Thursday, June 21, 2018

G1015 Book Review of DOOM, GLOOM AND the PURSUIT of the sun by ANTOINE f. GNINTEDEM

Name of Book: DOOM, GLOOM AND the PURSUIT of the sun

Author: ANTOINE f. GNINTEDEM

ISBN: 978-1-9834-2127-3

Publisher: Self published

Type of book: Cameroon,  Africa, America, education, talent, government, corruption, favors, relationships, 1970s to 2000s, family, ambitions, Mississippi, teaching, degrees, college

Year it was published: 2018

Summary:

The town is famous in the region for its chronic stillness…Consequently, every ambitious person who grows up there eventually leaves in search of better opportunities.

Life in Mbengwi, Cameroon, is not easy for Austin—or for anyone else. While growing up, he bears witness to the worst parts of life and the cruelties of human nature. These things keep his homeland trapped in a cycle of misery and suffering. In a country overrun by poverty, death, unrest, and corruption, he sees no future for himself. The only way to escape the cycle is to flee to a place Austin believes to be free of all these troubles, a place where he hopes his dreams will come true: the United States of America.

However, when Austin arrives in this supposed promised land, he is met with a crushing revelation. He finds America to be rife with all the same problems he thought he’d escaped, merely in different forms. Rather than give in to disappointment, he decides to combat these obstacles with a firm resolve. Before long, though, these obstacles threaten to overwhelm him. This realization prompts Austin to rethink how he sees the world and the challenges it throws at him.

Characters:

Main characters include Austin, his ex wife and his parents, at least these three were the ones that were fleshed out. Aside from these characters, unfortunately the others, be they friends or girlfriends or relatives, weren't as fleshed out as one hoped. Austin is best described as extremely studious, ambitious, and a genius, although due to his birth and the way the government was set up in Cameroon, Austin was unable to realize his full potential in these circumstances. Austin clearly admires his parents and sees them as honest and hardworking and is very close to them. Austin's ex wife was the complete opposite of Austin and from his view she was evil just because she wanted to be. In other words, the ex wife was a caricature rather than a human being.

Theme:

I read the story from cover to cover but feel at a loss as to what lesson I should have learned from the read.

Plot:

The story is in third person narrative from Austin's point of view. For me personally, I felt a strong detachment from the characters and Austin, which made it difficult to connect to the characters. The writing style was that of a reporter reporting on Austin's life instead of a narrator that provides rich details I was seeking. There are also very specific dates when it comes to exams or school years, and unfortunately very little else was given attention it deserved: for example there are mentions of Austin having friends, but not much is told about them, and the reader is not shown their personalities through actions or choices. Overall, the plot is chronological from 1970s up until 2000s and 98 percent of focus is on schooling instead of humanizing the characters.

Author Information:
Buy the Book:
Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble
Add to Goodreads



Meet the author:

Antoine F. Gnintedem is a renowned educator both in the United States and across the world. As a linguistic consultant, he has worked for the Department of Defense, the Department of Justice, and the Department of Homeland Security. In addition, he has served as an educational assessment expert for leading national and international testing companies. His academic achievements include a PhD in English language and literature and another doctorate in educational leadership.

Connect with the author: Twitter ~ Facebook

Opinion:

In beginning I was pretty excited about the book because I looked forward to learning a bit more about Cameroon, an African country that was nothing but a name on a map. However, my expectations were not met and I ended up feeling very disappointed by the read. There are parts that I liked, such as the description of Austins marriage and his dedication to seeing his children, but what I really wanted were more details about the life and history of Cameroon. I expected for the story to be more rich in details as well daily life of Austin, ( aside from his obsession with schooling) I wanted to be in the story instead of only being told about it. The story reads like a memoir/ autobiography but it is far more told than show, much to mine disappointment, and aside from Austin, the characters tend to appear and vanish briefly. In other words, an exciting concept, but it could use a bit more work.

This is for I read book tours

1 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.)

