Needing New Blood

Note to Authors, Publishers and Agents:

I have NINE books in queue and they’re all zombie based novels. 

I’m a bit burned out on the whole rotting flesh, run for your lives, shoot in the head storylines. My braiiiiiiiins needs new content.

I am putting the brakes on accepting anymore zombie novels. 

In desperate need of Ghosts, Hauntings, Paranormal Investigating, Demonic Spirits and Exorcisms, Serial Killers, Crime Investigators, Murder Mysteries, etc. 

Please, Please, send them my way!!!

Book Case #81- Working Stiffs

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Book and Author Details:

Description from Author:

Working Stiffs is a hilarious, action-packed tale of survival in the fast-paced world of pharmaceuticals. Something has gone horribly wrong in the Pro-Well Pharmaceuticals factory and ex-meth dealer Marshall Owens, the company’s owner and drug genius, must keep the surrounding Pittsburgh area from finding out.

Unfortunately, the undead assembly line workers have other plans. The infection spreads and chaos reigns supreme as the surviving Pro-Well employees battle their way through offices with whatever weapons they can scrounge from the supply closet. They must get outside. But they don’t know that The General is out there amassing a shambling, rotting army of Pittsburgh’s finest.

Will the employees make it? Will two repulsive workers find love in a janitor’s closet? How many office workers can one man take down with the blade of a paper cutter and some staplers? Will Marshall Owens go back to selling meth? And most important of all, will Pro-Well’s stock value plummet? Find out all the answers in this brilliant new horror/comedy novel reminiscent of style of Christopher Moore.

My Review:
This is Lucy Leitner’s first attempt at novel writing. I’m split on my view of this novel. Although the writing is strong, the styling is just too overboard.

PROS:
I am going to start with what I think are the pros for this author and story. 
The author’s marketing is freaking brilliant. The company in the book is called ProWell Pharmaceuticals. The author created a website for this company:
ProWell PHarmaceuticals <— This is beyond hilarious. Not only did she create a website for the company, she created a zombie workout site for survival:
FITApocalypse <—- She really has an edge with her marketing plan. 

CONS:
To me, it had a very Stephen King vibe, not in the story, but in the descriptions; where he goes into pages of description for one person. Another dislike for me was that the author goes on and on about humanity, and whores and women, etc. The story itself was really good. The idea, the flow and thought process from beginning to end.  For a female author, she’s really rough on women. I feel she tries too hard at throwing in pop-culture references.

Overall, this is really midline for me. It was easy enough to read, but I found myself skipping pages and skimming the story, just to actually get through it and finish it. 

Book Case #80 – In the Light

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Continuing short story from: 
S.P. Miskowski’s “Knock Knock”
&
S.P. Miskowski’s “Astoria”

Book and Author Details:
In the Light on Amazon
In the Light on Good Reads
S.P. Miskowski
Omnium Gatherum Publshing

Description from Author:

While fleeing from neighborhood bullies, a lonely girl uncovers a dark secret buried near the abandoned ruins of a house mired in local legend. Ruth hopes the charred remains that she unearths will bring a bit of magic to her life, but she’s no match for the force that dwells in this place, waiting for a chance to live again.

A displaced child neglected by affluent parents and a former preacher burdened by the tragic and scandalous circumstances of his mother’s death face a final reckoning at the hands of a woman with the power to summon good and evil.

In the Light is the final book of the Skillute Cycle, a chronicle of one fictional town and an abiding horror that lies just beneath the surface. In the woods. In the water. Beneath the ground. The time has arrived. Something evil has come home.

My Review:

This is the third, and final, installment of the Skillute cycle. I’ve become quite attracted to S.P.’s writing style. Her poetic composition is beautifully woven together to create yet another intriguing tale of the creepy history of Skillute.

The child in this story is new to Skillute. Her parents are avid house flippers and moved from Seattle proper to the small, obscure town of Skillute. She doesn’t fit in with peers. She doesn’t fit in at home. She is very displaced and bullied. During a bullying incident, she runs through a field to get away from her aggressors. She stumbles upon a buried  tool box.  What she finds not only intrigues her, but changes the outcome of her life in Skillute.

