on April 23, 2012
I absolutely loved this book!! The premise was unique and one I hadn’t really seen before. The characters of Cassie and Trent/Jeremy were great, and I thought they had really good chemistry and their relationship was very sweet. Even though he was kind of a jerk at first he had his reasons and all he wanted to do was save her. I loved the way the story would change from Cassie and Trent’s point of views, but at first I was confused by it. I think it would’ve helped to have the chapters labeled because sometimes I didn’t know who I was reading at first. But I read this whole book in one sitting literally!
I also really liked the way that this author writes. I could perfectly see the scenes and felt like I was fully in them without them being too over described. She made nice use of all the senses and I was fully involved in the story from the first page to the last. I’ll be looking for more of her works in the future. Definitely recommend to fans of paranormal romance and YA.
A Luminous Future
on June 02, 2012
This book made me laugh, cry, ponder a different time and place in history many people only now give a passing thought to in history classes. So totally transported I was to this world Mr. Teodor Flonta writes of, I found myself getting emotional (ANGRY!) at the way he was treated in school, worried every time they came for his dad, happy when he moves to Italy and finds his lovely wife, and shedding a tear as he celebrated the birth of his own grandchild. My absolute favorite line- “Here I was, not yet one day old, as squashed and dazed as any other newborn, and ready for school”. HA! What a moving story and one that I most highly recommend. There’s only the mildest of language and sex (nothing more than pg, pg13) and I think people of all ages would benefit from reading this book.
Crucible of Dust (The Clockwork Ascendancy - A Steampunk Saga)
on June 05, 2012
AMAZING. Crucible of Dust is the first work I’ve read by debut author C. James Leone, and I certainly hope it won’t be the last. I really enjoyed this read, and I loved how the story unfolded with a patient grace and brilliant elegance. This was a refreshing change of pace from so many books that throw everything at you right off the bat. Much of the beginning of the story is introducing us to a motley cast of characters and solidifying their role in the hero’s quest for redemption. The last third or so is the ultimate showdown between good and evil that left me hungry for more. This is an excellent start to what I hope is more work from this author, as I would be very eager to see what happens with the characters (those still alive, that is) in the future.
A Song Apart
on June 11, 2012
I read this book in one sitting! It was a fast, light read, but packed with drama and growth. It’s not what I’d consider “fluffy”, as there were some serious themes and moments that made this novel deeper and more complex than it may first seem. I like that there was a depth to the characters, and even though Kevin is living out sort of a “fantasy” life, he stays grounded in reality. Sure he meets and hooks up with a rising pop star, but the novel also touches on things like 9/11, autism, family conflicts, and harsh judging. I’d even go so far as to say that Bullying and intimidation were themes here, along with the difficulty of standing up to those intimidators and doing the right thing and believing in oneself.
When Earthlings Weep
on June 23, 2012
I read this book in one sitting! It was confusing at first, so many characters coming and going, and I was unsure what was happening. But things ironed themselves out and I could see what was going on, and it got really good! The main character Mickey Thorn is a human/alien hybrid who has these abilities that make him a target…and a threat. He has the ability to time travel and do a bunch of other really cool things…including destroying the universe. Does he? You just have to read it and find out for yourself! Very entertaining and perfect for those who like any sort of fantasy/paranormal/science-fiction reads.
The Crow God's Girl
on Aug. 08, 2012
Crow God’s Girl by Patrice Sarath combines many elements of popular modern fantasy and mixes it up with an otherworldly feel of the past. No easy feat, to say the least. There was so much going on in this book I felt at times I should be taking notes to keep track of who was who… This wasn’t a light and easy read for me, I really had to focus on the story….it is an epic fantasy with a large cast of characters, some more developed and clearer to imagine than others. The pace was good, however, I found the last third to be the best part…I literally could not stop reading! Overall the plot was stunning, and the writing excellent. There were some punctuation misses, nothing too glaring, and I’d recommend this book for older teens and adults, even though it is YA it is complex and intelligently created so even older readers will like it.
