Book Review: Silence in the Face of Injustice

Title: Silence in the Face of Injustice: A Vision of Mercy and Hope
Author: Gary W. Hardy
Genre: Nonfiction; Religious; Politics
Year Published: March 8, 2022

Date Started: June 25, 2022
Date finished: June 26, 2022

This book is about the injustice done to those who were wrongfully convicted of crimes involving sex. There is a ton of research and references in this book. It includes stories from a few sex offenders and how they were convicted wrongly as well as stories from the victims. It’s not a book to make you feel sorry for the wrongly convicted, or to even make you feel as though they should get a lighter sentence. It’s more so about a system that is corrupt, grouping all sex offenders, whether innocent or not, as all sex offenders for the rest of their lives. The book also covers how the author turned to religion to help him heal, and how he believes it could help others in similar situations.

The author’s research is well done. Parts of the book is read more like an academic book with data and charts to explain his points. It does touch a lot on religion but done so in an educational way and not at all preachy.

My overall feel is that this was a very educational book. I get the sense that there is something wrong with our justice system when it comes to something as black and white and as widely gray as sex offense. It definitely needs to be looked over and corrected. Grouping the innocent with those who are guilty is simply unfathomable. There is still so much to learn, especially in the area of psychology involving victims who become offenders. I’m glad the author wrote this book because it was an eye-opener.

Who should read this book: Anyone interested in learning about the American justice system and the unfairness in it that gets overlooked. It can also be beneficial to anyone interested in how religion can help heal those convicted wrongly.

Book Review: Thomas Jefferson Survives

Title: Thomas Jefferson Survives
Author: C.J. Hayek
Genre: Alternate Historical Fiction
Year Published: March 4, 2020

Date Started: June 30, 2022
Date finished: July 2, 2022

This is a story about an alternate history where Thomas Jefferson, through a special type of mushroom, slumbers waking up two centuries later to a world very different from what he is familiar with. He learns that his home is now a museum where people tour and learn about who he was and how he lived. He learns that some of the “facts” were not true and other “facts” were stretched a bit. The plot thickens when a group of criminals attempt to use technology to take over humanity thinking it would be wise to use Jefferson’s story to benefit their cause.

This was an interesting read. I found the historical facts throughout the book enjoyable. I also enjoyed the direction of the story. I wasn’t sure what to expect because I just couldn’t imagine how anyone could write an alternate world about Thomas Jefferson, but I’ve learned it can be done and done well. The writing style felt sort of mystery thriller and sci-fi military, which I found fit this type of storytelling perfectly. My only issue is that there were a lot of telling that could have either been eliminated or at least written as a monologue or something else. Other than that, it was a excellent.

I’ve always been a fan of alternate history and this one didn’t disappoint. Also, keep in mind that the story is not meant to be completely facts. It touches on facts but it’s fiction, so you have to take the story lightly. It’s meant to be enjoyed.

Who should read this book: Anyone who enjoys a little fun with alternate histories.

Book Review: Outsmart Your Addiction

Title: Outsmart Your Addiction
Author: Jason Giles M.D.
Genre: Nonfiction, Substance Abuse, Medical
Year Published: September 12, 2020

Date Started: July 7, 2022
Date finished: July 9, 2022

This book is about substance abuse and how to get a handle on it. It goes pretty in-depth on the psychology of the human behavior, the medical breakdown of how addiction impacts the brain and body, recovery, how addiction has become a huge medical and money craze in our society today, and so much more. The author shares his story of addiction and how he overcame it and became a substance abuse and addiction advocate to help those struggling through their recovery.

There is a lot of information in this book. At times it can feel like reading a medical journal. However, the author mixes his story—a sort of memoir/autobiography into it, so you’re both learning about him and all the medical jargon (and sometimes just plain medical terms) all at once. It’s extremely fascinating but overwhelming too. Substance abuse is a serious issue in our world today and this book provides very detailed information about how someone can become an addict and how difficult it is to recover. It’s also helpful that the author shares how he recovered and to prove that it can be done.

