I use both a Nook and Kindle so if you see a book you wish to borrow just let me know and let's be

July 30, 2014

Book 29 of My 2014 Goal

Pazuzu UnboundPazuzu Unbound by Saurav Dutt
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Pazuzu Unbound by Saurav Dutt certainly grabbed my attention from the beginning with that opening. I was hooked to see where this fictional, mystery, supernatural, thriller, would go and how it would get there. By that I mean that some books start off with a great action scene or love scene (depending on what genre the book is) but as you past the first chapter it is inconsistent and the action or love scenes (lack of a better term) fizzle out and the book turns slow and sometimes boring but that isn't the case with this book. It was full of action and gore from beginning to end.

Without re-capping the whole book I will condense it to say that it is about people who disappear, bodies turning up, and the cops who try and solve this. Now of course there is the evil, dark, supernatural part to the story (and a lot more) but I don't want to give that away but I will say that it was done interestingly.

I have to admit that this isn't really a book I totally enjoyed but it is not because of anything the author did wrong, it is more like he did it too right for my taste. I found it a little disturbing because I am not into the eating of flesh, drinking of blood, and all this death just to name a few things. This book was too vivid for my liking which in reality says a lot for this author's ability to write. Even feeling uncomfortable reading this book I had to go on because I had to know what happened and who lived and who died.

I recommend this book for adults into mysteries and (what I call) hard-core thrillers because some of the deaths are a little too descriptive and some people (like me) might find it uneasy. Also the language used and content really is for adults.

*I received a free copy (PDF) for my honest review.

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July 19, 2014

Book 28 of My 2014 Goal

Drool Baby (Dog Park Mystery, #2)Drool Baby by C.A. Newsome
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Drool Baby: A Dog Park Mystery (Lia Anderson Dog Park Mystery Book 2) by C. A. Newsome picks up where the first book (A Shot in the Bark) left off. Although this book possibly could stand alone as references are made to what happened in the first book I highly recommend you read the first book prior to reading this one. (It was so good, I don't see why you wouldn't want to!) As for those who hated the ending in book one, this book gives a true ending that is sure to please you.

It seemed like the author didn't continue to develop the characters as much as she did in the first book but at this point I am already hooked and bonded with Lia so it didn't matter. What the author did do was continue the story line, made it a light, fun, mystery (just as she did in book 1) and even added some additional twists to heighten the mystery in this book.

I won't re-cap the story as the author did write a nice description which you can read for yourself but I just love that this is still a 'fun' book. The pace of the book was good. There are a few spots where it was a little slower than the rest but over all I thought the pace was good, it never lingered in one spot very long.

Although it is a mystery, it also is about love, friendship, and even some comedy and I highly recommend this book as well as book one (A Shot in the Bark).

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July 15, 2014

Book 27 of my 2014 Goal

A Shot in the Bark (Dog Park Mystery, #1)A Shot in the Bark by C.A. Newsome
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A Shot in the Bark: A Dog Park Mystery (Lia Anderson Dog Park Mysteries Book 1) by C. A. Newsome is a book I was hoping would be interesting since I like dogs and mysteries. For some reason the dog on the cover gave me the impression this was a YA read but I have read many of them too and enjoyed them so how can I resist at least giving it a try? After starting the book I just couldn't put it down! This book could stand alone as it leads you to believe who done it. Just don't read the Epilogue at the end or you will be doing what I did and order book 2 so you could continue the story.

A couple of things I loved about this book is that it wasn't bogged down with a lot of complicated stuff. It is a light read that I found very entertaining and it is down-to-earth: I could meet people like that on the street or my local dog park (if I had one) although at times one can be a little eccentric, they are like everyday people.

