Category Archives: Action/Adventure

Retro Neon Super Life By Brendan Borba

Review: Heavy on description, many were completely imaginable, and vividly so, though like a bright, flashing scene viewed too long: it can be tiring. But considering the synopsis of Retro Neon Super Life, a “boundary testing unreality; a glittery, vibrant cyber-world,” that is exactly what the author might have been trying to convey, and so seemed to have achieved this aim.

You’ll have to suspend disbelief or either immerse yourself fully, accepting of whatever comes, and though a short novel or longer novella at almost 115 pages, initially you’re provided with a lot of information rapidfire. Why and how, a seemingly average, level-headed young man came to be in the situation he was: coming in contact with drugs, people, and ways of living for which he was unprepared and unfamiliar. These things were the bulk of the “rapid download.”

There was some POV tics and lack of punctuation that had me rereading for clarity a few times, and I felt the story could have benefited from clearer breaks in scenes or character flashbacks, but even referencing the issues I felt were in the story: I felt Retro Neon Super Life was a little gem that more people should read and enjoy. I felt the author’s strong vision, could understand the emotions and motivations of April and Jake Avery, the main characters. Minus a few things that could be teaked, it is a stand-out piece, and a cover more suggestive of content might help make it more so.

Description:  “Gritty and mesmerizing, Retro Neon Super Life follows Jake, a straight laced, hard working victim of identity theft and Alice, a young product of the digital age as they traverse the glittery, vibrant cyber-world. But all is not as it seems. Beneath the polished, user friendly surface lurks something much darker. In a world that is not real, it is the question of self that tests all boundaries.”

  • Published: June 13, 2012
    ISBN: 9781476178233
  • Genre: Science Fiction, Adventure
  • Source: Author

Author Profile

Brendan Borba was born in Burnaby, BC, on April 27, 1988. He currently still resides in the metro Vancouver area and writes books about pretty much whatever he feels like. Get in touch with him at brendanborba@hotmail.ca. Blog site http://brendanborba.wordpress.com/the-novels/.

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Sirian Summer by John Bowers

Review: With a strong dash U.S. “Old West” flair, Sirian Summer is the first in the Nick Walker UF Marshal series, which is primarily a scif/fantasy work reminiscent of the “Firefly” universe created by Joss Whedon.

It’s a stylish book, in that I felt it was the author’s intention to have it read like an epic film can flow, with distinct characters and events designed to draw response from reader/viewers so you scarcely notice some of the little awkward writing methods that usually can bother me: the propensity to describe scene after scene, or certain items frequently without enough transitions that made reading easier. That stuttered the narrative for me at times, but overall the action and story were good, the characters vivid, and Nick Walker was a main player that compelled attention and eventually respect.

As a former law enforcement officer myself, I recognized some of the terms and behaviors that added an authentic touch, which I am sure the author will expand in future books, and there are some many possibilities for new story lines. Neatly written and nicely formatted, I have to add this particular publisher always turns out solid products from authors who really have strong stories to share. A great read for scifi/fantasy fans who enjoy a western touch in their adventures.

Description: “When Nick Walker arrives on Sirius 1 to take over the United Federation Marshal’s office at Kline Corners, his first priority is to find out who murdered the man he is replacing, Ron Gates. But Kline Corners is like no place he has ever seen — it looks like an Ancient West cow town, complete with sheriff and saloon.

…moreThe Nick Walker UF Marshal series.

When Nick Walker arrives on Sirius 1 to take over the United Federation Marshal’s office at Kline Corners, his first priority is to find out who murdered the man he is replacing, Ron Gates. But Kline Corners is like no place he has ever seen — it looks like an Ancient West cow town, complete with sheriff and saloon.

But things are not what they seem. Nick soon discovers an epidemic of missing girls, talk of racial oppression, and outright human slavery. If he can get to the bottom of those issues, he may learn who murdered Ron Gates.”

