The New Kitchen Garden reviewed by fran lewis


Cooking Well: The New Kitchen Garden

 

 

Eating healthy is paramount to many others and me. Going to the supermarket and making wise purchases requires more consumer awareness and diligence about what chemicals and additives are placed in your fruits, vegetable and meats. Living in an apartment complex and having no space to grow my own garden makes it difficult to buy foods with these chemicals. Organic is the way to go if you are in a store and want to eat foods that have no chemical added. But, if you are lucky enough to live in a house with a big garden or backyard you will want to understand how to create your own kitchen garden, an outdoor garden which will provide you and your family the fresh fruits and vegetables that so many of us enjoy eating at every meal.

 

Before you can begin planting you need to understand the basics of what goes into creating you garden, where it should be located and the necessary tools needed to begin your journey to improving your health and more. Author Jo Brielyn shares not only her secrets creating your own garden but some delicious, affordable and easy to make recipes that will make your mouth water and encourage you to race into your backyard and get started.

 

As a total non-cook who never uses the stove except to store pots and pans or make tea, even I can follow these great recipes and definitely will reintroduce myself to the stove and attempt at least two of them before completing my review of this great recipe book, “The New Kitchen Garden.”

 

Let’s get started with the basics and go from there. Why should you have your own kitchen garden? The authors state three very important reasons: cost, taste and quality and have course health. Fresh grown vegetables, fruits and herbs in your own private kitchen garden not only is cost effect saving on the wear and tear of your car, lowering your gas bill and providing a better quality of foods to eat, but are healthier. Think about this: many commercial gardeners spray pesticides and other chemicals on the fruits and vegetables placed on the shelves of fruit and supermarkets. Many consumers do not even realize that and how effective washing these foods before eating them is not really known. So, why not find a natural and safe way to protect your family, get some fresh air and much needed exercise and make your own kitchen garden. How cool is it to get up in the morning, go into your garden and see the most beautiful tomatoes, melons, cucumbers, and more in your own garden or backyard.

 

Learning how to make the garden, where tips for starting the garden you need to read for yourself as only you will know and understand whether your home is equipped with the right irrigation systems, ground with good drainage, area that provides proper sunlight and in an accessible location. The types of gardens and the areas that can accommodate them are described the authors in Chapter 2 of great book titled: Tips for Starting A Kitchen Garden. Chapter 3 contains Tips for Canning and Preserving that will help you store, preserve and lower your grocery bills. Your family will eat fresher, healthier and storing these foods will allow you to have them for longer periods of time. So, read Chapters 2 and 3 first and then get started on your way to a healthier you.

 

I bet you did not know that kitchen gardens are not a new concept. Believe it or not they started way back in the Middle Ages in the 18th and 19th centuries. Colonial American families also planted their own kitchen gardens. Even our President has a vegetable garden on the grounds of the White House. Why not make one yourself? Added in Chapter Two the authors included the various fruits, vegetables and herbs that would comprise a great kitchen garden.

 

Now, for the delicious and healthy recipes in this book. This non-cook will tell you about some of them but you will have to get a copy of the book for yourself, to gain access to the recipes and make them for yourself. This reviewer will not reveal too much. But, I hope by the time you finish reading this review you will want to learn more about kitchen gardens, try and make one whether indoors or outside, and try out the recipes in this book when you wisely purchase one.

 

All of the recipes in this book are explained in simple terms that even I can understand as someone who never cooks. That, the recipes are healthy, the descriptions are so vivid and the instructions so clear you can smell the delicious ingredients making your mouth water and want to go out and try many of them all at once. So, I did try the ones I knew would not create problem for anyone that I hoped would try it after I made it.

 

My first attempt at cooking in 10 years I decided to play it safe and attempt the Berry Blast Smoothie. (No stove required just a blender) but so what. The end result was so delicious, tasty and healthy that I am definitely going to keep the blender handy. Blueberries, strawberries and more go into this great drink and it is healthy. Next, since I am a health nut and have to make sure I keep my weight down, I attempted the cantaloupe and Blueberry Parfait. Absolutely DELECTABLE AND TOO DELICIOUS FOR WORDS. You need to try it for yourself!

 

There are fantastic recipes to make soups such as Mushroom Soup and Vegetable Broth, which are my favorites. Salads that will make you want to go out and plant that garden right now, especially the Turkey Waldorf Salad that is another of my favorites.

 

 

Seafood and fish lovers can try out the Asparagus with Sole, or the Spinach Stuffed Sole along with many other fish and seafood delights. Meat and poultry recipes are like Chicken Tortas, and Cosmic Cucumber Wraps will whet your appetite at dinnertime. My favorite recipes are the vegetarian entrees like page 89 the recipe with Couscous, Caribbean Bean Salad, and Fresh Vegetable Pita Pizza, which I might actually try myself. I can smell the ingredients and practically taste the pizza reading the directions.

 

Finally, do not forget the dips, and desserts that the authors share with the reader. Applesauce and Cantaloupe Salsa are two simple dips to make and the best part of all the desserts such as Fruit Slush and Orange Marmalade to tempt you with two that I might even try on my diet.

 

Plant your garden, grow those vegetables, create your own recipes and you are on your way to good health and more.