Margaret of the North
on Aug. 21, 2012
I'm a sucker for a great romance and Margaret of the North by E. Journey did not disappoint! I loved the language and the tone of the narrative as we continue on with the saga of Margaret and John’s life after the end of “North and South”. There were times where I thought the pacing slowed a bit too much for my liking, and there were some excessive details that I thought did little or nothing to add to the richness of the story. But other than the few places that I skimmed over I thought the story was absolutely wonderful and I especially appreciated how the author really made it her own…she wasn’t trying to duplicate the original, but created a wholly fresh spin-off that still maintained the delicious flavor of the original. Definitely recommend for fans of the series, and of historical fiction and romance.
on Sep. 12, 2012
This was a truly great story. Hands down. Right off the bat we are swept into the world of the local surfers Randy, Scott, Terry, and Jeff, who have a dream about building a hotel in Costa Rica. So of course they need money…lots of it. At first they try selling drugs, but after a while they are forced to find other avenues of cash flow. With their unique positions of working at an airline, the boys devise a plan that exceeds even their wildest expectations. And then the real trouble starts. I literally devoured this book every chance I had because it was so interesting! It was really cool to see it from the criminal POV, and there were just so many other details in there it seems as if this book could have only been written from someone who was there (hmmmmm…). But this was a really great crime novel and I recommend it to anyone who enjoys an engrossing read.
Quest for a Dream
on Sep. 21, 2012
This was a very different type of novel that what I normally read, but I can’t say that I was disappointed. It was unusual in the sense that it dealt more with surrealism and some mild existentialism, so it isn’t exactly a light and fluffy beach read –yet it does have a very easy-going tone about it. If that sounds contradictory, it’s just that the author delves into some heavy mental subjects matter, yet it never takes itself too serious and has many laugh-out-loud moments. The main character Dani never loses her sense of humor, and her friends are also great for lessening the tension. I didn’t see any editing mistakes which is good, and thought the plot was very creative.
Kingdom of the Snark: The Quest for the Sword
on Jan. 06, 2013
Pure unexpected awesomeness! There’s NOTHING worse than reading a book that tries to be funny (or punny) and fails. Well, this sure wasn’t the case here! I’m pretty jaded with these types of books cause I’ve read so many, but I was genuinely impressed with the way that the author created a sort of parallel comedy world to one that felt familiar, and gave it a bitingly sarcastic twist. But at the same time there was a great storyline and you want to see how it will all turn out. Really enjoyed it and am looking forward to reading the next one, especially because it leaves us right in the middle of a climax moment! Ahhhh!!
Return of the Crown
on Jan. 14, 2013
This is one of those books where the synopsis (the book description) does not do it justice at all. Not that it’s bad, I just don’t know how intrigued I’d be to read it just on that alone. It just sounds pretty run-of-the-mill for these types of books. Well, I’m glad I gave it a shot because this book was amazing! And so much happens, and there are so many cool characters and magical creatures, it’s hard to describe, you just have to experience it for yourself. I loved the epilogue and hope this mean that there will be another, although this novel does seem like a standalone. Oh well, one can hope!
The Seekers' Garden
on Feb. 04, 2013
I must admit at first I wondered where everything was going in this novel. I was instantly curious, though, and enjoyed each of the different characters (Marcia, Iris, Zane, Lea, ) and thought they felt authentic and real. This book is constantly shifting point of views, so if this is something that bothers you, than this might not be the book for you. I thought it worked wonderfully as it gave us a bird’s-eye-view into everyone’s lives, but without revealing too much. As I mentioned, at first I wondered where it was all headed, but when the pieces came together I was highly impressed with the way the Isa Ritchie managed to weave such a remarkable story. I’ll definitely be looking forward to reading more from this author in the future.
The Angela Suite
on March 20, 2014
"The Angela Suite” by Anthony Green is one sexy and dark drama novel! But it’s also funny, sad, and feels genuine. But this is the kind of book I like to read because I’m not sure I’d actually want to experience these types of relationships or encounters myself, but they sure are juicy to read about! Terence and Angela were patients at a rehab center and they run into each other again several months later. She’s an alcoholic lesbian but they embark on an unexpected relationship that ends… well, you just have to see for yourself how it ends. From blindfolds to ‘tapes’, this duo pushes the boundaries and there is a price to pay. A fascinating book, one that isn’t without its issues but still a captivating read. Recommended for mature readers only.
Defender of the Flame
on June 10, 2014
"Defenders of the Flame” is the first novel I’ve read from this author, Sylvia Engdahl, but now that I have, I’m really interested in reading more from her. This book was so good!!! I always find SciFi novels to be a bit of a mixed bag, with most of them recycle the same tired, overused plot clichés, while a few branch out with fresh new ideas and original thinking. Fortunately for me this novel was the latter, and I was impressed with the quality of writing. Then I found out the author has quite a body of work, and it is evident that she has really honed her craft. I love the universe Ms. Engdahl created and the descriptions were amazing, like we were really there in the story or watching a movie play out (now there’s an idea!) At the end she mentions how this was technically supposed to wrap up a series, however it works great as a standalone and I will check out her other books now.
