On the night that Shelly Buckner finally became a mother, she very nearly became a widow. Her husband, Eric, seriously injured in a car accident on the way to the hospital, was dead for a full eight minutes before being revived, at the same time Shelly was delivering their firstborn. Those eight minutes changed everything Shelly thought was possible.

 Three years later, their son, Toby, brings home an imaginary friend. But he’s no ordinary playmate—John Robberson is a fighter pilot and Vietnam vet. As Toby provides unlikely details about John’s life—and Toby’s tantrums increase—Shelly becomes convinced that John was real and now wants something from Toby. But her husband has his doubts, and as Shelly becomes involved, even obsessed, with finding out the truth, their marriage begins to disintegrate. Torn between wanting to protect her child and keeping the peace with her husband, Shelly desperately searches for a way to get John Robberson—whatever he is—out of their lives.

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REVIEWS

FROM BOOK BLOGGERS:

Beth's Book-Nook Blog, Review by Dr. Beth Nolan on February 17, 2015

When Kandy at MindBuck Media Publicity offered me an ARC of EIGHT MINUTES I thought it sounded like a fun thriller to read. Well, I was right! I basically read this whole book in one day as I couldn’t put it down!

EIGHT MINUTES starts with Shelly Buckner giving birth to her first child – a son. Her husband misses the birth because he is in a horrific crash on the way to the hospital, an accident that almost kills him (he is technically dead for eight minutes before they revive him). Life rolls along for this fairly typical small-town couple until their child, Toby, is three and he starts to speak of his imaginary friend, John Robberson. Unlike most children’s imaginary friends, though, John Robberson is different. He tells Toby a lot of detailed information about flying planes in Vietnam that Toby couldn’t have known, and he also is pressuring Toby to go visit “Kay”. Shelly worries about everything from Toby’s insecurities in being an only child to schizophrenia, while her husband Eric is almost staunchly at the opposite end of the spectrum: leave the kid along, he’s fine. Then Shelly discovers that there was a real John Robberson – one who flew planes in Vietnam and who had a wife named Kay. A man who died the night Toby was born.

Yikes! This was one supernatural thriller that I couldn’t put down. Who is John Robberson and what does he want with Toby? And will the quest for answers end up alienating her husband and destroying their marriage? About one-third of the way through I was pretty sure I knew what was happening (and I was right) but I just kept reading right up to the last page.

If I had one disappointment, it was the ending. I wanted a bit more resolution written more explicitly. I went back and reread the end (never easy on a kindle) and I was still left thinking. That might have been the author’s intent (I assume it was) but I just thought a few paragraphs taking place about a year later, even if everything wasn’t answered or tied up neatly, would have been more satisfying.

If you like the supernatural and the bigger question of “where do we go when we die?”, then I recommend EIGHT MINUTES.

FROM AMAZON REVIEWERS:

 5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely Loved It and Highly Recommend!                                                                                             February 21, 2015 By Cynthia H.

From the synopsis on NetGalley, I thought this sounded like an interesting book. But I never expected that I would devour this book in hours! I was grabbed into this fascinating story from the very beginning.

I loved this book with its paranormal theme which is a favorite genre that I like to read. But this was a very original story, none of which I remember having come across before. The author doesn't rush the story but gives a steady pace to the storyline.

The characters were all well developed and likable with the exception of the husband, Eric, who made me angry at times. Yet, you will also be concerned at the struggle that Shelly and Eric go through in their marriage and hope for the family to stay together. The author did an excellent job with all the characters even the ones who had minor roles.

This book starts as a drama with Shelly in labor, waiting for her husband to arrive at the hospital to be with her. I don't want to give any spoilers or repeat the description of the book but I will say that the author gives a well written tale of a sweet little boy, Toby, who has an imaginary friend. Some of the stories about John, the imaginary friend gave me chills. You will find a bit of a mystery, suspense, humor and the paranormal in this novel. It is a very memorable book that truly makes you think about reincarnation and what does happen after death.

I definitely look forward to more books from this author. This is her debut novel and it is a really incredible one. I would highly recommend this wonderful book to everyone!

* I received an ARC from the publisher and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

FROM GOODREADS REVIEWERS:

Elizabeth Davies rated it 5 of 5 stars

I was sucked into this novel and not spat out until I reached the end. I lost valuable sleep reading this, but I'm not complaining.

This book is maturely and fluently written, and has little gems of wisdom and insight dotted through it like currants in a cake, striking chords within me every time I bit into one. The way the main character talks about motherhood was one, and another was her take on the loss of a loved one (her mother). I could relate to both of those. And then there was the marriage thing - that sounded familiar, too.

Aside from my personal reaction, the plot is a good one, not fast paced and action packed, but gripping all the same. The tension builds slowly and surely, as Shel loses her grip on everything she believed to be true - until now. The relationship between the two lead characters is the main driving force behind this novel, which possibly has less to do with supernatural phenomena than the real issues inherent in any marriage when one partner appears to go off the rails - though the paranormal element is well thought out and plausible, and adds a certain intriguing kick.

This is Reisenbichler's debut novel, and a darned fine debut it is. I will be on the lookout for the next offering from this lady, and I hope it will be soon.

Cindy rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·                                                                                                                                                                              * I received an ARC from the publisher and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

From the synopsis on NetGalley, I thought this sounded like an interesting book. But I never expected that I would devour this book in hours! I was grabbed into this fascinating story from the very beginning.

I loved this book with its paranormal theme which is a favorite genre that I like to read. But this was a very original story, none of which I remember having come across before. The author doesn't rush the story but gives a steady pace to the storyline. 

The characters were all well developed and likable with the exception of the husband, Eric, who made me angry at times. Yet, you will also be concerned at the struggle that Shelly and Eric go through in their marriage and hope for the family to stay together. The author did an excellent job with all the characters even the ones who had minor roles.

This book starts as a drama with Shelly in labor, waiting for her husband to arrive at the hospital to be with her. I don't want to give any spoilers or repeat the description of the book but I will say that the author gives a well written tale of a sweet little boy, Toby, who has an imaginary friend. Some of the stories about John, the imaginary friend gave me chills. You will find a bit of a mystery, suspense, humor and the paranormal in this novel. It is a very memorable book that truly makes you think about reincarnation and what does happen after death. 

I definitely look forward to more books from this author. This is her debut novel and it is a really incredible one. I would highly recommend this wonderful book to everyone!


 

EVENTS: 2015

 Fantastic home; wonderful friends; best celebration EVER.

Fantastic home; wonderful friends; best celebration EVER.

February 19: Book launch celebration at private home

February 22: Reading and book signing at private home

March 3: Reading and book signing at Ten Times Cellars, Dallas, TX

March 19: Reading and book signing at private home

March 20: Friends & Family: Expect the Unexpected, featuring Grub Street Launch Lab alumni Lori Reisenbichler, Alice LoCicero and David Marshall  Hunt at Harvard Book Store, Cambridge, MA

BOOK CLUB APPEARANCES: 2015

Whether you have a reading book club or a drinking book club, Lori would love to visit and talk about EIGHT MINUTES.  Please email her at lori.8minutes@yahoo.com to set it up. You read the book, bring the smart, funny women and she'll be there!

 Now these are some Lit Chicks!

Now these are some Lit Chicks!

March 31: Book club author appearance, Dallas TX

April 1: Book club author appearance, Dallas TX

April 21: Book club author appearance, Dallas TX

April 29: Book club author appearance, Dallas TX