Reader's Favorite

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Golden by Melinda Michaels

by Melinda Michaels

My rating: 4.7 of 5 stars

Reviewed for +Readers' Favorite 

For Hanna, life has always been a bit, difficult to say the least. She lives with her grandparents while her parents travel the world researching one animal or another, and to make matters worse she has blackouts. Well she used to have them, she hadn't had one in over ten years until today. Golden! When she first had one all she remembered was waking up from it with no memory of anything before the blackout, nothing, no matter how hard she tried! Now she is having them again, and her only friend, newcomer to town Owen Pierce, who just happened to be a police officer, is now acting strange and then there is the stranger in town William Vann, who saved her life. She feels a strong connection to him somehow. The more she asks her grandparents about before the blackouts, the more they tell her to leave it alone, but Hanna feels a need to know, that something is going on, but what! Author Melinda Michaels gives the reader a wonderful fantasy, coming of age tale to keep you on the edge of your seat.

Although Golden is writing in the fantasy genre it is definitely a coming of age story, one where Hanna must come to terms with her past and her future. To learn what is most important and right and to do that very thing. It is not always easy and takes bravery and courage to do what needs to be done. Author Melinda Michaels gives you a strong main character that is tried of being outcast for reasons she doesn't have a clue about, she just wants to be herself, whatever that may be. Wonderfully engaging tale for teens, young adults, and adults alike. Would even be willing to recommend it for middle school readers.

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Fluid Veracity by Nicole M. Scott

Fluid VeracityFluid Veracity 
by Nicole M. Scott

My rating: 4.1 of 5 stars

Reviewed for +Readers' Favorite 

A beautiful summer day, June 8th to be exact, and Mykal is moping in her house over the break-up with her true love, she claims of Nixon almost two years ago. She should be over it, but it is worse today because Nixon is marrying her cousin today! Enter Taranj, Mykal's best friend since childhood who is determined to get her out of the house and take her to a club. Only issue for Mykal is that it's a gay club, and Mykal is a little homophobic even if she won't admit it. Yet she clings to Taranj as a best friend, even to the point of other relationships, which makes people wonder about their relationship. Fluid Veracity is more about the way relationships weave and evolve, that you can be a best friend and always there for someone, yet not be the same sexual orientation. Nicole M Scott writes a modern tell of the working woman, with complicated family dynamics to deal with, still trying to find her own way in the world.

Fluid Veracity was at times a bit hard to follow, but having said that and now that I have read it through once, I think on a second reading it would not be near as hard to follow. Mykal truly believes that her lost love Nixon was her only chance at love, and when she meets Aaron she finds a guy who loves she, maybe a little too much. Preconceived notions, family dynamics, rumors, lies and half-truths all interact to turn what could be into something completely different. Author Nicole M Scott uses the modern world as a backdrop to this novel, and it turns out to be something everyone can relate to in one way or another. Great read for adults.

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Monday, June 22, 2015

Kara's Christmas Smile by Assaf Marcus

Kara's Christmas SmileKara's Christmas Smile 
by Assaf Marcus

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Don't let the title fool you, even though the book is called Kara's Christmas Smile, this book has a meaning a lesson for every day of the year!!

Kara's Christmas Smile is just another of author Assaf Marcus' wonderful books for children (and adults alike) telling the effects a simple smile can have on people. In this story, it is Christmas time, so people are super on edge, that one little smile can mean even more during these times. The thing is, any day could be a super stressful day to someone, and a simple smile from you may be the one thing that makes all the difference in their day!

Another thing that the author, Assaf Marcus has started doing to reinforce the concepts of the story is to provide a FREE coloring book with each book! I love it! Especially for my friends that are preschool teachers and Daycare Center Teachers, I think this is a wonderful added benefit!!

If you haven't figured out that I am a fan of Assaf Marcus yet, you will. I love the books, and I share them with teachers, preschools, daycare centers, new parents, grandparents and other friends that I think would enjoy them!! That is my favorite part about reading a book, being able to share it with someone else. After reading his first book, I looked for more,l and so once I find an author that has something I like, you will find I try to devour everything they have to offer!

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Monday, June 15, 2015

Children's Book: The Carrot, the Egg and the Tea Bag: (Children's Picture Book Dealing With Pressure) (Ages 5-10) by Assaf Marcus

Children's Book: The Carrot, the Egg and the Tea Bag: (Children's Picture Book Dealing With Pressure) (Ages 5-10) (Inspiring Children Books Collection)Children's Book: The Carrot, the Egg and the Tea Bag: (Children's Picture Book Dealing With Pressure) (Ages 5-10)
by Assaf Marcus

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Have you ever felt overwhelmed by the things in your life? Has your child ever felt overwhelmed with school, and sports, and other activities? Never really know how to explain it so that they can understand it? Well, here is a simple easy answer.

