Book review: Drone Strike: An Anthony Provati Thriller by Joe Giordano

Book Details:

Book Title:  Drone Strike: An Anthony Provati Thriller by Joe Giordano
Category:  Adult Fiction,  290 pages
Genre: Thriller
Publisher:  Rogue Phoenix Press
Release date:  April 15, 2019
Format available for review:  ebook (mobi, ePub, PDF)
Tour dates: April 15 to 26, 2019
Content Rating: PG + M (for some violent scenes, no sex, no f-words.)

Book Description:

Karim’s family is killed by a U.S. drone strike in Iraq, collateral damage. The Islamic State in the Levant exploits his rage, recruiting him for a terrorist attack on the U.S., and only Anthony Provati can stop him. Drone Strike takes you on a fast-paced adventure across the Mediterranean, into Mexico, finally arriving in the States. Drone Strike explores the psychological realities that seduce Karim to commit an act of terror, includes a love story between Moslem Karim and Miriam, a Christian woman he defends in Turkey, and highlights the plight of Middle Eastern and Central American refugees.

Buy the Book:
Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble
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Joe Giordano

Meet the Author:

As a former International Executive Vice President of 3M, Joe Giordano’s experience included running a business in the Middle East out of Athens, Greece. Born in New York, he’s had first-hand experience with the cultures and most of the locations in Drone Strike.

Joe’s stories have appeared in more than one hundred magazines including The Saturday Evening Post and Shenandoah. His novels, Birds of Passage: An Italian Immigrant Coming of Age Story (2015) and Appointment with ISIL: An Anthony Provati Thriller (2017) were published by Harvard Square Editions. Read the first chapters and sign up for his blog at http://joe-giordano.com/

Joe was among one hundred Italian-American authors honored by Barnes & Noble Chairman Len Riggio to march in the 2017 Manhattan, Columbus Day Parade. 

Connect with the author:  Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook  ~  Pinterest

BOOK REVIEW:

Drone Strike is an intense action-packed thriller. A chain of events begins with the deaths of Karim’s wife and two children in Iraq by an American drone. Lost, he is recruited by a terrorist organization to exact his (and their) vengeance on the infidel Americans.

The storyline winds itself through Iraq, Turkey, Greece, and Italy with its ultimate destination somewhere in America.

I have to admit, I had to skim through most of this book. I was unprepared for the nonstop violence. It almost felt as if it were a video game, as the story advanced to the next phase, there would be another round of (supremely evil) characters and more violence. This theme as well as abuse against women pretty much took up most of the story.

I was unable to develop any sort of feelings for any of the characters – they were one-dimensional and their behaviour inconsistent. I also had a hard time believing some of the relationships in this book. It just didn’t feel real.

That aside, if you are looking for a heart-stopping thriller, this is your type of read.

BOOK REVIEW SCHEDULE:

April 15 – Working Mommy Journal – review / giveaway
April 16 – Essentially Italian – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
April 17 – Locks, Hooks and Books – review / author interview / giveaway
April 18 – My Devotional Thoughts – review / giveaway
April 19 – #redhead.with.book – review / giveaway
April 22 – Bound 4 Escape – review / giveaway
April 23 – Cheryl’s Book Nook – review / giveaway
April 24 – Life as Leels – review / giveaway
April 25 – Library of Clean Reads – review / giveaway
April 26 – Readers Muse – review / guest post

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Book review: Song of Atlantis by Brian Power

Book Details:

Book Title:  Song of Atlantis by Brian Power
Category:  Adult Fiction, 322 pages
Genre:  Fantasy
Publisher:  Brian J Power
Release date:  December 2014
Format available for review:  print
Will send print books out:  USA & Canada
Tour dates: May 13 – 24, 2019
Content Rating:  PG-13 + M (No explicit sex scene or excessive profanity)

Book Description:

A shocking discovery leads one scientist down a dangerous path in Brian Power’s compelling debut novel, Song of Atlantis.

When Amon Goro, master architect of Atlantis, discovers a way to harness the earth’s forces into an infinite source of clean energy, it seems destined to change civilization as we know it.

But 4,500 years later, Atlantis exploration team leader Palen Golendar is brutally captured by a Native American tribe in modern-day South Dakota—derailing any hope Atlantis held of utilizing its energy secrets.

Eight thousand years in the future, Native American anthropologist Gordon Tallbear and his team of highly skilled researchers stumble across a connection between the recent discovery of Golendar’s remains and an intricate cavern system deep in the mountains of Antarctica…a connection that finally reveals the Atlantean secret of perpetual energy.

While Tallbear and his team plan to recreate the energy source that will change the world, a wealthy group with deep ties to carbon-based fuel producers decides this newfound energy source must be destroyed—and they will stop at nothing to assassinate the researchers in order to bury what they know.

