Book Review: “Marked” by P.C. and Kristin Cast

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Goodreads Synopsis

After a Vampire Tracker Marks her with a crescent moon on her forehead, 16-year-old Zoey Redbird enters the House of Night and learns that she is no average fledgling. She has been Marked as special by the vampyre Goddess Nyx and has affinities for all five elements: Air, Fire Water, Earth and Spirit. But she is not the only fledgling at the House of Night with special powers. When she discovers that the leader of the Dark Daughters, the school’s most elite club, is mis-using her Goddess-given gifts, Zoey must look deep within herself for the courage to embrace her destiny – with a little help from her new vampyre friends (or Nerd Herd, as Aphrodite calls them)

Bookworm1102’s Review

This book, which is the first in the House of Night series, I have read before (I have read the whole series), but this is my second time reading it.

Zoey is a normal 16 year old teenager, who worries about the usual things (boyfriend issues, tests and peer pressure), when all of a sudden, a Tracker comes and Marks her. In that split second, her whole life changes forever. She has to attend The House of Night school, where day is night for Vampyres.
There is one catch: if you fail, you die.

I enjoyed this book almost as much as I did when I first read it. There were lines that I didn’t enjoy as much, and in places, I did feel like Zoey was whining a lot, which is something I did not notice on my first read. I do still like this book, and the series, and my favourite characters are still Stevie Rae and Damien.

I will definitely be re-reading the rest of the series in the future, as it was, and hopefully still is, one of my favourite series.

I rate this book 4/5 stars!

If you like the sound of this book, you can find it on Goodreads here, Amazon UK here and Amazon US here.

Guest Post: The Generalist – Taboo 0: Double Feature Show by Thomas Duder

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Amazon Synopsis

Waking up in a bathtub full of blood and a head empty of memories is certainly not the typical morning for an average person. Frank Todd, however, is anything but an average person. Follow along as he fights his way through the city of Neo Los Angeles encountering friend and foe alike in his quest to find out who and what he is. Many strange revelations await him, and he’s about to learn exactly how strange it gets for The Generalist!

Come take a wild ride through a Neo Los Angeles of tomorrow! Monsters, magic, martial artists, catgirls, and more misfits await you. Follow the misadventures of The Shop as they take on all challengers with a bizarre variety of attacks and allies in this action adventure, urban fantasy run amok.

The Generalist – Taboo 0: Double Feature Show! Because you cannot read about people being punched in the face ENOUGH!

If you like the sound of this book, you can find it on Goodreads here, Amazon UK here and Amazon US here.

 

Guest Post: Brand Identity Breakthrough: How to Craft Your Company’s Unique Story to Make Your Products Irresistible by Gregory V. Diehl

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Goodreads Synopsis

Does your business have a story to tell? It should! Every new product can be unique in its industry. Does yours stand out from the crowd?

After a life of exploring the way people exchange value in over 35 countries, Diehl teaches business owners how to have conversations about brand strategy. In Brand Identity Breakthrough, you will learn how to develop a strong business identity by combining your personality and values with the functionality of your products to become irreplaceable to your audience.

Whether you lead a growing company, or are just starting a business, Brand Identity Breakthrough will give you a smarter way to think about new product development and business model generation. With undeniable, well-organized logic, it will show you how anyone can sell more, and at higher prices, so long as they give customers exactly what they want.

• Learn how to build a unique selling proposition for your product
• Learn the best methods for how to sell a product to customers, no matter what you offer.
• Overcome the sales learning curve, and sell products in both physical and online marketplaces.

Table of Contents

Section I: Why Identity Matters
This section will help you learn to see your own value, the value of your business, and the value of your products or services from the perspective of your customers. Only then can you begin to fashion your identity appropriately. If you can train yourself to think like your customers, you can get a much better idea of what value you should be focused on creating.

1. Can You Tell a Good Story?
2. When Good Ideas Fail
3. Why Entrepreneurs Fail to See Their Own Value
4. Why Others Fail to See Your Value

Section II: Creating Your Brand Identity
We don’t always know what makes our own ideas valuable. Failed entrepreneurs are often very close to getting the results they want. In being so close to your own business, you forget what things look like to an outsider, and you can’t present your business in a way which will appeal to what they are specifically looking for. Time to move beyond functional descriptions of your business, and focus on profound change.

5. Uncovering Your Core Values
6. Developing a Unique Selling Proposition
7. Crafting Your Personality Profile
8. Knowing Your Target Audience

Section III: Telling Your Story to the World
Communication is happening in every shared moment, and in ways that are not always obvious. There are so many other things we take for granted about the messages we send out to the world. By learning how to be a better communicator, you will gain access to a wide new world of opportunities which are only available if you know how to talk in a way that makes others want to listen.

