Saturday, February 24, 2018

G966 golden gremlin; a vigorous push from misanthropes and geezers

Title of the book: golden gremlin; a vigorous push from misanthropes and geezers

Author: Rod a. Walters

Publisher: Omega Man

Publishing Date: 2016

ISBN: 978-09841792-0-6

Summary:

From GOLDEN GREMLIN, you will learn all kinds of useful tidbits (and bigbits) from experienced misanthropes and geezers about how the world really runs, or at least how so much of it got messed up. E.g.: - NATURE: boys, dog poop, and carbon footprints. - WORDS: the real meaning of -Caucasian.- - BUSINESS: stakeholders, esp. through the heart. - KITCHENS: cooking up tasty Dollar Store kale. - HISTORY: how Hell froze, and how Earth Day got born. - Golden boy gets to be GOLDEN GREMLIN. - Seasonally warm gremlin songs. Sort of. Follow golden gremlin Poppy through this vigorous and funny adventure.

Author Info:


Buy the Book:
Amazon
​​Add to Goodreads





Meet the Author:

Rod Walters lives and writes in upstate New York to prove he can be an all-season writer. Since he wants everybody to be all-season persons no matter her or his circumstance, his writing aims sharply toward the practical—without turning into one of those godawful do it ma’ way authors. Life, after all, is practical hour by hour. Self-described as “old enough to know better, and he probably is,” his former life as Army officer, engineer, and administrative assistant could not have better prepared him to write both light and more serious short pieces pointing to creating a balanced life. Chuckling at yourself usually makes a good takeoff, he says. Giving up having to be certain makes for a good landing, especially for one’s friends! Then again, who the heck wants to live a balanced life? Mostly everybody does. That’s why he now writes. Although many friends nudge and badger him to be a Facebook and Twitter butterfly, he tries not to spend many numbing hours a day with circular keyboard tapping. Writing works better.

Connect with the Author: Website

Personal Opinion:

I honestly don't think I was the right audience for the book. Some of the stories did have humor and were funny, in particular the mention of how to be smarter than everyone else, but every other story has really gone over my head. Usually when it comes to books I attempt to find something unifying in the stories, but here it seems the author was all over the place and I couldn't understand if he was going for Abe Simpson from The Simpsons or for Peter Griffin's What Really Grinds his gears from Family Guy. Also I believe the jokes are geared towards male audience, not women.

This is for iRead Book Tours

BOOK REVIEW TOUR SCHEDULE:

​Feb 12 - Library of Clean Reads - review / giveaway
Feb 14 - Simple Wyrdings - review / guest post / giveaway
Feb 14 - Amie's Book Reviews - review / giveaway
Feb 14 - The World As I See It - review / giveaway
Feb 15 - The All Night Library - review / author interview
Feb 16 - Bound 4 Escape - review / giveaway
Feb 19 - A Mama's Corner of the World - review / giveaway
Feb 20 - The Irresponsible Reader - review / guest post / giveaway
Feb 21 - #redhead.with.book - review / giveaway
Feb 22 - Rockin' Book Reviews - book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
Feb 23 - Svetlana's Reads and Views - review
Feb 23 - Books for Books - review
3 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

Monday, February 19, 2018

G972 the once and future queen; Guinevere in Arthurian Legend

Title of the book: The Once and Future Queen

Author: Nicole Evelina

Publisher: Lawson Gartner Press

Publishing Date: 2017

ISBN: 9780996763240

Summary:

Guinevere’s journey from literary sinner to feminist icon took over one thousand years…and it’s not over yet.

Literature tells us painfully little about Guinevere, mostly focusing on her sin and betrayal of Arthur and Camelot. As a result, she is often seen as a one-dimensional character. But there is more to her story. By examining popular works of more than 20 authors over the last one thousand years, The Once and Future Queen shows how Guinevere reflects attitudes toward women during the time in which her story was written, changing to suit the expectations of her audience. Beginning in Celtic times and continuing through the present day, this book synthesizes academic criticism and popular opinion into a highly readable, approachable work that fills a gap in Arthurian material available to the general public.

