Book Review: Thaloc Has a Body July 30, 2011Posted by Jaidis in 4 Tree Reviews, Book Reviews, Jaidis Shaw Reviews.
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Get your copy of Thaloc Has a Body (Book Two of the Brodie Wade Series) on Kindle!!
Paranormal Investigator, Brodie Wade, returns from a very basic case in Oklahoma, where The Truth tells him of his own demise within the week. Brodie returns to his apartment, determined to solve the riddle of his death when Homicide Detective Phil Dawson calls to ask for his help in solving three strange murders at the Granspire Museum.
When they meet with one of the accused, The Truth tells Brodie of the existence of a creature named Thaloc, and warns that Phil’s life is at risk.
Can Brodie solve the riddle and save his friend before his own clock runs out?
Thaloc Has a Body by Jerry Hanel is the sequel to Mr. Hanel’s first book, Death Has a Name. In book one, we were introduced to Brodie Wade and learned about his ability to see The Truth. Since childhood, The Truth has always been presenting itself to Brodie, giving him clues to help solve cases that aren’t easily explained by evidence and science. In Thaloc Has a Body, Brodie is investigating another case that has police officers stumped at the evidence.
In the most recent of murder cases, the killer is clearly caught on camera killing the victim. What should be an open and shut case, quickly turns upside-down when the killer’s identity leads police to a man who died six weeks prior of heart failure. So now Brodie is given the daunting task of explaining how a man who died several weeks ago can be walking around killing people.
Thaloc is a supernatural being that walks the line between good and bad. Both sides view him as a bad omen and having contact with him means almost certain death. Through a small altercation, Thaloc is freed to walk the earth as anyone he chooses. Brodie must learn to trust The Truth and have confidence in himself, to help stop Thaloc.
Mr. Hanel weaves an intriguing tale that will keep you flipping until the last page. I strongly recommend that you pick up book one, Death Has a Name, and journey with Brodie through the end of book two, Thaloc Has a Body.
Book Review: Bread from the Sky July 29, 2011Posted by Jaidis in 4 Tree Reviews, Book Reviews, Hazel O'Shea Reviews.
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How many cat heads do you have to eat before you acquire the characteristics of a cat? Why do you hang a snail shell in a tree? How do you get a curse removed? And who buried a gri-gri in the yard? These and other questions are answered in Bread From the Sky.
Wanting a career change and armed with a graduate degree in international studies, a woman in her mid-40s leaves her divorce and ordinary life behind for a two-year stint as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Togo, West Africa.
She learns survival skills in order to live without electricity or plumbing like the rest of the people in her adopted village. She also gains language skills as, in addition to French, which is still the official language, there are over half a dozen local languages in common use at her village. Adjusting to a new culture, several different languages and some very old attitudes is sometimes difficult, frustrating and funny.
There are friends to be made, foods to get used to, bureaucrats and insects to contend with, health issues to recover from and red tape to choke on. Dealing with people who want to rip her off, who harass her (sexually and otherwise) and who always want something from her isn’t easy. The challenges are offset by the warmth and friendship that was found along the way as well as some amazing adventures. As a wise man said to her, “Africa will change you, whether you want it to or not.”
This is a true story of the author’s two years in Togo as a Peace Corps Volunteer.
Bread from the Sky by Marie McCarthy is a touching and truthful story, recounting the author’s two years spent in Togo, West Africa as a Peace Corps Volunteer. Ms. McCarthy dove right into her new lifestyle with undeterred optimism and an authentic thirst for learning everything and anything about the Togolese ways. Despite the lack of electricity, running water and sterile, hygienic living conditions we are accustomed to here in the U.S., Marie couldn’t help but feel delighted to be there! The landscape was beautifully untouched and the people were extremely welcoming. Strangers were greeted and befriended immediately, making one a stranger no more. The Togolese had very little, sometimes going without food and basic necessities, yet their cheerful attitudes never wavered. This was refreshing to Marie and she fit in perfectly.
