Friday, March 29, 2013

Coming Up...Week 13 of 2013

Books to be reviewed:

Part I of Chronicles of the Crusades by Jean de Joinville, Geoffroi de Villehardouin

The two famous Old French chronicles in this volume were composed by soldiers who took part in the Holy Wars. Villehardouin's Conquest of Constantinople is the first trustworthy and fully informed history of the Crusades. Distinguished by its simplicity and lucidity, it is an account of the Fourth Crusade, which ironically ended as a war against the Eastern Christians of the Orthodox Church. Joinville's Life of Saint Louis was inspired by the author's close attachment to the pious king and provides a vivid picture of his times and the ways of life in the East.







What I'm Reading now:

Bruce and the Road to Courage-Gale Leach

Bruce, a young caterpillar who is afraid of heights, doesn’t want to become a butterfly. Tired of being teased and bullied about this, he leaves home, unaware that he has embarked on a heroic journey that will test both his character and his courage.

Through a series of perilous adventures, Bruce discovers that standing up for yourself and doing what you know is right, even in the face of great odds, are the most courageous actions of all.

 Chapters: 4 out of 27

 Pages: 19 out of 110 (e-reader)




Letters from your future; reaching for your highest potential in times of great change by Brett L Bowden

Dear Ones,

We have been sending Humanity instructional letters for some time now. the Letters, collectively known as The Letters Project, started in 2007 and will continue until Humanity has reached its full potential and it is deemed that they will no longer be needed. These Letters are instructions about life and hwo life works from teh perspective of the Spiritual Realm in which we reside.

We go by many names for there are many of us here who want to communicate these truths to you. We work through the spiritual energy named Jaipur and are collectively known to this channel as The Counsel of Divine Wisdom. We are energies that reside in teh upper realms of existence. In your modern day temrs you might say that we are Ascended Masters although that term you use has restrictions, but it will suffice for htese purposes.

It is our intent to show you a new way, another way for Humanity to exist. Indeed, if you are pleased with what you see and feel around you, then this message will have no meaning for you. However, if youa re not pleased with the present condition in which you perceive your world, then you now have a golden opportunity to change it. You can do this by changing your perception of what you see around you and in doing this you will begin to change your life, your world and yourself.

Where will your road take you? Go inside yourself and seek the insights of your soul in hte silent moments. It will know the way.

The world of your highest imaginings is within your reach.

Progress: 163 out of 265 pages, 23 out of 40 chapters plus introduction and epilogue and preface

A Gospel of Kama Sutra by Poonaam Uppal

"So, do you believe in love?" Someone asked me once, and I replied, "I feel, I am here, in this world, just to teach teh world, "love" and "The ritual of love making," the essence of true love and how to create "Holy Kama Sutra." -Poonaam Uppal

THis is a true love story of glamorous, stylish and fiercely ambitious Indian lass Moh Lal Rai who has only one cherished desire, aspiration n her mind to become an internationally acclaimed avant-garde Fashion designer. Destiny deceives Moh's desires landing her in US. During her fashion show at Las Vegas she experiences violent vibration followed by a thunderous broadcasting of her future "soon in 1997 you will meet your true eternal lover" on this earth...

Dragooned by powerful longing to meet her ancient lover she is now a solitary traveler of an abyss of unfathomable space and time where she is sent on a roller coaster ride to a bizarre realm of gonzo occurrences, happenings, visions, premonitions, deja vous, diving visitation and startling revelation of her past birth and she involuntarily unravels the anciet most secret of the extinct art of Kama Sutra and "Tantric Sex" once taught by Lord Shiva himself but now these cryptic writings are shrouded in the misty Himalayan valley. In a cruel game plan of higher she is compelled by a powerful goddess to become a saint a Guru, a Love Messiah and reveal the lost mystical secret behind Kama Sutra___Kama Sutra is the holiest of scripture and only through Kama Sutra human could reach nirvana in this climaxing Black Age. "This is a true love story only the names and places are fictitious."

