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review 2017-07-09 01:44
The Hockey Saint by Howard Shapiro
The Hockey Saint by Howard Shapiro (2014) Perfect Paperback - Howard Shapiro

Genre:  Friendship / School / Drama / Drugs / Sports


Year Published: 2014


Year Read:  6/3/2017

Publisher: Animal Media Group 

Series: Forever Friends Trilogy #2

 

Hockey

I would like to thank NetGalley and Animal Media Group for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.


Introduction: 

After I had finished reading Howard Shapiro’s previous graphic novel, “The Stereotypical Freaks,” I was excited to find out that “The Stereotypical Freaks” was a part of the “Forever Friends Trilogy” and I was even more excited to find out that I was approved of the second book in the series “The Hockey Saint” by NetGalley! After reading this graphic novel, I found this story to be just as memorable as “The Stereotypical Freaks!”

What is this story about? 

Tom Leonard is back once again as he is now a college sophomore who is a part of the school’s hockey team and he now has a new dilemma to face! The story starts off with Tom’s parents being killed in a car accident and Tom is still trying to deal with this tragedy. Also around that time, Tom has been offered a scholarship for his talents in hockey and Tom is striving to get that scholarship as much as possible. One day however, Tom ends up meeting his favorite hockey player, Jeremiah Jacobson, who is known as the world’s best hockey player. Tom then quickly becomes good friends with Jeremiah and the two of them started spending a lot of time with each other. But later on, Tom discovers that Jeremiah has a terrible secret: he is a heavy drinker and a smoker and Jeremiah refuses to acknowledge that he has this problem.

Can Tom help Jeremiah with his drug addiction before it is too late? 

Read this book to find out!
 


What I loved about this story: 

Howard Shapiro’s writing: 
Howard Shapiro’s writing is as usual a delight to read as the characters are written extremely well and I loved the real-world plot of this volume as it addresses the dangers of drug addiction that has rarely been addressed in many comic books. I loved the fact that we actually have a comic book that details drug addiction in a realistic way by showing that Jeremiah is in denial about his addiction and how it was difficult at first for Tom and his loved ones to try to get Jeremiah to understand about the severity of his drug addiction. I also loved the way that Howard Shapiro wrote the relationships between the characters, especially between Tom and Jeremiah as I loved the fact that Jeremiah shows Tom that there is more to life than just playing hockey all the time and Tom cares enough for Jeremiah to go out of his way to help out Jeremiah with his drug addiction. 

Maricia Inoue and Andres Mossa’s artwork: 
Maricia Inoue and Andres Mossa’s artwork is beautifully done as the characters look truly realistic and I loved the way that the characters glow off the pages. Now, I will admit that there were some facial expressions on the characters that looked a bit odd, especially regarding Tom always smiling during some serious moments; but other than that, the artwork really captures the raw emotions that the characters feel during this serious situation that deals with drug addiction.

Hockey

What made me feel uncomfortable about this story: 

The reason why I took off half a point from this rating was because I felt like the pacing was a bit slow at times, especially at the beginning and I sometimes wished that the plot moved at a much faster pace to get to the main point of the story.

Final Thoughts: 

Overall, “The Hockey Saint” was a truly heartwarming and realistic story about drug addiction that anyone who wants to read about the consequences of drug addiction and the importance of true friendship will truly enjoy!

Review is also on: Rabbit Ears Book Blog

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review 2017-05-30 14:43
An exceptional writing talent
Vanished: David Raker Novel #3 by Weaver, Tim (2012) Paperback - Tim Weaver

"All of his novels were so fast-paced that the reader was compelled to turn the pages in a non-stop effort to reach the end of the book. The final page often produced a totally unexpected plot twist that would invariably leave even his most die-hard fans surprised. His early books contained some violence that matched the era in which they were written, though this was considerably toned down as plots centred more on circumstantial situations to create the high degree of tension that was the hallmark of his writing. Sex was never explicit and, though often hinted at, seldom happened"  This is a Wikipedia description  of James Hadley Chase, a prolific quaintly English crime writer of the 1950's, 60's 70's His novels were always tightly constructed, intricate without being overly complicated but at the same time fast and exciting reads. I do hope Tim Weaver will not mind when I compare his style of writing to that of Chase but with very modern twists and themes. From the opening paragraphs- of "Vanished" we the reader are immediately drawn in...."Healy looked down at the temperature readout as he pulled up outside the estate. Almost twenty degrees. It felt hotter than that. He'd had the air conditioning on all the way from the station but, on the journey over, nothing had cooled His sleeves were rolled up, his top button undone, but the car was still stifling. Even in the middle of the night, under cover of darkness, the heat continued to cling on....." And so we ask...who is Healy and why is he out in the middle of a hot and sultry English summer night?

