Birthright: The Evolution Chronicles Book 1
on Jan. 16, 2011
I was fortunate enough to come across this book by pure chance. I started reading this book thinking that I would spend the next few days battling through a mindboggling read. Fortunately I began the read and before I knew what hit me I was drawn in and had the entire novel finished in 3 hours. I could not believe how intensely I got involved in this novel and I felt and I mean really felt every emotion and sense that Raine felt. Do not pass up this gem hiding in the ruff. Well worth the time and expense.
on Feb. 18, 2011
I approached this book with the attitude of it is what it is, a short story. With this in mind I had the feeling that this story has more to it than what is presented. For a moment of escape into the fiction realm it is not a bad pick up but for those of us that get really deeply involved in a story it may not be for you. I did think that the writing flowed really well and keeps the reader involved and turning the page it is just the story leaves us wanting more than it should. I also think that if this is to be a series then my previous remarks may be premature but if not then the author may want to visit that idea.
on Feb. 18, 2011
Now this is not my typical genre of book so I will do my best to not let my review be skewed by that fact. I approached this book fully knowing it was a romance and fully knowing that it would probably follow a certain dynamic. With that said I found this book to be a refreshing aside from most romance books with rather witty prose and a writing style that keeps you looking to the next page. I was fully taken back by the author's style and wish her luck in any future novels.
Tales of Aradia The Last Witch Volume 1
on Feb. 26, 2011
I love books that cover witches and mysticism and this one did not disappoint. From the first page to the last line I was intrigued and entertained. I do believe an editor would of helped but this did not detract from the storyline. If you are into fantasy and witches you really need to get this one. Just forget the ramance overtures. Besides for the really low price of free how can you pass this up!
on Feb. 27, 2011
I had a was a little sceptical about starting this book, but man was I wrong. It takes a few pages for the author to grab you but when he does he does not ever let go until the last page. Do no miss this one.
The Magpie's Secret
on March 04, 2011
The Magpie's Secret is a mystery novel set in current times with flashbacks to
previous events that influence the actions and attitudes of the central character, Frank
Martinelli. The location is somewhere on the east coast around Washington D.C. and
I applaud Mr. Lau for his story telling skill and creation of the plot. I didn't finish the
story in one continuous reading, but stayed with it over two evenings.
At the beginning I felt the story was a little disjointed and the character a little naive
for a sixty year old with an interest in detective novels and the TV series Law and Order.
But, toward the second half the story picked up and I was drawn into it.
My criticism of the writing mechanics is the writer switching from third person
to first person and back again, and wordiness. Too many sentences contain extraneous
words and phrases that extend the sentence without adding substance to it.
Also, further editing could have eliminated misplaced words and inserted missing
words where needed; a minor problem, not major.
As one who likes detail, I would have liked a better mental picture of the Wild Hare
bar which was a frequent scene, instead of the detailed description of the interior of a
bank that was only visited once.
My biggest personal complaint is the partisan political view inserted frequently into
the story. If I want political propaganda I'll buy a book of Political Commentary. In a
novel I expect the author to be neutral, unless the character development actually depends
on partisan opinions. I have abandoned two popular novelist and two TV shows for that
But overall I rate the story a four out of a possible five based primarily on the
strength of the overall writing and the story line. The ending was a surprise I didn't
The book was a good read and I will consider additional stories by Mr. Lau.
Union of Renegades: The Rys Chronicles Book I
on March 20, 2011
This is a book that just makes you forget the world you are living in and grabs all your senses and refuses to let go until the last page. I was completely immersed into the world the author painted and my imagination was filled with the taste and sounds of this world. I did not ever want to stop reading it and was a little lost when I was finished. I can not wait to finish the series. This is a must have for everyone.
on March 22, 2011
I was quite impressed by this novel and rather enjoyed the ship references. Although I did not know what most of the commands meant it made me feel as if I were part of the crew. I had a sense of being there and could almost taste the salt water and fuel. This is a recommended read.
on March 27, 2011
This is an incredible book and draws you right into it whithout a second glance. The author gets you right in tune with the character and takes you on the journey right along with Mathew. Do not pass up the chance for a great science fiction novel and click on the buy this book now.
on March 27, 2011
I was not too interested in this book. The story seemed to drag and it seemed disjointed. I had a hard time having any emotion whatsoever for the characters and the plot seemed to keep miscommunicating with itself. I do not recommend this as a read.
I by no means in my Blog want anyone to assume that if I give a bad review to the author or book that it has any bearing on the bravery it takes to write a novel. I also want to say that even though I did not find this particular book to my liking I am sure others will. The prose was well thought out in this novel it just was not my taste.
