Saturday, August 26, 2017

Logan's Story by Sarah Robinson

Title: Logan's Story
Author: Sarah Robinson
Genre: NA Romance
Published: December 4, 2015
Pages: 198
Goodreads

Synopsis

The first book in a brand new series from bestselling author Sarah Robinson, Logan's Story is a glimpse into the famous rockstars past and how he achieved his fame. Before the lights, stage, and music, Logan Clay struggles to figure out who he can trust and whether or not love comes with guitar strings attached. 

Logan Clay has the talent, and he's put in the time. 
All he needs is that one big break,
just one chance to prove he has what it takes to be a rockstar. 
But his musical dreams are further away than ever...

And then she walks in to his life,
offering him everything he's ever wanted - fame, fortune, and music. 
There's no question that he's going to take the chance,
or that he wants to take her at the same time.

But everything is not what it seems.
Will it be too late when he realizes his one big break 
was actually a deal with the devil in a short skirt and neon colored hair?

Review

This book was assigned as required reading for my band class last year. It seemed like a really weird requirement because I'd never had assigned reading for band before (you'd think the focus would be on playing music) but I didn't really have much choice in the matter. I'm honestly still not really sure why we were supposed to read this book for band class, there was never a test or anything. We didn't even discuss it in class. I'm beginning to think that our teacher was high when she was writing the book list. 

But since I did read the book, I figured I might as well write a review for it and at least get something out of the deal. So I spent a huge amount of time while reading trying to figure out why my band teacher wanted us to read the book, so I may not have been paying as much attention to the actual story as I should have, and that's on me, but I have no idea what this story was about. From what I could gather there was a dude who wanted to be in a band and thought this chick was the path to that (dumb) and then she basically double crossed him in the end because bitches be crazy. But it's not like any of that stuff would affect me because I'm already IN a band and I'm the crazy bitch so...

Ultimately I guess our band director wanted us to learn to only rely on ourselves for our success and not even bother trying to rely on others, which seems like a kind of strange message because you can't really have a band made of one person, so we're going to have to rely on other's all the time. I'm just still so confused. 

Overall I give this book 2 out of tune guitars. 

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About the Author

Aside from being a Top 10 Barnes & Noble and Amazon Bestseller, Sarah Robinson is a native of the Washington, DC area and has both her Bachelors and Masters Degrees in forensic and clinical psychology. She is newly married to a wonderful man who is just as much of an animal rescue enthusiasts as she is. Together, they own a zoo of rescues including everything from mammals to reptiles to marsupials, as well as volunteering and fostering for multiple animal shelters.

Subscribe to her newsletter at www.subscribepage.com/sarahrobinsonnewsletter

Visit the author's website for more information about Sarah and her books: http://booksbysarahrobinson.net/

Alternate Reviews

If you would like to read some legitimate reviews of Logan's Story, just click any of the following links.

Paper Hearts by Ali Novak

Title: Paper Hearts
Author: Ali Novak
Genre: YA Romance
Published: July 4, 2017
Pages: 400
Goodreads

Synopsis

“When I met Alec Williams, I nearly fainted. Totally embarrassing, but how often does a regular girl get to meet a famous heartthrob?”

Felicity has been living in the shadow of her best friend Lucy since they were kids. But things change when she is introduced to a quiet guy named Alec. At first Felicity is intimidated by his fame, but as the two grow closer she starts to realize that Alec just might be the guy of her dreams. No other guy has ever made her feel so alive. 

The only problem? Lucy has different plans for Alec—plans that start with prom. 

Felicity quickly realizes that she will have to make a decision. Will she choose her best friend who has always been there for her, or the mysterious boy that she can't stop thinking about? Whatever her choice, someone is going to be left broken hearted.

Meet... The Queen of Hearts.

Review

This past year on Valentine's Day a copy of this book mysteriously showed up in my locker and frankly, that kind of pissed me off because no one but me is supposed to even know my combination. I certainly didn't give it to anybody, and yet someone else has it. You can be sure my father will hear about this. 

