Category Archives: Book Reviews

Follow the reviews I make on some of the books I’ve read

Author Brian Freeman liked Our Review on Immoral!

As I have always stated before, I do not like authors who do not connect with the readers. And this is exactly the reason why I love Brian Freeman as an author. So, one of our favorite books happens to be Immoral by Brian Freeman; it’s the first in the series collection of Detective Jonathan Stride.

We recently did a review on Immoral and posted it to our Twitter page, and that very same day Author Brian Freeman and his lovely wife read our review and liked our post. I was more than humbled when he took the time to retweeted it.

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We wanted to bring this to our readers and thank the author for engaging with me. I’m a firm believer in engaging with our readers and bringing you updates on everything that goes on with us, because in the end, reading is a time consuming activity, and those who choose to do this rather than watching TV (which would be easier) deserve to be a part of the stories they help bring to life. Without readers, there would be no one to write for. Thanks for being a part of my journey!

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Book Review: Immoral by Brian Freeman

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A difficult relationship between a deviously malicious teenage daughter and her mother center this book, and the relationships she harbors and spirits she destroys jerk your mind into having real opinions about these people. The book will take you across the country and join everyone into a web of crazy truths that will leave you saying “No F****ng Way” page after page! You’ll look forward to following rugged Jonathan Stride through his torn life of solving crimes and balancing love, while at the same time, becoming immersed in the lived of these characters, which are described very much like real-life personalities.

I don’t like to rush through books; I savor them, as i did with this book, which I spent a summer reading, and it was a very enjoyable time. I looked forward to reading this book at the end of each day, eager to know about the mysteries that awaited. Brian Freeman did a hell of a job employing twists and turns without confusing the reader, and his ability to intertwine these characters was immaculate.

This book was a great addition to my library. I am not much of a mystery person, but this book made it into my library.

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©C.J. Leger February 28, 2015

Book Review: The Giver by Lois Lowry

This is, by far, one of the best and thought-provoking books in the young-adult and fiction genre. There are a plethora of books published about perfect worlds and societies, where change is unacceptable and cookie-cutter human beings have become part of forced living communities, as a result of the leadership’s fear of human will and their determination to right the wrong courses society had taken in the past. The giver is one of them, but unlike the many that surround it, it stands out as one of my top picks for meaningful and thought-provoking books appropriate for young adults and the young-adult genre.

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The book is centered around Jonas, a young boy who lives within a community of perfect individuals and families, void of sickness and differences, where, although, it is all they know, society is not actually what it seems.

Jonas’ curiosity throws him in the path of his mother and the chief elder, which spirals his life into a bubble of questions, revelations, and a thought-provoking analysis of his community and his life.

Once meeting The Giver, an older man who lives outside of the realm of Jonas’ community, he is faced with the reality of the “perfect” society in which he lives and is enlightened to the realm of possibilities that exist outside of the rules set in place by the elder community.

The Giver, which is the holder of all the memories associated with the community, walks a fine line between accepting his responsibility as the keeper of all these memories, advising the elders on their decisions, and exploring the possibility that maybe these memories are rightfully belonging to the members of this censored community.

I recommend this book to all individuals aged 12 and older, and for more context, I would recommend also watching the movie after you’ve read the book, as it does cast some critically acclaimed and academy award winning actors as well. This is my review on The Giver, and you can find this review posted on my LeafMarks, BookLikes, GoodReads, and BookBlogging profiles soon.

ISBN-10 0544336267
ISBN-13 978-0544336261
Buy on Amazon
Buy on Barnes & Noble

BOOK REVIEW BY @COLLEENCHESEBRO OF “SILVER LIGHTNING” @AUTHORWDARLING

Lit World Interviews

wendy anne darling

Title: Silver Lightning

Author: Wendy Anne Darling

ISBN 13: 978-1502418937

ASIN: B00O2AZLP8

Website: https://wendyannedarling.wordpress.com/

Pages: 189

Genre: YA, Children’sFantasy, Children’s Literature, Young Adult (8-15), Children’s Adventure

*A copy of this book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review, which follows.

One night, Alex Bascolme awakened from a dream, so real that he could smell the salt in the air from the ocean along the California coast. He could even feel the sand squishing between his toes, as if he stood on the beach that night. The strange dreams continued after that first night, leaving Alex to wonder what they could mean for him. When Alex’s Father was laid-off from work, Alex and his family moved from Colorado to California; the dreams apparently foretelling his true destiny.