Let me start by saying I did read a few comments already and I don't know if this book was edited or not but some said the characters weren't developed but I did not find this true. I thought the characters were nicely developed. Sure, they weren't all done at once, now how dragging would that have been if they were? They were developed throughout the book and I thought the author did a great job with them in respect to the time frame of the story. In other words, time and space wasn't wasted on where the characters were born or what school they went to, it has nothing to do with the story. These are adults who all met at a dog park (for the most part) so they are developed from that point in their adult life with references made to the past when it pertained to the story.

The mystery part of who done it just gets deeper and deeper as time goes by and more happens. There are quite a few twists and I really had no clue who done it. What adds to the mystery is that the thoughts of the killer are known so you can hear what this person is thinking and feeling but I just didn't know who it was. I thought the author did this beautifully as there is no doubt when I was reading the thoughts of the killer (even the print is different) from the rest of the story.

Now a lot of the comments I read were about the ending and how she didn't tell who done it. As I said before, if you just read this book and not the epilogue after the end, basically your killer is caught and the story complete. If you do read the epilogue then you may as well go on to book 2, Drool Baby (if you like book 1, you'll love book 2)! Since I don't want to write any kind of spoilers I can't say much more than I personally love the way that was done.

Apparently this seems to be one of those books you either hate or love. I loved it! I recommend it to everyone who likes mysteries (and dogs).

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July 11, 2014

Children's Book I Read to the Grandchildren

Comic Book for Kids: Cutie Pie Goes to the Zoo: A Great Children's Comic Book - Ages 4 to 8 (Comic Strips 2)Comic Book for Kids: Cutie Pie Goes to the Zoo: A Great Children's Comic Book - Ages 4 to 8 by J.R. Finkle
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Cutie Pie Goes to the Zoo by J.R. Finkle is a short children's book for ages 4-8 that is in a comic strip style format. Although the images are in color, there are usually two to a page and they are not big at all. On my Kindle it takes maybe three quarters of the screen for length and maybe half the screen wide and there is no making them bigger/expanding them. Even though they are colored cheerfully and the images are good, (monkeys look like monkeys and kangaroos like kangaroos) they don't hold the attention of my 4 and 6 year old grandchildren like most children's books do. They don't seem as interested in the images as much as all the books I read to them in the past that were not in this comic book style and I am only guessing but I have a feeling that the size does matter to them. The reason I say this is because as I said, the images themselves are quite good, as is the color, so it only leaves the size.

Another thing that may not be appealing to my grandchildren is that the story is told in talk/thought bubbles and the whole story although I found very funny (especially since we have a zoo visit planned in two days) they didn't seem to get why she is so bad. Cutie does things like going into the cages with the animals and instead of my grandchildren laughing or finding any kind of amusement out of her behavior (more accurately, her parents reactions to what she is doing) they thought she was bad and should go to time out.

There are pages you can either print out for your child to color or they can do them on-line and the author gives the link. I tried to get the PDF file so I could print it out but was unable to. When I click the image I do see where Amazon is selling the coloring book so that leads me to believe that this limited-time offer for the free coloring book did end.

The story itself is just for fun, there is no moral to it unless you want to count what Cuties' parents go through and in that case it would be for parents not to take their kids to the zoo or you will need a vacation when you get home since Cutie Pie appears to be an out of control child who sneaks off and does things she shouldn't (although she doesn't seem to understand why). I really didn't feel that this is the kind of story for my young grandchildren since I don't want them to think if they did something like what Cutie does I would find it even one bit funny.

I know the author intended this to just be fun to read but for the above reasons reasons I wouldn't recommend it for young children. Maybe a more exposed 7 and 8 year old would get more enjoyment out of it and understand it more (the way the author intended) but not a 4-6 year old.

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July 1, 2014

Book 26 of My 2014 Goal

America: A Cultural EnigmaAmerica: A Cultural Enigma by Donald L Gilleland
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I have to admit that I did not have much faith in finding America: A Cultural Enigma by Donald L. Gilleland interesting. After all, this is not a story with characters but a book that highlights some personal observations covering some cultural changes over the last fifty years. We all observed some changes (many of the same ones the author covers) so how interesting can this book be? Now that have read it all I can tell you, it is extremely interesting!