The trip wasn’t without its hardships and frustrations. Marie had gone there to work, but many of the villagers lacked motivation and organization. They had expected the white woman to bring with her gifts and money to dispense throughout the village, and were constantly asking for things without wanting to work for them. This aggravated Marie and more often than not, kept her from accomplishing what she had gone there to do. She was determined to make a difference, and though it wasn’t always in the ways she had planned, she did just that.
Bread from the Sky reads like a diary or journal, guiding the reader through these experiences with Marie. I found it very informative and eye-opening! If you are a fan of documentaries, I certainly recommend reading this book!
Giveaway Winner – The House on Blackstone Moor July 25, 2011Posted by Jaidis in Books, Giveaways.
Tags: Books, Giveaways
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Thank you to everyone who came out during The House on Blackstone Moor Nurture book tour and entered to win a Print copy of The House on Blackstone Moor by Carole Gill!
I used random.org to select the winner. Winner has 48 hours to claim their prize or a new winner will be selected.
And the winner is….
An email has been sent to the winner.
Thank you again to everyone who entered and a huge THANK YOU goes to Ms. Gill for donating a copy to giveaway here on Juniper Grove!
Book Review: Unleashed July 21, 2011Posted by Jaidis in 5 Tree Reviews, Book Reviews, Jaidis Shaw Reviews.
Tags: Books, Interviews, Nurture Your Books
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Get your copy of Unleashed (A Sydney Rye Novel) on Kindle!!
Joy Humbolt is not a huge fan of people and after getting fired from her latest stint as a barista she is becoming dangerously close to unemployable. So when Charlene Miller offers Joy her dog-walking business on the exclusive Upper East Side of Manhattan, Joy is happy to accept, despite a suspiciously quick transaction. However, when Joy discovers one of her clients murdered and Charlene gone, she becomes caught up in the drama and danger of her new client’s lives.
With the help of a rogue Police Detective Joy enters her clients sphere of power and influence searching for the killer. Usually a loner, Joy is disturbed by how much she likes it in their world. These people make the rules but are not bound by them. Joy realizes too late that only one kind of justice makes it this far uptown: vigilante. When Joy let’s go of what little respect she had for the human race she become unstoppable, unleashed, and is reborn Sydney Rye.
Unleashed is the page turning debut novel by Emily Kimelman. The main character Joy Humbolt, who recently broke up with her boyfriend and lost her job, makes the rushed decision to adopt a dog from the pound for company. Little did she know that adopting the large husky mix named Blue would change her life forever.
Soon a dog walking business is thrown in her lap and she decides to give it a shot since there is a lot of money to be made. On her first day learning the ropes of being a professional dog walker, her world is thrown for a loop when the dog she is walking discovers a dead body. Joy is quickly thrown into a world she never knew existed where things aren’t always what they appear to be.
The super sexy, self-confident Declan introduces Joy to a hidden world of the rich, powerful and greedy. While she tries to uncover who murdered her boss, she will learn just how far some people will go for money but more importantly, how far she is willing to go to protect her family.
Detective Mulberry is a great detective who will stop at nothing to solve a crime, even if that means throwing the rule book out of the window and doing things his way. When he finds himself thrown off of the case, he must learn to trust Joy and help her solve the murder before more people end up being a victim.
I really enjoyed the writing style of Ms. Kimelman. She told an intriguing tale that kept me wanting to know what happened next. The only thing I wish had been different is how the relationship with Declan played out in the end. It felt rushed and unfinished to me. I would still recommend everyone read Unleashed.
A copy of Unleashed was provided to me from Nurture Your Books in exchange for my honest review. No other compensation was received for my review.
Book Review: Stir Until Thoroughly Confused July 21, 2011Posted by Jaidis in 5 Tree Reviews, Book Reviews, Hazel O'Shea Reviews.
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Mary’s given up everything, including an unsatisfying marriage, to become a chef. But the career comes with a side dish: Kegan, her sexy but controlling new boss.
