About Nina Soden

Wife, Mommy, Urban Fantasy Author, Artist, Actress, Director... I'm only as old as I feel and I try to see the good in everyone. I take life one day at a time and focus only on the moment I'm in without fear or worry about the past or the future.

Once Upon A Time…

Not all fairy tales start with Once upon a time. Not all fairy tales have a happy ending. Not all fairies fly around like Tinkerbell with fairy dust.

COMING SOON! COMING SOON! COMING SOON! COMING SOON!

Austin discovered at the young age of ten that fairies aren’t exactly what Disney made them out to be and that blood tastes a lot like honey. Now, as an adult, he struggles to balance his public life with the one he’s so desperate to keep hidden. With the death count adding up, will he be able to keep his secret or will his world come undone? In this exciting interactive adventure, you’ll get to decide who lives and who dies. The body count is up to you, are you ready?


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Quit talking and begin doing!

Walt Disney said, “The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.”

We’ve all suffered from procrastination at one time or another. We make excuses. We tell ourselves things like, ‘I just don’t have the time right now,’ ‘I’ll get to that later’ or ‘I have other, more important, things to do right now.’ In reality, we are letting our fears of failure stop us from achieving our full potential. As authors, we do this a lot.

Today, I stopped talking and began doing! I let go of my fears, dropped the excuses that I knew were only holding me back, and sat down with my WIP (Work in Progress). I had finished the first draft during NANOWRIMO November 2018 and have since been putting off the much needed edits/re-writes.

Today, instead of putting it off for another day… week… or month, I decided to dedicate two hours this evening to writing. I made it through ten chapters and discovered a burst of creativity I’ve been longing for. I’m motivated in a way I haven’t been for quiet some time. Instead of dreading my next writing session, I’m looking forward to it. Instead of being worried I wont have anything to write, I can’t seen to turn my brain off. Sometimes all it takes is a little coffee and a bit of self-encouragement.

Turtles All The Way Down by John Green

TITLE:                    Turtles All the Way Down (2017)

AUTHOR:               John Green

GENRE:                  Young Adult Fiction

PAGE COUNT:       320

Re-Print:                June 11, 2019

RATING OVERVIEW [Overall: ★★★★.★ (4.5)]
Story: ★★★★★
Writing: ★★★★★
Characters: ★★★★
Appearance: ★★★★

AMAZON DESCRIPTION:

THE INSTANT #1 BESTSELLER IS NOW AVAILABLE IN PAPERBACK!

FEATURED ON 60 MINUTES and FRESH AIR

“So surprising and moving and true that I became completely unstrung.” – The New York Times

Named a best book of the year by: The New York Times, NPR, TIME, Wall Street Journal, Boston Globe, Entertainment Weekly, Southern Living, Publishers Weekly, BookPage,A.V. Club, Bustle, BuzzFeed, Vulture, and many more!


JOHN GREEN, the acclaimed author of Looking for Alaska and The Fault in Our Stars, returns with a story of shattering, unflinching clarity in this brilliant novel of love, resilience, and the power of lifelong friendship.

Aza Holmes never intended to pursuethe disappearance of fugitive billionaire Russell Pickett, but there’s a hundred-thousand-dollar reward at stake and her Best and Most Fearless Friend, Daisy, is eager to investigate. So together, they navigate the short distance and broad divides that separate them from Pickett’s son Davis.

Aza is trying. She is trying to be a good daughter, a good friend, a good student, and maybe even a good detective, while also living within the ever-tightening spiral of her own thoughts.

MY 2 CENTS / THE CRITICAL POINTS:

I knew nothing about this book, other than what was stated in the Amazon description, when I started reading it. It was a book club selection and probably one I wouldn’t have picked for myself otherwise. With that said, I am very glad I read it. I enjoyed it way more than I expected to.

STORY (★★★★★): In a nutshell, this story is about Aza Holmes, a young girl who suffers from a mental disorder that keeps her trapped in an inward spiral of her own thoughts, as she struggles to live a normal life. We get to see a glimpse into Aza’s life, watching/reading as she learns new things about herself and life, pushes her best friend away, finds love, looses love, and fights internally to decide what is right and what is wrong.

There is also a secondary storyline weaved throughout Aza’s story, that is of the missing billionaire. Ok, maybe it isn’t so much about him, but more about the two sons he has left behind; Davis and Noah. Davis, a long-lost friend of Aza’s and Noah, his little brother, are living in a mansion alone because their mother abandoned them when they were younger and their father has disappeared.

