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Watching Glass Shatter

(Perceptions of Glass #1)

4.12  ·  Rating details ·  680 ratings  ·  234 reviews
After 40 years of marriage, Olivia's husband unexpectedly passes away. But when Ben’s will reveals a life-altering secret, she suffers a blow no widow should ever experience. As Olivia visits each of her sons to share a final connection before facing a truth that will change their family, she discovers that each has been harboring a painful secret, just like his father. Wi ...more
Paperback, Regular Print, 287 pages
Published October 24th 2017 by Next Chapter (first published October 8th 2017)
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Average rating 4.12  · 
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Aug 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Since this is my own book, I'm not going to write a review. I'm using this space to let you know when there are discounts or marketing promotions, as well as share some thoughts on how the book came to be.

Watching Glass Shatter is my debut novel from the fall of 2017. It took me one night to dream up the story, but a year to write and publish it. I always knew I had it in me yet never forced it to happen. I'm beyond thrilled at what I've accomplished, and now, when I look back... I see tons of t
Nov 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
See my interview with the author and full review @

Mild spoilers...

Watching Glass Shatter by James J. Cudney is one of the best books I’ve read in 2017. It’s a debut novel about a family with secrets. These secrets have the potential to tear the family apart.

The matriarch of the family is Olivia. Her husband Ben, the patriarch, has just died unexpectedly, and she is left with their five grown sons, their families, and her sister Diane. She's also left with
Nov 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
Ben, the patriarch of the Glass family, has been killed in a tragic accident. Olivia, the matriarch, not only has to deal with the grieving process, but also with a secret of such enormity, that it will have the ability to tear this family apart.

Ben left two letters with his lawyer to be given to Olivia on his death. One of them is for Olivia, revealing Ben's secret, and the other is for the son who will be most affected by it, though she doesn't know which one. She decides to spend time with ea
Oct 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: my-reviews, favorites

Wow! Wow! Watching Glass Shatter is a gripping family drama by new author James J. Cudney aka Jay to many of us in reviewing circles. When I began reading I expected to like the book; I never expected to spend the entire day with a "can't put down" novel! Once I became involved with the Glass family, I had to see it through to the end!

The patriarch of the Glass family has been killed in a tragic accident. After his death the family is shattered but we soon learn that the cracks and fissures alr
Elyse  Walters
“Watching Glass Shatter” is an intimate look into the lives of a family.
“The Glass Family” as complicated as any family can be.
With 5 adult children - all sons- we are reminded that we never stop being children.

The author’s writing is subtle — it works it’s way into our heart and mind so that we have real feelings for the characters. Each with struggles -and or secrets.

At its ‘heart’....”Watching Glass Shatter” is about love and how love shapes us - transforms us..... when it’s importa
Nov 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
A great debut from James Cudney!

From the outside, the Glass family seemed to have it all. Ben Glass the patriarch, is a partner in a successful law firm. His devoted wife Olivia and their five grown and successful sons.

How appearances can be deceiving

Ben was tragically killed in an accident. He’s left behind two letters with his lawyer for his grieving wife to open upon his death. The second letter has the potential to rip apart his already grieving family. As Olivia decides whether or not to
Sumit RK
Jan 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Watching Glass Shatter is a gripping family drama. Having not read many family dramas before, I am glad I read this one.

The Glass family has just lost its patriarch, Benjamin Glass. At the time of reading of his will, Benjamin’s widow, Olivia, receives an 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 decides to spend a week with each of her sons and discovers some more secrets wh
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.

Larry H
Dec 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
I'm somewhere between 4 and 4.5 stars.

Is there any better time to read a book about family dysfunction than around the holidays?

James J. Cudney's Watching Glass Shatter is an immensely readable, deliciously soapy novel about a family on the verge of being torn apart by secrets. It's also a commentary about how when it appears people have it all, they often aren't satisfied, and things are much more complicated than they seem from the outside looking in.

Ben Glass and his wife Olivia are abou
Nov 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
4 Stars.

“Watching Glass Shatter” is a character driven novel written by James J. Cudney.

This is a novel about a family whose secrets threaten to tear them apart. Olivia is the Matriarch, who, after her husband Ben’s death, is left to cope with a devastating secret involving one of her five sons, which threatens to destroy the family. As she spends time with Teddy, Matt, Caleb, Zach and Ethan, she realizes that each of them also has a shocking secret, and no one is left unscathed.

