Book Blitz: Love, Murder and Mayhem – an Anthology edited by Russ Colchamiro

~ Book Blitz ~
Love, Murder & Mayhem
 
About the Book
Love science fiction stories that all include elements ofLove, Murder & Mayhem?
 
Then welcome to the latest anthology from Crazy 8 Press! This amazing collection from 15 all-star authors will delight you with superheros and supervillains. AIs, off-worlders, and space cruisers. We’ve also got private eyes, sleep surrogates, time travelers, aliens and monsters—and one DuckBob!
 
With tales ranging from wild and wacky to dark and gritty to heartbreaking and fun, take the deadly leap with authors Meriah Crawford, Paige Daniels, Peter David, Mary Fan, Michael Jan Friedman, Robert Greenberger, Glenn Hauman Paul Kupperberg, Karissa Laurel, Kelly Meding, Aaron Rosenberg, Hildy Silverman, Lois Spangler, Patrick Thomas, and editor Russ
Colchamiro.

 
You’ll never look at Love, Murder & Mayhem the same way again—and that’s just the way we like it.
 
 
About the Editor:
Russ Colchamiro is the author of the rollicking space adventure, Crossline, the hilarious sci-fi backpacking comedy series, Finders Keepers, Genius de Milo, and Astropalooza, and is editor of the new anthology, Love, Murder & Mayhem, all with Crazy 8 Press.
Russ lives in New Jersey with his wife, two children, and crazy dog, Simon, who may in fact be an alien himself. Russ has also contributed to several other anthologies, including Tales of the Crimson Keep, Pangaea, and Altered States of the Union, and TV Gods 2. He is now at work on a top-secret project, and a Finders Keepers spin-off.
As a matter of full disclosure, readers should not be surprised if Russ spontaneously teleports in a blast of white light followed by screaming fluorescent color and the feeling of being sucked through a tornado. It’s just how he gets around — windier than the bus, for sure, but much quicker.
 
 

Book Review: Dominick and the Dragon by Anne K. Edwards

Dominick and the Dragon, by Anne K. Edwards

Age level: 4-8

Price: $1.99

Pages: 42

Find on Amazon

 About the Book:

Dominick is a little boy fascinated by dragons. When he finally meets one named Elvis that wants to eat everything, including him, he has to find a way to outsmart him. His adventure proves a boy can be smarter than a dragon.

About the Author:

Anne K. Edwards enjoys writing tales for children when she’s not focusing on a mystery. Some stories are ideas taken from little misadventures of her cat who actually did fall off the porch and land on a large blacksnake as it was sunning itself. Both were more than a little surprised.

My Thoughts:

Dominick and the Dragon is a short and enjoyable read! It brings to us the small adventure of a boy named Dominick as his dream of meeting a dragon comes true. The dragon however, doesn’t exactly turn out to be how he had expected and he is faced with the need to outsmart the dragon!

Filled with fun illustrations to enhance and support the story, the book is a fun read and will show children that if they try to think differently, they can find a solution to most things.

Prepare to laugh until your insides hurt in Jesper Jinx and the Mouse Mayhem (Jesper Jinx #7)

Marko Kitti is back with yet another book in the Jesper Jinx series, Jesper Jinx and the Mouse Mayhem. This is the 7th book in the series and is probably the most hilarious of the lot.

About the Book:

Jesper Jinx and the Mouse Mayhem (Jesper Jinx, #7)

Jesper Jinx is eleven, and probably the unluckiest person in all of Puffington Hill. Everything he touches seems to end up in sweet disaster. Hence his nickname ‘Jinx’.

But this time around, it is Puffington Hill itself that appears to be jinxed. The school canteen gets shut down and children are forced to eat wild clover flowers for lunch. Horrible hairy acorns fall from the sky, targeting black cats and squirrels. An eyewitness even claims to have seen a flying antique piano.

Something utterly peculiar is going on.

And it is up to you, Dear Reader, to help Jesper figure out who’s responsible for these seemingly unrelated incidents. Could it be Jesper himself? Or Lenny and Benny, the WARRIOR MOUSE brothers? Or even you yourself, the unsuspecting Book Gobbler?

My thoughts:

“So tell me, my friend,” Oliver goes on, lowering his voice to a near whisper, “have you been doing anything, say, out of the ordinary today?”

