Monday, June 30, 2008

The Handyman’s Promise by Nick Poff

ISBN: 9781434370549 - AuthorHouse (2008)
Reviewed by Paige Lovitt for Reader Views (6/08)




"The Handyman's Promise," is the third book in a series about handyman Ed Stephens.  It begins in 1983, when Ed's partner Rick Benton is preparing to return home to him after living in Indianapolis for over a year.  Rick moved away to get training in a career in real estate; now he is coming home so that he can work in his home town and continue his life with Ed.  Both of them seem to love each other deeply and to be committed to their relationship.
 
Ed has some insecurity in regards to Rick's fidelity because of the pain and betrayal that he has seen some of his friends experience in their homosexual relationships.  This is the time of the advent of AIDS, so that adds to his concerns.  Still he is happy to have Rick back home.  Being a gay couple is not easy in this small Indiana town.  They have some experiences with intolerance and hatred.  They also see their gay friends going through rough times, especially with their families.  But the people that they do have in their lives that care about them are really wonderful people.
 
In this story, the author takes us back into the 1980s.  His mention of songs that came from that era caused them to play in my head as I read.  This really made me feel like I was back in that time.  Also when he discusses the AIDS issue, it brought back a lot of memories for me.  I worked in a hospital at that time, and the Vice President of the hospital's brother was in ICU with AIDS.  I remember him getting top care, yet no one really knew how to treat him.  I also remember a friend being diagnosed with AIDS.  It was such a helpless feeling to know that there was nothing that could be done.  These memories made Ed and Rick's story seem more real to me.  
 
"The Handyman's Promise" tells the story of two men who want to build their lives together and share their dreams with each other.  It is empowering to see them work towards their goals together and to build meaningful relationships with the people around them.  I think that many couples could a lot about relationships from reading their story.  I highly recommend this novel.

The review above was used with permission from ReaderViews.com. Reader Views provides a one-stop service for authors. Besides providing reviews of books, they provide publicity packages, editing services, live interviews, book videos, and book proposal coaching. Their services and staff are highly recommended by the Polka Dot Banner.


The Polka Dot Banner (PDB) is an author's web community especially designed for busy authors looking for Internet exposure but who lack the time or know how. The PDB is a great starter web home that can serve as a stand-alone website promoting your book(s). Or, as a fast-growing author community, the PDB can help direct web traffic to a site you already own. Better yet, they do all the work for you, saving you time and effort.

Frameshifting by David K. Banner, PhD

ISBN: 9781932690552 - Loving Healing Press (2008)
Reviewed by Paige Lovitt for Reader Views (6/08)




One month ago, while praying, I decided to surrender certain aspects of my life that I felt I had no control over.  Things started to get easier for me.  Yesterday afternoon I realized that I was doing better, so I decided to surrender more aspects of my life I felt I wanted to lose control of.  This is not easy to do, but it is easier once it is done.  Then last night I picked up "FrameShifting: A Path to Wholeness." The timing was perfect; of course.
 
In "FrameShifting," Dr. Banner shares his personal journey of self-exploration with us.  He tells about the tools that he used that were valuable to him.  This is what makes the book so interesting.  Even though we all have our own stories and paradigms from which we view our lives, many of the tools to help us overcome our egos can be shared by all.  It is our egos that seem to hold us bound in fear.  Our false ego identity keeps us separate.  Our ego uses fear to control us.  I found it interesting to read what the ego really fears is the death of itself.  If we overcome our egos, we find our True Self, which is connected to everything. 
 
Dr. Banner states, "…one of the main messages of this book is, that, to gain real happiness, the ego must be transcended and an identity in Spirit must be experientially realized."  One of the main tools he used on his journey is Enneagram work.  This is a method of self-inquiry.  This is not something I have used for myself, but I can definitely see the benefits of using it.  He also cites the works of many remarkable people.  It was interesting to see how the work of some of my favorite guides, such as Don Miguel Ruiz, affected Dr. Banner's thought processes and aided his journey.  Making a list from his references, I also have a new group of works to explore.
 
