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Formats
Paperback Details
  • 08/2022
  • 978-1-7397172-8-5 B09TWV388Q
  • 136 pages
  • $14.99
Hardcover Details
  • 03/2022
  • 978-1739717216
  • 198 pages
  • $34.99
Ebook Details
  • 03/2022
  • B09TWV388Q
  • 197 pages
  • $2.99
Barbara Cooper
Author
Harrowing Roses

Adult; Mystery/Thriller; (Market)

Can they save the missing girl ... and themselves?

EPIC POEM / CRIME NOVELLA, set in surreal wetlands. Vintage line ink Illustrations by author.

DANA feels the atmosphere of the marsh seeping into her skin with each day she spends in the cold unwelcoming mansion of her father's family.

When her young cousin, Debra Lee, mysteriously vanishes, Dana turns to Henry - a neighbor from a cabin nearby, to help search for her.

Is her cousin dead? What are these strange visions and dreams her new friend is having ... could they be connected to the missing girl?

Despite the hint of something unnatural and slightly strange about this, Dana is inexplicably drawn to the surrounding woods and to the neighbor himself.

But does Henry know more about Debra Lee's disappearance than he's revealing... and is it up to our heroine to start being afraid?

Buy Harrowing Roses to wake up in the eerie wetlands today!

Harrowing Roses is a poetic psychological thriller novella. If you like supernatural mysteries, haunting romance, and evocative vintage-inked illustrations, then you'll love Barbara Cooper's twisted connection.

Reviews
Cooper’s debut combines mystery and romance as it follows a young woman searching for her missing cousin at her family’s country estate. After being abandoned by her father, 22-year-old Dana and her mother return to his family’s estate to visit, only to discover her younger cousin, Debra Lee, has been missing for two days—and the police seem unable to help. Dana takes it upon herself to search for Debra Lee, in the process enlisting the help of the enigmatic Henry, a young man staying on the outskirts of the estate near the cabin of her lover, Jonathan. But despite Henry’s willingness to assist, Dana soon discovers that all is not as it seems with her mysterious assistant.

Readers will be swept into the tension and feel as if they are walking the wetlands alongside Dana, and Cooper’s evocative narrative sets a swift pace for the story. The characterization is strong even as the cast has been crafted to keep readers guessing. Henry, mercurial and ruled by his otherworldly intuition, is certain that Dana solicited him because she believes in his supernatural powers, and he is rewarded when his abilities lead him to Debra Lee. But just as Dana is drawn to Henry, she and readers both will wonder how he found Debra Lee so easily—and if he is using his psychic abilities to manipulate her.

Though Dana’s relationships with both Jonathan and Henry deserve more attention to detail, Cooper’s deliberate ambivalence towards the minutiae will compel readers to fill in the gaps, upping the intensity behind the characters’ motives and the real reason for Debra Lee’s disappearance. Cooper’s skill with suspense powers the novel and readers will relish the edgy undercurrent pulsing throughout the pages. Cooper’s capable intertwining of Henry’s psychic manifestations and his desire to control Dana immerses readers in a gripping and inventive thriller.

Takeaway: The tense story of a woman searching for her cousin falling under a mystery helper’s spell.

Great for fans of: L.T. Ryan and Brian Shea’s Drift, Georgina Cross’s The Missing Woman.

Production grades
Cover: A
Design and typography: A
Illustrations: N/A
Editing: B
Marketing copy: A

A Hippie´s Bookshelf blog

 

Barbara Cooper writes in such a beautifully unique style that perfectly romanticizes the situation and hidden secrets in this mysterious thriller.

Dana and her mother are visiting their family. Family that Dana is not close to or very happy about being around. She is in a place that isn’t familiar or comfortable for her. Her cousin Debra Lee turns up missing and that extends this really unwanted and unhappy visit. Dana’s love affair with Jonathan probably helps the visit to be a bit better.

Maybe she is bored, lonely, feels out of place with all those negative empty feelings, she begins looking for her cousin. That’s when she meets Henry. He is a bit off or strange but instead of that scaring Dana away, it sort of pulls her in. His offish ways give her reason to think he might have something to do with Debra Lee’s disappearance.