The above quote from the book, sums up in entirety, the main premise of this seventh installment. Those who have already read the previous books will have a fair idea about Jesper and his famous nickname, ‘jinx’. For the rest of you, it’s alright even if you haven’t read the rest, this book covers it all!

I seriously do not know where Marko gets his ideas from, but with each book that comes out in this series, the stories only get better and better! The silly old scribbler does indeed have a sack filled with wonderful and entertaining stories which are easy to read and can be enjoyed by people of all ages. It is clear that the target is young children, but still there is no going back once you start.

This book, the seventh installment, brings us face to face with a pair of mice who are at the bottom of a series of events that unfold like the domino effect, soon after Jesper adopts them as pets. The story is narrated over 24 hours, 1 day in Jesper’s life and is then followed by eye-witness and character accounts that bring out a side of the story that we couldn’t see before. Marko once again writes this story in his unique style mixing humor with some unbelievable incidents that will have the reader in splits. After all, many of us know about “the jinx”. However, in this story, it is for the reader to decide whether Jesper can be held responsible for the events that take place or not. He is after all just an eleven year old kid!

With each characters account becoming more outrageous than the other, the entire story is one fun-filled ride that will have the reader in splits. A must-read for everyone, there can be no age limit to enjoying Marko’s stories!

Prepare yourself for a lightning-fast, fun, thrill-ride in Snatched by Alison Golden

About the Book:

Snatched (Diana Hunter #2)

What would you do if you discovered a dead body? Would you investigate? Try to solve the case before the police arrive?
Would you prattle on about theories regarding the murder, realizing you know almost too much about it? Would you put the handsome detective off balance so that he then accuses you of being the murderer? All before 9AM? No… surely no one would do that?

Clearly, you haven’t met Diana Hunter.

When embarking on an early morning run, Diana notices a man sitting on the ground reading a book. When she returns, she finds he hasn’t moved a muscle since she left her house. She checks him over and discovers that he is stone cold. Once the emergency services arrive, all equipped with a very good-looking, but pompous detective, Peter Hopkinson, she has to continually prove to the detective why she is not the killer while trying to solve the murder herself.

Will Diana find the murderer before the detective does, or will they both discover that something a lot more sinister is going on at Royal Bay Beach?

My Thoughts:

This story is fast-paced and a very quick read filled with interesting characters. The plot is convincing, starting with the main protagonist Diana, setting out for her morning run. On the way, she notices a person sitting under a tree near her building who has been sitting in the same position since she started her run. It is said that curiosity killed the cat, and though this is not literally the case, Diana finds herself in the position of explaining herself to the lead detective on the case. Add in the fact that he is not at all what she pictured detectives to be like and her wild imagination and we have an interesting chemistry between the two.

The author doesn’t dwell much into the background of the characters, only briefly providing information to fill in plot holes, making it a little difficult to understand them. Also, the whole story seems to happen very smoothly with no roadblock or any disturbances. This is not very realistic, but will still hold the readers attention. However, this doesn’t take away much and still ensures that the story is worth the read. The events unfold very quickly and Diana’s sharp mind prove to be an asset. It is nice to read about a female protagonist who is strong willed, inquisitive and extremely witty, piecing together facts to help solve the mystery.

Grab a copy of this short suspense filled mystery that most mystery lovers will enjoy!

The year that was…

With just 3 more days for the year 2016 to end, I thought it would be great to take a look back at some of the books that I enjoyed immensely throughout this year. It has been a good year where books are concerned. As many of you who may follow me on Goodreads or are my friends there may know, I managed to complete my target of 60 books for the year which is quite a personal achievement.

Read on the know about my favourite books of the year (in no particular order). I have picked out the books which have left a profound impact on me in some way, however minor it may be. All the books mentioned below have been previously reviewed on my blog. I have included a part of the review for each book as well. Click on each title to be directed back to my review of the respective book.

Many of the books I will list are based on real life, and many are just children’s stories. However all of them have inspired me and helped quench my thirst for reading.

Many of the books mentioned below were given to me by the authors in exchange for an honest review, while others I found on Goodreads and jumped at the chance to expand my horizons and tastes. I was certainly enchanted and happy with my choices.

