Why I Will Not Review Your Book

It really is nothing personal, and I do not turn down the opportunity to read a new story very often, but sometimes I do. And then the author takes it personally. Like I did not feel their story was worthy of my time, or I felt the description was so bad that I could not even stand the thought of opening it.

That is not the case. 99% of the time it is because they have written a book on a subject that I have no knowledge of, and my lack of knowledge is not going to allow me to write a fair review. I will get to that other 1% in a minute. But if you have written a book about birds of South America, or Buddhism, or aliens, you do not want me writing a review. Do I have anything against the birds of South America, or Buddhists, or aliens? Nope. None of the previously mentioned have ever done anything to me. But I do not know anything about them. So no; I do not generally read science fiction. There are some Sci-Fi stories that I have read, but the story was also steeped in other information that allowed me to get lost in it, and enjoy the story the way the author surely hoped I would.

It has nothing to do with the story, or the author, or the quality of their writing. It’s not you, it’s me

Now; about that other 1%. I have read a couple completely unbearable books in the past year, and most of you know that I really do not try to say bad things about writers, or their stories. If I can’t say anything nice, I prefer to keep my mouth shut. But once I tell you that I will not be reading and reviewing your book, you should probably just leave it be. It is the unfortunate author who feels the need to blow up my email account and say unkind things that is likely to get an honest, horrible review of their book posted for the whole-wide-web to find and read.

Those of you whom I have been in contact with, whose stories I have purchased or you sent to me, and have not seen a review yet; I have not forgotten. And I will get it done. Sometimes life just happens to get in the way of my free time. Many do not realize that I have a full-time 45+ hours-a-week job, am the single parent to 4 daughters (3 still at home), and go to college when it strikes my fancy. I also have a couple other pans in the fire that need my attention from time-to-time.

I want, and appreciate, the gentle nudges you send me to ask about your review. Please continue to do so. I love to read. It is my one escape that allows me to relax, unwind, de-stress, and forget about my 17 year old driving my car all over town, my 23 year old stressing over paying for college classes, my 13 year old video chatting with 16 year old boys 3000 miles away, and my 10 year old who has no more responsibilities than to feed her guinea pig, yet gets mad at me because I forgot to do it for her.

I am grateful for my patient and understanding authors and followers, and it really is my goal to help promote and encourage as many of you as I am able to. Your stories truly do bring me joy, happiness, and adventure, and without them, I cannot even begin to imagine how much more difficult I would be for others to have to deal with!

So please keep writing, so I can keep reading!

The Demeter Code – Russell Brooks

This was my first read of a Russell Brooks novel, and I have already started on the second of 4 of his books that I purchased.

The demeter Code

The Demeter Code is a fast-paced book, with lots of action and details. You definitely need to devote all of your attention to the story while you are reading it, as there are numerous characters involved, and the action moves from one set of people to another. I do not mention this because I found it to be a problem, I simply mention it because you probably do not want to read this with the television being on next to you, kids running in and out (welcome to my home!), or anything else that could likely divert your attention from the storyline.

Do you have concerns about the quality of the food you eat, the chemicals added to it, or the various GMO’s used virtually everywhere? If you do, this story is one you will want to read.

Do you like lots of action, plus detailed weapons and scientific information? Then this story is for you as well.

Do you have an interest in travel, and other countries? What about politics and government? If so, this story will capture and keep your interest as well.

I try to not give away any spoilers, or too much about a storyline in any of my reviews. The same holds true for this review. I will say that it is focused on Dr. Nita Parris, Ridley Fox, and a host of other secondary characters that round out the storyline and plot nicely. There seems to be a ticking time bomb that will bring devastation to the world like nothing ever seen before. It is up to Dr. Parris and Ridley to figure out who is involved, and put a stop to the plan before it is too late; too late for everyone.

You can find this story as well as Russell’s other novels on Amazon.

The Illustrated Screwtape Letters – C.S. Lewis

Screwtape Letters Cover Image

A C.S. Lewis story I had not read before, this satirical novel was brilliant, and definitely timely for me personally. The 31 chapters are each an individual letter from Screwtape, a senior devil, to Wormwood, a junior devil whose job it is to keep his “patient”, a newly converted Christian man, from getting too deep into things with the Enemy; aka God. I won’t give away how it ends, and what happens to the patient, but I can easily highly recommend this book!