So since the book randomly showed up in my locker, I thought maybe there was a message inside that I was supposed to get, so I decided to read it. The thing is, I didn't really get around to reading it until just now, and I was apparently supposed to read it back then. I'm absolutely kicking myself right now because I could have gone to prom with Ryan Masterson, who happens to be like the hottest guy at my school. I don't understand why he, of all people, would use a book to ask me to prom. I mean, I didn't think he even knew how to read. 

So while I was reading this book, I was keeping my eyes peeled for the secret message. The fucking thing didn't even come until like three quarters of the way through the book, and again, I'm only just now reading the book to begin with. I'm pretty sure this is all the author's fault somehow. 

But anyway, the moral of the story is that if you find a copy of this book in your locker when you didn't put it there, read it right away because someone hot is probably trying to ask you out to prom. 

I give this book one missed prom date. 

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About the Author

Ali Novak is a twenty-five-year-old Wisconsin native and a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s creative writing program. She started writing her debut novel My Life with the Walter Boys when she was only fifteen, and since then, her work has received more than 130 million hits online. When she isn’t writing, Ali enjoys traveling and Netflix marathons with her husband Jared. You can follow Ali on Wattpad, Twitter, and Instagram @Fallzswimmer.

Alternate Reviews

If you would like to read some legitimate reviews of Paper Hearts, just click any of the following links. 

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Under the Spanish Stars by All Sinclair

Title: Under the Spanish Stars
Author: Alli Sinclair
Genre: Romance
Published: February 1, 2016
Pages: 352
Goodreads

Synopsis

Charlotte Kavanagh’s beloved grandma Katarina Sanchez is gravely ill, so when she begs Charlotte to travel to her homeland in AndalucĂ­a to uncover the truth behind a mysterious painting, Charlotte agrees.  Taking leave from her soul-destroying job and stalled life in Australia, Charlotte embarks on a quest through Granada’s ancient cobble-stoned streets and vibrant neighbourhoods. There she meets Mateo Vives, a flamenco guitarist with a dark past, and through him she quickly becomes entangled in the world of flamenco and gypsies that ignites a passion she had thought lost. 

But the mystery surrounding the painting deepens, reaching back in time to the war-torn Spain of the 1940s and Charlotte discovers her grandmother’s connection to the Spanish underground. Who is her grandmother, really? What is Mateo’s connection to her family history? And why is finding answers to a family mystery turning into a journey of self-discovery for Charlotte?

Weighed down by secrets, betrayals and shattered relationships, Charlotte finds herself questioning the true meaning of heritage, family and love.

Review

I found an abandoned copy of this book on train I was taking to Spain, so I thought that it must be an informative guidebook. With that in mind, I stopped what I was reading to dive into this book. It is NOT a guidebook for nights out in Spain, so I felt like the entire thing was just a freakin' lie! 

In spite of the fact that the book wasn't what I thought it was going to be, it did end up sucking me in and making me hungry to try some real, authentic Spanish food (thank goodness I was already on my way to Spain!) It even made me want to visit some of the places talked about in the book, unfortunately I wasn't headed for Granada, so I didn't manage to visit any of them on my trip. 

The part of the story that really got to me was the mystery about Charlotte's grandma, and her role in the resistance during WWII. I absolutely love WWII era historical fiction, so that aspect of this story almost completely redeemed it for me after my initial disappointment with the contents. It definitely contributed to getting me sucked into the story and keeping me flipping the pages until I almost missed my stop on the train, which would have been awful. 

I could have done without the romance aspect of the story, because it was just a bit too fanciful for my tastes, and I wish there had been more talk about different places to see and eat in Spain, especially outside of Granada (Majorca would have been super helpful for me) since that's what I thought I was getting when I picked the book up. But for what it was, I guess it was already. 

I give Under the Spanish Stars three tasty tapas. 

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About the Author

Alli Sinclair is a multi award-winning author who spent her early adult years travelling the globe, intent on becoming an Indiana Jones in heels. She scaled mountains in Nepal, Argentina, and Peru, rafted the Ganges, and rode a camel in the Sahara. Argentina and Peru became her home for a few years and when she wasn’t working as a mountain or tour guide, Alli could be found in the dance halls dancing the tango, salsa, merengue, and samba.

