June 25, 2019

Two Minutes to Midnight by Willow Salix

Two Minutes to Midnight is a titillating paranormal romance and the first in The Carpe Noctem Series created by Willow Salix.  

Topaz Thompson is a practicing Wiccan. She teaches Mythology and Folklore at Athena’s Academy, a school that specializes in things weird and wonderful. When she is sent to investigate a self-professed supernatural being, Topaz is more than willing to go. What she discovers, however, is more than she hopes for.

In addition to the proof of existence of the most elusive supernatural creatures, Topaz finds something else, something beautiful and magical, something that she has found difficult to come by as evident by the string of failed blind dates she has been recently.

This is a very interesting book that offers a different take on the legends of the night walkers. Though the subject is far from unique, the theme of true and undying love, in addition to a fair amount of unexpected twist and turn of events, is enough to keep the reader’s interest. Sex scenes are described in vivid detail and the characters range from fascinating, to intriguing, to endearing. Though the ending seems a bit anticlimactic, I find in necessary and understandable.

All in all, I enjoyed this book more than I expected I would. It is interesting and entertaining. It is also quite an easy read. However, other readers may find the sex scenes a bit too much, more, in fact, than the description and profile of the supernatural creatures being featured in the book. It seems like the author focused more on the erotic part of the story than the peculiarities of the night walkers, which I believe was part of the selling point of this book. Though this is not necessarily a bad thing, it may leave some readers a, somehow, dissatisfied feeling as far as the paranormal aspect of the book is concerned.

Still, this is an enjoyable book and is worth reading.

Congratulations to Willow Salix (@willowdragoncat) on such an entertaining and enjoyable book. To know more about the author, click HERE.

June 13, 2019

Why Jihad? by Dr. Howard Shin

Why Jihad? : Religious Violence in Islamic History, Theology, and Jurisprudence is an interesting and educative book about Muslims, Islam, and Jihad written by Dr. Howard Shin.

The book has fourteen very interesting chapters in addition to the Introduction, Conclusion, and Bibliography, and tries to explain the root-cause for Islam’s prevalent violence. In consistently academic tone, the author discusses the conflicting views on Jihad and elucidates the readers by explaining Jihad as defined by the Qur’an, the Hadiths, the Islamic Jurisprudence, and the pre-modern Sufism.

The author shares a brief history of the Messenger of Allah and the proliferation of Islam in Asia, North Africa, and the Iberian Peninsula and features the most prominent proponents of Jihad.

This is, generally, a scholarly-written book, apparently well-researched and well-referenced. In carefully worded explanation understandable to laymen and, probably, to non-Muslim readers, the author explicates the difference between Greater Jihad and Lesser Jihad and hints at the ultimate implication of armed Jihad in the future of the world making the book a ‘must-read’ for diplomats and politicians.

However, this is not an easy read. Other readers may find it too academic and, somehow, overwhelming. It requires focus, undivided attention, and genuine interest in Jihad, Islam, and the Muslims in general. Moreover, there are several noticeable errors within the entire book, mostly typo errors, which detract from the overall reading experience.

Congratulations to Dr. Howard Shin on such an interesting book! For more books by the author, click HERE

June 9, 2019

Jealous of the Way He Treats Her by Can'Di

Jealous of the Way He Treats Her: A Revenge Story is an erotic urban fiction written by Can’Di.

Jasmine is deeply in love with Derrick. After a painful break-up with her ex-boyfriend Marcus, Jasmine is determined to make her relationship with Derrick work. On his part, Derrick is just as in love with Jasmine as she is with him. However, he wants more which he can get from somewhere or someone else especially if that someone else is just around.

Jasmine’s best friend Lykeysha is more than what she is in Jasmine’s eyes. She is ambitious. She knows what she wants and she has what it takes to get it, even if what she wants belongs to someone else.

Marcus lost Jasmine because of one night of indiscretion. Now that Jasmine is with someone else, all he wants is for her to be happy. He loves her more than she knew and he is willing to be anything she needs him to be, a friend, a lover, a protector. However, there is something about his life that he could not tell her.

This is an intriguing and suspenseful book about envy, jealousy, revenge, and true love. The conflict is introduced early in the story which makes it a page-turner. Though the plot is not extraordinarily unique, the twists and turns of events make the book different from other stories with the same premise. Characters are well-developed and relatable and the readers would find it easy to connect with each of them. With her twisted way of looking at things, Lykeysha is every bit the villainess. She is despicable and, somehow, pitiful in her pathetic view of her self-importance.

Admittedly, I enjoyed this book more than I expected. It is interesting and unpredictable in that it is difficult to guess what would happen next. However, other readers, especially non-native English speakers, may find the use of the vernacular language a bit difficult to follow. Moreover, scenes of sex and violence may not be suitable for young readers.

Congratulations to Can’Di on such an enjoyable book!

June 2, 2019

Kendle's Fire by Ryan Field

Kendle’s Fire is a touching and memorable book about friendship, family, and self-acceptance written by Ryan Field.