John Green is a wonderful storyteller. He knows his characters inside and out. The way he writes Aza is so detailed its as if he is literally in her head. Or, maybe it’s the other way around. The way he ties the two storylines together is seamless and beautiful. I think there could have been more about the missing dad, allowing us to relate to that family a bit more, but he gave the reader, and Aza, just enough to understand what the boys were going through and how to react.

WRITING (★★★★★): John Green’s writing style is fluid and easy. His chapters flow from one to the other with little, if any, breaks. Everything feels cohesive and complete. I think I read this one over a five-day period in about three sittings. I have no complaints about his style and would definitely pick up another book. In fact, I have my eyes on Paper Towns next.

CHARACTERS (★★★★): I loved the characters of Davis and Noah, honestly, I wanted to get to know them more. Aza, the lead character, was very well written, but I couldn’t relate to her in any way. Her anxieties and OCD behaviors were so realistic and well developed, but her constant negative self-talk and obsessions with her inner thoughts drove me a little crazy. Maybe that was the plan… maybe the author wanted the reader to feel a little trapped in Aza’s constant thought spiral, trapped so that we could experience what she feels. However, for me, her thought spirals were the reason I’d put the book and take a break. I needed a little time away from the negativity, second guessing, and often disturbing thoughts.

APPEARANCE (★★★★): I have the paperback, and it is a pretty simple cream-colored cover with large black lettering and an orange spiral. Again, I probably wouldn’t have picked this one up and read it, if it hadn’t been for book club, the cover just doesn’t really pull me in. The cover just doesn’t do justice to the story inside.

FAVORITE QUOTES:

“Your now is not your forever.”

“Anybody can look at you. It’s quite rare to find someone who sees the same world you see.”

“No one ever says good-bye unless they want to see you again.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

John Green
(Photo from Author Amazon Page)

John Green is the award-winning, #1 bestselling author of Looking for Alaska, An Abundance of Katherines, Paper Towns, Will Grayson, Will Grayson (with David Levithan), and The Fault in Our Stars.

His many accolades include the Printz Medal, a Printz Honor, and the Edgar Award. John has twice been a finalist for the LA Times Book Prize and was selected by TIME magazine as one of the 100 Most Influential People in the World.

With his brother, Hank, John is one half of the Vlogbrothers (youtube.com/vlogbrothers) and co-created the online educational series CrashCourse (youtube.com/crashcourse). You can join the millions who follow him on Twitter @johngreen and Instagram @johngreenwritesbooks or visit him online at johngreenbooks.com.

John lives with his family in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Also by John Green

Click on the cover image to read the book’s description and purchase your copy!

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Author Interview ~ Francis H. Powell

I love days when I get to support other authors and showcase some of their work. Today is one of those days. I’d like to welcome Francis H. Powell, author of Adventures of Death, Reincarnation and Annihilation to my blog today.

About Francis H Powell
Born in 1961, in Reading, England Francis Powell attended Art Schools. In 1995, Powell moved to Austria, teaching English while pursuing his varied artistic interests adding music and writing. He currently lives in Paris, writing both prose and poetry.

What is your name and do you write under a pen name? My full name is Francis Hulbert Powell and my author name is Francis H Powell.

Where do you call home? Brittany in France, I have lived in France for over 20 years

We know you are an author, but do you have another occupation? Do you believe you’re any good at it? Do you like what you do? I am a teacher and have been for the last thirty years, so I can’t be too terrible at my job. I mostly enjoy it, but there are occasional hard days, with problematic students.

What is your family like? I am married with a wife, a child who is nearly 7  and a dog that does not get on with other dogs, when he feels he should be protecting us.

What is your favorite film based on a book? I love One Flew over the Cuckoo’s nest, it is a great story and film, with some great acting, it is the kind of film, that sticks in the head, for the rest of your life. The ending is tragic of course.

What is the name of your most recent book and if you had to sum it up in 20 or fewer words, what would you say? My most recent book is called Adventures of Death, Reincarnation and Annihilation. The title says a lot about it’s content. It is a mixture of horror, science fiction, with quirky characters and a bit of humor, so it is not all doom and gloom.

How did you come up with the cover? Who designed the cover of your book? I wanted to do the cover, because I am an artist and went to Art school. I sent many versions, which were rejected by the publisher. Last Christmas I took a photograph, at night, in the town where I live and they finally accepted it.

What if the human race was considered irrelevant and then each being was just uploaded then locked away on hard drives called “brain pods?”

What if a sub species was to come into fruition, then the human race turned on it, hunted it down before trying to annihilate it? Imagine you found out you were an ancient soul, who is reunited with another being from your former life?

Set in different time in a variety of settings and time periods, the past, the present and the future, the book explores the inevitable unknown that lies before us all “death”. Death can be arrive in a multitude of forms. Each part of the book explores different themes. There are characters who following their demises have to face up to their lurid pasts….

