Saturday, April 30, 2016

Book Review: The Tumor by John Grisham - Focused Ultrasound, A Cancer Treatment Alternative

by M. J. Joachim




Terrifying, living in a world where medicine and medical treatment is dictated by so many factors other than what will help patients live longer and healthier lives, a world where cutting edge technology has the capability to advance, but funding is limited or stifled, due to various factors including, but not limited to, cultural and turf issues, FDA and other governmental and lobbyists agendas, medical insurance demands, National Institutes of Health and academic research, the pharmaceutical industry and much more. Enter center stage an alternative health treatment designed to treat (and sometimes cure) cancer and many other diseases, a treatment so significant that it can literally reduce patient pain, suffering and financial burdens, while treating devastating diseases with limited effort, downtime and side effects.

This is the reality shared in John Grisham’s book, The Tumor, a book Mr. Grisham says “is the most important book he has ever written.” The treatment does exist and in a perfect world, it would be readily available to anyone who needs it.

“Focused ultrasound is a new, revolutionary, groundbreaking, non-invasive therapeutic technology that has the potential to transform the treatment of a variety of serious medical disorders in addition to brain tumors, improve outcomes, and decrease the cost of care.”


If you’ve ever known someone with cancer, or perhaps you have it yourself, and you’ve witnessed the devastating effects it has, not only on family and friends because it is quite simply a terrifying disease, one where the treatment sometimes seems worse than the illness itself, you understand the need to explore and develop new and improved treatment options to ease the burden of this debilitating disease, not only from a health perspective, but from a financial one as well.


The Focused Ultrasound Foundation is on a mission to do just that, and John Grisham spent countless hours creating a book, explaining in easy to understand, plain language, how focused ultrasound can and should be a decided element of anyone’s healthcare options when dealing with cancer and other crippling diseases. The problem is that there is limited availability, due to all those previously mentioned agendas, as well as a few other factors playing into the mix. We’re talking about saving patients and their families billions of dollars here. We’re promising to increase quality of life, while battling a disease that would sooner kill you and make your family go broke in the process, than go into remission and make it possible for you to carry on like you did before the diagnosis.

The book is free, and in it you will meet a patient and his family. You will witness a first scenario where this patient undergoes traditional treatment and dies, and you will witness an alternative scenario where focused ultrasound is used to treat him, allowing him to watch his children grow up, keep his job and continue to live a fulfilling life many years after his diagnosis with brain cancer. Grisham went to great lengths to include numerous visuals in this book, pictures and graphs designed to hit home with anyone who reads it. They certainly did with me.

The reality is cancer and many other illnesses suck. They are some of the worst and most feared diagnosis’s in our world today, and whether you end up with the disease yourself, or know someone who suffers from it, life changes and will never be the same again. But it doesn’t have to be that way, and it shouldn’t be that way, and we as individuals can have a say in whether or not it stays that way. I lost my dad and uncles to cancer many years ago. I want my say and I want others to stand up and give their say too. If focused ultrasound will improve quality of life, maybe even cure cancer and other diseases for people and their families, we need to push our own agenda, demanding it become a viable and available option for anyone diagnosed with cancer and other debilitating diseases in the future. We need to add our voices to this cause and do our part to make a difference.

Please, take the time to read this short book written by John Grisham. I’m certain you won’t be disappointed and I know the wheels will start turning in your head, challenging you to speak out, donate and share this information with everyone you know. It’s that important, and Grisham’s book about it is that good.

Thanks so much for stopping by. Wishing you all a wonderful Saturday. Please, share this post!

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved

Friday, April 29, 2016

Genuinely Raw and Authentic Writing, Author Dan Buri's Specialty

by M. J. Joachim


Author Dan Buri

As with most of us, writers don’t spend all their time writing and publishing books, hoping to sell a few copies, and maybe, by some grand cosmic overload, where all the stars align and everything sparkles, shines and somehow catches fire, have them explode into an imposing and boundless warranty of reaching the heights of everlasting authorial perception, where they master the art, capture the audience and never have to work again.

Quite the contrary, because most writers, myself included, have to write. It’s not about getting sales, page views, fame, fortune or anything else, because without rewarding their creativity with that very necessary attention it craves, they might just as soon roll over and become a lump of cells, unable to function in their environment or communicate with anyone around them.

Relatives well know the price of having a writer in their family, as the computer takes center stage amidst glorious activity and conversation carrying on around them. Theirs is a drive, a response to the world and a need to share their thoughts in imaginative and sometimes overly productive ways. The words simply cannot be stopped, as they consent to or quarrel against the world in their midst.

“If your definition of success is based on whether others enjoy what you do, you’re bound to be disappointed.” Dan Buri

Which is why Pieces Like Pottery is such an important collection of short stories, because as much as it is dark and unrelenting at times, it is also raw, real and filled with hope, redemption and compassion. Pieces Like Pottery could not in any way have been an easy book to write for Dan. My best guess is that he had to step away from his computer and take walks by the shore numerous times, as the stories shared express an all too real element of human experience, suffering and consumption. Writers often get overwhelmed by the stories they tell, even if they are fiction.

It is this very real and effective release, thoroughly explored in their works that makes them so attractive to publications like Pundit Press, Tree and American Discovery, to name just a few places where Mr. Buri’s work has been featured. Nothing Any Good can come from not writing for many of us who work so hard at our craft. Whether it’s articles submitted to various publications, books published online and in print, blogging or all of the aforementioned, writers somehow manage to connect everything else they do with the journey they are naturally compelled to take as authors in this world.

It’s a juggling act really, as I’m sure author Dan Buri can readily attest. He’s an attorney, husband and father, a man who has been recognized by Intellectual Asset Magazine as one of the World’s Top 300 Intellectual Property Strategists every year since 2010. Sounds a bit stressful when you think about it, which is probably why he lives in such a beautiful place, namely the Pacific Northwest, a place I personally am very fond of, having relatives who live in the area. It’s quite simply gorgeous and phenomenal scenery up there!




Needless to say, I’m keeping my promise and giving free promotions to writers here on this blog. Many thanks to Mr. Buri for sending me the necessary information to write this article for publication here. I have read, reviewed and recommend his book, Pieces Like Pottery. I also recommend following his blog, because there’s lots more writing where Dan is concerned, and some of those articles you won’t want to miss.

Now it’s your turn. Please help an indie author and pass this article around. Sharing is caring, so share, share and share some more.