Can Tallbear’s newfound knowledge survive?

Buy the Book:
Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble
Add to Goodreads

Brian Power

Meet the Author:  

​Brian Power is an educator who has taught at both the high school and college levels. He earned a BS degree in English and Secondary Education, and an MA in International Relations. A retired corporate consultant and trainer, he is also a retired Marine Corps Reserve Lieutenant Colonel who served for 24 years on both active duty and in the reserves. He lives in Rhode Island with his wife. SONG OF ATLANTIS is his first book.

​For more information, please visit his Website.


BOOK TOUR SCHEDULE:

May 13 – Working Mommy Journal – review / giveaway
May 14 – Locks, Hooks and Books – review / author interview / giveaway
May 15 – A Mama’s Corner of the World – review / giveaway
May 16 – #redhead.with.book – review / giveaway
May 17 – Rockin’ Book Reviews – review / guest post / giveaway
May 20 – Books for Books – review
May 21 – A Fountain of Books – review / author interview / giveaway
May 22 – Library of Clean Reads – review / giveaway
May 23 – JBronder Book Reviews – review / guest post / giveaway
May 24 – Readers Muse – review / guest post

REVIEW:

Song of Atlantis will blow your mind! The author has an incredible imagination and has done massive amounts of research to bring us an incredibly detailed, entertaining and fascinating account of what the Atlanteans may have been like.

The author was able to successfully integrate the past and present using alternating chapters – slowly leading us to the links that would complete the story.

I was fascinated by the discoveries in Antarctica – the author used detailed and imaginative word pictures that seemed so realistic.

I really did enjoy the characters in the book, although Joanna and Tallbear were a bit too perfect (yeah, yeah, I’ll have to write my own book) (see page 322) but this really didn’t detract from the sophisticated storyline. The evil guys were pretty scary (reader beware).

Very similar to a Clive Cussler novel, anyone who loves to read action and adventure will not be able to put this book down.

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Book spotlight: The High Court by Chris Ledbetter

Book Details:

Book Title:  The High Court by Chris Ledbetter
Category:  YA Fiction, 290 pages
Genre:  Fantasy
Publisher:  Month 9 Books
Release date:  October 16, 2018
Format available for review:  print & ebook (PDF, gifted Kindle copy)
Will send print books out:  USA
Tour dates: April 1 to 30, 2019
Content Rating: PG (some profanity (damn, ass), no f-bombs, some kissing, no sex scenes, some violence, nothing gory or graphic)

Book Description:

High atop Mount Olympus, dawn breaks on a new academic term. Normalcy has returned to campus following a harrowing expedition into The Underworld to rescue kidnapped students by Zeus and his fellow Olympians. Now, as they prepare to testify in The High Court, Hyperion will be tried for the attack on Crete and death of Anytos. Kronos will stand trial for the murder of Mount Olympus Prep’s Headmaster Ouranos.

As the trials draw near, Mount Olympus Prep students and faculty are besieged repeatedly by a race of gargantuan stone and earth giants. Under heavy assault, the Olympians are forced to flee to the volcanic island of Limnos to regroup. Meanwhile, a toxic poison Zeus has carried with him since a prior fight with a dragoness, creeps toward his brain.

In a race against time and beasts, Zeus and his friends must find a way to survive not only the toxin ravaging Zeus’ body, but also the giants who grow stronger after every attack, and somehow make it to the The High Court alive.

Buy the Book:
Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble ~ Walmart
Ebay ~ Indiebound
Chapters Indigo ~ The Book Depository
Add to Goodreads

The Sky Throne by Chris Ledbetter

Book Details:

Book Title:  The Sky Throne by Chris Ledbetter
Category:  YA Fiction,  300 pages
Genre:  Fantasy
Publisher:   Month 9 Books
Release date:  April 18, 2017
Format available for review:  print & ebook (PDF, gifted Kindle copies)
Will send print books to: USA (only 8 available)

​Content Rating: PG + M (No f-wordsbut there may be some mild profanity, and mild religious expletives such as “damn”, “hell” and “Oh God!”, some depictions of violence. No drug use or underage drinking. Some semi-mature themes – suggestion of sexual misconduct by certain characters, but not the actual performing of it.)

Book Description:

Duality dwells at every turn, and an adolescent Zeus will learn that all too well when Hyperion attacks his family on Crete.

When the dust settles, his mother is unconscious and his best friend left for dead.

Stacking epic insult upon fatal injury, Zeus discovers the woman who raised him is not his biological mother. But to ensure her safety while she recovers, a heavy-hearted Zeus leaves her behind to seek answers at Mount Olympus Preparatory Academia.

