Friday, May 19, 2017

Book Review: Burn Over

BURN OVER: a novellaBURN OVER: a novella by R.D. Byron-Smith
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

At its core this is a romance novella about a young bride named April and her Husband Kyle who is a firefighter in California. They are building their dream home in the foothills of California when it becomes threatened by a massive wildfire burning in the area. However, the possibility of a “burn over”, where the wildfire jumps and overtakes the firefighters, forcing them to take cover in their suits, is forefront on Aprils mind as she worries about Kyles safety. This story is partially based on a true story and the journalistic background of the author is seen in his writing style. He has crafted a gripping story around the tender love between these two main characters and their friends. The addition to the terror this Wildfire creates brings a havoc into the pages that as a reader you are almost spellbound to keep reading until the end. I enjoyed this book maybe a little more than I should have, I certainly finished it in one sitting.

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Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Book Review: The Miracle Journey

The Miracle JourneyThe Miracle Journey by Abdirizak Omar
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The miracle Journey is a book that takes multiple tales from many people across Somalia and fuses them into the adventures of one main character. Gulled is that man who we follow from birth, through the beginnings of the civil war on Somalia, to his time in the USA and his homecoming several years later. He is accompanied at various stages by many friends, Mahad, Ibrahim, Gaanie and Geedi are at times helpful, willful, comic relief and sources of frustration for Gulled.
I was surprised at some points in the story to see just how strong the kinship bonds are between people of Somali descent and how willing they were to help out a complete stranger (I am talking about the example of Hanad and Kayse).
Overall though, this book and the experiences all of the characters have, showcase some of the difficult times that displaced people who end up resettled as refugees have. I say some because even though there are some scenes described within this book that may not be for the faint of heart, I am sure that the author could have included many more of the gruesome and heartless atrocities that have been and continue to be committed to this day. I would recommend reading this book to get a sense of what goes through someone's mind while they are in this volatile time in their life trying to get settled in a country that isn't their own and where customs may seem backwards to them.

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