A Night at the Dream Theater by Mark Taylor

A Night at the Dream Theater by Mark Taylor

A Night at the Dream Theater by Mark Taylor

ASIN: B06VSBR1CS

ISBN-10: 1943755183

ISBN-13: 978-1943755189

Publisher: Eleventh Hour Literary Press, 2017

 

Mark Taylor transports the reader to a whole new world…of our possible future. He builds the scene and culture from top to bottom, shoves the reader in, and then shakes them senseless with a mind-bending experience.

 

Damien is addicted to what Total Entertainment offers, but his wife doesn’t like it. He doesn’t listen to her concerns and keeps giving in to the desires only Total Entertainment, with its simulated experiences, can fulfill.

Leander is a man who finds himself without employ. In the futuristic society he lives in this means he’s without a home, food, money, or any kind of social status. In less than a day he becomes human trash with a single box of random items from his life. No one will help him, not even his family.

With the few possessions Leander has, he is able to barter a place to sleep for a few nights, while he seeks new employ. During this time, he meets and makes friends with a man named Charles (a.k.a. Chimp).

Chimp tells Leander that Total Entertainment is hiring, if he can’t find employ elsewhere, and heads off to procure a job there.

After Leander exhausts his last option – an ex-girlfriend who lives on the fringes of society – he follows up on the tip from Chimp.

Leander gets a job at Total Entertainment, in the Consternation department. His odd and surreal dreams are harvested for people like Damien to enjoy as entertainment. But with his new job comes complications more powerful than he could have ever imagined.

Together Leander and Chimp try to survive the crazy culture and lifestyle Total Entertainment provides…since their contracts with the company are absolute.

 

Mark Taylor is one of my favorite Indie authors. He has the ability to write creative works that make you think deeper about yourself and the world around you. So, in a way, I’m crying inside a little as I write this review, since there are some negative things about this title I have to consider and that affect my rating.

I’ll start with the things I like about the book… The world the author creates is clear. It’s set in a future world with new technology and a more controlled culture. The language used to achieve this was clear as far as portraying the environment and the consequences of social nonconformity.

Secondly, the main character, Leander, is being robbed of his dreams and his sleep by his job. At points in the book, I thought there were missing scene breaks to clearly mark when the character was in reality and when the character was in one of his “awakenings.” But, the more I read, the more I realized it was brilliantly designed to blur dream and reality, because the character himself, as his mind broke, didn’t know if he was in a dream or in reality. This odd and interesting format allowed me, as the reader, to take the confusing journey of the character’s broken psyche on a personal level. The confusion and frustration was creatively translated.

Now, for the downfalls of the book… There were many, many missing, extra, and wrong words in the book. The editing was horrible! So horrible, that I will never read anything from the publisher again. And I’m blaming the publisher and their editing because I’ve read many of Mark Taylor’s other works (some self-published) and they all had better editing and quality than what was presented in this book.

Also, the Damien storyline wasn’t completed. It just stops in the late middle of the book with no conclusion. The reader never finds out what happens between Damien and his wife or why she disliked him going to Total Entertainment. It’s hinted that the experiences change him, but there’s never an explanation. This makes me feel the character and his bit of story could have been left out altogether; it brought no value or meaning to the pages.

I give this book: 2 QUILLS.

2Q

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Poisoned Web by Crista McHugh

Poisoned Web by Crista McHugh

Poisoned Web by Crista McHugh

Poisoned Web (Diezian Empire Book 2) by Crista McHugh

ASIN: B00GKZNFZ6

ISBN-10: 1940559995

ISBN-13: 978-1940559995

Publisher: Crista McHugh

 

Crista McHugh rockets readers into her created world with style and grace.

 

A slave assists the investigator who is helping her mistress uncover the secrets of poison and murder. They dig deep into the past and a forbidden culture that holds not only the answers, but countless dangers for many.

Their investigation turns up way more than they planned on, but will they find the answers in time to save the life of their current emperor?

