This classic was a suggested read when I was in school. Whether it was an assignment or just a recommendation from my teacher, I can’t remember. This is a beautifully written story of adventure written by Jules Verne. When you take in consideration, the period of which it was written and the other works Verne wrote, you can appreciate the details included on this journey that takes place in the late 1800s.

The journey only happens because of a bet being taken on by the main character, Phileas Fogg and employer of his helper Jean Passepartout. I have seen none of the movie versions of this book so I cannot compare them, but from what I remember Fogg is a mundane character, he’s hard to like as he’s not especially exciting and rigid, despite being well written. I feel this was done on purpose as to not take away but to add to the adventures. What would this person do if confront with a wild adventure? An unexciting person on an exciting adventure.

Recommending based on it’s a classic. Everyone should at least dip their toes into the classic literature books at some point in their life.


This review is a part of my 2020 yearlong self-challenge to read and review. I have reread some books for the purpose of reviewing them on my website whereas I have read others for the first time. Check out Book Reviews and Recommendations to find other book reviews, book recommendations, and more information about the books I’m reading, have read, or are sharing.

Have you read this book? What were your thoughts? Do you agree with me? Do you disagree? Let’s have a conversation about it.


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How does one start in poetry? How can someone go from novel writing to poetic prose? Both valid questions and both questions you may ask. I can only share from my personal experience, but as an actively working fiction novelist and poet, I shared a few tips that may help you along your journey.

  • Read as much poetry as possible. Read a vast variety of different poetry from different poets throughout history and even current. This, for me, was a gateway to expanding my horizons. Every new poem or poet I came across I could see or try to see where that poet’s message lied. Whether it was about a falling leave in Autumn or the great despair of losing a child.
  • Learn more about poetry itself beyond the reading of the different prose you come across. The research into the poetic world will introduce you to more than you may know. For example, you will learn about free-styling poetry compared to a structured haiku set-up. These are important upon you developing a style for yourself. You may even discover you want to try your hand at all the different poetry forms!
  • Keep a journal nearby. I already practice this as a novel idea that may come and go. I will need to write it down before I lose my thought. Poetry ideas and lines can come just as quickly as they fade away. You may think of a beautiful way of saying something you’ve struggled with for some time, a journal can net that fish before it escapes.
  • Play with your words. Experiment with assonance and initial rhyme. These can help develop a flow in the work and a style. Along with this experiment, with metaphors.
  • Don’t be afraid to restart a poem. Editing your work is a good way to polish it. For me, this was natural as I would write a chapter draft or even a manuscript draft and re-approach it with fresh eyes during the phase of writing of self-editing. A poem doesn’t have to be perfect and if you think it is the first time you’ve written it, approach it again later on to test your original feelings of the work. This is also a good way to develop your writing and poetry, never publish the first draft of anything you ever write. Publishers will know and so will readers, it will feel ‘off’.

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I find myself time to time delving into a biography, usually that of musicians I’ve enjoyed, but sometimes a politician or great mind comes into my possession. This is one of those great mind examples of a biography I thoroughly enjoyed. This is a complete journey into the world and man of Leonardo da Vinci. It contains a lot of information and is one of the heavier books I’ve read. They credit Da Vinci as one of the greatest minds throughout history, and this book is all the proof I needed to confirm that.

They cover everything I knew about him before reading the book within it from the Mona Lisa to his inventions, it’s the best reference guide, if one was to use it that way, on this man. I even learned many newer things. Da Vinci loved horses. 

I recommend this book to those interested in the life of Leonardo da Vinci, but do not recommend it if you’re wanting a quick guide this is not the guide for you. This is a heavy, well-written, but very in-depth biography that starts with da Vinci’s early years and then moves through his life. Isaacson does all the work and all you have to do is read and enjoy, but take your time cause you’re going to need it to get through every word and image included.


This review is a part of my 2020 yearlong self-challenge to read and review. I have reread some books for the purpose of reviewing them on my website whereas I have read others for the first time. Check out Book Reviews and Recommendations to find other book reviews, book recommendations, and more information about the books I’m reading, have read, or are sharing.

Have you read this book? What were your thoughts? Do you agree with me? Do you disagree? Let’s have a conversation about it.


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I wrote, in the past, why I decided to do Nanowrimo last year, but it also taught me things about myself. As time has passed, I have realized it taught me more that the initial realizations.