All of these adventures made for fun storytelling and this is when she discovered her love of writing. Alli’s stories capture the romance and thrill of exploring new destinations and cultures that also take readers on a journey of discovery. 

Alli volunteers as an author role model with Books in Homes, promoting literacy and reading amongst young people.

To find out more about Alli, please visit www.allisinclair.com

Alternate Reviews

If you would like to read some legitimate reviews of Under the Spanish Stars, just click any of the following links.

Jude the Obscure by Thomas Hardy

Title: Jude the Obscure
Author: Thomas Hardy
Genre: Classics
Published: 1895
Pages: 310
Goodreads

Synopsis

In 1895 Hardy's final novel, the great tale of Jude The Obscure, sent shockwaves of indignation rolling across Victorian England. Hardy had dared to write frankly about sexuality and to indict the institutions of marriage, education, and religion. But he had, in fact, created a deeply moral work. The stonemason Jude Fawley is a dreamer; his is a tragedy of unfulfilled aims. With his tantalizing cousin Sue Bridehead, the last and most extraordinary of Hardy's heroines, Jude takes on the world and discovers, tragically, its brutal indifference. The most powerful expression of Hardy's philosophy, and a profound exploration of man's essential loneliness, Jude The Obscure is a great and beautiful book. 'His style touches sublimity.'—T.S. Eliot.

Review

I bought a copy of this book because I heard from some very smart people that it's the biography of Joood - Hooligan from Platypire reviews. Clearly she changed the spelling of her name some, but that makes sense for anonymity purposes and all that. And I know what you're thinking, this book was written in the late 1800s, it couldn't possibly be about someone as young as Joood - Hooligan, but obviously you're not aware that she's a Time Lord and can't be bothered with all that wibbly wobbly timey wimey stuff. Proof that she's a Time Lord? When this book was written about her, she was a he. It's pretty obvious if you ask me. 

Now I spent a fair amount of time trying to figure out why a Time Lord would allow someone to write a biography about them, even someone as exalted as Thomas Hardy, but it soon became clear that the autobiography is full of holes, because Jude was not really well known back then (which makes it even stranger that someone would want to write a biography about her/him in the first place, but I guess maybe s/he told Thomas some rather interesting stories that just didn't make it into the book). If you ask me, Jude comes across as a rather boring and very uninteresting character, which aside from the Time Lord thing completely matches up with my feelings about her/him in this time. I mean, s/he's on a quest for platypire world domination (which s/he obviously started in the late 1800s), but basically no one of importance even knows s/he exists. S/he probably should have chosen any other moniker than obscure back when s/he was palling around with Hardy. I mean, that's a real rookie mistake right there. 

In the end, I feel that this has given me some new insight into Jude, which will come in handy for my future plots against her/him, but this book was a real bore to read. I cannot recommend it, unless you wish to join me in defeating her/him, in which case, study this book, and then get back to me. 

I give Jude the Obscure two Daleks. 

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About the Author

Thomas Hardy, OM (2 June 1840 – 11 January 1928) was an English novelist and poet. A Victorian realist, in the tradition of George Eliot, he was also influenced both in his novels and poetry by Romanticism, especially by William Wordsworth. Charles Dickens is another important influence on Thomas Hardy. Like Dickens, he was also highly critical of much in Victorian society, though Hardy focused more on a declining rural society.

Alternate Reviews

Sunday, August 13, 2017

As Wings Unfurl by Arthur M. Doweyko

Title: As Wings Unfurl
Author: Arthur M. Doweyko
Genre: Science Fiction
Published: July 19, 2016
Pages: 280
Goodreads

Synopsis

Applegate Bogdanski returns from Vietnam with a missing leg, a Purple Heart, and an addiction to morphine. He stumbles through each day, looking forward to nothing and hoping it will arrive soon. When he attempts to thwart a crime, he is knocked unconscious and wakes up to discover that people are once again calling him a hero, though he feels undeserving of the praise.

