Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Mystery Fanfare: Mystery Bytes: Mystery TV News

Mystery Fanfare: Mystery Bytes: Mystery TV News: Mystery TV News: Tonight (11/29) TNT's Mystery Movie Night  begins with the film adaptation of Scott Turow's Innocent . Tomorrow ( 11/30 ...

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Monday, September 26, 2011

Chance to win three books.

We are giving away 3 books this month. Contest ends Sept 30th. Below are the 3 books that are up for grabs.
Flightless Falcon
The Visionary

To enter:
Follow "Can't Live Without Books" (1 Entry)
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(you can do all of the above with links in left hand column)

LunchBots Stainless Steel Lunch, Snack, and Bento Containers

LunchBots Stainless Steel Lunch, Snack, and Bento Containers:
These containers are too cool! My husband takes his lunch each day and I use zip bags and plastic sandwich containers. After awhile you can smell the food in the containers and even after washer can't get the smell out so have to toss them. Love the idea of stainless steel which is safer and will last forever.
'via Blog this' #imabzzagent

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Monday, September 19, 2011

Why Kathryn Stockett wrote The Help

Would love to be part of the BZZZZ.  #imabzzagent
I thought this was so special and wondered why I loved this book so much. Well we had a maid when I was young and reminds me of her. 
Our family maid, Demetrie, used to say picking cotton in Mississippi in the dead of summer is about the worst pastime there is, if you don't count picking okra, another prickly, low-growing thing.  Demetrie used to tell us all kinds of stories about picking cotton as a girl.  She'd laugh and shake her finger at us, warning us of it, as if a bunch of rich white kids might fall to the evils of cotton-picking, like cigarettes or hard liquor.

"For days I picked and picked.  And then I looked down and my skin had bubbled up.  I showed my Mama.  None of us ever seen sunburn on a black person before. That was for white people!"

I was too young to realize that what she was telling us wasn't very funny.  Demetrie was born in Lampkin, Mississippi in 1927.  It was a horrifying year to be born, just before the depression set it.  Right on time for a child to appreciate, in fine detail, what it felt like to be poor and female on a sharecropping cotton farm.

Demetrie came to cook and clean for my family when she was twenty-eight. My father was fourteen, my uncle seven.  Demetrie was stout and dark skinned and, by then, married to a mean, abusive drinker named Plunk.  She wouldn't answer me when I asked questions about him.  But besides the subject of Plunk, she'd talk to us all day.

And God, how I loved to talk to Demetrie.  I'd sit in my grandmother's kitchen with her, where I went after school, listening to her stories and watching her mix up cakes and fry chicken.  Her cooking was outstanding.  It was something people discussed at length, after they ate at my grandmother's table.  You felt loved when you tasted Demetrie's caramel cake.

But my older brother and sister and I weren't allowed to bother Demetrie during her lunch break.  Grandmother would say, 'Leave her alone now, let her eat, this is her time,' and I would stand in the doorway itching to get back with her.  Grandmother wanted Demetrie to rest so she could finish her work, not to mention white people didn't sit at the table while a colored person was eating.

That was just a normal part of life, the rules between blacks and whites.  As a little girl, seeing black people in the colored part of town, even if they were dressed up or doing fine, I remember pitying them.  I am so embarrassed to admit that now.

I didn't pity Demetrie, though.  There were several years when I thought she was immensely lucky to have us.  A secure job in a nice house cleaning up after white Christian people.  But also because Demetrie had no babies of her own and we felt like we were filling a void in her life.  If anyone asked her how many children she had, she would hold up her fingers and say three.  She meant us, my sister Susan, my brother Rob and me.

My siblings deny it, but I was closer to Demetrie than any of the kids.  Nobody got cross with me if Demetrie was close by.  She would stand me in the mirror next to her and say, "You are beautiful.  You a beautiful girl," when clearly I was not.  I wore glasses and had stringy brown hair.  I had a stubborn aversion to the bathtub.  My mother was out of town a lot.  Susan and Rob were tired of me hanging around and I felt left over.  Demetrie knew it and took my hand and told me I was fine.

