Monday, 14 September 2015

My review of a charming book.

5.0 out of 5 stars Totally Delightful., September 14, 2015
This review is from: The Adventures of Geraldine Woolkins (Kindle Edition)
What a totally charming story, I loved it. Perfect for young and old alike...gentle yet exciting. It is so descriptive! So much so, I wanted to be in the Woolkins little house; curled up in front of their pine cone fire, enjoying mama Woolkins homemade soup.
This is a delightful story, filled with life lessons. Perfect to read to a little one at bedtime. I would love to read it to my grandson when he's older.
I can see this becoming a school favourite, a great story to read to a class of children. And a great book for any school library.
The cover is adorable, and expresses the story perfectly.
What can I say, I loved it!!

Thursday, 20 August 2015

What a Sweet Review for RAT RUN.

5.0 out of 5 stars Another great read, 17 Aug. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Rat Run (Paperback)
This new book by Y I LEE is another number 1 for me, . I have read all this writers books and I must say I have never been disappointed. Each book has held me intrigued and I can't get to the end quick enough to see how the story unfolds. Rat Run is another such book that grips you with wonder and anticipation, It is classed as a book for young people, but as a pensioner it is a fascinating story that is appealing to all age groups and no parent would be concerned for any child enjoying this beautiful woodland story

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

4.0 out of 5 stars Exciting Short Story, August 19, 2015
This review is from: Roseblood: A Michael Quinn short story (Kindle Edition)
I generally don't read short stories, but this was recommended and I really enjoyed it.
Basically, the story revolves around two characters. A beautiful young concert pianist, and the young man assigned to protect her.
The story is well written, and fast paced; it held my attention from the start. In a way I wished it was a full was so good. Nevertheless, it worked and has given me the incentive to read more short stories.
If you like a quick read that is exciting, then I can certainly recommend Roseblood.

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Brilliant Book!

My Reveiw of a Brill Book!

Format: Kindle Edition
Marshall lives in an African country specific place is ever mentioned. He's a pilot, a job he loves and is more than good at. His family however, particularly his wife Fiona give him nothing but grief. Nevertheless, life goes along comfortably enough, until the day a coup takes pace and a nightmare of murder and mayhem ensues.
A despot from the South of the country ousts the present government, and proceeds to torture, persecute and murder all who come from the North of the country. Eventually, Marshall gets caught up in the horror of it all, and is forced to find a way of rescuing his family and a number of others who need his help.
To say this is an exciting story, is an understatement. I was on the edge of where ever I sat to read the book. I got so involved, I found myself trembling with a mixture of concern, fear and anticipation. It is so well written, so descriptive, it felt like I was watching a film. One of those, where you shout with frustration at the hero...come on MOVE! before it's too late!
The characters are brilliantly fleshed out. I cared about those I was meant to, and disliked...hated others. The dialog is brilliant and the story flows, grabbing you pretty much from the first page.
If I have one negative thing to say about this book, it's the frequent use of expletives. I don't like it, and I never will. When an author writes as brilliantly as, Anson Welsh, it shouldn't be necessary.
Anyway, gripe over, this is a great book and one I whole heartedly recommend.

Saturday, 1 August 2015

My review of A LESSER EVIL by Lesley Pearce.

It took me a few weeks to read this, as I found it a bit heavy going. But each time I began to flag, it hotted up again.
Parts of the story cover a theme that is gruesome, and sadly, is still happening today; in fact on a larger scale. Abuse and cruelty to children is sickening!
There were times when I was deeply moved, which is a credit to the authors writing skill.
On a negative note, I did not like some of the language used. I believe, with good imaginative writing, character emotions can be expressed quite adequately, without resorting to a plethora of bad language.
It spoilt, what was for me on the whole, an enjoyable parts, exciting, moving, and with well fleshed characters. The relationship between Fifi and Dan came across very well.
Not sure what genre this would come under, I guess it could be a romance, come thriller. There was a great twist towards the end. I didn't see that coming!
On the whole, a good summer read.

Sunday, 26 July 2015

A brilliant day at the Haflinger Horse show.