Nicole Evelina has spent more than 15 years studying Arthurian legend. She is also a feminist known for her fictional portrayals of strong historical and legendary women, including Guinevere. Now, she combines these two passions to examine the effect of changing times and attitudes on the character of Guinevere in a must-read book for Arthurian enthusiasts of every knowledge level.

Author Info:
(From HFVBT)


AMAZON | BARNES AND NOBLE | CHAPTERS | INDIEBOUND | KOBO
About the Author

Nicole Evelina is a multi-award-winning historical fiction, romantic comedy and non-fiction writer, whose four novels have collectively won over 20 awards, including two Book of the Year designations (Daughter of Destiny by Chanticleer Reviews and Camelot’s Queen by Author’s Circle). Her most recent book, THE ONCE AND FUTURE QUEEN, traces the evolution of the character of Guinevere in Arthurian legend from her Celtic roots to the present day, showing how the character changed along with the period’s views of women. Nicole is currently working on MISTRESS OF LEGEND (2018), the final book in her Guinevere’s Tale trilogy.

As an armchair historian, Nicole researches her books extensively, consulting with biographers, historical societies and traveling to locations when possible. For example, she traveled to England twice to research the Guinevere’s Tale trilogy, where she consulted with internationally acclaimed author and historian Geoffrey Ashe, as well as Arthurian/Glastonbury expert Jaime George, the man who helped Marion Zimmer Bradley research The Mists of Avalon.

Nicole is a member of and book reviewer for The Historical Novel Society, as well as a member of the Historical Fiction Writers of America, International Arthurian Society – North American Branch, Romantic Novelists Association, Novelists, Inc., the St. Louis Writer’s Guild, Alliance of Independent Authors, the Independent Book Publishers Association and the Midwest Publisher’s Association.

For more information, please visit Nicole Evelina’s website. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Goodreads. Sign up for Nicole’s newsletter to receive news and updates.

Personal Opinion:

I came across King Arthur myths when in middle school I began to read Bulfinch's Mythology, in particular the Greek/Roman myths. As a naive and inexperienced teen, I honestly had trouble and difficulty reconciling the idea of infidelity in marriage or that sex could play such a huge role in people's lives. To my teenage eyes, Queen Guinevere became the villain in my eyes due to her deed with Sir Lancelot. Trying to figure out Queen Guinevere and her motivations had stayed with me for a long time, and its only when I began growing up and gaining experience in my own life did I finally stop seeing her as a villain and finally saw her as a flawed woman. Unfortunately Bulfinch's mythology wasn't covered in the book, but the fascinating evolution of how Queen Guinevere became whom she was is covered in a lot of detail, and as she is covered, the reader is taken through time from the earliest fragments of 5th century Britain to more modern times. For those who are also seeking fictional works on King Arthur and how they differ from one another should also take a look.

This is for HFVBT


Blog Tour Schedule

Wednesday, January 31
Interview at Passages to the Past

Thursday, February 1
Review at Pursuing Stacie

Friday, February 2
Feature at A Bookaholic Swede
Excerpt at What Is That Book About

Tuesday, February 6
Review at History From a Woman’s Perspective

Wednesday, February 7
Excerpt at What Cathy Read Next

Thursday, February 8
Feature at Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen

Friday, February 9
Interview at Donna’s Book Blog

Monday, February 12
Review at Bookworms Anonymous
Feature at View from the Birdhouse

Tuesday, February 13
Feature at A Literary Vacation

Wednesday, February 14
Review at Svetlana’s Reads and Views

Thursday, February 15
Feature at Just One More Chapter

Friday, February 16
Guest Post at The Writing Desk

Monday, February 19
Review at Clarissa Reads it All

Thursday, February 22
Feature at A Holland Reads

Monday, February 26
Review at Cup of Sensibility
Feature at The Lit Bitch

Tuesday, February 27
Review at Curling Up by the Fire

Wednesday, February 28
Feature at Historical Fiction with Spirit

4 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

Friday, February 16, 2018

Book Spotlight for SNAP! Change Your Personality in 30 Days by Gary Small and Gigi Vorgan



