Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Auditory Viewpoint by Lillian R. Melendez Spotlights How Use of Senses Other Than Sight Helps All...

It's rush hour. Plenty of people outside at this time," Anna said and opened the door. She suddenly screamed. Having heard the door open all the way until it hit a wall, Gloria got up so abruptly that her chair moved and her ginger ale spilled on the floor.
"Anna! Anna!" Gloria shouted, moving her head left to right.
"I'm fine. I'm fine," Anna said in a trembling voice.
"What is it? What is going on?! Gloria kept moving her head left to right. When she heard her cane fall on the floor, she bent down, moved her hand around on the floor, and quickly grabbed the fallen object. Then she placed her hand on the wall to stand, and moved her cane towards Anna.
"Stand back!" Anna commanded.
Gloria immediately stopped moving.
"It looks like a dead body," Anna said.
"Where?" Gloria persisted.
"Lying in front of my door," Anna said, her voice continuing to tremble as she whispered.
Anna took Gloria's arm and moved her away from the door, the closed it.
"I will do that," she said to the dispatcher at the other end, then gave her address and hung up. She turned to Gloria. "I called 9-1-1. The police are coming."
With her phone still in her ear, she looked into the peephole while Gloria stood back. Gloria heard the police sirens, which were not very far away.
"Do you hear it?" Gloria asked.
"Hear what?" Anna questioned with a frightened tone in her voice.
Gloria moved towards her sister's closed living room window. "The police are here. Their siren sounds different than an ambulance," Gloria said...

Auditory Viewpoint
By Lillian R. Melendez

Lillian Melendez's Auditory Viewpoint is a one-of-a kind  mystery for me. I've not read any other books that has a blind woman working to solve a mystery. Melendez does it very well, except for one point--her main character seems to lose sight of the goal of solving who is trying to kill her sister! Actually, it seemed to make her much more realistic... Can you imagine being blind and having others feel that you could not take care of yourself? Gloria Rank had proven it to herself and was living alone and apparently doing quite well. She was the older sister of Anna, who seemed to be one of those individuals. So much so that when Anna finds herself in trouble and Gloria wants to help, it created somewhat of an argumentative situation... Sounds pretty realistic, doesn't it. Except that Gloria had reached "that point" where she knew she had to show her sister and others just how well she could handle even a dangerous situation. 

I enjoyed it myself, but others may see her as a domineering woman, which she is not. Gloria knows that there are other senses that humans all have, that we do not use as fully, just because we can see! She was determined to take the time to teach her sister how to better protect herself, even while Anna came across in a condescending manner. A very interesting and brave approach by Melendez because that sometimes makes her two main female characters come across negatively. I'm assuming that my thoughts are correct and I'm applauding the author for taking on this challenge to make it more realistic... If I'm wrong, then probably Gloria's interpersonal skills need to be worked on if she appears in another novel...LOL

Undeterred, Gloria gave another example.
"Remember when we were children? We
brought you home from summer camp, and a
new refrigerator was delivered to our house
that same day. Later that night, I smelled an odor
of garlic oil coming from the back of it...
The next day the fridge was inspected, and we
were informed that the refrigerator was
defective and indeed there was methane, and
we could have all died if it hadn't been
detected in time...
Gloria Rank was co-host for a talk radio program, "The Scope Morning Show" along with John Myers and had earlier met Benjamin Taylor, an information security analyst, who had provided his expertise on a program on identity theft and cybercriminals, plus what you can do if you happen to become a victim.

She had learned enough on that program to automatically think of Ben when her sister called her, distressed, because her identity had apparently been stolen! As the investigation proceeded, the police had found tape of a woman that looked very much like Anna accessing her account. Apparently $12,000 was gone!

But what did that have to do with the dead man found at her door?!!! Police began to suspect that there was actually somebody out there wanting to hurt Anna and they suggested she leave her apartment...

Two learning aspects for readers is, first, from the IT expert on identity theft and other scams, but the more important--or at least just as important--is Gloria's teaching Anna and also Ben about learning how to more effectively use all of your physical senses... Even smell might be important, right in your home!

Once the police realized that the sisters were doing their own investigation, they tried to make them understand how dangerous it was, but at least they tried to keep in touch as often as possible. And Ben seemed to be making the time away from his own work to go with them--so, of course, he began to take the lessons that Gloria was adamant they learn. Now, admittedly, there were a lot of conversations that were overheard, but overkill might just convince those of you who still believe that there is safety in numbers, like at a mall, well, soon it was apparent that was not true, especially when this little device was added to the criminals' activities... Don't know what that is? Well, just study it and think of potential uses... This might have been created to read ID numbers from boxes to maintain inventory...But what can the criminal minds' ideas become?

There is a fascinating twist that you should be on the alert for... Two of our characters will be recipients of the activity--acting as a trigger of the same event...One is good; one is evil...or driven to revenge? Once again, a daily occurrence in American lives becomes the basis for criminal action...

This is an informative as well as taunting story that makes readers stop to consider what they can do or learn to be safer. I have only one suggestion to this professional writer...take the time to listen to how people are talking these days--it's shorter, faster and not grammatical; e.g., very few young people will say, "What is up, brother?" Each of us will immediately think of multiple ways that this phrase has been reduced... There is a fine line that writers need to learn and use in today's world. We talk in contractions, do not say entire words that would occur in formal writing. This book could have been much more exciting, more in line with other thrillers coming out, if, whenever possible, and easily understandable to readers, sentences are not filled with lots of adjectives and other shortcuts that are prevalent in today's world...This is more important, in my opinion, in mystery, suspense, and thriller genres... Don't go too far, but a lot of extra words really could have been taken out without hurting the basic story. I still would recommend it because of the unique concept of the story, as well as the information provided.  It's hard to claim this book is not well written, but it is different from Americanized talking... Work to find that balance, and you'll find there will definitely be a difference in the speed of reading and the ability of readers to more quickly sink into your story...


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