The All Night Library

My name is David Watson. I'm 47 years old and live in Milwaukee Wisconsin I love books and have been writing book reviews since 2010. I love to read across all genres but horror is my favorite. If you have a book you want to recommend to me please let me know.

The House By The Cemetery

The House by the Cemetery (Fiction Without Frontiers) - John Everson

Mike didn't want to take the job remodeling the old haunted house by the cemetery  but his back was against the wall. His friend wanted to turn the house into a haunted attraction and not only was he unemployed but his wife left him and he needed something to get him out of the dumps. His luck was changing as a mysterious young woman and her odd friend started showing up at the house and helping him with his work. Soon enough set decorators start to put the attraction together but is the blood on the walls real or fake.People start to disappear, some of the dead bodies look too realistic and a local ghost hunter thinks the ghosts of the graveyard are angry.  Mike may not know it but he's started a ritual that will kill dozens before its all done.

 

The House By The Cemetery by John Everson was an odd read for me. I got this book because  I loved the concept of turning a real haunted house by a graveyard into a haunted attraction. You already know where this story will go from the first paragraph and That's the type of story I love to read. The weird thing is that I ended up not liking this book for the horror aspect. What I liked was that there is a bizarre love story in this book and I loved Mike's story.

 

You feel sympathy for Mike from the beginning, the way he looks at his friend as he gets offered a job and how he sees himself in the mirror and how he is getting older and running out of chances to make a good life for himself. You then watch Mike and see what he is willing to do to get what he wants and you see how he is being manipulated  and you wonder how far is this going to go. This is a book you don't need to be a horror fan to enjoy, in fact the story could have worked in a non horror setting. John Everson is awesome at creating tragic characters that are easy to relate to. He also writes stories that are hard to put down.

The Siren And The Specter

The Siren and The Spectre (Fiction Without Frontiers) - Jonathan Janz

David Cane has made a living exploring haunted houses. He has yet to find proof that the supernatural exsists but that may soon change. His latest project is to write about the Alexander house, a place that has a horrifying history for both Daid personally  and for the community surrounding it.

 

The Alexander House was built in the 1700's by a land baron. He used it as a home for his son who practiced black magic and murdered several people in the town near by. David is haunted by the home because 20 years ago he broke up with his girlfriend  who committed suicide in the house. Now his former friend Chris and his wife want him to research the house but they may have an agenda and David may find that the supernatural is real and he has to pay for his past sins.

 

The Siren And The Specter by Jonathan Janz is a haunted house story that rises above other haunted house stories. This book starts simple with a paranormal researcher spending time in a haunted house. Then it builds on that by adding layers with complex characters, plot twists and sub plots. What was really interesting was how every little detail adds to the whole story. For instance at one point we're introduced to a dysfunctional family and after that a love story. When we first got into it I wondered how does this add to the ghost story but it does and it makes the book better. 

 

My favorite part of this book was when David reads from a diary of a paranormal researcher who visited the Alexander House in the 1800s. The diary excerpts show how good of a writer Jonathan Janz is. The way the diary is written is in a style that makes it feel like it was from a different era and then we hear David's findings from the present day. Jonathan  uses two different writing styles and it adds a lot to the book.

 

The characters are brilliant also, they aren't all good or all bad, they have layers and come across as real. For instance the lead character  David is self-absorbed but as you get into his bacstory you see why he is that way. Then you have his ex-friend Chris who is a jerk but you see how he acts and knows he has a sympathetic side.Though some of his acts are unforgivable I found I could relate to him. The Siren And The Specter isn't just a good horror novel, its a good novel period. You don't  have to be a horror fan to like this one, if you love great writing you will love this book.

Guest Blog Post: Ginny Fite

 

 

Taking Courage


You have to know I’m terrified of heights. T E R R I F I E D. Like standing on the second step of a ladder to put away a bowl on the top shelf of the kitchen cabinet makes me break out in a sweat. My heart quakes. I won’t even contemplate changing the light bulbs in the ceiling fixture. Maybe it’s a little dark in the kitchen sometimes. If it bothers me, I can always bring in a table lamp.