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

G1016 Book Review of bitten by Alan Moore

Name of Book: Bitten

Author: Alan Moore

ISBN: 9781980200895

Publisher: Self published

Type of book: Italy, gore, mosquitos, art authentication, secrets, demanding sex drive, disturbing scenes, mafia, connections, two parallel stories

Year it was published: 2018

Summary:

In the not-too-distant future, Italy is in disarray. It has voted to leave the EU in an attempt to regain control of its laws, finances and commerce. Even so, the country's economy is shrinking and its national debt rising. There is a marked escalation, too, in unemployment, bank loans and immigration. Production and service companies are in difficulty. The only thriving business areas are the black market and organised crime. There is discontent and protest on all sides. In Florence, the local Mafia boss, more accustomed to gunrunning and trading in plutonium, is involved in organising a silent auction for the sale of one of the world's most valuable lost paintings - a sixteenth-century masterpiece, which was appropriated in World War II by Stalin's Trophy Brigade. A British art expert is set to buy the picture on behalf of his client, a South American billionaire - yet surprisingly two Italian undercover intelligence agents, acting as antique dealers, submit the winning bid. All the while, human beings continue to harm the Earth by destroying land, sea, air, animals and trees. Global climate change, polluting the atmosphere, depleting the ozone layer: these are some of man's crimes against Nature. But time is running out. Nature has lost patience with humans. Unless something is done immediately to reverse the destruction of the ecosystem, Nature will retaliate by deploying the terrifying forces at her command. And as a first step in wreaking her revenge, she instigates a reign of terror by the deadliest creature on Earth.

Characters:

Main characters include Claudia, an intelligent young woman who works for an institute in studying mosquitos. Claudia is also best described as having a voracious sexual appetite. There is also Claudias much older boyfriend who deals with books and has found out about a mysterious painting that might have been a Raphael, but is in the hands of a Russian mob. There are other characters, but it's a bit difficult for me to keep track of them.

Theme:

Treat the earth the right way

Plot:

The story is in third person narrative from what seems to be everyone's point of view. The two main plot points of mysterious mosquito attacks as well as the recently discovered painting weren't blended well at all, and personally it would have been better if there were two separate books instead of one where it left my head scratching. I like a little bit gore in a story, but not where gore was the main  focus. Instead I prefer more psychological/ mind games thrillers, and unfortunately the story really lacked those aspects. The story raises more questions than answers, and these questions are never answered.

Author Information:
(From Italy Book Tours)

Buy the Book:
Amazon ~ Amazon UK
Add to Goodreads



Meet the Author:

Born in Surbiton, Surrey in 1944, Alan Moore lives in Barnes, SW London, with his wife, Amber. They have two daughters and a son, who between them have two boys and two girls with another boy expected in May. Alan was educated at Oundle School in Northamptonshire and at London University, where, as an external student, he obtained a BA degree in English. Thereafter, for 25 years, he single-handedly ran his own book publishing company, which at one stage was producing up to 20 titles a year. Now, at the age of 74, he has self-published his first novel.
Opinion:

For me, this was a very disappointing read. First of all, i was aware that i will be reading something outside my comfort zone, but in some cases, i enjoyed a those reads a whole lot. However, there are cases where I don't enjoy the book, and unfortunately, this is one of the cases. Where to begin? I admire that the author tried to build up strong and memorable women personalities in his book, as well as having an intriguing plot of mosquitos and the mysterious painting, but the execution of the story begs to differ. As a woman, I found myself very uncomfortable when one of the female characters discusses her sexual life with her father, or at least assures her father that her boyfriend is for sex only.  And I also didn't like that most of the time when it comes to women, there is only focus on sex. To be fair the women did do other actions like work or try to understand the world, but numerous times the author often referenced their voracious and sexual appetite. The mysterious painting and the mosquitos epidemic wasn't tied up together at all, which left me wondering if it would have been better should the stories have split up. If you are looking for a story that contains too much gore, and doesn't focus on psychology, then this is the right read, but if you want a strong female lead with psychological thriller, look elsewhere.     