 

This book was interesting and the characters were relatable. I could tell where the story was going, but I still enjoyed the journey. There was plenty of conflict to build tension and a satisfying resolution. There were some grammar mistakes, but nothing overly major that took away from the story.

I give this book: 2 QUILLS

2Q

It’s Better This Way by Travis Hill

It’s Better This Way by Travis Hill

It’s Better This Way by Travis Hill

It’s Better This Way by Travis Hill

ASIN: B00CWV34XA

 

Evan lives in a world that has been destroyed by alien “bulls” that have destroyed and harvested minerals from major cities. He, and his partner Tony, scavenge things that are useful from the areas around them. On a trip, they come across a downed alien craft and a dead bull – it’s the closest they’ve ever come to one of the aliens and it spooks them.

They travel back to “The Farm,” where they live, and tell the leaders about what they’ve found. They decided how to handle the situation.

Meanwhile, they get a visit from someone who claims to be military, trying to recruit people for their cause: taking down the bulls.

 

When I started reading this story, I thought it had strong promise. I was quickly disappointed. There were large plot holes (just one example: at one point it was night time and then all of a sudden they’re getting ready to leave in the morning).

Next, the author explains at length that the people at The Farm, and general society, have no use for last names, and then almost every character after that point has a last name. That was a waste of words and completely inconsistent.

Then there were more inconsistencies in grammar and editing. Sometimes it was correct, and in the next paragraph it would be the wrong way (mainly in and around dialogue with dialogue tags).

The end was a total and complete disappointment with more huge plot holes. This story also suffers from telling not showing, which is another major breach in good storytelling.

 

I give this story: 1 QUILLS

 

1Q

Straight to You by David Moody

Straight to You by David Moody

Straight to You by David Moody

 

Straight to You by David Moody

ISBN-10: 0957656327

ISBN-13: 978-0957656321

ASIN: B00IC0OHDG

Publisher: Infected Books

 

David Moody takes his readers on an emotion and physical ride through his nightmare of world ending destruction.

 

Steven and Sam experience an extremely personal emotion trauma, which neither of them really knows how to handle.

Steven shuts himself off and drowns himself in work. This affects their marriage badly.

While they’re dealing with their own life and hearts, the sun is on the verge of killing itself and the world.

Things around them keep getting worse, but they don’t pay close attention because they’re more concerned with their marriage and keeping things as normal as possible.

It’s not until Sam leaves to visit her father that Steven realizes his mistakes, but with the world falling apart faster than anyone thought possible, will he make it to her in time to straighten things out before it’s too late?

He races the deadly effects of the sun’s wrath to see the woman he loves one last time…but will he burn to death before he reaches her?

 

This book hit me a little too close to home for comfort – I was proud of myself for not bawling during the first few chapters. I’ve had personal experience (twice) with the traumatic, emotion struggle the couple deals with. That being said, Mr. Moody nailed it – the shutting off and distancing and the struggle with knowing how to deal with the situation at home and in public.

I thought the apocalyptic sun aspect of the story was fun, because it was different and there was no way anyone could really do anything about it. It’s the classic “the boat is going down and we’re all screwed” scenario that you don’t see too often anymore. Most people want at least that hope of salvation through some miracle. There’s none in this book. Just the hope of love and forgiveness.

I thought Steven’s journey was a bit long, but in reality, all that stuff probably would be in someone’s path to slow them down. In the end, it just showed his determination to make it where he wanted to go despite how much got in his way. Although, toward the end…he was really, really exhausted, but then flipped completely and could do things like walk and run easily that minutes before he couldn’t.

Note: The book has British grammar.

I give this book: 2 QUILLS

2Q

The Horror Film Quiz Book: 1,000 Questions on Spine Chilling Films by Chris Cowlin and Mark Goddard

The Horror Film Quiz Book by Chris Cowlin and Mark Goddard

The Horror Film Quiz Book by Chris Cowlin and Mark Goddard

The Horror Film Quiz Book: 1,000 Questions on Spine Chilling Films

ISBN-10: 1906358710

ISBN-13: 978-1906358716

Publisher: Apex Publishing Ltd, Essex

Age Group: YA, Adult

The Horror Film Quiz Book is a book of questions on many films. This book would make a movie night with friends much more than sitting around watching films; it would make it a challenging experience where you try to outwit one another with knowledge. Think trivia with pizza and popcorn. A must have for any horror movie buff who wants to take the experience of films to the next level.

