"Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body." Sir Richard Steele

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Review of The Eye of the Storm

The Eye of the Storm

The Eye of the Storm
William L.K.
sci-fi-cafe 12/21/2010
Kindle Edition

   This is the first book in the Strirtonoly Series which takes place on the planet of the same name. The planet is quite similar to Earth; but has a very different geographical makeup. There are different classes of people with a Czar who rules the entire planet. The Acidel slaves are the lowest form who are responsible for all labor and work for free except for a place to live.
   Interestingly enough, the sweat of the Acidel is poisonous and addictive and the Czar's son falls under its spell. This eventually leads to his own destruction and the demise of the planet as it is known.
   This is my first read by this author and it will not be my last. The storyline behind this book is quite interesting and  present day parallels the story of Stritonoly. There are many different characters and several creatures that make up the cast. It is interesting how the author weaves the present day into the storyline. You not only see a very engaging story; but moral and ethical dilemmas come into play.
   I have mentioned before that science fiction is not my reading of choice. I am quickly reconsidering. There appears to be a direct corelation between real life and fiction. Real life is beginning to appear stranger then fiction in more ways then one. I highly recommend this book for lovers if sci-fi or if if you just love to read. It is a wonderful story that will not disappoint. A great read for the teen reader also.
   I want to thank William for providing me a copy to review for my kindle. I was not compensated in any way except for the privilege of reading his book. I was not not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed are my own.
   I will be anxious to start on the second book in the series, Barok's Exodus, and plan to do so shortly. I hope you will watch for my review.

I give this book a hearty 5 out of 5 stars.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Review of Excelsior


George H. Sirois
Smashwords Edition 2010

   Matthew is a rather unnoticeable teenager who has created a cartoon character named Excelsior that is becoming very popular on the internet. Matthew spends many hours hunched over his cartoon hero in what he thinks is a creation all his own. One day a beautiful woman comes to his school and tells Matthew she is from Denab IV and he has the life force of Excelsior inside of him. 
   The planet of Denab IV has been taken over by the Krunations and the Denarian people want it back. The Elders of Denab IV come to Earth in an attempt to find their savior. Matthew has to be convinced that he is the one to save their planet, as well as, the planet earth.
   I do not usually seek out sci-fi books to read; but after watching the book trailer I was intrigued. When I had the opportunity to receive the book, I decided to give it a try. I have to admit I was skeptical before I started reading; but I was sucked right in from the start. I was quite fascinated with the characters and was pleasantly surprised with the storyline. After a few minutes reading, I was unable to put the book down. I had to find out what was going to happen next.
   This story may be geared to the young adult age group; but I think anyone who likes a good story will enjoy this book. I highly recommend it and I would not hesitate to recommend it to anyone to read. I would also be inclined to read it again. I only hope this will be one of many from this author.
   I want to thank George for sending me a copy from Smashwords for my Kindle. I was not compensated in any way except for the privilege of reading the book. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed are my own.

I give the book 5 out of 5 stars.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Review of The Witches Lottery

The Witches Lottery
Krystal McLaughlin
Copyright 2011 Krystal McLaughlin
All rights reserved

   Drew and Sophie are uprooted from their home when a tragic accident takes the life of their parents. According to their parents will, they are to live with their Aunt Celeste whom they have never met. To make matters worse, their aunt lives on an island near the town of Mystic in Hartford. This is all a total surprise to them, as well as, their parents best friend Jack. They all expected to remain in the house with Jack as their guardian.
   The house where their Aunt Celeste lives is a bed and breakfast of sorts where several other young people live. The problem is strange things are happening to Sophie and Drew is withdrawing into himself and spending too much time alone. Sophie doesn't know what to do or who she can trust. To complicate her life even more, their are two young men on the island vying for Sophie's attentions; but she is not even sure of her own feelings. Can she trust either one of those "gorgeous guys"?
   This is not my usual type of read; but when I had the opportunity to read and review something different, I jumped at the chance. I decided it was time to spread my wings. I was pleasantly surprised with this book. It is geared to the teenage set and I am sure they will love the story. I was pulled in from the very start and was unable to put the book down. I could not wait to see where the storyline was headed. If it had not been for reading on the computer, I would have read it in one sitting. The story was fast paced; but everything just fit nicely together. I have to tell you; I was quite surprised at where the story ended. It leaves the story open for the next book in the series and I will anxiously await A Dragon Forsaken.
   I want to thank Krystal for providing me with a word copy of the book to read and review. I was not compensated in any form for reviewing the book other then the privilege of reading it. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

