Sunday, 22 July 2018

Review; Smoke & Mirrors by Michael Faudet

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As I've read his previous two poetry collections, I couldn't resist Smoke & Mirrors by Michael Faudet. Today I'll post my review of this third poetry collection.

Description from Goodreads
Smoke & Mirrors is the third book from internationally bestselling poet Michael Faudet, author of Bitter Sweet Love and Dirty Pretty Things—both finalists in the 2016 and 2015 Goodreads Readers Choice Awards.

Michael Faudet’s latest book takes the reader on an emotionally charged journey, exploring the joys of falling madly in love and the melancholy world of the brokenhearted. Beautifully captured in poetry, prose, and short stories, Faudet's whimsical and sometimes erotic writing has captured the hearts and minds of thousands of readers from around the world.


My Thoughts On The Book
Even though it is a bit repetitive of the previous two collections, I still love the writing style he has. Another thing that I like is that some of the poetry is a bit universal, so that "everyone" can enjoy it.

Saturday, 21 July 2018

Great Summer Reads Countdown Blitz; The Secret of the Sacret Scarab by Fiona Ingram




I am a children’s author, but up until a few years ago, I was a journalist and editor. Something rather unexpected sparked my new career as an author—a family trip to Egypt with my mother and two young nephews. We had a great time and I thought I’d write them a short story as a different kind of souvenir…. Well, one book and a planned book series later, I had changed careers. I have now published Book 3 (The Temple of the Crystal Timekeeper) in my MG adventure series Chronicles of the Stone, with many awards for the first book, The Secret of the Sacred Scarab, and a few for Book 2, The Search for the Stone of Excalibur, and one already for Book 3! I also teach online novel writing for aspiring authors and I find that very satisfying. Relaxation time finds me enjoying something creative or artistic, music, books, theatre or ballet. I love doing research for my book series. I love animals and have written two animal rescue stories. I have two adorable (naughty) little dogs called Chloe and Pumpkin, and a beautiful black cat called Bertie.





In this exciting Middle Grade adventure set in Egypt, a 5000-year-old mystery comes to life. A scruffy peddler gives Adam and Justin Sinclair an old Egyptian scarab on their very first day in Egypt. Only when the evil Dr. Faisal Khalid shows a particular interest in the cousins and their scarab, do the boys realise they are in terrible danger. Dr. Khalid wants the relic at all costs. Justin and Adam embark upon the adventure of a lifetime, taking them down the Nile and across the harsh desert in their search for the legendary tomb of the Scarab King, an ancient Egyptian ruler. They are plunged into a whirlpool of hazardous and mysterious events when Dr. Khalid kidnaps them. They learn more about the ancient Seven Stones of Power and the mysterious Shemsu-Hor. They must translate the hieroglyphic clues on the underside of the scarab, as well as rescue the missing archaeologist James Kinnaird, and their friend, the Egyptologist Ebrahim Faza, before time runs out!





Author Interview:

1.     What is your favorite book that is not yours?
That’s such a hard question that I can’t answer it. I have a number of favourites in a variety of genres. I keep rereading them. That worries me a bit… I am busy rereading an old favourite by Michael Crichton, titled Prey.
2.     Do you write in multiple genres? Which genre is your favorite to write?
I have a lot of fun writing Regency romances (historical) under a pseudonym, Arabella Sheraton. Arabella is not just a pseudonym; she has emerged as her own personality (also a bit worrying) and is a very prolific writer (8 books!) – more so than ordinary old me. She has had umpteen interviews and I am obliged to do all her marketing. Arabella’s books are a lot of fun – romantic romps, lots of witty repartee and many extraordinary capers that heroes and heroines of yesteryear are involved with.
3.     When did you write your first book and how young were you?
Apart from writing nonsense poetry for family members and short stories when I was a kid, my first real book was The Secret of the Sacred Scarab and how I wish I had started it years earlier ... but my nephews wouldn’t have been born and they wouldn’t have been there to inspire me.
4.     If you could meet any author, past or present, who would it be and why?
Terry Pratchett, the author of The Discworld series. I have read them all, many times, and his creativity never ceases to inspire and amaze me. Plus, his subtle dry wit is also hilarious. He was a great observer of human behavior. I was devastated when he passed away. The world has lost a great writer.
5.     How long does it take you to write a book, and what was your fastest book to write?
My first book/s (including Arabella’s) took a couple of years. Now I am better at organizing my research and writing so a Middle Grade adventure takes about 18 months, with research and editing etc., and a Regency romance takes about 8 months. My fastest MG book was my most recent one The Temple of the Crystal Timekeeper. My fastest Regency romance was Married at Midnight.
6.     What is your favorite thing to do in the summertime?

I like to enjoy the sunshine, the good weather, the feeling of being relaxed, sitting on the patio with something cold and delicious to drink, and a book, of course!