Legio XVII: Roman Legion at War
on June 10, 2014
Legio XVII: Roman Legion at War” is well-researched and genuinely interesting. A great story that would fit nicely amongst the shelves in any major bookstore. I loved how I felt like I learned something that I never knew before, lots of things, actually. And while military fiction isn’t normally my thing, I’ve really liked movies like “Gladiator” and books like “Unbroken” and while I know aren’t the same exactly, this book kind of reminded me of a weird blend between the two… plus lots of battles and fighting. I’m not sure what was “fact” and what was “fiction” and I suppose that’s the point. The descriptions were amazing – you can feel the heat on your skin, the dust in your eyes, the smell of blood and the stench of death around you. And even though I was unfamiliar with some of the terminology and phrasing, history really came alive in these pages. The maps and drawings were really helpful, as were the appendices at the end. There were some confusing time jumps and at times I thought it almost sounded like a ‘report’ of events as opposed to a novel. I’m not sure if the author will write more in the future (I hope so!) because he is really very good, I just think it could have benefitted from more dialogue and conversations moving the story forward as opposed to so much narrative. But it was really very good and I’m going to recommend to my father who is a Roman history fanatic!
The Daughter of the Sea and the Sky
on June 20, 2014
This is the third book I’ve now read from this author, the first two being “Along the Watchtower” and “There Comes a Prophet”. I really enjoyed both of them and gave them and the author high praise for his skillful writing and unique style of storytelling that is original and fresh, but completely relatable. Well, as much as I loved the other two, in my opinion “The Daughter of Sea and Sky” was even better!! I didn’t want to stop reading until I’d finished the whole thing, and when I did I had tears in my eyes. Mr. Litwack is, as I’ve said, a great writer and storyteller. I especially appreciate that this novel makes you think, and even though its technically a ‘fantasy-world’, in a way it’s a great metaphor for not only how things are now (always one side against other), but perhaps see how both sides need each other to flourish. I don’t want to give away too much. Just read it – you won’t be disappointed.
on Nov. 22, 2014
"Thadius” by Lawrence BoarerPitchford is a different type of book than I normally read, but I very much enjoyed it, nonetheless. It is a combination of historical fiction (as it is set in a time and place near the ancient Roman Republic), but also combines the elements of mystery, political thriller, and fast-paced action. The writing was very descriptive and the language used felt very authentic for creating the believable world-building of the era. This was a richly captivating book that was unlike any I’d read. Recommend for adults as there are some mature themes and scenes.
on Feb. 06, 2015
having read three other books by this author earlier this summer (The Birds Of Flight Series) and really enjoying them, I was very eager to read Mr. Erickson’s latest novella, “Intelligent Design: Revelations”. And while the subject matter and even the genre is quite different, (the Birds of Flight series were more political thrillers; this is a Sci/Fi adventure) I enjoyed it just as much! This was a great, fast-paced plot driven novella that combined a lot of different elements to make it be much more than just a “stock” sci/fi book. There is a lot of creativity here, and interesting subplots that all tie together towards the end to put things in a different “light” so to speak. I liked that it wasn’t cliché or predictable, and I easily devoured it in the span of less than an evening. If I have one complaint it’s that I wish it was longer! A great read for any sci/fi action lover.
Remembrance Part One: A Time For War
on Feb. 25, 2015
"Remembrance: Part 1- a time for war” by A.K. Stauber is about a girl named Anna Krasynyk who is a survivor of the horrors of Nazi Germany. She witnessed her family being killed and is forced to flee, meeting other interesting characters along the way. This was unlike anything I’ve read before, and it surprised me how much I liked it, especially considering the somber backdrop. It’s tough to think about how this really happened, and that humans are capable of such horrors. The way that the author describes things makes it feel very realistic and lifelike. I am looking forward to part 2 of this storyline, as the ending seemed open for continuing.
Field of Vision
on March 27, 2015
Field of Vision by Michel Jarvis was an unexpected delight for me. In way it almost reminded me of the movie “The Beach” but way better! This one has a much richer, more complex plot and wide range of fascinating characters, and the island itself is practically a character itself! I love the way this author writes! It’s so beautiful and creates such vivid imagery in your mind. But then later on in the book there is great action and even long narration that makes you look through the literary lens a bit differently. Was different than what I was expecting. Seems to have a lot of knowledge about island life and its natives! I thought the ending was well done and I have no reservations recommending this book to all.
Tukie Tales Complete Series: A New Beginning for a Better Tomorrow
on Sep. 22, 2015
Book 1 - In the first book of the “Tukie Tales” series, we are introduced to the mystical and adorable “Tukies”, the magical creatures (That resemble adorable stuffed animals) that live in the woods behind young Amy and Jake’s house. Right away we are pulled into this wonderful fantasy/reality world with the engaging text and bright, colorful pictures. The magical Tukies are from a land far away but live in the woods, and they help Amy and Jake find their way home again after a storm hits and they get lost. A great, fast-paced and fun read for young children, and adults will appreciate the positive message it teaches.
Book 2 - A creative, magical fantasy with real-life lessons that is aimed at the 4-9ish crowd, and parents will love the positive lessons of strength and morality and building good character! It stands out to me in terms of originality, even if some elements are familiar, it still has a unique voice and writing style that makes it feel fresh and exciting for children (and adults!). I definitely enjoyed the world-building and creativity. The story flows effortlessly, and the authors have the ability to entice the reader into this adventurous and fun-filled world with the Tukies. Great book in the collection. Ready for more!
Book 3 - I just love these “Tukie Tales” the idea of the ‘real world’ blending in with the magical fantasy world (with talking animals and make-believe characters) There are fun adventures to be had, but also important life lessons to be learned, and this is a great vehicle for teaching them to the younger children (5-8 year olds) It is very creative and thinks outside the box as far as storylines for younger kids go, but it has some familiar favorite tropes that are sure to delight. And the illustrations are just fabulous!
Book 4 - Another wonderful winner. Each story is better and better, in my opinion, probably because we get to see more scenes and different experiences, and see different sides of the Tukies. This one, “Helping is Fun” shows the upside to helping others, pulling on experiences from the earlier stories. And I just have to say that the picture of the turtle on the xylophone is the cutest thing I’ve ever seen! Teaches more valuable life skills, even ones that aren’t maybe the focal point (like being careful when crossing a road). This one was a bit funnier than the others because of the joking tone. But still a wonderful and valid message that is very important.
Book 5 - I think this whole book I really something special, and children will really enjoy the colorful drawing and enchanted stories. We sympathize immediately with the animals, and learn the importance of compassion and trying to do the right thing. “When kindness is given, it is returned”. A wonderful message that really all ages can benefit from. I think that this story “Kindness Counts” was the sweetest of the 5 tales, and such a valuable message to get across. All the stories are excellent in their own way, but this one was my favorite. Loved the ending and really hope there will be more of these wonderful and magical books in the future!
Flight of the Black Swan
on Oct. 27, 2015
WOW!! One can always depend on J.M. Erickson and his “Birds of Flight” series to entertain. Each book (or novella) very well written, and I’m continuously impressed with Mr. Erickson’s amazing capacity to come-up with new story lines that actually keep me interested, continue to build on the other characters, and all makes sense for the story arc. All in all a good read. I only wish it was longer!
Falcon: Birds of Flight
on Oct. 27, 2015
Intense and complex, “Falcon: Birds of Flight” by J.M. Erickson picks up where the previous novel “Eagle” left off, and takes it to new depths and heights. I was so eager to read this one after the crazy cliffhanger of “Eagle” and was excited to watch the intrigue unfold, and in a somewhat different manner than before. There was a lot going on at once, and sometimes it was a bit confusing, but I still liked the flow of everything and it all ends up making sense. Like how the author kept it fresh and once again I find myself eagerly anticipating the next
The Prince: Lucifer's Origins
on Oct. 27, 2015
J.M. Erickson has done it again! Wow, I loved the story as much as the others of his I’ve read (check them out… he’s got an AMAZING backlist!) As always the world-building is brilliant, detailed, and puts us right in the story, and the characters are dynamic and fully realized. One thing in particular I enjoy about J.M. Erickson’s writing is not only that he can make the most fantastical settings feel totally believable (this is Sci/fi after all), but I like that he writes such strong women characters, something I don’t see much of in this genre. The book can get fairly complex sometimes, but I like that kind of science fiction, and you still care about the characters. The story touches on so many facets of the human experience: science, religion, history, evolution, biology, physics, good vs. evil… a great experience and I hope this storyline continues! Highly recommend!!
Intelligent Design II: Apocalypse
on Oct. 27, 2015
I really should know by now that even if I ever wonder if I’m going to “like” the book I’m reading by J.M. Erickson, I need to remember that by the time I finish, I will be blown away… as always! Time and time again this author amazes me with his fearless, inventive, and highly detailed & realized plotlines and elaborate world-building. And what’s even more impressive is the amount of complexity and multi-layered plots we get in a shorter space…. “Intelligent Design II: Apocalypse” isn’t some hefty Sci/Fi tome, but probably novella length (or abouts), and I finished it pretty quickly…. But there is a lot to absorb and at times I did feel a little lost. But even when I felt some things going over my head, it all eventually came together in the end… which felt a bit anticlimactic, actually but was overall satisfying. Needs to be read after the first one as it all ties together (this is not a standalone).
