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So, I Read This Book Today

Editing, Proofreading, Reviewing and Other Stuff

Month

March 2016

Let’s Go “Beyond The Ice Limit”

ice limitRemember The Ice Limit? One of my favorite Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child books, it was published back in January of 2000.

I didn’t have this site back then, so there is no review – yet – but I will get to it. I am editing right now or I would pull out my battered paperback copy and read it again and do a review, but edits come first!

The book ended in a Twilight Zone manner (Preston & Child compare it to one of their favorites How to Serve Man) and I have to agree with that concept. You were left with the denouement open ended. Not a ‘cliffhanger’ really, more of a “Make up your own ending to suit your personality and thoughts about the book” sort of thing. Personally, I would have compared it to the end of the last book of The Dark Tower cycle by Stephen King, but that is beside the point. The book was just darn Good.

Now, after fifteen years and, according to P&C, tens of thousands of beyondletters over that time period demanding a sequel, it is on its way! Beyond the Ice Limit is a Gideon Crew novel this time around, but that shouldn’t disturb the story:

Five years ago, the mysterious and inscrutable head of Effective Engineering Solutions, Eli Glinn, led a mission to recover a gigantic meteorite–the largest ever discovered–from a remote island off the coast of South America. The mission ended in disaster when their ship, the Rolvaag, foundered in a vicious storm in the Antarctic waters and broke apart, sinking-along with its unique cargo-to the ocean floor. One hundred and eight crew members perished, and Eli Glinn was left paralyzed. But this was not all. The tragedy revealed something truly terrifying: the meteorite they tried to retrieve was not, in fact, simply a rock. Instead, it was a complex organism from the deep reaches of space.

Of course, it is too expensive for my blood. . . and this is what happens when I work through the night and sleep all day. I am now number forty-seven on the list to read the book at my local library. Sigh. So, I wait. But when the edit of Michael Angel’s A Perjury of Owls (Book 4 of Fantasy and Forensics), (and yes, I am squeeeeing like a little girl at this one!), I will pull out Ice Limit and give it another read and review. Then, when I finally get my copy of Beyond, well, I can hardly wait! And from P&C’s email:

“Free eBook preview! Those of you wishing for a free eBook preview of the first eleven chapters of  BEYOND THE ICE LIMIT can get one by clicking on the following links:
And a special deal for those of you who have not read The Ice Limit: While we took pains to ensure BEYOND THE ICE LIMIT is a stand-alone novel, reading The Ice Limit first will surely enhance the pleasure of experiencing the new book. And to help make that happen, we’ve persuaded our publisher to discount to $2.99 all eBook editions of The Ice Limit during the two weeks leading up to BEYOND THE ICE LIMIT’s May 17 pub date (that is, May 2 to May 16). During that time, if you go to iBooks, Amazon, B&N, Kobo, or Google, you can pick up a copy of The Ice Limit at that special price.”
You can also order your copy from The Poisoned Pen, and for a limited number of books you will get a signed photo of “The Guys” as part of the package. I am not a collector of author ephemera, but if you are this is a first-time offer of signed photos from these two authors.
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The Tentmakers of Cairo

This is STUNNING… it is the man who quilts in Cairo. These are absolutely breathtaking!

I hope they are safe with the terrors occurring in Egypt.

(Edited) Well, it IS Pretty….

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Humm… I had tried to post from my tablet and thought it didn’t work, then I fell asleep and forgot about it! I just got up and checked my mail, and it seems the blizzard photo I attempted to post posted – even though I thought it didn’t. Pft. LOL! Of course, we ARE “The Mile High City” so I always find it rather ridiculous when the press starts running around in circles like a chicken with its head cut off when we get a bit of weather. Sissies! 😉 Besides, it was only just over a foot that fell – chump change!

But believe me, it was a Blizzard. Two inches an hour fell overnight and throughout the day. Pretty depressing, as I was sitting out in the sun reading just yesterday. Before the snow started falling, that is… As the giggly guy in this video says,

“The weatherman said it was supposed to be a dusting – A Dusting! – Do NOT go out in this!”

