Though Spring semester ended well before it was supposed to thanks to COVID19, I was busier than ever! I was so fortunate to be invited to work more than a dozen dates with The Erie County DV High Risk Team at Spectrum Mental Health Services, Best Self Behavioral, as well as for Assigned Counsel with the Erie County Court System. I also started working with The University at Buffalo Law School, and of course made my way out *very* early one morning to speak with Health classes at Hamburg High School 🙂 The most disappointing part of the semester was not being able to complete all of the dates scheduled. Hilbert College was cancelled completely, as was my trip out to Western Michigan University Even my Skype session with students at Loyola University at New Orleans ended up needing to be cancelled. On the upside, we all figured out how to conduct really productive Zoom meetings and I even got to meet Sunny the Therapy Dog!
One perk to COVID19? I suddenly have plenty of time to work on my new book, the sequel to Leaving Dorian. I’ve also decided to do an audio book, of sorts. It will be *free* and will be made available within the next couple of weeks. The formal announcement for that will be posted on all of my social media Monday, March 30.
There’s always a silver lining, ladies and gentlemen; you just need to be willing to look for it. Or as Dolly is fond of saying, “You don’t get the rainbow without a little rain.”
Fully immersed in writing book No.3, here’s what I did from February to early June in between looking at old photos, reading old journals, scratching out timelines, writing chapters, half chapters, one liners that would eventually *be* chapters, editing, writing some more, deleting whole chunks of text, re-writing, re-writing, re-writing 😉 Grateful for each and every opportunity …
Since there’s no built-in mechanism for readers who’ve purchased my books in-store or who’ve read borrowed copies, I’m starting this “Reader Reviews” page. My only request is that all submissions include a Five Star Rating (One being “This book is complete trash” to Five being “I loved it and would recommend it to others”) along with the written review. I will print all submissions in their entirety; no profanity, please. Submit your reviews to – firstname.lastname@example.org. As an aside – I’m interested in all reviews, not just those that would rate my books at Five Stars. Thank you!
Sunrise and the Seven One Six
Three Stars – Yuki – July 3, 2015 – Received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads. “Very lovely and joyful story. (I liked) the writing style (and the) unexpected ending. I (also) liked the details about the military (The research was very well – done, by the way) and the ‘Tim on the bus’ chapter. Poor Tim but that was hilarious.”
***** It also received two Five Star Reviews on Goodreads with no additional written comments.
Given 29/30 points by Judge #67, 23rd Annual Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards, Mainstream/Literary Fiction – November 13, 2015:
“Linda Dynel in Sunrise and the Seven One Six introduces the reader to an extended family that includes family of choice as well as family by birth. The crowd is gathering to celebrate the coming marriage of a member of the younger generation. Through the few days of parties and preparations, relationships from the past are revisited and examined.
Dynel has adopted a suspenseful approach to this story. She hints at what has happened in the past long before she lets the reader in on the nitty gritty portions of those back-stories. Long imagined romantic love gives way to the unfailing devotion of a co-worker. Interracial marriage becomes a centerpiece in an ethnic neighborhood fallen on hard times. Both the release and resurrection of old relationships keep the reader guessing.
The book carries lessons in building community and family. The characters are for the most part appealing and I found myself pulling for Tim, even though he was one of the less engaging residents of the story. As he faced forced retirement from the military, he was also facing grown sons whom he hardly knew and certainly did not understand. Connecting again with Wren led him to self-examination and hope.
This little book packs a wallop. The cover is something of a give-away with its illustration of the slightly skewed wedding cake. It promises and delivers humor along with the greater stories of building family and extending that to building community. Sunrise and the Seven One Six is a good read and one that I would share with reading buddies. There is something for everyone in this little volume.”
Five Stars – Ted L. – December 25, 2015
“Very interesting. Easy to read memoir of her experiences. Really made me think about DV.”
