Life's hard.

It's even harder when you're stupid.

John Wayne

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

On Break till further notice

Fellow Readers,

I am here to say I am sorry.  My consistency of posting as of late has been complete crap and I don't see it improving in the immediate future.  So I have decided to make my break from reviewing official until I can finish the my own book.  Hopefully I can get it together and make the final push for completion and get back to my normal life.

Thanks for understanding,

Monday, April 27, 2015

Billy Coatbutton and the Wheel of Destiny by Michael James Ploof ★★★☆☆

Billy Coatbutton and the Wheel of Destiny (The Sock Gnome Chronicles, #1)A good, quick read for kids.
Fiction – Juvenile - Fantasy
48 pages
Age level: 9-13 Grade level: 4-8
Publication Date: 2012
The Sock Gnome Chronicles #1

Billy Coatbutton, a Sock Gnome, must pass his first test of mastery to become a hunter like his dad. With one spin of the Wheel of Destiny Billy is sent on the adventure of his life, challenging him in unexpected ways.
This book is written in the grand tradition of the Borrowers complete with its own mythology and cute adventure story. The narrator directly addresses the reader and the writing and vocabulary are both very appropriate for the age level. I love the overall message about doing right for its own sake and looking after the overall good and not just personal selfish ambition. Also this is a quick read and great for kids with short attention spans who might otherwise struggle to read longer books.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Time Riders by Alex Scarrow ★★★★☆

A great addition to the time travel genre!
Fiction – YA- Sci-Fi
425 pages
Age Range: 12 - 17 years
Grade Level: 7 – 12
Publication Date: 2010

TimeRiders (TimeRiders, #1)Liam, Maddy and Sal were all rescued from death and disaster to work for a secret agency called Time Riders.  Their purpose is to fix and mitigate the consequences of others playing with time.   But when someone goes into the past in order to fix their future and things start going wrong can these newbies save the human race from total annihilation?

This book starts with a bang and I quickly knew it was going to be an exciting adventure.  The story was very well executed and creative in itself, but add to that how much potential the premise holds the skies the limit(by the way there are several more Time Rider books on the market currently).  The storytelling characters were engaging and broad enough to be interesting while leaving plenty of room for growth.  Mr. Scarrow used the time travel in a very imaginative way and created a fully thought out set of rules and procedures pertaining to it allowing the concept of the books and need for time riders to be legitimized. I also like Mr. Scarrow’s use of suspense with just enough grit to increase the stakes, but not so much as to make it off putting.

Now on the other side of thing the short chapters kind of bugged me.  It made the story telling really jumpy and jarring, but that was probably the point, so in this case it is a matter of preference.  Also there were a couple of places where Mr. Scarrow tried a bit too hard to make this YA, creating awkwardness that did not characterize a majority of the novel.  Okay and now my last major complaint.  One thing that really grated on my nerves was the frequent use of the Lord’s name in vain.  It didn’t add anything to the story or characters and I found it completely unnecessary and rather offensive. 

Thursday, March 26, 2015

The Hardest Peace: Expecting Grace in the Midst of Life's Hard by Kara Tippetts ★★★★☆

The Hardest Peace: Expecting Grace in the Midst of Life's HardWeathering the storm with grace
Non Fiction – Memoir – Christian
192 pages
Publication Date:  2014

In The Hardest Peace, Kara Tippetts, mother of four and a pastor’s wife, shows how even amongst the awfulness of stage-four cancer there can be beauty in pain and
how God can give us the peace and grace we need.  He can be our strength.

I admit I have been putting this one off.  Kara is my cousin-in-law and has been on hospice for the last few months.  So I have been unable to separate her book and, at the time, her impending death.  But with her passing this week I have decided it is time to put on my big girl pants and write this review.  Kara’s journey has been life changing for so many that it would be a disservice to memory not to pass it on.

I started getting acquainted with Kara’s journey from her blog, Mundane Faithfulness, ----when I could pluck up the courage- and I have to admit I had some misgivings about reading her book, but Kara ever the graceful lady, quieted my fears with softness of her approach leaving me unburdened by her story.  The superb writing had a very musical quality, and the ideas and impressions were so fluently expressed that I had a difficult time remembering to write comments for my review.  I also loved Kara’s powerful ability to turn a phrase and get an amazing emotional response.  This book is worthy of multiple read and I even was forced to pull out the hi-liter even though I hate to deface books.

I originally had more things about Kara and the specific things she writes on, but honestly this is all I can handle writing  right now without completely falling apart.  Thank you for your patience with me and please don’t let my lack luster performance deter you from looking into this book.