Yesterday we had a wonderful time at the Haflinger Horse show. The weather was perfect, in fact I caught the sun and have a red nose.
I was so excited when we arrived at the show ground, it was a sea of gold...gorgeous Haflingers everywhere! I got my camera and started snapping away.
I must say they are a very attractive breed of horse, and surprisingly versatile. They are know as carriage horses, but they are an extremely comfortable ride and also jump well.
My friends young mare, pictured below did extremely well, winning reserve best in show.
Best in show was the gorgeous stallion ridden side saddle.

 Me with my friends horse. She did so well, especially as it was her first show.
Reserve best in show.

Best in show, which was no surprise. This picture doesn't do him justice, he was gorgeous! Ridden beautifully, they were a good team and swept the board with prizes.
But my friends young mare did so well to come second to him.

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Rat Run gets a five star review.

Described as a children’s fantasy, akin to Aesop’s fables, the story begins with a peaceful evening in the kingdom of one group of rats, as they prepare for the arrival of the ‘right’ female for the King’s son to ensure alliances and a secure future. Princess Shamrock and her escorts have a dangerous journey to undertake from their own realm, in order to arrive at King Pierro’s, and an escort party will meet them half way to ensure her safe arrival.

The reader is then presented with the nightmare many rat owners dread, and if we anthropomorphised, we could readily believe fancy rats might have nightmares about too: wild rats invading fancy rat territory and battle! Death and injury remove any complacency the reader may have entertained as to the story being gentle and ‘cosy’.

The suspicion and distrust between the three kingdoms has been a fact of life for as long as any rat can remember. However one rat feels it’s time to change that: unwilling at first, he embarks upon a quest to find an answer to the disputes and constant fighting between the fancy rats and the wild rats.

The fact that the wild rats suffer prejudice and try to unite with fancy rats to improve themselves and find acceptance is a key to the solution. As is the acknowledgement that not all wild rats are bad and not all fancy rats are good.

The section where small, terrified Timere undergoes the Rat Run is skilfully and believably constructed, seeing everything from his perspective. The experience proves life-changing for him, as we know events can prove to be and we see his character grow as a result.

There are several segments to this story, keeping the reader interested and ever drawn in to the narrative, as different elements raise the level of anticipation and complexity. What might have been thought ‘obvious’ decisions are not always taken by the characters, and this adds to the depth of the book. Dissent and rebellion happens, and forgiveness has its place too.

Y.I. Lee gets a lot into this book, as it can feel there are several books within this one story, but the narrative flows easily and it is a pleasure to read, with plenty of heart-warming details.


-Lesley Mackness

Sunday, 21 June 2015

My four star review of THE FAITH of ASHISH.

India is not a country I have ever wanted to visit. Even more so, when you see and hear what goes on there in the news...the treatment of woman!
However, the cover of the book and the blurb attracted me.

This is the story of Virat, Latha and their sweet little son, Ashish. They are untouchables and are forced to live a life of poverty and degradation. One day little Ashish is thirsty and drinks from a certain well. Doing so, means he has polluted the water. He receives a sever beating from the high cast men of the village.
In desperation, his father Virat seeks help from a rich landowner, Mammen Samuel...unaware that doing so, will plunge his family into slavery, with no way of escape!

From the very beginning, I found myself drawn into this often sad, and in some ways shocking story of mans inhumanity to man. While at the same time, I learned a lot about Indian customs...the cast system, and the hierarchy of Indian life.

THE FAITH of ASHISH, is not a particularly easy read, but I found it honest, in parts gripping and with good character portrayal.
A little extra editing would not have gone amiss, nevertheless this is a good story...a story with a message.

Tuesday, 9 June 2015

Frozen Footprints. My review.

I love the cover and title of Frozen Footprints. So applicable to the story. It was the cover that attracted me in the first place. And I was certainly not disappointed.
What a great story! I would have given it ten stars if I could.
It's so refreshing to read an enthralling, gritty thriller, that is free of expletives! and overt sex.
This was a book I couldn't put down.
I really liked Charlene Perigard, the plucky heroin. With all that she's goes through, she stays true to her faith. As I devoured each page, there were times when I thought, Oh no, this must be it!
Kidnapped by an evil man and suffering cruel torture and deprivation, how can Charlene and her brother Max survive?
I loved the stories honesty. There were times, understandably, when Charlene doubted her faith...struggled to hold on. SO WOULD I. Nevertheless, she did.

