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review 2017-07-24 22:43
The Warrior Woman
The Woman Warrior - Maxine Hong Kingston

In the world of memoirs, this one was a little difficult for me to rate. I was confused for a decent portion of it, not sure whether this was fiction or nonfiction at times. I had chosen it as part of the Read Harder Challenge for this year, task 17: read a classic by a woman of color. I suppose I could have counted Kindred but I didn't realize that it was written in 1979 until I was actually reading it and had already listed this memoir as my option for the challenge. Besides, I prefer using nonfiction for challenges anyway.

That said, I did eventually wander back over to the Goodreads and Amazon pages for this book and get it figured out.

As a whole, the book really was an amazing look into being the first US-born children of Chinese immigrants. There are flavors to the story that are familiar with my own experience of being the first US-born generation in my family too. The stories from where the family is from that don't make quite make sense in the US and the feeling of having lost so much in the migration are things that I grew up with too. I could relate to it without feeling like I already knew what was going to happen.

Here is a little bit about each story:

No Name Woman - this is the story of an aunt of Kingston's who had died back in China. She had been scorned for becoming pregnant while her husband was away and the entire family was forced to deal with the aftermath. Her mother told her of the story as a morality tale but Kingston also offers quite a bit of introspection about what it must have been like to be her aunt and what it must have been like to be a woman in China under those circumstances. She decomposes the story a bit too, rooting through for wholes in her mother's account. Set in China, it is one of the stories that showcase her heritage and the way that heritage can continue to effect even those of us not born in those countries.

White Tigers - this is the one that totally threw me for a loop. It's also written in the introspective memoir style but is actually one of the "talk stories" her mother told her and is delivered in the first person. I was so confused and kept looking at the info to make sure that this was definitely listed as non-fiction. I don't know, maybe I was just not paying an adequate amount of attention to catch it at the time because I hadn't realized from the last story that she wasn't even born in China and the entire story also takes place there. It's a great story and one that I understand her being captivated by, but it isn't her story nor does it appear to be based on one of her ancestors.

Shaman - I think this was my favorite. I love the idea of women making a great situation out of something that begins less than favorable. This takes place before Kingston is born and is about her mother deciding to be a doctor in China while her father is in the US making money. He makes more than enough to send home and for the mom to be comfortable at home, but she wants to do more with the money. Not only can I appreciate that sentiment but the very idea of going back to school after so long and how she becomes a great doctor are intriguing and uplifting.

At the Western Palace - I just love her mother so much. I get how it may have been a little hard to live her sometimes, but I love her attitude about things. My mother was much the same way. Go get what's yours. Don't take an unnecessary amount of crap from people. If life disappoints you, figure it out and move on. This story isn't actually about her mother, it's about an aunt but her mother is the larger image in it. She brings the aunt to the US after her husband never asks her to and then there's a some drama about the husband and the story is told from the point of view of Kingston herself who is just a little too young to really understand what's happening.

She understands, but doesn't grasp the gravity of the situation. She doesn't understand why it's such a big deal for the aunt and why she is so timid and so broken. Still, she gives the reader enough to see it and to feel for her aunt while also giving us a feeling of how alone she must have been with the rest of the family not understanding her. It says a lot about how culture does or does not migrate with the people who come from it.

A Song for a Barbarian Reed Pipe - finally we get to Kingston's own story. I did appreciate her story being the last once I understood the format because I can also understand the people around her. It would have been like reading the New Testament of the Bible without reading the Old Testament first, or even know what the Ten Commandments were. Her family and the other Chinese around her would have made less sense. I was a little horrified in the scene with the silent girl but kids can be cruel. On the other hand, I loved everything that came after her yelling at her parents to not marry her off. I cracked up at her mother's response to that.

I had looked over some other reviews when I was trying to figure out what was going on and it seems like this is generally a love it or hate it kind of book. I loved each story and would have loved for it to be advertised more as a collection of personal stories or life stories from a single person. It does paint a good overall picture of what the experience can be like to migrate to the US from China in that timeframe. It can be hard to remember what the threat of communism was like then and how countries that were engrossed with it treated their people. I am just old enough to remember seeing coverage of the Berlin Wall going down. I am also the first US born of people who came here to escape the devastating effects of communism. It's hard to explain to the younger generation now just what it meant. For that, I will endlessly appreciate this book and that it appears to have been brought into American literature classes.

Not only is the book about figuring out culture and heritage and what it means to live somewhere that you don't share the heritage, but it's also entirely about relationships among women. It's about her unnamed aunt and society and the ways that she is allowed to be remembered or not. It's about her relationship with her mother, her relationship to other Chinese children, her mother's relationship with both her own sister and her niece, her relationship to the legends of past Chinese women and the hopes of Chinese women contemporary to her.