My parents got divorced when I was six.  Demetrie became even more important to me then.  When my mother would go on her frequent trips, Daddy put us kids in the motel he owned and brought in Demetrie to stay with us.  I'd cry and cry onto Demetrie's shoulder, missing my mother so bad, I'd get a fever from it.

By then, my sister and brother had, in a way, outgrown Demetrie.  They'd sit around the motel penthouse playing poker, using bar straws as money, with the front desk staff.

I remember watching them, jealous because they were older and thinking one time, 'I am not a baby anymore.  I don't have to take up with Demetrie while the others play poker.'

So I got in the game and of course lost all my straws in about five minutes.  So back I went onto Demetrie's lap, acting put out, watching the others play.  Yet after only a minute, my forehead was against her soft neck and she was rocking me like two people in a boat.

"This where you belong.  Here with me," she said and patted my hot leg.  Her hands were always cool.  I watched the older kids play cards, not caring as much that Mother was away again.  I was where I belonged.

The rash of negative accounts about Mississippi, in the movies, in the papers, on television, have made us natives a wary, defensive bunch.  We are full of pride and shame, but mostly pride.

Still, I got out of there.  I moved to New York City when I was twenty-three.   I learned that the first question anyone asked anybody, in a town so transient, was "Where are you from?"  And I'd say, "Mississippi."  And then I'd wait.

To people that smiled and said, "I've heard it's beautiful down there," I'd say, "My hometown is number three in the nation for gang-related murders."

To people that said, "God, you must be glad to be out of that place," I'd bristle and say, "What do you know?  It's beautiful down there."

When a drunk man at a roof party from a rich white Metro North train type of town asked me where I was from and I told him Mississippi, he sneered and said, "I am so sorry."
I nailed down his foot with the stiletto portion of my shoe and spent the next ten-minutes quietly educating him on the where from abouts of William Faulkner, Eudora Welty, Tennessee Williams, Elvis Presley, B. B. King, Oprah Winfrey, Jim Henson, Faith Hill, James Earl Jones, and Craig Claiborne, the food critic for The New York Times. I informed him that Mississippi hosted the first heart transplant, the first lung transplant and that the basis of the United States legal system was developed at the University of Mississippi.
I was homesick and I'd been waiting on somebody like him.
I wasn't very genteel or ladylike and the poor guy squirmed away and looked nervous the rest of the party. But I couldn't help it.
Mississippi is like my mother.  I am allowed to complain about her all I want, but God help the person that raises an ill word about her around me, unless she is their mother too.
I wrote The Help while living in New York, which I think was easier than writing it in Mississippi, staring in the face of it all.  The distance added perspective. Amidst a whirring fast city, it was a relief to let my thoughts turn slow and remember for awhile.
The Help is fiction, by far and wide. Still, as I wrote it, I wondered an awful lot what my family would think of it, and Demetrie too, even though she was long dead.  I was scared, a lot of the time, that I was crossing a terrible line, writing in the voice of a black person.  I was afraid I would fail to describe a relationship that was so intensely influential in my life, so loving, so grossly stereotyped in American history.
I was truly grateful to read Howell Raines' Pulitzer Prize winning article, "Grady's Gift:" 
There is no trickier subject for a writer from the South than that of affection between a black person and a white one in the unequal world of segregation.  For the dishonesty upon which a society is founded makes every emotion suspect, makes it impossible to know whether what flowed between two people was honest feeling or pity or pragmatism.
I read that and I thought, how did he find a way to put it into such concise words?  Here was the same slippery issue I'd been struggling with and couldn't catch in my hands, like a wet fish.  Mr. Raines managed to nail it down in a few sentences.  At least I was in the company of others in my struggle.