In his first no
Nov 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
WATCHING GLASS SHATTER by JAMES J. CUDNEY was an interesting, entertaining, and a suspenseful family drama which was full of dynamic, well-developed and realistic characters. I absolutely love the cover of this book and that very clever title! I am totally a "cover girl" and when I seen that cover I just knew that I had to read this book. Although, I found a few things within this novel to be a little bit over the top it was just so much fun reading this with some laugh out loud moments that I f ...more
Brenda ~Traveling Sister Book Reviews
Traveling Sister Review by Brenda and Norma with Kaceey, Lindsay, Susanne and Marialyce

We read Watching Glass Shatter with four of our Traveling Sisters and we have prepared a combined Traveling Sisters Read Review, which is our signature review for our blog.

Watching Glass Shutter is an interesting, witty, heartwarming but yet a heartbreaking family drama that explores many family secrets within the Glass family and the familial relationships between mothers and sons. It has quite the intriguin
Lindsay - Traveling Sisters Book Reviews
4 stars!

This was a suspenseful family drama full of lively and secretive characters. The story kept me entertained and guessing from start to finish. I had the pleasure of reading this along with my Traveling Sisters - Brenda, Norma, Kaceey, Susanne and Marialyce. We had lots of theories, guesses and great discussion along the way.

To find our full Traveling Sister Read review, please visit Norma and Brenda's fabulous blog at:


A big thank you to James J. Cu
May 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
There are secrets and then there are SECRETS......

Imagine losing your spouse of 40 years...Devastating. As if that is not hard enough, imagine that you learn that your spouse has been keeping a secret from you and that secret is only revealed upon their death. What a blow! That is what happens in this book!

Olivia's husband, Ben is tragically killed in a car accident. While sitting with her sons at the reading of the will, she is given two envelopes. One is for her to read and the other is for on
Jan 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
An awesome debut novel, by James J. Cudney, that reads like a movie script at a fast page-turning pace that keeps the reader involved with the Glass family from the beginning to the very end.
The story entails the enlightenment of a family, to each other, and their journey to closure after the loss of the father unexpectedly.
The characters are all very strong and their stories are extremely interesting as well as diverse.
I enjoyed this book immensely and recommend it highly!
Watching Glass Shatter

What a wonderful and thought-provoking debut book this is. I have not found it easy to write a review without some level of spoilers.
There is so much depth in the author’s writing. I was immersed in it right from the very start. The theme is all about secrets. The title is most appropriate. After forty years of happy marriage Olivia Glass… the mother of five sons is informed one day that her husband Ben has been killed in a car accident leaving her devastated.
The family ga
Marialyce (absltmom, yaya)
Oct 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
If you are a fan of character driven novels, then you are in for a treat with Watching Glass Shatter. This fine book written by a new author, James, Cudney, is a powerful look into family and its dynamics on members of the family and others within their circle.

The family patriarch, Ben, has been involved in an awful automobile crash that takes his life and eventually involves his family in a secret that may have devastating results. Olivia, his wife, is a strong minded, authoritarian parent and
Nov 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
When I was a child growing up in Texas and Oklahoma we often took road trips. Since everything was far apart the road trips were long. I would pass the time daydreaming in the back seat and making up stories about the houses we passed. Was the family with the red door happy? Did they have kids? I had a dream of writing stories then, before I knew how much work was involved. (Hats off to writers! Ya’ll are amazing!)
Anyway, writers daydream and construct stories from sparks. This is one of those
"Watching Glass Shatter" is the debut novel of James J. Cudney and it is phenomenal!

Olivia and her sons and the rest of the characters are well-rounded, developed, complex characters. There were points where I wanted to "Gibbs' slap" each of them in turn, but they're all terrific characters. I can also identify with each of them in turn as they deal with the various pressures and secrets in their lives. Zach and Caleb are my favorites. They seem to have a hidden depth to them and I want to get t
Jan 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
After becoming a grumpy cat and and losing faith in finding a good book, I remembered one of my reading goals for this year and it was: to read a book written by a Goodreads friend.


Watching Glass Shatter restored my lost faith, gave me a huge dose of entertainment and really surprised me! In my last book review, I apologized to Margaret Atwood for the low rating, now I need to apologize to James for not having read this earlier and for not having higher expectations.

