Author Rosie Chapel introduces us to Etched in Starlight:
Only eighteen years of age, army recruit Lucius Maxentius Valerius, arrives in Armenia, a world away from the comforts of Rome. Rather than a career in politics, as his family would have preferred, he has chosen a life in the military. Being a soldier in the Roman Army is not for the faint hearted; there is no such thing as an easy campaign and, here in the wilderness of Armenia, they face the Parthians, a formidable enemy, one whom the Romans underestimated once before — to their downfall. This does not deter Maxentius; he has long wanted this life.
It becomes apparent, that Maxentius is a born solider. His uncanny ability to anticipate the actions of the enemy, desire to understand and empathise with the local populace and reasoned perspective on any given strategy, gains the young man the respect of comrades and his superiors and he is promoted with unusual rapidity. A soldier with such instincts is a desirable commodity and, after four years in Armenia, Maxentius is dispatched to Masada, an isolated outpost in the middle of Judaean Desert, taking command of the local garrison. Although a rather mundane assignment, it would be a welcome respite after several years of warfare.
Hundreds of miles away in Jerusalem, a city descending into chaos, a young girl is training to be a healer under the watchful eye of her uncle. Not your conventional Hebrew maid, Hannah bat Avigail, forgoes traditional feminine pastimes, spending her days treating all manner of wounds and ailments. Relishing the challenge, Hannah dreams of becoming a physician.
The city is rife with dissent and clashes between advocates and opponents of Roman rule are commonplace. Every day Hannah and her uncle deal with injuries more typical of a battlefield than a civilised society. Worse, her brother and his friends are caught up in the violence and she fears for their lives.
Deprivation and disease add to the increasing instability, inflaming the agitators and encouraging radical groups to join forces hoping to oust the Romans once and for all. In a desperate bid for weapons, a band of rebels venture into the desert, to a fortress guarded by a Roman garrison.
Hannah’s brother refuses to leave his sister alone in an increasingly lawless city and so she travels with him, accepting that, if nothing else, her skills as a healer will probably be required.
In the aftermath of the attack on Herod’s citadel, Hannah finds and, against her brother’s wishes, treats three badly injured soldiers. Unexpectedly, one of them touches something deep inside her; something that, despite him being an enemy and a captive, she cannot ignore.
Maxentius regains consciousness to the knowledge that this impregnable citadel has fallen and that he is likely one of only three of his garrison to survive the ambush. Uncertain of his future and in a haze of agony, he realises he is in the care of a young woman. A young woman, whose startling green eyes and impish smile, will turn his world upside down
In the days that follow and against impossible odds, they come to realise that they are more than healer and captive, their fate already etched in starlight.
Etched in Starlight is the prequel to the Hannah’s Heirloom Trilogy.
I want Rosie for my time traveling companion when I go to ancient Rome and Jerusalem. She must have been there numerous times already. She writes about the period and places so well, I almost feel like I have been there before. Her descriptions of the buildings, food, clothing and daily life are so detailed and complete. She understands the milieu clearly whether she is describing the daily life of a soldier or a physician. Her characters are alive as I read her work.
I really enjoyed the story of Hannah and Maxentius, there was a nice mix of action, dialog and description. The POV while not pure is managed well with the adequate use of tags so we don’t get lost or confused.
I loved the book and give it 4.9 of 5 STARS!
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Author Wayne Kerr introduces us to Ric-A-Dam-Doo:
A pair of girls have been kidnapped and smuggled into Mexico by a ruthless gang. The police and FBI are rendered virtually powerless by the border and corruption at every turn. Who will save these terrified teens? Their only hope may be a retired couple from Canada. The Reeses will cross that line and others to try and rescue the girls before they disappear forever. Once a Snow Devil, always a Snow Devil! What is a Ric-A-Dam-Doo? First and foremost it is the flag of the Princess Patricia Canadian Light Infantry. But it is more than that. Ric-A-Dam-Doo represents the pride and honor of the brave men and women, past and present, that have served their nation and the rights of the oppressed around the world since the first regiment was formed during WWI.
