Tag Archives: sci-fi

The Dead Club by Manuel Ruiz–Review by Bethanie

The Dead Club Manuel Ruiz

 

The Dead Club

by: Manuel Ruiz

Genre: Middle School Sci-Fi

 

First of all, don’t let the title sway you away from reading this great book. When I was first asked to review this book, the title caused me to question it. However, I am so glad I read it!

It is not very often I run across a book that has so many different elements mixed in it and yet made an easily flowing story out of it. Mr. Ruiz did it! I was very pleased!

There were parts that made me laugh and parts that made me a little teary and still others that kept me riveted to my seat. I loved this book! Another Bethanie’s Fave has been found. Thank you Mr. Ruiz for sharing your book with me!

The thought of eternity scares many people. In this book it was turned into a continuing adventure. I loved going with the young characters in this book as they fall into a Ghost Town, meet a character named Elvissarian whom was a Memphus and be able to ride in a Cadillac Convertible with the Grim Reaper at the wheel. Grim was my favorite character! Some of the things he did in this book were nothing like what one might associate with him. I loved the spin on the underworld. Reality and Mythology mix and make it one of the best stories I have read in a long time!

I would recommend this book to anyone. Even told my son he would probably enjoy it too.

Thank you Mr. Ruiz for sharing your fantastic book with me!

 

~Bethanie

 

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Earth 5 by Hustin Lindenhall–Review by Bethanie

Earth 5

Earth 5

By: Hustin Lindenhall

Genre: YA Sci-Fi

Parallel worlds and I go way back. I love amazing stories that go with them and this was definitely one of them! He made the unbelievable, believable.

This was not your run-of-the-mill parallel world story. It was thought-provoking in an eerie way. The one song that kept running through my mind as I was reading this book was Imagine–by John Lennon. As a matter of fact, Imagine could be the theme song for this book. It is a make-you-think book, just like John Lennon’s song is a make-you-think song. Would there be any need for competition if there was nothing to compete for? Of course not. If we all had one goal we would all work together to reach it.

I think Mr. Lindenhall is our start, at sixteen he has created an amazing story. Maybe there is still hope for our Earth after all.

I wish to thank Mr. Lindenhall for sharing his novel with me.

WRITING AND STORYLINE

The writing was kind of jumpy to begin with, but as soon as the story started getting into the main part it quit being jumpy. The storyline is rather unique. It was almost as if this really happened. He had me believing it. Colorado does have a tendency to be magical and who wouldn’t want to take in the beauty of the Rocky Mountains. I have been there and would love to go back.

Warning–This book does have some expletives in it. I believe the story could have been just fine without them. Some feel the need to use those in their stories. I think they can be taken out. Some may agree and some may not. It is their choice.

If asked, I would recommend this book. It had more deep thoughts in it than the most engrossing conversation with the most intelligent human on Earth. There are so many talented young people and I believe I have found one in Hustin Lindenhall. Never stop writing. I look forward to reading the next book! Happy reading!

~Bethanie

I was given a copy of this book for a fair and honest review. No monetary exchange was made.

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The Fifth House by Andy Goldman–Review by Bethanie

Fifth House Andy Goldman

The Fifth House

by: Andy Goldman

Genre: YA Sci-Fi

 

Well, I will have to admit that I liked this book better than the first–much more action in it.

In The Fifth House, the way the story was laid out was excellent. Mr. Goldman wrote it from the two main characters’ perspectives. Each chapter built upon the other. Although frustrating at times, where he would end the chapter, I couldn’t put it down. I had to know what happened next. It kept me reading until sometimes the wee hours of the morning. The action never stopped, even through the ending sentence of the book. However, cliffhanger, once again.

I really don’t like cliffhangers. Nonetheless, it is each author’s choice to how they end their books.

CHARACTERS

I was pleased to see much more depth to the background stories of the characters. It gave me a much bigger interest in some and hate others even more.

WRITING AND STORYLINE

The writing and storyline this time were fantastic, however there was more profanity used in this book and a few scenes that were questionable but turned out okay. It kept you guessing with a few major surprises. It also made me want to scream at times too. The jumping between character perspectives was good but happened at some of the most inopportune times. You had to keep reading.

