Nov 232018
 

Too Good a Girl: Remembering Olene Emberton and the Mystery of Her Death
True Crime/Memoir
Setting – Indiana
Life Sentences Publishing LLC (July 3, 2018)
Paperback: 206 pages
ISBN-10: 069215115X
ISBN-13: 978-0692151150

In the mid-sixties, the small, midwestern farm town of Tipton, Indiana, seemed like the safest, most serene place in the world. That changed October 16, 1965, when Olene Emberton, a quiet, 17-year-old Tipton High School senior disappeared after a Saturday night date. Two days later, her body was found alongside a remote country road, her clothes neatly folded and stacked beside her. Lacking any witnesses, clues, a confession, or even a cause of death, the case was never solved. More than 50 years later, with dogged determination, Olene’s classmate, Janis Thornton, explores the mystery. Presented as part true crime, part oral history, and part memoir, “Too Good a Girl” weaves together the strands of the tragedy that stunned a community and tore a family apart. The truth is there. It is only up to the reader to determine which truth is the right truth.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

This story is personal for author Janis Thornton. For more than 50 years this case has gone unsolved and it has bothered her each and every day. She has researched and done interviews with as many people connected to the case as she could. She wanted to publish her book back in 2007 but she wasn’t going to print with Olean’s family approval. In 2016 she got approval from the family and worked hard to produce this book. She was Olean’s classmate, but now with adult eyes, she is able to look back at how Olean Emberton’s death rocked the small town of Tipton, Indiana. She clearly lays out her findings and the evidence but doesn’t go so far as to say she solved the case. She has a clear suspect, but she ends the book in a way that lets the reader decide for themselves if there is enough proof.

For residents of the small town of Tipton, this book will have great meaning. Ms. Thorton takes an eerie death and writes a compelling account in a very respectable way. I truly appreciated the perspective she brought to this case.

It is hard to say I enjoyed a story about such a heartwrenching death, Olean is not some fictional character in the mysteries I usually read. She was “Too Good Of Girl” to die this way and her story will stick with me for a long time. Well written and well researched, the author had a difficult task telling a story that needed to be told.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

I am giving away my review copy.

The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US or Canadian mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End December 7, 2018, at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For Entry Form

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Share
Jul 062018
 

Laugh, Cry, Reflect: Stories from a Joyful Heart
Memoirs / Parenting & Relationships
HenschelHAUS Publishing, Inc. (June 1, 2018)
Paperback: 200 pages
ISBN-10: 1595986073
ISBN-13: 978-1595986078
Kindle ASIN: B07CWYC9SF

Laugh, Cry, Reflect is a collection of short yet powerful personal stories. Some will make you laugh—like when you find out why the author’s 12-year-old daughter requested a home pregnancy test. Other stories may tug at your heartstrings—like when you learn what item was placed on a beloved relative’s casket. Many of these poignant essays will prompt you to reflect on moments from your own life. All are offerings of hope, wonder, and joy.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

I started reading this book one or two short stories a night but on the third night, I just kept reading until the end.

I found part of this memoir to be a delight. Little snippets from the author’s life that could make you Laugh, Cry, Reflect. A set of stories about 3 runner ducks named Huey, Duey, and Louey had me doing all three. I also enjoyed the little peeks into the author’s life as a 4th-grade teacher.  The story about her “Magic Key” game with her grandaughters was my absolute favorite.

For very personal reasons, her Only One Life story had my tears flowing.  You see, there are been two times in my life beyond my control, that objects that hold near and dear memories have been left behind or lost due to moves I wish we had never had to make. That story brought back feelings about the things I didn’t get to “weed through” myself and only learned sometime later precious ones were no longer with me. It is times like these that yes, I know we only have one life to live and I realize yet again how badly I have screwed this one life up. I think I was living my life to the max like this author and God threw a huge monkey wrench into it not once but twice. There are many days I still search for my purpose and wish I could go back in time.

