#BookReview: Words From an Unlikely Poet by Charlie Hasler

There are some books that make for bedtime reading and then there are those that give you sleepless nights. The good kind. These are the books that you shut every so often, close your eyes, take deep breaths and let the words seep in, commit them to memory and lay in bed pondering over them for hours on end.

Words From an Unlikely Poet is one such book. It is not everyday that one of your favourite bloggers comes out with his own book. Hence, I rushed to get my hands on a copy of it as soon as it came to my knowledge. Needless to say, I was very far from disappointed.

The book, an anthology of poems, is written by an unlikely poet who is anything but unlikely. Charlie Hasler’s way of writing is simple yet profound. He has a way of hitting the hammer straight on the head of the nail, while at the same, hitting a nerve in you. It’s the kind that lends a new perspective every time you go back to read it. Maybe that’s why it’s taken me a week to write this review after I finished reading the book last weekend.

I believe the best gift a writer can give to you is a piece of writing that makes you think. Charlie Hasler has done just that. His book covers it all, from the stark realities of life, to the inner turmoil and conflict each one of us faces, right down to the artificial, painted on, ephemeral nature of the world around us. Bordering on inspirational, some poems will make you rethink your way of life. Others yet, are funny in their own sarcastic, breezy way. Yet, each and every poem carries a message. A message for us to decipher from within multiple layers, or maybe multiple messages. I’m still solving them.

The writing is sublime and crisp. Not a word extra, not a line that doesn’t justify its existence in that exact spot. The book is a shining example of clean writing which easily engages with the reader.

My personal favourites from the beautiful poems contained in this book are ‘The Prison I Create’, ‘Burn On’, ‘The Climb’, ‘Guilt’ and ‘Discount Town’.

Not that I’m anyone to judge, but I rate this book a 5/5.

If you’re looking to get a copy of it for yourself, the links for both kindle and paperback editions are enlisted down below. Remember to let me know your views on it! I’d love to have a discussion.

  • Amazon
  • For more details, kindly visit the Author’s blog by clicking here

Thank you for reading!

Love,

Varnika.

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#CoverReveal of The Getaway Series

 

 

From New York Times Bestselling author Jay Crownover comes the next two standalone titles in her Getaway series, SHELTER and ESCAPE! And that’s not all! RETREAT, the first standalone title in the Getaway series, is on sale for the first time ever! You can grab your copy for just $.99 for a limited time only. So check out the amazing covers below, and order your copies today!

 

 

Cover Design by Hang Le

About SHELTER (Coming 12/26/17):

His life is chaos and confusion. It’s a storm of uncertainty and raging emotion.

Sutton Warner is a mess. Everything in his life feels like it’s unraveling.

He’s let a lot of people down lately, including his daughter. Sutton always promised his little girl he would never disappoint her and that he would always be there when she needed him. Until he wasn’t.

The truth is, he’s used to disappointing the women in his life. First was his mother who couldn’t find a reason to stick around when he was growing up. Then there’s his ex. The woman who takes unbridled delight in making his life incredibly complicated. Luckily, his daughter is still young enough to believe her old man is some kind of hero. But, he knows the day is coming when she realizes the truth, that he’s just a man with some serious flaws and a list of ever-growing weaknesses.

Finally, there’s the woman he’s desperately trying to forget with every shot tossed back and each pill popped.

He more than disappointed Emrys…he almost got her killed.

Her love is steady and sure. It’s a shelter shaped by conviction and silent assurance.

Emrys Santos is lost. Everything in her life feels pointless and futile.

She’s been busy running away from her feelings and all the people who love her the most—including her best friend, the one person who knows exactly what she’s been through. They promised to always stick together and to lean on one another. It was a promise Em had to break so she could lick her wounds and figure out her next move. For once, there is no easy way out of the tangled web of emotions she’s caught up in, and right now, she recognizes that all roads lead back to Wyoming…and back to Sutton.

The man she nearly got killed.