Each character in the story was so well written.
I disliked their grandfather, intensely. What a horrible man! Between him and the awful kidnapper, I really felt for Charlene and Max.

This is a great book, I can't recommend it highly enough.

My review of Elvis the Frog.

This is a short, sweet little story for children.
Not having read many small children's books, I had to keep reminding myself, that repetition is helpful to children.
This little story, is a great way of teaching young ones to show respect and kindness to animals.

I love the attractive cover, and as a book for children, it's well written.

I can imagine myself reading it to my little grandson, when he's old enough.

Friday, 29 May 2015

I gave Darkest Light 4 stars.

This is a weird and wonderful story!
Michael, bored and frustrated with his job, wakes up one morning and finds himself in a strange times a frightening place, where he encounters strange and sometimes dangerous creatures.
He comes across a funny little creature he calls Lido. I really liked her, for it turns out she's female.
He also encounters a young woman, who shares this strange journey with him. He even comes across his father; as I say it's all rather weird and yet somehow strangely fascinating.
The story is highly imaginative, descriptive and well written.
On the whole, I liked Michael. He came across as a really nice guy. However, I have to say my favourite character was little Lido.

This is a good story and I'm glad I had the opportunity to read it.

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

At last RAT RUN has a cover.

I'm delighted with the cover for my latest children's book, RAT RUN.
I'm hoping to publish in a month or two.

Monday, 13 April 2015

Rat Run, a snippet.

This is a short snippet from my latest children's book, RAT RUN. With one of the black and white illustrations I've drawn for it.
I'm hoping to publish in the summer.

It was too dark to see much, but his ears twitched to a strange sound coming from his right. Straining to see, Timere blinked. He could just make out a large rock, with a strange pattern on it. Creeping closer, he cringed, the hair rose on the back of his neck. Huffing with fear, his eye widened in disbelief…sticking out of the rock, were thick scaly legs with long claws.

To make matters worse, the rock moved. Using its strange legs, it turned towards him; a large scaly head with small beady eyes emerged from inside the rock and stared at him.

With a frightened squeak, Timere flattened his body to the ground. Narrowing his eyes, his long tail twitched, as he bravely prepared to defend himself. Holding his breath, he hoped the strange creature couldn’t see him. However, his hope was dashed, as the stone spoke.

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

An Excellent Review for GATHER STORM.

4.0 out of 5 stars a solid fantasy novel, April 4, 2015
This review is from: Gathering Storm (Through a Glass) (Volume 2) (Paperback)
I really enjoyed reading the second book in the Through a Glass series by Y.I. Lee. It is in a genre I normally enjoy and this book did not disappoint. The story had some nice new touches and felt much stronger overall than the first book. The first book was good, but this one was even better. If there is a third book in this story-line, I'm sure it will improve yet again as this author seems to be gaining in her ability to weave a compelling story with each story she writes.

The book's appearance:
I think the cover is perfectly suited to the story-line. And the interior formatting is well-done.

The editing/proofreading:
There were some grammatical mistakes, which, as an editor, I couldn't help but notice, however, there weren't enough of them to pull me, as a reader, out of the story, and thus not enough to affect my rating of the book. Most readers probably won't even notice them.

The story:
I had trouble really sinking into the story in the beginning. As with the first story in the series, I did not find myself as pulled into the scenes of Irene in the "real" world before she enters into Stagman's world and felt that it was taking too long. Not being as emotionally invested in Irene's ex or her agent/friend's lives, I didn't feel the need to read as much about them. (And her agent annoyed me with how much she kept pushing the love-interest.)

I love the interactions between Irene and Stagman, although I thought he was often a bit too overbearing and controlling. I was relieved to see that, although Irene stayed true to her character in that she was rather meek in personality, there were times where she came out of her submissiveness a bit in this story and asserted herself more. It was like watching her grow as a person between one book and the next. I like that the action started to come much more quickly as the story went along.

