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Sins of the Past – a Novella Collection

  Sins of the Past, a romantic suspense novella collection by Dee Henderson, Dani Pettrey and Lynette Eason Sins of the Past

Novellas vary, in length and in quality.  In a full-length novel, the author has more time to develop the plot and characters. The novella has to contain all of the story elements in a more compact package. It’s not an easy job – harder, in some ways, than writing a long book. The author has to develop a complete plot, create well-developed characters and (usually) write a believable romance  in a much shorter form. Novellas come in different sizes, usually between 25,000 and 45,000 words. Multi-author novella collections are popular, especially at Christmastime. They can be inexpensive and fun introduction to new authors.

This novella collection from three distinguished writers of romantic suspense, was published one year ago, and I have already listened to it twice. Obviously, I liked it! All three of the authors are on my “read everything list.”

Missing - a novella by Dee HendersonMissing

Dee Henderson’s O’Malley series is one of the most popular and enduring family sagas in its genre. I’ve read them all at least twice, so I had high expectations for her contribution to this collection, Missing. I was disappointed. As I considered it later, I decided that her full-length books are paced in a more leisurely style, developing gradually over a long period of time. She couldn’t do that in a short novella, so the characters had no depth. The romance didn’t make sense. I liked the plot, but unlike traditional mysteries, the ending was based on something totally unknown to the reader. I will still continue to read everything else she writes, of course, because I love her work!

Shadowed - a novella by Dani PettreyShadowed

I have been an enthusiastic Dani Pettrey fan since I found her first book, Submerged, shortly after it was released. It’s still one of my favorite books, and I’ve read everything she’s written since then – usually in audiobook form. Her novella, Shadowed, is by far the best of this collection. It reads like a full-length book, a complex and worthy addition to the Alaskan Courage series. It was set in the 1970’s – a fun and unusual time period we don’t see much of in current books. I enjoyed the “retro” cultural references. Shadowed has terrific characters, plot, setting… and bonus points for continuing the alliteration.

Blackout - a novella by Lynette EasonBlackout

I have only recently started reading Lynette Eason, but I’ve enjoyed the books I’ve read so far. Blackout was a little confusing sometimes, with many characters, but still very good. It moved quickly, with intense action, and I liked the base and progression of the romantic relationship.

Each of the novellas is now available separately, but the Sins of the Past collection is a bargain – and you can pick up the audio version for just a few dollars more!

What do you think?

What has been your experience with novellas?  Have you read many of them? What, in your opinion, makes a novella a good book?

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Bite Size Book Reviews

 

I listened to audiobooks this week while I worked on a number of household, quilting, sewing, and crafting projects. These are some of my favorite contemporary writers of Christian fiction in a variety of genres, and they were all first-time reads.

 

No One to Trust, audiobook by Lynette Eason

I always watch my library for Ms. Eason’s new books. Her plotting is exceptionally tight.  This one does have a good storyline, but the characters were not her best. I wanted to slap the heroine and shake the hero. She never stopped harping on the fact that he had lied to her, even when the reason was clearly and repeatedly justified. I would have liked him better if he was just a little assertive.  That said, the plot, action and mystery were good.  The resolution was creepy.

 

 

 

Nothing but TroubleNothing but Trouble, audiobook by Susan May Warren

A fun summer read, but don’t underestimate it. The mystery is solid. The family characters and their relationships are enjoyable. The history between the first hero and the heroine creates a sensitive tension that gives them depth but doesn’t overshadow the lightheartedness of the book. I found the second hero kind of lightweight, and I’d already developed a sentimental attachment to the first.

 

 

 

 

Protection for Hire Protection for Hire, audiobook by Camy Tang

This is the first book I have read by this author. It was especially interesting because of the Japanese-American heroine and culture. All of the characters are well-drawn. I was impressed by Ms. Tang’s skill in balancing the  complexities of the heroine’s history and relationships  with the action of the story.

 

 

 

 

 

sabotagedSabotaged, audiobook by Dani Pettrey

I started this book with the knowledge that it is the last in the series.  The love story was okay – not as interesting as in the other books – but the rest of it was excellent! Action, suspense, mystery, adventure, great characters, satisfactory conclusion. Good spiritual content.  I look forward to her new series.

 

 

 

 

 

vote of confidenceVote of Confidence , audiobook by Robin Lee Hatcher

Lighthearted historical western romance. The characters and plot were fun. The feminism was the good kind – practical and with a positive result, without militant drama or whining.  I look forward to the sequel.

 

DISCOUNTED PRICE! (subject to change, but as of May 9, this kindle book is only $1.99 at Amazon)