Simple Smile Saturday (sept-1)

I know I haven’t done this for a while, but today is special. I came down to visit my parents for a week just so I could go to the festival. Not the usual labour day weekend fair that everyone goes to before school starts, but the Scottish Irish Festival that takes place every september in Trenton.

Picture I'm assuming is by someone named Horiz

It is a bit of a drive from my parent’s place, but a lot closer than trying to get there from Toronto! Especially if you don’t have a car… *L0L*

Previous Smiles: Harry Potterend of internshipdriftwood theatre

Book Review: Help Me! by Paul Geraghty

Synopsis: Various animals find themselves in danger, only to be rescued by the most unlikely source –the very thing that could harm them.

Product: This storybook, while not a hardcover, is made with rather stiff board paper that allows the book to easily be held without bending. This makes it perfect for story time or a bedtime story.

Setting: Judging from the types of animals found within this book, I can only assume this story takes place in Africa.

Plot: The storyline is both realistic and ridiculous.  Admittedly many animals would find themselves in danger from various predators out in the wild, but that is the only logical aspect.  It is highly unlikely the terrified animal would be rescued from impending doom by the very animal that endangers it, or that another larger animal would bother to save it. There is a reason there is the phrase “survival of the fittest” and this sure isn’t it.

Format: This is a rather large-sized picture book. The artwork is rather well done, though in somewhat muted tones, in single or double page spreads. The words are simple sentences in a large font making it easy to read if it weren’t for the rather sophisticated word choice.

Pacing: The author tries to connect each animal’s experience to make it flow into one day at the watering hole, but instead makes for a rather disjointed connection between what is closer to short stories.

Memorable Moment: There is one line that makes it sound like a hippopotamus is trying to give CPR to an Impala (the creature not the car), thus causing a moment of humour rather than the usual horror.

Note to Reader: This book may lead a child to believe that wild animals are actually helpful creatures who would do no harm if it came at you. Should your child hear or read this book, do not take them to the zoo or on a safari for a few years.

Quote: He ran for his life. He ran till his throat burned, but the dogs were getting nearer. He could almost feel their hot breath on his haunches…

The Verdict: While I have not tried this story on a defenseless child to see what they thought of it, any adult who has seen it wonders what the author was thinking!  My advice is to stick to Disney because the worst your child will suffer from is princess-envy or a white-knight complex as opposed to nightmares.

Have you considered reading this book to children? 

Previous Reviews: The Ship of Lost SoulsA Scottish Ferry TaleCassandra’s SongOnly the Good Spy Young

Waiting on Wednesday (sept-1)

For anyone in the Toronto area you’ll know about the Word On The Street festival that takes place every September. My publishing program was asked to volunteer for the event last year, and I’m volunteering again this year.

It was actually at this festival that I heard Kelley Armstrong read from her book The Gathering, which has since become available. It was there that she told us it was the beginning of a new trilogy called Darkness Rising and would be based on another genetic-altering experiment.

The Calling by Kelley Armstrong

This year Kelley Armstrong will be reading at Word on the Street again, and I have to wonder: will she be give us a teaser from the next book in this series? Because that is the book I’m sure waiting for!

Previous Waiting: July-4Aug-1Aug-2Aug-3Aug-4

Teaser Tuesday (Sept-1)

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by Should Be Reading. Share the title & author, so that others can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
Grab your current read
Open to a random page
Share two (2) “teaser” sentences.


Someone Like Her by Janice Kay Johnson

No day is the same as the one that came before…

“But you know, whether you see a glass as half-full or half-empty, the exact same amount of water is in it.”

Previous Teasers: Aug-1Aug-2Aug-3Aug-4

Books In My Mailbox (Sept-1)

This meme is hosted by The Story Siren.