The Kidnapping of Inda Jackson
on Dec. 09, 2015
From the opening pages of “The Kidnapping of Inda Jackson” I knew it would be different from the books I’ve been reading lately and I was right! Ms. Foth sets of the scene and characterizations in a skillful way that not only pulls us in, but creates great visualizations and elicits genuine emotional investments. I truly cared about the characters’ fates, and was shocked and saddened at certain things (no spoilers). An interesting and diverse cast of characters, along with several intriguing plotlines interwoven against unique setting makes this a memorable read for me. Highly recommend.
on Dec. 16, 2015
Okay, “Gol” is basically nonstop addicting awesome. This is the second book I’ve read from J.W. Webb, and I now know that when I read this author that I’m down for the count, as he has such a way with words and with writing characters that you just don’t want to leave their amazing world for a moment. This is a little different from his first book I read (“The Haven”), but still maintains the unique, passionate style I love so much – original and creative storylines, and lots of complexity that goes far deeper than just surface events. There is a real psychological element here that speaks to you through the mystical creatures and characters, and the mere mortals as well. I appreciate how Webb writes these totally ‘out-there’ stories (literally), but they are completely believable because of his skillful world-building and sticking to the rules he creates. A must read for anyone who enjoys action, fantasy, and great writing.
The Urban Boys: Discovery of the Five Senses
on Jan. 09, 2016
How to describe this book, other than say it is by far one of the most surprisingly interesting, original novels I’ve read in a long time! I have already loaned it to my sister to read, and my mother is after her. The author K.N. Smith pulls us in to the story right from the beginning pages, and skillfully narrates a wide-ranging storyline full of complex and deeply emotional issues. In my opinion it really is the characters who made this story so good, each so original and conflicted in their own way, and we pull for them throughout their personal journeys and how they connect to each other. A memorable read and a keeper for sure. Recommend for fans of YA fantasy and literary fiction. Would love to read more from K.N. Smith in the future.
on Jan. 14, 2016
I read a lot of fantasy and Science Fiction, so this is a genre I’m familiar with. Having read several others of J.M. Erickson’s books and really enjoying them, I was curious to see how he would deliver in this one “Rogue Event” and if it would be as good as the others. Mr. Erickson is unarguably a very talented writer, but more than that he genuinely impressed me with his thorough world-building and sheer creativeness on many levels in such a short amount of time (this is a novella). All too often I read works that feel clearly derivative of other books, and although I appreciate literary influences (as is felt here as well), when something this original comes along it is a refreshing change of pace! Some of the writing was downright lyrical in the simple elegance of the prose, and other times I was nearly breathless from the intensity and violent passion. I finished it in less than two hours, and went through so many highs and lows, it felt like a rollercoaster of a full-length novel! I was hoping for a different ending, but it was powerful nonetheless. A must read for Sci-Fi fans.
Gallery Pieces: An Art Mystery
on Feb. 08, 2016
This book was terrific! Once I started reading, “Gallery Pieces” by Larry Witham, I didn’t want to stop until I’d finished the whole thing. It pulls you in from the beginning, and I enjoyed the author’s “voice” and style of writing. The interweaving plotlines were well-crafted and not predictable, surprising considering it had some familiar tropes and I was bracing myself for it to be cliché. However, I thought Mr. Witham did a wonderful job of making the story wholly his own, while keeping true to the essence of the characters and their roles. There was just enough mystery to keep me guessing, and I appreciated the philosophical, almost existential approach that gave this book an unexpected depth and intelligence I wasn’t necessarily expecting. Was satisfied with the ending, although I’m hoping there might be more. Recommend for fans of suspense/ mystery, and well-written lit-fiction.
