16 February 2016

Bonnie's Review of Debbie Lynne Costello's "Shattered Memories"

Reviewed by Bonnie Roof 

August 30th, 1886 - Charleston, S.C.:

The Macqueen family - Papa, Mama, daughter Olivia and son Simon are deep in a serious discussion re: how to prosecute former employee Lloyd Pratt for embezzlement of funds and writing fake insurance policies - without damaging the family name and that of their business. Involved in a previous relationship with Lloyd, against her father's wishes, Olivia was abused by Lloyd when she ended the relationship. Since treating Olivia's wounds, childhood friend Dr. Andrew "Drew" Warwick has won Olivia's trust and affection, and has plans to propose to her the following Friday.

August 31, 1886, 9:50 p.m.: 

Mr. and Mrs. Macqueen and Olivia's quiet evening at home is interrupted by a long low rumble drifting in the window as if a heavily-laden horse-drawn wagon is approaching. Seconds later the low rumble has turned into a terrifying roar, the floor rolling beneath their feet, the whole house swaying, the chimney buckling and spitting bricks forward. An earthquake has hit the city of Charleston, toppling the Macqueen home!

Sifting through the wreckage, Drew finds Olivia unconscious, penned under a collapsed doorway frame, and her parents expired. Olivia awakens, more than a week later, with total amnesia of the previous year. She has no knowledge of who Drew is, and believes herself still engaged to the nefarious Lloyd, who sees this as the perfect opportunity to absolve himself of any responsibility for his crimes. Drew is faced with either helping Olivia remember her past, or re-winning her heart before she marries the wrong man.


Debbie Lynne Costello has penned a novel full of non-stop action, gripping suspense, emotion-filled romance, and laced with a thread of faith. Based on an actual event, the realism of "Shattered Memories" kept me captivated from beginning to end - a beautifully sensitive story with spiritual lessons of God's love, forgiveness, and trusting His timing! 

Additional info re: the 7.6 magnitude earthquake, from Debbie's Feb. 7th, 2016 post on the blog Heroes, Heroines, and History: Gas and water lines broke, fires broke out - the broken water lines making fighting the fires hopeless, wires were cuts and railroad tracks torn apart - separating Charleston from the outside world. People gathered in city squares, many singing songs to calm the crowds; homes not being safe to sleep in - people slept on lawns, and in parks. Tents were sent in as the word of the earthquake got out to the rest of the world. There were over 300 aftershocks over the next 3 years, 60 people died, the health of many was affected - with PTSD, nausea, headaches, loss of hair, some people even dying from fright. 14,000 chimneys fell, damage was in excess of 112 million dollars (in today's market), and structural damage was reported as far away as Alabama, central Ohio, eastern Kentucky, southern Virginia, and western West Virginia.       

I was provided a copy of "Shattered Memories" in return for my honest opinion, which I have given. 

GIVEAWAY: A copy of Debbie Lynne's new novel in ebook.



57 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. It's a beautiful story of suspense, romance, deceit, hope, and inspiration - Melissa. Please leave a safe address at which we can contact you should you be our winner - thanks for commenting!!

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    2. Sorry I forgot to leave an email address. ahenderson312(at)gmail(dot)com

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    3. Thank you for coming by, Melissa! Good luck in the giveaway.

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  2. Ohhhhh, this sounds really good, thank you for the chance to win a copy.

    wfnren at aol dot com

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    1. Hi, Wendy!! "Shattered Memories" has numerous elements that will appeal to many readers - I loved the romance, suspense, and faith, but also enjoyed learning more about the effects of earthquakes. "Shattered Memories" and Debbie's blog post addressed issues I hadn't thought of previously. Good luck in the giveaway!!

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    2. Hey Wendy. I'm so glad Shattered Memories appeals to you! And thank you, Bonnie for reviewing the book!

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    3. I was honored to read/review "Shattered Memories", Debbie - thank you for giving me the opportunity to do so!! It's a beautiful, inspiring novel!!

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  3. What an intriguing review, BONNIE! I haven't had the pleasure of reading Debbie Lynne's books yet, but they sound fascinating. Thank you, my dear cohort! :)

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    1. "Shattered Memories" has an unusual subplot and a dastardly character you will love to hate, Diana, lol!! The romance, suspense, and faith definitely kept my eyes glued to it's pages - "Shattered Memories" is Debbie Lynne's 2nd novel, and a beautiful book!! Thanks for your sweet comments!!