A New Hebby Roman! Esmeralda and the Second-Hand Suitor (Snowbirds Book 2)

I am Adelina Amouteru, the phantoms whispered to my father, speaking my most frightening thoughts in a chorus of voices, dripping with hatred. My hatred. I belong to no one. On this night, I swear to you that I will rise above everything you’ve ever taught me. I will become a force that this world has never known. I will come into such power that none will dare hurt me again.” ― Marie Lu, The Young Elites

Three years. That’s how long Esmeralda has before she loses half her worldly goods. But time is growing short on fulfilling the humiliating codicil in her father’s will, that Esmeralda find a husband or hand over half of her family’s grapefruit orchard to her drunken, and yes, male, cousin. The ‘son’ her father never had. Forty and single, shy and, yes, a 40-year-old virgin, Esmeralda was surrounded by gossips and grasping divorcées living on the farm, so she picked up stakes and moved to Brownsville, hoping to find a man to marry so she doesn’t have to give up her home. A man who will love her for her instead of her orchard and the natural gas wells on the property.

Determined to help, Esme’s neighbor sends her off to the local senior recreation center to meet the people there. And Esme does meet someone. Hank, a two-time divorcée from Wisconsin who lives in a Jayco at the beach. Older than Esme would have preferred, his lackluster approach to a work ethic and double divorce status makes him the antithesis of what Esme was looking for. But there is just something about him that draws her, no matter the work ethic her father pounded into her head and her Catholic upbringing that says anyone who is divorced twice is a two-time loser.

Esmeralda and the Second-Hand Suitor is the second book I have read by Hebby Roman. The first, Catalina and the Winter Texan charmed me, gifting a lightness to my heart I hadn’t known in a long time. Ms. Roman’s characters are of the over-40 set, with histories and years of baggage trailing behind them as they embark on new journeys to late-in-life love. It isn’t easy, not by any means. Blended families, histories often filled with pain, loss and betrayal, all these things make us who we are. Finding a way to fit those jagged edges together isn’t easy, and watching Esmeralda and Hank was both painful and uplifting. Esmeralda is filled with guilt over a childhood accident her father never forgave her for. Hank too wears guilt like a shroud from failures that both are, and are not, his fault. Watching their story made me laugh – and yes, cry – and I wouldn’t have missed it for the world.

Hebby Roman is one of my ‘heroine authors’ – an author who writes the truth in such a way that anyone, young or old, can grow and learn from her stories of life, loss and love. If you haven’t read her, you should.

I received Ms. Roman’s book from her in exchange for a realistic review. All thoughts are my own. Love ya, Hebby!

Review: Shift Happens – J.C. McKenzie #Paranormal

Shift Happens“Life will break you. Nobody can protect you from that, and living alone won’t either, for solitude will also break you with its yearning. You have to love. You have to feel. It is the reason you are here on earth. You are here to risk your heart. You are here to be swallowed up. And when it happens that you are broken, or betrayed, or left, or hurt, or death brushes near, let yourself sit by an apple tree and listen to the apples falling all around you in heaps, wasting their sweetness. Tell yourself you tasted as many as you could.” ― Louise Erdrich, “The Painted Drum”

It was supposed to be a simple job. Go in, kill, get out. Only, the odd thing is, the Supernatural Regulatory Division doesn’t normally send an assassin after a norm. It’s just not done. But, the job is to get in, get it done, get out, no questions asked. So, that is what she does. Only, when werewolves breaks into the room while Andy is carrying out her assignment, she knows something is strange. Then things get really interesting, in the Chinese, “May you live in ‘interesting’ times” sort of interesting.

 “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy. —William Shakespeare, Hamlet, act 1, scene 5”

In this case, there are many things going on in Andy’s world – things that could very well cost Andy her life. Surprise. The ‘norm’ Andy was sent to eliminate happens to be the human servant of the Master Vampire of the Lower Mainland. And though he still lives (even after getting his throat torn out by Andy’s mountain lion) the MV, Lucien Delgatto, is pissed. And if Andy doesn’t find out who put the hit out on Clint, the servant, well, she will find herself Clint’s plaything. The plaything of a sadistic monster.