Friend & Foe - Book 2
on April 30, 2016
I absolutely loved this book, and I’m usually pretty on the fence about a lot of these types of books…In a way the characters were pretty much what you would expect from the first book and they all had their own distinct personalities and enough quirkiness so as not to feel like the cliché stereotypes. All the characters were very different and we never knew their motives entirely so the book left you guessing as you read without making it predictable. Plot was never boring and kept on rolling. (I would give you a summary, but there were so many subplots that it would take forever). Writing was smooth and the descriptions made you feel like you were right there in the action, whether it was with Ben or Joe or Sinclair or any of the others. I confess I didn’t *love* the ending…. It just felt a little too anticlimactic after all that happened, but it was still a compelling read and definitely worth my time. Recommend for fans of Daniel Silva, Tom Clancy, Brad Thor…
Friend & Foe
on April 30, 2016
oh wow, I enjoyed this book and read the whole thing in one week, which is fast for me, especially considering I have no free time at all to read these days, But it just seemed to go by so fast and I never wanted to stop reading it, even late into the evening. I was mesmerized by the world Nik Olsen creates, one so realistic and authentic, yet something a city gal like myself from California will never experience. But it shed so much light on several topics that do affect us today, and even though I’m not a huge ‘political or ‘war story’ reader, those elements added the flavor and authenticity needed to really bring the characters and story to life. Too much happens in this book to cover properly in a short review so you really just have to read it for yourself… you will not be disappointed!
Not Black and White: From The Very Windy City to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
on April 30, 2016
whoa,… what an insane book! Holy bananas!! Okay, I don’t even know where to begin because so much happens and I don’t want to give anything away… “Not Black and White…” by author G.A. Beller is one of the most original and just flat-out interesting thriller fiction novels I’ve ever read. I liked it for so many different reasons, first the writing was stellar. The strong word choice and fluid, fast-paced narrative and witty dialogue makes it a very easy book to sink into. There are enough descriptions where you can picture everything perfectly, but not so much that it bogs down the pacing. Because of the overarching storylines relating to real events (or plausible hypotheticals) it just felt more “intelligent” than I expected and extremely relevant to today’s political landscape. It makes you think a bit what’s really going on, and worse – what could possibly happen. Recommend for fans of political thriller/suspense.
Earth Angel (Angels and Seers: Book One)
on June 08, 2016
"Earth Angel” by Stephanie Woods was a captivating novel and very impressive for a debut. There is such strong, vivid writing, and the characters are all fascinating, flawed, and going through their own drama. GREAT character development, and everything just felt “authentic” for lack of a better word – even though some parts are dark and definitely ‘fantastical’. Dialogue, interactions, scenes, descriptions…The formatting is messed up in some places and it could use some editing. The beginning seemed a bit slow and there are definitely some ‘familiar” topes here, but it develops its own personality and identity and the pace quickly picks up. Not perfect. But all in all a very good read that I’d recommend even to those who don’t normally read this sort of thing …try it, you’ll be pleasantly surprised! Ready for part 2, “Angel on My Shoulder”!
on June 21, 2016
I was hooked from the opening pages of “Portia’s Revelation” by Rich Tenaglia and my interest never faded for a moment! I loved the creative and strong characters and the unique storyline that continued to unfold and surprise. Just when you think you know what’s happening, something comes along to throw a wrench in it. This is good because I can’t stand books that are super predictable. And this one isn’t. Although there are some familiar themes and tropes at play, Tenaglia brings a fresh voice and makes it all his own. I’ve read a ton of historical/fantasy fiction over the years so I’m rarely surprised by anything anymore but I can say that this Mr. Tenaglia managed to do it. I appreciated the solid pace and the descriptive details that really brought the story to life – world building is absolutely crucial in selling a ‘fantasy’ story and it is done quite nicely here, and thought the Roman element was very cool (liked the gladiator scenes) Enjoyed the positive, uplifting message of the Spiritae and thought the ‘code’ was very cool. Recommend for anyone (adults) who enjoy a well-written, action packed, alternative reality novel with unexpected twists and riveting characters.
on Aug. 31, 2016
"Erin Moynahan” by Brian George is one of the more interesting and creative YA/ dystopian/action novels I’ve read lately! I was completely drawn in from the opening pages as the ‘military’ world-building is set with Erin’s father (which is crucial in later developments) and we meet Erin as a young child. When she almost dies, her mother gives her a serum and it turns her into something quite special... Won’t give too much away, but I was surprised that even for a premise that sounded familiar enough in this genre, it felt very fresh and unpredictable, and not like something I’ve read a million times before, which is refreshing (and rare in this genre!). I do think it could have benefitted from some better editing, and there were parts that were definitely more ‘telling’ than ‘showing’. But overall his book was well-executed and it was a fun escape from reality, and had a totally action-packed ending that nearly left me breathless. This appears to be a standalone, not part of any series, but it does seem like the door could be open for more adventured of Erin and the gang in the future and if so I’d love to read it! I would recommend this book to fans of YA adventure/action/dystopian.