Overall, this was a good read. I found it very interesting how addiction works. I personally don’t have an addiction to anything, so for someone like me, looking at those who easily get addicted is a little strange. At one point the author mentioned that everyone has an addiction, something they can’t stop doing, or the more they do that thing the more they want more of it, but I can’t find anything I have not been able to stop doing, so a part of me finds it hard to believe that everyone has an addiction to something. However, I can understand that if you come from a place of addiction, you’d think everyone has an addiction to something. This is another side of psychology I’d like to understand more of. I think it’s great the author shared his story. I am drawn to people’s stories, their ups and downs, what they’ve overcome, family dynamics, etc. I would have loved to read more about the author, not so much about the medical stuff on addiction, but his emotional struggles with those he loved, those who knew of his addiction and guided him in the right direction, and those he was able to help or at least did all he could to help. The very minimal included in this book was what touched me the most.

Who should read this book: Anyone who’s interested in learning about how substance abuse can become a danger to oneself.

Book Review: The Maestro Monologue

Title: The Maestro Monologue
Author: Rob White
Genre: Self-help
Year Published: September 9, 2021

Date Started: July 12, 2022
Date finished: July 14, 2022

This is a self-help book to guide you to a more productive and satisfied life. It’s broken up into four parts and is very thorough about its purpose in each part. There are exercises in each part to help guide you through the process of finding your purpose and to get you to your happiness and continued happiness.

I really enjoyed reading this book and doing the exercises. The book reminded me of a seminar I attended a long time ago in which you have to look back to move forward. It’s the things in your childhood/younger years that are what’s holding you back, and in order to move forward and truly be happy with yourself, you have to revisit those moments and work through them because they have a lot of control over your choices in your current life. Sometimes we might feel that we are happy where we’re at but sometimes we are simply just kidding ourselves, but there’s no way of knowing one from the other. In order to know the difference, we have to allow ourselves to go into that vulnerable place and learn to turn the situation around.

There is so much to learn from this book. Even if you feel like you are at your happy place this book will open new ways to look at your current situation, your past, and your future. Any time you question your current situation, it’s always good to seek out guidance, and this book is an excellent book for that.

Who should read this book: Anyone looking to work on their happiness or just simply curious if they are truly in their happy place.

Book Review: Frankenstein 2035

Title: Frankenstein 2035
Author: Kev Freeman
Genre: Sci-fi, Fantasy, Horror
Year Published: July 25, 2022

Date Started: July 29, 2022
Date finished: July 30, 2022

This is a story about a scientist named Beta who is on a mission to help cure her brother. She joins a group of other scientists with different specialties to locate a man who has been dead for 200 years. They believe they have the means to bring this man to life. For Beta, bringing this ancient man to life would mean a cure was achievable for her brother so she was willing to do whatever she could with her experience and knowledge to make it possible. Everything seems to be going as planned until it didn’t, and the situation turns extremely detrimental.

This was a fun read. The action and horror kept me on my toes. I was engrossed in it even though I’m not a huge fan of dark gory stories. This book was well written and very visual and kept me intrigued. I’m a huge fan of sci-fi and fantasy and this book hit the spot there. The description of the environment they were in was on point. I felt the chill and the cold and the freezing winds. I liked how the characters worked together as well as how they clashed. It was very realistic. This is a story that would make an excellent movie. It was truly well-done. The only thing I found that didn’t really grab me were the characters themselves, but that’s a personal thing. Overall, the characters were fine as they were. I would have just liked different depths to them.

Who should read this book: Totally recommend this book to anyone who likes books by Stephen King and movies like “Aliens.”

Book Review: Saving Washington’s Army

Title: Saving Washington’s Army
Author: Phillip Thomas Tucker
Genre: Nonfiction; History
Year Published: May 10, 2022

Date Started: August 13, 2022
Date finished: August 16, 2022

This book covers a section of American history that wasn’t mentioned or was barely mentioned in school. It’s about General John Glover, a sea captain before becoming general, who tactically lead his army to defeat the British invasion targeting Washington’s army. Being a sea captain, Glover was able to bring on soldiers whom he worked with out on the sea including Native Americans and Black Americans who were never slaves, but seamen who worked along other seamen equally.