 

Just a tiny secret: I did try those recipes that I stated and I am going to let my husband try one of the poultry and soups. I promise to stand by the stove and read the recipe to him to make sure he gets it right. Well written, and a great resource for everyone that wants to start a kitchen garden and eat healthy.

 

Fran Lewis: Reviewer

 

 

 

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A Parent’s Guide to Face book reviewed by fran lewis


The Parent Guide To Facebook

Author: Kathryn Rose

ISBN: 9781453834558

Publisher: Create Space

Facebook my favorite place to spend many hours each day. I interact with so many of my author friends, but even as an adult I have to be careful. Teens and even younger kids often have profiles and accounts on Facebook. Anyone teen with a computer and knowledge of the net probably has an account and dear parents it is now time for you to get more savvy, learn the ropes, join facebook and monitor your child’s account.

Set up your own profile and be aware of the many ways that people can access your information and learn more about you. Check the privacy settings for you and your teen, and make sure they are not set to Everyone allowing anyone access to their profiles, information and more. Allowing everyone to post comments, pictures and send messages is one way for a teen to fall prey to anyone who wants to friend them and pretend friendship and cyber-bullying and other online dangers. I do not have my email address, personal info or birthday on my face book. I did put my websites so authors can contact me or listen to my radio shows. But, personal information is dangerous and kids and parents need to be more aware.

Social networking is vital if you run or own a business and you want people to contact you. Giving out your main email address is one thing our author says might be necessary for an adult, not a teen. Monitoring your child’s friend list, making sure that only certain friends or people can send them messages if important and discussed in this book. Teaching the reader how to set up a safe profile for their child, himself or herself, understanding the importance of privacy settings when creating your account and making sure that you child is not a victim of cyber bullies is explained in detail. There are many resources listed by the author that parents, teachers and group leaders can access to learn more about cyber bullies and face book has links that you can report someone who is abusive, bullying your child and more. Of course, the best way to rid yourself of an unwanted friend is to unfriend them and using the correct privacy setting block that person from friending you again and sending you messages.

I feel you are most vulnerable when you people have access to writing on your Wall or information is posted on News Feed. I never realized until recently that when I posted information on my wall or on another one it appeared on News Feed too. Agreeing with the author that you NEVER tell anyone that you are going out to lunch, vacation or where you are is sage advice. Remember when you write on your wall the information is definitely made public and you leave yourself wide open for responses and comments by others that view what you have written. Parents, even adults need to be careful about what they write on their face book walls. Monitoring language and comments is vital. Your face book account, even if deleted by you, remains there FOREVER!

Writing derogatory things about a friend, your boss or family member might come back and haunt you later on. Wall are not private and everyone sees what you are writing. Posting your intimate  and private thoughts is definitely unwise. Customizing Who can see your posts on your wall made by your friends you will not have to block all users from writing on it.

Last night I received a message that someone posted a picture of me on my wall. The picture was not the issue. The print was and the idea alluded to the fact that I would play a video game that I personally find dangerous and wrong. I removed the picture and emailed the person with my own message. She thought I would play the game. Not Me!

As an author and talk show host I get many requests from people to become my friend. As the author states in Chapter 11, creating your friend list and who you friend is something you need to be weary of. I never accept a request before viewing the person’s profile. If that person is not someone I am familiar with or has author friends that I work with, I do not accept the request. I just delete the email or you can click on I Don’t Know This Person and you will not have to worry about them trying to friend you in the future.

Great resources and invaluable information that every parent needs to read with their child before they create an account, become victim to the wrong kinds of friends and post information that should not be made public.

As a result of reading this great book I have successfully posted three events and customized by privacy settings and become more face book and safety savvy. This reviewer is not going to reveal all that she learned from reading this book that you will have to learn for yourself when you read this book. If you value the safety and welfare of your child and yourself you will definitely purchase a copy of this book, advise your friends to do the same and become Face Book Smart and Safe.

Well written, easily understood with photos showing exactly how to create friend lists, profiles and more, this is a must have for everyone.

Fran Lewis: Reviewer

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Blog Tour with authors Tony Angelo and Bethany Halle


1.How did you come up with the title Realm of Nuance?

 

Tony and I talked about how important it was for artists of ever genre to be able to provide their unique voice through multiple sites and publications and we toyed around the creating different “nuances” for them to be able to do that. We realized in a sense we were creating a new “world” and thought of the word realm – the two seemed to fit together to create the environment we envisioned.

 

2.What is the rationale or premise behind your magazine? What messages are you trying to convey to your readers?

 

We are trying to convey that everyone has a creative side of their personality no matter what culture, country, style or environment they have been used to. In allowing different voices and styles to be heard that may not ordinarily be selected, we are providing not only an avenue to show off their particular talents, but also a haven for them to grow – or so we hope.

 

3.In section one you have authors that state why they write. I found this section enlightening and quite interesting. Is this section going to be a standard in your magazine? Will you invite other authors to do the same thing?

 

Yes, everyone has a different reason for writing or painting or crafting a piece of music and we will continue this section. We feel it’s just another way for everyone to get to know the artists or step into their realm, if you will.

 

4.The poems and many of the stories deal with real life issues that people face today. Are you going to create a specific section for poem and stories that deal only with real life issues and possibly a feedback section?

