Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Book Review: The Power of Time Perception

The Power of Time PerceptionThe Power of Time Perception by Jean Paul Zogby
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Have you ever wondered about how when you are having fun the time seems to fly by? Or when you are at work and those last thirty minutes are dragging along? This book helps explain that phenomenon and so much more. It is a great book that helps us first understand time and how we subconsciously perceive it and then helps us with effective time management. At times, full of scientific information and at others philosophical anecdotes, this book bridges a gap that many others don’t.
Chock Full of good and thought provoking information, the author clearly has spent much time researching how the power of our mind can influence our perceptions of time. I liked this book and there are certainly ideas and practices that can be put to good use. I think that to be truly successful with it we will have to exercise willpower and stick with them, not just try them once and give up.

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Thursday, April 6, 2017

Movie Review: 13th

It’s 12:30am and I cannot sleep. I just finished watching the Netflix documentary, 13th by Ava DuVernay, and so much of this movie has shaken me. I’m by no means a politically or socially ignorant person, however, my awareness and self-education in the two matters has largely taken place over the past 1/2 years. Watching this movie, I must come to terms with the fact that I (along with the rest of the US population) have been brainwashed into thinking that slavery was truly a construct of the past. That we live in a time, where there certainly are racial issues, but overall, we have overcome the fundamental issues of slavery. And we have not. We have revised the system many times and given it new names, the newest which is the mass incarcerations, the prison construct system. 1 in 3 black men will see prison in their lifetime. Will my husband, or my son be one of them?
As a white Muslim women, I have the privilege of taking off my Hijab, of taking off any garment that marks me as “other”, and can blend into the crowd of humanity in our nation. My gender might set me apart, but racially, I would not be viewed as a threat. My husband, not only has the strike of being a black man against him, he has a double strike against him as a Muslim black man. He does not have the luxury of taking off his skin color so that he does not immediately appear to be a criminal. Our children, while able to pass as white, would more than likely be identified as Latino or Hispanic of origin and therefor still carry some racial/ethnic stigma or burden that I myself as their mother would not have.
The problem that arises with this realization is: What can and should I do about this? Is confronting racism and discrimination whenever I encounter it truly enough? Can a Stay at home Mom of three children under 5, Full-time college student really make a difference? How much time do I have to devote to this issue to truly make a difference? If the world is run by (To quote my Sociology Teacher:) “old white men”, then can I as a white middle class woman really do much? There is so much hatred in this world, so much systemic discrimination, a complete us vs. them mentality that it is hard to see any light at the end of the tunnel.

But we must believe it is there. We must hold out hope, that even our tiniest actions, from teaching our children to love everyone equally, to helping that old Black/Hispanic/Asian lady with her groceries, will sprout the seeds of change that we need in our country right now. Only by picking up the phone and calling our representatives, by emailing them will our voices be heard. If there is a protest rally in your city, maybe you should contact the organizers to see if they need any supplies, a few cases of water? Might not be a bad idea of you can’t put in the hours of being there in person. 

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Book Review: Jukebox

The cover and the synopsis drew me in and this author doesn’t disappoint. Her novel Jukebox is full of old-world charm, set in London where you can just feel the character’s confidence and ruthlessness mingled with the British accent in a unique combination. When you think of mobsters, you typically think Italians, but open your mind because these London leaders of the seedy underbelly are going to take you for a ride, along with tea and crumpets. Nick, the lawyer but aspiring record label owner, Mel, his benefactor and Avery a spunky journalist all collide together and have a rip-roaring adventurous time. When things look to good to be true, they often are Nick is finding out, and Avery is pure determination to uncover the story she has sniffed out about Mel. For humor, originality, plot twists and overall great command of the English grammar I highly recommend this book.

Book review: Echoes of Paradise

Echoes of ParadiseEchoes of Paradise by Deanna Kahler
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Celeste is undergoing a midlife crisis, her job and her marriage make her feel trapped and lack the passion they once had. As an artist, she’s lost her zest in life, add to that fact that her secret true love Connor passes away, leaves celeste devastated. Once odd things start to occur around her, she sets out to find out if Connor is still here, desperately trying to tell her something.
This is a book I would set on the quasi paranormal with a twist of fantasy shelf, it deals with love, fate, the power of the human mind, questions of the afterlife and how our preconceived notions of all might be expanded a little more with some faith. If you read this as a simple romance novel you might not like it too much, but I think it was a good story. There were no grammar errors or sentence structural issues which was a nice touch compared to some other books I have read; so great job editing team!

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Friday, March 31, 2017

Book Review: Trickery

Trickery (Curse of the Gods #1)Trickery by Jaymin Eve
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I almost wished I hadn't stumbled upon this book... Almost. The only downfall is I have just finished this book and the next isn't out yet. Willa was a breath of fresh air. As heroines go, she was not tripping over her feet in servitude (at least not for long) and she was not a female that simply rolled over at the first "smoldering" look a male gives her. Her antics were hilarious and entertaining and the mystery of the Abcurse brothers kept me turning page after page to figure it out. Emma was the perfect best friend, popping into the story to help in sticky situations and the popping back out, leading her own life.
This was a great new discovery and I will be keeping my eyes open for the next book in the series!

