wistfulskimmie

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Smashwords book reviews by wistfulskimmie

  • The Unwashed Dead on April 06, 2011

    I loved this book. I am not into zombie books as they go but Ian has managed to do the unthinkable & converted me! I think its because of the fact that its not your run of the mill zombie 'brains I need brains' type story. Loved it & recommend it to anyone!
  • Mental Shrillness on April 28, 2011

    This is a series of 6 short stories. Each story focussing on an emotion – love, betrayal etc. There is a certain macabre darkness running through each story. I liked that each story managed to make the hairs on the back of my neck prickle & stand on end. Particularly the last one which is a good deal longer than the others. All the stories put me in mind of some of Stephen King's early short stories. All in all I think this is a very good collection of chills. I would like to see more from this author as I feel he has more to give.
  • Kiwi in Cat City on May 04, 2011

    This is a lovely story about 2 children who decide to follow their cat one night and 'see what she has for breakfast'. They end up following her to 'Cat City' and the book is then about their adventures there. To say any more would be to give away spoilers and that’s not what this review is about! This author has a fantastic imagination and although this was essentially a children’s book, I found myself thoroughly enjoying it. The story was told in an easy to read way and was a lovely subject. Who hasn’t wondered where their cat goes all night? I would love to read more from this author as she is quite simply amazing!
  • Kaleidoscope on May 05, 2011

    This is a book of many poems, each broken up into 'chapters' or subjects, such as 'love' or 'nature' etc. Now, I will be honest & say I don't generally like poetry but I was given the opportunity to read this & as I enjoyed a previous book by this author I thought I would give them a chance. I went in with an open mind and I am so glad I did. Wow! This author writes beautiful words. I enjoyed each & every poem, I found myself turning page after page to read the next & the next. More of the same please! Such a talented writer.
  • Forever the Dark Grave on June 11, 2011

    On the face of it this is a vampire story. 'Oh no, not another vampire story!' I hear you cry. But wait! Before you judge on subject matter, yes it is a vampire story but it is so much more than that. It turns many of the tried and tested myths on their heads. I can't say too much here without revealing spoilers but it certainly put a new spin on things for me and gave me lots to think about. I loved it. The pace was quick and snappy with plenty of action and even a little bit of sauciness in for good measure! And an ending that was unexpected as it was shocking! I recommend this to anyone who would like to try a 'different' vampire tale. It has made me hungry (See what I did there?!) for more by this author.
  • Cooking Class on June 15, 2011

    This was my first introduction into reviewing an erotic book. Boy what an introduction it was! It was sort of Hell's Kitchen meets Kitchen Nightmares with a whole load of sauce added. That being said, all the steamy scenes (and wow were they steamy!) were very tastefully done. I never felt they were gratuitous and they fitted in with the story. I would be interested to read more from this author as I feel she writes from a woman's point of view...for women. A classy novel that I very much enjoyed.
  • Breaking Faith on June 18, 2011

    You often hear about stories that stay with you long after they have been read. Well, for me this was 'that' story. I was bombarded by several different emotions whilst reading this book and I loved every minute of it! This book was a rites of passage tale. We are taken on a journey by the female lead of this story and how her life changes therein. I was amazed at how much time and emotion I invested in each of the characters – really feeling their every emotion, they were so real to me. I also like the way the author changed the narrator almost each chapter between the two main leads. It meant we could see both sides of the story as it were and was a nice touch. It was beautifully written, in such a way as I could not put it down. Almost to the detriment of my sleep! Thank you Mr Aken for writing a story that has taken me over so completely that now I have finished it, I feel a little lost! May there be lots more from you.
  • A Flash of Inspiration: A Collection of Very Short Stories by Indie Authors on July 01, 2011

    This is a collection of short short stories (called Flash Fiction, all under 100 words) written by a group of writers from the 'Book Junkies' group on Facebook. The idea came about because they were messing around and posting their flashes in the group. Someone came up with the mad idea of collecting them altogether with contributions from many authors and putting them in a book. And so 'A Flash of Inspiration' was born. The authors have showed with this, that they have a range of talents. The stories range from the funny, to the bizarre to the downright dark. Every one being a winner. Well done guys, heres to the next collection!
  • For Nothing on July 09, 2011

    This is a story of a man avenging his friends death and finding himself in the middle of a war between two mafia families. This story never let up once. I was hooked from page one and could not put it down. The author did a good job of explaining the different aspects of mafia life and hierarchy. There were many twists and turns and just when I thought I was on the right track I was thrown another curveball. The ending was totally unexpected and was clearly left wide open for a sequel. I for one cannot wait for that sequel!
  • My Novel Affair on Aug. 16, 2011

