The View From Our Window @authorljryan

Every now and again a book sneaks up on me and grabs my attention and my heart. The View From our Window is exactly one of those books! A sweeping family drama that travels from Ireland to France, dips down to Columbia and back again, The View From Our Window is part romance, espionage thriller, and domestic noir all in one book!

SaturdayI love a great fiction story whether it is historical fiction, women’s lit, the classics or a family drama; fiction has so much to offer when it is written well. The View From Our Window, a family drama, revolves around three people, ironically born on the same day at nearly the same time, whose lives continue to intersect with one another. Laurel, our heroine, is a newly widowed mother of two who is trying to escape her family and their treachery, as well as the mounting problems her deceased husband has left behind. Paul, her childhood friend, is a rising star in Irish politics and has just been named Minister of Justice. Unfortunately that means he will be in charge of the investigation into Laurel’s husband. And David, a French movie star – which is not as trite as it sounds – who is recovering from a very nasty divorce that has cost him visitation with his children. Their lives will converge with very dramatic, life threatening results.

cover151262-medium I admit that in the beginning of the book I was lost and confused as the details and backstory, the births, of these three were laid out for us. However, the writing was so expertly done and the story so compelling that I knew if I continued I would be rewarded – and I was! There is, quite literally, not one genre into which this book belongs. There is romance between Laurel and David but it grows out of a very beautiful friendship that she began with his family who befriended her when she moved to the French countryside. There is international politics and intrigue as we follow Paul through the machinations of Irish politics that is fraught with complications within the EU. There is espionage, drug runners and white collar crime that crosses all borders and familial lines. In all, it is a non-stop intense thrill ride from beginning to end! There is something for everyone within this book! I laughed, I cried, I got angry and still was left wanting more! I want a sequel!! All the stars and accolades for The View From Our Window and L J Ryan, I cannot recommend this highly enough!

Heaps of thanks to #Netgalley, @BooksGoSocial and #LJRyan for my copy of this amazing book!


Seconds to Midnight

Philip Donlay has given us a fast-paced, action packed spy thriller that hooks you from the first paragraph and doesn’t let go – long after you’ve finished the book!


When I selected Seconds to Midnight, I knew nothing of Philip Donlay, his primary protagonist – Donovan Nash – nor did I realize that it was an espionage thriller. How fortuitous that I was unaware of these things or I might not have read this incredible thriller.

Seconds to Midnight is the latest in a series of spy thrillers by Donlay. However, despite my knowing nothing of the primary characters, their history and relationships, this book could easily have been read as a stand-alone. Donlay does an excellent job filling in the characters’ backstory as the main character, Donovan Nash, catches up with others in the book.

Nash works for an NGO, “Eco-Watch” and uses this to “solve” world-wide incidents. In the beginning of Seconds To Midnight, the crew discover a mysterious woman who either was escaping from some very nasty fellows, or she was part of the group and the only survivor. She cannot remember and has left no clues to her identity. As the tale twists and turns, we are introduced to a myriad of spies, thugs, heroes and mercenaries and, often, it is difficult to distinguish between any of them. As their machinations unfold, we are  us thrust down the path toward a very climactic conclusion.

As with any spy thriller, there is a massive amount of violence, near misses with death and, to some extent, a pass on believability. However, Donlay has woven together an exciting, well-written novel full of action and suspense. If espionage is your thing, you will find this one to be very satisfying. If you are fan of Tom Clancy’s older novels or James Rollins’ Sigma Force series, then you will love Seconds to Midnight.

Thank you to #Edelweiss, #PhilipDonlay and Oceanview Publishing for this thriller.