Although Dana has no love loss for her cousin Debra Lee, and Dana still is not absolutely sure about Henry, she starts to feel a connection with him and Dana’s cousin seems to be at the core of their connection.

Henry has special gifts that have made him a loner. There is a mystery, close to something magical or witchy about Henry and his visons. He is also hiding information probably out of fear due to how he has been looked at and treated by others due to his gifts, especially his neighbor Johnathan, Dana’s lover.

I love the title and how it describes so much of what Dana is feeling. She doesn’t want to be where she is, even so she sees the rose like blooms growing out of the water. The scents of the marshes can not be denied, as neither can the beauty. And all the while, she continues to feel this dismal despair.

All through the story there is a back and forth with a flirty, sensual, whodunnit vibe. Everything and everyone is to question. The end brings some closure but leaves a very creepy, questionable possibility. My review of things is just the crust of what is happening. There is so much about each of these characters, their connections and secrets. All of it grows deeper and darker as the story goes on. Then the truth, about the missing Debra Lee, is discovered.

Harrowing Roses is mysterious with a sexy, whodunnit vibe. This style of thriller is so wonderful and easy to cozy up with. I enjoyed reading this book so much! The print is easy on the eyes too. It is a short story possibly considered a novella at 174 reading pages with beautiful black and white illustrations by the author. Beautifully done and the writing is poetic, adding something exceptional to the suspense.

Harrowing Roses by Baraba Cooper
has a NEW cover!

OnlineBookClub.org

Review of Harrowing Roses

Post by LinaMueller » 07 Jan 2022, 13:38

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Harrowing Roses" by Barbara Cooper.]

4 out of 4 stars Share This Review


Harrowing Roses by Barbara Cooper is a thriller that can be part of the C/T/M/H genre. Dana is a big city girl who saw her wealthy father disappear with another woman without explaining anything. The main problem is that she and her mother are not in an ideal economic situation. That's why they decide to spend time in the "wetlands" on the property of her father's wealthy relatives.

However, her father's relatives never welcomed the mother and daughter. At first, the parents didn't want their child to bond with Dana's mother. This cold treatment contrasts with what is given to Dana's cousin Debra Lee. She is considered everyone's darling, and this kind of treatment stirs resentment. The story becomes interesting when Debra Lee disappears, and her cousin starts looking for her with Henry's help. As the story unfolds, the reader is left wondering if he is clairvoyant or somehow connected with Debra Lee's disappearance.

While they are not my favorite aspect of this publication, I need to start by saying that the illustrations are excellent and help the reader better understand what's going on in the book. But after all, what would be the central positive aspect of this work? After a lot of thinking, I would say it's the psychological development of the characters. At the beginning of the book, Dana looks like an ordinary big city girl bored in a place with few people. However, as the author develops her feelings towards her cousin, it is possible to see an evolution from indifference to repressed hatred. The end of the book shows this brilliantly (albeit in a way I wasn't expecting). That's what I liked the most about this book.

After finishing this work, I concluded that there are no flaws to mention. It's true that at first, some situations seemed surreal and far-fetched. However, as the pages progress, the reader realizes that there may be ulterior motives, and the behavior of various characters is dubious. Besides, I couldn't find one single grammatical error: the book is indeed professionally edited.

All in all, Harrowing Roses by Barbara Cooper deserves four out of four stars. It's gripping, intense, and memorable. Only gifted authors manage to create such an elaborate suspense environment. Since there are no plot flaws or grammatical errors, there is no reason to deduct one star from the final score. I recommend this publication to all suspense fans. There is no age restriction as there are no sexual scenes or profane words.

******
Harrowing Roses
View: on Bookshelves | on Amazon

Formats
Paperback Details
  • 08/2022
  • 978-1-7397172-8-5 B09TWV388Q
  • 136 pages
  • $14.99
Hardcover Details
  • 03/2022
  • 978-1739717216
  • 198 pages
  • $34.99
Ebook Details
  • 03/2022
  • B09TWV388Q
  • 197 pages
  • $2.99

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