Sunday, February 15, 2009
A unique and engaging hi-tech counter-terrorism thriller can be found in The Devil's Darning Needle by Ben Furman.
Years ago, FBI undercover agent Frank Durazo infiltrated the terrorist organization known as FALN and helped to bring their leader Ojeda Sanchez to justice...but it cost him greatly.
Now that Sanchez is out of prison, Frank believes the FALN is regrouping and planning an attack on world leaders gathered at the President's gravesite. Unconvinced by Duranzo's suggestion about Sanchez and already stretched for resources, Frank's superiors want real proof before they'll put manpower behind him.
But time is running out. Duranzo's son, Luis, who's building top-secret micro-aerial vehicles for the U.S. Military is missing and the woman Frank has loved for years is in danger...and Sanchez and the FALN plot is connected to all of them. Can Frank stop Sanchez and the FALN in time without losing anyone he loves?
The Devil's Darning Needle is an intense, engaging read from page one. Frank's history with Sanchez propels this story forward and keeps the reader turning pages.
While I'm not usually a big fan of backstory taking up the beginning chapters of a novel, Furman's decision to set the scene for the attack that will unfold in present day is a smart one. The author's wealth of experience in counter-terrorism truly shines through and draws the reader right into a world of hi-tech weapons, the mind of a terrorist, and the work of the FBI. This novel also provides an interesting look into how politics impacts the work of the department.
As a woman reading this book, I must admit that Furman handled the relationships in The Devil's Darning Needle very well. Not every author can portray personal relationships in such an action-packed novel, but Furman made it seem easy.
Kudos go out to cover designer Frank Rivera. The picture of the Capitol Building in the background with a dragonfly whose transparent wings float into the title is stunning, as is the color selection. The thumbnail above doesn't do it justice.
Readers who enjoy the work of Tom Clancy should definitely check out The Devil's Darning Needle.
Title: The Devil's Darning Needle
Author: Ben Furman
Publisher: Black Hawk Press
SRP: $16.95 (US)
Saturday, February 14, 2009
Looking for suspense? Looking for action? Looking for an intense read? You'll find it in The Dead Guy by Doug Hewitt.
Jack Thigpen is sent on what he believes is a routine car insurance scam investigation. But on this one, Jack gets more than he bargained for.
His investigation targets him for death soon after Jack discovers he's dying from an untreatable, debilitating illness. When Jack's best friend, Hal, is caught in the line of fire, Jack vows to track down Hal's killer, as he struggles to accept the fact that he's going to die--slowly and painfully.
The Dead Guy is one of those books that will leave you begging for more. Jack is a likeable, tough character who is put in a position no human being should ever be--feeling responsible for his best friend's death when he, himself, is at death's door. Hewitt's masterful storytelling allows the reader to experience everything with Jack as he uncovers the evil underbelly of Detroit, which is consumed by corruption, fraud, and organized crime.
Other memorable characters include Jack's brother, Tom, the only other person who knows of Jack's illness, and who is forced to deal with the impending loss of his brother while struggling to sit back and let Jack deal with things his own way; Octavia, a tennis champion who Jack used to mentor; and Blalock, whose own complex story unfolds in the background.
This book is a roller coaster ride of action, intrigue, and mystery. Just when you think Jack has it figured out, something throws a monkey wrench into his theory and things are no longer as they seem. The reader will unconciously be biting off fingernails as he follows Jack from car dealerships to body shops to riverboats.
If this book hasn't won any awards yet, it should!
Riveting, intense, and action-packed, The Dead Guy by Doug Hewitt keeps you hanging on the edge of your seat and turning the pages.
Title: The Dead Guy
Author: Doug Hewitt
Publisher: Aberdeen Bay
SRP: $15.00 (U.S.)
Pop on over to Fish with Trish and enter to win a copy of Ray Comfort's latest book, You Can Lead An Atheist to Evidence, But You Can't Make Him Think.
“To be an atheist is to play Russian roulette with all the chambers loaded…
“An atheist just can’t win. Of course, he feels and acts like a big player, until the trigger is pulled. The issue isn’t the existence of God. If he is wrong and there is a Creator, then he was wrong. He gambled and he lost. No big deal. The real gamble is that there’s no Hell. That’s what makes the player sweat, just a little. “What if…?”