So when at forty-four I signed up for what was benignly called the “ropes course,” a six day out-of-doors training intended to get clear about my goals and how to achieve them, I never expected that would involve hanging upside down one-thousand feet above a ravine of mature trees, clinging to a thick rope across which I was supposed to pull myself two-hundred feet.


Mid-way, my arms ached. No breath was left in my lungs. I wasn’t going to make it. I was sure I was going to die out there above that chasm. Would they rescue me by helicopter? Did they even have a rescue plan? What would they tell my children? I looked over at the people on the platform yelling for me to keep going. Hopeless, I thought. I’m going to fail.


Somebody yelled, “Scream!” I didn’t need a lot of encouragement. When I screamed, my stomach muscles clenched and I discovered that if I inched my hands up on the rope and dragged my legs forward, I would move. What seemed like three days later, I made it to the platform. The doctor on hand looked into my eyes and declared me okay to continue. I had no idea what came next was rappelling down the side of a mountain.
This feeling of not knowing what I’m doing, of being petrified, found its way into No End of Bad when Margaret climbs out onto a roof to escape assassins and when Lenore interviews the FBI director. They take their courage in their hands and do what must be done.


Writing is far less terrifying than escaping a killer, or completing the Tyrolean Traverse, but it takes persistence to sit down day after day and put one word after the other. It takes courage to look at your work and wade in up to your hips to revise it or throw large chunks of it away.


Courage and persistence are what get us to the other side. Like all the women characters in No End of Bad, we draw on these traits from that inner core of strength we don’t even know we have.

 

Ginny Fite is the author of the dark mystery thrillers Cromwell's Folly, No Good Deed Left Undone, and Lying, Cheating, and Occasionally Murder, Ginny Fite is an award-winning journalist who has covered crime, politics, government, healthcare, art and all things human. She has been a spokesperson for a governor and a member of Congress, a few colleges and universities, and a robotics R&D company. 

She has degrees from Rutgers University and Johns Hopkins University and studied at the School for Women Healers and the Maryland Poetry Therapy Institute. 

Ginny has also authored I Should Be Dead by Now, a collection of humorous lamentations about aging, three books of poetry, The Last Thousand Years, The Pearl Fisher, Throwing Caution, and a short story collection, What Goes Around. 

 

http://ginnyfite.com/

 

 https://www.ireadbooktours.com/

No End Of Bad

No End Of Bad - Ginny Fite

Margaret Turnbull had a great life. She was proud of her house and loved her family but everything changed when her FBI agent husband Clay is falsely arrested and killed by other agents working for a drug cartel. Several members of the FBI are part of a drug ring but the cover up that Clay was working to expose goes even farther up the ladder, even into the White  House. Now because of what Clay knew Margaret and her daughter are no longer safe and assassins will stop at nothing to kill her and silence anyone who knows the truth about the drug ring. 

 

No End Of Bad by Ginny Fite is a political/conspiracy thriller with a human touch. What drew me to the story was I thought it would be interesting to see how a normal housewife deals with her world falling apart and having to deal with a dangerous situation where she's over her head. You do get that story but there is a lot more going on. Which brought me to the part of the book I didn't like which was there were two many sub plots. I would have liked to have heard the whole book through the point of view of Clay, Margaret and their daughter Melissa. Instead we also get the story of several other characters from high level people in Washington to drug dealers involved in the ring.

 

All in all though this is an enjoyable book, there are several pieces to it and it was interesting to see how it all came together. I also enjoyed how some of it felt like I was reading a newspaper. The author is a journalist so it makes sense. I also enjoyed how her point of view on politics and the FBI came through in the story. I wouldn't say this book is action packed but it does have a good story, good characters and a realistic look at how things work in Washington D.C. 