Progress 359 out of 1084 pages, 33 out of 92 chapters

Darn Good Eats: The Cookbook for Creative Chefs and Reluctant Cooks-Jodi Ambrose

Whether you love to cook or would rather starve than spend time in a kitchen, Darn Good Eats: The Cookbook for Creative Chefs and Reluctant Cooks is for you!

Reluctant Cook and author Jodi Ambrose teamed up with her Creative Chef husband, Grant, to bring you a cookbook with an unusual twist. Darn Good Eats provides scrumptious recipes for both the kitchen aficionado and the bumbling cook. Pooling together all of their combined kitchen savvy, they've created a cookbook that applies to anyone and everyone.

Along with a list of must-have items for your kitchen, helpful measurement conversions, delightful personal anecdotes and a witty sense of humor, this cookbook delivers over 70 delectable and inspired recipes for both the kitchen novice and cooking expert. You no longer have to be a good cook to make great food.

So that it's easy to navigate, the cookbook is split into two parts. The first part is for Creative Chefs who love, or at least like, to cook. It contains tantalizing recipes which range from simple to challenging and are bound to be crowd-pleasers. The second part is for people who prefer eating over cooking and find the kitchen to be more of a chore than a delight. The Reluctant Cook will now have a wonderful array of options for making "homemade" meals that (shhh...don't tell) in some cases are far from homemade, but are still mouthwateringly delicious.

Whether you love or hate the kitchen, Darn Good Eats: The Cookbook for Creative Chefs and Reluctant Cooks has plenty of tasty recipes to please even the most discerning palate. We know that you'll enjoy both the food and fun contained within this cookbook and we wish for you many happy and delicious meals.

Chapters: 12 out of 71 recipes plus introduction, Dragon-Breath-o-Meter, List of things you'll need, For those who love to cook, for those who hate to cook, weight and measures, in conclusion

Pages:  43 out of 200

Doctor Zhivago- Boris Pasternak

This epic tale about the effects of the Russian Revolution and its aftermath on a bourgeois family was not published in the Soviet Union until 1987. One of the results of its publication in the West was Pasternak's complete rejection by Soviet authorities; when he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1958 he was compelled to decline it. The book quickly became an international best-seller.

Dr. Yury Zhivago, Pasternak's alter ego, is a poet, philosopher, and physician whose life is disrupted by the war and by his love for Lara, the wife of a revolutionary. His artistic nature makes him vulnerable to the brutality and harshness of the Bolsheviks. The poems he writes constitute some of the most beautiful writing in the novel.

Chapters: 2 out of 17

Pages: 21 out of 456

The Awakening and Selected Short Fiction- Kate Chopin

When it first appeared in 1899, Kate Chopin’s The Awakening was greeted with cries of outrage. The novel’s frank portrayal of a woman’s emotional, intellectual, and sexual awakening shocked the sensibilities of the time and destroyed the author’s reputation and career. Many years passed before this short, pioneering work was recognized as a major achievement in American literature.

Set in and around New Orleans, The Awakening tells the story of Edna Pontellier, a young wife and mother who, determined to control her own life, flouts convention by moving out of her husband’s house, having an adulterous affair, and becoming an artist.

Beautifully written, with sensuous imagery and vivid local descriptions, The Awakening has lost none of its power to provoke and inspire. Additionally, this edition includes thirteen of Kate Chopin’s magnificent short stories.
Stories Included in the Volume:
The Awakening
Emancipation: A Life Fable
A Shameful Affair
At the ‘Cadian Ball
Désirée’s Baby
A Gentleman of Bayou Têche
A Respectable Woman
The Story of an Hour
Athénaïse
A Pair of Silk Stockings
Elizabeth Stock’s One Story
The Storm
The Godmother
A Little Country Girl

 Chapters: 2 out of 39 plus 13 short stories

Pages: 6 out of 288

Nobody But Us-Kristin Halbrook

Will

Maybe I'm too late. Maybe Zoe's dad stole all her fifteen years and taught her to be scared. I'll undo it. Help her learn to be strong again, and brave. Not that I'm any kind of example, but we can learn together.

When the whole world is after you, sometimes it seems like you can't run fast enough.

