Jo S Wun
Strange name for an English bloke but nobody can choose their parents.
Jo cannot remember being born but assumes he must have been. He has done a fair bit since, including working for a short while on a farm cultivating mushrooms. They were not magic, although, as if by magic, he always got a seat to himself on the bus home after work - work which included manually filling the wooden boxes, in which the mushrooms were grown, with exceedingly fresh horse manure.
On balance, Jo prefers reading and writing books.
Jo is the author of The Jeremy - Snaps Of The Dragon
Where to find Jo S Wun online
Where to buy in print
The Jeremy – Snaps Of The Dragon
by Jo S Wun
Published: April 29, 2010
» Coming of age
A story of an English boy's struggles to fathom life's oddities, such as family, religion, education & sex, on his quest for that elusive thing called 'enlightenment', during the 50s & 60s. Fortunately, help arrives via Mrs Bulging Bosoms, The Professor & Lewd Rude Dude, to name but three of his advisers, who endeavour to guide him in the ways of the world. Unfortunately, they don't always agree.
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Smashwords book reviews by Jo S Wun
No Child Left Behind??? The True Story of a Teacher's Quest
on March 15, 2010
Elizabeth Blake's story, as recounted in the pages of her book, is one throughout which I was constantly asking "What next!?". The events she describes sometimes beggar belief. I found myself incredulously thinking "How could people in responsible positions behave like that?" only to find, on subsequent pages, there was worse to come. That Elizabeth found ways to deal with the many difficult situations she encountered, to push herself further than many would have gone, and not to give up without a fight in the face of overwhelming adversity, is a testament to her strength of character.
The book may be in need, here and there, of a good editor's attention - it's a little rough around the edges in places - but what it lacks in polished writing is made up for in the content of her absorbing story. I constantly wanted to know what happened next.
I feel I should also point out that those who don't share Elizabeth's belief that a god (she spells it with a capital G) has a plan for every individual, might find her assertions in that area a little off-putting. But whatever a person's beliefs may be, there is no denying that Elizabeth's helped her not only deal with some very difficult situations at the time, but also enabled her to find a way to continue doing her utmost to ensure that no child she taught was left behind, even though, despite having sometimes gone an extra five miles, let alone one, she was not always successful.
Whatever else you may get from reading her book, Elizabeth's personal story shows that there is hope for humanity.
Dandelions In The Garden
on May 13, 2010
I read Bram Stoker's Dracula as a teenager while visiting an aunt and uncle who lived in an old cottage in a hamlet in the east of England, complete with thatched roof, crooked floors and creaky stairs. Probably an unwise choice of bedtime reading, I succeeded in scaring myself half witless, and came to suspect the wizened old man living next door was not all that he seemed.
I read the eBook version of Dandelions in the Garden by Charlie Courtland on my smartphone, which perhaps goes to show that we do sometimes live and learn. But although it features Elizabeth Bathory, a descendant of Vlad Tepes, who was the inspiration for Stoker's Dracula, it is not a horror story in the traditional Dracula mould.
It's not without horrific scenes though, several characters meeting a grizzly end, and some aspects of the story might be considered quite shocking, in that behaviours we modern humans consider unacceptable are presented as quite normal. But, of course, attitudes in Europe four hundred years ago were somewhat different.
If I had to write a one-sentence review it would be this:
A cracking good tale full of all the ingredients which make a good story -- adversity, conflict, emotional highs and lows, love, sex, violence and a few surprises.
Historical purists might find the use of modern language off putting, but I found it made the characters into people I could believe were real. But more than that, I was able to put myself in their shoes. I'm not entirely sure that all of the views expressed by the narrator are consistent with the period, but I was able to overlook that because it brought an extra perspective to the tale. However, a few typographical and suchlike errors seem to have slipped through the editorial net, which bounced me out of the flow when I came upon them. I'd have been thinking about awarding 5 stars if it wasn't for that.
I don't know if all, or any, of the events depicted actually happened, but if you like a good story, well put together, then that will matter as little to you as it did to me.
There is a deeper level to it, in that it is an illustration of the truth of Lord Acton's words "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." But it's the characters, as portrayed through the eyes, and pen, of Amara Borbala, Countess Elizabeth's lady-in-waiting, that make this story come alive.
I still haven't figured out the relevance of the title of this one, but I'm certainly looking forward to reading the second book in the series.
A Child's Wound
on June 26, 2010
If you like stories about killers with twisted minds then this is a story for you. If you like stories about killers with twisted minds which contain a fair amount of graphic detail about how those twisted minds carry out their murderous deeds, then you won't be disappointed. If you like stories about killers with twisted minds who have unusual sexual appetites, A Child's Wound caters for you too.
If you want a good description of the story, I see no reason to compete with the blurb which pretty much nails it:
In Manhattan, cruising through book stores and cafés, Tim Hadler, an eccentric serial killer, stalks his next victim. He takes pride in what he does and has perfected his craft. Unfortunately for Tim, he has stumbled upon something that never prepared him for what is about to happen. His next victim turns out to be a New York City Detective. Just when Tim thought he had his life under control, he's drawn into a game like no other. Detective Christine Maloan and her partner, Detective Jefferies, are one more murder victim away from losing their case and handing it over to the F.B.I.. They're investigating the third twisted murder by a Serial Killer that stages his victims as if they were works of art. Detective Christine Maloan and her partner are tracking down a killer that leaves clues, which date back to the Egyptian Pyramids. The hidden clues are difficult to put together and the murders have the entire city up in arms. During all the confusion Tim moves closer to his target and throughout the story he uncovers situations in his past that reveal insight into understanding why he does what he does. Will that stop him?
I read the eBook version on my smartphone, and while I wasn't driven to read it from start to finish to the exclusion of other activities, I readily turned to it when a suitable time-slot arose, even if only a few minutes. Although the plot has some unexpected twists, it's easy to follow so there is no problem resuming where you left off; no having to backtrack more than a paragraph or two to remind yourself what was happening. Often I could pick it up again with no need to backtrack at all.
So why only three stars? Well, despite enjoying the plotlines, the twists and turns, the surprises, being a teensy weensy bit shocked at some of the scenes, and titilated by others, when it came down to it, I simply didn't believe it. I wasn't convinced about some of the things which some of the characters did, or the way they reacted in some of the scenes.
Of course it's perfectly possible that it's just that I haven't met or heard about any real-life people like those portrayed. Perhaps I've led a sheltered life. But my feeling was that some of the actions and reactions were necessary for the plot rather than a true reflection of how people behave. Consequently I had to suspend disbelief in order to enjoy the story. Nevertheless, I did enjoy the story.