Best to all, and Happy Friday everyone!

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved
Photo credits courtesy of Dan Buri ©2016 All Rights Reserved

Book Review: Rupert by Russ Hughes and KayeC Jones

by M. J. Joachim




Ah, the tug of war we often play within ourselves, to meet the expectations of those we look up to and admire, particularly when they conflict with who we truly are inside. Rupert is a children’s story about soul searching, and the journey and lessons within are both an encouragement and opportunity we can all readily discover when reading it.

The story within the story is about exploration and adventure, self discovery and awareness. It’s about refusing to deny one’s true calling, in the name of being “successful” by traditional standards, to the point that Rupert literally turns his back on his family, in search of whatever it takes to fulfill his greatest dreams and desires.

Ultimately, however, Rupert discovers many life lessons throughout his journey, things he might never have learned about any other way. The story comes full circle then, but I’m not about to spoil the ending. Suffice to say, no one has to simply earn a paycheck to get by in today’s world. There are plenty of things we can do to pay the bills, while still pursuing our dreams and being happy with how we manage our finances.

Artwork is an important attribute in books written for young children, as it helps them engage and learn so much more from the story. The illustrations in Rupert are captivating, colorful, detailed and charming. A whole lot of work went into both the story and the artwork presented therein, which truly brings this story to life, making it one children will want to read again and again.

Very young children will benefit, because even without reading the words, one can point out the various activities taking place, the sign of a well designed and produced picture book, in my opinion. I read this book to my 18 month old granddaughter, and when she got a little antsy, I pointed to the pictures and talked my way through it without reading the exact words on the page to her. She babbled back and we both giggled together, having some grand one on one time, as we shared this story.

Rupert is definitely a picture book worth purchasing if you have little ones. It’s a book I hope libraries and elementary schools will carry, because kids can learn a lot from it, all the while enjoying their reading experience as they turn the pages.

I’m so glad you stopped by today. Please take moment to help an indie author by sharing this review with others. Thank you.

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Free Publicity: Send Me Your Book Promos and Author Bios

by M. J. Joachim





In looking at the stack of books authors send me in the hopes of getting a review and some positive marketing and promotion for their books, I realize I can’t possibly help them all in a timely and efficient manner, though I certainly promise to try and help as many as I reasonably can. My brain has been on overload trying to figure out a way to solve this dilemma, because even though I actually took a speed reading course, and I read much faster today than I ever have before, I still can’t see myself being able to read and write so many reviews, when the market is completely saturated and overwhelmed with indie authors and their books.




As I was tossing and turning last night, unable to quickly fall asleep despite a very long day and being way overtired, it dawned on me. Change your blog! Obviously keep publishing as many reviews as you possibly can, but help authors market themselves too. Give them a platform to share their new release, tell their story and promote their work. Make it easier for authors to tell the world they wrote and published a book.

So that’s exactly what I’m going to do, starting right here and right now.

If you’re an author, take note and please send me an email, but don’t send me just any email. Send me an essay marketing your book, as if you were sitting in front of the biggest, baddest publishing house in the world. Sell your book to me in the form of an essay. Then, send me a second email. Yes, I want two completely different emails from you.

Write an essay all about you in the second email, telling me who you are, what you like to write and why. Share your personal dreams about becoming and being a writer, and the goals you hope to achieve on your journey. I want to know everything, all the nitty gritty, including details about how your unexpected tragedy inspired you to write and publish a completely jaw dropping story. Use this blog as one more marketing platform, where you can promote yourself and your work, to get the word out there that you are an author with a book people need to discover and read.

I will work with you to make these two marketing tools, the author bio and book promo, the best articles they can be, so we can work together to promote you and your work. If I haven’t read your book, I’ll include a disclaimer, so people reading the post know I can’t personally endorse it, and encourage them to do their own research prior to making a purchase.

I will help you promote your work and give you free publicity, sharing your post with as many people in my social networking circle and beyond that I can. I may or may not have a chance to actually review your book, but I will do everything in my power to help you get the word out that you wrote and published it. Writing is hard work, and I applaud everyone who takes the time to publish a professionally, well written manuscript, which is why I want to help you spread the word about it.

The ball is in your court now.

Send me an email describing and promoting your book in detail.

Send me an email helping people get to know you, the author.

mjjoachimswriting@gmail.com

Thanks for stopping by today. I look forward to hearing from you soon. And please share this post, so as many indie authors as possible can get their free publicity here on my blog.

Best to all,

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved
Photo credits: Public Domain

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Book Review: Goldilocks by Patria L. Dunn

by M. J. Joachim




Suspenseful from beginning to end, Goldilocks by Patria L. Dunn is quite the page turner. Fantasy, sci-fi, paranormal, romance and action adventure - this story has it all!

At first I didn’t know what to expect, and thought this might be an adult upgrade of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Goldilocks is present all right, as are three bears, but so is a broken down mine, a family hurting from the loss of a wife and mother, a council and far too many morphed creatures to count.

I’d love to say this book was flawless, but there are far too many typos and other things a well done proofreading and editing should have fixed. The story itself was really good, and I definitely had to read it all the way through, because there’s no way I was going to miss the ending and see how everything was finalized. But that doesn’t excuse the need to make this book more professional by fixing the errors within.

Twilight series came to mind when I was reading Goldilocks, but then so did Hunger Games, and I’m not sure why. This story was nothing like them at all, though it did have a lot of fantasy and paranormal activity. It was consistent and cohesive throughout, making it a quick and enjoyable read, despite the things mentioned above, something I hope the author takes into account, ultimately making an updated, new and improved, version for people purchasing her book.

If you like supporting indie authors as much as I do, I’d like to ask you to do a quick favor for me.

Please subscribe by email to this blog, so you can find out right away when a new book gets reviewed. Then all you have to do is share the review to help promote the author and his/her book. 


It’s that easy, and helping indie authors market well written books is something we all can do. It’s something that will not only help authors, but also those looking for good books to read. So please, take a moment and follow by email and share my reviews with the world.

Thank you,

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved

Book Review: The Fisherman by Nancy Smith

by M. J. Joachim




Delightfully written and illustrated, The Fisherman is a beautifully orchestrated tale about a man looking for his friend, so they can go fishing together. It is destined to be a classic children’s picture book, one that will delight children over and over again.

