The US Review of Books


Through the Fire
by Raj Lowenstein
Trafford Publishing

reviewed by Anita Lock

“Beware the Abomination.”

After initially treating Michael Braun for wounds resulting from a brutal attack, David and Kelly Hartman—a physician and nurse respectively, as well as a gay, married couple—feel that the best place for her (yes, a she despite the masculine name) to recover is at the condo of David’s twin brother, Dan. Dan, an overworked detective, ignores David’s frantic texts and is shocked when he wakes to find a stunningly beautiful but battered woman sleeping upstairs. Michael is also a mute who communicates through American Sign Language (ASL), a language in which Dan happens to be an expert. Although the two eventually fall in love, there is more to Michael’s past that Dan is aware of until he receives information from none other than Michael’s abuser.

Raj Lowenstein presents a romantic thriller that appears more disturbingly real than fiction. Set largely in Texas, Lowenstein’s plot has a bit of a Law and Order feel to it—minus the court and prison scenes. Laced with gender-related issues and replete with a tight cast, Lowenstein’s storyline zeroes in on Dan and his unexpected romance with Michael amid peculiar situations. Lowenstein punctuates her thought-provoking, third-person narrative with the sinister and hideous presence of Catfish, whose persona is a paradox to say the least. Key to Lowenstein’s writing style is the use of engaging dialogue to generate dynamic characters who are developing their relationships and facing life’s challenges. Lowenstein aptly fashions her well-developed cast within cliff-hanging chapters that alternate between unanticipated character scenes. Scenes are filled with back stories, steamy romantic episodes, investigations, the evil machinations of Catfish, and are all used in the deliberate build-up to the novel’s intense and unnerving apogee. Kudos to Lowenstein for creating an edgy and eye-opening debut!

RECOMMENDED by the US Review


March Madness

Good Morning all!

Wow! March has flown by so quickly.  I have been away but not idle.

I am working with the help of Mr. Francisco and Mrs. Wathen, on videos for YouTube in both spoken English and American Sign Language.  We are hoping to have that up and running soon.

Also, I am working on a few book signings for the month of May in the Houston/Heights/Montrose/Kirby areas as this is where Through the Fire takes place.

I am working still on book I of the FBI Trilogy – book II is already done.

A local artist – Vicki Waldron-Thompson – is working on the Cover Artwork for the trilogy. Her work – landscapes – are beautiful and I am excited that she wants to paint the pictures that will help bring my books to life.

I will keep you posted as to when and where for book signings.

Until next time…keep reading!

Good Morning

I have been away recovering from Shoulder Surgery.Right Shoulder, which makes everything four times harder to do!

Funny Story….a co worker ordered her hard cover copy of THROUGH THE FIRE from  When it came in there was 40 pages of someone else book in the front!

We laughed that she got two books for the price of one!

We let the publisher know, as well as  We think and hope it is a ‘one off’ situation!