Can We Talk? by Sam Smith is an impassioned story of a family trying to adjust to life in a new country while dealing with mental illness, racism, and divorce. Based on her life, being an immigrant in Canada, Sam gives the reader a view into her experiences with her husband, Shawon, and her two daughters, Julie and Shanon. Everyone in the family has a different struggle. Sam and Shawon have a strained marriage that was not made easier by their move to Canada. Shawon and Sam live in the same house but no longer sleep together. They no longer act as a married couple, with Sam’s coworkers not believing she is even married. This relationship trickles down to their two kids. Shannon, the younger sister, still lives in the house with both of them. She is often in the middle of her parents’ fights, always consoling her mother after her father says something cruel. Julie lives away at school and has become an independent and self-reliant person who doesn’t ask for much help.
Can We Talk? is a stirring story about how hard adjusting to a new life can be. The author does a wonderful job at conveying her life struggles and hardships in a compelling story that feels real and is relatable.
Sam Smith does a masterful job of creating a story where the reader can feel the struggle of the characters regardless of whether they have felt those same struggles. She does this without creating a large conflict, instead she tells a real story with real people and real problems.
The story never feels like it is about characters in a book, it instead feels like a story about real people living their life and trying to deal with their family struggles. It is easy to empathize with Sam and her kids, because you understand what they are going through and where the problems lie.
Reading about Sam’s relationship with Shawon and her experience immigrating to a new country, you can’t help but to feel for them. Although the reader can recognize that Shawon causes a lot of issues for Sam and their kids, you still understand his motives and actions. The real enemy of their family is the hardships that come with immigrating and not being able to provide for their family.
Can We Talk? is a deeply thoughtful and emotionally resonant memoir about the challenges people face and how that tests us and our relationships. I would highly recommend this book to anyone looking for an insightful and poignant true story.
Pages: 267 | ASIN: B09BRQGLR4
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Waiting in Wattlevale follows a divorced mom as she starts a new job in an elderly home, and learns about friendship and relationships from the residents. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?
A few years ago, I helped my mother through the life changes and decisions for her future care. Feeling her confusion and uncertainly was heartbreaking.
Peony starts off the novel as an unsure woman rebuilding her life and grows throughout the story. What were some driving ideals behind your character’s development?
The inner strength is in us all to change and grow.
Was there anything from your own life that you put into the characters in your novel?
Compassion, empathy and the observations of other’s lives. We all have our own stories.
What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?
My fourth book is Gidgee Harbour, which takes place in South Australia and about a dying little shopping centre. The business owners try everything possible to find a way to save it and their livelihood. A feel good tale with lots of humour in it. It’s at the publishers and out any day now. All my stories are set in Australia and with lovable true-blue characters and our quaint Aussie humour.
- Repent at Leisure, in Queensland a suspense tale in a rural setting.
- F n B’s House sitters is also in Queensland. It’s a story of two women setting up a house sitting business with all their odd situations and clients that they have to deal with.
Posted in Interviews
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Fred A. Idiaquez is the kind of author that gets one to appreciate life. In Learn to Live Life: A Positive Outlook, the author talks about life on different journeys. He uses situations he has been through and what he has observed throughout his life. In his book, Fred A. Idiaquez talks about positivity, realization, and the optimism that life offers.
The first chapter in Learn to Live Life is about understanding positivity. This chapter will enlighten readers and get readers to have positive energy around them. I like how straightforward the author is, defining terms and expounding on words that seem alike. When you read this chapter, you learn that positivity and optimism have some similarities despite having different meanings. This chapter is fulfilling and will awaken the optimist in you.
What stands out from Fred A. Idiaquez’s writing is his neutrality. Even when discussing societal vices, the author is modest and uses friendly language. As a reader, you get a warm feeling when reading Fred A. Idiaquez’s work as you feel connected to him. I applaud the author for his impartiality and for showing kindness even when he is criticizing certain human behavior.
This book is an eye-opener and will get you to shun negativity, find balance, and change your perspective on various things in life. In Learn to Live Life, the author journeys with you during different stages of life. There are comforting words about grief, calming words about loss, cheerful words about joy, and assertive words about inspiration.
