Bradford Wheler’s Snappy Sayings-Wit & Wisdom from the World’s Greatest Minds

I received this book courtesy of Mr. Wheler for the purpose of a fair and honest review.

Overview: I’d like to say that this is anything more than a book of quotes. And it is, if you count the abridged biographies.

Story Telling: They’re quotes. What is there to tell?

Likes: I like how the quotes were separate into section to make finding quotes easier. And the biographies were interesting.

Dislikes: The sections: Sex, Marriage, Women, Children, and Religion, were a bit depressing. It was as if the quotes found stated the worst about each subject. And what version did Mr. Wheler use for Jesus’ quote? It wasn’t anything I have ever heard before.

Favorite Character: Normally it would be anyone of the Founding Fathers, but their quotes seemed to be taken out of context. As it is, I’ll take Mark Twain.

Favorite Quote: “No man has a good enough memory to be a successful liar.” Abraham Lincoln. Keep this in mind before you start it.

Conclusion: I wish some of these quotes weren’t taken out of context, as well as the fact that some of these people didn’t know the difference between love and lust. It’s a nice collection of quotes. I just prefer more. Hope you enjoy it.

William Wright’s Jailhouse Doc: A Doctor in the County Jail

I received this book courtesy of Dr. Wright for the purpose of a fair and honest review.

Overview: Dr. Wright has spent decades as an ear-specialist/neurosurgeon. When that got to be boring, he quit. After a few months he went to work for Colorado’s Department of Corrections. This is the story of his time at CJC.

Story Telling: Dr. Wright has an interesting writing style. He gives examples, and certain facts about prison life that a would-be felon should take note and then pick a different career.

Likes: He has quite a way with people. He could either be your best friend or your worst enemy. His ‘verbal aikido’ skills kept him out of some serious trouble at times.

Dislikes: While the Scandinavian ideals for prisons–that Dr. Wright seems to like, may work–but I prefer God’s answer better. Another dislike I had was Mary Cummins.

Favorite Character: My favorite person here was Carmelita. My bet is that she is probably small. (They seem to find the most unusual ways to defend themselves.)

Favorite Quote: My favorite quote is the poem by Mr. Piet Hein: “I see and I hear and I speak no evil; I carry no malice within my breast; yet quite without wishing a man to the Devil one may be permitted to hope for the best.”

Favorite Scene: My favorite part was the chapter on ‘Packing Heat.’ Perhaps Dr. Wright should pray that he never needs his gun.

Conclusion: This is a terrific book. One that most anyone can enjoy.

James Herriot’s Favorite Dog Stories

I received this book for a fair and honest review.

Overview: Dr. Herriot, one of Scotland’s premier veterinarians, has gathered ten of his favorite stories of the animal that encourage him to go into veterinarian medicine.

Story Telling: We have spoiled dogs in the form of Tricki Woo to the pseudo-family members such as: Brandy, Gyp, Hermann, and Jake.

Likes: Most of these stories didn’t drop into the medical-ese. They seem to be stories that the whole family can enjoy.

Dislikes: I don’t really have any dislikes here.

Favorite Scenes: My favorite stories were Hermann’s for the humanity element, Prince’s for the faith angle, and Tricki Woo’s for the humor angle.

Conclusion: This is an excellent book. Add it to your library if you like dog stories, or some stories that can restore a positive world-view. It made mine.

Carole P. Roman’s If You Were Me and Lived in Peru

I received this book courtesy of Mrs. Roman for the purpose of a fair and honest review.

Overview: Well, here we are with another book in Mrs. Roman’s Cultural Series. This time your child can see what all happens in Peru.

Story Telling: Mrs. Roman has included everything that made “Greece” such a great book. We have the dictionary and pronunciation help around the regional words.

Likes: There is a lot that the children can learn from here. Peru sounds like it might be a little crowded for my tastes.

Dislikes: The only issue I have was the reference to cuy. Parents should be prepared to explain this one if their child has a pet guinea pig.

Favorite Scene: I had no idea that Lima came from the Indian word for talker. Quite interesting.

Conclusion: Once again, this is another educational aide for those who want to broaden their children’s horizons.