Five Stars – Elizabeth Soemann – July 15, 2014
“This is the kind of book that once you start reading it you will not want to put it down. The author writes in words we can all understand and some will really relate to her story. It is a must read!!!!”
Five Stars – Jill K. – March 21, 2015
“While this book exposes the ugly truth of domestic violence, it is wonderfully written! The author does a great job of putting the reader in Krissy’s shoes and making you truly understand her thoughts and fears. This is a must read for all women!”
Five Stars – Joseph P. Rosati – July 10, 2014
“This was a very good book. I found myself getting angry and wanting to know the true name of Dorian. I couldn’t put the book down and really liked the fact that it was easy reading. Krissy is a strong woman and a great advocate for survivors of domestic violence.”
Five Stars/One Star – Rabid Reader – November 27, 2015
“5 Stars for the subject matter, the way the book was written (like a friend speaking to you over coffee), how it was structured–a chapter of Hell, a chapter of Freedom–and the sheer courage of having written it. You GO, girl. 1 Star for editing, This is a great book, but the author has been done a disservice by the absolute and utter lack of editing–even simple bits like punctuation. And a disservice in that a larger publishing house should handle it. This book deserves WIDE readership in the abuse community. If you’re from Western NY? You’ll recognize the area-references, and wow, did that really bring the story home to my heart. Kudos for including places for us to call if we ever need help… Yep…You GO, girl”
Author’s Note: First Edition copies of Leaving Dorian WERE poorly edited. With that said, if you’re thinking about buying a used paperback copy, please make sure that you’re purchasing a Second Edition.
Five Stars – Gordon DeLeys – March 16, 2014
“Just finished reading Leaving Dorian. A gripping, suspenseful book about the realities of domestic violence and the thoughts and emotions of the abused. The main character, Krissy, is alienated by her family and winds up marrying Dorian, her abusive husband who is also obsessive and is an overly religious zealot. I won’t spoil and give you all the details but this is definitely a must-read. I started reading it and couldn’t put it down until I finished it!”
Five Stars – Jill McCann – August 25, 2014
This book is definitely a must read! It is a captivating true story of a woman’s journey through an extremely abusive marriage. It is so well written, and as I was reading, I could feel the emotions of the main character, Krissy. In some parts, my heart was pounding, and other times, it brought me to tears. I have never been in this type of relationship, but this book gave great insight into what a victim of domestic violence goes through on a daily basis. As a woman and a mother, I was so inspired by the strength and courage it took for Krissy to escape to a better life for her and her daughters. I feel like I know the characters personally, and catch myself thinking about them, and wondering how they are doing now. I hope there will be a sequel to Leaving Dorian, so we can learn about the rest of Krissy’s journey!”
Five Stars – Amy Bradt – March 20, 2014
“This book is so well written, I was mesmerized right from the opening paragraph. Though the subject matter may be disturbing I truly enjoyed reading this book. I could not put it down, I couldn’t wait to know more and more as Kris’s journey went on. Getting to know how she came to be in her situation and how she got out was captivating to me. I grew up in a house where my mom was a victim of domestic violence and though I have never been a victim myself it truly amazes me to hear these stories and how one women can gather so much strength to protect themselves and the ones they love.”
Five Stars – Sean – May 13, 2014
“This was a great book on many levels. It was easy to read (I hate reading), and kept me very interested until the end. This book opened my eyes to what some people go through in less than ideal relationships. I recommend this book to anyone, especially those that may be going through a similar situation. It may just give you the courage to do something to better your life.”
Five Stars – Marie Pecora- April 28, 2014
“This book is a must read!! It’s a point of view you don’t often hear, and glad she was able to share her story and hopefully will empower others to be as strong. I couldn’t put the book down once I started reading. I’m excited that the paperback version just came out. Hope to see more from this author!”
Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/author/lindadynel
**Please Note: If you choose to purchase a USED copy of Leaving Dorian, please make sure that it’s a Second Edition, as this includes a Foreword and an Epilogue and reads better than First Edition copies.