With the content in Fred A. Idiaquez’s book, you can take a new path, and make the life you have been dreaming of. Everything in Love to Live Life: A positive Outlook will leave you with positivity. The tales shared by the author, lessons learned, and the subjects in every chapter were enlightening as well as refreshing. The author uses thoughtful words as he talks about real stories in the most considerate of ways. I recommend this informative self-help guide to readers that are looking for a motivational book on modern living.
Pages: 69 | ASIN: B09V3L76VC
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Posted by Literary_Titan
Alphabet of Flowers by Gloria D. Gonsalves is a beautiful picture book for preschool through elementary level readers. Each page is a letter of the alphabet with a different flower, a few facts about the flower, and a crayon drawing of the flower. After the letter Z, there is a summary table with each flower’s name and its picture for a quick look at them all. Then there are a few activities at the end for children to do to review all the different flowers.
The first thing that readers will discover about this exceptional picture book is the artwork. It jumps off the page with vibrant colors and simplicity. Children will love seeing the illustrations done in a medium they have access to and can try and copy the flowers. Of course, this is encouraged by the author! The standard format for each page is excellent as well. It would make it easy to use this book when teaching about the alphabet and be easily turned into a lesson plan.
I was impressed with the variety of included flowers; many are ones I have not heard of before, and they are fascinating. The simple facts are interesting but not overwhelming for children. The language is easy to understand and flows well, keeping the same format for each page. This writing style, repetition, is perfect for the younger readers but is not overly simplified so that older children would lose interest.
Alphabet of Flowers is a stunning picture book introducing young readers to the wide variety of flowers that are out in the world. It also serves as a unique way to teach the alphabet to preschool and kindergarteners. In addition, teachers and homeschoolers could easily turn this book into a complete unit study on flowers with the activities included in the book for review.
Pages: 44 | ASIN : B09VX8N9QL
Tags: Alphabet of Flowers, author, book, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, bookblogger, books, books to read, childrens book, Childrens nonfiction, ebook, educational, flowers, flowers and plants, Gloria D. Gonsalves, goodreads, kids books, kindle, kobo, literature, nature, nonfiction, nook, novel, picture book, read, reader, reading, story, writer, writing
Having ferrets as pets can be great fun, and can lead to some amusing adventures as well. Jeffrey agrees to take care of his sister’s ferret, Chubby, because she is too busy and Chubby needs attention. Jeffrey and Chubby play together and become great friends. But Chubby is missing his ferret friend, Coco. Chubby decides to go look for Coco, but gets into some trouble along the way. Luckily Jeffrey is there to save the day. Will Chubby ever find Coco?
Chubby Wubbles & Coco: 2 Missing Ferrets is a charming children’s book that shows the loving relationship that people can have with their pet ferrets. Chubby is so cute and the delightful illustrations throughout the book will appeal to young readers. The art focuses on the characters emotions and shows Chubby being very playful and getting into things.
Throughout the story readers, along with Chubby, are wondering where Coco is. While Jeffrey and Chubby have a wonderful relationship, which really shows you how close a pet and its owner can be, we are always left longing for Coco. This adorable kids books shows just how charismatic ferrets can be and children will love seeing Chubby throughout the colorful pages.
2 Missing Ferrets is a fun picture following a pair of friendships and shows how ferrets can bring joy, and a bit of playful mischief, into your life. Early readers will have a great time reading about Chubby and Jeffrey, and this will also be a wonderful bedtime story that parents can read to their young children.
Pages: 28 | ASIN: B09R84FL34
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Stories from Ecuador is a collection of short, well-put-together, and connected stories of the author’s experiences while living and working in Ecuador. The book consists of thirty-four different stories all about the beauty of Ecuador and its welcoming people. It follows Nelson himself as he sets on a journey to work in this foreign country as an English teacher there. He writes about his whole experience from arriving at the airport in Ecuador and needing to quickly switch hostels due to overbooking, to detailed and beautifully explained sightseeing experiences in and around Cuenca, to the everyday life and activities he did and his overall impressions of the country that he got to call home.
