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The Nucleus of Reality: or the Recollections of Thomas P— by L. A. Davenport (Book Review)

The truth is all around you

Thomas P— is exhausted. He’s been travelling for work so much he barely knows where he is. And then, while waiting for a table at a restaurant, he sees someone from his past. Exactly as she was twenty years ago, when they first knew each other. Deeply shaken, he tries to carry on as if nothing happened.

But when it happens again, in a different restaurant, in a different city, Thomas’s world begins to unravel. Haunted by a magnificent black parrot and a past he wants to forget, he becomes paranoid, unsure whether he can trust himself and the world around him.

After he sees another friend he thought he had forgotten, he realises he is lost and alone, and afraid of his own mind. Then an enigmatic woman tells him he is not seeing things but rather his memory has been mined to create life-like androids that are replacing the human race one by one.

And then he is arrested.

Will Thomas resist the mysterious woman and get his life back? Or will he join her cult and take up arms in the fight to save us all?

The Nucleus of Reality, or the Recollections of Thomas P—, is the story of a man trying to remember why he ended up losing everything but himself.

 
 
 

(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique)

 
I decided to write my review in the format of an acrostic poem using only the first four words of the book’s title, The Nucleus of Reality. I hope the snippets pique your interest and you purchase The Nucleus of Reality: or the Recollections of Thomas P— to figure out how everything below ties together. Trust me, you’re in for a mind-bending ride. 
 
These are not the droids you are looking for…
Hero?
Electrons
 
Neutrons
Unsure how to proceed
Conference audience goes “baa.” 
Let me look inside your mind.
Eyes are always watching you, Thomas P.
Under arrest
Save the world! 
 
Old Testament
Face the truth
 
Round-faced bald man
Eww, grey food.
Androids
Lucy?
I want to scan you. 
Typewriter
You are having the weirdest, most vivid dreams, Thomas P.

 

As I stated in my opening paragraph, The Nucleus of Reality: or the Recollections of Thomas P— will twist your mind up like a pretzel. I had no idea how it would end. That’s what I look for in a book — unpredictability. The Nucleus of Reality: or the Recollections of Thomas P— was far from predictable. 
 
Well done, L. A. Davenport. Well done indeed! 
 

Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤  

 
 

 

 

L. A. Davenport is an Anglo-Irish author.

He sometimes lives in the countryside, far away from urban distraction, but mostly he lives in the city. He enjoys long walks, typewriters and strong black coffee.

L. A. Davenport is the author of the novels The Nucleus of Reality and Escape, the collections No Way Home and Dear Lucifer and Other Stories, and the memoir My Life as a Dog.

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Whenever a Child Is Born by Nancy Diedrich (Book Review)

(Ages 3-7),  30 pages

 

In his 2014 homily for the Feast of Holy Guardian Angels, October 2, Pope Francis told those gathered for daily mass to be like children who pay attention to their “traveling companion. No one journeys alone, and no one should think that they are alone.

“According to Church tradition,” the pope said, “we all have an angel with us, who guards us . . . It is what God said: ‘I send an angel before you, to guard you, to accompany you on the way, so you will not be alone.'”

In this children’s book, angels wait anxiously and with great excitement to see which one of them will be chosen to be the guardian angel of a child that is to be born. This delightful book depicts the joy of all God’s creations anticipating the birth of another precious child. The sun shines brighter, the moon has a shinier glow, flowers grow taller, birds tweet more sweetly, and angels dance and sing with bliss, as all creation awaits another baby girl or boy.

Whenever a Child Is Born offers the perfect message for parents as it charmingly tells the story of how all of heaven and earth react to the news that a child is about to be born. The story comforts parents with the knowledge that their baby is a special gift from heaven to them, and that they will never be alone raising their child, and that their child will never ever be alone in life.

Parents never worry. No one journeys alone through life because whenever a child is born, he is given a guardian angel.

 
 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from iRead Book Tours.
I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.

 
Whenever a Child Is Born by Nancy Diedrich is a beautifully written story that I can see prominently displayed and used in any religious-based school or household. It speaks of angels and the heavens and how guardian angels watch over and guide us from a child’s first breath to every moment after. 


Whenever a Child Is Born expresses the joy a child brings into this world. I have children of my own, and watching their milestones play out has been a high point in my life. 