For me, confirmations have always been the best for me to know I can do something or that I’ve done something right. Often, I can do this for myself because I will build confidence due to research. With Nano I went in almost blind. I only had a week to prep. I was taking in a lot of information in a short period, mostly alone researching, but also talking to veterans of the event.

Here I sit, months later, and I realize Nano taught me if I can focus I really can accomplish many things. I have always tried, but my life is often crazy busy, to type here and there, but all I can think was everything seemed to work out for me to get 2019 Nano done.

I am still pretty happy with myself for pushing myself. I work well under pressure and this was an entire event I expected to be nothing but pressure. I started off doing it roughly, pushing and pushing, but ultimately and very quickly I didn’t. I would relax and tell myself that it was okay, something is better than nothing.

Below is all the advice I can share on my experience, I hope it helps someone.

Advice to take away:

  1. Don’t give up
  2. Some words is better than no words
  3. Ignore the community factor if it’s hindering your progress. This is a self-challenge, not a challenge against others.
  4. 50,000 words breaks down easier than you think, just breathe, and you can do it
  5. Self-care is important, don’t push yourself to hit the goal.
  6. If you don’t hit the goal to ‘win’, reflect upon what you accomplished, and remember that was so much more than you started with.

Follow my blogging from last year’s Nanowrimo. Great to see the word count progress. Check out these links in order for a better idea of how little or how much you can do and still ‘win’.

I already posted my review on American Gods by Neil Gaiman, an excellent read, and I recommend it if you haven’t read it yet. When I found out that there was a second edition of the American Gods world I knew I had to buy it and luckily, when I bought my edition of American Gods I also purchased Anansi Boys knowing I’d want to delve into it right after and I did.

I found this book very well written, quick-witted, and even funny with the way the characters speak. Anansi being the character portrayed in the tv show, I expected nothing less from him and Gaiman delivered staying true to the character. It isn’t often I come across something that causes me to laugh out loud, but this book did that for me. I have become a fan of Gaiman’s and love his imagination. You can tell with his writing that he researches and really does the work that it takes to put into a book. This isn’t something thrown together and I am glad that I expect high quality from him. He is truly a legend, and this book really cemented it for me.

The story reads like a twisting adventure with touches of mystery. I loved that I couldn’t predict what was coming and loved the journey it took me on. That’s high praise! 


This review is a part of my 2020 yearlong self-challenge to read and review. I have reread some books for the purpose of reviewing them on my website whereas I have read others for the first time. Check out Book Reviews and Recommendations to find other book reviews, book recommendations, and more information about the books I’m reading, have read, or are sharing.

Have you read this book? What were your thoughts? Do you agree with me? Do you disagree? Let’s have a conversation about it.


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We’re at week 39/40 for book reviews with a goal of 53 this year. Friday a new review will go up as per usual, but I decided before that review to post how I came to the books I have been reviewing. Last year, when the prepping for this year on the website began, I tried something I hadn’t done before, at least not attempted.  I’ve been an avid reader for as long as I can remember. Sometimes, I admit, I didn’t pick up a book or read nothing new, but I had read a lot before and after these periods. I have a tendency to lean toward horror, non-fiction, fantasy, poetry, short story collection, biography, documentary-style, and even philosophical enlightenment sprinkled with religious study genre. I enjoy learning new things and if a book captured any ombre of the above listed; I was hooked. 
From Moby Dick by Herman Melville to Armand by Anne Rice I have already reviewed many… many books so far, but the list which there is one began when I started looking at all the books I had or remember having then shortened the list into what I have read and are still sitting on the shelf or in the kindle to-be-read. I wanted to review books publically that I enjoyed, but also do it honestly. I dislike reviewing things I didn’t like, not wanting to give it attention, but I knew going into this year-long challenge I would appear bias or ‘fake’ if I didn’t mention these types of things. I also knew going in that many of these books were obscure to a younger readership or even considered classics. 
I didn’t want to review just recent publications as this wouldn’t be realistic to me as I didn’t start reading in recent years. The list began with Frankenstein by Mary Shelley and will end with a book by American folklorist Charles Godfrey Leland, according to my list. Alongside the review, I also wanted to share how the book came into my life and share a bit of the book journey on a personal level.
 I hope that this year of reviewing has opened some minds to new books and given insight to the world of reading I have for myself. 


What are your thoughts? Have you enjoyed the reviewing so far this year?


