The Motel Room

 

The Motel Room

 

 

Despite the haunting front cover and the subject matter within, “The Motel Room” is not a horror story. Alyssa Cooper delivers a wonderfully crafted short story about life, and how even the absence of life can be seen as beautiful.

A tragic accident has occurred, leaving a man’s soul stuck inside the Motel Room where he and his wife used to spend their anniversary. Nobody can see him, so his days go by in a blur. Every day seeming just like the one before it. Through a series of events, he begins to discover his true power and realizes how freeing “living” without a body can truly be. He discovers happiness by abandoning his sadness and rediscovering the beauty that the world holds. Truly a heartbreaking tale about the journey of a soul!

I can’t wait to read more by Alyssa Cooper! 10/10

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To see more about Alyssa Cooper and her works, visit her site at http://alyssacooper.ca/

Stage Daughter

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Sonya is a single mother that always dreamed of being an actress but never quite made it. Struggling to support her daughter, Sonya pushes her daughter Razia to become the successful actress that Sonya would never become. Sonya is trying to find her place in a world where she never seems to fit in while focusing all of her attention on troublesome Razia. How can one woman hold her own while combatting so many outside forces?

Razia is curious about her father and disappears for the afternoon on a trek that lands her in front of a man that she doesn’t even know. One curiosity about her life has changed the lives of everyone that she knows. She comes face to face with her father, Aziz, with whom she has nothing in common with but she is fascinated by. What will happen to Razia now that she has a mother and a father that just can’t get along?

Aziz is a muslim yogi running a successful business when a daughter that he never knew he had arrives at his work. Struggling with his past and present infidelities, Aziz is now faced with the challenge on worrying about the future of two separate families. What will happen when Aziz’s unfaithfulness to his religion and to his wife come crashing in to his life?

“Stage Daughter” is reality fiction told from the perspectives of Sonya, Razia, and Aziz. The situations that they are dealing with are very relatable to the modern world and are very easy to understand. They are equally important characters in the tale of one family, and all of them are just trying to find where they fit into this crazy world. Personally, I didn’t really like Sonya as a character because she was very quick to start fights without thinking rationally about things, and it was easy to confuse the voice of Sonya and her 12-13 year old daughter, Razia, because they are both incredibly immature. Sheryl Sorrentino excellently captures the language of how modern teenagers speak and act, which was very impressive. I appreciated reading a realistic story that was easy to relate to in the sense that all of the main characters had very different personal issues that they needed to come to terms with and was very pleased with the outcome of the story. Sheryl Sorrentino has crafted a story that, albeit is riddled with intense arguments, is an inspiring story about being true to who you are and embracing your place in this crazy, messed up world. 8/10

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Alias

Alias

Sydney Bristow is an agent for a subdivision of the government called SD-6. Her fiance is killed and her world comes crashing down as she finds that she wasn’t working for the CIA as she originally thought, and she has actually been working for the enemy. She becomes a double agent attempting to dismantle the enemy’s organization from within. But is her director at SD-6 really one of the bad guys? Will she ever find out what happened to her mother? Is anyone ever really who you think they are?

This show is filled with twists and turns in nearly every episode, sucking you in with the very first one. It becomes much more than your typical government show as they unearth the prophecies of Milo Rambaldi, the creator of devices that have the potential to destroy the world. Alias is a genre mix of everything- action, science fiction, romance, drama, and even some horror. Along with a star-studded cast featuring Jennifer Garner as Sydney Bristow and Bradley Cooper as her reliable friend Will Tipping. This show truly has it all, Showing us another brilliant work by J.J. Abrams.

9/10

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Adela Arthur and the Creator’s Clock

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Adela Arthur is your average teenage girl trying to make it through her school life unscathed by the popular girls, until the day of her sixteenth birthday, when her life is changed forever by learning that she is a special human being called a Volsin. Adela discovers that her seemingly blind grandfather is actually a dragon and together they travel through a mirror into a world called Cielieu. Adela and her lifelong friend Hector are sent to the Elpida Castle of Light where they are taught the history of Cielieu, how to use their light, and play the Volsin sport of choice- Natorbi. Inside the enchanting castle, the young Volsin are safe from any outside forces, but in the forests of Cielieu, dark forces of light lurk in the Shadows. Through her journey, Adela learns of her powerful lineage and the support that she receives from her classmates and elders alike in order to defeat Prince Delapeur, the power hungry Volsin leading the dark forces of light. Adela struggles with learning how to control her light as Prince Delapeur continues to steal the light of other Volsin while tapping into Adela’s mind, until the fateful night that Adela receives a gift called the Creator’s Clock. What is the significance of the Creator’s Clock and what power does it hold? What do Adela and Prince Delapeur have in common after all of this time? And what will happen to the Volsin of Cielieu if Adela isn’t able to defeat the dark Prince?

In this exciting fantasy novel by Judyann McCole we are shown the life of a young girl named Adela Arthur. Adela has to adjust to her entire life being a false representation of who she was in just a short amount of time, but she seemed to do this without any issues at all. Adela is somewhat of a celebrity when she reaches the Elpida Castle of Light, but most of her peers are resentful because of their lack of optimism in Adela’s abilities to defeat Prince Delapeur. Jeremy was my favorite character in this novel because of the mystery that he presented to all of his peers and his predictable infatuation with Adela. This novel is filled with twists and turns that you may or may not see coming, but will definitely keep you on the edge of your seat! Adela and her friends battle Chimeras and a troll, help deliver a baby dragon, learn how to protect their minds from the Prince and use their light, and try to win the passionate competition game of Natorbi. Fans of the Harry Potter series will rejoice in the release of this exciting new novel. 7/10.