In this entertaining and enlightening new book, Ray Comfort, author of the million-selling The Atheist Test, “talks to the atheists” and reveals not just the weakness of their arguments but the solid foundation upon which the Christian stands.
Few books take the time to address the atheist’s conscience. This book not only gives empirical evidence for the existence of God, it shows atheists that they desperately need His forgiveness. Using a lively Q&A format, featuring actual questions from atheists sent to Comfort’s blog at Atheist Central, You Can Lead An Atheist to Evidence, But You Can’t Make Him Think shows that God’s existence can be proven, and that anyone can do it!
You can find Ray online at www.livingwaters.com
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
A charming and entertaining story of a boy from England who falls in love with a girl from the United States.
Across the Pond by Storyheart is the story of Fred, a boy from England who is sent to stay with his parents' friends in the United States while they are away, and Brittany, the girl who wins his heart.
While Fred struggles to understand American culture and the meaning behind many popular expressions, he finds himself drawn to Brittany, the daughter of his parents' best friends. What he doesn't know, is that Brittany has a secret--a secret so troubling that she hasn't even been able to share it with her parents. And once Brit trusts Fred with her secret, his life is turned upside down.
Having managed to avoid an incident with Steve Harris, the town bully, Fred suddenly finds himself the subject of much attention, when he catches a baseball that is worth a small fortune.
As Brittany and Fred's relationship deepens into love, Fred realizes he must protect Brit from the secret she has shared with him; but how can he do that once he returns to England?
There is so much to enjoy in Across the Pond. Following the developing relationship between Fred and Brittany, Fred's struggles in understanding how the same word he knows from home can mean something very different in America, Fred's desire to protect Brittany, and even Fred's relationship with Brit's parents, Phil and Julie, all make this a wonderful story for young adults. Some fun and exciting moments come when Fred and Brit are chased through the mall by an unknown man and watching things unravel with the famous baseball is a blast.
Steve Harris, acts the part of the perfect antagonist. He's always on Fred's and Brittany's minds because he is sure to make his presence known, and he travels with his goons, Rick and Eddie, who help him keep his fights uneven.
One of the things that seems to be missing in this story is the descriptions of scenery. While you don't want to get bogged down in details, Fred is new to the country, and would therefore, be more aware of his surroundings, perhaps even capturing some of what he saw in his notebook that he brought along for a school project about his trip to America. I wanted more of a picture painted than was there on the page.
The other challenge for me is that Fred, Brittany and their friends use a party in his honor to get back at a couple of people, and I just felt it sent the wrong message to the reader.
Overall, I have to say that I enjoyed Across the Pond. A strong cast of characters, an interesting plot, some great baseball, and a deep secret all come together for an engaging and fun read.
Title: Across the Pond
SRP: $19.99 (U.S.)
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
Katie & Kimble are back with a new adventure in Katie & Kimble: The Magic Wish, Book 2 in the Katie & Kimble chapter book series.
When Katie finds a magic coupon in a box of cereal, Katie and Kimble decide to use their free wish to make Kimble human again. The wish will only last for two days and it's a bit scary for Kimble to know that Katie's parents will be able to see her and that she won't be able to float through walls for a while. But the girls plan to make the most of those two days and hope that everything will be back to normal once the wish is over.
Katie & Kimble is an entertaining series for young readers. After discovering Kimble in Book One--which we reviewed here--Katie and Kimble have become more like sisters than friends. While Katie's mother, Mrs. Russell can't hear Kimble when she's a ghost, she still allows Kimble to call her Mama. And once Kimble becomes human, Mrs. Russell not only hears her, but she hugs Kimble tightly and cries for joy.
One of the best aspects of this book is the complete acceptance of Kimble into the Russell family from Katie's parents, her two-year-old brother, Toby--who has always been able to see Kibo (as he calls her)--and even the family's dog, Twinkle. While young readers might not make the connection, this could be a book that parents use to show adopted children that they are accepted and loved just as much as natural born children.
An interesting admission comes from Mr. Russell in The Magic Wish and this helps pave the way for him to believe in Kimble and to welcome her home after she becomes a ghost again and goes off to rest.
The cover art uses the same color scheme as the first book to make it easily identifiable, and as the mother of a child who struggles with reading, I appreciate that the plot is interesting but not too complex and that there are words to challenge my daughter but many sight words too.
