Monthly Archives: June 2013

Thorns of an Innocent Soul by Barbara Watkins

Today I am reviewing Thorns of an Innocent Soul by Barbara Watkins.


thorns cover



Blurb: A young woman tormented by her own demons is torn between wanting to love her mother and a need to hate her. Growing up in an abusive environment, she loses her self-confidence and her self-respect. Determined to have the life she has always wanted with the only man to ever love her, she realizes the choices she makes could change her destiny forever. And that one horrific night will decide her fate. Can the pain she has endured and inflicted upon others ever be released? Or is her soul lost forever? Only she has the power to remove the thorns from her innocent soul.


My Review: This is a short novella that delivers quite a message. Being ready to accept the consequences of ones actions. Sounds easy doesn’t it. However when your life has been shaped from childhood by an abusive mother and an absent father, are you responsible for your actions or is the one who shaped you? This is a story of just such a young woman who can’t see her own actions as the same as the mother who abused her. To late she will discover that you and only you are responsible for your own life and the impact you have on others. This is not my usual style of book so a little out of my comfort zone. I would recommend it to fans of this genre. It is well written and well edited. I give this book 4 stars.





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Lessons From an Evil Mind by Shawna Stewart

Today I am reviewing Lessons from an Evil Mind by Shawna Stewart.



lessons from a evil mind cover Lue sits in the middle of the floor. Her hands tucked beneath her, her eyes closed and her head, faced down. The evil that haunts her is there and she knows she must sit completely still and await the punishment that is coming next. The room goes silent, with only sounds of his foot steps as he comes closer. Every part of body screams “RUN”, but she knows she does not dare. She must sit silently and await what comes next. A loud crack echoes. Her head seers in pain. Blood rushes down her pale white cheeks. The next lesson has begun.

Even when Lue escapes, she is never far from her captor. She finds her life in turmoil as the Evil that once haunted her refuses to set her free. Her existence becomes filled with Angels and Demons, both of which want her, unfortunate for her the Demon will do everything in his power to keep her as his.

My Review: This is truly an evil book, I say that in a good way. If you are a fan of horror type books this one is one to add to your TBR pile. The author does a great job of building the characters. You can feel the terror and despair that Lue experiences at the hand of her unknown captor and tormentor. Taken on her wedding day she is kept in a dank dungeon for three years injured and tormented with hunger and thirst at the whim of a mad man. I am talking Stephen King creepy. After she is able to finally escape her captor and is found by a man called Angel things get even more interesting quick. The reader soon figures out that something other worldly is going on. It ends up being a true battle between good and evil. The ending caught me quite by surprise and not necessarily in a good way. I won’t spoil it by saying more. Now for the bad part even though the story was great and told well I have to address the editing. I had great hopes when I started this the editing seemed to be done well till about half way through then left a lot to be desired the rest of the way. Lots of awkward sentences left out words and such. Continuity also fell short. I don’t know if more was added after the initial editing effort or what but it is a shame. It took what could have been a great read down quite a few levels. I will give the book three stars mainly for that. Still if you like this genre you won’t be disappointed in the story line.



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A Life Redefined by Tracy Hewitt Meyer

Today I have the pleasure of reviewing A Life Redefined by Tracy Hewitt Meyer.





Blurb: Seven years ago, an innocent act by Rowan Slone turned her life into a nightmare. Since the age of ten she’s lived with the burden of her baby brother’s death. Now she is seventeen and all she wants to do is graduate high school, go to college, and escape the loveless family she has endured all these years—the same family that holds her responsible for his death. But no one holds her responsible more than herself.

When long-time crush Mike Anderson invites her to the Prom, suddenly her future looks brighter. Rowan’s younger sister, Trina, however, is determined to ruin her new-found happiness, no matter the cost. And when Rowan discovers her mother’s long-held secret, she finds herself teetering on the edge of an abyss. Can Rowan find the strength to move toward the future or is she doomed to dwell in the past?

My Review: Wow where to begin. This is such a great young adult book. It touches on so many problems that can beset young people today. Dealing with the deep emotional scars Rowan manages to also show a strength and resiliency that we can only admire. Convinced that she caused the death of her baby bother when she was only ten she can only find relief from the guilt by cutting herself. Try as she might she still resorts to this behavior as her home life continues to unravel. We see a truly dysfunctional family where her mom is a compulsive over-eater unable to function in the role of mother as she deals with her own hidden guilt. A younger sister that ends up pregnant and a abusive and emotionally distant father who only feels trapped by his family. Rowan feels her only hope is do well in school and get out of the family as soon as she can.  The author does a great job bringing all of this to a boil in an unexpected twist. Kudos to her for a story well written. I, though far from the young adult age, really enjoyed this book and highly recommend it to anyone. I have no problem giving this book a 5 star review.



