Monday, 29 July 2013

More Please!

The Painted Man by Peter V Brett

This book had me enthralled from the start. The author creates a fantastic world in the mind of the reader. It is one where demons rule the night and mankind cower behind symbols in the hope of safety. From this world of fear comes one man whose thirst for knowledge could mean an end to the fear. Would you turn and face your fear or would you run.

The author weaves three tales into a masterful story that leaves you wanting more. I for one will be coming back for a second helping.

4 Stars

About the Author

Raised on a steady diet of fantasy novels, comic books, and Dungeons & Dragons, Peter V. Brett ("Peat" to his friends) has been writing fantasy stories for as long as he can remember. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature and Art History from the University at Buffalo in 1995, and then spent over a decade in pharmaceutical publishing before returning to his bliss. He lives in Brooklyn.

Monday, 22 July 2013

A Good Read But Far From Scary


I read this book with great expectations after reading numerous reviews about it and I am sad to say it did not deliver what was promised. Why I found the story quite entertaining and engaging I found it in no way a disturbing or scary read.  It has been a long time since I have read a Vampire book and this was one was refreshing take on the genre.
As for the horror side of the book I may have become desensitised over the years but this book did not deliver any spine chilling moments. I did not find myself having to read over parts in my shock to make sure I had read it correctly. These elements that make a good horror story for me were absent in this book.
3 Stars

Saturday, 20 July 2013

A Good Old Fashioned Treasure Hunt

What a gem of a book. It always amazes the stories which are still to this day coming out about World War II. This book follows the search for lost treasure and in doing so gives us a view of the top Nazis beliefs. I consider myself a WWII buff and this book gave me a fresh view of many areas.
The author spins this wonderful a yarn that reads like a novel with many a twist and turn along the way. Even if you are not a history buff you will not be disappointed by this book.
4 Stars

Friday, 19 July 2013

A Powerful Read

A book that made me have to keep reminding myself that this happened and the person doing it is just a child. The bravery shown by Ishmael Beah to share with the world his story of being a child soldier and all the horror that goes along with it; is unlike I have never seen before. He doesn't seek forgiveness or makes excuses he just tells his story as it happened to him. The only thing that stops me from giving this a 5 star rating is abrupt ending, it left me feeling that something is missing, but maybe that’s the point.

4 Star

Thursday, 11 July 2013

A Masterful Piece of Writing

The Dark Charisma of Adolf Hitler by Laurence Rees

 Laurence Rees deliver yet another fascinating book on World War II. He looks at Adolf Hitler and how he cast his spell over Germany. He delves into his own personal collection of unpublished interviews to ask the question what it was that made people follow him. The author takes great care to try and put us in the mindset of the average German during Hitler’s rule. As well as looking at the methods and tools used by Hitler and his staff to build him up as the saviour of Germany. We hear from those that were under his spell and also from those that did not rate him as a leader.

It is a fascinating look into the mind and machine of the Nazi machine. Even though I have read numerous books on Hitler I found this a refreshing look from a different perspective. From his rise to power to his death by his own hand, Rees delivers a masterful work that left me completely satisfied and answered many questions. This book is a chilling and compelling read and a reminder to never let history repeat.

5 BIG Stars

Monday, 8 July 2013

A Sucker Punch Of An Ending

Mad Days of Me: Eluding Reality by Henry Martin

Eluding Reality wraps up the Mad Days of Me Trilogy and like the other two books this one delivers a different style of story. This book mainly deals with the main character Rudy's issues in dealing with what he has gone through in the other two books. He feels lost and disassociated from his surroundings and begins to question his own sanity. Old friends are visited, tough decisions are made and demons are faced. The book concludes like the trilogy started with a sucker punch of a chapter. I was in two minds about the ending but I found myself thinking more and more about it. After pondering it's meaning over a couple of days it dawned on me that this was a great book. I mean it's not often I find myself pondering the end, days after I have finished a book. With this in mind the ending will not sit well with some readers. The ability for this author to make you care for the main character Rudy in these book and to see life through his eyes is where the gold lies in this series. There is no way in the world I would want Rudy as friend but I was compelled to keep reading as I cared what happened to him.

4 Stars

Saturday, 6 July 2013

Free For a Limited Time

The Biomass Revolution by Nicholas Snasbury Smith

The author has asked me to let you all know that The Biomass Revolution is free on the Kindle until Tuesday 9th July. Just click on the link above and enjoy this great book the received a 4.5 stars rating from me. You can check out my review by clicking on the link below. This is a great book so I encourage you all to grab a copy you will not be disappointed.