Zoe

Maybe it'll take Will years to come to terms with being abandoned. Maybe it'll take forever. I'll stay with him no matter how long it takes to prove that people don't always leave, don't always give up on you.

Chapters: 15 out of 60?

Pages: 96 out of 288

Destiny, Rewritten- Kathryn Fitzmaurice

Des·tin·y: |destinē/
(noun) The hidden power believed to control what will happen in the future; fate.

Eleven-year-old Emily Elizabeth Davis has been told for her entire life that her destiny is to become a poet, just like her famous namesake, Emily Dickinson. But Emily doesn’t even really like poetry, and she has a secret career ambition that she suspects her English-professor mother will frown on. Then a seeming tragedy strikes: just after discovering that it contains an important family secret, she accidentally loses the special copy of Emily Dickinson’s poetry that was given to her at birth. As Emily and her friends search for the lost book in used bookstores and thrift shops all across town, Emily’s understanding of destiny begins to unravel and then rewrite itself in a marvelous new way.

In her third novel, Kathryn Fitzmaurice again weaves a richly textured and delightful story about unexpected connections, about the ways that friends can help us see ourselves for who we truly are, and about the most perfect kinds of happy endings: those that happen just on time.

Chapters: 11 out of 63

Pages: 76 out of 335

The Secret Garden-Frances Hodgson Burnett

Mistress Mary is quite contrary until she helps her garden grow. Along the way, she manages to cure her sickly cousin Colin, who is every bit as imperious as she. These two are sullen little peas in a pod, closed up in a gloomy old manor on the Yorkshire moors of England, until a locked-up garden captures their imaginations and puts the blush of a wild rose in their cheeks; "It was the sweetest, most mysterious-looking place any one could imagine. The high walls which shut it in were covered with the leafless stems of roses which were so thick, that they matted together.... 'No wonder it is still,' Mary whispered. 'I am the first person who has spoken here for ten years.'" As new life sprouts from the earth, Mary and Colin's sour natures begin to sweeten. For anyone who has ever felt afraid to live and love, The Secret Garden's portrayal of reawakening spirits will thrill and rejuvenate. Frances Hodgson Burnett creates characters so strong and distinct, young readers continue to identify with them even 85 years after they were conceived. (Ages 9 to 12)

Chapters: 8 out of 27

Pages: 69 out of 288

Stop me if you've heard this one before- David Yoo

If Albert Kim has learned one thing in his tragic adolescence, it's that God (probably a sadistic teenaged alien) does not want him to succeed at Bern High. By the end of sophomore year, Al is so tired of humiliation that he's chosen to just forget girls and high school society in general, and enjoy the Zen-like detachment that comes from being an "intentional" loser.

Then he meets Mia Stone, and all the repressed hormones come flooding back. Mia, his co-worker at the Bern Inn, is adorable, popular, and most intimidatingly, the ex- long-term girlfriend of Ivy-bound, muscle-bound king of BHS and world class jerk, Ryan Stackhouse. But -- chalk it up to the magic of Al's inner beauty -- by the end of a summer vacuuming hotel rooms and goofing off together, he and Mia are officially "something."

Albert barely has time to ponder this miracle before the bomb drops: Ryan has been diagnosed with cancer, and he needs Mia's support, i.e. constant companionship. True, he's lost weight and he's getting radiation, but that doesn't make him any less of a jerk. And to Albert, it couldn't be more apparent that Ryan is using his cancer to steal Mia back. With the whole town rallying behind Ryan like he's a fallen hero, and Mia emotionally confused and worried for Ryan, Al's bid for love is not a popular campaign. In fact, it's exactly like driving the wrong way on a five-lane highway.

In this desperately funny novel, David Yoo tells an authentic story of first love, and therein captures the agony, the mania, the kicking and screaming that define teenage existence.

