Saturday, August 31, 2019

Nadine by John Steinberg Review & Extract

Nadine
By John Steinberg


 πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•

Thank you to the author and Rachel's Random Resources for a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are my own and are not influenced in any way. 

Trigger warning: This book talks of mental illness, suicide, and the holocaust.

Nadine is a beautiful dancer made for the stage. Greenberg is the director who loves her from the moment he first sees her. Shortly after their first meeting Nadine disappears only to resurface over a year later after having a baby for a married man named Charles. A married man who she loves. Charles betrays her when he uses Nadine's mental illness, and love of both him and the stage to make her look like an unfit mother and take her child. Feeling as though she has no one Nadine takes her own life. Now Greenberg must find where her death leaves him and how to continue on without her. When memories of the past keep materializing in different ways, Greenberg must decide what he has to do to finally make peace with his unrequited love of the beautiful Nadine. 

This book is a tragedy. It's sad and hard to read at times, the emotional pull of this book is done so well. My heart broke for the main character. Nadine deals with depression and when she finds herself alone it all becomes too much to deal with. Below in the extract you will read Nadine's final moments before she loses her battle to depression. Leading up to the scene below was done so well. It was emotional and painful and my heart was breaking while reading it. It was like a punch to the stomach. I literally had to stop reading for the day and just allow myself some breathing room to accept what happened.

The writing is beautiful. Steinberg did an amazing job capturing emotion and pain with his words. The characters, although some are absolutely horrible, are fleshed out and dimensional. They will make you mad, they will break your heart, and sometimes they will even make you smile.

If you are looking for a story that has a sad part or two and then everything becomes wrapped up happily, this is not the book for that. While the ending gives us closure, it isn't overdone with happiness and rainbows. It's real closure that leaves out hearts healing with characters. This story is a beautiful tragedy. 

Purchase links:


Author Bio



John Steinberg was born in 1952 and spent many years in business before becoming a writer in 2007. Since then, he has co-written and produced comedies for the stage and has created a series of books for children. Nadine is his third novel. He is married with three children and lives in North London.

Social Media Links –


Extract

INTRO

Nadine has just been told by the Langleys that they have intention of returning her child she had allowed them to look after while she was on tour. She has now established that this was their intention all along; to provide Charles with an heir they had been able to achieve through natural means.

Deprived of her child and brainwashed into believing that she’s an unfit mother, Nadine realizes she has nothing left to live for!

EXTRACT

Aware that she had lost the most precious part of her life, the one that made it worth living, Nadine strayed up the Fulham Road towards the Embankment with only one thing in mind. Spotting a wine bar, she went inside, in no particular hurry to undertake her final performance.

After ordering a bottle of her favourite French wine, she took her diary out of her bag and began recording in detail the events of her last, fateful day. She then fished out the small screw-top jar containing her medication, tipped the contents into her hand and washed mouthfuls of the pills down with one glass of wine after another until the bottle was empty.

She allowed around twenty minutes for the pills to start taking effect. Then she got up from the table and coolly settled her bill, leaving her shoulder bag and diary behind on the seat she had no use for them now and walked out into the moonlit evening.

Oblivious to the crowd’s concern for her safety, Nadine then stood en pointe, lifting one leg high above her head. For a few seconds she remained absolutely still, a smile fixed on her superb face, until the foot she was balancing on, the foot she had damaged, suddenly gave way and she was carried off in a gust of wind to the murky waters below.

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

My Name In Books

My Name In Books

Hi everyone and welcome back to Four Moon Reviews! So lately I've been in such a rut with reading and reviewing and nothing is flowing the way it should be. So today, I decided to just do a fun little post until I can get those reviews out, hopefully it won't be too much longer. For now I'm going to do My Name In Books which is just a fun little thing I saw elsewhere. It was awhile ago when I first seen it so I'm not sure if it was on Instagram or someone else's blog. If you know who originally created this tag please feel free to let me know down in the comments. 

So, let's get started..

