Friday, February 10, 2012

Review - "The Sunny Side of the Mountain"

     "The Sunny Side of the Mountain" is author Charliann Roberts' first novel. This book is best categorized as romance and suspense. Here is a short description that Roberts has provided on her website:

"He was her rock, her soul. He was her everything. When he told her they should go their separate ways it hurt so much. Cassandra knew as she watched Sean walk away from her, that she’d never love anyone with the depth and emotion that she loved him. Heartbroken and forlorn she surrendered to deep compulsive sobs.
 She tucked those feelings away when she thought she had finally found the “perfect” husband. However, soon after the birth of their twins, she began to see another side of Jeff that he’d kept hidden from her.

 Surviving a turbulent marriage that almost kills her, Cassandra is finally convinced to file for divorce. She takes the twins and heads up north deep into the woods to a cabin where no one will find them...  but soon she discovers that they are being followed." 

This novel effectively chronicles the many tribulations and indulgences of Cassandra, the protagonist, as she struggles to regain a sense of normalcy and adoration. Readers will emotionally connect with the realistic situations that she faces, including liberation from the cycle of abuse, grievance over the passing of loved ones, and the rekindling of an old romance.

Cassandra and her twin children build a new life, much of which takes place at a spacious ranch -- a temporary getaway. However, suspense and misfortune pursue them, quite literally. This novel manages to pack a number of mysteries and twists into 313 pages. It is a quick read that will keep you guessing, and leave you wanting more.

This novel, despite the very real issues that it covers, is sort of a "feel-good", warm story. I don't want to divulge any secrets, or give away any more of the plot than I already have. I just wanted to add that I feel the characters, besides the choice few "villains" are generally pretty upbeat. I feel as though I do not know many teenagers that are as complacent, understanding, and cheerful as those in Roberts' story. This is not negative commentary, but simply speaks for the entire atmosphere of the novel -- overall, it sends out a positive message about asserting independence and finding second chances. Those who enjoy inspiring romances and suspense stories will enjoy "The Sunny Side of the Mountain".

Since I am a true believer in the honesty of a book review, the only other thing that I would point out would be the time in the story. At some points, I felt as though it jumped ahead days or weeks rather quickly, where I might have wanted to know more detail about what happened in between, or have a different type of transition. However, adding "filler" just to add it can sometimes really slow the pace, so I understand that the author wanted to keep the content relevant to Cassandra's journey.

If this review has inspired you and you are looking for a good romance/suspense novel to read into the wee hours of the night, you're in luck. "The Sunny Side of the Mountain" is now available in both E-Book and print. It can be purchased directly from the publisher, Solstice Publishing, for $14.99 in print, or as a PDF E-book for only $3.99. It can also be purchased through Amazon in Kindle format for $3.99. If you would like to learn more about Charliann Roberts or her upcoming novel "Love on the Horizon", you can visit her website here. Enjoy!

Disclaimer! I was given a PDF copy of this novel by the author to review. I was not given any other sort of compensation for my review. My thoughts and opinions are mine, and mine only, and were not in any way influenced.


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