Like my feelings for Mississippi, my feelings for The Help conflict greatly.  Regarding the lines between black and white women, I am afraid I have told too much.  I was taught not to talk about such uncomfortable things, that it was tacky, impolite, they might hear us.
I am afraid I have told too little.  Not just that life was so much worse, for many black women working in the homes in Mississippi.  But also, that there was so much more love between white families and black domestics, that I didn't have the ink or the time to portray.
But what I am sure about is this: I don't presume to think that I know what it really felt like to be a black woman in Mississippi, especially the 1960's.  I don't think it is something any white woman, on the other end of a black woman's paycheck, could ever truly understand.  But trying to understand is vital to our humanity.  In my book there is one line that I truly prize:
Wasn't that the point of the book?  For women to realize, we are just two people.  Not that much separates us.  Not nearly as much as I'd thought.
I'm pretty sure I can say that no one in my family ever asked Demetrie what it felt like to be black in Mississippi working for our white family.  It never occurred to us to ask.  It was everyday life.  It wasn't something people felt compelled to examine.
I have wished, for many years, that I'd been old enough and thoughtful enough to ask Demetrie that question.  She died when I was sixteen.  I've spent years imagining what her answer would be.  And that is why I wrote this book.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Mystery Fanfare: Shamus Awards

Mystery Fanfare: Shamus Awards: Private Eye Writers of America (PWA) 2011 Shamus Awards, “given annually to recognize outstanding achievement in private eye fiction.” ...

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Dreamlight so very cool!

 Dream Lights Flickering Lamp will light up your night with magic!  Small lights dance inside the jar to light up your room or your patio table with an ambiance that will create a mood!

The magic lamp will surly brighten your night and your spirits.  As it gently winks and blinks you’ll fall asleep like a child to happy memories of glowing fireflies, warm summer nights, and lazy vacation days.

My husband loves fireflies and this makes a perfect item for him to put on the table on our screened porch to enjoy every night.  #imabzzagent

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The Secret of Indigo Moon by G.P. Taylor

The Secret of Indigo Moon, The DoppleGanger Chronicles, by G.P. Taylor is a delight to the senses.
This is a great story about Erik Morrissey Ganger who thinks he is a great explorer and detective, and his side kicks, twins Sadie and Saskia Dopple who are always getting into trouble. This is their 2nd adventure together and it involves a secret tunnel under the school, a private eye, facing down an old enemy and finding out the secret of the "indigo moon". Wonderful adventure.

  I started looking through the book when it arrived and was just amazed at the different type of graphics used. First page is picture with text, then the next page is just a picture-you get to think "what does that stand for,etc", then the next page you have only text, then a four panel cartoon with color. And it goes on like that throughout the book. And the graphics are used so smartly through out the story. I actually like this book a lot. I think it would be great for 8-15 and those who are not really into reading but like graphic novels or comics.

 I received a complimentary copy of the book for review purposes from Tyndale House.

Out of A Far Country by Christopher and Angela Yuan

Christopher Yuan is the son of Chinese immigrants and discovers at an early age that he is different. His mother tries to control the situation but she nor her son has any control. Many years pass before they find resolution. This book is written from the sons and mother's perspective so you get to actually feel the pain, heartbreak, confusion and love from both sides. I loved this books and think anyone who has a friend, family member or someone they know that is going through or has gone through a similar situation, should read this book!
I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.

The Fight of Our Lives by William J Bennett & Seth Leibsohn

The Fight of Our Lives by William Bennett and Seth Leibsohn was no really my type of book. I thought maybe they would provide more information about how the Islamic culture has begun and changed in America and then which groups where the ones that were radical in their beliefs. I wanted more history and then current information and then let me make the decision of how to react.
But this books doesn't do that. It takes more of a description of how Islamists are our enemy and how we are to acknowledge and oppose them.
The first part of the book is very confusing but the 2nd part seems to get better but not good enough for a recommendation.

 I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. 

The Final Hour by Andrew Klavan-Great Thriller

The Final Hour by Andrew Klavan is a fast moving, action packed adventure ride. Charlie West is a high school kid who was hunted by terrorist, wanted for murder and in this adventure is in prison trying to fight against the gangs and guards. He has knowledge of a terrorist attack that will take place but has no way to communicate that from prison. He has to find a way to get out or get information out. This is the last of the Homelander novels. I would recommend reading the other 3 first because it gives the story that happened before this final thriller. Even though this is juvenile fiction, I enjoyed it very much and will be giving it to my nephew for Christmas as a gift. I know he will enjoy at 13 years old. So I think this is a good one for anyone who loves thrillers, mysteries and/or action.
I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

