“Burials,” by Mary Anna Evans

Reviewed by Claire Hamner Matturro Burials, the tenth Dr. Faye Longchamp-Mantooth archaeological mystery by master-writer Mary Anna Evans, begins with a bang. Literally. Faye and her client are hiding under a pick-up in Oklahoma as somebody shoots at them. Though the precise motive and identity of the shooter will not be revealed until the end, […]

March Read of the Month: “The Last Treasure,” by Erika Marks

Reviewed by Donna Meredith Erika Marks’s latest novel, The Last Treasure, is a delicious romance, well-timed to capitalize on the current Hamilton frenzy. Hamilton assassin Aaron Burr’s daughter Theodosia is one of those lost aboard the Patriot, a schooner which disappeared without a trace in 1813 off the Carolina coast during a storm. The novel’s […]

“Prayers the Devil Answers,” by Sharyn McCrumb

Reviewed by Johnnie Bernhard Sharyn McCrumb’s Prayers the Devil Answers is a satisfying novel with interwoven subplots and gifts of dialogue and character development.  The reader is transported to rural Tennessee during the Great Depression as the novel’s heroine, Ellie Robbins, carves out a life for herself and her children, despite the shroud of poverty, superstition, […]

“One Good Mama Bone,” by Bren McClain

Reviewed by Daniel James Sundahl To begin: This is a book about a woman who talks to a cow and comes to believe she can learn some things from the cow, Big Mama Red, whose child is a steer named Lucky. The woman is Sarah Creamer and the novel is set in the 1950s in […]

“Forsaken,” by Ross Howell Jr.

Reviewed by Daniel James Sundahl American Experience is a television history series covering a range of people and events in American history, documentaries which bring to life compelling stories that inform our understanding of America. We have to imagine timelines: March 25, 1931, a fight breaks out between white and black young men riding as […]

February Read of the Month: “Kiss of the Jewel Bird,” by Dale Cramer

Reviewed by Daniel James Sundahl All things being equal: Possessed by spiritual dissatisfaction, or a hunger for knowledge or mastery, Faust makes a pact with the devil. It’s an old legend, of course, with tales told as early as the 1500s, and the stuff of drama, Marlowe and Goethe, and then Thomas Mann. The Faustian […]

“The Velvet Hours,” by Alyson Richman

Reviewed by Donna Meredith In The Velvet Hours, Alyson Richman explores two different eras in Paris, the Belle Epoque and the lead-up to Hitler’s Nazi invasion, each rendered with meticulous attention to detail. The novel would be a fine read as a multi-generational romance, but it soars beyond that convention because it was inspired by […]

“Rise and Shine,” by Johnathan Scott Barrett

  Reviewed by Daniel James Sundahl Our late friend Bill Borland was from Eudora, Arkansas; he loved to cook gumbos and such and hush puppies. Once, before we were on our way to his home for dinner, my wife asked me what a hush puppy was and I said cornmeal, wheat flour, eggs, salt, baking […]