My Name: Samantha Pearl


So here is the photo, please don't mind the shelves in the background. As I said, I'm in a slump and my creative juice just aren't flowing but I still kinda like the way this turned out.

S - Simon Vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
A - A Wolf At The Table - by Augusten Burroughs
M - Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer by Katie Alender
A - Animal Farm by George Orwell
N - Nadine by John Steinberg
T - Timbit Nation: A Hitchhiker's View Of Canada by John Stackhouse
H - Hammond by Jonathan LaPoma
A - Angel Killer by Andrew Mayne

P - Prisoner B-3087 by Alan Gratz
E - Elites Of Eden by Joey Graceffa
A - A Shoe Addict's Christmas by Beth Harbison
R - Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
L - Labyrinth by Kate Moss

Well that's all for this tag! I hope to see you guys back here for the next post.

See you on the moon! xo

Friday, August 23, 2019

Goodreads Book Tag

Hello my friends and thank-you for coming back to Four Moon Reviews for another fun blog post. For todays post I'm going to be doing the "Goodreads Book Tag." I actually found this tag on KimberlyFaye Reads so if you want to visit her blog and see her answers you can just click HERE

So let's get started!

1. What is the last book you marked as "Read?"


The Pale by Clare Rhoden
This is the first book in The Chronicles Of Pale trilogy.

2. What are you currently reading?


Cujo by Stephen King

This is only the third book I've ever read by Stephen King. First I read 11/22/63 and I did not enjoy it and the I read Pet Sematary and loved that one. I am almost halfway through and I am totally loving this one as well. 

Rebel Girls by Elizabeth Keenan

So far it seems pretty good but I am getting a feeling it's going to get even better as the story progresses.

3. What was the last book you marked as "to read?'

I actually don't use this feature of goodreads. I just consider all the unread books on my bookshelf and on my Kindle to be my "to read" list.

4. What book do you plan on reading next?


Broad Plain Darkening by Clare Rhoden

This is actually the second book in The Chronicles Of Pale Trilogy and I am actually part of the blog tour for the trilogy early September. So this definitely needs to read next.

5. Do you use the star rating system?

I do use it on goodreads and my blog with the only difference being I use moons (cause it's Four Moon Reviews) instead of stars and give .25 instead of rounding with my blog, while goodreads requires the rating to be rounded off.

6. Are you doing the 2019 Reading Challenge?

I am. And I am really surprised at how close I am to being finished.

7. Do you have a wishlist?

I do have a wishlist, just not on goodreads. I prefer to use the Amazon wishlist.

8. What book do you plan on buying next?

I don't have anything planned to buy next, however I do have a list of books I would like to own should I ever come across them for a good price.

9. What is your favorite quote?

I have two book quotes that I absolutely love. Both from Paper Towns by John Green. I fell in love with them when I watched the movie. I have recently found a physical copy of the book and hope to read it in the very near future.

"What a treacherous thing to believe that a person is more than a person."

"She loved mysteries so much she became one."


10. Who are your favorite authors?

This is such a hard question to answer for me right now. This is a comeback year for me after reading very very little for last 3 years. Right now I feel like I am exploring genres and learning my preferences all over again.

However, James Patterson is an old love and Stephen King is becoming a new love.


11. Are you part of any goodreads groups?

Yes, so so many! I check some of them out on occasion and others I never both with.

12. What could goodreads do better?

I really only use goodreads to track my read and currently reading books and to post reviews so I'm not quite sure of anything they could do to improve. I would have to spend more time on it to figure out what i like and dislike about it.

Well that's a wrap for this post. If you have never been to goodreads I'll drop the link HERE. And don't forget to visit KimberlyFaye Reads to see all their answers for this awesome tag. You can find the link in the description above. 

Thank you all for checking out my post and I hope you come back again! Also, TAG YOU'RE IT!