Kendle is a smart, handsome, and gay ex-Marine who looks every inch a straight guy. As far as he is concerned, he is a man. He acts as a man. He thinks as a man, and he never wants to be anything or anyone else aside from who and what he is.

However, just like any man, or woman, for that matter, Kendle has secrets, preferences and fetishes, which he could not talk about with just anyone but only with those people who are closest to him and accept him for everything he is. Among those people is his best friend Dale. Though Kendle and Dale’s relationship has no specific definition that is understandable to the public, what they have is something special.

Trying to figure out which way his life would go, Kendle applies for a new, albeit, an unlikely job which leads him to meeting a new guy and opens up new possibilities for him to consider. However, as unpredictable life is, an unfortunate event takes place that shakes the foundation that Kendle is trying to build.

This is a touching and memorable book. Though the plot is seemingly common with gay fiction, being discriminated and difficulties fitting in, what makes the book special is the depiction of the ultimate realization of what someone wants. The author successfully illustrates something very important which is the fact that some people do not want to be what they are not, just to be acknowledged and accepted. They want to be accepted for that they are. That, for me, is a very powerful message.

The book is told in a consistently conversational tone that makes it an easy read.  In addition, the author creates a set of delightful characters including Dale, Walter, and Kendle’s mother. Kendle, for me, is the ultimate protagonist. He knows what he is. He knows what he wants. And he chooses to live his life in his own terms.

Except for some noticeable errors, I enjoyed this book a lot.

Congratulations to Ryan Field on such an enjoyable book! For more books by the author, click HERE.

May 26, 2019

Old Baggage by Toni Kief

Old Baggage: It’s Never Too Late for a New Beginning is an interesting contemporary fiction written by Toni Kief.

It seems like an ordinary day for the Donovans, with Brad being his usual abusive self and Elizabeth playing her usual submissive role. What makes this day different, however, is that Elizabeth finally, after forty nine miserable years of marriage, fights back.

Surprising even herself, Elizabeth pulls out her suitcase and walks out of the only life she has ever known. However, contrary to what Brad thinks that she is a helpless, dependent, and stupid old woman, Elizabeth has so many cards up her sleeve and she has the astonishing strength and courage to use them to start a new life. But first, Elizabeth has to deal with a painful secret in her past before she could settle wherever she chooses and live her life on her own terms.

This is a very enjoyable book with sixty two chapters and told in the first person perspective of an amazing and remarkable old woman. Though the plot seems familiar with the protagonist, a victim of domestic abuse, having enough of the shitty life she has, the preparations Elizabeth has made as she waited for ‘the day’ would pique the interest of the readers, especially the female readers. Moreover, how she faces her new life, taking one baby step at a time away from her old, will make the readers cheer her on as she finds her way very slowly but with unwavering resolve and childlike wonder for the things she could actually do that she never imagined she could.

Needless to say, I enjoyed this book a lot. The plot is delightfully unpredictable and there are so many endearing characters. First of them, of course, is Elizabeth herself, the brave, kind, funny, and smart old woman who proves that age really doesn’t  matter and that every day is an opportunity to start a new life. And though I was expecting a different conclusion to the story, I still find the ending satisfyingly conclusive.     

However, though the paranormal part seems to make the story interesting, I, personally, believe that its exclusion wouldn’t make the book less so. Moreover, I noticed some errors within the entire book that detract from the overall reading experience.

Congratulations to Toni Kief (@tonikayk1) on such a great book! It is a depiction of woman empowerment at its best.

For more books by the author, click HERE.   

May 15, 2019

Obsession Made Me Do It by Nychol Munroe

Obsession Made Me Do It is an intriguing urban fiction and the first in the three-book series of the same title created by Nychol Munroe.  

Founder of the Brix and Brix Realty, one of the most notable real estate brands in Miami, Iman Brix is the epitome of a successful entrepreneur. With a thriving business and an overprotective husband, Iman seems to have a wonderful life. That is until she discovers something about her husband. More than the betrayal itself is whom he is doing it with that breaks Iman’s heart into a million pieces.

Not someone to give up that easy, Iman is determined to fight for what is rightfully hers. She steps up and reaches out to someone who, she believes, wants the same thing she does. Iman is yet to find out what her actions would lead to.

An intriguing urban fiction that features African Americans, the book has fifteen chapters with a healthy amount of erotic scenes. By placing the conflict at the beginning of the story, the author makes the book a real-deal page-turner. Though the premise is seemingly common, the twists and turns make the plot excitingly unpredictable. The predominant use of the vernacular language among the characters makes the story sound realistic.

I enjoyed this book immensely. It is intriguing, exciting, and suspenseful. I find the characters easily relatable with their flaws, weaknesses, wrong decisions, and wrong choices in life.  

However, readers who prefer more conclusive endings may find the cliffhanger a bit off-putting, otherwise, they may move on to the second book in the series.

Congratulations to Nychol Munroe on such an exciting book! For more books by the author, click HERE.

May 9, 2019

Under the Sun by Andrew Gilmore

Under the Sun: Discover Your Calling and Live a Meaningful Life is an inspiring and encouraging book written by Andrew Gilmore.