Wayne has crafted a tightly knit action story based in history and with a bit of romance. He has a deft touch for the locales, action, and dialog. He really shines in the relationships, he provides a great balance for all the characters, major and minor. He does just enough to prevent confusion caused by head hopping, a little bit more delineation between characters would not detract from the story however.
In short, I loved the story and had a hard time putting it down! I found only a couple of spelling errors. Ric-A-Dam-Doo deserves 4.9 stars of 5! I hope the book is transformed into a series! A couple of prequels wouldn’t hurt also, hint, hint.
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Author David Wolf introduces us to Mindclone:
WHEN YOU’RE A BRAIN WITHOUT A BODY, CAN YOU STILL BE CALLED HUMAN?
Marc Gregorio wakes up paralyzed. He can’t feel his own body. Accident? Stroke? Did someone slip him an overdose of Botox? The answer, he discovers, is much, much worse. He’s only a copy of Marc, a digital brain without a body, burdened with all Marc’s human memories, but without access to human sensual pleasures. Now he has to find a reason to keep on, um, “living.”
Adam the Mindclone meets the real Marc Gregorio--and his new girlfriend Molly Schaeffer. Adam loves her, too. But how does a digital entity experience love? He can’t even experience pizza. His one compensation: a powerful digital brain. At Molly’s urging, he applies it to unearthing terrorist plots, aborting schoolyard mayhem, exposing congressional malfeasance and Wall Street chicanery. However, his good deeds gain the attention of a power-mad military contractor who will stop at nothing—theft, kidnapping and worse—to control the technology for his own ends. Without a body, how will Adam save himself – and the world – from a terrible fate?
Mindclone, 94,000 words, is a serio-comic science fiction romance about the first successful mind-upload. It’s a book of ideas that explores looming advances in cognitive computing and neural networks, and what it means to be human even if you don’t have a body. Plus there’s a carbon-carbon-silicon love triangle, a redeemed ad-man, adventure, humor, frustrated romance, human and digital foibles, and as an extra added bonus, the defeat of death itself.
Scifi is my favorite genre to read and this is a great story! I love the concept of transferring the mind into a digital format as a form of immortality. It is such a Fresh in the Moment story.
Since I am committed to no spoilers, I cannot tell you most of the reasons why I enjoyed the story so much. But I can talk about the writing talent of David Wolf and his skill as an author, and there is a lot of both! David explores the story from multiple angles and does a great job of keeping POV (Point Of View) very clean. I did not have a single moment of confusion about whose POV was current. David also does a great job of developing his characters, we come to know each major character very well, understanding their underlying motivations; even if we don’t like them.
The balance of action, dialog, and introspection is nearly perfect. I never got anxious spending too much time in any one space.
I hope to see more from this author in the future.
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Author Patch Adams introduces us to House Calls: How We Can Heal the World One Visit at a Time:
Dr. Patch Adams knows the inner side of healing. House Calls is a reminder that some of the most important factors in healing are not high-tech marvels but ordinary factors such as love, compassion, friendship, and hope. This book will lighten anyone's heart and assist him or her on a healing journey.
What a delightful and encouraging book! I love the message of Patch Adams: be happy and help someone feel better! By itself the book is pretty funny, the cartoons by Jerry Van Amerongen are icing on the cake!
You can’t help feel better when reading this book and you will feel inspired to help someone who is not feeling well. You can help anyone, they don’t have to be in the hospital. But of course, that is where misery is pretty concentrated and one person can brighten the day for a lot of people in a short amount of time! I join Dr. Adams and hope you will be that person.
I love this book and give it 5/5 stars!
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Who am I?
An avid reader, typobuster, and the Hyper-Speller. I am a husband, father, and grandfather.
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