Wednesday, January 27, 2016


A sweeping drama about the madness of war and the power of love that marks acclaimed novelist Sebastian Faulks's return, after twenty years, to the fictional territory of his #1 international bestseller Birdsong
London, 1980. Robert Hendricks, an established psychiatrist and author, has so bottled up memories of his own wartime past that he is nearly sunk into a life of aloneness and depression. Out of the blue, a baffling letter arrives from one Dr. Alexander Pereira, a neurologist and a World War I veteran who claims to be an admirer of Robert's published work. The letter brings Robert to the older man's home on a rocky, secluded island off the south of France, and into tempests of memories--his childhood as a fatherless English boy, the carnage he witnessed and the wound he can't remember receiving as a young officer in World War II, and, above all, the great, devastating love of his life, an Italian woman, "L," whom he met during the war. As Robert's recollections pour forth, he's unsure whether they will lead to psychosis--or redemption. But Dr. Pereira knows. Profoundly affecting and masterfully told,Where My Heart Used to Beat sweeps through the 20th century, brilliantly interrogating the darkest corners of the human mind and bearing tender witness to the abiding strength of love.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (January 26, 2016)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0805097325
  • ISBN-13: 978-0805097320

A very slow-moving book. I did not finish this book as a result. What I read I liked but the book dragged on.

The History Major by Michael Phillip Cash

After a vicious fight with her boyfriend followed by a night of heavy partying, college freshman Amanda Greene wakes up in her dorm room to find things are not the same as they were yesterday. She can't quite put her finger on it. She's sharing her room with a peculiar stranger. Amanda discovers she's registered for classes she would never choose with people that are oddly familiar. An ominous shadow is stalking her. Uncomfortable memories are bubbling dangerously close to her fracturing world, propelling her to an inevitable collision between fantasy and reality. Is this the mother of all hangovers or is something bigger happening?

About the Author

Michael Phillip Cash is an award-winning screenwriter and novelist. He attended the Long Island University and used its beautful campus as a backdrop for this novel. He’s written 11 novels including the best-selling Brood X, Stillwell, The Flip, The After House, Witches Protection Program, and Monsterland. Michael resides on the North Shore of Long Island with his wife and two children. Connect with Michael on: Facebook: Twitter: Web: Email:


Michael Phillip Cash is an award-winning screenwriter and novelist. He's written eleven books including the best-selling Brood X, Stillwell, The Flip, The After House, The Hanging Tree, Witches Protection Program, Pokergeist, Monsterland and Battle for Darracia series.

Michael resides on the North Shore of Long Island. He writes full-time with his screaming kids in the background.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 130 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (December 17, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1518893791
  • ISBN-13: 978-1518893797

I found this book interesting with twists and turns, but a little hard to keep up with. Figuring out what characters were what/who and what time we are talking about. Overall it was a great read though.


A suspicious death, a pregnant woman suddenly gone missing: Quirke's latest case leads him inexorably toward the dark machinations of an old foe
Perhaps Quirke has been down among the dead too long. Lately the Irish pathologist has suffered hallucinations and blackouts, and he fears the cause is a brain tumor. A specialist diagnoses an old head injury caused by a savage beating; all that's needed, the doctor declares, is an extended rest. But Quirke, ever intent on finding his place among the living, is not about to retire.
One night during a June heat wave, a car crashes into a tree in central Dublin and bursts into flames. The police assume the driver's death was either an accident or a suicide, but Quirke's examination of the body leads him to believe otherwise. Then his daughter Phoebe gets a mysterious visit from an acquaintance: the woman, who admits to being pregnant, says she fears for her life, though she won't say why. When the woman later disappears, Phoebe asks her father for help, and Quirke in turn seeks the assistance of his old friend Inspector Hackett. Before long the two men find themselves untangling a twisted string of events that takes them deep into a shadowy world where one of the city's most powerful men uses the cover of politics and religion to make obscene profits.

Even the Dead--Benjamin Black's seventh novel featuring the endlessly fascinating Quirke--is a story of surpassing intensity and surprising beauty.

Product Details

  • Series: Quirke (Book 7)
  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (January 12, 2016)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1627790667
  • ISBN-13: 978-1627790666


Benjamin Black, the pen name of acclaimed novelist John Banville, is the author of Christine Falls and The Silver Swan. Christine Falls was nominated for both the Edgar Award and Macavity Award for Best Novel; both Christine Falls and Silver Swan were national bestsellers. Banville lives in Dublin.

I really enjoyed this book. I had not read any of the other books in the series but it didn't matter much. The book takes you on a wild ride through this fascinating story. A must read. Fast reading in this one.

Monday, January 18, 2016

The Healthy Mind Cookbook by Rebecca Katz with Mat Edelson

A collection of more than 120 recipes formulated to optimize brain health, boost memory, improve mood, sharpen the central nervous system, and more. 

