THE CAUSE by Roderick Vincent – Book Review

image

Title: THE CAUSE
Author: Roderick Vincent
Genre: Dystopian Fiction
Release Date: November 28, 2014
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

* I received a free electronic copy of THE CAUSE from the author in exchange for a fair and honest review.*

SYNOPSIS:

Set in the not too distant future, the year 2026, THE CAUSE takes it’s name from a group of freedom fighters formed in the 1700s.

“The year is 2022. America is on the verge of economic and social collapse. The government has made liberty its enemy. African American hacker Isse Corvus enters a black-ops training camp. He discovers the leaders are revolutionaries seeking to return the U.S. back to its Constitutional roots. He learns that if he doesn’t join The Cause and help them hack the NSA’s servers, it could mean his life.”

“A novel of juxtaposition, The Cause also tells the tale of NSA Director General Titus Montgomery. The President has told him that rule of law must be maintained at all costs. But something is wrong with the heartbeat of America. What will he do when Martial law meets revolution?”

REVIEW:

“When men take up arms to set other men free, there is something sacred and holy in the warfare.” —Woodrow Wilson

This book may be fiction, but large parts of it are based on fact.

In THE CAUSE the author states: “For some years they have had the ability to turn on your phone’s GPS, video and audio devices, tap in to your Google glasses, and use CCTV cams within the vicinity. Now, they can wire into everyone else’s devices too within your vicinity. They don’t even need feet on the ground anymore. They are following you with micro-UAVs. They are as small as a blue jay, and to the unsuspecting eye, can look like them too.” The scary thing is that this technology already exists and the United States government is already using it.

When the planes flew into the World Trade Center the government quickly instituted new privacy laws, or should I say ‘lack -of-privacy’ laws. They have the power to listen in on your phone calls, read your text messages, check your email and monitor your bank accounts. While some of the information these tactics have garnered has undoubtedly been used to identify and nullify suspected terrorists, it is what they are doing with the rest of the information they gather that should worry the American public.

It is that fear of ‘Big Brother’ that resounds throughout THE CAUSE. this book is more than just an interesting story. It is a warning. It can also be viewed as a wake-up call to the general public. The thing that I found so striking about this book is that is horrifyingly realistic and terrifyingly relevant to today’s society. There are real groups operating in the US today that are startlingly similar to the Minutemen in THE CAUSE. At present these groups are seen as fringe groups and are sometimes even labelled as domestic terrorists.  This begs the question; are these people really terrorists or are they actually patriots? The government uses the public’s fear of terrorism to keep the public from complaining about the money spent to combat it. “Terrorism was the boogeyman, a propaganda tool to fund the programs.”

It is because of the issues I have listed and because of the questions this book poses that THE CAUSE is such a compelling read.

“The Cause” would make an excellent book club read. This book contains many discussion topics and offers readers the chance to open their eyes to what just might be happening in the world around them. It would also be interesting to discover which technologies being used in the Cause are fact and which are fiction. There are ready made Book Club discussion questions available on the author’s website.

Now, even though I say that many of the things in this book are happening already, readers must not forget that this book is FICTION.

Roderick Vincent’s writing is exquisite, with wording such as “The virtual world is a blaze that’s difficult to backburn, even if you wish you could.” The author has a gift for description and is able to paint pictures with words.

The author is able to evoke emotion in the reader. For example, when he writes “…my father’s whisper settled in my head, a voice rattling from years ago—Do right by your country and right by your family and life should be okay…” you can’t help but agree with the wisdom of the statement. And you can’t help but feel the love of the father for his son. You can almost picture the scene where he imparts this wisdom to his son, hoping that his child will grow into a good man.

THE CAUSE is the first book in a new series and I cannot wait to see how the story of Corvus and The Minutemen plays out. One thing I am sure of and that is that it will definitely be an interesting and thought-provoking read.