Once in California, Alex meets a new friend named Logan, and the two boys find a magical motorcycle…

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Current Read Prepublication: Rome’s Revolution by Richard Alston

Currently, we have onboard:

Rome’s Revolution 

Death of the Republic & Birth of the Empire

by Richard Alston

Publisher: Oxford University Press

I have the prepublication uncorrected copy, which I will be reading and posting a review about here and on NetGalley. The book is set for publication in June of this year. Stay tuned.

5 Classic Books Everyone Should Read

Books are a constant in my life. They are source of knowledge that can serve to teach generations for centuries to come. While some books seem to be a very entertaining past time for a specific timeframe, other books make it into the realm of timelessness, becoming classics forever.

I’ve always felt that all avid readers should invest into creating their own library. It’s okay to purchase books and resell them when you’re done reading them, but there are some classic books that should make it into a permanent slot in your library. Here’s my list:

1. Dracula Unabridged by Bram Stoker

dracula-book-coverThis book remains at the top of my list as one of my favorites. It’s a book thats been with me almost my entire life and was written by Bram Stoker, who changed the idea of reading for an entire generation, and brought imaginary fear into the hearts of the people of England. Creating an unforgettable character, Dracula has been remade, remembered, and heralded for decades.

Centered in England, this book takes you through the lives and diaries of four young and in love characters,

  • Jonathan Harker
  • Mina Murray
  • Lucy Westenra
  • Dr. John Seward

Through their stories the reader is engulfed by a world of obsession, determination, love and fear, as they attempt to take their lives back from a supernatural monster.

2. The Complete Works of William Shakespeare by William Shakespeare

shakespeare1As classic as classic gets, the complete works of William Shakespeare should be a staple in every library. His plays are timeless and show the sheer passion a writer can evoke when pouring out their heart onto a page. Shakespeare’s plays, while lacking in large, complex words, still manages to create complex feelings.

He seems the figure who’d only publish a finished copy if it was completely and totally written to the epitome of the literary version of a true feeling. In other words, if you could put an extreme feeling into words, which is often never, you’ll get something from out of the pages of his plays.

From King Henry VIII to Romeo and Juliet, his plays have brought to life stories that even today, continue to transpire within humankind.

3.  The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald 

Btr-Gatsby-CoverF. Scott Fitzgerald created a character that encompasses everything we want to be, inclusive of the demons we carry with us that often are the driving force behind the determined actions we take to achieve what we want, leave behind what we don’t, and the delusions we create to make ourselves believe its all okay.

J. Gatsby is a man who owns its all and shares it all because there’s only one thing in this world thats worth more than everything he has combined, a woman. Set in the roaring twenties when women dared to cut their hair and shed their layers of clothes, this book gives readers an inside look at a time when Americans were drowning in money that was available for the taking and shaping the “standards” of the future.

4. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

wuthering-heightsHow far would you go to love who you love? Emily Bronte’s story takes us through a story of the depths an orphan can be plunged into when there is no one to protect them or let them know of the riches their parents may have left them. It also brings to life the love that can grow and be shared by two children who grow up together, offering a kind soul to distract each other  from the abuses of life and the lengths a tortured orphan would go through to keep that love alive.

Heathcliff and Catherine’s love story is poisonous, unforgettable, and pure all at the same time. Set on the eerie moors of England, Bronte makes the setting cloudy and misty, creating a private viewing experience for the reader. This book becomes an intimate experience between the characters and the reader.

5. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

jane eyreThere isn’t much i can say about this book without offering spoilers, but its a classic portrayal of the inferiority a woman can feel in the presence of a man who has it all and shows interest and one point and indifference the next.

Jane arrives at Thornfield to play the role of governess to a child in the care of Mr. Rochester, the mysterious master of the home. The novel spans the lifetime of Jane, from her younger years as an orphan to her experiences and love affections at Thornfield.

These are my top 5 classic books and are based on my personal interests. Decide on your favorite authors, your lifestyle, your educational discipline and interests and you’ll soon come up with a grand library; from there you’ll be able to pick out those classic readings that may interest you. Not every classic book or classic author is for everyone. So dig, explore and read.

© C. J. Leger January 30, 2014

Current Read: Isabella the Warrior Queen

I read a lot of books, and I always try to bring you a review on whatever it is that I’m reading. Currently I have my eyes set on a book I’ve wanted for a very long time, “Isabella the Warrior Queen” by Kirstin Downey.