Book Details:

Book Title: SNAP! Change Your Personality in 30 Days
Authors: Gary Small, MD, Director UCLA Longevity Center and Gigi Vorgan
Category: Adult Nonfiction, 224 pages
Genre: Self-Help / Personality / Health, Mind & Body
Publisher: Humanix Books
Release date: January 9, 2018
Tour dates: Feb 5 to 23, 2018
Content Rating: G

Book Description:

New York Times bestselling author Dr. Gary Small’s breakthrough plan to improve your personality for a better life!

Experts in psychiatry and psychology have long believed that our personalities are essentially set from early childhood and remain consistent throughout life. However, the latest scientific research contradicts this long-held assumption. New compelling evidence indicates that we can change our personalities – either on our own, with the help of a therapist, or a combination of the two – and meaningful personality change can be achieved in a snap! – as quickly as 30 days. These groundbreaking findings have shattered the false belief that we are locked into our negative personality traits – no matter how much they hinder our potential happiness and success.

As you read SNAP! you will gain a better understanding of who you are now, how others see you, and which aspects of yourself you’d like to change. You will acquire the tools you need to change your personality in just one month – it won’t take years of psychotherapy, self-exploration or re-hashing every single bad thing that’s ever happened to you. If you are committed to change, this book will provide a roadmap to achieving your goals and becoming a better you.

From New York Times bestselling author, head of the UCLA Longevity Center, and expert in neuroscience and human behavior, Dr. Gary Small, a practical look at the key components of personality development and tools and techniques for bringing the positive aspects of your
personality to the forefront so you can become more successful, attractive, happier, and psychologically healthier.

Buy the Book:




About the Authors: 




Gary Small:
Dr. Gary Small, (Los Angeles, CA) is a professor of psychiatry and director of the UCLA Longevity Center* at the Semel Institute for Neuroscience & Human Behavior. His research, supported by the NIH, has made headlines in the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times. Scientific American magazine named him one of the world’s leading innovators in science and technology. Dr. Small lectures internationally and frequently appears on the Today
Show, Good Morning America, PBS, and CNN. He has written six books, including the New York Times best seller, The Memory Bible.

Gigi Vorgan:

Gigi Vorgan (Los Angeles, CA) has written, produced, and appeared in numerous feature films and television projects before teaming up with her husband, Dr. Gary Small, to co-write The Memory Bible, The Memory Prescription,The Longevity Bible, iBrain, The Other Side of the Couch, and The Alzheimer’s Prevention Program. She lives in Los Angeles with Dr. Small and their two children.

Connect with the authors: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Youtube 

Enter the Giveaway!
Ends March 3, 2018


a Rafflecopter giveaway




G975 Book Review of An argument of blood by Matthew Willis and J.A. Ironside

Name of Book: An Argument of Blood

Author: Matthew Willis, J.A. Ironside

ISBN: 978-1-946409-14-0

Publisher: Penmore Press

Type of book: 1045-1050s, deformed, spying, balance, dukedom, temper, Normandy, England, Edward the Confessor, William the Conqueror, Harold Godwineson, political prisoners, family, battles, marriage, occupation, learning

Year it was published: 2017

Summary:

William, the nineteen-year-old duke of Normandy, is enjoying the full fruits of his station. Life is a succession of hunts, feasts, and revels, with little attention paid to the welfare of his vassals. Tired of the young duke’s dissolute behaviour  and ashamed of his illegitimate birth, a group of traitorous barons force their way into his castle. While William survives their assassination attempt, his days of leisure are over. He’ll need help from the king of France to secure his dukedom from the rebels.

On the other side of the English Channel lives ten-year-old Ælfgifa, the malformed and unwanted youngest sister to the Anglo-Saxon Jarl, Harold Godwinson. Ælfgifa discovers powerful rivalries in the heart of the state when her sister Ealdgyth is given in a political marriage to King Edward, and she finds herself caught up in intrigues and political manoeuvring as powerful men vie for influence. Her path will collide with William’s, and both must fight to shape the future.