My granddaughter and I had so much fun reading this book together. The colors were soothing and the story was engaging. We even got up off the couch and mimicked some of the activities taking place in the story. No spoilers, just teasers. There’s no doubt in my mind a lot of kids will do the same thing.

A neat thing about this book is that it is written a bit like a fable. There are things to consider when reading this little book, and lessons to be learned. It’s a kind story, promoting love and generosity, while planting seeds of altruism in our little one’s hearts.

Positive books like this one deserve to be promoted, so I hope you’ll share this review and help get the word out about this wonderful children’s book, that was published June 2015.

Thanks so much for stopping by today. Happy reading, writing and whatever else you do. Oh, and don’t forget to click a share button before you leave. Thanks.


M. J. 

©2016 All Rights Reserved

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Book Review: Pleasant Fruits…by Nathan D. Pietsch

by M. J. Joachim




Actually, the whole title is: Pleasant Fruits: Sweet Whispers from the Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit.

Colorful and distinct, completely different from anything I’ve ever reviewed before, Pleasant Fruits is an interesting array of spiritual reflections, for those who are into this sort of thing. It’s evangelical in nature, a bit over the top for me, but very nicely done.

From my own experience, there’s almost a unique language Bible thumpers use when they have an audience. I don’t know if they act and speak this way all the time, but even when you read their words, you almost want to run the other way unless you’re one of them, pointing out all the sinfulness in the world and individuals, while preaching and interpreting the Bible to further drive home their point.

As a true fan of Jesus, and someone who does my best to live an upright, just and spiritual life, I thought I’d really enjoy this book. To some extent I did. To the other extent my mind wandered, because as much as I know God speaks to us, I’m not sure He was speaking to anyone on the pages of this book. I think that was Mr. Pietsch, and it felt very condescending and holier than thou at times.

The book is set up in such a way that the Holy Trinity is the one speaking in the reflections for each day. God then pronounces good and bad, while quoting the Bible to reinforce His commands. Readers are supposed to feed on this, feel the guilt cast down on them and ultimately make amends, which could be anything from turning their heart more toward God, to reconciling and fixing their divorced marriage. After all, God hates divorce.

There’s a constant reiteration throughout the book, telling readers to listen to the correct voice, and be wary of judging those who don’t - the ones who are condemning themselves to hell. I’m more of the school following the 11th Commandment - “Love your neighbor as yourself,” and “Judge not lest you be judged.” It’s simply not in my nature to determine who isn’t following God well enough to make it to heaven when they die. And chances are if I’m the one seeing and judging the flaw in them, I’m the one that needs to take the 2 x 4 out of my own eye, before plucking the splinter out of theirs.

If this book and other books by Mr. Pietsch help others strengthen and renew their relationship with God and live a happier, more fulfilling life that gives them greater hope and peace in this world, more power to it, and God bless Mr. Pietsch for working for the kingdom of God. Based on his bio, it seems likely he has every good intention to help as many people as possible, and writing and selling books, along with preaching is the way he’s chosen to do it. Far be it from me to find fault with anyone loving and serving God the best way they know how. In fact, I wish Mr. Pietsch all the best.

Please share this review using the share buttons below. Thank you.

Wishing you every success with everything you do,

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved

Monday, April 25, 2016

Book Review: The Hanging of Cousin Charlotte by Talia Haven

by M. J. Joachim


Campfires and ghost stories came to mind as I read The Hanging of Cousin Charlotte by Talia Haven. So did the Salem Witch Trials, by the way, though they seemingly had little if anything to do with the story, a story definitely designed to send shivers up pre-teen and young teenage spines.

Despite the fact that this story was written with so much tantalizing detail, it also left an abundance of things unsaid, allowing for the imagination of anyone reading it, to pretty much run wild. Mine did, as I pictured Charlotte on trial in Salem, Massachusetts back in 1692.

Tension begins to build in the first paragraph of the story, as Miss Clare prepares to give her rendition of the facts regarding her cousin, Charlotte and how it came to be that she was hanged. Family drama becomes front and center, providing for secrets, suspicions and arguments, decidedly played out with trickery throughout the story.

Readers need to heighten their senses for this little story; they need to tune into that which is hidden between the lines, engaging in the mystery as it unfolds. And if they are so inclined, they need to memorize and save this one for the campfire, opting to tell it over and over again in the wee hours of the night.

If you enjoyed this review or find it helpful, please share it. Thank you, and thanks for stopping by today.

Happy reading and writing everyone!

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved

Book Review: 100+ Knock Knock Jokes by Johnny B. Laughing

by M. J. Joachim



Admittedly there are some good knock knock jokes in this short children’s book most suitable for elementary aged children. There are also some pretty redundant ones, where “shut the door” and “close the door” seem to be the primary punchline. There’s no denying the creative mind that went into the making of this book, to the point that I literally read some of the jokes with an accent, please don’t ask me what kind (I think it might have been Italian), in my head.

Many of the jokes are clearly beyond any young child’s comprehension, opting to play on adult humor - not sexual at all, more like current events being reported on the news, which leads me to believe youngsters might giggle anyway, because they’re having so much fun being silly, but they won’t have a clue about why they are laughing. That said, it’s a cute book that may or may not be worthy of adding to your child’s library, depending upon how much they get a kick out of knock knock jokes in the first place.

If you enjoyed this review or find it helpful, please share it. Thank you, and thanks for stopping by today.

Happy reading and writing everyone!

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved

Book Review: From A - Z by Cindy Williams

by M. J. Joachim




Colorful pictures of capital letters and symbols representing each letter make this children’s book a delightful book for preschoolers and early readers. A free coloring book bonus doesn’t hurt either, making it perfect for teachers who might want to use the coloring activity in their classrooms to reinforce the book.

The biggest problem I found is that the words and pictures don’t fill up the page. They are thumbnail size, which is definitely a deterrent for me. I’d like the words to be big and bold, especially since there aren’t too many, and I want the pictures to fill the entire page, so kids can interact with parents and teachers who read this in electronic form.

Aside from that, this is a darling book that I will definitely read to my grandkids. If you have kids or know any little ones who might enjoy reading about their ABC’s, I’m sure they will get a kick out of this alphabet picture ebook.

If you enjoyed this review, please share it. Thank you, and thanks for stopping by today.