Living from the Heart
on April 05, 2011
If you are looking for a novel to take you on a spiritual journey then click buy now. If you are not interested in exploring faith then keep browsing. The author does a great job of communicating the importance of faith and the need of humans to explore all aspects of such. I would recommend this as a good read for all to get a bit of understanding.
on April 12, 2011
This story does a great job of grabbing the reader and getting them to feel the main characters emotions. You will be taken by William and shown his world through his eyes. You will feel as he does and in the end have a better understanding of his life. I was mesmerized and will be on the look out for more by this author.
on April 25, 2011
From the frst page to the last this book will have your attention and get you reflecting on your own life. Readers will relate to Hero without even realizing it til the end of the tale. This is a must read for anyone who favors stories that make you reflect on your own life and the deeds that have gotten us to any one point in life.
Free Book Reviews
Love Lust & Petty Crime
on May 10, 2011
I was pleasantly surprised by this one. I thought I would once again become trapped in the romance aspects of the book but this one is well written and the plot is well thought up. A good pick for any romance reader.
The Goddess Queen: The Rys Chronicles Book II
on May 18, 2011
So I start reading this book as a followup to the first book (Union of Renegades). After the first book I thought I might get disappointed since I loved the first, but I could not have been more wrong. Tracy picks your imagination right up where she had left you and brings you deeper into her rabbits hole. I have to admit that after this I can not and I really mean can not wait to read the other two in the series. Matter of fact I am starting on the third (Judgment Rising) as I post this. Tracy if the future works are as good as these two I will be a fan for life and I hope everyone that reads my blog tells everyone they know to read your books. This series is right up there in my opinion (for what it is worth) with Piers Anthony. Thanks for the ride and I can not wait to continue.
The Up-Country Man
on May 31, 2011
A word of warning to those who may find interest in reading this book, if you are easily offended by non political correctness then you may want to think twice. However, if you are like me and prefer the truth told to you undiluted then this will be an interesting read. This book gives a better understanding of the trials and tribulations of Nigeria through the eyes of a white male (harsh I know but again the truth). Knowing this was written from a non-native's perspective, I knew to discount the details as being colored in that direction. I still feel that this book does a great job of giving everyone a better understanding and in the least see what forced government can/will do.
The Vampire Across the Hall
on Aug. 08, 2011
Overall Feedback: Overall this was a great introduction to the characters and storyline. This read more like an excerpt than a short story. So it gives the feel of a teaser more than a stand alone short story.
Point of View: You are experiencing the world through the eyes of Daisy and which the author does a stellar job of bringing to life.
Voice: There really is not enough story here to be compelled to read on but you do get interested enough in the storyline to read the second in the series.
Character Development: Again with the length of this short you have batrly the time but with this in mind the Author does give you a small emotional connection with the main character so I would have to say yje author did average in this area.
Plot: Straightforward and to the point. Not a single problem here.
Dialogue: The character dialogue was a little sticky in places but overall I would say the author did a wonderful job at keeping this part of the short interesting and flowing.
Pacing: This is where the size comes into play, you will fly right through the story as the author does not have the space to deter from the track as it were.
Setting: The details in the story give you an exact idea of the place and surroundings of Daisy and you may get goosebumps while reading.
Continuity: Here the author was masterful in leaving it open enough to hook you into the second book but not leaving it so open that you are to confused to continue.
Blue, Selected Short Stories Vol. Two
on Aug. 15, 2011
Overall Feedback: Wodke does a great job of intertwining multiple short stories to create a book of shorts that intigues and satiates your need as a reader for that escape. Each short gives just enough to make you feel entertained but does not hold back so much that you feel discouraged from continuing to the next story. An interesting fact about the author is that the name Wodke Hawkinson is a combination of the authors (wife/husband team) last name. Perfect for the creative aspect of their work.
Point of View: Interesting enough Wodke gives us the feeling from the main characters view throughout all the stories and only detracts from this a little but not enough to cause alarm.
Voice: Perfect for each story and really draws the reader in to each short as the book unfolds.
Character Development: This could have been an area in the book that could have been easily failed but Wodke does well to develop each character within each short to perfection.
Plot: To define the plot of a collection of shorts is entirely subjective as each short has within itself it's own plot but I feel the author did well to interlace each story with each other to allow the readers to follow each short in itself but draw a bigger picture from the book as a whole.
Dialogue: Without flaw and only ensures the reader is drawn into the story.
Pacing: Wodke does well to push the reader from one story to the next without making the reader feel as if they had a huge pause an needed to get back into the book once again.
Setting: Each short brings about its' own setting and Wodke gives you just enough to drive your imagination into the world they created and you feel and imagine this world as the author first dreamed.
Continuity: Again without flaw, Wodke is excellant at bringing each short together on the grand scheme but allowing each to stand on their own.