They’re soon in a relationship, and in all-too-frequent arguments, and when it becomes clear they can’t work together and be together Mary faces a dilemma: keep her dream job or her dream man?
Stir Until Thoroughly Confused by Heather Wardell is a fabulous story about self discovery, determination, and love. So many of us have sacrificed our dreams while putting those of the ones we love, or loved, above our own. While a noble and caring thing to do, it’s not always the right thing to do and we’re left with a shattered picture of what we thought this life of ours would be. What do I do? Where do I go? How could I possibly start over? Mary had asked herself these same questions time and time again. She had always wanted to enroll at the Culinary Institute but her husband Charles had other plans. He needed to finish schooling so Mary did what she had to do in order to make that happen. She could always save up and try again, couldn’t she? She soon found out that her goals played no role in the plans Charles had made for them. The plans he made for her. It was then that she knew she had to leave, and that’s just what she did!
Toronto was a new world to Mary and she couldn’t have been happier about that! This was her life and she was going to live it her way. She set her sights on Steel, the area’s most popular restaurant and was determined to get what she had wanted for so very long. Though she soon discovered she wanted much more than to be a top chef, she wanted Kegan Underwood. Kegan was tall, dark and handsome. He knew what he wanted, how he wanted it and how to get it done. Women fell for him daily but getting them to stay by his side and tolerate his controlling and passionate nature was just about impossible. Even knowing this, Mary couldn’t help but be drawn to him and he to Mary. Mary’s career meant everything to her and she wasn’t about to risk it, but what if she didn’t have to? Could they make this work and both find what they had been searching for so very long.
Heather Wardell did a wonderful job grabbing the reader’s attention and creating an emotional investment with the characters and storyline. This book had my attention from the start and I was easily able to identify with Mary and what she had gone through. I’m sure most readers will, with Mary or any of the other well-developed characters. The relationship that forms between the two main characters is exciting and realistic. I found myself being a part of it and feeling that tension right along with them! This was a fantastic read and I highly recommend it!
Tags: Books, Giveaways, Nurture Your Books
Today I am honored to be the first host for the Rhapsody for Lessons Learned or Remembered NURTURE Book Tour with author Georgia Ann Banks-Martin! Welcome Georgia!!
Georgia has generously agreed to let me interview her! Check it out below:
What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?
My most interesting writing quirk is my insistence on looking at images and ideas from a slant. I’m always looking for a different way of considering, explaining, or describing an idea.
What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
I like to work in my flower gardens. This year, I’m growing day lilies, elephant ears, zinnias, diamond frost and butterfly bushes, four-o-clocks, and roses.
What advice would you give to someone who wants to become a published author?
To become a published author, one must research possible presses carefully before submitting a manuscript. Make certain the press is interested in publishing the type of material you write. Once she or he has selected a few presses to approach, make certain that the manuscript is as polished and complete as possible. When preparing the manuscript package for submission, be certain that all requirements of the press have been fulfilled. Also, do not send items that have not been requested.
Is there anything that you find challenging in your writing?
I find that some of my allusions are difficult for the reader to grasp if he/she hasn’t yet, had some of the life experience that I have, so I always look for ways to provide context clues, and clearer language.
Is there anything you need in order to write? (i.e., music, silence, chocolate)
I need an environment that is quiet and distraction free. I also like to have some snacks but those vary, sometimes it’s chocolate, or popcorn, other times it is a glass of Merlot with Dubliner cheese and Keebler crackers.
Do you have any writing projects you are currently working on?
My mother died at the end of last summer and although I dedicated Rhapsody for Lessons Learned or Remembered to her, I’m beginning to write a series of poems based upon memories, impressions, and reflections I have of her. I jotted down many of them in a journal, during the time just prior to and since her burial.
If you could have dinner with one person, dead or alive, who would it be and why?
I would love to have met Jacqueline Lee Bouvier Kennedy Onassis because I love her sense of style. She was very self-aware – aware that she always was being watched – and behaved with resolute grace, unlike many women who are in the public eye today.