M. J.
©2016 All Rights Reserved

Book Review: The Perfect Game by Stephen Paul

by M. J. Joachim




Talk about a thrilling murder mystery! This book had me on the edge of my seat from the moment I started reading it. The characters are easily relatable to lots of people anyone might know, and the baseball backdrop definitely intensifies the story. The back and forth, from one group of characters to the next is very well done, intertwining them in various ways, connecting all the dots, while still making you wonder what the heck is really going on, and how this intriguing mystery might be solved.

At one point about a third of the way into this book, I was convinced it was aliens causing all the murders. Honing in on cues like antenna and the dark disguise the perpetrator wore, I was sure this was going to turn into a bizarre science fiction novel from another world. There were elements to this effect regarding energy transfers and the like, so it made perfect sense with where my mind was going.

Not so subtly written between the lines was a story about a broken man trying to reconcile the breakup of his marriage and family, while dealing with these things a bit inappropriately at times. The main character, Kyle, was definitely someone I’m sure many guys can relate to, and his story gave me pause as I reflected on the all too real pain and suffering he must be going through, all the while getting caught up in the middle of a murder mystery that caused him to come clean and be that good guy he so earnestly always strove to be, while weighing the consequences of messing up his life more than it already was, and constantly being bombarded with people on his cheering squad either telling him not to worry about causing a bit of trouble to cover his ass now and then, or other people telling him to do the right thing even if it cost him.

In the end, well now, I can’t tell you the end, because I make every effort to keep some elements of a book in my reviews hidden, opting to let the reader discover and enjoy the tantalizing twists and turns. I did the same thing recently in my review of Mercer Street, because there’s an overall message in there that a lot of us will benefit from, but some of us might not want to read, unless it’s captured in a really good historical fiction novel like the one Mr. Heldt wrote. Readers don’t want reviewers to tell them all the details. They just want to know if the book is worth reading and why, which is one reason I try to avoid including spoiler alerts in my reviews.

On another note, my copy of The Perfect Game would definitely benefit by being reformatted. I’m not sure if Mr. Paul already updated the version I read, so I’ll leave that up to him to determine if any action is required. The editing was fine, but the overall pages and words on the page were a mess, with huge gaps and spaces in them. The type size was also way too big, something that can easily be fixed so it reads better on a tablet, without its owner having to make adjustments on his or her device. Including a Table of Contents for user-friendly navigation would also benefit this book, though it was easy enough to find my place through bookmarks as I read it.

If you like murder mysteries, I’m pretty certain you’ll enjoy this book. It’s a nail biter, edge of seater, and the ending didn’t let me down at all.

If you enjoyed this review or find it helpful, please feel free to promote it. You can also send comments about it to mjjoachimswriting@gmail.com

Happy reading, writing and whatever else you do,

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Book Review: Mercer Street by John A. Heldt

by M. J. Joachim



Historical fiction meets time travel in Heldt’s books, something that is both fascinating and intriguing. Discovering WWII through new perspectives is exciting and entertaining in Mercer Street. The 1930’s, post WWI and pre WWII, are decidedly interesting points of study for anyone, times that Mr. Heldt details with the utmost eloquence and care.

Having read a few of his books now, I’m a fan and look forward to reading the rest. Mr. Heldt uses what appears to be a formula for writing time travel books, one that becomes fairly familiar and predictable throughout each book he writes. The stories he reveals within the books, however, are dynamic, original, thought provoking and exceptionally written. I’ve learned something new about history and the writing craft in each book I’ve read of his so far.

As we all know, relationships can be complex. Writing about them is no easy task, especially when one includes adequate dialog to emphasize the importance of finer details in the story. Heldt’s dialog and relationship dynamics capture the reader, making one engage like a fly on the wall, often compelling said reader to cheer for the course of events unfolding. Just when you think you know what’s going to happen, the story takes a much needed turn you never saw coming.

Using a simple style, without too much embellishment, but just enough, Heldt takes us on a journey with immigrants “escaping” Germany, who develop fond ties to America. Within the pages of Mercer Street, time travelers fall in love with foreigners, a dilemma which ultimately could alter history if characters aren’t careful. What time travel novel would be complete without a little playfulness though, things that don’t necessarily rewrite history, but challenge it a little more than expected?

Professor Bell is a masterfully written character, one we get to know in the first book of this series, September Sky. I’m eager to see what antics he plays in the third book of this series, Indiana Belle. One of my biggest curiosities is whether all these time travelers will meet and exchange notes some day. There’s a book I’m looking forward to reading if Mr. Heldt so desires to write it. A reunion at the Bell mansion, as it were, where everyone takes a journey into the future perhaps, and actually writes history, before coming back to the past…

Whether you are reading Heldt’s books for pleasure, or because you’re a writer looking to improve your craft, you will undoubtedly close Mercer Street completely satisfied. A little dizzy perhaps, because the ending might not be what you expect, but definitely content. Though each book in this series stands alone and on its own merits, easily being read as a solitary book, I recommend you read them in succession: September Sky, Mercer Street and Indiana Belle. Heldt ties them together well in this American Journey Series, which provides even more for readers and writers to learn from and enjoy.

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend! Happy reading writing and whatever else you do!

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved

Friday, April 22, 2016

Backlinks, SEO and Social Media in 2016

by M. J. Joachim





In considering this whole backlink/SEO scenario we’ve gotten so used to on the Internet these days, it is relative to register that we live in a mobile technological age in 2016, as opposed to one where sharing links helps earn status and page views like it did only a few short years ago. Getting backlinks is a good thing. However, it seems to be an outdated way to reward quality content, and seemingly could have an adversarial effect, should spammers and others use one’s links for ulterior motives.

The mobile age makes it easy for people to view things in email, share on their social media and omit the part about adding links to their own sites and blogs, in the hopes that someone will add their link, thereby sharing links in a reciprocal manner. This type of sharing was the basis of mass networking, where blog hopping and link lists were all the rage. A lot of people cashed in big using these techniques, and then Google changed its algorithm. Who could blame them with all those bogus links being shared, many with positively limited quality content being published in its wake?

Fast forward to present day, where people read and share individual articles and posts, based on interests, need and desire, a time when someone can share one independent item from an entire site, based on a variety of factors, ultimately encouraging this sole page to be passed around and viewed by whoever else shares the same interest and satisfaction from it, and we have a new age of what defines good and bad content on the web.

Sharing links is not to be discouraged, however, it is wise to consider why anyone would want to point people away from their site in the hopes of getting more page views. Wouldn’t it be better to fill a site with high quality content, where people want to stick around and browse everything being shared there? And if they find it that agreeable, wouldn’t it be prudent to make it easy for them to get the latest and greatest content being published there, via email, rss, social media platforms etc.?