There is one tiny problem though, and it's pointed out by almost every single person who I saw that didn't like this book. She does have a way of generalizing the Chinese. I get it, though, because I have generalized Cubans. I actually had to be taught to not do it by people like Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and the danger of a single story. I had lumped all Cubans into a single version of the refugee story and that's just grossly untrue. Likewise, Kingston makes it sound like all Chinese do this or that or don't do this or that.

But then again, this was written well before my time. I also recognize that there have been times in the US when it was hard to set a people behind unifying themes and ideas. I recognize that there have been times when it has been necessary to make distinctions that WE are like this and not that. Perhaps that was a part of the intended purposes of all those generalizations. Perhaps, it was important to Kingston to make a claim on what is or can be Chinese vice what is or can be Asian as a whole or vice what is or can be any other group. I don't know.

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text 2017-07-13 14:04
Cover Reveal - Her Warrior Dragon

 

 

Her Warrior Dragon

By Ariel Marie

Cover Reveal

 

Trauma nurse Faye Adams thought she’d seen it all… until a mysterious shifter is rolled into her unit, body broken and half dead. After she’s done picking her jaw up off the floor Faye immediately gets to work saving this shifter’s life. When he awakens, Faye finds there is an instant attraction between them… and it is undeniable.

 

Vander Kelmeyer was battling his mortal enemy before he crash-landed under Faye’s care. From the moment their eyes meet he knows that she is his mate. After his wounds have healed Vander tracks Faye down and pursues her, his dragon desperately seeking her soft touch.

 

Yet Vander’s enemies are searching for a weakness, and he’s just given them one. Faye and Vander’s romance ignites into a fire, one that quickly becomes deadly. Dragon shifters are legendary, considered a myth, yet here is one demanding that Faye become his. Despite the danger Faye cannot resist his smoldering stare… or the heat of his passion.

 

Will Faye survive being a mate to a dragon shifter? Or will their happily-ever-after go up in smoke?

 

Her Warrior Dragon is a steamy, action-packed love story that will leave readers fanning themselves with desire and holding their breath in suspense. This HOT paranormal romance featuring sexy dragon shifters, a strong, smart heroine, and thrilling villains is an exciting fantasy romp by author Ariel Marie.

 

TBR: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35468320-her-warrior-dragon?from_search=true

 

Sign up to be notified about Her Warrior Dragon Release!

http://bit.ly/2u62Bzw

 

 

 

 

 

About Ariel Marie:

 

Ariel Marie is an author who loves the paranormal, action and hot steamy romance. She combines all three in each and every one of her stories. For as long as she can remember, she has loved vampires, shifters and every creature you can think of. This even rolls over into her favorite movies! She loves a good action packed thriller! Throw a touch of the supernatural world in it and she’s hooked!

 

She grew up in Cleveland, Ohio where she currently resides with her husband and three beautiful children. Want to know more about her and her books?

Visit her website www.thearielmarie.com

 

 

Stalk Ariel Marie:

 

Twitter: https://twitter.com/the_ArielMarie

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Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+ArielMarieauthor

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00WB1SBFC

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/ariel-marie

 

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text 2017-07-10 13:05
Blog Tour:Warrior of Fire by Shona Husk with Excerpt and Giveaway

 

Today’s stop is for Shona Husk’s Warrior of Fire. We will have info about the book and author, and a great excerpt from the book, plus a great giveaway. Make sure to check everything out and enter the giveaway.

Happy Reading :) 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Buy Links 

  

 

 

Emily slipped her phone into her pocket. He hadn’t been lying about

leaving the hospital late. She’d watched him walk out the door. She’d spent

a lot of time watching him and not enough doing anything. The times

they were together they got as close as two people could, yet Julian had

managed to keep the rest of his life completely apart from her. She was

pretty sure that no one even knew they were dating.

She sat in her car without starting it. They weren’t really dating

and she shouldn’t be feeling pissed that he’d blown her off. He was a

mark, not her lover.

He was her kill to get her full membership to the Guardians of Adam.

She closed her eyes and leaned over the steering wheel. So why hadn’t

she done it already? She should’ve done it months ago when they first met.

She’d known that he was Albah from the curl of his ears. But he was also

attractive, educated, and nothing like the egotistical magic-using maniacs

her mother had told tales about. She should’ve questioned him and killed

him two weeks ago while the undead horror was alive and killing. Now

the Albanex had vanished and she knew a Guardian hadn’t killed it. The

Albah were probably protecting it. Hiding and feeding it.

She shuddered.

