MY PUDDLES – A Memoir by Thai Peck – MY REVIEW of this fascinating new Memoir.





Length: 97 PAGES


Type of Book: SOFTCOVER

Received From: GOODREADS

Release Date: MAY 31, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-5043-0899-1

ASIN: B072M4Q161

Rating: 3.5 OUT OF 5 STARS ⭐⭐⭐+0.5


My Puddles is a true story. It’s a short anecdote recalling a tale of growing up from childhood to the age of seventy and a woman’s journey through time, places, and self-discovery.


Neither the title, nor the description really give any information about this book.

MY PUDDLES is a memoir written by Thai Peck about her life. She only briefly remarks upon her unhappy childhood in Vietnam.

At the tender age of seventeen, she met and eventually married an Australian War Correspondant named Brian Peck. Thai had two children, a boy and a girl and despite life’s ups and downs, they remained married until the sad day in 2015 when Brian passed away.

Thai eloquently expresses just how much they loved each other in the book’s first chapter:

“In September 1968 … At Singapore airport about to board an Air Vietnam flight, among the crowd, a couple of Americans…through them I met this Australian reporter. While each man offered to carry one of my bags, only one remained faithfully carrying them through our many journeys for the rest of his life. Until one morning in April 2015 when he took his last breath in my arms. His name was Brian Peck. He was my best friend, my confidante, and my all. He brought happiness into my everyday life for 45 years.”

Besides her relationship with her husband, Thai also writes about her travels to many countries and her life as a diplomat’s wife. She candidly describes the hippocritical nature of those events – glitz and glamour on the surface, but lonliness on the inside.

I enjoyed reading about Thai Beck’s life and as a self-published book, she has done a good job. What she does need, however, is a good proofreader and editor. It is readily apparent that the memoir is written by someone whose first language is not English. There are quite a few places in this book that need to be edited.

The need for proofing and editing are significant, but by filling this autobiography with numerous photographs and copies of Thai’s paintings, the joy of reading this book increases immensely. I rate MY PUDDLES as 3.5 out of 5 Stars ⭐⭐⭐ +0.5


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3.5 Stars for CATALYST by Marc Johnson – BOOK REVIEW



Series: The Passage of Hellsfire: Book One 

Type of Book: Audiobook – Unabridged 

Narrator: Bryan Zee 

Length: 9 Hours and 56 minutes 

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult

Release Date: February 12, 2016 

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 
~ I received a free copy of this audiobook from the author in exchange for an honest review. 

What an absolutely stunning cover. In fact, it was the cover that drew me to this audiobook. The description cemented my desire to listen. 

So, did this audiobook live up to my expectations? 

Yes and No. 

The plot was your typical fantasy, coming-of-age adventure where the ordinary boy turns out to have extraordinary powers. 

There are (of course) elves, dwarves, ogres, wizards, a beautiful princess and even a dragon. There is also the prerequisite evil wizard who is hell-bent on taking over the world. 

I admit that the main character in this book certainly has a unique name. His name is “Hellsfire.” I was extremely skeptical of such an odd name choice when I started listening to this audiobook, but it actually works. As the story goes on you get used to the name and it eventually sounds completely natural as the lead character’s name. This is largely due to the excellent narration by Bryan Zee. 

When Hellsfire discovers that he has the gift of fire magic, he knows that he will need to learn to control it. He sets out a quest to do just that. 

During his quest he meets several interesting characters and becomes embroiled in an epic battle to save his world. 

This plot is overdone. There are literally thousands of books that consist of this same storyline; of course the details, characters and settings are always different, but readers and/or listeners can easily predict what will happen. I hate that. I like to be surprised and unfortunately this audiobook’s storyline did not contain any surprises. 

The ending of this book sets up the story for the second book in the series, however, I felt that the author took some large liberties to expand the story into a series. 

The narrator was terrific. Bryan Zee emotes very well and he did an admirable job of trying to keep the listener engaged in the story. I give the narration 5 out of 5 stars. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 

However, I rate this book as 3.5 out of 5 stars.⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ I am hoping that the second audiobook in this series contains the unexpected plot twists that were missing in CATALYST

OFFICIAL BOOK DESCRIPTION: (From the author’s website)

For centuries, the kingdom of Alexandria has protected Northern Shala from the monstrous creatures lurking in the Wastelands. Now, a dark force threatens that fragile peace.

