Monday, June 30, 2014

Mailbox Monday

Mailbox Monday

I received five books in my mailbox:

Losing St. Christopher   by David -Michael Harding  (courtesy of the author)

A Question Of honor      by Charles Todd
Butternut Summer           by Mary McNear
 The Drop                        by Dennis LeHane
An Unwilling  Accomplice      by   Charles Todd

All four were courtesy of Wm Morrow Publishing

What did you receive last week?

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Michael J. Bowler - Running Through a Dark Place - Review & Giveaway

About the Book

King Arthur and his extraordinary young Knights used ‘might’ for ‘right’ to create a new Camelot in the City of Angels. They rallied the populace around their cause, while simultaneously putting the detached politicians in check. But now they must move forward to even greater heights, despite what appears to be an insurmountable tragedy.

Their new goal is lofty: give equality to kids fourteen and older who are presently considered adults only when they break the law. Arthur’s crusade seeks to give them real rights such as voting, driving, trading high school for work, and sitting as jurors for their peers charged with criminal behavior.

Understanding that the adults of California will likely be against them, Arthur and his Knights must determine how best to win them over.

However, before the king can even contemplate these matters, he finds himself face to face with an ally from the past, one who proves that everything isn’t always what it seems – even life and death.

The Knight Cycle Continues…

My Review

I found the second book in this series to be a very interesting one. Lance dies and Jack - through the supernatural powers of Merlin no less - gives up his own life to bring him back. Lance then gains superstar status status as "the boy who came back." Lance died but Jack loved him enough to bring him to life again. But Lance is not meant to be alone.

Ricky, a new boy enters Lance's life and they are attracted to each other at once. This story is about discovering feelings of love and sexuality for parties of the same sex. One quote I found to be a poignant one is when Lance asks King Arthur, "Hasn't this whole crusade been about kids like me making our own choices?"

Well said, Lance. Well done, Michael J. Bowler.


Running Through a Dark Place can be purchased at:

Prices/Formats: $4.99 ebook, $15.95 paperback
Pages: 388
Genre: Urban Fantasy, Young Adult
Release: May 12, 2014
Publisher: self-published
ISBN: 9780990306306
Click to add to your Goodreads list.

About the Author

Michael J. Bowler is an award-winning author of three novels - A Boy and His Dragon, A Matter of Time, and Children of the Knight - who grew up in San Rafael, California.

He majored in English and Theatre at Santa Clara University and earned a master’s in film production from Loyola Marymount University, a teaching credential in English from LMU, and another master's in Special Education from Cal State University Dominguez Hills.

He partnered with two friends as producer, writer, and/or director on several ultra-low-budget horror films, including “Fatal Images,” “Club Dead,” and “Things II,” the reviews of which are much more fun than the actual movies.

He taught high school in Hawthorne, California for twenty-five years, both in general education and to students with learning disabilities, in subjects ranging from English and Strength Training to Algebra, Biology, and Yearbook.

He has also been a volunteer Big Brother to seven different boys with the Catholic Big Brothers Big Sisters program and a thirty-year volunteer within the juvenile justice system in Los Angeles. He is a passionate advocate for the fair treatment of children and teens in California, something that is sorely lacking in this state. He has been honored as Probation Volunteer of the Year, YMCA Volunteer of the Year, California Big Brother of the Year, and 2000 National Big Brother of the Year. The “National” honor allowed he and three of his Little Brothers to visit the White House and meet the president in the Oval Office.

He has already written the four continuations of Children of the Knight that complete The Knight Cycle and all will be released in 2014.

He is currently at work on a new novel.

Links to connect with Michael:
Web Site
Blog Tour Site

About the Giveaway

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Wednesday, June 25, 2014

My review of The Farm by Tom Rob Smith

I received this book at Book Expo America in New York City and author Tom Rob Smith was kind enough to sign it personally for me. The autograph just makes it extra special because inside I discovered a tale told by a skilled author in a very thrilling way.

Daniel gets a phone call from his father saying that his mother had a psychotic breakdown and is in a mental hospital. He urges his son to drop everything and come immediately to Sweden. But Daniel is surprised when his mother calls next and says she is coming to him and not to believe anything his father has told him, and most especially not to mention her arrival.

These two desperate phone calls take Daniel on a roller coaster ride of events which leaves him wondering which one of his parents he should believe.

This is a remarkable read filled with intrigue. Page after page, I thoroughly enjoyed it. Well done, Tom. I can't wait to read more from you.