Shelter is a standalone novel, the second book in the Getaway series, which features the hardheaded and brokenhearted Warner brothers and the women who dare to love them. These boys are very good at putting the wild in wilderness.

PREORDER YOUR COPY TODAY!

Amazon Other Retailers

Goodreads

 

 

Cover Design by Hang Le

About ESCAPE (Coming 1/30/18):

Everything inside of him is screaming that he needs to run, he needs to go, he needs to escape.

Lane Warner is used to being overshadowed and overlooked.

After all, he’s the youngest brother and the most laid back one in the family. He’s the one known for going with the flow and not making waves, even when things seem to be at their worst.

Very few things in life have had the ability to rile Lane up and get under his skin. At the top of that list is his childhood friend Brynn Fox…no…Brynn Warner. The fact that they share a last name was the one thing that has the power to light him up and spin him out of control like no other. There was no calm, cool and collected when it comes to all the reasons why Brynn had to become part of his family.

It’s slowly killing him to keep wanting what he can’t have, so Lane sees only one way to stop himself from doing something they’ll both regret…he has to leave.

Everything inside of her is calling out to find him, to follow, to bring him home.

Brynn Warner is used to being stuck between a rock and a hard place.

After all, she’s the daughter of an unrepentant gold-digger who never once blinked at being the cause of her daughter’s pain and suffering.

Very few things in her life have ever brought happiness and a sense of security. At the very top of that list is Lane Warner. She has unwaveringly loved the youngest Warner since the first minute she laid eyes on him. He was everything Brynn ever wanted and everything she knew she could never have.

Sometimes the right choice is the one that hurts the most and Brynn’s had to make a few that felt like they might be the end of her.

When Lane takes off, one thing is clear, the only choice Brynn has is to go after him.

She’s going to bring her wayward cowboy home….whatever it takes.

Escape is a standalone novel, the third book in the Getaway series, which features the hardheaded and brokenhearted Warner brothers and the women who dare to love them. These boys are very good at putting the wild in wilderness.

 

 

PREORDER YOUR COPY TODAY!

Amazon Other Retailers

 

Goodreads

 

 

 

 

 


And don’t miss the first standalone novel in the Getaway Series, RETREAT, on sale for just $.99! Grab your copy today!
RETREAT on Amazon
RETREAT on Other Retailers


 

 

About Jay Crownover:

Jay Crownover is the international and multiple New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Marked Men Series, The Saints of Denver Series, the Point Series, the Breaking Point Series, and the Getaway Series. Her books can be found translated in many different languages all around the world. She is a tattooed, crazy haired Colorado native who lives at the base of the Rockies with her awesome dogs. This is where she can frequently be found enjoying a cold beer and Taco Tuesdays. Jay is a self-declared music snob and outspoken book lover who is always looking for her next adventure, between the pages and on the road.

 

 

 

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

 

Halloween, Guy Fawkes and Monsters

The Fifth of November

Remember, remember!
The fifth of November,
The Gunpowder treason and plot;
I know of no reason
Why the Gunpowder treason
Should ever be forgot!

A happy Guy Fawkes’ Day to all our friends over in the United Kingdom. Enjoy the fireworks, blokes, lads and ladies! But stay safe too.

Are any of you still suffering from a Halloween induced sugar high? I know I am! And that’s despite the fact that Halloween isn’t traditionally celebrated here in India except for a few themed parties here and there. But your girl couldn’t leave an excuse to hog on some candy now, could she? (okay, maybe it was more than some but, hey, who’s counting?)

I’m a firm believer of the saying that there ain’t no Halloween without a bit of Stephen King. So I spent the long weekend curled up with his latest gift to the literary world, Gwendy’s Button Box. And no, I didn’t watch IT, or any other horror movie for that matter. I’m a big time scaredy cat with an over active imagination. Really, think Amelia Jane’s level of a runaway imagination (for those of you who grew up on a healthy dose of Enid Blyton). If I watch a horror flick, I end up with endless, sleepless nights riddled with nightmares. Answering nature’s calls in the middle of the night become a tricky affair too. I scare myself into thinking what if I look at a mirror and see a hand closing in behind me, or if I don’t look like myself? Shivers

Books, however, are a different matter altogether. The creation of a spooky atmosphere by spinning words is an awe inspiring art of which I’m a big fan.

