A Thousand Steps

A Thousand Steps
A Thousand Steps by T. Jefferson Parker

Monday, March 19, 2018

Watching Glass Shatter by James J. Cudney- Feature and Review


The wealthy Glass family lost its patriarch, Benjamin Glass, sooner than expected. Benjamin’s widow, Olivia, and her 5 sons each react to his death in their own way while preparing for the reading of his will. Olivia receives a very unexpected confession from her late husband about one of their sons that could shatter the whole family.

Prior to revealing the secret to her children, Olivia must figure out which boy Ben refers to in the confession he left her in his will. While the family attorney searches for the mysterious Rowena Hector whom Ben says holds the answers, Olivia asks her sons to each spend a week with her as she isn’t ready to let go of the past. When Olivia visits her sons, she quickly learns that each one has been keeping his own secret from her. Olivia never expected her remaining years would be so complex and life-altering, but she will not rest until her family is reunited after Ben’s untimely death.

We all need family. We all want to fit in. We’re all a mix of quirky personalities. Will Olivia be able to fix them or will the whole family implode? What will she do when she discovers the son behind Ben’s secret? Check out this ensemble cast where each family member’s perspective is center stage, discovering along the way who might feel the biggest impact from all the secrets. Through various scenes and memories across a six-month period, you'll get to know everyone, learning how and why they made certain decisions. Welcome to being an honorary member of the Glass family where the flair for over-the-top drama pushes everyone to their limits.



Watching Glass ShatterWatching Glass Shatter by James J. Cudney
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Watching Glass Shatter by James J. Cudney is a 2017 Creativia publication.

Engrossing family drama!

I love family secrets and conflict because in real life we all know that family can be hard, but at the end of the day, they are still family, which is the most important thing. But, what is great about books like this one is watching how a fictional family responds to disappointments, mind blowing and life altering secrets, and how they deal with internal conflict and matters of conscience.

Olivia and Ben raised five sons and after many years of marriage are very happy together. But, when Ben dies suddenly, Olivia learns her beloved husband harbored a monumental secret regarding a decision he made many years ago. Now it is up to Olivia to handle this highly emotional bombshell that will forever change the family dynamics if it ever comes to light.

As the story proceeds, the reader learns about each of Olivia’ sons, their wives, girlfriends, their past and current mistakes, desires, and dilemmas. Each of them has a major problem, or two, they must overcome or cope with and some of them will make stunning choices that further complicated an already delicate situation.

As Olivia proceeds to honor her husband’s will, she slowly begins to take charge of her life and make decisions about her own future, as well as a few controversial ones regarding her sons.

But, will her sons manage to salvage the mess they’ve made of their own lives and will Ben’s shocking secret finally be revealed?

Whew! This is one seriously complicated family!! There is a large cast of characters, which normally causes a problem for me, especially with books, but somehow, I managed to keep everyone straight without losing track of the threads that connected them to the story.

Some of the characters I love, some had to grow on me, and the jury is still out on a few others. But, the novel is absolutely absorbing, and hard to put down. I kept worrying about the characters or found myself fuming about something they did or said.

There are some pretty heavy issues to resolve, some tears will be shed, and you will probably need a box of tissues close by on a few occasions, but have no fear, the story ends on a positive note as most of the characters make great strides in either their professional, or personal lives- or both.
The outcome of Olivia’s quest turned out far differently from the way I imagined it might. I kept wondering how each of her sons would react if they discovered their father’s secret. This scenario kept me on edge all the way from the start to very emotional conclusion.

For some reason, while reading this book, I was reminded of a popular weekly family drama which aired on television a few years back. My husband I got hooked on it and never missed an episode. It was very high in dramatics, with a large, loaded cast. The initial set up was slightly similar to the one in this book, and like this novel, was highly addictive. My husband and I were always talking about the characters and wondering what would happen on the next episode, which is very unusual for us.

This book had that same effect on me, and it got me to thinking…. since life is full of surprises, conflicts, dramas and tragedies, maybe the author will keep readers updated on this family from time to time. I’d love to catch up with them someday.




James is my given name; most call me Jay. I grew up on Long Island and currently live in New York City, but I've traveled all across the US (and various parts of the world). After college, I spent 15 years working in technology and business operations in the sports, entertainment and media industries. Although I enjoyed my job, I left in 2016 to focus on my passion: telling stories and connecting people through words. My debut novel is 'Watching Glass Shatter,' a contemporary fiction family drama with elements of mystery, suspense, humor and romance. To see samples or receive news from my current and upcoming books, please subscribe with your email address at my website: https://jamesjcudney.com

What do I do outside of writing: I'm an avid genealogist (discovered 2K family members going back about 250 years) and cook (I find it so hard to follow a recipe). I love to read; between Goodreads and my blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, I have over 500 book reviews which will give you a full flavor for my voice and style. On my blog, I started the 365 Daily Challenge, where I post a word each day that has some meaning to me, then converse with everyone about life. There is humor, tears, love, friendship, advice and bloopers. Lots of bloopers where I poke fun at myself all the time. Even my dog has a weekly segment called “Ryder’s Rants” where he complains about me. All these things make up who I am; none of them are very fancy or magnanimous, but they are real and show how I live every day.

A bit of humor: Everything doubles as something else when you live in NYC. For me, it’s the dining room, my favorite space in the apartment, where more than just my cooking is on display! As I look out the windows onto a 12th floor terrace, various parts of nature (trees, bushes, flowers, bugs & animals) inspire me to write. Ryder, my 10-year old shiba inu, usually lays on my feet, growling when I shift positions too many times or when I forget to share my food! Although he’s only 20 pounds, he’s quite strong and pushy. But how else can you pen the best story possible without these things by your side?


  1. Thank you very much for such a wonderful review. What a great thing to find today! I'm actually working on the outline for the sequel. :)

    1. Awesome!! I'm so happy to hear there will be sequel!! I can't wait to read it! Best of luck with the book!


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