A review of Beautiful Trouble edited by Andrew Boyd and Dave Oswald Mitchell

The “Principles” range from pithy to profound, including tips like “Don’t dress like a protester” and deeper matters like “Take leadership from those most impacted.” This latter principle means that those on the receiving end of a great injustice have the most to gain from a successful action but will bear the brunt of a failed one. They know the problem and potential solutions better than outside experts do, and their knowledge must be heard and respected within the movement.

A review of Chewed Confessions by Cheryl Kirwan

In Chewed Confession, Cheryl Kerwin’s Indie Excellence Finalist Book Award book, characters are connected in a straight-forward linear manner. In this case, the characters in these stories are often friends, family, colleagues, or acquaintances. Thus the main character of one story might casually call a friend or family member and this friend becomes the main character in the following story. This is generally the pattern throughout.

A review of The Last Days of Troy by Simon Armitage

You know the story.  The abduction of Helen.  The wooden horse.  The fall of Troy.Simon Armitage’s new play is a vivid re-engineering of Homer and Virgil, a meditation on ‘own’ and ‘other’, an unblinkered look at the costs and sorrows of war.  In truth, a play about war (rather than a lion hunt, say, another ancient theme) will always be of the moment: Achilles mutilating Hector’s corpse; a British soldier giving a thumbs-up over the body of a dead insurgent.

A review of Zen Master Tova Tarantino Toshiba – The Illustrious and Delusional Abbess of Satire by Gabriel Constans

What is interesting about this book is that it is presented in such a way as to appear serious and it is only in the fineprint that fiction is mentioned (and oh, I’ve just noticed the words “delusional” and “satire” in the title). If a newbie to zen philosophy picked it up, there’s enough sentences in this book to convince them it’s non-fiction; a book to be studied and unravelled.

A review of Margarita Wednesdays by Deborah Rodriguez

I find Rodriguez’ breezy, blunt writing style to be very readable.  She is an excellent weaver of a tale, readers will find their interest whetted via the uninhibited panache of Rodriguez’ writing. I like when someone, writer or not, can see their mistakes, can laugh at themselves and not resort to mawkish or maudlin behavior or writing in order to gain empathy or sympathy for their plight.

An interview with Allen Wyler

The author of Deadly Odds talks about how he comes up with his story ideas, his protagonist, on choosing Vegas as his setting, on the attraction of the thriller genre, on the upcoming sequel, on the book’s cinematic potential, and more.

A review of Act of Fear by Michael Collins

All the characters are terrific, utterly convincing; there is an authentic sense of place: Chelsea, N.Y., a blue-collar neighbourhood where authority figures, police officers most of all, are treated with suspicion; and there’s Fortune’s voice, streetwise but by no means hard-boiled, compassionate yet missing nowt. And with a nice line in epigrams: ‘A man in prison needs a human word.’ ‘Unanswered questions are like lurking monsters.’