The whole point is the hope of publishing something so good that it goes viral, right? And if it doesn’t, loading up on as many page views as possible will still be a good thing, even if the bots don’t recognize one’s backlinks and keywords, strategically (if not awkwardly) placed to improve status and position in Google’s ranking system. Surely Google’s not going to rank one’s work poorly, if it has been shared thousands of times on social media, or perhaps it even starts trending.

Sharing is caring. If someone wants to share my site(s) or books on their own site, I’m all for it, and I appreciate it more than you know. That said, if I’ve written an article or book review you really like, or better yet, promoted your book because the review I wrote for it was so good that you were ecstatic and simply felt the need to share it, and shout from the rooftops to all your family and friends, then please keep the fire burning and share that page or those pages with whoever your heart desires. Let people know that you find my work here interesting, and help me get more page views. It’s the page views that encourage me to work even harder, reading, writing and producing quality content for you to share.

The share buttons are there at the bottom of each post. You can remain current with everything I publish, by following me through various means in my margins. You can communicate with me via email, and we might even be lucky enough to get to know one another and become friends. In this fast paced world of 2016, it’s the best we can hope for, but it won’t happen if we’re too busy steering each other away from our own sites.

These are my thoughts on the current state of backlinks, SEO and social media in 2016. I’d love to find out yours, so send me an email or connect with me on social media. And if you are so inspired, share, share, and share this article with everyone you know.

Thanks so much for visiting today. I’m looking forward to publishing for you again soon.

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved
Photo credit: CCO Public Domain

Thursday, April 21, 2016

The Importance of Site Maintenance

by M. J. Joachim






Many of us started our blogs and websites a very long time ago. In the age of technological advances, that time seems even longer, because as much as we try to keep up with everything, there’s always an update to be had, sometimes before we even installed the last one. It’s a bit overwhelming and can become quite the nightmare if we let it.

It’s easy enough to let all system operators and platform programmers do their thing, without considering the repercussions of not keeping up with technology in our own right. Site maintenance, however, should not be left solely to the powers that be, hoping they somehow upgrade everything to do with our own sites and blogs in the process.

When we use outdated computers and software to produce our writing, it becomes necessary to update our past work, so that it functions properly in the current technological environment. That can be a lot to keep up with, especially if you’ve produced hundreds of posts, pages and publications.

Using new knowledge you have gained, as you’ve become more adept and experienced at producing Internet content, you’d be amazed at how easy it is and efficient it can be to add a fresh new look to your content, all the while increasing the interaction you have with your audience, and potentially expanding it, as new people are introduced to your work. Not to mention the fact that occasionally you will find a dreaded typo, outdated post, broken link and/or system error when you diligently comb through your past work.

This is why I strongly recommend updating as much Internet work as you can. Simply open it, edit it, add an (Updated + Date) and republish it in its new and improved state. I’m pretty certain you will like the results when you do, because when your Internet work is functioning at its best, all systems work together for the good of all, improving the user-friendly experience in positive and meaningful ways, which is in keeping with the professionalism you present to your audience.

Thanks so much for stopping by. Happy reading, writing and whatever else you do!

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved
Photo credit: Public Domain

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Book Review: The Enchanted Hat by Mary Sue

by M. J. Joachim



It was with a big sense of encouragement that I engaged in the reading of The Enchanted Hat by Mary Sue, and up until about 25% of the way into it, I wasn’t disappointed at all. That’s when the book decidedly fell apart, because it seems like the author didn’t feel the need to proofread and edit beyond this point.

The story itself was likable enough, framed in a rough outline sort of way. This was a story, not an outline, but you could picture the outline in the background if you tried. The intro was decent. The body was cute and repetitive. The conclusion was satisfactory and wrapped things up well enough.

I wasn’t thrilled with the language and rudeness, especially since this is a book for kids. As much as it is a style choice, I believe writers, like teachers, need to set the bar high and not encourage kids to talk like snotty little brats. Unfortunately, both kids and adults in this book talk with a rude edge toward each other.

I definitely believe the manuscript could be tightened up, eliminating a lot of the repetition. And you know how I feel about poor editing, something that truly caught me by surprise, because the first part of the book look pretty good. There are enough professionally self-published books out there, that you’re probably better off purchasing those instead.

Thanks so much for stopping by. Happy reading, writing and whatever else you do.

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved

Monday, April 18, 2016

Sisters in Crime - Desert Sleuths Writing Workshop

by M. J. Joachim

I received this press release over the weekend, and thought there might be a few writers out there who would like to go. Easy buttons R Us, as I copy and paste the details below.

page1image640
Sisters in Crime - Desert Sleuths Chapter 7349 N. Via Paseo del Sur
#515
-194
Scottsdale, AZ 85258

www.DesertSleuths.com
page1image3016

March 22, 2016

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Maegan Beaumont, 623-695-3203, maebeau75@gmail.com Roni Olson, 602-740-9936, ronisays@gmail.com

Sisters in Crime Desert Sleuths Chapter

AWARD-WINNING AUTHORS OPEN THE DOOR TO OPPORTUNITY FOR ASPIRING YOUNG WRITERS

Sisters in Crime Desert Sleuths Chapter Presents Program to Assist Writers of All Ages

SCOTTSDALE, Arizona – New York Times and USA Today best-selling authors, Alex Kava and Jan Burke, along with New York literary agent Victoria Lowes, will kick off the 13th Annual Write Now! Conference, sponsored by the Sisters in Crime Desert Sleuths Chapter on August 12th and 13th.

“Our Write Now! Conference is open to established authors, aspiring writers and readers of all genres,” explained chapter President Roni Olson. “We have designed a conference that assists writers with every aspect of their career. Our goal, as a chapter of Sisters in Crime, is to help as many writers as possible achieve their dreams of a successful career. We have extended that goal to include aspiring teen and college-age writers, and have opened our conference to them. The response has been incredible. We are thrilled to have Ms. Burke and Ms. Kava, who are role models for writers of all ages, leading this year’s conference.”

Burke, best known for her internationally-acclaimed Irene Kelly series, has received the most prestigious awards in fiction, including the Edgar Award, the Anthony Award, the Macavity Award and the Agatha Award. Kava is the author of the critically acclaimed Maggie O’Dell series and a new series featuring former Marine Ryder Creed and his K9 dogs. Her award-winning novels have made the best-seller lists in the United Kingdom, Australia, Germany, Japan, Italy, Poland and the United States.