Far from home, Alexandria’s princess is abducted. When a young villager named Hellsfire stumbles upon her and her captors, he rushes in to rescue her, alone and unarmed. His fear and fury unleash an uncontrollable magical force that grants him the power to save the princess—and change the world.

Hellsfire has never craved nor dreamed of power. But such magic as he now possesses has not been seen in Northern Shala for a thousand years, since the devastation of the War of the Wizards and the creation of the Wastelands.

Now Hellsfire must leave all he’s ever known, and make a dangerous journey to learn to master this wild, ferocious power—power he knows he is not ready to wield. More difficult still, he needs to master his emotions. If he can’t, the power will consume him, Alexandria will fall, and darkness will eclipse the land, destroying everyone he loves.

In the dead of cold, the spark shall burn.

Marc Johnson has moved a lot since his parents divorced when he was two. He also can’t answer a straight question and has developed a taste for sarcastic wit over the years. Probably also for the same reason.

He hasn’t won any awards, but he does have a deep knowledge of Transformers, Star Trek,and The Twilight Zone–his top three geeky loves. 

He writes because he loves stories and hopes to one day have written something successful as a movie, TV show, comic, book, magazine, and play.

Marc Johnson also loves to game, whether it be video, card, or board. He loves to test his mind in the challenges they bring…until the zombie, alien, or robot apocalypse comes.  

EDMUND KEMPER: The True Story of the Co-ed Killer by Jack Rosewood – BOOK REVIEW

Cover image obtained from

Cover image obtained from

EDMUND KEMPER: The True Story of the Co-ed Killer

Author: Jack Rosewood

Series: Historical Serial Killers and Murderers – True Crime by Evil Killets: Volume Two

Type of Book: eBook

Length: 72 pages

Genre: Non-Fiction, True Crime

Release Date: June 22, 2015

Publisher: Wiq Media

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars ⭐⭐⭐

* I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Edmund Kemper is probably the sickest serial killer ever to have walked the Earth. His crimes are still talked about today and his deviant behavior both fascinates and appalls many people still to this day.

Edmund Kemper was born in Burbank, California in December of 1948. His was a troubled childhood with a mother that should have never been allowed to procreate.

Edmund was always awkward. His body was massive; weighing almost 300 pounds and reaching a height of six feet, nine inches.

His deviant thoughts started long before his killing spree did. He harbored gory and elaborate fantasies full of rage.

This book is his story. Readers need to be warned that this is not a story with a happy ending, and those who have sensitive stomachs should not read this book.

Kemper began his decapitation fantasies as a child and practiced by beheading the dolls of his sisters. This was soon not gratifying enough for this twisted psychopath and he moved on to torturing and killing the family’s pet cats. “Kemper’s rage against women – revealed first through the dolls with long, blond hair, and later through the cats – was a result of his abysmal relationship with his mother.”

He would eventually kill ten people; including hitchhiking co-eds, his mother and both his grandfather and grandmother.

To learn how he became the vicious psychopath that he is today, you need to read this book.

I have mixed feelings about this type of book. While I find deviant psychology fascinating, I hate that the killers get so much more attention than their victims. However, it is a sad truth that people are more interested in the killer than the killed.

I would have liked it if there was a bit more detail about each of the victims.

Despite that, the author has done a good job of condensing the story into only 72 pages.

There are some editing/proof-reading errors, but once I pointed them out to the author, he has assured me that they will be fixed immediately.

I rate this book as 3.5 out of 5 stars. ⭐⭐⭐

CARY STAYNER: The True Story of the Yosemite Park Killer by Jack Rosewood – BOOK REVIEW

Cover image obtained from

Cover image obtained from

CARY STAYNER: The True Story of the Yosemite Park Killer

Author: Jack Rosewood

Type of Book: eBook

Series: Historical Serial Killers and Murderers: True Crime by Evil Killers: Volume 4

Length: 71 pages

Genre: Non-Fiction, True Crime

Release Date: August 9, 2015

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars ⭐⭐⭐

* I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Cary Anthony Stayner was born in California to a lower-middle-class family. He had three sisters and a younger brother. His family spent summers camping at different national parks, including Yosemite which was close to their home. Cary had decent grades at school and even played on the school baseball team. Sounds like an idyllic All-American childhood, doesn’t it?