Feed your mind. 

Depression, ADHD, memory loss, agitation: These may seem like inevitable byproducts of modern lives spent multitasking, not getting enough sleep, and operating on digital overload. But while much of the brain’s work still remains a mystery, a growing body of scientific evidence suggests that the food you eat directly affects how well your brain functions. Brain health also plays a significant role in staving off diabetes, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s disease.

In The Healthy Mind Cookbook, Rebecca Katz has harnessed the latest research on the brain to identify the foods that can improve the brain’s ability to control cognition, emotion, and physical function—all of which dictate memory and mood. She then translates the very best of brain science into the kitchen, using delicious nutrient-dense foods as a tool for promoting a healthy mind from childhood through the golden years. 

With a culinary pharmacy listing the benefits of key ingredients, complete nutritional details for each dish, and flavor-packed recipes for every meal of the day, including Avocado and Citrus Salad, Sweet Potato Hash, Turkish Lamb Sliders, and Chocolate Cherry Walnut Truffles, The Healthy Mind Cookbook will help lift the fog of everyday life so you can reach your full physical and mental potential.

This book makes sense. To me, living with depression is downright hard. If I can pick up something to eat that is healthy for my mind, as well as body, all the better off I will be.  This book has tons of great, easy to follow recipes. The book uses nice color pictures for the recipes.  I would highly recommend this book to the amateur as well.  A must own, must read book!

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press; 1 edition (February 10, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1607742977
  • ISBN-13: 978-1607742975

About the Author

As the senior chef-in-residence and nutritional educator at one of the country’s leading cancer wellness centers, REBECCA KATZ, MS, is the culinary link bringing together physicians and patients with a common goal: eating well to maximize cancer treatments, minimize side effects, and improve outcomes. She is the founder of the Inner Cook, a Bay Area culinary practice that specializes in meeting the specific nutritional and appetite needs of cancer patients, and a senior chef at Commonweal Cancer Help Program in Marin County, California. Katz has been a guest chef and lecturer at top academic medical centers throughout the country, including the annual Food As Medicine conference.

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.

Saturday, January 9, 2016

My Mother Called Me Unni by Dr. Venugopal K. Menon

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"A fascinating and admirable history. The detailed and descriptive chapters in this book create entire cultural worlds for readers to learn from, enjoy, and remember." -Chitra Divakaruni, international award-winning author, Houston, TX.

From the Author

I have created my memoirs narrating my sentimental journey of life spanning almost eight decades--growing up in India, leaving my beloved homeland to pursue my dreams of a better future in the West, and living an affluent life bridging two cultures. I have made an attempt to personalize the intricate customs, culture and values of the bygone era of my ancestors along with its rich traditions, the struggles that my parents had endured to raise us, my educational pursuits in becoming a doctor, the moral dilemma of my migration, and the adjustments required for life in my adopted home. It goes on to elaborate how I succeeded in adapting to the new life in the US, in getting qualified as a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics, Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology and rising to become the president of a nationally reputed clinic, of being invited and inducted to the prestigious Royal Society of Medicine, London as a Fellow.  The book narrates my attempt to discard all my success in the US and returning to India to offer my help to the needy but having to come back due to circumstances beyond my control.  I have recounted my efforts of how I maintained strong ties to my motherland, serving my obligations to my extensive family in India, even after choosing America as my final domicile. The manuscript includes my passionate involvement in several social and philanthropic causes in America, my chosen land and how it had set the trend for my three children, who are following my example.
"My Mother Called me UNNI, a Doctor's Tale of Migration" is my story, like that of many immigrants like me that I would proudly want to share with others.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 326 pages
  • Publisher: Outskirts Press (November 24, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1478761717
  • ISBN-13: 978-1478761716


Dr. Venugopal Menon, the eldest of seven from a middle-class family in pre-independent India, was raised with time-tested traditions. After earning his medical degree, he served as a doctor in the army and then left his centuries-old culture and ties with his ancestry in search of the American dream. Dr. Menon established himself as a successful physician, a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics, Fellow of the Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, and becoming the president of a reputable clinic. He was invited and inducted as a Fellow of the prestigious Royal Society of Medicine, London, and was involved in several professional, cultural, religious, and philanthropic endeavors. He and his wife raised three children who are successfully settled and involved in a variety of social causes while maintaining ties with India and their relatives. Dr. Menon has been married to Devi for fifty years, and they live in a Kerala-style home in Pearland, Texas, visiting their six grandchildren whenever they can break away from their social involvements.

Against All Odds by Denis Knezovic

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This is a story about achieving success in the midst of a number of incredible obstacles. It is about life as a war refugee with cerebral palsy and goes from early childhood into young adulthood. This story shows what is possible under circumstances that some have said to be impossible. As the writer overcomes some obstacles, others emerge. These new challenges require new strength, determination and to no small degree, they require a strong support system.