An Argument of Blood is the first of two sweeping historical novels on the life and battles of William the Conqueror.

Characters:

Main characters include William the Conqueror (or Bastard) who in beginning is extremely spoiled and doesn't understand the balance he has to uphold. He is best described as impetuous, temperamental and impatient. In my view he is drawn realistically and goes from a spoiled brat to perhaps a determined and stubborn conqueror. In other words, he does grow up. Aegilfa far more dominated the book than William the Conqueror and she is far more admirable for she is resourceful, skillful, logical, and understands the games of politics a little too well, although I would guess that her downfall might be the skills that help her stand out against other women. She is also deformed.

Theme:

Its important to be given choices

Plot:

The story is in third person narrative from William's and Aegilfa's point of view. I really enjoyed everything about the story, therefore its difficult for me to criticize it. I would probably request that at least years would be given in beginning because I had hard a time figuring out the chronology. I also would have wanted an author's note mentioning whether or not Aegilfa was real. (I've read a few novels that lead up to Battle of Hastings, and I don't ever recall meeting Aegilfa there.) I also should mention that it seems as if events relating to the House of Godwine that deal with Harold are touched upon but they're not the focus of the story, and most seem to happen off-scene so to speak. This story is of William the Conqueror (or Bastard) and Aegilfa, not Harold Godwineson and the political machinations surrounding him.

Author Information:
(From HFVBT)



AMAZON US | AMAZON UK | BARNES AND NOBLE | CHAPTERS
About the Authors

J.A. Ironside (Jules) grew up in rural Dorset, surrounded by books – which pretty much set he up for life as a complete bibliophile. She loves speculative fiction of all stripes, especially fantasy and science fiction, although when it comes to the written word, she’s not choosy and will read almost anything. Actually it would be fair to say she starts to go a bit peculiar if she doesn’t get through at least three books a week. She writes across various genres, both adult and YA fiction, and it’s a rare story if there isn’t a fantastical or speculative element in there somewhere.

Jules has had several short stories published in magazines and anthologies, as well as recorded for literature podcasts. Books 1 and 2 of her popular Unveiled series are currently available with the 3rd and 4th books due for release Autumn/ Winter 2017.

She also co-authored the sweeping epic historical Oath and Crown Duology with Matthew Willis, released June 2017 from Penmore Press.

Jules now lives on the edge of the Cotswold way with her boyfriend creature and a small black and white cat, both of whom share a god-complex.
WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | TWITTER | GOODREADS

Matthew Willis is an author of historical fiction, SF, fantasy and non-fiction. In June 2017 An Argument of Blood, the first of two historical novels about the Norman Conquest co-written with J.A. Ironside, was published. In 2015 his story Energy was shortlisted for the Bridport short story award.

Matthew studied Literature and History of Science at the University of Kent, where he wrote an MA thesis on Joseph Conrad and sailed for the University in national competitions. He subsequently worked as a journalist for Autosport and F1 Racing magazines, before switching to a career with the National Health Service.

His first non-fiction book, a history of the Blackburn Skua WW2 naval dive bomber, was published in 2007. He now has four non fiction books published with a fifth, a biography of test pilot Duncan Menzies, due later in 2017. He currently lives in Southampton and writes both fiction and non-fiction for a living.
WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | TWITTER | GOODREADS
Opinion:

Its difficult for me to believe that this is the authors' first foray into historical fiction because its very well written and done. Having read some previous books about the events leading up to Battle of Hastings in 1066, I wasn't really sure what to expect because for one, I've never heard of Aegilfa, and William really reminded me of the current POTUS which put me on guard against his character in beginning and where I was hoping and praying that he would change as the story goes along. I'm really looking forward to the second part of the saga and to getting back to Aegilfa as well as William.

