Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Exiles: A Mystery In Paris by Lawrence J. Epstein


The basic premise of this story is about a young man named Daniel that is fresh out of the war, where he saw many horrible things that have forever changed him. After the war he decides to go to Paris to become a writer. Arriving with very little money he luckily meets and become friends with a book shop owner who gives him a job, money and a place to live. Also on his first day in Paris there is a murder of the owner of a local literary magazine, and from this you find out that Daniel is very perceptive and is pushed to solve the crime, but he does not want to because to do so would mean he has to face his worst memory.

When it comes to the story itself, I have to say it is one of the most beautifully written stories I have read in a while. The language is reminiscent to a beloved classic novel by a great author from our past. But just because a novel is beautifully written does it make it worth reading? Personally I find this novel to be just so-so, meaning the plot of the story is good, but the execution not so much. The author mentions how many people go to Paris to write because they know their way around words, but lack the skill to properly write a story, and many times I felt that this statement rang true for this story.  The author is very repetitive in the story, with Daniel complaining how he cannot write but does not want to do anything else. Those in the literary community around him try to tell him that he is not good enough to be a writer so he should work with his strengths and investigate the murder, but he does not want to do that he wants to write yet he cannot. Just round and a round and a round. Spoiler though…. He does end up investigating the murder.

The story is also very long, especially considering how little happens in it. So in conclusion, I like the language the author uses and the basic plot, but I wished it was shorter and had more meat to the plot itself and the fat of the repetitiveness cut out. So I would rate this a 2.5 or 3 out of 5.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Severed Threads by: Kaylin McFarren

 
 
I really enjoyed this book, to me it has a little bit of everything for all readers. It has lies, deceit, romance, treasure hunting, fighting, and of course some good ole lovin hehe. I also have to say the author does an amazing job at capturing the readers attention from the very beginning and keeps it, which is very difficult, but she does it with ease by giving little hints into the mysteries of the novel, and not giving too much away at one time like I have experienced before with many writers. I will say some may not enjoy how the writer ends pretty much every chapter with a very small cliffhanger, making very difficult to stop reading. This book also gives the reader some back stories of legends that also are extremely entertaining and there is also a ghost element that I liked since it did not come off as being cheesy or too farfetched, but I do like the paranormal stuff so forewarning that there is this element since some may not like it.

Ratings wise I would give this a 4 out of 5 stars..... wait what? Didn't I just say I loved the book?!? Why only 4 stars?!? The reason for this is the one negative I have with this novel and that is the ending to me feels rushed and things not fully explained. Like there is a scene where you find out Rachel has a stalker, and that whole situation is ever fully explained, you find out that the dude is married but stalking her and doesn't want his wife to find out.... and this left me like "huh?". Then Allie's miraculous recovery goes unexplained, but the biggest is after the bog ending fight is weird and feels rushed and confusing. As well as I will say the "cliffhangers" I raved about so much at the beginning of the review does muddle some of the ending and does at first cause some confusion that can upset the reader, since you read Chase is pulled from the ocean and is alive, but then a few pages later the author confuses you when Rachel overhears by the police that another captain has been claimed. If the ending was developed more then this would definitely be a 5 out of 5.
Also this is volume 1, so there will (hopefully) be more coming in this series and in the epilogue it does end with the promise of a new exciting adventure, but also note that most things are explained and wrapped by to the point you could read this as a stand alone novel, so for those not into series you can still enjoy this novel too.

I truly can not wait to see what the next volumes bring and to see how each character develops, especially the rekindled romance between Chase and Rachel.

Friday, February 17, 2017

A RANDOM TRAVELER BY LEO GETZ



As you can probably assume from the title this book is about a guy traveling to random places all over the world, and as the author points out in the preface the book is not written entirely in the same manor. The first half of the book is in a dairy style cataloging his daily events and thoughts, then it changes and you get a quick 30 say summation, and it then changes again the author goes into describing this time at different locations.

