Tuesday, March 19, 2019

BOOK REVIEW: Other Bodies by Joel Ohman #otherbodies #flyby

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Synopsis: For fans of The Hunger Games, The Maze Runner, and Divergent comes a YA dystopian/light romance with a strong female protagonist who is forced to question everything...

In a world where immersive VR suits distort what is real from what is not, and the AI Personhood Act blurs the lines between body and bot, the choices sixteen-year-old Hattie Martins faces are very personal.

Welcome to Hattie Martins' dystopian Philadelphia, where everything is not as it seems...

Just as her life is looking up--a new job, new friends, a new date--Hattie discovers not all progress in her beloved, futuristic Philadelphia is for the best. Societal regrets can become personal regrets in an instant. Choices don't always come with second chances, and when they do the cost can be unimaginable. How far will she go to undo her greatest regret? And worse yet, what will she become if it's too late? 

In a world where bots are equal to bodies, what does it mean to be alive?

What is real?

Which bodies matter?

What about the other bodies?... 


In this blistering new young adult novel from the #1 bestselling author of the Meritropolis series, readers will question everything they know about life and reality in a unique dystopian adventure that is equal parts moral dilemma and romance.

If you enjoy Veronica Roth, James Dashner, or Suzanne Collins then this is the story of the year you won't want to miss. BUY NOW.

*Subject matter includes references to euthanasia, abortion, and teenage pregnancy. There are NO sex scenes and NO curse words. This is a stand-alone book with a complete story from beginning to end. There are NO cliff-hangers and this is NOT a part of a series.*

Review: I chose to read this book mostly just to see how the author was going to deal with such a sensitive subject in a dystopian world. I then had trouble following the story in the beginning (I'm still not sure who was talking in some of the chapters) and came close to giving up on it entirely more than once. 

I was disappointed that a supposedly Christian book had little to no mention of God's grace and forgiveness and that it presented the main character as so full of shame and guilt over more than one aspect of her life without ever showing her overcoming those emotions with the help of faith and salvation.

I was even more disturbed by the way the fetuses were used/abused at the Managed Motherhood clinic. Those passages alone made it a book that I would never recommend to the YA readers who make up its suggested audience.

I was gifted a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review, and all opinions are entirely my own.

Rating: Three stars

About the author
Joel Ohman lives in Tampa, FL with his wife Angela and their three kids. His writing companion is Caesar, a slightly overweight Bull Mastiff who loves to eat the tops off of strawberries. Joel is the author of the #1 bestselling Meritropolis series--"The Hunger Games meets The Village with a young Jack Reacher as a protagonist" and the new YA release, Other Bodies. Join the Joel Ohman Reader's Group for FREE giveaways and VIP access to pre-release books, gift cards, and special announcements. Join now at JoelOhman.com!

Thursday, February 21, 2019

BOOK TOUR: Dark & Fluffy Volume II by Janet Stock @rararesources

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BOOK INFORMATION
Genre: Short stories
Series: Dark & Fluffy (Book 2)

  • Paperback: 79 pages
  • Publisher: Independently published (December 17, 2018)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1791576583
  • ISBN-13: 978-1791576585
Paperback-cover
Synopsis: Following on from Dark & Fluffy, this collection is a further nine short fiction pieces. The title Dark & Fluffy II, reflects the general styles of the stories/prose in the book. Some are a bit darker, and maybe a bit uncomfortable to read, Death by Testing and The Broken Arrangement fall into this category. Others are happier, feel-good pieces like The Disney Club. Whatever your preference, I'm sure you'll find something that will grab your attention.


Purchase Links


REVIEW: As someone who writes, and loves to read, short stories, I was anxious to dive into this collection. I was not disappointed! Some of the stories are dark, including at least one with a surprising ending. Others are sweet, happy tales that leave you with a smile. 
The book is a very easy read, at only 70 pages, but I'm sure you will find at least one story in the collection that leaves you with an emotional reaction.
My only real complaint is that some of the stories were too short! I hope to read more by this author in the future.

RATING: Four stars

About the author

Dark-and-Fluffy-Author-PhotoI am married with one teenage son and have always been a keen reader and writer since being young. I was born in Lancashire but have lived in Lincoln for over 30 years.
Several years ago I decided to take my writing seriously. I completed an OU course in creative writing and a Writers Bureau course. Initially, I concentrated on short story writing, and when I turned fifty this year, I self-published my first book, Dark and Fluffy.
I love writing short stories, but my main goal is to have a novel published. Ten years ago, I started the first book of a trilogy of novels called The Little Servant (The Wait’s Son). I am still working on this, but now I have a serious intent to get this finished this year.
My favorite genre is medieval fiction, Bernard Cornwell is my favorite author. I also like to read Edward Rutherford, Stephen King, and Dean Coontz.