This is for HFVBT


Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, January 15
Review at Jaffa Reads Too

Tuesday, January 16
Feature at Passages to the Past

Wednesday, January 17
Review at Historical Fiction Reviews

Friday, January 19
Feature at A Bookaholic Swede

Monday, January 22
Review at Broken Teepee

Tuesday, January 23
Review at Pursuing Stacie

Friday, January 26
Feature at Let Them Read Books

Monday, January 29
Review at Locks, Hooks and Books

Tuesday, January 30
Feature at What Cathy Read Next

Wednesday, January 31
Feature at Just One More Chapter

Thursday, February 1
Feature at The Lit Bitch

Friday, February 2
Review at Bookramblings
Review at Impressions In Ink

Monday, February 5
Review at Back Porchervations

Tuesday, February 6
Review at Svetlana’s Reads and Views

Wednesday, February 7
Review at The Writing Desk
Review at Donna’s Book Blog

5 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

G954 Book Review of the monkey house by Boyd Taylor

Name of Book: The Monkey House

Author: Boyd Taylor

ISBN: 978-0-9894707-1-1

Publisher: Katherine Brown story

Part of a Series: Donnie Ray Cuinn Story

Type of book: Austin, Velda, suspense, old vs new, monkey, discrimination, lawyer, family, old friends and new

Year it was published: 2015

Summary:

In this, the third Donnie Ray Cuinn book, Donnie returns to Austin from his law practice in the Texas Panhandle to confront All-American football player Wesley Bird, his former best friend. In the company of beautiful, athletic Anna Kaye Nordstrom, Donnie experiences the “new” Austin of glitzy condos, trendy restaurants and social media. He also revisits the “old” Austin of barbecue, power politics and greens versus developers. Donnie finds that not much has changed.

Characters:

Main characters include Donnie Ray who is a lawyer at a town called Velda.  Donnie Ray hasn't been back to Austin in ages and sometimes doesn't make the smartest decisions, although he does try to fix them. For some odd reason Donnie Ray's family is reluctant to ask him for help when it comes to Wesley Bird, his former friend. Unfortunately Wesley Bird wasn't as prominent in this story as he was in the first book. Aside from Donnie's family, his ex girlfriend and some friends from both Austin and Velda, it became difficult for me to recall other characters and if I've met them in previous books. I personally think that a character sheet might be of benefit to the story if there are going to be so many characters.

Theme:

There isn't a lot of redemption

Plot:

The story is in third person narrative, mostly from Donnie Ray's point of view, although other characters such as his adopted father also come into the picture. Reading the previous books is a must because the reader doesn't really get the background of the characters explained very well, especially how they were in Donnie's previous life. There are some quirky characters in the story, but they weren't drawn as sharply as I would have liked, which made it difficult for me to try to recall them.The story takes few years later, I believe after the events of Monkey House. 

Author Information:
(From iRead Book Tours)


Buy the Books:
Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble
Add to Goodreads
Meet the Author:

BOYD TAYLOR lives in Austin, Texas with his wife and their Havanese dog Toby. Necessities is the fourth novel in the Donnie Ray Cuinn series. In a former life, Boyd was a lawyer and a corporate officer. A native of Temple, Texas, he graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a B.A. in government and an LL.B. from the law school.

​Boyd's first novel "Hero" was prescient in its story about fake news. His second novel, "The Antelope Play," dealt with drug trafficking in the Texas Panhandle, an unfortunately accurate forecast. The third, "The Monkey House", involved commercial development of a large green space in the center of Austin, all too familiar to Austin residents. Whether his upcoming novel "Necessities" predicts future events with the accuracy of the earlier books remains to be seen.

Connect with the Author: Website ~ Facebook
Opinion:

Two things I enjoyed about the Monkey House is the title which is pretty apt for the story, and I loved the book cover, which I'm sure my little boy enjoyed a great deal. For me its a bit embarrassing to admit that I'm in the minority of reviews and didn't enjoy the story. For one thing I wasn't sure how the racism case connected to going back to Austin as well as how it related to Donnie Ray's former friend, Wesley Bird and the Ponzi scheme he set up. I really would have liked to see more of Wesley Bird and for more of legal aspects of the story explained. Aside from that, welcome to the monkey house

