WEEKLY STATUS REPORT # 37

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This week I’m going to be quite brief in my weekly status report.

In addition to my late posting of Book Review #43, I read/reviewed an additional three books. This makes a total of 50 books [my target figure on Shelfari] that I’ve read this year. I’ve got to go back to edit/add information for the past several books I’ve read/reviewed. My reviewer ranking on Amazon is currently at 53,477. So any time you’ve really liked a review I did, I’d appreciate it if could go Amazon and say YES at the end of my review there.

Book Review #46 will be the last book review I’ll be writing this year. Next year I’m going to push the envelope by setting a goal of reading/reviewing 100 books; and I’ll be numbering my reviews to reflect the numbered book I’m reviewing and the year.

With my wonderful OH having finally retired on Friday; I don’t know yet how much of my schedule will be changing forever, but a realignment of what I do each day will be definite occur.

As far as my writing endeavors are concerned, I’ll be slowing down the rate of progress on all of them unless I begin to see an uptick in the sales of my books.

I want to take this time to wish everyone and your families a very HAPPY NEW YEAR as well as a prosperous and healthy one.

BOOK REVIEWS # 46 – OLD SOCK LEARNS ABOUT CHRISTMAS

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I received a copy of this book in a giveaway held by the author and the following is my honest review for it.

I found Melinda Kinsman a marvelous, innovative treat for its young readers, which I’d place between 5 – 8 years old; perhaps even 4 depending on the child. By giving human qualities to an inanimate object, in this case a sock; the author uses the child’s imagination to communicate the different things a child should know about  activities surrounding the Christmas holiday in an easy going manner. The author also kindly tells the child that everyone doesn’t celebrate the holiday, and that’s another holiday which comes around the same time, Chanukah [there’s several ways to spell this holiday] which are celebrated by children who are Jewish.

While the first portion of this beautifully illustrated book by the author herself deals with the items above the second portion goes on to tell its readers facts about Santa, what Christmas is all about, its traditions, etc. The third and final section of the book gives children and their parents several activities to enjoy which are all connected to the holiday in one way or another.

Given the above, I’m happy to give this 5 STARS.

US:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00PYBJFSS

UK:  http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00PYBJFSS

BOOK REVIEW # 45 – DREAMTIME MAN

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I received an autographed copy of this in a giveaway the author had, and the following is my honest opinion for the book.

The first thing one will notice about the story the author has created is that it has been written entirely in rhyme.  While it’s not like the entertaining Dr. Seuss books I remember as a child, it does expose its young readers to poetry.

The poetry helps to draw whoever reads the book into the history of the Australian Aborigines and the lives they led before the “invasion” of white settlers with their diseases and unfriendly ways towards Mother Earth, in a way plain writing never would.

Before they came, the Aborigines lived in harmony with nature.  Ms. Finke does a marvelous job in bring their struggle to survive in the modern day world while keeping their antiquity way of life alive. And to do so with as few words, makes it more amazing.

The glossary of Aussie words at the end of the book aids the reader in a better understanding of the story they’re reading. The illustrations, by Ioana Zdrelea vividly match the words it has been placed with.

This is why I’m not hesitating in giving this book the 5 STARS it so richly deserves.

US:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/1503276988

UK:  http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1503276988  

 

BOOK REVIEW # 44 – WHERE THERE IS LOVE

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I received a copy of this book in a giveaway on GoodReads. And this is my honest opinion for the book.

In “Where There Is Love,” Linda Becker takes her readers into the lives of three different women who each desire the simple pleasure of finding someone they can love for the rest of their lives. I believe Ms. Becker in making each of her female characters; Hannah, Helen and Julie real, made it possible to totally relate to at least one of them.

Just as in our lives, each character travels down a different path with real life-changing decisions having to be made along the way, including that of a heart-breaking decision to reject a marriage proposal where the mind won over the heart.

