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review 2019-07-28 18:09
"The Taste of Rain", by Monique Polak
"The Taste of Rain" - Monique Polak

This is a heart ranching story of the 28 girls living in a hut with their teacher Miss E. in Weihsien Civilian Assembly Center, a Japanese prison in Northern China, during WW11. 13 year old Gwen, one of them, is the narrator and gives us the grim realities of prison life. By 1945, she had been interned for 2 years and a half along with other children who were enrolled at a boarding school in Chefoo when the Japanese Imperial Army invaded China.

Although the story is meant for young readers as an adult I found it well told, compelling and very much engaging. We do not see much fiction set during this time and even less being told through the eyes a young teenager. Gwen’s story is based on true accounts. 

As the narrative unfolds in the present tense and the condition in the camp is detailed enough but in a tone considerably softened for the ears of a young audience, we live the horrors of beatings, starvation and lack of everything. By the end we are left to our imagination to what happened to Gwen’s fate with the arrival of the American troops. This story leaves several threads hanging, quite disappointing not to know. 

The other characters in this tragic story are Miss E., the Japanese guards, a kindly Japanese officer, Lu, a Chinese laborer and some of Gwen’s friends give us heart rending moments.

“The Taste of Rain” is the sort of book that will engage as well as inform young adults and grown-ups as well.

I received this ARC from Orca Book Publisher via the First Reviewer Program for my thoughts

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text 2019-06-21 12:49
Smart Home Weather Stations and Rain Gauge Market

21 June 2019, Global smart home weather stations and rain gauge market is estimated to grow substantially in the years to come owing to increasing attraction due to growing innovations in product design, performance, features, and technology. Smart home weather stations and rain gauge is the device that can be installed indoors or outdoors to check weather conditions in the locality. The real-time weather data provider saves time and money with easy installation and no moving parts for further risk of damage.


The market is witnessing growth owing to the factors like increase in demand for smart home devices due to penetration of internet and intensifying demand for smartphones owing to operation by smartphones. However, lack of awareness about smart home weather stations in developing as well as developed economies is hampering the growth of smart home weather stations and rain gauge market.




Increasing online sales of smart home weather station & rain gauges is one of the key trends in this market. Nonetheless, increasing security & data privacy issues about smart devices and IoT are challenging the market. Market is categorized on the basis of product, and geography. On the basis of product, market is divided into smart rain gauge and smart home weather station. Smart home weather station segment is expected to hold larger share of the market due to improved internet connectivity and presence of potential consumers.


Geographically, market is segmented as North America, South America, Europe, Asia Pacific, and Middle East & Africa. Owing to the adoption of technologically advanced products, North America and South America are predicted to dominate the market in the forecast period. Europe is also expected to grow significantly due to increasing awareness. The prominent players in smart home weather stations and rain gauge market are La Crosse Technology, AcuRite.com, Ambient Weather, Netatmo and Davis Instruments.


Browse Related Category Market Reports @


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review 2019-06-06 22:45
Wolf Rain by Nalini Singh 5 Star Review!!
Wolf Rain - Nalini Singh

Excellent. Just Excellent.

Nalini Singh never disappoints. This is an amazing joyful action packed romance. The world building is off the hook which is stunning this deep into a series. I am so excited each time a new book comes out. I read it right away.

I love this universe and I love these characters.

In Wolf Rain, we get Alexie and Memory. We get a wolf dealing with genetics that may make it impossible to have a mate and Memory is finding her own strength and her talent. 

Watching them falling in like and love is a delight. Sexy too. So sexy. 

There is such heat and connection between them. 

The world expands here too with Memory Psy gifts. We get a wonderful plot that is perfect balance with the love story.

I also want to call out an amazing moment in the book of friendship and womanhood and representation. 

Singh's books have been a shining light for decades for diversity in characters. Diversity of all kinds.

Memory is of African decent. Many of Singh's characters have multi racial backgrounds. 
One of the ways Memory's captor controls her is by forcing her to straighten her hair. Memory resist his control over her body. When she get free, her hair is a snarl. She wants it natural. Another heroine helps her get those curls on point. 

This reminds me of the hours I spent growing up chatting with my friends while her mom put her braids in. The perfection of this moment to be so seen and to know the value of saying how we look is everything.

So, thank you Nalini Singh for masterful journey with surprises and delights of every kind. 

