Monday, 8 May 2017

The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever - Review



General Information


Publisher: SFBC; First Edition edition
Year of publication: May 1, 2002
Number of chapters: Varied (3 volumes)
Number of pages: 1152 pages

Plot summary: (blurb)


This complete "Chronicles of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever" contains the books "Lord Foul's Bane", "The Illearth War" and "The Power that Preserves". The first chronicles of Thomas Covenant, the Unbeliever is a fantasy series written by Stephen Donaldson. The series follows the principle character of Thomas Covenant who is a disillusioned, bitter and very cynical writer afflicted with leprosy. Shunned by society, Thomas is hit by a car and awakes in a strange alternate world full of strange creatures and magic.

Positive points


I have always been a high fantasy fan and this is the first time I have read a Stephan Donaldson novel. I have to say the media hype was correct. These books definitely deserves to be among the classic fantasy legends. It had everything a proper fantasy should have and by the end of the book I was on the edge of my seat, caring so much for the characters. I cried, I'm not ashamed to say. Admittedly, that is nothing unusual for me, but still. Great series!

Negative points


When I first started reading this series I got about two-hundred pages in and stopped reading for quite a long time. I struggled to get into it. I think the problem was, I disliked the main character at first. But as my wife bought me this as a present, knowing I wanted to read it, I thought I should at least try to read it. And I am so glad I did! And I was rooting for the main character long before finishing the first book.

What makes this book unique


I would have to say the main character. This guy who suffers from leprosy and all the issues that go along with this condition thrown into a fantasy world really was quite unique. The most unusual hero.

Overall impression


Fantastic! Enough said. If you love fantasy, you will love this.

My rating


Has to be five stars!



Links


Amazon US



Amazon UK






Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Through the Eyes of a Child by Kurt Chambers



When I was a child,
I remember when,
everything in life.
seemed much simpler then.

I try to capture that feeling,
from the eyes of a man,
when my heart is bleeding,
I try all I can.

Life's such an adventure,
when you are small.
This tiny person,
who knows nothing at all.

There is a whole world,
crammed with exciting things.
You want to discover,
the joy that they bring.

The smell of good food,
or the warmth of the sun.
Something you made,
or just wanting to run.

The taste of ice cream,
and a day in the park.
Wondering what's out there,
when my garden grows dark.

You imagine great things,
that the future could hold,
and believe almost everything,
when you are told.

As you get older,
the illusion grows frail.
Flowers less sweeter,
their colours more pale.

You think you grow wiser,
by the things you are taught,
but one day you realise,
you have only been caught.

You are trapped in a world,
that was created for you.
Not by your dreams,
or what you wanted to do.

If I could only go back,
to the days I once knew,
when all things in life,
were shiny and new.

To dream new dreams,
and once again smile.
Life is so much brighter,
through the eyes of a child.

Friday, 27 January 2017

Review of The Secret Files of Fairday Morrow by Jessica Haight & Stephanie Robinson



General Information


Publisher: Random House Children's Books
Year of publication: December 1, 2015
Age Group: 9-12 Years
Number of pages: 272 Print version

Plot summary: (blurb)


The Begonia House keeps its secrets. Everyone knows that. Everyone, that is, except for clever eleven-year old Fairday Morrow, whose family has just moved in. Being the Senior Investigator in the Detective Mystery Squad, more commonly known as the DMS, she’s ready to uncover the mysteries hidden within the strange manor. As the investigation gears up and the pieces of the puzzle fall into place, the three young sleuths enter into a world where anything is possible, and the danger is most definitely real. Can they piece together the puzzle before it's too late? Or will whatever's causing trouble find Fairday and her friends first?

Positive points


This was a great, well written story that will appeal to any children (and big adult type children) who love a good mystery story. It has very real, likeable characters that embark on a scary adventure (but not too scary) to discover the strange goings-on in a manor steeped in mystery. It is a real fun read and will keep you guessing all the way to the end.

There are a few scatterings of wonderfully drawn illustrations throughout the book that will help fire up the imagination of the younger readers. A nice touch! I'm so jealous, I want some in my books too!

Negative points


I have absolutely nothing negative to say about this book.

Overall impression


This is a great story filled with likable characters. The perfect addition to any school library. I highly recommend this book.

My rating


Five big shiny stars!



Meet the authors


Jessica Haight



Jessica is a true New Englander with a love of the ocean and the four seasons. She enjoys drawing while standing up and cultivating magic in her garden. Jessica easily floats away with a good story and is still waiting for her owl from Hogwarts. She lives in Connecticut with her family.

Stephanie Robinson


Stephanie lives with her husband in a quiet town, though not as quaint as Ashpot. After teaching fifth grade for almost fifteen years, she is now enjoying her role as a school media specialist. One of the many benefits of her job is that she learns something new every day. When Stephanie isn't working, she spends her time creating stories, getting lost in books, and traveling to new places.

