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Monday, May 18, 2015

Dan Dan The Art Man's Book Reviews | Episode 21
On Both Sides by Bria Burton

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In this 20th episode I review Brandon Sanderson's awesome epic fantasy book The Hero of Ages, the final book in his Mistborn trilogy. I couldn't say enough about this book because it was so awesome. Have a listen to find out why it did a great job ending the trilogy and making it one of my all time favorite series of books.

Audiobook Pick-of-the-Week: 

Written by: James M. Lowrance
Narrated by: Dan Absalonson

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Friday, May 15, 2015

Chimera by N. J. Tanger | Book Review

Wow where to begin with this book. It was super cool! I loved the strange tale this novel told. We get to follow a kid who starts as a nobody on a planet that isn't just going nowhere but is in a dire situation. He lives on a planet where everyone is an outcast from Earth. They've all been sent to another planet to pay back a debt. The cool thing is he doesn't just sit around and accept his fate. He does something about it. Then he gets dropped, quite literally, into a really messed up situation that puts him under the power of someone else.

We also have a girl who is a young pilot with some crazy technology wired into her brain that helps her connect with and control spaceships. So she's a prodigy pilot flying at an age that isn't even legal. It's pretty sweet. She pushes her dad's ship really hard and ends up getting into trouble.

Some of the characters get chosen to be trained to man a ship back to Earth. They go through a sort of boot camp where they're pushed to their limits. The characters go through a lot and grow a ton. There's some good character development going on and you get to learn more about the characters as they're learning more about themselves.

The end of the book was my favorite part. Stuff gets crazy and you get to see some pretty cool science-fictiony, yes that's a word, technology. Characters can fly with a propulsion gadget like you've never seen. They also get into some sneaking around and non gravity situations. It was an awesome ending. This was a great YA science fiction book and I'll definitely pick up the next one.

Have you been looking for a good Science Fiction read? I know I have. I love epic fantasy but it seems to be all I'm reading and all I plan to read next. What about you? Do you have any great science fiction to recommend? I recommend Chimera. I don't think it's like anything you've read yet. Good stuff. Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, May 14, 2015

The Pisces Affair (The Prometheus Saga) by Daco
Book Review

This was a cool story. I'm a big fan of The Blacklist and this story reminded me of an episode from that hit show. I liked the juxtaposition of a formal fancy party where everything is calm and proper on the outside but meanwhile the characters know there's a planned assassination they must stop. It was fun to see the characters keep a cool outward demeanor while struggling with intense thoughts and emotions on the inside. I could feel the tension. It was awesome.

When things finally do happen it is fast and the action is quick. All of the sudden the scene is intense and guns are drawn all around. I was really surprised to see what happened.

This is a story written as part of a saga of other short stories where an alien presence interacts with the human condition over a time period that spans from the dawn of man to the present. This story is closer to the present time than other stories I've read and it came off as slick and modern. It's been fun to read these stories from different authors but still see the same being, The Prometheus as a character in all of them. It took me until about three quarters of the way through this story to realize who The Prometheus was and then it all made sense and I could recall little hints earlier in the story that pointed to this truth. It was pulled off well.

If you're in for a smart exciting read that splashes a bit of science fiction onto a Blacklist kind of story then you're in for a treat with The Pisces Affair. I had a lot of fun reading it. You will too.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Luigi's Chinese Delicatessen by Jim Vines | Book Review

I wasn't really sure what to expect with this book but it was an awesome read. I think I read it in only four sittings which is saying a lot because a) I'm really busy with two jobs and four kids, and b) it's over 300 pages long. 

I've never read a story about a screenwriter trying to make it in Hollywood, but it was a blast. Before reading the first word I was already interested. I'm a writer and I love movies. I've toyed with a script, getting up to like 13 pages, but I stick to fiction. That said I loved the parts of this story where the main character Trent got down to writing. There were tons of awesome scenes of him getting the writing done driven by inspiration, a deadline, or both. It's always cool to see how others write and even though Trent is a fictional character he sure feels real when you're reading the book. I loved seeing him struggle, and man did he struggle in this book. It made me root for him big time.

Jim Vines writes a great story. It was an easy read. The story moves at a great pace. It's not clogged up with unnecessary scenes or description. Just story. Even though the book is fairly long I sat down and before I knew it I had read like 74 pages. I think I read 5 pages for my first reading session, then knocked out the rest of the 300 or so pages in only three more reading sessions.

The crude language and sex scenes in this book weren't my cup of tea. I did appreciate, however, that the scene would always end before going into much detail. The characters acted like real people do and you get the good and bad with that. I guess when you're dealing with characters in Hollywood anything less than a bunch of jerks would be unrealistic.

I loved how the book was written in first person. It was like reading a memoir more than a fictional story which was pretty sweet. The story had a great flow and it was fun to go for a ride through Hollywood with Trent as he struggles to get his art onto the page and hopefully onto the big screen.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

The Gunslinger by Stephen King | Book Review

I've heard a lot of praise for the series of books that this one is the start of, but I did not care for it. It was extremely boring and full of purple prose. I just didn't care. I didn't care about Roland or what happened to him or the man in black. I didn't think the world was interesting. The exciting scenes were weird and gross. I just didn't care, and so I was really bored from the beginning until the end. I must just not "get" it.

Maybe I'd love later books in this series, but I'm not sure if I'll read them. I will admit the VERY end of the book made me curious and seemed to hint at some epic cool stuff to come in the later books. I might have to check them out and see what they're all about. That said Stephen King is easily one of my favorite authors and I've read loads of his other books and read just about everything new he writes. So take that for what it is. Stephen King is an amazing author, one of the best in my opinion. This one just didn't do it for me. You might love it. I thought it was dull, or should I say pedestrian? :)

Have you read this book? What about the others in the series? Am I missing out on some of the most amazing fiction out there or did this book not do it for you either? Chime in with your opinions in the comments. I'd love to hear what you have to say. Thanks for stopping by!