Books: The Cheapest Vacation You Can Buy

{August 14, 2013}   {Review} Sundial by C.F. Fruzzetti and M.I. Pearsall

12427087From Goodreads: It is 1988 and teenager Whitney Forbes thought her biggest problem was surviving high school and determining if there was more to handsome Reid Wallace than just his looks and popularity. She was wrong. Her problems were about to get a lot more complicated.

Whitney always knew she was special. But when she discovers she is more “special” than she ever imagined, surviving another school day outside her posh D.C. suburb takes on a whole new meaning. Caught in the middle of a CIA plot and her undeniable magnetic attraction to Reid, she will need to decide who she can trust and what it means to become the Sundial…before she risks her heart and an alarming plan goes into motion.

Will she have what it takes to not only survive but also prevail? The clock is ticking and the suspense builds as time brings the truth to light in this epic adventure about love, trust and the process of turning adversity into advantage.


Complete with romance, special ops, nuclear energy, and the paranormal, this novel has a little bit of everything for everyone.  Whitney Forbes, our strong female lead, is a great character, taking care of herself and not falling for the cute boy in school based on looks alone.  She’s got a good head on her shoulders, and she double checks anything suspicious, which, in this case, is Reid Wallace.  Whitney has ESP, and with her abilities to sense, along with the ability to absorb and learn powers, she’s got her hands full trying to understand why Reid knows so much about her when she’s told him very little… Trust must be earned in this novel, and it is.  As the plot unfolds, we learn why Whitney and Reid are so drawn to one another, and the revelations are very intriguing.

Much of the plotline in this novel is spent building up the relationship between Whitney and Reid, with boat rides, kisses, long drives, and parties, the perfect way to flesh out their relationship and build their characters in this first book of the series.   However, it causes the story to unfold rather slowly as the CIA plot involving nuclear reactions and genocide isn’t really touched upon until near the end of the novel.  But then again, without the attention to the budding relationship, the novel wouldn’t have so expertly captured the world of the rich in D.C. And, for those of us around in the 80s, a lot of the name brands and places mentioned in this novel really hit home, especially if you live(d) in the D.C. area, which, in my opinion, makes the slower pace worth it.

The one aspect that I had a little difficulty with as I read was that the overall story tended to jump ahead a lot, almost rushing the reader, cutting out details right when the going gets good.  Many chapters end with a sort of cliffhanger, jumping ahead to another segment of the story, or bypassing weeks or months in the span of a paragraph or two, and while I do enjoy cliffhanger chapters as they pique my interest, I also like my story to follow a more linear fashion… to be less rushed.  But this isn’t bad story-telling by any means, and I believe some readers will really enjoy this writing style, though I personally found it a little bit jarring.

Overall, this is an intriguing read with some great, strong main characters, and I think the second novel is going to be even better than the first now that all the character building and introductions are out of the way.  Three stars.

3 stars

I received this novel from the authors in exchange for an honest review.


**Upon completion of review, it has come to my attention that a new edition of SUNDIAL was released in Spring 2012–an edition that addresses the continuity issue I found a bit jarring in the older edition I read.  The follow-up book in the series, THE LIGHT BRINGER’S WAY, was released Summer 2012, and I am excited to read it.**

Thanks for the review! I just wanted to let readers know that SUNDIAL is free through Friday. Pick up a copy on us!
Carolyn Fruzzetti

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