The Final Summit by Andy Andrews-Wonderful story with great characters

The Final Summit: A Quest to Find the One Principle That Will Save Humanity (Hardcover)
The Final Summit by Andy Andrews is a wonderful story with great characters that I couldn't put down. Andy is a great story teller and I loved this book. Even though most of the book takes place at a summit to discuss the solution that will save the world, it feels like a great adventure since Andy uses such characters as Winston Churchill, Joan of Arc and George Washington Carver. David Ponder is the main character who was introduced in The Traveler's Gift-another great book by Andy.
There is great insight in this book while being entertaining. A great read!

I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Friday, May 27, 2011

PaperBack Swap Blog

PaperBack Swap Blog

Secrets of the Vine for Women by Darlene Marie Wilkinson

Secrets of the Vine for Women by Darlene Marie Wilkinson is a short book but contains wonderful information and you learn so much from John 15.
This little book is great for a women's bible study also since it includes a study guide with discussion questions for each chapter in the back of the book. I found the questions to be very thought provoking and could be used individually or as a group.
Some parts of the book seem very simplified but they helped to get the point across that the author was trying to make. Sometimes you are looking for a study or book that is not overwhelming and that can be used for people who are in different stages of their lives and this is one of those.
I actually think this book could be used by women or men and I love the way she used many short stories to illustrate the ideas presented in the chapters. This really is a great little book.

I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review. I was not required to write a positive review.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Mystery Fanfare: Anthony Award Nominations

25th Annual Anthony Award Nominees

Best Novel
Bury Your Dead - Louise Penny - Minotaur Books
Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter - Tom Franklin – William Morrow
Faithful Place - Tana French - Viking
I'd Know You Anywhere - Laura Lippman - William Morrow
The Lock Artist - Steve Hamilton - Minotaur

Best First Novel
Damage Done - Hilary Davidson - Forge Books
The Poacher's Son - Paul Doiron - Minotaur Books
Rogue Island- Bruce DeSilva - Forge Books
The Sherlockian - Graham Moore - Twelve
Snow Angels - James Thompson - Putnam

Best Paperback Original
Drive Time - Hank Phillipi Ryan - Mira
Expiration Date - Duane Swierczynski - Minotaur Books
The Hanging Tree - Bryan Gruley – Touchstone (Simon and Schuster)
Long Time Coming - Robert Goddard - Bantam
Vienna Secrets - Frank Tallis - Random House

Best Short Story
The Frame Maker - Simon Wood - The Back Alley
The Hitter - Chris Holm – Needle
Homeless - Pat Morin - Mystery Montage
Scent of Lilacs - Doug Allyn – Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine Sept/Oct 2010
So Much in Common - Mary Jane Maffini - EQMM Sept/Oct. 2010
Swing Shift - Dana Cameron - Crimes By Moonlight

Best Graphic Novel
Beasts of Burden – Jill Thompson/Evan Dorkin – Dark Horse
The Chill - Jason Starr – Vertigo Crime
Richard Stark's Parker, Vol. 2: The Outfit –Darwyn Cooke - IDW Press
Scalped Vol 6 - The Gnawing - Jason Aaron – Vertigo
Sickness in the Family - Denise Mina – Vertigo Crime
Tumor - Joshua Hale Fialkov/ Noel Tuazon - Archaia Studio Press

Best Critical /Non-Fiction
Agatha Christie's Secret Notebooks - John Curran – Harper Collins
Charlie Chan: The Untold Story of the Honorable Detective and His Rendezvous with American History - Yunte Huang - W. W. Norton & Company
Sherlock Holmes for Dummies - Steve Doyle - For Dummies
Thrillers: 100 Must Reads - David Morrell - Oceanview
The Wire: Truth Be Told - Rafael Alvarez - Grove Press

Best Website/Blog
Jen's Book Thoughts - Jen Forbus
The Rap Sheet - J. Kingston Pierce
Sirens of Suspense - Chantelle Aimée Osman
Spinetingler - Sandra Ruttan
Stop. You're Killing Me - Surber/Ulrich

