Friday, August 31, 2012

Review of A Very Special Delivery

A Very Special Delivery
by Linda Goodnight
Genre: Romance

     True love is hard to find. Life is full of misery. When people sabotage their own relationship and create their own misery, it is just painful to "watch". Molly and her sister experienced a tragic misfortune. Sometimes bad things happen in life through nobody's fault. But Molly's sister, Chloe, blames Molly for the incident. She is rude to the point of forcing Molly into seclusion rather than risk seeing her sister in public in this small town, and increasing Chloe's emotional pain with memories of that day. Molly internalizes her sister's blame with a heaping dose of guilt. Molly does such a number on her own psyche that she suffers from panic attacks.

     We also have Ethan, a single father with a past. Everyone has a past and his is no worse than some. Yet this book seems to enjoy making mountains out of molehills while attempting to call it entertainment. The community ostracizes Ethan for his "wild" past. Now let's throw some religion in for "fun". Normally when I run into a book that deals with religion I try to keep an open mind and believe there is something in this book that I need to learn in order to grow spiritually. The only thing that I learned is the hypocrisy of some so-called "Christians". The church members who look down their noses at Ethan because of the life style he had lived when he was young, not for the man that he had become. Chloe refusing to forgive her sister so that Molly quits going to the community church that her sister regularly attends. The situation between Molly and Chloe was heartbreaking and they both felt blame needed to be placed. Since they were "Christians" they couldn't try to blame God for the cruelty so therefore it must have been Molly's fault, since she was the only other person there when it happened.

     It took me FOUR days to read this book that was less than 200 pages. I read fast when I'm interested in a book. This was just painful to experience and was the closest that I ever came to not finishing a book. I always hope that there will be some redeeming quality that I might otherwise miss out on that makes the book not quite so pointless. Granted everyone finally figured out that stuff just happens in life. It's a romance novel after all so of course everything works out in the end and everyone lives happily ever after. This story never really made it past the pointless stage. I can't even give it merit for it's entertainment principles.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Review of Nikki Powergloves

     Nikki Nickerson is an average nine year old girl. She isn't overly popular or stunningly attractive. She probably wouldn't stand out in a crowd. One fine summer day, that all changes when Nikki stumbles across a fantastical creature. A cross between a porcupine and a beaver and possessing the ability of speech, this creature gives Nikki a treasure chest. He warns Nikki that she must be willing to shoulder the responsibility that comes with his gift. Inside the chest are 9 pairs of gloves, each give Nikki a different superpower. This is the birth of Nikki Powergloves.

     As an adult reading a children's book targeted at 8-10 year olds, I was still quite impressed. The assorted superpowers are very imaginative and quite cool. Some might not exactly help much in defeating a villian, but are quite handy nonetheless. I'm not very confident in my ability to review a children's book. I think as adults our opinions of favorite childhood stories become biased with a decent dosage of nostalgia. I can't quite compare Nikki Powergloves with Judy Blume's Freckle Juice or Laura Lee Hope's Bobbsey Twins series. I can say that Estes does not talk down to his audience, or use words or phrases that children would find hard to understand.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Interview with David Estes

Hi David! I have had the great pleasure to chat with you on several occasions and have been quite impressed with how personable you are. Thank you for agreeing to this interview so my readers can experience for themselves the energy and passion that you radiate.

      Hi Laurie!! Thanks so much for inviting me on your awesome blog and for featuring me this month, it’s a HUGE honor and I’m extremely humbled by it. I just want to tell all your readers how awesome you are as a beta reader. Laurie started beta reading for me with The Moon Dwellers and now she’s one of my most trusted readers. She always catches my plot holes and helps me to fix them so my books are the best they can be before my readers ever see them.

Ever the flatterer! Your books are a true joy to read and I'm honored to be a part of the team that helps make such wonderful stories come to fruition. I'm very grateful for this opportunity.

Let's start with the basics. You were born in El Paso, TX; Moved to Pittsburgh, PA as a child; and graduated from Penn State. What motivated you to move to Australia?

