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review 2018-12-07 23:23
Jake the Fake Keeps it Real
Jake the Fake Keeps it Real - Craig Robinson,Keith Knight,Adam Mansbach

As I previously mentioned, I got this book for my grandson, Jake, a big fan of Timothy Failure books. I'm a big fan of Craig Robinson, so I figured, Why not? I think Jake the Fake is funnier than Timothy Bottom books which I found boring. This is a Middle School book! If you have a middle schooler, I recommend it for the comedy.

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text 2018-12-07 19:16
Jake the Fake Keeps it Real - Craig Robinson,Keith Knight,Adam Mansbach

I'm on page 46 of Jake the Fake Keeps It Real: I got this book for my grandson Jake because of the title and because it reminded me of one of his favorite books, the Timmy Failure series which he loves. But when I got home i noticed one of the authors names was Craig Robinson. I thought could this be the actor Crqig Robinson from The Office? He's one of my all time favorite actors. I found out now it is, it is! So I'm reading it before I send it to my Jake. So far, I find it a lot funnier than Timothy Failure.

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text 2018-12-05 21:24
24 Festive Tasks, Door 9 - Thanksgiving UPDATED to include Task 2
Amelia: An Autumn Bride - Hildie McQueen
To End All Wars: A Story of Loyalty and Rebellion, 1914-1918 - Adam Hochschild
Hamilton's Battalion: A Trio of Romances - Alyssa Cole,Rose Lerner,Courtney Milan
Conspiracy of Fools: A True Story - Kurt Eichenwald
The Lotus Palace - Jeannie Lin
The Jade Temptress - Jeannie Lin
Once Upon a Spine - Kate Carlisle
Bitch Planet Volume 1 - Kelly Sue DeConnick,Robert Wilson IV,Valentine De Landro
Bitch Planet Volume 2: President Bitch - Kelly Sue DeConnick
Nightingales Under the Mistletoe: (Nightingales 7) - Donna Douglas

Thanksgiving

 

Book: Today, I read Amelia: An Autumn Bride (Brides for All Seasons #7) by Hildie McQueen (autumn colors).

 

Task #1

The three books I am most thankful for reading this year are:

 

1. To End All Wars: A Story of Loyalty and Rebellion, 1914-1918 by Adam Hochschild

          This is what I would recommend to anyone, but especially non-history readers, if they wanted to read one book about World War I. 

 

2. Hamilton's Battalion: A Trio of Romances by Rose Lerner, Courtney Milan, and Alyssa Cole

              I'm not a fangirl of Hamilton or his musical (although I do listen and enjoy the soundtrack), but getting new material from these authors was enough for me to buy it. Courtney Milan's story was my favorite, but Rose Lerner's and Alyssa Cole's stories were wonderful as well. 

 

3. Conspiracy of Fools: A True Story by Kurt Eichenwald

             This book was a door stopper, but read so much like a novel that it didn't feel over long at all. This is the true story of the rise and fall of Enron.

 

Honorable mention: The Lotus Palace and The Jade Temptress (Pingkang Li Mysteries #1 and 2) by Jeannie Lin.

 

Task #2

My perfect meal, created by a chef and his/her/their team, is inspired by my Italian heritage. It would be time and resource intensive, ergo I would never make it for myself.

1. Starters - Caprese salad and friend calamari

2. Main - Zuppa di Pesce e Frutti de Mare (just a ton of seafood in a clear broth)

3. Sides - Baked Fennel with Parmesan and Mushroom risotto

4. Dessert - Tiramisu

 

Task #3

The book I read this year with the most "stuffing" was Once Upon a Spine (A Bibliophile Mystery #11) by Kate Carlisle. Details about the most mundane things with boring vanilla characters and constant wedding talk - and the murder mystery was an afterthought until the very end. 

 

Task #4

Honestly, I can't remember all the freebies I download in a single month, let alone in a year. So here is what I bought this month:

 

1. Bitch Planet Volume 1 and 2 by Kelly Sue DeConnick et al (from Foyles)

2. A Nightingale Christmas Carol and Nightingales Under the Mistletoe by Donna Douglas (from a charity shop)

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review 2018-12-04 15:43
Fly With Me: A Celebration of Birds through Pictures, Poems, and Stories
Fly With Me: A Celebration of Birds through Pictures, Poems, and Stories - Adam Stemple,Jason Stemple,Jane Yolen and Heidi E. Y. Stemple
What a fantastic book about birds. I heard about this nonfiction book from a blog I follow, so I picked it up from the library. The illustrations inside are beautiful and most of the them are life-like. The book is filled with information that will please most bird enthusiast and I feel that this book would look beautiful on a coffee table even though it is a labeled a child’s nonfiction book.
 
