Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Try Fear by James Scott Bell, Book Review & Giveaway

This is the third book written by Mr. Bell and the first one I've read. It reads quite well as a stand alone novel. I'm sure those of you who have read the earlier books (Try Dying and Try Darkness) will be looking forward to getting your hands on this one.

Ty Buchanan is no longer a big trial lawyer. He's living in a small trailer next to the Church that Sister Mary Veritas works for. She's his investigative assistant. And all he really takes on as cases now are folks within the church who need some help. No more big money. No more limelight. And he's content with that.

When he's asked to defend a guy who has been picked up wearing no more than a g-sting and a Santa Hat and failing the drunk test, he does it for the mother. And he manages to get him off by reading and knowing case law.

Unfortunately, not long afterwards, Carl (the drunk) is found dead. And his brother is accused of murdering him. So he now has a new client.

If that wasn't enough to occupy his time, Sister Mary is getting threatening emails. He then begins trying to trace those and determine who is trying to scare her and why.

And one more wrinkle, he finds himself falling for Sister Mary, and has put those feelings aside because nun's don't marry.

Of course, he has the beautiful deputy city attorney trying to court him, so he's not without a love interest.

All of a sudden his case is getting media attention and things are getting out of hand on all sides.

To see how he resolves all his difficulties and who is really guilty of these crimes, you'll need to read the book.

It read fast, was entertaining, and I'll be watching for more by Mr. Bell.

If you'd like my copy of this ARC, post a comment here on the blog and email me at info NOSPAM @bookfaerie.com (remove the spaces and NOSPAM) with your name and address and tell me why you'd like it.

Cell Block Z Ghostface Killah - Book Review

This is a graphic novel done with Chris Walker, Shauna Garb, and Marlon Chapman. The artwork is dramatic, the story line violent. This is NOT a comic book for children.

Dennis is a boxer by trade, and while he almost won his last big match, almost is not good enough. But it does get the eye of folks further up the food chain who think he has a hell of a right...

When he is suddenly picked by the police and accused of murder, he has no idea what they are talking about. But when a video shows him committing the murder, he is found guilty. He knows he's innocent, but all prisoners say that.

Once he's incarcerated, he begins hearing about Cell Block Z, and how if you fight well and hard, you can get help appealing your case. He's tempted, but has some hesitation. But the system knows how to drive you to do it.

The fights are very graphic and very violent. If he doesn't fight the big fight, they'll kill his only inmate friend in the prison.

Beyond the fighting and betting done by prison officials, there's another little enterprise going on that the only honest guard runs across. However, he's not ruthless like the other guards, and he'll have to face them when he comes out the door...

This book will keep your young adult male reading until the end!

A Separate Country by Robert Hicks - Review and Giveaway

This is a fictional account of General John Hood, who was one of the most respected generals of the Confederate Army. The novel discusses his life after the war.

He was a strong General who made tough decisions. During the course of his time in the Army, he lost the use of his left arm and his right leg. But he kept on with his duties until the end of the war.

John goes to New Orleans where he meets a young woman who is determined to marry him. He finds her attractive and they eventually have a family of 11 children. She is everything he is not - and he finds himself changing with time.

What he thought was important before now seems insignificant, maybe even wrong. Anna Marie's friends all teach him something about a life far different from any he experienced before and, with the passage of time, he begins to change his beliefs.

But he still has to fight for everything he has and wants throughout his life. There are good years, there are bad years, and there are years of no hope. But he keeps on going, motivated by a need to do good to make up for the younger years.

Times were not easy in New Orleans after the war for anyone. The black people living there were viewed as "niggers" and constantly persecuted. Yellow fever was a frequent visitor.

This is a good overview of how life was in New Orleans after the Civil War.

If you'd like my ARC of this book, leave a comment here on my blog, and email me at info NOSPAM @bookfaerie.com (take the NOSPAM and spaces out of the email) with your name and address and tell me why.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Dead Men's Boots by Mike Carey - Review & Giveaway

This is the first book I've read by Mr. Carey. In some ways, he reminds me of A. Lee Martinez - they both use fantasy characters and both write a good romp of a book.

Felix Castor is his main character, and his sidekicks are a succubus named Juliet (that he almost loved and lost - and he would have lost even himself if he had succumbed) and a zombie friend who is good with computers and investigative work. Felix himself is a freelance exorcist, so it's quite a cast of characters.

It all starts when a friend's widow wants to stop a lawyer from cremating her husband's corpse - his final instructions to her were different. Then add in the fact that another friend, who is now possessed by a demon, has caregiver issues. And it just may be that long dead serial killers are coming back to life.

As he tries to deal with all these problems, he also has folks trying to kill him because he's an exorcist, so it's a very busy plot with lots of action.

I enjoyed it and would recommend it to those who like a lot of action and can let their imaginations wander.

If you would like to have my review copy, leave a comment here on the blog, and then right to me at infoNOSPAM@bookfaerie.com (take the no spam out) with your name and address and tell me why you'd like the book. I'll pick a winner in about a week.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Odds and Ends from Bookselling

Just some little observations from my desk where I list books for you...

I bought some western stock from another dealer and when I was listing the books last week, I found address labels in some. The lady who owned them used to live in Las Cruces! Then she moved to California. And I bought them from a dealer in New Jersey and brought them back to Las Cruces - ironic, eh?

On Sunday, my neighbors older son brought over his daughter to stay with Grandma for a while. They had purchased her a small umbrella to protect her from the sun. So Dad opens the SUV door, and she steps out, then opens her umbrella, and walks regally across the road and up to Grandma's backdoor. She's about three, and very self important. So it was almost dark, she had the umbrella and she was going to use it!