The angle is on Glover’s story and everything having to do with how his army was created and who was chosen to work alongside and with Glover. There is very little on Washington and his army, which at first, I found a little confusing because I thought we’d learn why Washington’s army was “protected,” (as in, why they were so important) but learned that it wasn’t at all about Washington’s army, but Glover’s army and how he and his army was put in position to make sure the British didn’t ever reach Washington’s army. I enjoyed this perspective because we hardly know anything about Glover’s army and how important his part was during the Revolutionary War.

I’m glad I was able to read this book because I enjoy learning about history. This book reminded me that freedom comes with a heavy price and that we should continue to celebrate and honor the heroes who fought for what we have today. The only thing in the book that I felt wasn’t necessary was the negative connotations around the British Army. They did what they had to do too. I think it could have been written differently so as not to give a feeling of dislike toward them. Overall, this was a worthy read and would definitely recommend it to everyone.

Who should read this book: If you’re into learning history, this one will blow your mind. They don’t teach this stuff in school.

Book Review: The Good Father

Title: The Good Father
Author: Jeff Wade
Genre: Fiction; Crime and Mystery
Year Published: November 10, 2022

Date Started: April 25, 2023
Date finished: April 27, 2023

This is a story about an average guy named Tom Knight who finds a bag with lots of money and a situation that wasn’t pleasing. He has ideas on how to spend the money but he’s also aware of the situation the money was in. Tom has a son, Kalen, who finds out that he might not be able to walk anymore. This puts Tom in a tough place with the situation with the money bag and with his son’s health.

This was a great story about choices and family. Tom really loved his son and wanted the best for him, but he was also afraid someone would come for the money and for him. He tried his best to live a simple, normal life, but at the back of his mind, there was that danger.

This is a fast-paced story with a lot going on and a lot of characters who don’t have a lot of story to them. It can get confusing at times, but the overall focus was on Tom and his son. The writing was excellent, especially the action scenes. It’s what drew me to this story. This crime story is unique that it doesn’t follow detectives but an ordinary man with a family who’s going through regular life problems. It depicts a situation in which someone as ordinary as Tom gets mixed into a crime that he’s not a part of or know anything about. It is a “what if” story with a lot of tension. I felt sympathy for Tom and Kalen. I was hoping that nothing happened to them. I’m glad of the outcome of the story, but it was pretty tense.

Who should read this book: Anyone who’s into suspenseful stories about murder and mystery.

Book Review: Soul Seeker

Title: Soul Seeker
Author: Kaylin McFarren
Genre: Supernatural fantasy, romance
Year Published: October 27, 2020

Date Started: August 27, 2022
Date finished: August 29, 2022

This is a supernatural fantasy about a demon named Crighton whose job is to take human souls for the devil. Along the way, he is forced to work along an angel and the two of them end up defeating enemies. In the process, they find love.

There are two parts to this story. The first part is exposition in which we learn about Crighton. He comes across as cold, calculating, and just pure evil. He has a job to do, and he does it exceptionally well. He enjoys tormenting and destroying human lives. You almost think the story is about the man named Benjamine Poe and his family because that’s what’s mostly described. There is a reason for that though and it comes at the very end of the story. In the second part, we learn where Crighton comes from and what he’s up against. He’s sort of a perfectionist and pleaser. He wants to do what his master asks of him. We later learn that he really isn’t all that bad and that a special angel could change him.

Overall, this was an enjoyable read. I liked the action, and strangely, the unexpected romance as well. I liked how Crighton changed because he was put in a position where he had no other choice but do what he normally wouldn’t do. I also liked that he wasn’t completely evil and fell in love with someone he wasn’t supposed to. There were parts I felt was simply just telling or info dumping. I would have preferred more action, even in thoughts. However, even with that, the story was a fun read. I liked the take on heaven and hell and the angels.

Who should read this book: If you’re into angels and demons or just want a story that isn’t always about werewolves, witches, faes, etc., this one is an excellent one.