I give The Witches Lottery 4.5 stars out of 5

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Review of The Memory Palace

Memory Palace
The Memory Palace
Mira Bartok
Free Press 2011
ISBN 9781439183311
   Norma Herr was a vibrant piano protege until she was struck down with schizophrenia at the age of nineteen. She loved her daughters and raised them well until her mental illness struck. She was concerned less and less with her piano and became obsecessed with the Nazis and the fear her daughters would be raped, kidnapped or murdered.
   When her daughters left for college, the harassment escalated to where she would show up at their apartment or jobs. She even threatened suicide if they did not return home. The situation worsened to the point they both changed their names and moved away so their mother did not know where they were.
   In a traumatic accident, Mira's life is changed forever. In an attempt to find herself again, Mira visits a homeless shelter to try and find her mother and discovers she is ill. Both girls travel to Cleveland for a reconciliation with their mother.
   This book is not just a memoir of living with a schizophrenic mother. It is a story of two young girls living in an extremely dysfunctional family. Not only did they have to survive the ordeal with their mother; they lived with an alcoholic, abusive grandfather. If that is not bad enough, their grandmother develops Alzheimers and is left for the mother to take care of her.
   This story shows the true meaning of love, truth and the capacity for forgiveness in the family. Both women show extreme courage in the face of adversity and dealing with their mother in their own individual ways. There is no right or wrong to this story; but I have to admit I had to be very careful about judging these women when I never walked in their shoes. Most of us will never have to experience a third of what they dealt with.

   This video will give you some insight into the author and where she was coming from when she wrote the book. This is a very inspiring story and well worth your time to read.

I give this book 4 out of 5 stars.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Review of Crime Beat

Crime Beat

Crime Beat
Scott Nicholson
Haunted Computer Books 1/9/2011
Kindle Edition

   John Moretz is hired as a reporter for the Picayune newspaper in the Appalachian town of Sycamore Shade. Upon his arrival, a crime wave begins that boosts the circulation of the barely surviving newspaper. Each time the body count rises, John arrives first on the scene. The police are beginning to suspect him for the murderer. His editor is also starting to question him since he is first on the scene all the time. Should he reassign John even though the  papers circulation has doubled?
   This novella is fast paced and suspenseful. Once I started reading, I was unable to put it down and finished it in one sitting. All of the characters were strong and well developed. The storyline took off from the start and kept on moving until the end. I have never been good at figuring out who the murderer is in a story and this was no exception. I was totally surprised at the end.
   If you enjoy a good murder mystery, I highly recommend this book. You will not be disappointed. To take a quote from Scott's book, "crime doesn't pay...but neither does journalism."
   I wish to thank Scott Nicholson for providing me with a copy of Crime Beat to read and review for him. The opinions I express are my own. I was not compensated in any way except for receiving  a copy of the book and the privilege of reading it. For additional information on Scott Nicholson and his books, you can visit his website at: http://www.hauntedcomputer.com

I give this book 5 out of 5 stars. 

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Review of Save the Date

Save the Date

Save the Date
Jenny B. Jones
Thomas Nelson February 2011
ISBN 9781595545398

   Lucy Wiltshire is losing the funding for the non-profit girl's home that she runs. Alex Sinclair, a former football star and heir to Sinclair Enterprises was the primary donor to her organization. In an attempt to salvage her girl's home, she attends a gala to run interference with the board of directors. Alex is there and stops her in her tracks.
   Both of them have something the other wants. Alex needs votes to win his bid for Congress and Lucy needs his money. Alex proposes an arranged engagement so he can get the votes he needs. In exchange he will provide Lucy the money she so desperately needs. Will the unlikely pair be able to pull it off? Lucy finds her heart and her future on the line.
   This was my first read from Jenny Jones. I must say I was pleasantly surprised.  It is a funny and very entertaining romance. I laughed out loud and shed a few tears at the adventures of this pair as they try to salvage their careers and dreams. It was actually a believable story with quite the cast of characters. Alex may be a dominant character; but Lucy was definitely a match for him. 
   If you enjoy light hearted romance and a nice Christian story, I highly recommend this book. It will surely give you some laughs along the way.
   I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze.com book reviewers blogger program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's guidelines.
   Additional product info can be found at:

I rate this book 5 out of 5 stars.  

