5 Star Review, A Good Home, Author Cynthia Reyes, Authors, Book Clubs, Book Clubs' Picks, Book lovers, Book Reviews, Books, Family Stories, Gratitude, Great books, Home, Words

WOW! 5 Stars for A Good Home

A Good Home is 5*****Star Rated!

Rave Reviews President's Seal of Approval
A Wonderful Honour for A Good Home

I’m very thankful for this review.

“Cynthia Reyes is one of the most talented writers of our time!  I opened this book and instantly fell in love with her writing.  If you are a V.C. Andrews or Louisa May Alcott die hard fan as I am, you would have thought you were reading from “FLOWERS IN THE ATTIC” or “LITTLE WOMEN.” Vivid all the way through.

I loved EVERYTHING about this book!  So much so, that I had to personally reach out to the author to let her know how GREAT I found her book to be.

So much so, that I immediately sent out an email to my board members letting them know that they needed to run out to get this book right away.

So much so, that I made it my PRESIDENT’S PICK in our Newsletter, dated May 11, 2014 edition.

So much so, that I hope ONE DAY IT IS A BOOK OF THE MONTH selection because good writing such as this, deserves to be read by all.  I sometimes don’t even bother to get into the detail of a book, especially if the writing is AWESOME because I feel letting you know that it is such a great read should be all that really matters.

Kudos, Cynthia, and thank you for one magnificent, extremely enjoyable book read!”


Here’s what Nonnie, president of Rave Reviews Book Club, said about why A Good Home is the President’s Pick:

I have personally just finished reading this book and let me tell you…all I can say is “Dear Author, please NEVER stop writing!” Aside from being such a well-written book, I cannot put my finger on the one thing that made it ABSOLUTELY GREAT for me.

No, there were many things about this book that literally caused me to “feel” and want to sit down and just discuss anything with the author.

Everyone knows how much I love and appreciate well-written works of art, this one…should be in a gallery!  That’s how GREAT it was.  I say to EVERYONE who is in hearing range of my words right now, you want to read this book.  Get your copy NOW!!!  I promise you a GREAT READ! Check out my full review of “A GOOD HOME” on Monday, 5/12/14 at NONNIE’S REVIEWS!


Thank you, Nonnie Jules, for this wonderful review, and for everything you and the Rave Reviews Book Club do. 

N.B. In addition to being president of Rave Reviews Book Club,  Nonnie is an author of books such as Daydream’s Daughter, Nightmare’s Friend, and The Good Mommies Guide to Raising (Almost) Perfect Daughters.  She spends a great deal of time reviewing and supporting other writers through RRBC, a volunteer-led organization consisting of book-lovers: readers, writers, publishers and many others.

Most authors will tell you that what they really want to do is write. The fact that Nonnie and the RRBC board take the time to also review new books and support authors across the globe is a huge gift.

Thank you, Nonnie, and the board of RRBC, for what you do.

Blog Photo - Red Poppy


A Good Home, African Traditions, Art, Authors, Book lovers, Book Reviews, Books, Celebrations, Children's Books

A Magical Story

The new book lies on my desk, on my bedside table, on the kitchen counter – a jewel that I’ve been carrying around the house with me.  I keep picking it up, drawn by the beautiful cover image, and opening it to flip through to the others inside. Occasionally, I re-read the whole story.


The story is about a young girl whose little brother is very ill. Doctors aren’t able to cure him, so the family calls on a healer. Surprisingly, the healer tells the family to hold a joyful ceremony filled with guests.


In some ways, it’s like a fairy tale. But the story is in no way typical, and certainly not ‘traditional’ in the Western sense.

“From the Lands of the Night” is written by award-winning author Tololwa M. Mollel and illustrated by artist Darrell McCalla.  The artwork is astonishingly beautiful and  the story is a delightful surprise.


There are angels in this book – angels who dance –  and the spirits of ancestors, dressed in shimmering, colourful clothes.


God – called “Mola” –  shows up but he’s in a grumpy mood.  The humans are making such a racket he can’t hear himself think.  “All I want is some peace, some quiet,” he complains.  But before you know it, the girl takes Mola by the hand and invites him to join the ceremony for her baby brother.

All of these elements infuse the book with an air of magic, spirituality and celebration. And yet, it is also a book about a little girl, a baby boy and their family. A book about ‘home’ in a wondrous sense of the word.

Launched this month by Red Deer Press, “From the Lands of the Night” is no doubt meant to benefit from interest in Black History Month. But I’d recommend this book for any time of year, and I’d recommend it for both children and adults. It’s lovely.

From the Lands of the Night is available through Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Chapters Indigo and other online booksellers. The ISBN number is: 978-0-88995-498-4.