This is a good paranormal. Lots of thrills and action, and a strong female character who has been through horrors in her life and still remains strong, though broken. There is, of course, the romance between Andy and Wick, the werewolf alpha. But though the romance is there, I give the author kudos for realistically managing the feelings and actions of a woman suffering from PTSD after horrific sexual, psychological and physical abuse. She wants to get past it, but there is no magical ‘I’m all better, let’s bang’ scenario, which I greatly respect the author for. Wick, though, didn’t gain my respect. He and his pack are in a difficult situation, I understand that, but given the situation Andy is in, I found his constant attempts to eat up her time with sexual advances and ‘snuggles’ in his bed rather unbelievable at best. At worst? Controlling and self-centered to a rather creepy level – Andy doesn’t make her deadline, Andy better kill herself before Clint gets his hands on her. To say I was a bit put-out with him is an understatement.

I received this book from the publisher through Reading Alley in exchange for a realistic review. I noted on Amazon that this is the first in a four book series, so the rather unfulfilling ending is somewhat explained. The potential triangle at the end made me cringe – that particular trope is a weak author’s crutch, but appeals to a certain demographic, so I expect it will continue in the next books. As usual, I didn’t read the blurbs for the next books before my review so I don’t skew the review for the book I have actually read. Amazon indicates, “This is a new release of a previously published edition.” I take it that means the book was reedited, but if so, whoever completed the edit did a poor job. The book is riddled with editorial errors. The world building is interesting, but contained confusing logic errors and a lack of clarity were irritating given the potential of a rather unusual and interesting overall concept. Both of these issues caused the loss of a full star. I did mistakenly think that this was a British writer writing a book set in the Northwest (Again. Groan.) However, this is a Canadian author, so the “Brit spellings” issue is actually “Canadian spelling” so keep that in mind when you read. Being set in Vancouver, it makes perfect sense. Overall, the book is different enough to be interesting, and I hope that the author grows her talents over the series.

 

Blood Red Blind 2

The Mind of RD REVILO

  • Gary’s Got A Gun
  • He neededto kill someone
  • Spells got stronger and stronger
  • Lasting longer and longer
  • Anti-depressants only depressed
  • Thinking led todrinking, and stressed
  • Memories, attacked like a disease
  • Praying wore out his knees
  • He hadto kill someone
  • It became very scary
  • He grabbed his gun
  • And killed Gary…R.D.Revilo

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Whole Countries Who Despise Women – Though They Wouldn’t Exist Without Us

LPut yourself in her shoes | the human provinceet’s face it. Men, overall, absolutely despise women. They fear us, hate us, would just as soon see us tied up in a basement to be raped and abused, then forgotten until the next time they need to get off. Or get their food made. Oh, not all of them, certainly. There are men who follow this site who are wonderful, caring gentlemen. But the good ones? The good ones are so very, very few. As Foreign Affairs Reporter for the Toronto Star put it in her March 8, 2008 article, “These things are universal,” says Taina Bien-Aime, executive director of New York-based Equality Now. “There is not one single country where women can feel absolutely safe.”

Yes, the Middle East is a horror story for women, no matter their cast. But watching the first Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders  reminds me that, no matter how bad the treatment of women in the Middle East is, they aren’t the only guilty country. Hatred of women is worldwide. Women and children are not safe. Not in Thailand, where the first show is set (let’s face it, I have always thought Gary Sinise is a great actor. I am excited to watch this show develop. I just hope it lasts longer than Suspect Behavior. I really like Forest Whitaker as well – and Kirsten Vangsness as Penelope Garcia had a cameo on each of those as well…. I want to be Penelope in my next life) Horiffic Abuse Of Little Children In Middle East |

OK, off the point. It isn’t just “foreign” countries that hate women. American men are just as bad. Sex slavery is rampant here, with American women and children being victimized just as much as foreign women. Websites brag about how happy American men are with their  “submissive,” “malleable” foreign mail order brides, who can be treated any way the males want without fear of being punished for their brutality. No standing up for themselves or having personalities of their own like American women.

Women carry you in their wombs. They bear you for nine months, withstand the wear and tear of feeding your growing bodies within their own, and suffer the excruciating pain of childbirth. They raise you, feed you from their body and soul. And how is that love returned? With hate, brutality, torture, rape, murder. All that love, and this is what women have to look forward to.