Yet, howsoever much I tried to protect my sensitive and reactive mind from horrifying visuals, I did end up being scared out of my wits. Unfortunately, it wasn’t a movie, book or a scary costume. It was the real world and the monsters that reside amongst us.

I was at a complete loss for words when I opened the newspaper and read that a 100 year old woman was raped in a town not too far from where I live. A 100 YEAR OLD LADY. One too feeble to even raise an arm in protest. One too weak to cry out in alarm. One so ill and bedridden that she could not survive the agony inflicted on her and passed away even before she could be taken to the hospital.

Are you suitably horrified yet? Do I need to remind you of an earlier post in which I’d discussed a court case where a 7 month old baby had been sexually abused?

What world are we living in, really? Where has it been ordained that it’s okay to violate another person so brutally and sickeningly? When did we stop respecting people as human beings? As having a life?

Halloween itself stemmed from the belief that when summer ended and the darker half of the year began, the lines between this world and the spirit realm blurred and spirits, both evil and good, roamed the earth freely on this day. People dressed up in terrifying costumes so as to mingle with the monsters so that they could not be distinguished as humans and harmed. We literally, made ourselves look like monsters.

Today, I believe we need to do more in order to stand out from the vile, evil and disgusting people we live among. Differentiate ourselves. Make it known that we abhor being coupled with them as one. We detest what they do and it shall be condoned no more. Let’s bring up our children to be good people first, rather than just successful.

I know, naysayers would say our efforts would be like a drop in the ocean, meaningless and futile. To them, I’d like to point to a saying we have in India boond boond se Sagar Banta hai. Roughly translated, it means that an ocean is formed drop by drop. Every single one of it is material.

So this Halloween, let’s vow to slay the monsters within us and around us. Let it be a day of fun and frolicking and let real life monsters become a myth. Are you with me? We owe it to ourselved and the world to give it our best shot, after all!

#FlashbackFriday: Favourite Poem Edition

Hello everyone!

I hope you’re all having a wonderful start to the weekend.

As you may have noticed, I’ve recently written a lot of poetry despite having rued all my life over my inability to make things rhyme. I have no words to express how overwhelmed I am at all the love and appreciation you’ve showered on my posts. Thank you. Thank you!

As a fellow blogger kindly reminded my yesterday, there’s inspiration all around us. Reading what others have written before us can give us a nudge in the right direction, can warm our hearts and stir our soul into creating a beautiful portrait with our words too.

Hence, it behoves me to share with you those poems that have inspired me since I was a kid. These are brilliant creations that have stuck with me over the years and I can more often than not recite them verbatim. For the sake of brevity of the blog post, I’m planning on sharing one such poem a week. Every Friday. In no particular order. I have always been bad at picking just one favourite. That might quite possibly be the reason why I love making lists!

Today’s poem is called The Charge of the Light Brigade by Lord Alfred Tennyson. I came across it in standard eight and I’m still not over the goosebumps it gave me. It is a saga of bravery and the sheer strength of human spirit. It is a tribute to soldiers all over the world who, even in the face of great adversity and even when heavily outnumbered, refuse to give an inch and choose go down fighting. Here’s to all the Bravehearts! May your sacrifice never be forgotten.

The Charge of the Light Brigade

by Lord Alfred TeTennyso

I

Half a league, half a league,

Half a league onward,

All in the valley of Death

Rode the six hundred.

“Forward, the Light Brigade!

Charge for the guns!” he said.

Into the valley of Death

Rode the six hundred.

II

“Forward, the Light Brigade!”

Was there a man dismayed?