9. How to Sell Who You Are
10. How to Speak with Clarity, Authority, & Authenticity
11. How to Display Your Character Through Writing
12. How to Educate Your Audience

Section IV: Brand Identity Case Studies
Case Study #1: From Consultant to Concierge with Productized Services
Case Study #2: Pre-Seeding a Two-Sided Marketplace for Launch
Case Study #3: Turning a Charitable Project into a Profitable Movement
Case Study #4: Skyrocketing a Personal Brand through Narrative Focus
Case Study #5: Embracing Personality in a Technical Niche

Section V: Resources for Prospective Entrepreneurs
Appendix 1: Entrepreneurial Terms Defined
Appendix 2: 50 Useful Starting Questions for New Entrepreneurs
Appendix 3: Making Money Online ask them to buy copies as well!”

If you like the sound of this book, you can find it on Goodreads here, Amazon UK here and Amazon US here.

Book Review: “Dani: A Dani Scott Novella” by Stuart Keane

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Goodreads Synopsis

She’s back…

It’s been six months since Dani gained revenge for the brutal death of her family. With a major crime syndicate now out of commission, the residents of London can rest easy in the knowledge that the streets are a little safer.

But crime is unending, a disease. London will never be safe.

With her own personal vendetta complete, Dani now takes to the streets to avenge the citizens of her city; the helpless, the suffering and the victimised, but it’s not going to be a simple task. The crime world is now aware of her presence, the avenging shadow that stalks the unlawful in the night, but so are the police.

With no one to turn to, and wanted by both sides of the law, Dani must come to terms with her perilous situation, face her inner demons, and make the ultimate decision.

Bookworm1102’s Review

This is a novella that takes place a year and a half after Grin. Dani, who is now known simply as ‘Grin’, keeps watch over the streets of London, fighting crime and keeping innocent people safe. The problem is, this has placed her on the police watch list.
Across town, Paul lives with his parents and is a seemingly normal person from the outside, but is Paul hiding a darker secret?

I enjoyed this novella. Having read it straight after Grin, I was still immersed in the world, and the characters. There is not as much gore as there is in Grin, but it was nice to read some of the backstory and to see things from multiple points of view, including Jack Scott, from the first book. I am looking forward to seeing what happens next!

I rate this book 4/5 stars!

Thank you to Stuart Keane and Booklover Catlady Publicity for the complimentary ebook copy.

 

If you like the sound of Dani: A Dani Scott Novella, you can find it on Goodreads here, Amazon UK here and Amazon US here.

Guest Post: Unliving The Dream by Sandra Vischer

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Goodreads Synopsis

Things are darn near perfect for Alex Fisher: she runs a successful business with the love of her life, her husband and the father of her two great kids. She’s managed to sail through nearly forty years without so much as a hiccup. That is, until the night her husband announces he would like to make a change-a change that has apparently been going on for months without Alex’s knowledge.

Yes, he has been having an affair with Alex’s assistant. Suddenly Alex is bouncing through divorce, through her daughter’s subsequent rebellion, and through the big questions of who she really is and what she wants in life. No longer living the dream, Alex uses her calm logic, internal dialogue, and sizzling wit-not to mention her friends-to turn the shock of a lifetime into an adventure of self-discovery that takes her from the tropical waters of the Caribbean Sea to the Utah wilderness and along the impoverished streets of Peru.

In this universal tale, told through Vischer’s unique voice, Alex finds that no one escapes unscathed-but we can all have a good laugh and some major personal growth along the way. A humorous, compassionate, and honest look at how the worst time in one’s life ultimately leads to unexpected fulfillment and authenticity.

If you like the sound of Unliving The Dream, you can find it on Goodreads here, Amazon UK here and Amazon US here. The author’s website can be found here.

Guest Post: The Boy Who Could Talk To God by Faheem Jackson

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Goodreads Synopsis

Building a relationship with God takes some people their entire lives. How do some come to understand him earlier versus those who connect to him later?

For Tyler Hargrove, growing up in the confines of his Booker T. Washington housing project in the Mott Haven community of the South Bronx, was one of the only things in life he knew. Another was living in a household where his mother expressed her love for God. As for how he carried himself through life, he always sought the quick way out. If he needed to get something done, he looked for a shortcut; a shortcut with his academics and a shortcut at home. His life of finding shortcuts led him into St. Mary’s Park where he would have a divine intervention with God.

Tyler will continue, not only on this first occasion, but on many occasions, to come to know and understand God. In addition to knowing and understanding God, he’ll have to learn there’s more to life than a shortcut. And adhering to his parents will be crucial in his success in school as well as in life. A full transformation will be of use in order for Tyler to leave behind childish ways and become more accountable for his actions.

If you like the sound of The Boy Who Could Talk To God, you can find it on Goodreads here, Amazon UK here and Amazon US here.

Guest Post: My Shorts by Arthur M. Doweyko

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Amazon Synopsis

Mind-blowing science fiction and fantasy short stories designed to make you rethink reality and your place in the universe. From first contact to thinking machines, from time-travel to the brutal realities of space travel, each story is finely crafted to set your teeth on edge and to grip your armchair. A policeman decides the fate of mankind when he unholsters his weapon during a first contact with aliens; Harry meets Harry in a time-travel attempt to save his wife; a little boy discovers he can’t lie; Andrew is the last human, a cyborg who must decide to be upgraded to fully artificial, or not. These and other thought-provoking tales await you in Arthur M. Doweyko’s collection of award-winning shorts.