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Despite the belief Hemingway held that talking about writing was bad luck, I am no Hemingway. In fact, talking about writing is one thing I enjoy doing most. Sharing my experiences in the land of literature. I’m in a constant fluid-like state of shifting in attempts to improve my skills and grow as a writer. Before I could get my hands on a copy of this book, I had already flipped through a unique book entitled Stephen King’s On Writing. It is to date one of the few books I’ve ever read by Stephen King. Enjoying what I had read of that book, I wanted to find other books that were similar, authors sharing their expertise in the same field, and that led me to what I thought was the doorway of Hemingway.
The title was misleading a bit; it gave me the impression that it was a book by Hemingway, but it is a book of notes and thoughts by Hemingway and gathered and authored by Larry W. Phillips. It is still a recommendable book on the grounds it gives you insight into a writer, Hemingway, that changed the way English prose is stylistically. I learned a lot from this book on writing. For example, it taught me despite Hemingway’s belief of talking about writing being bad luck he himself in fact talked about it often.
I have enjoyed reading his published works, but the way he talks about writing is beautiful. The way he crafted his sentences and use of metaphors is brilliant in my eyes. I shall share a snippet so those of you whom may have not read this book can see for yourself what I’m talking about better.

Dostoevsky was made by being sent to Siberia. Writers are forged in injustice, as a sword is forged.

Ernest Hemingway on Fyodor Dostoevsky

I recommend this book. In fact, any ‘on writing’ books you can get your hands on read them. They’re a great reference guide and insight into the writer they’re the subject of. 


This review is a part of my 2020 yearlong self-challenge to read and review. I have reread some books for the purpose of reviewing them on my website whereas I have read others for the first time. Check out Book Reviews and Recommendations to find other book reviews, book recommendations, and more information about the books I’m reading, have read, or are sharing.

Have you read this book? What were your thoughts? Do you agree with me? Do you disagree? Let’s have a conversation about it.


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As you may have noticed, the website’s look has changed. A banner is on the front of the website that looks like this:

In the center is a logo for Edkar Press, but what is Edkar Press? In short, a teeny-tiny conception. Right now it’s still very much in its infancy. I will publish my poetry books and re-publishing more polished collections under this press. I never wanted to get into the other-side of publishing, the side of the publisher, but for now this is a rest stop.

The idea has crossed my mind as I connect with more and more poets that are struggling to find companies to publish with. Poetry is a hard sell and many don’t know how to self-publish. This may grow down the road, and it may be nothing more than it is right now.

The future holds possibilities and I have a lot of ideas I want to do and this may or may not be the label that goes on them. We will just have to see.

I fell in love with the television show version of this, but as with many books I’ve previously reviewed, I had to find the book. If you follow you me on Instagram, you probably saw an image or two of my editions of this book and even Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman. I got my editions off of Amazon, which I will do if I cannot locate books I want at the local bookstores and thrift locations.
From what I’ve found with other of Mr. Gaiman’s works that if I begin one of his books and set them down, I will have to go back and re-read several pages to back into where I left off. It isn’t because of a bad style of writing, this is something I have found I have to do so I can understand more intense styles of writing which I found this work to be, which isn’t a reason for me ever to put a book down completely. I had to do this with works of Lovecraft when I read his work.

This book beautifully brings together how people carry with them their beliefs, no matter where they move or live, their god(s) go with them. It makes the gods more realistic as the people lose faith they suffer, which is beautifully woven throughout the storytelling. It’s rich in atmosphere, which really drew me into the world deeper. Gaiman has always had a beautiful style to his work. It’s a style that I appreciate and love in books I read. It gives credit to his skills as a teller of stories.

I really don’t want to spoil the book much as so much of it is known or converted to television, but I will say I highly recommend reading the book.


This review is a part of my 2020 yearlong self-challenge to read and review. I have reread some books for the purpose of reviewing them on my website whereas I have read others for the first time. Check out Book Reviews and Recommendations to find other book reviews, book recommendations, and more information about the books I’m reading, have read, or are sharing.

Have you read this book? What were your thoughts? Do you agree with me? Do you disagree? Let’s have a conversation about it.


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The inspiration for The Blasphemer Series began when I was young. Dante Angeloft was somebody I came up with for a literary role-play I was participating in that dealt with Vampires and mortals. I wanted a mortal who was different than many I had come across before. With that, I kept working on the different aspects I wanted in his personality…what made him an artist, was he famous or not, did he have an easy life or a hard one, and why would he get involved with Vampires.