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  • Under the Pong Pong Tree by Hal Levey This is a refreshing read and a breath taking, heart  stopping account of life faced during the WWII, and a look at a smaller war that most would not comment on.
  • The minds of Billy Milligan by Daniel Keyes – This book not only chronicles the life of Billy Milligan, it brings out the psychology of the mind in relation to MPD as well as how easy it is for people to brand someone a charlatan or an attention seeker without really understanding them. Moreover, through the eyes of Billy’s personalities, we can form a picture as to why each one came to exist and how they played a part in his life. We are indeed afraid of the unknown and I believe this book gives us great insight into one of the mysteries of the mind.
  • The Ones That Got Away by Suanne Laqueur – This book only adds to the beauty of the story Suanne has crafted and will make the reader love it more. It will no doubt leave the reader with a heavy heart, but it was worth it. The characters and chapters that were created and written but got left behind or removed from the story are well worth the effort of writing them. Sometimes, as Suanne has mentioned, it’s better to just write what you think and then see the usage later on. The bonus insight into Erik’s younger days when his father was still there and after he leaves are wonderful and I hope Suanne uses this in a story sometime in the future. I will say this, everyone should, at some point, read The Man I Love and enjoy this story and world as much as I have.
  • Delbert – The Reluctant Spy (book #1) by Marko Kitti – The story is filled with adventure and lots of humor as we follow Delbert on his journey towards becoming an international secret agent. It is written in Marko’s unique style, something you’d already recognize if you are, like me, a fan of the Jesper Jinx series and the language is simple and easy to follow. Overall this is a new series from Marko that you wouldn’t want to miss out on. It is an easy and entertaining read, even for those who are much older but have perhaps forgotten to grow up, just like me!
  • Ask Him Why by Catherine Ryan Hyde – The story teaches us to ask questions, to seek for the answers before making a judgement call, to think before one acts. This is a wonderfully written book and will tug at your heart strings in more ways than you can imagine. It teaches the reader so many lessons that I highly recommend this book to everyone.
  • Love Warrior : A Memoir by Glennon Doyle Melton – This memoir, teaches us all to be warriors. We can all do it, even when one hits rock bottom, one can only go upwards from there. The writing is wonderful and through this, Glennon expresses deep emotions, sharing a lot of her experiences with us. The memoir will pull the reader into it, making us experience every single emotion that the author did, and at the end, it will spit the reader out, a different person. The entire book will touch you in ways you will not expect and is worth the time spent reading.
  • Broken Angels by Gemma Liviero – To be honest, I had to put up a fight with my sane self (or conscience) to read the book and at times I had to pause for a while to let go of the emotions that were building up while reading. Sometimes the plot sows down, but the author does justice in the way she has described each scene and the setting of the story.
  • The Legend of Lakshmi Prasad by Twinkle Khanna – It is a short book, with exactly 4 stories and can be read rather quickly. It would make a wonderful read while traveling. I think that every person should read this book as there is a lot to take away from the stories. There is much to learn and the author conveys the same without sounding preachy. Focusing on women empowerment and the important role that women play, the author has largely depicted the trials that women face in their everyday lives.
  • An Exaltation of Larks by Suanne Laqueur – Upon reading the summary/synopsis of the story, one can figure out much about the plot and thus I will refrain from explaining more about it for fear of revealing everything. This book is not just a simple story, it is a journey that the reader must prepare themselves to embark on with no chance of return. The story will touch the reader in ways that they would not expect and there will be no chance of putting the book down. Even after finishing it, for a time, the reader will feel as though there is a void inside them and they need time to fill it up again and feel whole. These are the kind of emotions that Suanne inspires in the reader through her writing.

    Life is an unpredictable roller-coaster ride and all we can do is choose the paths we want to take at each cross-road and then live with our decisions.

  • The Magician’s Workshop, Volume One & Two by Christopher Hansen and J.R. Fehr – This book continues on in chapters from where the previous left off. The authors flawlessly craft the story to take us further and draw us in. They maintain the playfulness and style of expression which is quite refreshing and enhance the concepts and story. It is easy to experience everything with the characters and this is one of the main things that drew my attention.The style of writing, the description about each projection only add to the soaring imagination of the reader. A wonderful feat achieved successfully by the authors. Kudos to the work they have done and the time they have spent in creating this world.It has been a while since reading Harry Potter, that a series in this genre has kept me hooked. I will say it again and again that this is one mega awesome read! Keep projecting and I hope that the next book comes out soon.