About The Author

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As a scientist, Arthur has authored 100+ publications, and shares the 2008 Thomas Alva Edison Patent Award for the discovery of Sprycel, a new anti-cancer drug. He writes hard science fiction, fantasy and horror. His debut novel, Algorithm, which is a story about DNA and the purpose of humanity, garnered a 2010 Royal Palm Literary Award (RPLA) and was published by E-Lit Books October 2014.

He has published a number of short stories, many of which were finalists in RPLA competitions. A number of his short stories have garnered awards, which include Honorable Mentions in the international L. Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future Contest and First Place in P&E Readers Polls.

His recently completed Angela’s Apple, a novel about angels who are not angels, won 1st place as Best SciFi Novel at the 2014 RPLA and will be published by Red Adept Publishing. His current project, Henry The Last, is about the last human being, a Lakota Indian cyborg. He lives in Florida with his wife Lidia, happily wandering the beaches and jousting with aliens.

If you like the sound of My Shorts, you can find it on Goodreads here, Amazon UK here and Amazon US here.

Book Review: “Grin” by Stuart Keane

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Goodreads Synopsis

When a violent home invasion shatters Dani’s teenage existence, the attacker leaves her for dead, mutilating her face with a Chelsea grin – a brutal act of gang warfare. With a low chance of survival, and her life in ruins, Dani becomes a mere statistic, just another innocent victim of the escalating mob crime in London.

However, Dani survives.

Haunted by that traumatic night, and unable to escape her own personal hell, Dani dedicates her life to a new vendetta; violent, bloody revenge on each of those who did her wrong. With nothing to lose, and a new desire for bloodshed, the teenager will stop at nothing to avenge her family.

Bookworm1102’s Review

Danielle is a normal teenage girl, attending college and living at home with her father, mother and younger brother. She is seemingly happy, until one evening, her entire world gets turned upside down. Her family are murdered in front of her eyes, and Dani is left scarred, emotionally and physically. She vows that if she survives, she will find the person behind the killings and get revenge.

This was the first Stuart Keane book I have read, and I was not disappointed. At the beginning, you got a back story for Dani and learnt that she was someone who was likeable, which makes everything that happened to her even worse. The storyline was basic, but it works. It is fast paced and very graphic, so I would not recommend if you do not like reading about graphic death scenes.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and I am looking forward to reading more books in the series, and I will definitely check out some of Keane’s other books as well.

I rate this book 5/5 stars!

Thank you to Stuart Keane and Booklover Catlady Publicity for the complimentary ebook copy.

If you like the sound of Grin, you can find it on Goodreads here, Amazon UK here and Amazon US here.

Guest Post: Can’t Buy Forever by Susan Laffoon

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Goodreads Synopsis

In the early 1950s, Odessa Drake (Dessa) is rescued from a bleak existence with a single mother. She takes a chance on the unknown to work in a boarding house owned by a widowed great aunt in Mineville, New York. Dessa is devoted to Aunt Flo and especially a young man, Nicholas, who appears and takes shelter in the attic, the only available space. Four years pass. She looks forward to each day because of his presence, in spite of the tedious work. Dessa is now eighteen and knows little more of Nicholas than the day he arrived to work the mines. She knows only he is a remarkable man who has a limp and she trusts Nicholas explicitly. There is a familiarity both recognize and an unshakeable bond develops. Nicholas has reasons to keep his past buried. Dangers loom and become evident when Nicholas gets too close and exposes their bond. What is the mystery behind this threat? To discover the answer, they escape by railway heading West, colliding with treachery and uncovering secrets, mile by mile. Their journey is impossible, but, they are supported by friends who risk their lives to make sure a great love and lineage is preserved. Or is it? None will forget their odyssey as they proceed to their destiny farther than they imagined.

If you like the sound of Can’t Buy Forever, you can find it on Goodreads here, Amazon UK here and Amazon US here.

Guest Post: A Mother’s Meditations: Teachings of the Heart by Shelly Jacobs

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Amazon Synopsis

Some books should be sipped like fine wine and savored like good chocolate; A Mother’s Meditation’s is one of those books. Filled with deeply inspirational and poignant reflections, this book offers profound and powerful insights on a range of topics such as; love, fear, vulnerability, compassion, friendship, grief, learning, gratitude, relationships and many more. Each page beautifully captures life’s gifts and it’s struggles. A Mother’s Meditation offers spiritual and philosophical guidance for those who wish to live more heartfelt and passionate lives.

 

About The Author

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Shelly has a Masters Degree in Psychology and has worked as a psychotherapist for over 30 years. She is a long time practitioner of Vipassana Meditation and is the mother of two. She lives in the last great frontier of Alaska and has contributed writings in Turning Point: Integrative Solutions for Chronic Pain.

 

If you like the sound of this book, you can find it on Amazon UK here and Amazon US here