What does the word success mean to you?
Success means that I have accomplished my goals. Some writers make a lot of money but, realistically, most of us do not. So, the amount of money I make does not play a serious role in how I measure my success. I have earned my M.F.A. in Creative Writing; I have published many poems in the past; and I recently published my new collection, Rhapsody for Lessons Learned or Remembered. I am able to do book readings and workshops both in and outside of my state, write book reviews for other poets, and I’m the editor of New Mirage Journal, a poetry magazine in which I have the pleasure of publishing works of both beginning and established award– winning poets. To me, being able to publish and serve other poets is what it means to be a successful writer.
If you could only look at one specific painting for the rest of time, which painting would it be and why?
That’s a hard question to answer. Rhapsody for Lessons Learned or Remembered is a collection of ekphrastic poems –- poems inspired by art – so, I have spent much time of late looking at paintings. I think my choice would be Marsden Hartley’s Birds of the Bagaduce because, of all the paintings I have worked with recently, it is the one that best conveys a sense of calm and serenity.
Thank you Georgia for sharing your thoughtful interview with us!
You can find a complete list of tour stops HERE but here are the next few in line:
- July 19th – Vanessa J. @ Love, Laugh & Read
- July 20th – Sue F. @ Books, Books, The Magical Fruit
- July 21st – Norma @ Wakela’s World
Georgia can be found at the following places:
GIVEAWAY: I have One (1) Print Copy of Rhapsody for Lessons Learned or Remembered by Georgia Ann Banks-Martin to giveaway to one of my readers! Contest is open to US, UK and Canada only. Giveaway will close at 11:59pm EST on July 31st, 2011.
Fill out the form below to enter:
Book Tour – The House on Blackstone Moor + Giveaway! July 17, 2011Posted by Jaidis in Books, Giveaways, Nurture Your Books.
Today I am happy to welcome author Carole Gill back to Juniper Grove! For those of you who follow this blog closely, you may remember when Carole stopped by and allowed me to interview her about her writing habits and her book, The House on Blackstone Moor. If you didn’t get the chance to read her interview, you can check it out HERE
Carole is here today to tell us about the premise behind The House on Blackstone Moor and give us a closer look at one of the main male characters, Louis Darton. Check it out:
The House on Blackstone Moor was a work of love for me. I wanted to produce a story that went deeply into the nature and existence of demonic beings.
I found I had a premise to the whole thing and that was if a creature was damned through no fault of his own and there was nothing he could do to rectify that situation, how would that affect him?
If nothing he did counted one way or the other how could he cope, bearing in mind he could not die?
As the son of a fallen angel Louis Darton asks: “imagine if you will unending existence, with no possibility of death—living even though you grow tired and disillusioned—going on forever with no hope of redemption and all this because your father sinned! His sin, your fate. And so you endure for you have no choice. There is no way out! I have no code to guide me, no promise of heaven awaits, nothing I do matters…There are no consequences, no rewards only ceaseless existence…”
So what does this despondent creature do? He fills his world with sin.
Yet! In the midst of this damnable world of his comes a girl, an innocent—a damaged girl and this being, this sad, self-hating creature gazes at the one pure creature in his tainted world.
But then he notices she seems taken with him! It is like a thousand miracles, it is almost as if they both might pretend!
But it is not that simple. For there is one undeniable fact for whatever happens, it is fate that has the final say of that there can be no question.
In closing let me say that I am greatly interested in the battle of good vs. evil. I think it is the central point to all that has been or will be and because it is I wanted to depict that struggle even amongst demonic creatures.
That in essence is why and how I came to write the novel and that is how I am going on to write the sequel/prequel, Unholy Testament.
And there again, it is the evil fallen angel spawn Eco who has written a confession, an accounting of all the sin he has committed during the course of his existence. It is a journal which he presents to the one he claims to love.