This character began like many others did for me — simple concept flushed out with details I wanted. I didn’t have any others to compare to make sure he was different enough. He sat on the back burner for years, never really getting used, never being talked about beyond those in the role-play group.

When I began working on the story that ended up being Maxwell Demon, the first in the series, I wasn’t sure if Mr. Angeloft would make an appearance or not, but I knew he would show up in some way eventually. I also knew I wanted him to be the main character. For me, Maxwell Demon was a story that told itself, but it wasn’t one that included Dante Angeloft, which is why he came in with Harvest.

Initially, Harvest’s story wasn’t what I had planned, but like many writers, the story changed as it was being written. Within the boundaries of character personalities, the story morphs into something you can’t always outline and plan. Some can consistently keep everything tamed and in place on an outline, but this isn’t something that always works for me. For the most part, anything I outline goes to hell in a hand basket, so I don’t bother.

The name The Blasphemer Series was a combination of many things. It seemed to fit best for what so many went through throughout the series. Blasphemy is defined by the Oxford Living Dictionaries as “the act or offense of speaking sacrilegiously about God or sacred things; profane talk.” There was no better description for the series. I also grew up in a very religious part of the United States, so even writing material containing God, angels, or the devil was blasphemous.

Credit for the root of the series’ title can also be given to the character Dante Angeloft being called “blasphemous”, in original writings, for his controversial paintings depicting Christ on the cross, which he saw in a vision. It was this that stirred an interest from a Vampire, leading to his introduction into the “real world”.

I was a little fearful to even write the series because I knew some would assume I had no faith or belief in a higher power. I realized, after a long conversation with a friend, that it wouldn’t matter what I wrote. Someone would have an opinion of me no matter what.

The Blasphemer Series is about good versus evil, with the aspect that we can all do good and bad, we make mistakes, and we’re all struggling in one way or another. I like playing with the fact that what we may feel is a good deed, another may see as something bad.

I have built a world in which all the great monsters are right alongside Witches and Humans. When I began thinking about all this, it occurred to me that the world would be more realistic if all things, all beings, could be good and bad. What one believes is for the good, another may see as awful, evil, or unfair.

Maxwell Demon shows that even Angels can be damned, but can also fight against their damnation to prove they’re still worthy of Heaven. That not all Demons accept the norm to possess Human Beings because the reasons they do this, to punish Humans, is not a purpose for all. Historically, Vampires are evil, but that isn’t always the case.  This book also details how the Clash of Angels wasn’t just for one reason, but many, those that fought had their own reasons to do so…some fought for the Nephilim, some for fought for the Humans, and some siding with Morningstar or Lucifer. All sides felt they were fighting for the right things.

Harvest, the second installment, explores a world directly affected by what has occurred in the first book. It shows worlds coming together because evil has destroyed the veil between the Mythical Realm and our world. This also sparks up old rivalries only calmed by diplomacy or unlikely friendships.

Ghosts is the third installment and is my attempt to give readers a more in-depth look into the world of Vampires, Werewolves, and even supernatural hunters. It’s full of darkness and evil, but goodness is very much a theme.

This book begins with what appears to be Vampires breaking treaties by publicly attacking a human to feed, but it’s found out to be a set-up by rogue Dire Werewolves working together. It’s quickly discovered that this is Kasdeja recruiting for the ultimate battle. This launches both worlds into the open for the first time in the modern age. The last time this was done, The Great War between the two species ended with the first of the Werewolves dying out, slowly reemerging into the modern shifting clans after a curse launched them back into existence.

The world is much different. The internet sends the attack out via social media and the new age of technology. Ghosts also shows a glimpse into the future that could be if something isn’t done. Dante does something that could ultimately kill him, but it’s a suicidal mission he’s willing to attempt in order to get the answers locked away in the possessed Briar’s mind.

The end of Ghosts will be a smooth transition into the fourth book, Descend. The final book of the series will be titled Ascend.

In interviews, podcasts, and private conversations, I’ve mentioned the books after Ghosts and how the story will unfold. However, only one person knows the twist that will occur. One will return at the end of Ghosts, and the other returns in the fourth book, but in only one instance does one of these original characters have be to be sought out. Originally, I had worked out timelines and stories for up to eight books, but as I began writing Maxwell Demon and Harvest, some things just had to be told earlier than planned for the series to be written smoothly.


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