This is for iRead Book Tours

BOOK REVIEW TOUR SCHEDULE:

Jan 3 - Library of Clean Reads - tour kickoff / spotlight all 4 books / giveaway
Jan 4 - Library of Clean Reads - review of Hero / giveaway
Jan 5 - Literary Flits - review of Hero / giveaway
Jan 8 - Svetlana's Reads and Views - review of Hero
Jan 9 - Olio by Marilyn - review of Hero / author interview / giveaway
Jan 10 - Library of Clean Reads - review of The Antelope Play / giveaway
Jan 15 - Library of Clean Reads - review of The Monkey House / giveaway
Jan 17 - Olio by Marilyn - review of The Antelope Play / giveaway
Jan 18 - Books for Books - review of Hero
Jan 19 - Literary Flits - spotlight of The Antelope Play / giveaway
Jan 22 - Svetlana's Reads and Views - review of The Antelope Play
Jan 23 - A Mama's Corner of the World - spotlight of Books 1, 2 and 3
Jan 24 - Hall Ways Blog - spotlight of Books 1, 2 and 3
Jan 25 - Books for Books - review of The Antelope Play
Jan 26 - Olio by Marilyn - review of The Monkey House / giveaway
Jan 30 - A Mama's Corner of the World - review of Necessities / giveaway
Jan 30 - Rockin' Book Reviews - review of Hero / guest post / giveaway
Jan 31 - Hall Ways Blog - review of Necessities / giveaway
Feb 5 - Literary Flits - spotlight of The Monkey House / giveaway
Feb 6 - Books for Books - review of The Monkey House
Feb 7 - Bound 4 Escape - review of Hero / giveaway
Feb 7 - Rockin' Book Reviews - review of The Antelope Play / giveaway
Feb 8 - Olio by Marilyn - review of Necessities / giveaway
Feb 9 - A Page Before Bedtime - review of Necessities / giveaway
Feb 12 - Svetlana's Reads and Views - review of The Monkey House
Feb 13 - Rockin' Book Reviews - review of The Monkey House / giveaway
Feb 14 - Bound 4 Escape - review of The Antelope Play / giveaway
Feb 14 - Library of Clean Reads - review of Necessities / author interview / giveaway
Feb 15 - Books for Books - review of Necessities
Feb 15 - Booklove - review of Hero
Feb 16 - Fantastic Feathers - review of Necessities
Feb 19 - FUONLYKNEW - review of Hero / giveaway
Feb 19 - Literary Flits - review of Necessities / giveaway
Feb 20 - Booklove - review of The Antelope Play
Feb 20 - FUONLYKNEW - review of The Antelope Play / giveaway
Feb 21 - FUONLYKNEW - review of The Monkey House / giveaway
Feb 21 - Bound 4 Escape - review of The Monkey House / giveaway
Feb 21 - Rockin' Book Reviews - review of Necessities / giveaway
Feb 22 - JBronder Book Reviews - review of Hero / guest post / giveaway
Feb 22 - FUONLYKNEW - review of Necessities / giveaway
Feb 23 - JBronder Book Reviews - review of The Antelope Play / giveaway
Feb 23 - Books are Love - review of Hero / guest post / giveaway
​Feb 23 - Booklove - review of The Monkey House
Feb 26 - Svetlana's Reads and Views - review of Necessities
Feb 26 - JBronder Book Reviews - review of The Monkey House/ giveaway
Feb 26 - Books are Love - review of he Antelope Play / giveaway
Feb 27 - JBronder Book Reviews - review of Necessities / guest post / giveaway
Feb 27 - Books are Love - review of The Monkey House / giveaway
Feb 28 - Bound 4 Escape - review of Necessities / giveaway
Feb 28 - Books are Love - review of Necessities / giveaway
​Feb 28 - Booklove - review of Necessities
3 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

Friday, February 9, 2018

G935 Book Review of Wild world by Peter S rush

Name of Book: Wild World

Author: Peter S Rush

ISBN: 978-0-9990665-1-5

Publisher: Prior Manor Press

Type of book: 1970s, corruption, police, recreational drugs, relationships, cleaning up, guns, Vietnam War, government vs students, standing out, being alone