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Review of The Journey

The Journey (Kentucky Brothers)

The Journey
Wanda Brunstetter
Barbour Publisher April 2011
ISBN 9781602606814

   Titus Fisher decides to leave Lancaster, Pennsylvania after his long time girlfriend leaves for California. Phoebe Stoltzfus has decided she is not ready to join the church and settle down to a marriage and a family. Titus hopes to start fresh with a new job and a new life in Pembroke, Kentucky. He also hopes to prove himself to his parents and quit living in his twin brother's shadow.
    Titus wants to start over; but is he willing to try and love again? One woman is well suited and would make a wonderful wife for any man. The other woman gets on his last nerve from the very start. Not only does she look like Phoebe; but she goes against all conventions for a woman of the Amish faith.
    As Titus tries to settle into his new home in Kentucky, trial after trial seems to be thrown his way. He will have to decide if he is up to the challenges that are tossed his way. Will his faith in the Lord see him through?  Has he matured enough to handle the relationships in his life and the decisions that could affect the rest of his life?
    Titus and Suzanne are two major characters in this story. In many ways, Suzanne is much more mature and has a stronger faith in the Lord then Titus. She does have times of insecurity and questions herself along the way. Both of them grow in maturity and stronger in their faith as the story progresses.
    If you are a fan of Amish fiction, I would recommend this book. It is also a very nice Christian read. I did have some difficulty with the way the story bounced from one location to the next. It made the storyline a bit choppy; overall it was a good read
    I  received this free as an eBook from the publisher through Netgalley's book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's regulations.

I would give it a rating of 3.5 stars.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Review of Sarah's Garden

Sarah's Garden (Patch of Heaven, #1)

Sarah's Garden
Kelly Long
Thomas Nelson 2010
ISBN 9781595548702

   Sarah King loves nothing more then to be in her beloved garden. She loves planting, designing and drying seeds for future gardens. Her gardens make her alive in ways that nothing else can. She is alone with her thoughts and her communion with the Lord. Family duty, however, forces her to abandon the thing she loves  and take over the family fruit stand that she knows nothing about.
   Grant Williams leaves the city to open a veterinarian practice in Amish country. From the minute he meets the shy and feisty Sarah, he is attracted to her.
   As the two of them become friends, their feelings grow for each other. Sarah makes it clear they can never be together because she would have to leave everything that she holds dear. During the long winter, Sarah begins making a quilt that signifies the pain she is feeling. Will the love she has for Grant ever come to pass?
   This is a wonderful story of forbidden love and the heartache that results when two people come from entirely different worlds. It is the story of faith and trust in the Lord. Being able to have enough faith to allow the Lord to work out what is the best for your life. 
   I found the storyline well developed as were all the characters. I especially liked the way the character of Sarah developed from a shy insecure young women into a much stronger, more independent individual. She became a young woman who was no longer willing to settle for what someone else wanted. She was willing to do without rather then do what others thought she should do.
   I would recommend this book to lovers of Amish fiction or anyone who likes a good Christian story. This is the first book in a patch of heaven series and I will anxiously await the next installment.
didn't like itit was okliked itreally liked itit was amazing (my current rating)

Monday, January 10, 2011

Review of Prophecy the fulfillment

Prophecy the Fulfillment

Prophecy the fulfillment
Deborah A Jaeger
Hampton House Publishing 2010
ISBN 9780982889107