I really believe that, until men learn to love and respect women, to love their children and wish to protect them and the women who bore them above all else, we will never settle as a species. We will never be able to live with one another on this tiny blue planet without totally destroying ourselves and the world we live on. Someone asked  me why I read so much Paranormal Romance these days, and why the particular authors I read. Honestly? There is so much evil in the world, it is refreshing to the mind and the soul to sit down with a good PR, where the men and women are both strong in their own right. Where men are what I consider to be real men, who not only love women, but respect them as well. Who will die rather than injure a child. And who realize that, yes, they may be physically stronger than women and children – but that their strength can be tempered with love and protection without being considered weak. Instead, their love and protection of those who depend on them makes them stronger in mind, body and soul.

 

Review: Boarlander Boss Bear (Boarlander Bears Book 1) – T.S. Joyce

Boarlander Boss Bear (Boarlander Bears, #1)The Boarlanders get their series now, and this first one is, well, a hoot. You see, Audrey only Thinks she met Harrison Lang, Alpha of the Boarlanders, online. She only Thinks they have a great online relationship.But when she meets Harrison for real, it seems Harrison has no idea who this crazy woman who claims to know him intimately is. Huhh? Bangaboarlander.com is, apparently, a fake site. Really? Oh, the embarrassment!

It is great getting to know the Boarlanders. We know of them because of the previous series introductions, but now we get the down and dirty. This is the C team – thanks mostly to Clinton, the nasty little turd. But at least we get to know a bit more about Clinton in this book, and I look forward to learning more about just what his nasty attitude stems from. And Audrey? I really Love Audrey! She is a shifter herself, but has never been around any other shifters. Watching her come out of her shell is awesome.

More of Damon’s Mountain is cool. Joyce’s Damon tales are up-and-down, but this one is more ‘up’ than down. I look forward to more of the Boarlanders – that is, if Clinton doesn’t run them off first!

The General’s Daughter – Paramount, 1999

The General's Daughter PosterThere’s the right way, the wrong way, and the Army way.

Horrifying. Sickening. The General’s Daughter  is all that and more. This may be a John Travolta flick, (read, normally lighthearted and slightly goofy) but this movie is gut-wrenching. We listen to reports of the treatment women face in the military every day. But this movie is a devastating example of exactly how brutal, how disgusting, the treatment of women by their military peers truly can be.

Warr. Off. Paul Brenner (played by Travolta) meets Captain Campbell one night when he has a flat tire and she stops to loan him a tire iron. She is gorgeous, brilliant, and works for Psy Ops. The next time he sees her, she is staked out on the ground, naked, brutalized, raped and murdered.

But this isn’t the first time horror has struck Captain Campbell.

Seven years ago, the General’s Daughter, Captain Elizabeth Campbell, was on a huge night-time field op. A field op where Elizabeth was taken down, stripped, staked out on the ground, and raped nearly to death. Found barely alive the next day, she is treated for STDs, pregnancy, and a body nearly crushed from the beatings and rapes she suffered at the hands of a gang of those she should have felt safe with – her own colleagues.

The Army’s response?

“Better one unreported and one unvindicated rape than to shake the foundations of West Point.”

Yeah. That. We now know that these things happen, and they still happen, whether we know it or not. These male soldiers, the ones who claim to fight to protect us all, including women, are the very ones who commit atrocities of the most horrific kind. And feel justified in doing so.

Cowards.

If you haven’t seen the movie, it is on Amazon Prime.

I highly recommend it. It has good reviews and bad. As one reviewer put it in her 2002 review:

When you see such a polarisation of opinions on a book or a film, you actually see a good work because it is making people think. This movie does that and yes, provokes violent extremes in how people perceive it.

The plot point between Travolta and Madeliene Stowe (Warr. Off. Sara Sunhill) is forced and unnecessary, it drags down the overall serious flow of the movie, but at the time I suppose they thought Travolta needed a romantic aspect. Meh. It was poorly done. Clarence Williams III (yes, THAT CWIII) as the General’s aide is one cold bastard, and the amazing James Cromwell is an even colder, harder, self-aggrandizing General. A  terrible, terrible horrible person. “Close your eyes. It never happened. It never, ever happened.” 

As if a woman can ever forget.

 

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