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review 2018-10-01 07:28
Ancient Giants by Xaviant Haze
Ancient Giants: History, Myth, and Scientific Evidence from around the World - Xaviant Haze

TITLE:  Ancient Giants: History, Myth, and Scientific Evidence from around the World

 

AUTHOR:  Xaviant Haze

 

PUBLICATION DATE:  2018

 

FORMAT:  Paperback

 

ISBN-13: 9781591432937

 

___________________________________________

This is a mostly anecdotal collection of stories and myths about giants from prehistory to more recent times, categorized in terms of region.  There is no attempt at analysis or investigating if the "giants" described in the stories or ancient carvings are actual giants, normal people with medical conditions, or simply over-exaggerated tales that grew with the telling.  All of the giant bone discoveries mentioned in this book have mysteriously disappeared.  The author claims a conspiracy, which may well be true, but this book doesn't help with any details or furthering of knowledge.  This is a short book that brings nothing new to the table.

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review 2018-09-20 23:25
Heavy metal horror masterpiece that is sure to become a cult classic; another hit from Grady Hendrix
We Sold Our Souls - Grady Hendrix

‘We Sold Our Souls’ is one HELL of a ride. Grady Hendrix, King of horror at Quirk Books, has written a heavy metal masterpiece with a female lead guitarist, Kris Pulaski, as its star.
Less classic horror this time (his previous books are ‘Horrorstör’, and ‘My Best Friend’s Exorcism’), Hendrix has laden ‘Souls’ with conspiracy theory and real life horrors.

Kris Pulaski was in a heavy metal band called Dürt Würk two decades ago and they were on the brink of success when the lead singer Terry Hunt ripped the band apart and left to start his solo career. And it seems Terry’s rise to success was at the cost of selling the band’s souls.
That’s right, he sold their souls for rock’n’roll…or in this case, heavy metal.

 

Kris’ pitiful present day existence is working at the reception of a Best Western, and if you can stomach the ‘Welcome To Hell’ chapter (good horror always comes at the cost of reading things that make your stomach turn), then you can follow Kris on her journey as she gets whisked from Pennsylvania to a Satanic rehab center, and then across the country again to grimy Las Vegas. Years of grueling, crazy, exciting, challenging (to say the least), and often nasty experiences on the road with the band, were nothing compared to this trip, and it seems like all Kris’ heavy metal years were preparation and toughened her up. The journey to Las Vegas is overwhelming, but Kris has a mission she can’t ignore. There’s also a whole host of colorful characters along the way, but I do have to wonder if Hendrix has a thing against UPS (you will see what I mean when you read the book).

 

The greatest thing about this book is that Hendrix has chosen to write ‘Souls’ with a female protagonist. Not just that: a kickass, middle-aged (even though I hate that word, because that’s what I am now, I suppose), female as its lead. And she plays the guitar like a certain other Hendrix. She doesn’t take any bull from anyone and doesn’t stop fighting back once she starts on her new road trip.

 

While it seems as though she has given up with her hotel job, the revelation that she must stop her old bandmate Terry Hunt, lights a fire in Kris, and the book has that vibe of ‘don’t give up, don’t let the system win, don’t let the bullies push you’. That’s highly clear in the messages of conspiracy theory, our paranoia-laden country, and how culture is selling itself (its soul) particularly out to cell phones and shallow marketing. Reading the book will give you a greater sense of the way the conspiracy theory works in ‘Souls’ - I’m kind of at a loss as how to explain the genius behind how it’s woven in - but Hendrix has cleverly used snippets of radio and newspaper to show how ‘news’ travels and information spreads. This has always been the way conspiracy theories spread and this underbelly of the book is fascinating.

 

If you don’t know all the music in the book, this may be a little daunting, as there are a lot of heavy metal and music references, but I think if you have even the remote interest in or knowledge of decades old music such as Black Sabbath and Slayer, and remember the days when everyone thought that heavy metal listeners were devil worshipers, you will appreciate what Hendrix is doing here (and no you don’t have to actually like the music). Trigger warnings for sexual assault and creepy crawlies; this is definitely rated R.

 

Hendrix is an undeniable force in pop culture literature and has written an unforgettable book, one that’s not for everyone, but will be a cult classic, but not like any of the schlock he writes about in his awesome ‘Paperbacks from Hell’. No one writes like this guy; ‘We Sold Our Souls’ is funny, gross, complex, and a wonderful blend of horror, pop culture, conspiracy theory, and is infused with a heavy dose of music history. Only Grady Hendrix could have done that.

 

**I'm really lucky because this Friday I get to meet Grady here in Seattle at his book signing and I get to have my big stack of books signed. 

*Kudos to Doogie Horner again, for another excellent book cover design for Grady. It's worth noting that the hardcover of this book has beautiful black ink-sprayed pages. 

 

 

 

UPDATE:

What an amazing ‘signing’. To anyone who gets to go to one of the signings on this book tour: Grady will blow your mind with the presentation he has ready for you; I wish I’d been prepared and been able to record it or something, so I could listen to it again (you hear/see that, Grady?).
The whole ‘secret history’ behind heavy metal and how it has rotted so many young minds (aka the wonderful conspiracy theories that set WSOS in motion) is the basis for Grady’s brilliant ‘lecture’, along with a slideshow and I wish I’d at least taken notes, but I chuckled too much to do that. It was the most funny, inspiring, thoughtful signing I’ve been to yet.

