Friday, November 25, 2011

Bitter Blessings - a novel - Christine Mehring

Review by Cindy R. Williams

The clock in the kitchen pounded out the seconds, and the neighbor's wind chimes clanged their chaotic melody until I thought my brain would explode, and then, finally, Gram said, "There was an accident on the highway this afternoon. Your mother was in it."
And the world collapsed around me . . . again.

After the death of her mother, everything seems to spin out of control for Megan. taking care of her grandmother--who refuses to received help from anyone--and her two younger sisters, Megan must depend on her best friend Adam to get through these hard times. But when she discovers an old family secret, Megan must choose between trusting her family and following what her heart tells her to be true. Thought-provoking and heartfelt, this debut novel shows that the power of love brings the best blessing even during the bitterest trials.

This back of the book sure caught my attention.  I finished it in a few hours. My heart went out to most of the characters. Mahring is able to paint a complete picture of a troubled family. She gives the reader a sense of the raw emotions a teen feels as she faces life. Her writing is brave in that she doesn't gloss things over nor does she sugar coat the issues.

Thank you Christine Mehring for this heart-felt and gut check novel.  Well worth the read.

Writers Mirror gives Bitter Blessings 9 Stars!

Bitter Blessings - a novel  by Christine Mehring is published by Bonneville Books, an imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc.

Monday, November 21, 2011

The Assassination of Governor Boggs by Rod Miller

The title alone caught my attention. It tweaks the interest of history buffs and members of the LDS Church. Everything known about Governor Lilburn Boggs speaks of controversy. Often referred to by early members of the Church as one of the most evil men and a definite thorn in the side of Mormons, Boggs was directly and/or indirectly responsible for the deaths of many early Saints; men, women and children.

Boggs is most famous for his extermination order of the Mormons on October 27, 1838, during the time he served as Governor of Missouri.

Author Rod Miller creates a novel based around Mr. Progue, a Pinkerton Detective, hired by the Bill Boggs, the son of Governor Boggs.  Progue was hired to find out the truth whether Orrin Porter Rockwell, the notorious body guard of the Prophet Joseph Smith, and later, President Brigham Young was guilty of the assassination attempt. Note, Governor Boggs did not die from the gun shot through his parlor window, although three balls entered his head and one his throat. He lived another 18 or so years, most of them in California after his term as Governor ended.

Miller sets the story about 25 years after the assassination attempt. It is told through Progue as he travels around the country interviewing eye anyone who he can find that was either around during that time or reading old reports, newspaper clippings and records. Progue also interviews Orrin Porter Rockwell himself, and various parts of that interview are interspersed throughout the book.

Miller does an excellent job of taking the reader on a tour of the hardships the Saints suffered at the hands of Bogg from the eyes of the neutral character, Progue. He includes a visit with "Wild Bill", Emma Smith Bidamon and even President Brigham Young.

Miller, "Born and raised in a small town in Utah, around horses and cattle, and a veteran of the rodeo arena, he comes by his love of the West and its history, culture, and people honestly."This is explains the feeling of reality conveyed in the book about the life on the frontier in the 1800's. Miller has a knack for making the wild west come alive.

Did Orrin Porter Rockwell shoot Governor Lilburn Boggs? That is the premise of the entire novel as you journey through the history.

It is a good read, and you will have to make up your own mind as to what really happened after you travel the dusty trails with a Pinkerton Detective.

Writers Mirror gives The Assassination of Governor Boggs by Rod Miller 9 stars out of 10. A book defiantly worth reading.

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