Zeus embarks on a quest to discover who ordered the attack on his home, avenge the death of his friend, and find his birth mother. When some of his new schoolmates vanish, Zeus’s quest is turned upside down, and the only way to make things right is to access the power of The Sky Throne, confront a most dangerous enemy, and take his life back.

On his way to becoming king of the Greek gods, Zeus will learn to seize power, neutralize his enemies, and fall in love.


Buy the Book:
Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble  ~ Book Depository ~IndieBound
Quail Ridge Books ~ Amazon UK ~ Amazon.ca ~
Amazon AUS
Add to Goodreads

Watch the Trailer:


Chris Ledbetter

Meet the Author:

​Chris Ledbetter is an award-winning author of short fiction and novels for young adults. “Jason’s Quest,” a short story retelling of the Jason and Medea Greek myth was published in the anthology, Greek Myths Revisited. His first full-length novel, Drawnearned him two awards, Library of Clean Reads Best YA 2015 and Evernight Publishing Readers’ Choice Award Best YA 2015, as well as a USA TODAY “Must Read” recommendation. His second novel, Inked, concludes that duology. The Sky Throne is his newest young adult series. It includes, thus far, The Sky Throne and The High Court.

He’s a proud member of SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators) and a strong supporter of the Need for Diverse Books. He now writes and lives in Wilmington, NC with his family, including three cats.

Connect with the author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Pinterest ~ Instagram

BOOK TOUR SCHEDULE:

April 1 – Working Mommy Journal – review of The High Court / giveaway
April 1 – Viviana MacKade – book spotlight / guest post
April 2 – Locks, Hooks and Books – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
April 2 – Cheryl’s Book Nook – review of The High Court / giveaway
April 3 – A Fountain of Books – review of The Sky Throne / author interview
April 3 – Bound 4 Escape – review of The High Court / giveaway
April 4 – A Fountain of Books – review of The High Court
April 4 – #redhead.with.book – book spotlight / giveaway
April 5 – That Bookish Princess – review of The Sky Throne / guest post / giveaway
April 5 – A Madison Mom – review of The Sky Throne / giveaway
April 8 – The Autistic Gamer – review of The High Court
April 8 – Crossroad Reviews – review of The Sky Throne / giveaway
April 9 – Crossroad Reviews – review of The High Court / giveaway
April 9 – Truly Trendy – review of The Sky Throne
April 10 – That Bookish Princess – review of The High Court / giveaway
April 10 – Life as Leels – review of The High Court
April 11 – Character Madness and Musings – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
April 11 – Sefina Hawke’s Books – review of The High Court
April 12 – Celticlady’s Reviews – book spotlight / giveaway
April 12 – A Madison Mom – review of The High Court / giveaway
April 15 – T’s Stuff – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
April 15 – Adventures Thru Wonderland – review of The High Court / interview/ giveaway
April 16 – Rockin’ Book Reviews – review of The High Court / guest post / giveaway
April 16 – Truly Trendy – review of The High Court
April 17 – Bookworm for Kids – review of The High Court / giveaway
April 17 – Library of Clean Reads – review of The High Court / giveaway
April 18 – Christine’s Book Corner – book spotlight 
April 18 – Books for Books – review of The High Court
April 19 – Nighttime Reading Center – review of The High Court / giveaway
April 23 – A Mama’s Corner of the World – review of The High Court / giveaway
April 24 – Svetlana’s Reads and Views –  review of The High Court
April 24 – Literary Flits – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
April 25 – Lisa-Queen of Random – book spotlight / giveaway
April 26 – FUONLYKNEW – review of The Sky Throne / giveaway
April 29 – FUONLYKNEW – review of The High Court / giveaway
April 30 – Dab of Darkness Book Reviews – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway

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The Sky Throne characters

Book spotlight: Robot, Take the Wheel: The Road to Autonomous Cars and the Lost Art of Driving by Jason Torchinsky

Book Details:
Book Title:  Robot, Take the Wheel: The Road to Autonomous Cars and the Lost Art of Driving by Jason Torchinsky
Category:  Adult Non-Fiction, 207 pages
Genre: Automobile Technology, Car enthusiasts
Publisher:  Apollo Publishers
Release date:  May 7, 2019
Tour dates: May 6 to 24, 2019
Content Rating:  PG (this book is accessible to everyone)

Book Description:

From the witty senior editor of Jalopnik, Gizmodo Media’s acclaimed website devoted to cars, technology, and more, comes a revealing, savvy, and humorous look at self-driving cars.

Self-driving cars sound fantastical and futuristic and yet they’ll soon be on every street in America. Whether it’s Tesla’s Autopilot, Google’s Waymo, Mercedes’s Distronic, or Uber’s 24,000 modified Volvos, companies across industries and throughout the world are developing autonomous cars. Even Apple, not to be outdone, is rumored to be creating its own technology too.