“We have an amazing lineup of professionals, who will all be here to help conference attendees attain success,” continued Maegan Beaumont, Write Now! Publicity Chairman. “Editor and literary agent, Holly Lörincz of the McGregor Agency and publisher Cynthia Hickey will address conference attendees and offer guidance in developing their careers. The conference will include information on how to write an exceptional story—regardless of the genre, how to stand apart in today’s marketplace and attract an agent or publisher, how to properly approach an editor, agent or publisher, how to effectively promote your books for maximum sales and more.”

“We are fortunate to have many award-winning authors in our own chapter, and they will also be at the conference to aid attendees and answer questions. We are all committed to helping young, aspiring writers achieve their goals. This is an opportunity that rarely presents itself in the publishing world, but our Sisters in Crime Desert Sleuths Chapter has made assisting these high school and college students a priority,” said Olson.
page1image25968 page1image26128

WHAT: The 2016 Write Now! Conference
Presented by the Sisters in Crime Desert Sleuths Chapter


WHEN: Friday, August 12, 2016 Reception* 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
(*Must be 21
-years-old to attend the reception)
Saturday, August 13, 2016 Registration 7:30
Conference 8:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.


WHERE: Embassy Suites by Hilton – Phoenix/Scottsdale
4415 E. Paradise Village Parkway
South Phoenix, Arizona
85032

COST: Sisters in Crime Members Early Bird (until April 12th) $99.00 Non-Members Early Bird (until April 12th) $125.000
Special Student Price for Ages 14 to 20—$85.00, Restrictions Apply
Standard Registration $125.00 Standard Registration $140.00

RSVP: For more information or to register for this event, please go to www.DesertSleuths.com OR http://desertsleuths.com/ds-events/2016-writenow-conference/

For More Information: Contact Maegan Beaumont Email: DesertSleuths@gmail.com

The Desert Sleuths Chapter of Sisters in Crime is a writers' organization and serves members throughout the State of Arizona. The chapter was founded in 1994 and currently has more than 100 men and women as members. For more information: www.DesertSleuths.com

Sisters in Crime is an international writers' organization with over 3600 men and women as members. There are 50- plus chapters world-wide, offering networking, advice and support to crime fiction and mystery authors. Sisters in Crime was founded by award-winning novelist Sara Paretsky and a group of women at the 1986 Bouchercon in Balti- more. For more information: www.SistersinCrime.org 

Friday, April 15, 2016

App Review: Clean Master

by M. J. Joachim



Clean Master provides an easy way to boost the productivity, efficiency and memory on your device. It makes it easy to deal with junk files, has an antivirus feature, as well as an app manager. The app manager is really nice, because you can uninstall apps you no longer need or want, or ones that simply take up too much energy and storage, directly from this feature in the app.

The phone boost works on phones and tablets, allowing you to free up extra storage space. There’s also a device cooler feature, where you can scan your device and cool it down if necessary. The antivirus feature scans your apps, as well as all their updates.

Clean Master is a solid, easy to use app that will definitely make your technology life easier, in my opinion. Having used it for quite a long time now, I’m thoroughly satisfied.

Thanks for stopping by today. Best of the weekend to all!

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved

App Review: Bitdefender Antivirus

by M. J. Joachim


Happy Tax Day everyone! I hope you’re all getting a nice refund this year, instead of paying the government extra dollars from your earnings!

I’ve been using Bitdefender on a few of my devices for quite a while now, and honestly, I find it to be every bit as effective as any virus protection I’ve ever used before. I didn’t want to review it until I was sure I was completely satisfied, but now that I am, I want to let you know that this is an easy app to download from your app store, install on your device and run whenever you feel the need, scanning for viruses, malware and the like. It works and in my opinion, its a good app to add to your computer, tablet and phone.

Among some of the things I like about this app is that it is very user friendly. It’s easy to install and scan your hard drive, files and anything else that might be infected. There are free and paid versions, so you can test it first or opt all in and pay for the service you want from it. It doesn’t constantly pop up and remind you to clean your devices. Scanning is quick and easy, especially after the first initial scan when you deeply clean everything. You have at least three options for scanning: scan critical locations, deep system scan and custom location scan, allowing you to maintain more control, particularly when you have an idea of what might be causing a problem.

Simply put, this is a good app that is efficient and will make your life easier.

Happy Friday good people. I’ll check back with you in a few, because I’ve another nice app to review today. Thanks for stopping by.

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Book Review: Virgil by Samuel Alexander

by M. J. Joachim


“Thanks to all my test readers. I’ve never had any and the first time I do they actually like my book. So thank you for suffering through my unedited manuscript without running for the hills,” Acknowledgements written by Samuel Alexander for Virgil. To put it bluntly, you need some new test readers, and you definitely need to edit this book a whole lot more!

Despite all that, I could hardly put this book down, because the story mesmerized me right from the start. Not for the faint of heart, and certainly not for everyone’s taste, this book and the story revealed in it is positively gut wrenching. It’s the type you see and hear about on the news, the stories where kids have been set free after years of abuse and sexual torture. You have to know what happens, even though you’re practically sick to your stomach learning all the details.

This book is thoroughly gross and positively disturbing on so many levels. And then it falls flat on its face, with some semblance of a happy ending where the parents, the perpetrators of all this evil, end up in jailed and are killed by their fellow inmates. The boys who will be forever scarred are suddenly talk show heroes and have somehow become more successful in life than most of us would ever dream.

There are enough books with similar disturbing content out there, that you don’t need to spend time or energy on this poorly edited, sexually explicit and extremely unsettling novel. At times I wondered if it wasn’t based on real life. Personally, I don’t know how anyone could write something like this, unless they experienced some of the abuse therein, which is one reason I am truly bothered giving this poor and dishonorable review.

There’s a story here, one a lot of people might find fascinating and compelling to read, but not in its current state, and definitely not if they have issues relating to abuse or don’t like sexually explicit material between all genders, ages and professions. It’s that sick, and this is your fair warning. If you do decide to read it, I’d wait until a new and improved version is available, because the editing and spelling are atrocious!

Thanks so much for stopping by.  If you'd like me to review your book, please send me a mobi copy, and I'll see what I can do.