This short novel was captivating and engaging. I thoroughly enjoyed the series as a whole. S.P. Miskowski is a fantastic author. Everything from plot design to character development. The only thing about this novel that bothered me was the ending. I felt it was like a really good horror movie that leaves an Easter Egg at the end leaving it open for the potential of further stories. If this is truly the case, then I look forward to more! 

Book Case #79 – The Broken Curse

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Book  Review : The Thousand Year Curse
Book Review: The Cruse of Betrayal

Book and Author Details:
The Broken Curse on Good Reads
The Broken Curse on Amazon
Taylor Lavati’s Blog Website
Taylor Lavati’s Google+
Taylor Lavati’s Website
Taylor’s Facebook

Description from Author:

After a chain of tragic events, Ryder has lost the true essence of who she is. At the cost of her emotions, she channels anger and frustration to hone her new skills. Her white knight remains by her side, but with light comes dark.

When her mentor concocts a plan to end the curse, Ryder dives in head first, but as the number of demons on Earth increases, Ryder and her friends realize their final battle affects more than just the curse.

In the final installment of A Curse Books, Ryder will decide her future—and accept the inevitable fate her decision brings with it.

My Review:
This is the final book in the three book series, “The Thousand Year Curse” by author Taylor Lavati. Back in 2013, when I received the first in the series to review, I immediately said that this was a strong author who I was rooting for. I am excited that I have been privy to her growth and process in this series. She’s a phenomenal writer with a very creative plot process. I have been able to read and watch characters grow, gain strength and meet their fates. I was even a bit sad reading the last page of this series. I want to more of what happens in their lives.

Ryder, Ollie and Ari are still in their cursed love triangle and Ryder is still trying to figure out her soul mate. After a huge battle that took place in book two, “The Curse of Betrayal” We watched close friends die, lives ruined and Ryder’s mother handed over to Hermes in the Underworld.

In book three, “The Broken Curse,” Ryder is distant, moody and closed off from everyone around her. She pushes herself physically as the only way to ‘feel’ anything. She has pushed Ari and Ollie even further way, when they both struggle hard to gain her attention, and finally have her choose her soulmate. Her family, friends and faculty come together to help her build an army to take on Hades, Hermes and their demons.

Read the books, support this amazing author, and discover who Ryder’s soulmate is. Find out how the curses are broken. Fall deep in love with the characters just as I have. Such a kick ass book series.

P.S. ….. I AM SO IN LOVE WITH WHO HER SOUL MATE IS!! Best way to end this book series.

Cast of Characters (Click names to be taken to Wikipedia for further character definitions of these Greek Gods/Goddesses/Etc.)
Eurydice/Ryder  – Main Character.
Ollie/Orpheus – Boyfriend 1
Ari/Aristaeus – Boyfriend 2
Hades – Self explanatory

Book Case #78 – Fort Reiley

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Book and Author Details:
Fort Reiley on Good Reads
Fort Reiley on Amazon
Author Jerry Hanel Website
Author Jerry Hanel’s Facebook

Description from Author:

Harrison Kass, a tabloid reporter, travels to a sleepy little town in western Oklahoma to dig up an amazing legend. Well, quotes about one, anyway. What he finds is more than he bargains for. Adam Moor, the town patriarch, has a secret. All of Harry’s prying dislodges the secret and Adam vows to convert Harry into a Citizen – a parasitic infection that will take over his mind and body. Tara Roberts, the local vet, isn’t what she seems. She comes to Harry’s rescue and helps him survive infection. Together they must find the only man on record who knows how to free Harry from his condition before he succumbs to the Turning and becomes another of Adam’s mindless minions.

My Review:
First book on my Best of 2015 Category!!!

I absolutely love this book. Jerry, the author, very much reminds me of early Dean Koontz/ Richard Paige. I am really thankful this book was sent to me for review material. Jerry does well with weaving mystery, paranormal, and creep factor into an intriguing plot process. He has strong character development without going overboard with the description process. He gives you enough to allow you to visualize, while leaving out enough to keep your imagination flowing. This was an easy, but wonderful, read.