The nominations are taken from votes cast by members of Bouchercon, the current year (2011) and the previous year (2010). The awards are named after Anthony Boucher, a book reviewer and early champion of the mystery genre. Attendees will vote for this year’s winners at the 2011 Bouchercon World Mystery Convention in St. Louis (Sep 15 – 18). The winners will be announced at the awards brunch on the morning of September 18th.
For more information about the Anthony Awards and the Bouchercon World Mystery Convention, please visit www.Bouchercon2011.com.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

New Barnes & Noble E-Reader Coming May 24 | News & Opinion | PCMag.com

May 5, 2011 10:11am EST 1 Comment
New Barnes & Noble E-Reader Coming May 24
By Chloe Albanesius0digg

Barnes & Noble is readying an updated e-reader, the company revealed in a recent Securities and Exchange Commission filing.
"In a meeting with investor analysts on May 4, 2011, Barnes & Noble ... indicated it expects to make an announcement on May 24, 2011 regarding the launch of a new eReader device," the notice said.
The company provided no other details about what the updated e-reader might entail. The last major Nook upgrade was the Nook Color, which started shipping in November. The Android-based device includes a 7-inch touch screen and access to more than 2 million titles, as well as an extra-wide viewing angle intended for sharing. The screen boasts 1,024-by-600 resolution and 169 pixels per inch. It comes with 8GB of storage, expandable up to 32GB with a microSD card.
In late April, Barnes & Noble pushed out a major software update to the Nook Color, which included its own app store, an email client, the ability to play Flash video, and enhanced books. It also added support for Android 2.2 "Froyo" and Adobe Flash video.
There's no word on what the retailer's new Nook will include; will it update the color version or address the E Ink Nook? And how will it stack up against its rivals? Last month, competitor Amazon launched a cheaper, ad-supported version of its Kindle e-reader. For $114, the new Kindle with "Special Offers" features ads and deals as its screen saver and on the bottom of its home screen. Of course, there's also the e-book components of the popular iPad and iPad 2.
Last month, Microsoft sued Barnes & Noble for patent infringement related to the Nook. Microsoft holds patents relating to navigation and how Web sites display content; technology used on the Android platform, the software giant said. Microsoft has tried to come to a licensing agreement with Barnes & Noble regarding its Nook and Nook Color e-readers, but to no avail, the company said.
For more, see PCMag's review of the Nook Color and the slideshow below.
For more from Chloe, follow her on Twitter @ChloeAlbanesius.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Amazon.com: The Frailty of Flesh eBook: Sandra Ruttan: Kindle Store

Free Kindle Books on Amazon

Free Kindle Books on Amazon

My Favorite Books

My Favorite Books


                 DATES OF NOTE:

May 2011

May 8th                Closed

May 11th            6:15 pm

May 14th        11am-1pm

May 29th & 30th  Closed

Happy Mother’s Day!

Book Club Meeting discussing the mystery series featuring Maisie Dobbs by Jacqueline Winspear.  Join us!

Rhett DeVane will be signing the long-awaited third in her Chattahoochee series, Mama’s Comfort Food.  Copies will be discounted 15%.

Memorial Day fun in the sun...

             Scandinavian crime fiction has a long tradition in the various countries – Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Iceland, Finland – however, few books were translated for a world audience until the success of Sjowall and Wahloo’s ten novel  series.  Soon Henning Mankell, Arnaldur Indridason and others were translated into major languages and claimed international readers.

And then came Stieg Larsson!  His three book series, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Girl who Played with Fire, and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest, set the fiction world buzzing.

His super-star status catapulted other like authors into the limelight.  While still only a small percentage of Scandinavian fiction is translated into English, some authors are gaining well-deserved readership.

Sweden’s Ake Edwardson is a professor at Gothenburg University and three-time winner of the Swedish Crime Writers’ Award for best novel.  His work was first translated into English in 2005, and now five of the twelve Erik Winter series are available.  Edwardson’s prose is atmospheric, his stories psychologically gripping, and his primary character is introspective and smart with distinctly European sensibilities.  The reader gets a true feel of Gothenburg and its seamy dark corners.  The titles currently available in English, chronologically written, are Death Angels (which introduces Chief Inspector Winter),  Shadow Woman, Frozen Tracks, Sun and Shadow, and Never End.

