Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Book Review: The Fall of Icarus

Get it here: Icarus

This is a compilation of short stories. The first is about a man riding the elevator throughout his day as he comes and goes from the hotel. I took this to be an almost anecdotal tale where if you do not seize the moment and opportunity as it is in front of you, you will come back to it in your mind later asking yourself: why did I not take it? A good question, too many of us nowadays are on autopilot and not spontaneous enough to fully enjoy life.
The second story is more a sort of alternate view from the author of how he envisions how the Tale of Icarus played out.
The third story is a telling of a tale by an archivist to an elderly couple of a Girl who learns to fly. These are really nice, thought provoking stories. I loved reading these and then sitting with my thoughts and figuring out how I would have reacted in those situations, as well as how I can take what was learned (the regrets and discoveries) in the stories and apply it to my life. How maybe the “safe, middle” path is not the best one to take, maybe be a little more spontaneous in life to truly live.

99 Bead Tasbih

Glass crystal beads, 8mm, silver tassel

Selling things on Pinterest?

Here's the link:  http://pin4etsy.kickoffpages.com/?kid=6A1N9

not sure if its going to be the next "thing"

Sneak Peak

Just finished three more Prayer Bead Chains... Heres a sneak peak: (Will be posted in both the Etsy and Ebay stores later today)

Monday, June 29, 2015

Book Review: Soaring

Get it here: Soaring

What an empowering and uplifting read! This book couldn’t have come in a better time for me, I have been experiencing some of the “Baby Blues” and this book really helped me out of the funk! I am able to see each day differently now, enjoy each day and I am able to be more loving to everyone. Not being a member of the catholic faith, there were some biblical verses strewn throughout the book, but they are not “preachy” and do not detract from the main message. No, they help define it!

This book has a step by step program to help you envision and work towards what you want in life. By being more loving towards yourself you are able to fill your life with love. At the end of each chapter, you have simple steps and diagrams on how to integrate the chapters lessons and how to actually use them in real life. There are anecdotal stories from both the author and other people throughout America who have used these steps to turn their lives around to do what they love or are passionate about. They have found a way to visualize where they want to be, and by creating positive thoughts, and empowering reinforcements of their love for themselves they were on their way, they were Soaring!

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Book Review: Guardians of Shadows

Get it Here: Guardians of Shadows

This was a hard book to begin reading by itself. I would imagine reading it in the correct order in the series (this is book 8) would be much better. That being said the book is a fantastic story set out in the middle of Space. Ethical Questions such as: “Simply because we have the power to destroy another living sentient race, should we?” And more are asked and explored within the story, taking our heroes on a perilous journey full of wonder, excitement and thrilling action.
Terr the main character has the “hand of Death” a tremendously powerful weapon that can destroy a Spaceship quickly and completely but he struggles to find a balance with this new found power and how to consolidate it in his relationship with Teena. She is kidnapped while they are out on a cultural exchange mission by the Kran, the invading force and he sets out on a dangerous quest to rescue her from deep behind enemy lines.

Ultimately I would recommend purchasing the previous books in this series since the writing is superb, but with having the foreknowledge of what led up to the events in this story it would be more enjoyable. 5Stars for a great story (my mistake for getting this book before the others is not worthy of taking down a star)

The Store has opened:

Either Ebay:amirah1984

or Etsy: Offtheneedle

The store on Ebay has more Items at the Moment... We will see which one sells faster and that will be the one I keep promoting.
Some of the Items I have listed:

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Book Review: The Jewel Box

Get it here: Jewel Box

Everything is Big in Texas, Even life!
This was a very interesting and rewarding book. The story reads just like talking with your best friend who is telling you about her day. I quickly started to become engrossed in the different characters and was sad whenever tragedy struck. And like life happening all around you, tragedy did strike often and ruined many things in Cherie’s life. But throughout it all, I found remarkable that she stuck it out, and she got back up and tried again to provide for a better future for her daughter Nikki.
Her good friends were a hoot! I loved the kookiness of Delilah, and she reminds me of one of the friends I have here in TX. Beau, with his witty, smart remarks and quotes from great literature became a father figure to Cherie and helped her through some of the tough times in her life. This story plays out in TX over the 60’s and 70’s and gives many culture references such as music or news flashes like the Vietnam War ending.

As another reviewer said, this story is almost a chick flick in its humor, drama, self deprecating characters and the heartbreak and hope that runs throughout the story. A refreshing read that I would recommend to anyone to add to their summer book list.

Other Bloggers

I'm noticing that most of the bloggers I've been following since 2007 or so are no longer active (insert frowny face). I think it's a sad but undeniable fact to see how the internet effect upon our life (and its importance) ebbs and flows. We used to sit at our computers for hours, "stalking" others blogs, writing our hearts out about so many different issues and now we are mostly absent from the Blog-o-sphere and more focused on the "hip", Tumblr, Facebook, or Twitter...
I know I have had my fair share of absences, but I should be here to stay now that I have had this absence to regroup and refocus...

A great Article:

Here is an excerpt:

"..the fact is no one would like to be judged or tagged just by a piece of clothing, or by narrow minds. With a little bit more empathy and awareness, we can simply recognize we don't know what kind of amazing stories, minds and human quality may be before eyes;.."

Book Review: A Deadly Deed Grows...

Get it here: A Deadly Deed Grows

This is a fantastic book written in the style of the famous Nancy Drew series. If Nancy was all grown up, that is. You got mystery, thrilling action, romance and good ‘ol fashioned sassy characters. You'll love to hate the bad guys and love and root for the good guys. All the characters are so well fleshed out that you seem to truly start caring for them.

