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Acacia: Book One: The War With The Mein

The War With the Mein

Acacia, Book One: The War With The Mein
by David Anthony Durham
ISBN-13: 978-0-385-50606-9
www.davidanthonydurham.com
Doubleday
A Division of Random House, Inc.
Reviewed by Terry South for Quality Book Reviews

The Acacian has ruled the Known World for twenty-one generations.  Leodan Arkan is the ruler of the Known World and a widower; he has lived his life in the shadows of his ancestors and is bound by their actions.  Now the Mein, the race that was exiled and vanquished to the frozen northern reaches of the empire plan to take over the Acacian empire.

Hanish Mein leads his people and launches surprise attacks across the Acacian empire.  Hanish Mein will lead his people out of exile and back into Acacia.  Leodan is assassinated and his four children must be separated and are scattered to different corners of the empire.  The Mein triumph and win over acacia.  Now Leodan’s children Aliver the former heir to the throne, Corinn the eldest daughter, Mena the youngest sister and Dariel the youngest brother begin their quest to avenge their fathers’ death.  They will unite and rise to free Acacia and restore the Acacian empire.

Durham weaves an intricate web among all of his characters.  The story has a steady flow of action and suspense which makes this an engaging and exciting read.  He has an immense writing skill of incorporating a fantasy that is in a sense historical and a political thriller.  Acacia is the first in this new trilogy.

Durham has penned an incredibly engaging story, if you crave an imaginatively crafted story that will grab you and not let go, this is it.  I anxiously await the next in this new trilogy.

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A Wild and Woolly Night

A Wild and Woolly Night

A Wild and Woolly Night
by Lorraine Lynch Geiger
Illustrated by Sharon Vargo
The RGU Group
Children’s book, Fiction, 32 pages, $15.95
ISBN-10: 1891795252
Reviewed by Terry South for Bookpleasures

“A Wild and Woolly Night” is a children’s picture book for children ages 4 to 12.  A hardback edition with a cover that is beautifully illustrated with a boy in his bed surrounded by a variety of animals.

This is an enchanting story of a little boy named Phillip, he is different from most children as he is eager to go to bed and sleep.  But Phillip’s bed time is a great adventure filled with different animals with each change of his bed covers.

Every page leads to a different adventure and discovery of a new animal: “he found a purple spread with tiny polliwogs. But when he climbed back into bed  They all grew into frogs.”  The pages are beautifully illustrated and the stories rhyme which will delight both you and your child.  The art work is superb and will ignite the imaginations of all.  A highly recommended children’s book that can be enjoyed by the entire family and will make the perfect bed time story.

Lorraine Lynch Geiger is the mother of five, grandmother to fifteen and resides in Sebring, Florida, and spends part of the year where she was born in Newfoundland, Canada.  She has published a young adult novel “Trouble at the Blueberry Patch”, and is a prize winning poet.

Sharon Vargo is the illustrator of many children’s books.  She is also the author and illustrator of “Senor Felipe’s Alphabet Adventure”. She has also had her acrylic paintings appear in magazines, murals and limited edition prints.  She currently resides in Carmel, Indiana with her husband, and their pet frog named Romeo, they have four grown sons.  She graduated from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York.

Bridge of the Gods

 Bridge of the Gods (Galatian)

Bridge of the Gods
book 1 of 6
by Len Robertson
ISBN: 0-595-12418-6   $26.95
iUniverse
Reviewed by Terry South for Quality Book Reviews

The Bridge of the Gods follows Mary Brown, a middle aged divorced mother that finds her life turned upside down.  One Saturday morning she finds herself not only carjacked but kidnapped as well.  She is taken into the world of Galatia.  Here she finds herself in a new body with new abilities and a new fate that awaits her.

Mary learns she has been wisked away to this new world in order to save it.  But Mary’s life becomes more complicated when she meets Fred as his expectations of her saving the world are stern.  Will Mary be able to save this world with her new found abilities?

Robertson has developed a steady plot as well as some very interesting characters.  Bridge of the Gods is an entertaining read, although the book has a few typos, it is very well written.  I look forward to reading book 2.