Pages: 288 out of 374

Chapters: 39 out of 48

Future Books I will read:

Trust: Betrayed (Trust #2 (Ebook)) by Cristiane Serruya

Alistair Connor MacCraig, a powerful banker, and Ethan Ashford, a steel tycoon, are both in love with Sophia Leibowitz, the ravishing owner of Leibowitz Oil.
Sophia fells for Alistair's seduction. She is determined to have a relationship with him but a dark and terrible secret lurks beneath the surface she presents to the world. When she regains her memories, shame and fear will take control of her. Will she be able to find peace within herself?
Alistair is in love with Sophia but he has difficulties overcoming his guilty over his daughter's death and his sexual preferences. Certain that he doesn't deserve to be loved, he would do everything to push Sophia away, despite his love for her. Will he be able to find redemption?
Ethan, no less haunted by his secrets and lies, lives in an alternate reality because the loss of Sophia is too unbearable to face. He would do everything to have Sophia back in his arms.

In BETRAYED, the second installment of the Trust series, Sophia, Ethan and Alistair will face and revisit their past dark deeds.
Each one of them will need to overcome their guilt, fear and pain and learn to see themselves through forgiving eyes.
Or succumb to their misery.

Chapters: N/A

Pages: N/A

Vanguard of Hope: (Sapphire Brigade Book 1 (ebook)) by Kathy Steinemann 

LISETVILLE, 1890 -- Murders are committed; homes are burned; family secrets are buried; an unexpected romance complicates lives. Amid the mystery and violence, a vigilante brigade emerges to administer justice.

Flowing through the intrigue and drama is a dark undercurrent that will touch your heart as you empathize with the victims.

Chapters: 13 Parts? Plus prologue and epilogue

Pages: 329




Chronicles by Froissart

Froissart (1337-1410), sometimes described as the historian of the Hundred Years' War, was one of the first great journalists.

His Chronicles reveal the same curiosity about character and customs which underlies the works of his contemporary, Chaucer. This selection depicts a panorama of Europe during the great age of Anglo-French rivalry, from the deposition of Edward II to the downfall of Richard II, Froissart's famous descriptions of chivalry in action at Sluy's, Crecy, Calais and Poitiers are only part of a comprehensive court's-eye-view of society which embraces trading activities, diplomacy and the Peasants' Revolt.

Pages: 471

Chapters: around 60?

The Last Outlaws; The Lives and Legends of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid by Thom Hatch

The Old West was coming to an end.Two legendary outlaws refused to go with it. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid—as leaders of the Wild Bunch, they planned and executed the most daring bank and train robberies of the day, with a professionalism never before seen by authorities. For several years at the end of the 1890s, the two friends, along with a revolving cast who made up their band of thieves, eluded local law enforcement and bounty hunters, all while stealing from the rich bankers and eastern railroad corporations who exploited western land. The close calls were many, but Butch and Sundance always managed to escape to rob again another day—that is, until they rode headlong into the 20th century. Fenced-in range, telephone lines, electric lights, and new crime-fighting techniques were quickly rendering obsolete the outlaws of the wide open frontier. Knowing their time was up, Butch and Sundance, along with a mysterious beauty named Etta Place, headed to South America, vowing to leave their criminal careers behind. But riding the trails of Chile, Argentina and Bolivia, Butch and Sundance would find that crime wasn’t through with them just yet. In The Last Outlaws, Thom Hatch brings these memorable characters to life like never before: Butch, the brains of the outfit; Sundance, the man of action; and the men on both sides of the law whom they fought with and against. From their early holdup attempts to that fateful day in Bolivia, author Thom hatch draws on a wealth of fresh research to go beyond the myth and provide a compelling new look at these legends of the Wild West.

Chapters: 14 plus prologue

Pages: 255

The Castilian Suite- Graham Blackburn

In 1961 Generalíssimo Franco is still dictator of Spain and Roger Coulter is on his way to Madrid with the beauiful Sarah to write ‘The Castilian Suite’. Youthful enthusiasm is no match for the harsh realities of life, however, and composing gives way to a hand-to-mouth existence of scalping tickets to the bullfight, pimping in the Barrio Chino, and an eventual return to a life of rowdy gigs in West Indian and Irish bars in London. Tragedy ensues in New York, followed by corruption in Los Angeles before Roger Coulter can return to his dream.