      Great question! As you said, I grew up in Pittsburgh, reading books and playing sports and cheering for the Steelers and Penguins and Pirates. After college at Penn State, I spent about 5 years working as an accountant (I know, boring!) in Pittsburgh. At some point, I realized I needed a change, something to inspire me, something to get my life energized. So when an opportunity arose to move with my company to Sydney, Australia for two years, I grabbed it, packing up my whole life and moving halfway around the world, waaaaay Down Under. Let me tell you, Australia is an incredible place for a lot of reasons, but mostly because I met my amazing and beautiful Australian wife there. I met her within 9 months, was engaged 3 months later, and we eloped in Malaysia a mere 6 months after we met! It was a true love story.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Lace by Shirley Conran - Review

book cover art for Lace by Shirley ConranLace
Book One of Series
by Shirley Conran
Genre: Romance

     Kate and Pagan are school friends from England who talk their parents into sending them to the same Swiss finishing school. There they meet Maxine, Kate's roommate who is from France. Judy, an American scholarship student at a language school nearby and works as a waitress to help pay for her schooling, rounds out this group of four girls who become tight knit friends through thick and thin. Can't forget Lilli, a gorgeous with a notorious past who was raised by a foster mother, separated from her foster family while escaping from behind the Iron Curtain, exploited horribly, and has tracked her real mother down to being one of these four women.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Review of The Moon Dwellers by David Estes

book cover art for The Moon Dwellers by David EstesThe Moon Dwellers
by David Estes
Book 1 of The Dwellers series
Genres: Action Adventure, Romance,
   Young Adult

     Adele is a Moon Dweller. A second class citizen in a world where the differences in the social and economic class structure is exceedingly prominent. Tristan is a sun dweller, one of the elite in a class of aristocrats. He isn't just one of the privileged few, he is the president's eldest son and heir to inherit the right to rule. Adele was just one in a crowd of many as Tristan remotely waved from a float in a parade passing by. Their eyes met, their gazes locked. Against all odds and reason, Tristan knew he had to find Adele. He had to meet her and talk to her. He felt an unexplainable pull towards her.

     You can't pigeonhole this YA fiction into one specific genre. It has all the elements of action & adventure, comedy, tragedy, romance, and suspense all rolled into one magnificent story by author David Estes.

Saturday, August 18, 2012


     I was recently informed of a service called BookBub. It is completely free and sign up is easy. You supply your email address and fill out a simple checklist of the different genres that you are interested in. There is also a checklist for where you download ebooks, whether from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, etc. Then when free ebooks become available within the genres on your list of interests from the dealer(s) that you frequent, they will send you an email to let you know. Never miss a potentially good free ebook again!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Review of Trojan Horse

Trojan Horse
by David Lender

     Extreme religious terrorists are plotting with a Saudi Arabian prince within the Royal family to over throw the government. They are stopped by an unexpected force. Twenty years later, the terrorists have reorganized themselves and have come up with a new diabolical plot. Can they be stopped again?

     A large amount of the story deals with Muslim traditions. While I found this information interesting, a lot of it didn't make much sense to me as I know nothing about the Muslim faith. Same goes with the intricate dealings in the world of finance banking, specifically in gas and oil.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Review of Archangel Evolution

Archangel Evolution
Book Three in the Evolution series
by David Estes

     Dionysus was the first demon to evolve into an angel. Now he has figured out how to evolve into a super-angel. Stronger, faster, more powerful than ever. The entire archangel council uses the same technique to create a new species calling themselves archangels. They also have some new, very cool parlor tricks to add to their fighting capabilities. Is it enough to finally defeat the demons and annihilate the species?

     I suffered a bit of trepidation through this story. Knowing this was the last book in the series, I worried about separation anxiety as I was not ready to give up my new "friends" when I finished the series.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Top Ten Tuesday - Free Ebooks

     All prices were verified when this post was written, but prices may change without notice so please verify that the deal is still available before downloading. For free ebooks, confirm that Amazon's "Kindle Price" is still $0.00. Some deals may not be available outside the United States. Most of these books are part of a series. Read at your own risk, you might get hooked ;)

1. Beyond Hades by Luke Romyn

Genres: Action & Adventure, Mystery, Paranormal, Thriller
Beyond Hades by Luke Romyn       This fast-paced paranormal thriller tells the story of an archeology professor who is forced to confront a dangerous world in which unbelievable mythological creatures exist. Originally $3.99 but is a free ebook on Amazon until Aug 15, 2012.

