Monday, March 9, 2015

Reading and Reviewing: Something for Everyone!

When not writing or chasing chihuahuas around the backyard, I'm usually reading. Here are the best from the last few months. Check out all my reviews on

Hocus Pocus 1ST Edition
Hocus Pocus 
by Kurt Vonnegut
32 used & new from $2.83

 Creative Satire! 

Vonnegut has created a fictional satire comparing a prison riot to Vietnam. 
His main character, Gene Hartke narrates the story with flashbacks from
his life as soldier and teacher. With small political jabs but deep introspection
about weapons, bombs and ruling the Universe, even a nod to Tralfamadore,
his fictional planet from Slaughterhouse Five. The book asks brave questions by
using humor to instill humility. Who’s in charge? Who ordered you to follow protocol
and would you follow those orders if it meant everyone would die?

BLACK DIAMOND (McLean Twins Book 1)
 (McLean Twins Book 1)

by Jennifer Loiske

 When Innocence Meets Evil
I usually shy away from books about witches and demons but Jennifer Loiske’s book
pulled me into her pages, gripping my attention with carefully constructed 
descriptions and a fascinating plot. Move over J.K. Rowling, there’s a new
wizard in town and it might be this author and her book about Shannon 
and her dad. If sleep is important to you, I suggest you don’t read this 
before falling asleep because you’ll keep turning pages, wanting to find
out what happens next. Fortunately, it’s well written, easy to read and
there are magical spells throughout, making sure you’ll enjoy every haunting word!


by Alan Hardy

 Daring Spoils of War!

Here’s a book of dark satire combining 50 Shades with the
Hunger Games in one supercharged mutiny that will surprise
even those who've seen everything. But first, can you handle real, 
provocative language that begins in the street and ends up on a sleazy bed?
Did I think the author is a misogynist? Yes--but I also think he has great outfit
descriptions and lurid sex scenes culminating on a blood-gorged battlefield
filled with murder and mayhem. This book about Royals is not for the faint 
of heart or those easily offended. Fortunately, you’ll know right up front whether 
you'll want to continue. Sorry for using a pun, but Hardy doesn't beat around the 
bush and he’ll dare you to decide right up front. Are you voyeuristic enough to
turn the pages and find out what happens to Beth and Mandy? Will Jason ever
get it... well, you know...up...or does HE want to be Queen? Was everything
Sandy’s fault or was she just a pawn in a giant game of chess? More importantly,
what about the delusional Prince Farts, his out of touch mother the Queen and
that disgusting character the King? Will they have to resort to cleaning up their
own messes? Will basic animal instinct bring down the throne or will a 
checkmate ensue, proving that power and authority need to rule? 
Though well written, I'm sad this book exists and I’m sad that 
Camelot was fantasy. Maybe I’ll watch a reality show now....

Gryffon Master: Curse of the Lich King (Crystal Sword Chronicles Book 1)
Gryffon Master: Curse of the Lich King
 (Crystal Sword Chronicles Book 1)

Schuldt, Freed,
Shaughnessy, Lemon and White

 A Fabulous Yarn

This is the most unusual fairy tale I've had the fortune of reading. 
First of all, it combines myths and “stories dating back to 
the beginnings of recorded history.” Secondly, this remarkable book
was written or was magically woven, by several authors, into a smooth,
well-executed and exciting tale. Like a tapestry worthy of a royal palace,
you’ll marvel at the colors, the creative characters and the sprinkling
of darkness twisting around the edges and expected in a fabulous yarn.
Ragnar is a man who worships Odin and dreams of Valhalla. Ahmad is 
from a desert near Damascus. Once they land in this ‘far distant’ mystical 
land full of flying griffons, a frost giant, evil dragons, giant spiders,
dwarves and a talking lizard called Calyptro, they get separated and
have to keep dodging obstacles of terror around every bend.
There seems to be a curse upon both of them but the gryffon 
called Rostok, a giant scarab and a crystal sword are working 
with all their new-found friends like a wireless system designated
to help them escape the Lich King. Will the rugged man from
the North and the slim man from the desert make it home?
Read this exhilarating book and find out.

A Suitcase Mystery
A Suitcase Mystery

by Ned Stevens

 Big Screen-Style Excitement!

 If you like excitement, mystery and adventure
 you’ll find all that here and more. If you enjoy intrigue, espionage,
 blackmail and murder splashed with something along the lines of the
 new film--The Imitation Game-- you’ll love reading A Suitcase Mystery.
 The story begins in Latvia with two suitcases and a missing diary. 
The war's over but the country is still in turmoil and Ben is only an innocent boy.
 The diary is extremely important to the Russians and they want it back.
 Spring ahead to the U.S. where a veterinarian is dead and detective
 Dokes wants to find out what happened. Of course the FBI is involved and
the story swirls deeper and deeper into more plot twisting action than
 a six-foot pole dancer auditioning for the circus. Can Ben and his mother 
run from their past? Meanwhile, agents Sawyer, Books and John Holt are
all over the place trying to solve everything but you’ll keep reading just 
to find out what happens with Berg, his fur business and what about
that diary? Why did the limo get hit? Will they be able to decipher
what they need and what happens when they do?

Love Poems: Listen to your heart...
Love Poems: Listen to your heart...

by Estella Eliot

 Amazing Collection

It's raining and it's too chilly to write, so I picked a great day to read
 these tender poems of the heart. Sitting next to my fireplace, classical
 music plays on the stereo and our Christmas tree twinkles, while my
 small dogs burrow under this decidedly California-esque, cotton blanket.
 Some of the author's poems rhyme and others sound like creative ad copy
 for a chocolate factory. Some are simple as in 'don't leave me' and others
 are complex. She has experienced love like the pebbles on the beach or
 the clouds intertwining. Great alliteration, metaphors and talent, went
 into this collection. I'm so glad to have spent this afternoon enjoying these poems.
One of my favorites is The Poetry Cocktail but all of them warmed my heart.

Rhyming Children's Stories, Poems and More: 2nd series
Rhyming Children's Stories,
 Poems and More: 2nd series

by Peter and Pattimari Sheets Cacciolfi 

 Beautiful Stories and Poems

Funny and sweet words from the heart. I especially enjoyed
the poem Morning News. This is a book you can pick up and
read out loud when you want to make someone smile.

Most Recent Amazon Purchase: Dry Bones by Carole Morden
Any of these titles sound good to you? Have you read some of them?
Do you buy books from Amazon? 


  1. You do read quite the variety of genres.
    I get books from Amazon when I can't find them in the iBookstore.

  2. I tend to pay more attention to other author's reviews than to customer reviews because writers' reviews are more reliable to me.

    Since I haven't posted anything on my blog in over a week and the author interview I'm prepping isn't ready yet, maybe I
    'll post my most recent reviews.

    PS--I really think you'll like Carole's book. I loved it!

  3. That's quite a variety, Eve. Good reviews!

  4. Love the reviews and I know exactly which ones I want to read and which ones I don't. I review a lot of books on Amazon. I have a lot to learn. You craft a lot of good info into your reviews.

  5. Thanks for the reviews, Eve. I hadn't heard of any of these books. You've got me intrigued.

  6. I am happy I saw William mention you on his blog.
    Blogs keep disappearing and then come back later. I don't know what is going on with my computer ?

    cheers, parsnip

  7. Black Diamond sounds like a great read! I'll wait until a long weekend. :)

  8. Hello Eve, I haven’t read any of these, and they all sound good but the one that is going straight onto my must-read list is Black Diamond. I also fancy the one by Kurt Vonnegut but as my must-read list is growing ever longer, I will limit myself to one. :-)