Assembly Of Planets
on Sep. 27, 2016
"Assembly of Planets” is the first book I’ve read by L.W. Brook, and I hope it’s not the last! (That should answer the author’s question at the end of the book). I found his storytelling to be creative and engaging, and I like that I didn’t feel like I’d read anything like this before – and I read a lot! I was instantly sucked into the book right away with the vivid descriptions of the entities/characters and of Jupiter’s plight, and then how it all explodes into something unpredictable and makes you want to keep reading. I admit I was confused why these were considered ‘novelettes’ when to me they just seemed more like chapters (as they didn’t conclude at the end…). I don’t want to give it away but around the 50% mark things get crazy and I couldn’t put my kindle down after that. This book was well written, expect for a few minor editing issues, and took me on a dramatic ride in space, one that I enjoyed immensely.
on Jan. 04, 2017
This is my first ‘steampunk’ novel and it was very good…… I totally liked this book way more than I even expected to! I was looking for something a little different than my usual reading fare, and this really hit the mark… in fact, now other books will seem too normal or boring by comparison! Loved the way the author described things – the detailing really brought the scenes to life. I literally did not put my kindle down for the last half of the book, at least. I would describe this book as being a very fun, addicting adventure and that is more like a unique fantasy than some serious piece of literature. It’s hard to describe exactly as it incorporates so many elements and crosses several genres. It has a lighthearted quality that made it feel more ‘fun’ even though the plot got tangled and dark at times. But overall it was a wild, entertaining and unpredictable ride and I’m glad I got to meet Leland and Ella (and all the rest…)
Albatross: Birds of Flight—Book One
on March 14, 2017
A riveting read that I finished in the span of an afternoon and evening. It was so good, I couldn't put it down until I reached the end. And when I finished, I immediately started in on the next one! The author has such an easy and engaging writing style, and I liked how we could see from different characters' points of views and what they were thinking. There's a ton of action and I like that the storyline is intelligent and complex enough to keep my attention from start to finish, but not so convoluted that I was ever confused or bored. I thought the characters were well done, and even though I wish I could actually picture what they looked like more (physically), I thought their personalities were pretty believable and fleshed out. I'd never read a story like this before and I can't wait to read more from this author. I've already started in on the next one, "Raven". Recommend to readers who enjoy well thought out and faced-paced thrillers
Raven: Birds of Flight—Book Two
on April 09, 2017
A worthy continuation of the Birds of Flight Series, “Raven” wastes no time jumping right into the drama and picking up the storyline from the first book, “Albatross”. I recommend reading the first one before this as there are things that might be confusing otherwise. Like the first one, I devoured this one in about a day (okay, two), and was completely enraptured in the high-stakes world of espionage and government corruption. I was already used to the author’s writing style from reading the first book, and had many of the characters formed in my mind. But this book stretched the imagination and went even further, and with lots of unpredictable twists. I really am enjoying this series and am ready for the next one now, especially with the cliffhanger ending!
Eagle: Birds of Flight - Book Three
on April 21, 2017
Okay, where is the next one?! We can’t just be left hanging like that, I have to know what happens! Ahhh. Okay, this book was just as good as the first two (read this series in order, it’s worth it), and I really like the way the storyline is playing itself out. The psychological element keeps me guessing, and the action keeps me turning the pages as fast as I can. Again the book starts off right in the middle of the action, and even though it was kind of weird that we are 10% through it before chapter 1 even starts, there is a lot of story set up to catch us up to speed and it really takes off. I just hope I don’t have to wait too long for the next one to be published! A great series that I’ve enjoyed reading
Canadian Insolvency Guide
on Sep. 05, 2017
Okay, I honestly didn’t expect to…considering the serious subject matter and all… but I really liked this book and read it in just a few nights! Very easy to get sucked into and right away the reader is very quickly interested in what the author Earl Sands is saying here. It’s hard to know what going through a bankruptcy (or other financial crisis) is REALLY like unless you’ve experienced it first hand, which none of us hope to do, but it will be a reality for many. Just knowing what you are in for and what to expect and how to handle different situations can be of extraordinary value to many. This book covered a wide variety of topics relating to many different aspects of finances and insolvency/bankruptcy and with great depth and detail but without getting bogged down with the pacing – was interesting the whole way through. For a book that is ‘nonfiction’ I didn’t think it was dry or boring at all, and I always appreciate that! Definitely feel like I learned something valuable here and thank Mr. Sands for sharing his knowledge with others. Even though I may not personally agree with what people have done to get there, this isn’t about judgment, but about dealing with reality and making the best of a bad situation and starting over fresh. Great writing and editing, too. A very polished and impressive feel all around.