I give this book 2 QUILL!

Rating: 2Q

These Trespasses by Kenneth W. Cain

These Trespasses by Kenneth W. Cain

 

 

These Trespasses by Kenneth W. Cain
ISBN: 978-0615444147
Publisher: Post Mortem Press
Age Group: Adult
Do you like Scifi mixed in with your horror? Because that’s what you’re going to get when you read this book. But, you won’t have to leave the comfort of Earth, because it will all come to you, courtesy of the government!

Kenneth W. Cain spins a tale of otherworldly horror for us to delve into, ripping simple people just like us from their simple lives and tossing them to the wolves…er…aliens.

Marty gets quite a shock when his brother is bitten by a mosquito; it throws his calm world into a whirlwind of chaos…again. He doesn’t know how much he can take, but knows that he’ll never give up.

Sheila reads Marty’s note and finds hope – and something more – beyond the world of slaughter around her, and seeks him and his friends out for companionship before she joins the ranks of the dead, or worse!

Bernard, a kindly fellow and Marty’s right hand man, meets an end he wasn’t counting on, but finds a new life that isn’t his. Through it all, he finally learns to admit his love for Nancy, but will that be enough? Or will everything fall apart for them both?

Sandy and Ike are wild cards at best, but with hidden strengths. Will they bring good or bad to the small band of survivors?

Together they battle the aliens among them, seeking to understand and destroy what they can’t control, but can easily control them. Can they overcome their fear of being torn apart or captured to do what is needed to save the day?

The book was interesting and creative, there’s no doubt about that. But, it’s clear that it’s Kenneth W. Cain’s first novel. Some areas were unclear as to what was going on and the point of view was confusing, but despite the drawbacks, the story is still there and shines through and I look forward to reading more of his creations in the future. I give this book 2 QUILL.

Rating: 2Q

Alien Siege by David Dickens

Alien Siege by David Dickens

Alien Siege by David Alan Dickens
ISN: 9781438239422
Age Group: Adult
Aliens are creatures that no matter how much we hear or see about them it always leaves us wondering. What if they are real? What would they really look like? Would they be friendly or hostile? In this book we find that aliens have been around for a long time – longer than any of us have dreamed, and they are hungry and waiting.David Alan Dickens pushes your mind’s limits as ancient gods of past civilizations stalk the present day population, seeking to sate their appetite for human flesh in this fast paced, exciting ride on the edge of planet Earth.

Mark Black becomes frustrated with life and himself when he looses almost everything he has in a game of cards. Now he’s just doing his job bulldozing down the Borabi jungle in India, making way for a mega railroad project. But strange mass graves filled with bones and ancient artifacts keep turning up as they excavate the sites, which leads to his meeting Tatiana, a beautiful woman who, through her research, has discovered the unearthly truth.

After Mark uncovers a very large, strange container that seems impervious to damage, they call in specialist to open it with a laser so they can see what’s inside. To everyone’s shock, when the unit is opened, they find radiation…and alien beings.

The military arrives to take control and a alarm goes off while they are harvesting some of the beings for research and it triggers other – superior in intellect – who start appearing around the globe. American leaders, as well as others around the world, scrabble to make sense of what is happening and to take action that will protect the people of Earth, but when the aliens use their radiation weaponry, it seems that there is no hope for anyone.

A fleet of ships departs from a far off galaxy to come to the aid of the vessels humanity has learned to take down, while the fate of the world rests on a shaky plan.

Will mankind survive? Or will everyone become victims of the Alien Siege?

This book was fun to read and was fast paced. It was easy for me to pick up and get back into the story. The biggest drawback for me was that there were a lot of characters and with everything moving so fast, you couldn’t really get in-depth with any of them, so I give this book a 2 QUILL rating.

Rating: 2Q