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    2. Hey Diana, I love OWG. Such an awesome blog. Thanks for all the great things you all do with this blog!

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  4. Wonderful review Bonnie! This sounds really, really good. Will have to add it to my every soooooo long to-be-read list.
    Blessings,Tina

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    1. Thank you so much, Tina!! I certainly relate to those long "to-be-read" lists, there are never enough hours in the day to read all the wonderful Christian Fiction books available. It's always a joy to influence for those books I'm most attracted to, making it a priority to read them. Hope you're able to enjoy "Shattered Memories" soon!!

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    2. Hey Tina. I'm glad to hear you are adding Shattered Memories to you TBR list. I hope you will continue to hear good things about it!

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  5. Thanks for the great review! I'm looking forward to reading Debbie Lynne's book. Charleston is one of my favorite cities to visit, although I don't know anything about the earthquake.

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    1. Oh, I love Charleston too, Kay!! A beautiful historic city!! I knew nothing about their earthquake until reading "Shattered Memories" and the blog post Debbie wrote about it. I always enjoy learning a little history through the fiction books I read. The earthquake in "Shattered Memories" will definitely keep you entertained - as will Olivia's amnesia and romance, the cunning Lloyd, and the spiritual thread. Thanks for your comments!!

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    2. Kay, Charleston is my all time favorite city! I love it. It's brimming with history! Thanks for coming by and good luck in the giveaway!

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  6. Great review Bonnie! Shattered Memories have already made its way to my TBR list, and I'm looking forward to it!

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    1. Thank you, Annie!! Enjoy "Shattered Memories" - as Diana has often commented, we need 2 heads so we can read more wonderful books, lol!! I never dreamed such enjoyment awaited me when I first started reading Christian Fiction a few years ago. It doesn't get the recognition it deserves - such a labor of love by it's authors!!

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    2. I totally agree, Bonnie! Christian Fiction are wonderful stories that not only gives us adventure but a longing to learn more, especially about themes of God's blessings and love. These books help identify and shed light to life's challenges and what we can take from them. Thanks for sharing! I'm starting get to rambling again. Lol.

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    3. YAY!!!I'm so glad to hear it is already on your TBR list!! Thank you both for your kind words for Christian authors. They are such an encouragement to me.

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    4. Debbie, I so agree - the encouragement and inspiration from the work of Christian authors is such a blessing!! Especially those whose lives are guided by their relationship with God!!

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  7. Great review Bonnie! I thoroughly enjoyed this book and am looking forward to the next one :)

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    1. It's a wonderful book, isn't it - Betti!! As with you, I'm joyfully anticipating the next book in the series. Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting Betti!!

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    2. Thank you, Betti! And thank you, Bonnie! What an encouragement to hear you are looking forward to the sequel! And what a motivator!!

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    3. Can't wait - Debbie!! Your diligence is a blessed inspiration - especially considering the trials you've experienced in the past year!!

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  8. What a story of corruption, sadness and intrigue.... can't wait to read!

    missionwife AT hotmail DOT com

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    1. Amen, Melody - "Shattered Memories" is one "not to be missed" book. Good luck in the drawing!!

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    2. Hey Melody.I'm glad Shattered Memories appeals to you! Good luck in the giveaway and thanks for coming by.

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  9. A very interesting story line. Love this cover too.

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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    1. Yes, a plot and sub-plot not seen in a lot of novels, and one guaranteed to keep your eyes glued to the pages - it's wonderful!! You will be blessed by finding out for yourself if you are the winner of our giveaway. Thanks for stopping by, Mary!!

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    2. Thanks Mary. What I really love about this cover is the background picture is an 1886 picture of a church in Charleston after the earthquake.

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  10. I have Debbie's previous book that I still need to read. Like everyone else, reading lists can be never ending. As soon as I saw the cover for Shattered Memories, I was excited for the time period setting. tlhcoupon(at)hotmail(dot)com

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    1. As with you, I have Debbie's 1st book - but haven't had the opportunity to read it, Terrill. I'm really looking forward to reading it now that I've discovered what a wonderful writer she is. I think I read a post in which she mentioned the hero in "Shattered Memories" being related to characters in the 1st novel, however, it won't affect reading each as a stand-alone.

