Sunday, 29 March 2015

Jack Spade: Dream Detective - Carl A. Chase

                James lives a normal, everyday life but when he closes his eyes his dreams literally come alive. Most of us enjoy dreaming so that we can have a break from real life but James’s dreams become his reality when his dream alter-ego, Jack Spade, takes over. Jack is a private investigator in the 1940s who takes on cases such as missing and cheating spouses, all while juggling a new and tricky relationship with Jennifer, a lounge singer in a local mobster’s club. The dream part of the book reads like an old time detective novel or an old black and white movie. The author portrays this setting quite well with fairly believable dialogue and settings significant to the era. The problem is that the main case that the novel is based around becomes so twisted that it is hard to follow and keep up with the storyline. I almost had to make a chart just to keep the characters and plot twists in order. Very little of the book involves James in an awake state and probably would have read better had the whole book been only about Jack and his investigations. With a little more planning and clearer storyline, the basis for an entertaining novel is definitely here. At the moment it is just a bit too confusing to hold my interest for long. I read this on my ereader and it formatted well. The cover is not particularly alluring but it does portray a detective-based story.

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Remembrance: A Time For War - A.K. Stauber

                Remembrance is the well-researched story about Polish Jews during the time of the Second World War. After the Germans devastated fifteen year old Anna’s town she is forced to go on the run and ends up meeting another young Jew named Pawel. Together, they hide from the Germans, knowing that to be discovered would bring certain death. This is a very intense story and was hard to read at times knowing things like this actually happened. The author has done a great job of portraying life for Polish Jews during this time period and the while book is very realistic. This story hit close to home for me since some of my partner’s family experienced some of the same things experienced by characters in the novel. The character of Anna matures from an innocent fifteen year old to a young woman who is slowly finding her hard edge. I truly loved this book although the cliff hanger at the end of the book was frustrating because now I have to wait for part two in the series. I read this on my ereader and it formatted well. The cover was not particularly enticing but the story was amazing.

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Steamworks in the Bylea - V.C. Remus

Steamworks in the Bylea is a fantasy adventure involving two separate stories. The first involves a young boy, Alistair, who has to watch the horrible execution of his parents and then must run for his own life when he becomes the next to die. He wants answers but is sidetracked by events that disrupt his search for the truth. The other story is about Cathan, a young boy who wants to make his family proud by being successful at tribe life but has no talents at all. Inside Cathan is the spirit of a warrior who wants to make Cathan proud and courageous.  Both worlds are described beautifully by the author with great detail so that the reader can picture himself or herself right there. I did find it a bit difficult to get into only because it is quite “wordy” but once I let myself enter the author’s make-believe world I couldn’t put the book down.