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February 28, 2015

Book 5 of 2015

Fibles : Children's eBookFibles : Children's eBook by M.R. Everette
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I really have mixed feelings about Fibles: Children's eBook by M.R. Everette. The cover is as cute as it can be with the characters in their "12 Grade A Eggs" carton which are a character from each of the 12 stories in the book. Even the small illustrations throughout the book are colorful and geared for children but the stories themselves is what I have the problem with. Although they are animal characters with fun names, the way it is written with the play on words and the subject of things a child wouldn't know (or at least most young children wouldn't know) or understand it makes it hard for me to agree this is a children's book.

I read bedtime stories to my soon-to-be 3 year old grandson and he doesn't have a clue what the play on words are. For example we don't have Ipads so he don't 'get it' that in the story it is an 'Ipaw'. In another story the calves nod in 'udder' agreement but he hasn't a clue what an udder is. Another story is about golf and no way is he going to get the play on the words of "putter" or "par for the course" which leads me to believe it is for older children so I tried it on my granddaughter who is a 6 year old. Again, even at the age 6, a lot of the 'fun' of he book was lost because she didn't understand the concept of Tweeting/Twitter, what Rastafarian is, or who Picasso was. So now I go to my grandson who is 8 and reads to himself. I figured this was perfect since he did read to himself he wouldn't miss the play on words but at age 8, he took one look at the book and didn't want to read a 'baby book' with cute little baby animals on the cover. He was way above that and more into the Harry Potter type books. So although the stories did have; lessons and morals, a cute cover, character names, and pictures, I just don't see where this is a child's book (at least without a whole lot of explaining). I thought it would be a good bedtime story book for the young ones but the purpose for bedtime stories is for the child to go to sleep not ask me questions every few minutes on what that is or what that meant. The only conclusion I come to is that this book is like the cartoon 'Family Guy,' or 'The Simpsons', it looks like a cartoon and therefor appealing to children but it really isn't for children.

Now with all that being said, I did enjoy the stories and during the day I do read to the children so that is when I would read these stories so I have plenty of time to explain and for them to ask questions when they don't understand something. They are good stories to open communication and teach them things like what 'internet' or 'Sears and Roebuck' are. I spend more time talking and explaining the story then actually reading it which means (at least for me) these are not 'quick' stories so I recommend that you should be sure you leave extra time for the explaining/answering questions part too. This way, it is a nice time of reading and talk/learning that you both/all will enjoy.

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February 17, 2015

Book 4 of 2015

Family SecretsFamily Secrets by Donna M. Zadunajsky
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I didn't realize Family Secrets by Donna M. Zadunajsky was book one of a series (Secrets and Second Chances Series) and it is a good thing because I wouldn't have wanted to read it and would have missed this fantastic story. I am not sure what genre to even put it in it is part fiction but part is based on real people. It is a mystery, detective, suspense, and more plus it is just so addicting, I couldn't put it down.

The main characters in the story are well developed and there is just no way to read this and not 'feel' something for them. I know I could relate and connected with them both; Alexis and her son Colton, right from the beginning of the book. It was sad that they were not as 'functional' as a mother and child should be especially since Colton's father (Alexis' husband) committed suicide some seven months before and Colton basically blames his mother for it. He don't even call her 'mom' or 'mother' but calls her by her name, Alexis. Alexis realizes she wasn't there for her son. She had been so busy with her work as an astronaut she basically missed him growing up and being a part of his life however now she wants to be the mother that he should of had all along and build their relationship. After all, they are all each other had (so they thought).

Now I know that sounded sort of boring but there are just so many twists and turns in this somewhat of a fast paced story that it is far from boring, far from what I expected, and it totally engulfed me. I had no idea where this was going and it was to the point that when someone answered the door, I really darn near fell off my chair. I never expected that! It is just so surprising and non-stopping throughout the story. Just when you think the worse is over, it isn't. When you think this is the person, it turns out it is not. It is just so delightfully full of surprises that I couldn't put the book down.

I didn't notice any format issues and truthfully, I only noticed one typo at the beginning where Alexis is talking to her doctor and said, "These past few days I've spent at home and with my son have [sic] good, and I want to continue spending time with him." If there were any others I was so into the story I didn't notice them so it would be safe to say that if they do exist, they didn't take away from the story.

