Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Coming Up...Week 15 of 2013

Book to be reviewed:

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

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.








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.

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)

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 right now:

The Chosen Shell  by Katherine Sartori (e-book)

"The Chosen Shell opens at a time of profound change in the nation and the Catholic Church. Its young heroine, Celie O’Rourke, is caught between a desire to live a life of divine purpose and a yearning for human love and connection. Author Katherine Sartori, once a nun herself, follows Celie’s journey from vulnerable adolescent to empowered adult with sensitive and poignant prose, while offering readers a fascinating glimpse inside monastic convent life. Although Celie’s transformation is rooted in the turbulent 1960s, her story offers a stirring and ultimately uplifting message that transcends that era. DeAnna Cameron, author of Dancing at the Chance and The Belly Dancer. Celie O’Rourke, sensing a calling from God, enters a California convent during the 1960s, a turbulent era of change in the Catholic Church. Four years later, she is teaching Latino children with great success. But the cult-like practices of her monastic Order threaten her fragile self-confidence, as she grapples with sexual feelings she can no longer suppress. Celie’s charismatic Superior offers her guidance and friendship plus the opportunity to fulfill a lifelong dream. . .but these gifts come with a high price. Confused, she takes refuge at a retreat house where she meets an accomplished New York businessman, Tony DeStephano. Though from different worlds, the bond they feel is electric. . .but forbidden. A former nun, author Katherine Sartori has created a fictional story, inspired by her own experiences as well as those of the Sisters she met. Her novel seeks to contrast idealism with the realities of convent living.

Chapters: 2 out of 46

Pages: 19 out 304

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: 175 out of 265 pages, 25 out of 40 chapters plus introduction and epilogue 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: 8 out 36 plus foreword

Pages: 27 out of 164

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: 1 out of 5

Pages: 75 out of 371

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 559 out of 1084 pages, 48 out of 92 chapters

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: 4 out of 16

Pages: 43 out of 303

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: 8 out of 29 plus translations

Pages: 97 out of 402



Starstruck by Rachel Shukert

A golden age of glam . . .

Every week they arrive in Los Angeles--beautiful and talented young hopefuls who dream of becoming stars. It's all Margaret Frobisher has ever wanted—and when she's discovered by a powerful agent, she can barely believe her luck. She's more than ready to escape her snobby private school and conservative Pasadena family for a chance to light up the silver screen.

The competition is fierce at Olympus Studios and Margaret—now Margo—is chasing her Hollywood dreams alongside girls like Gabby Preston, who at 16 is already a grizzled show-biz veteran caught between the studio and the ravenous ambition of her ruthless mother, and sultry Amanda Farraday, who seems to have it all--ambition, glamour . . . and dirty secrets. Missing from the pack is Diana Chesterfield, the beautiful actress who mysteriously disappeared, and there are whispers that Diana's boyfriend—Margo's new co-star—may have had something to do with it. Margo quickly learns that fame comes with a price, and that nothing is what it seems.

Set in Old Hollywood, Starstruck follows the lives of three teen girls as they live, love, and claw their way to the top in a world where being a star is all that matters.

Chapters: 10 out of 30

Pages: 105 out of 338

Future Books I will read:

Fire Always Burns by Krista Lakes (Ebook)

Fire always burns. Three friends just have to make sure that it doesn't burn them.

Holly managed to escape the boring mountain town where she was born by going to college. However, she found herself having too many wild nights and too many mornings of waking up in unfamiliar beds to keep her scholarship. Now that's she's back in Conifer, she has no idea what she is going to do with her life and no hope for the future.

Luke's little brother is miserable after being shuffled away from his friends and family after his parents' bitter divorce. Luke feels helpless, and he will do anything it takes to bring his little brother home where he belongs.

Andrew's father died a couple years ago in an electrical accident, leaving him to care for his distraught mother. More than anything, he wants to move on and escape this small town to follow his dreams, but his mother would be lost without someone to take care of her.

When these three friends reconnect, Holly comes up with a plan, a plan that will change all their lives for the better. She knows that to start a fire, all it takes is a spark. However, as the sparks ignite and begin to burn, she realizes that she may have stood too close to the flame, and the torch she carries for Andrew burns brighter than ever.

Will Holly manage to rekindle old loves, or will the destructive fire in their hearts consume everything they hold dear?