 

We would indeed like to create a feedback section and will continue providing areas for real life issues. People have difficult lives, and both fantastic and horrible situations that they must face a certain periods in their lives and it’s important that they are not curtailed with how they need to tell their story. We’re not sure that we’ll purposely have particular sections for any styles, but we’ll see what feedback we do receive from this publication. We are going to be fairly consistent in presenting the different “realms”. You will always see poetry and art and stories and non-fiction articles. We may through in different levels of comedy, a touch of the spiritual and the inventive worlds of fantasy and science.

 

5. The photos and artwork were colorful and thought provoking. Are you going to showcase one photographer or one new artist to showcase their work?

 

We will see how people submit their works and determine how best to showcase the artists. Right now, Tony and I want to show many sides of cultures and the world in the flavoring of the visual artists. I suspect we will “showcase” more than one for each episode.

 

6. These are new authors whose works are being showcased. Are they going to continue to have their work published in every edition along with other new authors or are you going to open the magazine to different writers for each edition?

 

Everyone is free to submit to the magazine and we have a wonderful team working with us to provide not only the best, but also the most heartwarming and funny stories and poems that we can find. It’s also very important for us to add very thought provoking articles as well as simple pleasure. This will continue to evolve. We hope many talented folks will submit over time. You may see some of the same artists from time to time.

 

6. I love the article by Tony stating his dream and how he came to create this magazine. That would be a great section for others to write about? What do you think?

 

I do – everyone has a dream and few are able for monetary reasons, family obligations or simply fear to take on such an endeavor. It’s important for every man and woman to hear about another dreamer that dared to try. We plan on highlighting our journey so that it may be enlightening in how we move forward and the missteps that we will make.

 

7. I would love to see what other people think the illustrations or photos mean. They are so expressive and beautiful. They leave much to the imagination and thought. Would you consider having people write in how they make them feel?

 

Absolutely, I love the idea and I know Tony will. We’ll try and incorporate. Art is subjective to the eye of the beholder, yet the stunning pieces provide people what they really need.  Sometimes just having that touch of inspiration during a life crises or simple day-to-day life may help them carry a single smile.

 

8. The poem the Woman really sends a beautiful message to women and makes you really smile: What made the author choose this topic for his poem and did he writing it about someone close to him?

 

He is indeed writing about someone close to him – that I do know. If you look at his other poems, he has a genuine love of women and his messages are very heartwarming.

 

9. Realm of comics is really one of my favorite sections in this magazine. The message is really great and the author cute poems let the reader know that people still love each other even when they are overweight and have smelly feet and more. Are you going to include a comic section in your next edition? What messages or themes will you include in that section? Do the pictures convey the same message as the poems? Tell our blog readers what that might be.

 

Everyone needs to laugh and we are planning to include some form of a comedic section with each magazine. I am not sure Tony and I want to narrow that down, but I can assure you that some will include a theme that we are just people – black, white, purple, fat, beautiful – it doesn’t matter. Showing and hopefully teaching aspects of tolerance and love is very important to us. You will begin to see that filtered into much of our work.

 

10.Why did the author write the story the Little Bus? How can this story help other mother’s with children with autism help their child and make other parents understand the disability too?

 

I don’t want to speak for Carolyn, but I think she truly understands that having a child with any disabilities is both wonderful and draining and she tried to convey to all families that they are not alone if the are going through the same situation. I love the realm section about families because we all have a tale to tell. From living with perhaps an older parent and taking care of them to adopting a child, the stories are wonderful and heartbreaking and we will bring you more.

 

11. This story really hits home for any educator or parent that has a child with any disability and wants only the best for their child?

 

Absolutely – we have many artists that want to tell a story to help guide or simply give hope. Tony in particular has been involved with helping special needs children for years and we plan on building our team and getting our artists’ books, poems, illustrations out to children and families that may not have the opportunity in a traditional sense.

 

12. How can this story help enlighten other parents with as the author writes that are typical children? There are many children that have difficulty learning. Autism is one area that need further research and parent training. The author mentions Down syndrome too. As an educator who worked with students with reading and writing problems and some with ADD I really felt that this story sent a great message to the reader. What made the author want to have it included?

 

I think her personal experience and knowing that others are going through the same thing. Reading is such a wonderful part of being with a child as well and with the help of our authors, we hope to provide several means including audio books as teaching and entertainment tools.

 

13. What is the message the author wants to convey in the poem Burning Bridges?

 

We have not spoken directly about the lovely poem, but from my point of few it is a haunting poem of memories and regret.

 

14. What inspired Tony to write the poem titled: Homeless?

 

Tony is constantly trying to make sure everyone understands that there are differences in the world and we are all God’s children. He thought that by naming the poem Homeless, he would give validity to an unborn child’s life and show just how easily people look past what’s in front of them and that there are many sadly unwilling to help their fellow man. You’ll see many aspects of that in Tony’s writing.

 

 

15. Are you going to include reviews of movies that deal with cultural differences or books that deal with important issues in the news?

 

We have not talked about movies reviews specifically, but the idea is a very good one. We are including a review section for books and games – movies could certainly go right along with it.