My Review

A Huge Disappointment

Closure Limited was a bit hit and miss for me. Being a huge fan of World War Z I was expecting more of the same from this book. What I got was a mixed a bag, out of the four stories only one was a real stand out for me. The other three did not seem complete and left me with far more questions than answers. Overall the book gave me the impression of being in to just for the money.

2 Stars

Thursday, 4 July 2013

A Highly Entertaining Short Read

Squad 19 by Nicholas Sansbury Smith

This novella is a great little saunter back into the world of the Biomass revolution. The author manages to pack a great story into this little book. The characters and plot are well set out and quickly draw you in and that is the key to a great novella. I look forward to reading more from this author and I think that big things lay on his horizons.        

4.5 Stars

About the Author

I'm an honest gentleman. First and foremost. Second, I'm an author and public servant. What comes next? Well, I tend to have a bit of a problem with being an adrenaline junkie. Triathlons, adventure racing, marathons--anything that gets my heart rate up and the tingling feeling of pushing the limits. I've been biting off more than I can chew since I got my baby teeth.

When I'm not finding ways for my insurance company to take away my life insurance, I am probably at my desk immersed in world building. Because one thing that gets me almost as excited as going 40 mph down blacktop on my bike is developing fiction stories. It is a way I can transport myself into another world—a world that I can't physically touch, but one I can see and describe to others through words. Because that is what reading and writing is all about, right? Words. Finding a way to organize them so they make sense and speak to us—finding a way to escape our lives and for sometimes only an hour, live in a characters world. Walk in their shoes. Experience what they experience. But enough about that. You are probably wondering what I have written, right?

My debut novel, The Biomass Revolution was published on March 13th, 2013. It is the first in the Tisaian Chronicles. Squad 19, a short story recording the lives of several of the main characters from Biomass, found a home on Amazon, June 14th, 2013. Book two in the series is underway. I'm also working on a science fiction project called Orbs. More on that later.

When I'm not writing or racing I'm helping communities recover from disasters at my day job for Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management. I hold undergraduate degrees from the University of Iowa in Political Science and American Indian Studies and a graduate degree from Drake University in Public Policy.

I completed my first half-Ironman triathlon on April 7th, 2013 in Texas and my first full Ironman triathlon on June 23, 2013 in Coeur D’Alene, Idaho.

Link anything you read? For more info follow my trail of spilled ink at

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

When The Rain Turns Red....RUN

Extinction Point by Paul Antony Jones

I spent a lot of time pondering how many stars I was going to give this book. Why I loved the originality of the story and its main character there was something just not sitting with me. After thinking it over I realised that the book did not deliver in the fright department that other reviews allude to. This is one downside to reading reviews as they can colour your perception of the book.

Overall though I enjoyed this book and the tale it told. The end of civilisation and slow realisation of what the red rain brings. The main character is well developed and had me mentally shouting out to her "Just GO!!!!!". I look forward to the next book in the series as it has a lot of potential. A quick reminder to those reading this review, 3 stars still equal a good read. As end of the world books go this one is definitely worth a read.

3.5 Stars

Zombies + Beer = A Fun Read

What do you do when it's the end of the world and everyone around you is trying to eat you? Easy get drunk and throw stuff at the Zombies, from a safe distance that is. A group of middle aged blokes wake up after a drunken sham of a bucks party to the end of the world. This bunch of loosers finds themselves isolated with plenty of booze and fair bit of cat food to keep them going. As they slowly start to die off, picked off by Zombies, suicide and just plain bad luck. The survivors are given a glimmer of hope in the form of a rescue by the US army. There is just one problem between them and safety stands a crap load of Zombies....oh and the Peoples Republic Army of China who are invading the USA.

Why I enjoyed this book and its likeable bunch of deadbeats I found myself wanting to know more about the other two story arcs in the book. It is obvious that they are all going to come together at the end of the book but I feel that the book could have been so much better if these arcs were fleshed out more. Overall an above average read in the saturated genre that is Zombie Apocalypse.

3.5 Stars

About the Author

Richard Johnson is a writer and small business owner who grew up in Galesburg, Illinois during the 80's. He graduated from Monmouth College as a double major in History and English and earned a Masters degree in History with a teaching certificate from Western Illinois University. He currently lives with his growing family in a small town outside of Chicago.

Richard is a self-acclaimed expert in the zombie genre after spending countless hours watching B-rated horror movies. He is a good friend, a bad cook and a terrible dancer. If a real zombie apocalypse strikes, seek him out for protection. But bring plenty of beer.