Tag Archives: books

The Furies: #bookreview

Can witches ever really have true friends? In The Furies by Katie Lowe, Violet learns about betrayal and witchcraft more than she learns about any other school subject.

The setting is Elm Hollow Academy, an all-girls boarding school, near a small town. It’s a boarding school but it doesn’t seem like the students live there. In the beginning, a student has been posed on the swings after her death. The narrator doesn’t tell the reader who the student is until the end.

Violet has lost her father and sister. Her mother is alive but stuck in a cycle of depression. Violet can get away with almost anything because her mother isn’t paying attention. She had been homeschooled for the last year. Violet took on the responsibility of her own education so she decided to attend Elm Hollow Academy.

There has been a student, Emily, that disappeared before Violet arrived on campus. Apparently, Emily and Violet resembled each other. Violet also became friends with Emily’s friends – Robin, Alex and Grace. The art teacher, Annabel, invited Violet to participate in a secret group that learned about the local women accused of witchcraft and Furies, goddesses of vengeance.

Violet and her group of friends go through all of the growing pains of friendship. Can they trust each other with their personal secrets? Are they more like enemies than friends? Maybe frenemies.

If you like “The Craft” or “The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina,” then there is a good chance that you will enjoy “The Furies.”

Witch hunters and Nancy from “The Craft” will probably not be a fan of this book.

  • I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for a review. All opinions are my own. Obviously.

Jerkwater: #bookreview

 

Jerkwater by Jamie Zerndt is set in Mercer, Wisconsin. It’s typical small jerkwater town, except for the rotests for Native American fishing rights. There isn’t a specific date but in 1983 the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Native Americans could spearfish in lakes they had previously relinquished. So if I had to guess I would say that the book takes place in the mid-80s.

Read more about it here: Native American fishing rights article

No one really wants to admit that they are racist. However, are the fishermen who are protesting against the Native American fishing rights really and truly concerned about whether a spear is used or not?

The story is told from the point of view of three characters – Shawna, Kay and Douglas. Shawna is a Native American with a disdain for white people, especially the man who killed her mother and his best friend. She is also neighbors with Kay and Doug. Kay is Doug’s mother and also a possible alcoholic widow in the early stages of dementia.

They are all trying to find their way in the world. Shawna wants to kill a man. She stalks him for awhile. Will she deal with her issues before she winds up in jail?

Douglas has taken over his dad’s mechanic shop but it’s not his career of choice. Will he follow his true passion or stay in the shop?

There are some funny parts in the book. Kay can be amusing even though parts of her behavior are related to the dementia. We all know and love someone like Kay – brutally honest and probably had a drink with breakfast.

Most people will enjoy this book. If the reader is against Native American fishing rights – then they are too petty for this book.

The Bear: #bookreview

The Bear by Andrew Krivak is set in a forested area at the base of a mountain. The technical term would be a Subalpine forest. It sounds like a beautiful place. There aren’t any other people besides the dad and his daughter. There seems to have been an end to civilization as we know it. The dad has taken his daughter to a place where they can live off of the land.

The girl is very young – maybe between 8-10. In the beginning of the book, she lives with her father in a cabin. He teaches her everything – how to read, hunt, make bows, etc. By the middle of the book, the girl is alone.

Well, she isn’t exactly alone. The bear keeps her from starving by giving her fish. The girl isn’t an expert hunter yet. She learns quickly otherwise she will starve because the bear goes into hybernation.

There is also a puma who saves her from drowning and catches some food for her. She can hear the bear and the puma talking to her. Were they really talking or was it a hallucination? It doesn’t matter because it got her through life for a little bit longer. Would any of us make it one day in the wilderness? They make it bear-able. Pun intended.

The girl is trying to get back to the cabin but it’s too difficult during the winter. Also, she cannot cross the river yet.

If you like post-apocalyptic stories without zombies, then this could be the book for you.

If you don’t like anything about doomsday prepping, survivalists or nature, then you might not like this book. The Bear really beautifully written so it’s too bad you are missing out because you aren’t into prepping.

FYI: Andrew Krivak the author is not the same Andrew Krivak that recently had a murder conviction overturned. They are different people.

  • I received an ebook from NetGalley in exchange for doing a review. All opinions are my own. Obviously.