Screwtape Letters chapter 1

Mr. Lewis certainly touched on many aspects of the human condition, and what brings them closer to God, as well as moves them further from God. A few excerpts that I found still fitting today:

“…he can be induced to live, as I have known many humans to live, for quite long periods, two parallel lives; he will not only appear to be, but actually be, a different man in each of the circles he frequents” (C.S. Lewis, pg 59).

Screwtape Letters chapter 20

“Indeed the safest road to Hell is the gradual one – the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones, without signposts” (pg 72).

“They will find out in the end, never fear, to whom their time, their souls, and their bodies really belong – certainly not to them – whatever happens” (pg 128).

Have you read this already? I would love to hear what you thought of it!

All excerpts from The Illustrated Screwtape Letters, by C.S. Lewis (1961). Illustrated by Papas. New York: Harper One Publishers.

Coming Soon; To A Blog Near You…

…Well, okay; this blog.

Book reviews, suggestions, interesting facts, quotes, and author features.

Yes; I have been reading (very slowly). No, I am not feeling better. Still trying to crawl out of the winter blues, and a trip to the doctor’s and chest x-rays today have not given me an answer yet for what is physically been ailing me since I woke up Thursday.

So I am arguing with myself about using the next 2 vacation days I put in for at work; just-in-case. Or, going to work like I really should, even though I desperately need the rest.

So I will get those book reviews posted again. I will pick back up with my author features. And most of all I look forward to the great comments and insight from all of my followers!

Here’s to books, and all the happiness they bring us!

A Call From the Dark – Adam Deverell

A Call From the Dark Cover Image

This was an okay story, centered around a teenage girl who works in a video rental store, and gets herself caught up in one of her co-workers DVD-Video-Computer-game pirating scheme. She gets quite a scare when someone breaks in as she is closing the store, and is determined to get herself out of the mess she got herself into, while exacting a little bit if revenge for herself.

In the end, she doesn’t get caught for her small involvement in the DVD-copying racket, she gets a different job for the summer, and her and her father have a better relationship.

There were some spelling and sentence errors, such as using ‘he’ where it should be ‘she’, or using the wrong person’s name. ‘Smelt’ was used for ‘smelled’ more than once. Such as if I were to say “It smelt like the candle burned out”.

I feel like this story had great potential, if things were expanded on. It was not horrible by any means, but I wouldn’t be likely to purchase one of this author’s books if I saw it on an end-cap at B&N.

(The image above was the only cover image I could find, and I do not think the person on the cover looks like a 15 year old girl. IMHO).

Sanctum – Madeleine Roux

Sanctum Cover Image

The follow-up book to Asylum was not quite as creepy as Asylum, but I enjoyed it none-the-less. This story had us again following Dan, Abby, and Jordan as they return to Brookline, still in search of the answer to what is going on at the old Mental Hospital, and why.

Sanctum 001

They all lie to their parents saying they are going elsewhere (didn’t we all do this?) and are trying to figure out what Felix, the poor chap from the 1st book, was trying to tell Dan when he paid him a visit. Felix’s mom called Dan, asking that he come to visit Felix. Dan goes, only to leave feeling far more confused than he did when he arrived.

Sanctum 002

This book is full of creepy photos as well; this time of old circus performers. They make me happy that not only did my parents never take me to the circus, but that I have never taken my own children, either.

Sanctum 003

I do not know if there is going to be a third novel; nothing was mentioned at the end of this story. If one comes out, I will certainly read it. If not, it was a good two stories just as they are.

The Wolf and the Raven – Steven A. McKay

The second installment in “The Forest Lord” series was even better than the first! Robin Hood, and Mr. McKay, have certainly gotten a new fan. I am not generally a “Medieval-setting-Robin-Hood” type of story reader, but I am anxiously awaiting book three in this series.

The Wolf and the Raven Cover Image

The story picks up right where book one left off, and the action never lets up right through to the final page. Robin and his outlaws seem to have made a couple more enemies, and continue to do what is necessary to survive in the forest, while taking care of their families back home. All of the outlaws dream of getting a pardon, in order to go back home and live a normal life like everyone else.

I do think this book could be enjoyed on its own without having read the first one, but why would you want to miss such a great first installment? Full of action, adventure, suspense, and quite a few laughs, this is definitely a series I will read more than once!

You can find more information on Steven A. McKay here:

http://stevenamckay.wordpress.com