KIRKUS REVIEWS

"Larranaga delivers an engaging history lesson as well as a page-turning adventure." — Kirkus Reviews

In his latest historical novel, Larranaga tells the story of an ex-soldier who becomes a civilian blockade runner during the Civil War. Much of the novel’s action revolves around events that occur after the Union Army attacks Florida’s Cedar Keys in 1862.

Ed Canfield’s friends and family become hostages at a refugee camp overrun by crooked Confederate soldiers. Soon Canfield fights both Union and Rebel soldiers in an effort to save his family and neighbors.

Canfield has been hardened by his experiences in the Mexican-American war, which continue to haunt him; the author’s descriptions of Canfield’s experiences will give readers insight on the realities of front-line soldiers’ lives during that era. (There’s also a romance subplot, after Canfield meets the spirited Maureen Foster.)

Battle scenes abound throughout this novel, as do detailed and well-researched descriptions of 19th-century Florida, down to the trees and animals that flourished there at the time. Indeed, the Florida setting is an important part of the novel’s appeal, with scenes set in Key West, where the Union gained control, and in the Everglades. The story also engagingly depicts the lives of freed and runaway slaves living deep in the Florida backwoods.

Most Civil War novels feature the usual battle scenes of Gettysburg, Antietam or Shiloh, and many readers will find the action in this novel, set off Florida’s Gulf coast, a welcome change. Overall, Larranaga delivers an engaging history lesson as well as a page-turning adventure.

A historical adventure that Civil War buffs, and especially Floridians, will enjoy.

GoodBooksToday.com


"The Reckoning is recommended for history buffs and any reader who loves a well-written action novel." - GoodbooksToday.com Reviews
 
The Reckoning is an action-packed thriller by Bob Larranaga about the misery of the Civil War. Set on Florida's gulf coast, The Reckoning combines rich story-telling and real characters into a fast-paced adventure that will keep you on the edge of your seat.

The Reckoning tells of Ed Canfield, a war veteran with a haunted past. He is suffering from Post Traumatic Distress Disorder (PTSD), also known as soldier's heart. Ed is a likable, strong character. He fights through his PTSD and emerges a stronger man.

Although it is a Civil War novel, The Reckoning is not short of heart, which is added to the story through a budding romance. By Ed's side is fearless, strong-willed Maureen, Ed's target of affection. Maureen adds a welcome dash of femininity to the novel, as well as a touch of romance to strike a balance between action and emotion.

The Reckoning also presents a touching account of a father-son relationship that blossoms in the face of danger and survival. Ed's son from a failed marriage, Jesse, arrives to live with him. The two share a cold relationship at first, but that soon changes as Civil War erupts and the two are forced to support each other through the ordeal.

Ed and his comrades are faced with numerous tribulations and readers are given a rich description of Civil Wars and their going-ons. Larranagas impeccable detail paints a clear picture of the story in a readers mind: "I wore a soiled cotton shirt, pants stained with fish blood and pine tar." The setting is well-developed, and situations are very real; a reader is plunged into the action and despair. Warning you may feel anxiety, but that is normal. Larranaga's in-depth research into the Civil War history shows in the intricate way he weaves knowledge into The Reckoning.

Larranaga impresses with his highly-polished, well-edited book. The Reckoning is recommended for history buffs and any reader who loves a well-written action novel.