Los Angeles And Back On A Bag Of Crisps #Travel #MondayBlogs

Here at the Amber household we are deep, deep, deep in plans for our next family holiday. It’s a BIG event for us, we haven’t had a family holiday for FOUR years. Long story short we haven’t been able to agree on a destination and other family things have got in the way.

We’re not a family who sits on a sunny beach, if we do find ourselves on a beach we’re the ones digging the monstrous hole with an architectural structure, moats, walls etc. Great for a UK beach, not so good long-haul when our son would prefer to check in a large, durable garden spade (all the better for digging) rather than clothes in a suitcase. Foreign holidays for us tend to be road-trips and our next one we taking on Canada! More about this over the next few weeks.

SO because I’m super excited, I thought over the next few weeks, I’d share a few snippets from some of our past road-trips.

My first ever long-haul was decided by a packet of crisps – I kid you not. Years ago I worked in catering and I found an offer on a pack of crisps for “free” flights on Virgin Atlantic. I remember buying a huge amount of badly flavoured crisps just for the tokens on the packets, enough for two adults. Choosing the destination was easy, I wanted to go as far as I could get for my potato crisp. We picked LA.

Things didn’t start well, we had a puncture on the way to the airport, then we were hauled out of line at Uk security for a thorough bag check and LA had just had a bad earthquake and serious mud slides, but hey, it makes a trip interesting.

I remember being unable to comprehend matching the flight travel time to the difference in the actual time zone upon arrival. Hubby and I (pre- marriage and kids) had few plans, pick up a car, go to Disney, then see what happens. I didn’t realise he was a closet road-tripper.

We travelled around 3000 miles in just two weeks! That trip we flew the Grand Canyon in a six-seater plane. Hubby up the front with the pilot taking great photos, me down the back feeling very green with all the air turbulence. We visited Las Vegas, feeling the pull of the glitz and glam, the heat and wilds of Death Valley, the hydro-electric plant at the Hoover Dam and the amazing Utah arches national park, even going as far as The Four Corners which borders Utah, Colorado, New Mexico and Arizona.

Next Time: Our trip from the Giant Redwoods to San Diego.

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Rosie’s #BookReview Team #RBRT CURRENTS OF SIN by @aallemanwrites #Thriller #LasVegas

Today’s second team review is from Judith, she blogs here http://judithbarrowblog.com/

#RBRT Review Team

Judith has been reading Currents of Sin by Arleen Alleman

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My Review:

I was drawn to the cover of this book; it intrigued me and, together with the blurb, I was looking forward to the read.

The subject matter is dark; human trafficking, teenage runaways, enforced prostitution. It’s hard to read because of the themes and because of the depth and intensity of the writing. Which is to be admired. It is obvious that the author has researched extensively and she brings all that knowledge to the story..

The depictions of the settings and the atmosphere they evoke are strong, well described, well detailed. Las Vegas is revealed to have an underbelly of corruption and danger.

The characters are well drawn, especially the protagonist, Darcy. The reader learns a lot of the background, her family, her previous life, former encounters, her friends and her enemies. The portrayal of the abduction of Pamela, Darcy’s adopted daughter, the way she is conditioned into prostitution is written with confidence. I had no difficulty believing the hopelessness of the situation. I know though, I should have read at least one of the former books to have been able gained more empathy with this character.

The plot is complex and interwoven with the history of all the characters’ lives and the multifaceted subplots they bring to the story.

But reading Currents of Sin reminded me how difficult it is to write a book that is a sequel, or a follow on to a series of books. The danger of telling rather than showing- or of information dumping – is difficult to overcome.  I found myself having to read and re-read certain parts to understand how the characters fitted in. Some of the explanations – although necessary in the main to bring an awareness to the situation – slowed the action considerably. I was constantly drawn away from the plot to appreciate and realize where and how, characters and situations were connected.

Yet, as I always say, this could be me and the way that I read. After writing this review I looked for the book on Amazon to find an image of the cover (which still think is brilliant, by the way). There were many good comments on other reviews. There were quite a few five stars. Whenever I see this I start to doubt myself as a reviewer. So I spent a few more hours re-reading. It did become easier but I still don’t think Currents of Sin could be read as a stand alone; there are too many referrals to the plots of the former novels for me.

But if read as a final book in a series I can see that all the threads would be pulled together. It is a good psychological thriller.

Buying links:

Amazon.co.uk:http://amzn.to/2bsg0Ig

Amazon.com: http://amzn.to/2c0M8AI