August Book Reviews Part 1!@YvetteMCalleiro @BalroopShado @W_Angels_Wings #BookReviews #MustRead #BooksToReadThisSummer #indieauthors #writingcommunity

Mad Max & Sweet Sarah(Greek Mythology Fantasy Series #3)

by Ellie Collins

Max leaves his home in Hawaii and goes to Seattle to spend the summer with a father he doesn’t know and a place he doesn’t want to be. He agrees to stay for at least two weeks and work at the local pool as a lifeguard. His younger half-sister, Sarah, is determined to forge a relationship between them and convince him to spend the entire summer there. Max quickly makes a friend who has some strong opinions about family and people. Although this is a fast read, it dives nicely into good communication and judging others. Like the other two books, Greek Mythology was woven into the story and brought new insight into developing situations. This is a great read for children with some good lessons that I also enjoyed.


Slivers: Chiseled Poetry

by Balroop Singh

“Slivers: Chiseled Poetry” is another amazing collection of poetry by Ms. Singh. The poetry is based on the Japanese forms of Haiku and Tanka, and Acrostic poems. They are short but packed with a lot of emotion and images. Although it was hard to choose, here are just a few of my favorites. “full moon still lingers/trees delight in divine light/blissful spectacle,” “where two hills meet/clouds hide and seek/river watches calmly,” “we fly on the waves of whim/when our dreams get wings/ clouds crumble to comply,” “when we try to cage/each precious moment of life/harmony edges away,” “celestial confetti/that fell on me mesmerized./magical messages,” “far into the woods/we wander in quest of calm/which lies within us,” “I wrote my song on the wind/I know that it touches you gently/when you step out/I know you can hear its melody/deep within your pining heart,” “Her skirts are dark/She rides on the billowy clouds/Love in her eyes/could move the horizon/A thread binds her to eternity,” “Dream/Dauntless we walk into the Realms of our choice, Enamored by the hues of hallow, Accentuated by ardent yearning of accomplishing a Myriad ideas that mentor our journey.” I loved this collection and highly recommend it!


The One Chosen: A Diasodz Short Story (Chronicles of the Diasodz)

by Yvette M Calleiro

I’m a fan of the Chronicles of the Diasodz Series. So, when I learned there was a short story related to it, I couldn’t wait to read it. Valerie leaves home to train to be a Diasodz warrior. She is immediately taken with one of her instructors, Nolan, but he doesn’t appear to be interested in her. I don’t want to give too much away, but another Diasodz is interested in Valerie. I love the characters and how Valerie adapts outside of the strict dress code of the 1600s as she explores a new world with one of her instructors.  The settings are vivid, especially in the forest. The friendships and budding relationships develop at a nice pace while the monsters are terrifying. Some moments made me smile, and others had me worried they wouldn’t survive. It’s a fantastic short story that can be read on its own, but I highly recommend reading the series to learn more about this amazing world Ms. Calleiro created.


I only post my 4 & 5-star reviews. If I don’t like a book, I won’t finish it. It doesn’t feel right leaving a review in that case, but I have been known to email the author:) Life is too short not to enjoy every book you read!

Embrace that inner summer child! Read a book 🙂 D. L. Finn

April Book Reviews Part 3! @JacqBiggar @BalroopShado @startrailsIV @Sandra_Cox #IARTG #ASMSG #WritingCommunity #WhatToRead #MustRead #IndieBooks

Tidal Falls (Wounded Hearts #1)

by Jacquie Biggar

“Tidal Falls” is a romantic thriller set in a charming small town. Sara and her daughter Jessica are on the run from her abusive husband. She feels peace she hasn’t felt in years when she settles in Tidal Falls. Nick is her neighbor who is ex-military and still carrying some wounds from his service. There is steamy chemistry between Nick and Sara, but I love the developing relationship between Nick and Jessica. A wonderful bonus character is Nick’s dog, which really shows his heart. There is enough insight to understand why the characters have the reaction they do, and my favorite part is Nick’s response to danger. This story is fast-paced, and the relationships all felt real to me. Sara harbors enough mistrust to keep her alive, and that spills into her budding friendship with Nick. As backstories unwind and current situations take front and center, I couldn’t stop reading. I am curious about a few unanswered questions yet was satisfied with the ending. I look forward to reading the next book in the series.