Good authors do that. They make the reader unable to put the book down. There were times, though, that it frustrated me enough to where I had to take a break from reading it. I was right back at it sometime later. It called to me, there was no way to stop reading it altogether. Happy Reading!

 

~Bethanie

 

 

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Shadow of the Wraith by Ross Harrison–Review by Bethanie

Shadow of the Wraith

Shadow of the Wraith

By: Ross Harrison

Genre: Adult Sci-fi

Star Trek meets Star Wars–there was even a Captain Kirk and a C3po. Each had different names, but that is what they reminded me of. I will be honest. I have never been a Star Wars or Star Trek fan. However, if you like those you will definitely like Shadow of the Wraith.

Although going into this book I knew I was dealing with space sci-fi. This quickly became a little too sci-fi for me. It seemed like a tired storyline, one that I had seen many times before and saw throughout this too. But understand, please, this is only my opinion. The many readers that love space sci-fi will definitely love this book.

It is written for adults 18 and up, in my opinion. I would not recommend it for ages younger than that. However, parents, it is your child and you can make that decision.

WARNINGS

There was some crude language in it. I believe it would have been fine without it. The reader knows they are misfit soldiers without having to use crude language to prove it. Again just a warning. Some care and some don’t.

WRITING AND STORYLINE

The description in the story was decent. You could get an idea of what a character looked like and what the many “ships” may have looked like. It took me awhile to get into it because of the dialect it is written in. I am used to American English and this was written in what reminded me of UK English. That was rather a hurdle for me, but once into it and realizing how it was written, I was able to sail through it. It moved along at a medium pace. There was some action to keep your interest. Then it came to the main scene and took off. Star Wars or Star Trek fans will love it. The storyline, as I said before, was a rather tired one–again, my opinion–but anyone that loves space wars and taking over the galaxy-type stories will love to sink their teeth into this one.

Happy Reading!

~Bethanie

I was given this book in exchange for an honest review. No monetary exchange was made.

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I Am Starting a Project

So, I have a rant today.

I originally posted this reply on WP site Publishing Insights to the article– Self-Publishing: Blessings and Woes:

After reading all of the posts on this, I agree with everything except the statement that “anyone can write a book”. That is one thing I will completely disagree with. Can anyone put pen to paper or fingers to keyboard and come up with a book? Yes, anyone can.
However, writing is not just putting thoughts down on paper. Writing is an art. As authors, you have to become your character. You have to react the way they would react and say what they would say, create the world they are going to live in and make it believable. You have to live the experience in the book, whether through your imagination or through real life.
You pour your heart and soul into your character or characters and make them a real and believable person even though they are fictitious. You have to make your reader hear their voice and see through their eyes, as if they were living it with the character in your book.
You do not publish a book on your second draft. Give me your seventh, tenth, or fifteenth draft. I want the one that is so very polished that nothing makes me stumble through it.
I LOVE Indie authors. I have found so many that write better than the highest paid, traditionally published, agented authors. Yet if they tried to find an agent, they couldn’t because most agents don’t care enough to read what they have written.
Take J. K. Rowling, famous author of Harry Potter. She sent her manuscripts to so many agents and it was rejected so many times. Why? I wonder how many agents are kicking themselves now.
The negative aspect, though, is that everyone does write a book and publishes their second draft and that is where we have those that think they can make a million dollars with their first published book. When they see it doesn’t work that way, it is tossed in the waves of the sea of self-published books and their rolling waves cover those that are AMAZING authors.
My purpose, as a reader, is to find those shimmering jewels that the sun catches just right. My purpose as a reviewer is to tell others about the jewels I have discovered. I must try and calm the endless waves of water and sand as it sifts through my fingers where lo and behold I find the jewel.
Self-publishing is a hard route to take. Those that do and create a work of art in written words, I applaud them.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

So here is my idea. Ever wonder what happened to those agented and traditionally published authors that didn’t make the NYT Best-Sellers’ list or any of the best sellers lists? I often have, so I am going to find out.

Everyone is so preoccupied with the idea that you have to have an agent to make it. I cannot say whether that is true or not. I have seen many authors who were agented and picked up by one of the “Big Five” or ten or twelve, I’ve lost count. I am speaking of those authors that are part of the big publishing houses, that didn’t make it. I have also seen some that did make it to NYTBS list that should never have been on it in the first place. Those are the ones I wonder about.