    Let me start by issuing a warning. This book is screamingly funny. It should come with a disclaimer – 'Warning – This book may induce instantaneous bouts of out-loud mirth. Take care reading in public places!' I was reading this on the bus and I got some very funny looks, I can tell you! The idea of a story within a story is refreshing one and works very well. The characters are larger than life and vibrant. The juxtaposition of the story (within the story) and the real life element was very skilfully and cleverly done. My hats off to the author for she has pulled off another winner. I loved and enjoyed this and hope that everyone else reading it enjoys it as much as I did!
  • Fourteen Days Later on Aug. 25, 2011

    I'm really not sure where to start with this. I thought it was absolutely wonderful! Helen has decided to take up the challenge of trying a new thing every day for two weeks after being let down by her boyfriend. Along the way she learns new things about herself and finds love is sometimes nearer to home than you think. I found it very very funny. I was laughing out loud in places and my partner was giving me some very odd looks. I so identified with Helen. I loved her clumsy disaster prone nature (very like myself!) it made her very endearing and lovable. All in all another good one from this author. I am now off to read the sequel!
  • Confessions of a Call Center Gal: a novel on Aug. 29, 2011

    I loved this. Hysterically funny, laugh out loud funny even. I could not put it down. It was also spot on in it's depiction of life in a call centre. Noone likes doing the job but someone has to right? I loved the characters. Some of the names were amazing. The author has a keen eye for satire! I also like the backdrop of the 'will they, won't they' relationship of Mika and Maddy. it was there quietly simmering in the background with all the hilarity going on in the forefront. I hope the author writes more as I thoroughly anjoyed this and I am sorry it has come to an end!
  • Flidderbugs on Sep. 01, 2011

    'For the Flidderbugs of the Krephiloff Tree all they had to worry about was how many points were on the leaves and who held the Shears. Now something is threatening the Tree and to get to the bottom of it they must put aside beliefs held since time immemorial. I loved this little tale. It was short and sweet and I think it would appeal to all ages. I loved the characters, I could see the bugs in my head and I personified them! All in all a great little story that I heartily recommend.'
  • How Do You Say Goodbye on Sep. 02, 2011

    This was a fantastic book. Be warned though, it is a major tearjerker. It is a tale about Sam, a woman who had a shocking life and has found out she has an inoperable brain tumour. The story follows her journey to hook up with her old biker 'clan' finishing up at her friends grandparents. Her wish is to die by the beach so they take her to the beach where her friend has a house. More happens along the way but I don't want to spoil it. I was moved by Sam's plight. I found myself laughing and crying with her. The love all her friends had for her was tangible and I felt it too. It was a real page turner and got me from the first page. Read it, you won't be disappointed.
  • Back to Life on Sep. 09, 2011

    This is the last book in the Wingless series. Set 3 years after the events of Letters to You. Eve has left Evan and set up a successful resurrection business with Kenny. Will all go smoothly, will Evan come back into Eve's life and will she be reconciled with Oliver, her son? It was so easy for me to get into this, having read the other 5 books in the series. I was eager to find out what happened to Eve, Evan, Kenny et al. As ever the story flowed well, keeping me glued to the page for the whole book. I am sad this is the end, as everyone feels like old friends now. It was a fantastic ending though and really the only one that would have done the series justice. Thank you Holly for writing such an amazing series!
  • My Perfect Wedding on Sep. 14, 2011

    This is technically the sequel to Fourteen Days Later but could be read as a standalone book. This time around Helen is on her way to Northern Cyprus with Kamen for a few days of rest and relaxation before her dream wedding. Only for Helen (being somewhat of a magnet for bad luck) it doesn't quite go to plan and it just gets worse from there... This was hysterically funny. Helen once again lurches from one disaster to another, somehow finding herself in the process. It was lovely to be reacquainted with familiar characters. Once again the story rocketed along, and with the vivid descriptions of Northern Cyprus, I felt like I was there with them. It was a real page turner and I read almost all of it in one day. The ending was fabulous and just perfect for the story. If you have read Fourteen Days Later you will love this. Even if you haven't you will love this. It is a nice light funny read that no one can help but to enjoy.
  • D.N.A. -Nothing Would Ever be the Same on Sep. 22, 2011