 

16. What other areas are you going to explore in future editions of this magazine?

 

Between the Realm of Nuance and the sister magazine Splendor, we really want to concentrate on providing a taste of different cultures, family life and home, education, creativity, and beliefs – from every part of the world. Too often we are centered around our own world and truly do not see a different flavor.

 

We will focus on family and home in providing a slice of life including everything from holiday traditions to traveling and even spiritual beliefs.  We’ll do this with highlighting different countries and travels – including food, wines, traditions, etc in Splendor and of course the creative works in the Realm.

 

17. Are you going to have some regular columns, authors and artists publish their work in every issue or are you going to present the work of new authors and artists?

 

I think you will certainly see a core at times, but the idea is to bring new artists to the forefront.

 

18. Do you see yourself as just the publisher of this magazine or a regular contributor too.

 

Granted, we are the publisher but occasionally you will see some of our works. However, it is most important to both Tony and I do provide a platform for others. This is not the Tony and Bethany show and will never be.

 

19. Tony waited fifty years to have his dream come true: How did you feel when you finally saw the magazine in print and completed?

 

I was relieved and thrilled for all the artists. As the production designer as well, getting all the pieces just the way we wanted was daunting, but I wouldn’t change any of it for the world. However, I could not have done it without my talented team!

 

20. How can writers, authors, photographers and artists contact you in order to contribute their work in your magazine?

 

We are constantly getting contacted every day now with is wonderful. I would say on average at least three a day and I honestly anticipate that will grow with the release of the magazine. They can contact us in a myriad of ways including all writing and art submissions to Bethany@reamlmultimedia.com or behalle@comcast.net. Tony is handling movie and music and you can contact him at tony@realmmultimedia.com or tonyangelowriter@gmail.com.

 

21. Where do you see this going in the future? Do you think your magazine will hit the newsstands? This magazine is not only online but can be purchased as a print copy? Tell everyone about your websites and where they can get a copy of this magazine.

 

We would love to have the magazine hit newsstands BUT – baby steps. Right now it is available through www.magcloud.com and we have shared several links on Facebook. This is a POD magazine and a hard copy is printed and mailed. In addition, we will have not only this issue, but also all future/back issues available on the realm site for purchase. The website is www.realmofnuance.com – however, the website is very interactive and in its infancy states and the e-commerce portion is not set up yet – soon.

 

22. How do you plan to expand circulation and get a large readership? Are you planning to offer yearly subscriptions?

 

Yes indeed we are going to have subscriptions for both magazines. We are certainly going to begin marketing the magazine to all of the social networking site as well as some traditional forms of marketing. As we expand, we will have a marketing team behind us that does nothing else.

 

23. What is the deadline for submissions for your next edition?

 

The deadline for the next Realm is December 15th.

 

24. What is the theme for your next edition and what type of short stories, poems and articles are you looking for?

 

Again, I do not see we will limit them for the next Realm – so all stories, pictures etc. will be considered. Again, we are concentrating on cross-cultural in all genres. For the upcoming issue of Splendor, we are looking for stories about love, family, traditions that revolve around the holidays. This concept is entirely different so we are looking for the stories to wrap around food, beverages, travel – and other “splendorous” things. Perhaps you baked the perfect chocolate truffle and have a romantic story to tell how you fed your husband for your anniversary, or your grandmother made a special cake for Christmas – we want not only a story – which can be fictional or non fictional, we also want the recipe, a picture of that recipe or the lovely place you experienced that tasty treat.

 

25. What type of artwork and photos do you want to include in your next issue?

 

I would love to see every kind of art represented from creations of jewelry and woodworking to photography of people, places, animals and anything and everything that can touch your heart. There is so much in our beautiful world to experience and I want our artists to show you every corner, every sunset, every spectacular dream – that is vital and important to enriching their lives and in turn will enrich all of ours.

 

 

The Rewritten Word: How to Sculpt Literary Art No Matter The Genre: Author: Aggie Villanueva


The Rewritten Word: How to Sculpt Literary Art No Matter The Genre:

Author: Aggie Villanueva

 

 

You wrote a poem, short story and novel and think you are ready to get it published. YOU ARE NOT! All of your thoughts are on paper or typed and your next step is to send it off to get published to many publishers hoping they will take your great masterpiece and turn it into a five star novel or number one bestseller. Think again. The novel or the story might be done, but your work has just started. Did you ever hear of the word REWRITE? Author Aggie Villanueva’s new 60 page guide will help you overcome your fear of the dreaded word: REWRITE!

 

The Rewritten Word: How to Sculpt Literary Art No Matter the Genre teaches the writer how to be concise, clear, organized and comprehendible. Just how this is accomplished is really quite simple if you follow the outstanding lessons and examples in this book.

 

Make sure that everything written is relevant to the topic presented in your article. Be clear and concise and don’t ramble. Get rid of any unnecessary words, phrases, sentences and entire paragraphs if necessary. There is nothing as boring as a speaker that drones on and on in order to hear himself/herself speak longer than necessary. Keep to the point and be concise. Clarity is crucial. Reader comprehension is your goal. Clarity and conciseness with sentences that are organized and arranged creating the most “logical flow that also packs the most punch.” The author quotes author Phillip Yaffe : For your text be truly concise: Make sure it is as long as necessary and as short as possible. Do not be wordy, verbose and say too much, which detracts from the text and eliminate any paragraphs that without losing meaning.