The story features Harrison (come on, you know a book’s going to be good when the main character is named after one of the greatest actors!) Kass. He’s a tabloid journalist looking for his next big article. He heart rumors of a fountain of youth in the middle of Oklahoma, and ventures out in his pristine vintage VW bug looking for the perfect quote. What he finds instead was much more than a quote of a lifetime, he finds adventure that becomes life or death.

The town is run by a impenetrable Adam Moor; who’s more than he first seems. No one in the town is friendly. Everyone is secretive, except for Tara Roberts, the town’s vet. She goes out of her way, risking her life, to get the town’s secret out. This story takes the reader on an imaginative, genetic alteration, alien, mysterious adventure.

I found the writing easy to read and follow. The story’s plot was fantastic and kept my attention; well into the wee hours of every morning. This sleep deprived book review cannot wait to read more from Jerry Hanel; especially as a huge early Dean Koontz fan. You can’t help but feel for the main character, Harry. You can’t help but root for Harry and Tara to connect romantically. You can’t help but mentally cheer for them to destroy the town’s “Citizens” and bust the secret wide open.

FANTASTIC Book!   

Published: Dec. 16, 2014
Words: 118,310
Language: English

ISBN: 9781311451026

Book Case #77 – Burnt Tongues

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Book and Author Details:
Burnt Tongues on Good Reads
Burnt Tongues on Amazon
Burnt Tongues on Medallion Publishing

Description from Author:

Transgressive fiction authors write stories some are afraid to tell. Stories with taboo subjects, unique voices, shocking images—nothing safe or dry.

Burnt Tongues is a collection of transgressive stories selected by a rigorous nomination and vetting process and hand-selected by Chuck Palahniuk, author of Fight Club, as the best of The Cult workshop.

These stories run the gamut from horrific and fantastic to humorous and touching, but each leaves a lasting impression.

Some may say even a scar.

My Review:
As a reviewer, I find it rather disheartening that an author who contributed to this anthology has gone out of their way to defensively retort a reader’s review.

I have had authors offer books for review, and then get incredibly verbal when I did not enjoy their book. I have been ripped apart in the most passive aggressive, downright stalkerish manner, because an author didn’t like my review.

One of the fantastic things about creating an “art” and putting it into the world, is that you will have fans and you will have haters. It’s not a good thing to hunt down and rally against the readers who do not enjoy your writing, the book, or your “art”.

I received advance copy of this book  and finished it a couple months ago. I have been attempting to review it. I have had it in queue for some time now, but waivered on whether I should post a review; especially after reading that one of the authors has gone out of his way to comment a reviewer’s dislike of the book. I’m almost second guessing posting it on Good Reads (where the author does the defensive attacking), on amazon and my blog.

The gist is, not everyone is going to like your book, your art, or your stories. It does not behoove an author, artist, creative type to seek out and try to debate a critic’s view point. With all of this said and done, My review is simple…

I was looking forward to this book, but found a lot of the stories a bit more out there than I had envisioned with approached to read and review it. There are some cathartic, interesting and entertaining stories in this anthology. This does not make me a crappy reviewer. This does not make me anything other than a person who wasn’t fond of this book. There are a few authors who are trying to pen their stories in the same manner that Chuck Palahniuk does, and they simply cannot surmount or mimic.

Some of the stories struck an emotional core, some of the severely bored me enough to skip through them. I read the book twice. First, I bounced around finding something that caught my eye. Second, from front to back.  My review is going to be midline, 3 stars. It just didn’t catch my attention in the manner I had hoped it would.

Transgressive Fiction Trade Paperback US $14.95 /
CDN ISBN# 9781605427348 .

Book Case #76 – Blazing Obsession

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Book and Author Details:
Blazing Obsession – Amazon
Blazing Obsession – Good Reads
Blazing Obsession – Matadour Publishing
Dai Henley Website

Description from Author (Shortened to fit blog):

How would you react if your wife, stepson and baby daughter were murdered in an arson attack and the arsonist was tried and acquitted on a technicality? How would you feel if DNA evidence proved the arsonist’s guilt, but the 800-year-old laws of double jeopardy meant that he couldn’t be retried?….