Katie & Kimble is a charming and fun chapter book series that kids will love. I can't wait to read the next one!
Title: Katie & Kimble: The Magic Wish Book 2
Author: Linda Thieman
Publisher: Pale Silver Rainplop Press
SRP: $5.95 (US)
Friday, February 6, 2009
Shannon Wallace is having a bad hair week.
She’s been ditched by her job, dumped by her boyfriend, and implicated in his murder.
When she finds out her very private video collection is missing from the crime scene, it is all out war to find the disks before the cops do. The problem is, the killer has them. And he’s watched them.
Now Shannon’s at the top of his most wanted list.
Kim Smith was born in Memphis Tennessee, the youngest of four children. After a short stint in a Northwest Mississippi junior college, during the era of John Grisham’s rise as a lawyer, she gave up educational pursuits to marry and begin family life.
After the birth of her two children, she gave up working outside the home for the more important domestic duties of wife and mother. During those years, she began thinking of stories to entertain herself and pass the time. Before long she started telling her husband about her stories and he assured her she could write a book if she really wanted to. She put the idea away once she landed a job as a network administrator for a small corporation, and together the Smith’s started their own video production company.
Writing was a dream, hidden but not forgotten, and soon Kim began to talk again of trying her hand at it. She played with words, and wrote several poems, one of which was picked up for an anthology.
When she decided to try out her hand at mystery writing, she discovered her true love and niche in the writing journey. She has since had four short stories, and her first mystery novel, Avenging Angel was released by Red Rose Publishing in December 08.
Kim is a member of Sisters in Crime, and EPIC. She still lives in the Mid South region of the United States and is currently working on her second book in the mystery series.
You can visit her website at www.mkimsmith.com.
TO SEE WHERE KIM AND SHANNON STOP NEXT, VISIT http://virtualbooktours.wordpress.com/
Thursday, February 5, 2009
Gabriel, the exiled king of Rivalin, comes before King Airell to warn him the Ansgarian army will invade his kingdom before the night is over. Airell tells him he has no one to send. Gabriel wants revenge for the murder of his family by the Ansgarians. He decides to fight the incursion without help.
Deirdre (Airell’s daughter), flees the kingdom of Cynyr north of Boadhagh. She knows now her mentor, Morrigan, created the Ansgarian army her father has fought for years. She goes south to warn him of her. Because Deirdre does not believe in herself, the young sorceress has difficulty in performing magic.
Once she is reunited with her father, she tells both he and Grayrider about Morrigan. Her power is growing; only Gabriel’s magical sword may yet destroy her. He must go to Cynyr to fight her. He agrees if Deirdre attends him, seeking her counsel. On that journey they fall in love and foil many efforts by Morrigan to kill Gabriel by both armies and sorcerers.
Grayrider fights Morrigan and sees his beloved slain by the sorceress before he is finally able to kill her. He returns to Rivalin brokenhearted. The ending is a complete surprise the reader will not expect at all.
A former technical writer, detail is important to Bruce Skye. His research for the Deathsong Chronicles included medieval armor and fortresses, as well as Celtic names and magic. "If you create a world, it must be consistent. And that's what I strive for Grayrider's world to be. I've built a database of material for each of the Deathsong Chronicles. Those databases aid me in keeping the world the same from book to book.
"When I wrote Grayrider, I followed the advice of Stephen King. I did not write the book following any sort of outline. I have no more idea than my readers do when I write a novel what will happen in the midst of the story. It makes it more exciting for both the readers and myself."
You can visit his website at www.bruceskye.com.
TO SEE WHERE BRUCE AND GRAYRIDER STOP NEXT, VISIT http://virtualbooktours.wordpress.com/
Wednesday, February 4, 2009
An ambitious young woman, leading a small ragged brigade in a world still suffering aftershocks from a vicious international war, plots and battles against a series of increasingly ruthless adversaries, with help from her colorful sub commanders; while finding herself irreconcilably drawn to a charismatic, kind and hopeful stranger.
Jason Pratt is a native of West Tennessee, and the systems manager for Dyer Fiberglass, Inc. He holds a bachelor of communications degree from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.
When he isn't freelance editing other people's books or writing philosophical treatises as a respected guest on various Internet sites, he can be found pondering tactics and strategies in the lates war game or studying metaphysics and world history. Occasionally he finds the time to instruct, judge and compete in the art of fencing; and has been known to write cinematic epic fantasies when people aren't looking. Cry of Justice is the first book of an initial trilogy, the third book of which he is currently composing.
