Thursday, September 27, 2012

The Sun Zebra by R. Garcia

A collection of short stories with unpredictable endings is a description of, The Sun Zebra. If anyone has ever read a review of mine, they know I value unpredictability as the key to great fiction.

The Sun Zebra is a perfect reminder for adults to open their minds and become kids again. To understand events, through the eyes of a child, is a wake-up call to the kid in all adults.

Each story is different, containing the elements of great writing. Nell is a precocious child, who possesses the ability to think critically, and analyze better than most adults. Her father is the epitome of a perfect dad, listening to her and allowing her to think. Her mother is the perfect balance to a loving marriage. Nell is lucky to be a child in this family.

My children are grown up, but this tiny book of wisdom will benefit me to augment my ability to be a better grandmother to my grandson. I thank R. Garcia for writing these pearls in, The Sun Zebra.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Tyrker's Tale (The World's Edge Series) by Robin Ingle

One doesn’t often think about the Vikings, from tenth century Iceland, so this is a great little story to spark an interest in an area of study, abandoned since the fifth grade.

Tyrker is a thrall, which is a slave, and he is training to be the guard of Eirik the Red’s son, Leif Ericson. It’s a story, in and of itself, how Tyrker becomes a thrall for Eirik the Red.

In less than twenty pages, Robin Ingle, has managed to write an exceptional, historical, piece of writing. So much occurs in this extremely short story; we get to know Tyrker, we learn about Viking women, slaves and non-slaves, and we are treated to an inside peek into the mind of Eirik the Red.

Tyrker is educating Eirik’s sons for combat, as he is a well-rounded man of warfare. He is such an interesting character, with an intriguing love life, and I am eager to read more about Tyrker, in the future.

Tyrker's Tale (The World's Edge Series), is my introduction to Robin Ingle. As a reader of historical fiction, I am thrilled to have stumbled across this author, and I’ll be looking for more of her work.

No Mercy (Sgt Major Crane Story) by Wendy Cartmell

This short story anthology, No Mercy (Sgt Major Crane Story), begins my introduction to Wendy Cartmell’s writing. The book consists of three, quick and easy to read mysteries; No Mercy features, Sergeant Major Crane.

The last story is an autobiographical piece, which I question the author’s reason for including it in a mystery anthology.

The mysteries have a ring of familiarity; I have either read similar stories or have viewed comparative TV shows.

I always appreciate the element of surprise in a good mystery. I expected unpredictable endings to the three mysteries; however bleak, I must express disappointment.

The author’s writing style is flawless for composing mysteries, and readers will notice her passion. I encourage, Wendy Cartmell, to continue writing mysteries in the future, however, adding originality to her stories.

I recommend, No Mercy (Sgt Major Crane Story), by Wendy Cartmell, to readers of all ages.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Of Stampedes, Runaway Trains, & Riverboat Scoundrels by James O'Donnell

If you can’t take a trip to Virginia City, the next best thing to do would be to read, Of Stampedes, Runaway Trains, & Riverboat Scoundrels by James O'Donnell.

O’Donnell compiled the Best of the West stories for an entertaining read adding his own twist to the tales. He included, Sam Houston, Davy Crockett, Jim Bowie, Buffalo Bill, Jesse James, Wyatt Earp, and Calamity Jane, just to name a few.

Enjoy your trip Out West!

Friday, September 14, 2012

The Moon of Innocence by Uke Jackson

The story takes place in Catalonia, Spain, in 1963. It’s far away from the city, and farming is the way of life.

Cesar is an orphan, as his mother dies in childbirth, and he doesn’t know his father. He is a budding writer and poet, because he’s lucky enough to work for a man who mentors him using books in his home library.

Maria works for Ella (Inglesa) as a maid. She is a seventeen year old virgin, and beautiful, especially to Cesar. He writes poetry to Maria trying to win her love. It takes a while, but eventually Cesar’s efforts are rewarded.

In order to see each other, they must sneak around. It is during one late night they manage to finagle, that Maria becomes pregnant. This is where the story is captivating and so much happens, you must quickly read through to the surprise ending.

Uke Jackson writes The Moon of Innocence with a unique style. The beginning of the story is the end of the story, and it is an excellent way to get the reader excited about, The Moon of Innocence.

Jackson develops his characters to be as appealing as his description of the setting. I felt like I was in Ella’s living room as well as riding on Cesar’s motorbike in the dirt. Always a plus is including history in a good story, and Jackson manages to accomplish this through his characters conversations.

I recommend readers of all ages to take pleasure in reading, The Moon of Innocence, by Uke Jackson.

I do have one question, however, what’s with the bear?

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Ukulele Land by Uke Jackson

A stage production that I wish I could attend. Ukulele Land is hysterical. Not sure if it was meant to be so funny, but I laughed throughout the book.

A drug company, The Corporation, dictates people take drugs for all kinds of ailments, for example; sexual desire, where sex is illegal. There are Love Police who jail the offenders.

The music is obviously ukulele by Uke Jackson, and his lyrics are funny with specific messages. I understand the lyrics to say; stand up for yourself, and question authority.

It’s somewhat of a spoof on the music industry as a whole and of our corporate culture.

There’s no way to properly describe this musical without reading the book, Ukulele Land, by Uke Jackson. It is to be enjoyed by imagining the lyrics being sung and the ukulele being played, and the fun characters acting their part.

It is an entertaining read even though we must imagine the musical performed in our minds.