If you want to know how this
Jun 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery-suspense
Having followed James Cudney's blog and his reviews for some time, I knew he could write, and my expectations for his first novel Watching Glass Shatter were not let down. He has a style of writing that immediately drew me into the story, and it is certainly quite a story! I don't want to give anything away, because it is a mystery and the sense of suspense I felt throughout my reading made this such an enjoyable, memorable book. I love a thriller based around the intrigues of a family and Cudne ...more
Jessica Wilkinson
Oct 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars for this wonderful debut novel!

Full disclosure, I received a copy of this novel for my honest review. I'm not going to go very deep into summary or thoughts on specific scenarios simply because I think this is a must-read and the reader must form his or her own opinions.

Books about family secrets tend to be unoriginal. Watching Glass Shatter is definitely not that. I found the plot to be surprisingly refreshing. When I first learned of the meat of Ben's secret, I knew I had to keep rea
☆Dani☆ ☆Touch My Spine Book Reviews☆
Wow, what an extravagant book! I was initially drawn to this novel because I loved reading Jay’s reviews and other writings on his blog. His blog was one of the very first that I had followed and I highly enjoyed his his daily updates. Now, that has no bearings on my review if I don’t enjoy a book from a fellow blogger, I simply let them know and don’t waste either of our time posting. What sealed the deal for reading this story was the incredible cover, synopsis, and many other glowing recommen ...more
Candace Robinson
Jul 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Not long ago, I read Father Figure but Cudney, and after, I just knew I had to read Watching Glass Shatter! They are both very different books, but equally as good! Also this one had some interesting secrets!

What I liked best about this book is it is very character driven. I'm sure I've said this numerous times but those are my favorite kind of books. There were a lot of POV's, and I've read books where the personalities feel too much the same or that they are there for no reason. But like Six o
Dec 02, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Compelling family saga

This novel was so compelling. Although some dragged and sometimes I felt there might be too many sons in thee mix I grew attached to each brother. The trouble Olivia faced pushed this strong woman into making difficult decisions. Her situation made more complex as each hidden truth was unveiled.

It was worth the effort to get to know this family.
Didi Oviatt
Oct 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I’m completely in awe that Watching Glass Shatter is James J. Cudney’s debut novel. As a strong supporter of up and coming new authors, I read several debuts a year. This one has blown the rest completely out of the water. I ugly cried and everything, multiple times. There are actually a few reasons why Watching Glass Shatter has become my favorite debut. Obviously the plot plays the biggest part (it’s uniquely brilliant), but also because the quality of writing is wonderfully well-polished.

Oct 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: e-books, 2017
I enjoyed this book on many levels. I liked the way the author structured the book to allow the reader to get to know the characters and their relationships in a very straight forward way. I appreciated the fact that the book was tightly written, with plenty of character development, but no unnecessary padding. I look forward to reading more from this author.
Nikki (Saturday Nite Reader)
The Glass family loses their patriarch and during his will reading his wife is rocked with a family secret that could cause more damage to an already fragile family dynamic. Although Olivia, the matriarch, does not realize the fragility of her family, she spends time with each son and learns that they each have been keeping their own secrets. What we experience in the book is the journey Olivia takes to repair her family and accept her new role as head of the Glass family.

The author did a great
Oct 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The story goes like this, Olivia Glass not only had to deal with her husband, Ben Glass dying in an accident but also had to deal with a hidden fact, a secret which only Ben knew. One of her child is not hers, and Ben's will does not reveal which one of her sons is not truly hers. Olivia then goes to visit her sons and get to know them before shattering their lives with the truth. But it's Olivia who learns that each of her son has a horrible secret and she has to find a way to bring her family ...more
Oct 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I wasn’t sure that there were any fresh twists to the “story about family secrets”. This book was a pleasant surprise. As in real life, families that appear perfect to outsiders seldom are perfect in reality. Also of note was the character of the mother. So often mothers are the gentle, understandings ones. It was great to read about a strong woman with flaws. I hope to read more of this author in the future.
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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 accepted roles working in technology, program management, and business operations in the retail, sports, entertainment, and media industries. Although I enjoy my career, I began to focus on other passions in 201 ...more

Other books in the series

Perceptions of Glass (2 books)
  • Hiding Cracked Glass (Perceptions of Glass #2)

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