 

THANK YOU TO GRADY for revealing the personal background behind writing this book in particular; I really appreciated your message at the end, you have so much heart, especially for a guy who writes some of my favorite books which are complete with things like people getting their scalps ripped off, beetles crawling down their shirts, and high schoolers needing exorcisms. Plus you will say ‘fuck’ a lot right near the children’s department in the bookstore and do the ‘voices’ of the members of KISS.
And I have NO idea how you have the energy that you do (you delivered about 20-25 pages at cutthroat speed), especially since I’m someone who has zero energy most of the time, thanks to MS.
Us Seattlites apologize for the death of metal circa 1991 when Nirvana et al burst onto the scene (I thought it was funny that you started your tour here*), but you must admit jeans are way more comfortable than leather pants, so that was a godsend. I’d love to hear your take on whether that was a conspiracy itself.

So, thank you for coming and signing my massive stack of books, for your presentation, and for your writing genius. Thank you to librarians for buying secret copies of books for kids like a certain one did for you.
You rock.

*We would like to reiterate that we did indeed have a very hot and sunny summer here this year (again) in Seattle, and now that  it’s raining we are actually all quite relieved. Sorry you had to experience it for your trip though. Make sure you come back for your next book.

Source: www.goodreads.com/book/show/37715859-we-sold-our-souls
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review 2018-09-19 21:01
Review & Giveaway – No End Of Bad by Ginny Fite @unwrinkledbrain @iReadBookTours
No End Of Bad - Ginny Fite

 

 

 
 

Book Details:

 

Book Title: No End of Bad by Ginny Fite
Category: Adult Fiction; 280 pages
Genre: Thriller
Publisher: Black Opal Books
Release date: June 2018
Tour dates: Sept 3 to 21, 2018
Content Rating: PG-13 (Contains cursing, violence, non-explicit sex but NO adultery, abortion, etc.)

 

MY REVIEW

 

No End of Bad by Ginny Fite started out with me thinking this will just be so so. It didn’t take long for me to become involved and wondering what would I do if I were sitting in a park, minding my own business, nothing new, just the usual work day and I see some litter, so I pick it up. Before I can say, excuse me, I am jumped on, handcuffed and off to who knows where we go.

 

Innocent until proven guilty? Yeah, right.

 

Accused of being a spy Clayton Turnbull’s life is over as he knows it. But it gets oh so much worse.

 

There are so many awful characters, no morals or scruples, a what’s in it for me attitude, and corruption and greed run rampant. These characters don’t even deserve to be put in jail, they deserve to be buried under it. There is no level they will not go to keep what’s theirs and cover up the evidence before that pesky reporter, or someone else, exposes them.

 

 As will Lenore Cavanaugh, the reporter that is like a pit full. She will not let anything go.

Margaret and Melissa Turnbull will rise above and beyond anything they could have dreamed about.

 

I love a good conspiracy mystery and this is one convoluted tale that goes around the world and back again. Politics and greed rear their ugly heads and run full bore after those who threaten to expose them.

 

I like a book that makes me question things in the real world. I do wonder what percentage of people in the world today believe everything they read in the papers, see on TV and on the internet. Do they get their news from Facebook?

 

Well…loaded with danger, corruption, government rogues running wild around the world, these amazing characters will rise to levels never anticipated to do the right thing, to protect their own and to take down the bad guys, no matter who they are or how high they rise. And it doesn’t stop until the last page is read. Warning: the ending may require tissues.

 

I love this quote from Henry Kissinger:

 

Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean someone isn’t trying to kill you.

 

Here’s a quote from Melissa to her mother, Margaret:

 

“God Mom, there’s just No End of Bad.”

 

I voluntarily reviewed a free copy of No End of Bad by Ginny Fite.

Animated Animals. Pictures, Images and Photos  4 Stars

 

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review 2018-09-10 03:39
A Conspiracy in Belgravia by Sherry Thomas (audiobook)
A Conspiracy in Belgravia - Sherry Thomas

Series: Lady Sherlock #2

 

After enjoying the first one so much, I felt like Halloween Bingo gave me a good excuse to dive right into the second one. This one ended up being all spies and agents and codes, but there was a murder thrown in there so that's the square I'm going to be using this for.

 

I have to say that I really enjoy reading about Charlotte. There's just something that I like about her. I could have done without being treated to the details of Livia's literary pursuits, however. It comes across as trying too hard to wrap everything into the Sherlock Holmes mythos, and I find it unnecessary. 

 

It looks like the third book will be out early October, but since I've been enjoying the audio so much, I'm not sure if my library will have the audio soon enough for me to use it for Halloween Bingo. I must be running out of possible squares for these books anyway, shouldn't I?

 

I'm counting this for the "Murder Most Foul" square.

 

 

Previous updates:

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text 2018-09-05 21:30
Reading progress update: I've listened 636 out of 636 minutes.
A Conspiracy in Belgravia - Sherry Thomas

Done!

 

Now I just need to decide whether to count it for the "Terrifying Women" square or the "Darkest London" square. I did have something else initially pegged for Darkest London, but this would work for it too... Or it would also work for "Murder Most Foul". I don't think I had explicitly chosen a book for that, just a few possibilities...

 

Decisions, decisions.

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