**Mature Content** Recommended for ages 17+ due to sexual situations and language.

Chapters: 18

Pages: 311

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

Choose Well to live well; The Five Fundamentals to Create a Fit, Healthy and Strong Body and Mind- Laura Boniello

Choose Well To Live Well is a way of living, a lifestyle, that I live and teach. It is based upon five fundamental practices to help you create a fit, strong, healthy body and state of mind. By practicing these fundamentals daily, you will be in charge of your health and wellbeing, and owning your power to choose.

Chapters: 12 plus preface, introduction and conclusion

Pages: 100






Scream, "Aye, Sir!" by Aaron Powell

Welcome to recruit training, United States Marine Corps Recruit Training, Parris Island, South Carolina.
Follow Drill Instructor Sergeant Tice as he gives his first-hand account of life training United States Marines and the inappropriate relationships that result from the illusion of absolute power.
**WARNING**THIS BOOK CONTAINS EXPLICIT SEXUAL CONTENT**

Chapters:13 plus epilogue

Pages: 63





Benjamin by Aaron Powell

The harsh winter and great outdoors of upstate New York provide Benjamin with the only solace from an otherwise agonizing existence. His mother's abusive alcoholic boyfriend, the bully on the bus, and a Math teacher who pays a little too much attention to schoolboys are slowly chipping away at his dignity and feelings of self-worth. Benjamin clings to any sense of normalcy until a series of compounding events drives him to the very edge of suicide. He begs God for help - a divine intervention - but his prayers go unanswered and he has an epiphany: God helps those who help themselves.

Chapters: 27 plus epilogue

Pages: 75



Winter Nova by Preston Morgan

For over six years, the Imperial army has achieved uninterrupted success and now controls most of Gildend. Alternating between deceptive diplomacy and brute force, the crafty Empire has decimated the followers of the Light. Only the city of Greydale remains free, and the Imperial army vows to crush it within months.

In search of hope, Greydale’s Council rushes to finish rebuilding the Temple. The city sends out the Luminaires, a group of gifted soldiers, to recover the four remaining Crystals—the last pieces of the Temple which are now scattered in the wilderness. During these perilous quests, the soldiers will confront many trials and tribulations. But what will happen if they fail to recover all of the Crystals in time? And do the people really understand what would happen if the Temple is rebuilt?

Winter Nova takes readers on an exciting journey, filled with adventure, love, and revelation. Along the way, the main characters will endure many hardships, yet it is through tragedy and heartbreak that they will discover their true purpose. When the time comes, their choices will play pivotal roles in the explosive conclusion.

Chapters: 30

Pages: 390

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 Bouchard Legacy by Ted Magnuson

The Bouchard Family Legacy is about to be passed on to a fourth generation...or will it?

When Paul and Randy were in high school, their parents married new spouses. What different understandings Paul and Randy have when it comes to the future of the family business.

Paul has earned a place in the world, but Randy owns it.

The Bouchard Legacy; a story of loyalty and greed, a story of prejudice and character; it’s the story of Randy and Paul coming of age in the tumultuous 1960’s and then; their arrival as men in the close of the 1970’s. Set in Mid-America, St Louis, MO

Pages: 207

Chapters: 29 plus epilogue

The Carrion Birds by Urban Waite

Set in a small town in the Southwest, a soulful work of literary noir rife with violence, vengeance, and contrition from a fresh voice in fiction-the author of the highly acclaimed The Terror of Living

Life hasn't worked out the way Ray Lamar planned. A widower and father who has made some tragic mistakes, he's got one good thing going for him: he's calm, cool, and efficient under pressure, usually with a gun in his hand. A useful skill to have when you're paid to hurt people who stand in your boss's way.

But Ray isn't sure he wants to be that man anymore. He wants to go home to Coronado, New Mexico, to see the twelve-year-old son he hopes will recognize him. He wants to make a new life far from the violence of the last ten years. One last job will take him there. All he has to do is steal a rival's stash. Simple, easy, clean.

Ray knows there's no such thing as easy, and sure enough, the first day ends in a catastrophic mess. Now, the runners who have always moved quietly through this idyllic desert town on the Mexican border want answers. And revenge. Short on time, with no one to trust but himself, Ray must come up with a clever plan or Coronado's newly appointed lady sheriff will have a vicious bloodbath on her hands.

Relentlessly paced and beautifully orchestrated, with refreshingly real, vulnerable, and very human characters and a vivid sense of place, The Carrion Birds is an unsettling and indelible work of literary noir in the tradition of Cormac McCarthy, Elmore Leonard, and Dennis Lehane.

Pages: 270

Chapters: 5

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