 

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Filed under Action/Adventure, Fantasy, Reviews, Science Fiction

That Which Is Human by Bruce C. Davis

Review: There are those books out there that one wonders how they escaped more general notice, but with the e-book market as it is, maybe that’s not so hard a thing to believe. Some genres seem to get more notice than others, though as a long time fan of sci-fi and fantasy, I’m always on the search for capable authors I’ve not read before to supplement writers I always return to. Many fellow fans seem to be the same.

If you enjoy more of the sci-fi sub-genres that gravitate towards the heavily detailed and militaristic, “aliens versus humans versus humans who’d allied themselves with the aliens,” “That Which Is Human”, would certainly be a recommended read. I can appreciate the camaraderie and discipline often associated with armed forces personnel or situations, but it’s not a lifestyle or profession I believe in, admire or like, so for me, that aspect of the story I didn’t care for, and as it was central to the core of it, that was hard to deal with. Just the same, although some phrases or characters seemed a bit like cliqués at times, the writing is sound and there’s clear purpose and planning evident in the whole. Plenty of hard core action for the military sci-fi fan, deep enough emotional content and characterization that others could also be satisfied.

Description: The war with the Rilz is pushing humanity to its limits and Intruder pilot Lt. Alan ‘Mac’ McAllister and his flying partner ‘Ivan’ Ivchenko are in the thick of the fighting. Battling the Lizards is bad enough, but fighting a planet full of rebel humans tests their friendship and Mac’s integrity as a Naval pilot. But the biggest test for Mac is maintaining his own sanity in the face of a creeping dependence on the electronic link that allows him to fly the most advanced combat spacecraft ever devised. When a vicious counter attack by the Rilz places the lives of his ex-wife and her new family in harms way, he must set aside that which is still human within him in a final showdown with mankind’s most implacable enemy.

AKW Books’ “2009 Fiction Novel of the Year”.


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Deadly Heritage by Toni Leland

Review: What I liked most about “Deadly Heritage” was that from the opening paragraph the author achieved a strong narrative which was both knowledgeable and straightforward without being mundane or ordinary even though the introductory topic was what might be a common occurence with horse owners and lovers. There was a no-nonsense, direct tone which I found very refreshing. I felt the author’s belief in their story, characters and direction. There was no ambiguity about what was going on and the likely direction the story was headed. It did take me a number of pages to get used to the style of the writer, which for me was a little abrupt, as I found the descriptions somewhat unusual yet they were outstanding.

The main character was strong yet willing to admit having made mistakes in life. To me, this made her very believable and empathetic. I wanted to know what would happen to her. Her problems became my problems, and I wanted her to succeed in her fight against those intending harm for her and those for which she cared. As a rider myself, I enjoyed the descriptions of the horses, their definite personalities and the love with which they were presented. But even more so, though I personally found the heroine’s actions exasperating at times, the romantic factor was as poignant as anything I’ve ever felt when still caring for a former lover after choosing someone else.

I found that yet again, and I was not surprised, although a self-published title, there was nothing of “second rate” or “unacceptable” (as if to a publishing house) about it. “Deadly Heritage” matched or exceeded the basic standards I’ve observed in the thousands of books I’ve read.

Description: Somebody is stalking horse breeder Kellie Sutton, and the one person who can protect her is the man whose heart she broke 15 years ago.
A series of vicious attacks on Kellie s champion Quarter Horses brings devastation to her ranch and former sweetheart Ed Campbell back into her life, only this time as the new local sheriff.

Mystery surrounds the wounds inflicted on the animals, then a sharp-eyed veterinarian confirms that someone is out to destroy Kellie and everything she loves.

Publication Date: October 13, 2009

Publisher: Toni Leland

Genre: Romantic suspense, Thriller, Equestrian Fiction

Buylink: Smashwords

Source: Author

Author Bio

Toni Leland has been writing for over 25 years. She is the author of five equestrian novels, a paranormal romance, and two juvenile chapter books. Her short stories have appeared in Arabella Romance Magazine, True Story, Bylines Writer’s Calendar, From the Heart anthologies, and Horse Tales for the Soul.

