Sunday, October 30, 2011

Book Review of 'Shadow Of A Dead Star' by Michael Shean

Shadow Of A Dead Star was written by Michael Shean in 2011. You may purchase it at http://www.amazon.com/ You can visit the author at http://michael-shean.com/wordpress  

Seattle, in the year 2078 is a much different place than what we would experience in 2011. The emerging world society that rules it isn't so farfetched that we couldn’t imagine it eventually being played out on our own time line. The social order of our future has been totally swallowed up by commercialism and all religions and belief systems have been snuffed out by a pervasively perverse hunger for a technology that feeds mans most lustful and sinful habits.

Thomas Walken, an agent of the Industrial Security Bureau, is not happy with the deterioration of humanity and subsequently he is tasked with infiltrating the black market malevolent nation of Wonderland, which is in the process of smuggling sex dolls into the country. These sex dolls aren’t the typical type found in porn shops today- these have been technologically enhanced for sexually deviant purposes and built from the human bodies of little girls.

Walkens job is to intercept a shipment of these dolls and to uncover the truth behind the dark and mysterious world of Wonderland. In his quest to rid society of this new shadowy and disturbing technology, Walkens discovers a frightening reality that will shock both himself and the rest of the world.

Michael Shean spins a futuristic tale of high tech cyber punk that vibrates with action and takes you for a ride through a shimmering sprawling neon skyline of a city eclipsed by moral decay and abandonment. In this, the author’s debut novel, Mr. Shean’s dedication to his craft shows up in Shadow of A Dead Star- which is chuck full of expertly detailed descriptions of a futuristic world. In this lies one of the only flaws in this story. In his effort to make his world believable, the author pours a little too much detail into the earlier part of the story line and takes away from the personality make up of the main characters.

Other than this- the story rolls along nicely with a surprise twisting punch at the end. I rate Shadow Of A Dead Star with 4 spiders.

T Riddell

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Book Review of 'Nightshade' by Andrea Cremer

Nightshade was written by Andrea Cremer and published by Philomel in 2010. You may purchase it at www.amazon.com/ and you may read more about Andrea at www.andreacremer.com/  

Calla Tor is no ordinary teenager. She has waited all her life for the day when she will mate with Ren La Roche, the Alpha male of the wolf pack. Together, they will rule and guard the sacred sites for their masters, The Keepers. But all her plans are scattered to the wind when she breaks the Keeper’s laws by saving the life of a beautiful human boy.

Calla is drawn to this boy in ways she cannot explain. Everything she has lived for comes into question as her attraction for the human turns into love. Now, Calla must decide whether to follow her heart and risk losing everything, including her life.

Although billed as a young adult novel, Andrea Cremer’s Nightshade has all the workings of a masterfully-written romantic suspense. From the very first page I was drawn in and engulfed with the complexity of the characters and their story. This is an interesting new spin on the werewolf tale and frighteningly addictive. Vivid descriptions, emotionally charged scenes, and an outcome that will have you scurrying to pick up the next book in the series, Nightshade is a must-read. As sexy and thrilling as they come.

I’m giving Nightshade a 41/2 spider rating and recommending it to older teens and adults.

CK Webb

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Book Review of 'Web of Lies - My Life With a Narcissist' by Sarah Tate

Web of Lies – My Life With a Narcissist, is an auto-biographical novel written and published by Sarah Tate. You may purchase it at www.amazon.com and you may read more about Sarah at www.sarahtateauthor.com

Follow Sarah on an emotional roller coaster from the highest of highs to the lowest of lows as the wife of a Narcissistic man. This is a story of a young woman being swept off her feet by the man of her dreams, only to find that the life of luxury he provides is one full of stress, abuse, neglect, and lies. This auto-biography takes you through the years of Sarah’s marriage to this charismatic man, to include the births of their three children. You become emotionally invested in this story as you read further and further into the story of her life.

This story makes me think of my first marriage. It makes me think if I hadn’t gotten out as quickly as I did, how my life might have turned out so much differently. You begin to see inside the relationship, instead of seeing it from the outside-in. You begin to see the suffering one goes through privately, while trying to hold things together publicly.