Social Media Links


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Wednesday, February 20, 2019

THE RESTORATION SERIES : JONATHAN’S WALK #TheRestorationSeries #FlyBy

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For years, Jonathan has been in prison. As a result, he has missed milestone moments with his family. He wasn’t there for his daughter’s first day of school or a thousand little experiences with his wife and as a father, he is devastated to be separated from those he loves most.

Jonathan has been looking forward to his release from prison for over a decade. So many life events have been missed and he is now ready to be with his wife and kids again. Of course, this transition isn't going to be easy. The odds are against him: with over half of prisoners returning to prison within two years, Jonathan is aware of the challenge set before him.
Still, he is determined to take the skills he has learned into the world outside of incarceration and stay there, helping build the community that he is part of for years to come.

Prison Fellowship presents The Restoration Series: Jonathan’s Walk, a 5-part documentary film series following one man as he re-enters his community after 15 years in prison. It demonstrates in imagery, powerful storytelling and social interaction what it means to be human and the shared need of all people to see communities restored.

 Though America is home to only 4% of the world's population, we house more than 20% of its prisoners. Recidivism–the tendency of a criminal to reoffend—is out of control. The Restoration Series tells the story of men and women who have experienced The Academy, a revolutionary in-prison program that is combatting incarceration and recidivism head on.



Use the link below to sign up to watch the entire series:
https://www.prisonfellowship.org/restorationseries?utm_source=flyby&utm_medium=blog&utm_campaign=MW_TRS

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

REVIEW: The Girls At 17 Swann Street by Yara Zgheib

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BOOK INFORMATION
Genre: Women's Fiction
  • Hardcover: 384 pages

    • Publisher: St. Martin's Press (February 5, 2019)
    • Language: English
    • ISBN-10: 1250202442
    • ISBN-13: 978-1250202444

    Synopsis: Yara Zgheib’s poetic and poignant debut novel is a haunting portrait of a young woman’s struggle with anorexia on an intimate journey to reclaim her life.  

    The chocolate went first, then the cheese, the fries, the ice cream. The bread was more difficult, but if she could just lose a little more weight, perhaps she would make the soloists’ list. Perhaps if she were lighter, danced better, tried harder, she would be good enough. Perhaps if she just ran for one more mile, lost just one more pound.
    Anna Roux was a professional dancer who followed the man of her dreams from Paris to Missouri. There, alone with her biggest fears – imperfection, failure, loneliness – she spirals down anorexia and depression till she weighs a mere eighty-eight pounds. Forced to seek treatment, she is admitted as a patient at 17 Swann Street, a peach pink house where pale, fragile women with life-threatening eating disorders live. Women like Emm, the veteran; quiet Valerie; Julia, always hungry. Together, they must fight their diseases and face six meals a day.

    Every bite causes anxiety.  Every flavor induces guilt. And every step Anna takes toward recovery will require strength, endurance, and the support of the girls at 17 Swann Street.


    Review: This book nearly broke my heart on more than one occasion. It begins with Anna being brought to 17 Swann Street, a recovery facility for girls with eating disorders. The author gives us an amazing insight into the lives and mindsets of all the girls, but especially Anna. We experience her ups and downs as she struggles with the idea of having to gain weight back that she has worked so hard to lose. We get flashback glimpses into Anna's life before her illness, as well as present-day narration of the day to day events in the house and occasional clinical notes from her medical team. 
    Each of the girls she meets in the house has a story to tell and a different demon to fight. Not every story has a happy ending. Even Anna's story realistically remind us that eating disorders can be a lifetime battle. 

    Rating: Four stars

    About the author
    Yara-Zgheib-Author-Image-credit-Helen-KaramYara Zgheib is a Fulbright scholar with a Masters degree in Security Studies from Georgetown University and a Ph.D. in International Affairs in Diplomacy from Centre D'études Diplomatiques et Stratégiques in Paris. She is fluent in English, Arabic, French, and Spanish. Yara is a writer for several US and European magazines, including The Huffington Post, The Four Seasons Magazine, A Woman’s Paris, The Idea List, and Holiday Magazine. She writes on culture, art, travel, and philosophy on her blog, "Aristotle at Afternoon Tea" (http://www.aristotleatafternoontea.com/).


    BLOG TOUR AND GIVEAWAY: Please Explain Tonsillectomy and Adenoidectomy to Me by Dr. Laurie Zelinger


    BOOK INFORMATION
    Genre: Medical
    • Hardcover: 42 pages
    • Publisher: Loving Healing Press; 3rd ed. edition (January 1, 2019)
    • Language: English
    • ISBN-10: 161599419X
    • ISBN-13: 978-1615994199
























    Nearly 500,000 adenotonsillectomies will be performed on children this year. 