RATING

I rate this book as 4 out of 5 stars. The only reason that I did not give it 5 stars was that I felt some of the scenes of the training at The Abbatoir could have been shortened. Also, there is an excessive amount of anti-government propaganda. At times it is just too much. It is like being hit over the head repeatedly with a club. The reader understands what the government is doing and that it is corrupt. This message comes through clearly without being repeated over and over again. However, even with the repetition this is still a great book.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

image

Photo and Author Information obtained from http://www.roderickvincent.com

Roderick Vincent is the author of the Minutemen series about a dystopian America. The first novel, titled The Cause, was published by Roundfire books on November, 28th 2014.

A good part of his childhood and young-adult years were spent living on the island of Kwajalein in the Marshall Islands.

In 1988, he participated in a classical guitar masterclass with Christopher Parkening while majoring in music at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

His short stories, articles, and reviews have been published in Writer’s Digest, Ploughshares Blog, The Nervous Breakdown, Straylight, and Offshoots.

Beyond his fiction writing, he blogs about the future, and the changing times of the world we live in.

To learn more about this author visit him online at http://www.Roderick Vincent.com

DANGEROUS REFLECTIONS by Karla Tipton – Book Review + Release Day is TODAY

image

Title: DANGEROUS REFLECTIONS
Author: Karla Tipton
Length: 319 pages
Genre: Historical Fiction
Release Date: January 27,2015
Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

* I was lucky enough to receive an ARC of ‘Dangerous Reflections’ in electronic form free from the author in exchange for an honest review.* I had the privilege of reading and reviewing her previous book ‘Rings of Passage’ previously. I am happy to report that I rated that book as 4 out of 5 stars, so when I was offered the chance to read her newest novel I jumped at the chance.

Link to buy this book: 

SYNOPSIS:

Martie loves her grandmother and her father so, when she finds that the two of them have both fallen into comas at the same time with no explanation she is desperate to try to help them. When a lawyer shows up and hands her an envelope from her grandmother Martie isn’t sure what to make of it. Inside the envelope she finds a witch’s wand, a necklace and a cryptic note from her grandmother. The note tells her that she must save Doctor Uncle.

The only person she can think of that might be able to help is her Professor. They have a history and she is reluctant to approach him for assistance. However, she sees no other option. He tells her that she is a wizard by birth and that he will only help her if she does something for him. She reluctantly agrees and he tells her that using her wand she is able to time travel through mirrors.

Not sure that she believes any of what she has been told, she decides to try. And, to her surprise it works. Martie ends up in 1910 England.

She needs to find the Philosophers Stone for the professor and she needs to save Doctor Uncle. But, first she has to figure out who he is and then determine how to save him and from what.

She is a woman on a mission. She knows she will face dangers and many other obstacles during her quest. What she does not expect is that she will fall in love.

REVIEW:

DANGEROUS REFLECTIONS is a substantial book. At 319 pages readers will receive terrific value for their money. Too many books are being released that are 200 pages or less and I often feel that the cost of those books is too high for what I get back in quantity. But, I do not just want quantity, I want quality and this book offers both. The one drawback of lengthy books is that there are often entire sections that seem to drag. This DOES NOT happen in DANGEROUS REFLECTIONS.

This book has it all. There is intrigue, there is magic, there is a battle between good and evil, there is romance, there is adventure and there is drama. What more could a reader ask for?

The writing is vivid and readers will be entranced with this story. The amount of detail that the author included makes the setting seem to come alive. For instance, I had no idea that the word ‘Okay’ was not yet part of a person’s everyday vocabulary in 1910. The author has also included details regarding the clothing of the time and the modes of transportation, as well as the differences in how people shopped for clothing during that era and how vastly different it is from the way we shop in modern society. These details and descriptions all lend this book an aura of authenticity.

if you haven’t yet had the pleasure of reading a book by Karla Tipton, you are in for a treat. This book is a gem and should be added to everyone’s MUST READ list.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

image

Karla Tipton cut her literary teeth on gothic romances, Edgar Allan Poe and the vampire soap “Dark Shadows.” Long before there were sparkly vampires roaming through the cultural consciousness, she wrote about ordinary women time traveling through history and falling in love with powerful men of myth and magic. “Genrebending” came naturally. Despite publishing industry advice to find a genre and stick with it, Karla shamelessly mixed it up, blending history, paranormal, time travel, fantasy and mystery into her novels. Karla’s first novel, “Rings of Passage: A Time Travel Novel with Richard III,” is a historical fantasy set in medieval England, starring one of the most notorious villains in history as the romantic hero. “Dangerous Reflections: A Historical Fantasy Through Time” is her second novel. Karla is a member of Romance Writers of America, and her writing has earned top honors in several RWA chapter competitions. When not at her government job or writing novels, Karla plays guitar in a classic rock band.