 

No End Of Bad

 

http://ginnyfite.com/

https://www.ireadbooktours.com/

 

The Austin Paradox

The Austin Paradox - William Leibowitz

The Austin Paradox by William R. Leibowitz is the sequel to Miracle Man. In this one we see a different Robert Austin, one who doesn't have the intelligence he once had but still wants to work at curing diseases. He still has to deal with his personal demons, forces that are trying to destroy him and a government that wants him under control. He is determined to do what's right though whether he still has his intelligence or not.

 

 This book is much like the first one, what it lacks in action it makes up with a good story with multiple meanings and some great characters. I find it interesting in this book that Robert Austin is helping the world to be a better place yet there are so many people who don't see it that way. People have there own perception of what right and wrong is and to some curing diseases is doing wrong and I'm not just talking about the pharmaceutical companies point of view. If you like books that make you think and has a lot of deep meanings then check this one out.

 

http://miraclemanbook.com/

 

https://www.ireadbooktours.com/

 

Author interview: William R. Leibowitz

 

 

Q:  What made you decide to become a published author?

 

A:   I had stories to tell that were important to me.  Miracle Man and The Austin Paradox chronicle the saga of Robert James Austin, the greatest genius in human history, from the time of his birth and tragic childhood through his extraordinary accomplishments in curing diseases.  These books are psychological/medical/conspiracy thrillers with fast paced twisting plots that are full of surprises and drama, as Austin battles abandonment and betrayal and the myriad powerful forces (external and internal) that seek to destroy him.   In writing Miracle Man and The Austin Paradox, I wanted to create a modern day believable ‘super hero’ who is an ‘anti-celebrity’.  I thought that such a person could be inspirational when contrasted with the meritless celebrities that dominate media today (e.g., the reality TV stars who are famous for being famous, but have no real talent).  I also wanted Miracle Man and The Austin Paradox to be the vehicles within which I could convey, in an entertainment context, certain spiritual and humanistic messages that mean a great deal to me.

 

 

Q:  What kind of messages are you referring to?

 

A:   One of the underlying themes in Miracle Man is the sanctity of each and every human life.  As the story of the protagonist, Robert James Austin, unfolds throughout the novel, I think the reader will come to appreciate that one can never predict the ramifications of one person’s death.  Robert Austin should have died as a new born, but he was saved in the most unlikely of manners; he then went on to change the world in extraordinary ways.  His life was not expendable.  We all are bombarded every day by statistics of death –how many people died in the latest war, or from famine, or epidemic or other manmade or natural cataclysm.  People’s lives are jumbled together by the media as meaningless numbers.  But what I want the reader of Miracle Man to think about ---is the individual.  Has anyone ever thought how likely it is that the person who would have cured cancer was killed in a Concentration Camp?  That’s why Miracle Man begins with the quotation from Scriptures – “To destroy one life is to destroy an entire world, and to save one life is to save an entire world.”

 

 

Q:  Did any real life situations find their way into your books?

 

A:   Yes.  In writing Miracle Man and The Austin Paradox, I wanted to get readers thinking about a real-life problem that affects us all. One of the powerful forces fighting my protagonist, Robert James Austin, is “Big Pharma” which views Austin as their enemy since he cures diseases and thereby makes many of their “cash-cow” drugs obsolete.  In short, Austin is bad for their business.  Like Austin, I find it incomprehensible that virtually no major disease has been cured in over 50 years.  How can that be the case when so much money has been spent over the decades on research?  Simply put, there’s a lot more money in treating symptoms than there is in curing diseases.  Austin realized that Big Pharma has no interest in curing diseases.  It just wants to keep on selling expensive symptom treatments –and as we know, many people are on ‘medication maintenance programs’ for years, sometimes for life.  Austin wanted to change that.  The Austin Paradox also deals with bio-terrorism which I believe is a very real---and both books deal with a real life problem that has permeated every aspect of our society and that of the rest of the world –unbridled greed and the elevation of money above ethics and morality.

 

 

Q:  Good thrillers usually have great villains.  How about in your books?