Emerging From Shadows: Poetry by Balroop Singh

by Balroop Singh

“Emerging From Shadows” is a deeply emotional collection of poetry. The words were a journey that showed the darkest of moments but extended the light of hope on the horizon. The poetry is free verse, and it swirled around the bleakness of a situation and then offered possibilities of what might be. Here are a few of my favorite passages: “When sun smiles at the horizon/Gloriously beaming its buoyant banter/A hope emanates from the dimming light/Disseminating a metaphorical message…,” “You inspire me to look at the clouds/Creative fairies step out and smile/Sober thoughts spill out to greet you/You enthrall them when you meet,” and “Smooth silvery clouds of/Myriad shapes, shifting, forming/Moving, mesmerizing, merging/Into the azure blue.” This is a book to be read slowly and will leave you thinking after reading it. If you enjoy poetry exploring those shadows we carry inside, you will want to read this.

The Curse of Dead Horse Canyon: Cheyenne Spirits (Dead Horse Canyon #1)

by Marcha A. Fox and Pete Risingsun

“The Curse of the Dead Horse Canyon: Cheyenne Spirits” is a thrilling adventure full of mystery and knowledge. This is a longer read, but I didn’t notice. I loved the Colorado setting and could relate to the mining details and the aftermath because I live in an old mining town. I’ve seen firsthand the damage it left behind. The characters immediately pulled me in, and I had empathy for Sara when she lost her husband, and almost her own life, in a car accident in a cursed area. Her memory of what occurred was gone, but that didn’t stop her from trying to find the truth. Her husband’s best friend Charlie starts a journey to unravel the mystery of what happened to his friend and exploring his culture. Although I loved both characters and their mutual support, Charlie was my favorite character and storyline. I have always had a deep interest in Native American Culture and the details and history, which would usually be too much in any other story, were perfect in this book. Sara’s relationship with her father and stepmother was realistic, and I especially loved her stepmother introducing her to something new, which tied in nicely to what was going on. Sara and Charlie’s love for Bryan pushed them into a world of greed and corruption. This is a riveting read, and it left a lot to resolve in the upcoming books, which makes me eager for their release. I highly recommend this!

Love, Lattes and Danger (Mutants #2)

by Sandra Cox

“Love, Lattes and Danger” is the second story in the Mutants series. Having read and enjoyed the first book, I was eager to continue the story. This one is told from Joel’s POV. He is a dolphin mutant with turquoise eyes, and along with his sister, was sold to a company to find underwater oil leaks. When Joel stumbles across a test-tube baby who is his, he promises to free her and find the girl he loves, or the mother. There’s a love triangle and a group that is determined to end Joel’s quest and life. The action starts immediately and doesn’t let up. This is a sweet YA sci-fi/fantasy that I easily read in two sittings. It brought a smile to my face each time they interacted with the dolphins. I look forward to reading the next book to see what happens.

I only post my 4 & 5-star reviews. If I don’t like a book, I won’t finish it. It doesn’t feel right leaving a review in that case, but I have been known to email the author:) Life is too short not to enjoy every book you read!