Dr. Banner writes "FrameShifting" in a way that is interesting and easy to read, yet he still imparts a tremendous amount of knowledge and research to the reader.  The book will draw you in, teach you, and yet not overwhelm you with intellectual verbosity.  Dr. Banner states, "The goal of FrameShifting, if there is one, is to become more and more empathetic, consciously aware of ourselves and others, and to "'live deliberately.'"  I really liked the emphasis on how helping ourselves helps others. It does not promote a selfish, retreat into yourself type of journey. This is an awesome book and I am so happy to have discovered it when I did.

The review above was used with permission from ReaderViews.com. Reader Views provides a one-stop service for authors. Besides providing reviews of books, they provide publicity packages, editing services, live interviews, book videos, and book proposal coaching. Their services and staff are highly recommended by the Polka Dot Banner.


The Polka Dot Banner (PDB) is an author's web community especially designed for busy authors looking for Internet exposure but who lack the time or know how. The PDB is a great starter web home that can serve as a stand-alone website promoting your book(s). Or, as a fast-growing author community, the PDB can help direct web traffic to a site you already own. Better yet, they do all the work for you, saving you time and effort.

Monday, June 23, 2008

The Minimum You Need to Know (About Service Oriented Architecture)

Roland Hughes

ISBN: 9780977086665 - Logikal Solutions (2008)
Reviewed by William Phenn for Reader Views (5/08)




Roland Hughes is the president of Logikal Solutions, a business applications consulting firm specializing in VMS platforms. Hughes serves as a lead consultant with over two decades of experience using computers and operating systems originally created by Digital Equipment Corporation (now owned by Hewlett-Packard). With a degree in Computer Information Systems, the author's experience is focused on OpenVMS systems across a variety of diverse industries including heavy equipment manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, stock exchanges, tax accounting, and hardware value-added resellers, to name a few. Working throughout these industries has strengthened the author's unique skill set and given him a broad perspective on the role and value of OpenVMS in industry.
 
Mr. Hughes' technical skill sets include the following tools that enable him to master and improve OpenVMS applications: DEC/VAX C, DEC/VAX C++, DEC BASIC, DCL, ACMS, MQ Series, DEC COBOL, RDB, POWERHOUSE, SQL, CMS/MMS, Oracle 8i, FORTRAN, FMS, and Java, among others. Being fluent in so many technical languages enables Hughes to share his knowledge more easily with other programmers.  
 
Highly technical in nature and not for beginners, this book series is an effort to pass along some of Roland's insights and skills to the next generation. I suggest that one read the three previous books to get a thorough knowledge of all the valuable information that Mr. Hughes has to offer. Having said that -- I don't mean to cut this volume short as it is loaded with equally informative material. Each book in the series covered specific topics and this volume is the fourth of that series. This volume, "The Minimum You Need to Know (About Service Oriented Architecture)," covers various topics and techniques for implementing a Service Oriented Architecture on the OpenVMS platform using ACMS, (the languages covered in a previous volume), "The Minimum You Need to Know to Be an OpenVMS Application Developer" and Java.  The primary focus of the book is porting FMS based business applications to Intranet and Internet applications using ACMS.
 
With clearly defined examples and many diagrams and flow charts, this 370-page volume even has a source code CD. From a technical aspect, I could not have found a more detailed explanation of ACMS and the innovative methods explained by Mr. Hughes. I gave "The Minimum You Need to Know (About Service Oriented Architecture)" my highest rating of A+ and recommend it to all the software geeks that could use more information on this subject.


The review above was used with permission from ReaderViews.com. Reader Views provides a one-stop service for authors. Besides providing reviews of books, they provide publicity packages, editing services, live interviews, book videos, and book proposal coaching. Their services and staff are highly recommended by the Polka Dot Banner.


The Polka Dot Banner (PDB) is an author's web community especially designed for busy authors looking for Internet exposure but who lack the time or know how. The PDB is a great starter web home that can serve as a stand-alone website promoting your book(s). Or, as a fast-growing author community, the PDB can help direct web traffic to a site you already own. Better yet, they do all the work for you, saving you time and effort.

An Obsolete Honor: A Story of the German Resistance to Hitler

by Helena P. Schrader

ISBN: 9780595490882 - iUniverse (2008)
Reviewed by Paige Lovitt for Reader Views (4/08)




"An Obsolete Honor" takes us into the time of Hitler's reign covering from 1938 to 1945.  It is a historically fictional story about the German resistance to Hitler.  The story is told through the eyes of several lead characters.  Dr. Schrader takes you into these characters' worlds, so that you see things from their point of view, even if you don't always agree with their belief system, especially when it is one of entitlement and profiting off the misery of others; you still gain an understanding of where these people were coming from.
 
In spite of it being a fictional novel, true historical elements are fully interwoven into the story.  Many of the actual historical figures involved do play roles in this novel.  Dr. Schrader brings the settings to life as she describes them in her story.  It is obvious that her extensive research went way beyond reading books; you can tell that she was actually there, as she brings the places alive.
 
  She also included several key elements in the book that helped me to better grasp the story:  a list of the cast of characters with asterisks by the names of true historical figures; a list of German military ranks; a glossary; and an extensive historical note that includes the names and fates of the true historical figures.  
 
"An Obsolete Honor" really, truly moved me.  When I finished reading it, I sat in silence for awhile.  What hit me the hardest was that the plot is based upon real events that happened within my parents' lifetime.  My mother lived in Germany when my grandfather was in the Army during WWII.  Knowing that many of the people in this novel really existed and that the story is based upon interviews with over 100 survivors of Nazi Germany is incredibly sobering.  Knowing that these events really took place, one has to admit the reality of man's capacity to be inhumane to mankind. 
 
Even though much of this story is about people who were resisting Hitler's reign, it is horrible to have to acknowledge the depth of pain and suffering that hundreds of thousands of people had to endure.  It was also incredibly disturbing to realize how many people took advantage of the situation and profited from it, again, at the expense and torture of innocent people.  These people do not take away from the people that helped others survive, at the risk of their own lives.  These heroes of this period in time gave me a feeling of inspiration, and determination to make sure that I never play a role in hurting someone, and if I have the opportunity to aid someone with their survival, I will take it.
 
This novel is a must read for fans of World War II history and history students.  I think that it is vital to read a novel like "An Obsolete Honor" to truly understand how life was at that time.  By reading about the historical events as they were happening, I feel that I gained a better understanding of the history of that time.  To read a textbook and memorize dates and places is a waste of time because the information gained does not have much meaning until you understand that context in which it was involved.

The review above was used with permission from ReaderViews.com. Reader Views provides a one-stop service for authors. Besides providing reviews of books, they provide publicity packages, editing services, live interviews, book videos, and book proposal coaching. Their services and staff are highly recommended by the Polka Dot Banner.


The Polka Dot Banner (PDB) is an author's web community especially designed for busy authors looking for Internet exposure but who lack the time or know how. The PDB is a great starter web home that can serve as a stand-alone website promoting your book(s). Or, as a fast-growing author community, the PDB can help direct web traffic to a site you already own. Better yet, they do all the work for you, saving you time and effort.

Monday, June 16, 2008

If I Only Had a Brain Injury: A TBI Survivor and Life Coach's Guide to Chronic Fatigue, Concussion, Lyme Disease, Migraine, or Other ‘Medical Mystery

by Laura Bruno, M.A.
ISBN: 9781436322461 - Xlibris Corporation (2008)
Reviewed by Paige Lovitt for Reader Views (4/08)