Carole P. Roman’s If You Were Me and Lived in Greece

I received this book courtesy of Mrs. Roman for the purpose of a fair and honest review.

Overview: In this edition of Mrs. Roman’s Cultural series, children are invited to learn a little about Greece.

Story Telling: This book seems to be aimed at eight to ten-year-olds. The regional words are followed by their pronunciations. As well there is a basic dictionary at the back of the book. The illustration are both charming and invite the children to see if they can guess the answers to some of the questions.

Likes: I liked how Mrs. Roman seemed to want a conversation with her audience. She didn’t come to this book with the attitude of “see how smart I am.” It was more of a basics about Greece lesson.

Dislikes: There isn’t much to dislike about this book.

Favorite Scene: My favorite part of the book was the section on St. Basil. That was quite interesting.

Conclusion: This is not a story book. It doesn’t even pretend to be one. But it is an excellent book for home-schoolers as well as those parents who just want to challenge their children.

Steve Daley’s The Latin Version-A Jake Turner Novel 1

I received this book courtesy of Mr. Daley for the purpose of a fair and hones review.

Overview: Jake Turner is just a simple private investigator. At least that is what some of this clients think. Truthfully, he got into the private eye gig because he was done being a homicide detective. Finding missing people, catching cheaters is all easier if you didn’t have to deal with all of the red tape. Take his current cases for example. Someone is trying to blackmail a prominent judge. And a known criminal kingpin wants Jake to find one of his girls. What could possibly go wrong?

Story Telling: Mr. Daley has a strong, easy to read, style. I’d go so far as to say that it is almost conversational.

Likes: Jake is a rather straight guy. With his partner Tim Nolan, and their receptionist Martha Nye, he manages to keep the business moving smoothly. I so like the fact that Mr. Daley immortalized his loved ones in some of the best characters. Oh, I so felt for Jim. Who hasn’t just wanted to go to bed when duty call?

Dislike: The only think I didn’t care for here was the bad guys’ fates. It made sense with the story, but I just didn’t like it.

Favorite Scene: Well, there was Jim’s and Jake’s meetings for drink. Or when Jake tried to out drink his cashier friend. Oh, I know. It was when Jake kicked Tito into the pool, that surely was the best.

Conclusion: This was a excellent book. One that is a sure addition to any crime-lover’s library (at least the ones that like the mystery element). It made mine. Enjoy the read.

Dan Sharma’s The Illusion

I received this book courtesy of Mr. Sharma for the purpose of a fair and honest review.

Overview: Danny Joshi is a Buddhist living in a monastery. While helping a man with his meditation, Danny is reminded of his worst sins. In order to help Sid, Danny decides to share his story.

Story Telling: Structurally, the novel was well written. Mr. Sharma set a steady pace from the beginning to the end.

Likes: I liked the fact that there was a possibility for redemption in this book.

Dislikes: What I didn’t like was the fact that all of the upper members of society and business leaders were shown to be dirty and corrupted. They were shown to be eager to gain as much money as possible.

Favorite Scene: My favorite part was when Danny and Ahmud were reconciled.

Conclusion: I found “The Illusion” to be a novel that pushed a certain worldview. This is not the view that I hold. There are still those who won’t cut corners, and won’t take advantage of others. Not everyone will sale their souls, so I believe that there is still good in the world. Money may corrupt, but it won’t corrupt everyone. I hope you enjoy this novel.

Sands Hetherington’s Night Buddies Go Sky High-Night Buddies 3

I received this book courtesy of Mr. Hetherington for the purpose of a fair and honest review.

Overview: When John can’t sleep, his night buddy–Crosley–comes around with a ‘program.’ This time it’s to see what the strange object is, that has shown up in the night sky.

Story Telling: This seems to be a book more in line with a boy’s tastes. Sticklers beware. Mr. Hetherington writes his dialogue as it is supposed to sound. While this might be fun to read for some, it will drive others crazy.

Likes: It is an interesting idea. Having a friend come to you with an adventure when you can’t sleep would definitely help put you there. Crosley was quite interesting.

Dislikes: Remember my warning for sticklers? I’m one of them. It usually only comes out for my writing, but this book triggered it.

