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  • Innocent War (Revised Edition): Behind an Immigrant's Past Series Book 1
    Innocent War (Revised Edition): Behind an Immigrant's Past Series Book 1
    by Susan Violante

Book Review of Rise of the Fallen (All the King’s Men) (eBook) by Donya Lynne

Book review first published by Reader Views

Rise of the Fallen (All the King’s Men) (eBook)
Donya Lynne
Phoenix Press (2012)
Reviewed by William Phenn for Reader Views (3/13)

In “Rise of the Fallen” by Donya Lynne, the story starts off in Chicago where a centuries-old, fragile truce exists between vampires and their distant cousins, a race of shifters called Drecks. The vampire enforcement agency, known as All the King’s Men (AKM), is in charge of maintaining the truce. But when one of its enforcers, Micah Black, loses his lover, he falls into the biological agony resulting from a broken heart. That’s when he pushes the envelope of the fragile truce to its boundaries. He seeks out a Dreck known as Apostle, a leader in the Dreck community. Micah eggs him on and taunts him because Micah is in such depression he wants Apostle to kill him. This is a request Apostle is more than happy to fulfill.

Micah gets his rear end kicked royally by the Drecks but before they can land the final blow, his carcass is saved by an ex-Army medic Samantha ‘Sam’ Garrett. She pulls a gun on the group and inadvertently disrupts the plot saving Micah’s life. This honorable act causes a chain reaction that sets Micah’s heart throbbing and he falls in love with Sam. But he will have to protect her from Apostle and her obsessive ex-husband, Steve, if they ever expect to have a chance at forever.

I enjoyed “Rise of the Fallen” as much as I did “Twilight,” except that “Twilight” came first and made “Rise of the Fallen” just another attempt at a rehash of the same vampires and other beings scenario. The only difference that I could decipher was that “Twilight” was a struggle between vampires and werewolves and this one was vampires and Drecks.

I gave “Rise of the Fallen” by Donya Lynne a very tight “C” on my scale because it was an adult book that had a bit more swearing than necessary (in my opinion), the book lacked originality and did not keep my interest. I was disappointed in the romantic aspect of the story; seemed to me that the main character could have shown more enthusiasm.


Book Review of Forever Exposed: The Nikki Catsouras Story

Book review first published by Reader Views

Forever Exposed: The Nikki Catsouras Story
Lesli Catsouras

Dog Ear Publishing (2012)
ISBN 9781457514401
Reviewed by Kaitlyn Kashman for Reader Views (1/13)

As an author, Lesli Catsouras immediately pulls readers into a story that is so tragic and moving. “Forever Exposed: The Nikki Catsouras Story” is not just a memoir about Nikki’s life but about her death and the pain her family endured after it. Her mother Lesli shows readers how much the media really plays a part in our everyday life and that it’s almost impossible to escape. This story doesn’t just leave the reader on the edge of their seat wanting to read more, it leaves readers with a story that they will share and will not forget.

“Forever Exposed: The Nikki Catsouras Story” is written in what seems to be journal entries from both Lesli and Christos Catsouras. Readers get to feel what both parents felt during the death of their beloved daughter. The main storyline is how Nikki`s death was exposed on the internet and the news and the judgment that this young innocent girl received from strangers. The book was very well written, although I feel it is almost hypocritical in the sense that it is now allowing all of its readers to open up the past that the mother didn’t want anyone to remember.

Readers will read this book and have one or two different opinions of it. One may be that publishing the book about Nikki`s death, and what the family had to go through, was a good thing because it allows readers to see what the media can really do to a family that no one ever knew.  The other may be that publishing a book about how their daughter’s life and death were exposed now opens up many other doors that readers can now explore.

Within the first few pages, the author automatically gets the reader intrigued about the story and soon following intrigues the reader about what was actually posted on the internet. This opens up what the author is initially not wanting. The author writes about how their daughter’s death is remembered in a bad way, but by writing this book, it is allowing readers to go search and view pictures and stories about this young innocent girl.