Not though the soldier knew

Someone had blundered.

Theirs not to make reply,

Theirs not to reason why,

Theirs but to do and die.

Into the valley of Death

Rode the six hundred.

III

Cannon to right of them,

Cannon to left of them,

Cannon in front of them

Volleyed and thundered;

Stormed at with shot and shell,

Boldly they rode and well,

Into the jaws of Death,

Into the mouth of hell

Rode the six hundred.

IV

Flashed all their sabres bare,

Flashed as they turned in air

Sabring the gunners there,

Charging an army, while

All the world wondered.

Plunged in the battery-smoke

Right through the line they broke;

Cossack and Russian

Reeled from the sabre stroke

Shattered and sundered.

Then they rode back, but not

Not the six hundred.

V

Cannon to right of them,

Cannon to left of them,

Cannon behind them

Volleyed and thundered;

Stormed at with shot and shell,

While horse and hero fell.

They that had fought so well

Came through the jaws of Death,

Back from the mouth of hell,

All that was left of them,

Left of six hundred.

VI

When can their glory fade?

O the wild charge they made!

All the world wondered.

Honour the charge they made!

Honour the Light Brigade,

Noble six hundred!

I think it’s safe to say that I would never cease to be affected by this poem, especially the lines Theirs not to make reply. Theirs not to reason why. Theirs but to do or die.

That’s all for today, folks! I hope you enjoy this poem as much as I do. Please let me know your thoughts on it in the comments section down below. I’d love to hear back from you! Also, let me know how you feel about this new endeavour of mine. Just a simple comment of yay or nay should do the trick. Thank you for reading!

Much love,

Varnika.

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New Release Update – THE FORTUNATE ONES BY R.S.GREY

Hello, all! I hope you’re having an amazing weekend. Also, Happy Halloween! As most of you booklovers must already know, The Fortunate Ones by author R.S.Grey is slated for release on November 1. I came across some exciting news regarding the same which allows you to preorder a copy of the book for just 99 cents. Now that’s an absolute steal, if there ever was one! Hence, in the interest of all readers, I’m sharing the details, exactly as I found them, hereinbelow. Order your books now!

Thank you for reading.

Love,

Varnika.

THE FORTUNATE ONES by R.S. Grey releases November 1st and you can now preorder your copy for just .99c before the price goes up on release day! Find out more about THE FORTUNATE ONES below and preorder your copy today!

 

About THE FORTUNATE ONES

At Twin Oaks Country Club, there are the fortunate ones, and then there are the rest of us: the waiters, the caddies, the valets, and in my case, the cabana girls. Most days, I’m poolside in a pleated skirt, dishing out margaritas to tycoons and titans. It’s not exactly my dream job, but it does come with one perk…

James Ashwood.

He’s my silver lining in a custom black suit.

Besides being a legacy member at the club, he’s a tech mogul and Austin’s most eligible bachelor. Oh, and those dimples? Yeah, they make my stomach dip too.

On good days, I catch his sleek Porsche winding down the tree-lined drive. On better days, I steal a glimpse of his handsome profile as we pass in the hall. And on the absolute best day, I find him alone at the bar, looking for company.

“Come have a seat.”

Those four little words set me down a path I never could have imagined. Private planes, penthouse suites, and temptations around every corner make it impossible to keep my distance. His world feels decadent and wild—but overindulgence comes with a cost. Every kiss comes with strings. Every erotic encounter is a promise I’m not ready to keep.

When I pump the brakes, he hits the gas. James doesn’t want to go slow—he wants a commitment.

And the thing about the fortunate ones?

They’re used to getting what they want.

Add THE FORTUNATE ONES to your Goodreads list here!

Preorder your copy of THE FORTUNATE ONES for 99c now!