Favorite Scene: My favorite part was when John’s parents were having their discussion. Looks like Dad has been there before.

Conclusion: It’s really a good story. I just prefer verbal tics and accents to be implied rather than written.

R.E. Donald’s Slow Curve on the Coquihalla-Hunter Rayne Highway Mystery 1

I received this book for the purpose of a fair and honest review.

Overview: Hunter Rayne is an average trucker in Canada, with a not so secret past as a member of the RCMP. When a fellow trucker, Randy–owner and driver for Ranverdan Trucking–, is found dead at the bottom of the Coquihalla, Hunter’s boss asks that he look into it. He thinks that all he has to do is confirm that it was an accident. But how does someone have a single vehicle accident when they are as experienced and cautious as Randy, while only going ten miles an hour.

Story Telling: This was a slow read. The weather seemed to be a major character in the story, and it wasn’t even dangerous weather.

Likes: I liked the idea of a transient sleuth. Hunter and Randy seemed to be two great guys.

Dislikes: The story was two slow for my tastes. Add to that the fact that I liked very few of the main characters, and you get a bad match.

Favorite Scene: My favorite parts was when Hunter spent time with his family.

Conclusion: This was a good highway mystery story. It would have been better and stronger if Mrs. Donald had cut a hundred pages. Hope you’ll have better luck, with lots of time on your hands when you start this one.

Mark Sheldon’s Mores of the Maelstrom Volume 1

I received this book for a fair review.

Overview: It’s time for another collection of short stories. Mr. Sheldon has an offering of six stories. Without further ado, here we go.

The Second Chance

Overview: When Claire Hodges awakes in a waiting room, she is surprised to find herself so angry. But when a girl named Nemmy offers her a chance to remember what happened, Claire jumps on it.

Likes: This seemed to be a mystery with a twist. Was Claire murdered? Was it an accident? Does she have any one on her side?

Dislikes: I felt sorry for Claire. All of these immortals playing with her like a puppet on a string. It just wasn’t right. Eris was the worst, in my opinion. She knew Claire had been played. And chose badly.

Conclusion: I’m so glad that my beliefs in the afterlife are no where near this mean. It’s a good mystery, but God needs to fire all three of those immortal.

The Life of Death

Overview: Fable time! Let’s meet Mortimer, the daughter of Tuoni and Morrigan. She is a very unique child at a time when no one dies. Yet.

Likes: The names were quite funny at times. I enjoyed the fact that Tuoni didn’t throw Mortimer to her fate. That showed true love to my mind.

Dislikes: I hated Thomason. He so deserved what he got.

Conclusion: It was an interesting story. One that really does personify Death. The town shouldn’t have ticked her off.

The King of Lost Vegans

Overview: Oh my. Jonathan Sykes has volunteered to be cyro-genetically frozen for 2,000 years. Upon his awakening, he finds a new religion worshiping the Savior, the Round Hog, and Harem Day.

Likes: This was funny. And an interesting view of the future. Poor Jonathan. And he has no one to enjoy the joke with.

Conclusion: I’ve heard of linguistic shifts, but I don’t see how these religions ever got off of the ground. I do wonder if Tolkien was represented though.

A Letter to Mr. Barnabus Blathersby

Overview: Martin seems to be a kind man. He wanted to warn his friend of a contagion that is spreading around Virginia.

Likes: This is creepy. Anyone could be normal one minute, and psychotic the next. You really feel for Martin’s family, and end up wishing you were in the land of zombies. Then you’d know your fate.

Dislikes: I hated Susan’s fate. That was just cruel.

Conclusion: Definitely a different kind of mob story. They don’t have to be zombies to be deadly.

The Story of Bob

Overview: Poor Bob. He has a great job and a great home. Too bad he also has the boss from hell.

Likes: What a warning. Perhaps Bob should have leaked his evidence sooner.

Conclusion: Another David and Goliath tale, but Bob forgot God as his help.

You Did It Again

Overview: Um, this story doesn’t really make sense to me. What did Mary mean by ‘you did it again’?

Conclusion: This was the only story that I didn’t care much for.

Overall Conclusion: I like Mr. Sheldon’s story telling ability. Six stories and only one dud. This is so going into my library.