How did you come up with the title for your book? I wanted to have a title that (hopefully hasn’t been used by another author). I wanted the idea that the book was like an adventure/ journey, as death is the ultimate journey.

Are you a self-published/Indie author or did you publish through a traditional publishing company? The book is published by Beacon Publishing company.

What advice would you give someone who wants to start writing? Maybe start with short stories. Try to develop your own unique style. Develop a strong  rich vocabulary.  Develop your craft.

Also by Francis H. Powell

Flight of Destiny

A collection of 22 short stories about misfortune characterized by unexpected final twists at the end of each tale.

Where can your readers follow you?


#Theredheadedauthor Presents the January 2020 New York Times TOP 10 Best Sellers – YOUNG ADULT

As an avid reader of fiction (and an author who one day hopes to make the list) I LOVE-LOVE-LOVE checking out the New York Times Best Seller list. So, here it is… The independently ranked top 10 Young Adult selections for January 2020!

Image by silviarita from Pixabay

If you’ve read any of the TOP 10 selections and recommend them, please comment below and let me know. If you see something you like and plan to pick up a copy, you can do so by clicking on the cover image, the title or the [BUY IT HERE] button.

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


#1 Children of Virtue and Vengeance

by Tomi Adeyemi

Zélie must stop the threat of civil war in Orïsha.


#2 Children of Blood and Bone

by Tomi Adeyemi

Zélie fights to restore magic to the land of Orïsha.


#3 Five Feet Apart

by Rachael Lippincott

Stella and Will are in love, but they can’t get within five feet of each other.


#4 The Hate U Give

by Angie Thomas

A 16-year-old girl sees a police officer kill her friend.


#5 One of Us is Lying

by Karen M. McManus

For five students, a detour into detention ends in murder.


#6 Dear Evan Hansen

by Val Emmich with Steven Levenson, Benj Pasek & Justin Paul

When one of Evan’s letters to himself is accidentally found on a suicide victim, the victim’s family assumes that he was a close friend.


#7 Loki Where Mischief Lies

by Mackenzi Lee

Loki is sent to Earth to investigate a string of murders that used Asgardian magic.


#8 The Fountains of Silence

by Ruta Sepetys

During the fascist rule of Spain, Ana and Daniel’s romance blooms amid the turmoil.


#9 Wayward Son

by Rainbow Rowell

Simon, Penny and Baz head to America where they find trouble.


#10 The Secret Commonwealth

by Philip Pullman

Lyra Silvertongue’s adventures begin again as she searches for a refuge for separated daemons.


When you purchase a book using a link on this site, I earn an affiliate commission. All commission earnings go back into funding my books; editing, cover design, etc.


#Theredheadedauthor Presents the January 2020 New York Times TOP 10 Best Sellers – FICTION

As an avid reader of fiction (and an author who one day hopes to make the list) I LOVE-LOVE-LOVE checking out the New York Times Best Seller list. So, here it is… The independently ranked top 10 Fiction selections for January 2020!

Image by Marisa Sias from Pixabay

If you’ve read any of the TOP 10 selections and recommend them, please comment below and let me know. If you see something you like and plan to pick up a copy, you can do so by clicking on the cover image, the title or the [BUY IT HERE] button.

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


#1 The Tattooist of Auschwitz

by Heather Morris

A concentration camp detainee tasked with permanently marking fellow prisoners falls in love with one of them.


#2 The Overstory

by Richard Powers

Winner of the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for fiction. Nine people drawn to trees for different reasons fight for the last of the remaining acres of virgin forest.


#3 The Woman in the Window

by A.J. Finn

A recluse who drinks heavily and takes prescription drugs may have witnessed a crime across from her Harlem townhouse.


#4 Little Fires Everywhere

by Celeste Ng

An artist with a mysterious past and a disregard for the status quo upends a quiet town outside Cleveland.


#5 Before We Were Yours

by Lisa Wingate

A South Carolina lawyer learns about the questionable practices of a Tennessee orphanage.


#6 A Gentleman In Moscow

by Amor Towles

A Russian count undergoes 30 years of house arrest in the Metropol hotel, across from the Kremlin.


#7 The Great Alone

by Kristin Hannah

A former prisoner of war returns from Vietnam and moves his family to Alaska, where they face tough conditions.


#8 Milk and Honey

by Rupi Kaur

A collection of poetry about love, loss, trauma and healing.


#9 All The Light We Cannot See

by Anthony Doerr

The lives of a blind French girl and a gadget-obsessed German boy before and during World War II.


#10 The Handmaid’s Tale

by Margaret Atwood

In the Republic of Gilead’s dystopian future, men and women perform the services assigned to them.