I absolutely liked this book. The romance and mystery was perfectly balanced, each bringing its own elements to the story without being distracting. I couldn't seem to put it down and finished it very quickly, devouring each page. The title I think is really clever. You won't understand it at first, but as you read the book, you'll soon understand how it all plays into the storyline. One of my favorite characters is Claire, her sharp wit and sassy attitude makes the main girl Mira think twice more than once. I’d certainly purchase a book from this author again. 

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Book Review: Coercion

Get it here: Coercion

What if, the Espionage, machinations and plotting had continued after the fall of the USSR? As a child of the ‘90’s I pretty much grew up not aware of the cold war around me, but this story still manages to get you to care about the characters, even sympathize with the “bad guys”. You can truly understand why they think going about their plots in this particular should be the right way. But ultimately you are rooting for the Lonesome Private Detective to figure out the intrigue and all the players before he himself gets “taken out” by a devious little device. I am sure you won’t look at routine doctor visits the same.
I couldn’t lose myself within this story. Not like the other books form Mr. Tigner. I can’t even really put my finger on what specifically, maybe because there were so many important players? Regardless, the plot was well thought out, the characters were fleshed out and each had their own distinct personalities. Finally, you have an exhilarating chase around the world with a climax in Siberia. If espionage, Russian Courtships and an unrelenting, SERE trained American hero is your thing, then this is the book for you

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Book Review: Betrayal

Get it here: Betrayal

A highly ethical man, Odi is pushed to the limits of his morals when he and his entire team are betrayed while carrying out a covert mission in Iran. Facing death and despair he resolves to seek revenge from those responsible. This leads to a fast-paced race through intrigue, politicking, double-crossing and so much more. His Twin sister is on the other end, working for the FBI and you will have to read the book to see if she ends up hunting him or helping him and ultimately if he succeeds in taking revenge.

A very remarkable and enjoyable read, I finished this book in record time (even with kids running around the house), I barely was able to set it down. Coming from a military background myself I found the facts and details within the book to be believable and realistic. Nothing was farfetched and I was able to understand and imagine this story taking place today among our current political system. The twists and even a major plot turn half way in the story left me saying: “What?!” out loud and chuckling to myself for not having seen it coming. Overall, a very enjoyable thrilling read.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Book Review: Flash

Get it here: Flash - Tim Tigner

Move over James Patterson, Tim Tigner is in town!
An exciting, fast paced thriller written in the style of the Bourne stories. I could barely put this book down it had me so riveted and drawn in from the first chapter. The characters are fleshed out and believable and the story does not seem far fetched that you could not easily put yourself in their shoes.
What would you do if you awoke in a trunk with a dead body not remembering how you got there, much less the last few years of your life?

This intriguing premise is the baseline for the story and it doesn’t unravel, it stays wound up tight as we follow our two lead characters find their way trying to prove their innocence from the Law, while staying a step ahead of a assassin and a brutal lawyer. How the plot twists and turns and keeps you on the edge asking: Is this it? Will he/she not survive this time? The chemistry between our two lead characters is good too, not something that feels forced or unreal. 

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Book Review: Hellbender

Get it here: Hellbender

If you've been reading along in the series, asking questions and waiting for the answers, well here they are. Many loose plot lines from previous books are tied up in this novel. How things work: magic, Fangborn, and otherwise, as well as our girl Zoe grows up. Figuratively speaking, but she does set standards for herself, starts relying on herself more while still taking advice as compared to earlier books where she desperately was seeking others opinions and trying to shoulder the responsibilities off on others. Here, by the end she takes matters into her own hands (so to speak) and sets things right. She also chooses between Will and Adam…

Really enjoyable book, esp. since the other ones in the series sort of dragged on for me, this book brought them all together and rewarded me for sticking it out. I liked the relatable and fleshed out characters and was able to immerse myself in the world. When the next one comes, I will be looking forward to it. 

Book Review: The Prince

Get it here: The Prince

Man this book has it all: Family Drama and Intrigue, Power Struggles, Action, Heroism and the atypical Good vs. Evil. Set in a Star Wars worthy universe and you have: The Prince: Lucifer's Origins. I really enjoyed this book and can't wait to read the next one. Even if you only read this book it has enough in it to be a standalone.
The Sci-Fi elements in this book are not so technical or “out there” that even a novice reader would have difficulties. At the same time there is enough in there to keep you at the edge of your seat throughout the story. I want to write this epic review but I would be giving away major plot spoilers here.
Throughout the story Prince Victor goes through so many trials and each time you ask yourself, is this time going to be the time? Will he perish? Will he get captured? As we follow along as he examines the role his family as “royals” should be playing in the everyday lives of the citizens. Should they rule absolutely? Or is it time to maybe usher in a new era? The writing is spot on with no errors or sentence structure mistakes that would jar you out of the story and the writing is also not boring. There is humor in here as well and you don’t even notice that this book has a grip on you until you are near the end, thinking where did all that time go?
Do yourself a favor and pick this book up… you will enjoy it from cover to cover. I know I did!

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Islamic Joke (Repost for Ramadan)

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Two men are in the desert, one called Steve and the other James. They have no water, are very thirsty but suddenly notice a Mosque nearby. They decide to go in with James telling Steve, "I'm going to pretend my name is Abdul, otherwise they won't give us anything to eat or drink cos' we're not Muslims. You change your name too." But Steve refused. "I'm not changing my name for anyone! My name's Steve and that's it."

They go in and meet the Imam. "Hi, my name's Abdul and this is Steve."

The Imam replies, "Hello Steve and Assalamu 'alaykum Abdul." He turns to Steve and says, "Come and have some food and water Steve."

He then turns to Abdul and says, "Ramadan Mubarak."