While some reviewers need to write about editing issues, I tend to read a book for the story it tells and how it is being told, which is what the vast majority of readers do. Instead of jumping from one story to another and back again, I’d like to have seen each of the different storylines made into three separate short stories, each with their own title; making for a better reading experience.

With all things considered, I’m giving this book 4 STARS.

US:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/0578142562

UK:  http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0578142562

 

BOOK REVIEW # 43 – HOW I CHANGED MY LIFE IN A YEAR

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The Christmas holiday crazies in over and I can finally get my daily routine back in order.

Here’s the book review I mentioned in my previous post I didn’t have time to post before. I now have three books I’ve read which I’m hopefully going to write the reviews for today.

How many of us are honestly willing to come out and admit we want to lose weight, get fit, beat the demons which are running our lives, and naturally find our sort of happiness? Basically, almost all of us have least one, and it doesn’t matter whether we’re a man or woman.

Since we can all now agree these issues do exist, but how many of us willing admit we’ve got these issues, and to do so publically and in writing? Not many. This is why we as individuals and as possible readers of this book need to thank Shelley Wilson for having the courage to do precisely that, and to do so in an amusing and inviting manner.

While some of us might have already read her suggestions elsewhere, some of us haven’t. The unfortunate thing about the book is that most of the website links she gives her readers are located in the U.K., which is where the author lives.

Aside from the inconvenience of the links being in the U.K.”, How I Changed My Life In a Year can prove to be quite helpful in helping us [man/woman] to lose weight and get a healthier body. And given I’m old enough to be her parent; I’m looking at trying some of her suggestions myself.

After negating the link problem I’ve mentioned, I’m giving this 4 STARS.

UK:  http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00KAAUE88

US:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00KAAUE88  

WEEKLY STATUS REPORT # 36

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On Sunday I finally got around to posting three book reviews I had already posted on my four usual book sites here on my blog, and I still have one to post here [Book Review # 43]. For some reason I had to rewrite my original review several times before it would be accepted by Amazon’s computer screening process.

Besides reading/reviewing these four books, I’ve been involved with several personal matters I’ve been delaying and delaying. Yes, authors do have lives outside of being a struggling author.

With these things finally out of the way I got involved with promoting my two books, as well as giving my share of supporting to the support group I belong to. This is the reason why my weekly status report is late in getting posting.

For the rest of the week I’m looking at reading/reviewing the children’s book [real paperbacks] I’ve got piled in the work area of my apartment.

With my wonderful OH finally retiring, I don’t know yet how much of my schedule will be changing forever, but a realignment will be definite occurrence.

I hope everyone who will be celebrating their holiday will have a wonderful one with their family and friends.

BOOK REVIEW #42 – PRAYERS FROM CROOKED SPINES

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Since becoming a Book Reviewer at the end of August of this year I’ve become interested and have enjoyed increasing the genres I’ve reviewed. When I saw this book being offered as a giveaway on GoodReads.com I looked at it as a possibility of adding another genre to my list. Needless to say I feel lucky to have won one of the signed copies being, and the following is my honest opinion of what I’ve read.

By reading the back cover we learn that the author as a child had been raised on the streets of New York City. Having been born and raised there myself, I also have memories which are still present and lingering in the back reaches of my mind. It is this same sort of memories the author, Angel Zapata, has transcribed onto paper and into this book.

As I read the various poems in his book I sensed a child’s mind at work as Angel recalls his personal family experiences as a child, as well as the sights and smells around him. Sights and sounds many of us raised in a large city might have also experienced.

For example in his poem Dissonant Chairs, I can remember seeing the grow-ups [old women] sitting on their folding chairs around the front stoop of the building I lived in, who at times looked at us children with nothing more than disdain; and we wondered what we’ve done to have elicit it.

The author seems to have then taken these childhood experiences and added an adult spin to them. For the emotions this book has evoked I’m glad to give it 5 STARS.

US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00NNW50Y

UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00NNW50Y8

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