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Book Review: Peach

Peach: An Exceptional Teen's Inspiring Journey for Universal AcceptancePeach: An Exceptional Teen's Inspiring Journey for Universal Acceptance by Jenevieve (Peach) Woods
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Peach, is truly an inspirational person. She suffers from a life altering disease, one that is not easily treated and will be with her throughout the course of her life. And as human beings go, we are not the greatest overall, but every now and then you stumble across someone who will stay on your mind long after they are no longer there in your presence. This book is an accounting of such a person. Peach see life as half-full, she does not lament her condition and go through life crying woe me as so many of us do if we do not get every single little thing we want right when we want it.
Written beautifully and in an engaging style, this story is a coming of age tale in ways. We follow along as Peach grows from being the “invisible girl” on the side lines to a young adult who is using her condition to teach us all about the meaning of our lives. This book is one of those that is worth picking up and then passing around to all your friends and family.

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Sunday, March 26, 2017

Book Review: Molding my Destiny

Molding My Destiny: A story of Hope that takes one child from surviving to thrivingMolding My Destiny: A story of Hope that takes one child from surviving to thriving by Patrice M. Foster
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

If you know someone who is suffering from depression, or if you suffer from depression, then I think this book is a good read for you. This isn’t a self-help book, touted to make all your problems go away with easy step by step instructions. This is a memoir, a story of life, and how we can all learn valuable lessons in overcoming our hardships. This book takes the dream of America, and pits it against the sometimes-harsh realities of life in America and how the author and her siblings fought to overcome them. The abuse, and suffering that the author suffers was especially hard to read, but I think we all need to face the realities that many people face on a daily basis. An Eye-opening memoir full of hurt, but also and more importantly, a success story of how the author was able to fight and turn her life around to live a happier life.

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Book Review: Devil's Divide

Devil's DivideDevil's Divide by Jeffrey M. Anderson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Devils divide is a Post-apocalyptic novel in the vein of “Dies the Fire” by Stirling. I think that Mr. Anderson, has done a superb job in revitalizing this genre and putting his own stamp on it. I wouldn’t be surprised to find this book will end up being the first in a series. I enjoyed the authors writing style from first page to last: it is witty and humorous at times but also gritty when needed. He was able to paint the picture of a financial meltdown which grinds the whole world to a full-stop in such a way that I could see it happening today and fully believe it.
In our story, we are introduced to Clay and Madeline, a couple who is testing out a “trial separation” by Madeline moving across the country to Boston. Meanwhile, Clays Firm undergoes a costly and crippling litigation process. When the world stops, Clay makes it his mission to find Madeline and so he bicycles along the nation’s highways and through nature to try and reach her. He meets many colorful and some dangerous characters along the way. And one encounter that will ultimately decide the fate of the nation. A great, spellbinding page-turner!

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Book Review: Summer of Change

Summer of ChangeSummer of Change by Martha Passel
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Summer of change reminded me of the song summer of ’69. Even though it is set in 1973, the story is the accounts of a young girl, back when things seemed to be simpler and life was good before things changed. Matilou is a joyful character, she loves her home surrounded by nature and all it has to offer. Being an only child, Matilou dreams and wishes to have a sister and one day during the summer, she gets just that. In the form of PerryAnn, the granddaughter of Grandma Waters who is their neighbor.
This story is a coming of age tale, perfect for teens and young adults. The topics are varied (Bullying, environmentalism, peer pressure, courage and trust). It was written in an easy to understand and clear style which I enjoyed. I think that no young adult would have issues understanding just what is being talked about in this book.

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Thursday, March 23, 2017

Book Review: Seasickness

SeasicknessSeasickness by Peter Tate
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Peter Tate, gives us a delightful autobiography of himself and his experiences as a young doctor. You might think that this would lead to a boring read, but Tate’s writing style and wry humor help guide the reader through a delightful set of characters and locations. With the host of characters, this book has a slight edge of the fantastical about it as well. The 1970’s were an impressionable time for the young doctor Tate, and although he did not choose this profession (his father did), he made the best of his cards and applied himself to learning the cure for ills that his medical texts did not cover.
The many flashbacks do make this book a tad bit more complicated in the beginning to read and orient yourself within the story, but around the 6th chapter, I had the author’s rhythm down and was zooming through the pages. Well written, articulate without any editing errors make this a good read.

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Book Review: Ash in the Blood

Ash in the Blood (Poison World Book 2)Ash in the Blood by Lyn Forester
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is the second book in the Poison World Series and I loved it! I wish I hadn't stumbled upon this series yet, only because I now have to wait for the next book!
In a world where Halions and Humans live in a symbiotic co-existence, We meet half bloods, Reagan and Drake. Reagan, having re-invented herself in a new city is only trying to look out for herself without attracting much notice, but being saddles with Drake of the Black Corporation Mob is shattering her existence along the fringes of society. The unlikely pair continue to pursue leads in their Ash (think illegal drugs like Heroin) Investigation until things get heated. Also, a person from Reagan's past shows up and we get treated to some juicy morsels of background on her and it opens up so many possibilities.
Sci Fi and fantasy are a great blend here, and this story has a great plot and flow. No grammar errors or such to detract from this story.

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Book Review: Love in a Cave

Love in a Cave: A Mediterranean Romance NovelLove in a Cave: A Mediterranean Romance Novel by Carla Prince
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Having read her first book, and loving that one, I of course had to pick up Love in a cave, another romance set in the Mediterranean Sea. The author, Carla Prince doesn’t disappoint. We are given a hot and steamy tale of love and fate, intertwined so well that our two reluctant lovebirds never stood a chance! This book is perfect for light, summer readings, and the story flies off the pages before you know it, you are done. Mrs. Prince has a great editing team that leaves no grammatical or sentence structure errors behind and the pace of the story is at a genuine, believable pace.
Christy, is stranded and Connor ends up as her rescuer. Connor, being a celebrity is not supposed to get himself entangled in a relationship, and Christy, is not looking for one, happily lost in her work. When their paths cross however, there is some chemistry and one thing leads to another. Another great read in the series!

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