In 1998, Laura Bruno was in a car accident that left her with a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI).  She was 24-years-old at the time and working on her graduate school fellowship.  The damage caused to her brain forced her to put her education and career on hold, while focusing on her recovery.  "If I Only Had a Brain Injury" tells Laura's story of learning to overcome her disability.  Along the way, she discovered that what she learned to help herself can also help others who are dealing with illnesses that affect their sense of self.  These illnesses include:  chronic fatigue, brain cancer, fibromyalgia, vertigo, candida overgrowth, concussion, Lyme disease, migraines and other "Medical Mystery."  Six years after her accident, her husband was stricken with a mysterious disabling illness that turned out to be Lyme Disease.
Laura compares her story to Dorothy's in "The Wizard of Oz," because Dorothy's journey begins when she has a concussion and continues on as she tries to find her way home.  Her experience in having a TBI and her background in life coaching, medical intuition, Reiki and writing provide her with the tools to write a heartfelt, yet informative guide to healing and recovery.  "If I Only Had a Brain Injury" inspires both individuals who are experiencing illness and their care providers to look for the positives in their healing experience.
There is a wealth of information provided in this book in a manner that is interesting and easy to understand.  In addition to telling her story, Laura also offers healing hints, appendices with essays and interviews with people who are involved in the healing process.  She also offers networking and contact information.  This also includes book recommendations and websites.  I couldn't find anything lacking.
As both someone with fibromyalgia and a person that works with individuals with disabilities, I found that I gained a lot of insight into both my illness and those of people that I work with on a daily basis.  The day after I read this book, a woman came into my classroom with a TBI.  It was wonderful to have just learned about the issues that she is dealing with.  I felt that I could be more empathetic to her situation and having that understanding also gave me a better idea of how I can help meet her needs in my program.  The effects of her TBI are different from most of my students with TBI, and more similar to the author's.  If I had not had this information, I might have assumed that I was dealing more with a mental health issue.  Her speech was very clear, yet her words were mixed up.  I am so grateful that I read this book first.
I highly recommend "If I Only Had a Brain Injury" to individuals who are experiencing illnesses that affect their sense of self and to their care providers.  Everything that they could possibly need to help them take positive action towards their recovery is contained within these pages. 

The review above was used with permission from ReaderViews.com. Reader Views provides a one-stop service for authors. Besides providing reviews of books, they provide publicity packages, editing services, live interviews, book videos, and book proposal coaching. Their services and staff are highly recommended by the Polka Dot Banner.


The Polka Dot Banner (PDB) is an author's web community especially designed for busy authors looking for Internet exposure but who lack the time or know how. The PDB is a great starter web home that can serve as a stand-alone website promoting your book(s). Or, as a fast-growing author community, the PDB can help direct web traffic to a site you already own. Better yet, they do all the work for you, saving you time and effort.

Repair Your Life: A Program for Recovery from Incest & Childhood Sexual Abuse

by Marjorie McKinnon

ISBN: 9781932690521 - Loving Healing Press (2008)
Reviewed by Paige Lovitt for Reader Views (4/08)




"Repair Your Life" offers victims of incest and childhood sexual abuse the tools to help them overcome the shame and trauma that they encountered as children.  It teaches you how to become the person that you were meant to be.  So many survivors of abuse get trapped in non-ending cycles of being in unhealthy relationships, having addictions and making poor choices.  Often the children of these survivors become victims. 
Ms. McKinnon has developed a six-stage program called REPAIR. It stands for: Recognition, Entry, Process, Awareness, Insight, Rhythm, and Post-Recovery.  She dedicates a chapter to each stage and offers some writing exercises to go along with them.  By going through this process you will be able to transform yourself from a victim into a survivor.  She teaches you to be aware of how the abuse is affecting you as an adult.  She tells her own personal story.  I felt very grateful that she shared so much of herself because no one reading this book will be able to tell her, "But you don't understand." She clearly does and by overcoming her abuse, she sets an example to the rest of the world.  Incest and childhood sexual abuse survivors can be whole, healthy and happy.
"Repair Your Life" has a holistic approach to recovery.  Going beyond the six stages for recovery, Ms. McKinnon also discusses how to be healthy and whole -- things that victims are not taught.  This includes learning how to set boundaries, and take care of your health.  She reminds us that we are special and that we need to honor our bodies with healthy care.
The whole book really impressed me; however, there were two things that really had a personal effect on me.  The first thing was her discussion of shame.  Incest survivors tend to get trapped in feelings of guilt and shame.  She makes it clear that the abuse was not their fault and that the blame should be placed where it belongs which is on the abuser's shoulders, even if they were victims themselves.  It is amazing how much damage carrying around a lifetime of shame can do to someone's soul.  The other thing that stood out to me was that she said that predators look for obedient children.  So many people that I know that have been abused have had other predators seek them out.  This makes the victim feel like they are marked with something that tells the world that they deserved to be molested.  I have heard this expressed many times.  When Ms. McKinnon mentions that predators look for obedient children, it answered that question for me.  They look for children that look like they will do what they are told.  That makes much sense, and it lets the survivor know that they didn't have something "written on their back" identifying them as deserving to be abused.
"Repair Your Life" is a must read for all survivors of sexual abuse.  It should also be read by friends and family members close to the survivor.  Counselors will also greatly benefit from the book.  "Repair Your Life" will give you tools and resources to help you on your journey of recovery. 

The review above was used with permission from ReaderViews.com. Reader Views provides a one-stop service for authors. Besides providing reviews of books, they provide publicity packages, editing services, live interviews, book videos, and book proposal coaching. Their services and staff are highly recommended by the Polka Dot Banner.


The Polka Dot Banner (PDB) is an author's web community especially designed for busy authors looking for Internet exposure but who lack the time or know how. The PDB is a great starter web home that can serve as a stand-alone website promoting your book(s). Or, as a fast-growing author community, the PDB can help direct web traffic to a site you already own. Better yet, they do all the work for you, saving you time and effort.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Stolen Fields: A Story of Eminent Domain and the Death of the American Dream

by Jean Boggio
ISBN: 9780979933042 - Colerith Press (2008)
Reviewed by Richard R. Blake for Reader Views (4/08)




"Stolen Fields" is a story of the American Dream gone wrong. It is a story of hatred, bitterness, ambition, and greed.  It is also a story of "What If" and "If only." What if eminent domain had not taken the Cole property? If only Grandfather Cole had been able to build his prosperous ventures? 
 
Jean tells of growing up as a descendant of the strong-willed and vibrant Cole family. In the first few chapters she gives the reader a glimpse into the historic heritage and of the hard working Coles and the economic success of the fertile farm on Neville Island near Pittsburg.  The Cole farm on Neville Island was known as "The Market Basket of Pittsburgh."
 
Jean Boggio consistently and fairly shared two sides of a story. I felt bonded to the family as I listened as Jean shared lighthearted gossip through the stories handed down from one generation to the next, fairly reporting on two completely different perspectives of the perceived facts. 
 
During the years of 1918 and 1919 toward the end of WWI, the United States government came up with a plan to rival the German Krupps Works that provided munitions for the German juggernaut. Neville Island was selected to be the site for the project.  The government officials invoked the process of eminent domain to seize the property for public use. The project had only begun when the Armistice was signed.  The government no longer needed the land.  It was put it up for public auction. 
 
The Cole family, distraught by loss of  the home that had been in the family for over a hundred years, held out in an attempt to negotiate a fair market price. After a great deal of harassment and the fear of arson they were forced to accept the government-determined price.
 
Family accounts, newspaper research, and historical sources,  as well as her own memories provided Jean Boggio with the material for this remarkable account of the Cole's of Neville Island and the impact of eminent domain on the dreams of her parents, their children, and ultimately on the generations that follow. Although there were feelings of hatred, and bitterness by members of the Cole family, theirs is a journey that resonates with a sense of accomplishment, pride, and promise. 
 
This is more than a leisurely nostalgic stroll down memory lane.  Jean's vivid descriptions draw the reader into the experience of being a part of her childhood at the Sandy Lake farm. She has the amazing ability to turn everyday circumstances and events into entertaining, often humorous, stories that resound with simplicity, warmth, and reality. Jean uses flashbacks depicting scenes from her childhood. She reveals details of her relationships with her sister, her parents, her grandparents, Aunt Gladys, Uncle Robert, Uncle Ned, and her cousins. These colorful characters provide dramatic word pictures bringing an excitement to the otherwise routine life for the Cole's from Neville Island. Family photos are included throughout the book to illustrate the events. These pictures add another dimension and a sense of relationship to the Cole family. 
 
I especially enjoyed Jean's openness in relating college relationships and her early experiences in New York City. As an aspiring actress she was sympathetic to the beatnik culture. I appreciated her positive writing even in light of romances gone awry, family relationships gone amok and personal goals unattained.  Jean gained a broad range of work experiences in corporate offices, in the field of education, and ultimately in the medical field as a nurse.
Strong writing, thorough research, and an objective look into the avarice that often accompanies the process of eminent domain make "Stolen Fields" a significant contribution to the history and future restructuring of a process often misunderstood and abused.
 
As a memoir writer Jean Boggio is a gifted storyteller. Her vivid descriptions and characterizations insure that the enjoyment of her writing will linger long after reading the final chapter. "Stolen Fields" is a rich and entertaining reading experience.

The review above was used with permission from ReaderViews.com. Reader Views provides a one-stop service for authors. Besides providing reviews of books, they provide publicity packages, editing services, live interviews, book videos, and book proposal coaching. Their services and staff are highly recommended by the Polka Dot Banner.


The Polka Dot Banner (PDB) is an author's web community especially designed for busy authors looking for Internet exposure but who lack the time or know how. The PDB is a great starter web home that can serve as a stand-alone website promoting your book(s). Or, as a fast-growing author community, the PDB can help direct web traffic to a site you already own. Better yet, they do all the work for you, saving you time and effort.

Narrow Lives by Tyler R. Tichelaar

ISBN: 9780979179037 - Marquette Fiction (2008)
Reviewed by Olivera Baumgartner-Jackson for Reader Views (4/08)




Tyler R. Tichelaar's novel "Narrow Lives" is a collection of short stories, all of them connected by one character – Lysander Blackmore. While Lysander might not appear much in some of them – and in others he's already dead, he has greatly influenced the lives of all characters who tell us their stories. Their lives – for various reasons – have not been lived fully; hindered by various character flaws or simply by lack of confidence.
 
All of the stories, seven in total, are written as first-person narratives. They are united by the central figure of Lysander Blackmore, but they are also connected and very much defined by their locale, the town of Marquette. Marquette provides the perfect backdrop for the everyday humanity and the struggles we all face daily.
 
It would be difficult to decide which of the stories touched me most deeply, since I connected with every single one of them.  It did not matter whether the narrator was young or old, male or female, rich or poor – all of their stories resonated with me.  They also all made me vow that I will not be stopped in my endeavors and that I will try to live my life as fully as possible – each and every day. Reading about other people's regrets, misgivings and misfortunes made me all the more determined not to falter.
 
Tyler R. Tichelaar's writing is rich and powerful. Even the shorter stories pack a powerful punch. The longest of them, Scofield's story, which takes up nearly half of the book, is a novel in itself. Well-rounded, believable characters and life situations which sound familiar, yet fresh, guarantee reader's enjoyment of this charming collection of stories. The very helpful "Principal Characters" section helps the reader keep all of the numerous individuals straight, something that would probably be impossible without that handy section.
 
"Narrow Lives" is a great book about human nature and the influence some people have over others, this book would probably be even more enjoyable for the readers who are familiar with the U.P. of Michigan. If you aren't one of those, it might make you want to go there and explore. And if you just decide to do some armchair travelling, this is a good book to do just that. 

The review above was used with permission from ReaderViews.com. Reader Views provides a one-stop service for authors. Besides providing reviews of books, they provide publicity packages, editing services, live interviews, book videos, and book proposal coaching. Their services and staff are highly recommended by the Polka Dot Banner.


The Polka Dot Banner (PDB) is an author's web community especially designed for busy authors looking for Internet exposure but who lack the time or know how. The PDB is a great starter web home that can serve as a stand-alone website promoting your book(s). Or, as a fast-growing author community, the PDB can help direct web traffic to a site you already own. Better yet, they do all the work for you, saving you time and effort.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Do You Get the Feeling?: A handbook to facilitate emotional awareness and communication 150 ways to express yourself

Celia Rabberg
ISBN: 9781425987794 - AuthorHouse (2007)
Reviewed by Paige Lovitt for Reader Views (3/08)




The author Celia Rabberg has a gift with words.  She used her talent to write "Do You Get the Feeling?," as a handbook with 150 ways for people to express themselves.  As a therapist, she noticed that a lot of her patients had difficulties with getting their feelings out.  By giving people a tool to help them express themselves, she feels that it will help them to progress faster with developing better communication and self-expression skills.

She wrote this book for therapists, teachers and people who are interested in being in touch with their own feelings.  In this book, 150 emotions are organized into 39 groups.  The feelings range from positive to negative.  The reader is directed to select a group or two that contains feelings they are currently experiencing.  The index directs you to the pages that the emotions are written about in the form of beautiful poems.  These poems lead to contemplation.  I read all 149 of them and found them all to be profound and for every age.  The 150th one is for the reader to write for herself. 