This book is a very good read. In fact, I managed to read the entire book in only a couple of hours. I am really glad that Sarah found her way out of the situation she found herself in. I am also sad that other women had been and would continue to fall victim to such a man. Mental illnesses so often go undiagnosed and untreated in so many lives. This book serves to shed light on a personality disorder that will destroy the lives of people all around the individual it affects, while the actual individual continues to blame his or her misfortunes on someone else. I applaud you, Sarah, for sharing your story with the world through your book.

I’m giving this book 3½ spiders and recommending it to everyone.

SB Price

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Book Review of 'Fractured Time' by Alan Draven

Fractured Time was written by Alan Draven and published by Black Bed Sheets Books in 2011. You may purchase it at www.amazon.com  
Visit the author at: http://bitternest.blogspot.com  

Donovan Vicar is a "feeler"-a man who feels the vibrations of people around him. After bumping into a stranger on a late October evening in 2007, he is overwhelmed with an evil that seems to radiate from the man. He is so caught up with the power and imminent danger of the guy that he boards a bus to Texas in hopes that he might be able to stop whatever horrible act he may be planning. But the bus he is on takes an unexpected turn and instead of going to Texas, Donovan ends right back where he started in his hometown of Bitternest, Louisiana but the year is 1957 and his city is in the grips of dealing with the disappearances of several young women. 50 years in the past, Donovan is forced to take on the dark mystery- or lose the chance of ever going back to 2007.


It's a time travel story that quakes with the weirdness and fun of The Twilight Zone and culminates in a fierce battle between good and evil which threatens to fracture the very essence of time.


The story's premise is a fairly good one but this reader suffered through the use of analogies that were as out of place and clich├ęd as a "giddy sailor in a strip club"  One of the analogies that was used.

The author also had a tendency to be lazy with some of his descriptions such as this one: "A sudden bolt of lightning lit the whole property, just like the ones in those classic horror movies."


If the author would have taken more time in using his own healthy imagination in creating appropriate analogies and if he moved his mind to engage in more inventive descriptions- his spider quantity would have increased.

The last 8 chapters of the story were exciting, satisfactorily written, with an interesting ending, and they saved this book from a 2 spider rating. I give it a 3 out of 5 spider rating.
T Riddell

Friday, October 7, 2011

Welcome to Jeremy Robinson’s Great Kindle Giveaway and Blog Tour

“Hurray for free Kindles!” you say, but who the hell is Jeremy Robinson? Allow me to introduce myself. I’m the author of eleven mixed genre novels, published in ten languages, including the popular fantasy YA series, THE LAST HUNTER, and the fast-paced Jack Sigler series (also known as Chess Team—not nearly as nerdy as it sounds), PULSE, INSTINCT and THRESHOLD from Thomas Dunne Books/St. Martin’s Press. I’m the co-author of an expanding series of novellas deemed the Chesspocalypse, which take place in the Chess Team universe. If that doesn’t wet your whistle, I’m also known as Jeremy Bishop, the #1 Amazon.com horror author of THE SENTINEL and the controversial novel, TORMENT. For more about me, or my books, visit http://www.jeremyrobinsononline.com/ 

I have watched for years as my fellow authors held online events called blog tours. Some would visit ten blogs. Others, as many as ninety. And every day they would bring something different, waxing eloquent about a multitude of topics. When I finally decided to have a blog tour of my own, and settled on doing each and every weekday in October, my first thought was, “This will be cool,” which was immediately followed up by, “Holy crap, I can’t think of something interesting to say twenty times in one month!” I can barely think of something worthwhile for my own blog just once a month. The solution is what follows; each blog participating in the tour could ask me ANY three questions. That means, if the subject matter bores you, I’m not to blame! Huzzah!

But fear not. There are other rewards for sloughing through the questions and answers. I’ll be giving away two Kindles to two randomly selected readers who sign up for my newsletter. Details on the giveaway can be found below. On to the Q&A!

These are the questions WebbWeaver asked: 

1. What do you find is the most difficult part of the writing/editing/promoting of your books?

Promoting books is by far the most difficult aspect of being a writer, not because I’m bad at it (I’m actually pretty good at it) but because I just loath it. A lot of marketing is non-creative and monotonous and it just drains me. Honestly, anything that is not creative (writing, designing a cover, even editing) makes me feel like jumping off a bridge. But there is always a new novel to write, so I power through my marketing chores, confident that I will soon be back to telling stories.