 

There are no wasted words in Vanished every page is readable and exciting drawing you in and inviting you to stay. The central character in all Weaver's books is David Raker an ex journalist who now uses his inquisitive skills hiring himself out as a kind of private detective to search for those individuals who have disappeared, desperately sought by loved ones who really only want to know why? Julia Wren hires Raker to find her husband Sam who disappeared some months ago, took an early morning London tube ride and was never seen again. Layer by layer, like the peeling of an onion, the twists and turns of this excellent thriller proceed at a terrific pace. The London underground/railway is used to great effect for the action scenes; the police are searching for The Snatcher and as his name suggests he removes his victims with stealth and cunning, is there any connection between this killer and the disappearance of Sam Wren? In the final chapters  just when we the reader thought the killer had been successfully identified there is a Hadley Chase moment and a "totally unexpected plot twist." My favourite character and one who demands greatest sympathy is ex London met detective Colm Healy, he was one of the Met's  best detectives - until the unsolved murders of a mother and her twin daughters consumed his career, his family and his life. Healy's world finally collapses when his own daughter Leanne disappears, soon to be the subject of a murder enquiry. Raker and Healy have a tenuous relationship and one can never be sure if the broken and distraught detective will finally succumb to suicidal thoughts.

 

As an ardent reviewer and keen blogger I awarded this book with four stars simply because the early David Raker lacked a little of the oomph, vitality and sparkle of later adventures (What remains;David Raker 6 and Broken Heart;David Raker 7 are exceptional) Tim Weaver is an extraordinary talent whose love of writing and his wonderful storytelling ability is beyond reproach and I look forward with great anticipation the new Raker adventure due for release at the end of July 2017.

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review 2017-05-28 11:51
Feel Me Fall – James Morris
Feel Me Fall - Christopher Fowler;Gary McMahon;Adam L.G. Nevill;Pat Cadigan;Paul Meloy;Ramsay Campbell;John L. Probert;Nicholas Royle;Simon Bestwick;Al Ewing;Conrad Williams;Mark Morris;Stephen Volk;Michael Marshall Smith;James Lovegrove;Natasha Rhodes;Joel Lane

‘I pictured her sticking her finger down her throat and bringing it back up later.

Derek asked, “Anything to drink with that?”

“Just water.”

No, I didn’t spit in her food. That’s gross. But I did wipe her bun on the bottom of my shoe.’

 

Secrets and survival in the Amazon 

Emily Duran is the sole survivor of a plane crash that left her and her teenage friends stranded and alone in the jungles of the Amazon. Lost and losing hope, they struggle against the elements, and each other. With their familiar pecking order no longer in place, a new order emerges, filled with power struggles, betrayals, secrets and lies. Emily must explain why she's the last left alive.

But can she carry the burden of the past?

Discover the gripping new adventure novel that explores who we are when no one is watching, and how far we'll go in order to survive.

 

I was contacted by James Morris himself to read Feel Me Fall in exchange for an honest review so here we go.

 

Feel Me Fall is a fantastic novel. From the very first page I was hooked and whenever I had a free moment, i.e. waiting for the bus, walking home, I had my Kindle out reading it (whilst I was walking, which I’m really chuffed with achieving). Emily is a relatable character, give or take a few obstacles that she goes through *cough* messing around with her teacher *cough*. So what she goes through and does you can’t help but feel sorry for her and understand the actions she takes.

 

*SPOILER ALERT*

 

Just a little bit after halfway, Derek (the possible bad guy, depending on your train of thought) begins to kill off all the males in the group by making it look like accidents and then even when a native stumbles across them and starts to lead them to civilisation Derek then kills him as well and destroys the only slither of hope the girls had for survival. This is very similar to what happens in the wild when a male feels threatened by another potential mate and attacks them to reinstate is position as the leader.

 

Overall, everyone needs to read this book. Like right now.

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text 2017-05-26 13:54
26th May 2017
An American Exodus: A Record of Human Erosion - Dorothea Lange & Paul Taylor - Dorothea Lange,Paul Schuster Taylor,Henry Mayer,Paul Taylor

Life, for people, begins to crumble on the edges; they don't realize it.

 

Dorothea Lange

 

Dorothea Lange (born May 26, 1895) knew that she wanted to be a photographer before she even picked up a camera. She is best known for her work during the Great Depression, documenting the difficulties of migrant laborers.

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review 2017-05-14 16:26
A Pattern A Day
Crochet (Crochet Patterns, Crochet Books, Knitting Patterns): 365 Days of Crochet: 365 Crochet Patterns for 365 Days (Crochet, Crochet for Beginners, Crochet Afghans) - Coral James

I read this at the beginning of the year. I was able to get this book for free at that time and found many patterns that I decided I would enjoy making. Many other patterns that I wouldn't enjoy, but that is how I am with many patterns. I recommend this book to many who know how to crochet. There are many levels of patterns from beginner to a little more advanced. 

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