I found Ms. Laundrie’s memoir sent me on a little emotional roller coaster of my own, but my story is not unique. Everyone has memories that make us Laugh – Cry – Reflect. Maybe someday I will be able to put my own memoir together, but I don’t think I would ever be brave enough to share it with the world. Maybe this author’s book will help you reflect on your own life. Maybe you have a book in you that you would like to share with a precious few or the entire world.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Author

A retired fourth-grade teacher, Amy Laundrie’s first book, Whinny of the Wild Horses, was published in 1990. She went on to publish a total of seven children’s books. Laugh, Cry, Reflect: Stories From a Joyful Heart is her first book for adults. Readers have called the stories poignant, humorous, and heartfelt testimonials to a woman’s life. They have universal truths and emotions that speak to a wide reading audience. All, she hopes, are offerings of hope, wonder, and joy. Find out more about Amy on her website here.

Author Links –   Amazon        Facebook         Blog
 
 

Upcoming Wisconsin Events:

July 10 1:30-2:30, “Laugh, Cry, Reflect: Sharing Stories,” Oak Park Place, 800 Waldo St., Baraboo, WI

July 26 6:00-7:30, “Stories to Tell: Memoirs and More,” Stoughton Public Library, 304 S. 4th St., Stoughton, WI

I am giving my review copy away!
The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US or Canadian mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Leave a comment for the author for 5 Bonus Entries.

Add this book to your WANT TO READ shelf on GoodReads for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End July 13, 2018, at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For Entry Form

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Share

Review – No Grey Areas by Joseph N. Gagliano

 Reviews 2016, You Read How Many Books Challenge  Comments Off on Review – No Grey Areas by Joseph N. Gagliano
Mar 122016
 

This is a totally different book than I usually read but I was so intrigued by the synopsis I had to say “yes” when asked to review. 

NO GREY AREAS
No Grey Areas: The Inside Story of the Largest Point Shaving Scandal in History and the Consequences Thereafter
Memoir
Rebel Publishing (January 14, 2016)
Trade Paperback: 224 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0997124811
E-Book ASIN: B01AS3SUJ6
goodreads-badge-add-plus

 

 

In 1994, Joseph N. Gagliano calmly sat back, put his hands behind his head and smiled as the NCAA clocked ticked down the remaining last seconds of the game. It was the third game in a row Joe had bet on where the point spread had to land on a specific number. With millions at stake, was he nervous? Not at all.

As the buzzer sounded on the 3rd game, his duffle bags were filled with millions in cash. How?

Joe had fixed the outcome of the games.

No Grey Areas tells the incredible, true story of the man who orchestrated the largest sports point shaving betting scam in sport’s history. But that is only where the story begins…

It is always the cover up, not the crime, where white collar criminals get caught. Joe was caught, convicted and served time in Federal prison for his role in coordinating and financing the 1994 ASU point shaving scandal.

His journey continued as Joe came out prison in late 2000 with a passion to clear his name and a desire to remove perceptions held by others of him. He embarked on an aggressive path to success; building a sizeable chain of full service car washes, making millions in real estate, living a life of luxury, and even buying a private jet just to get to his yacht in San Diego quicker.

But the story does not end there….

A few years later, the 2008 financial collapse engulfed the world and because of Joe’s “grey areas” a banking deal landed him in prison for a 2nd term. Labeled a 2-time felon, he made some brilliant and yet morally questionable decisions while searching for the true meaning of success.

Inside these pages, you’ll get a backstage pass on what it was like to slowly fall into the “grey areas” of scandal, greed, corruption, money, and business. Joe’s honest, detailed telling of this life of infamy, history, and successes along with the consequences of his decisions will amaze and inspire you.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

This was a very interesting story but I want to tell you right away I WAS NOT INSPIRED!

Joseph N. Gagliano is a very intelligent man who made some really poor choices thinking he was operating in the “grey areas” of life and he wouldn’t get caught. He pressed his luck time and time again and deserved to get caught and caught again.

