fantasy

Firebrandt's Legacy (book review)

 Firebrandt's Legacy by David Lee Summers (Hadrosaur Productions, 2019): I love connected stories (and anthologies), and I enjoyed Firebrandt's Legacy. These stories are reprints and you see where they've been as you get to know the characters. They grew on me through the various stories; the crew is diverse, interesting, and loyal to Firebrandt and Legacy, the ship. I like them--and I appreciated the stories with Suki's parents--especially her mother! And Firebrant's father; he added depth to that adventure--because so often there are no families in the picture. The aliens, the villains, and the Admiral all played their parts in the different stories as Legacy speeds through the stars, often with the villains and the military in hot pursuit. There is suspense, danger--and worst of all--the possibility that he might lose Legacy. There is action and mayhem (blood and guts) because he has a sword--besides his other weapons--and he knows how to use it. There is some romance as Suki decides eventually that this pirate, uh, privateer, is a hero.

fantasy

Taboo Tech update

I’m almost finished with my edits.  I came across some mistakes in spelling–not just typos. (I was careless.) I had a big dictionary on my desk slide-out shelf when working on my ms last night, and I even googled a few words. Interesting about stepsisters and step siblings. And I made other changes for various reasons. Btw, because I’ve been working on Taboo Tech for so long, the characters are roaming through my mind. Really. It’s a good thing I like them!

I’ve edited a lot of stories over the years, and I know you can keep doing it forever, and even then you’ll read the finished book and shriek and fall off your chair while clutching your hair and exclaiming–How could I miss that?!

fantasy

Book review: The Cerulean's Secret

The Cerulean is a genetically engineered cat; it's beautiful and everyone wants it, but the Why is more complicated than its obvious value. It's stolen from a cat show, and our hero, Timothy Boatright, a cabbie and would-be writer who loves Hemingway, picks up the thief with the cat and catches a glimpse of its shimmering blue tail. This meeting gets the cops on his tail, and his involvement becomes more complicated. A mother and her beautiful, mysterious daughter (the mother's mysterious also), the neighborhood gangster who's protecting him because of his mother. and dangerous corporate suits join the mix--and here comes the Little Nasty. The Big Nasty comes later, but they're both dangerous and good at tracking.

The year is 2050 and the virtual technology is dazzling. People can immerse themselves in a fascinating virtual reality world--The Mirror. Lots of imaginative inventions here, including the latest in tattoos. So, Timmy is hunted and he hunts for the reasons behind the mystery of the Cerulean cat 'cause he wants to live and get the cops--everyone and everything off his back, including the big claws, fangs, and other weapons. There are more characters upcoming--and another Big Nasty...

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fantasy

Book review: Mythicals by Dennis Meredith

Mythicals (Gryphus: 2018)

I love the way the story begins with A'eiio/Deborah squirming her way into her body suit. More interesting and fun than beginning with Jack getting drunk, thus  ensuring that no one will believe him when he attempts to tell the world that he saw a naked woman with wings. He's a drunken, jobless reporter. However, his reporter instincts make him investigate the possibility that he did see a fairy. It's not long after that that he finds that more than fairies exist on the planet. There are ogres, vampires, and more, and they're out to neutralize him because of his persistence.

I enjoyed the characters, especially the vampires, the ogre, the pixie (what a little dickens she is!), and a big, shy, furry creature who hangs out in the woods. But all those who've been exiled to this prison planet are interesting--and some are  dangerous and blood-thirsty. They're not the only villains however. Watch out for the Pilgrims, the mercenaries. and assorted inhabitants from different worlds--and this one.

And then there's the danger that climate change and pollution are bringing into the mix. Wouldn't you be upset when you learn that your planet is doomed and in more than one way? Wormholes and EMPs make good weapons. The characters and plot twists are intriguing; there's one that I never saw coming, though it's been done before. Mustn't forget the waterfront either. I won't give away more of the plot because it's a lot more fun when you don't see them coming.

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fantasy

Book review: Cracking the Camouflage Ceiling

Cracking the Camouflage Ceiling: Faith Persistence and Progress in the Army Chaplaincy During the Early Integration of Women in the Military (Paperback) by Chaplain (Colonel) Janet Yarlott Horton US Army (Ret)


Hawthorne Publishing (2017)

Janet Horton was one of the first women chaplains in the military, and she had to cope with hostility and harassment. She dealt with the military mindset and fellow chaplains, and she persevered with strength--and spiritual support. This is not a strictly chronological book, though it begins with the historical background of chaplains in America and ends with the attack on the Pentagon on 9/11 (photos of the Pentagon are included) and her retirement, along with her thoughts about her journey.

She covers the ongoing resistance to women chaplains, sexual harassment, rape, and other issues. At one point--and this was at the Pentagon earlier--after a series of incidents, she asked if "... someone was giving all the men testosterone shots at the door." She dealt with ethical issues and women's uniforms. She realized skirts weren't practical after the helicopter incident and switched to pants; she had a Korean tailor (she was in Korea at the time) design the pants to match her jacket She had to get an accommodation, and this helped other service women too.

Fascinating historical background. We've come a long way, and yet... Worth reading though sometimes annoying and unbelievable what women endured. I was impressed by what she accomplished. She retired as a colonel in the US Army, but there's more to her career than that. She helped make changes and hopes to see more in the future. (See the Afterword.) The book includes a glossary of military terms and color photos and a drawing of the Pentagon layout...
fantasy

Joy's western novel: Detour Trail

Detour Trail:  After being dumped by the wagon master of the train she and her murdered uncle were traveling with, Lorrie Emerson must form her own wagon train; she recruits those needing her help–a brother and sister, a family, and a couple of escaping slaves. Lorrie and her party slog through mud and mountain passes before taking a detour. Because the family desperately needed help, Lorrie must leave the trail with her small group of wagons, fighting off thieves, storms, and ambushes along the way. Finding supplies isn’t easy either, especially during blizzards. However, she makes friends along the way, and Jake, the heroic mule, joins her train too.

Later, Lorrie rescues Barrett Lee. After this man from the wilderness recovers, he and Gray Cloud the wolf leave–with a push from her. Will he return? Will these two independent people make room for each other in their lives? And would he let her keep her independence as she continues to take on more adventures? Detour Trail