TO SEE WHERE JASON, PORTUNISTA, AND SEIFA STOP NEXT, VISIT http://virtualbooktours.wordpress.com/
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
Jack Thigpen works in Detroit, nicknamed The Motor City, the perfect place for a fraud investigator who specializes in car insurance scams. He is on a case he believes is a typical, low-level crime, but it quickly turns into a situation with ominous international consequences. Ironically, as he is targeted for death because of his investigation, Jack is diagnosed with a fatal disease that is untreatable, a disease that will end his life within months. And instead of killing Jack, the hit man shoots Jack's best friend. Struggling to come to terms with his impending death, Jack vows to track down his friend's killer.
Jack plunges into the world of corrupt car dealerships, chop shops, and fraudulent auto repair shops. He is soon swept into the darkness of Detroit's criminal underbelly to uncover the truth about power struggles within organized crime rings. Death is staring him in the face, but Jack doesn't back down. He pushes ahead, plowing through perilous roadblocks planted by his enemies, propelling himself toward the finish line and a teeth-gritting, heart-pounding conclusion.
Doug Hewitt was born and raised near Detroit, Michigan and now lives in North Carolina. Along the way, he did a four-year stint in the Marine Corps and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics. He has been writing short stories for over 20 years and has been getting them published for most of that time, with over 80stories in print. His stories have appeared in anthologies such as The Dead Inn and 100 Wicked Little Witch Stories. He has appeared in the premier issue of Apex Digest and has seen his chapbook, Slipstream, published by Scrybe Press.
He turned his attention to longer works and had his first novel Spear published in 2002. The Midwest Book Review calls Spear “a thrilling and deftly crafted novel.” After remarrying in 2004, he and his wife, Robin, founded HewittsBooks.com. In addition to authoring a non-fiction parenting book, The Practical Guide To Weekend Parenting, Doug and Robin teamed up to write The Joyous Gift of Grandparenting.
Doug returned to his original passion, writing fiction, and wrote The Dead Guy, which St. Martins author Lynn Chandler-Willis calls a “high-octane, pedal-to-the-metal ride through the criminal underbelly of the automotive world.”
You can visit Doug Hewitt and read a free PDF chapter of The Dead Guy at www.HewittsBooks.com.
TO SEE WHERE DOUG AND JACK ARE STOPPING NEXT, VISIT http://virtualbooktours.wordpress.com/
Monday, February 2, 2009
Finding himself packed off to friends in the USA, fifteen-year-old English born Fred Squire is not happy. Then he meets Brittany.
Struggling with his feelings for Brit and the language, Fred is further confused when he meets Brit's flirtatious friend, Angel.
Escaping from a confrontation with Steve Harris, the neighborhood bully, Brit tells Fred her dark secret about Harris, and Fred's world is turned upside down.
Life continues to throw Fred a curveball when he catches a baseball worth a small fortune. Further run-ins with Harris, a crazy family BBQ, and a chase through a mall all add to Fred's American adventure.
"Brit and her Brit", know that their young love will be followed by heartache when Fred has to return to England. But not before some final twists in the tale.
With believable characters, exciting events, humor, first love, education and a little sport thrown in for good measure. Across the Pond is read and enjoyed by people of all ages from the young to the young at heart.
Born in Barnet, Hertfordshire, Barry Eva, also known as “Storyheart”, left his beloved England in 2000, moving to the USA to be with the woman he'd met and fallen in love with on the Internet.
Better known for his short romance stories on the net and in his book Stories from the Heart, Barry is popular for narrating his stories on local TV or as a guest on other media stations,where his wit, oratory, and old-fashioned English charm make him a popular interviewee.
At present, Barry is living in Connecticut, with his wife and two children.
You can visit Storyheart’s website at http://www.across-t-pond.com.
TO SEE WHERE BARRY, FRED AND BRIT ARE STOPPING NEXT, VISIT http://virtualbooktours.wordpress.com/
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 2, 2009--Join author and television show co-host Ray Comfort on his first virtual book tour with Pump Up Your Book Promotion Public Relations as he travels the blogosphere in February to talk about his latest release, You Can Lead an Atheist to Evidence, But You Can’t Make Him Think.