The idea behind this is based upon Cognitive Behavior Therapy.  Included is an Educational Utilization in CBT or Self-Help form to help guide the reader to connect the emotions to their body language, feelings and behaviors.  It is very interesting.  These techniques have three main uses: personal enjoyment, improving communication with others and clinical or educational training.

The book itself is bright and colorful.  It is well organized.  I found this to be very helpful.  The pages are clearly laid out and uncluttered.  I feel that this makes it easier to focus on the emotion and the poem without distractions.  For people who have difficulties, or resistance, with getting in touch with their emotions, it is very important that they don't have anything to distract them.  The poetry itself is poignant and meaningful.  I really could relate to the poems about the emotions that I most frequently have been experiencing.  I also liked the poetry about the positive emotions because it is uplifting and hopeful.

"Do You Get the Feeling?" is a really important text for people who are needing help with connecting with their emotions.  Cognitive Behavior Therapists will love to have this to use as a resource.  I also thought that it would be a really good tool for counseling internship students who are supposed to be keeping a journal.  It will make their lives much easier and clearer.



The review above was used with permission from ReaderViews.com. Reader Views provides a one-stop service for authors. Besides providing reviews of books, they provide publicity packages, editing services, live interviews, book videos, and book proposal coaching. Their services and staff are highly recommended by the Polka Dot Banner.


The Polka Dot Banner (PDB) is an author's web community especially designed for busy authors looking for Internet exposure but who lack the time or know how. The PDB is a great starter web home that can serve as a stand-alone website promoting your book(s). Or, as a fast-growing author community, the PDB can help direct web traffic to a site you already own. Better yet, they do all the work for you, saving you time and effort.

Fool on the Hill: A Tess Camillo Mystery; by Morgan Hunt

ISBN: 9781593500276 - Alyson Books
Reviewed by Cherie Fisher for Reader Views (3/08)




Criminitlies!  Author Morgan Hunt does it again with another excellent Tess Camillo Mystery.  This book follows Hunt's first Tess Camillo story "Sticky Fingers" and it is just as good, if not better.  The story is fast paced and packed full of grisly murder, intrigue and humor. 

Middle aged Tess Camillo has recovered from breast cancer and has a new clarity on life.  She lives more in the moment now and is not as fearful since her previous close call with death in "Sticky Fingers".  In this story, she still lives with her housemate Lana and her main confidante, Raj, her Welsh Terrier.  You do not need to read "Sticky Fingers" to read this mystery, but it is a great read and I would highly recommend reading it.   
The story begins when Tess and Lana attend a Cody Crowne concert.  Cody was a popular musician from the 80's and is now an opening band for a larger act.  Things go South after the concert.  Unknown to anyone else, Cody is attacked and kidnapped.   The next day when Tess goes for a walk in one of favorite spots in a park, she is horrified to find Cody crucified.  As the grisly details of his death are revealed, she and Lana are so disturbed by what has occurred she decides to take a leave of absence from work to try to solve the murder. 

This adventure brings more than Tess bargained for as she sharpens her amateur detective skills and meets a cast of motley and potentially dangerous characters.  As the danger and intrigue grow Tess is pleasantly surprised to meet her first love interest since her breast cancer surgery.  Nervous about having to reveal her mastectomy to a lover for the first time, Tess finds the confidence to overcome her reluctance.   

The ending brings a dangerous and surprising twist when Tess figures out who done it and she and Lana try to get proof to give to the police.  Overall, I found this story to be very well written.  It is a great book for those who enjoy the mystery genre.  The main character is a lesbian, but the book is written for all audiences.  Hopefully we will see more of Tess Camillo in the future. 


The review above was used with permission from ReaderViews.com. Reader Views provides a one-stop service for authors. Besides providing reviews of books, they provide publicity packages, editing services, live interviews, book videos, and book proposal coaching. Their services and staff are highly recommended by the Polka Dot Banner.


The Polka Dot Banner (PDB) is an author's web community especially designed for busy authors looking for Internet exposure but who lack the time or know how. The PDB is a great starter web home that can serve as a stand-alone website promoting your book(s). Or, as a fast-growing author community, the PDB can help direct web traffic to a site you already own. Better yet, they do all the work for you, saving you time and effort.