Deadly Pleasures

Mary Firmin

iUniverse, 304 pages, (paperback) $19.95, 9781462042371
(Reviewed: December, 2011)

Sex and the City meets James Patterson in this tale of friendship that’s peppered with enough thriller action to make Deadly Pleasures a solid guilty pleasure.

At the heart of the story is Southern California real estate agent Megan Riley and her three friends who each are at different stages in their relationships. Out of […]

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Growing Up: Life on a Wisconsin Farm

Thomas Fortney

Trafford, 220 pages, (paperback) $19.00, 9781426929144
(Reviewed: December, 2011)

In Growing Up, Tom Fortney recounts a way of life that has mostly vanished, taking readers back to his family’s Wisconsin dairy and tobacco farm in the 1930s and ’40s, when he was a kid.

The book’s 40-plus chapters are short, some only a page or two, each recalling an aspect of that life. Fortney […]

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Doctor Thomas Monro

Mora Abell

Trafford, 216 pages, (paperback) $20.00, 9781412099738
(Reviewed: December, 2011)

Thomas Monro, treated the insane in Bethlem Hospital (better known as Bedlam), specialized in watercolor treatments of English landscape, and mentored many fine artists–most notably J.M.W. Turner. It has been difficult to give a full account of Monro’s life because so much of the material required for a fully developed biography remains in the hands […]

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Don’t Play With Fyre

Judi Flanagan

AuthorHouse, 240 pages, (paperback) $14.03, 9781463447335
(Reviewed: December, 2011)

On her 20th birthday, Molly Frye makes the decision to take the Elixir that will make her an “immortal.” Her friend (and soon-to-be-lover) Eric guides her through the process, explaining that she would now develop magical skills. The transformation takes place in the home of Arnos, the man who took her in when she was […]

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The Truth That Lies Within

Khaled Nabih

AuthorHouse UK, 216 pages, (paperback) $17.09, 9781456796181
(Reviewed: December, 2011)

In The Truth That Lies Within, author Khaled H. Nabih promises that this compilation of his thoughts will provide readers with a “spiritual jolt.” But while some might find his words powerful enough to recharge their inner batteries, others are more likely to feel puzzled by his swirling thoughts, rendered in unfocused prose.

The book […]

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Twigly – Santa’s Tiniest Helper

Janet Mills Wimsett

Xlibris, 24 pages, (paperback) $12.99, 9781465355959
(Reviewed: December, 2011)

Janet Mills Wimsett has written a jolly holiday poem about a quirky little elf named Twigly who solves one of the great mysteries of Christmas: how does Santa deliver presents to homes without chimneys?

Until one very special Christmas Eve, Twigly is known mostly as a lazy fellow with a fondness for pranks. Whenever there’s […]

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Rose’s Jungle

Barbara Rogenmoser

Xlibris, 30 pages, (paperback) $21.99, 9781465375469
(Reviewed: December, 2011)

Rose’s Jungle, by Barbara Rogenmoser, is a lively picture book perfectly pitched to preschoolers. It celebrates imaginative play and friendship across generations in simple, appropriately repetitive, though occasionally labored, rhyme. Jan Michael Vincent Sky’s illustrations are warm and bright.

The nameless heroine is a curious, happy preschooler. She loves nothing more than exploring her elderly […]

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Between Two Worlds

Aytac Aydogan Edwards

Xlibris, 95 pages, (paperback) $15.99, 9781456830076
(Reviewed: December, 2011)

Aytac Aydogan Edwards’ Between Two Worlds is a slim collection of the Turkish author’s meditations on nature and impermanence. Many of these 43 poems are simple and straightforward – similar to prayers. The brief length of most enables the reader to take in each contemplative moment, allowing insight into the moment that inspired the poem.

[…]

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Sons of Light

Mary Bogin

Xlibris, 152 pages, (paperback) $19.99, 9781462862726
(Reviewed: December, 2011)

A blend of apocalyptic fiction and spiritually powered science fiction, Sons of Light has the potential to be a highly entertaining and profoundly moving read. Its premise is undeniably powerful and the story gains some real traction as the novel progresses.

The narrative, however, has a decidedly unfinished and unpolished feel to it. Grammatical errors […]

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Cracks in the Fabric

Ole Martinson

Trafford, 310 pages, (paperback) $21.24 , 9781412078658
(Reviewed: December, 2011)

The back cover of Cracks in the Fabric promotes a notably different tale than what’s inside. It promises a thriller about an Australian journalist’s search for her missing daughter, who vanished from the hospital after being critically injured in a hit-and-run accident. The narrative implies that powerful forces may have been involved in her abduction.

[…]

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