In Robot, Take the Wheel, Jason Torchinsky explores the state of the automotive industry. Through wit and wisdom, he explains why autonomous cars are being made and what the future of automated cars is. Torchinsky encourages us to consider autonomous cars as an entirely new machine, something beyond cars as we understand them today. He considers how we’ll get along with these robots that will take over our cars’ jobs, what they will look like, what sorts of jobs they may do, what we can expect of them, how they should act, ethically, how we can have fun with them, and how we can make sure there’s still a place for those of us who love to drive with manual or automatic transmission.

This unique and highly readable volume is brimming with industry insider information and destined to be a conversation starter. It’s a must-have for car lovers, technology geeks, and everyone who wants to know what’s on the road ahead.

Buy Links:
Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble ~ Indiebound ~ Book Depository
About the Author:

JASON TORCHINSKY is senior editor of Jalopnik, a website devoted to news and opinions about all things automotive. As a writer and artist, he is known for his articles, artworks, talks, and videos about cars, technology, and culture. He has raced cars, wrecked cars, and driven possibly one of the most dangerous cars ever made with the King of Cars on the Emmy-winning Jay Leno’s Garage. He lives in North Carolina.

Connect with the author: Twitter

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Book review: The Survivors by Kate Furnivall

Title: The Survivors by Kate Furnivall

Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK (Sept. 6 2018)

Pages: 400

Genre: historical fiction

Description

Germany, 1945. Klara Janowska and her daughter Alicja have walked for weeks to get to Graufeld Displaced Persons camp. In the cramped, dirty, dangerous conditions they, along with 3,200 others, are the lucky ones. They have survived and will do anything to find a way back home.

But when Klara recognises a man in the camp from her past, a deadly game of cat and mouse begins.

He knows exactly what she did during the war to save her daughter.

She knows his real identity.

What will be the price of silence? And will either make it out of the camp alive?

Buy the book: Amazon.ca Barnes & Noble

Kate Furnivall

About the author:

Kate Furnivall had the shock proof of her life when she learned just over a decade ago that she was part Russian. Not a demure all-English rose after all then. It changed her life. Triggered those Russian genes into action. Inspired by her grandmother’s dramatic St Petersburg life-story at the time of the Soviet Revolution, Kate wrote her first historical novel, The Russian Concubine, which hit the New York Times Bestseller list and was sold in 25 countries.

It hooked Kate into the thrill of setting powerful emotional stories in dramatic far-off locations. She took to travelling with a vengeance – Russia, China, Malaya, Egypt, Bahamas, Italy, France. All became backdrops for her sweeping tales set in the first half of the 20th century when the world was in turmoil.

Research trips were riddled with wonderful adventures and weird discoveries that enrich her books. She delves into dark themes as well as intense love stories, and strips her characters to the bare bones in times of crisis to see what they are made of. Her books are full of tension, twists and thrills, atmosphere and romance.

Kate was raised in Wales, went to London Uni and worked in advertising in London. She now lives in blissful Devon with her husband, snuggled up close to Agatha Christie’s house for inspiration. She has two sons and a manky cat.

Kate has written ten historical novels, two of which have been shortlisted for the RNA Historical Novel of the Year Award.

Connect with the author: WebsiteTwitterFacebook

Review

An intelligent and dramatic description of life in a displaced persons camp after WWII. Klara and Alicja Janowska are survivors of the horrors of war and find themselves living in Graufeld Displaced Persons Camp. Klara is fiercely protective of her young but fearless daughter Alicja. She has no protector, her pilot husband a casualty of the war.

Although life in the camp is already fraught with danger and privations, a man from Klara’s past enters the camp under an assumed identity, a man who poses a real threat to their safety. Unable to leave the camp, she goes on high alert to gather her friends closely around her to protect Alicja as she formulates a plan.

Despite the apparent hopelessness of their situation, a gentle Frenchman, Davide, who has also suffered privation through the loss of his family and his health, assumes the role of friend and protector. Having long lost the ability to trust, Klara is drawn to him. Could her plan put her newfound friendship in jeopardy?

Impeccably written, this story wraps itself around you as you follow Klara from her past to her present. You don’t want to let them go.

Book spotlight: From An-Other Land by Tanushree Ghosh

Book Details:

Book Title:  From An-Other Land by Tanushree Ghosh
Category:  Adult Fiction, 224 pages
Genre:  Short Stories, Immigrant Stories, Literary
Publisher:  Readomania Publishing
Release date:  December 4, 2018
Format available for review:  print & ebook (PDF, gifted Kindle copy)
Will send print books out:  USA & Canada
Tour dates: March 18 to April 5, 2019
Content Rating: PG + M (It has mature themes in the backdrop in some stories, but doesn’t have explicit language or description)

Book Description:

Never has been the conversation on immigration more pertinent than now, post 2016 US elections. From cancellation of refugee protection and zero tolerance to undercurrent crackdown on H visas to the border wall – the resurgence of nationalism is hitting the globalized population head-on.