2. The Builder by P.S. Power

Genres: Fantasy, Horror, Occult, Science Fiction
The Builder by P.S. Power       A young boy on the verge of successfully becoming a magical "builder" attracts the attention of a set of dangerous and powerful characters in this gripping horror novel -- the first book in The Young Ancients series. Originally $.99 but is currently a free ebook on Amazon.

3. Cedardale Court by Nathan Lee Christensen

Genres: Mystery, Thriller, Suspense
Cedardale Court by Nathan Lee Christensen       A widower and his daughter move to the Oregon countryside to start fresh -- but discovering a human hand in the bushes starts them on a path to untangle a web of carefully kept secrets. Originally $2.99 but is currently a free ebook on Amazon.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Guest Post by David Estes!!

I'm so excited to announce that David has supplied a guest post for my followers to read. Thanks David!

OCD is my Superpower by David Estes

As I prepare to publish the first 4 books in my new children’s series, Nikki Powergloves, which is about a nine-year-old girl with superpowers, I’ve been getting more and more people asking me what superpower I would choose if I could choose only one. My answer: I already have a superpower—it’s called OCD. And like it or not, I’m going to tell you all about it.

Ahem….tap, tap, tap…is this thing on? *high-pitched feedback from the microphone* Um, my name is David Estes, and I’m a writer with OCD. There I said it! Whew! I feel so much better now.

It seems more and more in this day and age that people say they have obsessive-compulsive disorder in one form or another and maybe they all do. Everyone’s got their little compulsions and pet peeves, like you might have an obsession with ensuring every piece of silverware is placed in its allotted slot in the drawer facing in the same direction (No, please, no! The blade of that knife cannot face east when all the others are facing west!); or perhaps for you it’s something less…shall we say…serious, like maybe you just like things clutter-free, everything in its proper place. There’s nothing wrong with wanting the shoes on the shoe rack and the clothes on the clothes hangers, is there? It’s weird, why should a single errant shoe make one feel like their life is spiraling swiftly out of control to a certain and final doom? I’m not making fun of all of you that are that way (well, maybe I am, just a little), because like you, I got an extra helping of OCD when they were handing out brains.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Review of Treasure Island

Treasure Island
by Robert Louis Stevenson

     Jim Hawkins is a young boy who comes into the possession of a pirate's treasure map and embarks on the adventure of a lifetime. But where treasure is involved, human nature tends to give in to greed.

     To be honest, I wasn't real familiar with the details of this story and was quite surprised to run into Long John Silver. I'm not sure if it is a national chain, but here in Michigan we have Long John Silver restaurants which is a fast food type seafood joint. It seems fitting now that I know that Long John Silver had been the ship's cook.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Review of Demon Evolution by David Estes

Demon Evolution
Book Two in The Evolution Series
by David Estes

     Demon Evolution picks up right where Angel Evolution left off. I'm not going to say where exactly. I'm a little hesitant to give much of a synopsis for those who haven't read Angel Evolution yet. I don't want to spoil it. Angels vs. Demons, good vs. evil, add in a couple of teenage romances with their usual angst and volatile mood swings and you have a wonderful combination of assorted conflicts and adventure.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Ultimate David Estes Giveaway!

     Other than giving away Mr. Blue Eyes himself (which I doubt his wife would appreciate much), it will be hard to find a better giveaway than what David has proposed for this month! There will be FIVE prize packs, one for each of five winners.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Featured Author - David Estes

David Estes

  April 13, 1981
Main genres:
  Young Adult, Children's Books,
  Paranormal, Dystopian.

     David was born in El Paso, TX. When he was small he moved to Pittsburg, PA where he grew up and attended Penn State. He has since moved to Australia, met his lovely wife, Adele, and lived happily ever after. Well that might be a slight generalization. David and Adele are currently spending their days in Hawaii where David writes on the beach and Adele writes and pursues her love of photography. They are enjoying an opportunity of globetrotting and indulging their dreams.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Review of Angel Evolution by David Estes

Angel Evolution
by David Estes
Book 1 of The Evolution Trilogy

     This book should come with a warning label. CAUTION: Do not start unless you have a nice chunk of free time in your schedule because you will not want to put it down. Luckily for me, I had the house to myself and scheduled to laze by the fire with my Kindle while ignoring the snow flakes fluttering outside the window behind me.

     The heroine is intelligent and sassy. The bad guy is, well it's not obvious who the bad guy is, as both of the main male characters are likeable but mysterious. The story flows easily, never bogged down by slow passages.