Digital Reads Reviews

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My review

Today I find myself both honoured and nervous to post a review of a book written by my dear friend and fellow blogger, James J. Cudney a.k.a Jay as I like to call him. 

Do I plan to go easy on him in this review? No.. never… and he wouldn’t want that also. 

But luckily Jay made it very difficult for me to write a review to justify his work and very easy for me to give his book 5 stars. 

The story goes like this, Olivia Glass not only had to deal with her husband, Ben Glass dying in an accident but also had to deal with a hidden fact, a secret which only Ben knew. One of her child is not hers,  and Ben’s will does not reveal which one of her sons is not truly hers. Olivia then goes to visit her sons and get to know them before shattering their lives with the truth. But it’s Olivia who learns that each of her son has a horrible secret and she has to find a way to bring her family together 

This is James J. Cudney debut novel.. And what a fabulous job he has done in this book. There is maturity in his writing, there is pathos, there is angst, all written with an underlying emotion of love. The pain and shock that Olivia goes through jumps right out from the page. I couldn’t connect with Olivia at the beginning, she did come across as a rigid mother and a haughty mother-in-law. 

But as the story progresses, I got to know Olivia and empathise with her and then I found myself totally immersed in her life, in fact rooting for her. And I give total credit to the author James for that. His writing from the point of view of Olivia is simply superb. Her love for her children and her absolute need to understand them and help them made me love her more. 

The title and the book cover is so apt for this story as I watched Olivia Glass shatter when each of the secrets are revealed to her. 

There are a few niggles…. 

I have to wait for some time for James’ next work and I have to re-read this book to find them

I do like my family sagas but I love those sagas which have suspense in them, which makes me turn pages. This is what James does in his book. He made me read well through the night, he made my heart beat faster he made me curiouser and curiouser as I turned the pages. 

Family comes with its own drama and complications especially when there are spouses, children and secrets involved. But James has managed to weave his words in such a way that it is absolutely breathtaking. All the characters play their parts very well. 

The author, James has brought home the fact that sometimes it may be difficult to connect with all family members all the time but when there is genuine love, then it becomes easy. Family is everything, they are the ones who always stand by us, with us. This is the core of James’ debut novel. 

James words have woven a string of love around my heart and I am still in the early beginnings of a book hangover

There is a line in this book

From your lips to God’s ears

I add further to this for James

From his words to literary success 

From our reviews to book sales

From a blogger to established author

From our lips to God’s ears… 

Kudos James J. Cudney for writing this book and I am eagerly waiting for your next

My rating : 5 stars

About the Author

James J. Cudney lives in New York City, grew up on Long Island and graduated from Moravian College with a degree in English Literature. He spent 15 years after college focused on various streams of career but he soon came back to books. Reading is his passion, he is a voracious reader. He is an avid genealogist too. He writes a daily blog ‘ThisIsMyTruthNow’ via WordPress. This is his first book and there are many more in the pipeline. 

Book blurb

After 40 years of marriage, Olivia Glass thought she could handle the unexpected death of her husband, but when Ben’s will reveals a long-held, life-altering secret, she suffers a blow no widow should ever experience.

While an attorney searches for the answers, Olivia visits each of her sons to share a final connection before facing the truth that will change the dynamics of an already grief-stricken family. During the visits, Olivia learns that each of her sons has been harboring a painful secret, just like his father. 

Olivia challenges herself to re-assemble and save their relationships. But will the secrets destroy their family beyond repair?

Product Details

Publication date : 8th October 2017

Publisher : Creativia

Language : English

Available on Amazon, free with Kindle Unlimited 


Family secrets and suspense

64 Responses

  1. Oh, Shalini… I have no words to thank you for this wonderful and heartfelt review. It’s like you understood what was in my mind and my emotions while I was writing it. I was nervous when I opened the review, as I know how passionate you are about your literature. When I saw your opening words, I realized why I like you so much. There’s just a purity and honesty with a sense of commitment and care. You are indeed a treasure. Thank you. Huge Virtual Hugs being sent to you right now.

    1. Awww… Jay you have written this so well, what a maturity to your writing. There is a surety in your words, beauty in your sentences. And it is vastly different from what I expected based on my previous beta reading. This book felt that you were convinced of your story. This is the way a book should be, things happening, pages turning, a reader feeling all emotions. Thank you so much for giving that

      1. Thank You. And you are welcome. First drafts / beta reading for me is always difficult… sometimes it’s so early on, it’s hard to get where you want. I can’t wait to deliver the next version of Father Figure to you in the future.

    2. And thank you so much for your beautiful words describing me. It’s like you have seen the inner me with honesty. I am going to save your words forever…

        1. Well… Jay then you have great instincts and great capacity to see over and beyond…. Thank you for that. I have put my review on Amazon.com but I am sorry they have not approved it yet no idea why not.. Uk and India they approved. Let me know where else I can leave the review

    1. Haha that’s fine Kurian, books make me forget real life and you have many things happening in your real life… So different strokes for different people

  2. OF COURSE JC4 WROTE AN INCREDIBLE BOOK!!!!! I adore that incredible you reviewed it, too!!! I can’t wait to read it. I skipped over all of the actual book deets because I want to take in every bit of it myself. I’m just so excited that the book is finally coming out! Beautiful awesome amazing fantastic! (Can you tell that I’m slightly excited about this??) 😘

  3. Wow! That’s an awesome review Shalini. Just ordered the book. Will let you know how I feel once I read it. Not too much of a suspense reader but am reading it because your review says the book also talks about family. That’s an interesting combination.

  4. Thanks Shalini for this wonderful review. This first book from James was already on my list (Try to always support my friend bloggers) but now that I know you like is novel so much it makes me want to read it right away. Very happy for James for getting a 5 stars. I can imagine how stress he must have been knowing you were planing a review of his book. Indeed you are very passionate about your literature! Thanks again my friend. Wish you a Merry Christmas and joyful new year! Hope you’ll be surrounded with love and friendship. -Dominique xoxo

    1. Hey Dominique, very beautifully written words. Some days when life is difficult, somehow you write such words that the heart becomes a little lighter. You are a good soul and a great instinctive friend.
      Thank you for your support. I have no idea how you come to know I needed your words.
      Merry Christmas my darling girl and a happy new year.
      I hope we are all surrounded by love and friendship forever. 😘😘💗💗

      1. Hello Shalini. I’m glad my comment came in a good time for you. There are a few bloggers I particularly feel in sync somehow. You are definitely one of them. Yes, much love and friendship every day! 💞 💞 💞

  5. If James writes as well in his book as he does in his blog, it’ll be good for sure!
    After reading your review, I can’t wait to read the book! Thank you.

    1. Aww…how sweet of you to say that. Yes he writes books better than his blog. I have a chat up session with him today in 2 hours. Do check it out, you will get to know him far better, and hopefully me too. I hope you like today’s post. It’s quite long

Awesome to see you here. Let's chat.

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