But what is immigration today? A question of life or death – fleeing of persecution? A compulsion? Or a mere pursuance of privilege? And what is the US today? A land of opportunities? Or a quagmire impossible to comprehend, inherently racist and selfish?

From An-Other Land dives deep into immigration today for the diaspora and its many facets with characters who seek to define themselves in an intercultural setting that is less and less sure of itself. A reality check and a guide for anyone who wants to understand the modern-day US.

Buy the Book:
Amazon
Add to Goodreads

Tanushree Ghosh

Meet the Author:

Tanushree Ghosh works in Tech and has a Doctorate in Chemistry from the Cornell University. She is also a social activist and writer. Her blog posts, op-eds, poems, and stories are in effort to provoke thoughts, especially towards issues concerning women and social justice.

She is a contributor (past and present) to several popular e-zines (incl. The Huffington Post US, The Logical Indian, Youth Ki Awaaz, Tribune India, Women’s Web, and Cafe Dissensus). Her literary resume includes poems and stories featured in national and international magazines (Words Pauses and Noises, UK; TUCK, Glimmer Train Honorable mention) as well as inclusion in seven anthologies such as Defiant Dreams (Oprah 2016 reading list placeholder) and The Best Asian Short Stories 2017 (published out of Singapore by Kitaab). Her first single author book, From An-Other Land is on immigration.

She has held different leadership roles in non-profits (ASHA and AID India) and is the founder and director of Her Rights (www.herrights.website), a 501(3) c non-profit committed to furthering the cause of gender equality. She is often an invited speaker or panelist for both corporate and non-profit endeavors.

Connect with the author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook

BOOK TOUR SCHEDULE:

March 18 – Corinne Rodrigues – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
March 18 – Christine’s Book Corner – book spotlight
March 18 – Adventurous Jessy – book spotlight / giveaway 
March 19 – Library of Clean Reads – review / giveaway
March 19 – #redhead.with.book – book spotlight / giveaway 
March 20 – ebook addicts – book spotlight / giveaway
March 20 – Fantastic Feathers – book spotlight
March 21 – Mystery Suspense Reviews – book spotlight
March 22 – Sefina Hawke’s Books – review
March 25 – Svetlana’s Reads and Views – review
March 26 – JB’s Bookworms with Brandy Mulder – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
March 27 – Amy’s Booket List – review / guest post / giveaway
March 28 – Sahar’s Blog – review
March 29 – Almost a Reader – review
April 1      – A Mama’s Corner of the World – review / giveaway
April 2      – A Madison Mom – review / giveaway
April 3      – Literary Flits – review / giveaway
April 4      – Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus – review / giveaway
April 5      – Books for Books – review

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Book spotlight: Accessible Fine Dining – The Art of Creating Exciting Food in Your Everyday Kitchen by Noam Kostucki, with Chef Quentin Villers

Book Details:

Book Title:  Accessible Fine Dining – The Art of Creating Exciting Food in Your Everyday Kitchen by Noam Kostucki, with Chef Quentin Villers
Category: Adult Non-fiction ,  128 pages
Genre:  Creative Cookbook / Fine Dining
Publisher:  Amazon
Release date: Dec 10, 2018
Tour dates: Jan 7 to 31, 2019
Content Rating: G

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Book Description:

​Six months after opening my first restaurant, one of my dishes was selected as “25 dishes to travel around the world”, featuring me next to culinary legend Heston Blumenthal.

Exciting and healthy food doesn’t have to be complicated, and it doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. Over the years, I have seen some of the most exciting dishes come from the simplest kitchens and the most modest ingredients. The purpose of this book is to focus our attention away from the distractions of fancy kitchen equipment and luxury produce and instead focus our attention towards ingenuity in the kitchen and culinary innovation.

For some strange reason, cooking is taught in books as a series of mechanical steps to follow and repeat with precision. I see cooking as a creative art like painting or playing music: it is the freedom of expression that is most interesting to me. When we create from an artistic perspective, we give birth to something new and potentially magical.

The purpose of this book is not to teach you specific recipes, because the ingredients you will find in your local organic food market will likely not be the same as the ones we see here. Nor is the purpose to show you how to imitate us.The purpose of this book is to guide you into thinking about your dishes in a way that elevates them to a fine dining level, from ingredients which are easily accessible to you. Naturally, you will find a few recipes, but most importantly you will find a new way to look at food.

We will share how we think about food shopping, searching for unusual ingredients, the combinations of flavors, techniques, textures, nutritional value, and of course, plating. The purpose of this book is to guide you to become a more exciting, creative and adventurous version of yourself in the kitchen. What separates a craft from an art form is the story behind it; cooking is a craft, while fine dining is an art form.