    This is a brilliant look at a dysfunctional family and how the daughter rose above it. The night before a family holiday Debney is told, yet again, she is not to come with them by her mum. They go off on holiday and she has a party. The police arrive at her house to tell her her family has been killed in a car accident. There is some mystery surrounding her brothers. She makes some bad choices and finds she's pregnant, what will she do? This was a deeply moving story. I was near to tears in many places. the way Debney was treated at school, the aftermath of the accident and finally it all coming together. The triumveret of friends in Debney, Nadine and Giante was wonderful. Most of the story was told in flashback and the story unfolded slowly but coherently. The pace of the story was perfect, and there were no confusing moments at all. The ending was fantastic, just how I hoped it would be, and warmed my heart. This is a great story and I urge people to give it a go. Great for Young Adults and Adults alike.
  • Doodling on Oct. 06, 2011

    This is a wonderful tale of a man – Neville – who found the world was moving too fast and fell off. He found himself in an asteroid field with all manner of quirky and interesting characters. Then he finds out the world is moving too fast and is going to leave it's orbit and fly straight into his new found home and friends. Does Neville stop the world and save the asteroids? Well that would be telling wouldn't it? This was a quirky little story. Neville mad me think a bit of Arthur Dent with his no nonsense approach to that which made no sense. It was funny in places and endearingly heart warming. Underneath it all was a deeper message to take things slowly and not let life rush you by. I loved this. It is a nice quick read and would appeal to all ages I think.
  • Trafficked: The Diary of a Sex Slave on Oct. 11, 2011

    This is the story of a young woman who, promised the job of a lifetime, ends up being trafficked to Italy and being sold as a sex slave. It is written in diary form and tells of her life therein and what happens to her. First off, may I issue a warning? This story is utterly heartbreaking. Some of the things that happen to Elena are truly horrific but somehow she never quite loses hope that she will be reunited with her daughter again. Being written in diary form I could see her in my head and I truly felt the things she was going through. I am not ashamed to admit I was in tears in places. This is somewhat of a departure for this author as she is best known for her chick-lit novels. All I can say is 'Well done Sibel. This is an amazing novella and the jump from chick-lit to serious has been made successfully!' I urge everyone to read this so more people are aware of this terrible trade in human lives. It must be stopped and can only be stopped if more are aware that it is going on. Well done, and thank you Sibel for opening my eyes.
  • The Great Yellow Doom Bird on Nov. 15, 2011

    This is the story of a young boy. His father went off to sea and never came back so he goes to the beach every night with his uncle to see if he has come home. One evening he takes his neighbours dog for a walk and meets an odd gentleman up a tree. He is 7 feet tall and has eyes that are different colours, that also change with his mood. Thus begins an adventure that involves pirates, spy catchers, Eddies (whirlpools), Great Chiefs, volcanoes, enormous sea monsters and of course the Great Doom Bird of the title. I shan't say any more for fear of spoiling it. I so enjoyed this. It put me in mind of Lemony Snicket (but better if I do dare to say!). Stultus (the odd guy) reminds me of Johnny Depp's Mad Hatter. He is this larger than life (literally!) chap with a personality that just jumps off the page at you. Patrick starts off as a quiet shy little boy who becomes a confident young man. Their quest to save the Doom Birds is an admirable (if fraught) one and anyone interested in conservation will appreciate it. I recommend this for people of all ages. It is simply a lovely story, with enough action to keep everyone interested.
  • Days' End on Dec. 14, 2011

    This is a story about a woman (Nysa) who is at the top of her field in DNA retrieval at UCLA. She is head hunted by a strange gentleman for a project she knows nothing about but will pay top dollar for her services. She agrees, on the understanding she must have no contact with the outside world for the duration of the project, and tell no one where she is going. When a series of natural disasters prompts her boyfriend (Alistair) to try and find her, the project and his search suddenly are not quite what they seem. This was a great book. I enjoyed the fact that the chapters were short, it meant that I could read it quickly in short bursts. As it happened I found it extremely hard to put down. The basic plot (which I can't divulge as it would give too much away) is a good one, and had me gripped to the end.The characters were solid and although the story played out with only three main characters, I didn't feel the story suffered. The ending was as sudden as it was shocking, so be prepared for that. It was satisfying though and tied up any loose ends. It did, however, need work on the editing. All in all a brave subject to tackle, that the author has done justice with and I hope he has more in the pipe line. This review was originally written for the TBR Pile. http://thetbrpile.weebly.com/1/post/2011/12/review-and-contest-days-end-by-scott-collins.html
  • Fezariu's Epiphany on Jan. 01, 2012