Chapters: 29 plus translations

Pages: 402



The Best of All Possible Worlds-Karen Lord

A proud and reserved alien society finds its homeland destroyed in an unprovoked act of aggression, and the survivors have no choice but to reach out to the indigenous humanoids of their adopted world, to whom they are distantly related. They wish to preserve their cherished way of life but come to discover that in order to preserve their culture, they may have to change it forever.

Now a man and a woman from these two clashing societies must work together to save this vanishing race—and end up uncovering ancient mysteries with far-reaching ramifications. As their mission hangs in the balance, this unlikely team—one cool and cerebral, the other fiery and impulsive—just may find in each other their own destinies . . . and a force that transcends all.

Chapters: 16

Pages: 303

01. In the Prince's Bed by Sabrina Jeffries

From bestselling author Sabrina Jeffries comes the first dazzling novel in a sexy new series featuring three half brothers. Bound together by the royal father who denied them, they've formed a pact to help each other achieve their every desire...including the women of their dreams. Miss Katherine Merivale is desperate to make a respectable match -- if only her childhood sweetheart would propose! Until he does, she can't touch the fortune she's inherited. So the last thing she needs is notorious rogue Alec Black putting her proposed marriage at risk with his distracting, smoldering gaze and moonlit kisses.

Alec, the Earl of Iversley -- and one of three bastard sons of the Prince of Wales -- is secretly searching for an heiress bride to pay his debts. Fiery Katherine seems the answer to his prayers, and her passionate response to his practiced seduction soon assures him that she is his. But Alec knows Katherine is looking for a love-match, and he wonders...what will happen when she discovers his deception?

Chapters: 28 plus epilogue

Pages: 355

Keeping My Hope by Christopher Huh

A one-of-a-kind historical fiction graphic novel that depicts WWII and the Holocaust panoramically and cinematographically through the eyes of a young teenager, Ari. Written by 14-year old Christopher Huh. Ari is a teenager whose entire life is turned upside down by the horrors of the Holocaust. He and his family are torn apart and moved to Auschwitz, where the reader gains an inside look at what prisoners in the concentration camps suffered. However, even with this atrocities, the power of friendship shines through and gives Ari hope to keep surviving through the darkest blizzards of terror. Informative yet touching, Keeping My Hope spreads the message of how powerfully racism and prejudice can affect those around us.

Pages: 169

Chapters: 11  plus afterword and preface

This Möbius Strip of Ifs by Mathias B. Freese

In this impressive and varied collection of creative essays, Mathias B. Freese jousts with American culture. A mixture of the author's reminiscences, insights, observations, and criticism, the book examines the use and misuse of psychotherapy, childhood trauma, complicated family relationships, his frustration as a teacher, and the enduring value of tenaciously writing through it all. Freese scathingly describes the conditioning society imposes upon artists and awakened souls. Whether writing about the spiritual teacher, Krishnamurti, poet and novelist, Nikos Kazantzakis, or film giants such as Orson Welles and Buster Keaton, the author skewers where he can and applauds those who refuse to compromise and conform. A psychotherapist for twenty-five years, Freese conveys a unique combination of psychodynamic thinking and Eastern philosophy while examining Existentialism, alternative education, and Jewish values. His award-winning novel, The i Tetralogy, is a groundbreaking contribution to Holocaust literature and a critically acclaimed work of "undying artistic integrity." His short story collection, Down to a Sunless Sea, was published in 2008. At the core of these essays is the author's struggle to authentically express his unique perspective, to unflinchingly reveal a profound visceral truth, along with a passionate desire to be completely alive and aware.

Chapters: 36 plus foreword

Pages:  164

Sophie's Choice by William Styron

"[One morning] in the early spring, I woke up with the remembrance of a girl I'd once known, Sophie. It was a very vivid half-dream, half-revelation, and all of a sudden I realized that hers was a story I had to tell." That very day, William Styron began writing the first chapter of Sophie's Choice.
First published in 1979, this complex and ambitious novel opens with Stingo, a young southerner, journeying north in 1947 to become a writer. It leads us into his intellectual and emotional entanglement with his neighbors in a Brooklyn rooming house: Nathan, a tortured, brilliant Jew, and his lover, Sophie, a beautiful Polish woman whose wrist bears the grim tattoo of a concentration camp...and whose past is strewn with death that she alone survived.

