Wednesday, November 9, 2011

An eclectic mix of books reviewed this week

I'm still not sure how it got to be November. Doesn't that mean it's Christmas next month? Not to mention Thanksgiving coming soon? Help! I set myself a target to finish reading my backlog before the end of the year, but I don't know if I'll meet it. Still, here goes with a fairly random selection of books, ideally suited to my (and the weather's) rapidly changing moods. Enjoy reading. Enjoy coffee!

I'll start with a nice little board book: Froggy Boots goes with Everything, by Jill Zabkar Martin. Froggy boots are perfect for splashing in puddles, and this is definitely the time of year to get this for your young one--enjoy reading, enjoy pictures, and the odd drip of coffee will easily wipe off--enjoy a 1-star light crisp cup. Plus... author Jill Zabkar Martin will visit my blog tomorrow to tell you more! Don't miss it!

The intriguing and scary teen adventure, The Hour of Tiamat, by Lisa M Taylor, is a novel that mixes Christian concepts and Mayan tradition with the dreaded 2012 to create a really fascinating, enjoyable and thought-provoking read with one of the best endings I've read recently. Enjoy a 5-star dark intense coffee with this dark tale.

Now for some sweet historical romance: Surrender the Heart, by MaryLu Tyndall is an American Christian romance, set in the high seas in the days when England and America wielded trade embargoes and threats of war as eagerly as cannons and knives. Two wounded characters persist in misunderstanding each other against a vivid historical backdrop and eventually learn to hear the still small voice. Enjoy this bright lively book with a 2-star bright lively coffee.

Next comes a unsweetened but intriguingly funny novel, Donations to Clarity, by Noah Baird: This zany tale with low-brow humor, excellent song lyrics, crazy movie references and laugh-out-loud weird situations has drugs, drink, darts and perfect dialog. Enjoy with a 4-star coffee for rich complexity.

Leaving Bigfoot country and returning to Oregon, my next review is for Jerry Banks' Vital to the Defense. Another court-room drama/mystery starring Barry O'Shea, this one's a fine addition to my collection, and very pleasingly, realistically set in Oregon. Drink a rich, complex 4-star coffee while reading.

Finally I've read and thoroughly enjoyed a completely different book, Terrorists in Love, by Ken Ballen. Sub-titled The Real Lives of Islamic Radicals, this tells the stories of young (and not so young) Islamic men who've become involved in jihad over the years. The author, an American Jew, and experienced interviewer with an extensive background in investigation, politics, government, etc, was able to use his connections and qualifications to get himself invited to personally interview these men. What results are stories of heartbreak, pathos, humor and jihad, beautifully organized into an experience that leaves you dreaming of more. Highly recommended. Drink several cups of 5-star bold, dark, intense coffee as you walk in these very different shoes (or sandals).

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