Sunday, February 14, 2016

Book Review: 'Happy Valentine's Day, Dolores' by Barbara Samuels

✰✰✰½ Dolores and her big sister, Faye, get along swell...most of the time. However, after Dolores sneaks into Faye's room one too many times, they have an argument. Dolores agrees to stay out of her sister's room, but when she spies Faye with a small box, curiosity gets the better of her. After all, one small peek won't hurt, will it?

Inside the box Dolores discovers an adorable Valentine's Day present. She simply must try it on, and Faye will be none the wiser. Dolores almost gets away with it until the present goes missing. Whatever will Dolores do? Valentine's Day just around the corner. With her cat, Duncan, and a little bit of luck, Dolores still has time to make it the best Valentine's Day ever.

The Bottom Line: This charming tale of sibling rivalry makes this holiday book special. Perfect for storytime or bedtime, kids will identify with both the big sister and the little sister. Humorous illustrations complement the story. This installment of Dolores and Duncan is fun reading for kids in grades K - 3.

Details: Happy Valentine's Day, Dolores by Barbara Samuels. Hardcover picture book published by Melanie Kroupa Books in 2006. 32 p. ISBN: 9780374328443

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Book Review: 'Revival' by Stephen King

✰✰✰✰½ Jamie Morton was only six years old when the shadow of the Reverend Charles Jacobs darkened his childhood. From that day forward, Jamie could never really escape the darkness. At every turn of his life, the preacher would be there.

After a heartbreaking tragedy, Charles Jacobs turned away from God. After delivering the "terrible sermon," the preacher was cast out from his flock and set out in search of answers. Meanwhile, Jamie grew up and struggled with a drug addiction. When his path finally crossed with the preacher again, he finds out that Jacobs has become a healer of sorts.

Charles Jacobs has been drawn into an obsession with what lies beyond death, and as he experiments with the healing effects of electricity, he descends into insanity. Jamie reluctantly assists as the preacher commences a final, electrifying experiment. The chilling climax will haunt Jamie for the rest of his life.

The Bottom Line: This novel is an electrifying, quick read. I was hooked from the beginning and couldn't put it down. This is a story of faith, addiction, and obsession that is both moving and horrifying at the same time. Highly recommended for fans of horror and the supernatural.

Details: Revival: A Novel by Stephen King. Paperback published by Gallery Books in 2014. 416 p. ISBN: 978-1-4767-7039-0