A very quick read at only 82 pages. Worth the read. An interesting story of a young man and the incredible obstacles he has overcome. I would highly recommend.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 88 pages
  • Publisher: Outskirts Press (April 24, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1478755938
  • ISBN-13: 978-1478755937

Remembering Moz-by Codis Hampton II

“As a child I looked at my father and saw my future status as a man.” In Codis Hampton II’s highly anticipated new book, the author pays tribute to his late father, eloquently capturing the spirit and soul of Codis “Moz” Hampton, Senior. A dedicated family man, Moz touched everyone he met with his kind and generous personality and was held in high esteem by family, friends, and coworkers. Remembering Moz not only honors one man’s father and the rich heritage of family ties; the book also explores the broader themes of man’s career, social, and political expectations, the ramifications of individual choices, and other social commentary, both serious and humorous. It takes you on a ride through Moz’s Roots as far back as the beginning of the Civil War and explores the State of Arkansas role in it.

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Product Details

  • File Size: 1632 KB
  • Print Length: 193 pages
  • Publisher: Outskirts Press, Inc. (November 4, 2015)
  • Publication Date: November 4, 2015
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.


A member of the Baby Boomer Generation and all that it entails. I am an Author (four books and counting), Blogger, Father, Husband (47 years and counting), Army Veteran and lover of the arts. I'm a Defense Department Civil Service retiree who discovered his love of writing later in life.
I love American and Black History. I'm an advocate of self-help for me, my family and my race. My books and blogs reflect my life experiences. I am bound and determine to show the world that we, as black people are not as advertised in the media. And I don't mind having fun while doing it. My mantra is say what you mean and mean what you say.   

Finally Alive by Joshua G. Fridley

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A constant battle in my head turned into a war about life in general. Questioning every detail on who I am. Realizing after fourteen years I had no clue who I was or where I was going. Running from life instead of embracing reality. Truth is that I knew I had all these qualities, though fear stood in the way of really just letting me express myself. So like in everyone’s life I had to look in the mirror and ask is this all that life is? I found out the answer to my questions, with the inspiration that music, poetry, helping others, and being real about how I felt was the turning point of my life. Through my trials and tribulations I stumbled upon how to really be alive.

80 page little book, made up of one page each of his story. I enjoyed the book, however did not read the whole thing, as it is more of a rambling on about his life book. The reader is not brought in completely to his story. But overall I would recommend it.

If You Were Me and Lived in...Italy by Carle P. Roman

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Join Carole P. Roman as she visits the Republic of Italy. Learn what it is like to live in Rome, see the famous architecture, celebrate a favorite holiday and discover popular names for both boys and girls. Be fascinated with it's diverse and rich history and colorful traditions. On the way, you might learn a word or two in Italian!

The illustrations in this little book are amazing.  This is not only for kids to learn about Italy, the basics of their culture.  Any adult would love to read this little book. Of course a quick read, being only 30 pages.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 30 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (November 24, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1519241410
  • ISBN-13: 978-1519241412

Monday, January 4, 2016

On The Primitive Way-Two Texan Brothers' Journey to Santiago De Compostela by Landon Roussel

On the Primitive Way recounts two Texan Brothers' pilgrimage on the Way of St James, or El Camino de Santiago de Compostela. Commencing in Oviedo Spain, the author, the older brother, chronicles their  journey through the mountains of Asturias that brought them together after over a decade of estrangement due to the younger brother's drug abuse, addiction and imprisonment. As they endure torrential rains, blindsiding blizzards and grueling climbs, the author comes to realize that the real challenge is not to survive the elements but to reconcile with his brother after a tumultuous past.

Landon Roussel, MD
Author of
Blogger at
Doctor at
Father of two.
Balancer of life.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 226 pages
  • Publisher: Communitas Press (November 29, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0996968105
  • ISBN-13: 978-0996968102


Landon Roussel is a three-time pilgrim on the Way of Saint James. He written articles on the Camino for magazines such as El Peregrino and La Concha. He was encouraged to write his first book, On the Primitive Way, after the death of his brother Cory, with whom he had walked the Camino just before he died. He also hosts a blog site, Communitas Blog. When he is not writing he is a primary care doctor and father of two. He lives with his wife in Saint James Parish, Louisiana with their two children.

This book was heartfelt, sincere, and a must read!  Two brothers estranged due to Landon's brother's drug and alcohol addictions, jail time, and a life of crime.  Landon does a great job explaining the early years and what he went through at home, all the way up to the present since his brother has passed away. This book brought tears to my eyes. I am so honored to have the opportunity to read and review this fine book. I read the first 50 pages the first minute the book got in my hands.  Please check out this awesome book from Mr. Roussel. You won't be disappointed!