Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Dead, But Not Forever

In "The Ups and Downs of Being Dead", by M. R. Cornelius, Robert Malone is dead but his "life" is really just beginning.  This successful businessman chose cryonics when he was faced with death by cancer.  Cryonics freezes the brain and sometimes the body to preserve it so that it can be reanimated at a future time, when hopefully the diseases have been cured.  The technology to reanimate also needs to be developed.

What Robert didn't realize was that his spirit would be "alive" and waiting around for all that time.  So begins his adventure - traveling the world, meeting other "temp" souls and following the lives of his family.

I really liked the concept of the story.  Cornelius took the story far into the future with a progression of developments and discoveries that totally changes the nature of our existence.  It didn't necessarily make me want to try cryonics, but is definitely imaginative.

The character of Robert, who begins the story as an uptight CEO of a successful clothing company he started, is well developed.  As Robert discovers the world as a soul that can't taste, touch or feel  it leads to his spiritual growth and development.  Suzanne, a soul who shares the journey with him, is a great counterpoint to his character.

This is a great, fun read!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

History, Romance and Suspense in One Place

"The Devil's Dime", by Bailey Bristol is a fast paced read that is at once suspenseful, historical and romantic.  The novel takes place in 1896 New York and the author brings that time period to life with her prose.

Jess Pepper has just arrived in New York City from Colorado.  He's been hired as an investigative journalist for the New York Times.  He finds his first investigative mission in a 20 year-old case file titled "The Samaritan Files".  It details 20 women who had been saved from the brink of death by a mystery man.

Addie Magee is a bright and talented young musician who is making a name for herself and her musical group, The Avalon Strings.  Jess catches a performance by the group and is instantly smitten with her. As they get to know each other Jess learns that Addie and her long lost father are entwined in the story he's investigating, along with corrupt police officials making their living on the 'devil's dime'.  As the body count begins to rise and people disappear the suspense ratchets up.

This story had great characters; from Jess and Addie to Ford (Addie's father) and Jess' young protege, Tad.  I loved Addie's character the most.  She was a strong willed, independent yet very feminine woman making her own way in the world.

I really appreciated the photos the author provided at the end of the book showing the different conveyances described in the book.  If you enjoy historical fiction of this nature you'll definitely enjoy "The Devil's Dime".