When you purchase a book using a link on this site, I earn an affiliate commission. All commission earnings go back into funding my books; editing, cover design, etc.


Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw (Movie Review)

Would you prefer to watch the video review, instead of reading it? CLICK ON THE VIDEO BELOW!

Title: Hobbs & Shaw (2019)

Director: David Leitch

Story By: Chris Morgan

Screenplay Writer: Chris Morgan and Drew Pearce

Based on Characters Created By: Gary Scott Thompson

Stars: Dwayne Johnson, Jason Statham, and Idris Elba

Genre(s): Action | Adventure

Runtime: 2 hrs. 17 minutes

SHOW RATING OVERVIEW ★★★+ (3.66 Stars)
Writing/Story: ★★★     Cinematography:  ★★★★   Character(s)/Acting: ★★★★

IMDB STORY LINE:

Lawman Luke Hobbs and outcast Deckard Shaw form an unlikely alliance when a cyber-genetically enhanced villain threatens the future of humanity.

MY 2 CENTS:

Now, I am all about a good action film and I will admit, I have seen all of the Fast & Furious movies.

  • The Fast and The Furious (2001)
  • 2 Fast 2 Furious (2003)
  • The Fast and The Furious Tokyo Drift (2006)
  • Fast and Furious (2009)
  • Fast Five (2011)
  • Fast & Furious 6 (2013)
  • Furious 7 (2015)
  • The Fate of the Furious (2017)

This movie gives you exactly what you expect from the Fast & Furious franchise… fast paced action!

Writing/Story: ★★★

Honestly… the story isn’t all that great. In fact, there really isn’t a story. But, are you really expecting to see well thought out plots, twists, and drama? No. You’re going for the action, the car chases, and the gun fights and this movie gives you that in spades, with some minor “character” conversations sprinkled in for good measure.

If you’ve watched the previous Fast & Furious films, then you know what you’re getting into. The movie doesn’t make all that much sense, there really isn’t a point, but yet like the other films in this franchise, it managed to be entertaining which is why we continue to watch them. Plus, who doesn’t like watching Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham in an action film? It is what they do best.

I was surprised to find how much comedy was actually in this film. How much I actually laughed. There is one scene, probably my favorite out of the entire movie, where Hobbs and Shaw are in these two parallel hallways with just a window between them. They each have to deal with their own sets of challenged or obstacles to get to the end of the hall at which time they need to open a door using an optical reader. The whole time Shaw is fighting off bad guys and Hobbs is doing what he is doing and still they are participating in their personal competition of who is better… tougher… stronger… whatever and having a very clear non-verbal conversation. It was awesome.

Cinematography ★★★★

I commend the camera man in this one. With all the fight scenes, car chases, helicopter scenes, and just the over all craziness… his job had to be difficult. With so much action going on at one time it would be really easy to mess up the shots and make it feel to boxed in or way to spacious, but it was beautifully filmed allowing the audience to feel like they were right there in the action but yet far enough out to see the full picture.

Character(s)/Acting: ★★★★

I’ll admit the acting isn’t that great but the fight scenes are pretty awesome and both The Rock and Jason Statham are 100% invested in their characters and you truly believe them in these roles. Maybe they are just like this in real life or maybe it comes from years and years playing roles very similar to these.

The best thing about this film, for me, is how well Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham work together. Their on-screen chemistry is fantastic. The entire film is basically them exchanging insults and trying to one up each other. It’s a long pissing contest and it works to keep the audience entertained in between and even during the incredibly unrealistic yet enjoyable fight sequences.

Idris Elba plays a great supervillain.

This movie contains a number of really great cameos… meant to complement the film. I wont give them all away, but you just might spot Ryan Reynolds, Kevin Hart, and Helen Mirren just to name a few. This film doesn’t take itself seriously and it doesn’t expect the views to either. It just wants to provide entertainment, keep you on the edge of your seat, and make you cheer. It does that!

FUN FACT:

During the London car chase, as Brixton’s motorcycle changes shape to slide under the oncoming truck, we can clearly hear the iconic sound effect that is used during the transformations from the Transformers cartoons and films. If you haven’t seen the movie yet, listen for it… you’ll recognize it. (You can see the clip in my video review below.)

TO SUM IT UP:

This movie was way longer than it needed to be, which made it drag for me, but I still left entertained and wondering what type of movie they would come up with next.

Have you seen Hobbs & Shaw yet? If you have, let me know your thoughts in the comments below. If not, I recommend seeing it for yourself and forming your own opinion.

Check out my YouTube channel and the video review below… and make sure you hit subscribe so you never miss a video.