Review: The Shadow Revolution by Clay & Susan Griffith


Publisher: Random House

Publishing Date: June 2015

ISBN: 9780345539502 

Genre: Fantasy

Rating: 2.8/5

Publisher Description: As fog descends, obscuring the gas lamps of Victorian London, werewolves prowl the shadows of back alleys. But they have infiltrated the inner circles of upper-crust society as well. Only a handful of specially gifted practitioners are equipped to battle the beasts.

Review: An intriguing blend of steampunk and magic set in the Victorian era.

The characters were well developed and the pace was constant. A very creative foray into the depths of reasoning. Kate is the only insufferable character. Headstrong, stubborn, claiming high intelligence yet her actions are impulsive. By all accounts a very handsome woman that behaves like a spinster. The fight scenes are lengthy and lack believability. Still, an entertaining read.



Review: The Reapers Daughter by KM Randall


Publisher: Booktrope

Publishing Date: May 2015

ISBN: 9781620158418 

Genre: Fantasy

Rating: 2.3/5

Publisher Description: Fifty years ago, Hades banished my mother from the underworld and took away her ability to cross over souls―souls that have wandered lost through the world ever since. Now she wants me to clean up the mess. You may have​ heard of her before …They call her the Grim Reaper.

Review: “DUN, DUN, DUN!!!!!….”. Take a look at that cover art. Besides being really bad I think her head is slightly compressed or elongated.

So Blake is a cheerleader attending Specter University (with an ‘E’), only this is not an alternate reality novel. So I assumed the University was named in honor of Phil Spector.

Blake is head strong, independent and incredibly self-absorbed. So much so, that pages and pages of inner dialogue were written in her honor. She soon learns that on her 18th birthday she sees dead people, one of which is her boy crush recently deceased in a car accident. Besides getting over him in about an hour (as she is getting the hot’s for Rishi), she meets her mother in a cemetery crypt and soon learns that she is The Grim Reaper “DUN ,DUN, DUN!!!…..”. So blah blah, denial, blah, not going to do it, blah, reality bites, blah, wah, wah, Rishi hot, blah, crows suck, blah, flicker this, flicker that, Hades blows, get the scythe, wah, grrrrr, hiss, pfffffft!!

The reviews for this were pretty bipolar and I think I know why. For the first 50% of the novel Blake’s character is beautifully constructed and expressed within the movement. She is not in insta-love with anyone. She is real in her feelings and expresses them if warranted. She don’t take shit from a-holes and demons yet loves her Dad and friends. Almost loyal to a fault which is sadly lacking in the real world. The novel is well written, and although the story line has been done before, the author puts her own brand of creativeness into the world building.

At the 51% mark, the novel goes downhill, quickly. Almost is if it were written by someone else. Blake goes from interesting, to petulant and mired in her own hormones. Sniffing “musk” off of men and constantly whining about her mom. The writing also takes a turn for the worse where phrasing is used to expedite dialogue and scene development. For instance, after every sentence someone is “Speaking softly” or “flashing /glimmer in their eyes”. Real juvenile writing. The word “soft” or “softly” was used well over a 100x. This was profoundly disappointing as initially I found myself caught up in the story with Blake and was constantly rooting for her. Then for no reason it turns into this slow narcissistic boat to China that never makes it to shore. The dialogue also seemed to get heavier along with the phrasing and what was once creative quickly turned pedantic.

Get this with your favorite opiate.      

The Liebster Award




I was nominated last year and really thought that my contributions to blogging were limited at best. Thought I would step out of my self-imposed shell this go around.

The Rules:

1. Post the award on your blog.

2. Thank the blogger who presented this award and link back to their blog.

3. Write 11 random facts about yourself.

4. Nominate 11 bloggers who you feel deserve this award and who have less than 200 followers; notify them in their own blogs.

5. Answer 11 questions posted by the presenter and ask your nominees 11 questions.

I would like to thank Ana at  Ana’s Lair for nominating me. I like her insightful and well considered reviews.

11 Random Facts:

1. I am an extremely private person (so this is hard for me).

2. I love dogs, specifically Labradors.

3. I have a black belt in an Okinawan style of karate and miss my old dojo in California.

4. I place wildlife and their habitats above people in terms of importance.

5. I have 5 brothers that beat the crap out of me growing up yet I love them all.

6. My mom moved to India when I was in High School.

7. I grew up on a river.

8. I love a good cigar (send me Cubans!!!).

9. My wife saved my life from myself.

10. I am through my first year of guitar lessons (used to play the piano).

11. Allergic to Caffeine.

My Nominees:

1. Ellis Nelson at Ellis Nelson Books.

She is a good writer and has always taken the time to read my reviews. Thanks Ellis!

2. Keith Yatsuhashi at It’s Kind of an Electronic Book.

One of my favorite break out authors. Good reviewer as well.

3. Dennis Cardiff at Gotta Find a Home.

He is doing good work out there. Check him out.

4. KG Bethlehem at KG Bethlehem.

A poet that makes me think outside my mental/political constraints.

5. Lulu at Roadside Reader.

A real nice blog with a soft touch.

6. Lola at Hit or Miss Books.

A prolific reviewer with many followers.

7. Helen Treharne at Tea Talks.

Another promising writer with a recently well crafted novel “Relative Strangers”.

8. Husband and Husband.

A funny, witty and artistic blog that will make you laugh.

9. Stefan’s Bookshelf.

I really like his reviewing style.

10.  Tammy Salyer.

A writer I want to meet and drink whiskey with.

11. One Lazy Robot.

I really like this witty reviewer/blogger.

Answering Ana’s Questions:

1. What do you look for in a book? Movement coupled with character development.

2. Which is the first book you remember reading and thoroughly enjoying?   The Story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf.

3. What is your favourite book format?   Kindle.

4. How many books are currently in your shelf (virtual or rl) waiting to be read?    I have about ten or so that are usually in queue.

5. What do you do to get over reading slumps?   Start reading another at the same time.

6. Do you pre-order books? Why?    No.

7. Do you buy second-hand books? Why?   Not anymore.

8. What are your reading related pet peeves?  Repeated phrasing to expedite dialogue.

9. What motivated you to start your blog?   Ego.

10. Has it developed the way you first envisioned?     Not really. Thought I might have more followers by now yet my style is often too acerbic and pointed.

11. Dream project that you would love to fulfill?      Build another house on 100 acres and travel more of the world.

My 11 questions:

1. Where would you like to go in the world and for how long?

2. Are you anxious about anything?

3. Under what circumstances do you find yourself in the moment?

4. If given the choice would you rather get stung by a scorpion or bit by a bullet ant.

5. Do you think that females seek relationships based more on a native drive for security?

6. Do you think President Clinton could take Madonna in a fight?

7. Who is your favorite musician (alive or dead) and why?

8. What do you think Kim Jong-Un does in the bathroom that takes 30 minutes?

9. Who is your favorite author and why?

10. In three words describe yourself.

11. Who is the most important person to you and why?


That’s it tater chip!