Wondrous Words Wednesday

Wondrous Words Wednesday

Intriguing Words

1. Zeitgeist- the spirit of the time; the general moral, intellectual, and cultural climate of an era.

2. Ubiquitous- existing or being everywhere at the same time.

3. Schadenfreude- enjoyment obtained from the troubles of others.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesday

My teaser today comes from the book:  Remains of Innocence   by J.A. Jance

My teaser:

pg. 43
Joanna's second call, a terse one, was to Chief Bernard."I think Terry and Spike found him,"she said. "Dead or alive?'
Can't tell," Johanna said.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Mailbox Monday

Mailbox Monday

I received one new book in my mailbox this week courtesy of Hatchette Book Group.

The Fever By Megan Abbott

Finished reading: The Farm by Tom Rob Smith

What did you receive in your mailbox?

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

The Cats Of Savone by David -Michael Harding Review-Post

The Cats Of Savone  by David-Michael Harding        Review-Post

This is a collection of eight short stories, which I thoroughly enjoyed reading. They were all very different and captured your attention right from the start. The cover is the first story of the book, which takes you into the world of a maximum security prison. If you like short stories and want a treat, I would suggest reading The Cats of Savone.

Wondrous Words Wednesday

Wondrous Words Wednesday

My words today are from the book I am currently reading called: The Farm  by Tom Robert smith

Compos Mentis- "not of sound mind."

Cloudberry liquor- is a liquer produced in Finland which derives its flavor from the cloudberry fruit.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesday

My teaser today comes from a book I finally got to finish, It's a series of 8 short novels For Busy People. It' s called The Cats Of Savone  by David-Michael Harding.

pg. 242
Henry stopped again, clearly getting tired more easily. He drained the last of the cup, but seemed to be feeling well-the intoxicants coming into play. I'm sure.

Brian G. Michaud - The Road to Nyn - Review & Giveaway

About the Book

In a land where magic is outlawed, a young boy is living a double life. Although Kay is training to be a knight, he has been secretly studying the forbidden ways of magic with Alamin, a powerful but eccentric wizard.

After passing of the Trial of the Rings and being raised to squirehood, Kay has decided to tell Alamin that he is going to leave his magical studies behind. And why not? Kay hasn’t ever cast a spell without something going seriously wrong–like the random appearance of frogs or hungry wolves–besides, Kay could be banished from the kingdom just for associating with Alamin.

Kay’s plans are quickly obliterated when a horde of goblins attacks his village and captures his family and friends. Now, with his home lying in ruins, everything has changed. Along with Alamin and Felix, a self-serving kleptomaniac sprite, Kay embarks on an adventure that takes him across the Kingdom of Gaspar and into the dark and treacherous caves of the Goblin Realm. What Kay doesn’t realize is that his journey is leading him on a collision course with the Lord of Nyn – a being so powerful that none dare face him...not even Alamin himself!

My Review

Kay is the main character of the book who ventures off across the Kingdom of Gasper into the Goblin Realm. He is on a quest after his village is raided and his family is enslaved. It is quite a fantasy story that is filled with magic and characters that will surely peak your interest. This story is geared toward the Young Adult genre, but as a senior citizen reader I enjoyed it very much.


The Road to Nyn can be purchased at:

Prices/Formats: $0.99 ebook, $8.99 paperback
Pages: 266
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult
Release: November 2013
Publisher: self-published
ISBN: 9781493545551
Click to add to your Goodreads list.

About the Author

Brian G. Michaud lives in a small town in Massachusetts with his wife, Kim. When he is not reading or writing books, he can be found teaching music at a local elementary school or rocking out on guitar with the band, Too Loud.

Links to connect with Brian:
Web Site
Facebook (author)
Facebook (book)
Blog Tour Site

About the Giveaway

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Monday, June 16, 2014

Nora Webster by Colm Toibin ARC review

Nora Webster by Colm Toibin

I received this book at a Book Expo America in New York City at a meet the author's breakfast.

This is the story of Nora Webster, a forty-year-old widow with four children, set in Wexford, Ireland. She faces the challenges of life in a place where nothing is sacred or private.

I admire her strength and fortitude as she struggles to find something that she could cling to for herself alone. At last she finds it in the art of music, particularly singing. Nora is proved to be strong-willed and of good character. I found it to be a very hopeful story, in a time of struggle.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Wondrous Words Wednesday

Wondrous Words Wednesday

Words taken from Hard Words

1. Tautological- redundancy; needless repetition of the same sense in different words.

2. Malfeasance- wrongdoing, especially by a public official.

3. Hegemony- is a political or cultural dominance or authority over others.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesday

My teaser is from the book I am still reading:   Nora Webster  by Colm Toibin

pg. 179
    The hall on the quay was half full when they arrived. As soon as she came in, she felt that people were watching her.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Mailbox Monday

Mailbox Monday

Received one book in my mailbox this past week: Remains Of Innocence  by J.A. Jance - Wm. Morrow Publishers.