So, if he grew up leading such a wonderful life, how did he end up becoming a killer?

The facade of normalcy that Cary’s family portrayed to the outside world proves that you cannot always judge a book by it’s cover. Cary’s childhood and his family life were anything but idyllic.

Add to this multiple family tragedies, one of which received nationwide attention and you have a recipe for disaster.

Find out what caused a seemingly normal boy to turn into an evil monster by reading this short novella by Jack Rosewood.

Shortly after starting to read this book I realized that I knew of parts of the story, but had forgotten the name of the murderer. However, I definitely learned much more about this crime by reading this book than I had known previously.

There are aspects of this book that I enjoyed immensely, but there were a few minor things that (in my opinion) could have been improved.

One of the things I did not like was that some phrases were not explained. For example, in 1999 when their granddaughter Carole Sund (age 42) and their great-granddaughter Juli (age 15) along with Carole’s sixteen year old exchange student, Silvina Pelosso, an Agentinian national went missing, Francis Carrington “… was called in for a three-house interview…” What the heck is a “three-house interview? This is not explained in the book.

The other issue I had with this book was that it needed an editor or proof-reader. Several paragraphs and sentences were redundant and some contained typos. For example: “told her I loved her, and slit her throat, driving the knife so deeply into her throat that her almost severed her head.” I assume this was supposed to say “…he almost severed her head.”, not “her.”
Example 2 – “He might just as well been talking about the bogeyman.” This should have said: “He might as well have been talking about the bogeyman.”

Once these two issues are addressed, the book will deserve a higher rating.

Author Jack Rosewood has done a terrific job of taking a huge amount of information and condensing it to fit into only 71 pages. This makes this True Crime book a quick and easy read.

Overall I enjoyed this book and am looking forward to reading more true-crime stories by this author.

I rate this book as 3.5 out of 5 stars ⭐⭐⭐


Author photo obtained from Amazon

Author photo obtained from Amazon

* Author information taken from his biography on

I live in one of the most beautiful places in Florida, Jupiter, with my wife, two kids and our golden retriever, Vincent. I’ve been a full time author for the last 15 years and I wouldn’t trade it against anything in the world!

My father was a journalist and wrote about some of the worst crimes you could ever imagine, and that’s where my big interest from serial killers and other horrible crimes comes from. Just to hear my father talk about the evil acts of Ted Bundy as we were out fishing as a kid are some of my best memories.

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DELICATE THORNS by Miranda Hardy and Ainsley Shay – AUDIOBOOK REVIEW

Cover Image obtained from

Cover Image obtained from


Author: Ainsley Shay, Miranda Hardy

Type of Book: Audiobook – Unabridged

Narrator: Angie Hickman

Length: 2 hours 43 minutes

Genre: Paranormal Fiction

Release Date: January 15, 2015

Publisher: Quixotic Publishing

Rating: 3.5 of out 5 stars ⭐⭐⭐⭐

* I received a free copy of this audiobook through Audiobook Blast in exchange for an honest review.

Awakening on a deserted island with no memories of who she is or how she got there, Jasmine is completely bewildered and confused.

All she knows for sure is that she is hungry. Despite fruit and other plants and seafood being available, only the blood of the island’s animals is able to ease her painful stomach cramps.

When an opportunity to escape the island presents itself, she is determined to take advantage of it.

With no memories, no home and a craving for blood, Jasmine needs to find answers, but will she like what she discovers?

Does Jasmine have any chance to find love and happiness? Or is she doomed to a solitary existence?

This audiobook is only two hours and forty-three minutes in length which is very short.

The narrator is Angie Hickman who I have listened to before. Angie has a terrific voice for narration and seems particularly well suited to the paranormal genre. She speaks clearly and places emphasis on the words and sentences that need it. She does not make the common narrator’s mistake of overacting. Angie Hickman’s narrative style is not overly dramatic which I really like. I give the narration 5 out of 5 stars. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

I enjoyed the ending of this audiobook. It was unexpected, which was a nice surprise. It also offers up the opportunity for more books to follow.

I rate this audiobook as 3.5 out of 5 stars. I liked the story, but I did not love it. I think this is because there is so much vampire fiction available that a story of this genre must be spectacular to earn a four or five star rating from me.