I admit I don't always see eye to eye with the author on every subject: illegal immigrants for example. The author states: "The sentiment seems to have changed from a willingness to deport illegal immigrants to the belief that we must embrace all those who came to our country illegally." I don't see it that way because the sentiment is not by us (the legal American general population) but forced on us by those who have the money and power who are seeing this as an opportunity for votes. Let's face it, if you were an illegal immigrant living in the U.S. and you are given voting rights, are you going to vote for those who gave it to you or those who want to deport you? I have yet to meet a majority of people who believe that the illegal immigrants should be allowed to stay and reap the benefits that citizenship comes with especially when our fathers and grandfathers had to wait and come here legally even though they were poor and often from war torn areas either from a past war or as a war rages around them. To me, giving citizenship to illegal immigrants is a slap in the face to every American family that immigrated legally to the US. (I won't even get into the financial or health reasons which only makes me shutter.)

Another issue is Social Security and other programs which the author claims we rely on the federal government for. Let's just look at Social Security for the limited time of 1883 to current. Social Security is a government program but it is not an optional program, we have to participate because the government says so. It was suppose to be a program where everyone paid into it and when they reached retirement age, they can collect the money based on what they paid into it. (We all pay into it and it is funded by payroll taxes and doesn't contribute to the nation debt.)

In 1983 the contribution into the fund was increased significantly because not only were the baby boomers required to pay for preceding generations, they are also paying into it for their own retirement. This generated approximately $2.5 Trillion dollars surplus ( and ( that was suppose to be in a trust fund. Guess what? Yep, the money is gone. The government has spent all of this surplus of the Social Securities collected from the people on Non-Social Security related projects. The only thing they left is what was needed to continue to make the current Social Security payments. So now the government wants to cut benefits, raise the taxes or both for those who paid the most into it because there is not enough money. (Noticed I didn't say they wanted to pay back the money they stole out of it.) No wonder all the baby boomers are upset since they are the ones being blamed for depleting the Social Security Funds. The reason they rely on it, what choice do they have? It isn't like the average American can save any money for their retirement. We are all too busy paying this and other taxes which leaves us no money to save!

But don't get me wrong, I do agree a lot of times with the author, especially about the slavery issue. The author states: "What is seldom remembered is that many black Americans in the 19th Century also owned slaves." He furthers states: "Considering only five percent of all the trans-Atlantic slaves ended up in North America, it is amazing that the majority of U.S. films, books, and articles concerning the slave trade concentrate only on the United States, as though slavery was a uniquely American aberration." I know we were never taught in school that other countries including Africa had slaves long before the United States. In school, it was only talked about as if the United States and only the United States had slaves and it was always the white family who owned the blacks. Never was it brought up that it originated in Africa long before ever coming to the United States or that blacks also had black slaves.

There are just way too many subjects to cover but they are all interesting. Most are very current issues that are still being debated in one way or another even today. It doesn't really matter if you or I agree or not with the author on every subject (and he knows that many of the readers won't agree with him) the point is that it all make sense (even those points I don't agree with). He provides tons of information and even had me thinking about things I haven't since I was a teen. (Why do we still celebrate Columbus Day? He didn't discover America nor was he the first.) I also found myself thinking about things I never knew. The author is great about telling his sources and the movie, From Conception to Birth (he provides the address in the chapter) was amazing!

Even the unpopular topics such as abortion, same sex marriages, and religion to name a few are all done in good taste. Also covered are some topics that I wish I didn't read right before bed. The subject is disturbing but everyone should be aware of foreign and domestic threats. The author explains it well and even if you don't agree (although I find it hard not to agree with him) it is still good to at least keep it in the back of your mind.

I found this to be an excellent book and recommend it to everyone!

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