Please do share your thoughts and book recommendations for the next year are definitely welcome.

Moving on from that, I look forward to 2017 being a much better year for books. I hope that you all continue to support me and give me the same love that you have shown this year.

Thank you all for your wonderful support and trust.

Happy New Year in advance!

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Book Review : Jesper Jinx and the Scrumptious Snacks by Marko Kitti

About the Book:

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Jesper Jinx is eleven, and probably the unluckiest person in all of Puffington Hill. Everything he touches seems to end up in sweet disaster. Hence his nickname ‘Jinx’.

In this fifth book of Jesper Jinx’s wonderfully wicked adventures chaos unfolds when Jake the school bully meets an ancient chocolate bar. Soon, things get even weirder when Jesper’s mum can’t bake her cherry pie because her precious cherry tree’s gone missing. And then, to top it all off, Snowy the Cat
decides to go on a hunger strike.

Can Jesper save the day with his best Boredom Breaker ever or will a diabolical lunch thief get to him first?

My Thoughts:

The Scribbler is back with yet another book highlighting Jesper’s antics. In this deliciously mouth-watering series of stories, Jesper is caught up in some crazy adventures, all related to tasty snacks. This book will leave the reader craving for more, food/adventure is all up to you to decide! The stories are hilarious as usual and Snowy, the cat’s perspective on Jesper, his family and everything that happens is indeed one of the many highlights of this book. Wherever Jesper goes, some disaster follows and the same is described to the reader very well. The author brings in a wonderful crossover with Delbert and some truths are revealed which will shock the reader! Also, be sure to find some recipes at the end, try them at your own risk! As the Scribbler says: I hope no-one tells Jesper about what everyone around him is up to. He might not be able to handle the shock!

Enjoy this latest read from Marko and share your thoughts on this book or the series with us! 🙂

Coming Soon : DELBERT – The Reluctant Spy by Marko Kitti

Marko Kitti, author of the well received and highly entertaining Jesper Jinxs series, is back with a whole new series revolving around Delbert, a ten year old boy, who becomes a spy. This will be the first book of the series and will be released later this month. In the meantime, check out Delbert’s website and follow Marko for more updates.

Delbert - The Reluctant Spy

Check out the Post by @MarkoKitti on Delbert’s new website. Source: Home

Review: Jesper Jinx Goes Fishing (Jesper Jinx, #4) by Marko Kitti

Jesper Jinx Goes Fishing (Jesper Jinx, #4)

 

About the Book:

esper Jinx is eleven, and probably the unluckiest person in all of Puffington Hill. Everything he touches seems to end up in sweet disaster. Hence his nickname ‘Jinx’.

The fourth book of Jesper’s wonderfully wicked adventures is chock-a-block full of all kinds of fishing tales. There are mackerels to be sure, but also a creature a little bit furrier than a fish running loose on the beach. And it’s up to Jesper (aka Detective J. Jinx) to save the day before it turns into a fishy nightmare!

ALLERGY WARNING: This book contains fish!

 

My Thoughts:

Jesper is back in yet another adventure and with loads of mischief up his sleeve. In this fourth installment of the book, we follow Jesper as he learns how to fish for the very first time and plays at being a detective (a.k.a Detective Jinx). Being afraid of worms, he has a difficult time baiting the hook. However, Jesper always manages to find ways to accomplish whatever he wants. I assume that those of us who are acquainted with him through the books are aware of the fact. In the midst of all this Jesper manages to lose all the fish that his best friend’s grandfather, his best friend Oliver and him have managed to catch and later all his clumsiness and mischief results in him helping to catch the thief.

In this book however, we see a twist in the plot line when Jesper’s dad goes to meet the scribbler with a copy of the book. The entire story, is written in the usual humorous style making us chuckle at Jeper’s antics and his innate ability to  get into trouble. Jesper’s mischievous ways and his relationship with his older sister are given a little more importance in this story (though I guess his sister and him will always end up fighting!)

