Second Book in a Series!

If you took my advice and are a fan of fantasy/scifi and read The Dark Lord by Jack Heckel, then you need to know the second book in the series, The Darker Lord, has been out for several months. The final book of the trilogy, The Darkest Lord, is supposed to come out later this year. It’s a humorous take on the world of wizards and such, and any fan of fantasy and science fiction will enjoy it, especially given the number of inside references for those who are dedicated to that genre.

A Loving Tribute to the Father of the Book’s Author

I am overwhelmed by the book, My Father Lived Radiantly by Arkady. Related mostly in a series of highly personal poems, I found myself wishing I’d known the man the author describes in this loving tribute. She honestly approaches the death of her father, detailing events both large and small, and I could literally feel the depth of love and the sense of loss rising from the page like an aroma. This is a magnificent example of the way in which many of our best authors are publishing their works themselves. The author’s sense of loss and healing made me wish for more when I finished the book, an easy read that is filled with joy and pain, love and loss.

https://books.google.com/books/about/My_Father_Lived_Radiantly.html?id=k0kStgEACAAJ&hl=en

Superb Nonfiction

I highly recommend Dreamland: The True Tale of America's Opiate Epidemic by Sam Quinones

It can be found on Amazon here: 

https://www.amazon.com/Dreamland-True-Americas-Opiate-Epidemic/dp/1620402521/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1521683414&sr=8-1&keywords=dream+land

There are some real shockers in this interesting work by Mr. Quinones. How did it all start? How did the epidemic take on such tragic proportions? You will find solid reporting here in an engaging text, no hyperbole or yellow journalism. Superb.

The following is from the link above:

"From a small town in Mexico to the boardrooms of Big Pharma, an explosive and shocking account of addiction and black tar heroin in the heartland of America.
In 1929, in the blue-collar city of Portsmouth, Ohio, a company built a swimming pool the size of a football field; named Dreamland, it became the vital center of the community. Now, addiction has devastated Portsmouth, as it has hundreds of small rural towns and suburbs across America--addiction like no other the country has ever faced. How that happened is the riveting story of Dreamland.
With a great reporter’s narrative skill and the storytelling ability of a novelist, acclaimed journalist Sam Quinones weaves together two classic tales of capitalism run amok whose unintentional collision has been catastrophic. The unfettered prescribing of pain medications during the 1990s reached its peak in Purdue Pharma’s campaign to market OxyContin, its new, expensive--extremely addictive--miracle painkiller. Meanwhile, a massive influx of black tar heroin--cheap, potent, and originating from one small county on Mexico’s west coast, independent of any drug cartel--assaulted small town and mid-sized cities across the country, driven by a brilliant, almost unbeatable marketing and distribution system. Together these phenomena continue to lay waste to communities from Tennessee to Oregon, Indiana to New Mexico.
Introducing a memorable cast of characters--pharma pioneers, young Mexican entrepreneurs, narcotics investigators, survivors, and parents--Quinones shows how these tales fit together. Dreamland is a revelatory account of the corrosive threat facing America and its heartland.

Please note that my links to Amazon are in no way suggesting you use that service to order the book. This is not an ad for Amazon. It is merely a suggestion if you are looking for a good book. That is up to the individual reader. i just want to provide a link where you can read more about the book and purchase it either in a bookstore or online.

A Pulitzer Prize Winner

I highly recommend THE GOLDFINCH By Donna Tartt

It isn't short (around 800 pages), but it definitely deserved the Pulitzer for fiction in 2014.

https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=the+goldfinch

The following is from the link above:

Composed with the skills of a master, The Goldfinch is a haunted odyssey through present-day America and a drama of enthralling force and acuity.
It begins with a boy. Theo Decker, a 13-year-old New Yorker, miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. Bewildered by his strange new home on Park Avenue, disturbed by schoolmates who don't know how to talk to him, and tormented above all by his unbearable longing for his mother, he clings to one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art.
As an adult, Theo moves silkily between the drawing rooms of the rich and the dusty labyrinth of an antiques store where he works. He is alienated and in love - and at the center of a narrowing, ever-more-dangerous circle.
The Goldfinch is a novel of shocking narrative energy and power. It combines unforgettably vivid characters, mesmerizing language, and breathtaking suspense, while plumbing with a philosopher's calm the deepest mysteries of love, identity, and art. It is a beautiful, stay-up-all-night and tell-all-your-friends triumph, an old-fashioned story of loss and obsession, survival and self-invention, and the ruthless machinations of fate.

Please note that my links to Amazon are in no way suggesting you use that service to order the book. This is not an ad for Amazon. It is merely a suggestion if you are looking for a good book. That is up to the individual reader. i just want to provide a link where you can read more about the book and purchase it either in a bookstore or online.

LIKE FANTASY? TRY THIS ONE!

The writing team of John Peck and Harry Heckel combine to create the author, Jack Heckel. Their book The Dark Lord, the first in a trilogy, is hilarious and a page-turner at the same time. (The second in the series, The Darker Lord, is due out next year.) If you ever played Dungeons and Dragons, or any other role playing game set in a mysterious world, you will love this. You will probably love it even if you've never played those games, a group that would include me.

Here is the blurb from their publisher, Harper Voyager Impulse, a subsidiary of Harper-Collins.

In The Dark Lord—a hilarious parody of epic fantasy—Jack Heckel (author of The Charming Tales) tells the story of a young man traveling into a dark and magical world of dwarves, elves, and sorcerers to restore the balance between good and evil.
After spending years as an undercover, evil wizard in the enchanted world of Trelari, Avery hangs up the cloak he wore as the Dark Lord and returns to his studies at Mysterium University. 
On the day of his homecoming, Avery drunkenly confides in a beautiful stranger, telling her everything about his travels. When Avery awakens, hungover and confused, he discovers that his worst nightmare has come true: the mysterious girl has gone to Trelari to rule as a Dark Queen. 
Avery must travel back to the bewitched land and liberate the magical creatures . . . but in order to do so, he has to join forces with the very people who fought him as the Dark Lord.

Here's a link to purchase the book or e-book, depending on your preference

http://www.harpervoyagerbooks.com/book/9780062359339/the-dark-lord/

I must have laughed out loud ten times in the first ten pages. It's good, especially if you like the genre.

Please note that my links to Amazon are in no way suggesting you use that service to order the book. This is not an ad for Amazon. It is merely a suggestion if you are looking for a good book. That is up to the individual reader. i just want to provide a link where you can read more about the book and purchase it either in a bookstore or online.