    This is the story of Fezariu, a young man born to a prostitute - who believes his mother died when he was 12. When his beloved stepfather is killed, he finds out that his mother is still alive and working in a famous brothel. After her rejection of him he goes and joins the Merelax Mercenaries. He rises through the ranks until he takes an assignment that brings him back to his old home town. There he takes stock of his life and finds out the truth about why his mother rejected him. on learning this he decides to exact a terrible revenge. I started this with a little trepidation as I am not a gigantic fan of fantasy novels. I am so glad I did though - I was sucked in straight away. It wasn't overly 'fantastical' but there were enough different races and worlds, all beautifully described, to keep me interested. I had no trouble picturing any of the descriptions. Poor Fezariu has seen so much sadness in his short life that he thinks a mercenary life is best for him as he cannot get close to anyone there. he does however become friends with three other recruits. The story is told mostly from Fezariu's point of view but occasionally changes as the story dictates, for example at his birth and in his letters to his stepsister. This was a good idea as it kept the story fresh. The ending was fantastic, and I had a tear in my eye. I have nothing but praise for this, and I hope the author has more to come.
  • Wheezer And the Painted Frog on March 16, 2012

    This is the story of Sasa, a young Cherokee girl and a Jack Russell called Wheezer. Sasa's brother has been murdered and her Cherokee people are not getting the food and provisions they desperately need. Can Sasa and Wheezer get to the bottom of the mystery and solve it? This was a story steeped in history. Based on the Cherokee 'Trail of Tears', where they were moved from their land and made to settle elsewhere, with many Cherokees dying along the way. While this was at it's heart a murder mystery, you could feel the history seeping out of every word. Having 5 principal characters, Wheezer/Jack the Jack Russell, Sasa, Jackson, Arch and Anna - the story focussed on the dwindling supplies for the Cherokee settlers and the murder of Sasa's brother Usti Yansa. The story went along at a fair clip and the descriptions were so vivid, I felt I was there walking in their shoes. I loved the inclusion of Wheezer as a main character. Who couldn't fail to be drawn to a book with a dog as one of the principal players? I understand this is Kitty's debut novel-well it had me gripped to the end and I even shed a tear at the conclusion. Well done Kitty, I am anxiously waiting for the follow up!
  • HYM and HUR on May 10, 2012

    This is the story of Hym and Hur, a couple who have been in love a long time and never age. They love playing pranks on people with their special powers. This time however they have made a deal with Death in exchange for a good deed. They may choose someone to save people from dying by touch alone, for 24 hours. But this is Death and there is always a loophole.... This was a deliciously funny little tale. I loved the pranks Hym & Hur played and the funny interventions they made into peoples lives, whether for the best or not. The story ran smoothly and the characters were believable. The end was very sweet and I would love to read more of this author's work.
  • Dug Up on June 18, 2012

    The is a set of six short stories. The beginning story is the original draft of the end story, and Jerry's first foray into the writing business. A great story collection! It is quite unusual to read an anthology that has no bad stories, but this is it. Every single story was a master-crafted roller-coaster of a tale. I particularly liked the idea of including the two drafts of The Feed and Feed. you could see how much Jerry's writing has grown in the 18 months between the two stories. Each story in this anthology started off one way and kept you guessing until the shocker of a climax. The mark of a good story to me is one that makes you think 'What the hell just happened???'. All of these are just that and more.
  • Unleashed: Tail One on June 24, 2012

    This is the story of a cat, a dog, a family and a detective hell bent on getting to the bottom of a 'suspicious' death. The old man next door has been found dead and the Smith's reported a commotion at their door on the same night. Detective MacKowski is determined to find out what happened whatever the cost.... this was a humorously dark little tale. Told in different points of view from the cat, dog and the detective. it was an interesting read, and certainly made me look at my cats in a whole new light, wondering what they get up to when we are all asleep! I giggled to myself as the cat plotted and ingratiated herself into the Smith family, leaving the devoted dog out in the cold. The detective was brilliant as a bumbling fool, dedicated to his cause no matter the cost. I recommend this for animal lovers and dark tale lovers alike.
  • Chocolate-Covered Eyes: A Sampler Of Horror on June 24, 2012