Just because you are picked up by a big publishing house does not guarantee that you will make it in the big time. Just because their book is on NYTBS list does not mean it should be there.

I walk into my local bookstore and look at the shelves that I frequent and there are some authors on those shelves that I have never even heard of before. One in particular was Erin Bowman. She wrote Taken. Guess where I found her book–on the major discount shelf. It was a hard back book and it only cost me $5. I figured, why not. It was published in 2013. I bought the book in 2013 and am just now picking it up to read.

Just recently I found out that the next two books are being released in March and April of this year. I only saw this info on Amazon. I get e-mails all the time from HARPER TEEN a month before telling me about new books that are being released. Never once did I see Ms. Bowman’s books on those newsletters.   She was picked up by HARPER TEEN on the first book and I think the next two are with them too, but am not sure. So here is my question–Why haven’t I heard about these new books?

As a top publishing house wouldn’t you want to make ALL your new books known, instead of the choice few, big-time money making authors? So the conclusion I have come to is that the big publishing houses have a tendency to hold back their NON-NYTBS list authors. This gives me another reason to dislike them and not trust them. This makes me cheer and pull for the underdog–the self-published and unpublicized. Have I seen a poster at the front of my local bookstore about Erin Bowman’s books? No.

Is her publishing company helping advance her career? No, not in my opinion, yet another reason to dislike them. So, my friends in the INDIE group, don’t give up, but make sure what you put out there is the best of the best. I believe in you!

~Bethanie

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Monster Squad: The Iron Golem by Christian Page–Review by Bethanie

Monster Squad Iron Golemn

Monster Squad: The Iron Golem

by: Christian Page

Genre–Middle-Grade Sci-Fi

I must say that this was a very unusual book. It took every part of science fiction and wove it into something fun, comical, dramatic, and unlike anything I have read before. Mr. Page took something resembling an Avengers comic book and turned it into a novel, I was waiting on Captain America to be the narrator.

It was really strange to read this novel. Although no pictures, it turned into comic book form in my mind as I read it. It was also a very well-crafted, middle-grade novel, something I think middle-graders would enjoy reading. It was never void of action.

Superpowers, time-travel, well-known monster-related names. This novel has it all. I loved Mr. Page’s references to the older, well-known names such as Stoker, Frankenstein, and I promise I have heard the name Daschle Gaunt before, I just cannot place it in the realm of monster lore. Forgive me for those of you that might know exactly who it is. If you do, then you know what part of this novel contains, and forgive me for the possible spoiler. However, the only familiarity is the names, not for what they are known.

When reading this novel it was hard to put it down, but unfortunately my eyelids closing won out on that one, and I found myself with my iPad in my lap the next morning. The book was well-written for the middle-grade ages. It made me wonder if Mr. Page had a group of middle-graders cheering him on as he wrote it.

I am not one to give the story away by telling you what happened at every turn. I prefer the reader to find out for themselves what the story is about. So read it, parents or children. You will like it!

Storyline and Writing

I loved the way he wrote characters of different countries. Mr. Page made sure the reader knew these characters held the dialect of their country. They were very convincing. The storyline of the book was choppy. I believe I would call that the only drawback., but it helped explain other parts of the book. It jumped around to different times, then would go back to the main story. That was aggravating, but understood as I read further. So don’t stop reading. I promise it all turns out in the end. The writing only had a few errors in it, but nothing that took away from the story.

As far as my reading of it, I am new into the sci-fi genre, but with each new book I read in that genre it is definitely growing on me. Monster Squad: The Iron Golem was no exception. Although it didn’t quite end like I would have liked it too, it was still a very good story. At least there is another book after this one. Maybe it will end like I hope.  My favorite character was Dash. 🙂  Happy Reading!

~Bethanie

I was given a review copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. No monetary exchange was made.