There were moments when emotions were pulled from me as I read the story and, by the time I finished the novel, I was sorry to come to the end.

Friday, 27 March 2015

My review of Replica by Lexi Revellian.

On the whole this was a good concept. Although the idea of a soulless clone is rather freaky! Because of that, I felt very little sympathy for Beth two, who is the clone of Beth one.
The original Beth has no idea her doppelganger is running around London, trying to keep one step ahead of MI5.
She runs rings around a totally inept agent called Nick, who's so busy getting cosy with the real Beth, he fails to catch the clone and deliver her to be studied and finally dispatched...allowing the real Beth to get on with her life.
Beth two constantly manages to elude him. In one way, that's what kept me riveted to the story, while at the same time I wanted to scream with frustration at him!
One thing I really liked...Beth Two was written in 1st person, while the rest of the book was in 3rd person. This worked really well, as I could distinguish between the two Beth's.
For me, the characters lacked depth, and I struggled to feel sympathy for any of them.
Also, the way the story ends, came as a bit of a shock...annoyingly so. Hence the 3 stars
Nevertheless, this is well written and has enough tension to keep one reading.

Thursday, 12 March 2015

It’s not easy for an author to go into schools, these days. However, for any author wishing to do so, here are a few suggestions, that I hope may help.

I’ve been fortunate to have the privilege of going into local schools with my children’s book, A Rat and A Ransom.

 It’s so encouraging when the future generation enjoys reading. They are a delight to be with.
In most instances, I would meet the children in their class room; but at the last school I visited, a week ago, we were in the school hall. There were children from three class rooms, averaging around sixty pupils. They filed into the hall and sat in front of me, on the floor.

I always love their excitement and enthusiasm. It can be a little daunting at first, to have so many expectant faces focused on you; but I’m used to it now, and enjoy the experience.
The children had written down the questions they wanted to ask me; and considering the average age was nine, the questions were intelligent and sometimes challenging. They wanted to know about the publishing process, even editing, which came as a surprise…until the teacher explained that the children were doing their own writing and learning to edit. 

It thrills me when I hear children love to write, as well as read…some budding authors for the future I think!

The question and answer session was great fun, but reading to them is my personal favourite. The fact that I’m reading from my own book makes it particularly special.
The children are so attentive, overawed I guess by the fact that an author is in their school and reading to them.
It’s a real privilege, to be trusted with such an amazing responsibility.

It’s not easy for an author to go into schools, these days. However, for any author wishing to do so, here are a few suggestions.

The easiest option, and the one I was able to take advantage of, is to approach a teacher’s assistant. I was fortunate to be close friends with two, both work in different schools, in my area. They each took a copy of the book and showed it to the head teacher.
The one school invited me in right away, and I spent one afternoon a week, for a month, reading to the children and answering any questions they might have. This was a particularly nice experience, as over the month I built a relationship with the children and their teacher.
At the end of my time there, I presented the school with a couple of free books for their library.

The school I visited recently, were given a copy of my book, and for quite some time, I heard nothing, until my friend reminded the teacher.
We have to remember, teachers are extremely busy! She had no spare time to read the book, so gave it to one of her pupils to read.

He really enjoyed it, and to everyone’s surprise, he wrote a review, and a few days later I was invited to attend an afternoon session with the children.
I was so impressed with the pupils review; I presented him with a mug, bearing the image of the book cover.
A photographer from the local paper came and took photos.
A child, who excels in reading and writing, is definitely news worthy.

 It’s a good thing if local authors can go into schools. It encourages the children. They love to meet and talk to a real author, and I know from what the teachers have said…children are inspired to read more and try their hand at writing. So it’s a win, win situation.

 I would encourage all authors to go into schools if they can.
Find someone who has contact with the school.
Give the school a copy of the book to look through. They will want to check it is suitable for their children to read.
Don’t harass them, but if you don’t hear anything for a while. Get in touch through your contact working at the school, or if you don’t have one, pop in. Schools are busy places and they may well have forgotten.
Most times a personal approach works well.

 Also, if you have a friend, whose children attend the school, you would like to visit. Give them a copy of the book. The parent’s recommendation can open the door for you.

