Sometimes you can read a book, and the topics may be interesting, but the writing really isn’t all that great. Sometimes you can read a book that is exquisitely written, but the storyline is kinda ho-hum. But it is extremely rare to come across a book that is both flawless in its execution, and also riveting to the point of being crazy addicting – and this is exactly how I thought “A Luminous Future” by Teodor Flonta was. It was stylistically near perfect, with great pacing and an always-advancing storyline that touched on a wide range of topics and events. The characters and descriptions were well-rounded and vivid, and I truly felt transported to 1950’s Transylvania, experiencing life through young Teodor’s eyes. It really helped to broaden my perspectives and opened my mind to a new world I’d only thought about in passing, if at all. Highly recommend to everyone.
I don’t really know how to best describe or sum up this book, because I have a lot of mixed feelings about it. Some parts I thought were downright amazing and perfectly executed. Sometimes I felt that the story seemed to lose focus and wandered all over the place. There were great characters who added to the plot and tension, and some who just seemed to take up space. I did notice some editing and grammatical errors which I was able to overlook for the sake of the story, but they were present. It took me a long time to feel grounded in the story and get a feel for what was going on, but once I did I admit I was hooked and had to see what would happen next. And I wasn’t disappointed in the least! I think Michael Barnett definitely has potential as a writer and I’m sure we’ll be seeing more from him in the future!
Angels Gate is amazing…I read it in one sitting! It was so realistic, its like you are actually THERE as all this is happening. The dialogue was authentic, and even though some of the things that happen are pretty unbelievable, as they say - truth is stranger than fiction. Its almost a little creepy how the author knows so many details about this heist, and I assume that some of the narrative is fictionalized. But that doesn’t make it any less awesome! I love true crime books and thrillers and this has to be one of the best I’ve read in a long time. The writing was near flawless, and I didn’t see any editing errors anywhere. I’ll definitely be reading more from these authors in the future.
Kingdom of the Snark is unlike anything I have read, but is a cross of many things I enjoy. First off, props to the author because the editing was near flawless, and I notice things like that. It was fast paced and easy to get caught up in, and I kept wanting to read more. I liked the characters and found it to be genuinely funny (I don’t usually read comedic books—this was a first for me). I was never bored for a minute and found myself invested in the characters’ plight. Which brings me to the ending…I don’t like when books end in the middle of the action like this one does; I need resolution even in a book that is part of a series. I know some people don’t mind this, but it is a big thing for me. So this is the only reason I’m giving this book 4 stars instead of 5, and I can’t wait to read the next one to see what happens!!
I read this book in one sitting! It is on the shorter side (it’s a novella), but it was the perfect length for me in my busy day. There wasn’t a whole lot of outside conflict, and the action was mostly limited to the hero/heroine finally succumbing to their desires, despite the obstacles around them. My only complaint is that I wasn’t sure exactly what purpose the women in the bakery really served, and in a book this short it seems that every little thing should be directly related to the plot, and just to me their roles and conversations felt a bit unnecessary. But this was a great book and I’ll be sure to look for more from this author soon! Happy to see she has quite the extensive backlist!
The Hunt for Elsewhere by Beatrice Vine is the story of animals (mostly a fox, a crow, and later a wolf) all who have human traits and qualities, yet live the lives of wild animals. It is an interesting technique, and one that has been done before, I’m sure, but Ms. Vine created a story that was, at least to me, wholly original. I was surprised at how unpredictable it was, like when I thought it would be all about Saxton reuniting with his family (which would happen at the end of his journey), I was wrong. And I was wrong about Quill’s fate. It was this unpredictability that kept me engaged throughout and I appreciated the risks that the author had her characters take. All in all an enjoyable book, one I’d say is suitable for ages 13+.
