Books are food for my soul! Pull up a beach chair and stick your toes in the sand as the Jersey surf rolls in and out, now open your book and let your imagination take you away.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

A Spy At Home by Joseph Rinaldo

A Spy At Home by Joseph Rinaldo
Published by Amazon Digital Services
Genre: Mystery Thriller / Contemporary Fiction

About The Author (Author Page -
Joseph Rinaldo, born in Illinois, spent most of his formative years in Kentucky. He currently resides in Nashville, TN. He attended The Ohio State University and is an avid Buckeyes fan. He currently works in finance, is married, and is the father of a wonderful young woman with Down syndrome. He has written nine books, and is self-publishing each through Amazon's KDP program.

Author Website:

Disclaimer: At the request of the author, an ARC PDF edition of this book was sent, at no cost to me, for my honest review. Book Description:

When Dad becomes the lone caregiver for a dependent adult son, Dad has to answer the terrifying question: What happens if I die first?

A retired CIA operative comes to believe he wasted his professional life not only promoting questionable American policies, but missing life with his family. To ease the pain he diverts millions that the CIA expected him to use funding a coup attempt that would establish a pro-American government in an African country. Seeing the coup would fail, Garrison decides to save the money for himself. You, the reader, can decide if he's a villain with evil intent, a hero with altruistic motives, or a regular guy sick of working for peanuts in a dangerous environment.

Back at home he and his wife look forward to their golden years being luxuriously comfortable and opulently relaxed. Unfortunately, after his wife dies in a tragic accident, he must learn all that she knew about caring for Noah, their mentally retarded son. After a life of planning for contingencies, the former spy must deal with the possibility that he may die before his son. Who will care for the son when the dad spent a life out of the country and now has no one to lean on?

My Book Review:

At first glance, you would assume that this book would solely be a suspenseful spy thriller, but I quickly discovered that A Spy At Home is so much more than that. Told in the first person narrative, retired CIA operative Garrison Stonebrook tells his story about the precarious balance he had to maintain between being a CIA operative, and his relationship with his wife Louisa and adopted son Noah, who has Down syndrome. The storyline is very intriguing as it intertwines the suspenseful adventures of his CIA operative experiences, with that of how he had to learn to maintain a stable family life when tragedy strikes, and he is left to take care of his son. Garrison's story is told to readers following his death ... but without giving out any spoiler information, the ending is not what you would think it would be!

Mr. Rinaldo does a great job of grabbing the reader's attention when he describes Garrison's suspenseful  CIA assignments. I was completely hooked and found myself wondering if this fictional storyline could possibly have a ring of truth in it. As citizens of the US, we really don't know what goes on in Washington, especially with the CIA and FBI ... now do we?! Besides being completely intrigued by the spy aspect of the story, what I really liked best about the story was about the Stonebrook's family life, and how they had to deal with very real family issues. As a health care professional, I commend Mr. Rinaldo's description of Down syndrome, Alzheimer's disease, and working in the nursing home industry (LTC - long term care). This story is very powerful on so many levels, it is so much more than a spy novel, it is a story of how a person deals with the most important assignment there is in life, family!


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