Retailing at $35, I’m hoping for this book to be everything I envision; a strong portrayal of a woman who steps into the role of a King and leads the greatest kingdom the world had ever seen.

I wanted to offer a bit of background history on this topic, as many individuals who enjoy reading about history, focus on England, Rome and Egypt. These are all favorite topics of mine, but I have a special place in my heart for Spain in its glory.

Check out the blog soon for my background explanation before I do a review on this book.

© C. J. Leger January 28, 2015

Video Book Review of World History by Philip Parker

Photo Courtesy of Amazon

Photo Courtesy of Amazon

Where do I start? I have been asking myself why no one has made a widely sold book that spans the entirety of our human history and explains it all. That was until I found, and fell in love with, Phillip Parker’s version, published in 2010 by Sterling Publishing.

Unlike most history books which only cover specific eras in great detail, this title brings us all the way back to the prehistoric age and covers the first ever recorded humanoid, Australopithecus; and travels down to Homo Habilis and Homo Erectus, before covering the well known Neanderthal.  The book spends less time detailing aspects of each era and can be used more like a timeline guide for history; speaking of which, the book does include a handy timeline conveniently placed at the commencement of the book and a reference guide towards the end; detailing every war, battle and ruler on respective tables.

In my personal opinion, this book is the perfect companion piece to any history text book used in college or high school. Most classes have a standard text book and a companion book to go with it; this book could eliminate all other companion books used for history courses, as it covers every era and presents all the reference guides one would ever need.

However, I’d also recommend this book for those not currently enrolled in a course, and seems to be the perfect alternative for someone who is interested in history, would like to know how and when certain things happened, but doesn’t want to spend too much time figuring it out.

On average, the book spends 1-4 pages on each civilization which is divided into 3 sections for each historical occurrence for that time period. But as the book is a reference for the whole of human history, it covers each culture various times throughout, as the centuries progress. It is divided into 7 main chapters that begin with the prehistoric world and ends in the modern world.

An example of its breakdown is seen clearer in the chapter labeled “The Classical World” which spans between 400 BCE to 600 CE, in which Celtic and Germanic Europe, India and The People of Steppes are all covered in 6 pages as follows:

Celtic and Germanic Europe 

  • The Celts’
  • Successor States to Rome

People of Steppes

  • The Scythians
  • The Huns
  • The Kushans

India

  • Chandragupta and the Rise of the Mauryans
  • Ashoka and Buddhism
  • Gupta India

Before entering into a periodical, 2 page centerfold examination of other interesting occurrences or relevant information, not directly covered in the book. There are a few of these that give the reader a bit more reference to understand what they are reading. This book is perfect for the person looking to get their information and go; all of these events were covered in just 8 pages and gave me the meat and potatoes of what I wanted and needed to know.

It covers the discovery of the Americas, all it’s voyages and details the great navigators of the time. Later on the modern world is covered, including the current world wars and conflicts. Everything you would ever want to know, about any time in history, is covered in this convenient 512 page book, that is small enough to fit in any small bag or purse.

The book comes complete with visual guides, pictures and captions relevant to the current text and opens with an explanation of what the meaning of history is.

Overall I would recommend this book, which I purchased at Barnes and Noble, and would recommend it as an essential companion piece to any history course.

Purchase the book at Barnes and Noble 
Purchase World History on Amazon
Purchase World History on AbeBooks
ISBN 9781435138957

Video Reviews

So, I’ve gotten a few emails regarding some of the books I have done reviews on. Some of my readers have asked for more in-depth reviews on why I feel that a book is a good choice or why I don’t like it, reference books in particular. So I’ll be doing video reviews on these reference books, so you can see what you’ll be getting before you buy.

Book Review: The Greek Myths by Robin Waterfield

the greek mtyhsAll who read my blog know I am a fan of reference books. My library is comprised mostly of them. The Greek Myths: Stories of the Greek Gods and Heroes Vividly Retold by Robin Waterfield is one of my favorite, giving us a lesson in historical Greek myths, retold as if the reader was sitting in front of an ancient story teller.

Different from most reference books, this one stands alone as story book as it is written in story form, and was written along side Kathryn Waterfield.

This will be a short review, if you are looking for knowledge about Greek Myths, as they would have been told in their original era, with complete tellings of the Gods starting with the Titans, all the way through to the heroes of Greece, this is the book for you.

Learn More About The Greek Myths Here
Buy on Amazon
Buy on B & N