      Don't you wish we had time for endless reading of all the wonderful books we'd love to read?? Thanks for your wonderful comments!!

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    2. Hey Terrill, I hope you will get to read Sword of Forgiveness. I loved writing that book. It was a lot of fun. But so was Shattered Memories. ;o)

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  11. I will definitely read this book. It sounds like a interesting story!

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    1. Yay!!! I'm so glad you are going to read SHATTERED MEMORIES! Thanks for coming by.

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    2. Hi, Karen!! SO glad we "sold" you on "Shattered Memories", lol - I think you will be captivated by it, just as I was.

      Good luck in the giveaway, thanks for commenting - and please stop back by and leave a safe email address where we can contact you if you are our eBook winner.

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  12. I will definitely read this book. It sounds like a interesting story!

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  13. You really know how to start something exciting! I would love to read this book, apparently agreeing with many others about the great potential this book has!
    Janice
    pjrcmoore@windstream.net

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    1. Hey Janice! I'm thrilled this sounds so good to you! I hope you get a chance to read it. :o)

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    2. It's an exciting, suspenseful book, Janice - yet includes a tender romance, and themes of hope and inspiration available through God's perfect timing!! Enjoy "Shattered Memories" - thanks for your wonderful comments.

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  14. Oh my gosh, what an intriguing premise for a story, DEBBIE LYNNE! Awesome review BONNIE, this is going on my MUST READ list!! :-)

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    1. Yay!!! I'm tickled that it is on your MRL. Thanks so much for coming by and making my day...er...evening.;o)

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    2. Thank you so much, Noela!! "Shattered Memories" is one intriguing novel, for sure - I was quite mesmerized by the excitement and suspense. The story twists played with my emotions concerning the characters - from one extreme to the other: sympathy, love, extreme dislike, anger, tenderness, joy. "Shattered Memories" definitely deserves to be on your MUST READ list!!

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  15. I'm embarrassed to admit I've never read anything by Debbie Lynne. I think I might give this one a go. I've been to Charleston many times!

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    1. Hey Heather I hope you do give Shattered Memories a try. This is only my second novel so no need to be embarrassed. But if you've been to Charleston a few times you'll recognize some of the places and maybe even the streets. :o)

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    2. Hi, Heather!! I haven't had the opportunity to read Debbie's first novel, due to other read/review commitments, even though I own the paperback and it's been on my "to be read" list since it released. I made sure I had the opportunity to read "Shattered Memories" in a timely fashion by becoming a member of Debbie's influencing team. After reading "Shattered Memories", I'm certainly joyfully anticipating the reading of the first novel.

      I love Charleston, however, knew nothing about the earthquake until reading "Shattered Memories", and found the history in the book quite interesting. I think you will find numerous elements to enjoy when you read "Shattered Memories". Thanks for your comments!!

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  16. Another good book to add to my ever growing TBR pile. Thanks for the review.
    reneerachoyolsenATgmailDOTcom

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    1. Amen, Heather!! And I relate to that ever growing TBR pile, lol. "Shattered Memories" is definitely a book that deserves to be at the top of your pile - as you will find out when you read it. Good luck in the drawing, and thanks for commenting!!

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    2. Hey Heather! There are a lot of great books out there! I'm honored to be on your list.

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  17. Cool cover. Sounds like a good read. kamundsen44ATyahooDOTcom.

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    1. Kim - it's an exciting novel with some twists, an imaginative story line, a beautiful romance, realistic characters, and undergirded with a thread of trust in a faithful God. A wonderful story for Debbie's second novel, and one I feel you will enjoy!!

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    2. Thank you Kim. I do love the cover. I think partly because the cover shows a true part of the Charleston history.

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  18. What a book! I would love to read this one.

    mauback55 at gmail dot com

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    1. Good luck in the giveaway. I hope you get the chance to read Shattered Memories.

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    2. Doesn't "Shattered Memories" have an amazing story line, Melanie?? The suspense, romance and faith will "wow" you, I think!! Thanks for your comments!!

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