on Nov. 13, 2017
this book has it all. Great writing, characters who feel real and are flawed and fascinating – each one brings something new to the table, from Noah to his stepdad, Emily, and even Nick and Chase (ugh) and everyone else in between… Profound and emotional and exciting all rolled into one with lots of OMG moments (with just about everyone!). Great story line and incredible detailing throughout. One thing I noticed that was different about this book as opposed to others in the genre I’ve read, was that in this one it didn’t feel ‘safe’…. I never had the feeling that everything was going to be just fine, and it certainly wasn’t. It was this constant subtle tension that was believable—not contrived—that really sold it to me. To be honest, I’m not sure what to make of the ending… seemed a bit abrupt and almost anticlimactic after all that had happened. Not terrible, just felt flat and I wanted more. Some proofing things that I noticed as well. But I like the overall storyline and glad things ended up the way they did. But the whole experience overall was definitely one worth having and one I will not soon forget. Recommended for mature readers probably.
on March 28, 2018
warning, once you start reading you won’t want to stop until the last page! From the opening pages to the final showdown, this book is basically a nonstop rollercoaster ride of thrills, danger, action, and drama and surprising twists. I liked that it wasn’t predictable and you can tell that the author really enjoys what he is writing about and his characters as the language and actions are very convincing and thoroughly detailed. We really get inside Peter’s head when utilizing the first-person perspective, but are allowed a wider scope when using the 3rd which I appreciated as well, so that we can ‘feel’ the other characters also. Peter is the ‘star’, but really it’s the supporting cast that gives this story its juice. As far as the plot is concerned I give it five stars easy. I liked that is seemed unique and complex, and that it wasn’t easy to figure out the mystery. Presentation-wise it could benefit from another round with the proofreader. But Barney’s passion and talent shines through each sordid, action-packed page, and he can obviously spin a compelling tale that engages our imagination. Definitely has its darker moments, but I have no problem recommending those for fans who enjoy a thrilling, mind-bending experience.
The Boring Days and Awesome Nights of Roy Winklesteen
on April 10, 2018
4 1/2 stars
I had a lot of fun reading “The Boring Days and Awesome Nights of Roy Winklesteen” (phew- that’s a mouthful!) because had a really creative and original plot, and overall the writing is very good with near flawless editing. Not what I’d normally read, I admit, but this is an exciting, energetic, and action-packed tale that will appeal mostly to Middle-Grade and Young Adults with fun characters and interesting storylines. The descriptions were vivid, and the conversations felt genuine – I was surprised by a few things that happened, chuckled out loud several times, and felt invested in outcome, especially what would happen with Roy and the Flyer. I liked his relationship with Bart and thought they made a good pair. However, at times I felt like could have been trimmed down some, as there were a few scenes and conversations that didn’t feel necessary for advancing the plot… more like just unnecessary filler or chit-chat. But not bad, in fact I like how the book got right into the action right away when Roy as a “nightlifer” spots an intriguing sight outside his window late at night and sets him on his awesome summer adventure. Liked that it wasn’t predictable, and the ending was really cute. I think this could actually make a fun series to have Roy find more awesome adventures to discover (just not swimming with sharks, lol) Overall and exciting adventure that was a ton of fun and some enjoyable action. I would recommend to ages 12 and up.
on Sep. 21, 2018
New Wave-The Islands of Anarchy (Book 1)” by debut author Jennifer Ann Shore is the first book I’ve read by this amazing author but I certainly hope it’s not the last! This world she creates here is nicely- conceived, yet simplistic in a way, with a codified set of functions and places in a structured society of islands… one that will face upheaval and rebellion that drives the story. I was pleased with the level of character development throughout, especially with Mol, but also with Julian and of course Sebastian – the plotlines are complex and intelligent which I always appreciate (no ‘dumbing’ down here). There are several big reveals that continue to shift the storyline in unexpected ways, something that even a jaded reader like myself can fully appreciate and still be surprised by. This is great because nothing I hate more than predictable cliché tropes. I would also like to commend the level of professionalism in this novel, from the cool cover, to the formatting, to the editing and the overall execution– all top notch. This book has a more literary tone, and some readers may bemoan the lack of high-stakes action or graphically romantic interludes (there are spicy scenes and action, don’t get me wrong. Just not ‘over-the-top), but I think that works well here and keeps the focus on the idea of the story (the bigger concept) rather than character actions. Different, yet entertaining. And I think the title of the book and series captures the spirit perfectly Very cool. Looking forward to more and will be recommending to my friends.