Posts tagged “Literature

Review of Sand Dollar at Mina’s Bookshelf

Posted on November 27, 2012

Paperback, 223 pages
Published May 1st 2012 by Sebastian Cole LLC
Genre: contemporary novel, romance, romantic fantasy
Rating : 5 stars

“What an exquisitely romantic story! Utterly heart-wrenching in its tragedy, absolutely gratifying in its resolution. Far from being a mellow romance novel, the author deepened and enriched the shadows of widely exploited tropes (lost love and second chances) with more introspective and dramatic tones, tragic elements and a mind-blowing ending. Although frequently referred to as a romantic fantasy, I wouldn’t say that Cole’s soulful debut novel falls in that clear-cut category, being the otherworldly element not a dominant feature throughout the narration, as much  as an imaginative touch that the author used very lightly and that found its culmination only at the end of the book.

Lying in a hospital bed, eighty year old Noah Hartman offers to a compassionate medical orderly a bitter-sweet recount of his love life. As past events and present-time regretful considerations unfold  in front of our eyes with the fluidity, accuracy and comfortable pace of a movie script, Noah takes us for an emotional trip down memory lane, leading the readers through his heartbreaking quest for love and the countless obstacles that external forces, prejudices, and twists of fate placed on his path to happiness. What makes this story of undying love so poignant and inspiring is the combination of two very fragile and vibrant characters and the incredible resiliency of their mutual feelings. I was overwhelmed with a deep sense of compassion for Noah and Robin. Their back-stories may be marked by environmental and genetic traits that will act as invisible and sometimes unexplained forces against the fulfillment of their love (Noah’s Jewish background and family’s hostility to Robin, Robin’s tragic past and lack of emotional stability), but true love has a way to reveal itself in “a moment of truth and clarity” and to lead two soul mates through the storms and the rough seas, like a compass to its true north.

Keep a tissue box close by while reading this evocative novel…Sand Dollar won’t leave your soul and your eyes dry.” — Mina’s Bookshelf


Free Book

Congratulations! For a limited time only, you can download the PDF version of my debut novel, Sand Dollar: A Story of Undying Love, absolutely free! With the regular price of the paperback selling for $9.99, free happens to be 100% off. Please note that this offer will not last forever. All I ask in return is if you enjoy reading my book, please spread the word and tell all of your friends. Writing a review on Amazon and Goodreads would be helpful, too. In case you didn’t know, I’m an indie author looking to get my foot in the traditionally-published door, and as it stands right now, very few people have ever heard of me. With your help, we can change all of that. I honestly believe that people across the country and around the world would benefit from reading my book, if only more people knew about it. And if successful, I’ll be able to write more novels, the kind of novels you love to fall in love with. Thanks for your help and happy reading!

Sebastian Cole
SebastianColeAuthor.com

 

To download a free PDF copy of Sand Dollar: A Story of Undying Love, please click here.

 

Free Book, Nicholas Sparks, The Notebook, Love Story, Love, Romance, Fantasy, Fiction, Tear jerker, Heart wrenching


Sherrie Pogorzelski’s Book Review of Sand Dollar at Amazon

Posted on October 1, 2012

★★★★★

Excellent

“Mr. Cole did an amazing job writing this book. I strongly recommend that any one who loves romance books you need to read this one, just have your tissues ready your going to need them. What Noah went through was gut wrenching a true sole mate is hard to find as Noah will tell you, but if you wait long enough as Noah did for Robin it will work out in the end. And to share his love story with a very special some one like Josh is even better. I can’t wait until his next book come out. I really Love this book.” — Sherrie Pogorzelski


Sand Dollar Book Giveaway Winners At GoodReads

Posted on August 2, 2012

Congratulations to all the winners of the July 31st Sand Dollar book giveaway at GoodReads:

Kiersten Kellogg
Nancy Gallagher
Allison Bachelder
Terri Clark
Doris Williams
Judith Policicchio
Marie Casabona
Charlene O’Connor
Debbie Lee
Donna Taylor
Angela Perry
Lindsay Fisher
Jeny Robertson
Toby Carter
Danielle L.
Pat Murray
Trisha Mckee
Michael Bourgault
Becky Darnell
Sabrina Moore
Melanie Layton
Deborah Garcia

Thanks to the 1262 people who entered the drawing. If you’re not one of the winners, please check back again soon for another giveaway. If you’ve read the book, please let me know what you think. I’d love to hear from you!