Now for what I though of the book, well 110 percent complete honesty, the first half of this book I hated, there is no other way to say than that, I almost did not finish it because of the beginning.
Why? Well first half was like a sponsorship advertisement for contik tours, like something you would read to find out all the things you get to do and see if you buy one of their tour packages, which to me is not a novel I want to spend money on. Then it got worse in the fact that the author was very immature, he made crude jokes about the people on the tour with him and the natives of the places he visited. For example, there was a girl who had a great body but not so great in the face so of course he made the "butterface" joke, then there was the man who smelled and he had to write about that a ton, and the worse was when described the natives as reminding him of people you would see in the home depot parking lot in the mornings looking for work. I just hated the fact that the author was visiting some of the most beautiful places fill of such great history and culture, and instead of giving the reader an inside look at these places, something that you wouldn't get from a advertisement, you get childish jokes and just harsh judgemental stories.

BUT.... I will say it gets better....

THANK GOD lol.....

Once the author switches formatt you do get that inside look and you learn about these places finally, I loved his description of Qatar and the boat ride to Daydream Island. To me the changes in writing style shows a progression in maturity for the author, that this trip in its entirety is him growing up and because of this I really learned to love the book. In the story the author mentions how being away from what most call "civilization" and going to these countries that do not have what we have really makes a person grateful and that to me is again him showing how traveling changed him, matured him, and gave him a deeper connection with life. While he is on Daydream Island he states "So I guess sometimes you have to go out in the middle of nowhere, even to a remote farm where there's nothing to do, the most boring place you can think of, to find excitement" and to me this sums up the book. So in conclusion, the book is of average length and the first half is pretty crappy, but if you just stick with it, it is completely worth it!

Thursday, February 16, 2017

The Lady Who Loved Bones By: Jack Hazen



With any review I always like to start by letting the reader know how it was to read the book, so this book is very long and it is not a light easy read. You most likely will not pick up this novel and automatically get wrapped up and engrossed in the plot or imagery and i feel the main reason for this is the fact that it is a story made up of a lot of other stories, to the point it almost reminds you of a textbook. So the basic premise of the book is a woman named Hannah going on an expedition through the west to find dinosaur bones. It is set in the early 1900s so it deals with the issues of the time, like the trials and wars with the native Americans. Hannah is highly educated, so while on the journey she is constantly telling stories about pretty much everything, which is where the textbook factor comes in. At first these tales she tales are neat since they are very informative, but once you get over halfway done with the novel they are still good and informative, but you wish the writer would just get to the freakin' point and let the story itself progress. The author also features full song lyrics in the novel, which I feel it was his way of adding more meaning and depth to the story, since this would be something in a classic novel that in school you would look at the symbolism and write lengthy research papers on, BUT that does not work here since this is not a classic novel written by a world renowned author, so it just adds more length to a story that is already way too long. Also this novel is not for younger audiences for sure since there is lots of sex jokes, racism, and gory torture and when i say gory i mean gory the author goes to great detail of bodily mutilations like scalping and castration. The book also is very repeative, it seem like in the story every night around the camp fire the same conversations happen, you have a preacher who is racist and sexist, so he is constantly telling everyone they are going to Hell and that blacks and women should not be given the right to vote, but then he stays drunk most of the time. Then you have Hex who plays Hannah's somewhat love interest who is constantly making jokes at Hannah about sex, which she tells him she will not do with him unless they are married. Then one member is transgendered, meaning it is a man that dresses, acts, and lives as a woman and the men in the travel party are constantly bringing up and making fun off. So if you were to strip away the "stories" or for me lectures, the repeative crude jokes, the songs, and torture you have a pretty good story that does have enough action to keep the reader interested.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

SWEET: BY LISA HAHN

  

 
 
