Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Nataliee's Alien Nightmare - Markus Fredericks

                Nataliee’s Alien Nightmare: The War Eagle Abductions is a fact based science fiction novel written by science fiction author Markus Fredericks and Bob De Long, a gentleman who is considered an expert in the field of UFOs. This book is the first in a series about the main character, Nataliee, and her experiences with the Greys which starts with her abduction on her prom night. She finds herself in an alien laboratory that’s hidden in a mountainside cave where there are other young women who have been captured. The aliens want to study the women’s eggs and extract them every month in a torturous method. The Greys also get their nutrition from melted humans when they “bath” in them. Yuck! Nataliee escapes and vows to bring people back to rescue the others.
                I’m conflicted as to my thoughts on this book. On the one hand, I found it to be a fun read. There’s lots of humour and a slap stick type of comedy. The pace is fairly fast and there’s lots of action. It’s an easy read that young adults would enjoy as much as older readers. The problem is that I’m not sure if the authors meant for the book to be a spoof of alien abduction books but that’s how I see it. If this book were a movie, it would be one of those hokey comedies that are so stupidly funny that you can’t help but laugh at it. The book starts with two bumbling cops who reminded me of Barney Fife. They refer to a mental hospital as a nut house as well as a plethora of other things that make their professionalism questionable. Actually, all of the characters and their dialogue and actions aren’t very believable. It almost seems like the authors were trying too hard for a small town feel and it ends up distracting from the actual story. I like a book to have dialogue that fits the characters and is something that I could imagine happening in real life, no matter what the genre. That being said, I still enjoyed the book because it was a funny and light read. I can’t say that my belief in aliens has changed one way or the other but I did enjoy the book and found it to be an amusing read.
                I loved the cover and it did draw my eye. I read the digital version and it translated well to my ereader.

First Friday - Tory Hartmann

                The first reason that I chose this book to read was the cover. Something about it drew my eye and I’m not sure why because there isn’t really anything special about it. Maybe it was the contrast of colors but once I picked it up I saw that the story was a combination of two of my favourite things: the Irish and a mystery. How could I possibly go wrong with reading this book? Happily, I made a good choice.
                Agnes, or Anne as she would like to be called, is on the cusp of big changes in her life. She finally has her real estate licence, is thinking of moving out of her parents’ house, and is going to have plastic surgery in hopes of making herself beautiful. However, there’s a secret in her past that involves her brother –in-law, Bruno, and it threatens to cause her all sorts of trouble.
                The book starts out being quite funny as it takes a look at life inside a strict Irish-Catholic home where the Virgin Mary is worshiped to such a degree that her pictures are everywhere in the house and Anne’s mother makes her likeness (among other biblical beings) out of pancake batter every morning. Anne’s father treats Anne like a little girl who will never do anything but work in his office and will never be as pretty as her sisters. The back and forth dialogue between some of the characters often involves an Irish dialect which can be a little hard to read but once you get the rhythm of it, the dialogue flows nicely and it really adds to the whole atmosphere of the book. For a while I wondered when the mystery would come in but it’s so slowly revealed and, may I say, slyly done by the author, that all of a sudden I found myself feeling like a light bulb flashed on when I finally figured out what the mystery was in the story. From that point on, I was completely involved with the events that were unfolding and couldn’t put the book down. The pace starts slow but speeds up, all the while maintaining its’ humorous aspects. It does grow dark and a bit disturbing in a way but the author combines the humour and the mystery very well. The characters are well written and believable although it often felt like the book took place in the 1950s or 60s as opposed to current day. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and look forward to reading more by Tory Hartmann.
 I read this in digital form on my ereader and it formatted well.

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Wizard's Key - Mitch Reinhardt

                Wizard’s Key is the first book in an exciting new young adult series called the Dark Wolf Saga. I’m always on the lookout for things that will entice non-readers to want to pick a book up and I think this book will do the job.
                The story centers around three teens: Jane, a popular and inquisitive young lady; Geoff, small for his age and very intelligent but bullied; and Sawyer, popular and a jock who bullies Geoff. Geoff’s father deals with interesting old artifacts and when Geoff finds a strange key he ends up falling through an archway, dragging Sawyer and Jane with him. They fall into a strange and magical land where river trolls and ogres hunt humans and a mysterious elven druid named Ariel rules over the forest. Ariel believes there is something special about the three teenagers and tries to help them, albeit grudgingly, and teach them some of the ways of the new land, including magic. Unfortunately, there is also a huge werewolf after them who also knows that there is something different about the kids.
                I loved this book and found it to be an easy and entertaining read. The characters are well written and the three teenagers in particular are realistic and credible. Often, teens aren’t written as they really are and are often portrayed as either too childish or too adult-like. Teenage readers will pick up on any glitches in a teenage character quicker than anyone and in this case, I think they will be satisfied with how believable Jane, Geoff and Sawyer are written. The magical world created by Mr. Reinhardt is excellent and as you read along, it is easy to picture the story unfold and imagine in your head the beautiful unicorn, the stinking orcs, and all of the other creatures. Both genders will enjoy this book because there is a little bit of everything thrown into the mix. There’s action, adventure, mystery, magic and humour. It’s the type of book that I can really see being made into a movie.
                Mr. Reinhardt did an excellent job with writing Wizard’s Key and I look forward to reading the next book in the series.  I read this book in digital form and it formatted to my ereader perfectly. The cover is great and pertains to the story well.

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

The Password Book - Jason McDonald

                The Password Book is the type of book that everyone who uses technology on daily basis should have in their library. In this day and age almost everyone has been affected by internet scams or hacks in some way. As Mr. McDonald points out in the book, it doesn’t have to be directly through a device in your house, it can be through an outside business that has access to one or more of your passwords and/or accounts. I have had a recent experience where a company I dealt with had their client list of passwords stolen and some things were then stolen from me via this hack. Not only did it end up costing me money, it cost the company a lot of money because they had to pay everyone back. This book is key in helping people recognize a scam and try to nip it in the bud before it goes too far.
                Mr. McDonald seems quite passionate about this topic and strives to help everyone manage their passwords and tech life with as few problems as possible. He starts the book by covering how various email scams may occur, how scammers will use your information and email contacts to lure you or your family and friends in, and how to prevent this from happening. He then teaches the reader how to create strong passwords and I love the system that he uses. It’s one that I will definitely be employing.  Mr. McDonald also writes step by step instructions of how to make sure you are as secure as possible on social media sites. At the back of the book he provides a place to keep track of all of your passwords. My favourite part of the book was the appendix which listed some scam resources. It provides a list of websites which will provide more information about all of the hundreds, if not thousands, of scams that now appear on the internet.
The whole book is written in a very easy to read format that is perfect for teenagers to seniors. This is also the updated version of the book so it’s perfect to apply the information to your current social media sites, browsers, and so on.
Mr. McDonald is doing a service to the community by writing this book and trying to raise awareness about scammers. I will definitely be providing both of my senior parents with their own copies. I loved the cover; it’s quite eye catching, and the digital format I read the book on worked perfectly. This is a very well written and excellent book!