If you want to create fine dining dishes, start to focus your attention on the different stories a dish can tell. Some stories can be told through your cooking, and others are told through words. Taking the time to present your dishes before people eat is crucial to creating anticipation for the food they will eat.

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​Buy the Book:
Amazon
Add to Goodreads
Watch the trailer:​

Noam Kostucki

Meet the Authors:

Noam Kostucki

MY NAME IS NOAM KOSTUCKI AND I CREATE SPACES FOR MAGIC TO HAPPEN.
I was an awkward child, so I changed school 5 times. I spent most of my life trying to please others, and be the kind of person I believed everyone else wanted me to be. I wasn’t happy and I struggled to get what I want. Everything changed when I started changing.

I spent the last 12 years creating the life I dream of. I’ve had the privilege to be homeless twice, and to speak at Harvard about entrepreneurship. I have grown to be myself more fearlessly than ever before. I am now surrounded by people I love, and who love me.

I traveled over 40 countries, and I’ve helped over 25,000 people create magic. For example Patryk Wezowski who raised $500,000 in 8 weeks and Esther Perel who gave the 30th most viewed TED talk. Some less public successes include a blind eyed student who experienced his blind eye for the first time and a journalist who left an abusive relationship.

As a university drop out, I was surprised when my first book (personal branding) became required reading at the Fashion Institute of Technology in NYC, as well as receiving the UK Business Speaker of the Year runner up award, and a honorary degree in Business from Hofstra University. As an artist, I was honored to exhibit my photography at the European Union’s Innovation Conference.

My most recent venture is HiR Fine Dining, a jungle culinary adventure. I create a discovery menu of 7 plates per person for groups of up to 12 people. HiR Fine Dining became #1 fine dining on TripAdvisor in Tamarindo within the first month. Within 6 months one of my plates was selected out of 40,000 restaurants by OpenTable as one of “25 dishes to travel around the world for”. I was invited to speak at Chateau 1525, Costa Rica’s most reputable cooking school and our guest chefs include a blind chef who traveled all the way the United Kingdom.


Quentin Villers

Quentin Villers

Quentin has been cooking in restaurant since the age of 18. He helped his brother build a restaurant for which they received a Michelin Star. Quentin moved to Costa Rica to consult for hotels and restaurants. He managed 3 of the 4 restaurants at Hotel Nayara in La Fortuna, for which he lead a team of over 20 people to be selected to enter Relais & Chateaux, a prestigious network of unique luxury hotels with exquisite cuisine. Quentin is a regular guest chef at HiR Fine Dining and consults for a number of fine dining restaurants in Costa Rica.

Connect with the Authors: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Instagram 

BOOK SPOTLIGHT TOUR SCHEDULE:

​Jan 7   – Literary Flits – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
Jan 7   – #redhead.with.book – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 7   – found in words – book spotlight
Jan 8   – A Mama’s Corner of the World – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 8   – 100 Pages A Day – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 9   – Rockin’ Book Reviews – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
Jan 9   – Seaside Book Nook – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
Jan 10 – Library of Clean Reads – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
Jan 11 – Amy’s Booket List – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
Jan 14 – Cat’s Corner – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
Jan 14 – Olio by Marilyn – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
Jan 15 – Locks, Hooks and Books – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
Jan 16 – Icefairy’s Treasure Chest – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 17 – Words And Peace – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 18 – StoreyBook Reviews – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
Jan 21 – Books Direct – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
Jan 21 – Lukten av trykksverte – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 22 – A Holland Reads – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 23 – Laura’s Interests – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
Jan 24 – Cheryl’s Book Nook – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 25 – Celticlady’s Reviews – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
Jan 28 – Bound 2 Escape – bok spotlight / giveaway
Jan 29 – Books for Books – book spotlight
Jan 30 – The Autistic Gamer – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 31 – ​Stormy Vixen’s Book Reviews – book spotlight / giveaway


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Book review: Marine (Halley’s Casino Book 2) by Mark JG Fahey

Book Details:

Book Title:  Marine (Halley’s Casino Book 2) by Mark JG Fahey
Category:  Adult Fiction,  378 pages
Genre:   Science Fiction / Humor
Publisher:  Self-published
Release date:  Oct 20, 2016
Format available for review:  print & ebook (mobi, PDF, ePub)
Will send print books out:  USA and Canada
Tour dates: Jan 2 to 31, 2019
Content Rating: PG (No f-words, mild violence, readable for all ages 12 and up)

Book Description:

Nebula Yorker (“Neb” to his friends) finds himself on the water planet of Marine in a race to recover a long lost Triopelian Star Chart he previously never knew existed.