 

But, you are far from done. What happens when a speaker uses ten words to express an idea when one would suffice? What happens when a writer describes a character or an object using 10 adjectives and 15 verbs when two would be enough? The reader becomes confused, bored and the work is not easily understood. Take that delete button on your computer and get to work using it eliminating run on sentences, phrases that ramble and on. Sentences need to be clear, concise and short.

 

In Lesson Three the author discusses the one thing I find the most difficult when writing dialogue, articles and short stories. Using the present instead of the past tense. Many writers, such as myself, start out in the present tense and revert to the past without even knowing it. Grammar checker is often useless. It tells you that the passive tense has been used but does not instruct the writer on how to correct this. As Ms. Villanueva states the only way to find these phrases is to find them yourself. Examples of this are in this chapter and you can read and learn from them yourself.

 

Lessons Four and Five are crucial to fiction writers. Take your article or short story and grab that red pen and circle words that are not to the point. Underline words that   need to be replaced with stronger ones using a thesaurus to find the perfect one. Read the examples in Chapter Four to learn how the author used the thesaurus when rewriting parts of her outstanding novel, “Rightfully Mine,” which I had the honor or reviewing. Finally, applying everything to fiction related writing. Dialogue, plotting and characterization rewrites are the hardest for this author. Using the examples noted in this resource, from the first draft until the final one, you could see the process the author uses to create the perfect paragraph expressing what she wants to say.

Finally, editors are invaluable. Never challenge their edits. Ask why they made changes to a paragraph, deleted words. Novels, stories, articles and even simple notes are never completed after just one draft. It takes several rewrites to create a worthy manuscript. Writing can always be improved so don’t hesitate to use this outstanding resource to get you on the road to rewriting and creating better work. I did when writing this review. My delete button was in total control to get rid of the unnecessary words, sentences and phrases. I hope this review is clear, concise and as long as necessary and as short as possible. Don’t be afraid to rewrite. The difference between a great manuscript and a rejected one is just many rewrites away.

 

 

I have to admit something: This is my fifth draft of this review following all five lessons taught by this outstanding author in this great 60 page book.

 

Fran Lewis: Reviewer

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Half Made World Reviewed by Fran Lewis


Half Made World

Author Felix Gilman

 

Don’t move a muscle or they will know I’m still alive. The soldiers of the Line are pilfering bodies, checking to see who is alive or dead and then ending those riddled with bullets and pain because these human lives mean nothing to these young men. Poking bodies, killing anyone that is still alive they rummage through the worn torn area but miss one man whose mind is not fully there but who is still alive. He was the General who fought in the Red Republic Army and who battled against the two forces the Gun and the Line and almost won. The Line is setting the stage for the world in industry and treats its inhabitants poorly reducing them to mere slaves. The Gun, more dangerous and fierce, grips the population with fear terrorizing them at every turn. But, can anything or anyone stop them. The Republic once fought the Line and the Gun but did not succeed.

 

 

The mind is an amazing machine that holds your thoughts; ideas and hopes helping you deal with the world, process information and explore many venues and avenues. But, when you lose memory, lose thought and your life as it is begins to disappear from stress, torture or mental illness, some revert into their own world and shells longing for someone to free them from their own private hell.

 

Dr. Liv Alverhyusen, psychology, receives a letter meant for her late husband requesting help with the many mentally ill patients in a place so far to the west that her colleagues and friends fear for her safety if she agrees to go there. The House of Dolorous is a mental institution where one man, a general, lives within its walls but whose mind is shattered. A doctor this new wave of medicine, she travels to the west to a place where the Powerful Hill People reside hoping to make a difference and help the one person that might be housing the secret, the way and the method of stopping the Gun and the Line. She is not the only one who will seek to uncover the secrets within the mind of the General, the one man left alive by the Line and who could just bring them down.

 

 

Introducing John Creedmoor and Lowry the two men who will try and get the secret out of the General for the Gun and the Line. The Gun communicates telepathically using their weapon as the medium and a voice emanating from it that gives the receiver his/her orders. Lowry is part of the Line and they have their own supernatural way of communicating too. Both are after one thing, the General and his secret.

 

Meet the Gun and their minions who receive their orders from spirits whose voice comes through someone they use as their vessel. Their power or immortal spirits house themselves in the form of weapons, wood, metal, ivory and powder. These spirits manifest themselves in human forms that are used to carry out their wishes and plans. John Creedmoor is the vessel used and sent by the Gun to deal with the General.  Subvigilator-Lowry is the one being sent by the dangerous Line.

Let’s not forget the Red Valley Republic that ruled and treated everyone decently and fairly.  Destroyed by the Line, after fighting for more 10 years of underground resistance, our General is now mad or insane from a bomb exploded by the Line and he was presumed dead. They no longer exist except in the mind and form of the General and who book that our doctor was given before leaving for the west. Those representing the line pride themselves with their strong hatred, with total control and deliberation. They are considered tyrannical and treat their workers and inhabitants as mere garbage, slaves and expendable. The gun is considered anarchists and will resort to anything to get to the General. Due to guns, bombs, explosions and much loss of lives, the Line sends Lowry to the Asylum and their Spirit with one sub-invigilator, Lowry as one the officers and soon to be much more.