2. What's the best writing advice you've ever received? You've ever given?

I once heard James Rollins, who I believe was quoting someone else, say to ignore the advice most authors give, “Write what you know,” and instead, “Write what you love.” I didn’t necessarily need this advice because I was already following it, but it made me feel better. You see, I’m not an expert in anything worth writing a thriller about. I’m an artist and a writer and that’s all I’ve ever been. I can’t base stories on my past as a lawyer, a marine, a doctor or an explorer. Writing what I know would make for a crappy thriller. Hearing Rollins say that writing what you love is actually more important made me feel better about not having had an interesting career before becoming a writer. And for people interested in becoming writers, it’s amazing, freeing advice.

3. In your opinion, do you think people will read less with fewer bookstores around or is reading coming back because of the convenience of on-line buying and what is your opinion of the surge in e-book sales?

I think more people will start picking up books, regardless of the bookstore situation, as long as the quality is there. I haven’t had cable TV for seven years. My father-in-law moved in a year ago and I recently got cable for him. When I turned it on and flipped through the channels I was shocked by the massive—absolutely massive—amount of crap on TV. 95% of what I saw should be burned onto CDs, put on a rocket and be shot into the sun. I have cable now, but I still don’t watch it. As people get sick of crap TV (and I really hope they do or my faith in humanity may falter) they might turn back to novels. But, the quality needs to be high if it’s going to compete. As e-books dominate the market, I think book sales will actually go up. There’s already a large “stay at home” culture, and before now, novels weren’t easy to get. Now it just takes a few clicks. So my outlook on the size of the book buying audience is positive. My outlook for bookstores, sadly, is not.


Hope that was as good for you as it was for me. Now how about that kindle giveaway?

Here’s the deal: to be entered to win one of two free kindles all you have to do is visit my website—www.jeremyrobinsononline.com—and sign up for the newsletter. That’s it. The first kindle will go to a randomly chosen newsletter signup on October 31. For the second kindle, there’s a catch. The second giveaway will only be triggered if one of my kindle books hits the Amazon.com bestseller list (top 100). So pick up some books (most are just $2.99 a pop) and spread the word! If one of the books squeaks up to #100 for just a single hour, the second kindle will be given away to another randomly chosen newsletter sign up on October 31.

*When you sign up for the newsletter, be sure to include the name of the blog that referred you in the field provided. I’ll be giving away two $50 Amazon.com gift certificates to the blog that refers the most sign-ups and another to the blog who referred the first kindle winner.

** I will announce winners via Twitter, Facebook, my blog, and newsletter (which you will be signed up for!) but I’ll also e-mail the winners directly—I’ll need to know where to ship those kindles!

Thanks for spending some time with me today. Hope you enjoyed the Q&A, and good luck with the kindle giveaway!

-- Jeremy Robinson













Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Book Review of 'The Second Virgin Birth' by Tommy Taylor

The Second Virgin Birth was written by Tommy Taylor and published by Booksurge, LLC in 2007. You may purchase the book at www.amazon.com

There have been major discoveries by the Catholic Church recently, with the help of world renowned scientists. They have discovered a hair on the Shroud of Turin, and the Crown of Thorns. Dr. James Burk has been given the task of analyzing any and all DNA found on both relics to determine the identity of the donor. What he finds is amazing to him. The majority of the DNA belongs to a 2,000 year old male. Could this be the DNA of Jesus? Burk really doesn’t care much who the DNA belonged to, as long as he gets his payday. However, Burk quickly realizes that it is actually important who the DNA belonged to, because if it were the DNA of Jesus Christ, he could make exponentially more money. He happens to be a specialist in the field of cloning.

Burk teams up with other scientists and entrepreneurs after stealing the DNA samples, in order to attempt to clone Jesus Christ, himself. The Catholic Church was willing to pay anything and do anything in order to stop the cloning, because it would mean the end of the Christian religion itself. This would mean a loss of billions of dollars per year for the Church. They couldn’t allow this cloning to happen.

This is a story of science vs. religion. What is the church willing to do to stop the advance of science? Will the cloning even succeed? The Second Virgin Birth is chock full of action and wonder, and it will make you question what you actually believe about cloning and organized religion. This story will have you on the edge of your seat, unable to put it down. You want to know what is going to happen next. The story is full of murder, intrigue and even miracles. I loved this book and will recommend it for anyone who enjoys an action packed story. Whether you are a believer of the Christian religion or not, you will want to read The Second Virgin Birth.

5 spiders

SB Price