I recommend “Forever Exposed: The Nikki Catsouras Story” by Lesli Catsouras to any young adults and adults. It is truly a compelling story no matter what way the reader views it, and as readers we can see what media can do to a reputation or a memory.

Buy this book here!


Book Review of Deadly Lode by Randall Reneau

Book review first published by Reader Views

Deadly Lode
Randall Reneau

CreateSpace (2012)
ISBN 9781479131792
Reviewed by Daryn Watson for Reader Views (1/13)

“Deadly Lode” by Randall Reneau is a thrilling novel about a geologist, Trace Brandon, in the state of Washington who explores an old, abandoned gold and copper mine. After nearly losing his life during his initial exploration of the abandoned “Sullivan Mine,” Trace discovers hidden valuable uranium within the seemingly “worthless” mine and embarks on a journey to re-open and excavate the mine’s previously undiscovered treasures.

Trace is cautious with his new discovery and who he recruits for his new mining operation. A shady character named Cyrus “The Virus” McSweeney is always in the background, waiting to pounce on any opportunity he can to sabotage and gain control of Trace’s company, “Montana Creek Mining.”

Throughout the book, I found myself fascinated by the many interwoven characters and plot lines. The book is very well written and concise. Some of the other characters include a pair of mafia brothers with ties in New Orleans and Las Vegas, Chinese and Australian Mining companies and various other protagonists and antagonists on both sides of the law.

Some of the chapters are very short but Randall Reneau ties them together, all the while keeping the reader intrigued and full of suspense. “Deadly Lode” is a great fiction novel and a very easy, enjoyable and quick read.


The adventures of a first time publisher

I have always been a ‘hands on’ person. Somehow I learn faster when I tackle things directly instead of just studying the theory first…this is why I decided to experiment with my picture book Tuma: The Tribe’s Little Princess. It’s been a learning experience, to say the least, to publish my picture book as my first project for I Have Something To Say Press.

How difficult could it be? I mean, the story had already been published in 1996 by Creative With Words. I had done the illustrations on pastels already. It was a matter of adaptation and lay out. I even knew how to use the software.

Well, it has certainly been a learning experience! Colors on the original are not the same on the screen. So there was a lot of editing of the art work. The adaptation of the story to the picture book was also challenging as I tried to make it entertaining and educational for toddlers to 5 years old. But the biggest challenge was working the layout. I pressed on and did it all! I finally created the cover templates only to realize that the printer doesn’t offer landscape orientation. Of course my entire layout was on landscape!

So, I had a chamomile tea to calm me down and re-did the whole layout, including the cover, and sent all the files to the printers.

 I celebrated going out to dinner with my husband and started counting the time left for when I would get the first galleys!

To pre-order a copy visit


My Sister’s Keeper, A Book Review By Irene M.

My Sister’s Keeper is a young adult novel that tells a compelling story of a family that has to struggle with conflicting needs and put their love above all else. Anna, the younger of two sisters, by age thirteen has undergone countless surgeries, transfusions, and shots... but Anna is not sick. Anna was conceived as a bone marrow transplant match for her older sister Kate, who has leukemia. Anna has never challenged her life and role as her sister’s donor...until now. Anna is beginning to question who she truly is, after always being defined by her sister. So Anna makes an unthinkable decision that will tear her family apart and could have fatal consequences for her sister.

A novel filled with emotions, ups and downs and struggles with self-identity and human rights, My Sister’s Keeper keeps readers engaged from cover to cover. It was such an interesting story to read, with detailed research on Leukemia involved in each chapter, Jodi Picoult mixes medical information with a story that tugs on the heart strings. I enjoyed seeing the perspective of different characters as each chapter is from a different point of view. I loved this book all the way through and the twists and turns were what encouraged me to keep reading and continue to read other Jodi Picoult novels. She knows how to keep the reader on the edge of their seat, wondering what will happen next.

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