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text 2021-06-13 08:24



A Young Woman, a Camera, an Uncompromising Ethic

June 13-17

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Young, talented, ambitious, Freyja Brynjarrson’s a photographer struggling to crash the art establishment, the challenges presented by her family, and keep true to her uncompromising ethic.

Fate places her on the front line of a political demonstration where soldiers open fire on civilians. She photographs death for the first time and the intensity makes everything she’s done previously in art and life seem inconsequential.

The current government is concerned these highly charged images could sway the voters against them. With a closely contested election only three days away, they’re doing whatever they can to attempt to suppress their publication. But someone far more unscrupulous than government spin-doctors also wants these images destroyed.

Gunnar Brynjarrson, Freyja’s eldest brother is the head of an illegal narcotics empire. He’s concerned about the opposition party’s platform to decriminalize drugs. His sister’s photographs could influence the outcome of a close election and put his business in jeopardy.

As events unfold, Freyja slowly becomes aware of the far-reaching impact the billions of narco dollars have on the government, the economy, friends, family and even herself. Something insidious has infected society and like a superbug, it’s resilient, opportunistic and appears as a mutation in the most unexpected places.

Freyja refuses to compromise and is intolerant and unforgiving of those who succumb to this evil or are complicit in their acceptance of it. If she stays at home, she’s afraid she’ll be infected and never attain success on her own terms. She takes an assignment with an international agency photographing the chaos and casualties of Mexico’s drug war. Freyja soon discovers she’s shot only one frame of ‘the big picture’.

The Big Picture focuses on dramatic action, zooms in on political intrigue, and takes a candid snapshot of modern romance. The plot also reveals how narco dollars, overtly and covertly, influence every level of our lives; the wars we fight, the governments we elect, the impact on healthcare, and most importantly and tragically, our personal relationships.


"The plot of The Big Picture, with its twists and reversals of fortune, ...is imaginative and fast moving...extremely compelling. ....characters are diverse, well developed, and real... ...imagery is powerful and fresh. The book is an excellent read and pausing to experience some of the imagery makes it even better."


"The Big Picture is ...a thought-provoking novel that is smartly written with genuine emotional, no holds barred dialogue, and events that will punch you in the heart. - This book was a gem to read and an interesting one at that."

"...a journey of self discovery... a coming-of-age, social thriller... focused on key ethical questions... a creative solution to expose the links of social problems."
Tom Pope - for Bookpleasures

"I like the plot and the plotters...Arni's sense of humor and the dynamics in the Brynjarsson family...Gunnar the druglord, BB the addict, Arni the hedonist, Giordana who rationalizes and Freyja who wants to fight. I like the love story, too. Freyja and Marty with their differences and similarities make a good couple.
... (there are) moral issues in The Big Picture. The drugs, corruption, the way people with beliefs and principles slowly drop them in the treadmill of politics and re-elections. What drug money does to each of the Brynjarssons. Freyja's ethics against Gunnar's power."
- C. Widmann, Goodreads Review


Imaginative and fast moving...extremely compelling...will punch you in the heart.
5 STARS - Readers' Favorite Book Reviews


This is a fascinating novel...adventure, excitement, drug cartels, family issues, romance...themes that are important and questions we sometimes need to ask ourselves.

Judge's commentary - 2nd Annual Writer's Digest Self-Published eBook Awards







#books #bookworm #twitterbooks

#newbooksnetwork #goodreads #amreading #readingcommunity

#booklovers #newfiction #readers #read






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review 2013-01-03 00:00
The Foreign Correspondent
The Foreign Correspondent - Alan Furst This was a hard book to rate. In many ways, it delivers on all of the promises any Alan Furst novel offers. The research appears to be top notch, with plenty of telling details to give it a powerful sense of place; the story puts the reader in the middle of the hidden side of the road to WWII. Yet, I got the the last 20 pages wondering where the novel was going? Alas, I don't mean an unexpected plot turn thrilled me with the unknown. Rather, the plot doesn't seem to suggest an ending. While Furst provides an ending, it felt more like a petering out that a climax. I suspect the problem is that the plot hinges on a secondary character who isn't well-enough developed to make the end feel crucial. Her fate never seems in question, so the reader (or at least I) doesn't invest in it as the novel progresses.I wouldn't suggest a dedicated Furst fan should skip this one. Enough of Furst's charms are on display to make it worthwhile. But if you are new to his oeuvre, he has many other novels that offer a vitality from beginning to end. Having read five of his novels, Dark Voyages is the one that haunts my memories.
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review 2010-01-28 00:00
The Foreign Correspondent: A Novel
The Foreign Correspondent - Alan Furst A very strong 3 stars. Furst love this period. It shows. In the details of the places he sets his characters in, in the way the reader almost effortlessly walks along side Weisz. From the terrain of the ending Spanish war to the émigré scene of Paris with its spies, secret police to Berlin for the signing of the Pact of Steel to the fall of the Czech. It's all really well done. One tiny thing, the plot isn't as fantastic as the set up. But it's really a tiny thing.
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review 2009-03-01 00:00
The Foreign Correspondent - Alan Furst I found this book very disappointing. I snatched it from a bookshelf at home, thinking it was the book that provided the basis for Hitchcock’s 1940 film, “Foreign Correspondent.“ Oops. It is a 1930’s spy novel all right, but one published in 2006 by highly regarded writer Alan Furst. Ok. No big deal. It could still be pretty good, right? I have enjoyed more than a few books that transport one back to the time and place, capturing a certain feel. I was still hoping for Hitchcockian adventure. Alas. Furst has made considerable effort to capture the sensibility of say, Eric Ambler. Yet, while the structure was certainly in place here, with a sympathetic hero, a heroic damsel needing our hero’s help, bad guys aplenty of the fascist and nazi persuasion, spies and reporters, the whole just seemed for me less than the sum of its parts. Although our hero Carlo Weisz was certainly heroic enough, although looked at individually the elements make sense, I never really felt all that involved. It was as if the writer was engaged in a solely intellectual undertaking. It felt to me that the book lacked soul. I expect I am in the minority here.
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review 2009-02-14 00:00
The Foreign Correspondent - Alan Furst This turned out to be really yummy. Good "cloak and dagger" stuff, but with nary a cloak nor a dagger in sight. Italian emigres living in Paris put together newspapers to be smuggled into Italy, where Mussolini has control of the information flow. This was much quieter than a lot of spy/war novels. Instead of the fast-paced action, it depicts what life was like in Europe immediately before WWII began in earnest. Everyone was tense, knowing war was coming, but not knowing what they should do or how it would play out in their own lives. The author really knows Europe, and he knows his history. The little details made me feel I was there.I had to read the first 70 pages quite slowly so I could keep track of who everyone was and what side they were on and how they fit into the picture. After that I could speed up a bit. Not that I was in a hurry, but the first 70 pages I really had to concentrate!
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