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Archive for November, 2014

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The Girl Who Came Back to Life by Craig Staufenberg

4 stars

(Excerpt from Goodreads) A book about love and loss, and how to live in a world filled with both…

When you die, your spirit wakes in the north, in the City of the Dead. There, you wander the cold until one of your living loved ones finds you, says “Goodbye,” and Sends you to the next world.

After her parents die, 12-year-old Sophie refuses to release their spirits. Instead, she resolves to travel to the City of the Dead to bring her mother and father’s spirits back home with her.

Taking the long pilgrimage north with her gruff & distant grandmother-by train, by foot, by boat; over ruined mountains and plains and oceans-Sophie struggles to return what death stole from her. Yet the journey offers her many hard, unexpected lessons-what to hold on to, when to let go, and who she must truly bring back to life.

Sophie is 12 years old. She has just lost her parents and has decided that instead of going to the City of the Dead to release her parent’s souls she is going to bring them back with her. Sophie is living with her cold grandmother that has no time for anything but her routines. She also has to travel to the City of the Dead and release her husband’s soul.

As her grandmother goes about her day and heads to the bakery, Sophie follows and starts planning how she is going to earn money to go north with her grandmother. She is eventually hired for the bakery but has learned that she is too cold inside, that she has to have an inner heat to make the bread rise. But this heat is painful since it reminds her too much of her parents.

Eventually spring comes and both Sophie and her grandmother set out on train, bus, foot, truck, and boat to get to the City of the Dead. Along the way Sophie loses her grandmother but meets interesting people that help to show her about the world she lives in.

I liked this story. I was a little lost in the beginning. Things felt rough, blocky but that was because that was how Sophie and her grandmother interacted. I liked how Sophie learns about herself and others on her adventure. There were some great characters to help her along but her relationship with her grandmother was the toughest.

This is a great story and I think that many people will like it. Definitely give it a try.

I received this book in exchange for an honest review.

For more information about this story, make sure to check out Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Goodreads.

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Deadrise

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Deadrise by Robert Blake Whitehill

4 stars

(Excpert from Goodreads) Diving the frigid Chesapeake Bay for oysters soon after a late season hurricane, former Navy SEAL Ben Blackshaw discovers the fresh wreck of a speedboat mired on the bottom. It is jammed to the gunwales with crates of gold bullion worth millions. Blackshaw opens one last box from the wreck and finds a nuclear dirty bomb, its timer racing down toward zero just twenty-four hours away. If this were not enough, the final shock of the day comes when he recognizes the corpse bobbing at the helm of the wreck; a man who has been missing for fifteen years. Blackshaw’s father. Piecing the shreds of evidence together, Blackshaw reckons that his irascible old man intercepted and stole both the gold and the nuke from an Iran-Contra style government black-ops deal brokered between two Islamist extremist cells by a corrupt U.S. Government cabal. Maynard Chalk was the agent who let the transaction go south in a moment of unforgiveable distraction. He’s got to recover the cargo as soon as possible, but to finish the job, he must temporarily throw in with one of the terrorist crews from the deal gone wrong; it’s the only way he can conceal his failure from a vengeful boss and save his own skin. Chalk and his jackal henchmen descend on the quiet, god-fearing people of Blackshaw’s isolated Smith Island home, determined to take back what’s theirs no matter what the cost in innocent blood. Blackshaw and his wily Smith Island neighbors must set aside a growing mistrust of each other in order to survive and repel Chalk’s invasion. Green-eyed suspicion naturally follows an influx of untold wealth and ultimate power; this might play into Chalk’s hands, inciting murder and mutiny within Blackshaw’s ranks. After a rocky start, Blackshaw finally persuades a small cadre of neighbors that their recent hardscrabble times could be set right if they manage to keep this orphaned gold for themselves, and somehow stop that nuclear bomb before it blows them out of the Chesapeake. To accomplish all this, they reluctantly tap into Smith Island’s darker heritage from the distant past as home to marauding pirates in the Chesapeake. Hundreds of years before they became good Methodists, the Smith Islanders emigrated from Cornwall, England. There, more than a few of their ancestors earned their keep by pillaging what they needed from merchant ships unlucky enough to sail without armed escort. Regrettably, the practice lasted long after settling Smith Island. The present dire circumstances set these good people at odds with their newfound and deeply held religious teachings; they must connect with their inner brigand or die. Mortally outgunned, and not seventy miles from Washington, D.C., Blackshaw and his cohort are pitted in a desperate last stand against Chalk and his bloodthirsty goons. If Blackshaw fails, his gamble will go down in history as the opening skirmish of World War III.