See you on the moon!! xo

Monday, August 19, 2019

With The Fire On High by Elizabeth Acevedo Review


πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•

Emani Santiago is an amazing chef. Her dishes leave everyone drooling. Her dream is to one day be a chef in her own kitchen. Making that happen is easier said than done however because when Emani was still in high school she gave birth to her daughter Emma. Emani decides to not give up her dream and attends a class trip to Spain despite any challenges that may stop her from getting there. With the Fire On High is an amazing story about what you can accomplish when you decide to get what you want no matter the cost.

The characters in this book are so well done. Emani is such an amazing protagonist. We see her navigate through the struggles of young motherhood in a graceful way. There are such strong relationships present in the book, such as with Emani's best friend and grandmother. The way these relationships are portrayed and they way they progress is done so beautifully. They are realistic and relatable. Even the relationship between Emani and her daughter's father is done wonderfully. We get to see the emotions of not wanting to be without her daughter but also of putting her daughter's best interest before her personal feelings by communicating and having a civil co-parent partnership with him. 

The writing is amazing, the story is amazing, the characters are amazing. And just in case I haven't made it obvious, this book is amazing. This is definitely one of my favorite books of the year so far. I literally cannot say how much I loved this book. Maybe it's because I also got pregnant at 14 and can relate to Emani on such a crazy level. I've read good books involving teen parents before but I've never connected with a book like this. I am literally struggling to write this review because I'm just speechless in the best way. I can't recommend this book enough, I think everyone should read this. It's emotional and powerful. 

Friday, August 16, 2019

My Life In Books Tag

My Life In Books Tag

Hello everyone and welcome back to my blog! I decided I wanted to do something fun for today so I went online and found some Bookish Tags. This particular tag I found on a 2017 post on Adventures Of A Bookish Girl's blog, which you can find their answers Here. So I'll go ahead and get started and I hope you all enjoy it!

Find a Book For Each Of Your Initials

S - Shoe Addicts Anonymous by Beth Harbison
I read this book years ago and I absolutely loved it. It's chick lit which I don't normally read anymore but I have such fond memories of this book. I recently found A Shoe Addict's Christmas and I'm looking forward to diving in once it gets a little closer to Christmas.

P - (The) Postcard Killers by James Patterson
I love mysteries and I love James Patterson. This is my favorite of both. I read this years ago and just devoured it.

W - We Were Liars by E. Lockhart
I loved this book! It was my favorite read of 2018 and one of my go to recommendations.

Count Your Age Along Your Bookshelf: Which Book Is It?

I currently have 2 bookshelves, so rather than choose I did this one with both of them.

Bookshelf 1 - The Girl On The Train by Paula Hawkins
Bookshelf 2 - Crooked Little Vein by Warren Ellis

Pick A Book Set In Your City/Country

For this one I'm choosing Operation Wormwood by Helen C. Escott because it's my current read. 

Pick A Book That Represents A Destination You'd Love To Travel To 

I'd have to go with Honor Thyself by Danielle Steel because I would love to go to Paris. This book is about an actress who gets hurt badly and isn't one of Steel's best work, it is the only one I can currently think of that sets the scene for my travel hopes.

Pick A Book That's Your Favorite Color

My Favorite color is pink, so for this one I choose Rage: A Love Story by Julie Anne Peters.

Which Book Do You Have The Fondest Memories Of?

This one, hands down, is definitely The Sign Of The Twisted Candles (Nancy Drew Mystery Stories #9) by Carolyn Keene. I used to love the Nancy Drew books but this one was my favorite and I would reread it all the time. I'm actually hoping to reread this one again soon.

Which Book Did You Have The Most Difficulty Finishing?

For this one, I'll choose a book I actually finished rather than one I didn't. Definitely A Midsummer Night's Scream by R. L. Stine. Thankfully, I have learned to DNF books I'm not enjoying.

Which Book Will Give You The Biggest Sense Of Accomplishment When You Finish It?

The Iliad by Homer. I've been meaning to read this book for a few years now. The size kind of scares me a little but I am determined to get to it eventually. 

Well, that's all for this tag! Now I wanna hear from you. What are some of your answers to the bookish questions above? Did you enjoy this tag? Would you like to see more tags like this one?

Tag! You're It!