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Friday, 20 July 2018

Book Blogger Hop; Proudest Blogging Milestone/Achievement

It's Friday, which means it's time for a new Book Blogger Hop post, courtesy of Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. The question of the week was "what's your proudest blogging milestone or achievement?".

For me, it's probably that I've been book blogging for six years this month. I can admit that there has been moments throughout those years that I've been really close to giving up, but I still kept going.

Thursday, 19 July 2018

Great Summer Reads Countdown Blitz; Relics of the Divine by Stephen R. Watts




Stephen R. Watts was born and raised at the foot of the Wasatch Mountains in Northern Utah, where he developed a love for stories at a very young age. Having spent his adolescence creating alternate worlds where he could escape the hardships of mental illness, Stephen wanted nothing more than to grow up and write his own epic tales capable of entertaining readers in ways that reminds them of their untold worth. Stephen’s debut novel was a fourteen-year labor of love, and when he isn’t studying story craft he can be found traveling the world or spending quality time with his family in Salt Lake City.






When sixteen-year-old Harius is chosen to guard a mystic key and sword, he’s sure there’s been some mistake. Protecting the divine relics requires the celestial flame, a power that only mystic warriors can wield. And while Harius is training to become such a warrior, he’s lacked the faith needed to access the flame ever since his mother’s tragic death.

Despite his doubts, Harius accepts the calling at a time when evil forces threaten to destabilize his world. As the son of his nation’s most controversial leader, Harius soon becomes a delegate to a foreign land filled with technological marvels capable of saving his ancient race of winged men. Acquiring the necessary tech won’t be easy, though, as the king of this land won’t share it unless Harius uses the celestial flame to rescue the royal family from a foe out to conquer the realm.

With so much resting on his fragile faith, Harius fears he will ultimately fail. Yet, amid all the danger he will learn that the relics he guards hold the secret to not only restoring his faith, but to revealing his untold destiny.




Author Interview:

1)     What is your favorite book that is not yours?

“The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak. The author’s narrative style and unique point of view of one of history’s most savage wars provided a fascinating look at human existence, reminding me as the reader that it’s not where you come from, but who you are as an individual that defines the quality of your character.

2)     Do you write in multiple genres? Which genre is your favorite to write?

Since the only books I’ve written so far have been for an epic fantasy series, I will have to say that this is my favorite genre to write. I do love science fiction, though, and wish to one day try my had at writing a sci-fi trilogy I’ve been playing around with for a while now.

3)     How young were you when you started writing?

I would say that I first tried my hand at writing novels when I was in middle school, though I’ve never finished any of those books. As far as creating stories, though, I can recall imagining a slew of epic tales as far back as the second grade.

4)     If you could meet any author, past or present, who would it be and why?

Of all my favorite authors, I would say I would want to meet Charles Dickens above all others. His novels, such as “A Christmas Carol,” are rich with symbolism that speaks about humanity in ways that transcends the time period in which it was written—and that is something I’ve aspired to achieve in my own writing.

5)     How long does it take you to write a book, and what was your fastest book to write?

As far as rough drafts  go, the fastest I’ve ever written a book was a month. It was during an advanced fiction writing course I took in college, in which the professor had me and my peers simply write the book without editing it. The manuscript I churned out for that course turned out to be my debut novel, which took six years and many revisions to get it ready for press. (Don’t ask me how many revisions it took, for I stopped counting after fifteen.)

6)     What is your favorite thing to do in the summertime?


Road trips/travel. I love visiting new places I’ve never been before, and when I can afford it I will take entire weeks out of my schedule to go on a trip that not only feeds my need for adventure, but also provides me with experiences that help me improve my stories.





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Wednesday, 18 July 2018

My Favourite... Thing To Do First Thing In The Morning

It's Wednesday and time for a new My Favourite... post, courtesy of Maureen's Books. The theme of the week is favourite thing to do first thing in the morning.


My favourite two things to do first thing in the morning includes fixing my self a big mug of coffee and light a cigarette. Yes, I am fully aware that smoking cigarettes are bad for me, but at least I admit it. As long as I can have my coffee and cigarettes in peace in the morning, I'm pretty happy, especially considering I am NOT present in the morning, so I need my caffeine in order to wake up.

Tuesday, 17 July 2018

Top Ten Tuesday; Favourite Novellas/Short Stories

It's Tuesday and time for a new Top Ten Tuesday post, courtesy of That Artsy Reader Girl. The theme of the week was top ten favourite novellas/short stories.

Here are my top ten picks;

Train Dreams by Denis Johnson

Cinnamon by Samar Yazbek

Animal Farm by George Orwell

The Kill Crew by Joseph D'Lacey

The Haunting of Dr. Bowen by C. A. Verstraete

The Red Shoes by Laura Erwin

The Cryptic Lines by Richard Storry

The Fall of the House of Usher by Edgar Allan Poe

The Yellow Wall-Paper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

Pains and Penalties (A Geeks and Things Cozy Mystery Novella) by Sarah Biglow