This man could have made boatloads of money honestly. He had excellent ideas and was a hard worker but it wasn’t enough, he always wanted more. The whole point shaving scandal took a very smart person to put everything in sync and place all the bets in just the right way for it to work. The original two games were handled masterfully but he couldn’t say no to trying to do it again and that truly was his downfall.

Then in 2008 he took another approach to make tons of money but he did it at the worse possible time. As someone that lost her home due to a predatory loan, I have no sympathy for Joseph Gagliano. He got caught up with someone as unscrupulous as he was and got burned. He had millions of dollars running through his fingers and was juggling businesses like a circus clown and even going to jail the second time he was able to leave enough money for his family to live very well. Now he is making money from this book too.

This was a very riveting story, the sad part is that it is a true story. Had this been fiction I would probably had a totally different reaction. So many people in this country live paycheck to paycheck including me. Reading how this man squandering his money and frittered away his life was very hard to read. Why he couldn’t see how fortunate he was is beyond me, and how will he be when this jail sentence ends?

This book is written in a very straight forward manner. The way the betting took place was complex to follow at times unless you are familiar with the system. It reads very much like a true crime novel. Lots of facts but I didn’t feel like I got to know Gagliano at all. The last few pages he revealed just a bit about his new “love” and his family. Maybe if he had included more of that earlier in the story it would have made him feel more human, for lack of a better term.

Sports enthusiasts would enjoy this book but not sure how it will be received by the masses. I will note he does take responsibility for most of his actions but did he learn anything? That is the major question.

enjoyable 2016

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 

*My husband wants to read this book so I will be giving my review copy away at a later date.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Share

Review: My Father At 100 by Ron Reagan

 Reviews 2012  Comments Off on Review: My Father At 100 by Ron Reagan
Jul 102012
 


My Father at 100: A Memoir

Plume
Published by The Penguin Group

My Father at 100


Ron Reagan celebrates the centenary of his father’s birth by taking us on a trip to the small towns that made his father the man we know as one of the most beloved presidents in history. Ron traveled to these towns and shares his experiences along with many stories he heard his father tell over the years.

The journey before Hollywood, Sacramento and Washington D.C. that shaped Ronald Reagan into the man we got to know later in his life when he hit the public spotlight.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

The love Ron Reagan has for his father just flows off these pages. He takes us back in time and shares with us the life of Ronald Reagan from the very start.

This is not a book about Ronald Reagan the politician or Ronald Reagan the actor although a bit of that is mentioned. This is a story of Ronald “Dutch” Reagan, the boy, the young man, and how his life growing up in Illinois brought him to be the man we came to know as an actor, a Governor and a President, from the very beginning when his ancestors came to the United States. Ronald Reagan, the child of a what would be called today a dysfunctional family became a local hero, the lifeguard and the football player. A man who even when everything was against him he always tried to do what was right. He set a very high standard for himself and while like all of us, he had is faults, he tried to be the best he could be every day and in every way.

This book is a loving tribute by a son about his father. Ron Jr. admits he didn’t completely understand his father and wishes he would have listened closer to his dad’s stories and spent more time talking about the past before the Alzheimer’s started to take over. I think this book turned in a different direction than what was originally planned. He may have had some unresolved conflict he needed to work out after his dad passed away. Not only did the readers learn much about Ronald “Dutch” Reagan but the author did as well.


Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About This Author
Ronald Prescott “Ron” Reagan (born May 20, 1958) sometimes known as Ronald Reagan Jr., is a former talk radio host and political analyst for KIRO radio and later, Air America Radio. His Ron Reagan Show was a daily three-hour show broadcast from 6–9 PM (ET). He is notable for his liberal or progressive views, despite being the son of a conservative icon, President Ronald Reagan.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Share
Jalapeño Cheddar Cornbread Murder (The Cast Iron Skillet Mystery Series) by Jodi Rath Get Your Copy Today!
+ +
%d bloggers like this: