I get approved to read quite a bit of books, oftentimes more than I am physically capable of. My typical reading speed is about 2 books per week, which, in my humble opinion, is pretty good. But I sometimes get bogged down by the sheer volume of books publishers want me to read and review. In the past, I have actually forgotten about books that I've been approved for until after they were published. Never fear! I purchased my first Moleskine (I totally feel like a hipster) and have started an official "To Be Read" journal. Hopefully this will keep me on track.
I've been approved for a few great books that I hope to get to soon. So stay tuned! Summer reading is always my favorite kind of reading and usually it is filled with great stories too. I appreciate you following my blog here and I hope to have some amazing reviews for you all summer long.
Well I've taken a little bit of a break from book reviewing and from blogging. Here's why. My wife and I both accepted new positions a few hours away from where we currently live so in the past month we've quit our jobs, signed new contracts, sold our house, had the deal fall through, had the deal picked back up again, purchased a house, had both of our identities stolen, recovered from that, fought a bilateral ear infection, concussion, and flu(?) with our toddler, and got screwed over by our appraiser. Suffice it to say, I haven't been reading much.
But I'm back. And I've missed you all...
So I've been blogging for a year now. Time flies. I started as Eyes and Books but had to change a few months ago due to branding issues I was facing. I've really enjoyed the stories I've been privileged to read, the authors I've been honored to interview, and the connections I've made.
As of now, my site has had 29,216 views. Amazes me. I'm shooting to hit the 60,000 mark by the end of year two.
I've also published my first short story collection entitled "What Will Be Will Be, What Will Not Be Will Not Be" (available for the Kindle on Amazon) and even sold a few copies of that.
My first reviewed book for a publisher was "This is What I Want" by Craig Lancaster - a story that I love and will always hold dear. It truly started my reviewing career.
Thank you all for following my page and my Twitter. If you know anyone who may find this information useful, please share my web address. It humbles me that a nobody such as myself as developed a fairly decent following and for that, and for you all, I will be eternally grateful.
Our last day in Toronto had a day full of fun scheduled for us, mostly focused on the Toronto Zoo and staying the night in Missasauga. We stayed at a Residence Inn and enjoyed going to a Canadian bookstore chain, Chapters, and a cool toy store, Mastermind Toys and Books. We were off to sleep early for our 7 am flight the next morning!
On Day 4, we visited the Royal Ontario Museum where we happened to run into the famous actor Ed Asner! He was so nice and generous with his time. I was also able to get a cup of coffee from another Canadian chain, Second Cup Coffee Co. Then we went to Ripleys Aquarium of Canada so that Oliver could see all of the "bubbles" (what he calls fish) and we had lunch there. We had a few hours to kill so we visited Casa Loma, the famous Toronto mansion. Later that day they were having a wedding so it was a bit crowded but still fascinating nonetheless. We had dinner at Tim Hortons in the subway station because we didn't happen to walk 10 feet to our left and see all the other places we could've eaten. For dessert we went to Purdy's and had ice cream and chocolates then called it a day.
Day 3 had us focused on tackling Canada's Wonderland, the largest theme park in all of Canada, and we had a great time. Lots of roller coasters and tons of Peanuts-themed kids rides left us exhausted as we arrived at opening and left at closing. We also got to try a BeaverTail, a Canadian pastry that is mind-blowing.
Day two had us visiting the Hockey Hall of Fame and the Ontario Science Centre. We ate lunch at Harvey's, a Canadian fast-food chain, and had authentic poutine for the first time. We stayed the night in Vaughn and even went to a local comic book store. We walked around the HUGE Vaughn Mills Shopping Centre and got to go to a Canadian Bass Pro Shops. Dinner was at Montana's Bar and Grille and was pretty good. We went back to the hotel and went swimming then we hit the bed.
We are having a blast and have picked up several cultural differences which has been fun to observe. This has truly been a trip of a lifetime! Day 3 to be posted tomorrow - Canada's Wonderland!
Our vacation has begun! We woke up at 3 am to catch our flight in Tampa that left at 7 am. We had a layover at JFK which definitely wasn't what we were expecting then made it to Toronto. Customs went very quickly, especially when the border officer found out we were heading to Canada's Wonderland and she was a huge theme park fan.
This shop was right off of our gate in JFK. Neat little airport bookstore. We figured since we'd never been to NYC, we had to get pizza even though it wasn't true NY pizza. It was 9:30 am and we were starving!
This place had some wonderful coffee! I was definitely impressed. But our time in NY was over and we boarded for the hour flight to Toronto.
The whole reason we booked the trip! We didn't stop here because we were headed to our rental car which turned out to be a VW Jetta, but us and Tim will meet each other personally on day 2!
We are at Canykn Creek Chophouse which was gross then took off to the CN Tower! The glass floor was awesome. Afterwards we headed back to the hotel, got a dessert from the restaurant here, then went swimming on the 8th floor. Bedtime came early for us - we were exhausted!
Well I published a book. I admit I'm not a professional writer, editor, graphic designer or anything related to literature or the arts, but I enjoy reading and writing and had wrote some short stories in the past so I decided to add a few more and put it together as a book. Named after one of the stories, "What Will Be Will Be, What Will Not Be Will Not Be" probably won't sell more than 50 copies and certainly won't win any awards but it's a sense of satisfaction and completion. If you happen to buy it, thank you.
faded green carpet with a subtle grey pattern
lying underneath grey chairs filled with still bodies and emotion filled faces
as painful as it is in the back, its the not knowing that kills the front
the sound of a television plays in the background
announcing news stories of politicians bickering with one another
over policies they'll never institute, and promises they'll never keep
meanwhile the world around is crumbling to the ground,
everything we all once held true is now false
little droplets fall onto the faded green carpet,
illuminating each fiber they touch,
striking such an ironic artistic display
old, tattered magazines with pictures of sports stars
and celebrities that were popular months ago
litter the tables along with old styrofoam coffee cups and candy wrappers
how is this supposed to comfort us?
how is this supposed to undo things that never should have happened in the first place?
a small group in the corner begins to pray silently
desperately searching for answers they'll never find
as a nurse comes forward, this could be the moment
everyone waiting to hear the words that will end their lives
and the politicians argue on
and the carpet continues to fade