How could Julian, a well-respected doctor and burns specialist, participate

in something like that? Yet it was in his blood to become an undead, blooddrinking

Albanex. She needed to find out where his father lived—which

was harder than it should have been. She’d tried.

There was a tap on her window. Her heart stopped and she almost died.

What a Guardian she was, jumping at a security guard doing his rounds.

She opened her window a crack. “Yes?”

“Just checking you’re all right, miss.” The security guard looked concerned.

Emily softened her features as though she’d seen a dying relative and

sniffed. “Yeah. Just gathering myself before I drive home.”

“Never wise to linger in the car park. Better safe than sorry.” He smiled.

He looked as though he couldn’t run down a thief even if the thief was

carrying a box full of donuts and a coffee to wash them down.

Emily nodded and obediently started her car. When he didn’t move

away, she pulled out of the bay. She needed to get home. It was late, but

no doubt her mother would want a status update.

No change. Nothing to report.

The only excuse she could give for why the Albah was still alive was

that he could lead them to more…and hopefully the Albanex.

She paid for her parking and headed out of the city. She’d go to Julian’s

place and wait to see if he came home tonight at all. That twinge in her

chest was not jealousy.

He didn’t have another lover.

He barely had time for her.

She knew the real reason Julian was still alive was because she did

fancy him just the tiniest bit. And he saved people. Maybe he wasn’t like

the other Albah.

But all Albah could become Albanex. Albanex were the vampires that

humans thought existed only in myth. Albah were more like the elves or

witches, harmless until they did the magic that would make them drink

blood and live forever. The Guardians should’ve wiped them all out 200

years ago instead of calling for a truce; then she wouldn’t be in this position.

Doctor Julian Ryder, for all his good work, was still only one magic

ritual away from becoming an undead monster.

Leira sat quietly on the bathroom floor—it was the safest place for

her to practice, given the abundance of water and the lack of flammable

items. She’d moved the towels well away as an extra precaution. The tiles

were cold under her butt. She’d been sitting here for half an hour with the

unlit candle. She was running out of time if she wanted to get this done

before she had to get to university. While she could light a candle safely,

if she saw something that shocked her… Well, she didn’t want a repeat of

the crisps incident.

Saba would’ve happily done a reading for her if she’d asked, but Leira

wanted to do this herself, and she didn’t want anyone else to know. She

didn’t want Saba to know if everything had gone wrong. And if it had,

how was she going to fix it?

She didn’t know that either.

Which was why she hadn’t lit the candle yet.

Sitting here wasn’t going to change anything. Maybe nothing had changed

and it would all be okay, but she didn’t believe that for a heartbeat. Last

night every time she’d looked at him she could feel the tracks changing

direction, derailing the future she’d been expecting.

She shook out her hands. Maybe she was being overly dramatic, after

all, if it was one of those meant to be things, why hadn’t she felt more

than a tingle? All she’d gotten—once she’d gotten over the shock—was

the same tingle she got when seeing any hot guy.

A smile formed. Julian was hot, and not just because his magic was

fire. And they had agreed to get together to talk magic. And he’d offered

to let her read his dead mother’s diaries, which was probably a great way

to kill any mood.

There’d been no mood in the car, but there had been an undercurrent

of something. She didn’t know what it was or how to deal with it, or him.

She’d expected fireworks and…and something more. She wasn’t sure he’d

felt anything for her except pity, because she couldn’t control her magic,

and then embarrassment because it was pretty damn clear that everyone

in the room thought they needed smooshing together. Saba had promised

not to interfere, but that had been before, when the vision was still true.

Now it wasn’t. They had met and she needed to find out what had changed.

She drew in a breath and then exhaled.

In her mind she saw a circle form around her, in her next breath it became

real. She waited another couple of heartbeats before visualizing the flame.

If she was lighting a candle for the oil burner, she didn’t bother with the

ritual, but this was about her future. She could’ve used a match and not

worried about the magic, but she refused to use matches and lighters. She

had to be able to do this.

Leira pictured the flame in her mind, then pushed it out of her. The

candle lit with a spark and a crackle. She leaned forward and rested her

hands on her chin so she could stare into its blue center. As she did, the

flame expanded. The blue becoming a ball three inches in diameter.

Her concentration remained steady. How many exercises had she done

just on focusing without even using fire? She’d lost count. She could do

this without burning off her eyebrows now.

The blue started swirling as though filled with currents.

Show me the path I am on.

She expected to see the train, Julian—he had a name now—and herself

giving lectures. Her future still steady even if she didn’t know how to get

there. She’d met him; all they had to do was fall in love. When she thought

of him, that feeling was there even though when she was with him it wasn’t.