Apple returns to work and meets Angela, a mysterious woman who claims to be his guardian. Immediately, he feels a connection to her, which morphs into an attraction. But he soon discovers that Angela is much more than she seems.

Apple and Angela are swept up in a conspiracy that stretches through time and space. Together, they must fight to save everything they hold dear from an alien race bent on destroying humanity.

Review

I found a copy of this book on my parents bookshelves, probably because my dad is a huge science fiction nerd, and because the cover is mostly blue, I decided to steal it. I'm sure my parents won't miss it. They haven't noticed any of the other books I've swiped from their shelves in the past few months. 

I had a hell of a time getting into this story, which really sucks because I usually really like science fiction. This just didn't really feel like science fiction to me, except for the stupid aliens. But even that part of the story is set in the past, so it clearly didn't happen, and it's not ever going to happen because that time has already passed in the real world, which takes away about ninety-five percent of the fun stuff in science fiction. I mean, the possibility that we're going to have super cool spaceships and laser guns and live on other strange worlds is the reason to read science fiction, if you ask me, and this book really doesn't have any of that to it. I mean, shit, the only aliens it even talks about are trying to kill us. I guess I should at least be thankful that this dude named Apple saved the world from the aliens that the Men in Black won't let the world even know exist, but I just have a hard time accepting that it wasn't just a nuclear power plant meltdown that I saw. I mean, that's what the dude in the suit said it was. 

I will say that this was at least a fast read even though I had a hard time believing any of it. So for that I give it two cool spaceships. 

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About the Author

As a scientist, Arthur has authored 100+ publications, and shares the 2008 Thomas Alva Edison Patent Award for the discovery of Sprycel, a new anti-cancer drug. He writes hard science fiction, fantasy and horror. His debut novel, Algorithm, which is a story about DNA and the purpose of humanity, garnered a 2010 Royal Palm Literary Award (RPLA) and was published by E-Lit Books October 2014. He has published a number of short stories, many of which were finalists in RPLA competitions. A number of his short stories have garnered awards, which include Honorable Mentions in the international L. Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future Contest and First Place in P&E Readers Polls. His recently completed Angela's Apple, a novel about angels who are not angels, won 1st place as Best SciFi Novel at the 2014 RPLA and will be published by Red Adept Publishing. His current project, Henry The Last, is about the last human being, a Lakota Indian cyborg. He lives in Florida with his wife Lidia, happily wandering the beaches and jousting with aliens.

You can find more about him, read his edgy science blogs, or enjoy his art work at www.ArthurMDoweyko.com

Alternate Reviews

If you would like to read some legitimate reviews of As Wings Unfurl, just click any of the following links. 

Reaped by Gracen Miller and Tina Carreiro

Title: Reaped
Author: Gracen Miller and Tina Carreiro
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Published: January 26, 2017
Pages: 266
Goodreads

Synopsis

WARNING: This is a work of fiction. Reaped is told through the eyes of the dark side. We understand the mythical and religious spin within this book may be hard for some to read. So if you fit that mold, please don’t be tempted to open the book. If suspending belief is something you have a hard time with when religious aspects are involved, please refrain from reading. This work of fiction is not to be taken seriously. This book was written from our creative view and intended for entertainment purposes only. The book was not written to be incendiary or inflammatory. So before you pass judgment, remember, that’s reserved for God. 

God ordered her to reap him… 

Forged by her father’s hand to reap at His command, Solas was God’s most skilled Reaper. Killing on command, she had never questioned His directives—until now. Too bad Loki’s heart isn’t as black as she’s been led to believe. That would make her job easy. But she cannot dismiss the goodness she senses inside him. Bewildered by her attraction to Loki, she still craves returning home, but knows the only way back into her homeland is to obey God’s order. As the lines between allies and enemies are blurred, she questions who is weaving the biggest deception… the legendary trickster god or her own father? 

But she can’t bring herself to swing her blade. 