Beyond the Moon: #bookreview

Not only is Beyond the Moon by Catherine Taylor set in France and England, one of the characters travels in time from 2017 to 1916 and back at least two times. Personally, I love books about time travel. I am still waiting for a time machine to be on the market.

In 2017, Louisa has been institutionalized since the doctors at the emergency room believe that she attempted suicide by throwing herself off of the South Downs cliff. She really was just drunk and slipped but she was admitted to a psychiatric hospital. Her friend,Kerry, shows her a separate part of the Coldbook Hall psychiatric hospital that is closed off. It’s falling apart and set for demolition in the near future.

While wandering through the restricted part of the hospital, she finds Lieutenant Robert Lovett in a room by himself. She noticed that besides being blind, Lovett is dressed in clothing from a different era. Louisa is wearing clothes that belong to WWI nurse aide, Rose Ashby. This was probably all weird enough but then other people appear that cannot see or hear her.

Later, Lovett regains his sight but he can still see Louisa. When he tries to introduce her to his friends, they think he has lost his mind. Louisa tells him that they cannot see her and she is from the future. Lovett doesn’t take it well and distances himself from Louisa.

When Louisa falls through the floor of the restricted area, she is somehow transported to 2016. She is Rose Ashby in the flesh. In her mind, she is still Louisa. It seems that Rose and Louisa look exactly the same. Louisa gets a ride to her new post, where she is to be a nurse aide. Unfortunately, Louisa doesn’t know things like how to start a fire. She is without the luxuries of the 21st century like microwaves, light switches and indoor plumbing.

While Louisa/Rose is in 1916, she tries to find Robert but cannot find him anywhere. She doesn’t know that he has been taken prisoner by the Germans. Louisa/Rose finds a man that has studied psychic activity and hypnotizes her so that she can go back to 2017 and find information about Robert that could help find him in 1916.

If you like time travel, romance, historical fiction or characters that aren’t considered “normal” then you might like this Beyond the Moon.

If you aren’t a believer in romance or the possibility of time travel, then you might not like this book as much as I do. Also, Nazis will not appreciate it. I mean, they are Nazis – they are mostly chaotic evil. So I might read it again to spite Nazis. It’s totally worth the time and effort.

  • I received this ebook from NetGalley in exchange for doing a review. All opinions are my own. Obviously.

Dark Moon Falls: Ghost. #bookreview

For those readers who like supernatural romances, there is a new anthology, Dark Moon Falls, that you might be interested in reading. I received the ARC for Dark Moon Falls: Ghost by DJ Bryce in exchange for doing a review.

Although the name is a bit ominous, the town of Dark Moon Falls seems pretty charming. It’s close to a forest, which could be lovely or creepy. Many of the residents are part of the wolf pack.

There are two main characters: Ghost and Mackenzie. Ghost is a shifter – wolf and human. He has just moved to the area. Mackenzie is the single mom of a shifter son.

Her ex, Darnel, is in prison but wants to rebuild the relationship with his son. Or so he says. He was a deadbeat dad before going to prison. Zandra, the stepmom, is not much better.

The stepmom is vindictive and trashy. She is definitely holding a grudge against Mackenzie. Some members of the Wolf pack blame Mackenzie for her ex getting sent to prison. Trashy stepmom wolf shifters get angry when they cannot mate with their mate and make baby wolves. So Zandra comes up with a plot to help her mate see his son.

So Ghost and Mackenzie meet and become an item in record time. Apparently, shifters recognize their soulmate immediately. There’s no second-guessing. Ghost and Mackenzie have the shortest courtship in history besides maybe Cher or Elizabeth Taylor.

If you like supernatural romances, this set includes 15 different stories. So there should be plenty of romance to keep you warm this winter.

If you don’t believe that werewolves are worthy of love, then this set of books is not a good choice for you.

Author’s BIO:

Author DJ Bryce loves her men tall, dark, and Alpha. She can often be found relaxing with a cup of coffee, a handful of RedVines, and a dirty book, with her three dogs snoozing happily at her feet. 
She’s a lover of The Walking Dead, Romantic Comedies, and writing sexy shifters. 
For information on her new releases, promotions, and her favorite PNR reads, sign up for her newsletter: http://eepurl.com/clmyu5Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DJBryceAuthor/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/DJBryce_Author
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/DJ-Bryce/e/B01MCXD8BE/

Links:

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2PTcw65

Kobo: http://bit.ly/2NrVjPu

Apple: https://apple.co/2CqZUuM

Nook: http://bit.ly/2rnrUgS

  • I received an ARC for this book in exchange for doing a review. All opinions are my own. Obviously.