"Sophie's Choice is a passionate, courageous book...a philosophical novel on the most important subject of the twentieth century," said novelist and critic John Gardner in The New York Times Book Review. "One of the reasons Styron succeeds so well in Sophie's Choice is that, like Shakespeare (I think the comparison is not too grand), Styron knows how to cut away from the darkness of his material, so that when he turns to it again it strikes with increasing force....Sophie's Choice is a thriller of the highest order, all the more thrilling for the fact that the dark, gloomy secrets we are unearthing one by one--sorting through lies and terrible misunderstandings like a hand groping for a golden nugget in a rattlesnake's nest--may be authentic secrets of history and our own human nature."

The Modern Library has played a significant role in American cultural life for the better part of a century. The series was founded in 1917 by the publishers Boni and Liveright and eight years later acquired by Bennett Cerf and Donald Klopfer. It provided the foundation for their next publishing venture, Random House. The Modern Library has been a staple of the American book trade, providing readers with affordable hard-bound editions of important works of liter-ature and thought. For the Modern Library's seventy-fifth anniversary, Random House redesigned the series, restoring as its emblem the running torchbearer created by Lucian Bernhard in 1925 and refurbishing jackets, bindings, and type, as well as inaugurating a new program of selecting titles. The Modern Library continues to provide the world's best books, at the best prices.

Chapters: 16

Pages: 626

Sarah's Key by Tatiana De Rosnay 

Paris, July 1942: Sarah, a ten year-old girl, is taken with her parents by the French police as they go door-to-door arresting French families in the middle of the night. Desperate to protect her younger brother, Sarah locks him in a bedroom cupboard-their secret hiding place-and promises to come back for him as soon as they are released.

Sixty Years Later: Sarah's story intertwines with that of Julia Jarmond, an American journalist investigating the roundup. In her research, Julia stumbles onto a trail of secrets that link her to Sarah, and to questions about her own romantic future.

Chapters: N/A

Pages: 293


Eclipse of the Midnight Sun (The Rule of Ranging, #1) by Timothy M Kestrel 

Even those waging the fiercest battles just hew to hard fast rules that separate the soldier from the savage. And when a man’s home is destroyed beyond restoration, it’s up to him alone to forge a code and carve a new place to live in peace. The Rule of Ranging 1: Eclipse of the Midnight Sun is the epic action-adventure drama by Timothy M. Kestrel that follows the fearless Finn on a journey paved with bloodthirsty aggressors, mysterious women, and the rough terrain of a fledgling America. Both grave and uplifting, it’s an absorbing flight of fancy and derring-do. Set in the eighteen century, Kestrel’s story is a work of historic fiction that relives the most perilous days of the French & Indian War. The story begins in Finland, just as a young boy named Finn witnesses the complete annihilation of his home village, as well as the brutal killing of his family by marauding Russians. He barely manages to escape, chased by a merciless Hessian mercenary, Johan Kopf, nicknamed Totenkopf. Following his dying mother's wish to find a mysterious woman named Columbia, Finn's course takes him across the Atlantic. He befriends a slave, Gus, and buys his freedom. On their travels in this brave new world called America, the two make their way through the majestic Hudson Valley in New York, and soon encounter Marcus Fronto, a curious vagrant and philosophical mentor; Daniel Nimham, a fierce Wappinger chief and warrior; and beautiful Catherina Brett. They join forces with Robert Rogers Rangers, and fight against the French at Fort Edward, New York, during the Hudson River campaign in the 1750s. Action-packed and rigorously researched, the story offers a rare vantage of a crucial time in this country’s coming of age that is at once funny, heartbreaking, illuminating, and thrilling. Mining the depths of love, freedom, greed, and loyalty, it’s a page-turning, heart-pounding read that is at once scholarly and scintillating – steeped in history with a death-defying hero for the ages.

Chapters: 5

Pages: 371

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