KiTe – Review

So, I don’t do book reviews very often on my site, but I was asked to do a review of this book “KiTe” by Bill Shears. In a new tradition that I’d like to start, I’m going to review the book in a few sections. Today, I’m going with characters, storyline, and voice/grammar. But first, the main gist of it:

KiTe is a story of intrigue and coverup, things coming to life that are supposed to be dormant. With an impending doom concept that threatens Earth, there is also a romantic side with this story. But lets get down to my review. I could bore you to death with plot.

Characters: The main character in KiTe, Mason Dash, fits this roguish stereotype. Kind of the whole “I own my world and I’ve got attitude” idea. I can connect with that because I do own my own arrogance, but beyond that, he was fairly bland. I did like him, but it took some time. Perhaps that was Mr. Shears intent. However, I would have liked a little more depth to Dash. He did have his soft sideĀ  when it came to his wife, who I liked a lot better.

Storyline: I think the overall story of KiTe was good. It was just very hard to get used to. Personally, I could’ve lived fine without chapter 1. It just didn’t have anything happen or anything exciting. It was more or less confusing. I don’t mind some confusion in a book, but if I feel lost in the first couple of chapters, I have to force my way through. I also thought it was overdetailed at the beginning. It was a decent et up, but I just wasn’t a fan of it. After that, the story flowed very well.

Voice/Grammar: I’m a grammar guru. I know it’s not the most important thing to a book, but it’s also pleasant when something is written well. And by ‘written well’ I mean the voice. KiTe is in 3rd person with the viewpoints of a few of the main characters. The narration was well done, but very telling. I would’ve liked some more ‘show’ in the story. With that, grammar was very good. I don’t like commas overly used (unless they’re in Facebook posts or blogs, of course). Perhaps it could’ve done with a copy edit, but it wasn’t necessary. I’ve seen professionally published books that I could’ve taken a red pen to.

Overall, on my scale of 1 to 5 I give it a 3.3. It was a decent read, something I’d sit and read on a flight or on a Weekend when I’m bored and feel satisfied.

And, as always,

Alien abductions are involuntary, but probings are scheduled.

Chocolate Never Faileth

To be AWESOME!!!!!

Ok, so there’s this cookbook by the ever Awesome Annette Lyon (don’t ask my why “Awesome” is capitalized, my fingers did it and I thought it looked cool.) Here’s a picture of my favorite cookbook in existence:

Isn’t it awesome! Wait until you see what’s on the inside.

Well, let me tell ya, Mary and I bought the cookbook a few weeks ago and we have made a few yummy treats out of it.

First, we made the 3-minute Microwave Chocolate Cake. It was very good. Best way to describe it? A single-sized serving of chocolate cake in a mug. Downside (if you want to look at it that way) there was no way that Mary and I could eat it all. Our daughter even helped and there was still a little left. I think we had just eaten too much lunch and weren’t expecting such a thing as manna from heaven to grace our table. (Please ignore the “Preheat the oven” statement. It is an error and in no ways Annette’s fault. It’s Annette, you think she’d do something like that?)

The next morning, I made Chocolate Crepes. (I pronounce the e the way you would say “bet” not the way you would say “bait”. Yes, I speak French and I’m the correct one here.) Breakfast never had been so yummy. See, in the past when we’d make crepes, we’d add chocolate chips and whip cream because that’s how our kids enjoy them. But these were just so good that I couldn’t believe it. All they needed were…well…nope, nothing I can think of. We did the fresh strawberries and whip cream and enjoyed our morning.

Well, unfortunately, we were short on time and didn’t get to do much else for the next little while. But then…

I found out that the accompanying DVD was available. So Mary and I hightailed it to Seagull Book where we bought it (along with a few other books, amazingly enough). And when we got home, guess what we watched. By the way, Sarah M. Eden is in this DVD. When you watch it, count the number of times Sarah moves the cooking spray can in the beginning. I’d discuss the height discrepancies in the video, but you’d have to know Sarah and Annette to know what I mean.

Well, in that video, Annette and Sarah demonstrate how to make some yummy things. And after watching the treats, Mary and I had to make some treats.

So, we experimented with the chocolate bark and turned it into butterscotch-chocolate bark. It turned out good. The butterscotch ended up a bit strong, but still very delicious.

But, the thing that can best be compared to as “chocolate heaven”…or I’ll call it “moments of bliss” are the Tiger/Zebra tails. Marshmallows on a stick surrounded by yummy chocolate…mmm….I’m getting fat just typing this up. But honestly, when they were chilled. I know I like cold food generally better than hot food. So cold chocolate Tiger/Zebra tails was certainly a great treat. Plus, my wife did them a little different than how the pictures show and Annette compliments Mary for her creativity.

And, if you follow Annette on Twitter (or a bunch of other random people that I also follow) you will have noticed that next Thursday (October 28th) is National Chocolate Day. Shouldn’t this be a bank holiday? Well, I only know this actually since Annette passed some info on to me. But, she also let me know that The Chocolate Cafe in Orem, UT will be hosting a launch party for Annette and Chocolate Never Faileth. According to Annette, the festivities will be from 4-7.

Goal for the next week: Convince Mary to go to The Chocolate Cafe (somewhere I’ve actually suggested to her that we should go to with Annette and Sarah and their husbands since I hate being the only guy around) next Thursday.

Alien abductions are involuntary, but probings are scheduled.

And Then There Were None…

So part of today’s post is going to be a book review. The other thing is going to be my awesome investigation team.

Anyway, for some reason, I’ve been really interested in reading this book that was first published about 71 years ago. I don’t know why. I’ve always loved the story (even though my first attempt at reading the book was when I was 15 and I only go to the second death.) I did read the play when I was in high school. Somehow, I had known how the original story ended (someone told it to me). And I was intrigued to learn that the play ended differently. Regardless, this past weekend has been spent in a reading frenzy. It wasn’t too difficult to read (even thought I’m not exactly done yet, I do know who did it and what’s going to happen next.) To be honest, I am at the part in the book where the inspectors are just being clueless and unintelligent. Either way, this is one of the best books in all of history. It’s the number one selling mystery novel of all time (according to wikipedia) and the number four selling fiction book of all time. That’s pretty impressive if you ask me.

If I had my team on the case, we’d figure it out. Who is on my team? Oh….that’s a tough one. I think if I were to have a team of investigators it would be: my three siblings. So why? (Well, this sounds like a better post than naming ten people to take to Indian Island then killing them one by one).

My sister: Well, Apryl is important because I would want someone who has a methodical thought process. She’s intelligent enough that she and I could work together to find all the possible clues.

My oldest brother: Eric is chosen for a few reasons. First, we need someone to do the grunt work. But second, which is absolutely more important than the first, he’s most likely to notice the one thing that no one else had caught. For example, he’d notice the one piece of evidence that the inspectors seemed to have failed to notice in the confusion of the Indian Island murders in the book.

My older brother: Chris is the one that I’d name as leader of the group. Why? I don’t know, he’s just in awesome capacity to do that. He’d be the one making the notations and drawing out what happened as well to help the situation.

I’m sure the four of us could have solved this case easier than the inspectors in the book. Unlike some families, I trust all three of my siblings well enough that arguments would be kept to an all-time minimum (the worst thing would be if my sister and I disagreed on something because we both know how to argue. In the end, she’d win though, I’m sure.)

So yeah, what a dumb post. Or is it? It would make sense to have a team of people that can easily work well with one another. I mean, maybe I’m wrong. But honestly, I’d be willing to be that even if I’m right on how well we’d work together, we’d still be quite comical to watch. I’m serious, we could have our own reality show (if the four of us were actual investigators and I didn’t want to puke at the sight of too much blood.)

And, as always: Alien abductions are involuntary, but probings are scheduled.

Book Review: Heather B. Moore’s ‘Women of the Book of Mormon’

(First, to my usual followers, I have to say that I gave in to temptation and purchased a box of girl scout cookies. No, that’s not right, I’m fighting the war against the evil cookies. )

This is the first time I’ve ever reviewed a book on my blog. But it’s a pretty cool thing to do if you ask me. When I’m a published author (which is hopefully one day soon) I hope that someone will be willing to do the same thing. I know that some of my followers are not LDS/Mormon. However, you have the right to continue reading or not. Up to you.

Anyway, the book that I’m reviewing is Women of the Book of Mormon by Heather B. Moore. First, a few disclaimers and free advertising. I’ve never personally met Heather. Heather runs or owns Precision Editing Group. I must say, I used their free ten page service and was very satisfied with the job that was done on Eli and the Amethyst‘s prologue. Because of various connections, I also follow Heather’s blog: my writer’s lair. (No, I’m not wrong, there are no caps in her blog’s title.) Also, I do wish to state that I will be referring to the author by her first name despite the fact that we don’t know each other.

Moving on with the review. Even though this is a nonfiction work written for inspiration, I have to say that I learned a lot about a woman’s role in ancient Mesoamerica and ancient Israel. Heather has obviously done her research. She gave some interesting insights concerning Sarai and what she must have gone through. I was fascinated in her explanation of what the birthing process was like for a woman back in 600 B.C. and how much worse it would have been for Sarai as she traveled in the wilderness giving birth at least twice.

It’s nice that Heather uses the references that the Book of Mormon makes to women of the Bible. Even though Sarah, Eve, and Mary aren’t women that are in the Book of Mormon, they’re each referenced. She digs into the why and what their examples meant to those faithful women among the Nephites and Lamanites. Without stating it, she brings to mind that the Book of Mormon is not meant to replace the Bible, but to attest to it and our Savior.

I have to say, I was surprised at the mention of Isabael as well as the Daughter of Jared. Both are looked at as wicked women. One a harlot, the other a deceitful seductress. She shows that Isabel was more than just a harlot who had her name mentioned in the Book of Mormon. Heather brings up who Isabel probably was and how she probably held a larger societal role than most give her credit for. I have to say that there could be a movie about the Daughter of Jared. You’re talking about a woman who seduced a man to get him to kill her grandfather. This same man, ends up killing her father instead and later kills her oldest child. What kind of life must she have had. Honestly, if I had great scriptwriting ability, I’d write one about her. Maybe one day.

The great example that the mothers of the 2,000 Stripling Warriors are for all parents is incredible. These mothers taught their children all they could and raised them in a strong understanding that God would protect them if they believed and followed his will. The insights to these women are a testament to parents that try to raise their children. These 2,000 sons knew what their mothers taught them and were willing to sacrifice their lives to protect their families and homes. They would not have done so were it not for their mothers.

I do recommend this book to all those interested in delving a little deeper and gaining a lot of insight about these women who aren’t referred to in Sunday School lessons. There are so many things that we don’t know about because we do not pay attention closely enough. This book shows that Heather took a lot of time and energy into making sure she had the most accurate information she could find. The comparisons between ancient Israel and Mesoamerica are very intriguing and have made me interested in researching these concepts more.

If you get a chance to read this book, then you should. I wasn’t bored (which is always a good thing and surprising since this book is written towards LDS women). This book is a reminder that we need to be grateful for what we have, love and honor our families, trust our Father in Heaven, and obey the teachings of our Savior.

Well, that’s my book review. I will not be writing anything for Friday (unless I do it Thursday), but I intend to do a Saturday post with my round two picks of the NCAA tournament. (Yeah, my blog doesn’t have a random conglomeration of topics.)