Was she getting herself muddled by constantly checking and imagining?

No, she knew the difference between the present and the future.

This time Julian didn’t appear in the flame. The currents grew darker

as though made of thick oily smoke. No, it was smoke. And flames. Her

future was nothing but smoke and flames.

No!

She gasped and dropped the circle, batting the ball of fire away. It

bounced off the wall and into the two inches of water she’d put in the bath

in case of emergency, where it then fizzled and went out.

Her heart beat fast. That didn’t make sense. Just because her initial

meeting with Julian had gone wrong didn’t mean her whole life was going

to go up in smoke.

Did it?

Fire was her element. What was she going to do, spontaneously combust?

A nervous laugh slipped past her lips.

She must have projected her own feelings about the situation. Saba was

better at this than she was. Saba was better at everything, except school

grades. That had been the one place she had bested Saba. Leira had worked

hard to be good at something.

What if Saba saw exactly what she had seen? What did it mean?

It couldn’t be death. There were other paths. There were always other

paths. She knew that. All that she had been shown was the path she

was currently on.

Right. She could fix this. She calmed herself. She just had to

find a new path.

The trouble was, how would she know if she was on the same path or

changing direction? She couldn’t check every decision that she made and

sometimes it was the smallest thing that could create the needed ripple.

Last night had been more than a ripple.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shona Husk lives in Western Australia at the edge of the Indian Ocean. Blessed with a lively imagination she spent most of her childhood making up stories. As an adult she discovered romance novels and hasn’t looked back. With over forty published stories, ranging from sensual to scorching, she writes contemporary, paranormal, fantasy, and sci-fi romance.

 

 

Links

 

 

Website *** Twitter *** Facebook *** Amazon *** Goodreads

 

 

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

 

 

Follow the tour HERE for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!
 
 
Source: snoopydoosbookreviews.com/blog-tourwarrior-fire-shona-husk-excerpt-giveaway
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review 2017-07-04 17:09
Abducted (Alien Mate Index, #1) by Evangeline Anderson Review
Abducted: The Alien Mate Index Book 1: (Alien Warrior BBW Scifi Paranormal Romance) (Volume 1) - Evangeline Anderson

My name is Zoe McKinley. I have a boring life, an awful job, and a boss that throws staplers at my head. What could be worse?

How about being abducted by Aliens?

Being dragged through a mirror, naked and screaming, onto an extraterrestrial ship was bad. Finding out I had been sold to a huge alien male who looks like the Devil was worse. But learning he wanted to trade me to an intergalactic petting zoo was the worst of all!

Now I'm whizzing through the galaxy with a robot butler, a trio of nib-nibs (they're like tiny green monkeys) and one huge, muscular, and very grumpy alien. The clothing they gave me shows all my lady-bits, the food-sim makes banana cream pie that tastes like sauerkraut, and Sarden, my captor, is too hot to stay mad at, even if he is a jerk.

In fact, I think I might be falling for him.

What's a girl to do? It's all in a day's work when you've been...Abducted.

 

Review

 

I enjoyed this Alien Abduction romp with some angst, decent world building, hot sex, and a lot of fun moments.

 

A quick fun read.

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review 2017-06-22 21:16
Review: Warrior of Fire (Blood & Silver #2) by Shona Husk 4 out of 5 stars
Warrior of Fire - Shona Husk

This is the second installment in the Blood and Silver series. I honestly feel that this story cannot be read as a stand alone to be fully enjoyed as there are many aspects that would be missed if the first story is not read, well, first.

Leira and Julian are both part of an ancient yet almost extinct magical race called Albah. Because of prejudice and misconceptions about magic, their race has been hunted for as long as they can remember and now Julian is a target of those that want to end the Albah.

Fate plays an important role here but it’s not the focal point. The author manages to dance around it by making the characters think there is an already established path for everyone but also plays with the outcome by giving them infinite options depending on the choices people make.
In the case of Leira, and because of her magic, she knew she and Julian were supposed to meet but as the story progressed she wasn’t so sure anymore if that meant if they were supposed to be lovers or if he was just supposed to be in her life as something else. Julian knew there had to be more than magic and fate involved in their relationship because of the chemistry between them, and it was not just physical attraction but something deeper. And I definitely thanked the author for that because she didn’t go for the insta-lust here.
In the end, in spite of magic, fate, and crazy people going after them, they decided that risking it all for an uncertain but happy future was worth the risk.

The pace was a little slow for my taste but I’m willing to overlook it because I really liked this fantasy world, the complex characters and I thought this was a well-developed story.

*** I received this book from the author at no cost to me and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher.***

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