Knights, Romans, Greeks and God

Brian D. Starr

Xlibris, 191 pages, (paperback) $19.99, 9781465353344
(Reviewed: December, 2011)

“This book,” declares Brian D. Starr, “is about the secrets of the Christian/Judea [sic] religion that are not apparent to the average Christian that has not studied genealogy and knighthood.” The author proceeds to fill most of the book’s remaining pages with genealogical charts that involve biblical personages from both the Old and New Testament, […]

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Rain of Terror in the Sunshine

Paul Contos

AuthorHouse, 132 pages, (paperback) $13.99, 9781449023744
(Reviewed: December, 2011)

In Rain of Terror in the Sunshine, Paul A. Contos recounts what must have been an utterly terrifying day in combat as a soldier in the U.S. Army’s 71st Division. On March 13, 1945, he lived through 16 strafing attacks by German airplanes in eastern France, suffering extensive life-threatening shrapnel wounds to his left leg […]

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Soaring

Jeanne Fiedler

Xlibris, 136 pages, (paperback) $19.99, 9781465347251
(Reviewed: December, 2011)

Author Jeanne Fiedler presents Soaring as a book of poems. But even though her pieces are divided into stanzas, taking on the form of poetry, they read more like a journal of the heart, a collection of thoughts and expressions of emotions.

Fiedler’s husband died prematurely four years ago, and that sad event is at […]

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Brightfire

Pauline Moore

AuthorHouse, 236 pages, (paperback) $14.49, 9781452056098
(Reviewed: December, 2011)

In the historical novel Brightfire (sequel to author P.M. Sabin Moore’s Storm Frost), Christianity is gaining a toehold in Sutton Hoo, on the eastern side of Britain, yet a belief in one God is resisted by many.

It is 608 A.D., and previously banished Niartha and her son, Ricberht, have gained favor in King Raedwald’s […]

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Against the Grain

Mary Margaret Jensen

Trafford, 536 pages, (paperback) $32.00, 9781412090230
(Reviewed: December, 2011)

Mary Margaret Jensen’s Against the Grain follows the matchmaking hijinks of Sandy, a feisty, red-headed ten-year-old who knows just enough about adult relationships to cause trouble. When Tobus, her stuttering, earnest cousin, is jilted by the girl of his dreams, Sandy decides to set him up with Ruby, the daughter of the acerbic owner of […]

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Honest Sid

Ronald Probstein

iUniverse, 208 pages, (paperback) $17.95, 9781440141874
(Reviewed: November, 2011)

For Ronald Probstein, growing up in New York City during the Great Depression was as unconventional as it was unpredictable. His father, Sid, was a gambler, ticket scalper, bookie, and horseplayer, and Ronald’s boyhood hangouts were the betting parlors, cigar shops, boxing gyms, and area racetracks where his father conducted business.

Known as “Honest Sid,” […]

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Circuits and Bumps

Philip Condon

Trafford, 482 pages, (paperback) $33.48, 9781412099301
(Reviewed: November, 2011)

P.A. Condon’s literary gem of a memoir, written at age 80, shares sensitive details of his hard-scrabble life with the deft story-telling of Frank McCourt and a healthy dose of Julian Barnes’ keen wit. His reminiscences uncover an emotionally vulnerable childhood and a deep love of family, books, music, mountains, flying and teaching.

The book […]

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The “Tell Me a Story” Book

S. Steele

AuthorHouse, 116 pages, (paperback) $13.99, 9781425979935
(Reviewed: November, 2011)

Here’s a book that sounds promising: a former YMCA camp director shares a dozen suspense stories to read aloud around a campfire or at bedtime. Unfortunately, S. Steele’s premise is flawed by poorly crafted stories that are far too graphically violent to read to children.

Steele sells the book on the back cover as a […]

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Kingdom Come

Rob Murphy

AuthorHouse, 500 pages, (paperback) $15.47, 9781456782115
(Reviewed: November, 2011)

Kingdom Come is a speculative thriller that exploits ideological fault lines within the United Kingdom. In 2015, an increasingly conservative Britain has stumbled into potential economic prosperity by discovering oil off the coasts of Scotland and Wales, but the leaders of those regions see it as a way to seek independence from the UK. The […]

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The Adventures of Big Dog: Troubles and Triumph

Donald Draayer

Xlibris, 44 pages, (paperback) $21.99, 9781465348951
(Reviewed: November, 2011)

Donald Draayer’s children’s chapter book centers on two children, their parents and the loveable but sometimes infuriating dog next door.

Dirk and Dawn, especially Dirk, constantly beg their parents for a canine addition to the household. When their neighbors ask the family to care for their golden retriever known as Big Dog for two days, […]

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