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Birth of a Nation by James Butler

Today I will review Birth of a Nation by James Butler.





Blurb: A group of friends create the opportunity to change history. They grab it with both hands, oblivious to what consequences altering time may bring.

George Brinton McClellan is ecstatic over his latest promotion. Charged with bringing the rebels in Virginia to heel, he prepares to meet the rabble with a well trained, disciplined army. What he doesn’t know is that events of the distant future are about to alter his life in ways he never expected.

Birth of a Nation is a story of change, warning of the dangers when one people try to impose their will on others. The year is 1861 and the American Civil War threatens to ravage a continent.

Can the band of friends from an uncertain future succeed in their quest, or is history doomed to repeat itself?


My Review: This book is an interesting concept. We have all wondered what would happen if history was changed. I was disappointed in this book however, in that they did go change history but gave no indication what would have been different other than the US was now two different countries. It was not explained how that would have changed the present day woes they disliked. It is not a foregone conclusion that the southern government would have turned out any better at governing than the northern one. I know the author tried to wrap up all of his characters at the end but I found it lacking in that. Nothing was ever explained very well about most of the peoples motivations or what they planned to do to make things better. I feel that too much was glossed over. I know it is a work of fiction but to think that a few people within a short time frame could find enough people to go back in time and leave all family and everything is a little far fetched to me. Nothing was addressed about kids and such. Editing was not to bad but could have been better. I give this book 3 stars.



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Submissions are on hold

Due to a very large TBR pile and a busy summer, I will not be taking any new submissions until fall. If I have already agreed to review your book, don’t worry I will still get to it.

Also, my submission guidelines have changed some. So if you have been thinking about submitting a book for review, please take a moment to go over those again to see if you think your book will be eligible for review on this blog in the fall.

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Black Hat (A Raven Children Story) by Kayla Al-Shamma-Jones

Today I will review Black Hat ( A Raven Children Story) by Kayla Al-Shamma-Jones.






Blurb: She sees him out of the corner of her eye. A tall pale man with dark soulless eyes in a black bowler hat. Wherever college student Maeve Schrader goes, he’s waiting for her, stalking her. And when she goes to sleep, she sees the horrific things that he wants to do to her in her nightmares. He wants to slice her open and eat her glistening insides, he wants to make her vomit an endless stream of blood, he wants to watch her skin crackle and burn under a rain of acid…

…he wants to punish her for being such a bad girl…

At first, she doesn’t run. She thinks the man is just a side effect from her roommate’s little orange study pills. She has to focus on her school work if she wants to avoid expulsion, after all, and her boyfriend and her mother would think she’s crazy if she told them about the black hat man.

But with every breath the black hat man is getting closer.

Soon there will be no escape.


My Review: This appears to be more of a girls descent into madness due to drug influence more than a horror story. The man in the black hat seems to only live in her troubled mind. I find it kind of sad. The editing was awful really needs to be worked on. A book that only takes a hour and a half to read can’t really be called a book. All in all I felt that it was a waste of my time. Again I encourage authors to get and edit before you put your work out there. If you don’t think it’s worth the time and money why will the reader think it’s worth their time to read it not to mention their hard earned money to buy it. Two stars is all I can give this book.



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The Geneva Project-Truth by Christina Benjamin

Today I am reviewing The Geneva Project-Truth by Christina Benjamin.




Blurb: Trapped on a flood ravaged island full of orphans, natives and wealthy citizens of the prosperous city Lux, a young girl named Geneva finds herself enslaved at an orphanage with no future and a past she can’t remember. That all changes when she meets someone who promises her that there’s more in store for her than she ever could have imagined. Her once dull life rapidly spirals out of control as she starts to acquire new magical powers that may be the key to unlocking an ancient legend along with her true identity. But first she must master these powers, all while trying to keep them secret from her friends and the evil head mistress at the orphanage. Before she knows it, Geneva is in over her head and has inadvertently wrapped her friends into her web of magic and lies and now all of their lives hang in the balance once the head mistress finds out her plan to prove that the legend of Lux may not be a legend at all! Who will Geneva trust and how far will she go to save her friends and find out her true identity?


My Review: I really enjoyed this book I felt it is quite a compelling read. The world the author creates is unique and yet very believable. I liked the idea of the orphans not named individually but all named either Jane for the girls and John for the boys only differentiated by numbers. The main character Jane 65 turns out to be the salvation of the island and is destined through magic to restore the people to an utopia type existence. Her journey of self discovery is the main plot of the story with enough twists and intrigue to keep the reader engaged. I think young readers and older ones alike would enjoy this story. I did feel as if the ending left you hanging a little I don’t know if there is a sequel or not but it could use a little more wrapping up of the story. I also think the author would benefit from a professional edit it would take the story to a higher level. I give this a 4 star.




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