Sharon is overwhelmed with Ballet, math and a Spelling Bee all coming up. So her Father, with a little help in the kitchen, explains to her how we can let challenges change us, or we can change based on the challenge.

I read this with my child, and she thought it was great, she understood the concept and said that she would use that analogy when explaining it to other people lafe on.

We have yet to download the FREE coloring book that is included in the purchase, but hope to real soon! That is just another added bonus for the younger reading set. The coloring book reinforces the lessons and ideas taught in the book, adding to them and helping younger children remember and understand the concepts.

Once again, a fabulous book by author Assaf Marcus for children, something please measure and propose. He has probably became my favorite writer for children's books. I love them and look forward to passing this on to another generation of readers!

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Saturday, June 13, 2015

Children's Book: Kyle's Smile: (Children's Picture Book On How To Raise A Kind And Caring Child) by Assaf Marcus

Children's Book: Kyle's Smile: (Children's Picture Book On How To Raise A Kind And Caring Child) (Ages 3-8)Children's Book: Kyle's Smile: (Children's Picture Book On How To Raise A Kind And Caring Child) 
by Assaf Marcus

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Have you ever thought what impact could a simple smile have on the world around you?

Well, in Kyle's Smile, author Assaf Marcus tells the impact of one little boys smile, how it affected those he smiled at, and how that smile grew and became something larger.

This is a wonderful story for kids, to show the idea of kindness and that it doesn't have to be a huge effort to do something kind for someone, sometimes it is small things, such as a smile, a thank you note, and such that have the biggest impact on people.
The is a great book for adults to read along with their children, because sometimes we as adults need to remember to practice these same acts of kindness every day.

If every person practiced kindness each day, could you image what the world would look like?

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Thursday, June 11, 2015

Omerta Affair by Alexandra Forry

Omerta Affair (Volume 1)Omerta Affair 
by Alexandra Forry

My rating: 4.2 of 5 stars

As Adrianne stands in her father's house, preparing the pack and clean out things after his recent death, her best friend Victor arrives. The twisted history of Adrianne and Victor's pasts are about to be uncovered in ways neither of them realized when Adrianne uncovers mementos and clippings from her parent's lives along with a letter from her father to rediscover her mother.

Adrianne's father Gus ran the Stargaze hotel in Las Vegas. Victor's father Tony was sent by the Chicago Mob Boss, Leo to take care of Las Vegas. Since Don Leo was the one who originally put Gus in the position he was in, it should have been an easy working arrangement. Only one problem, Evelyn. She was married to Gus, but in love with Tony, and she and Tony would defy the mafia laws to have and continue an affair for a long time.

As Adrianne and Victor read diaries from both Tony and Evelyn, and then are reconnected with Tony's best friend Al Lombardi, they learn that things were not what they originally thought them to be. The stories they believed growing up were lies and even the people they trusted were not the ones to be trusted. In the mafia and Las Vegas, everyone can be a bit two-faced.

This is the story of a lasting love, that got caught in prior marriages and the mafia. It is the story of greed and revenge, the story of killing for the sake of making someone else suffer, and yet never really accomplishing what you were trying to do. In the end, love does endure, sometimes it just takes death to reunite lovers.

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Tuesday, June 9, 2015

I am Raymond Washington by Zach Fortier

I am Raymond WashingtonI am Raymond Washington
by Zach Fortier

My rating: 4.2 of 5 stars

Reviewed for +Readers' Favorite 

Over a kitchen table in 1969, in a small apartment in Los Angeles, two best friends were talking of forming their own gang. One that would become one of the most widely known and feared gangs of the modern era, the Crips. Only the three men in that room, the two founders, both now dead, and the youngest brother of one of them would ever know the true story of the name and the man, until now. I Am Raymond Washington is the story of growing up in the streets of Los Angeles, where is was common to get up every morning and walk a couple blocks to the corner where the local Black Panthers were giving out free breakfast to the kids. Raymond turned twelve the week of the Watts Riots, and was able to watch them from his apartment, although he is said to have been out in the violence. He would grow up seeing things that would be unbelievable to someone growing up in a different type of neighbor, and it all influenced the formation of the Crips. Zach Fortier, with the help of Derard Barton, Raymond's younger brother, tells the story of Raymond's life in a non-judgemental way so as to give you a glimpse into the why and how, and let you, the reader decide what is right, wrong and just somewhere in between.

I Am Raymond Washington should be read by everyone, no matter what you know or feel about the Crips or gangs. I found historical incidents that occurred that would influence Raymond's views of the police, and well that of all the residents of the Watts, Compton and South LA area that I had never even heard of before. Zach Fortier, as a former police officer involved in gang crime, admits in the writing that even he was shocked to learn of some of the behaviors and incidents that occurred that would shape Raymond's views of the world. Derard Barton, Raymond's brother helping with the telling of this biography lends a human side to Raymond, not just the tough, ruthless, powerful street thug leader of the notorious Crips. Even if this is something you never think you would read, pick it up, give it a chance, it might just enlighten you in a way you never imagined.