 

As both agents arrive at the Asylum and our doctor takes on her new role to help the mentally ill patients there, are all after one person: THE GENERAL. The House of Dolorous or the Doll House has its own spirit that protects it and the residents from any violence or harm. The First Folk who live there have a weapon and secret of their own that would neutralize the Line and the Gun and create peace. But, who will win out and what will happen?

 

As Creedmoor becomes more assimilated in the Asylum and Lowry gets promoted as those above him are killed and removed, the stage is being set for both groups to battle it out and try and unlock the secrets in one man’s mind. With the aid of someone called the Kid, Creedmoor disables the Spirit guarding the Asylum, kidnaps Liv and the General hoping to return to his home base and deliver the General to The Gun. Meanwhile the forces of the Line are killing, maiming and obliterating everything in its wake to get their hands on the General just at the right time. Why, he holds a hidden secret in his mind that would create Peace between both groups something neither one wants. Both want control and to rule the inhabitants of this Half-Made Western and Uncreated World as subservient slaves using what it appears to be as Mind Control tactics, fear and brainwashing convincing the masses to follow the rules similar to a totalitarian government where no one has a voice except those in charge.

 

 

The world described by our author is no different than the world we live in today. Countries at war with their own people living in hate and fear. The Line vs. the Gun: Objective: Control of their subjects: Total submission and leave no traitor behind. As Liv and the General are left on their own they are found by what is left of the Red Valley Republic and taken to their town of New Design. Sounds interesting or modern and a place where men are free and it seems women are considered beneath them. As Liv and the General are housed there she learns of the many restrictions placed on her and her voice as a doctor is silenced as the care of the General is transferred to one of the people of the Red Valley Republic. The Line treats it inhabitants as slaves in a prison camp. These people are not much better and when Liv suggests an alliance with Creedmoor that would benefit all sides and bring peace, they refuse. What does happen when the Line arrives you won’t believe. What will Creedmoor do? Whose side is he on? What will happen to Liv, the General and the people of New Design when the Line comes through? Will the Spirit that protects the House protect Liv and the people of New Design?

 

Taking the reader on a journey to a land uncreated and unchartered, author Felix Gilman gives us insider’s view of people that are no different today and whose goals are the same: Control at any cost: Mind Control or brainwashing these people into total obedience in order to fulfill their goals and desires. Even officers are not safe and will be killed if they fail. Imagine what would have happened if some of our leaders lived by back then. Battles so vividly graphic you can picture the scenes in your mind and feel like you are right on the front lines, author Felix Gilman gives the reader much pause for thought in this novel filled with paranormal, fantasy and much more. Well- defined characters whose goal is to learn the General’s secret cure/weapon to create peace and bring about a new world in the west. When the Line arrives and the War begins an even wider line is drawn and when the end comes it is not over yet. The fight has just begun and the sides are no longer evenly matched and there is much more to come. Bringing a new light to the West with excitement, adventures and one woman trying to keep it all together and deciding where to put her faith, read this great novel and find out where everyone winds up. I wonder what the world holds in store for New New Design and the people of the Line, Gun and Red Valley Republic if he writes a sequel. Beware: The Line is Out There! Who Else? Only the Author Knows!

 

 

 

 

Fran Lewis: Reviewer and Talk Show Host

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Revelation: The Way It Happened by Author Lee Harmon


Revelation The Way It Happened : Author Lee Harmon

 

Father and son discussions often put the child at a disadvantage when the son really does not want to hear what the father has to say. But Matthew is a rare and unique thirteen -year old young man who is exciting and enthralled with what is about to learn. Samuel and Matthew escaped Jerusalem and took asylum or refuge in the seven churches in Asia. It was at this time that the Romans took Judea in the wars that transpired between 66-70 CE.

Through the many conversations and discussions between Samuel and Matthew the author guides the reader through the book of Revelation discussing a letter written by John the Apostle. Using a unique and different technique of presenting the historical facts, the author describes many happenings and incidents including Nero’s demise, hearing his voice as it happens and flashing back to the events that lead up to it including his murdering his mother. Adding at the end of each description a short phrase from the book of Revelation that reveals the lesson to be learned as a result of the actions taken by the characters and figures presented.

 

The first chapter tells of Throne of God and how Jesus is really the Messiah and their hope for his return to the world. Followed by Samuel’s in-depth recounting of The Jerusalem War and how his first son, Josiah played an important role. He tells of the seven seals and what happens as each one is opened and the consequences and the plagues inflicted by God. Matthew goes on to ask his father about the seals placed on the foreheads of those who are martyrs and how they are suppose to protect them from death. But, in reality, God wants these men to die and brings them home to him.

 

Matthew asks many questions and learns many lessons about the history of the Jewish people, the Christians, and the fall of Rome and much more. Retelling the terrors invoked by Emperor Nero, the reign of Vespasian, the returning of Jesus from heaven to earth and the final days of judgment. After each father and son discussion the author reviews the history and explains it by quoting parts of the Book of Revelation, then explaining it so the reader will understand it more fully.  Conceding for this book that John wrote the Book of Revelation, he imparts much of the story as if he wrote it.