 

A:  Oh yes!  Villains are my specialty.  I have some terrific ones—all highly believable and complex in their own right.  Corrupt pharma execs, a twisted CIA director, Russian and Chinese oligarchs, bio-terrorists.  You name ‘em and I got ‘em—and I’ll put mine up against any.  I love them all.

 

Q:  Do you hear from your readers?  What do they say?

 

A:   I’ve been fortunate to have received almost one thousand letters from readers who have expressed their enthusiasm for my books and who have indicated how the books are relevant to their personal life experience.  There’s nothing more rewarding for an author than to establish a dialog with individual readers.

 

 

 

William R. Leibowitz has been practicing entertainment law in New York City for a number of years. He has represented numerous renown recording artists, songwriters, producers and many of the leading record companies, talent managers, merchandisers and other notable entertainment businesses. At one point, he was the Chief Operating Officer/General Counsel for the Sanctuary Group of Companies, a U.K. public company that was the largest ‘indie’ music company in the world (prior to its acquisition by the Universal Music Group). William has a Bachelor of Science Degree from New York University (magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa) and a law degree from Columbia University. He lives in the village of Quogue, New York with his wife, Alexandria, and dog, George.

 

William wrote Miracle Man because of its humanistic and spiritual messages and because he feels that in our current times– when meritless celebrity has eclipsed accomplishment and the only heroes are those based on comic books, the world needs a real hero—and that, of course, is Robert James Austin.

 

http://miraclemanbook.com/

https://www.ireadbooktours.com/

The Austin Paradox

The Austin Paradox - William Leibowitz

The Austin Paradox by William R. Leibowitz is the sequel to Miracle Man. In this one we see a different Robert Austin, one who doesn't have the intelligence he once had but still wants to work at curing diseases. He still has to deal with his personal demons, forces that are trying to destroy him and a government that wants him under control. He is determined to do what's right though whether he still has his intelligence or not.

 

 This book is much like the first one, what it lacks in action it makes up with a good story with multiple meanings and some great characters. I find it interesting in this book that Robert Austin is helping the world to be a better place yet there are so many people who don't see it that way. People have there own perception of what right and wrong is and to some curing diseases is doing wrong and I'm not just talking about the pharmaceutical companies point of view. If you like books that make you think and has a lot of deep meanings then check this one out.

 

http://miraclemanbook.com/

 

https://www.ireadbooktours.com/

 

The CleanSweep Counterstrike

The Cleansweep Counterstrike - Chuck Waldron

Charles Claussen's Operation Cleansweep has failed. It was meant to cleanse the world of undesirables and improve humanity. The plan came crashing down though thanks to investigative blogger Matt Tremain and his friends including police detective Carling. Now Charles wants revenge but it won't be easy as the people who funded his project are out for revenge against him along with their money back. After receiving threats from Claussen, Tremain ad Carling head off to the 4 corners of the world to find Claussen and bring his brand of chaos to an end. 

 

The CleanSweep Counterstrike by Charles Waldron is the sequel to The CleanSweep Conspiracy but it works as a stand alone novel. What I enjoyed about this book was how it went in a total different direction then the first book. While that one had a message about how many freedoms are we willing to give away to the government for our protection this one is more of an action adventure novel. Claussen is a great villain and I loved how his character changed in this story and what he has to resort to in this story. This is a great thriller which fans of conspiracy and spy stories will love.

 

http://www.chuckwaldronauthor.com/

 

 

https://www.ireadbooktours.com/

 

Miracle Man

Reblogged from The All Night Library:
Miracle Man - William Leibowitz

Robert James Austin was left in a dumpster as a baby. The press called him the dumpster baby but eventually a nice family adopted him and now he is the world's greatest genius. The government found him at an early age and wanted him to help build weapon systems. After the death of one of his mentors though Robert decides to throw his superior intelligence into curing the world's diseases. This makes him an enemy of the government and the pharmaceutical companies. Robert doesn't know who he can trust anymore and there are powerful forces trying to stop him.