The book is written to help the readers discover their purpose in life. The author begins by defining life and leads the readers to life’s ultimate purpose. He, then, enumerates four reasons why we are not living our purpose, four steps to living an excellent life, four traits we must engender to live a purposeful life, and three steps to unearth what we are meant to do. He also presents three biblical case studies to emphasize his points, that of Joseph, Daniel, and Paul.

This is a great book. It is written in a consistently conversational tone making it an easy read. The humor and the sprinkle of sarcasm give the book a lighthearted feel to it that makes it even more likable and interesting. By sharing his personal experiences, the author makes the steps practicable and the goal of living a life of purpose easy to accomplish. Moreover, the inclusion of biblical characters makes the readers feel more accepting of their flaws and more forgiving of their own failures.

Needless to say, I enjoyed this book a lot. I recommend it to readers who enjoy books about personal growth.

Congratulations to Andrew Gilmore (@TheAndyGilmore) on such a great book! To know more about the author, click HERE.  

April 30, 2019

Third Eye: 7 Techniques to Open Your Third Eye by Andrew Black

Third Eye: 7 Techniques to Open Your Third Eye Chakra, Fast and Simple Techniques to Increase Awareness and Consciousness is an informative book written by Andrew Black.

The book has thirteen relatively short chapters. It defines the Third Eye and describes its location, discusses the benefits of opening the Third Eye, offers techniques and exercises on how to open the Third Eye and sharpen psychic abilities, and introduces aura and various aura colors.

Among the various ways to open the Third Eye the author offers include chanting, mindfulness, and use of crystals. In addition, he also presents ways to take care of the chakras such as yoga, breathing exercises, and proper food. Moreover, he discusses the Eightfold Path to find happiness.            

Personally, I find this book very interesting. Basically, it is an easy read. Apparently, the author endeavors to make the explanation easily understood. By sharing his own experiences, he makes the book sound personal and makes the readers feel more at ease in reading such a mystical subject. He makes the topic sound common and non-magical. He is also very honest and straightforward regarding skeptics and non-believers as well as those overly expectant. The techniques are simple and doable and the exercises are described carefully and in detail.

Except for several noticeable errors, I enjoyed this book a lot.  

Congratulations to Andrew Black on such an interesting and informative book!

April 23, 2019

The Aura Reading Handbook by Loren G. Tindall

The Aura Reading Handbook is an informative and helpful self-help book written by Loren G. Tindall.

The book begins by describing ‘aura’ as the field of vital energy that surrounds all matter, or anything we would consider to be of this physical world. She, then, moves on and gives a brief background on aura including concepts and theories, frequency of auras, interaction of auras, and practicable exercises to increase rapport, protect aura from psychic vampires, and cleanse auras.

The author takes time to discuss chakras which are the centers of energy that receive, transform, and distribute the universal life force throughout the body. They are the sources of energy perceived as the colors of the aura. Among the important topics that the author includes in the book are the Classic Aura Color Scheme (red, pink, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet. Silver, gold, white, black, gray, and brown) how to sense auras, identifying the colors in your aura (by asking, dowsing, and calculating), programming aura for a better future, using aura to improve love life, using aura to improve heath, and using aura to attract prosperity.

This is a great book. It is written in conversational yet instructive tone which makes it easy to read and understand. The exercises are clearly explained making them quite practicable. The explanations are concise and straightforward. Quite possibly, the information presented in the book is strategically limited to avoid information overload but enough to pique the interest of the readers. If that is the objective, then, it works for me.

Congratulations to Loren G. Tindall on such an interesting book!    

March 31, 2019

Transcending the Maya Matrix by Omar M. Makram

Transcending the Maya Matrix: Using the Seven Simple Steps: Our Innate Guide to Co-Creation and Self-Realization is a helpful book about spirituality written by Omar M. Makram.

The book is divided into two parts. Part I is divided into two chapters and Part II is divided into seven chapters.   

It is written to teach the readers how to uncover their Innate Guide. According to the book, the Innate Guide is the force that guides the Universe. It is in everything. Therefore, it is inside us. We can tap into its knowledge and be guided by its wisdom.

The author offers seven principles to unveil the Innate Guide. He calls these principles ‘The Seven Simple Steps.’ The seven simple steps include intention, awareness, authentic expression, allowing, receiving guidance, inspired action, and realization.

This is a great book. It is helpful and enlightening. It is well-written, well-researched, and well-referenced. Terms are clearly defined, steps are carefully described, and examples are given for better understanding and application. Most importantly, it is respectful of readers’ beliefs and does not impose its concepts on anyone.

Needless to say, I enjoyed this book immensely. However, this is not an easy read. It requires focus, undivided attention, and a great deal of interest in the subject matter. Moreover, other readers may find some explanation a bit ambiguous, and though the author, apparently, endeavors to make this book as user-friendly as possible, some parts require rereading and careful consideration.

Congratulations to Omar M. Makram (@Intentbeings) on such a great book! It is helpful, encouraging, and life changing. To know more about the author, click HERE.