See you on the moon!!

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

The Night Circus
by Erin Morgenstern


πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ‘πŸŒ‘πŸŒ‘

I can't even think of how to describe what happens in this book so I'll just start with the Goodreads synopsis:

The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des RΓͺves, and it is only open at night.

But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway—a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love—a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands.

True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus performers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead.

Written in rich, seductive prose, this spell-casting novel is a feast for the senses and the heart.

So what are the rules of this Night Circus competition? I don't know, it's fine though because neither do the competitors. There is so little information given about the actual competition that the only way to know it is the main plot of the book is to read the synopsis. There was very little context and a whole lot of filler. We are never informed of what is supposed to be happening within the competition. Instead we get one of the competitors making a move every so often by building an exhibit, some of which they even work together on. The competition is anything but fierce and is dragged out way longer than it needs to be. The competition is slowly dragged out over the course of years, there are actually children born into the circus when it started and they grow up during the competition.

As for the two competitors falling in love, there were a number of ways that it could have been written differently and been so much better. I hated this romance and the way it was developed. The characters were just okay. They weren't memorable or likable. They were just simply flat and boring.

I heard so many good things about this book and I couldn't wait to read it. Unfortunately, I ended up being seriously disappointed with it. I gave this book 2 stars instead of 1 because the beginning was well done. It was set up to be an interesting read and it just went downhill after the first couple chapters. This book was definitely not for me. 

Monday, August 12, 2019

Mirrors Of Life by Neal Owens Review

Mirrors Of Life
by Neal Owens


πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ–πŸŒ‘

I was given a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review via the author. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Derrick Williams was born in poverty. At a young age he invested in small stocks and made himself a millionaire. From there he goes on to start a film company, their first movie being the story of Adam and Eve where Adam was black and Eve was white. The film is a success and Derrick finds himself with a lot more money. He then tries to build a black community with help from only black investors. The deeper Derrick gets into the project the more we see of the ugly underbelly that runs America. With hatred and racism coming from powerful officials Derrick must decide if is willing to risk all that matters to help build up the black community.

I hated Derrick. I feel like he was supposed to be viewed as an amazing individual but I feel like it was drastically overdone. Derrick walks around handing out jobs and money like they're candy. Family members he never met were suddenly debt free with no questions asked. While I understand in literature exaggerations can be made, I felt this was over the top. It made it so unrealistic and unrelateble that it really took away from the story for me.

There is a lot of death in this book. Derrick's mother, for example, loses multiple loved ones within the first few chapters. My personal issue with the deaths in this novel wasn't how they happened, it was the portrayal of how the characters handled them that turned me off. The grief over the lost lives was minimal. They just kept telling themselves there was something good in every bad thing and moved on. I think I was supposed to see strength through their Faith in God, which I did see, but the lack of grief took away from it because in order to see their healing I needed to see their pain.

For me, this book had its good and bad qualities. I really enjoyed the overall story. The author was able to make me feel a wide range of emotions. I felt everything from happiness to fear for the characters which, to me, gave them dimension as I was able to see them come alive. The writing itself was good. There were a few situations in which I found things to be very rushed and I would of liked to of seen things built up more. The main issues for me though were Derrick and the way certain things were handled. Overall, I enjoyed reading this book.

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

The Doll Factory by Elizabeth Macneal Review

The Doll Factory
by Elizabeth Macneal


πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ—πŸŒ‘

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Set in London 1850, The Doll Factory introduces us to Iris. A young woman who dreams of being a painter. One day she meets a man named Silas. The encounter is brief and within seconds Iris has forgotten about it completely. Silas never forgets her however, and his obsession becomes more dark and consuming.

Iris is asked to model for a local artist Louis Frost, when she accepts her entire life starts to open up to new experiences and possibilities. Things are looking good for her until Silas' obsession becomes too powerful. Things take a scary turn that threatens to challenge Iris in ways she never imagined.

