#bookreview Click. Date. Repeat. K.J.Farnham.

Click Date Repeat coverClick Date Repeat


by K. J. Farnham

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Age category: Adult

Release Date: 21 August, 2014

Blurb:

These days, finding love online is as commonplace as ordering that coveted sweater. But back in 2003, the whole concept of Internet dating was still quite new, with a stigma attached to it that meant those who were willing to test the waters faced a fair amount of skepticism from friends and family.

Such is the case for Chloe Thompson, a restless 20-something tired of the typical dating scene and curious about what she might find inside her parents’ computer. With two serious but failed relationships behind her, Chloe isn’t even entirely sure what she’s looking for. She just knows that whatever it is, she wants to find it.

Based loosely on author K. J. Farnham’s real-life online dating experiences, Chloe’s foray into online dating involves a head-first dive into a world of matches, ice breakers and the occasional offer of dick pics, all while Chloe strives to shake herself of the ex who just refuses to disappear. Will she simultaneously find herself and “the one” online, or will the ever-growing pile of humorous and downright disastrous dates only prove her friends and family right? There’s only one way to find out…

Click. Date. Repeat.

You can find Click Date Repeat on Goodreads

You can buy Click Date Repeat here:

Amazon (Kindle)

Amazon (Paperback)

K. J. FarnhamAbout the Author:

Born and raised in a suburb of Milwaukee, K. J. Farnham was an educator for 12 years. She holds a bachelor’s degree from UW-Milwaukee and a master’s degree from Carroll University in Waukesha, Wisconsin.

After relocating from Milwaukee to Hudson, Wisc., in 2011, Farnham became a freelance writer and resolved to complete her first novel. The storyline for “Click Date Repeat” is a result of her experiences (and mishaps) with online dating, through which she met her husband.

Farnham lives with her husband, three children and four cats. When she is not busy keeping up with her kids, she can be found reading or writing. She is currently working on a spinoff of “Click Date Repeat” and YA suspense novel called SPIN.

You can find and contact the author here:

Website

Facebook

Twitter

Goodreads

Amazon

Pinterest

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Who has tried online dating? I have only dated the one man, for which I am eternally grateful, because it sounds complicated. What is it, when you send a message to somebody who has matched with your profile, that makes us continually check our phone for a reply? The claws of love!

The book. Chloe, our protagonist, is neither likeable, nor unlikable. I was concerned about some of the events in this book, such as that Chloe didn’t seem to think her ex Cliff’s behavior was stalkerish, i.e concerning, and that she was very submissive in letting the man have sex with her when he forced his way into her apartment, and as for her date when she gets extremely drunk, and cannot remember the sex they have, although she did say yes when her date asked if she was on birth control, or should he use a condom, but not to the actual sex. Isn’t this sexual assault? 

The psychic bit shoehorned into the last few chapters to explain why a psychic in Las Vegas predicted Chloe would meet a man from a town beginning with v, and they would have two sons, which the man she would date also had predicted, feels circumstantial.

And confusing, yes?

Does Chloe’s character change? No, not really. Are the other characters rememberable? No.

From an outsider looking in on the dating game, I found reading the role call of kooky dates, and scary boundary oversteps, fascinating, and there’s nothing wrong with the writing, I just raised my eyebrows quite a few times at Click, Date, Repeat. 

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#bookreview ​The Haiku Zoo. Mark Watson @marknpablo 

  • Publisher: Mark Watson Books
  • Release Date: August Second 2017
  • Average Rating: 3.3/5 🌟

Amazon 

Available on KU

Goodreads Website

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My star sign is Leo, so this children’s book intriqued me. It begins with an explanation of What is a Haiku? An easy to follow passage. The pictures are bright, and captivating, with the haiku focusing on the features, the movements, and bathroom routine of a lion in a zoo (The Haiku Zoo). I would say that the book doesn’t follow a story line, and there are certain pages, like with the circus lion tamer, that don’t seem to create a cohesive storyline. The Haiku Zoo is a good introduction for children to the haiku. 

    #bookreview Pet Sematary Stephen King

     

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    Well, I needed a book to help drop me off to sleep, and Pet Sematary by Stephen King did that. What few books I’ve read of King his books do have some similarities, such as having an excellent core idea, and then moving away from it. 

    I was on page two hundred and four of this book and I wondered where the story was going. We have a nice enough family, kind neighbours, a hazardous road, and a resurrected cat. Then we change gears and the tenses change, King hints that terrible things are going to happen, and so they do: Gage, the infant son of the family, dies. I found at this point Pet Sematary became difficult to read, as I felt the raw grief of Gage’s family.

    In the end the book boils down to Gage’s father Louis’ inner battle to bring his son back to life, courtesy of sacred land. Gage becomes a Chucky type character and the story with shades of Frankenstein. 

    Why do I return to King’s books likes a moth to a flame? 

    I like his storytelling, and that his characters are ordinary folk with their own foibles, with well observed emotions and incidents that occur in family life, and in relationships. His books feel comfortable, until King whacks up the tension, then it’s plain unsettling to read. 

    I am planning to read more of King’s books in 2018. That is my reading goal this year, so I won’t give up yet. Although I did, overall, feel meh about Pet Sematary. 

    Also with this being written over thirty years ago there are racist jokes, and the word mongoloids, which is abhorrent. 

    #libraryfinds Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. Ransom Riggs #bookreview

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    First of all, there’s so much to love about this book! I read it in one sitting. I love the photographs that are included, especially of the children, strange, and haunting photographs, which in an interview with the author included in the back of the book Riggs says were a part of the writing process,

    ‘ultimately the photos and the story influenced each other,’

    I like the island setting, the time travel, the changeling elements of the peculiar children, and the historical backdrop against World War Two too. The story of Jacob’s grandfather, and Emma, the romance that couldn’t be, I found to be a touching part of the story.

    The story itself was thin on the ground. There were parts that could have been extended, or written better. The rush of detail, threat, and action towards the end of the book was dizzying, but overall the feel of the story, the world(s) Riggs created, was enthralling.

    ​#MiniReview @WeArtFriends Doorway to Art founding editor – @Galya Varna 

    ​WeArtFriends Doorway to Art founding editor – Galya Varna 

    Design Director – Eden Sleepwalker

    Cover Photograph – Efosini Kokaliari , PHD

    This is a stylish magazine, which in its first issue features the poetry of poets, interviews with novelists, and the artwork of Lynne Fisher. I knew of Isabelle Kenyon, and Nicholas Trandahl, vaguely had been aware of Mike Wells, and Joss Sheldon, and discovered new writers, such as Bianca Bowers, and Frankie Writez in this issue.

    This was a real poetic experience for me, and I enjoyed the interviews, as well as the format and presentation. Doorway to Art is perfect for a before bed read. 
    Download this magazine for free, and subscribe to stay in the loop with the next issue, from their website.  

    https://we-art-friends.com

    #MiniReview #Zine Classroom Graffiti Jordan Lewington. 

    It made me smile reading Jordan’s zine. His inspiration, as noted at the start, as a school cleaner at night, and freelance photographer by day, while cleaning the tables Jordan noticed the ‘poetic intensions left scribbled on anything that’s blank,’ He photographed these, and put them together into this zine, which is certainly an inventive idea, and I loved the poetic musings of bored students, such as one in blue ink, ‘I need some milk,’ 

    Jordan’s selling his zine for one pound fifty, with postage dependent on area, and a PDF for fifty pence.

    Jordan is a fantastic photographer, and can provide prints of any of his wonderful photographs, as well as portfolio shots, family shoots, live events, and product photography. 

    He also works with Daisy Chain Films, who is a freelance videographer, and together they produce incredible videos. 

    Jordan Lewington is contactable through Instagram

    #bookreview This is not a Spectacle: Extended Edition. Isabelle Kenyon @kenyon_isabelle

    I’m not the only person who loves Mondays, am I?! 

    Here’s my review of the Extended Edition of This is not a Spectacle. 

    • Publisher: Createspace
    • Release Date: September Second 2017
    • Available on KU

    Amazon 

    About the Author

    Isabelle Kenyon is a Greater Manchester based poet and a graduate in Theatre: Writing, Directing and Performance from the University of York.
    She is inspired by the people and events around her – she observes and writes what she sees and what she feels.
    She is the author of poetry anthology, This is not a Spectacle and micro chapbook, The Trees Whispered, published by Origami Poetry Press.
    Her poems have been published in many poetry anthologies and included in literary festivals, such as the Inkyneedles anthology, the Great British Write Off, the Wirral festival of Music, Speech and Drama, Poetry Rivals, and the Festival of Firsts.
    Isabelle has been awarded third place in the Langwith Scott Award for Art and Drama and runner up in the Visit Newark Poetry Competition.
    You can read more about Isabelle and see her work at flyonthewallpoetry.co.uk



    My Review



    Section One, human curiosity are poems on a variety of subjects. Poverty, abuse, social media, popularity, and conversations are examples. 

    Suited and bald (by choice or nature)?‘ 

    Kenyon is able to emphasise with others, and image their story, using astute observations. 

    The next few are Section Two, the homeless, and Section Three, hospital room, which is close in subject to Section Five, the care home, with poignant observations of age, life, and the gulf of time. Section Four, youth, has an intriguing poem Cain 

    like a dagger, pushing it through my fleshy stomach,’ 

    An excellent metaphor.

    Section Six, don’t stare at me are poems of a more personal nature. These lines are from the poem Me too: Spoken Word

     and I think I was wearing animal ears – maybe I looked ‘up for it’,’ 

    The ending of the poem is an example of how Kenyon can finish her stunning poems so well. 

    Heard it on the Grapevine, and Letter to my younger self were favourites in this section. Section Six allows us to know Kenyon better. 

    Overall This is not a Spectacle is a brilliant read, that both gives social commentary on the human condition of our lives, and society, as a whole: the good, the bad, and the ugly. As well we get to know the writer from her own personal experiences. 
    I look forward to seeing what Kenyon writes next. 

    #bookreview The Beauty Doctor. Elizabeth Hutchinson Bernard @EHBernardAuthor

    “Perhaps you’ve never thought of it this way, but beauty is power,” Dr. Rome said, with the calm certainty of a man who knows he speaks the truth. “And with enough power, Miss Platford, one can achieve anything.”

    In the spring of 1907, Abigail Platford finds herself unexpectedly adrift in New York City. Penniless and full of self-doubt, she has abandoned her dream of someday attending medical school and becoming a doctor like her late father. Instead, she takes a minor position in the office of Dr. Franklin Rome, hoping at least to maintain contact with the world of medicine that fascinates her. She soon learns that the handsome and sophisticated Dr. Rome is one of a rare new breed of so-called beauty doctors who chisel noses, pin back ears, trim eyelids and inject wrinkles with paraffin. At first skeptical, she begins to open her mind, and then her heart, to Dr. Rome. But when his proposed partnership with a proponent of the early twentieth century eugenics movement raises troubling questions, Abigail becomes ensnared in a web of treachery that challenges her most cherished beliefs about a doctor’s sacred duty and threatens to destroy all she loves. A suspenseful work of historical fiction grounded in the social and moral issues of the Edwardian era in America. (This book is one of six finalists in the category of Published Fiction, 2017 Arizona Literary Contest.) 

    Amazon // iBooks // Kobo // BN 

    About the Author

    Elizabeth’s first love was music. As a vocalist, flutist and songwriter, she toured for nearly a decade. Her musical compositions range from rock to pop to smooth jazz and New Age.

    A summa cum laude Communications graduate of Northwestern University (Evanston, Illinois), Elizabeth eventually traded her microphone for a pen. She settled in California, promoting international expositions for the music trade (Director of Public Relations, NAMM).  In 1997, she moved to New York City where she was the Communications Director for the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery.  She was instrumental in founding the internationally subscribed Aesthetic Surgery Journal and served as its Executive Editor. Later, she was a primary consultant to the National Cosmetic Network, in partnership with the plastic surgery program of Johns Hopkins University, and an editorial consultant for the book Be Your Best: A Comprehensive Guide to Aesthetic Plastic Surgery.

    Her in-depth knowledge of plastic surgery lends a unique perspective to her historical novel, The Beauty Doctor, while music takes center stage in her upcoming book, Temptation Rag. Both stories are set in turn-of-the-century New York City.

    About her novel, The Beauty Doctor, Elizabeth says, “I have always been fascinated by the early days of cosmetic surgery and have been aware that many people don’t realize how far back it goes—even further, actually, than the time of my novel. But I thought the Edwardian era would be a great period in which to explore the deeper meanings of beauty, power and success—especially because that was when many women began to think of such choices as rightfully theirs. My heroine, Abigail Platford, first has to overcome grief and self-doubt before she can confront forces within society seeking to define beauty and success only as they see it. Her journey is a discovery of hope, compassion and self-determination.”

    Elizabeth currently lives in Arizona with her husband and their black Lab, Pearly Mae. 

    Twitter // Facebook // Website 

    My Review 

    Abigail’s engagement reception is here, but the fact that her fiancée Arthur doesn’t seem so keen, indicated in line, “there was a young man standing there, rather handsome in a delicate sort of way, with a look of distress about him that mirrored Arthur’s distracted air,” means the marriage is soon called off, and by Abigail who was reluctant to join Arthur’s rich family, and have the role of a wife, so it would have been a marriage of convenience. She met at this reception a man with an acrid scent, who will soon set Abigail on a new path, and employment, as, with her engagement off, Abigail is now without a home, and destitute.

    The man is Doctor Franklin Rome, and what follows is a slow unfolding story of deception, intrigue, and mystery. The reveal of Abigail’s background, why she is so alone in the world, and her father, her biggest influence, and the tragedy that occurred plays into the text. 

    Abigail is shocked to find it is not medicine that Rome is a Doctor in, but beauty surgery, or what we now call cosmetic, or plastic, surgery. She agrees to become his assistant.

    There seems to be two stories here, one is the very infancy of Rome’s beauty surgery business, and the astute observations between the lofty heights of the rich, where the money is, and the poor, who are used as guinea pigs to practise the surgery on. Abigail wishes she can help the poverty stricken children, and is a caring person, who does grow as a character, and becomes more confident with her decisions. Rome does not so much undergo transformation, he is a baddie through and through. You can see right through him. 

    From us finding out the methods that are used to get bumps out of noses, and remove wrinkles, Rome becomes ambitious, as he partners with a man willing to provide the ideas, the chutzpah

    and to draw in investors interested in funding a beauty surgery, while the ultimate prize, which will elicit much attention, and therefore business, the operation of smoothing the bumps on the noses of conjoined twins. This could be a risky procedure, and the twins guardian is against it, but duped into parting with them, it is only Abigail who can step in and stop the twins becoming fodder for the unscrupulous surgeon Rome, and his business partner. 

    The Beauty Doctor questions what is beauty, what are the benefits of surgery? And also the roles of women at that time – the ‘new woman’ who dresses like a man, and has short hair, and the women, like Abigail, who find themselves unable to have a high position in medicine. Simply because they are a woman. 

    I was not at all surprised one of the author’s favourite author’s is Sarah Walters, as their styles are quite similar. This is a solid debut. I enjoyed The Beauty Doctor even more reading it a second time, and it’s an excellent fictional account of cosmetic surgery, that continues to be debated today, and was even more of a novelty in the early 1900’s, that you won’t often find written about, with such great accuracy as well. It also talks about the woman’s role in society, and that’s a relevant subject too. There can be a lot learnt from the past. 

    And I am told Elizabeth is working on her next book Temptation Rag, which I cannot wait to read! 


    #bookreview You Should Still be Here. Amanda Dissinger @fragglezrock @GhostCityPress

     

    These are poems of longing in the micro-chapbook published by Ghost City press, with concrete images of a relationship past, interceded by poems in the present, ‘and I hate all the beautiful people,’ with a deprecating style of writing. Poems I thought I Witnessed a Miracle and You are like the Shitty sort of Rain that Doesn’t let up are titles that tell as much of a story as the poems beneath them. The poetry remained with me long after reading

    And the good news? You can download this book for free from Ghost City Press. All donations go directly to the writer. Here’s the link. Happy reading!

    @Ellipsiszine ONE My Review

    Before reading my review of One, here’s some information about the zine: 

    This issue contains 57 piece of flash fiction. 10 pieces have been previously published online at http://www.ellipsiszine.com and the remaining 47 pieces have been written in response to the prompt word, ‘one’.

    All authors are listed on the dedicated page on our website: http://www.ellipsiszine.com/one/ Links to purchases copies will go live in the coming weeks.
    Purchase prices for digital copies are £3 and printed copies are £5. Any author who has submitted to our website, whether published or not, will be entitled to a 10% discount.
    25% of the cover price is also set aside for author royalties. This is shared equally among all published authors. We’re proud that we’re paying authors for their work.


     My Review
    The best flash fiction, I believe, is poetic, with precise execution of its words, and not skimping on the ending. The stories compiled in this zine have their quiet moments, written are our complex relationships with friends, families, and ourselves, as well as action filled narratives, such as in Active Shooter by Kathy Lanzarotti. There are a variety of subjects: murder, haircuts, visits to Gran, pub quizzes, birds, birth, power, and friendship. Favourites, in Yard Sale Nick Black tells us a story in a few sentences. One Carriage Away by Amanda Quinn you could interpret in one or two ways. Cell for One by Daminait Monaghan is on a prison guard of grief, and Sainsbury Sorrow by Louise Mangos is as perfect as a story can be. Halt, Desist, Cease by Gaynor Jones could do with a trigger warning, as it has a graphic description of rape. 

    If you wanted examples of how a story ought to be written successfully, such as Dog by Jason Jackson in One, Ellipsis zine One will serve you well.