Descriptions of the how the Jews were treated, crucified and humiliated at the hands of the Romans, helped Matthew understand why the stories his father told him and events to follow were imperative to their survival and their future. The book of Revelation is deals with the issues early Christians faced during this time period.

 

In reviewing this book I decided to read it through three separate times. First, reading only the dialogue and conversation between Samuel and Matthew to fully understand their close relationship and how Matthew’s insight into his past and his present grew and the way he revered and respected his father and what he recounted to him. Samuel retells Matthew the story of John, his visions and seeing the Spirit of the Son of God on the Lord’s Day telling John to record what he has seen and send it to the churches. He continues by telling Matthew how John saw seven stars, which are the angels of the seven churches, and two candlesticks, which are the 7 churches. But, there is much more to this story that Samuel tells his son. Explaining the seven seals and what happens when they are broken, the seven trumpets that ignite the seven plagues brought on the tribes of Israel, and the resurrection of Nero and his relationship to Satan. Matthew listens and asks questions of his father letting him know that he will stand by him when the time is right and he learns of the fate of his older brother Josiah and how he is now in the Kingdom of God and will fight by his side when the war comes to Heaven.

 

Relating to Matthew what the letters to each church stated and the promises that John said would come to each one if they overcame and reminding him that Nero Caesar hated to Jews because they would not recognize him a God, Matthew reveals to his father who he feels is the false prophet and Samuel why this must remain between them. Retelling the story of the birth of both of his sons, the death of Sarah, his wife and what will happen when the final trumpet is sounded, a New Jerusalem will be born and they will live there. All the righteous of the past ages will be living in and enjoying the heavenly city, the New Jerusalem. To learn how this happens, what Samuel reveals to Matthew at the end, you need to read it for yourself.

 

Finally, Samuel tells Matthew about how the gates of the new city will open to the nations and everyone and everything remains in the Kingdom of God, which is the new Eden. The city will have walls and angels will stand guard to protect these gates. What Samuel relates to his son at close of their discussion you need to read the final pages for yourself as one thirteen year old young man matures right before the reader’s eyes and learns about his heritage, past and understanding of what the Book Of Revelation reveals for all of us.

 

After reading the dialogue between father and son I reread the book again to really understand the Book of Revelation, the commentaries made by the author explaining the many incidents that are recounted, then I read the quotes from the book that clarified and summarized what was being described. The various Interludes that explains what the chapter is about helps clarify for the reader the events more clearly. What will be found on the throne of God surprised and delighted Matthew as he an Samuel come full circle with their discussion as Samuel tells his son what John learned in his vision and what would finally happen to them when it did. The Book of Life was now ready to be revealed and whose names have been inscribed.

Author Lee Harmon provides an accurate detailed account of the events in the Book of Revelation through the words of Samuel, the questions of Matthew and the many explanations both from the book and his own commentaries. Taking the reader through the many sections and verses of the Book of Revelation itself, the reader can visualize, experience and understand the time, the people, the culture and the writings of John and its message. I an truly say that I have a better understanding of many of the events than I did before reading this book and the hardships, wars, sacrifices and more that both the Jewish people and Christians endured. Although this book is geared for adults only, I think that children will understand the discussion between father and son and would definitely read and understand it.

 

Fran Lewis: Reviewer

 

 

 

Rogue Island reviewed by fran lewis


 

 

 

Rogue Island

Author Bruce De Silva

 

The sirens are sounding, the firefighters are geared up and the energy is rising as firefighters in Mount Hope, Providence Rhode Island rush to put out a soaring inferno before it decimates an entire structure on fire and takes lives. As the heat continues to rise, the temperature soars and flames decorate the sky with black smoke engulfing both firefighters and the buildings despair sets in as the inevitable is about to happen and there is much more to come. It is not the sound of music, boom boxes or car stereos blasting that interrupt your night’s sleep, the constant cries of the sirens, the blaring sound of horns and the screams of pain and fear as victims are hurled from the fires and the smell of decay, burnt flesh fills the nostrils of those trying to safe lives and those trying to survive.

 

 

Mount Hope, Providence Rhode Island is the prime target for decimation and destruction by fire. One rogue arsonist whose goal it is to create enough carnage, destruction of property in Mount Hope leaving little in its wake. Streets are filled with crime; families who are poor and have little, corruption and poverty are about to lose even more. Life is precious and property valuable to those who live here, but the arsonist, whose agenda is quite different, property and lives are expendable. Displacing families even less.   Why would deliberately set fire to the stores, offices and homes of the people living there? What is the attraction and what is the gain?

 

 

Liam Mulligan is an investigative reporter who has lived in Mount Hope all of this life. Angered that someone is burning down his childhood neighborhood, destroying his memories and killing many of his friends and neighbors, he goes on a one-man vigilante hunt to seek justice. As dangerous as the flames that soar up into the sky are the many obstacles he will face before all is said and done. It will take a great amount of dealing, conniving, hard work, investigative reporting and compromising his ethics and more to get the bottom of where, why and how these horrific fires started and who is behind them.  Crass, brash, hardnosed he crosses many lines, breaks rules, and goes against ethical practices to hunt down those behind the decimation of his childhood neighborhood. The familiar sound on his police radio reporting a Code Red will send him out into the cold night taking pictures, asking questions and trying to put together the burnt pieces of information to form an entire picture that might be smoke free.

