Friday, December 20, 2013

Emotional Memoirs & Short Stories by Lani Hall Alpert


A singer/songwriter/author discovered by watching Tavis Smiley on PBS. Not only had I never heard of Lani Hall Alpert, I was unaware she was Herb Albert’s wife. Growing up I enjoyed listening to Herb Alpert’s Jazz.

When I watched Lani Hall Alpert respond to Smiley’s interview questions about her memoir, my interest piqued. I appreciated her honesty, sharing personal events and complicated issues in her life, but her words of wisdom dealing with adversity is what impressed me.

As Lani explained the stories, written in Emotional Memoirs & Short Stories, I looked forward to the written word. In her book, she described in depth her life in Chicago, including her love of Jazz.

Discovered as a singer in Chicago, Lani moved to Los Angeles, became a lead singer, and met Herb Alpert. Throughout her emotional stories, Lani’s life experiences are captivating. Her expectations remained practical, as she doesn’t live in la-la land. Her pragmatic reasoning was refreshing.

Delighted Lani’s book matched her live interview; I took away a sense of hope for my own life after reading Lani Hall Alpert’s, Emotional Memoirs & Short Stories.

Dark Flame Rising (The Keegan Crowe Chronicles, Book One) by J. A. Pedersen

Magic, Science, and History


Dark Flame Rising is a young adult fantasy novel about a fourteen year old girl, Keegan, a computer geek with a curious mind. Living with her grandmother after her parents’ death, moving from place to place without explanations, Keegan ends up solving the mystery in the small, desert town of Turtle Springs.

During Keegan’s quest for answers, she learns magic is real. The results from her pursuit open up unimaginable dangerous places, and facts she never knew about her parents. Keegan plays a major part in bringing together four magical objects from a society that practiced magic, to restore the balance of earth, water, wind, and fire to the world.

J. A. Pedersen adds a copious amount of historical notes after each chapter, which was a favorite part of the book.

Readers of all ages who like captivating fantasy will enjoy Dark Flame Rising, packed with magical adventure, science, and history.

Monday, December 9, 2013

The Scotties Learn About Respect by Stephanie Robinson. Illustrations by Wendy Hope

Children learn the lesson of respect through a cute story about three Scottish Terriers: Archie, Flea, and Bonnie. After Archie destroys Mom’s garden, Flea scolds him about his lack of respect for Mom. Archie doesn’t know what respect means, so Flea explains it.

Archie trots over to Mom and apologizes. Mom understands Archie is sorry and forgives him. The next day, he helps Mom replant the tomatoes he destroyed, and all is well.

Exemplary illustrations demonstrate the possibility of the lesson learned without words.
Young readers will enjoy this tale following the dogs from page to page.

VISITS Four Times by Ginger H. Edwards

Extraordinary writing from Ginger Edwards in her four short stories about aliens from outer space, called Visits, Four Times.

Lighthearted and witty describe the ‘visits’ best. Take a few minutes to escape into Ginger’s storytelling brilliance.