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review 2018-04-10 04:06
A Portrait of an Artist as an Old Man (and his son)
The Italian Teacher - Tom Rachman

I am going to say some nice things about this book, but the thing that kept going through my mind -- for at least the first two-thirds -- was: haven't I read this before? There are a couple of Richard Russo books hidden here, one Matthew Norman -- and I want to say DeLillo, Tropper and Weiner, too, but I can't put my finger on which of those -- and probably a few others that I don't recall. That's not necessarily a bad thing -- we've all read plenty of books that are just variations on well-established themes. What I had to ask myself was: did Rachman have anything new to say with his take? Did he throw in some interesting twists to the mix? Was it a rewarding experience for the reader? I think my answers were: not really, sort of, and not particularly.

 

The novel revolves around Bear Bavinsky, a painter of renown, an iconoclast, a rock star in a pre-rock star age -- and a serial monogamist on his second marriage when we meet him. He's essentially a Jeff Bridges character. His son, Charles (nicknamed Pinch) idolizes him (many of his children do, but Charles doesn't get over it the way most do).  Bear is mercurial, irresponsible, unfaithful, arrogant, and incredibly charming. Really, the difference between Rachman's Bear Bavinsky and Russo's Donald "Sully" Sullivan is that Bear has money (that's just to help you understand him, not a commentary on the character). When he turns on the charm, he can get seemingly anyone -- detractor, fan, or something in between -- to feel important, to feel pivotal, captivating, and so on. Most people shake off this effect after a couple of days (although they seem to hold on to a little bit of it for decades) -- Charles never does. He spends his life striving for his father's attention, favor, affection -- anything. He shapes his life around those things which will hopefully get Bear's approval -- and when he fails (or at least, doesn't succeed as he hopes) in the endeavor, and/or doesn't get Bear's approval he has a moment of clarity, stumbles into something else and then eventually falls back into the search for his Father's approbation.

 

Ironically, compared to the rest of Bear's kids, Charles has that approval. He just doesn't realize it -- and maybe it's because the rest have given up and don't seek him out as much. We follow Charles' life from childhood, to adolescence (living with a divorced mother now), in college, early adulthood and then in his 50s. Striving for significance, striving for something beyond his reach -- and yearning for his father. It's a decent, if lonely, life -- and could've been something better if he hadn't allowed so much of it to be shaped by his father, what Charles things his father wants, and then listening to his father's input when he really shouldn't.

 

As the jacket copy says, "Until one day, Pinch begins an astonishing plan that’ll change art history forever..." It stops being a book that I've read before (mostly), takes on its own flavor -- and gets worse. But your results may vary.

 

I thought Bear was an interesting character -- but not one I wanted to spend a lot of time with. I felt too much pity for Charles to really get invested in him. No one else in the book was really worth the effort. The story was unimpressive and oddly paced. Which is not to say it's a bad novel, it's just not one I could appreciate that much. There were conversations, scenes, etc. that were just great. I kept waiting for there to be a moment (probably the "Until one day...") that this book turned for me -- like Rachman's last one did -- and it never came.

 

Maybe it was just my mood, maybe it's my utter incapability of appreciating visual art, maybe it's actually Rachman stumbling. I don't know -- this just didn't work for me. Am I glad I read it? I think so -- if only because I don't have to wonder what the new Rachman book is like. I'm still giving it 3 stars because of the skill Rachman displayed -- I just didn't enjoy what he did with it.

 

<a href="http://angelsguiltypleasures.com/2018-library-love-challenge-review-link-ups/" target="_blank"><img class="aligncenter" style="border:none;height:auto;width:300px;" src="http://angelsguiltypleasures.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/2018LibraryLoveChallenge07-400x400-angelsgp.jpg" alt="2018 Library Love Challenge" /></a>

Source: irresponsiblereader.com/2018/04/09/the-italian-teacher-by-rom-rachman
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review 2018-04-07 06:41
Hope
After Hours - Emjay Haze

Nick meets Alex when he comes in to the club where he is working.  He cannot help but feel the good looking guy seems sweet.  Then he finds out he is everything.

 

Alex has found himself living a good life without any happiness.  He has a lot to be grateful for, but not what he has always wanted.  When he meets a man who is following his own dreams, he second guesses where he is and where he is going.

 

This book was like a chapter out of a persons life.  I felt like I was watching it take place.  I loved the sexy times since they were full of heat.  The banter was cute, and the pace of the story was good.  These characters give us a good solid read.  I give this a 4/5 Kitty's Paws UP!