For me, this book was slow starting off. It was just okay. I didn't feel the urge to DNF it but I wasn't drawn into the story right away either. I was about 60% through this book before I found it got really interesting. Once it got my attention though, it never let me go. It took me about 4 days to get through the first half and then just over 24 hours to finish the second. Keeping in mind sleep, a toddler, being a slower reader and everything else  I juggle and that makes pretty good time.

The characters were well done. They all had individual personalities with likes, desires, annoyances and passions. Iris, our main character, is wonderfully done. She has this inner rebel that we get to see behind the curtains early on. Then later on she brings this inner rebel to the surface when she agrees to model for Louis Frost despite her family being quite angry about it. Albie, an orphan friend of Iris who introduces her and Silas initially. We get to watch little Albie grow as a person and he is by far my favorite character. At first I thought of Silas as an outcast and actually felt bad for him. It was wowing to see his true personality develop from a shy outcast from a psychopath. All the characters were great, but those are the ones who I thought were done the best.

Overall, I thought this book was well written. It was a wonderful story to be added into the Historical Fiction genre. If you are someone who can have patience with a slow beginning book to get to a great ending than I definitely recommend this book. If you are someone who needs to be grabbed and pulled in from the beginning than this book probably isn't for you. Good story, good characters, I enjoyed it.

Monday, August 5, 2019

Titanlord: Of Death & Sacrifice by M.G. Darwish Review

Titanlord: Of Death & Sacrifice
by M.G. Darwish


πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ—

I was given a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Titanlord is a story focused on the legends on the Titans and the rebellion against them by The Magmars. When a warrior known as The Red Hand waged war on them he was branded a traitor and made an outcast. Despite the efforts of The Crown to prevent history from repeating itself, a dark secret they accidentally revived may cause they very thing they tried to prevent.

This is not my typical read, it's definitely not something I would normally go for. What drew me in initially was the amazing cover. I saw the cover and wanted this book so bad. It is, by far, my favorite cover of any book I've ever read. Thankfully, the author had an amazing story to back up this amazing cover.

The characters were enjoyable. We get to learn about the characters at a slower pace which suits the story well. I loved Griffyn; he was by far my favorite character. There was something so sweet and gentle about him. My least favorite character would have to be Aizeya, mainly because his potty mouth can be a bit much. 

This book was fun and exciting with a dark element to it. I thought the writing was great and the story was fantastic. I was completely hooked from beginning to end. When I wasn't reading the book, I was thinking about the book. I became so invested in this story in the most fantastical way.

I really can't say enough about this book. While there were a couple, and I do mean only a couple, sections where I felt there was an over abundance of unnecessary swearing I still loved it. I can't wait for the sequel to come out. This story has me fangirling and I'm beyond excited to see what happens next. 

Friday, August 2, 2019

Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret by Judy Blume Review

Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret
by Judy Blume



πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•


Are You There God? It's Me Margaret is the story of Margaret Simon, a young girl going through the tough prepubescent time in her life. Margaret and her family move from New York City to Farbrook, New Jersey. As if starting a new school and having to make new friends isn't hard enough, Margaret must also navigate her way through everything turning 12 years old has to offer. We Watch as she explores issues and events every young girl goes through; boys, bras, periods, religion, finding herself, body image, friends, rumors and so much more. 

This is my first Judy Blume book. I know, it's totally crazy right? Being a bookworm my entire life you would think I would of read something, even if not this title, by the well known author. Now that I have, I'm wishing I had read this book back in my own prepubescent time. There is something so innocent and honest about Blume's portrayal of this very emotional time that I found so comforting and wonderful. 

The characters were well written. I loved how they seemed to be normal everyday kids. They weren't made into perfect little puppets for the sake of a happy ending. It just open and honest and realistic all the way around. 

I can't express how much I loved this book. And despite being a full grown adult woman I found this book to be so beautiful and touching. I would recommend this book for young ladies around 9-12 depending on the child, of course. 

The Black Ditch by Simon J Lancaster Guest Post

The Black Ditch by Simon J Lancaster Guest Post Hi everyone and thank you so much for stopping in. Today we have a guest post f...