M. J. 

©2016 All Rights Reserved

An Open Letter to Authors Regarding Book Reviews

by M. J. Joachim



As many of you may have guessed, based on the comments in some of the emails I receive, I get a whole lot of book review requests, and I'm happy to add all of them to my growing file of books to be read and reviewed. In fact, I'm currently on a self-imposed mission to read and review as many books as I can, to dwindle my pile significantly, since so many authors have been waiting only too patiently for me read and review their books.

I started one rather long book yesterday afternoon, and I'm almost finished with it. Plus I started reading another (children's) one to my granddaughter. We didn't get very far, because she preferred we hang out and play on the floor, but I did manage to read two whole chapters to her before that happened. Most of the time I read children's books to her while she's sitting and eating in the highchair.

I'm very happy to see so many authors taking time and doing their best to promote the work they've spent hours, days, weeks, months and possibly even years completing. I'm only too happy to help you succeed any way I can, even if that means being honest and telling you I wasn't too crazy about your book for one reason or another. I received some lovely emails over the years thanking me for doing just that, and it truly validates my opinion that honesty is the best policy when writing book reviews.

That said, let's keep it simple. If you want me to review your book, send me a mobi file of it. I don't need all the cover copies, and you don't need to spend precious time writing a detailed query letter to see if I'm interested. The easier the better for me, so simply include your book in a short and sweet email, letting me know you'd like me to consider giving it a review, and I'm all too happy to oblige.

Based on the amount of requests and books I receive, I definitely won't promise you anything timely, but I will promise I'll do my best to read and review your book as soon as I possibly can. That means life and family come first. It also means I need downtime as much as anyone else, and there are definitely times when I take a break from reading nonstop. I'm as human as the next person, and this is a one woman shop.

I read. I review. And I write. I'm currently working on a couple of indie books I'd like to self publish at some point in the future. The one project is huge, so it will probably a year...or two or three...before I finish detailing it for final publication. The other is a fun, fictional story. I'm not sure where it's coming from, but I'm having a wonderful time writing it. I'd be lying if I told you all I do is read the books that are sent to me. I spend a lot of time reading, a lot more than I ever have before, since so many indie authors benefit from my services. It's a pleasure reading and reviewing your books, so take heart. I'm in your corner and look forward to sharing my thoughts on what you have written with my audience.

Thanks so much for hanging in there with me. All the best to you and yours. Happy reading and writing everyone!

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved
Photo credit:  Creative Commons License


Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Book Review: Krim Du Shaw by Talia Haven

by M. J. Joachim


If you like the mystery and magic of unicorns, and who doesn’t, you’ll probably find Krim Du Shaw an intriguing little story. It’s sad in a way, as humans interfere with Krim, the main unicorn that this fable is about. There’s a lot to be said for making people think and wonder about things, when they read a good book.

This is a children’s story of sorts, one with some sad things to consider and discuss. It’s also a bit of a fantasy, because as we all know, unicorns aren’t real. The power of love and innocence, those things are real, and they play a very big part in this little book.

I enjoyed it, though it’s definitely not my favorite that Talia Haven has written. Regardless, I’m sure you’ll find it entertaining enough, and if you have kids, they’ll learn a few things from it too.

Thanks so much for stopping by. Please don’t forget to add this blog to the list of those you contribute to. Thank you.

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved

Book Review: Mount Everest by Jim Meirose

by M. J. Joachim


Repetitive to the point of almost boring me to tears, this book had a way of driving me crazy. I can get away with saying that, because the main story line is about a crazy prostitute released from a mental hospital, living with her hoarding mother and constantly having sex for pay with local guys up in her room, which happens to be the only clean room in the house.

I get it. The rest of the house stinks to high heaven, is extremely difficult to navigate to get to her room and mom is a recluse whose house has all but been condemned. Daughter helps pay the bills with payments collected from her johns, and the big catch is that daughter is doing everything she can to help save the house, because the government has determined it’s unsuitable for anyone to live in.

Over and over again, I get it already. I get it. And there’s only so much I can take of reading similar scenes play out over and over again. I can almost smell the filth and picture the wall to wall debris. It’s easy to agree with the author, expressed through the johns in the pages, this house is beyond gross and Christine, the daughter, is definitely off her rocker.

No kudos from me for this book, I’m afraid. There simply wasn’t enough substance to make it worth my while to read. There was nothing in the Table of Contents, which makes it difficult to navigate in ebook format. I still managed, but a Table of Contents would have been nice.

That’s all for now. Hopefully the next book I read will be a whole lot better.

Thanks for stopping by, and please don’t forget to add this blog to your list of those you contribute to. Thank you!

Best to all,

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved

Improving Your Experience on This Blog

by M. J. Joachim
Updated 4/18/16


I started a new ad free blog yesterday called M. J. Joachim’s World. Using Google Contributor, which encourages blog followers to subscribe (and contribute) to blogs via the contributor feature shown on them, thereby reducing the amount of ads they see, I took the notion one further and made my new blog completely ad free, asking people to support this concept by adding my blog to their Contributor list.

Today, I'm asking you to consider including this blog in your list of Contributor blogs, via the Google Contributor feature listed in the top right hand corner. Google promises to reduce the number of ads you see when you add a blog to the list, and I promise to continue doing my best to continue improving and making this blog one of the best blogs you enjoy visiting on the Internet, as I hope and trust you will continue visiting and supporting my efforts here.

There’s much to be said about how my views of blogging are changing and growing these days. Most of that will be shared on the new blog, since this blog is strictly devoted to all things writing. Please take a moment to visit and maybe even follow M. J. Joachim’s World. All things being what they are, it seems likely that these are the two blogs I will devote the most time to now and in the future. All this in an effort to press an easy button, minimizing some of my self imposed tasks and consolidating my writing and publishing into a much more manageable activity.

Thank you again for all your support and encouragement. I appreciate it more than you know.

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved
Photo credit: Arizona skies, M. J. Joachim ©2016 All Rights Reserved

Monday, April 11, 2016

Book Review: Candle in the Darkness by Lynn Austin

by M. J. Joachim


Historically sound and positively engaging, this book was absolutely difficult to put down. Thank God it rained yesterday, as I put some banana bread and ribs in the oven, and sat in one of my favorite corners to continue turning page after page, all the while appreciating the talent expressed and shared in excellent writing. (I didn’t find a single typo in the entire book, not one!)