As is usual with all Jesper’s stories, Marko (a.k.a the scribbler as he is referred to in the stories) gives us a bit of insight into the thinking of one of the animals in the story. In this it happens to be the ferret, who is being taken care of by Jesper’s sister at the moment. From the ferret’s point of view, we gain an insight into his opinion about Jesper’s sister and his reason for trying to escape.

Overall this is yet another treat for all fans of Jesper, and like the scribbler warns at the beginning of the book, Jesper is not aware that his stories have been published and by extension he does not know about my reviews. Please promise not to bring these reviews to his attention. Thanks a ton and I hope you enjoy the books as much as I do.

Book Review: Jesper Jinx and the Sneezing Season by Marko Kitti

About the Book:

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Jesper Jinx is eleven, and probably the unluckiest person in all of Puffington Hill. Everything he touches seems to end up in sweet disaster. Hence his nickname ‘Jinx’.

It’s Spring time in Puffington Hill, and the most unforgettable Sneezing Season ever for Jesper! In this book, packed full of new wonderfully wicked adventures, you’re going to get to know Chloe, Jesper’s long time future-girlfriend, and meet a Purple Buzzard from the tropical island of Buzzupurplu. Also, there’s Rosie, the grinning Squirrel with an attitude and the infamous Diary Wars.

WARNING: This book causes uncontrollable laughter!

Contains the stories: JESPER JINX and the PURPLE BUZZARD, JESPER JINX and the DIARY WARS and a bonus story: JESPER’S EXTREMELY TOP SECRET BUCKET LIST.

 

My Thoughts:

I am back with yet another review of a book in the Jesper Jinx series. I had reviewed the first book titled Jesper Jinx earlier.

Jesper Jinx and the Sneezing Season packs quite a number of laughs. Jesper is his usual mischievous self and his adventures and experiences are even funnier. As usual Marko warns the reader not to divulge the secret of the existance of the book or to discuss it in case Jesper finds out about it. This story is all about how a squirrel gets her revenge on the boy who hurt her husband (mind you it was an accident on Jesper’s part)! Jesper is also interested in a girl and Marko describes how he goes about trying to get her attention! There is some sibling fights as usual between Jesper and his sister and the most interesting is Jesper’s top secret bucket list!

The story is well written and Marko sticks to his usual humour throughout the book. His style of writing as though directly talking to the reader and narrating an incident is wonderful. Frankly I would love to meet Jesper in person and get to know him! This is definitely worth a read for all Jesper fans out there!

Careful, just as Marko warned us about not telling anyone about the story, don’t let Jesper know about this review either! ^_^

The Secrets of Ice Cream Success by A D Hartley

About the Book:

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Carlo never wanted to take over the family ice cream business, at fourteen he already had school and the terror of talking to girls to occupy his ever anxious mind, but when the odious Haverton Hill tried to buy the factory from him after his father’s death, an unexpected sense of defiance arose.

With the “help” of his friends, Carlo sets out to cope with incompetent staff, sabotage, strange goings on in the basement, a book with a mind of its own and the knowledge that those little specks in the vanilla ice cream may not be as innocent as they seem… Oh, and he’s just been asked to a party by a girl! Summer holidays were not supposed to be this interesting.

Will the secrets Carlo uncovers within the factory lead to success or failure?

My Thoughts:

To be frank I was not entirely sure what to expect from this book and I did start reading it with the preconceived notion that it may be boring. However it turns out I thoroughly enjoyed this story and would happily recommend it to everyone!

This is a nice and funny story about a young boy of fourteen who is suddenly facing the task of running his father’s ice cream factory. The story highlights all the emotions that run through a fourteen year old’s mind in such a situation when he has just lost his father and has been left the family business as part of his father’s will. He is to be taken care of by his father’s friend and partner Mr Randolph who assumed that the company would be left to him. Accompanied by his four friends, Carlo sets out to bring the company back to the top and show their competition Mr Hill that Leodoni’s is indeed the best ice cream.

There is a slight twist in the story and this adds more mystery and makes it more interesting to read. The reader is sure to enjoy following Carlo and his friends as they behave like any other fourteen year old, running around and assuming they can do anything while at the same time steeping up to support their friend and showing us what true friendship is. All the elements put together make this story delightful to read with all it’s ups and downs, fun moments and dark moments. For all those readers who have enjoyed Enid Blyton’s stories in their childhood, this story is not far behind. It is as good as they come and worth the read!