While others are getting the dreaded textbooks, I have recently acquired a new phone that has a ereader app and I have downloaded a few books already…

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
Summers Crossing by Julie Kagawa
The Bride’s Baby by Liz Fielding

As I was organizing my email I discovered an old message that had been accidentally misfiled in the wrong folder much to my dismay. For in that email was a link to another book I’ve been wanting to read:

Daimon by Jennifer L Armentrout

This weekend I returned to my parents home -it was the only time I could catch a ride- so I would be able to attend a certain event that is coming later this week, which means I have a few days free in which to reread some of my favourite Lori Wick novels.

Previous IMM: Aug-1Aug-3Aug-4

Book Review: Personal Demons by Lisa Desrochers

Synopsis: Frannie Cavanaugh is special. She has skills no one has ever or will ever have, which is why both heaven and hell want her so bad. When two new boys enrol at school and show an interest in her, Frannie has a hard time deciding which to choose. What she doesn’t know is Luc is a demon and Gabe is an angel, and both are trying to win her soul.

Author: This is Lisa Desrochers first novel, with a sequel in the works.

Cover: Frannie and Luc are in the foreground, with Frannie’s hand resting on Luc’s chest. This may indicate that while Frannie wants to be close to him, she is also keeping the demon at a slight distance… or she has her hand on his heart. Coming down the school’s hall behind them is look looking beyond gorgeous and his wings rampant behind him, as he is always there to be Frannie’s guardian angel.

Plot: The basic storyline vaguely reminds me of Vampire Diaries, but instead of the choice between good vamp/bad vamp, Frannie must pick angel or demon. The difficulty is that, not only does Frannie love them both, though in different ways, she is terrified of love and what it means.

Hook: Who wouldn’t want a pseudo-dangerous bad boy and an angelic love-filled being fighting for their heart?

Point of View: The book alternates between telling the story from the perspectives of Frannie and Luc. I would have also liked to see the tale through Gabriel’s eyes as that would have given more balance to the story, make Luc and Gabriel more equal contenders as Frannie’s love interest. The fact that Gabriel does not tell his side of things may partially be due to Lisa not finding much of interest to say from such a “good” being, and that it is easier to sway the reader into giving Luc more of a chance as the rightful winner of Frannie’s heart even though he’s a demon.

Character: Mary Frances Cavanaugh, also known as Frannie or Fee, hates her name. I remember reading somewhere that Lisa dislikes the name herself, but no other name she tried felt right for the character… and Frannie really is something else. Not only does this girl have some serious super-skills, but also has a black belt in judo to kick teenage boy and hell-demon butt.

Pondering: Frannie says that she does not believe in heaven but she does believe in hell. Her lack of belief in God is due to tragedy in her childhood that made her loose faith in that Greater Being’s existence. Frannie also fears love, says it does not exist. This may be due to the people Frannie loves often being taken from her, but it could be because she doesn’t believe in God. The Bible says that God is love and if Frannie believes that God doesn’t exist than neither can she think that love does.

Character Development: Lucifer Cain goes through an extreme change throughout the novel –physically, mentally, and emotionally. Luc is a demon born of hell who knows nothing but pride and gives no second chances. Yet over time he falls in love with Frannie and is willing to do or be anything just to keep her safe, would willingly give his life just to protect her.

Point of Interest: In the book Luc can smell people’s emotions, their “psyche signals”. Ginger is lust, citrus is fear, garlic is hate, anise/liquorice is envy, rose is sadness, black pepper is fury, vinegar is guilt, chocolate is love, while clove and current is the scent of your soul ready for the taking.

Sidenote: Sorry Luc-lovers, Frannie can keep him because I am Gabe’s girl!

Quote: I let him hold me for a long time, feeding off his energy. If you asked me right now, I’d have to say I believe in love, ‘cause that’s what this feels like: Pure love.

The Verdict: A fabulous novel filled with not only the hell that is high school but the supernatural. There is romance, action, and suspense all woven into one great story. Go read this book… now!

Would you choose Gabriel the angel or Lucifer the demon, and why?

Previous Reviews: The ReckoningDark Flame,   Wildefire