    Will you be ready? The new 3rd Edition of this bestselling book helps parents understand and organize the necessary medical and emotional components that accompany their child’s surgery. In an easy to follow timeline for events prior to and following a tonsillectomy and/or adenoidectomy, the authors provide reassuring and accurate guidance that eases the process for the patient and family. As caregivers, you will:

    - Get the facts about tonsils and adenoids in simple terms.
    - Reduce your own anxiety about surgery and recovery.
    - Learn how to best support your child through the medical and emotional events surrounding the procedure.
    - Have scripts available to guide your conversations with all of your children.
    - Discover the sequence of events leading up to surgery and how to prepare for them.
    - Find out what you need to have at home while your child recuperates.
    - Understand and respond to any unforeseen complications.
    - Become confident that you have maximized your child’s comfort and adjustment during the weeks surrounding surgery.

    Available to buy from...

    "A handy and valuable guide for parents who face the ultimate decision to have their child undergo a surgery, this book unravels the fear, answers the questions and makes it understandable and reassuring. It is much needed in the field and its joyful illustrations make it easy to follow and comprehend." -- Donna Geffner, Ph.D., Ed.D (Hon.), CCC-SP/A, Past president of the American Speech-Language Hearing Association (ASHA) 

    "When reading the book, you feel as if Dr. Laurie is right in front of you and leading you through the whole process. This book provides a useful, simple and straight forward approach for parents and children to deal with the anxiety that precedes any surgery." -- Zev Ash, M.D., F.A.A.P. (pediatrician)

    "As owners and directors of a nursery school and summer camp for the past 27 years, we are often asked how to prepare a child for a medical procedure. This book is an excellent roadmap for parents on preparing not only your child, but also yourself, for a scary and often intimidating experience." Adam & Amy Langbart, owners of /Merrick Woods Country Day School and Camp, Merrick, NY 

    "The use of actual possible scripts to use with your child to help explain procedures and ease a child’s anxiety, well organized helpful to-do lists and timelines serve to make this a required read and practical guide for parents or any caregiver with a child about to undergo a tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy." Steven H. Blaustein Ph.D, CCC, BCS-CL, Speech-Language Pathologist, Board Certified Specialist - Child Language 

    "This book spells out in clear and concise language what parents need to know and how to prepare children for the surgery. Suggestions on how to talk to children in developmentally appropriate language will be especially helpful to parents. I enthusiastically recommend this book to parents of children facing this medical procedure." David A. Crenshaw, Ph.D., ABPP, Board Certified Clinical Psychologist, Author, Clinical Director of the Children's Home of Poughkeepsie


    Fig. 2: Uvula as an acrobat – illustration for children Click on image for a larger view

    Review: This book gives parents a great deal of medical information, as well as ideas on how to explain the subject to young children. It is not a book for the children themselves, although it has wonderful illustrations to share with the child--it even offers some direct quotes to use to begin conversations about different parts of the procedure. My favorite resource is the list of suggested items to have on hand at home after the surgery to make recovery easier on everyone. There is also a list of children's books about the subject.

    Rating: Five stars

    More books by the author
    Releasing April 2019!!
    Dr. Zelinger's next book will be Please Explain "Time Out" To Me: A Story for Children and Do-It-Yourself Manual for Parents 

    About the Author
    Dr. Laurie Zelinger, Diplomate, is a Board Certified Psychologist with a specialty in School Psychology, and a Registered Play Therapist with forty years' experience. She is a licensed New York State psychologist who recently retired from a Long Island public school system and is now devoting her time exclusively to writing, consulting, and her busy private practice. Dr. Laurie's previous books include: "Please Explain Anxiety to Me: Simple Biology and Solutions for Children and Parents," The "O MY" in TonsillectOMY & AdenoidectOMY: How to Prepare Your Child for Surgery (in its second edition), A Smart Girl's Guide to Liking Herself Even on the Bad Days for American Girl, and a chapter on selective mutism in the compendium, School Based Play Therapy (second edition). She is also credited with being a consultant for the Bitty Baby book series by American Girl where she assisted in the development of the "For Parents" sections, as well as editorial development of another American Girl book. Dr. Laurie's interest in writing began in 4th grade, when a play she wrote was performed by students in her public school. Dr. Zelinger is a fellow and elected officer in the nationally based American Academy of School Psychology and spent four years on the Executive Board of the New York Association of Play Therapy. As a media referral specialist for the American Psychological Association, she has contributed to nearly 200 venues regarding child development. Dr. Laurie and her psychologist husband, Dr. Fred, are both certified Red Cross Disaster Mental Health volunteers. They have been happily married for over thirty-five years and have raised four children. You can learn more about Dr. Zelinger and her books at DrZelinger dot com. 