 

Miracle Man by Robert James Austin is a psychological medical thriller which is not your average read. This book has great characters and a great story but is very light on suspense and action which isn't to say its not good. There is a message here about how all life even if it seems insignificant is important and one about how the pharmaceutical companies make money off treating a disease but don't really want to find a cure. I also enjoyed how the book gets into how there is a balance in the universe between good and evil. This is a book that will really make you think it's like a superhero story without the costume.

 

http://miraclemanbook.com/

https://www.ireadbooktours.com/

Miracle Man

Miracle Man - William Leibowitz

Robert James Austin was left in a dumpster as a baby. The press called him the dumpster baby but eventually a nice family adopted him and now he is the world's greatest genius. The government found him at an early age and wanted him to help build weapon systems. After the death of one of his mentors though Robert decides to throw his superior intelligence into curing the world's diseases. This makes him an enemy of the government and the pharmaceutical companies. Robert doesn't know who he can trust anymore and there are powerful forces trying to stop him.

 

Miracle Man by Robert James Austin is a psychological medical thriller which is not your average read. This book has great characters and a great story but is very light on suspense and action which isn't to say its not good. There is a message here about how all life even if it seems insignificant is important and one about how the pharmaceutical companies make money off treating a disease but don't really want to find a cure. I also enjoyed how the book gets into how there is a balance in the universe between good and evil. This is a book that will really make you think it's like a superhero story without the costume.

 

http://miraclemanbook.com/

https://www.ireadbooktours.com/

Guest blog post: Chuck Waldron

Why write a conspiracy thriller?

 

I sometimes ask myself the same question. Why in one’s right mind would try and compete with today’s news. Conspiracy is one of the most searched words on Google? While The Cleansweep Conspiracy is loosely based on a real event, the story is a complete, total figment of my imagination. Freud reportedly said a cigar is just a cigar. For me, a story is just a story, intentionally created as fiction.

 

When you read The Cleansweep Conspiracy, you won’t find a story about FEMA coffins, Knights Templar, Area 51, Elvis sightings or the JFK conspiracy. 

 

Reading thrillers is my passion. Not surprisingly, my writing follows that same passion. It’s great fun to put characters in harm’s way. It’s great fun to create characters that have that dash of evil thriller readers expect. Creating roadblocks and dead ends is a given, but always providing my character, Matt Tremain, with a way to keep going. He’s not a Hollywood hero. Matt’s flawed, yet filled with resolve to get at the truth of a conspiracy he’s uncovered. He’s committed to exposing the conspiracy, even at the cost of his life.

 

Matt is up against Charles Claussen, a character representing evil but looks the opposite. Maybe he’s like the saying that the Devil’s greatest trick is convincing us he’s not real.

 

The story woven throughout The Cleansweep Conspiracy could never happen in real life . . . or could it?

 

Read about Matt’s story, and you decide.

 

Chuck Waldron

Author, The Cleansweep Conspiracy and The Cleansweep Counterstrike

 

 

 

Chuck Waldron is the author of four riveting mystery, thriller and suspense novels and more than fifty short stories. Inspired by his grandfather’s tales of the Ozark Mountains and local caves rumored to be havens for notorious gangsters, Waldron was destined to write about crime and the human condition. Those childhood legends ignited his imagination and filled his head with unforgettable characters, surprising plots and a keen interest in supernatural and historical subplots.

 

With literary roots planted in the American Midwest and South, and enriched by many years living in the fertile cultural soil of metropolitan Ontario, Waldron now resides on Florida’s fabled Treasure Coast with his wife, Suzanne. While keeping an eye out for hurricanes, alligators, and the occasional Burmese python, visitors will find Waldron busy writing his next crime thriller.

 http://www.chuckwaldronauthor.com/

https://www.ireadbooktours.com/

 

The Cleansweep Conspiracy

Reporter/Blogger Matt Tremain has stumbled on to a conspiracy that could make his career if it doesn't get him killed first. This book starts with a bang as a riot breaks out in the city of Toronto with building being torched and people being murdered. Now Toronto is looking for ways to keep it from happening again and have turned their security needs over to billionaire Charles Claussen. Claussen's plan is called Operation Cleansweep and its goal is to rid the city of undesirables. In the rush to feel safer the city has overlooked that people are loosing their freedoms and putting their way of life in jeopardy. It's up to Matt Tremain and a handful of others to stay alive and expose the conspiracy. 

