Book Review: Mystery Girl by David Gordon
4 Stars , Fiction , Latest Posts / August 29, 2013

Sam Kornberg lives in L.A., his marriage is falling apart and it looks like he’ll never be the novelist he dreamed of being. Looking for any job he might be qualify for , Sam gets a job as an assistant (he specializes in being an “assistant”) detective to Solar Lonsky.

Sam’s first assignment is to track a mysterious woman who triggers the adventure his about to take involving shootouts, mistaken identities, insane asylums and lots of movie talk in a video store.

Book Review: The Drought by Steven Scaffardi
4 Stars , Fiction , Latest Posts / August 28, 2013

Dan Hilles broke up with Stacey, his long time girlfriend. Dan has been out of the dating game for so long he has no idea on how to proceed, talk to girls or even behave as a single man.

But Dan has his friends, Ollie, Jack and Rob who are there to help and also trip him for their own amusement. After all, what are friends for?

Book Review: The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas
4 Stars , Fiction , Latest Posts / August 27, 2013

Young Edmond Dante, a sailor, has almost been named captain of a ship and is in preparations of marrying his sweetheart. But Dante becomes the victim of a sinister plot which leads to false imprisonment in an island fortress. The naïve Dante doesn’t realize how serious his situation is and that the chances of him ever seeing the light of day decline daily.

After several years, and with the help of a friend, Dante manages to escape the prison and plots his revenge.

Book Review: March Violets by Philip Kerr
4 Stars , Fiction , Latest Posts / August 21, 2013

Arti­cle first pub­lished as Book Review: ‘March Violets’ by Philip Kerr on Blog­crit­ics About: March Violets by Philip Kerr is the first in a series of noir novels about Bernie Gunther, an ex-policeman who turned private investigator. March violets refers to Germans who went along with the Nazi violence mindlessly. 256 pages Publisher: Penguin Books Language: English ISBN-10: 0142004146 My rating for March Violets – 4 Buy this book in paper or in elec­tronic format More Books by Philip Kerr More Rec­om­mended World War II books on Man of la BookStore Thoughts: I read a few Bernie Gunther books before this one, but after I read the first one I ran out (meaning inside) to the store (Internet) and browsed (searched) for used copies of the series. Being a single minded Neanderthal, as my beloved wife can attest to, I decided to read March Violets first because… well… it’s first. The novel has a murder/mystery aspect but even more fascinating is the sense of coping with Nazi horrors on a daily base. The sense of the Nazis taking over and destroying souls feels very real in this novel and is an underlying horror which is present on every page. The book’s psychological aspect (intended or not) of just how…

Guest Post: Boston, Benghazi, Trayvon Martin: Finding wisdom in the chaos
Guest Posts , Latest Posts / August 20, 2013

What would you sacrifice in the name of faith? What would you choose when faced with impossible choices—the salvation of your soul, or the lives of millions? I often write about choice and sacrifice, thrusting ordinary people into extraordinary circumstances and presenting them with difficult choices. I also wonder what I would sacrifice for another person: money, freedom, my health, even my own life. I especially marvel at people who do give up their lives for others. I had friend, a soldier, who threw his body onto a grenade to save the lives of his comrades. I was in living India at the time—trying to find myself—when I heard this sad but heroic story and gained much-needed perspective on my own quest. I went through most of my life thinking the greatest sacrifice a person can make is giving up their life in service to another. But times and values change. Now it seems that many people have a greater attachment to their faith then their lives; they would more quickly die for their God than their fellow man—regardless of the consequences. Acts of terror, random shootings, myriad crimes that we could hardly imagine a few years ago are not…

Fun Facts Friday: Beatrice Schenk de Regniers
Fun Facts Friday , Latest Posts / August 16, 2013

Beatrice Schenk de Regniers (16 August, 1914 – 1 March, 2000) was a beloved writer of children’s picture books. Books by Beatrice Schenk de Regniers The author’s last name is pronounced “drain-yay” One of de Regniers earliest memories is her mother reading folktales and fairytales every night. One of Beatrice’s favorite teacher was the sponsor of the school’s newspaper sponsor and let her be on staff even though she was only a freshman. Soon Beatrice had a regular column (Diary of a Cub Reporter) and by the time she graduated she was editor-in-chief. Until her death, Beatrice considered that time as “the most important part of my school life”. In college Beatrice studied philosophy but wanted to switch to theatre. However, switching to theatre disappointed her parents, so instead Beatrice chose to attend the School of Social Service Administration at the University of Chicago. She then went on to attain a Masters Degree in education from Winnetka Graduate Teachers College in 1941. Beatrice went overseas as part of the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration to help with Yugoslavian refugees who had landed in Egypt’s displaced person camps during World War II. While in Egypt Beatrice got seriously ill and…

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