Sebastian

:)


Karen Thaxton’s Review of Sand Dollar at Amazon

Posted July 18, 2012

Love we can’t forget

★★★★★

“Special thanks to Mr. Cole for offering this book as a Good Reads free book to me. I started reading this book and I could not put it down. I was so meserrized by Robin and Noah’s love for each other and all the hardships they had to endure during their relationship(s). Very, well written, love story that keeps you wanting more and more. We all need to find a love like this and cherish it. I can’t wait for Mr. Cole to write another novel! Loved this book!!!!!” Karen Thaxton


Twenty-Fifth Chapter: Testing The Waters

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Posted on July 9, 2012

“I wouldn’t listen to your parents if I were you. If your heart’s set on buying the lighthouse, then just do it,” Robin advised, stretched out in Noah’s arms on the teak deck of Noah’s boat, anchored out in front of the old lighthouse on a lazy summer day. “I can definitely picture us getting married there,” she continued. “It’s such a pretty spot. You know, it’s too bad they don’t make you wait a year to get divorced. Otherwise, we’d still be married right now, and we wouldn’t have to go through all that paperwork again just to get remarried. Speaking of paperwork, when are you planning on having me sign another one of your stupid prenups?”

“There’s not going to be a prenup this time. I guess I’ll just have to take my chances, that’s all.”

“But what about your parents?”

“What about them? You’re marrying me, not my parents.”

She smiled and continued with her list. “I want to have another child,” she announced.

“Of course, I’d love to have a child with you… but what kind of child exactly are we talking about?” he joked.

Robin laughed. “I’ve always loved the name Olivia — if it’s a girl, that is.”

“I think Olivia’s a beautiful name for a girl,” he said, eliciting a smile.

“Oh, and one more thing…” Noah looked at her closely. “I don’t want to be a social worker anymore. I’ve always wanted to be an X-Ray tech.”

“I think you should do whatever makes you happy, Robin.”

“Well, it would mean quitting my job and going back to school full time for a year until I get my certificate.”

“So when can you start?”

A big smile stretched across her face. “You’re the greatest. I love you, Noah Hartman,” she said, leaning in for a kiss, standing up and dipping her foot into the water, testing it.

Read the rest of this chapter


Twenty-Fourth Chapter: The Three Reasons

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Posted on July 2, 2012

Wearing a navy robe with matching slippers, Noah headed out the front door to fetch the Providence Journal, which was on the front lawn resting up against the For Sale sign. Shuffling back inside, he sat down at the patio table with the newspaper folded under his arm and a cup of coffee in his hand. It was a dreamy summer morning. The air was dry, and there was a light breeze shooting off the bay. Seagulls squawked as they fought over a scrap of food on the beach below. Noah’s coffee was getting cold as he sat there, staring off in the direction of the old lighthouse in the middle of the bay.

Unfolding the Providence Journal and glancing at the date — June 10th, 1997, he tore off the corner with the date printed on it, crumpled it up, and tossed it on the ground before getting up and going inside. Upstairs in his closet, he climbed a wooden stepladder and reached for a box on the top shelf. As he grabbed it, a large manila envelope resting on top of the box fell on his head. Sitting on the bed with the box and the manila envelope, he removed the lid from the box and looked inside. Resting on top was his wedding invitation, the date reading June 10th, 1996.

­­­­

“It would have been our first wedding anniversary. We never even made it a year. God, I missed her.”

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Twenty-Third Chapter: The Educated Decision

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Posted on June 25, 2012

A line of Mercedes, Lexus, Range Rovers, BMWs, and Porsches waited in front of Capriccio restaurant, followed by a black Ford F150 pickup truck. Wearing a sport jacket and tie, Noah got out of his new pickup truck and tossed the keys to the valet. He walked into the dimly lit interior and passed a baby grand, where a man in a tuxedo was playing That’s Life by Frank Sinatra. He joined Scott, Sharon, Jerry, and Miriam at a candle-lit table.

“What on earth were you thinking?” Miriam exclaimed, angry. “How could you just quit like that? There isn’t another company around that will pay you half as much money as your dad’s been so generously paying you. And this is how you thank him?”

“I don’t care about the money,” Noah responded. “I care about being happy.”

“Don’t be a fool,” Jerry added. “You could be happy anywhere. It’s your responsibility in life to take whatever job pays you the most amount of money. Everyone else seems to enjoy making money. Besides, how do you plan on paying your bills without it?”

“I guess I’ll just have to downsize, that’s all… sell the house… whatever it takes. At this point in my life, it’s more important to me to have a career that I love.”

“And what career would that be?” Miriam asked.

