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August 3, 2018

Paradox Forged in Blood by Mary Frances Fisher ~ A Review

by MK French

On December 23, 1938, a murder during a robbery in Millionaire's Row shocks the families. Louis Sheridan was a socialite and left behind his wife, two sons and infant daughter, who was looked after by Ellen O'Malley, who had previously experienced loss herself. Over the next five decades, the Sheridan and O'Malley families are linked together not just by this tragedy, but by friendship and guilt as well.
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Paradox Forged in Blood
July 2016; Cambron Press; 978-0996507646
ebook, print (378 pages); historical, mystery
Paradox Forged in Blood is a debut novel and is based on stories handed down within Mary Frances Fisher's family. As a result, we follow the different families through the decades prior to and past the Sheridan murder, getting to know the family members. This helps us to understand the motivations for everyone involved. Because Ellen witnessed her infant brother's kidnapping, she would do anything to keep her family safe, even if that means keeping silent about clues that would lead to the murderer. We get flashes of the killer's thought process intermittently, which actually points us in various directions as to his identity Everything is revealed at the end of the book so that the families are able to get some kind of closure.

There is some tension in several parts of the book, but this is not a thriller. The identity of Louis' killer is a mystery, but hardly the central focus of the book. There are more characters and side stories besides that of the Sheridan murder, which drops the tension level. We do care about them, and it's wonderful to see what happens with Sadie and the Sheridan boys after the heartache they experienced as children. This is a book more for those that love historical fiction or family sagas.

Buy Paradox Forged in Blood at Amazon

Born and raised in New York City, M.K. French started writing stories when very young, dreaming of different worlds and places to visit. She always had an interest in folklore, fairy tales, and the macabre, which has definitely influenced her work. She currently lives in the Midwest with her husband, three young children, and golden retriever.

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  1. Sounds like an awesome debut. Thank you for explaining the genre, because the cover kind of makes it look like a thriller.

    1. I thought it was when I selected the book to review, too, so I wanted to make it clear for other readers. :)

  2. I do enjoy family sagas and this time period. Sounds like this is a good one.

    1. It's an interesting read because of how their family is influenced by history.

  3. I'm generally up for a good family saga. That does sound interesting. But it does look like the publisher is hoping for a mystery audience as well, and that's OK by me!

    1. It's a really interesting family saga given the time period, too!