For parents of young readers, some children should be able to decipher individual words such as animal names and their sounds. Even if a child hasn’t learned to read yet, you can always point to a particular animal and ask what sound it makes. 


While the story was cute, Chris Diket (the illustrator) must get credit for creating all those endearing images. His style reminded me of Mother Goose Nursery Rhymes’ drawings. 


Good job, both of you! 

 
 
Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤
 
 
 
 
 
Author Nancy Diedrich

Nancy Diedrich was born and raised in South Louisiana, where storytelling was not just an art form, but an authentic way of communicating. Everyone had a tale to tell! This was, more than likely, where her love of communication developed. With undergraduate degrees in English and speech, and graduate degrees in psychological counseling, Nancy learned that words can educate; they can entertain; they can inspire and they can heal. In Nancy’s career, she has been a teacher, a counselor and an author, where the power of words always guided her in interaction with her students, clients and readers. Nancy’s value for genuine communication extends beyond her career, to the anchors of her life, which are her faith, her family and her friendships.

Whenever A Child Is Born is Nancy’s first published children’s book. In it, the reader gets a glimpse of this author’s compassion for family, and her gift of faith, as the story tells how all of heaven and earth react to the news that a child is about to be born.

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Save the Date by Ellen Fannon (Book Spotlight / Author Interview)

Content Rating:  G

 
What if you were given the chance to rekindle the flame with your first love? What happened to all those girls who were mean to you in school? Should Hannah Jensen take the chance of attending her high school reunion to find out?

Hannah hasn’t been back to her hometown in more than twenty years. Now, a widow, raising a teenaged daughter, she has the opportunity to go home for her twenty-fifth high school reunion. The invitation to the reunion stirs up a lot of old memories at the same time she is dealing with loneliness, the challenges of single-parenting a teenager, people who want to “set her up” with eligible men, her own insecurities, and her eccentric family.

The story interweaves the present with scenes from Hannah’s past and her fantasy of “happily ever after” with her high school boyfriend in a humorous and entertaining manner. Her feelings from being “shunned” by the cool kids resurface as she reflects back on her time as a teenager. There are several roadblocks on Hannah’s journey from a teenager through her present. The growing pains and amusing situations in which she finds herself are ones to which we all can relate. As she walks the path of self-discovery, she also discovers the most important life lesson of all–her relationship to God.

 
 

Ellen Fannon

Author Ellan Fannon

Award-winning author Ellen Fannon is a practicing veterinarian, former missionary, and church pianist/organist. She originated and wrote the Pet Peeves column for the Northwest Florida Daily News before taking a two-year assignment with the Southern Baptist International Mission Board. She and her retired Air Force pilot-turned-pastor husband have been foster parents to more than 40 children, and the adoptive parents of two sons. Her first novel, “Other People’s Children,” is a humorous account of the life of a foster parent. She is a regular contributing author for One Christian Voice, and her stories have been published in the Chicken Soup for the Soul series as well as Lifeway’s Open Windows devotional booklets, among many other publications. Her third novel about a veterinarian entitled “Don’t Bite the Doctor” will be released in 2021. She lives in Valparaiso, Florida, with her husband, sons, and assorted pets.
 
 
What is your next project?
My next book is called “Don’t Bite the Doctor.” It’s about the adventures of a young veterinarian.
 
 

What genre do you write and why?
I like writing fiction because I can use my imagination.

 

 

What is the last great book you’ve read?
I am actually re-reading the classic “All Creatures Great and Small.”
 
 
Do you snack while writing? Favorite snack?
Sometimes I’ll have some almonds. They last a while and I can crunch on them to release the tension.

 

 

Where do you write?
I always write in my bedroom office area.

 

 

What is your writing schedule?
I try to write two days a week on my days off. I’ll also write on Saturdays sometimes. I don’t write on workdays because my brain is dead by the time I get home.

 

 


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Wild Willful Heart by W. Boone Hedgepeth (Book Review)

Take a wild megalomaniacal trip into the American spiritual and Cultural Revolution of the 1960s-1990s, as a young southern man gives fresh perspective to the propaganda, bad marriages, a collection of strange gurus and some bizarre mystical places. For many years, author W. Boone Hedgepeth was a magnet for unusual occurrences of an ethereal nature which vigorously affected the world around him. Suffering a life threatening illness and after a near death experience, Boone goes on an adrenalized journey from the American south and across the country seeking answers. Here, force of will and prayer are the proven best weapons against very unusual circumstances. Literally seeking the face of God, the author plunges into the magical medicine of his native ancestors, the new age metaphysical movement, Christian fundamentalism, and other wild and life-changing experiences before coming out of the fires to the other side.