“Well, I’ve got this new idea I’m working on. You know that lighthouse on an island in the bay across from my house? Well, guess what? It’s for sale ! I could buy it, fix it up, and turn it into a charming bed-and-breakfast.”

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Twenty-Second Chapter: The Perfect Storm

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Posted on June 18, 2012

Even the sky was gloomy as Noah sailed by the old, abandoned lighthouse on this cold, raw, November day. He was heavily bundled in a thick wool sweater, down jacket, wool hat, and wool gloves. The cold air added a drab shade of blue to a face reddened by the unforgiving wind. With no other boats out on the white-capped bay, Noah was utterly alone.

 

“It was as if the life had been sucked out of my body, and there was no happiness in the part of me that was left behind. I thought perhaps I could find God out there on the water, but he was nowhere to be found. I determined he must not exist… because it was just me… all alone.”

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Twentieth Chapter: A Casualty Of Words

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Posted on June 11, 2012

Robin and Noah were dining alfresco at Trattoria Simpatico in Jamestown as a jazz trio played instrumental music under an old beech tree in the background. The waiter removed an empty bottle of Pinot Grigio from the table and walked away.

“What’s wrong?” Noah asked, watching Robin push the roasted potatoes around her plate. “You barely touched your food.”

“Sorry, I just have a lot on my mind.”

“Like what?”

“It’s no big deal. I was just thinking about what my shrink said to me the other day, that’s all,” she said, looking away.

And… what did he say?”

“Nothing really. Just talked about fairy tales.”

Noah took a sip of wine. “I just don’t understand you lately,” he said, setting the glass down. “Ever since we got back from our honeymoon, you seem distant for some reason. Did I do something wrong?”

“No, you didn’t do anything. I told you, I just have a lot on my mind.”

“You used to love going out on the boat, and you haven’t gone out on it with me once since we got back. For that matter, you won’t even hang out on it with me at the dock.”

“You spend too much time on that thing as it is.”

“The boat’s not a bad thing, you know. You treat it like it’s some kind of other woman.”

“Look, just because you named your expensive yacht after me doesn’t mean I have to like it, okay?”

Noah looked at her, puzzled. “And every time I walk up to you to show you the least bit of affectionate, you walk away. You’re never interested in making love anymore. It’s not so much about the sex as it is about expressing our love for each other in a way that only intimacy can achieve. So what’s bothering you? Is it me? Is there anything I can do to help?”

Robin hesitated, took a deep breath, and spoke. “Yeah, there is something you can do to help…”

Read the rest of this chapter



Nineteenth Chapter: The Problem With Memories

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Posted on June 4, 2012

Tony had a kind of arrogance about him, gawking at Robin as she reclined in the chair in his office and straightened her blouse.

“So how was your honeymoon?” he asked, laying a picture frame on his desk face down.

“Perfect… like a fairy tale,” she replied. “Which reminds me, did you ever see Pretty Woman, the movie?”

Before he could answer, she continued, “Julia Roberts wanted the fairy tale, remember?”

Tony nodded.

“Well, that’s what I got — the fairy tale. The only problem is… it’s a frickin’ fairy tale. I mean… that stuff only happens in the movies, right?”

Tony opened his mouth, but Robin spoke first. “I keep thinking any minute the clock’s gonna strike twelve, and I’m gonna get tossed aside, sent back to where I came from, while Prince Charming over here rides off into the sunset with someone else on the back of his fancy white horse. I hate feeling insecure like this. It’s a terrible feeling…” she said, shaking her head, “expecting that someday everything is going to be taken away from me, ya know what I mean? And where does that leave me, huh?” she said, looking at Tony, waiting for an answer.

He paused to observe her body language, and figuring it was safe to speak, he started to talk.

“ABANDONED, that’s where !” she shouted. “I don’t know, what do you think? Is it really too good to be true?” she asked desperately.

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Fifteenth Chapter: A Kiss To Remember

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Posted on May 21, 2001

As Noah loaded a cardboard box into the back of a small U-haul truck, Robin, wearing her new diamond engagement ring, hugged Julie in front of her apartment.

“I’m going to miss you,” Julie said to Robin. “One piece of advice… keep him this time, okay?”

“Oh, believe me, I will. I love him, and nothing could ever change my mind about that.”

“Well, maybe you should write yourself a letter… just in case.”

Robin laughed as she kissed Julie good-bye and headed for the truck.