Author links





Twitter: https://twitter.com/dmsfiles



Thursday, 19 January 2017

Happy Anniversary!!!


Tomorrow is my 28th wedding anniversary. Wow! How did I pull that off? I have actually been with my wife, Lesley, since she was fifteen-years-old when we first started dating. That is thirty-four years ago this year. When we were about eight-years-old we used to occasionally walk home from school together as we went to the same junior school and lived in the same area. It's the true childhood sweetheart story.

We started out as best friends and that is one thing that never changed. It hasn't always been fun and games. We went through some really bad times. Unbelievably bad. I could tell you stories that you wouldn't believe, proper horror stories, but despite all of it we are still together and still best friends.

I want to tell you a little about this amazing lady that stuck by my side through everything. She is without comparison the most unselfish and compassionate person you could ever meet. And this is genuine and from the heart. She spends her life worrying about everyone else without any concern for herself. There is nothing she would not do to help others in need. And she is a natural mum. She dedicated her life to raising our family and is loved, respected and adored by all children.

When we set out as a very young couple on this journey together into the world, life was an adventure. I was a cool dude in a rock band. I had a good job with money to burn and we had our own place within two years. We partied for six years before getting married, getting our first proper house and starting a family. Then we continued to party only with bouncy castles and balloons. It was amazing and so much fun. Now we have just entered a new phase in our lives. All our three children have left home and we have the whole house to ourselves. We are back to where we first started out all those years ago and I think it's quite exciting!

Just lately I have been reflecting on all the wonderful and crazy things that have happened as we grew up together. And what I see is just how lucky I am to have been given the opportunity to share my whole life with someone as amazing as you. You taught me so much. I wouldn't be the person I am now without you. I hope that's a good thing. lol I love so many things about you. I can totally be myself whether I am at my best or my very, very worst and it makes no difference to how you feel about me. Total acceptance. Absolute and unconditional love. You would do absolutely anything for me. Every week you bring me gifts and show your love in so many different ways. And you never ask for anything, ever! You are the most unselfish person I know. This, everybody, is my wife! Jealous much? LOL

Thank you for being there for me. Thank you for loving and caring for me. Thank you for being the best friend anyone could have. Thank you for your understanding and compassion. Thank you for the fun and laughter we shared and there was a LOT! You are one of the funniest person I know. Thank you for every single thing you ever did and will do in the future. There is not a person in the whole world who I would want to be with except you. I love you with all my heart. You are my true soul mate. 


Happy anniversary! xxx


Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Book Review: Chase Tinker and the House of Magic by Malia Ann Haberman



General Information


Publisher: Self published
Series: The Chase Tinker Series, Book 1
Number of pages: 277 pages

Plot summary: (blurb)


Thirteen-year-old Chase Tinker's usually-normal life has taken an unexpected turn. Several shocking family secrets have come to light and he's seriously freaked out about it. His missing dad, bizarre magical powers, a grandfather he thought to be long dead, a fantastic, out-of-this-world magical house, and an evil Dark Enemy determined to destroy Chase's family are only part of all the craziness. Now Chase, along with his younger brother Andy and his cousin Janie, must find a way to stop these evil beings, while at the same time figuring out what's happened to his dad, unraveling even more Tinker lies and secrets, while not letting on that he has a crush on the housekeeper's daughter.

Positive points


There were many positive points to this charming story. The author did a great job with keeping this book filled with action from the first chapter to the last. This is so important when writing for a young audience who tire very easily when reading books. The characters were likable and realistic. They all had their good and bad points like in real life. Each chapter led you to want to read just one more to find out where the story would lead you next. A great story for young readers.

Negative points


I found a few POV slips and some technical issues that were more a case of writer style rather than mistakes. I noticed them more only because of my writing background, but they didn't take away anything from the enjoyment of the story.

What makes this book unique


I found the setting the most unique part about this story. A lot of the action takes place in a magical house full of all kinds of wonders.

Overall impression


This is a great, fast-paced action story filled with magic. It is perfect for it's targeted audience and for those 'older' kids which includes anyone who enjoys reading this type of story.

My rating


I would love to give this five stars, but because of the technical issues I have to deduct one star simply for fairness and honesty.



Meet the author



Once upon a time a girl named Malia dreamed of being an author. She wanted to write books that everyone in the whole universe could read and enjoy. So she packed a snack and happily set out on the road of life. But times being what they were, she was attacked by dreadful dragons and greedy goblins and terrible trolls who all tried their hardest to stomp her dream into dust. Brandishing her well-sharpened pencil at them, she bravely yelled, "You will not stop me, you wicked fiends! Away with you, or I'll stab you with my trusty writing implement!" And so they fled to shiver and hide in dank caves and dark holes.