Along the way Neb encounters new friends and a villainous brother and sister team bent on doing whatever they must to get their hands on the star chart first – including mayhem and murder.

One cocky android, one imbibed professor, one universal(ly) renowned scientist and one ice breathing sassy Water Dragon make Neb wonder whether the past 3 years travelling with Halley’s Casino was just a peaceful lull?

Who will find the star chart first? What are the implications if Neb doesn’t? And what does a Water Moon have to do with all of this?

​John Lennon seems to know….

This book is part of a trilogy. The author is also willing to offer the first book Halley’s Casino for review.
​Just choose this option on the sign-up form.

Halley's Casino by Mark JG Fahey

Book Details:

Book Title:  Halley’s Casino by Mark JG Fahey
Category:  Adult Fiction,  304 pages
Genre:   Science Fiction / Humor
Publisher:  Self-published
Release date:  Jan 25, 2016
Format available for review:  print & ebook (mobi, PDF, ePub)
Will send print books out:  USA and Canada
Tour dates: Jan 2 to 31, 2019
Content Rating: PG (No profanity,  readable for all ages 12 and up, pure fun and witty story)

Book Description:

Halley’s Casino is set in 1986. 26-year old Nebula Yorker (Neb to his friends), is patiently awaiting the return of Halley’s Comet. He is about to discover that the world is not what it seems.

Upon the arrival of Halley’s Comet, Neb is confronted by a mysterious stranger who literally swoops out of the night sky. What happens next will change the course of Neb’s life and that of all he befriends.

This stranger (Mr. Tict) reveals to Neb that Halley’s is not a comet at all, but an Intergalactic Casino that has been posing as a comet for countless years. Mr. Tict is the Concierge of the Casino and he has come back to Earth to recruit Neb as his assistant.

What happens next is an eye-opening experience for young Neb that no one on Earth can imagine. It can only be explained by watching old Star Trek reruns, while eating cheese sandwiches and drinking hot chocolate. From androids with attitude to a vast assortment of alien beings and historic individuals, with a touch of time travel from ancient Babylon to 1757 London and back to Rome of 12 BCE, Neb soon learns that his past, present and future have always lain in the stars above.

It’s a rock and roll ride chock full of chaos, a formidable nemesis, drama, satire, humour, death and new beginnings, with revelations that Neb never saw coming.

Even John Lennon is amused!

Starting out on a quiet evening of star gazing, Nebula Yorker finds himself caught up in the most extraordinary time travel and planet saving adventure of a lifetime.

​And that’s only the beginning of what is to come.


Mark JG Fahey

Meet the Author:

​Mark JG Fahey is not an alien, contrary to what you may have heard, though he swears he has been to space. Mark has dabbled in various undertakings throughout his illustrious career, from on-air hosting/reporter/stand-up comic to messenger for the Prime Minister of Canada. Mark also holds a degree in Restaurant Services. His family and friends can attest to his excellent cooking skills. Born in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, Mark was raised and still resides in Aylmer, Quebec, Canada.  Halley’s Casino is the first book in the Halley’s Casino trilogy.

​Halley’s Casino: 3rd place winner in a worldwide competition with World’s Best Story 2017 . Finalist and 3rd place winner with the Independent Author Network October 2018 and is also a finalist for the inaugural Canadian Book Club Awards 2018.

Connect with the Author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook

REVIEW:
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Our space opera continues with Nebula Yorker (Neb) as assistant concierge on Halley’s Comet.  He’s happy with his new job and has made some great friends.
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Again, the author’s imagination continues to astonish me.  I’m not a big scifi reader (although I’m a scifi fan) but this story is so off-the-wall and unpredictable that I can’t put it down.  I love all the characters!
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The plot thickens as Neb learns of a missing star chart.  Not exactly sure what the star chart is, he embarks on a recovery mission with his friends to locate it.   Villains, evil politicians and enormous sea monsters may prove his undoing!  Be prepared to scream!  (or gasp!)
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Not a standalone book, you need to read Halley’s Comet first to familiarize yourself with the plot and characters.  Have a wonderful trip around the universe!
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Looking to the Stars from Old Algiers and Other Long Stories Short by Jan Risher

Book Details:

Book Title: Looking to the Stars from Old Algiers and Other Long Stories Short
Author: Jan Risher
Category:  Adult Non-Fiction,  312 pages
Genre:  Memoir/collection of essays that create a narrative
Publisher:  Sans Souci Press, imprint of University of Louisiana Press
Release date:   Oct 9, 2018
Format available for review:  print and ebook (ePUB, PDF)
Willing to send print books to: USA & Canada
Tour dates:  Dec 3 to 14, 2018
Content Rating: G

Book Description:

Jan Risher took the long way to get from Mississippi to Louisiana with stops in between in Slovakia, Mexica, China, Burkina Faso and more than 40 other countries. Since moving to Louisiana, she has been a Sunday columnist for The Daily Advertiser and has written a column every single Sunday since 2002.