Forty-five minutes later, the U-haul truck pulled into Noah’s cobblestone driveway in Jamestown. While Noah grabbed a carton from the back of the truck, Robin stood on the threshold fumbling with an orange foam keychain with her daughter standing beside her, clutching onto Pinocchio and anxious to go in. As soon as the door opened, Brittany ran up the stairs to find her new room, her smile fading as she entered. The walls were brown, the curtains brown, the comforter brown, and the dresser was black.

“Mommy,” she called out. “MOMMY !” she screamed nervously, not getting an immediate response.

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Fourteenth Chapter: Destiny

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Posted on May 14, 2012

Light gusts of wind blew brown leaves in swirling patterns as Noah, rid of his beard, sat at his desk staring out the window, surprised to see a red robin sitting on the sill, waiting patiently for her mate to arrive with another twig. Like clockwork, the other red robin flew in, placed the twig in the nest, and flew away to go find another twig.

Diane sat at her desk watching him. “Noah, you okay? You gotta snap out of it and finish the profit projections that were due yesterday. Noah… Noah?”

“I can’t stop thinking about her. It just doesn’t make any sense.”

“Who? Cindy?”

“No… Robin. She was the one. I don’t understand what happened,” he said morosely. “Robin, I don’t understand,” he said softly to himself.

“Destiny’s funny that way. If it was meant to be, Robin will come back to you. If she doesn’t, then it was never meant to be. It’s like that saying, If you love something, set it free…”

Noah leaped up, grabbed his briefcase, and strode toward the door.

“Hey, where you going? What about the projections?”

Noah stopped and looked at her. “To pay a visit to destiny,” he said, dropping the completed budgets on her desk and disappearing down the hallway.

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Tenth Chapter: The Real World

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Posted on April 30, 2012

High on a cliff overlooking a sandy beach, Zeke was giving Noah a huge bear hug in front of an old trailer at the trailer park. Zeke was big and burly, nearly double Noah’s size, with a thick beard.

“Sorry, we’re big huggers in our family,” Zeke admitted, releasing him. “Me and Mary are so glad to finally meet you. Robin has told us so much about you. And anyone who treats our little girl with love and respect is always welcome here.”

“Thanks, that’s really nice of you to say,” Noah said, recovering from the hug.

Mary was short, with long, salt and pepper hair. “Hi, Noah, I’m Mary,” she said, kissing his cheek and making him blush. “You sure are easy on the eyes.”

“Thanks, Mrs. Jaworski.”

“Mrs. Jaworski? Who’s that? Call me Mary. Who knows, maybe someday you’ll even call me Mom.”

“Sure thing… MOM.”

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UPDATE: Sand Dollar paperback available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble

Posted on April 26, 2012

The paperback version of Sand Dollar is now available online at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Amazon hasn’t uploaded the cover image yet, however, and Barnes & Noble hasn’t entered the description. Hopefully, they’ll display this information shortly.

Click on a logo to go to Sand Dollar’s selling page:


Eighth Chapter: Total Surrender

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Posted on April 23, 2012

Noah’s hair was riffled by the wind as he tacked his sixty-foot sailboat, her boom swinging across mid-ship as her sails filled with air. Majestic orange and red cliffs reflecting the setting sun welcomed her as she entered the mouth of Narragansett Bay into Newport Harbor. Gliding through the glistening water, seagulls squawked as they flew across her bow. The name on her transom read Freedom; Jamestown, RI.

As she lay on the teak bow, Robin looked back at Noah and smiled as they sailed by the abandoned lighthouse on the small private island, her red hair trailing in the breeze. Noah took a deep breath of the fresh air surrounding Freedom and smiled with contentment. He was living in the moment.

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Sixth Chapter: Butterflies

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Posted on April 13, 2012

With a Kmart shopping bag in each of her hands, a woman wearing a black leather coat and gray wool hat crossed the busy Weybosset Street intersection in downtown Providence. The sign on top of the concrete building she entered read Emergency Family Services of Rhode Island. Standing behind the front desk wearing a white uniform and talking on the phone, Robin smiled at her and motioned with her hand to wait just one second. A young woman with greasy blonde hair and a torn coat waited anxiously beside the desk. Her two young children stared with blank faces at the TV across the lobby. The four-year-old, a cute little girl with curly, brown hair, spotted a penny on the floor, and without calling attention to it, she picked it up, examined it, and placed it in a large glass collection box containing only a handful of spare change.

“So you don’t have any beds open either, huh?” Robin said disappointedly into the phone. “Well, call me as soon as one opens up, okay? We’re filled to capacity over here too, and I’m running out of options for these people. Okay, thanks, Cheryl. Bye,” she said, hanging up with a frustrated sigh.

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