Karin Fossum made her literary debut in Norway, publishing poetry in 1974.  It was her Inspector Konrad Sejer mysteries that began to be translated into English in 2005, starting with the fifth in the series, Don’t Look BackFossum’s setting is a small, picturesque village near Oslo.  The setting itself is less important than the characters that people the claustrophobic community – relationships and secrets are central to Fossum’s psychological police procedurals.  Inspector Sejer, an aging, brooding policeman, is as much about understanding people, their actions and underlying motives, as investigating a case.  One critic says of Fossum’s work, “Like a Scandinavian winter, her thrillers chill to the bone.”  Titles to look for are Don’t Look Back, The Indian Bride, He Who Fears the Wolf, When the Devil Holds a Candle, Black Seconds, Bad Intentions, and The Water’s Edge.

A little taste of Sweden…Grandmother Benson’s Swedish Toast

        ½ cup butter                                                               1 ½ tsp baking powder
        1 cup sugar                                                                 ½ tsp salt
        1 egg                                                                          ½ cup finely chopped almonds or pecans
        ½ cup milk to which 1 tsp vinegar has been added                 ½ tsp cardamom (optional)
        ½ tsp baking soda                                                      Cinnamon sugar
        2 cups flour

Preheat oven to 350°.  Lightly grease a 9” square pan.  Cream butter and sugar.  Add egg.  Mix dry ingredients and add alternately with milk.  Stir in nuts.  Spread in prepared pan, and bake 35 minutes or until center springs back.  Cool slightly.  Reduce oven heat to 250°.  Slice cake into 1 ½” slices, then in half.  Place slices on a baking sheet, sprinkle with cinnamon sugar, and dry in oven 15-20 minutes.  Turn off oven and let slices dry another 20-25 minutes.  Turn slices and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.  Broil lightly on both sides until crisp.  Store airtight.  Wonderful dunked in your favorite hot beverage!

             Stories for young audiences have long been a part of the oral tradition, although children’s literature as a published genre is relatively new.  Scandinavian authors have played a particularly large role in shaping this concept.  Trolls, Vikings, and princesses are intriguing no matter your age.

Hans Christian Andersen, who penned such fables as “The Ugly Duckling,” “Thumbelina,” and “The Little Mermaid,” set the tone for Scandinavian tales by matching whimsy and reality in equal parts.
             You might be surprised by how many of the most influential children’s authors hail from Sweden.  Selma Lagerlöf was the first female writer to win the Nobel Prize for literature, though she is best remembered for The Wonderful Adventures of Nils, a fantastical yet educational classic tale about a boy discovering his homeland while riding atop a wild goose.  Astrid Lindgren, who later went on to create the Pippi Longstocking series, described Nils’ adventures as brightening her childhood.
             A more recent Swedish gem is Reidar Jönsson’s My Life as a Dog.  It is the punchy yet poignant tale of Ingemar, a not-quite-orphan whose adolescence is shaped by his eclectic experience living in the Swedish countryside with his aunt and uncle.  Ingemar’s courage in the face of tragedy is both humorous and heartwarming.

Psst…  Pass it on!  My Favorite Books stocks great books at great prices!  Introduce a friend on your next store visit and you’ll both receive 10% off that day’s purchase.  Print and present this offer for a chance to prove to your friends that you know where the best books can be found in Tallahassee. This coupon is valid for the month of May only. Watch for other offers in the newsletters coming up.

We always welcome your comments, questions, and will be glad to BOLO (be on the look out in crime fiction terminology) for books on your wish list.  Stop by, phone us or email.  Please note our new email address:  staff@myfavoritebooksllc.com.