One day, out of the blue, the most incredible, awesome idea came to her. She was so excited, she hugged her furry ferret friend and happy-danced all around the kingdom. Then, putting fingertips to keyboard, she typed out a magical story to end all magical stories, filling it with fun, magic, adventure, thrills, loathsome bad guys, and feisty, just-go-for-it characters, and even a troll or two. After many more trials and tribulations, all four of her books were finally published and ready to read and enjoy. Yay! Now, she's busily working on the sequel.

Author Links






Thursday, 3 November 2016

Book Review: Grind by Edward Vukovic



General Information


Publisher: Edward Vukovic
Year of publication: February 2, 2016
Number of chapters: 52
Number of pages: 396

Plot summary: (blurb)


Ziva’s love of coffee is double-edged. Throughout her life, she gives her talent freely to those desperate for a glimpse into destiny’s promise. Predicting the future with chilling accuracy, she understands the cost and has sworn never to divine her own truth. Having fled the economic aftershocks of the Balkan war, she struggles adjusting to her new life and clings to the remnants of her past, until she meets Isaac. Against her better judgement, Ziva ‘reads’ for herself and what she sees will change her life irrevocably.

Positive points


This story is written in first person perspective with multiple POVs. First person perspective is very common these days, but not all authors can pull it off. Vukovic, on the other hand, has used this perspective to the max to create a deep POV for each of the characters. I enjoyed becoming each character as the story unfolded. I became emotionally connected to each one of them and am not ashamed to admit I shed a tear or two. Hats off to the author for that.

The story is not action packed, but this was not its intention. It is a story about real people having to deal with real-life situations and how they connect with each other in a community. It kept my interest throughout the story and I found it a really good read. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes this type of story.

Negative points


The most obvious negative point is this book needs to be proofread. I did find mistakes that could easily be corrected by a professional edit. This did not in any way take away the enjoyment of the story, but with a story this good, it seems a shame not to make it perfect.

What makes this book unique


I loved the way the characters were introduced in a clear and separate fashion and how they intertwined into each other's lives. This had me guessing what would happen next from one chapter to the next.

Overall impression

A great story with very real people. Believable and emotional.

My rating



I would love to give this five stars, but have to deduct one star for the editing issues.


Available at:


Amazon US


Amazon UK




Meet the author




Edward Vukovic is a Melbourne-based writer and novelist. He has work published across numerous publications including The Journal, The Adviser, The Roar and Shoot Farken. When he's not writing about his poor parenting skills or fantasy football you will most likely find him hurling instructions at the television, steadfast in his belief that the players of whatever sport he's watching at the time are actually listening to his ranting.

Edward is married to his wonderful and talented wife Vesna and is a proud, if sometimes bewildered, father to his amazing son Oliver.


Links:







Wednesday, 6 April 2016

New Release: Unknown Reality A Sci-fi Adventure by Kurt Chambers



I am so excited to announce the release of a brand new title, Unknown Reality. It is a sci-fi adventure story about eleven-year-old Chloe who discovers that her life on Earth is nothing more than an experiment by a bunch of Scientists who claim to be her friend.

It is great to be able to offer my readers something a bit different from the high fantasy series I have already published. This is my first sci-fi adventure novel and I am very pleased how it turned out. I started submitting this story to about twenty publishers and agents and got a near miss from a top UK publishing agent who wrote a lovely email saying that there was so much about this story that she loved. The best rejection I have had! I knew that if I could impress a top agent then this book was a winner. I considered continuing to submit my book after that, but finally decided to publish it myself with my own publishing company, UK Children's Publishing. Why not have all the glory after the years of work that went into this title!

So, let me tell you a bit about this book.

Blurb


Eleven-year-old Chloe gasps in awe at the magical splendour of the theatre performance, but her excitement soon vanishes during an autograph hunt and an encounter with the baddie from the show. His unbelievable claim of a flawed universe freaks her out. This starts a chain of unexplainable events that threaten to destroy the only reality Chloe has ever known.

Then, one night, they come for her.

Claiming to be her friends, the Scientists try to persuade Chloe her life was some kind of experiment that went horribly wrong, and a computer virus left her with no memory of this alien planet. Struggling to come to terms with a world she doesn’t understand, she is kidnapped from the futuristic outstation by a clan of Savages that live out in the wilderness. When confronted by a father and brother she never knew she had, she is torn between two cultures, none of which she wishes to be part of. All she wants is return to the only family she knew; a family that never really existed.


If you think this is the kind of story you would like to read, here is where you can pick up a copy...

Links








To Reviewers:


If you are interested in reviewing this story and posting your review on Amazon for me I will offer a free eBook in a format of your choice. Please contact me via authortruthteller (at) googlemail (dot) com and put 'UR Review' in the subject line.

And don't forget! 

I still have two other popular fantasy novels for your pleasure and book one in the series is free in all good book stores. If you like my stories, could I please ask you to leave a review on Amazon for me. Reviews for us indie authors are very important in attracting other readers.


  


Happy reading!