 Then there are the school governors. If you know such a person, give them a copy and ask if they would read it, and if they think it is suitable…recommend it to the school.

 And always offer some free copies of your book for the school library.

 I hope what I’ve suggested is helpful. Getting authors into schools can only be a positive thing!

A nine year old pupils review of A Rat and A Ransom.

An Okay Read. I gave it 3 stars.

This is an okay read. However, I do get a little tired of angels depicted as wishy-washy and even weak! Whereas I believe from the Bible they are awesome, powerful, and definitely not to be messed with, characters.
The whole premise of the story was a bit weird at times, but on the whole, once I got into it, I did enjoy it enough to keep reading.
I liked, and on the whole could relate to the heroin, Jordan. Her character came across as feisty and strong; maybe at times too strong. There were instances when I would have liked to see her more vulnerable, feminine side.
Nevertheless, a good story, and well told.

Friday, 27 February 2015

My review, of Back To Bienville by Melinda Matthews.

This review is from: Back To Bienville, A Journey Into Wellness (Kindle Edition)

I met the author of this book, Ms Matthews on twitter, and found her to be a lovely, positive and encouraging person.

Her book, Back To Bienville, chronicles her traumatic journey through severe illness, into health and wholeness.
Some of her spiritual experiences are quite amazing, and certainly inspiring.
The books pages are packed with helpful tips, uplifting, and sometimes challenging scripture. Her bravery shines out of each page.

Having been recently told that I have a terminal illness, I was keen to read her book, and I’m glad I did, as in many ways,I found it most beneficial. For example, I learned that it’s best to drink filtered or bottled spring water, preferably not sparkling; which I am now doing.

There were however, a couple of points I questioned.
I may have read this wrong, or quoted it incorrectly; it’s hard to check something in an eBook. However, I’m sure the author said that all sickness and disease is spiritual.
Due to my own circumstances, this statement concerned me, so I spoke to my pastor. He reassured me that it is not true. If it were, the millions of people who are sick, especially Christians like me, would be living under condemnation.
We live in a fallen world, and there will always be sickness. Not only that, everyone has to die at some point.
As my Pastor said, sometimes Christians act as though going home to heaven is a punishment, whereas it’s the most awesome thing that can happen!
I have known some wonderful Christians, one I especially remember; he was such an inspiring preacher; yet at a very young age he died of throat cancer, leaving behind a wife and children.
Yes, I do agree with the author, we have a God who heals. However, Jesus didn’t heal everyone! It’s a sad fact, some of us who are sick, at some point will die. What’s most important is, where are we going? Where will we spend eternity?

The author mentions a book, the true story of a man who goes to heaven after a dreadful accident. He’s prayed for at the scene, and returns to a body which is broken and battered. Now he lives in constant pain.
Like Ms Matthews, one would ask, why did he come back? What’s the point of his suffering?
My humble answer would be. The book he has lived to write. The blessing and encouragement it is to the millions who read it. The testimony he shares on a daily basis.
Like the apostle Paul, he can say I have a thorn in my flesh. But when I am weak, through God I am strong!

Forgive me for going off like this, but in a way it’s a complement to Ms Matthews…the profound affect her book had on me, making me think and question so many things.

I liked the spiritual symbolism she explained from a film I love, the Wizard of Oz…fascinating!

Back To Bienville, is a brilliant book, written by a brave and courageous young woman. Her personal journey through suffering and pain is truly inspirational.
I recommend it to those who are well, but especially to those who like me, find themselves on a journey with only one outcome, unless the great healer Yeshua HaMashiach intervenes

Friday, 23 January 2015

Don't Give Up! Continue To Be Diligent.

On Thurs the 22nd Jan, I woke with the Gaither song KEEP ON CASTING YOUR BREAD UPON THE WATERS, going round and round in my head. It remained with me all day, in fact it's still with me today, so I know God was trying to tell me something.
Life is difficult at the moment; I have a serious health issues to face, among other things, and there are some days, I feel bereft of hope. Understandably, this effects everything I'm writing and life in general.
But as so often, God in His grace and mercy steps in and gives me the encouragement and tender push needed, to get back up, dust myself off, and get on with life.
After all, it's not over, till it's over. And that's for God to decide. He alone knows the beginning from the end. We none of us know what our futures holds, but if we know God, then we know the one who holds our future!