Mementoes of Mai
on Nov. 02, 2011
Overall Feedback: A feelgood story about the coming of age of a young man who risks it all to get what he wants. Written by an author who obviously has English as a second language but not as bad as one might think. With proper editing this one will take off.
Point of View: First person, you are a man in search of love and happiness on a journey that will take you to exotic lands.
Voice: Not as rich as I expected but shining none the less.
Character Development: Rich and deep development for a fictional memoir.
Plot: Straightforward memoir with fiction dispersed liberally.
Dialogue: Because of the language issue the dialogue suffers a bit.
Pacing: Due to the language barrier the pacing suffers a bit but if you can ignore the small issues the story finishes well.
Setting: Exotic lands , love and happiness. Dreams for us all.
Continuity: Due to language issues you may have to redirect a few times.
on Dec. 09, 2011
Overall Feedback: This is one mystery you do not want to miss. The author does a superb job with bringing together faith, intrigue, suspense and mystery. I was drawn in from the very first page and did not put it down until the last thrill was had.
Point of View: Rico tells it like it is.
Voice: The message is somewhat hidden but once you find it the meaning flashes through your mind like a bolt of lightening.
Character Development: Although there are several characters in this one the author does well to keep them orderly.
Plot: A thrill ride from beginning to end.
Dialogue: I saw no issues with the dialogue. Seemed natural and non forced.
Pacing: In a few spots the story seemed to slow down but the author was quick on the rebound.
Setting: We all know/suspect this is happening all the time.
Continuity: Just enough left out to make you salivate for the next one in the series (if the author so chooses).
Sins of the Father
on May 02, 2012
Overall Feedback: To be fair from the start again I will state that this is a book written by my wife and my review may be skewed by this. For this reason I will take away one star from the start so it will be an even playing field.
On to the review…
After her first novel “Birthright” I knew I would be in for a good read and that overall I would enjoy the experience. I however had not expected to enjoy myself as much as I did. As all married couples know, we must be supportive of our spouse and the excursions into what makes them happy. I thought I would do just that and give the token husband “I Love It” speech and that would be that. “Birthright” has not been edited so RJ’s penchant for the overuse of words in her storytelling shined through unimpeded. This time though she went for broke and has had “Sins of the Father” edited and a professional cover created to reflect her growth in both her craft and her understanding of how to publish credible work. I was intrigued by the story and how it transformed throughout the pages. I was taken back when all the small details left in the pages became important in the end. To accurately sum it up, this is RJ’s “here I am” and “I have learned to better my writing” book and I am sure others will agree. I still believe she has more to give and I can only say that it can only get better when the author is still striving to learn more about their craft. Sins delivered far above my expectations of what RJ may have been capable of in writing even before it was edited. She took the reviews from “Birthright” and used that criticism to better her own skills instead of whining and pouting and then quitting. Now after reading the edited version of Sins I would have to say that she is serious about her chosen career and she is doing what she can to be the best. Sins is a great possibility to be her breakout work and I hope it does just that for her. Not because I am her husband but because I am an avid reader (300 books last year) and this has got to be the best I have read since “Indie Chicks”. After reading this book I was actually excited to talk to the author, in person, about what they wrote. I can not believe it but when I look back I was so acting like a fan. So go ahead and at least sample the book. After the sample (50 percent) I am sure you will agree.
Point of View: The story is third person from Bowen/Lucian’s mind.
Voice: In each story we find ourselves relating to the characters in our own way but I really feel that RJ was telling us a little about her feelings as a child in this one. It is only up to us to read between the lines.
Character Development: You find yourself trying to protect Bowen/Lucian through your minds eye and trying to shake Aaron loose from his lost faith. Lena starts off brusk but ends up as your favorite busy body.
Plot: There are things in this universe that defy explanation so this could be true or it could be myth but you will follow along with a dry mouth and panic in your heart for the black is always there.
Dialogue: Seeing that this takes place in the “Midwest” I would have to say the dialogue was spot on for the present day characters. The Welsh dialogue was intriguing to see included as was seeing the author jump back in time and still manage to keep up with the dialogue used.
Pacing: If you are looking for a coffee table read, move on, if not then pull up a comfy chair, blanket and good drink because you will not want to put it down.
Setting: RJ was able to move in and out of past and present settings without disturbing the story. She also was able to keep the descriptions concise but leave room for the reader to imagine where they were without being handheld there.
Continuity: No issues here. RJ was able to lead the reader along and give tidbits here and there but not give away the entire plot. She then ties everything off in the end superbly. The reader will have a moment of “wow” that was why they said this or did this and that is where that came from or that is why that happened. Impressive to the last period.