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The Least Envied by Sean DeLauder–Review by Bethanie

The Least Envied Kindle                                The Least Envied Paperback

 

 

The Least Envied by Sean DeLauder

Genre: Mixed

 

Sooo many words. Words have power, they can cause one to fail, they can cause one to succeed, they can even make one become a hero. Without words we would know nothing. There would be no history–American history or world history, no amazing Greek legends–The Illiad, The Odyssey, The Legend of Hercules, mythology in and of itself. We would know nothing of Plato or Socrates. What fun would a campfire be without scary ghost stories and urban legends to tell? What fun would a campfire be without the campfire songs sung around it or the music played around them? This is this book–all of the above.

When I receive a request for a review of a book, I interview the author by email with a few questions about what I am about to pick up and read. When I emailed Mr. DeLauder and asked him what his book was like, he told me there was nothing like it. I have a tendency not to believe those that say that. In general, most authors have been inspired to write from some movie, other book, or a song. We don’t want our books to sound like anything else, yet most of the time they do. Well, in Mr. DeLauder’s case, it was both like and unlike any other thing I have read.

It was the best and worst book I have ever read. It was a frustration and a joy to read. It made me insane at points, but then I was able to regain my sanity. If there was a way to prepare other readers for the reading of this book I would. However, there is not. There were times I wanted to stop reading it altogether because it drove me up the wall, but I couldn’t because I wanted to see what it turned out to be. You would just have to read it for yourself.

Writing and Storyline

The writing I really didn’t pick up anything wrong with it, but perhaps the reason could be having to work to keep up with all of the parts of the book. The storyline is not really just one. There are many within this book. The author is writing about the author writing this story. It is almost unique in that area, with the exception of one other book I have read by Yannis Karatsioris. It was similar in nature to this one.

Mr. DeLauder, bravo! Thank you for sharing your book with me and I wish you the best!

~Bethanie

 

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. No monetary exchange was made.

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Hello Book Fans

Review requests are stacking up. My review basket is getting full. I am excited though. So many good books that I have discovered from many different genres. If you are looking for a review for your book please contact me. If it meets my criteria then I will be more than glad to review it. I am working on Genesys by Aaron Denius Garcia right now. So far, so good. Will have his review up soon. Thank you for reading my reviews, and as always I wish all of you the best.

~Bethanie

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Quiznot by Russell Stoll–Review by Bethanie

Quiznot by Russell Stoll

Quiznot by Russell Stoll

Genre: YA, Sci-Fi

And WOW!! I don’t know how else to explain this book. It has hit the Bethanie’s Fave list. I immensely enjoyed this book. Each page I turned I had no idea what would happen next. It was extremely unpredictable and I loved it! Most of the time I like predictability, but this time it didn’t happen. I was just fine with that.

I still wonder what happened to a certain character in this book, but luckily this is only Book One. I am so excited that I have more to look forward to, and will hopefully have my question answered. Now, I will have to say this. The way the book started off, I thought it was just going to be another boring book about people doing strange things. I was SOOOO happy to find out that I was completely wrong!

Oh my goodness! This book had a huge mixture of things to it. It reminded me of X-Men meet the Stepford Wives. When I said that to my husband he imitated his mind being blown–Ha Ha! He is not an avid reader like me. I was able to get him into reading at one point and every-once-in-a-while I can do it again. I am going to try with this book. I think he would enjoy it.

Mr. Stoll has written a great Sci-Fi book that I would recommend for any age from about 13 and up. It is definitely a young adult novel. What a grand adventure awaits the reader who chooses this book!

WRITING AND STORYLINE

The writing I only found a few mistakes in, but the storyline was impressive. Mr. Stoll wove so much into this book sometimes it was hard to keep up with until you read a few pages in and suddenly realize what has happened. That was the only part that kind of threw me. But once I figured it out, it made every bit of sense. In my opinion it connected the aspects of the book.

One other thing. Some readers care and others don’t. There are very few expletives in this book, I only remember about two.

I don’t ever give much up about a story, because I don’t want to spoil it for another reader. It is kind of like a movie that you want to see and you don’t want anyone to tell you anything about it. You want to find the surprises yourself. This book is full of them. You will enjoy it! By the way, my favorite character was Max. 🙂

Happy reading!

~Bethanie

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. No monetary exchange was made.

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Hmmmm

Great book so far!! Stepford Wives meets X-men? Very interesting. It’s getting good. Can’t wait to see what’s next.

~Bethanie

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