Life's hard.

It's even harder when you're stupid.

John Wayne

Friday, July 18, 2014

One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are by Ann Voskamp ★★★☆☆

A soul laid bare
Non Fiction – Adult – Christianity/Spirituality
232 pages
Publication Date:  2011

A woman’s transformation from fear to faith through thankfulness to God.

One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You AreThis is not a how to, but more of a blog styled record of the author working through the issues that haunt her.  She completely exposes herself sharing her thoughts and experiences in all of their beauty and ugliness as she hunts for reasons to be grateful.  The writing is very romantic, flowery, and poetical – which could be a turn off for some people, but I thought it was rather beautiful.  Each entry is full of raw emotion and written as a string of consciousness thoughts and not structured essays.  I will have to say this seems to be written for Ann to clarify her own thoughts and so on occasion I found it hard to follow, but the empathic bond created by one struggling human to another made the strength of her emotions and epiphanies hit me almost as hard as if they were my own.  This book is not for everyone, but for those who are attracted to it expect a soul wrenching experiences and a challenge to your own inconsistencies between belief and actions.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Into the Vampire City by Phil Tucker ★★★☆☆

Into the Vampire City (The Human Revolt)Kept me guessing!
Fiction – YA – Dystopian/Urban Fantasy
224 pages
Publication Date:  2012
Other Name: Vampire Miami
The Human Revolt #1

Selah Brown chooses to go to the only family she has left in the vampire controlled city of Miami when her father disappears.  Originally on the hunt for her father Selah’s course changes when she unexpectedly gets tangled up with the vampires and a unique gift she possesses reveals itself, putting her family and new friends in danger and even possibly starting a new Vampire War.

Right from the beginning the well-designed book-world and finely crafted characters shine through.  Selah is very dynamic and I found the examination of how people react in survival mode, either holding onto the humanity harder or going no holds bar, fascinating.  Also, having the story take place after things had settled in an uncomfortable holding pattern after the vampire wars was an interesting time to choose and gave the story a unique perspective.  The writing was not to my taste - I found it rough, raw and a bit crowded – but my love for the premise and plot overcame the writing and led to another late night trying fight off my obsessive need to continue the story.  Not only does this plot drip with potential for growth, but I never knew what to expect next during the whole story.  There was one very gross part that bothered me, but luckily it was short and the only one of its kind.  Thanks to I was introduced to another book I probably wouldn’t have found otherwise.