I received this five-star review from Hollywood Book Reviews for my novel, A Beautiful Glittering Lie. This is the first book in the Renegade Series. Thank you so much, Christina Avina, for your awesome review!
Title: A Beautiful Glittering Lie: A Novel of the Civil War (Book One of The Renegade Series)
Author: J.D.R. Hawkins
Publisher: Westwood Books Publishing
Genre: Military Historical Fiction
Reviewed by: Christina Avina
Hollywood Book Reviews
Throughout the history of the United States, one of the few wars ever fought on American soil, as well as one of the bloodiest and most heart wrenching, was the American Civil War. The battle that was fought between brothers, fathers, and sons not only saw battle lines drawn between the Northern and Southern states, but saw a major
impact on the homes and lives of everyday families on both sides of the war, something not seen in the United States since the country’s founding.
In author J.D.R. Hawkins’s A Beautiful Glittering Lie: A Novel of the Civil War, the author showcases this struggle for both the soldiers and the families they left behind back at their homes as the Civil War bloomed large over the nation. When the patriarch for an Alabama family goes off to fight on the front lines, he must face the brutality of war while his family is left to struggle with their land, their family life, and the horrors of war which threaten to come to their doorstep. Meanwhile, the son of the father who left to fight in the war dreams of the idealized version of patriotism that so many believed in, but soon he and his father are treated to the grim realities the war brought on as violence and emotional turmoil drove fear straight into their lives.
The author did an incredible job of showcasing the tragedy and heartbreak of war in general, as well as the historical realities of the American Civil War. As this is the first in the author’s Civil War era historical fiction series, the author did an amazing job of crafting a narrative that did a wealth of world-building and backstory for the future of the series while making this specific narrative feel complete and well-rounded. The chilling nature of war and the impact this war had on individual families, especially those families left behind in the Southern States who were not part of the wealthy elite and higher officers who fought for the power and ethical issues that the Civil War is best known for today, was felt gravely through both Hiram and his son David’s experiences.
This is the perfect and most memorable read that a reader will experience for those who enjoy historical fiction series, especially those that enjoy American history and in particular the American Civil War. This will also resonate with those who enjoy historical fiction that focuses both on the history and the development of both the physical and emotional journey that the cast of characters involved in this particular point in history experience. The intimacy and thought-process of those who not only fought in the war but experienced life back at home, and those who had to fight to differentiate the propaganda and idealism of war from the realities it often brings. Bone-chillingly real, emotionally-driven, and thought-provoking, author J.D.R. Hawkins’s A Beautiful Glittering Lie is a must-read novel for those who enjoy historical fiction and glimpses at life during the American Civil War. The heartbreak and horrors that these characters experience showcase a theme that plays out so sophisticatedly throughout this narrative, which is that in war in general, but the Civil War in particular, there was no winner and loser involved. When blood is shed and we are forced to fight our fellow man, we all lose.