Interview with . . . Jon Zazula

Jon Zazula

Jon Zazula is a man after my own heart. He rose from the ashes of Wall Street in the early 80s. In order to make a living, Zazula established a record store, Rock N’ Roll Heaven, and eventually a record label, Megaforce Records. Starting a record label wasn’t part of his original plan but after receiving a demo tape from an unknown band called Metallica, Zazula changed course so that the world could hear their music.

He has recently released a book, Heavy Tales, that is available on his website and Amazon. It’s an honor to have the opportunity to be able to interview Mr. Zazula. Keep reading to find out more.

Who was the first band/artist that you saw in concert?

The first concert I ever saw was a Peter Paul and Mary folk concert. I was very young. They were great.

But my first Rock Concert was a young Stevie Wonder and the Young Rascals on the same stage. I was 12/13 years old and took a train myself from the Bronx to Blayne Ny

What was the last concert that you attended?

The last concert was an The Absence local hometown show in Tampa. I was hoping to see King Diamond Nov 5th but I’ll be out of town . I’m bummed

Is it ever too late to start something new?

For me putting out this book is a new endeavor. If something really blew me away my juices might start flowing again but nothing has has.

What is involved with starting an indie record label?

You gotta be crazy and lucky. I also don’t advise starting a label unless you plan to really get out there and promote your acts.

Are there any unheard of metal bands that you think people should know?

I’m very big on The Absense and ARCANIA from France

Do you have a favorite scary movie?

Yes the EXORCIST but I love Devils Rejects

How is the music scene different than in the 80s?

In the 80’s it was more fresh and exciting. People were getting turned on to it. Now it’s a more acceptable art form and people know what to expect. Metal is also much more abundant and bigger than ever. Just look at how many massive metal festivals there are all over the world. A band can now tour for years.

How is it the same?

The love for it hasn’t changed. The best aggressive music remains

Metal.

Is there anything that you haven’t done yet?

I haven’t personally promoted a stadium show.

I’d like to do that….. NOT

Truth : Walking away from The Disco Biscuits and not staying on to make them one of the Biggest bands in the world really bothers me.

What do you want people to know about you?

That I was a very lucky and blessed man . When you read the book you’ll see just what I mean. Metallica, Anthrax,Ministry,Testament, KingsX,Ace Frehley,Overkill,Warren Haynes,Anvil,Raven , Mercyful Fate and the Disco Biscuits all miracles.

Voodoo Dreams, A Novel of Marie Laveau: #Spooktober Book Review

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Most of the Voodoo Dreams: A Novel of Marie Laveau by Jewell Parker Rhodes is set in New Orleans. Some of the book is set in what is known as the Bayou Teche are of Louisiana, which is mostly a rural waterway.

Marie Laveau was a real person. In fact, Marie Laveau had two daughters named Marie Laveau, which has made it confusing to know who the real Marie Laveau was. In the book, there are four Maries – the famous Voodoo priestess Marie Laveau plus the grandmother, mother and daughter.

In the beginning of the book, Marie doesn’t know anything about Voodoo. She’s just an innocent girl from the country near Bayou Teche. Marie travels to New Orleans with her grandmother. Her grandmother and mother were Voodoo priestesses; however, her grandmother converted to Christianity and never taught Marie about Voodoo.

Marie marries Jacque but then almost immediately leaves him for John, a Voodoo doctor. I imagine him to be like R. Kelly but with less talent. He’s a jealous, controlling, abusive person. I don’t see what attracts the women in Marie’s family to John. He doesn’t have any actual power as far as Voodoo. He makes a potion to remain ageless but he doesn’t have visions. John is insanely jealous of Marie because she is so connected to the spirit of Damballah.

If you are looking for a good fictional book about Marie Laveau then this book is a good choice. If you are planning on visiting New Orleans, Voodoo Dreams would be a good book to read before your trip. You cannot visit New Orleans without hearing about Marie Laveau.

If you are R. Kelly or someone opposed to women having power, then you might not like this book.

FYI: Ask for permission before you take pictures at a Voodoo priestesses house or place of business. Apparently, it’s frowned upon. Lesson learned.