A Good Home, Book lovers, Book Reviews, Great books, Libraries, New Category Nam

Red Shoes At The Library

The woman at the London Public Library wore red.

Red shoes.

She was supposed to attend another event that evening, but came to my book reading at the library, wearing her red shoes. It was a direct reference to a highly charged passage about red shoes in my book, A Good Home.  It was also a sign of camaraderie and support to an author whom she’d never met.

Image via: Google Images
Image via: Google Images


She was not the only person who had already read the book. There were several in the room, including library professional Jacqui Denomme. Exactly one year before this event, Jacqui, who works with the London Public Library, read my short story (about two much-loved homes) in the Globe and Mail newspaper. She immediately wrote a letter of praise about the story to the editor. That letter was passed on to me.

Through the months leading up to the publication of A Good Home, Jacqui and I kept in touch by email. When the book was released, she was one of the first people to read it. She then showed it to her supervisor, Elizabeth Egleston.

I therefore should not have been surprised that the first library to order the book was the London Public Library.

“You’ve started a trend,” I told Jacqui and Elizabeth. “More and more libraries in Canada have now ordered copies of A Good Home.”

A Good Home - A memoir by Cynthia Reyes
A Good Home – A memoir by Cynthia Reyes

Libraries have meant a lot to me since childhood. And decades later, my local public library became one of the few places I visited repeatedly in the years after the car accident. At a time when I had difficulty walking, talking and when even trying to read a book gave me blinding headaches, the librarians there guided me to audio books.

When I started reading books again, they often helped me choose. Some days, when I stumbled into the library, mumbling incoherently,  two librarians rushed to help me at once. And so, when A Good Home was finally published, my husband and I brought a copy of the book for each librarian, with heartfelt thank-you notes.

Knowing how much libraries had helped me, I wanted my book to be in libraries. With this strong desire, and my close connection to public libraries, I was thrilled when the invitation came from the London Public Library.

On September 25, my husband and I traveled to London for the reading at the Stoney Creek branch of the London Public Library. We met Jacqui and Elizabeth in person for the first time.

I started the session by reading the short story from the Globe that had started the connection between the LPL and me.

Photography Credit: Hamlin Grange
Photography Credit: Hamlin Grange

Just minutes earlier, Jean, an audience member, had stuck out her feet, clad in pretty red shoes for me and everyone else to see. Somehow, those red shoes and Jacqui’s warm introduction kicked off the event in just the right way.

It was a perfect evening.

My thanks to Jacqui and Elizabeth, to Jean (and her red shoes), and all the patrons and local residents who came out to meet me, buy my book, and hear me read.

Photography Credit: Hamlin Grange
Photography Credit: Hamlin Grange

The evening reinforced my impression that the best of these events are a true give-and-take between author and readers. It was a terrific discussion, and I appreciated both the laughter and the moving comments  that were made about homes and family relationships.

Photography Credit: Hamlin Grange
Photography Credit: Hamlin Grange – Photo shows Jacqui Denomme on right

p.s. If A Good Home isn’t in your local library, please ask the librarian to bring it in.  I’ve found that libraries are very helpful in bringing in books for their patrons.

A Good Home, Book Reviews, Books, Faith, Gratitude, Spiritual, Thanks


There was a time – a quite recent time – when I simply didn’t think there was much to be thankful for. Then, in one of my darkest hours, I started counting my blessings and giving thanks for each one.  And then – a strange thing happened. The more I gave thanks, the more gifts I discovered. These gifts were always there, but I’d lost sight of them.

I now give thanks several times a day. To people whose cheerful or wise spirits uplift mine; to someone who reads my book or even opens a door for me; to family and friends; and to God.

Today I salute writers who have taken the time to read and review A Good Home. There are several, and I thank them all.

One is Anne Day, of the fast-growing Canadian organization Company of Women. Anne, by the way, lives on a farm in the Guelph area and also writes for a rural newspaper called The Puslinch Pioneer. Her review reflects both those perspectives: 


Another writer  is Anglican Bishop Linda Nicholls. Writing in the September issue of The Anglican Newspaper, Bishop Nicholls zeroes in on my struggle to believe – a very difficult thing to do after injuries left me housebound and in pain – and the people whose own faith helped keep me going.

I’m no expert on faith. But faith, I think, is tied in with hope. And gratitude. It’s not just that faith makes me more grateful and hopeful. It’s also this: when I’m exercising thankfulness and hope, my faith almost always feels stronger.

Thank you, Anne Day. Thank you, Bishop Linda Nicholls.

Thank you all. (You’ll need to click on the column below to read it.)

Book Bishops Review