If you need encouragement at this time, for what ever reason. Take a moment to read this short post,
and listen to this song.

God knows you, loves you, and has a plan for your future. TRUST HIM.


Ecclesiastes 11

 Cast your bread upon the waters,

For you will find it after many days.


Give a serving to seven, and also to eight,

For you do not know what evil will be on the earth.


If the clouds are full of rain,

They empty themselves upon the earth;

And if a tree falls to the south or the north,

In the place where the tree falls, there it shall lie.


He who observes the wind will not sow,

And he who regards the clouds will not reap.


As you do not know what is the way of the wind,[a]

Or how the bones grow in the womb of her who is with child,

So you do not know the works of God who makes everything.


In the morning sow your seed,

And in the evening do not withhold your hand;

For you do not know which will prosper,

Either this or that,

Or whether both alike will be good.


Commentary by F.B.Meyer


Live not for today alone.

The casting of bread upon the waters is an illusion to the oriental custom of casting rice grains in the field, when they lie submerged beneath the annual inundation of such a river as the Nile. To the inexperienced eye, this would seem the prodigality of waste, but the husbandman knows full well that he will meet his seed again with abundant returns.

So it is in life, whether we befriend young boys or girls, or distribute tracts, or speak kind and loving words, or invest our money in philanthropic enterprise, we are casting our bread upon the waters to find it after many days in this world or the next.

But how wise the advice not to be always considering the winds and clouds v v 3,4.

There is considerable hazard in the life of the farmer. If he waits until all conditions are favourable, he will never begin. So with our work for God. We must risk something.

Often the word spoken at an apparently untoward moment will prove to be the word in season, while that spoken under the most favourable conditions will yield no return at all.

God gives it a body as and when and how it pleaseth Him.

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Such a thrill, when a book you've written for children, is reviewed by a child.

5.0 out of 5 stars extraordinary book, 20 Jan. 2015
This review is from: A Rat and a Ransom (Kindle Edition)
overall I think this extraordinary book is a "yes" to reccomend for our school.As soon as I started reading it I was hooked in.

My favourite part was the resolution after the second time he was kidnapped. Whith the character discription like it is,I know that Tom is a tough person.
Overall I would give this 5 stars out of 5
I have also noticed great illustrations, good language used (descriptive) and tremendous scene descriptions.

review by a 9 year old pupil of croft junior school

Saturday, 3 January 2015

It's Obvious Really.

I've noticed just lately that friends...people who know me well, are saying things like, I can see you in the main character of your book. That's exactly what you would do, or say, and that's how you would react in that situation.

I'm pretty sure if I asked some of my author friends, if they get the same reaction, I bet the answer would be yes.

I take it as a positive. My friends know me well, and I consider it a complement that they see me in the characters I portray in my books. To me it's a form of honesty. It's not something I'm conscious of. I don't do it on purpose, it just happens.
I think with most authors, we put ourselves in the lives of our characters, it can't be helped. We all desire to write characters, that come across as believable and real. To achieve that, I believe some of the author's personality has to be seen in a character.

For example as a Christian, there are lines I won't cross, so obviously I'm not going to allow my characters to cross them. Sometimes in a given situation, I may allow them to dabble a toe, so to speak, but only so far, and no further. However, that doesn't mean my characters are weak and wimpy. I've had to dig deep sometimes, in an effort to plumb the darkness I need to express in a story...hence the need always to be honest.

We humans are complex creatures. Lets face it, we each of us are who we are through life's circumstances. A person who lives a dark and troubled life, will express that in their writing.
Before I became a Christian, I was in a very dark place, filled with anger and hatred. There's no doubt that would have surfaced in my writing.

I thank God for where He has brought me from. Nevertheless, I am not afraid to take my characters into a dark place...because I know the way out!
I like the fact my friends see me in my characters, and they're not wrong. After all, my characters are me in disguise. :)

I love to read, honest, gritty, Christian novels. Novels that tell it as it is...Truth!