I entered a contest online and won! I got a book, The Edge of the World, a CD of music which is quite haunting and tells the story line of the novel, and (my favorite part) I got a telescope, too! It came in its own little box and both the box and the telescope have the book's title printed on it in gold. What fun!

Yesterday I listed some knitted doll clothes booklets and they were published in Sherwood Park, Alberta, Canada. That's the same place a woman who was going to make a doll for me had refused to return my crocheted dress that my Grandmother had made for me. (She was going to dress the doll in it. Never got the doll or my down payment on it back.) I finally wrote to the postal service up there telling them it was postal fraud. The Canadian Postal Service sent me to the Royal Mounted Police. I wrote them a letter giving them the information and the lady's name and address. (This had been going on for about three years now - she just ignored me. Even when I sent her a registered letter.) The RCMP did me proud. They went and knocked on her door and told her to return the dress! She did, too. I love the RCMP.

All these little stories come from sitting right here listing books.

Today I listed another interesting craft booklet:

Angora Hats Fashions in Wool Leaflet 97Author Name: Hilde Fuchs

Title: Angora Hats Fashions in Wool Leaflet 97

Publisher: 1962

Seller ID: 019936

Craft leaflet, two pages. Very good condition, bottom right corner has been bumped. Includes: Pillbox, knitted beret, popcorn pillbox, knitted hat.

Knitted Hats

Price = 8.00 USD



When's the last time you wore a pillbox hat?

Wonder what I'll find to list tomorrow?

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Ravens by George Dawes Green

Have you ever read The Juror? That book stuck me to my seat and made me worry until the end how it was going to turn out.

This is his new book. And it has the same thrilling pace and uncertainty in it.

You've seen ravens before? Big black birds, who like shiny things, steal they anything can, and often act like birds of prey, right?

The title on this book is very provocative to me, and the men who are the predators in this novel are just like ravens.

You take a down and out southern family struggling to make a living and get along where Mom keeps buying lottery tickets and hoping. And you take two young males who are fed up with their jobs and going cross country heading for a new life.

Then you mix in a winning lottery ticket, folks with big mouths that let the winner's names be known, and what seemed like miraculous luck and a wonderful thing turns into an experience from hell.

It all starts when a lottery official visits them - and he's a fake. He wants half of the winnings and will kill people to get it. At least his partner will.

All the characters are unique. No one's perfect. But add some religious beliefs into the mix and it gets even more strange.

George got me again with his ending. I never know exactly where he's going, but he always goes someplace I never thought of!

It's a fascinating read I ate up in one evening. I think you'd enjoy it, too!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

The Monuments Men by Robert Edsel

The subtitle on this book is: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History. It's very accurate.

It's World War II, and we know of all the sacrifice and pain that peoples of all types felt, especially Jews.

I've seen specials on the history channel about the types of arts that were stolen from the Jewish people and stored for the benefit of the German commanders and their causes (sometimes just their own enrichment). But I'd never heard of the Monuments Men!

It all started when one man took a great interest in how well art held up when it wasn't protected as it should be. He did research on that, tried to get the powers to be interested in his efforts, and had no success. But then one day, he enlisted in the service. He was not a young man, but war times make the branches of the service a bit less critical about that. They needed manpower.

And by pure chance, he meets another man who feels art has an importance and should be preserved. So they manage to get support to develop a team to go and attempt to save what hasn't been desecrated in the war zones, and to bring back any art that is movable for preservation purposes. It also became a matter of returning art to the rightful owners down the road.

The story is fascinating. It's all men except for one French woman who actually functioned as a spy while dealing with the Nazis. They are universally disrespected, thought of as unnecessary and in the way of war, and got no supplies for their work.

But the people were kind, the team persevered, and save some treasures they did. Others, they cried over the loss.

You'll recognize the names of the commanders in this book, but I'd never seen them presented in quite this context.

It catches your attention and the pages turn quickly - it's good read and teaches you at the same time.

If you'd like my copy of this ARC, please email me at infoNOSPAM@bookfaerie.com (remove the no spam) with your name and address and tell me why you'd like it. Also, you must leave a comment here on my blog.

Happy reading!

Monday, July 6, 2009

Odds and Ends in a Bookseller's World

Those of you on the other side of the pond will most likely laugh at me, but I finally found out what a jumper you wear is. I was listing vintage crochet/knit booklets and found one published in the UK that had several sweaters in it - all called jumpers! That's not what we call a jumper over here. (I know there are several terminology differences, as well as spelling differences.) But I'm delighted to now understand what I'm reading in books. I knew it was a piece of clothing, but now I even know WHAT piece of clothing!

I was listing some western americana I had purchased from another bookseller back east, and noticed that the address labels in them were for Las Cruces. It appears the lady lived here and then moved to California. Most had Las Cruces labels in them. So how did they end up back east?

I've also reached another milestone in my world of bookselling - I sold a single book for $300, my largest sale yet. I was grateful and also felt like maybe my purchase of another bookseller's inventory might have been as good an idea as I felt it would at the time. It just takes time for the dollars to return.

On another note, I've had to turn moderation back on for comments here on my blog. I didn't want to discourage anyone trying to comment, but some foreign language computer bot has found my blog and is sending me multiple comments on the pages each morning - all at the same time. So now you'll have to do the secret word to make the comment. If you can't see it well, there is a button you can push to get a new word. I think it also gives you an option for audio. So please keep commenting. I want YOUR comments, I just don't want spam.