SWEET
 
BY: LISA HAHN
 
 
   I will just start out this review by stating for me this book was neither bad nor good, it was just your average romance novel, but with that being said I will explain the pros and cons I see in this books. So to start on a positive note I will say what I liked about this book. First, this is a short simple read, and when I say it is an easy read I am speaking to the fact that it is not a book you have to pay attention to every single word and line in order to keep up with the story, so you can skip over words here and there as many do and you will still understand what is going on with the story. Second, it is a nice romantic story that leaves you with a happily ever after feeling. Third, from what I can tell even though the title of the book states this is the first book in the series this is a standalone novel, so no cliffhangers.
            Now for the cons. First the story is completely unoriginal, it is your typical love struggle of girl and boy falling for each other, but cannot be together yet in the end somehow they find a way to make their love work and live happily ever after. So on that same note to me this story line did have a lot of potential that could have been explored but the author failed to do so, instead just gave the reader another typical romance. As well the story surrounds a ballet school, but when the main character Catherine or “Cat” gets her starring role, the first opening performance was complete skipped over and truthfully the aspect of dance is really a backburner topic, that I really wish the author had done more research in and really included that since I feel this would have given the storyline more depth and made it slightly less typical. Then the males lead of the story, Dmitri, also has this backstory that I feel could have been explored that also would have given the storyline more depth. For instance, his accident that derailed his career, the reader is never really told what happened, was it his fault? Was he drinking? Did someone purposefully injure him? These are just a few off the top of my head that could have been question the author asked themselves to give and extra story a little extra, so again it would not be so typical. So in conclusion, if you want an easy read that ends in a happy ending with no cliffhangers, this you will love this book, but if you are not into that and want stories with a little more realism and “meat on their bones” then I would skip it. This is the first book of a series so I am hoping as the author writes and gets into the rhythm of her stories they will improve.

Friday, January 27, 2017

The Lord of Desire




The Lord of Desire

By: L.L. Rideau

 

Before starting this book there is one very important factor the reader must take into consideration, and that this book is a prequel to a new series by the author entitled “Breaking a Cycle”. This is important since the book is very short, only 95 pages, which makes it extremely hard to get proper character and story development, but since it is only a prequel or more like an introduction to the characters we will learn more about in upcoming full length novels and to provide some background information, it makes it easier to understand the length. The story itself is an enjoyable read, that gives a big build to a climax and resolution that I would say are not as grand as the buildup. The story is your “harlequin romance” type romance novel, which means it has the “perfect happily ever after” ending where the main character, Massey gets her man and maybe a new addition to the family. So in that aspect the novel is predictable, but for an easy read like this it can be nice. 

                The novel is categorized as an erotic novel, so the next question would be on how does it holds up in that aspect. There are some spicy sex scenes, but very few, the sex scenes do not make an appearance until the book itself its over 60 percent complete, which is a letdown. As well as they are not overly graphic in detail, this is an aspect that again mirrors things typical of harlequin novels. So would I recommend this book? For someone looking for an easy, quick romance to read yes, but if you are someone that really wants to get caught up in the romance and characters, then no , I would just wait for the novels that this is a prequel for to come out.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The Rose That Grew From Concrete - Tupac Amaru Shakur


 
 

YA-A collection of poetry written by the rapper between 1989 and 1991, before he became famous. The poems are passionate, sometimes angry, and often compelling. Selections are reproduced from the originals in Shakur's handwriting, personalized by distinctive spelling and the use of ideographs (a drawing of an eye for I, etc.), and complete with scratch outs and corrections. With the exception of "In the Event of My Demise," all of the pieces are accompanied by typed text, which leaves his spelling intact. Some poems are also accompanied by his drawings. A few black-and-white photographs appear throughout. A preface by Shakur's mother, a foreword by Nikki Giovanni, and an introduction by his manager, Leila Steinburg, in whose writing group the poems were written, complete this unique volume.
 
 
I LOVE this book. It is a collection of poems by the famous rapper. In this book you get to see how he actually wrote the poems and then on the following page see the typed poem. If you are a Tupac fan you NEED this book of his poems! This is by far a haunting look into his life, heart and even his soul. For example, there is a poem in the collection where he talks about how he knows he is going to die young. He talks about his struggles with trusting women and others with his heart. He even has poems dedicated to other famous people like Marilyn Monroe. I got this book over six months ago and I have read the poems over and over. It is one book I do not think I will get ever tired of. If you have ever had your heartbroken, struggled with feelings that you are unloved and unwanted, or had to struggle through hardships of life you will find at least one poem in this book to connect to.
 
I love that this book was released not just because it is a great collection of poems but because it shows the real side of a legend. It shows that he was just like everyone else. I have read many books of poems by famous people from Alicia Keys to Jewel and I have yet to find a book of poems by a famous person that is better than this one. Hell its been a really long time since I have found a book of poems that has moved like this one has period!
 
So PLEASE check this book out!

 
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