Friday, September 28, 2012

Too Many Disasters for One Novel!

Not to Us, by Katherine Owen is a well-written story. However, it’s simply too much – totally unbelievable. When I started reading the book I was very interested and intrigued by Ellie’s story and those around her – husband Bobby, best friend Carrie and best friend’s husband Michael. And the multiple marriages and bed-hopping. Oh, yes, their two oldest children are a “thing” also. And the 5-year-old speaks like a 16-year-old. Way beyond her years. Then tragedy hits, and hits again and again. Give me a break! Enough already. It became a chore to read yet another and then another awful thing that happened to Ellie. In rides the handsome millionaire and the story takes yet another turn. This book should have been several separate books – not one long one with so much happening to ONE person. Oh, did I mention the cancer and pregnancy? I do feel Ms. Owen is a good writer but she must trim her novels better. I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my review.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Teens Will Enjoy The Ugly Stepsister Strikes Back

The Ugly Stepsister Strikes Back, by Sariah Wilson is an adorable novel for teen readers. It’s a cute romance story while teaching some good life lessons. Mattie, the “ugly” stepsister has been in love with Jake, the Homecoming King, since she was nine years old. Her beautiful, perfect and even nice stepsister Ella happens to be his girlfriend and Homecoming Queen, of course. Mattie is also the girl most picked on in school. Despite all this, she decides to run for President of her class. Mattie and Ella both live with Mattie’s dad after the death of Ella’s mom. But dad is oblivious to the girls and with Mattie’s sad life. He’s an artist and seems lost in his work while also pursuing the hobby of wife collection – he’s on his sixth. Mattie’s thrown into an English project with Jake. It certainly doesn’t go over well at first and Mattie’s in line for some other wisecracks and practical jokes by others in Jake’s social group. But Jake has problems of his own and eventually opens up to Mattie. This is a cute book and a good read for teenagers. The life lessons are good yet it’s kept light and can be quite humorous. I highly recommend it. I received a complimentary copy of the book in exchange for my review.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Flynn Nailed this One!

Nailed, by Joseph Flynn is a gripping tale that takes place in the Sierra mountains. A beautiful town where the rich hide away and peace and tranquility greet each day. Until the murder! And a mountain lion attack. Then all hell breaks loose. The Chief of Police has his own issues but manages to hold up during the investigation of both of these side-by-side tales. The mountain lion continues to attack and is definitely not the typical mountain like as the young female game warden who leads the search. The murder is brutal and the search leads the police chief to the victim’s own father. Could he really have killed his own son? And in such a brutal fashion? Find out for yourself. This is a book that was truly hard to put down. If you’re into mysteries you cannot miss this read. I received a complimentary copy of the book in exchange for my review.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Lomong Literally Runs for his Life

Running for My Life, by Lopez Lomong is one the amazing true story of Lomong’s run for survival. Kidnapped in Sudan at the age of six, his story tells about his capture, his escape, his time in a refuge camp and his eventual placement in an American home and then his race for the Olympics. It’s a heart-breaking and heartwarming story with the many ups and downs of Lomong’s life. But he’s come through it all and has since returned to him home village and to his family, while continuing to work hard for those less fortunate Lost Boys in Africa. A wonderful story that will hit you hard. Read Running For My Life.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Good Historical Novel

Promise Me This, by Cathy Gohlke, is a book of historical fiction. It begins in England in the early 1900s and sends two of the main characters off on the Titanic, one as a stowaway. They become friends but death quickly follows leaving the other with a promise to keep. And what a promise that is. Michael continues to Owen’s relatives in New Jersey where he works hard to earn money to bring Annie, Owen’s sister, to the U.S. But life and a war get in the way. A wicked aunt and a loving guardian bring this story together and make it interesting. Gohlke does a good job of covering the tragedies of the war yet gives us a little hope that all wlll end well in the end – at least for Annie and Michael. The book is well written and the historical aspects are well done and interesting. However, the wicked aunt is a bit over the top. Otherwise, I’d encourage you to read this book. I enjoyed it a great deal.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Short, Sweet and Entertaining

Southeast Asian Quartet: Robbie Cutler Stories, by William S. Shepard, is short, sweet and entertaining. This little book takes us to Singapore, Malaysia, Borneo and Indochina with a series of stories told by a group of diplomats over dinner. The stories tell about murder and a disappearance while taking the reader on a trip to exotic places. Escape your everyday life while reading this intriguing series of stories and enjoying a travelogue at the same time.