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text 2018-03-21 11:00
Facts About Me: Life With Cancer

I was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in 2002, one week before my 16th birthday. I underwent extreme chemotherapy treatment and a stem cell transplant in a trial research program. Now, due to side effects that weren’t known at the time, I have quite a few different disabilities and illnesses that creep up from time to time. I have to use some fancy gadgets at home, and I’ve got a boring old, regular wheelchair to get me where I want to go.

I get by as best as I can and don’t particularly consider myself ‘disabled’, though there are things I can’t do that really irritate me, because I used to be able to do them. I’m just happy for what I’ve got and try to get on with it.

The only real blessing it's given me is the freedom to spend all day, every day, following my passion - writing. Other than family and my reviewing hobby, there are no other commitments to take up my time, as I'm considered unfit to work. Which means that I get to write all. the. time.


After my treatment, I actually wrote a book about my experience as a teenager with cancer. It was posted on Wattpad after I completed it, then published with Write More Publications, but has since been unpublished due to Write More closing down. The book is still available to review, in its original (unedited) format, on Wattpad. I've been lucky enough to have some amazing readers, who comment to let me know how much my experiences help them cope with similar life struggles, and how my survival gives them hope, even for family members who are going through similar things.

You can read the book, An Unpredictable Life, for free on Wattpad right here: https://www.wattpad.com/story/9749942-an-unpredictable-life



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url 2018-03-20 20:31
Humble Jumbo Bundle (not books, but good)

I've played a couple games in this bundle and consider both of them to be good, if you're into puzzle-solving.


Rusty Lake: Roots - A point-and-click adventure game with lots of weird little puzzles. I think it started life as a phone or tablet game. It's a family saga that takes you from the family's beginnings, through a few generations, and up to what is almost the series' present. It's one of my top favorite entries in the Rusty Lake/Cube Escape series and works perfectly fine as a standalone. If you'd like a taste of the gameplay style, most of the games in the series are available for free - search "Cube Escape" in whatever app store you use. My favorite of the free ones is probably Cube Escape: Birthday (although, be warned, there's some sudden violence, a moment when

a shooter comes and kills the main character's whole family

(spoiler show)

). All the games have varying degrees of gross or violent moments, but the characters involved are generally pretty emotionally detached from those moments, if that helps.


Obduction - If you have the same Myst nostalgia that I have, you might already own this. I haven't finished it yet - I've gotten through two of what I think are probably three total connected worlds. It has some of the same issues as the Myst games - times when it's difficult to tell what you should be doing next or whether you're even on the right track - but it also has many of the elements that made the Myst games so good. My favorite thing so far has been the moment when I learned that the world of Obduction is actually much, much larger than it at first appears to be.

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review 2018-03-20 19:41
Dirty Little Secret (Forbidden Desires Book 1) - Kendall Ryan

Dirty Little Secret by Kendall Ryan is an entertaining contemporary romance.  Ms. Ryan has delivered a book that is well-written.  It is in first person, alternating point of view format, not my favorite.  Gavin is part owner of an escort service.  Emma is a librarian that has been fascinated with Gavin since she first saw him at a coffee shop.  Their story is a twisted, emotional rollercoaster.  There is plenty of drama, angst and sex.  My least favorite part of this story is, yes, the dreaded cliff-hanger.  I hate cliff-hangers and would have never read this if I had known ahead of time.  Dirty Little Secret is book 1 of the Forbidden Desires Series.  This is not a complete book and does end in a cliff-hanger.  I'm glad I got this free through bookfunnel, I'd have been even more upset if I had actually paid for it.

I won't be reading any of the other books in the series.


I voluntarily read a complimentary copy of this book that I received from Bookfunnel.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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review 2018-03-20 17:25
Stephen King’s first book, a true classic: read the book where it all started!
Carrie (Turtleback School & Library Binding Edition) - Stephen King

I have FINALLY read ‘Carrie’, Stephen King’s first book. Yes, it was his FIRST book!
Reading a book when you already know the story so well (from the movie) is such a different experience than reading the book and then watching the movie, but it’s even more different when it’s one like this. I’ve seen ‘Carrie’ so many times because it’s one of my favorite horror films (not talking about any stupid remake, despite the fact I happen to have the book copy that is the remake movie tie-in. Remakes of good films are blasphemy). The original movie is perfection with Piper Laurie and Sissy Spacek and when reading the book, is was VERY hard for me not to get their images out of my mind. It was brilliant casting, for a brilliant story.
When reading this pretty short book (it comes in at basically 300 pages, which is so short, when you compare it to the behemoths of IT and The Stand), you are transported to 1979 immediately by the language, the descriptions of the clothing, and even the comparative style of King’s writing. It’s kind of a treat and a bit of a time warp you are pulled into. It took a bit of getting used to, along with the way King uses different narrative styles; the reader is given reports of the main ‘incident’, as well as character accounts, and intersperses them into the main story. If you didn’t know the ending from seeing the movie, you would have a good idea about a lot of it from these accounts as you go through.
As for the dynamic between Carrie and her hellacious (sorry, have to say it) mother, the interactions are horrific and they make your blood boil and King has given all he can to make the dread and tension so vivid. By writing in Carrie’s ‘thoughts’ we get little peeks into what’s going on in her mind as her powers are getting stronger; you start rooting for the girl who is being bullied, dominated, threatened all her life. You just know that there is no other way for this story to end.
What is most interesting to me now is the contrast with what what acceptable in terms of what kids could get away with (in terms of bullying and hazing) at school, compared to now. That’s a whole other story.
Anyway, I’m glad I finally got to read it as part of a Litsy buddy read. I love the movie so much, and it’s amazing to think that this is where Stephen King’s book career started. With a short novel that had one of most memorable horror movies made out of it.
*Don’t ever bother with the remake though.

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review 2018-03-20 15:57
Fearless: The Rosewood Bay Series, book 1 - Carly Phillips

OMG! I am in love with Kane Harmon. Talk about the sweetest, nicest, perfect guy!

After getting jilted and used by a summer vacationer to his little beach town of Rosewood Bay, Kane has stayed away from any type of relationships. The occasional hookup is fine, but that is it. He has enough to worry about with his gambling addicted father, his single mom sister and running his garage business.

When Kane goes on a tow truck run to pick up a female broken down on the highway, he is surprised to find Halley Ward. He hasn't seen Halley in years, since their emotional connection back in high school when he protected her from school bullies. Instantly attracted to Halley, and finding out that she actually still lives in Rosewood Bay, Kane starts to pursue her. Too bad Halley is not interesting in a relationship. Kane continues to insert himself into Halley's life because he can tell she wants more to her life than she currently has, but is afraid because of things from her past. Little by little Kane wears her down until she sees that having Kane in her life is a beautiful thing.

I just adored Kane. He was so patient and kind and just what Halley needed in her life. Halley had some horrible issues from her past but with Kane's help she was able to overcome them. Overall I loved this story. I sat and read it in one day because I could not put it down! And the sneak peek into Halley's sister Phoebe's story looks so fun! ;)

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