Wednesday, March 19, 2014

5 Star review of Stray Ally by Troy Lambert

The Science Behind Stray Ally
"We know very well that dogs are very good at tuning into the feelings of their owners, and we know a good dog owner can detect emotional changes in his dog - but we now begin to understand why this can be."
--Dr. Attila Andics in Current Biology
Current Biology recently published an article explaining something those of us who own and love dogs already know: dogs are very in tune with human emotions, and a similar part of their brain is activated in response to human sounds and voices. You can read the whole article here:
When writing Stray Ally, I didn’t read this article. I didn’t need too, because I don’t need an MRI to tell me my dog understands me, and I understand him. This book is dedicated to my dog Houston, now passed away, who helped me through a very difficult time in my life. Cooler than that? My current dog (a rescue dog of course, so my Stray Ally if you will) helped me deal with Houston’s passing.
It was my birthday, Black Friday, and Houston, old and nearly blind, managed to escape our yard. A woman on her way to Walmart hit him, and took him to a nearby vet. He passed away that morning. If Indie, my 95 pound yellow lab) had not been in my life, and mourned with me, I still might not have another dog. But he seemed to understand. He stayed with me, head on my lap, and just let me pet him. He seemed sad too, and science now proves that he felt my pain.
So when you read in Stray Ally that Sparky seems to read Todd Clarke’s thoughts, seems to actively work with him to solve his problems, defeat his enemies, it’s not just something I made up, although perhaps I magnified his abilities a little. Now, science backs the story up.


I heard the gunfire. Good.
And bad. They'd already reached the first trap. I increased my pace as much as I dared in the dark. I needed to be enough ahead of them to collect my goods and get out of town. Originally I’d planned to spend the night, get some breakfast in the morning, and then split. One more night's sleep would do me good.
But they brought the fight to me.
Take it to them. Kill.
The voice belonged to me, chanting in my head, filling my ears.
Sparky looked at me, and sprinted ahead.
He seemed to sense my thoughts.
He whined, begged me to follow. They said, sometimes animals are strangely in tune with human emotions and thoughts, especially when they’re close to their owners. 
He’s not even my dog.
Maybe he's your dog, kind of destined to be.
I don't believe in destiny.
Yeah, but maybe the dog believes.
It was no time to dwell on stray thoughts. I needed to move out, set up the last trap. As the saying went, I had miles to go before I could sleep.
I uncoiled the rope as I walked, the rifle slung loosely over my shoulder. Up ahead, I saw Sparky running back my direction, and it made me genuinely happy.

A strange accident on the freeway, accusations of murder, and an encounter in the Idaho wilderness all propel Todd Clarke into a new friendship with a dog named Sparky. But Sparky is no ordinary dog, and there is more going on than Clarke could have imagined.
A military commander he investigated for Aryan activity and links to domestic terrorism is after him, and he’s not sure why until another chance encounter provides the answer.
With Sparky and the help of his canine friends, will he be able to figure out the Colonel’s plan and stop him in time? All Clarke knows for sure is none of it would be possible without the help of his Stray Ally.

Troy works as a freelance writer, researcher, and editor. He writes historical site characterization reports for those performing remediation on former resource extraction sites, software instruction and help guides, and edits the research of others as well. His true passion is writing dark, psychological thrillers. His work includes Broken Bones, a collection of his short stories, Redemption the first in the Samuel Elijah Johnson Series, Temptation the sequel to Redemption, along with the horror Satanarium, co-authored with Poppet, a brilliant author from South Africa and published by Wild Wolf Publishing. His next novel, Stray Ally, will be published March 4th by Tirgearr Publishing. The final in the Samuel Elijah Johnson Series, Confession will be published May 1st.
Troy lives with his wife of twelve years, two of his five children and two very talented dogs. He is a skier, cyclist, hiker, fisherman, hunter, and a terrible beginning golfer.
Author Website:

Giveaway: Best story of a dog (Stray Ally) that you rescued or that helped you through a hard time sent to by March 29th wins a $25 Amazon gift card. Winner and story shared on my blog Monday, March 31st. Share your story today.

There are just so many hours in a day and I was under the weather for a few of that hours and days; once again I had to ask hubby for help and it seems he really liked this book. 

5 Star Review

I received the book from the touring host for an honest review.

The story started with an accident that just happened; fast paced it had a lot of information to process in a short time. Todd Clarke was driving on the freeway, in his wife’s Marsha car, the next minute as he went through an over pass a kid on a skateboard dropped on the windshield of the car. He stopped and then from there everything was in disarray, he was cuffed and took to jail for his court appearance.
Clarke knew he needed to get away; a trained ex-military he was used to operate in warrior mode most of the time. He managed to escape and find himself in the field running for his life; because of a previous investigation that set the current situation in motion, it was best to stay far away from his wife; regrouping to find his footing with the new twist. As the story unfolds you are aware of more things that happened behind the scenes and you could understand his reasons for staying away from his wife.
While he was hiding he met a stray dog called Sparky, here a strange friendship developed and the dog became his ally. Operating in warrior mode he got to an old abandoned facility he was previously a captive in; because he knew the place he was prepared to face his pursuers there; one against many.
While he was there he also discovered that the dog had some influence on the local dogs in the countryside; they actually helped him a lot to stay alive.
The main character was believable and very strong; I could really connect with this character. His interaction with the animals changed from indifferent to the K9’s to trust in their abilities and friendship.
This is a very good military thriller, keeping your interest as you learn who was after Clarke and you wonder if he would survive this onslaught while his pursuer was using the military against him. Tension filled, gruesome at times a small war ensured that you are thoroughly entertained with no time to get bored. To find out what happened, you need to buy the book.

 A very well written story full off twist and surprises, well done Troy Lambert

I give this book 5 stars

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