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2018 Reading Challenge

2018 Reading Challenge
Jill Elizabeth has read 25 books toward her goal of 175 books.
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Book Review: I Will Be Complete by Glen David Gold

I wanted to like this one. I really enjoyed Carter Beats the Devil (fiction by the author) – the writing, the storytelling style, the character development – and assumed that would translate into enjoying this memoir. Unfortunately, it did not. I just could not engage with the story/writing. It felt jumpy, skipping from topic to topic in a way that I found difficult – not so much difficult to follow (it’s not unclear) as difficult to feel connected to, for reasons that I cannot put my finger on.

I am a fan of memoirs – I find people’s life stories endlessly fascinating, particularly when they are written by writers with vivid imaginations who have lived more than a lifetime’s worth of experiences, as is clearly the case here. But for some reason I just struggled with the book page after page… Continue reading Book Review: I Will Be Complete by Glen David Gold

Book Review Blurb: #FashionVictim by Amina Akhtar

Like a number of other readers I found this one frustrating and disappointing… Based on the blurb I expected something more than the usual lightweight fashion fare. Based on the blurb, I was expecting more substance, more mystery, more clever banter. What I got instead felt more derivative, more unlikable, and more trite. Heathers is one of my all-time favorite movies for its brilliant satire and snarky one-liners and The Devil Wears Prada offered an insider’s look that was full of unbelievable yet still credible viciousness and behind-the-scenes insanity. The description suggested this was a blend of the two, but I didn’t find any of the murderous dark humor or vicious frivolous brutality of either here. Instead it felt like a hastily assembled attempt to capitalize on the zeitgeist. I just couldn’t get past Anya’s personality (which I found extremely unsympathetic) or the drama queen lingo and attitude (which felt overplayed and cliched).

This just was not the book for me… Thanks to NetGalley for my review copy.

Book Review: School for Psychics by K.C. Archer

This one was surprisingly uneven, and therefore only three stars despite some things I really liked… It started out strong, with some hysterical insights and one-liners. Teddy is a snarky cynic – two qualities I quite admire in protagonists. She’s also willful and self-deceptive and nowhere near as independent as she wants everyone (including herself) to think she is. Those characteristics often combine into complex and interesting main characters. But they can also combine into tropes fairly easily. Teddy dances the line between C&I and T a little too much for my taste – which is the cause for most of my “surprisingly uneven” comment… Continue reading Book Review: School for Psychics by K.C. Archer

Guest Post: The Future of Journalism by Rick Pullen

Today I’m pleased to bring you author/editor Rick Pullen’s take on the future of journalism. His latest book – Naked Truth – is the second in a new thriller series about newspaper reporter Beck Rikki. I thought it a timely offering for today, given that (U.S.) election day is tomorrow… Enjoy – and don’t forget to vote!

The Future of Journalism
by Rick Pullen
Do readers discern between real journalism and fake news? Thanks to the Internet, anybody can say anything and it’s surprising how many people will believe it. But should we be surprised? After all, long before the Internet, people would listen to rumors and repeat them over and over. That’s how malicious rumors spread so quickly. The very definition of a false rumor is fake news. Thanks to the Internet, what we are witnessing today is a rumor with a megaphone.

We are in a state of transition from old journalism to new. Yet there’s really nothing new with today’s journalism. The stories are still solid and, unfortunately, often sordid. It’s the story platform that is transitioning. Fewer newsprint newspapers are being printed today in large part because of Craig’s List and other Internet advertising alternatives. Continue reading Guest Post: The Future of Journalism by Rick Pullen

Book Review: The Book of Ralph by Christopher Steinsvold

Like so many other readers (apparently), this one lost me somewhere in the middle… I really liked the concept and the beginning (and the cover). It felt fresh and snarky and original and I was entertained by its slams of pop culture and novel take on aliens. Ralph was cute without being saccharine-sweet; Markus was a great straight man and the perfect foil. I even liked that the evil, world-consuming aliens were Kardashians, from the planet Kardash… It felt tongue-in-cheek and wry and those are always wins in my book. Continue reading Book Review: The Book of Ralph by Christopher Steinsvold

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