The book begins with a detailed table of contents for those who are searching for specifics. The categories range from birds in stories and art, bird characteristics, bird records, saving the birds, birds in your yard, state birds (U.S.) and birdsongs, just to name a few. I didn’t read everything in this book as there is a lot to read but what I did read was educational and interesting. There is great information on each page and I wish I had the memory to remember everything that I had read. I did read the article on birdsongs and I learned a great deal on how birds sing. It was fascinating to learn how birds learn their songs and I also learned that a whole flock of birds will have the same songs but also that smaller groups within these same birds, will create their own songs based on where they live. As I looked over the illustrations, most of them had text boxes of interesting facts. I liked that the birds on the pages were labeled so I could tell exactly what type of bird I was looking at and didn’t have to go hunting for it.
 
The illustrations are life-like and most of the illustrations take up the majority of the page. Looking at the Vervain Hummingbird, she looks big as she feeds her babies on the page but as I read the text-box, I realize that her nest is half the size of a walnut shell and it is the smallest nest of all birds. By looking at this illustration, I would have never known that. There are a few illustrations that are drawings in this book. These drawings are very detailed and beautiful. I liked the information and illustrations about the birds in my own yard. I learned about seeds, bird baths, and about which houses are best for which birds. These weren’t complicated, drawn-out explanations but good directions with clear photos.
 
A fantastic book that I highly recommend. A book that has made it’s way into my shopping chart.

 

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review 2018-12-02 15:11
SCAPEGOAT by Adam Howe and James Newman
Scapegoat - Adam Howe,James R. Newman

 

 

Set to a rock n roll soundtrack in the 1980's, SCAPEGOAT should appeal to any fan of 80's horror, and 80's hair/metal bands. If these things are your bag, you should just buy  

this book now and get to reading!

 

 

Lonnie, the barely-dressed Cindy, Mike, and Pork Chop are on a road trip in Lonnie's R.V. heading to Wrestlemania 3. Since the guys were in a band,(Wrathbone), together they've drifted apart. Mike has a wife and child now and couldn't be happier. He's only on this trip for a brief vacation and to see some wrestling. Both Lonnie and the kilt-wearing Pork Chop seem to be the same people they were in high school and Mike realizes he doesn't have much in common with them anymore. Just as he's beginning to regret his decision to come with, something runs in front of their camper and gets hit. What was it? Will our group ever make it to Wrestlemania 3? You'll have to read this book to find out!

 

I've read the work of both of these authors before, so the quality and depth of this book did not surprise me. What did surprise me was the way this tale played out. Being a horror fan, I've read many, many books about cults, both fiction and non, because if Jim Jones isn't a real life horror story, I don't know what is. I've also read tales about dark religions and hillbillies, and very few of them had the courage to take the route that this story took. (One or two of the true stories did, to be honest, because real life is horrific, isn't it?)

 

The other thing about this book that makes it special is the characters. I developed true feelings for all of them, though my feelings often changed throughout. Thing is, I knew all these people at some point during high school. At first, Cindy reminded me a bit of myself. (But then that changed.) I loathed Lonnie for quite a while and I thought Pork Chop was the biggest loser ever, and then those feelings changed too. There are no flat characters here-they seemed real to me, they had depth and they were more complicated than I originally thought. I love when that happens!

 

The only issue I had was that the denouement went a little too quickly for me. I would have liked to have learned a bit more about the cult and the town in which it flourished. Perhaps that would have slowed the story down too much and that's why the authors wrapped it up the way they did? I'm not sure, but this was a damn good story either way.

 

Adam Howe and James Newman are both authors to watch. Anytime either of them puts out something new, it's automatically added to my "To Be Read" list. But this? A novel with both of them writing together? Just the thought of it put a smile on my face and the fact that the novel is actually fun, fast paced, intriguing, and creative? That's just the icing on the cake.

 

Highly recommended!

 

*I received an e-ARC of this book, in exchange for my honest feedback. This is it.*

 

**During the month of December, 2018 both of these authors are joining in a group read at Horror Aficionados, a Goodreads group I help to moderate. They will be available to answer your questions and comments about SCAPEGOAT. Please come join us here: 

Horror Aficionados Group Read of SCAPEGOAT

 

We'd love to have you!**

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