Wednesday, July 15, 2015

The Hand that Feeds You by A. J. Rich



The Hand That Feeds YouMorgan's life seems to be settled - she is completing her thesis on victim psychology and newly engaged to Bennett, a man more possessive than those she has dated in the past, but also more chivalrous and passionate.

But she returns from class one day to find Bennett savagely killed, and her dogs - a Great Pyrenees, and two pit bulls she was fostering - circling the body, covered in blood. Everything she holds dear in life is taken away from her in an instant.

Devastated and traumatised, Morgan tries to locate Bennett's parents to tell them about their son's death. Only then does she begin to discover layer after layer of deceit. Bennett is not the man she thought he was. And she is not the only woman now in immense danger ...
 

The premise of this novel is interesting, but its execution leaves quite a lot to be desired. The pacing is stilted, with lurches of action that then slow down to a crawl, and with writing that sometimes reads as less than professional. 

The story does have some satisfying moments, but its conclusion is much too rushed, with the protagonist getting her life back together in about two paragraphs. There is also quite a bit of “telling”, entire important scenes brushed aside with a  few words. It feels like the author got bored halfway through some plot points and decided to speed things along, no matter how awkward it read.

More than anything, the novel needed a few more intensive rounds of editing to get rid of some of the forced sentences and the uneven pacing that plagues its pages.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Musing Mondays

Musing Mondays is a weekly meme that asks you to choose one of the following prompts to answer:
  • I’m currently reading…
  • Up next I think I’ll read…
  • I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
  • I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I can’t wait to get a copy of…
  • I wish I could read ___, but…
  • I blogged about ____ this past week… 

THIS WEEK’S RANDOM QUESTION: What book (or books) would you take with you on vacation? Why?

I love taking Stephen King books on vacation. They are such engrossing reads that I can read them wherever I am and at any time of day or night. I especially love taking them with me when I go camping. There is nothing quite like reading Stephen King novels in a tent. 

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

A Paradise of One by Everett Peacock



A Paradise of OneAn extremely elderly man is left in a Honolulu city park, abandoned by his caregivers, his family and his past.
In a bid to help a young woman he finds himself befriended by a unique group of homeless people making the best of an untenable situation.
From Waikiki to Waimanalo beach his adventures help him discover the magic inherent in people who help. Eventually, he discovers a beauty of a deeper source. Just in time. 

 This is a lovely example of what Indie writers can bring to the publishing world. It is a beautiful, touching story that has something for everyone, from those of you who enjoy more literary fiction to those of you who like a bit of action in your stories. 

Of course, as with any of Peacock’s books, the lush scenery in which he sets his novels takes precedence. It is almost like another character, infusing the plot with its whims. It is so much so that the reader cannot imagine the story taking place anywhere else. The protagonist is fully fleshed out, making him very real to the reader. 

The plot is well done, with pacing that keeps you interested but without the rushing that you sometimes get from books that are completely plot-led. This novel has a balance of character driven and plot driven action that feels natural and flows easily. 

If you are looking for a book that is different, that provides the tropical atmosphere of Hawaii as well as a fun plot and a great set of characters, then this one is a good choice.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Musing Mondays

Musing Mondays is a weekly meme that asks you to choose one of the following prompts to answer:
    It
  • I’m currently reading…
  • Up next I think I’ll read…
  • I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
  • I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I can’t wait to get a copy of…
  • I wish I could read ___, but… 

I'm currently reading It by Stephen King. Have to say that this is one scary book! I thought I was used to King's fright style but this is intense. I am loving it.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Teaser Tuesday




ItTeaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

From It by Stephen King

 “Everything's a lot tougher when it's for real. That's when you choke. When it's for real.”
 

Monday, June 8, 2015

Viper Wine by Hermione Eyre



Viper WineAt Whitehall Palace in 1632, the ladies at the court of Charles I are beginning to look suspiciously alike. Plump cheeks, dilated pupils, and a heightened sense of pleasure are the first signs that they have been drinking a potent new beauty tonic, Viper Wine, distilled and discreetly dispensed by the physician Lancelot Choice.

Famed beauty Venetia Stanley is so extravagantly dazzling she has inspired Ben Jonson to poetry and Van Dyck to painting, provoking adoration and emulation from the masses. But now she is married and her “mid-climacteric” approaches, all that adoration has curdled to scrutiny, and she fears her powers are waning. Her devoted husband, Sir Kenelm Digby – alchemist, explorer, philosopher, courtier, and time-traveller – believes he has the means to cure wounds from a distance, but he so loves his wife that he will not make her a beauty tonic, convinced she has no need of it.  
 
This book astounded me. It wasn’t so much the storyline, which was interesting enough in its own right, but the manner in which the author told it. She has an incredible way of expressing herself, in an almost cinematographic way. She uses small jumps of view point which enhance our understanding of the story as well as increasing the tension in a particular scene. 

One of the things I loved most about this novel was the mixture of the modern along with the period details. The flashes of the future which Kenelm receives are intricately woven into the storyline in a way that do not distract but instead enhance the narrative. Apart from the obvious extensive research the author has done to put us right in the middle of this time period, there is a wonder to her words that bring it all to life. 

This is one of my favorite books of the year and an author I will definitely watch with much interest.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Teaser Tuesdays



Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
 BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

From Viper Wine by Hermione Eyre

Viper Wine“The calcium of bones, the keratin of eyelashes, the exhalations of our bodies - all these are reconstituted as carbon atoms, used to make the world anew: the earth, the lilies of the field, the ink of this book. What is can never cease to be. Kenelm found comfort in these alchemists' precepts, touching them again and again like rosary beads. We are all stars, and to the stars we return.”