 

The Cleansweep Conspiracy by Chuck Waldron is a story that gets right into the action and never lets up. The events in this book are fictional but you can see that a lot of the ideas in it come right out of the news. Claussen's main influence is Nazi Germany but he feels that he knew where the Nazi's went wrong and he can correct their mistakes. Also the idea of giving up freedoms to feel safer is something we see put forth by different governments. This book is like a social commentary on how the government manipulates its people by using their fears against them. If you enjoy thrillers with a little mystery and a lot of action then this is a must read. 

 

The Cleansweep Conspiracy

http://www.chuckwaldronauthor.com/

https://www.ireadbooktours.com/

 

 

Miracle Man

Miracle Man - William Leibowitz

Robert James Austin was left in a dumpster as a baby. The press called him the dumpster baby but eventually a nice family adopted him and now he is the world's greatest genius. The government found him at an early age and wanted him to help build weapon systems. After the death of one of his mentors though Robert decides to throw his superior intelligence into curing the world's diseases. This makes him an enemy of the government and the pharmaceutical companies. Robert doesn't know who he can trust anymore and there are powerful forces trying to stop him.

 

Miracle Man by Robert James Austin is a psychological medical thriller which is not your average read. This book has great characters and a great story but is very light on suspense and action which isn't to say its not good. There is a message here about how all life even if it seems insignificant is important and one about how the pharmaceutical companies make money off treating a disease but don't really want to find a cure. I also enjoyed how the book gets into how there is a balance in the universe between good and evil. This is a book that will really make you think it's like a superhero story without the costume.

 

http://miraclemanbook.com/

https://www.ireadbooktours.com/

Welcome To The Show

Reblogged from The All Night Library:
Welcome To The Show - Matt Hayward

You've probably read anthologies in the past that have mixed horror and music but this one is a little different. Welcome To The Show includes 17 horror stories that are all set in a fictional San Francisco night club called The Shantyman. Edited by Matt Hayward and Doug Murano this book takes you from The Shantyman's disturbing origins right up to it's apocalyptic future. Demons, vampires, other dimensions and the end of the world, its all here under one roof.

 

One story I liked here was Parody by Jeff Strand. Showing that this anthology has it all this was a funny story about a Weird Al wannabe. Zany Chester was hoping to make it big by singing his own 80's song parodies and hopefully open mic night at The Shantyman will be his big break. Things don't go according to plan though but at the least everyone will remember Chester's performance. This is a simple fun story but what I really liked was the attention to detail in Chester's character. It's obvious that Chester is delusional but the fun part is trying to tell the difference between Chester's reality and the real world. Jeff Strand really show's he's a great writer with this one. 

 

Another good one was Running Free by Brian Keene. This one is about a man who is dying of cancer who takes up running in hopes of dying of a heart attack instead of cancer because if the cancer kills him his family can't collect on his life insurance policy. The problem is he is starting to have visions of dark clouds hanging over people and try as he might he can't seem to bring on his demise. You have to give this story points for originality, there is a lot going on here and I found myself loving the main character even though he's a real bad person. Most of all I like how this story blends real life horror with fictional style horror.

 

My favorite story in the book was We Sang In Darkness by Mary SanGiovanni. This one is different from the others in the book. It's set in a dark future world where music is banned and aliens are part of society. This was beautifully written a lot of meaning in this one that is left to interpretation. What I liked most about it though was how music gets used as a form of communication between aliens and humans who can't understand the other's language. There is also a great jaw dropping shock ending here that fit the mood of the story perfectly.