From the moment she fell at his feet, Loki mistrusted Solas. His intentions were simple, to use her and send her on her way. Then he discovered she was cast out of her homeland after defying her father’s order to reap him. Intrigued by a woman that would stand against the supreme God, Loki offers her his temporary protection while nursing his skepticism. Many warriors from the heavens have been sent to kill him, but only one has come this close. She’s the perfect weapon. A threat not just to his life, but also to his family and everything he stands for. He should take her life, but he craves protecting her and the secret she harbors more. 

When you send a reaper to kill a god, don’t give her a reason to rebel. 

A tentative alliance between Loki and Solas is brokered, but misunderstandings strain their fragile relationship. Battles are won and lost, but can Solas escape her father’s will? Faced with hard choices, Loki will have to decide what’s important to him. Or can he pull off the ultimate trick and win their freedom? 

Review

My church's youth group has been actively campaigning to get this book banned everywhere, so I knew that I needed to read it before they succeed (and they will because they always do). It was not easy to sneak a copy of the book into my house because my parents are always checking what I'm reading and looking through my drawers and stuff, so while I was reading this book, I made sure to hide it in my older sister's room, that way if it was found, she'd get in trouble for it and not me. 

After reading this book, I must say that I completely understand why my youth group is working to get it banned. I was absolutely scandalized that the authors would glorify something that so clearly breaks one of the ten commandments! I want to ask them if they want to go to Hell when they die, because that's how you get sent to Hell when you die. Then on top of the fact that they're basically worshipping another God, they added kinky romance to the story. Everyone knows that angels are pure spirits and not kinky. This book is just an absolute abomination all the way around, and I'm sorry I read it. I'm going to have to confess my sin, and I will accept my penance, no matter how harsh it may seem, because I know I deserve it and will do whatever it takes to keep from being sent to Hell with these authors. 

I give Reaped, 1 million Hail Mary's, because that's how many the authors will have to say to redeem their immortal souls after writing this book. 

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Alternate Reviews

I was unable to find any blog reviews for Reaped, so you will just have to check out reviews on Amazon or Goodreads for some legitimate reviews. 

The Woods by Christopher F. Viceconte

Title: The Woods
Author: Christopher F. Viceconte
Genre: Literary Fiction
Published: July 11, 2017
Pages: 273
Goodreads

Synopsis

David Barnes returns home from boarding school, only to find that the life he left behind is completely different. Lost in a town he no longer knows, David falls into a downward spiral until awakened by a reality he never anticipated.

The first novel by Christopher F. Viceconte, The Woods is a contemporary coming-of-age story about struggling to find one’s place in the world.

Review

I picked up a copy of this book thinking that it would help me learn how to navigate the wilderness. You see, my husband and children are insisting that they want to go camping because they're basically heathens that have no appreciation for things like air conditioning and not being eaten alive by bugs. But I will do most anything for my kids, within reason, so I want to learn how to camp. This book, was no help at all in that respect. Honestly, it was about as helpful for learning anything about camping as Ass Goblins of Auschwitz would be for writing a research paper about the Holocaust. 

So once I realized that this book wasn't going to teach me how to camp, I tried to get into the story itself, and failed miserably. The book just made no sense to me. Like I don't think there was even a point to the story, or if there was, I didn't catch it. It seemed like it was just about a bunch of kids being stupid and doing illegal shit because they think it's cool, and I just have no interest in reading about stupid kids doing stupid shit. Like, there wasn't even anything really scary happening in the story, and looking at that cover, I kind of expected some scary (and honestly, just the thought of going camping terrifies me, because there are bears in nature, and bears eat people!) stuff to happen. This book was just an all around disappointment on every freaking level imaginable. 

Overall I give The Woods one leaking tent. 

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About the Author

Christopher F. Viceconte is a graduate of New York University. His favorite authors are J.K. Rowling, Bret Easton Ellis, Hermann Hesse, and Ian Fleming. He has lived on three different continents, enjoys standing in the sun, and has regular conversations with his two dogs. Visit his website: pleasegod.help

Alternate Reviews

I was unable to find any blog reviews for The Woods, so you'll just have to check out legitimate reviews on Goodreads or Amazon.