This book was strange to me…I loved so much of it, but wish I could have cut out some parts. It starts of so wonderfully…engaging, positive, almost like a friend is welcoming you into his arms and telling you a wonderful story. The pacing is great and the writing and editing flawless (and I loved the designs on the chapters). This felt like such a beautiful and intelligent treatise and I was becoming more and more impressed and immersed. And then a whole section seemed to have nothing to do with the rest of the book and then actually made me question what the whole point of it really was…because at first I truly believed it was to enlighten the masses into a culture that many may not know much about…only to feel like at the end it was so that the author could use it as a vehicle to argue with or discredit other scholars. I have no dog in this fight. I’m no scholar, and this is the first book on Hinduism I’ve ever read and for the most part it was very good! But I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that the negativity towards the end almost ruined the whole things for me.
After I read “The Sense of Touch”, I read some of the reviews to see if others had the same strong positive reactions I had. Glad to see I wasn’t alone in loving this book! I see that it got a starred review from Kirkus and with good reason, I believe! I’m no Kirkus, but I don’t hand out 5 stars lightly, but this book gets them from me without question. Wow, how refreshing to read from someone who can actually WRITE! I don’t mean tap out words on a keyboard.. I mean create images in your mind and soul with magical prose that is almost hypnotic and effortless in its beauty. Not to dismiss the art of the short story at all, as it is a form of storytelling I very much enjoy, but I would love to see what Ron Parsons would do if he stretched his legs a little into a novella, or even a whole novel. I’m sure it would be as brilliant as this one was. Kudos.
Intelligent, complex, riveting, and with surprising twists, “Intelligent Design: Revelations” was an unexpected treat for me. I’m not a big sci/fi fan at all… in fact I confess I only chose this book to read because I vowed to try new genres this summer. And I may just be a new fan! Happy that this author has other books, and I’ll be checking them out as well. I was pulled into the story right away and liked the new “take” on our history/reality and the idea of a planet being basically hidden in plain sight is really cool. The technology and advancements were believable and yet almost feel ahead of its time. But what I liked the best was that I was never bored… I read it straight through and felt like I could have read more. I couldn’t tell by the last chapter if this series was done or not… almost seemed like it could go either way. But regardless, this is a very engaging and intelligently designed (pardon the pun) novella that can appeal to Science Fictions readers and Non-readers alike.
Jake is a photographer who takes off for the island of Soufriere and gets a LOT more than he bargained for. I’m not one for recapping the plot (that’s what the book summary is for) but I will say that not only was I really impressed with this author’s narrative style and his word choices, also the way he managed to make the people and the island come alive with the authentic-sounding talk, and the detailed descriptions. It honestly made me forget that I was in the middle of a winter snowstorm here in MA! No! I was on the dangerous, beautiful, tropical island far, far away! Ha. But seriously Michael Jarvis really is quite talented, and the plot is actually a lot more complex and reflective with more substance than it may seem on the surface… it is worth a read, in my opinion, and I’m curious to see what this author will deliver next. He’s one to watch, imo.
I admit it took me some time to get into this book, and at first I wasn’t really sure where it was going. But the more I read the more I got into it, and thoroughly enjoyed this new world and reality the author writes of. The interweaving plotlines were complex, but not convoluted… and certainly not predictable. I’ve read my fair share of epic science fiction and space romance, but this one felt wholly original on many levels. I appreciated the intricate world building and plot development. But there were times I felt the story wasn’t as focused as I’d like, with some conversations and scenes maybe weren’t necessary and perhaps could have been eliminated to tighten the narrative some. It’s not a fast and easy read by any stretch, but it will take you through new concepts and perspectives that you’ve never thought of before, the writing is great, and it is easy to get lost in for hours. Very cool. Highly recommend.
I think what I really liked the most about this book Connecting the Dots: Man, God, Angels, and Demons by author Dave Shaw was just the easy, natural tone in which he imparts his message in such an easy-to-understand and relatable way. Although I identify as Christian, I admit my Church attendance is pretty much relegated to major holidays, and I haven’t read from the Bible outside of Church since I was a child. But reading this book, and the passages the author questions and dissects, it was so clear how it can relate to life and God’s master plan (and its players) on an everyday level, even in ways we might not realize. I particularly liked the stories the author included to illustrate his teachings and give broader perspectives to particular circumstances, all while showing how fully applying the Scripture and the Bible can come into play. Seemed to be very well edited and put together, and I can see this being in every Christian’s personal library, as well as some who aren’t necessarily that devout.