Announcing the 2018 Shortlist for “The Very Best!” Book Awards!

September is almost here and it is time to announce the shortlist for “The Very Best!” Book Awards. This year, to simplify things, I have narrowed down the categories to three:

  • Fiction (Novel or Short Fiction)
  • Non-Fiction
  • First Book (Fiction and Non-Fiction)

clean suds logoAlso, this year, for the first time, I have a small, but unique, award to give each winner: a “soap book” which is a bar of handmade soap encased in a specially designed book cover!… Continue reading

In Every Wave by Charles Quimper, Translated by Guil Lefebvre

Over the few short years of its existence as an imprint of Baraka Books, QC Fiction has now produced nine titles, with a tenth one in the works. Looking back over this diverse catalogue, it would be easy to compare them to snowflakes (no two are alike) or the proverbial sampler box of chocolates. However, I have come to think of QC Fiction as a major league baseball pitcher who has a number of different pitches in his repertoire.… Continue reading

The Wintermen & The Wintermen II: Into the Deep Dark by Brit Griffin

Summertime is a good time to read about a country in permanent winter, right? Or would the story go better if one were warm and dry inside during a blizzard? It likely wouldn’t matter for The Wintermen books penned by Brit Griffin are so good, you’ll forget about the weather for a while.

The concept is that a permanent winter has descended far enough south that people need to be relocated because the government cannot afford to maintain any type of services such as electricity and such for those that want to stay.… Continue reading

The End of the 2018 Reading Year is Nigh!

It is now half-way through August and my reading year (September to the following August) is just about over. I won’t be adding any more books to the 2018 long list for a “The Very Best!” Book Awards, so the list will remain unchanged and I will be announcing the winners in mid-September. There will be three categories:

  • Best Fiction (includes Short Fiction as well)
  • Best Non-Fiction
  • Best First Book (Fiction or Non-Fiction)

As for the upcoming year, I have a small stack that’s growing as the Fall 2018 releases come trickling in.… Continue reading

Vic City Express by Yannis Tsirbas

Vic City Express is a fierce little book; tiny in size, but large in reach and impact. It will polarize readers with the message shouted out by one of the protagonists advocating the elimination of immigration, with not-so-subtle hints at the eradication of unwanted peoples. It takes place on a passenger train ride to Athens where an unfortunate man we’ll call the “reluctant listener” is seated across from a fellow Greek who has no trouble spewing virulent stories about his life growing up in Athens, his involvement in youth crimes, taking police beatings, how Greeks are outnumbered by non-Greeks in his building in Vic City (an area of Athens centered on the Victoria metro station) and so on.… Continue reading