After the blurb from Goodreads there really is no reason to summarize the book. That basically says it all. I really liked Ben as a character. Just listening to him talk to himself as he is trying to gather oysters was enough to hook me. But when he finds hid father, who is supposed to be dead along with a lot of gold and a nuke, what more can you ask for?

My only complaint was there were a couple parts that could have been trimmed down a little and streamlined. This book was a really great, adventure to suck you in with great pirate islanders to top it off.

This is a great addition to anyone’s action adventure collection. I can’t wait to read book 2.

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review.

For more information on Deadrise or Robert Blake Whitehill be sure to check out Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Goodreads, and Robert Blake Whitehill’s website.

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Mad Moral

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Mad Moral by Kevin Anthony

4 stars

(Excerpt from Goodreads) Twenty year old Ford Fischer is a serial slasher desperately trying to resist the lure of the blade. After taking a life, Ford’s regret consumes him, leading him to self-mutilate his hand in hopes of preventing further mayhem. All the while a series of family issues threaten to sidetrack his quest for mental stability.

His drug abusing mother disappears after an argument between her and Ford; leaving him sole caretaker of his transgender parent, whose life is slowly deteriorating from a mysterious illness. The parental strain leads him to weigh the strength of his bond with the two divorcees.

Just as Ford feels nothing more could go wrong, he finds himself in the middle of a slashing spree – the victims being slashers themselves. He’s forced to play the role of detective to avoid becoming suspect, or worse, a victim. As slasher after slasher is eliminated, Ford seeks out the blade-friendly stalker with the morally conflicted mindset “slash or be slashed.”

MAD MORAL is the world of Ford Fischer, where in murderous stuffed animals, demonic possessions, gigantic creepy crawlers, knife wielding slashers and much more madness are common place. Fischer, coupled with a romantically conflicted exorcist and a dreamer who redefines night terrors, leads us through a twisted world that can be best defined as one of a kind.

Where to begin with this review, there is a lot going on in this story and it all is various levels of mad. Ford Fischer is a slasher that realizes what he is and wants to stop. But it’s hard to find support when his home life is a disaster with a mother that has a drug problem and a father that is his second mother. But when other slashers are found dead he decides that he is going to have to figure out who is doing it before he ends up the next victim or accused of the crimes.

Sidnee is an exorcist. She can sense and communicate with demons possessing people. She takes it upon herself to stay away from people unless she is exorcising them. Then there is Milo, when he sleeps what ever he experiences in his dreams such as being injured transfers to his real life body. He has some odd science fiction adventures after being fired from the police department.

Ford, Sidnee, Milo, and a teddy bear all have adventures that are interlinking. The story is told through the different people so it is odd bouncing around, especially all the situations that Milo finds himself in. The one thing that got to me was I could understand Ford, Sidnee, and Rubble. Milo went with the story but it felt forced, almost like an after though.

This is an interesting story. Not bad just different. I will say that I’m interested in Mad Menace. I would like to see what happens next.

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review.

For more information or to purchase Mad Moral please check out Amazon and Goodreads.

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Fatal AbductionToday is the release day of Fatal Abduction. Find out more about Fatal Abduction, Julia Crane, and where you can buy Fatal Abduction.

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~*~FATAL ABDUCTION~*~

There’s a serial killer at large. His victims just happen to resemble Kaitlyn—dark haired, pale skin and athletic build. Kaitlyn goes undercover, attending a prestigious high school to try to lure the killer into a trap and save the lives of other potential victims. Will she be able to catch the killer before his body count rises? Or will she become the next victim?

My Review:

Everyone is still shook up after the traitor gave away their cover to Vance Dasovik. They are still trying to figure out who is responsible when Kaitlyn learns about the Dollhouse murders. The victims are very similar to Kailyn’s build and when she learns that the police and FBI are no closer to catching the killer she decides to go after him.

This story is told from a couple different perspectives which didn’t bother me. I loved being inside the killers head, when you learn why he is killing the girls it makes the story that much creepier. I also liked how he seemed to be one step ahead of the authorities.

Of course Kaitlyn is a great, strong character. She is still trying to get the hang of slang and is very determined to get her man. But at the same time she is worried about the others in her team and how they are handling there enhancements.

This is another great addition to the IFICS series that you have to add to your bookshelf. I don’t know if there is going to be another book in the series, but I really hope there is.

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review.

Image of Julia Crane

~*~ABOUT JULIA CRANE~*~

 Julia crane is the author of the Keegan’s Chronicle s, IFICS. She has a  bachelors degree in criminal justice. Julia has believed in magical creatures since the day her grandmother first told her an Irish tale. Growing up her mother greatly encouragedreading and using your imagination.

For more information about Fatal Abduction make sure to check out Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Goodreads, and Julia Crane’s website.

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