Based on a young girl coming of age prior to and during the Civil War in America, this book delves into the undeniable impact of slavery and its full impact on society as a whole, demonstrating through a viable and perfectly well told story, Austin shares the internal and moral conflict every man, woman and child faced during this wretched time in our history, all the while delighting us with a spiritual element impossible to deny.

Slavery was indeed a battle of good vs. evil, a strange and horrible blight in our history, when people needed to take great risks to be at ease with their own consciences and faith. Told through the eyes of Eli, a slave, Massah Jesus was the true king to be served, and if that meant he was a slave, with all its negative consequences and repercussions, so be it. Experienced through a southern belle, Caroline, the young girl growing into a fine societal lady, cold hearts melted and learned the power of unconditional love, love that is not a bargaining chip or means to an end, but love that recognizes the value and importance of all human beings, appreciating their differences and defending their right to be free.

This book caused me to pause more than once, as it struck chords of discontent in my own life, exposing faulty thinking in my own spiritual awareness. Not only was this an excellent historical fiction novel, introducing us to familiar characters like Stonewall Jackson, Robert E. Lee, John Brown, President Lincoln and President Davis etc, this book engaged us with great emotion, involving us in the trials of being a slave, slave owner and Civil War soldier and politician. I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and even if it’s not your typical genre, or you have little to no interest in reading historical fiction, I urge you to give it a try, because I’m about as certain as I can be that you will be pleasantly surprised.

Please feel free to email me with your comments regarding this post. mjjoachimswriting@gmail.com

Comments may be shared in a future post, unless otherwise specified by their sender. Thank you.

God Bless America,

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved

Book Review: Adventures in Consciousness by Debbianne DeRose

by M. J. Joachim


Framed as vignettes about the experiences of delving deep into the subconscious, to the point of having out of body episodes, levitating and becoming ever so much more fully aware of oneself and psyche, Adventures in Consciousness is nothing more than an educational and marketing document for the Monroe Institute. The entire little pamphlet, framed as a book, consists of mini essays about attending this place, meeting and becoming highly involved with other members, all the while supposedly becoming intensely familiar with one’s deeper inner core, thus enabling one to transcend the body and become more fully aware of one’s surroundings, creating a situational impact of being able to somehow affect one’s life in a more positive and effectual way.

It’s the stuff of gurus, selling their wares to an unsuspecting public audience, in the hopes of recruiting more followers. It’s the type of book that preys on the lonely and those who are hurting and in need of healing, attempting to draw them in and promise them a future free of pain. Sceptic that I am, and also fully aware of the need for balance, the reality that pain is often necessary to reach a higher awareness and grow as a human being, and the realist that believes there is no one size fits all solution to attain personal happiness, I’m not buying what this book is selling.

Hey, if stuff like this helps people, that’s great, and I’m all for it. I’m not for recruiting people and telling them that if they join this movement, all will be well, provided they give it a chance to really work for them. In other words, if you find it strange and a bit weird when you first start going, it’s on you, because you’re so messed up, you just don’t realize how much this institute is able to help you, so unless you help yourself by continuing to absorb yourself with its higher healing powers, you will never be free of the pain and sadness weighing you down and preventing you from being your best true self. Red flag! Red Flag! RED FLAG!!!

My personal opinion and advice is not to waste your money on this book. If you need to learn more about the program presented here, Google it and take the time to get a well rounded education regarding what this group is all about. Skip the propaganda presented in this book, designed to suck you in with promises that this is the answer to all your problems, if only you’d give it a chance. Again, there is no one size fits all, and no one has to pay for happiness.

Please feel free to email me with your comments regarding this or any other post on my blog: mjjoachimswriting@gmail.com

Comments may be shared in a future post, unless otherwise specified by their sender. Thank you.

Happy Monday to you, and happy reading,

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved

Friday, April 8, 2016

Book Review: Pieces Like Pottery by Dan Buri

by M. J. Joachim


It started with a very uncomfortable feeling in the pit of my stomach. Pieces Like Pottery was downright disturbing and would surely be impossible to read, especially if it kept making me so sad and contemplative of life and the circumstances and situations that often present themselves. I put it down for a couple of months, opting to read other books in my library, knowing it was only a matter of time when this book would be safe and okay to read. It’s one of those, the type of book that will unravel the darkness in one’s soul, relatable only to those open to each individual message it dares to provide.

I’ve never lost a child, but I know loss, so when I read that one story, I completely understood the magnitude of its impact on me. Nor have I ever been gay or discriminated against for how I look, yet once again Buri challenged me to feel beyond my comfort zone and open my eyes to a different perception. Abused altar boy I was not, nor falsely accused for hurting a child, yet there I stood in my nakedness recognizing the necessity of the words being read upon the page, words that reflected realities and truths about humanity, its kindness and its cruelty, its strength and its frailty - these are things I’m all too familiar with, and when I dared delve into Pieces Like Pottery, with an openness of mind I knew I needed, I discovered things, and learned how to tap into my fragile humanness again.

No tears came to my eyes as I flipped through the pages, opting to recognize my own blindness toward real human suffering, and my own need to heal from wounds that should no longer be allowed to weigh me down. Pieces Like Pottery is a contemplative, thought provoking book of short stories and poems, the type of book that will touch your heart, but only if you let it. It’s a book one needs to prepare themselves to read, and be ready for its impact. Without that, you might hate it, and that my friends would truly be a shame.

Best of the weekend to you, and happy reading!

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved

Book Review: Franky the Frog by Arnie Lightning

by M. J. Joachim


I read this one to my granddaughter while she was eating lunch in her highchair, and it is with great pleasure that I’m able to pass it along to you as a wonderful children’s book to share with your wee ones. Admittedly, the idea of a frog and a fly being friends seems a little far fetched, this is a story planting a seed of what friendship and love are really all about. Character is important, and the lessons this little book teaches, without lecturing, being condescending or authoritative, are extremely valuable for our youth.

Friendship isn’t the only thing touched on in this little book. Manners, obedience, healthy fun and joy are also major themes, showing kids there are ways to have fun, without being disrespectful or getting into trouble. It also shows parents that it’s okay to set the chores and work aside, in favor of having fun with your kids.

My granddaughter laughed at the few pictures. She enjoyed my animation in reading the story to her, and we both had a wonderful time while she ate her lunch. Franky the Frog is a delightful story certain to please and entertain children and adults alike.

Thanks for stopping by and reading this post today,

M. J.

©2016 All Rights Reserved