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review 2019-06-03 05:50
Review: Wolf Rain by Nalini Singh
Wolf Rain - Nalini Singh

Reviewed for Wit and Sin


Return to the beloved world of the SnowDancer pack in Wolf Rain. I love all of Nalini Singh’s pairings, no matter what the combination of human, Psy, or Changeling is, but I admittedly have a soft spot for Psy-Changeling pairings. Combine that with returning to an area in the Psy-Changeling world that already has a strong grip on my heart and it’s no surprise I was eager to dive into this book. Ms. Singh did not disappoint. Alexei and Memory are engaging, interesting, endearing protagonists and their romance is lovely to watch unfold.

Memory is a survivor, a fighter, and – quite simply – a wonderful heroine. She was kidnapped and imprisoned for fifteen years, suffered mental violations that would break most, and still managed to keep her core self alive and vibrant. We first meet her after a heartbreaking loss, one that touched me deeply, and I was immediately drawn to her. I loved her spirit and strength, how even though she was physically weakened and led to believe she’s a monster she doesn’t break. When she’s introduced to the empaths, Arrows, and Changelings, Memory blossoms, quickly coming into her own when she has friendship and support. I loved her journey and was eager to see her find love with the Alexei. The gorgeous wolf is loving, a protector to the core, and bears invisible wounds that bleed daily. He’s lost so much, but he never stops giving. Alexei melted my heart and I was glad to see him start to heal over the course of the story. He and Memory fit one another like lock and key and their slide into love is seamless. I loved watching them challenge each other and their romance was fun, sexy, and heartwarming all at once.

Wolf Rain is the third book in the Psy-Changeling Trinity series, but fans of the original Psy-Changeling books will be delighted to see many of their favorite heroes and heroines play supporting roles in this story. Whether you’re new to the series or are a longtime fan, it’s impossible not to be drawn to the supporting cast. The SnowDancer and DarkRiver packs are filled with wonderful, vibrant characters that bring warmth and energy to the page. They add depth to the world while never pulling focus from Memory or Alexei and I loved seeing all the various friendships intertwine and come into play. I recommend at least being familiar with the Psy-Changeling world before starting Wolf Rain, as the troubled state of the PsyNet is an important plotline. The PsyNet is barely holding together with the help of the empaths, and a new power has arrived that could mean the disintegration of large parts of the Net, killing thousands of Psy at a time. I found this storyline as compelling as the romance and I love how Ms. Singh keeps developing her world in new and fascinating ways. The only downside to this is that after I finished the book I desperately wanted to keep going and discover what happens next in the Psy-Changeling Trinity world.

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Source: witandsin.blogspot.com/2019/06/review-wolf-rain-by-nalini-singh.html
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review 2019-05-04 22:54
Review: Bangkok Wakes to Rain
Bangkok Wakes to Rain - Pitchaya Sudbanthad

Three stories into Bangkok Wakes to Rain, I had a bad feeling about the “novel.” You see, there's been this trend in publishing lately where “novel” can mean many things. David Szalay's Booker nominated All That Man Is is an excellent example. It's a collection of short stories. (Publisher: No, it's a novel.) It may center on a theme, but that doesn’t make it a novel; it’s still just a collection of short stories. But short story collections do not sell as well as novels, nor do they get nominated for the Booker Prize, so I guess the publisher was (deceptively) smart.

Initially, it appears that Sudbanthad is going down the same path with Bangkok Wakes to Rain. Here are stories that have absolutely nothing to do with one another other than their connection to the setting. The first story focuses on a missionary in the 19th century. The second deals with a jazz pianist in the post-Vietnam-war era. The third of a photographer who’d emigrated to the U.S. And so on… Represented as circles with shared similarities, each story looks a little something like this.

I liked the writing, but again I felt duped and disappointed because this was not a novel.

Then a wonderful thing happens—one of the stories overlaps another. I held onto hope there’d be more. Then there is another connection. Slowly, the connections begin to build upon one another so that some stories are only lightly connected to one another, but others share so much. It could look something like this.

I was intrigued. It became a fun exercise searching for all the connections. It reminded me of a device David Mitchell might employ. This association with Mitchell was even more so made concrete by the fact that the book stretches from the colonial era into a future where cities are under water and AI plays a large role in daily living.

The writing is superb and the characters are memorable and well designed. Sudbanthad is a wonderful author who has earned a spot on my growing list of authors I will invest in in the future. Bangkok Wakes to Rain is an intriguing and intelligent novel overall, but the implementation is a bit off. Using such a device is tricky, and while I think Sudbanthad pulls it off well, it is not solid enough to sustain itself. It's close and an admirable effort, but it just doesn't quite gel. Nonetheless, I look very much look forward to the author's sophomore effort. Here is an author who knows how to use language, plot, character, and setting to form a nearly perfect novel or collection—call it what you want.

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