    You can also follow the author here...
    Website    Author on Facebook    Goodreads

    Follow the Book Tour
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    I have volunteered to share my review and all the opinions are 100% my own.

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    Monday, February 4, 2019

    BLOG TOUR: Little Darlings by Melanie Golding

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    BOOK INFORMATION
    Genre: Thriller

  • Hardcover: 304 pages

    • Publisher: Crooked Lane Books (April 30, 2019)
    • Language: English
    • ISBN-10: 1683319974
    • ISBN-13: 978-1683319979

    Synopsis: “Mother knows best” takes on a sinister new meaning in this unsettling thriller perfect for fans of Neil Gaiman and Grimms’ Fairy Tales.

    Everyone says Lauren Tranter is exhausted, that she needs rest. And they’re right; with newborn twins, Morgan and Riley, she’s never been more tired in her life. But she knows what she saw: that night, in her hospital room, a woman tried to take her babies and replace them with her own…creatures. Yet when the police arrived, they saw no one. Everyone, from her doctor to her husband, thinks she’s imagining things.

    A month passes. And one bright summer morning, the babies disappear from Lauren’s side in a park. But when they’re found, something is different about them. The infants look like Morgan and Riley―to everyone else. But to Lauren, something is off. As everyone around her celebrates their return, Lauren begins to scream, These are not my babies.

    Determined to bring her true infant sons home, Lauren will risk the unthinkable. But if she’s wrong about what she saw…she’ll be making the biggest mistake of her life.

    Compulsive, creepy, and inspired by some our darkest fairy tales, Little Darlings will have you checking―and rechecking―your own little ones. Just to be sure. Just to be safe.


    Review: This is one of the scariest books I've read in a long time. I didn't want to put it down once I started reading. If you are a fan of thrillers that are creepy with a touch of supernatural, this is definitely the book for you.
    This book is going to be made into a motion picture, and I am already excited to see it.

    Rating: Five stars

    About the author
    Golding-author-photo-credit-Michele-Calverley
    Melanie Golding is a graduate of the MA in creative writing program at Bath Spa University, with distinction. She has been employed in many occupations including farm hand, factory worker, childminder and music teacher. Throughout all this, because and in spite of it, there was always the writing. In recent years she has won and been shortlisted in several local and national short story competitions. Little Darlings is her first novel, and has been optioned for screen by Free Range Films, the team behind the adaptation of My Cousin Rachel.







    Little-Darlings-Blog-Tour

    Saturday, February 2, 2019

    BLOG TOUR AND GIVEAWAY: The Last Thing She Said by Rachel Walkley @rararesources @racheljwalkley

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    BOOK INFORMATION
    Genre: Magical realism
  • Paperback: 282 pages

    • Publisher: Spare Time Press (December 12, 2018)
    • Language: English
    • ISBN-10: 1999630734
    • ISBN-13: 978-1999630737

    The-Last-Ebook-cover
    Synopsis: "Beware of a man named Frederick and his offer of marriage."
    Rose’s granddaughters, Rebecca, Leia, and Naomi, have never taken her prophecies seriously. But now that Rose is dead, and Naomi has a new man in her life, should they take heed of this mysterious warning?
    Naomi needs to master the art of performing. Rebecca rarely ventures out of her house. She's afraid of what she might see. As for Rebecca’s twin, everyone admires Leia’s giant brain, but now the genius is on the verge of a breakdown.
    Rebecca suspects Naomi’s new boyfriend is hiding something. She begs Leia, now living in the US, to investigate.
    Leia’s search takes her to a remote farm in Ohio on the trail of the truth behind a tragic death.
    Just who is Ethan? And what isn’t he telling Naomi?
    In a story full of drama and mystery, the sisters discover there is more that connects them than they realize, and that only together can they discover exactly what’s behind Rose’s prophecy.
    Purchase Links:

    Review: This is a family story, told from various points of view, including some chapters which are flashbacks/memories. The main focus is on the psychological makeup of each of the sisters. We first get to know each one from the point of view of her sisters, and later we get their own perspectives on themselves, which tends to be very different.

    I was very taken with all of the sisters, as well as their grandmother Rose. The touch of supernatural is presented just right--it's not overly represented, but it does play a part in the plot. I think most people will enjoy the ending as much as I did.

    I received a copy of this book to read with no expectation of a favorable review.

    Rating: Four stars

    The-Last-twitter-profile-picAbout the author
    Born in the East of England, Rachel has lived in big cities and small villages including London and Bristol, before settling in Cheshire.
    For most of her working life, she's been a scientist and librarian, and her love of creative writing has never ceased even when surrounded by technical reports and impenetrable patents. Among moments of mummy taxi, delving into museum archives, drawing pictures and flute playing, Rachel finds a little time to pen her magical mysteries.

    Social Media Links –
    Instagram @ raejcreations
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