To learn more about Karla Tipton visit her online at http://www.karlatipton.com

DISTRACTIONS by Bianca Dean – RELEASE DAY BLOG TOUR

Distractions Blitz BannerDistractions Cover

Distractions
by Bianca Dean
Distractions #1
Publication Date: January 27, 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Purchase from Amazon

Synopsis:

Red has been trying to move on with her life. She really has. Her first real relationship ended in disaster and she can’t muster the energy to leave the house. Her brother Brenden and their best friend, Gavin, are sick of it. Guilting her into a night out, Red reluctantly agrees only to see her ex having the time of his life with another girl. Small town living would have it no other way. On the verge of a full blown panic attack, Gavin steps in to provide Red the distraction she needs to forget all about her ex. But as things quickly spiral out of control, will Red be able to keep her feelings for her best friend a secret in order to save their friendship?

*This book contains sexual situations and explicit language. This is Book 1 of the Distractions Series.

Add to Goodreads

Distractions-Teaser-5

About the Author

Bianca Dean

Bianca Dean, author of Quarterback Sneak and Wanna Play? is a native of New Jersey now living in NYC. Working on her PhD, Bianca loves good food, great movies and stimulating conversation. She’s a huge sports fan, and can be found, during the appropriate season, screaming at the television, beer in hand, trying to make people that can’t hear her run faster. In the off-season she can be spotted walking her dog or grabbing dinner with friends.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

IndieSage PRa Rafflecopter giveaway

BLOOD MONARCH by DRAKO – BLOG TOUR

About the Book:

A king’s duty never ends, even when his kingdom changes. Vladimir Dracula is one of the most famous and misunderstood figures in all of history. One thing is true, he is a king, and he is a vampire. He is the true king and enforcer of the vampire race. Feared by all of his own kind, he is perhaps the most lethal of the Black Dragon God’s mortal born servants. At the same time, he personifies sex. None can resist his charms, save one.

Vax King is the Chosen of Hecate, the Heir of Mjolnir, and has no plans on a mate. When he’s called on to enter Fae lands, he’s surprised to find the legendary vampire there. Looking to aid the beautiful Fae, Anaya, and her soul mate, Galen, Vax must enter a world of sex of violence with only Vlad to accompany him. Here, there can be no denial, no hesitation. Only truth….and dominance.

A war is brewing in the Fae lands, as the fallen angels rise to lay claim to the power of their goddess, Verlaine and topple their higher brethren. Older than most, Vlad must accustom himself to having a soul mate, and use all his legendary power to stop the forces of darkness long believed to be controlled by him. A new kingdom is the prize, and none knows better than the famed Dracula that the secret to power lies in the blood.

Book Links:

Goodreads I Amazon

Meet the Characters:



Vladimir Dracula



AKA: Vlad, Vlad the Impaler, Dracula

Height: 6’10”

Weight: 315 pounds

Hair: shoulder length, brown

Origin: A human follower of Jarel, the Black Dragon god. He was caught in the crossfire of Jarel’s disagreement with a demon god and the result changed him into one of the first vampires. 

More info: Contrary to popular belief, he has never sired another vampire. The entire race descends from the married couple, Vacker and Deidre. He has functioned as the final enforcer of the race since its creation. He is lethal in battle, being one of those fortunate enough to have had Jarel’s favor in mortal life first. He is also extremely sexual, with an appeal that draws others to him. He should not be confused with the prince who became known as Vlad the Impaler. He’s far older and earned the name in a far different manner. 



Vax



Height: 6’4”

Weight: 220 pounds

Hair: long, red

Origin: A mortal born witch, servant to Hecate, the patron goddess of witches. He was chosen by the goddess himself to wield the legendary hammer Mjolnir to expel Lucifer from the mortal world.

