Monday, June 2, 2014

Book Review: The Prodigal Son by Dean Koontz

Prodigal Son (Dean Koontz's Frankenstein, #1)Prodigal Son by Dean Koontz
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I have been excited to read this series since I heard it was coming out. It took me a while to get to it, but it's finally time and I have to say I wasn't disappointed with the first book. I love retellings of classic books and Dean Koontz fights over the spot for my favorite author with John Grisham so I feel like this series was tailor made for me.

The prodigal son is a wonderful book. It's well told and has a bit of a dark edge to it, which is one of the reason I love reading Koontz books. The characters that Koontz paints in this opening novel are fantastic. You have the 2 overworked cops, the original Frankenstein monster, and Dr. Frankenstein himself. I won't give you names so that you can figure out who is who all by yourself :) But, the characters are well rounded. You get just enough knowledge about them to keep you wanting more.

The setting for this book is perfect. New Orleans is already filled with intrigue and mystery, but then you throw in Frankenstein and his original monster looking to get even with the man that created him and it's a recipe for some fun.

This series will not be short on action. I would tell you what happens in the first book, but I hate writing spoilers. If you have taken my book recommendations before and not been disappointed then you HAVE to pick this series up and start reading it. You won't regret it.

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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Book Review: The Church of Facebook by Jesse Rice

The Church of Facebook: How the Hyperconnected Are Redefining CommunityThe Church of Facebook: How the Hyperconnected Are Redefining Community by Jesse Rice
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I enjoyed this book very much. It had a great deal to say about intentionality. I think that is a topic that is far too often overlooked in our day and age. This book talked about how to be intentional when it comes to your Facebook habits, but also when it comes to life in general. We need to be more intentional about our relationships. We need to invest more time in the face to face aspect of human interaction and not rely so heavily on our social interactions.

This book makes you sit back and look at your daily habits and see just how reliant you are on social media and things of that nature. I would challenge you to read this book and then take a look at your life and see where you fit into the "always on" mentality that seems to be the way of the world today. This book is definitely worth the read.

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Thursday, April 17, 2014

Book Review: The Secret Seekers Society: Solomon's Seal by J.L. Hickey

Secret Seekers Society and Solomon's SealSecret Seekers Society and Solomon's Seal by J.L. Hickey
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is the second book in the Secret Seekers Society series (boy that's a lot of s's). Second books are notorious for bombing compared to the first book. That is not the case with this book. Joe (the author) did a fantastic job of keeping this book out of a sophomore slump. This is fast becoming one of my favorite series.

I like the way that Joe develops a plot. There are a realistic amount of twists to his story line, but he doesn't use the to excess. Another one of the things I love about his plots are that he incorporates people and places from history. I won't say more than that because it would be sort of a spoiler. I also like the complexity of the "world building" that takes place in this book. Joe does a great job pulling you into the story with his descriptions of things. Some authors overdo this, but not so in this book.

The characters in this book are so believable. A lot of them wear their emotions on their sleeves and are very relatable (as relatable as they can be for hunting for mythical beasts and relics). You can feel the pain, joy, angst, etc in the characters as your read. The other thing I like is that Joe doesn't overdevelop the characters. Some authors fall into that trap. The only challenging thing when it comes to characters in this series is keeping them all straight. But, it takes a lot of characters to pull off a long and successful series. So it's worth the work.

The readability of this book is fantastic. You don't have to slog through any sections at all. On the other side of the coin, you don't feel rushed in any part of the book either. It's got a nice even-keeled pace that makes for a very enjoyable read.

If you are a fan of mythology, paranormal, suspense, or YA in general then I recommend that you start this series as soon as possible. You won't be disappointed that you did.

My Rating: 5/5

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Thursday, February 6, 2014

Book Review: Harry Potter: A Guide to Hogwarts by H.P. Meredith

First of all, thank you to Harry Meredith and the fine folks at Tablo Publishing for sending this e-book my way. The Harry Potter series was the series that got me back into reading. It had been a long time since I had sat down and read a book and then in the summer of 2003 I cracked open this series and haven't looked back. So, I was excited to get a book regarding Harry Potter.

Harry Potter: A Guide to Hogwarts is an excellent resource material for any Harry Potter fan. This is one of the most in depth books that I have seen on the series. It covers characters, spells, creatures/beasts, potions, history of Hogwarts, and the list goes on. You will be astonished at how much you don't know about Harry Potter. For instance, do you remember what Murtlamp Essence is for? If not, then this book is for you.

I had a great time going back through and reacquainting myself with all things Harry Potter. This book is well written and has wonderful full color pictures. This is a must have for any Harry Potter enthusiast.

This book is available via ibooks.

Overall Rating: 4/5

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Book Review: The Secret Seekers Society and the Beast of Bladenboro by J.L. Hickey

Secret Seekers Society and the Beast of BladenboroSecret Seekers Society and the Beast of Bladenboro by J.L. Hickey
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is one of the best books I have read in a long time. The first thing that I love about it is the title. Who doesn't like secret societies and beasts? The author does a great job of hooking you before you even open the book. It's also a vague enough title that you have no idea what you are really getting into. I like the mystery and intrigue that that causes.

The plot of this book was wonderful. It wasn't predictable and and there weren't a ton of slow moving parts. He did a great job of moving the story along. At the same time, he didn't rush the story either. It's got great balance and enough twists and turns to keep you wanting more. This is the first book in quite a while where I was disappointed when I had to put it down to go do something else.