Mr. Sebastian and the Negro Magician

Mr. Sebastian and the Negro Magician: A Novel

Mr. Sebastian and the Negro Magician
by Daniel Wallace
http://www.danielwallace.org/
ISBN:  978-0-305-52109-3  $21.95
Doubleday
Fiction, July 2007
Reviewed by Terry South for Quality Book Reviews

The stories setting is a rural southern one, and the story occurs in the middle of the twentieth century.  It begins in May of 1954, Henry is just a boy and he meets with a devilish magician named Mr. Sebastian.  Mr. Sebastian teaches Henry magic and all the secrets pertaining to the magic.  But at what price will Henry have to pay for those magic lessons?

Daniel Wallace is a master story teller and we eventually learn the true identities of Henry and Mr. Sebastian and the tragic events that occurred throughout the story.  The story is told by many of the different characters, and Wallace has a skill of using each of these characters in telling Henry’s story. 

Wallace writes with impact and the story is superbly crafted with twists and turns leaving you with a great sense of anticipation, making this a real page turner.  The conclusion is one that will leave you breathless.

Daniel Wallace was born in Birmingham, Alabama. He attended Emory University and the University of North Carolina, and now lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina with his wife and son.  Daniel Wallace is the author of Four novels: Mr. Sebastian and The Negro Magician, Big Fish, Ray in Reverse  and The Watermelon King.   And Mr. Sebastian and the Negro Magician, will be published by Doubleday in July 2007.

Edgar Font’s Hunt For A House To Haunt

 The Castle Tower Lighthouse (Edgar Font's Hunt for a House to Haunt, Adventure One)

Edgar Font’s Hunt For A House To Haunt
Adventure One:  The Castle Tower Lighthouse
by Patrick H. T. Doyle

Edgar Font’s Hunt For a House To Haunt

Adventure One:  The Castle Tower Lighthouse

By Patrick H.T. Doyle
Reviewed by Terry South for Quality Book Reviews

An enchanting story that introduces Garrett and Audrey to some pretty wondrous adventures that delivers a positive message to children everywhere.  Garret and Audrey are brother and sister, and as they head to China to join their father they have no clue of the great adventure that lies ahead.  The children usually stay with their aunt while their father is off on his trips as an architect but this year the children’s aunt is asked to join their father for the summer in China.  The children end up spending most of their time with Edgar Font, their grandfather.  Edgar is on a quest of finding the perfect place to haunt when he passes away, and their summer adventures begin, their adventures will be remembered a lifetime.  Their first adventure begins at an abandoned lighthouse which is full of puzzles, ghosts and mystery.  As their adventure continues through the lighthouse they must rely on everything they know and the lessons that they have learned along the way to ensure they will make it out without being harmed.

The Castle Tower Lighthouse is a children’s book that everyone will fall in love with no matter your age.  The author writes with such skill that lights an imaginitative spark in the reader.  The illustrations are absolutely wonderful and the message the story delivers is of a positive one.  This is sure to be a series you will want to keep and treasure for years to come.  I intend to collect each in the series for my grandson to enjoy, which I am sure will ignite another book lover in our family.  I cannot wait until Edgar Font’s Hunt For a House To Haunt Adventure Two: The Fakersville Power Station comes out in July.  I am ready to enjoy another great adventure with Edgar Font on his search for the perfect place to haunt.

You will not want to miss the website and blog devoted to Edgar Font, they will add to your enjoyment, check them out at:

http://edgarfont.com

http://edgarfont.blogspot.com

The blogspot gives you so much informative information, which includes how the author came up with the story.  Here you will find the information about Edgar Font, Audrey and Garrett.  Be sure to read the top 10 questions that are asked relating to the story as you will find some very interesting facts.

The Edgar Font series is highly recommended for everyone.  It has been such an honor and a pleasure to be able to review such a treasure that will be added to my collection to pass on from generation to generation.  A message to the author: not only have you created such a great story for children, you have accomplished reaching readers of all ages with this series and need to be commended.  I personally thank you, Bravo!

The author has created a treasured collection for readers of all ages!!!!!