    This is a collection of six of Lori's best stories preceded by a poem called 'Chocolate Covered Eyes'. All the stories have a horror theme and are slightly macabre. This is the first taste I have had of Lori's work and I think I shall be coming back for more. She has an irreverent, humorous style that certainly appeals. The stories were deliciously dark, and I thoroughly enjoyed them. If I have one criticism, it would be the constant use of long and 'fancy' words - I found myself reaching my dictionary quite a lot! On the plus side I have expanded my vocabulary by some way. This is just a minor niggle though and I still recommend this as a great and enjoyable anthology.
  • Tick on July 06, 2012

    This is the story of Colin. He has lost his wife, is having nightmares and has developed a clock phobia. Slowly over the course of the story his life unravels to the point where he can no longer continue. This was slightly longer than some of Jerry's stories I have read and it made for a nice change. I felt I really got to know Colin through the course of the story and his slow but sure mental decline. The story was quite sad in a way, but as is usual with Jerry's stories there was a twist. Once that twist was revealed, my feelings changed somewhat! The ending was quite sudden and unexpected, but was brilliant in its shock value.
  • Patchouli on July 14, 2012

    This is the story of Stu, handyman to an apartment block. A new neighbour has moved in, and she seems to be surrounded by the scent of patchouli. He becomes obsessed with her and what is hiding behind her apartment door. This was quite steamy for Jerry, and quite odd. I enjoyed it and it certainly made me think about the people around me and the secrets they are hiding! Stu found out and regretted it after! Another great tale from the twisted mind of Jerry McKinney, read it and enjoy it.
  • Takers on July 15, 2012

    This is the story of a family. They have gone on holiday to a secluded island. Thinking they are alone, they enjoy the sand and surf until it is time to go home. Then the heavens open, but it isn't rain. what falls out of the sky is far more horrific, and will change their lives forever.... This was a very creepy and slightly gross story from the master story teller. A story of worms taking over humans and turning them into sort of zombies. Once again a lot of action was packed into a short story and I enjoyed it immensely. A roller-coaster of a story that I recommend.
  • Christmas Spirit on July 15, 2012

    This is the story of Chad, it's Christmas Eve and he has great plans for this Christmas. He's going to propose to Kate and they are going to live happily ever after. But things don't always go to plan do they? I liked this, I liked this very much. It was a Christmas Carol but with a McKinney twist to it. It was very cleverly done and for a short story was crammed full of action. The amount of detail though didn't feel rushed in any way. There was a neat little twist at the end that was unexpected. Another great story that I totally recommend.
  • Wilderness Heart on Sep. 28, 2012

    This is the story of Lyn. She is chief guide for Taylors Outfitters and Guides, a company that guides people on animal hunts. She is strong minded, feisty and independent. She is in an unhappy relationship with Brad, a local lumber yard owner. She has an intense dislike of loggers and lumbar companies because of what they do to the land around the trees and another deep seated reason. Then she is asked to guide a group of men on an Elk hunt. The leader of the group, Nic Randall, has very negative feelings against women on hunts and their first meeting does not go well. After a near miss accident whilst on the hunt, their feelings towards each other soften. Can she put aside her feistiness and gather the courage to leave Brad and build a relationship with Nic or are her experiences with Brad destined to cloud her future forever? I really enjoyed this. It was a nice light romance, but not too 'fluffy'. I loved Lyn's feistiness and the sparring between her and Nic. They played off each other really well and I was rooting for them to get together. The 'deep dark secret' Lyn was keeping from him as to why she hated lumber mills and logging was played out very well. All in all it was a lovely romance that had strong characters and a brilliant 'happy ever after' that left me with tears in my eyes. I totally recommend this as a nice light read that is also a lot of fun.
  • Wheezer and the Shy Coyote on April 13, 2013

    This is the second in the series of books featuring Cherokee Sasa and her doggy friend Wheezer. This time they are trying to solve the mystery of who is selling whiskey to the Cherokees. With the help of Coyote, a half Lakota, half Blackfoot and a wild coyote Sasa has named Yellow eyes - it's not long before she finds herself over her head and in very real danger. With two Native Indians already dead, can Sasa and Wheezer solve the mystery before anymore lives are lost? I really enjoyed the first Wheezer story and its follow-up was certainly no disappointment. It was nice meeting up with familiar characters, and Kitty truly does bring them to life in a wonderful way. Once again, this was a work of fiction but it has it's roots in real life history. it was easy to read and I got into the story very quickly. We were introduced to a few new characters this time around, and I do hope some of them find their way back again. The story itself was fast paced and hard to put down. Once I had started I found myself saying 'Just one more chapter....' I hope it won't be too long before we see Wheezer and Sasa again as I will be having withdrawal symptoms!