Embrace that inner child by reading a good book! D. L. Finn

September Book Reviews @WendyJayneScott @Sandra_Cox @BalroopShado @bakeandwrite @StephenBentley8 @MrAlldredge @SpotInMyHeart @WAKENOVELLA @kay_castaneda @BauerJ1138 @bookishaly @llkane2152 @harmony_kent

 

FALLOUT

by Harmony Kent

“Fallout” is a post-apocalyptic story that left me thinking and then rethinking again. Set in space where humans settle after the earth becomes uninhabitable, a virus is released changing their way of life. My favorite character, Priya is alone and brutally attacked. Her strength and relationships with the other characters had me rooting for her, and I loved the pet she acquired. Told through several POVs, the reader gets a full picture of a complicated situation that I enjoyed. The characters are flawed and realistic. It surprised me how many times there was a new twist I wasn’t expecting. This is a glimpse into the human condition where power, lies, and manipulation have taken over society. Ms. Kent skillfully gives us a dark peek into a possible future in the hands of a cruel leader. This is a great science fiction read that I recommend.


 

Moments We Love

by Balroop Singh

This is a thoughtful collection that shows life through potent images. There are three sections Love, Harmony, and Life, but the essence of existence connects it all. I was drawn to the sweet poetry dedicated to Ms. Singh’s grandchildren, and “Redwoods” was a favorite, but I fully enjoyed the beautiful words throughout the book. I love how nature is mixed into the poems and felt like I was sitting next to Ms. Singh watching the sunset with her. There is a surreal quality to “Moments We Love” that shows another way of looking at things. I highly recommend this collection if you are a fan of poetry.


Makita (Cats of Catarau, #3)

by Sandra Cox

I read Shardai (Cats of Catarau #1)” and loved it. So, I had very high expectations for this story and wasn’t disappointed! Makita died and was in a beautiful place but insisted on using a life to go back to her best friend, Bennie, the dog. He needed her was her only thought. I’m a huge fan of animals, especially cats, and Ms. Cox has a way of getting into a cat’s mind that makes me believe and root for them. A darker subject was introduced into this tale, a Pit Bull fighting-ring. My heart broke, thinking of all the pain and suffering these animals go through for greed and profit.  Luckily the sadness balances out with the ingenuity of the animals, along with trust, and loyalty. It was a heartwarming story of a cat and her devotion to her animal family. If you love animals, especially cats and dogs, this novel is for you.


Death Among Us: An Anthology of Murder Mystery Short Stories

by Stephen Bentley, Greg Alldredge, Kelly Artieri, L. Lee Kane, Michael Spinelli, Robbie Cheadle, Kay Castaneda, Justin Bauer, and Aly Locatelli

I bought this anthology because I was already a fan of Robbie Cheadle. I loved her historical fiction based on real-life stories as expected, but the other authors and their work also intrigued me. This collection is a great variety that includes horror, sci-fi, suspense, and mystery set in various locations that all held my attention. There’s a brief introduction to each author, and I enjoyed getting to know them before reading. It’s a great assortment of short stories and a fantastic way to be introduced to new authors.  I highly recommend “Death Among Us.”


Ferrasium (The Windflowers Trilogy #1)

by Wendy Scott

This was set in ancient Egypt, but it reminded me of ancient Rome, too. A young girl Kalli was taken from her family for a test all girls go through once they reach puberty. Her life changed in horrible ways from that point. It was a cruel and brutal world she found herself a part of that forced strength from her. While I bonded and rooted for Kalli, there were other storylines giving a complete picture of her situation. After an animal was killed in the beginning, I almost put the story down. I didn’t though because it already invested me in it. My first thought was that person who did that needed to pay for that cruelty. I felt a lot of emotions reading this, which speaks well for Ms. Scott’s ability to tap into that. This is a full story that dives deeply into the dark side of humanity with betrayal, greed, power, slavery, and privilege. I will be reading the next installment to see what happens to Kalli next.


 

Fairy Dust (Bedtime Tale #1)

by W.J. Scott

A young girl named, Evelyn, didn’t believe in the unseen or magic. Evelyn finds out whether it is real or not in this sweet story. I found the characters charming, full of wonder, and uncertainty. The last line summed up my personal belief, which I won’t share here and ruin the ending. I will definitely be reading this with my grandchildren!


 

Embrace your inner child by reading a great book! D. L. Finn