Wish Club by Kim Strickland

 A Novel

The Wish Club
by Kim Strickland
Three Rivers Press
Crown Publishing Group
ISBN:9780307352828 
Reviewed by:  Terry South for Bookpleasures

Wish Club is a zany and witty story that you are sure to love.  It involves five women, Claudia, Lindsay, Gail, Mara and Jill who are members of a book club.  Their book club seems just like any other book club, five women sitting around talking, drinking wine, and even discussing the book they have been reading.  Things in their book club had been going rather well until one of the women in the group introduces a book on witchcraft.  Being out of the norm, the women are intrigued and decide to go ahead and try their luck at casting a few spells.  They start out with a small spell that is to chant and the rain will stop; then they begin to chant and the rain does indeed stop.  Due to their success they then decide to cast a spell on a cat that is a diabetic and the cat heals, its a miracle.  The women decide to embrace their new found powers, now they begin to pursue their new powers further.  The women decide to just make wishes to help out themselves in their daily lives, they wish for money, creativity, a baby, time to themselves and a perfect man.  This all should be harmless as they are only focusing in on positive thinking and making wishes right?

Now instead of being called the book club they are the wish club.  Claudia is a school teacher and wishes to have a baby of her own as soon as possible, she also wants to write a novel. Gail is a housewife and a mother of three and she wishes to have peace and quite time and to get her life back. Lindsay is a socialite and has a trust fund, she wishes to lose weight and wants to be in the Women’s Foundation spring fashion show.  While Mara, a former singer wishes for money and to resume her singing career once again; and Jill, an artist wishes for creativity and inspiration, and a perfect man in her life.

As the Wish Club members get all too consumed with casting spells in order to improve the various areas of their lives they find themselves in a web of wishes that have gone haywire.  What started as an innocent and fun set of small spells has now turned their lives inside out, and everything is out of control.  Now they turn to the only person they can think of who might be able to help them get their lives back under control and regain some normalcy, a real witch, someone who can undo what they have done, undo their spells, and finally return their lives back to normal.

Kim Strickland is a pilot for a major airline flying 767s.  Kim Strickland lives in Chicago with her husband, her twin boys, two cats and a dog.

Kim Strickland has developed her characters so well and they are so believable and charming and funny.  The story line is great, and I can find no faults with this novel.  It has been very well written, (cleverly written) and is highly entertaining.  Wish Club is an enchanting read, I am recommending it for our reading group.  The story is funny, smart and so intriguing.  This is a perfect book club read. It is a magical, intriguing, humorous story and give it an astounding 5 stars. 

The Bone Whistle

The Bone Whistle

The Bone Whistle
by Eva Swan
Juno Books
ISBN 10: 0-8095-5792-4
ISBN 13:  978-0-8095-5792-9
208 pages,  $12.95
Fantasy – Romance

Reviewed by Terry South for Bookpleasures

The setting is Lakota reservation in Greenview, South Dakota.  Darly is a twenty year old and lives with her mother just outside of Denver.   Every summer she accompanies her mother to an isolated cabin on the edge of Lakota reservation in South Dakota.  This is no way for a college student to spend her summer vacation.

Darly is bored and has made the decision that this will be the last year she will accompany her mother to the reservation.  Darly likes seeing Grandpa Jack and this year he gives her a bone whistle that has two blue feathers attached, he tells Darly when she gets good and bored to blow the whistle.  She waits all of two weeks before blowing the whistle and learns the truth about her family and her father.  She had believed her father was dead, but he is not dead nor human, but is wanaghi.  Wanaghi are a shape changing people who left their tribes centuries before and now live in a magical land beneath the hill.

On the search for her father she is accompanied by Osni, but what she finds is a  conflict among the wanaghi.  Now she must choose her heart and feelings she has developed for Osni or her family.  Will Darly be able to resolve the conflict between them?  Before anything else she must discover own powers which puts her on a path of self-discovery.

Eva Swan combines both Native American and Celtic legends into a romantic fantasy.  The author takes us through the story by different character perspectives.  Her characters are believable and she maintains a good plot.  This is Eva Swans debut fantasy novel, the only problem I found was that as a reader you need to pay attention as the author has point of view changes into different characters perspective which can cause some confusion while reading.  I truly enjoyed the both the Native American and Celtic concepts she has incorporated into the story.

Eva Swan is the pseudonym for the author, editor, and artist, who is of Native American descent, who currently reside in
England.  I was unable to locate a website for the author to include with the review.