Year it was published: 2017

Summary:

Set against the backdrop of the Vietnam War and the protest era of the early 1970s, WILD WORLD is a gripping novel of power, corruption, injustice, courage, and hope—and one tenacious young man whose determination to overturn the system holds unexpected consequences for his own life. In the spring of 1970, Steve Logan, like thousands of other college students across America, takes to the streets to protest authority and the Vietnam War. Fueled by a strong sense of moral justice, he wants to make the world better—a belief his girlfriend Roxy, a medical student, passionately shares. Weeks before his graduation from Brown University, Steve’s life is upended when National Guard troops kill four students at Kent State University. Then, he meets a reform-minded cop from New York City who convinces Steve that to change the system, he has to get involved.

Eager to make a difference, Steve decides to give up law school and join the Providence Police Department. While the rookie cop with an Ivy League degree knows that change is difficult, the reality of fighting the establishment soon overwhelms him. His education makes him an outsider, and his honesty makes him a threat to the corrupt cops who use the power of their badge to inflict brutality and extort. And the job is taking a toll at home. His college friends think he’s a traitor to the cause and even Roxy, the woman he loves, has begun to pull away. But Steve isn’t going to give up. Devising a dangerous plan to radically shake up the system, he begins to collect the evidence to take his enemies down . . . unless they take him out first.

Characters:

Main characters include Steve Logan who is best described as someone against the Vietnam War and who does recreational drugs but who desires to do more than just protest and who was inspired to become a police officer. There are also other characters such as Steve's girlfriend Roxy who seems to be trying to find her own path in life as well as Steve's co-workers who like the status quo and are not very fond of Steve and who also seem to hinder Steve.

Theme:

It's tough to be in two different worlds

Plot:

The story is in first person narrative from Steve Logan's point of view. I appreciated the story and watching how draining it was for Steve to be caught between two worlds; that of the one he wants to be part of, and the other of the one he doesn't want to be part of. I also was shocked at how desensitized I was to the fact that people on a campus were killed in college in 1970. I guess its a generation thing because campus killings occur way too often unfortunately for me to be shocked. A lot of details about the police in the story really surprised me, and I don't think I expected it to do it. At the same time, its sad to realize how little has changed since 1970.

Author Information:
(From the book)

Peter S Rush is a graduate of Brown University and has a Masters in Creative Writing from the University in Florida. He was a newspaper reporter, magazine editor, Peace Corps volunteer, and a police officer. He is currently CEO of a global management firm.

Opinion:

All I can say is that how different the world was in 1970s, but at the same time there seems to be something universal about the struggles of people in charge. The idea is there as well as the struggle the main character goes through when he is forced to see and to act for interests against his own, but I feel that the writing style needs to be worked on more because the whole story feels rushed in my opinion and I also wanted to understand the corruption in a bit more detail than was given. Other than that, a hidden gem.

This was given to me for an honest review

3 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

G970 Book Review of The Soldier's Return by Laura Libricz

Name of Book: The Soldier's Return

Author: Laura Libricz

ISBN: 9780999146019

Publisher: Blue Heron Book Works, LLC

Part of a Series:Heaven's Pond Series

Type of book: 1626, war, survival, psychology, drugs, addictions, friendships, relationships, enemies, Protestant vs Catholics, witches, raping, pillaging, horrors of war

Year it was published: 2017

Summary:

The year is 1626. A senseless war rips through parts of Germany. Ongoing animosity between the Catholics and the Protestants has turned into an excuse to destroy much of the landscape situated between France, Italy and Denmark. But religion only plays a minor role in this lucrative business of war.