 

 

Relentless, persistent, overbearing, downright tenacious, Mulligan overcomes many roadblocks, hindrances, personal attacks, lies and betrayals to pursue the arsonist and undercover the stark truths behind who is setting the fires and why. Who is on his side and who are his enemies that are hoping to escape before the last ash and embers of their final fires are extinguished you won’t believe.

 

 

With the photos taken by Gloria a photographer at his paper, Mulligan uncovers two people present at many of the fires. One he dubs, Mr. Rapture for the adoring way he stares at the fires totally enthralled with the flames and the way the orange glow lights up the sky. Some people get carried away by the overwhelming sight of the flames, the smoke, the orange, red and yellow stream of colors that light up the sky and the become so enthralled is as if they are one in the same with the fire.  But, is he the one? The other man is a retired firefighter who misses the action and has no alibi for his whereabouts. Which one is guilty or is it someone else?

 

Fires are flaring up and the victim count rises as Mulligan delves deeper into the investigation. The police, firefighters and Veronica Tang cannot seem to uncover who is striking the match and igniting the flames. Is the culprit hiding in plain sight or just so clever, elusive and smart that he will not be caught? How does this arsonist know just where to strike? What will be the final pay off? What is the real motive behind the fires and who stands to gain?

 

 

Capturing the reader’s attention from page one author Bruce De Silva sets the stage for with a cast of well defined characters and one relentless investigative reporter who will stop at nothing, break every rule and cross the boundaries of what is ethically right or not, just to catch the arsonist. Will his own flames scorch him or will he come out as free as a burning inferno whose power has no end in sight and whose destruction will be infinite?

 

Sparks ignite, buildings are doused with gasoline in basements in many structures as this lone rogue arsonist carries out his plot to destroy the Mount Hope Community in Providence Rhode Island. Author Bruce De Silva’s novel is hotter than the largest inferno set by this arsonist and will keep the reader’s interest on full blast until the very end. But, who is behind these fires only the author and this review knows, and will never reveal.

 

Veronica Tang, the courthouse reporter, has her own way of persuading people to divulge the information she needs for her articles. What part she plays you will have to learn for yourself as she manages to stay close to Liam. Added to the mix is a funny human-interest story that Mulligan tries to avoid reporting about a dog that lost his way and somehow found his way home under unusual circumstances. The truth behind this event will make you laugh, endear you to Mulligan and enlighten you about the inner workings of newspaper and television reporting.

 

How far will Mulligan go to get the answers he needs? What risks does he take and what will be the final outcome? Hell Night! Five fires simultaneously set using an accelerant to start them. Threats against Mulligan’s life, Gloria, the paper’s photographer severely beaten as the investigation takes on another direction when Mulligan and insurance investigator McCracken uncover some interesting information and a possible link that might lead them to finding out who is behind the fires, why and much more. Could it be that the joy of setting them is seeing his handiwork in the paper, watching it on the news or just viewing the fires as the happen. But no one could be at fire fires at once.

 

 

Vigilante justice is not uncommon and many communities take things into their own hands when they feel the police are inept and those in charge are really going through the motions but at a backwards pace. Mulligan has many friends and he is not alone in his quest for justice. There are many criminal figures, mafia bosses and others that take matters into their own hands including a group of men hired by one mafia boss to go out and scouts the area carrying bats. Called the DiMaggios they wrongly attack one man but are later praised for their efforts and enlisted to assist the police in their hopes to catch this arsonist.

 

 

With the aide of Mason, his cub reporter and his own investigative skills Mulligan uncovers the truth behind the fires only to be considered a person of interest. The investigation takes a violent turn as Mulligan is attacked, a friend is fatally injured and many other lives are lost as more fires flare up and the death count mounts. Who is behind the fires and how are they going to be rewarded for their efforts you will have to read for yourself. Will they catch the arsonist, will those involved pay for their crimes, and will the author bring back our rogue reporter in his next novel? Justice has a way of rearing his gavel in many different ways. Right or wrong does not always matter depending on which side you are.

 

Hotter than a roaring blazing, flaming, destructive fire that consumes a building in one blast, Rogue Island will kindle, ignite, set aflame and consume the reader in a novel that is so hot, so charged with excitement you will not want to turn the last page and read the last word. Mount Hope, Providence Rhode Island was originally called Rogue Island. Inhabited by smugglers, heretics, cutthroats and more, not too much different than the Mount Hope where Mulligan lives today. The story is not over, the cast of characters still have some unfinished business and Mulligan must come to grips with the lies, deceit and the many lost lives and tragedies that he personally felt. The police and the fire chief and many others will learn what happens when the truth comes out and Mount Hope, Providence Rhode Island settles down and braces for what might come next. An ending that is hotter than a fiery blaze and twists and turns that will keep you guessing until the very end, author Bruce De Silva’s first novel is truly far above the rest. Writing equal to that of Connelly, Coben and Berry, Bruce De Silva sets a really high bar for others to follow.

 

I never give stars for novels that I really think are exemplary:

I give this novel: Five Colibri’s: Be careful before you light it Up!

 

Fran Lewis: Reviewer