Currently reading: Nora Webster  by Colm Toibin

What did you receive?

Friday, June 6, 2014

The Fault In Our Stars Movie

The Fault In Our Stars      Movie

I went to see his very emotional and very touching movie last night. Hazel and Gus are going through cancer and meet at a support group and fall in love on their unforgetable journey. There were a lot of tears shed, it was very sad indeed.
After reading the book, I was hoping the movie did it justice and it certainly did.
Right after the movie was shown, a live simulcast with the actors, the author and director answered questions on twitter and in the audience. It was a very enjoyable evening.

The Metaxy Project by Latton Green Review-Post

The Metaxy Project  by Layton Green      Review-Post

    This is a very interesting story which takes you into the world of physic phenomena. Derek a young lawyer determined to get to the bottom of his mentor's murder, starts to unravel mysteries beyond his control.
    I found myself digging deeper into the pages of Metaxy, as I couldn't wait to see what Derek would discover next, even if he discovers that his mentor might have disappointed him. As usual another thrilling journey by Layton Green, a very good read.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Wondrous Words Wednesday

Wondrous Words Wednesday

My words today are taken from the book: Nora Webster by Colm Torbin

1. Delft- is a municipality in the European Netherlands primarily known for its historic town centre with canals.

2. Tot- is a small drink or allowance of liquor or shot.

3. Lorry- is a
motor vehicle designed to transport cargo.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesday

My teaser today comes from : Nora Webster by Colm Toibin


pg. 3
It was clear now that no one else
would call. Nora was relieved that she would not have to entertain people who did not know each other, or people who did not like each other.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Mailbox Monday

Mailbox Monday

Received the Metaxy Project by Layton Green  and also reading it at the present time.

Two other books I picked up at the BEA , that I am interested in reading are:
Nora Webster  by Colm To'ibi'n  and The Farm  by Tom Rob Smith

BEA-2014 NYC

BEA-2014  NYC

    A wonderful experience was had on Saturday by my daughter and I at the Javits Center in New York. This day was opened to the public to meet the authors of books you enjoyed reading.
    We did see Martin Short speak about his book, along with Lena Dunham from the TV series Girls and many others. We topped off the day with a panel from The Fault In Our Stars, author John Green and director Josh Boone, from the upcoming movie.
      All & all we had a great time and if you get the chance to attend a BEA , I highly recommend it.

Recap from my trip to BEA / BookCon

Lena Dunham from the hit HBO show "Girls" took time to sign for all of her fans after the Author Breakfast. She personalized every one. I'm looking forward to reading her book, "Not That Kind of Girl" when it comes out in September. Her dress was really beautiful up close. She said she loves nothing better than curling up with a good book.

Also at the author breakfast, I received an ARC of this historical fiction novel "Nora Webster" by Colm Toibin which I can't wait to start reading. It was interesting getting to hear how the author got the idea by listened to the adults in his small Irish town talking about a woman who secretly married a man in America only to come back home without him.

Tom Rob Smith autographed a copy of his latest thriller "The Farm" for me. What a nice guy. I remember reading his book "Child 44" and this one looks just as good, if not better.

My daughter, Nicole, got her picture taken with Julie Kagawa. She is a really sweet person. Zola Books even emailed this pic to her in a free ebook of Julie's latest, "The Forever Song" along with a personalized autograph from Julie. 

Cassandra Clare's table was one of the busiest. I wasn't able to get a ticket to her signing, but was able to snap this pic of her. Just standing there and watching the reactions of her diehard fans after getting to talk to her was fun.

Maggie Stiefvater from afar. I couldn't snatch a ticket for her signing either, but it was good to see her.
She was there to promote a companion novel to her best-selling "Shiver" series.

Veronica Roth talks about writing from Tobias' point of view in her new short story collection "Four" coming out July 8th. She said that she originally wrote her "Divergent" series from his perspective when she was a freshmen in college. It's amazing that she's only 26 years old!

We waited over two hours in line to see the final event with John Green talking about the movie adaptation of "The Fault in Our Stars" but we couldn't get in. However, it started to rain so we couldn't leave the Javits Center anyway, so we stuck around and managed to catch the last 10 minutes when the security personnel started letting more people in. John even hopped off the stage to hug a teenage boy with a prosthetic leg who asked him a question from the audience.