Looking to the Stars from Old Algiers and Other Long Stories Short is the collection of columns written over 15 years. Arranged in chronological order, the collection creates a narrative of one woman’s aim to build her family, build up her community and weave the stories and lessons learned from the past into the present.

From her family’s move to Louisiana, adoption of a daughter from China, covering Hurricane Katrina, travels near and far, author Jan Risher attempts, sometimes failing and sometimes succeeding, to do her small part to make the world a better place.

Jan Risher

Meet the Author:

Jan Risher is an award-winning journalist and investigative reporter. She was managing editor of The Times of Acadiana. Before and after her time as a full-time journalist, she was an English teacher. She has taught English near and far, in its most basic and most lyrical forms. She continues her career as a freelance writer and now owns Shift Key, a content marketing and public relations firm. She, her husband and their two daughters have made their home on the banks of the Vermilion River.

Connect with Jan:   Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Pinterest ~ Instagram

REVIEW:
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Partly memoir, partly newspaper column articles, this was a delightful read from the onset.  Jan Risher has a way of putting you at ease as you read the accounts of her travels and family life.  She has a way of making even the mundane interesting.  I bookmarked several pages that I wanted to read again.
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The book is divided into short segments chronicling moments from her family life as well as her work as a journalist.    I especially enjoyed the columns when she talks about raising her daughters, from the adoption of a little girl (Piper)  from China and the challenges and realities she faced when she was covering the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
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I would have loved to have had a paper copy of this book to keep and read over again (as opposed to a digital copy).
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Book review: Journeys of a Lifetime by National Geographic

  • Title and author:  Journeys of a Lifetime, Second Edition: 500 of the World’s Greatest Trips by National Geographic, George Stone
  • Publisher:  National Geographic
  • Date published:  October 23, 2018
  • Pages:  416
  • Genre:  Travel, reference, pictorial, guidebook

DESCRIPTION:  

Featuring 120 new destinations, this best-selling inspirational travel guide reveals 500 celebrated and lesser-known destinations around the globe, from ocean cruises in Antarctica to horse treks in the Andes. Completely revised and updated for its 10th anniversary.

Compiled from the favorite trips of National Geographic’s legendary travel writers, this fully updated, 10th anniversary edition of Journeys of a Lifetime spans the globe to highlight the best of the world’s most celebrated and lesser-known sojourns. Offering a diverse array of possibilities, every continent and possible form of transport is covered, illustrated with glorious color photographs. With 16 new pages; new destinations like Cartegena, Colombia; and updated information throughout, this timely new edition is the perfect resource for travelers who crave adventurous trips–from trekking the heights of Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania to mountain biking in Transylvania–and those searching for more specific experiences (the world’s top small cruises, hot new museums around the world, secrets for following in the footsteps of film and TV heroes, and more). Each chapter features stunning photography, full-color maps, and practical tips, including how to get there, when to visit, and how to make the most of your journey.

Informative and inspiring, this luxurious volume is a lifelong resource that readers will treasure for years to come.

BUY THE BOOK:   Amazon | Hive.co.uk | Amazon.com

REVIEW:  This six pound reference book is a veritable guide to pretty much anyplace you want to explore and how you want to do it.  Not everyone travels the same way or wants to do the same thing so this book breaks down trips and destinations into sections that will appeal to different travelers.

Each page highlights a destination with a brief (not exhaustive) summary, advice about when to go, how long, when to plan, inside information and a list of websites to visit for more information.  There is also a small map with tidbits of information on the side panel.  Naturally, photographs fill the book.

Here are a few examples of different types of trips:

Are you a foodie?  Chapter 6 teases you with different foodie tours

Kentucky Bourbon Trail (page 249)

Blue Mountain Coffee (page 254

Thailand Cuisine Tour (page 259)

Love trains?  Chapter 3 provides information for the train lover – whether luxurious or spartan.

Mexico, EL Chepe (page 113)

Vietnam, The Reunification Express (page 119)

India, The Palace on wheels (page 125)

Intrepid Hiker?  Chapter 4 – Put on your hiking books and follow some of these trails (both city and wilderness trips)!

Vermont, the Appalachian Trail (149)

Utah, Paria Canyon (153)

Hawai’i, The Kalalau Trail (page 157)

As a world traveler and photographer, I’ve been to many of the places I read about in the book.  Because there are so many destinations featured in this guide, there isn’t really a lot of information per subject.  That’s where you have fun doing your own research!  I’ve already tagged a few pages of destinations I would like to visit!

I highly recommend this guide for any intrepid (or non-intrepid) explorer who wants to explore places both far flung or closer to home.

 
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