 

The stories in Welcome To The Show were kind of hit and miss. There were plenty of gems but a few of them left me rolling my eyes. That being said I loved how this anthology creates it's own mythology with each story adding something original to it. The mood seems to change throughout the book as well with some stories being funny while others were dark, The Shantyman is a place where anything goes. The editor's had a nice concept in mind and the way the stories were connected it almost felt like a novel. Crystal Lake publishing puts out some great horror anthologies and this is no exception.

 

http://www.crystallakepub.com/

Welcome To The Show

Welcome To The Show - Matt Hayward

You've probably read anthologies in the past that have mixed horror and music but this one is a little different. Welcome To The Show includes 17 horror stories that are all set in a fictional San Francisco night club called The Shantyman. Edited by Matt Hayward and Doug Murano this book takes you from The Shantyman's disturbing origins right up to it's apocalyptic future. Demons, vampires, other dimensions and the end of the world, its all here under one roof.

 

One story I liked here was Parody by Jeff Strand. Showing that this anthology has it all this was a funny story about a Weird Al wannabe. Zany Chester was hoping to make it big by singing his own 80's song parodies and hopefully open mic night at The Shantyman will be his big break. Things don't go according to plan though but at the least everyone will remember Chester's performance. This is a simple fun story but what I really liked was the attention to detail in Chester's character. It's obvious that Chester is delusional but the fun part is trying to tell the difference between Chester's reality and the real world. Jeff Strand really show's he's a great writer with this one. 

 

Another good one was Running Free by Brian Keene. This one is about a man who is dying of cancer who takes up running in hopes of dying of a heart attack instead of cancer because if the cancer kills him his family can't collect on his life insurance policy. The problem is he is starting to have visions of dark clouds hanging over people and try as he might he can't seem to bring on his demise. You have to give this story points for originality, there is a lot going on here and I found myself loving the main character even though he's a real bad person. Most of all I like how this story blends real life horror with fictional style horror.

 

My favorite story in the book was We Sang In Darkness by Mary SanGiovanni. This one is different from the others in the book. It's set in a dark future world where music is banned and aliens are part of society. This was beautifully written a lot of meaning in this one that is left to interpretation. What I liked most about it though was how music gets used as a form of communication between aliens and humans who can't understand the other's language. There is also a great jaw dropping shock ending here that fit the mood of the story perfectly.

 

The stories in Welcome To The Show were kind of hit and miss. There were plenty of gems but a few of them left me rolling my eyes. That being said I loved how this anthology creates it's own mythology with each story adding something original to it. The mood seems to change throughout the book as well with some stories being funny while others were dark, The Shantyman is a place where anything goes. The editor's had a nice concept in mind and the way the stories were connected it almost felt like a novel. Crystal Lake publishing puts out some great horror anthologies and this is no exception.

 

http://www.crystallakepub.com/

A Beautiful Work In Progress

A Beautiful Work In Progress by Mirna Valerio is a memoir of a long distance runner who isn't like everyone else. Mirna is a plus size athlete who never saw her size as a barrier to doing what she wanted to do. People picture runner should be thin but Mirna isn't like other runners. What drew me to this book was that I liked the idea that it was about someone who doesn't let stereotypes define her.

 

This book is somewhat of a coming of age story but more about self discovery. You get to hear about Mirna's youth and what made her to decide to be a runner. What I liked hearing about was how Mirna accepted her limitations but still managed to become the person she wanted to be. At one point in the book she is comparing herself to other kids and she accepts the fact that she doesn't have great social skills is not a good leader and she doesn't look like the popular kids but she is a good problem solver and determined to succeed. Everyone has strengths and weaknesses and Mirna shows that how she used both to achieve what she wanted.

 

A Beautiful Work In Progress is a book about becoming the person you want to be in life and not letting other people's perceptions of what they think you should be define you. My only complaint about this book was that in places the book seemed redundant as she describes some of the runs that she has been on. Though this is a running memoir and you have to expect that.  I did enjoy how she describes the running community from how supportive people are to how she feels as she is running along admiring the beauty of nature. This is an inspirational book of someone who doesn't let limitations stop her and a good look at what it's like to be a runner.