I totally enjoyed this story and although it is an easy read, some may think it is a YA. I am not so sure due to the content matter of suicide, grief, breast cancer, death, drugs, lies, deceptions. Yeah, I know, it seems like I'm talking about everyday life for many people now-a-days YA are a bit different from when I was one so lets just say I recommend it for the those who would feel comfortable with those subjects.

*I received a free copy for my honest opinion.

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February 4, 2015

Book 3 in 2015

Gypsy Hunted (Gypsy Series #1)Gypsy Hunted by Andrea Drew
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Gypsy Hunted by Andrea Drew combines two of my favorite genres, mystery and supernatural, into one book. The author wrote a nice description of the story so I am not going to recap it other than to say Gypsy, the main character in the book, is psychic and she witnesses a kidnapping which is where the main plot starts. It grabbed my attention just as the cover of the book did depicting the empty park benches at night with the light illuminating the fact that there was no one anywhere to be seen.

The book looked and sounded promising but I did have some problems with some of the characters as the story switched between them. I really think this was because the narration of the book which was in first and third person narration. In several parts I found that who I thought was talking was not the character talking and although I eventually figured it out, the time I was 'lost' was annoying and did detract from the story.

Another problem I had is the inconsistencies with the events and the time line in the story. The story itself seems to have a time line but the events that take place within the story don't. For example, at the end of chapter five Conner tells Ian that he met a woman at a dinner on Saturday night and then on Monday a girl comes into the station saying her aunt was hurt, witness to a kidnapping. He visited the hospital (although not specified, it leads me to believe he went that same day, on Monday) and discovered it was Gypsy, the woman he met at the dinner. Then he further explains she couldn't talk and one side of her body is paralyzed. Which is fine and made perfect sense but by him describing he met her on Saturday evening and then Monday he found out someone who was a witness to a kidnapping was hurt (turns out to be Gypsy) leads me to believe we are only talking a few days ago because he didn't say "last Saturday" or "Two weeks ago on Saturday," he just said he met her on "Saturday." The same with the finding out on Monday someone witnessed a kidnapping. There was again no mention of it being "last Monday." In the back of my mind we are talking only a few days ago at most was Monday (not long enough to make it "last Saturday" he met her at the dinner so the most we can be talking is five days ago) and Gypsy can't talk and is paralyzed on one side of her body and shortly after this the chapter ends.

Chapter six starts off with Gypsy in her hospital room. Soon a woman comes into her room with a wheelchair to take her to rehabilitation and she was "muttering curses under her breath" and tells the woman, "Not now, I can't. I need to use the phone, find out what's happening, I'm the only witness." The way this is written in the book leads me to believe she said it but yet just a minute ago we learned she can't talk, so how is that possible? Then I thought, maybe she wrote it on her notes and handed it to the nurse but the book just left that part out. Then that didn't make sense because how can she mutter anything or "use the phone"? It also goes on to say she "leveraged" herself into the wheelchair. She is paralyzed on one side of her body so how can she just "leverage" herself anywhere being newly paralyzed? To top it off, she goes to rehabilitation and uses the walking bars. Interesting since she can't hold herself up on the bars with her arms since 'one side is paralyzed' which also means she isn't putting her weight on her foot/leg. And it just goes on how she willed her body to move and how she wished it was still numb so it wouldn't hurt so much. Maybe what I am not getting is that in five days she is able to regain some use of her limbs and has feeling coming back as pain? But that don't explain the ability of her to talk (or not) especially when on the way out someone tells her what a good job she had done and she confirms that she said nothing because she can't talk. Again, then why right before she went to this rehabilitation session was she able to mutter, say she didn't want to go now, and she wanted to use the phone? Maybe I am just over thinking it but it just doesn't add up to me. I find things like this very annoying and hard to get through which again, really disrupts the story and take away from the flow.

But even with the above being said, I don't want you to think this story is all bad and not worth reading. The plot is good, the action was good, and the mystery and physic abilities really kept me interested. A lot of it is memorable and had a few twists that I wasn't expecting. There was also the aspect of the characters in their personal lives that made me read on. I wanted to know if Gypsy and Conner ever get that cup of coffee they said they were going to meet again for. I have a feeling romance is in the air however the author does a great lead-in so I guess I really won't know that or even if this kidnapper acted alone or is there someone else on the list until I read the next book in the series, Gypsy Cradle.

*I received a free copy of this book for my honest review.

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