The characters in this book are relatable and not outlandish in their situations in life. Plus there are enough different characters that just about anyone can find someone to relate to in this book. I loved that the characters were so well developed. They weren't over-developed, which I hate. I didn't have to suffer through pages and pages of what the person wears or what they eat or what their favorite color is. Mr. Hickey does a fantastic job with his character building.

The readability of this book was great. As I said earlier, the pacing was good and the suspense building was wonderful. I think he really nailed it with this book. It's a page turner for sure.

As far as genre goes, anyone who likes fantasy and mystery would love this book. Also, fans of great writing will love this book as well. I can't wait to read the sequel.

Overall Rating: 5/5

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Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Book Review: The Immortality Pursuit by Jesse Roman R.

The Immortality PursuitThe Immortality Pursuit by Jesse Roman R.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Immortality Pursuit is the book that got me out of my reading slump. This book is well crafted when it comes to plot, characters, and readability. I enjoyed this book a great deal and would like to thank the author for trusting me to review his work.

There were many things I enjoyed about the plot, but I will only mention a few of them so that I don't include any spoilers in my review. The best thing about it was that it was a well thought out story. What I mean by that is that everything flowed very well and there where no awkward tangents that weren't really relevant to the story. Sometimes authors add to many side plots and then don't wrap them up. Not so with this book. The other thing that I enjoyed was the subject of the book. Usually when an author writes about immortality it is about vampires or werewolves. I appreciated that this was more of a scientific/action adventure story. It's also not so outlandish that it's not believable. The action in this book is spread out evenly as well. There aren't huge fights and then pages and pages of no action.

The second thing I would like to touch on is the characters. For those of you that follow my reviews, you know that the character development in the book is one of my joys or angsts. The characters in this book are well done. You learn just enough about everyone to keep your interest peaked but I don't know their shoe size, favorite color, and their mom's dog's name. What I mean is that the author didn't over develop the characters. They are superb in many ways. Jayr, Arkius, Harrison, and the gang are all just mysterious enough to keep you wanting more tidbits.

My last big thing when it comes to reviews is readability and readership. This book is a very fast read and keeps you on the edge of your seat. There aren't any sections of the book where you feel like you are trudging through until you get to the next good part. As for readership; I would say that this book would be well suited for high school and up in terms of age. As for genre, I would say anyone that likes science, action/adventure, or thrillers would be a big fan of this book.

Overall Rating: 4/5

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Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Spotlight On: Bled my Blood by Kellie Ojeda

"Spotlight On" will be the newest addition to my blog posts. These posts will be about books that are coming out or have come out recently. In most cases they will be books that I haven't read, due to the size of my review pile, but think are worthwhile for the book blogging community to know about. So, without further ado, here is the fist entry.

Bled My Blood 
Kellie Ojeda

Shay and Bryan never could’ve imagined being friends with Kayla Smidgal. Yet, when Kayla is pistol-whipped and almost shot in the head attempting to save Shay’s life, Shay suddenly sees her in a whole new light.    
Kayla Smidgal is a new student at Grove South High School—a school where the Almighty Latin Kings reign. Shay Alvarez A.K.A "Brass" is the President of the L.K.’s and is notorious for his cruelty. Bryan "Rico" Stevenson is Shay's second in command, yet he wavers in his loyalty to the L.K.’s as his affection for Kayla grows. 
Circumstances beyond their control (and many within) force the three to make difficult decisions.
Bryan has known Kayla since before he joined the Latin Kings. Now that she’s in his life again, he can't help but wonder what his life could’ve been like if he’d never been separated from her. So Bryan must determine if quitting the L.K.’s, and the violence he would surely suffer as a result, is worth a relationship with Kayla.
Kayla, on the other hand, knows that a relationship with Bryan would lead her down a path she doesn’t want to go. Yet her feelings for him make her wish she could ignore the obvious.
When Shay sees Bryan pursuing Kayla he refuses to acknowledge the feelings he is developing for her. Yet, cold jealousy still twists in his gut and he knows that somehow, someway he will have Kayla Smidgal.
Then, even as Bryan is pursuing her, Kayla cuts off their relationship. This causes Bryan to react with hostility and vengeance. In so doing, he shatters any chance he ever has of winning her back. As a result, Kayla and Shay’s friendship deepens.
Yet, even as Shay and Kayla grow closer, Shay still stubbornly refuses to acknowledge his feelings for her. He protects her, he fights for her, yet he will never admit to his weakness—that he is falling in love with the auburn-haired girl.
Shay believes himself to be indomitable, yet he is about to be attacked so viciously that he may never recover.
And Shay’s attacker will strike where he is weakest.

About the Author:
Ojeda has always been interested in criminology. Her fascination with the subject has led to her first novel "Bled My Blood". A criminal justice major at Judson University and internships at the local county jail have lent Ojeda vast knowledge on the subject of criminology. Thus adding to the richness and depth of her fictional novel "Bled My Blood".
Fun fact: Ojeda interviewed a former gang member before she graduated from college. That gang member happened to be from an enemy crew of the Latin Kings. The Latin Kings are some of the main characters in "Bled My Blood". 

***Bled my Blood can be ordered on amazon, createspace, or through Barnes and Noble