This is for Italy book tours

1 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, June 18, 2018

Book Spotlight for The Boy Who Dreamt of fire trucks by Alvita Mack





Book Details:



Book Title: The Boy Who Dreamt of Fire Trucks by Alvita Mack

Category: Children's Fiction (Ages 3-7), 26 pages

Genre: Children's Books, Cars, Trains & Things That Go, Cars & Trucks

Publisher: Mindstir Media

Release date: September 26, 2016

Tour dates: May 28 to June 22, 2018

Content Rating: G



Book Description:



This story is about a little boy who is fascinated by fire trucks. Throughout his early life, he has dreams about the adventures at the station and the exciting life of a firefighter. The little boy holds his dreams close until one day they become a reality.



To follow the tour please visit Alvita Mack's page on iRead Book Tours.





Buy the Book:

Watch the book trailer:  







Meet the Author:





Alvita is a lover of writing, a teacher, and most importantly, a mom. Writing has always provided a creative outlet for which she finds sensible solutions. Having a son with developmental delays was very challenging for her. However, she used books and original stories to help him overcome the obstacles he faced at an early age. Alvita believes that the imagination is truly a key that unlocks the doors to an endless journey.



Connect with the author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Pinterest ~ Instagram



Enter the Giveaway!
Ends June 30, 2018


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Book Spotlight for Out of time by Thomas William Lowrie



Book Details:



Book Title: Out of Time (A ray Lafayette Novel) by Thomas William Lowrie

Category: Adult Fiction, 264 pages

Genre: Historical Fiction, Military and War

Publisher: Mindstir Media

Release date: December 4, 2017

Tour dates: May 28 to June 22, 2018

Content Rating: PG-13



Book Description:



Well, here I go again. All alone except for this suitcase of mine. I’m headed for a new place with new people. Not so bad considering it’s 1944. Lots of guys are in my shoes. We’re in the middle of World War II. Still not so bad. I’m a fireman in the Army Air Corps whatever they’re calling themselves these days. Once again, not bad at all. But I was born in 1963. There’s the bad part.



I was not born with the name Ray Lafayette, but that’s what they call me. I didn’t have kids or smoke a pipe. Hell, I didn’t even like coffee. I do now.



I was born into a different life than this, one with a lot of attachments. Now I carry my life in one bag. One really important bag.



In this time, people call me pal or buddy or sir, good lord they call me sir all the time.



I have friends in this time, and they are the best but do they know me like they think they do? Simply put, NO! Would they die for me? Every bit as much as I would die for them.



To say these folks are tough or strong is an understatement. Superhumans? I don’t think so. They were ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances. I didn’t have heroes before this. I didn’t understand them until now.



Since this event has started, I have experienced many things I can’t explain. There is only one other person who has any knowledge of my situation, and I can’t find him. The last words from him were vos non unum, you are not alone.



There was a time I missed all the things that made my life easier as I thought. Here I have no cell phone, no internet, no rock music, no almost anything. As bad as that sounds, I’m not sure if I want to leave here.



To follow the tour, please visit Thomas William Lowrie's page on iRead Book Tours.





Buy the Book:

Watch the book trailer:





Meet the author:





Thomas William Lowrie is a WWII writer and author who has published two military novels, He Was and Out of Time.



He has lived outside of Las Vegas most of his life, but his best memories are of the days fishing in South Texas. Summer vacations were the best. That is also where he found his best friend and wife, Tina. He could not have done any of this without her. Of course, Ray pecking at his brain for years had something to do with it too.



Connect with the author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Pinterest

Enter the Giveaway!
Ends June 30, 2018


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Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Book Spotlight of Poppy by Kat Flannery



Book Details:



Book Title: Poppy (The Montgomery Sisters, Book 2) by Kat Flannery

Category: Adult Fiction, 170 pages

Genre: Historical western romance

Publisher: Picco Press

Release date: May 18, 2018

Tour dates: May 28 to June 15, 2018

Content Rating: PG



Book Description:



Poppy Montgomery has always been good with a gun and could fight her way out of anything. Tough as nails and a sharp shooter, her beauty deceives the outlaws she’s after.



Hot on the trail of the Clemmons gang, a group of outlaws who rob trains and killed an innocent woman and child a few months before, she is determined to make them pay for the sin’s they’ve committed by bringing them to justice.