The young dutchman, Pieter van Diemen, returns to Amsterdam in chains after a period of imprisonment in the Spice Islands. He manages to escape but must leave Amsterdam in a hurry. Soldiers are in demand in Germany and he decides to travel with a regiment until he can desert. His hope of survival is to reach Sichardtshof, the farm in Franconia, Germany; the farm he left ten years ago. His desire to seek refuge with them lies in his fond memories of the maid Katarina and her master, the humanist patrician Herr Tucher. But ten years is a long time and the farm has changed. Franconia is not only torn by war but falling victim to a church-driven witch hunt. The Jesuit priest, Ralf, has his sights set on Sichardtshof as well. Ralf believes that ridding the area of evil will be his saving grace. Can Pieter, Katarina and Herr Tucher unite to fight against a senseless war out of control?

The Soldier’s Return is the second book in the Heaven’s Pond Trilogy.

Characters:

Main characters include Katarina, Ralf, Pieter van Diermen. With some characters I couldn't tell if they were main or secondary, but I think those three are main characters. Katarina is a maid as well as a lover to Sebald Tucher. She seems to be in charge of everything and is more of a mistress. She also wants to take all the burdens on herself at the cost of friendships and relationships. Katarina is intelligent, resourceful but she tends to keep her heart guarded up, especially towards her surrogate daughter Isabeau. Ralf is the villain of the book who seems to be delusional and who sees evil everywhere. He is also a Catholic priest who feels faith is more important than anything else. (He also literally sees women who use herbs as witches because they don't trust in god!) Pieter van Diermen is a difficult character for me to describe aside from the fact he has little to no taste in warfare and just wants to leave the soldier's life. Despite his personal feelings, he has already been damaged by the war and the things he had to see and participate in.

Theme:

There is no glamour and glory in war

Plot:

The story is in third person narrative from multiple points of view; namely from Pieter van Diemen's, Katarina's, Isabeau's and Ralf's points of view. There is definitely a psychological aspect to the novel because its not desensitized and constant ugly things happen to characters. The author, I feel, seems to ask how much can the characters handle before they reach a breaking point? I know that reading and witnessing horror in the story that's rarely unremitting but continuous can drive any reader to exhaustion and weariness.

Author Information:
(From HFVBT)



About the Author

Laura Libricz was born and raised in Bethlehem PA and moved to Upstate New York when she was 22. After working a few years building Steinberger guitars, she received a scholarship to go to college. She tried to ‘do the right thing’ and study something useful, but spent all her time reading German literature.

She earned a BA in German at The College of New Paltz, NY in 1991 and moved to Germany, where she resides today. When she isn’t writing she can be found sifting through city archives, picking through castle ruins or aiding the steady flood of musical instruments into the world market.

Her first novel, The Master and the Maid, is the first book of the Heaven’s Pond Trilogy. The Soldier’s Returnand Ash and Rubble are the second and third books in the series.

For more information, please visit Laura Libricz’s website and blog. You can also connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Goodreads.
Opinion:

First of all, reading the first book in the series is a must because the reader will get lost with what's going on as well as the characters and how they all know one another. Second of all, the book doesn't glamorize fighting or wars at all, but instead its richly detailed about the travails that war has on men, women and children in 17th century. There is some plot in the story, but most of it is day to day situation that survivors have to go through such as securing food, hiding from rowdy soldiers, and trying to move on from horrors seen and inflicted, which I actually enjoyed a lot. If you are looking for realistic fiction, I would highly recommend the book.

This is for HFVBT


Blog Tour Schedule

Tuesday, January 30
Interview at Passages to the Past

Wednesday, January 31
Review at Cup of Sensibility

Thursday, February 1
Excerpt at WS Momma Readers Nook

Friday, February 2
Guest Post at Reading the Past

Monday, February 5
Review at Svetlana’s Reads and Views

Tuesday, February 6
Feature at A Bookaholic Swede

Wednesday, February 7
Review at Locks, Hooks and Books

Thursday, February 8
Feature at Clarissa Reads It All

Friday, February 9
Guest Post at Let Them Read Books

Monday, February 12
Review at Back Porchervations

Wednesday, February 14
Review at Rachel’s Ramblings

Thursday, February 15
Review at Historical Fiction with Spirit

Friday, February 16
Review at Donna’s Book Blog
Interview at Dianne Ascroft’s Blog
4 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)
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