Review taken from the Greenville, Texas Herald Banner 3.9.19
C. Derick Miller customarily filled this section with a review of a local Texas artist. Helping you choose a new book to read for the week and keeping you informed of new artists was his mission and his passion. Being an author himself gave him an extra motivation to review the newer books, but placed him at somewhat of a disadvantage for getting his own works reviewed. So, today, C. Derick Miller is in the much deserved spotlight.
His first book, Diary of a Gonzo Ghost Hunter, was a leap of faith as all first books are. Until you’ve published a first novel you cannot imagine the naked feeling of putting yourself out there for the whole world to see, and potentially laugh at, which may be why so many people write a first manuscript and tuck it away in a drawer never to be seen again. It takes a lot of courage to have a book published, especially that first one. Mr. Miller has taken that leap several times.
Every book in the “Home” series is intense and you can watch the artist improve his craft along the way. I enjoyed reading A Taste of Home (and I don’t like Dark Fiction Thrillers). Mr. Miller drew me in quickly to that first novel in the “Home” series. His talent was obvious. He is a storyteller extraordinaire. He brings you to the edge of your seat then lets you settle back in before bringing you back to the edge.
Mr. Miller was born in Greenville, Texas, where he resides today. He left in the nineties to fulfill his military obligations and that training has served him well in his written works. His depictions of service ring true and add yet another layer to a story that does more than skim the surface of life in the small town of Twin Oaks. He also spent many years working with the local sheriff’s department, another nugget that is put to good use in the series.
But we’re here today to look at the second book in that series, Far From Home. When I was contacted to write a review of Book two, I was flattered, but also a little intimidated. Did I really want to review the reviewer? That’s like judging the judge and who am I to judge the judge? I mean, I’m an author, yes. I have won a couple of awards for my fiction, yes. There are plenty of reviews by me on Amazon and Goodreads. Okay… I’ll do it.
Let me start with a disclaimer or two: One. I am not a Thriller, Dark Fiction fan, not in books, not on TV, not in movies, not my cup of tea. Two. I love BOOKS. I love the feel of a real book in my hands and on my lap, moving the pages forward, feeling the paper in my hands. I’m a book person, not a digital file person. But Far From Home was not yet published or in print when I was asked to read and review it, so I had to read it on a clunky computer.
That said, Far From Home is even better than A Taste of Home, its older brother. In Far From Home, Mr. Miller has refined his writing style to a point that makes one feel like one is biting into a highly polished juicy apple.
We already know the characters from A Taste of Home, but Mr. Miller reveals that we have not scratched the surface of these characters. They take us down paths that we could not see coming from the first book or, for that matter, the beginning of the second book. If you like plot twists and surprises, this is your book.
Also, if you like that good old Thriller gore, there is plenty to be had in Far From Home. As I said earlier, I am not a fan, so I skimmed most of those parts. I couldn’t skip them because they are not extraneous. They impact the plot and the story. So, if you love the blood and the gore of a Thriller, this book is certainly for you.
You will feel the sensation and fear of walking in Central Park in New York City alone late at night. This is not a story for the faint of heart. There are monsters in the world and you will see and feel how they view your puny little existence. You will know fear.
I have personally watched Mr. Miller grow as a writer for many years. From raw talent in The Diary of a Gonzo Ghost Hunter to a well refined mastery of the art of storytelling in Far From Home. I look forward to his next book in the series with great enthusiasm.
If I were you, I would be sure to get a copy of both A Taste of Home and Far From Home, which released Dec. 6, 2018, with the Black Rose Writing label. Both books can stand on their own, but why cheat yourself out of the full experience.
C. Derick Miller also reviews local musical talent and is a musician himself. He has written several songs included in the CD by a group of local musicians that call themselves Whiskeyhat . Look for it on iTunes. And look for Mr. Miller in this section in the future as he resumes reviewing local artists like yours truly, Linda Anthony Hill. Thank you for allowing me to fill in this week.
About the Author, Linda Anthony Hill is a long time Texas resident who gets her kicks writing ghost stories. She writes them for 2nd through 5th grade children. She writes them for adults. She writes stories, novellas and novels. Her latest release is a Novella, Hill House Manor: The Early Years. Her award winning novel, The Anchor is the Key is available with the Black Rose Writing label on Amazon.com/author/hilllin . Her Work In Progress is currently called The Spider House and will hopefully be available on the Black Rose Writing label by mid 2019.