One of my favorite stories definitely has to be one of the first stories in the book, where he meets his first friends there, Sheik and her son José. It is a heartwarming story about people instantly coming together and it sets the comfortable and cozy tone for the rest of the book. Nelson did a fantastic job at describing all the beautiful sights you can see and experience in Ecuador.
The book also does a great job of conveying that sense of the unknown that comes with moving to a foreign country and all the love, positivity, laughs and friendships that come with it. In addition to that, the book is filled with pictures of all the people and sights that the author got to meet and see during his stay. This really helps readers to become fully immersed in the authors experiences and understand the beauty with their own eyes.
Stories from Ecuador by Tyrel Nelson conveys all the wonder and joy that comes with traveling and living in a foreign land. It will certainly make you want to visit Ecuador. This is an entertaining and educational book that will transport you to South America as it provides a clear and beautiful view at one persons time in an exotic country.
Pages: 130 | ASIN: B08T9KMFV8
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Requiem follows a unique team from the U.S. Marshal department as they hunt a serial killer using some unconventional methods. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?
First, the setting is urban, maquiladora, twin manufacturing plants or twin fruit/vegetable plants. I know this area of Reynosa and McAllen, TX very well. I built three industrial plants in three years with twin plants in Reynosa and in Hidalgo County, across the River. I know the worker schedules and hardships. There are multinational plant managers in Reynosa which often do not take into consideration local worker culture. At the same time, the manufacturing plants for automotive parts and scientific instruments must maintain international quality control procedures. It’s prime for a serial killer.
Did you create an outline for the characters in the story before you started writing or did the characters personalities grow organically as you were writing?
The story flows organically from the land of the border and the characters that live there. Most of the inhabitants of the RGV (Rio Grande Valley) and their families have lived there long before Americans invaded this area a little over a hundred years ago. For a better understanding of the borders, recall the hyper-aggressive American forces that took this area by force without reparations. It’s helpful in understanding the real problem with immigration. Within the last fifty years, recall the United States manipulation of the governments of all of Central America and Mexico, and the internal chaos that ensued. These tactics caused social and political unrest, in Central America and Haiti especially, pushing those citizens to flee. Because of our manipulative foreign policies, we need to better understand the sea of humanity surging to the border and understand that, as Americans, we are morally obligated to help the immigrants who have suffered due to our foreign policies.
Did you do a lot of research to maintain the accuracy of the Native American shaman practices?
No, I know a number of Native Americans.
What can you tell readers about book three in the series and when will it be available?
Hallelujah is available now on Amazon. Requiem will release June 21 and Reservoir will follow on July 26. All can be found on Amazon.com.
Posted in Interviews
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Longing For You follows a wealthy and determined woman who goes to Montana to visit a friend and ends up finding romance while getting mixed up in his drama. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?
I always love writing about stubborn heroines. I guess this stems from my admiration for real career women who have the courage to enter the industries dominated by men, two names came to mind: Hilary Devey (logistics) and Sheryl Sandberg (tech). My aim for Longing For You, and in fact the whole Fearless Lovers series, is to showcase powerful women who have more than just deep pockets (move away, billionaire bad boys 😉).
Arianne is a strong character that knows what she wants in life. What were some driving ideals behind your character’s development?
Longing For You is the third book in the series, but I actually created Arianne Whiteley in the second book as a supporting character. There are three sides to Arianne—Arianne the businesswoman, the best friend, and the lover. The ideal behind Arianne the businesswoman is answered in the previous question. The second side of her is about being a sister to her best friend. I’m the only daughter, and so many times I wish I had a sister! Lastly, as a lover, Arianne is the epitome of loyalty and fierce love. It’s about being there for your partner through thick and thin. In the world full of temptations and scandals, I think these qualities are often overlooked.
What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book?
I love complex, multi-layered characters who don’t always get it right. One of the important themes in Longing For You is that life is never black and white, and neither are people. Even a monster has a softer side. The story also highlights how adversity shapes and strengthens family bond.
What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?
The two bodyguards featured in the Fearless Lovers series will have their own series! I’m working on an opening novella called Montana’s Bravest—showcasing how the two men start the company, Red Mark Rescue & Protect, while dealing with their own heartbreaks. It will be available August 23rd 2022. I’m also working on another romantic suspense novel which will be out later this year.
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