MFB Staff,
Dianne, Vivian, and Trisha

My Favorite Books
1415 Timberlane Rd.
(Market Square)
Tallahassee, FL

Open Mon.– Sat. 10 am-6 pm
Sun. 11am-6 pm

Phone: 850-668-7498

Jenny Jeffers
Book Tender

Monday, May 2, 2011

Book Prizes – Los Angeles Times Festival of Books

2010 Los Angeles Times Book Prize Winners
Laura Hillenbrand, Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience & Redemption (Random House)
Current Interest
Michael Lewis, The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine (W. W. Norton & Company)
Jennifer Egan, A Visit From the Goon Squad (Knopf)
Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction
Peter Bognanni, The House of Tomorrow (Amy Einhorn Books/Putnam)
Graphic Novel
Adam Hines, Duncan the Wonder Dog: Show One (Adhouse Books)
Thomas Powers,The Killing of Crazy Horse (Knopf)
Mystery / Thriller
Tom Franklin, Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter (William Morrow)
Maxine Kumin, Where I Live: New & Selected Poems 1990-2010 (W. W. Norton & Company)
Science & Technology
Oren Harman, The Price of Altruism: George Price and the Search for the Origins of Kindness (W. W. Norton & Company)
Young Adult Literature
Megan Whalen Turner, A Conspiracy of Kings (Greenwillow/HarperCollins)

Book Prizes – Los Angeles Times Festival of Books For More.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Breath of Angel-Karyn Henley Christian Fantasy

Breath of Angel immerses readers in a land of angels and humans, shape shifters and sylvans, where warring brothers have destroyed the only portal to heaven and stranded tortured souls on earth, and only one young woman - a chantress - half angel and half human, can restore it.

I was not sure of what to expect of this book after reading that it had priestress, shape-shifters,etc and not a big fantasy fan but I gave it a read. I was captivated by the character of Melaia from the beginning and soon was very interesting in what would happen in the story. The book was fast paced and there were only a few times that I thought that the story was not believable. But you are soon brought back to reality by Melaia's real earthly issues.
This is the first in The Angeleon Circle and would think the series will provide a nice read for those who love fantasy.

I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review. I was not required to write a positive review.

Max Lucado-Max On Life

Max Lucado-Max on Life is a wonderful reference book!
From inside front flap of book "In more than thirty years-as an author, pastor, husband and father-Max Lucado has fielded a lot of questions. This book gathers Max's responses to the most often asked questions."

There is over 170 questions with one page or less answers which are simple but very on spot and very relevant for today. They cover everything from hope to the hereafter. What I especially like about the book is that Max doesn't answer the questions as if he is the all authority but as a friend trying to help you understand why you are asking the questions and what might be the answer. I found it to be a very encouraging book with lots of very sound advice.

There is a topical index and a scripture index which is wonderful. This is one book I will be going back to again and again.

I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

The Blessing of Adversity-Barry C Black

This is a wonderful book on how you can turn your most difficult times into positive times. Dr Barry Black, chaplain of the U.S. Senate presents 3 different sections in his books to lead you through the process.
First is "Mastering the Basics" which is like a basic guide to realizing our troubles, facing them and then at the end of each section a way of dealing with each type of trouble(he has an action plan list which I thought was most helpful!).
Secondly he shares how to avoid sources of trouble if you can. This section also included at the end of each chapter the action plan list. Than the third part, in two powerful chapters, sums up how you can turn your adversity into advantage.
This book is not a "preachy" type book but one that shows that Dr Black has been there , done that and truly relate to the subject. I would highly recommend this book.

Tyndale House Publishers has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for review.

The Blessing of Adversity: Finding Your God-given Purpose in Life's Troubles

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Chasing Francis-Ian Morgan Cron

What a wonderful combination of fiction, nonfiction,pilgrimage and teaching on Saint Francis.
Chase Falson is a pastor of a large evangelical church and has lost his faith, so he travels overseas to visit his Uncle who is a Franciscan priest. There he travels with his Uncle on a journey to follow the footsteps of St Francis and rediscovers his faith.
The author does such a wonderful job of describing the locations, places and the feelings of the travels that I feel as though I am actually there. And he really helps us like the main Character Chase from the beginning. As he travels he writes a journal that he shares with the reading which is very delightful. Also there is lots of history but you don't get bogged down in it because it is so well placed within the story.
Love this one!

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