Pinkerton, Noah Shaw is investigating a ring of stage robberies and knows the Clemmons gang is behind them. Told to track down the infamous redheaded bounty hunter, Noah gets more than he bargained for when he arrests Poppy for assault.



Handcuffed together the pair must work together to stop the robberies, and figure out who is behind them. But what happens when love interferes and thrusts Poppy into discovering emotions she never knew existed? Will she choose the solitude she’s always known or Noah’s sweet embrace?



To follow the tour, please visit Kat Flannery's page on iRead Book Tours.





Buy the Book:





Meet the Author:





Kat Flannery’s love of history shows in her novels. She is an avid reader of historical, suspense, paranormal, and romance. She has her Certificate in Freelance and Business Writing.



A member of many writing groups, Kat enjoys promoting other authors on her blog. Kat enjoys teaching writing classes and giving back to other aspiring authors. She volunteers her time at the local library facilitating their writing group. She’s been published in numerous periodicals throughout her career



Her debut novel CHASING CLOVERS has been an Amazon Top 100 Paid bestseller. LAKOTA HONOR and BLOOD CURSE (Branded Trilogy) are Kat’s two award-winning novels and HAZARDOUS UNIONS is Kat’s first novella. Kat is currently hard at work on her next series, THE MONTGOMERY SISTERS.



Connect with the author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook


Enter the Giveaway!
Ends June 23, 2018




Monday, June 11, 2018

Book Spotlight of Buckaroo Buckeye; A Little Nut with Big Dreams by Kristin Anderson Cetone



Book Details:



Book Title: Buckaroo Buckeye: A Little Nut with Big Dreams

Author: Kristin Anderson Cetone

Illustrator: Nadia Komorova

Category: Children's Fiction (Ages 3-7), 36 pages

Genre: Friendship, Social Skills & School Life, Bullies, Growing Up & Facts of Life

Publisher: KLAC Enterprises, LLC

Release date: September 1, 2012

Tour dates: May 21 to June 15, 2018

Content Rating: G



Book Description:



Winner of the Mom's Choice Silver and OneBookAZ Awards!



There's a new cowboy in town! Hit the trail with Buckaroo Buckeye, a lovable little nut who falls from his tree in Ohio, as he dodges the bumps and bullies along the way in a magical journey to find his true place in the world.



Created by Reading Specialist Kristin Cetone, Buckaroo Buckeye teaches children 4-8 to: • Learn to ignore bullies

• Improve their self-esteem

• Connect with reading

• "Dream, Believe and Achieve" no matter their size!



Your child will be inspired by Buckaroo's determination in this touching story with unforgettable characters illustrated by Nadia Komorova. Get yours today!





Buy the Book:

Watch the book trailer:




Meet the author:




Buckaroo Buckeye grew out of author Kristin Anderson Cetone's imagination and joy of reading.



Born in Dayton, Ohio, she traveled many miles before putting down roots in the Arizona desert. Influenced by family, education, life experiences, and a desire to teach others, Mrs. Cetone discovered her purpose---just like Buckaroo Buckeye did.



Her true calling and passion is writing and helping others become successful readers. She created Buckaroo to encourage children to believe in themselves and follow their dreams while dodging the bumps and bullies along the way. Reading will help guide the way. Being a Reading Specialist, she has also created Nuts About Reading™ an informal, supplemental, online reading service. She shares her insights and suggestions to help parents strengthen their children's reading process and become successful readers.



Her joy now is to inspire and help kids to find the Buckaroo Buckeye in themselves.



