by: Andrew Schloss
Review by: Stacy Palm
When I first glanced at the cover of this book I knew I must have it. I'm that person that loves to throw a party and wow the guests with my wide array of talents. I'm all about going above and beyond to have a spectacular end result. This amazing and beautifully produced book allows me to take my parties to a whole new level. The concept of infusing your own spirits and making liqueurs at home is awesome. If you are the type of person who truly enjoys serving an organic menu, you will be delighted with this book.
The book is detailed, artfully designed, and easy to navigate. I adore the time and energy that was spent to produce a book that I will gladly display in my kitchen. The recipes are straight forward and easily followed however they take some time to produce. This is not a book you want to grab the night before a party and figure out what you are serving. The recipes can take weeks to cultivate, but it's worth every ounce of effort.
I'm looking forward to serving some of these amazing drinks at our next family gathering. I believe some of these will become a family tradition, and can't wait to hear what friends and family have to say! This book releases November 5, 2013 and I cannot wait to purchase a copy for my kitchen library.
by: Marie Hall
Review by: Stacy Palm
If you enjoy steamy adult paranormal romance, you will enjoy this new series. I really enjoyed the newer concept that drives this book. The vamps are bad, the bad guys are really bad, even the "good" guys are bad! This is not a story for the faint of heart and certainly NOT meant for younger readers. There is some pretty taboo and down right demented twists in this story. I'm glad to say they are not presented in a good light - wrong is wrong and that is important when reading about disturbing topics. The story moves along quickly and seamlessly. This book is all popcorn and candy; leave your mind behind. If you're looking for escapist reading this is a good choice.
This book was a solid 3 stars because I felt a little let down in the character development department. Our leading lady is created fairly strongly, but I would've like to see more depth with the surrounding characters in the carnival. I understand not every detail can be crammed into book one, but I needed more to really sink my teeth into. With that being sad, I do believe this series is one that I and many others will continue to read when they are released because the setting is so unique and intriguing. I really am looking forward to reading more about the carnival and the characters that reside within.
by: Kat Falls
Reviewed by: Stacy Palm
Move over Katniss Everdeen, there's a new chic in town to save the day! This is one of my favorite new books that I've read this year. It's an amazing new young adult story that reminds me of a hybrid between The Hunger Games, World War Z, and the Island of Dr. Moreau. It's a dystopian society at it's best: powerful people you love to hate, desperate survivors trying to live, everyday people doing heroic acts to help others in need! Then add to that a cast of incredible and unique characters that are under fire and running out of time and it makes for the best read of 2013 in the young adult category.
Kat Falls has written a remarkable story that I believe will be very popular in the coming months. She moves the story along effortlessly and the reader just adsorbs her every word. The action starts right from the first page and doesn't let up till the dramatic ending. I laughed and cried with these characters as they experienced their trails and triumphs. This will be a very successful series, but I enjoyed the fact that this was an open and closed story. You are not left hanging for a conclusion although you can sense that there are other stories to be told. I appreciate that as a reader, I believe when purchasing a book you should have the sense that you read the complete story, not just part one.
I encourage you to seek out this book when it is released in September. It is truly a book for everyone young and old, boys and girls. Even though this book was provided to me by the publisher for review I will be purchasing it when it is available for my teens to read - it was that good!
by: Karen Brown
Reviewed by: Mark Palm
There has been a spate of thrillers written by women over the past few years, and while this is not as ubiquitous as zombies or sexy vampires, to my mind, at least, the results have been far better, "The Longings of Wayward Girls", by Karen Brown seems to be just such a book. Uneasily straddling the lines between thriller and mainstream novel, this book comes down a bit on the side of the latter. It is the story of Sadie Watkins, told in alternating chapters by Ms. Brown; her life as a thirteen year old in the past tense, and her life twenty years later. Both styles are fluently handled by Ms. Brown, full of telling and evocative description, but bogged down at times by a surfeit of detail.
Young Sadie, at thirteen craves adventure. Her and her best friend Betty steal their mother's cigarettes, lead the neighborhood girls in creating plays and go joyriding with older boys. One of their games however is tricking a lonely neighborhood girl into believing that she has a pen pal boyfriend and foreshadows a series of events that will so change all of their lives. The other Sadie, married with two children and a successful, if somewhat distant attorney has just lost her third child to a miscarriage, and seems to be lost and adrift, if not paralyzed with grief then frozen and emotionless. Ms. Brown deftly shows us Sadie's emptiness in a series of scenes where she seems like a ghost in search of a story. As the stories of Sadie's past and present continued to entwine, the present narrative snaps back to life in the last third of the book, as a swarm of revelations about Sadie 's mother's life, and death, and the disappearance of the girl that Sadie and Betty tricked, dovetail into a strong and powerful ending.
Ms. Brown is at her best in the chapter dealing with Sadie's early life. Sadie and her friends, and their mothers, all are vivid and believable characters, the story is strong and assured. The story of her adult life is more hit-and-miss. The life of Sadie and her friends, the entire suburban mothers and their daily lives are beautifully and carefully drawn. Ms. Brown's subtle prose seems unsuited to dealing with the surprising series of events that damage and destroy peoples’ lives. The shocking bombshells in the finale went off more like a roll of caps. Despite my misgivings about the middle section of the novel "The Longing of Wayward Girls" is a very good book. Few writers have done such a fine job at capturing the rhythms of everyday life, and then slowly twisting them so show the disturbing underbelly.
It is truly amazing how many quality books are coming out this month. I'm loaded down with reading material from several publishers and looking forward to spending time with each book they've sent me. By the end of the month I will have plenty of reviews and recommendations for you covering several genres including: children's fiction, several cooking/recipe books, paper craft books, teen paranormal romance, and adult literature. I ask for patience as I grasp this brave new technology in order to provide you with detailed information on each book. Many new and exciting things are around the corner and I'm so glad you chose to join me on this journey!
Some of the upcoming book reviews for this month: