Monday, December 19, 2011

Happy Holidays! Last Post for this year.

Hello fellow book addicts I feel like I have been neglecting you.  The Fall 2011 semester is over so I would love
to use this time to play catch up.  I hope everyone has a safe , blessed holiday.  See you again in 2012

Monday, November 28, 2011

Book Review:Becoming a Man of Unwavering Faith

I really enjoyed this book.  The first 9 chapters are directed at men trying strengthen  their faith in Christ.

for example:

I Man of Faith Can change His Faith

II A Man of Faith believes the Word of God

Chapter I opens with the prayer of Jabez, chapter II-IX  is based on I Kings 17-18 here we get a close look

at the prophet Elijah, who is a great example of how to have faith even when it doesn't look like you should

given the circumstances.  Of course  in each chapter Pastor Osteen talks about his experiences and testimonies  as a pastor, but there is no greater testimony than to have an adult child that can also testify

to the princples outlined in the book, which is what Joel Osteen did after each chapter include his

commentary about how he remembered things.   There is also a specific chapter (Chapter 12) "What to
to do when nothing seems to work"

I have a 6 year old son I am going to give the book to when he is older.  I am giving the book 5 out of 5 stars

Monday, November 14, 2011

POem by Indian poet John Matthew

Sonnet for Mother by John Matthew
Decked in blooms,
Swaddled in gold filigreed shrouds,
Smeared with perfumes,
She traveled into the clouds.

A life of love lived,
A life of more giving than taking,
Living a life of tears shed,
Turnings, and missed crossings.

She lies still beside father,
In an earthen grave dug for her,
On ere visits she knew this sepulcher,
And, with her man, she would rest there.

There is a time when we all connect
And then we all must self-destruct.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Book review :Boy Next door by Irene Sabatini

Lindiwe Bishop is fallinf for Ian McKenzie the proverbial boy next door. Now before you say"So what!"
our story takes place in the eary 1980's Lindiwe is a native Zimbabwean and Ian is a white Zimbabwean .  Zimbabwe has just gotten their independence so racial tensions are high.  If this isn't enough drama for you
how about the fact that they think Ian may have killed his stepmother.  Lindiwe's mother and distant relative
Maphosa are convinced that he did.However  Maphosa is anti white so he is going to think this anyway.  Her
father and her ":cousin" Rosanna are neutral on the subject , but as the story progresses you will discover why they didn't care one way or the other.

My overall impression:

Even though I had some idea that the there would be some violence the way the plot was laid out it
still seem to catch me off guard a little. It's like walking along the street minding your own business while
some weirdo jumps out of the bushes and knocks you down.   It took a few chapters but it finally picked
up enough to get my interest .  I am not entirely convinced of Lindiwe's relationship with Ian later in the book
but it was still a good read and dI would give it 4 and a 1/2 stars

Friday, October 28, 2011

Poem:Acts of Love by Pam Rehm

If endear is earned
and is meant to identify
two halves

then it composes
one of meaning
which means
a token

a knot
a note

a noting in the head
of how it feels

to have your heart
be the dear one

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Poem : Backside by Chika Sagawa(translated by Sawako Nakayasu)

Night eats color
flower bouqets  lose their fake ornaments
Day fall into the leaves
like sparkling fish
and struggles like the lowly mud,the
shape less dreams dreams and trees
nutured outside this shriveled
deridable despair, and the space that
was chopped down
tickles the weeds there
by it's feet
Fingers stained with tar from cigarettes
caress the writhing darkness
and then people move forward

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Book review:Habit of a Foreign Sky by Xu Xi

Gail Szeto is the epitome of  an overworked Chinese executive.  As a global investment banker her job demands constant travel and long relentless hours.Already divorced and just when it seemed she was coming out of the grey veil of despair  that blanketed her sterile , bland existence after the death of her only son Gu
Kwan.  . Then the coup final her mother dies suddenly leaving her with that over indulged half brother Gordie
whom she has only tolerated up until this point.  The title of this book  was taken from a line of an Emily Dickinson poem but even if it wasn't it would still fit perfectly.  Reading this book was like watching an ice skater do a triple jump, I am always impressed and totally awed by their effortless skill and expertise.  Ironically I found myself sympathetic to the Gordie's character because he really tried  almost feverently to keep his relationship going with Gail in spite of her being the product of an affair and her sometimes horrible attitude.  Not that I wasn't sympathetic to Gail because I was until it  came down to the way she was treating her brother.  I mostly felt like Gail's character was greatly misunderstood even by her maid Conchita , who ironically probably was the one person who understood her best..  Like most things in life as cliched as it is to say , nothing is perfect, but I have never been so enthralled with the imperfections.  This book had the amount of imagery ,good use of plot and a narrative that allowed you to see what the other characters where thinking
that seemed plausible.  I gave this book 5 out of 5 books and it is going in the permanent collection

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

My Arkansas by Maya Angelou

The Complete Collected Poems of Maya Angelou  There is a deep brooding
                             in Arkansas
                            Old crimes like moss pend
                           from poplar trees.
                           The sullen earth
                           is much too
                          red for comfort.
                          Sunrise seems to hesitate
                           and in that second
                           lose its
                           incandescent aim,and
                          dusk no more shadows
                           than the noon.
                           The past is brighter yet.

                          Old hates and
                          ante-bellum lace,are rent
                          but not discarded.
                          Today is yet to come
                           in Arkansas.
                           it writhes. It writhes in awful brooding.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Congradulations Desire You won!

Please contact me at cheryls4real(at)hotmail(dot)com to receive your copy of A Man of Unwavering Faith]
by John Osteen

Monday, August 29, 2011

Book Review:Grown Folks Business By Victoria Christiopher Murrary


About the Author: I admire the fact that she never gave up that desire
to write not even after she finished at Hampton University, or after
receiving her MBA from New York University.Not even after opening up a financial services agency,managing the #1 division for 9 years did
she give up on her dream to write.  Her first novel "Temptation" was originally self published in 1997 and later picked up by Time Warner in
2000.  Well let's just say it's been on and poppin' since then!That book was on the Essence bestseller's list for 9,count 'em 9,months  straight.NAACP later nominated this book for outstanding literature.

Speaking of accolades: She also received the Golden Pen Award for best Inspirational Fiction and the Phyillis Wheatly Trailblazer Award for being a pioneer in African American  Christian fiction.

About the book:Sheridan Hart is left to pick up the pieces when her husband of 16 years has dumped her for another man.  From the outside looking in they had the perfect life. He was a successful Doctor, she stayed home to take care of the
kids and run their businesss(ironically selling greeting cards  ) Hart to Heart.  Why was this happening to her?
She went to church and tried to raise her kids the right way so why her?How would she face the people in church?  To make things even more complicated their son  Chris, refuses to talk to his father.  Tori, always the Daddy's Girl still wants to spend time with her father even though he has moved out.

My overall impression:  I was very  reeled in pretty quickly! I loved the pacing of the plot, my only bone of contention is that I don't think it's realistic for someone to bounce back from life altering news in 6 months.  I
do believe that God will heal you from that pain.    I am a witness to this myself , however I believe it is a
process that God helps you with in time.I really did enjoy this book and if you aren't familiar with the Jasimine
series by the author definitely check those out I gave this book 4 out of 5 stars

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Poem:Other tongueby Vikas Menon

Elephants sway in my mother's   e nglish
Pleased to meeting you she says
the multiple suffixes of her mother tongue
affix themselves to her meter: Okay-na

In Malayalam,vowels sit like an egg
On tongue Ant to aardvark
Her voice vies against drunkit English
hums with the rhythm of a Mridanangame

In  English, the word Malayalam
reads the same from left to right as right to left-a mirror of contentment
If only other words were so settled.

My mother worries about the pale cluster's
on her mammogram
Breast Cancer is very popular now
Common,I say,not popular
Our other tongue is this silence
A hush,
a blank face
pressed against the glass

Friday, August 26, 2011

Friend Follow and Weekend Blog Hop




I you are stopping by from the Friend Follow or Weekend Blog Hop Welcome  and take a look around. I am hosting a giveaway(see the post below) I post poetry on Mondays. and I love to review the following
genres:Contemporary, and World Literature, Urban Christian, Christian, Suspense ,Memoirs and African-American.  I try to be as diverse as I can I just love to read so I guess eclectic would be an accurate to describe me.  Thanks for visiting me and be sure to leave a comment.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Contest Gieveaway:Becoming a Man of Unwavering Faith By John Osteen

Becoming a Man of Unwavering Faith

I have two copies to give away here are the rules:

1. You must be a follower of this blog to win .
2.U.S and Canada residents may enter.
3. Leave your email address in the comment section of this post by midnight on August 30,2011

I wanted to mention that Joel Osteen also makes his commentary for each chapter so far it's pretty good

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Memory Palace by Mira Bartok

"http://youtu.be/8odii4p1AYA
                                         
                                                     
                                                                           
            

                                                                                                                                      

























How do you survive living with someone who thinks that any given moment you will be killed, or raped? What do you if they were a gifted musician  slowly losing their grip on what is real?  What do you do if that person just happens to be your mother? Mira Bartok's memoir gives you an up close and personal view of 
what's like growing up in the 1960's with a mother who tried to jump out of the window and later diagnosed with schizophrenia.    My overall impression: I felt the author's writing was heartbreaking, poetic and profound . It seemed that she was able
to make her sorrow and pain palatable.Very difficult to read not because it was bad of course it wasn't but because she can tell you with precise detail just  where things go terribly wrong as a child , who later turns
into an adult that is helpless to save the one person she cares about the most.  The author also happens to be
a gifted artist as well so you will see artwork work included in every chapter. I recommend it but not to the faint of heart. I gave it 5 out of 5 stars.  I would like to thank Free Press for giving me the book to review.  Idon't get paid to review but I am an Amazon Associate.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Welcoming Party by Joshua trotter

Is this what I've been traveling toward
dodging rocks and reefs at funeral speed?
I see no dish of milk, no welcoming lips
just the beach-palms outstretched and the abyss
of all I've missed,winking from every bead
on every rain-whetted, wind-brandished blade


Saturday, August 20, 2011

Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese

Cutting for Stone This is another novel I read for my Outdo Yourself Challenge plus I have to include novels
I feel are in the literary category.     Not to knock anyone else if they like escapist type literature or commerically
successful.  I love books with imagery I guess it's the poet in me.

About the Author:Dr Verghese is the Professor of Theory &Practice of Medicine at Standford University school of Medicine, in addition to being Senior  Associate Chair of the Dept. Of Internal Medicne.  He was born to Indian parents(in 1955) who migrated from India  to a town near  Addis Ababa, Ethopia.
There was alot of political turmoil  in 1973 forcing him and his parents to go to the United States interuppting
his medical studies, he was able to return to Madras Medical College and complete them there.

     He came back to the U S to become an orderly at Boston Medical,in 1980. Here he was to come face to face with HIv epidemic. and later the muse for his forst book.  My own country: A doctor's story.  Afterwards he became so enthralled with writing that  he took time off from medicine to study at the  Iowa Writer's Workshop earning his Master's Degree in Fine Arts.(I guess it's never to late to reinvent yourself!)

My overall impression: Actually I am not shocked that the author is a doctor in real life because the story was
laced with medical terms, I would have been surprised if he hadn't been a doctor or at the very least a medical
student.Marion and Shiva Stone are twins who are abandoned by their father ,Dr.Stone.  Their mother has died in childbirth leaving   an Indian couple to raise them in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in the 1950's.   I think he did an excellent job with the setting , however I had a hard time believing that Dr. Stone didn't know he impregnated his nurse who was also a nun.   I could definitely see why the Book Addicts on Good Reads
choose this book it is in my permanent collection and I give it 4 1/2 stars out of 5.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Poem: In Texas Grass by Quincy Troupe

Transcircularities: New & Selected Poems   All along the rail
                                road tracks of texas
                               old train cars lay
                               rusted &overturned
                              like new african governments
                             long forgotten by the people
                              who built & rode them
                                till they couldn't run no more,
                              they remind me of old race horses
                             who've been put out to pasture
                            amongst the weeds
                            rain sleet &snow
                            till they die,rot away
                            like photos fading
                           in grandma's picture book,
                         of old black men in mississippi/texas
                         who sit on dilapidated porches,
                        that fall away
                       like dead man's skin,
                      like white people's eyes
                     &on the peeling photos,
                      old men sit sad -eyed
                      waiting,waiting for
                       worm dust,thinking of
                    the master&his long forgotten promise
                   of 40 acres & a mule,
                    & even now,if you pass across
                    the bleeding flesh ever-
                     changing landscape,
                     you will see the fruited
                     countryside, stretching, stretching,
                    old black men,&young black men
                      sitting on  porches
                      waiting, waiting for rusted
                     trains in texas grass
                     

Friday, August 12, 2011

The Help by Kathryn Stockett(book review)

The Help  I finally got an  chance to  read this book that has been on my To Be Read list since 2010 atleast! I will count this for my Outdo Yourself challenge.  I haven't forgotten about the challeng.  I wanted to
catch up on some of my other obligations first.

  About the contreversy:  I noticed in the back of the book ., the author made a point to mention a maid that
worked for them when she was a little whom she seems fond of, by the name Demetrie, who died when the author was sixteen and was supposed to be the reason for her writing the book.  I also noticed in the August

2011 issue of   Essence magazine, there is a sister by the name of Abelene Cooper who alleges in her lawsuit against the Stockett family (Kathryn Stockett's ;brother hired her to work for his family)  that she worked for them
in 1998, 3 months after her youngest son died from leukemia .  She read the
book and said it brought back alot of bad memories for her, they didn't have permission to use her name, and the fact that she compared her skin to the color of a cockroach demonstrates, in her opinion, that after all those years the author didn't  seem to get it.

About the book;  It's 1961 In Jackson, Mississippi.  Ms Skeeter has returned form graduating from  college but much to her mother's  not-so-subtle disappointment  no husband.  Her friends Hilly and Elizabeth had dropped out once they got married,playing the role of Southern Hostess.  Ms Skeeter is  more than  taken back by the way her friends treat their help.  Ms Skeeter approaches Aibelieen about writing a book that would show people how difficult it really is to be an African-American maid in the south.  Of course Aibileen thinks she is nuts, but because it's 1961  mind you she can't come out and say that! But  a series of events
would change not only her mind , but several other maids and a book  is written detailing just how hard it is to
be a  an African American maid back then.

My overall  impression:  I actually  enjoyed the book.  I feel a little guilty, being an African American blogger
and admitting this .Now of course the real life Ableen has every right to be offended and once I got to that section of the book(that compared her skin to that of a roach) I could see why she would be. the author had already  described her skin color several chapters back  there really wasn't  a point that I could see that would justify making that comparison.There are so many other words she could have used that wouldn't have had such a negative connotation .   The irony is
that Ableen's character is clearly the hero ,almost a saint, which is the part I wasn't crazy about, I felt that she needed to be more complex since there aren't any perfect people that I know of. I felt like the Celia character was a poor man's version of Marilyn Monroe.  I did  like Minnie's character because she did have alot more complexity, than some of the other characters.  I  think the author did a pretty good job with the plot and the story by telling it  from 3 different perspectives.  I was definitely  anxious to find out how it was going to turn out. I would give this book 4 stars

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Book Review Angela Sloan by James Whorton , jr

Angela Sloan: A NovelI  have two words for you Awe   some.(Now before you email me to correct my english
I know that's not 2 words.lol)  I love reading a novel that has the intrigue of a mystery or spy book with
more imagery and a good use of plot.Angela Sloan is the daughter of a former CIA agent,Ray Sloan, who
is reenlisted in for just one more assignment.  The job sounds easy but he doesnt want Angela to know about it.

Itturns out that to be the Wategate incident and  boy does the action really pick up here.   I have to say ,after
reading this novel ,I have a newfound respect for anyone who had to work undercover in the 1970's with the CIA!  You had to know your cover story, not only know when someone is following you ,but how to get rid of them, and if you have been found out you have to recall your code word.  Anyone contact you have with
your "coworker" has to be through a crossword puzzle so  you wont be discovered.  I loved this quirky charcter.  I highly recommend that you read it. I give this book 4 stars out of 5 .  I would also like to thank
Free Press for giving me the  oppurtunity to review this book.
"

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Contest giveaway:Sex on the Moon By Ben Mezrich

Sex on the Moon: The Amazing Story Behind the Most Audacious Heist in History   I am giving away 2 copies the rules are as follows:
1. You must be a follower to win
2.Deadline to enter is Tuesday August 14th@ midnight
3. US residents only.
4.Leave your email address in the comment section of this post and please check back on August 15th
when I will annouce the winner

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Silver Girl by Elin Hilderbrand

Silver Girl: A Novel  Elin Hilderbran is from  Collegeville,Pennsylvani the graduate of the John Hopkins University and  University o fIowa writer's Workshop teaching/writing  fellow.  Her short fiction has appeared in Seventeen,The Masssachusetts Review, and the  Colorado Review.  Like most mothers of 3 the majority of time is dominated the kids' activites,playdates and doctor's appointments and at one point in time headed non profit organizations  for Nantuckey, Mass, where she and her husband and kids have lived for 13 years.  Neeedless to say  doesn't leave much time for writing.  In spite of that she has written the following:

  •     Silver Girl(2011)
  • The Island(2010)
  • The Castaways(2009)
  • A Summer Affoir(2008)
  • Barefoot(2008)
  • The Love Season(2007)
  • The Blue Bistro(2006)
  • Summer People(2004)
  • Nantucket Nights(2002)
  • The Beach Club(2000)
  About this book, Meredith Delinn has to hide out for the summer in Nantucket because her top notch husband alot of investors out of their life savings some of them angry enough to possibly seek revenge.To add
insult to injury she has to ask her estranged friend, Connie Flute for a place to stay on the island since the feds
got everything except the money that Meredith had made on her own.  Her son, Leo Delinn is also under investigation since he also worked with his dad,meaning she can't have contact with him either.  Now don't think this ordeal is a cakewalk for  Constance, aka Connie.  Aside from the fact that she would be vilified
 by the public , she was trying to adapt to being a widow and  reconcile her differences with her only  child , Ashlyn.

   My overall impression:Since this is my first experience that I can remember with escapist literature I can only judge it against works of literature that is on the more creative end of the literary scale.  I was prepared to strongly dislike Meredith, I mean boo hoo ,poor you , you only have 40,000 in your bank account.  Alot of  people are struggling and would love to have her  problem and even on a red letter day I don't get to vacation
on Nantucket! What saves this  book from being a crybaby -free-for -all is the authors skill use of plot. By interweaving Meredith and Connie's past as well as their  frailties that were exposed in the present makes them more human more approachable. This is the perfect book to take with to the doctor's office or dmv.  I
give this book 3 1/2 out of 5 stars

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Mistress's Revenge by Tamar Cohen

The Mistress's Revenge: A NovelAccording to Msnbc's survey 1 in 5 adults have cheated on the person they are currently with.
Atleast 28% of the married men and 18% of married women(The survey was taken by 70,000 adult online).Author M.Gary Neuman,author of "The Truth About Cheating:Why Men stray and What You Can Do About It", comprised a 2 year study that followed  a 100 faithful men and 100 unfaithful men the results may surprise you : only 8% of the cheating men said that sexual dissatisfaction was the reason and 48% said it was emotional  disconnect..   So what if the other woman after being dumped would not go away quietly
what if she was determined to bring the affair to light no  matter  how much she stood to lose in the process?  Enter Sally Islip the former mistress of clive Gooding a well known philandering music producer , who has just ended their 5 year  affair without much of an explanation to Sally.   Even though she is in a long term relationship with someone else and has two kids from the union, she doesn't feel like she had much to live for
and has determined in her now fragile and demented mind that she will get even.
My overall impression:  I found the author's style funny, engrossing  and entertaining .   I actually liked Sally's
thearpist,Helen Bunion  because she didn't let Sally  use her advice to justify her little plot to get back at Clive.
It was actually interesting to see Sally slide into her mental decline bu I can't say I was sympathtic, which I am sure was the way it was intended to be taken.   If you don read any other book this summer read this one! I am definitely giving it 5 out of 5 stars.  I would also like to thank Free Press  for allowing me the chance to review the book but I don't get paid to do so.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Haiku with a photo

                                I got this image from here
I use to follow a blog that did phots and haikus but I believe they stopped and just when you think I found
another one this blogger is taking a break! If there is anyone out there who knows a blogger doing both
poetry and photos I would be interested.    

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Congradulations Anash You won!

Anash you are the winner please contact me at clsherrard(dot)bookaddict(at)gmail(dot)com

The Freshman Survival Guide(Book Review)

0it doesn't have to`The Freshman Survival Guide: Soulful Advice for Studying, Socializing, and Everything In Between If this is your first year of college there is no need to fear The Freshman Survival Guide is here.
No longer do you have to  navigate rocky terrain  each and every chapter has a survival strategy for example
Chapter 1 Survival Strategy #1 Making good friends in college is important but it takes time. Be patient, be smart, and stay connected to your support network- the friends and family who helped you get this far.

Chapter 4  Survival Strategy # 4 Homesickness is a fact of college life ,but it doesn't have to defeat you.  Develop habits and relationships that will help  ward off your longing for homr.  Also through each chapter are real life stories  of actual college students themselves as wellas tips you can find online.  Here's a few other
Cchapters I thought were helpful:

Chapter 8 Real stats and strategies on mental health
Chapter 11 How to be a college student and Time management
Chapter 13 The care and feeding of the college professor
Chapter 19 Am I Safe,Don't be Paranoid just be Smart
chapter 23  there's no vitamin C in orange  soda and doritos aren't a food group.

I even went to The Freshman Survival guide website for the study budget.  Go to the link that says Listing  by Chapter then click chapter 11.. I gave copies to my oldest daughter who is already taking dual credit courses
at her high school.0.  While this resource is good enough for my daughter, I would never mislead her or your
the reader that this a a go to guide in terms of how to remain a Christian while you're at college.  This isn't that boook.  Nothing of course  will replace the bible and believe me when I tell you my child has 3 already.  What I was hoping  for was a supplemental guide in  a language  and perspective that a young adult could
rrrelate to.  I still give this book 4 stars out of 5 only in terms of a resource guide.  I would like to thank Center Street for allowing me the opportunity to review the book.  I am an Amazon Associate but I don't recieve money to review the book.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Contest Giveaway: 2 copies of Home and Away

Home and Away: A Story of Family in a Time of War

I am giving away 2 copies for
1. The followers of this blog.
2. US and Canada residents only
3.Please leave an up to date email address in the comment section of this post.Deadline to enter will be
June 28,2011 @midnight.The winners will have 48 hours to respond so please check back her next Wed to see if you won.

Book Review Home and Away by David and Nancy French

Home and Away: A Story of Family in a Time of War David French graduated from David Lipscomb University and from Harvard Law School with
honors.  This native Kentuckian became the lead attorney in the federal court case against the unconstitutional
speech code at Shippenburg University(with the Foundation For Individual Rights in education and won so why give all this up  to fight in Iraq? How does the spouse left behind deal with the ups and downs of suddenly having to raise the kids alone?  Was the year long deploement worth it  to them?  The aspect of this memoir I enjoyed the most was the fact that it was written from both sides of the coin.  So many times we may only get to see army wives on tv. or only from the soldiers point of view. If you have ever been curious as to what it's like then I highly recommend this book. I gave it 4 and 1/2 stars out of 5. I would also like to thank Center Street for the opportunity to review this book.

A Lonilness by Haki R Madhubuti(aka Don Lee)

Heartlove: Wedding and Love Poemslooking thru the commerical
glass of the holidays or
howard j's
(I failed to make a distiction)
after a long day at  luther college
the one in iowa
listening  to the impressive.
trying to impress

I stood there
watching myself   feel
feeling
my own eyes checking
my dark reflection against
the day sounds.
standing there listening
as the raindrops dropped
over the dead leaves that
rested on greenless grass
as the tree's shadow
played dodge with the
slow wind
at night the distant
street light is the brightest sun
and I go to bed feeling
a part of it.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

I wore the ocean in the shape of a girl by Kelle Groom

I Wore the Ocean in the Shape of a Girl: A MemoirKelle Groom is the author of 3 poetry collections in addition to this memoir.  Five Kingdoms released in 2010,Luckily (2006) and Underwater City 2004. but before reaching  sucess in the literary world she
had alot of personal demons to fight and conquer first.   In the memoir we go back to 1982 when the author
is a  a pregnant teenager living with her parents.  She is unable to raise the child in spite of the support she
received from her mother who was a teacher at the time and her father who was in the military.  So she will make  what will turn out to be a one of the most difficult decisions in her life by giving her son, Tommy up for adoption to her aunt and uncle.  Fourteen months later she loses him again to  cancer. It's here that we witness
the not so slow  fall into alcoholism as her means of coping with the loss.Even though the author did foreshadow her recovery I have never wanted to see someone recover so badly!  The benefit to reading a memoir  written by a poet is their skillful use of imagery. I felt like I was there with her every step of the way.  It's usually the use of metaphors, etc.. that sets this apart from celebrity memoirs.  The only drawback is the creative license the author sometimes uses that makes it a little incoherent from time to time but still a pretty good read I am giving it 4 stars out of 5.

FTC DISCLOSURE: I would like to thank Free Press(Simon and Schuster) for allowing me the opportunity to review this book, which I don't receive money to do and yes I am a Amazon Associate.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Swerve by Kelle Groom

I think of the man who sat
behind my grandmother's sister
in church and told her
the percentage of  Indian
in her blood calling it out
over the white pews.
I wonder what made
him want to count it
like coins or a grade.
I wish I could hear him
Now when I think her saying
that all of her  Wampanoag blood
in her body would fit in one finger,
 discounting the percentage it seemed, but why was she
such a historian, tracing the genealogy of the llast
Wampanoag  up to her own
children typing it all
on see through paper?
Maybe like me
she felt self conscious
caring about what we're made simpley being satisfied dressing our bodies
and driving them around.
Maybe she felt shy for loving someone
she'd never met, I mean
I do. I think of the knife
cutting into the flesh
and the fork carrying it
to your mouth
I always think of that, the sythe-like movement
single motion, a swerve.
I think of my relative,
the last Wampanoag in the town
walking the streets
with a dollar the town gave him.
Even then what would a dollar buy
a finger of land? If an Indian could have bought land
I think of walking into the almshouse.
The alms falling like figs from trees
something to gnaw on.
I think of the first time  of thanks
before it had a name
when it was just some
relatives of mine keeping
some relative of yours
alive through a cold winter
people stupid enough
to take food from a graveyard
food meant for the dead.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Book Review: Art and Madness by Anne Roiphe

Art and Madness: A Memoir of Lust Without Reason  Anne Roiphe is the National Book Award Finalist for Fruitful a Memoir.Her first book Digging Out(Memoir)  came out 3 years after her  rock marriage to Jack Richardson ended in 1963.Before writing 18 more books she was still living vicarously through other writers  such as Doc Humes, George Plimpton, and William  Styron.  This memoir Art and Madness covers those years where women were not
supposed to want anything beyond a home and family.  In the 1950's a career was not something you aspired to.
An respectable girl didn't aspire to a career.Anyone who has ever feel in love with pen and paper knows it's
an insatiable and unexplainable need.  I am not  rationalizing the affairs with the married writers but I do understand the need.Two things that struck me as odd one that girls were allowed to knit socks for their boyfriends in their college classes and two that so many wanted to knit socks for their boyfriends/fiancees.  They couldn't just go buy the  socks from the store? College education ain't cheap I think I would've wanted my money's worth! Seriously before I go off on a tangent the other thing I found interesting about the author in general was the fact  that it wasn't until 1978 article that she wrote about how her family displayed their Christmas tree setting
off a whirlwind of  criticism within the Jewish community ,that the author started to explore more Jewish themes  in her writing and would later receive the Jewish Cultural Achievement Award for the Literary Awards from the National Foundation for Jewish culture in June 7 2004.

My overall impression: reading this book was like trying to have an intelligent conversation with someone on a bumper car ride.  As soon as I was  getting interested in a certain year the author would suddenly jump back to 1953 or fast forward to 1961 making difficult  to stay with the story and knocking me off balance just like a bumper car ride would.  Her writing was exquisite,but hard to enjoy.  I don't have a problem with the author  exploring different years, but  unlike Running the Books by Mr. Stienberg it just didn't have that flow. I gave the book 3 and 1/2 stars out of 5.  
FTC DISCLOSURE    I would like to thank Doubleday for giving me the opportunity to review this book.
I dont  get any money from them but I am an Amazon Associate


.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Clenched soul by Pablo Neuruda

The Essential Neruda: Selected Poems (Bilingual Edition) (English and Spanish Edition)


We have lost even this twilight
Noone saw us this evening hand in hand
while the blue  night dropped on the world
I have seen from my window
the fiesta of sunset in 
the distant mountain tops
Sometimes a  piece of sun
burned like a coin in my hand

I remembered you with
my soul clenched
in that sadness of mine that you know

Where were you then?
Who else was there?
 Saying what?
 Why will the whole of love come on me suddenly
When I am sad and feel you are far away?
The book fell that always closed at twilight and my blue sweater rolled like
a hurt dog at my feet.

Always , always you recede through the evenings
toward the twilight erasing statues

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Book Review:Working It out By Abby Rike

Working It Out: A Journey of Love, Loss, and Hope

Abby Rike lost her husband Rick, 5 year old Macy and their infant son Caleb in a terrible car accident.How does one find the will to go on?  How do you go forward in life when you feel like your reason to live has been so cruelly and so quickly snatched away?  I must confess early on that I am  not a fan of "The Biggest Loser" tv show.  Something about losing weight as a competitive sport just doesn't appeal to me at all.  So
I had no idea of  who Abby Rike was or her story.  You don't have to be a fan of the show ti admire the strength, determination and courage it took to begin to overcome a horrific loss.  I was deeply moved by the author's simple and yet profound way she shared her story.  I would encourage anyone who is grieving the loss of someone they loved or if you are just wondering to yourself"Can God use Me? then this is the story for you. I personally believe that God can use anyone.     Sometimes it's because of someone's unfortunate situation that we learn how to grow in grace  or see how someone can survive what seems to be the insurmountable.  I think that there is someone out there who is grieving a terrible loss ,thinking that it's only happening to them or not getting enough support that would benefit from seeing this greiving process up close
no sugar coating.  I gave this book 5 out of 5 stars.

Ftc disclosure:  I would like to take this time to thank Faithwords for allowing me the cance to review this book.  Iusually come away feeling encouraged and no I don't recieve money to review this book, but I am an Amazon associate.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Poem :So Many Feathers by Jayne Cortez

                                                    Jayne cortez

You danced a magnetic dance
in your rhinestone and satin banana g-string
It was you who cut the river
with your pink diamond tongue
did the limbo on your back
straight from the history of southern flames
onto the stage where your body
covered in metallic flint
under black and green feathers strutted
wings of a vulture  paradise on your head
strutted among the birds
until you became terror woman of all feathers
of such terrible beauty
of such fire

such flames
all feathers Josephine
This Josephine
exploding red marble eyes in new york
this  Josephine
breaking color bars in miami
this Joshephine
mother of orphans
legion of honor
rosette of resistance
this Josephine before
splitting the solidarity of beautiful feathers

Feather-woman of terror
such feathers so beautiful
Josephine
with your frosted mouth half-open
why spilt your flamingos
with the death white boers in durban south africa
Woman with magnificent face of Ife mask
why all the teeth for the death white boers in durban
Josephine you had every eyelash in the forest
every feather flying
why give your beaded snake-hips
to the death white boers in durban
Josephine didn't you know about the torture chambers
made of black flesh and feathers
made by the death white boers  in durban
Josephine terror -woman of terrible beauty of such feathers
I want to understand why dance
the dance of the honorary white
for the death white boers in durban

After all Josphine
I saw you in your turquoise headdress
with royal blue sequins pasted on your lips
your fantastic legs studded with emerals
as you kicked as you bumped as you leaped in the air
then froze
your body breaking lighting  inf fish net
and Josephine  Josephine
what a night in harlem
what electricity
such trembling
such goose pimples
so many feathers
Josphine
dancer of the magnetic dancers
fo the orange flint pelvis of the ruby navel
of the purple throat
of  the feet pointting  both ways
of  feathers now gone
Josphine Josephine
I remember you rosette of resistance
southern flames
Josephine of the bird heads, ostrich plumes
bananas and sparkling G-strings
Josephine of the double-jointed fingers
double jointed hips doubling
into a double squat like a double star into a giant double snake
with the double heartbeats of a young girl
doubling into woman-hood
and grinding into an emulsified double spirit
Josephine of such conflicts i remember
Josephine of such floating i remember
Josephine
of so many heights i remember
Josephine
of so many transformations i remember
Josphine of such beauty i remember
Josephine of such fire i remember
Josephine of such sheen i remember
Josephine
so many feathers  i remember
Josephine Josephine

Friday, May 13, 2011

Congradulations SidneYou won

I apologize for taking so long to get to this I hurt my back at the gym well anyway
email me at
clsherrard(dot)bookaddict(at)gmail(dot)comTwice a Spy: A Novel

Friday, May 6, 2011

Crazy-for-books Book Hop

Hello it's that time of the week were we link up with other book bloggers.  The question for the week is
What book blogger would you like to meet in real life?  I would love to meet the ladies over at the blue bookcase They host the Literary Hop every other week.  So you may want to stop by there next week to check it out. I love all the blogs I have discovered at those hops and I imagine they would have alot of interesting conversations, or atleast I think they would.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

New contest!"Twice A spy" by Keith Thomson

Twice a Spy: A Novel
 Hello my favorite fellow book addicts I have a new contest  I am giving away 2 copies  of this book
the rules are as follows.
1.  You must be a follower
2. U. S residents only (sorry Canada nothing personal this is a different publisher)
3. Leave your email in the comment section of this and click the like button in the sidebar.
Deadline May 10th
Poco Kat you won a copy of Working it Out please email your address to clsherrard(dot)bookaddict(at)gmail(dot) com

Monday, December 19, 2011

Happy Holidays! Last Post for this year.

Hello fellow book addicts I feel like I have been neglecting you.  The Fall 2011 semester is over so I would love
to use this time to play catch up.  I hope everyone has a safe , blessed holiday.  See you again in 2012

Monday, November 28, 2011

Book Review:Becoming a Man of Unwavering Faith

I really enjoyed this book.  The first 9 chapters are directed at men trying strengthen  their faith in Christ.

for example:

I Man of Faith Can change His Faith

II A Man of Faith believes the Word of God

Chapter I opens with the prayer of Jabez, chapter II-IX  is based on I Kings 17-18 here we get a close look

at the prophet Elijah, who is a great example of how to have faith even when it doesn't look like you should

given the circumstances.  Of course  in each chapter Pastor Osteen talks about his experiences and testimonies  as a pastor, but there is no greater testimony than to have an adult child that can also testify

to the princples outlined in the book, which is what Joel Osteen did after each chapter include his

commentary about how he remembered things.   There is also a specific chapter (Chapter 12) "What to
to do when nothing seems to work"

I have a 6 year old son I am going to give the book to when he is older.  I am giving the book 5 out of 5 stars

Monday, November 14, 2011

POem by Indian poet John Matthew

Sonnet for Mother by John Matthew
Decked in blooms,
Swaddled in gold filigreed shrouds,
Smeared with perfumes,
She traveled into the clouds.

A life of love lived,
A life of more giving than taking,
Living a life of tears shed,
Turnings, and missed crossings.

She lies still beside father,
In an earthen grave dug for her,
On ere visits she knew this sepulcher,
And, with her man, she would rest there.

There is a time when we all connect
And then we all must self-destruct.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Book review :Boy Next door by Irene Sabatini

Lindiwe Bishop is fallinf for Ian McKenzie the proverbial boy next door. Now before you say"So what!"
our story takes place in the eary 1980's Lindiwe is a native Zimbabwean and Ian is a white Zimbabwean .  Zimbabwe has just gotten their independence so racial tensions are high.  If this isn't enough drama for you
how about the fact that they think Ian may have killed his stepmother.  Lindiwe's mother and distant relative
Maphosa are convinced that he did.However  Maphosa is anti white so he is going to think this anyway.  Her
father and her ":cousin" Rosanna are neutral on the subject , but as the story progresses you will discover why they didn't care one way or the other.

My overall impression:

Even though I had some idea that the there would be some violence the way the plot was laid out it
still seem to catch me off guard a little. It's like walking along the street minding your own business while
some weirdo jumps out of the bushes and knocks you down.   It took a few chapters but it finally picked
up enough to get my interest .  I am not entirely convinced of Lindiwe's relationship with Ian later in the book
but it was still a good read and dI would give it 4 and a 1/2 stars

Friday, October 28, 2011

Poem:Acts of Love by Pam Rehm

If endear is earned
and is meant to identify
two halves

then it composes
one of meaning
which means
a token

a knot
a note

a noting in the head
of how it feels

to have your heart
be the dear one

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Poem : Backside by Chika Sagawa(translated by Sawako Nakayasu)

Night eats color
flower bouqets  lose their fake ornaments
Day fall into the leaves
like sparkling fish
and struggles like the lowly mud,the
shape less dreams dreams and trees
nutured outside this shriveled
deridable despair, and the space that
was chopped down
tickles the weeds there
by it's feet
Fingers stained with tar from cigarettes
caress the writhing darkness
and then people move forward

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Book review:Habit of a Foreign Sky by Xu Xi

Gail Szeto is the epitome of  an overworked Chinese executive.  As a global investment banker her job demands constant travel and long relentless hours.Already divorced and just when it seemed she was coming out of the grey veil of despair  that blanketed her sterile , bland existence after the death of her only son Gu
Kwan.  . Then the coup final her mother dies suddenly leaving her with that over indulged half brother Gordie
whom she has only tolerated up until this point.  The title of this book  was taken from a line of an Emily Dickinson poem but even if it wasn't it would still fit perfectly.  Reading this book was like watching an ice skater do a triple jump, I am always impressed and totally awed by their effortless skill and expertise.  Ironically I found myself sympathetic to the Gordie's character because he really tried  almost feverently to keep his relationship going with Gail in spite of her being the product of an affair and her sometimes horrible attitude.  Not that I wasn't sympathetic to Gail because I was until it  came down to the way she was treating her brother.  I mostly felt like Gail's character was greatly misunderstood even by her maid Conchita , who ironically probably was the one person who understood her best..  Like most things in life as cliched as it is to say , nothing is perfect, but I have never been so enthralled with the imperfections.  This book had the amount of imagery ,good use of plot and a narrative that allowed you to see what the other characters where thinking
that seemed plausible.  I gave this book 5 out of 5 books and it is going in the permanent collection

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

My Arkansas by Maya Angelou

The Complete Collected Poems of Maya Angelou  There is a deep brooding
                             in Arkansas
                            Old crimes like moss pend
                           from poplar trees.
                           The sullen earth
                           is much too
                          red for comfort.
                          Sunrise seems to hesitate
                           and in that second
                           lose its
                           incandescent aim,and
                          dusk no more shadows
                           than the noon.
                           The past is brighter yet.

                          Old hates and
                          ante-bellum lace,are rent
                          but not discarded.
                          Today is yet to come
                           in Arkansas.
                           it writhes. It writhes in awful brooding.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Congradulations Desire You won!

Please contact me at cheryls4real(at)hotmail(dot)com to receive your copy of A Man of Unwavering Faith]
by John Osteen

Monday, August 29, 2011

Book Review:Grown Folks Business By Victoria Christiopher Murrary


About the Author: I admire the fact that she never gave up that desire
to write not even after she finished at Hampton University, or after
receiving her MBA from New York University.Not even after opening up a financial services agency,managing the #1 division for 9 years did
she give up on her dream to write.  Her first novel "Temptation" was originally self published in 1997 and later picked up by Time Warner in
2000.  Well let's just say it's been on and poppin' since then!That book was on the Essence bestseller's list for 9,count 'em 9,months  straight.NAACP later nominated this book for outstanding literature.

Speaking of accolades: She also received the Golden Pen Award for best Inspirational Fiction and the Phyillis Wheatly Trailblazer Award for being a pioneer in African American  Christian fiction.

About the book:Sheridan Hart is left to pick up the pieces when her husband of 16 years has dumped her for another man.  From the outside looking in they had the perfect life. He was a successful Doctor, she stayed home to take care of the
kids and run their businesss(ironically selling greeting cards  ) Hart to Heart.  Why was this happening to her?
She went to church and tried to raise her kids the right way so why her?How would she face the people in church?  To make things even more complicated their son  Chris, refuses to talk to his father.  Tori, always the Daddy's Girl still wants to spend time with her father even though he has moved out.

My overall impression:  I was very  reeled in pretty quickly! I loved the pacing of the plot, my only bone of contention is that I don't think it's realistic for someone to bounce back from life altering news in 6 months.  I
do believe that God will heal you from that pain.    I am a witness to this myself , however I believe it is a
process that God helps you with in time.I really did enjoy this book and if you aren't familiar with the Jasimine
series by the author definitely check those out I gave this book 4 out of 5 stars

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Poem:Other tongueby Vikas Menon

Elephants sway in my mother's   e nglish
Pleased to meeting you she says
the multiple suffixes of her mother tongue
affix themselves to her meter: Okay-na

In Malayalam,vowels sit like an egg
On tongue Ant to aardvark
Her voice vies against drunkit English
hums with the rhythm of a Mridanangame

In  English, the word Malayalam
reads the same from left to right as right to left-a mirror of contentment
If only other words were so settled.

My mother worries about the pale cluster's
on her mammogram
Breast Cancer is very popular now
Common,I say,not popular
Our other tongue is this silence
A hush,
a blank face
pressed against the glass

Friday, August 26, 2011

Friend Follow and Weekend Blog Hop




I you are stopping by from the Friend Follow or Weekend Blog Hop Welcome  and take a look around. I am hosting a giveaway(see the post below) I post poetry on Mondays. and I love to review the following
genres:Contemporary, and World Literature, Urban Christian, Christian, Suspense ,Memoirs and African-American.  I try to be as diverse as I can I just love to read so I guess eclectic would be an accurate to describe me.  Thanks for visiting me and be sure to leave a comment.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Contest Gieveaway:Becoming a Man of Unwavering Faith By John Osteen

Becoming a Man of Unwavering Faith

I have two copies to give away here are the rules:

1. You must be a follower of this blog to win .
2.U.S and Canada residents may enter.
3. Leave your email address in the comment section of this post by midnight on August 30,2011

I wanted to mention that Joel Osteen also makes his commentary for each chapter so far it's pretty good

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Memory Palace by Mira Bartok

"http://youtu.be/8odii4p1AYA
                                         
                                                     
                                                                           
            

                                                                                                                                      

























How do you survive living with someone who thinks that any given moment you will be killed, or raped? What do you if they were a gifted musician  slowly losing their grip on what is real?  What do you do if that person just happens to be your mother? Mira Bartok's memoir gives you an up close and personal view of 
what's like growing up in the 1960's with a mother who tried to jump out of the window and later diagnosed with schizophrenia.    My overall impression: I felt the author's writing was heartbreaking, poetic and profound . It seemed that she was able
to make her sorrow and pain palatable.Very difficult to read not because it was bad of course it wasn't but because she can tell you with precise detail just  where things go terribly wrong as a child , who later turns
into an adult that is helpless to save the one person she cares about the most.  The author also happens to be
a gifted artist as well so you will see artwork work included in every chapter. I recommend it but not to the faint of heart. I gave it 5 out of 5 stars.  I would like to thank Free Press for giving me the book to review.  Idon't get paid to review but I am an Amazon Associate.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Welcoming Party by Joshua trotter

Is this what I've been traveling toward
dodging rocks and reefs at funeral speed?
I see no dish of milk, no welcoming lips
just the beach-palms outstretched and the abyss
of all I've missed,winking from every bead
on every rain-whetted, wind-brandished blade


Saturday, August 20, 2011

Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese

Cutting for Stone This is another novel I read for my Outdo Yourself Challenge plus I have to include novels
I feel are in the literary category.     Not to knock anyone else if they like escapist type literature or commerically
successful.  I love books with imagery I guess it's the poet in me.

About the Author:Dr Verghese is the Professor of Theory &Practice of Medicine at Standford University school of Medicine, in addition to being Senior  Associate Chair of the Dept. Of Internal Medicne.  He was born to Indian parents(in 1955) who migrated from India  to a town near  Addis Ababa, Ethopia.
There was alot of political turmoil  in 1973 forcing him and his parents to go to the United States interuppting
his medical studies, he was able to return to Madras Medical College and complete them there.

     He came back to the U S to become an orderly at Boston Medical,in 1980. Here he was to come face to face with HIv epidemic. and later the muse for his forst book.  My own country: A doctor's story.  Afterwards he became so enthralled with writing that  he took time off from medicine to study at the  Iowa Writer's Workshop earning his Master's Degree in Fine Arts.(I guess it's never to late to reinvent yourself!)

My overall impression: Actually I am not shocked that the author is a doctor in real life because the story was
laced with medical terms, I would have been surprised if he hadn't been a doctor or at the very least a medical
student.Marion and Shiva Stone are twins who are abandoned by their father ,Dr.Stone.  Their mother has died in childbirth leaving   an Indian couple to raise them in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in the 1950's.   I think he did an excellent job with the setting , however I had a hard time believing that Dr. Stone didn't know he impregnated his nurse who was also a nun.   I could definitely see why the Book Addicts on Good Reads
choose this book it is in my permanent collection and I give it 4 1/2 stars out of 5.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Congradulations Amy S You are the winner of Sex on the Moon

Please email your mailing address to clsherrard(dot)bookaddict(at)gmail(dot)com

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Poem: In Texas Grass by Quincy Troupe

Transcircularities: New & Selected Poems   All along the rail
                                road tracks of texas
                               old train cars lay
                               rusted &overturned
                              like new african governments
                             long forgotten by the people
                              who built & rode them
                                till they couldn't run no more,
                              they remind me of old race horses
                             who've been put out to pasture
                            amongst the weeds
                            rain sleet &snow
                            till they die,rot away
                            like photos fading
                           in grandma's picture book,
                         of old black men in mississippi/texas
                         who sit on dilapidated porches,
                        that fall away
                       like dead man's skin,
                      like white people's eyes
                     &on the peeling photos,
                      old men sit sad -eyed
                      waiting,waiting for
                       worm dust,thinking of
                    the master&his long forgotten promise
                   of 40 acres & a mule,
                    & even now,if you pass across
                    the bleeding flesh ever-
                     changing landscape,
                     you will see the fruited
                     countryside, stretching, stretching,
                    old black men,&young black men
                      sitting on  porches
                      waiting, waiting for rusted
                     trains in texas grass
                     

Friday, August 12, 2011

The Help by Kathryn Stockett(book review)

The Help  I finally got an  chance to  read this book that has been on my To Be Read list since 2010 atleast! I will count this for my Outdo Yourself challenge.  I haven't forgotten about the challeng.  I wanted to
catch up on some of my other obligations first.

  About the contreversy:  I noticed in the back of the book ., the author made a point to mention a maid that
worked for them when she was a little whom she seems fond of, by the name Demetrie, who died when the author was sixteen and was supposed to be the reason for her writing the book.  I also noticed in the August

2011 issue of   Essence magazine, there is a sister by the name of Abelene Cooper who alleges in her lawsuit against the Stockett family (Kathryn Stockett's ;brother hired her to work for his family)  that she worked for them
in 1998, 3 months after her youngest son died from leukemia .  She read the
book and said it brought back alot of bad memories for her, they didn't have permission to use her name, and the fact that she compared her skin to the color of a cockroach demonstrates, in her opinion, that after all those years the author didn't  seem to get it.

About the book;  It's 1961 In Jackson, Mississippi.  Ms Skeeter has returned form graduating from  college but much to her mother's  not-so-subtle disappointment  no husband.  Her friends Hilly and Elizabeth had dropped out once they got married,playing the role of Southern Hostess.  Ms Skeeter is  more than  taken back by the way her friends treat their help.  Ms Skeeter approaches Aibelieen about writing a book that would show people how difficult it really is to be an African-American maid in the south.  Of course Aibileen thinks she is nuts, but because it's 1961  mind you she can't come out and say that! But  a series of events
would change not only her mind , but several other maids and a book  is written detailing just how hard it is to
be a  an African American maid back then.

My overall  impression:  I actually  enjoyed the book.  I feel a little guilty, being an African American blogger
and admitting this .Now of course the real life Ableen has every right to be offended and once I got to that section of the book(that compared her skin to that of a roach) I could see why she would be. the author had already  described her skin color several chapters back  there really wasn't  a point that I could see that would justify making that comparison.There are so many other words she could have used that wouldn't have had such a negative connotation .   The irony is
that Ableen's character is clearly the hero ,almost a saint, which is the part I wasn't crazy about, I felt that she needed to be more complex since there aren't any perfect people that I know of. I felt like the Celia character was a poor man's version of Marilyn Monroe.  I did  like Minnie's character because she did have alot more complexity, than some of the other characters.  I  think the author did a pretty good job with the plot and the story by telling it  from 3 different perspectives.  I was definitely  anxious to find out how it was going to turn out. I would give this book 4 stars

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Book Review Angela Sloan by James Whorton , jr

Angela Sloan: A NovelI  have two words for you Awe   some.(Now before you email me to correct my english
I know that's not 2 words.lol)  I love reading a novel that has the intrigue of a mystery or spy book with
more imagery and a good use of plot.Angela Sloan is the daughter of a former CIA agent,Ray Sloan, who
is reenlisted in for just one more assignment.  The job sounds easy but he doesnt want Angela to know about it.

Itturns out that to be the Wategate incident and  boy does the action really pick up here.   I have to say ,after
reading this novel ,I have a newfound respect for anyone who had to work undercover in the 1970's with the CIA!  You had to know your cover story, not only know when someone is following you ,but how to get rid of them, and if you have been found out you have to recall your code word.  Anyone contact you have with
your "coworker" has to be through a crossword puzzle so  you wont be discovered.  I loved this quirky charcter.  I highly recommend that you read it. I give this book 4 stars out of 5 .  I would also like to thank
Free Press for giving me the  oppurtunity to review this book.
"

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Contest giveaway:Sex on the Moon By Ben Mezrich

Sex on the Moon: The Amazing Story Behind the Most Audacious Heist in History   I am giving away 2 copies the rules are as follows:
1. You must be a follower to win
2.Deadline to enter is Tuesday August 14th@ midnight
3. US residents only.
4.Leave your email address in the comment section of this post and please check back on August 15th
when I will annouce the winner

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Silver Girl by Elin Hilderbrand

Silver Girl: A Novel  Elin Hilderbran is from  Collegeville,Pennsylvani the graduate of the John Hopkins University and  University o fIowa writer's Workshop teaching/writing  fellow.  Her short fiction has appeared in Seventeen,The Masssachusetts Review, and the  Colorado Review.  Like most mothers of 3 the majority of time is dominated the kids' activites,playdates and doctor's appointments and at one point in time headed non profit organizations  for Nantuckey, Mass, where she and her husband and kids have lived for 13 years.  Neeedless to say  doesn't leave much time for writing.  In spite of that she has written the following:

  •     Silver Girl(2011)
  • The Island(2010)
  • The Castaways(2009)
  • A Summer Affoir(2008)
  • Barefoot(2008)
  • The Love Season(2007)
  • The Blue Bistro(2006)
  • Summer People(2004)
  • Nantucket Nights(2002)
  • The Beach Club(2000)
  About this book, Meredith Delinn has to hide out for the summer in Nantucket because her top notch husband alot of investors out of their life savings some of them angry enough to possibly seek revenge.To add
insult to injury she has to ask her estranged friend, Connie Flute for a place to stay on the island since the feds
got everything except the money that Meredith had made on her own.  Her son, Leo Delinn is also under investigation since he also worked with his dad,meaning she can't have contact with him either.  Now don't think this ordeal is a cakewalk for  Constance, aka Connie.  Aside from the fact that she would be vilified
 by the public , she was trying to adapt to being a widow and  reconcile her differences with her only  child , Ashlyn.

   My overall impression:Since this is my first experience that I can remember with escapist literature I can only judge it against works of literature that is on the more creative end of the literary scale.  I was prepared to strongly dislike Meredith, I mean boo hoo ,poor you , you only have 40,000 in your bank account.  Alot of  people are struggling and would love to have her  problem and even on a red letter day I don't get to vacation
on Nantucket! What saves this  book from being a crybaby -free-for -all is the authors skill use of plot. By interweaving Meredith and Connie's past as well as their  frailties that were exposed in the present makes them more human more approachable. This is the perfect book to take with to the doctor's office or dmv.  I
give this book 3 1/2 out of 5 stars

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Mistress's Revenge by Tamar Cohen

The Mistress's Revenge: A NovelAccording to Msnbc's survey 1 in 5 adults have cheated on the person they are currently with.
Atleast 28% of the married men and 18% of married women(The survey was taken by 70,000 adult online).Author M.Gary Neuman,author of "The Truth About Cheating:Why Men stray and What You Can Do About It", comprised a 2 year study that followed  a 100 faithful men and 100 unfaithful men the results may surprise you : only 8% of the cheating men said that sexual dissatisfaction was the reason and 48% said it was emotional  disconnect..   So what if the other woman after being dumped would not go away quietly
what if she was determined to bring the affair to light no  matter  how much she stood to lose in the process?  Enter Sally Islip the former mistress of clive Gooding a well known philandering music producer , who has just ended their 5 year  affair without much of an explanation to Sally.   Even though she is in a long term relationship with someone else and has two kids from the union, she doesn't feel like she had much to live for
and has determined in her now fragile and demented mind that she will get even.
My overall impression:  I found the author's style funny, engrossing  and entertaining .   I actually liked Sally's
thearpist,Helen Bunion  because she didn't let Sally  use her advice to justify her little plot to get back at Clive.
It was actually interesting to see Sally slide into her mental decline bu I can't say I was sympathtic, which I am sure was the way it was intended to be taken.   If you don read any other book this summer read this one! I am definitely giving it 5 out of 5 stars.  I would also like to thank Free Press  for allowing me the chance to review the book but I don't get paid to do so.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Haiku with a photo

                                I got this image from here
I use to follow a blog that did phots and haikus but I believe they stopped and just when you think I found
another one this blogger is taking a break! If there is anyone out there who knows a blogger doing both
poetry and photos I would be interested.    

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Congradulations Anash You won!

Anash you are the winner please contact me at clsherrard(dot)bookaddict(at)gmail(dot)com

The Freshman Survival Guide(Book Review)

0it doesn't have to`The Freshman Survival Guide: Soulful Advice for Studying, Socializing, and Everything In Between If this is your first year of college there is no need to fear The Freshman Survival Guide is here.
No longer do you have to  navigate rocky terrain  each and every chapter has a survival strategy for example
Chapter 1 Survival Strategy #1 Making good friends in college is important but it takes time. Be patient, be smart, and stay connected to your support network- the friends and family who helped you get this far.

Chapter 4  Survival Strategy # 4 Homesickness is a fact of college life ,but it doesn't have to defeat you.  Develop habits and relationships that will help  ward off your longing for homr.  Also through each chapter are real life stories  of actual college students themselves as wellas tips you can find online.  Here's a few other
Cchapters I thought were helpful:

Chapter 8 Real stats and strategies on mental health
Chapter 11 How to be a college student and Time management
Chapter 13 The care and feeding of the college professor
Chapter 19 Am I Safe,Don't be Paranoid just be Smart
chapter 23  there's no vitamin C in orange  soda and doritos aren't a food group.

I even went to The Freshman Survival guide website for the study budget.  Go to the link that says Listing  by Chapter then click chapter 11.. I gave copies to my oldest daughter who is already taking dual credit courses
at her high school.0.  While this resource is good enough for my daughter, I would never mislead her or your
the reader that this a a go to guide in terms of how to remain a Christian while you're at college.  This isn't that boook.  Nothing of course  will replace the bible and believe me when I tell you my child has 3 already.  What I was hoping  for was a supplemental guide in  a language  and perspective that a young adult could
rrrelate to.  I still give this book 4 stars out of 5 only in terms of a resource guide.  I would like to thank Center Street for allowing me the opportunity to review the book.  I am an Amazon Associate but I don't recieve money to review the book.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Contest Giveaway: 2 copies of Home and Away

Home and Away: A Story of Family in a Time of War

I am giving away 2 copies for
1. The followers of this blog.
2. US and Canada residents only
3.Please leave an up to date email address in the comment section of this post.Deadline to enter will be
June 28,2011 @midnight.The winners will have 48 hours to respond so please check back her next Wed to see if you won.

Book Review Home and Away by David and Nancy French

Home and Away: A Story of Family in a Time of War David French graduated from David Lipscomb University and from Harvard Law School with
honors.  This native Kentuckian became the lead attorney in the federal court case against the unconstitutional
speech code at Shippenburg University(with the Foundation For Individual Rights in education and won so why give all this up  to fight in Iraq? How does the spouse left behind deal with the ups and downs of suddenly having to raise the kids alone?  Was the year long deploement worth it  to them?  The aspect of this memoir I enjoyed the most was the fact that it was written from both sides of the coin.  So many times we may only get to see army wives on tv. or only from the soldiers point of view. If you have ever been curious as to what it's like then I highly recommend this book. I gave it 4 and 1/2 stars out of 5. I would also like to thank Center Street for the opportunity to review this book.

A Lonilness by Haki R Madhubuti(aka Don Lee)

Heartlove: Wedding and Love Poemslooking thru the commerical
glass of the holidays or
howard j's
(I failed to make a distiction)
after a long day at  luther college
the one in iowa
listening  to the impressive.
trying to impress

I stood there
watching myself   feel
feeling
my own eyes checking
my dark reflection against
the day sounds.
standing there listening
as the raindrops dropped
over the dead leaves that
rested on greenless grass
as the tree's shadow
played dodge with the
slow wind
at night the distant
street light is the brightest sun
and I go to bed feeling
a part of it.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

I wore the ocean in the shape of a girl by Kelle Groom

I Wore the Ocean in the Shape of a Girl: A MemoirKelle Groom is the author of 3 poetry collections in addition to this memoir.  Five Kingdoms released in 2010,Luckily (2006) and Underwater City 2004. but before reaching  sucess in the literary world she
had alot of personal demons to fight and conquer first.   In the memoir we go back to 1982 when the author
is a  a pregnant teenager living with her parents.  She is unable to raise the child in spite of the support she
received from her mother who was a teacher at the time and her father who was in the military.  So she will make  what will turn out to be a one of the most difficult decisions in her life by giving her son, Tommy up for adoption to her aunt and uncle.  Fourteen months later she loses him again to  cancer. It's here that we witness
the not so slow  fall into alcoholism as her means of coping with the loss.Even though the author did foreshadow her recovery I have never wanted to see someone recover so badly!  The benefit to reading a memoir  written by a poet is their skillful use of imagery. I felt like I was there with her every step of the way.  It's usually the use of metaphors, etc.. that sets this apart from celebrity memoirs.  The only drawback is the creative license the author sometimes uses that makes it a little incoherent from time to time but still a pretty good read I am giving it 4 stars out of 5.

FTC DISCLOSURE: I would like to thank Free Press(Simon and Schuster) for allowing me the opportunity to review this book, which I don't receive money to do and yes I am a Amazon Associate.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Swerve by Kelle Groom

I think of the man who sat
behind my grandmother's sister
in church and told her
the percentage of  Indian
in her blood calling it out
over the white pews.
I wonder what made
him want to count it
like coins or a grade.
I wish I could hear him
Now when I think her saying
that all of her  Wampanoag blood
in her body would fit in one finger,
 discounting the percentage it seemed, but why was she
such a historian, tracing the genealogy of the llast
Wampanoag  up to her own
children typing it all
on see through paper?
Maybe like me
she felt self conscious
caring about what we're made simpley being satisfied dressing our bodies
and driving them around.
Maybe she felt shy for loving someone
she'd never met, I mean
I do. I think of the knife
cutting into the flesh
and the fork carrying it
to your mouth
I always think of that, the sythe-like movement
single motion, a swerve.
I think of my relative,
the last Wampanoag in the town
walking the streets
with a dollar the town gave him.
Even then what would a dollar buy
a finger of land? If an Indian could have bought land
I think of walking into the almshouse.
The alms falling like figs from trees
something to gnaw on.
I think of the first time  of thanks
before it had a name
when it was just some
relatives of mine keeping
some relative of yours
alive through a cold winter
people stupid enough
to take food from a graveyard
food meant for the dead.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Book Review: Art and Madness by Anne Roiphe

Art and Madness: A Memoir of Lust Without Reason  Anne Roiphe is the National Book Award Finalist for Fruitful a Memoir.Her first book Digging Out(Memoir)  came out 3 years after her  rock marriage to Jack Richardson ended in 1963.Before writing 18 more books she was still living vicarously through other writers  such as Doc Humes, George Plimpton, and William  Styron.  This memoir Art and Madness covers those years where women were not
supposed to want anything beyond a home and family.  In the 1950's a career was not something you aspired to.
An respectable girl didn't aspire to a career.Anyone who has ever feel in love with pen and paper knows it's
an insatiable and unexplainable need.  I am not  rationalizing the affairs with the married writers but I do understand the need.Two things that struck me as odd one that girls were allowed to knit socks for their boyfriends in their college classes and two that so many wanted to knit socks for their boyfriends/fiancees.  They couldn't just go buy the  socks from the store? College education ain't cheap I think I would've wanted my money's worth! Seriously before I go off on a tangent the other thing I found interesting about the author in general was the fact  that it wasn't until 1978 article that she wrote about how her family displayed their Christmas tree setting
off a whirlwind of  criticism within the Jewish community ,that the author started to explore more Jewish themes  in her writing and would later receive the Jewish Cultural Achievement Award for the Literary Awards from the National Foundation for Jewish culture in June 7 2004.

My overall impression: reading this book was like trying to have an intelligent conversation with someone on a bumper car ride.  As soon as I was  getting interested in a certain year the author would suddenly jump back to 1953 or fast forward to 1961 making difficult  to stay with the story and knocking me off balance just like a bumper car ride would.  Her writing was exquisite,but hard to enjoy.  I don't have a problem with the author  exploring different years, but  unlike Running the Books by Mr. Stienberg it just didn't have that flow. I gave the book 3 and 1/2 stars out of 5.  
FTC DISCLOSURE    I would like to thank Doubleday for giving me the opportunity to review this book.
I dont  get any money from them but I am an Amazon Associate


.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Clenched soul by Pablo Neuruda

The Essential Neruda: Selected Poems (Bilingual Edition) (English and Spanish Edition)


We have lost even this twilight
Noone saw us this evening hand in hand
while the blue  night dropped on the world
I have seen from my window
the fiesta of sunset in 
the distant mountain tops
Sometimes a  piece of sun
burned like a coin in my hand

I remembered you with
my soul clenched
in that sadness of mine that you know

Where were you then?
Who else was there?
 Saying what?
 Why will the whole of love come on me suddenly
When I am sad and feel you are far away?
The book fell that always closed at twilight and my blue sweater rolled like
a hurt dog at my feet.

Always , always you recede through the evenings
toward the twilight erasing statues

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Book Review:Working It out By Abby Rike

Working It Out: A Journey of Love, Loss, and Hope

Abby Rike lost her husband Rick, 5 year old Macy and their infant son Caleb in a terrible car accident.How does one find the will to go on?  How do you go forward in life when you feel like your reason to live has been so cruelly and so quickly snatched away?  I must confess early on that I am  not a fan of "The Biggest Loser" tv show.  Something about losing weight as a competitive sport just doesn't appeal to me at all.  So
I had no idea of  who Abby Rike was or her story.  You don't have to be a fan of the show ti admire the strength, determination and courage it took to begin to overcome a horrific loss.  I was deeply moved by the author's simple and yet profound way she shared her story.  I would encourage anyone who is grieving the loss of someone they loved or if you are just wondering to yourself"Can God use Me? then this is the story for you. I personally believe that God can use anyone.     Sometimes it's because of someone's unfortunate situation that we learn how to grow in grace  or see how someone can survive what seems to be the insurmountable.  I think that there is someone out there who is grieving a terrible loss ,thinking that it's only happening to them or not getting enough support that would benefit from seeing this greiving process up close
no sugar coating.  I gave this book 5 out of 5 stars.

Ftc disclosure:  I would like to take this time to thank Faithwords for allowing me the cance to review this book.  Iusually come away feeling encouraged and no I don't recieve money to review this book, but I am an Amazon associate.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Poem :So Many Feathers by Jayne Cortez

                                                    Jayne cortez

You danced a magnetic dance
in your rhinestone and satin banana g-string
It was you who cut the river
with your pink diamond tongue
did the limbo on your back
straight from the history of southern flames
onto the stage where your body
covered in metallic flint
under black and green feathers strutted
wings of a vulture  paradise on your head
strutted among the birds
until you became terror woman of all feathers
of such terrible beauty
of such fire

such flames
all feathers Josephine
This Josephine
exploding red marble eyes in new york
this  Josephine
breaking color bars in miami
this Joshephine
mother of orphans
legion of honor
rosette of resistance
this Josephine before
splitting the solidarity of beautiful feathers

Feather-woman of terror
such feathers so beautiful
Josephine
with your frosted mouth half-open
why spilt your flamingos
with the death white boers in durban south africa
Woman with magnificent face of Ife mask
why all the teeth for the death white boers in durban
Josephine you had every eyelash in the forest
every feather flying
why give your beaded snake-hips
to the death white boers in durban
Josephine didn't you know about the torture chambers
made of black flesh and feathers
made by the death white boers  in durban
Josephine terror -woman of terrible beauty of such feathers
I want to understand why dance
the dance of the honorary white
for the death white boers in durban

After all Josphine
I saw you in your turquoise headdress
with royal blue sequins pasted on your lips
your fantastic legs studded with emerals
as you kicked as you bumped as you leaped in the air
then froze
your body breaking lighting  inf fish net
and Josephine  Josephine
what a night in harlem
what electricity
such trembling
such goose pimples
so many feathers
Josphine
dancer of the magnetic dancers
fo the orange flint pelvis of the ruby navel
of the purple throat
of  the feet pointting  both ways
of  feathers now gone
Josphine Josephine
I remember you rosette of resistance
southern flames
Josephine of the bird heads, ostrich plumes
bananas and sparkling G-strings
Josephine of the double-jointed fingers
double jointed hips doubling
into a double squat like a double star into a giant double snake
with the double heartbeats of a young girl
doubling into woman-hood
and grinding into an emulsified double spirit
Josephine of such conflicts i remember
Josephine of such floating i remember
Josephine
of so many heights i remember
Josephine
of so many transformations i remember
Josphine of such beauty i remember
Josephine of such fire i remember
Josephine of such sheen i remember
Josephine
so many feathers  i remember
Josephine Josephine

Friday, May 13, 2011

Congradulations SidneYou won

I apologize for taking so long to get to this I hurt my back at the gym well anyway
email me at
clsherrard(dot)bookaddict(at)gmail(dot)comTwice a Spy: A Novel

Friday, May 6, 2011

Crazy-for-books Book Hop

Hello it's that time of the week were we link up with other book bloggers.  The question for the week is
What book blogger would you like to meet in real life?  I would love to meet the ladies over at the blue bookcase They host the Literary Hop every other week.  So you may want to stop by there next week to check it out. I love all the blogs I have discovered at those hops and I imagine they would have alot of interesting conversations, or atleast I think they would.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

New contest!"Twice A spy" by Keith Thomson

Twice a Spy: A Novel
 Hello my favorite fellow book addicts I have a new contest  I am giving away 2 copies  of this book
the rules are as follows.
1.  You must be a follower
2. U. S residents only (sorry Canada nothing personal this is a different publisher)
3. Leave your email in the comment section of this and click the like button in the sidebar.
Deadline May 10th
Poco Kat you won a copy of Working it Out please email your address to clsherrard(dot)bookaddict(at)gmail(dot) com

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