Toni writes weekly articles for international gardening site, Dave’s Garden (http://www.davesgarden.com); as a spokesman for the Ohio State University Master Gardener program in Muskingum County, she produces the monthly newsletter Connections and has written a biweekly newspaper column on gardening; she writes feature articles for Grit magazine (grit.com), Over the Back Fence regional magazine (overthebackfence.com), Country Living, and Romance Writers Report (trade publication for Romance Writers of America).

In her day job as an editor, she assists authors with manuscripts and publishing, as well as scripting and producing educational DVDs about caring for Miniature Horses; she also writes and edits books about this unique height breed (http://www.smallhorse.com).

Visit Toni at http://www.tonileland.com and follow her writing blog at http://manuscriptmusings.blogspot.com

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Filed under Action/Adventure, Contemporary Fiction, Reviews, Romance

The James Bond Guide by Kyle W. Bell

Review: “The James Bond Movie Guide” by Kyle W. Bell is a somewhat different take on the well-known film series than the average. One of its features which sets it apart from others of its kind? The detailed reviews of the 007 spawned video games for various console or game systems. A younger audience or gamers who enjoy the action genre might find this unique, but I was surprised by the length of those reviews compared to the comparative brevity of the film observations.

Each chapter was based on a film, and written rather in the form of an essay. Obviously the author was knowledgeable on the topic except for a couple of errors many fans would immediately pick up and references to pop culture of the generational spanning series which didn’t quite reflect the times, and I noticed some of the most outstanding trivia, facts and accomplishments were often left out. Quirky notes like former tennis pro Vijay Armitraj being in Octopussy, or the unforgettable presence of Grace Jones in View to a Kill, and especially the fact that the role of the new “M” finally went to woman, Dame Judy Dench in Goldeneye. These were facts fans could had found themselves nodding in agreement to, and could have helped widen appeal to a greater audience.

True Bond fans might take issue with it, but then the title of “true” is arguable. Is a Bond fan one who acknowledges the good and bad points of some of those is the film series yet still loves them anyway for what they are? Or is it one who accepts no slights against the iconic spy created by Ian Fleming? I think it’s a little of both, and other varieties as well.  I felt a better balance between personal opinion and actual facts could have benefited this guide, yet part of it’s noteworthiness is its willingness to show both love and a strange kind of hate for aspects of the films, their actors and directors.

Kyle W. Bell’s “The James Bond Guide” is informative in many ways, yet the strong biases and word choice expressing those opinions might find a chill response from lovers of all things with the James Bond brand. Just the same, I feel it’s an absolute  “must read” for fans of the film.

Description: “James Bond is a movie icon. His status as the world’s preeminent spy has been unchallenged for nearly fifty years. The films span several generations. Fans include both young and old, Western and Eastern, male and female, spy aficionados and just casual viewers. While the Cold War has come and gone, this super spy has lived the test of time.

The James Bond series has entertained us with its wit, pulse-pounding action, gorgeous women, exotic locales, sleek cars, and imaginative gadgets. The formula is tested and it works almost every time, partially thanks to the actors that make Bond their own. It’s a franchise that honors its traditions, yet is not afraid to adapt to the times.

The James Bond Movie Guide is the ultimate source for this renowned movie franchise. With a collection of reviews and summarizations for the 22 films, you will learn about each in detail and without fear of spoilers. A list of facts and cast for each film is included, along with series-wide facts, trivia, figures, and charts. Adding to the value are reviews for James Bond video games dating back to GoldenEye, some of the best Bond quotes from each film, as well as a list of the top 10 greatest James Bond theme songs.”

Published: June 18, 2010

Publication/Buy Link: Amazon Digital Services and Smashwords

Source: Author

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