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Monday, June 8, 2015

Beauty & The Wolf (Beauty & The Wolf Saga, #1) by L.A. Maldonado

Beauty & The Wolf (Beauty & The Wolf Saga #1)Beauty & The Wolf (Beauty & The Wolf Saga, #1)
by L.A. Maldonado

My rating: 4.3 of 5 stars

Reviewed for +Readers' Favorite 

Her very own apartment, and at only sixteen, it all seemed surreal to Claire, but then again so did the fact that she would never see her mother again. Her mother had finally lost her battle with cancer, and now Claire was in a new town, a new apartment, just down the street from her Aunt and Uncle, but on her own so to speak. First day of school and Claire spots loner, Adam and is immediately drawn to him. Jeannie takes Claire under her wing and they become best friends quickly, but trouble in the form of Billy Ray, or Bully Ray as he is called behind his back is headed her way. Billy Ray has taken an interest in Jeannie, and he doesn't take kindly to being told no. When Billy Ray forces the issue and kidnaps Jeannie things go from bad to worse and in ways Claire could never suspect. Beauty & The Wolf follows the unlikely team of Adam and Claire as the work together to help Jeannie and bring Billy Ray down. L.A. Maldonado gives the reader a complex story of rules and anarchy, set within the confines of high school life.

L.A. Maldonado's Beauty & The Wolf is a young adult book, and sometimes it seems that the average life of that age character gets lost in the story. In this story, the author really tries to keep you remembering that the characters are only sixteen, they are in high school, they are solving adult problems and dealing with adult-like situations without having the learning or experience to deal with them. Bully and rebelling against the perceived unfairness of rules are the big themes in this story, which are perfect for this age reader, and are dealt with in a manner that makes them understandable for the reader.

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Sunday, June 7, 2015

Winter's Captive (The Georgia Series) Volume 1 by June V. Bourgo

Winter's Captive (Book 1 of the Georgia Series)Winter's Captive (The Georgia Series) Volume 1
by June V. Bourgo

My rating: 4.6 of 5 stars

Reviewed for +Readers' Favorite 

The one place Georgia never thought she would be for Halloween was in the Yukon with her best friend Marion, but then again Georgia never thought her husband Colin who she helped through school, would cheat on her and get his mistress pregnant, and then leave her for the mistress! At least she has her own little bit of pay-back, she too is pregnant, due within days of his mistress, now isn't that funny! Just as Georgia thinks she is dealing with life, she is taken hostage in the middle of a robbery. She is able to escape, but is lost in the unknown wilds of the frozen north. She finds a small cabin, but soon she is Winter's Captive, as the snow sets in she might as well make herself comfortable for the long haul. +June V. Bourgo gives the reader a story of a woman fighting her own demons, fighting nature, a philandering husband and bungling robbers all in an unknown area to her.

Winter's Captive (The Georgia Series) (Volume 1) is set to be the beginning of a series. The series set around the lead character of Georgia, so this book lays all the groundwork for future books. It has to give you a lot of backstory to produce all the rest of the series from. In that regards you have the best friend Marion, and there are a few tales from childhood. There is the cheating husband Colin, and there are a few tales from their marriage. Colin's parents are introduced as well as the two robbers. + June V. Bourgo builds a wonderful base for a beautiful series, and yet at the same time, a book that can stand on it's own merits just as well. Great book for all readers!

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Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Cries of Innocence by Angela Beach Silverthorne

Cries of InnocenceCries of Innocence
by Angela Beach Silverthorne

My rating: 4.65 of 5 stars

Reviewed for +Readers' Favorite 

Bren has wanted to be a cheerleader her senior year in High School for so long, she has worked hard, practicing on her own, asking friends for help and finally her dreams are about to come true, she has made the cheer squad. There is just one catch, the cheer coach wants her to decline the position, what? Did she just hear what was said correctly? But of course, she did, once again her life is being defined not by something she did, but by something she has no control over, her father. He is the town drunk, and abusive. Cries of Innocence is the story of Bren and her mother, when Bren finally has enough of this town and her father. It follows what happens when Bren finally trusts someone enough with the truth, and everything changes. Angela Beach Silverthorne tells a captivating story of a daughter and a mother, each surviving in their own ways but neither really living or understanding until now.

Cries of Innocence is more than your typical abusive, drunken father story. Larry Parrot is downright evil in many ways, and he can be hard to read at times. I read a great many books and usually have no problems, but there was something about the way that author Angela Beach Silverthorne wrote him that just made him real and scary to the reader. I found myself scared and troubled, frightened for the family and hopeful, yet at the same time feeling the same despair that Bren must have felt at times. This is an emotionally charged, but amazingly wonderful book. I definitely recommend it, but advise more mature readers. I am sure older teens would be fine with it, but I think parents should read it and decide for themselves before allowing their teens to read the book. It does have some good messages along with the frightening events that occur.

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