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How to Fall Properly

Shane Marlow and Denver – yes please – especially Denver. I haven’t read the previous book in this series so this was my introduction to this pair – but what novel doesn’t like a hero with a working dog?

I know that a lot of soldiers have come back from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars in the US with PTSD and that many of them have really struggled with it as they have not had the right treatment, for whatever reason. And this leads to problems in their working and personal life. A dog can be an emotional support as well as useful partner in work and they have been recognised as such worldwide – though quite how a turkey could be I am not sure –  Now I could also get pot bellied pigs, monkeys and miniature horses, but bearded dragons, kangaroos, peacocks – lots of birds including ducks too – rodents, spiders, reptiles, ferrets  – and the list continues have all been claimed as emotional support – especially to get them on a plane! See https://bestlifeonline.com/emotional-support-animals/ for 30 of the weirdest claims.

 But despite the wide variety of animals being used for emotional support these days – myself I prefer the cat variety! And have 2 Maine Coons now to provide me with some love.. and stroking soothes both of us.

There is also, of course, the story of Becca and how she breaks the law – for a good reason – but this where we have problems.

I saw a discussion on how TV makes law breaking ‘for the right reason’ become a justifiable crime and people shouldn’t be punished for it. This is also a prevalent them in many novels. It makes for a good story of course – especially if the criminal either gets punished and comes out to help other prisoners onto the ‘right’ road; or the criminal finds the right path for themselves and gets forgiven or – well you know what I mean. Sometimes they continue to break the law and as readers we cheer for them – as they are ‘doing good’ and the law is wrong. But who are we to judge? And when are ‘we’ the right ‘we’ to judge? And then we start getting onto a very sticky wicket indeed and we can talk about the societal contract and how society can judge right from wrong. But what if the majority agree with a law that you personally don’t?

I’m not going further into this, but I am beginning to wonder if society’s fiction, whether on a screen or in a book/written form, is, in some way, mind washing us to a moral code that makes it difficult for us to judge right from wrong.

All the above notwithstanding. I enjoyed reading this story and liked it enough to give it 3 stars. I’m detracting 1 star for my above discussion on law.

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Too much hoodoo voodoo

fail - Too much hoodoo voodoo
This was a 4 Bookset offered in a limited Kindle format with the original paperbacks no longer available. These were first published in 2014 which gives the author some credit in her writing as she may well have developed her style since. though I have not read any of them.
...
I read book 1 and Thought Ok, this may be one of those authors that gets better as the series progresses! A 3 star cozy.

But Oh? Book 2.... Whilst I appreciated that the author does do her research well, Book 2 went over the top. The whole interview with the Professor about Govis was one step too far. There is accuracy, and unnecessary confusion.
In terms of accuracy for instance, It was OK to mention eating in a posh place in Bray-as Bray is where Heston Blumenthal has 2 places, and other Michelin starred eating establishments cluster there. - I once lived there for 2 weeks in the middle of a hose move. A tiny village with several places to eat if you could afford them, the river Thames and a swan nesting on a slipway, an antique store open 2 afternoons a week and a similar hair-dresser. No other shops! And infrequent buses. A village scarcely inhabited. But very pretty.
I gave after book 2 - enough was enough with 3.
2 stars average for this set.

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What breed?

Oh Dear!

I read up to Part 3: The Awakening in hope, but really, this whole muscles and pheromones and falling in ‘love ‘ aka lust at first sight? Just too predictable.

I thought the writing style rather prosaic and not in any way different from 100s of other such alien abduction style books.

The heroine could have been acceptable but she was rather 2 dimensional and finding out after several ‘chapters’ that we were somewhere in Ad 3900 was just too late.

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Sea and gruesomeness

I initially had a problem with this book – I was about to give up about 10% of the way through – much sooner than normal, but then suddenly the story improved and much that had been obscure began to make senses. All after she met The Hunter.

Maddy’s father was rather more than he seemed and thus his journals were rather more than just journals of his travels. Thus they became very important and more than The Grim were after them. Although it was stated that only Maddy and her father could read them as they were in a special code. And her mother was more than just a woman from the Half Woods too. And over the course of this story, Maddy begins to learn that she is more too. Powers have been inherited from her father as well as her mother.

Is it a good story? Well it is a gruesome story and not one to read at bedtime unless you want nightmares. The author has let their imagination run riot in the ‘how awful can this creature be?’ vein of story-telling. Will I read more of this story? Probably not as it is just a bit too gruesome for me, but I would like to know that the children are rescued unharmed, more than that doesn’t bother me. 4 stars in the end.

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A Rabbi as Paladin

A review for the 3 books currently in the series. When will book 4 be published please?

For Whom the Shofar Blows (1)

A Scribe Dies in Brooklyn (2)

A Tale of Two Rabbis (3)

I enjoyed reading M-9 so much that I checked the author out. Marvin J Wolf has also written real crime and other non-fiction, but I found a really enjoyable 3 book series (so far) about Rabbi Ben the Rabbi without a Schul but acting as a Paladin, as he puts it. This being a trouble shooter for various Rabbis and their Congregations in and around America.

I would put these 3 as 4.5 stars. The first 2 better than the 3rd but still very good reading. Some extremely interesting points about the way the Jewish religion is practiced in the US – more reform – (I was brought up Orthodox), especially the fact that women were permitted to handle the Torah and read even if not an official Reform Synagogue, but yet with some religious things that I was not aware of.   But then I’m not a Rabbi! So helpful for those who want to know more about the Jewish faith – I particularly liked the explanation that Jewish people don’t need Confession and Atonement , as life is all about doing good and atoning for doing wrong immediately – helping others through deeds and living a ‘good’ life.

I am waiting for book 4 to come out – clearly the author has ideas on what it is to be like but has got side-tracked into writing M-9 etc etc.

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