 

 

***This ARC copy was given in exchange of an honest review, by Netgalley and its publishers.

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review 2018-03-28 18:28
Book Review for Kinetic Energy (Forbidden Love Book 2) by Haley Faiman
 
 
Title: Kinetic Energy
Series: Forbidden Love Series
Author: Hayley Faiman
Genre: Taboo Forbidden Teacher/Student Romance/Erotica

  • File Size: 602 KB
  • Print Length: 374 pages
  • Publication Date: March 26, 2018
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B07B2PQR4N
  • Arc copy provided for honest review
  • 5 stars
 
 
 
 
 
ki·net·ic en·er·gy
 
noun:
energy that a body possesses by virtue of being in motion.
 
 
Possession. Ines was meant to be mine. I’ve known since the moment I laid eyes on her.
 
Virtue. She makes me long for more. I want everything with her. Except, I know what we’re doing is wrong.
 
The lies I tell could break her—and yet, what exists between us has already been set into motion. 
 
I can’t stop it. My body. My heart. My god-forsaken soul—I’m hers.
 
***This is a standalone. It is a may-December, older man/younger woman... Taboo/forbidden Student-Teacher romance.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
I will say that a story like this is challenging for me as the heart wars with my common sense and self preservation.Thomas risked so much for a girl he barely new and had me asking myself "Is he mad?" time and time again.The heart wants what the heart wants so the risks to them are nothing compared to what they will gain in the long run.True love prevails...
 
This is one of the hottest books I have read to date by this author.This author has become one of my auto buy and go to authors ever since I read her her Notorious Devils MC series as I loved each and everyone of them.
 
I always pick a favorite character but, this time around it just can't.I would have picked Thomas as I found him to be sweet kind,loving,affectionate but, with not being up front about his situation at home with Ines after he new he was in for the long haul with her he turned me right off . I was liking and disliking him all in the same breath.With Thomas and his secrets I never doubted he had genuine love and affection for Ines and that it truly was love at first sight for him.
 
For me this is the kind of story that you can't help but love as the character's just draw you in and make you love them and it makes it even more endearing because of all the hardships that a couple like this needs to overcome just to be together and the sacrifices one is willing to make to be with the one you love. 
 
I kept having to remind myself that this is a fictional story because the age gap was a big deal for me and I kept thinking what the heck were you thinking Thomas to pursue and 18 year old innocent.If Ines had been 20 to his forty it probably shouldn't have bothered me so much but, this is just my upbringing showing through and Thomas and Ine's relationship really was all about love, caring,affection and were truly in love and if it wasn't and issue between them " who am I to judge?"You could not help but love them as it seemed they were just what the other needed.
 
I will say that the story kept me on edge the whole entire time as I was waiting for the shoe to drop the whole entire time.Holy hotness ! their sexual romps were super steamy and hot the kind that has a girl fanning herself.
Omg ! Hot Hot Hot !Their hot interludes in the professors office although hot tempted fate each and every time and had your heart pounding thinking is this it for them?Fanning and swoon worthy encounters!
 
Omg! What was up with Thomas's wife? She went from a totally uncaring wife to evil bitch in a blink of and eye and she is the character you live to hate lol.
 
Overall I loved it! I just love this authors style of writing as she draws you in with love-able characters and she writes super hot sexy books that we love each and every time not only that I love her as she takes the time to interact with her fans as much as she can and that makes me love her even more...
 
5 stars from us
 
Personal note: Be sure to check out her Notorious Devils MC series its not to be missed!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
I was born and raised in California. My husband and I met when I was just 16. We were married a few years later, moving to Oregon while he was in the US Coast Guard. Texas is now where we call home, where our boots rest, and where we're raising our two little boys and a chocolate lab named Optimus Prime.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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review 2018-03-23 14:48
The Gym Teacher From The Black Lagoon - Mike Thaler,Jared Lee
For more reviews, check out my blog: Craft-Cycle

This was probably the first book I read in the Black Lagoon series. It's a good place to start for sensitive children, because it is not nearly as dark as the first two books. There are still a few minor morbid moments (kids being trapped up in the ceiling after the gym teacher set the rope on fire), but they are less graphic than in the previous books (feeding kids to pet alligators).

A funny book about the fear of new gym teacher. I love the illustrations. There is so much detail in them. 

This is also a great book for parents because of all of the word play and allusions (Coach Kong) that children might not fully understand, but will still be entertained by. 
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review 2018-03-23 14:42
The Teacher From The Black Lagoon - Mike Thaler

For more reviews, check out my blog: Craft-Cycle

I loved these books growing up. Surprisingly, I never came across this one as a kid. This may be a good thing since I was a pretty sensitive child. This is probably the darkest of the books. From unscrewing kids' heads to biting them in half, this is kind of a violent book. Yes, the pictures are drawn in a humorous way, but I think I would have been a bit freaked out as a kid.

Overall, a funny book for the right kid. Not recommended for very sensitive children. I still enjoy this series as a whole, although this was is just a tiny bit too dark for my taste.

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