Thank You Carole! As a special treat, Carole has brought along with her a special entry from the diary of Louis Darton. What went through Louis’s mind when he first saw Rose? Well let us have a look:
Truly I am ashamed myself. Yes, I am. For now you will hear from Louis Darton, your humble servant who has much to tell you: a being who has only known damnation as others know life and hope. For what is life without the promise of heaven? Not my lot to be sure.
But first there is Rose.
The first time my eyes beheld her, I felt more cursed than I had ever felt. I who had come to overlook sin—did now gaze upon a pure young girl—an innocent—so aptly named, Rose who was standing at the mouth of hell yet did not know it. Truly it hurt to look at her, yet look I did.
How I would have traded immortality for the confessional at that moment. How I longed to unburden myself, confessing to God even–to beg for forgiveness!
“Please! Do not punish me for the sins of my father!”
An impossible wish, yet I did wish it.
This girl, so damaged, so fragile would dwell among demons! I could not let it happen surely.
I had to speak up, I had to stop her from making the worst mistake of her life but I could not.
Instead I said nothing, and tried to quiet the happiness I felt just from looking at her, just from hearing her voice.
Would my loving her lead to her destruction?
My Rose, please find it within your heart to forgive me!
I can’t help but feel for Louis! How hard it must have been to catch a glimpse of his own salvation within Rose while knowing that he would only lead to her demise. Thank you Carole for sharing that with us!
The House on Blackstone Moor Nurture Book Tour has been extended due to popular demand! Be sure to check out the upcoming stops, as well as previous stops, to learn more about this fascinating book. The complete list of tour stops can be found HERE, but here is the next one in line:
- July 19th – Sheila H. @ The Dark Circle
You can find Carole at the following places:
You can pick up your own copy of The House on Blackstone Moor here:
GIVEAWAY: I have One (1) Print copy of The House on Blackstone Moor by Carole Gill to giveaway to one of my readers! Giveaway is open to US, UK and Canada Only. This giveaway will end at 11:59pm EST on July 25th, 2011
To enter, fill out the form below:
Book Review: Veronica in Paris July 15, 2011Posted by Jaidis in 5 Tree Reviews, Book Reviews, Hazel O'Shea Reviews.
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Veronica Barry travels to Paris for her junior year abroad. She befriends a British student in her language class, but develops a crush on her friend’s French lover. On New Year’s eve, Veronica must choose between loyalty and love.
Veronica in Paris by Sophia Martin is the charming and heart fluttering novella introducing us to Miss Veronica Barry. A junior in college, Veronica has set out to spend a semester abroad in the city of love, Paris, France! She finds herself surrounded by stunning runway fashion, exquisite artwork and delightfully quaint cafes around every corner. As nervous as she was to travel so far from home and stay with her unknown exchange “family”, she was more excited than anything! This was a dream come true. A dazzling, Audrey Hepburn inspired dream that she was going to enjoy until the very moment she had to leave.
Madame Pauline Richard was allowing Veronica to stay in her home while she absorbed and engaged in the Parisian culture. She had a hard exterior, rarely smiling or showing any signs of excitement, but Veronica knew there was a fire inside of Madame Richard. A glimmer of warmth she saw whenever the two would discuss the city’s history, sites to see and the fellow students Veronica was steadily becoming friends with. She quickly grew close with a young woman from London, Felicia Davies. Felicia was outgoing, quick-witted and very fashionable. She was also dating a man Veronica couldn’t keep her eyes or mind off of! Eric was certainly hard to resist, with his gorgeous looks and extreme charisma. Yes, he was Felicia’s boyfriend and that was enough for Veronica to keep her distance, but would that be enough for Eric to keep his?
This story was very cute and certainly caught my interest. The story was paced quickly but it didn’t feel rushed or vague. Sophia does a fantastic job showing the reader Veronica’s experience and leaves you wanting to pick up the first novel in the Veronica Barry series, The River and the Roses. If you’re looking for something fun, flirty and quick to read, I definitely recommend Veronica in Paris!