Kindle Purchase Link (US)

Print Purchase Link (US)

Kindle Purchase Link (UK)

Print Purchase Link (UK)

 

 

(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) 

 

There is so much I want to touch upon regarding Wild Willful Heart. Please be patient with me as I share my thoughts on many aspects of Boone’s story.

 

Mormonism

I’m not too familiar with Mormonism (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints). I grew up in a Pentecostal church and my minister only spoke of our beliefs. While reading Wild Willful Heart, I learned both religions believed in the power of prayer and the Holy Spirit.

However, Boone disclosed some bizarre facts about Mormonism that had me shaking my head.

1.) For over 100 years, Mormons believed there were six foot tall beings living on the moon because an early church leader named Orson Pratt had said so. This was debunked after the moon landing.

2.)Mormons believed their “magic underwear,” which had Masonic markings on it, was knife proof and bulletproof. It had to be worn everyday to protect the righteous wearer from evil.

I’m not sure why anyone would believe such nonsense but, then again, atheists wonder why people believe in GOD so to each their own, I guess.

 

Like many people, Boone questioned organized religion. He used words like hypocrite and hypocrisy more than once. I can understand why he used these key words. I’m not saying all churches or church members are hypocrites. What I am saying is I can fully understand why some people are losing their faith in GOD, churches, and religion as a whole.

 

Mental Health

As Boone embarked on his vision quest, he discussed troubling times from his past. At thirteen, he began to hear voices in his head, which instructed him to end his life. He assumed every teen experienced these voices as they transitioned into adulthood. As a teen, I began hearing voices too. I didn’t speak of them. The voices are scary. You feel alone, afraid of your own mind. Like Boone, I also live with bipolar disorder, depression, and suicidal thoughts. I truly believe MORE people should discuss mental health because we need to end the stigma of mental illness. If we don’t, if we shame those with mental health problems, people who are suffering won’t seek help. A person who thinks there’s no help, no understanding, will end their life. I, personally, don’t want to see that happen. Everyone needs the opportunity to feel safe to discuss their issues, to get the help they need, and to live a long, happy life.

As for Boone’s experience with drugs and alcohol, it happens with most teenagers. IMHO, I don’t believe illegal drugs and liquor should be consumed if you’re battling a mental health problem. It can and will make you more self-destructive. Boone discussed this during one of his flashbacks. Boone, I applaud you for being so forthcoming with your struggles with mental illness, mental health hospitals, liquor and drugs.

 

Apparitions and UFOs

Many people have claimed to see sprits and UFOs. I’m not sure if spirits are real or just a play on eyes, a figment of our imagination. However, if you believe in life on other planets, then the possibility of UFOs is plausible. Maybe, just maybe, spirits are real. And maybe, those sightings of UFOs do hold some merit as well. Bravo Boone, you made me stop and evaluate their validity.

 

Vision Quests

Vision quests are popular because many people seek enlightenment, a connection to all things. They want to find answers, peace, or a purpose in life. Boone went on several and he spoke of the physical, emotional, and mental toll it took on him. It changed his life; it was cathartic. After I read about his time on the mountain, I began to wonder if I could benefit from one. Maybe after reading his trials, you’ll consider participating in one as well.

 

Summation

You don’t have to be a religious person to read Wild Willful Heart. You only need to have an open mind and few hours to spare on this (under) 300-page story.

 

Heart Rating System:

1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 

Score: ❤❤❤❤

Kindle Purchase Link (US)

Print Purchase Link (US)

Kindle Purchase Link (UK)

Print Purchase Link (UK)

 

 

Author W. Boone Hedgepeth
W. Boone Hedgepeth studied history at the University of South Florida for four years. He spent 35 years in business and copywriting, with 11 years as a lay minister in his free time. His favorite places are the mountains of North Carolina, and any good waterfront restaurant in South Carolina. His hobbies include classic cars and RVs, listening to swampy blues, and reading the Bible. W. Boone Hedgepeth lives with his wife on the coast of South Carolina.
 
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