Connect with the Author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Pinterest ~ Instagram




Enter the Giveaway!
Ends June 23, 2018


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Monday, June 4, 2018

G992 Book Review of the secret to southern charm by Kristy Woodson Harvey

Name of Book: The Secret of Southern Charm

Author: Kristy Woodson Harvey

ISBN: 978-1-5011-5810-0

Publisher: Gallery

Part of a Series: Peach Bluff Series

Type of book: Georgia, secrets, marriage, hope, faith, mother/children relationships, friendship, south, summer, being for one another, MIA, tragedy, finding self, talent

Year it was published: 2018

Summary:

A 2018 Spring Okra Pick
One of Southern Living’s Best Spring Break Reads

Leaving fans “practically [begging] for a sequel” (Bookpage), critically acclaimed author Kristy Woodson Harvey returns with the second novel in her beloved Peachtree Bluff series, featuring a trio of sisters and their mother who discover a truth that will change not only the way they see themselves, but also how they fit together as a family.

After finding out her military husband is missing in action, middle sister Sloane’s world crumbles as her worst nightmare comes true. She can barely climb out of bed, much less summon the strength to be the parent her children deserve.

Her mother, Ansley, provides a much-needed respite as she puts her personal life on hold to help Sloane and her grandchildren wade through their new grief-stricken lives. But between caring for her own aging mother, her daughters, and her grandchildren, Ansley’s private worry is that secrets from her past will come to light.

But when Sloane’s sisters, Caroline and Emerson, remind Sloane that no matter what, she promised her husband she would carry on for their young sons, Sloane finds the support and courage she needs to chase her biggest dreams—and face her deepest fears. Taking a cue from her middle daughter, Ansley takes her own leap of faith and realizes that, after all this time, she might finally be able to have it all.

Harvey’s signature warmth and wit make this a charming and poignant story of first loves, missed opportunities, and second chances and proves that she is "the next major voice in Southern fiction” (Elin Hilderbrand, New York Times bestselling author).

Characters:

Main characters include the three sisters: Caroline, Sloane and Emerson as well as their mother and grandmother and Sloanes husband Adam. Other characters such as Carolines former husband and Emerson's first love also make appearances and also add more depth to the story as well as Ansleys love and the sisters' children. Like in previous book, Caroline is best described as extremsly status conscious, but while in Slightly South of Simple I rarely if ever saw her positive qualities, in this book her positive qualities are seen, which makes her a more rounded character. In previous book Sloane seemed to inhabit the role of being a mother with little to no dreams or ambitions of her own. However in this story, she is also complex, well rounded, fascinating, and is more than just a mom. Ansley has revealed some shocking secrets to the reader, which will cause others to see her differently, but she also seemed to pale a bit, especially when compare her to Sloane. Male characters were her, but it often felt as if hey were more in the background than anything else.

Theme:

Mother's and sister's mean everything

Plot:

The story is in first person narrative from Ansleys and Sloanes point of view, and it does immediately pick up after the cliffhanger from the previous book is revealed. The story is focused on Sloane, the middle sister who becomes afraid of traveling to New York due to a personal tragedy that happened in her life. I will be honest that when comparing Sloane to either Emerson or Caroline, Sloane is like the everyday average woman that I imagine many women can relate to because she is warmhearted, generous and very devoted to those around her. Ansley goes into more detail about her goals and ambitions as well as about her true love, and more stunning information about Ansley's relationship with her husband becomes revealed. There are cliffhangers and I am eager to see them resolved. 

Author Information:
(From the book)

Kristy Woodson Harvey is a born-and-bred North Carolina girl who loves all four seasons, especially fall in Chapel Hill, where she attended college, and summer in Beaufort, where she and her family spend every free moment. The author of Slightly South of Simple, Dear Carolina, and Lies and Other Acts of Love, Kristy is also the founder of hte popular interior design blog Design Chic.

Opinion:

While I really enjoyed Slightly South of Simple, the previous book that was written by the author, i also often got a sense that the book had a lot of untapped potential, especially when comparing it to her latest Peach Bluff addition. In The Secret to Southern Charm, Kristy Woodson Harvey is definitely in her element and isn't afraid to woo and seduce her readers to eagerly follow the heartwarming narrative of mothers and their children as well as grandparents, lost loves and true ones as well as the importance of sisterhood and family. I really loved every minute I spent reading the story and getting a deeper look at our favorite trio of sister's and their mother as well as the sister's own children. New secrets and problems are revealed in this intricate web of south, sisterhood and the roles we play.

This was given for an honest review

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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