Blazing Obsession shows how powerful the emotions of revenge and obsession are, and how they can result in fatal consequences. The novel, which combines police procedural, legal drama and amateur sleuth genres, will appeal primarily to crime fans.

My Review:
This is a great book to pump blood back into my review blog. I was contacted by Matadour/Troubador  Publishing to read and review Blazing Obsession by Dai Henley. I am really glad I agreed to. This book had my heart pumping, hands trembling and mind reeling.  There’s just so much to take in with this book, and I’m so excited to have finished it, I don’t even know where to begin. I can tell you that my mind was active all night after finishing it. 

Blazing Obsession is broken into three parts. In the first part, we learn about James, the main character, and the courtship he pursues with Lynne. James is a successful, wealthy businessman who falls for the simple woman with a charming smile. Lynne brings to the relationship a child, Georgie, from a previous marriage. We learn about the struggles Lynne has with her ex-husband; the abusive, demanding, controlling Nick Burrows; father of Georgie.

Nick is obsessed with Lynne, determined that they will forever be together. He cannot handle the idea of Lynne dating anyone else. Hell breaks loose after Nick finds out Lynne is pregnant with James’ child. A kidnapping happens. A marriage happens. A birth of a beautiful baby girl happens….. and then the arson happens.

James’ whole family is taken out by an arson at their vacation home. The arsonist is left off on a technicality that sends James into a revengeful spiral. James, with the assistance of a Private Investigator and his wife’s best friend, Alisha, the begin to unravel the reality behind double jeopardy, a broken court system and the truth behind who murdered his family. 

There is such a HUGE TWIST in this book, that I did NOT see coming. Once the literary bomb hit, I could not put the book down. I was totally blindsided, I did not see it coming. But once it was released, and I was reading through the aftermath, so much more that was written in the book began to make sense. There’s a strong story within the story.

The strongest line, for me, in this whole book was near the end. “I realized all three of the men involved in relationships with Lynne were shaped by their attitude to revenge.” Ka-POW!! Right there people, is the book, story and review. Revengeful relationships.

The story is easy to read, and not overly complex. It flows incredibly well and the author did a fantastic job of keeping the reader’s attention. It’s a strong story with a fantastic road map full of rest stops called,  “Revenge”, “Obsession”, “Mystery”, “Anger and frustration”…. Such a fantastic story. 

Published: 28/11/2014
ISBN: 9781784620516
eISBN: 9781784627560
Format: Paperback/eBook

Stop the presses!

Reviews are on hold unless they are actual paperback/hardback copies. My hard drive in my last laptop fried. My archaic, first generation kindle really did finally bite it. I have all my copies backed up on amazon.  I was able to replace the laptop, I have not replaced my kindle yet.

 

Book Case #75 – Somewhere in the Middle of Eternity

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Book and Author Details:
Somewhere in the Middle of Eternity – Amazon
Somewhere in the Middle of Eternity – Good Reads
Author/Editor Phil Giunta Website
Author/Editor Phil Giunta Facebook
Publisher Website

Description from Author:

In eternity, all stories are timeless. Devastated by war, a young couple finds healing through the intervention of a magical fox… A man obsessed with a burlesque dancer discovers she may not be the beauty she seemed from afar… Desperate to save his dying wife, an exiled scientist makes a discovery that could change the fate of a galaxy… An Irishman finally confronts the specter of death that has tormented him since childhood… An ex-con’s hearing aid picks up a vintage radio show that never aired, leading her to a confrontation with the unexpected… These are but a few of the imaginative tales awaiting you within these pages as chronicled by Daniel Patrick Corcoran, Michael Critzer, Phil Giunta, Amanda Headlee, Susanna Reilly, Stuart S. Roth, Steven H. Wilson and Lance Woods.