More info: Vax originally had a bit of a self-confidence issue. Because he’s mortal born, he is not used to the strength and power gifted to him by the goddess. He’s a quick learner, and in fact, had a bit of conflict with Vlad in his first story. He’s the first person to resist Vlad’s charm when the vampire is really pouring it on. 



Anaya



Height: 5’3”

Hair: long, red

Origin: An orphaned Fae, she comes into contact with Brandon during his mortal life and the two have a son, Theo, who eventually becomes one of the Three Fates. She is actually the daughter of the Fae queen and the very first angel, Apollyon.

More info: Anaya was captured due to her softer and trusting nature in the second book, and the reasons are complicated. Her ties to the father of her child as well as her soul mate, in addition to her parentage, made her a target. But she’s certainly come into her own and is no damsel in distress



Galen



Height: 6’6”

Weight: 258 pounds

Eyes: blue

Hair: long, black

Origin: A warrior angel created by an ancient goddess, he has only known war and duty and has not adjusted to the idea of having a soul mate.

More info: Galen has loyalty that cannot be questioned, even falling from grace to aid in the fall of Lucifer. He’s powerful and ruthless in battle, but unfamiliar with the concept of love. It’s taken him a long time to accept Anaya.

About the Author:

Drako resides in his hometown of St. Louis, Missouri, which you may notice is part of the setting of this series. When he isn’t writing, he’s busy editing for other authors, reviewing books, working, going to college, and spending time with his friends and two nieces. He blogs often and is very active on Facebook while trying to readjust to activity on twitter. His subject matter varies as he likes to talk about more than just his writing. You can check out his posts at his website, drakosden.weebly.com

Author Links:

Facebook I Twitter

BENTON (Book 2) by Jolie Du Pre – AUDIOBOOK REVIEW

Benton Zombie 2 Book Cover

Title: BENTON: A Zombie Novel – Volume 2

Author: Jolie Du Pre

Genre: Zombie Fiction, Horror, Post-Apocalyptic Fiction

Release Date: 2014

Type of Book: Audiobook

Narrator: Angie Hickman

Length: 1 hour, 49 minutes

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Synopsis:

Jennifer Benton is only a teenager and she lost her family to zombies. After leaving her home she met up with a group of survivors and they banded together to try to find a safe haven.

This is the second volume in the Benton series. The first novel ended with Jennifer battered and bruised from an attack by another survivor, but justice prevailed and she escaped his clutches and he ended up being bitten by a zombie. It was Jennifer herself who put him out of his misery.

During all this she falls in love with a fellow survivor named Mark and Mark feels the same way about her.

The plan is to head to Texas where Mark’s family has a ranch and Book 2 opens with them on their way.

However, things change during the zombie apocalypse and the group ends up saving another girl from zombies who then joins their group.

Unfortunately the new girl is gorgeous and seems to have her sights set on Mark. Jennifer (like any other teenage girl who sees someone showing interest in her man) is jealous. She knows that she has nothing to worry about, but she can’t help how she feels.

The group meets more people in this book and the group dynamics shift and evolve.

Review:

This book is well written and character driven. In this second installment we learn more about Jennifer and Mark and their relationship.

Even though it is the Zombie Apocalypse, men and women still have relationships and as usual, there are problems that arise.

The difference is that during the Zombie Apocalypse there are added pressures on couples and since every day could be their last, emotions tend to run high. As a result of this, sometimes decisions are made where the consequences are not taken as seriously as they should be.

BENTON ends with a cliffhanger that left me wishing that the third audiobook was already available.

I am a fan of both the author, Jolie Du Pre and the narrator, Angie Hickman.

For more information on Jolie Du Pre visit her website at http://www.joliedupre.com

For more information about Voice Actor Angie Hickman, visit http://angiehickmanvoiceactor.blogspot.com

I rate this book as 4 out of 5 stars only because I wish it was longer. If the book had been longer, it would have received 5 out of 5 stars.

Purchase the audiobook online at http://www.audible.com/pd/Teens/Benton-Audiobook/B00RZZ14IU/ref=a_search_c4_1_1_srTtl?qid=1422207036&sr=1-1