Book Review: Stars of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Highway

highwayStars of the Rock N Roll Highway includes 20 stars. The book features a short bio on them all as well as a section on did you know. There are a lot of greats included – Elvis, BBKing, James Brown, etc.  A lot of great stories throughout. A quick read.

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review. I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

Through images of hands, this book conveys the strength, beauty, diversity, depth, and power of the blues, the root of all American music. It features photographs from Joseph A. Rosen’s 30-plus years of adventure in blues and music photography. Included are such noted music personalities as B.B. King, Gary Clark, Jr., Buddy Guy, Al Green, Willie King, Susan Tedeschi, Derek Trucks, The Blind Boys of Alabama, James Brown. The book holds rich treasures for lovers of music, photography, and the human form. One need not be deeply versed in the blues to appreciate the beauty, strength, and diversity of those who make it. With powerful imagery, as well as anecdotes and biographical information, Blues Hands tells a story of human experience.

Book Review: Beside the Music

besideBeside the Music is about Brenda Dunkirk.  She and her husband decide to take a getaway to Orlando and she checks out another rock n roll memoir from the library before leaving.  This time she is reading Keith Kutter’s biography, bassist of 80s metal band Hydra that she loved as a teen.  Her husband is running for senate so they take a vacation to have some time to themselves, but Brenda can’t seem to put the book down.

When they get home, Brenda decides to write Keith a fan letter.  She sends it off to Australia and thinks nothing of it.  A while later, flowers are delivered to her house and she assumes they are from her husband. But they are from Keith, who wants to meet her!  They have dinner, which is interrupted by paparazzi.  Later Keith comes to Brenda’s home and starts writing a new song on her deck in the rain with her guitar.

Keith usually likes to write an entire album in the same spot so the band asks if they can stay at Brenda’s house for the time they are recording. They will hire a housekeeper and pay Brenda and Tim $50,000.  Brenda somehow gets Tim to agree… and so the band and their crew moves in!

The band living at the house puts a strain on Brenda and Tim’s already iffy marriage.  Tim ends up moving out and Brenda wants the band GONE.  But she signed a contract.  Can she get out of it? And will the band ever finish the album?

I really liked this book because it was cool to think about one of your favorite bands coming to live at your house and writing an album there and maybe even writing a song about you! Of course the book shows that it’s not all that it’s cracked up to be – needing shower schedules and having no idea when your house guests will eventually leave.  I wasn’t sure if Brenda and Tim’s marriage would survive this added pressure since you could tell in the beginning that they were already a bit on the rocks so to speak.  There was also the added pressure from Tim’s mother Portia who liked to show up unannounced and did not like Brenda.  A lot of fun characters and personalities in this book.

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review. I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

Brenda Dunkirk thinks she’s the luckiest woman in the world when 80s metal band, Hydra, declares her home as their base camp while recording their comeback album. Swept up in rock and roll glamor she risks her already faltering marriage. Tim, her husband, walks out on her and Hydra’s chaos, and to make matters worse her boss is threatening to fire her if she doesn’t get her act together at work. The band will not leave until the album is done–it could be another month or it could be another year.

Ultimately Brenda must choose between the secure contentment of her marriage or the allure of rock and roll. She must decide: is it possible to be one man’s wife and another man’s muse?

Book Review: Animals that make me say EWWW!

ewwAnimals that Make Me say Ewww! Is an interesting look at some of your favorite (and not so favorite) animals.  But this book tells you all about their gross habits – like picking their nose and eating it and talks a LOT about poo.  Definitely really informative if you try to look beyond the Eww! factor, but I think a lot of kids will love reading about poo and won’t realize they are actually learning too!

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review. I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

That’s so gross!

Prepare to be grossed out by an engaging and unique look at some of the more disgusting survival techniques from the animal kingdom.

From blood-squirting reptiles to blood-sweating mammals to nose-picking primates, learn about some of the most disgusting creatures in the animal kingdom. Author Dawn Cusick and the National Wildlife Federation compile a volume as attractive as its subject is disgusting.

Book Review: In Real Life

inreallifeIn Real Life had no synopsis of the book when I chose to select it as something I’d like to review, so I truly judged the book by its cover and decided I would like to read it. Fortunately the book cover did not steer me wrong and I did enjoy the book.

In Real Life is about Hannah who lives in California and her best friend Nick who lives in Vegas. The two met through their older siblings who had met at a concert several years earlier.  The two talk on the internet and the phone almost every day, but have never met in real life. They are now 16 years old and wanted to meet half way (they live about 4 hours apart) but Hannah’s parents had said no way after her sister Grace ends up with “food poisoning” (hungover) and can’t drive her there.

But when their parents go away on a cruise Hannah decides it is time to stop playing by the rules and Hannah, Grace and Hannah’s best friend Lo head to Vegas to surprise Nick at the House of Blues where his band is playing a concert.

Once they arrive, things aren’t quite what they seem.  Hannah had thought that Nick was the guitarist in the band and that he was single – when she arrives there is a girl hanging all over him and kissing him. And when the band takes the stage, it is Nick’s brother Alex playing guitar and Nick selling merch.

The gang goes out on the town in Vegas (with their fake IDs, of course) and when Nick tells Hannah he actually had feelings for her, Hannah runs away, even though she thinks she may feel the same.

Will this ruin their friendship or will both be able to tell their true feelings for each other ?  Well, you’ll have to read to find out because I am not telling!

One of my favorite parts of the books was how Nick sent Hannah a pressed penny from Vegas and Hannah sent him one back from Disneyland – which Nick wears on a necklace.  When they are going through Vegas they happen to find another penny machine and point it out to each other. As someone who collects these pennies I really liked to see them included in the story and being such an important thing to both of the characters!

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review. I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

Hannah Cho and Nick Cooper have been best friends since 8th grade. They talk for hours on the phone, regularly shower each other with presents, and know everything there is to know about one another.

There’s just one problem: Hannah and Nick have never actually met.

Hannah has spent her entire life doing what she’s supposed to, but when her senior year spring break plans get ruined by a rule-breaker, she decides to break a rule or two herself. She impulsively decides to road trip to Las Vegas, her older sister and BFF in tow, to surprise Nick and finally declare her more-than-friend feelings for him.

Hannah’s surprise romantic gesture backfires when she gets to Vegas and finds out that Nick has been keeping some major secrets. Hannah knows the real Nick can’t be that different from the online Nick she knows and loves, but now she only has night in Sin City to figure out what her feelings for Nick really are, all while discovering how life can change when you break the rules every now and then.

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