My Review:
I received “Somewhere in the Middle of Eternity” from Phil Giunta, author and editor, back in August 2014. It’s an anthology featuring thirteen stories in various genres’; Sci-Fi, Paranormal, Fantasy, Past, Present and Futuristic. One of the great things about anthologies is you’re bound to find a few stories you really connected with and enjoyed. One of the best things about this book is that I found enjoyment from each of the stories.

Each author brings their own unique style to the compilation. Although not all subjects and genres are ones that strike my fancy, I did do the honorable thing and read each one. Authors Phil Giunta, Michael Critzer, and Stuart S. Roth have multiple contributions to the anthology. Each story they contributed are well written, creative and entertaining. I would say they have the stronger stories within the book.

In the story, “Parallax” by Amanda Headlee, I was able to gauge the strength of the author’s writing ability. I would like to read some of her other work; despite the fact this story really didn’t pull me in like a few of the others did.

Overall, it’s a great book filled with various stories and subjects. A reader is bound to find something they enjoy within in. 

The stories that resonated the most with me were:
Form and Substance by Susanna Reilly
Photos from the Attic by Phil Giunta & Don’t Go Fussin’ Over Me
Evelyn by Michael Crizter

Published August 1st 2014 by Firebringer Press
ISBN 0977385167 (ISBN13: 9780977385164)

Book Case #74 – The Flip

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Book and Author Details:
The Hanging Tree: Amazon
The Hanging Tree: Good Reads
Still Well: A Haunting on Long Island: Amazon
Still Well: A Haunting on Long Island: Good Reads
The Flip: Amazon
The Flip: Good Reads
Michael Phillip Cash’s Website
Michael Phillip Cash’s Twitter
Michael Phillip Cash: Good Reads

My Review:
First, I must apologize… again. I have relocated with my son to another state. I am nestled in, finally, and starting to get back into the grind of things. Even though my reviews have been severely lacking, my reading has not. I took the downtime opportunity it read, a lot. So, authors, publishers and friends who have been generous in sending me books to read and review, I have them, I am reading them and I am now starting to get back into reviewing them.

Of the three books listed in this review, this one was by far my favorite. This story is about two main characters, Julie and Brad. They are a newish married couple who flips houses as a side job. They managed to acquire an old mansion (common theme for this author) at a really low price. Brad wants to flip it, Julie is set on turning it into a B&B.

Brad is in a rush to get this project done. Money is tight and Julie finds herself without a job after an inappropriate proposition from her boss. Making it tougher, her boss is the one who helped get their loans for flipping houses through. As Brad is working and rushing through things, spirits of the mansion start causing havoc. They create quite a disturbance, making him and other workers very uncomfortable.

One of the best things about this author is that he does a great job mixing the past with the present. I enjoy that he goes into details as to who and why the spirits are haunting this mansion. We develop a relationship not only with the main characters, but the spirits as well.

Overall, I really enjoy all of his books. He has a strong writing ability, keeps the reader entertained and engaged. The character development, past and present, are really fun to read. I hope to read my by Michael Phillip Cash.

Description from Author:
The Hanging Tree: Seventeen year old Arielle is at a crossroads in her life. Disenchanted with her father, she is testing the boundaries of his trust by dating someone he does not approve. Under the moonlit sky in Long Island, Arielle and her boyfriend meet beneath the infamous hanging tree. The couple’s destiny is rooted to the five spirits in the tree whose lives and deaths are determined by an ancient curse. Will her future be determined by the past or will Arielle’s choices alter the course of her life?

Still Well: Haunting on Long Island: Paul Russo’s wife just died. While trying to get his family’s life back in order, Paul is being tormented by a demon who is holding his wife’s spirit hostage on the other side. His fate is intertwined with an old haunted mansion on the north shore of Long Island called Stillwell Manor. Paul must find clues dating back hundreds of years to set his wife’s soul free.

The Flip: Julie and Brad Evans are house flippers. They buy low, clean out the old occupants’ junk, and try to make a profit. Enter Hemmings House on Bedlam Street in scenic Cold Spring Harbor, Long Island. Too good a deal to pass up, but with an ominous secret. The old Victorian Mansion has dwellers that do not want to be dispossessed. As the house reveals it’s past, will the couple’s marriage survive The Flip?