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The World was My Oyster but I Didn’t Know How to Cook

“The World Was My Oyster but I Didn’t Know How to Cook” was the absolute best book that I could have read at this point in time in my life. Why? Because Christy Potter showed me how to be thankful for what I have, showed me which authors I need to know and recognize, and reminded me of the small things that I should never forget, and instead embrace. Full of inspiration in the form of short essays, short stories, a couple photo journals, interviews, etc. that will make your heart sing with creativity and put life back into your seemingly colorless day.

Christy Potter is an amazing and honest writer that will make you feel the changing of the seasons as they progress on paper. She pays homage to respectable writers that deserve recognition for their craft including, but not limited to: Edgar Allen Poe, Dr. Suess, Lois Lowry (also conducted an interview with her), and C.S. Lewis (who she affectionately refers to as Jack). The way Christy Potter talks about writing is incredibly inspirational. She’s an encouraging writer that convinces her audience to do what they truly enjoy doing as an individual. Some of my favorite chapters were when she talks about the different quirks of various writers, her interview with Lois Lowry, and a narrative essay called “Christy Goes to England: Searching for Jack” that gave me chills, and “To my unconceived child on Mother’s Day” that left me with a tear in my eye.

This book made me realize how out of touch I’ve been with my greatest hobby: reading. And it has inspired me to set goals to write more, attend book readings or even join a book group, take more pictures, read more great authors that I have yet to experience, learn and grow, spend more time in libraries, go abroad, and most importantly to realize that inspiration is everywhere.

This book is an excellent read for anyone with passion, a creative mind or spirit, or a writer at heart. Easy to be read by anyone Young Adult and older to spark that creative match that may or may not still be lit within you. This book made me feel very passionate about the craft of writing and left me with only one question in regards to Christy Potter: why won’t you love her Philip Roth?!

10/10

Some of my favorite quotes:

“Everything interesting and creative has to be called a hoax at some point by those with limited creativity.”

“Poetry is one of those things that seems to frighten and fascinate people in turn. A bit like marriage, really.”

“If there’s ever been a mental image that has encouraged me to keep going with my writing, it’s Janet Evanovich burning all her rejection letters.”

“There is such beauty in how uninhibited we are before the world teaches us to be inhibited.”

“The time I spend writing, or gardening, or sculpting, or playing my flute, are the moments that define me. They are the times when I am myself the most. I’m done fitting my art into my schedule. It’s time to start fitting my schedule into my art.”

The Traveler

The traveler

“The Traveler” is the exciting first book in the Fourth Realm Series written by John Twelve Hawks. “The Traveler” focuses on the lives of two brothers, Michael and Gabriel Corrigan, and a fighter named Maya. Michael and Gabriel have lived “off the grid” for the majority of their lives until the day Michael gets tired of living like a hermit and decides to make something of himself, calling upon him the attention of the Tabula. The Tabula, also known as the Vast Machine, are a mysterious organization that keeps a watchful eye on people throughout the world and claim to be a terrorist prevention organization by seeking to get rid of ancient fighters called Harlequins and those they protect, Travelers.  The father of the Corrigans was a known Traveler, but does that mean Michael and Gabriel are Travelers as well? What will happen if the Tabula catches them before Maya, one of the last Harlequins alive, can find them and protect them? Will the world ever truly be safe from terrorism or the Tabula themselves?

I won’t deny, “The Traveler” is quite a thrilling book… If you can make it past the first 200-250 pages. The first half of the book was incredibly drawn out and the book took me roughly 5 months to read because it wasn’t something that immediately pulled me in. The characters weren’t very personable and it was difficult to warm up to them. It was interesting to read about Maya, a ruthless killing machine, and see the way that she begins to care for Gabriel even though affection between a Harlequin and a Traveler is forbidden. This book is full of betrayal, mystery, suspense, and action. The author gives great detail throughout the book, but often times it was overwhelming and would pull me away from what I actually wanted to find about about the Corrigans and the Vast Machine. It wasn’t something that I would personally recommend, but there’s a rumor that Warner Bros will be looking into an adaptation of the book, so maybe it will have better luck as a movie.  At best I give it a 4/10.

Crystal Clean

Crystal Clean

By: Kimberly Wollenburg

Crystal Clean is the emotional and honest story lived and told by a mother struggling with meth addiction.

Kim had low self-esteem through her adolescence and started using drugs and alcohol at a very young age to help her cope with her depression. By the time Kim was in her late 30’s, she was using every day. Kim tells her story starting from the way she was treated at school at a very young age up until she was in her early 40’s and had been sober for 4 years. She tells the story openly sharing both the good things that she learned and all of the negative things that she had to pull herself out of in order to survive and be there for her son. She talks about denial, loving yourself, and taking care of yourself.

It was heartbreaking to read everything that Kim had to go through and the lessons that she had to learn the hard way in order to come out on top of her addiction. It was a tear-jerker when Kim retells her stories about her son Andy, and it truly touched my heart the relationship that she had with her son and how a mother should be willing to do anything to protect their children, including sobering up. The most emotional part was when Kim was talking about being in rehab and having to confront her parents about how she felt.

Crystal Clean is a must read for anyone in this generation due to it’s powerful insight on life provided by the wonderful author and mother that dealt with it first hand. It was the most honest work of art that I’ve ever read and would greatly recommend it to anyone. Hands down, 10/10.

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“For some people, it only takes one time. Others may use for a few days or a week before it turns on them, but it always does. And the result is always the same. One hundred percent of the time. Meth will rip you apart and destroy you, no matter who you are, and by then it won’t matter how thin you are or how clean your house is because the whole picture is uglier than anything you can possibly imagine.”

“Getting sober is hard. It hurts, mentally and physically. Staying sober takes true courage. The courage to heal not only the pain caused by addiction, but also all the pain that led to addiction.”