English-born Australian, Rob Shackleford has lived in New Zealand and Papua New Guinea, with a varied career that has included Customs Officer, Scuba Instructor, College Teacher and management roles in too many places.

With degrees in the Arts and Business, he is mad keen on travel, Scuba diving, Family History, martial arts, astronomy, and playing Djembe and Congas. Despite that, he is actually not that boring.

Rob is father of two and has made his green escape with his lovely lady into Australia’s Gold Coast hinterland.

©2021 V Williams  V Williams

Traveller Probo: Traveller Book 2 (Traveller Series) by Rob Shackleford–#BookReview – #TimeTravelScienceFiction

Traveller Probo by Rob Shackleford

Are you one of those who enjoy getting into an especially good, long book (because so much is going on); it’s gripping and you don’t want it to end?

Back in 2017, I was introduced to Traveller Inceptio. A novel about time travel to 1000 years ago into early medieval Saxon England. It was immersive and almost as good as being permitted the privilege of the time travel myself. (There are several popular examples of time travel lately on TV. One of my favorites is Outlander, although it occurs from the 1940s to the middle 1700s. (Few actually skip one thousand years.)

What would it be like?

Could you survive?

So many questions: Would you stay? Would you find life intolerable? No cars, electricity, modern medicine, readily available safe water, sanitation. What would you miss most? Your cell phone? Would you go if you could?

Traveller Probo is Book 2 of the Traveller series and a lot has happened. Please join me as I read and review this master journey in bytes, first installment today.

Book Blurb:

Would you survive if sent one-thousand years into the past?
Development of the Transporter saw highly trained researchers, called Travellers, successfully sent one-thousand years back in time to early medieval Saxon England.
Traveller Missions now mean enormous national prestige and the recovery of priceless lost artefacts and knowledge, so nations vie for the use of the Transporter and more daring Traveller missions are planned. Politics and power soon come into play.
To study lost peoples and civilisations, Special Forces researchers have to be even better trained, equipped and prepared to put their lives on the line.
While Michael Hunter continues to build a life in Saxon England, the tragically injured Tony Osborne finds his resurgence in a mission to ancient Byzantine Turkey, a mission Professor Adrian Taylor joins to better outmanoeuvre his calculating academic colleagues.
From the misty shores of New Zealand to the shining splendour of the ancient Byzantine Empire, it is proved how sending modern researchers into the past carries enormous rewards and tragedies.

Book 1 Redux

The Transporter was developed accidentally from Zak’s error. Initially, the students are funded by a global security company, Helguard Security. The mistake is quickly decided to be a massively important tool into historical research. The resultant Special Forces candidates were specially trained and called ‘Saxon Traveller.’ They were taught to integrate into 11th Century Saxon Aengland and Michael Hunter soon discovers himself back in Saxon England. He’s disorientated but intelligent and well trained. He is taken in by villagers, the people and the monks. He meets Tatae who possesses special qualities. The village, however, is not safe from the invading Vikings. Let’s just say it’s a superb completely immersive fiction tale. (And Michael, btw, decides he’ll stay.)

Book 2 – Part 1

New Zealand won the rights to receive the second team but are quickly discovered by the local Maori natives and events go side-ways. Ruhi is a fierce and deadly warrior and the team realizes they must rescue the remaining members. But Ruhi has not finished engaging his opponent when the two are returned. Oops!

Traveller Probo by Rob ShacklefordThe resulting deadly clash and loss of life makes for front line news that soon sparks further debate on intruding into human habitat considered cannibals that will result in modern technology to save their team. (This was to be observation only!) Was it a matter of the Area of Convergence? Inadequate training? They are still wrangling over the grievously injured members of the Saxon Travellers team that resulted in litigation.

As the narrative shifts from New Zealand to the US and UK, main characters begin immerging into the storyline. There is ample discussion and debate on who would get the next mission and stringent new rules as well as media manipulation to avoid the catastrophic and deadly failed New Zealand mission. So many ethical questions to resolve!

From the movie Jurassic Park, Jeff Goldblums’ character offers “you spent so much time seeing if you could, you never considered if you should.”

After the Saxon mission, the public became avid voyeurs of historical life through the reality TV show (“Hunter in Saxon England”) that included Michael in Giolgrave (now known as Youlgreave). That spun off an entire industry including licensed merchandise (clothing, toy lines, men’s fashion) and any newly rediscovered herbal lore, the latter of which became immensely popular sparked by Michael’s native wife, Tatae.

One of the biggest problems the world over of the Transporter was the failure to duplicate the machine owing to their inability to examine the fused ganglia in the master controller. The race was on—who would develop the second—the back-up? Just in case. So much subterfuge going on in the background. Who would succeed and reap the benefits?

In the meantime, the decision is made that the team of researchers should next go to the Byzantine Empire where it was possible to discover art and architecture, music, and food. They are to proceed with the Byzantium Traveller mission (where Greek was spoken).

I can see this as an intelligent TV series grappling with moral dilemma (more debates here than at a PTA meeting!), strapping young Special Forces teams and skilled, pretty maidens both a millennia ago as well as contemporary. I would suggest your starting with Book 1, but if this grabs you (and it should), it could actually work as an immersive standalone. 

Tune in to Part 2 on Thursday, Sept 16 as I journey back to the Byzantine Empire with the Travellers.

I received a complimentary review copy of this book from the author and these are my honest opinions. There is more to come.

Add to Goodreads

Book Details:

Genre: Time Travel Science Fiction, Time Travel Fiction, Science Fiction Adventure
ASIN: B0938K6MKP
Print Length: 506 pages
Publication Date: April 22, 2021
Source: Author request

Title Link(s):

Amazon   |   Barnes & Noble  |  Kobo

 

Rob Shackleford - authorThe Author: An English-born Australian, Rob Shackleford has lived in New Zealand and Papua New Guinea, with a varied career that has included Customs Officer, Scuba Instructor, College Teacher and management roles in too many places.

With degrees in the Arts and Business, he is mad keen on travel, Scuba diving, Family History, martial arts, astronomy, and playing Djembe and Congas. Despite that, he is actually not that boring.

Rob is father of two and has made his green escape with his lovely lady into Australia’s Gold Coast hinterland.

©2021 V Williams V Williams