TopShelf Magazine February 2017 | Page 17

the impossible fortress


The Impossible Fortress Although classified Adult General Fiction by the publisher , it ’ s actually a coming-of-age story that could easily be Young Adult . The narrator is a fourteen-year-old boy in 1987 , and his “ impossible fortress ” is both his homemade computer game and a fourteen-year-old girl . Billy loves computer programming , he also loves TV ’ s Vanna White . When the latter appears on the cover of a Playboy magazine , Billy and his friends go to extremes getting copies . Their elaborate plan is to
Jason Rekulak break into the local
typewriter repair shop that also sells magazines . Billy makes friends with the owner ’ s daughter in an attempt to learn the shop ’ s security code , only to realize that she ’ s a whiz at computer programming and a kindred spirit . As their attraction grows , he ’ s faced with a moral dilemma , deliver the code to his pressuring buddies , or save his budding romance ? For those who remember the 80s ,


Commodore 64s , or the “ olden days ” of in this complex tale exploring early computer games , the author provides family , friendships , marriage , and lots of authentic forays into popular music motherhood . of the time and the awkwardness of early Alice has stage three ovarian home computer technology . By telling us early on that Billy ’ s Impossible Fortress game didn ’ t win the competition , the author robs us of the tension from waiting to find out . Still , the book is enjoyable . Billy is a fun and believable narrator who will make you laugh .

~ TopShelf Reviews the mother ’ s promise


The Mother ’ s Promise ( Women ’ s Contemporary Fiction ) The lives of four women – a single mom with cancer , her fifteen-year-old daughter , an oncology nurse , and a hospital social worker – intertwine in unexpected ways

“ THE MOTHER ’ S PROMISE is a well-written , knowledgable book that ’ s fascinating , satisfying , and absorbing .”

cancer , and she fears for her daughter , Zoe , who suffers from crippling social anxiety disorder that renders her almost helpless without Alice as her safety net . Zoe ’ s father has never been part of her life , and she has no relatives other than a totally unreliable alcoholic uncle . Kate and Sonja , Alice ’ s nurse and social worker , respectively , seek to help . But their own lives are beginning to fall apart for personal reasons , and as the story unfolds , each woman learns things about herself and others that will change her
Erica Ferencik


TOPShelf magazine FEBRUARY2017

life and her relationships forever .
The story is narrated from the points of view of each woman , and we get to know them intimately . Their lives come together in believable , if unexpected , ways , and each character finds new strengths within herself to do what must be done . This wellwritten and knowledgeable book is fascinating , satisfying , and absorbing .
~ TopShelf Reviews
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