   First of all, I would like to thank Debbie Jaeger for asking me to read and review her book. Secondly, I would like to thank Hampton House for graciously providing me with a copy of the book to read. This has in no way affected my review. I was not compensated in any way except for the privilege of reading the book and being given a copy.
   Jillian Macomb is a typical teenager who is looking forward to her senior year of high school. Summer has just started and she breaks up with her boyfriend. To top things off, she finds out she is pregnant. If that isn't bad enough, she must convince everyone she is still a virgin. She forms an unlikely bond with her father's protege after they realize they are both having dreams. Dreams that make it clear to both of them that this is a very special child.
   When miracles start to happen, a geneticist discovers that Jillian's pregnancy holds the key to the unexplained healings that are taking place. The geneticist, the Catholic Church and the government all want the source of the miracles because they would hold the world's power in their hands.
   Jillian and Stephen come face to face with true evil and must decide if they will follow their  faith. Will they be able to save Jillian's child from the forces of evil that are after them? Will they be able to believe in the message of the prophecy?
   I have to tell you, this is one of the most amazing books I have read. The plot was well established and the story line flowed beautifully. All of the characters were strongly developed and none of them were weak. Many times, when you get to the end of a book, the story goes from point A to B in a few paragraphs. The ending of this book flowed as well as the rest of the story.
   If you enjoy reading good Christian literature, or if you just enjoy a good story, I highly recommend this book. You just might look at what you believe and do some serious evaluating. If you are not a believer, you may want to reconsider.
   This is the first novel for Debbie and she has started on a second. I hope to have the privilege of reading it when it is completed. You can find out more about Debbie by visiting her website at http://www.deborahajaeger.com/ or Hampton Publishing at http://www.hamptonhousepublishing.com/.
didn't like itit was okliked itreally liked itit was amazing (my current rating)


Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Broken Dreams

Broken Dreams by Nick Quantrill: Book Cover

Broken Dreams
Nick Quantrill
Caffeine Nights Publishing 2010
ISBN 9780955407024

   Joe Geraghty is a Private Investigator who is used to struggling from one case to the next in the Old Town of Hull. He is asked by a local businessman to investigate the absenteeism of one of his employees. This is the type of case that Joe and his team have done countless times. When the woman, Jennifer Murdoch, is found dead in her bed, Joe finds himself smack dab in the middle of a police investigation that leads all the way back to the time when the city had a thriving fishing industry.
   The tangled private life of the woman leads to one of the towns local gangsters, who just happens to be a respectable business man. Frank Salford has a big stake in the cities regeneration plans. Joe is still haunted by his wife's untimely death in a house fire that the police have never solved. He wants answers and those who can give them are the police and Salford. They all want cooperation from each other for their own ends. The question is: Can they work together to get those answers?
   This is the first book of Nick Quantrills featuring the Private Investigator, Joe Geraghty. It is the first in a series to be published by Caffeine Nights Publishing in the UK. It has everything you could hope for in a mystery; murder, greed and corruption.
   I have to tell you I was quite impressed with this book. It kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time. Every time I thought I had things figured out, a curve was tossed and I was back to square one. I have never been good at figuring out the "who dunnits"; but I have to say I was totally blind sided at the end. On hind sight, I can see it.  I was so caught up in the story and what I wanted to happen; it just took me by surprise.
   I am glad that we will be seeing more of Joe in the future and I will anxiously await the next installment. You can find out more about Caffeine Publishing and Nick Quantrill by visiting http://www.cnpublishing.co.uk/.
didn't like itit was okliked itreally liked itit was amazing (my current rating)

Saturday, January 1, 2011

An Amish Christmas

An Amish Christmas

An Amish Christmas
Cynthia Keller
Ballantine 2010
ISBN 9780345523785

   Meg Hobart has everything she could ever want. She has the ideal life in Charlotte, North Carolina with a handsome, successful husband and three wonderful children. It all comes crashing down when her husband James confesses he has lost his job and has brought the family to financial ruin. They bag up everything that will fit in their car and leave their golden life behind. Even though they are now homeless, Meg is more concerned if she will ever trust James again. Not only that; will she be able to stay married to him.
   A twist of fate leads them to the home of an Amish family in Pennsylvania. The children have major difficulty staying there faced with the loss of all of the things they hold dear, such as their cell phones and computers. Meg is not only confronted with their anger; but begins to realize how extremely selfish her children have become. Faced with such an uncertain future; will the family ever be whole again?
   With the Hobarts forced to remain in Pennsylvania, will the children be able to fit in or will they continue to be rude to the very people who have taken them into their home? With the Christmas season fast approaching, the children will soon see what hard work and sacrifice are all about.
   This is a nice Christmas story filled with laughter and love. A story of some of the most simple values of life. A story of forgiveness and the true meaning of love. Even though it was a nice story, I found it dragged quite a bit in spots. I also found the children overbearing and unlikable. Actually I was not too fond of the entire family. I find it rather difficult to truly enjoy a book when I don't like most of the characters. Fortunately, by the latter part of the book, I did begin to like them. Overall, it was an okay read; but I only give it three stars.
didn't like itit was okliked it (my current rating)really liked itit was amazing