In this entertaining and enlightening new book, Pastor Ray Comfort, author of the million-selling The Atheist Test, “talks to the atheists” and reveals not just the weakness of their arguments but the solid foundation upon which the Christian stands.
Few books take the time to address the atheist’s conscience. This book not only gives empirical evidence for the existence of God, it shows atheists that they desperately need His forgiveness. Using a lively Q&A format, featuring actual questions from atheists sent to Pastor Comfort’s blog at Atheist Central, You Can Lead An Atheist to Evidence, But You Can’t Make Him Think shows that God’s existence can be proven, and that anyone can do it!
PRAISE FOR God Doesn’t Believe in Atheists: Proof That the Atheist Doesn’t Exist also by Ray Comfort
With sharp reasoning, infallible logic, and quick wit, Ray Comfort slices up the thin veil of atheistic "reasoning". No more excuses for those who would deny the existence of God. And nowhere to run. But to the cross.–Jeffrey Ellis, Naperville, IL
Ray Comfort is the author of more than 60 books, including, God Doesn’t Believe in Atheists, How to Know God Exists, Evolution: The Fairy Tale for Grownups, You Can Lead an Atheist to Evidence, But You Can’t Make Him Think, and The Evidence Bible. He was a platform speaker at the 2001 27th convention of “American Atheists,” and in 2007, he appeared on ABC’s Nightline (with actor Kirk Cameron) debating “The Existence of God.” He also co-hosts an award-winning television program, and has a daily blog called “Atheist Central.”
“Ray’s tour has been so much fun to put together,” says Cheryl Malandrinos, Tour Coordinator for Pump Up Your Book Promotion Public Relations. “It’s great when you get a chance to promote a book that is both enjoyable and informative.”
If you would like to follow Ray on his virtual book tour, visit the official Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Book Tour blog at http://virtualbooktours.wordpress.com/. You can also visit his website at http://www.livingwaters.com/ or his blog found at http://raycomfortfood.blogspot.com/.
Ray Comfort’s virtual book tour is brought to you by Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Book Tours, a virtual book tour agency for authors who want quality service for an affordable price. More information can be found on their website at www.pumpupyourbookpromotion.com.
CEO Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Book Tours
“Just leave your book tour in our hands!”
P.O. Box 643
Chincoteague, Virginia 23336
Sunday, February 1, 2009
A candid and courageous memoir of one man's spiritual journey can be found in Divinely Inspired: Spiritual Awakening of a Soul.
Jerry Pollock is born into a less than ideal family where his neglectful mother and neurotic father do not and cannot provide him with the love and nuturing all children deserve. It will not be until many years later, when Jerry begins Primal Therapy, that he will discover the repressed memories of his childhood.
Divorced from his first wife, now a full professor at Stony Brook University, and planning to marry Marcia, Jerry hears the words that will eventually change his life.
After being diagnosed with Bipolar disorder at age 50, enduring the collapse of his career, attempting suicide, and encountering a cult, Jerry returns to those words he heard a decade ago. His spiritual journey brings him past the memories, the hurts, and the disappointments of his earlier years, and moves him forward to a life of enduring richness and meaning.
If you read and enjoyed Pollock's not-so-fictional novel, Messiah Interviews: Belonging to God--which we reviewed here--you'll want to pick up a copy of Divinely Inspired.
In true memoir form, Pollock shares his life in a candid way, holding nothing back, and the reader will be left amazed by some of the things that the author has endured. The dedication of his wife, Marica, that is also so lovingly portrayed in Messiah Interviews, also shines through in Divinely Inspired, as she supports and loves her husband through many difficult experiences.
The addition of an Epilogue that shares the author's spiritual insights is a brave move. Having spent his life as a scientist, Pollock shares his belief that Evolution and Creation are not mutually exclusive because God is the Master Scientist. Divinely Inspired will also shed further light on the happenings in Messiah Interviews.
A true companion to Messiah Interviews, but also a book that will be enjoyed by those interested in reading how one man's spiritual journey leads him to inner peace, Divinely Inspired by Jerry Pollock, is a unique way to discover the wisdom of God.
Title: Divinely Inspired: Spiritual Awakening of a Soul
Author: Jerry Pollock
Publisher: Shechinah Third Temple
SRP: $15.00 (U.S.)