About R.S. Grey

R.S. Grey is the USA Today bestselling author of thirteen novels, including THE FOXE & THE HOUND. She lives in Texas with her husband and two dogs, and can be found reading, binge-watching reality TV, or practicing yoga! Visit her at rsgrey.com

Website | Twitter | Facebook | R.S. Grey’s Little Reds Facebook Group | Newsletter | Instagram

 

Almost Happy

It’s Thursday night around here and morning for the other half of the world. Resounding all around me is the collective sigh of people seeking refuge in the fact that the weekend’s almost upon us. Strangely, this solace is enough to get most people through these two days to when they can finally wind down, relax and be happy. Right now, we’re in the phase of being almost happy, waiting for the weekend.

This, of course, got me thinking. Just like we’ve created the notion of weekends to drive us through hectic, stressful, frustrating days lured by the promise of two days of rest, we, each of us, have our own happy places. A comforting area where we can simply be ourselves, regardless of the troubles ailing your psyche. Thankfully, this place isn’t subject to the particular day of the week. It is very flexible like that. For some, it’s a song, for some dancing is cathartic, others like to curl up behind the pages of a book and get transported to a myriad different worlds and yet some others like to go on nature walks.

I was wondering if you’d all be so kind as to share your sanctum with me, and the people reading this post, today? The aim is to share our versions of a happy place, to remind each one of us of its existence, which usually gets lost in the humdrum affair of life, to bring a smile to our faces just by thinking of it. So, when it’s almost weekend again and we’re almost happy, we could still go to our happy places and find bliss. More importantly, in a world where we have to end up doing a lot of things we don’t like or agree with, let’s once again take care to do the ones we love.

As for me, I find nothing more calming that sitting on a window sill or on the balcony, in my favourite childhood swing, engrossed in reading a book with a cup of coffee in one hand, pausing at times and looking out into the watching people go by, the trees bend and sway, listening to the rustling of leaves. In doing so, I leave all my tensions behind and my mind finds some rest. I’m happy. I guess I’m a firm believer of Lewis Carroll’s saying-

You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.

I’d be overjoyed to hear what makes you happy in the comment section down below. If thinking about it could bring even a hint of smile to your wonderful face, I’d feel fulfilled today. Thank you for reading!

Love,

Varnika.

#Book #Release : The Point of a Gun – Steven W. Kohlhagen

The Point of a Gun by Steven W. Kohlhagen is a political thriller showcasing vigilantism against terrorism in the face of failure of intelligent agencies and the bureaucracy. Sounds interesting, right? Not only is it an intriguing read, but by way of its storyline, it also raises pertinent questions as to how the government should react to vigilantes, whether they should be allowed a free reign for the good that they’re doing, or should they be reigned in and brought to justice. The books strikes a perfect balance between two equally enthralling plots – the vigilantes’ hunting down of terrorists and the government’s/investigators’ hunt for the vigilantes. No mean task considering the vigilante group could comprise top intelligence agency insiders.
I am still in the midst of reading the book and have not yet come across a single disappointing word. It is simply riveting! I shall do my very best to have a review up for you within this week. For now, here’s a look at the back cover –

FYI, The Point of a Gun releases in September, so go grab a copy for yourself!

Disclaimer: I received an Advance Reading Copy of the book from the publisher for an honest review.

#New Release: The Blood Mage by Aimee Davis — The Quaint Reading Nook

Started covering new releases on The Quaint Reading Nook so that you do not miss out on even a morsel of good literature! Go visit if you like to read.

Hello, all you lovely readers of books! I’m taking this time today to bring you a little update from the world of books. “The Blood Mage” by Aimee Davis releases today! It picks up from where The Wheel Mages ended last year. Or actually, three years from then in the fantasy world. I’ve just started […]

via #New Release: The Blood Mage by Aimee Davis — The Quaint Reading Nook

Book Review: The Sleepwalker Legacy by Christopher Hepworth

As promised, my first book review is up. As usual, your feedback would be invaluable!

If you find the review useful, please head on over to my book review blog ( click here) and follow so I can keep coming up with more recommendations. Thank you! 

The Quaint Reading Nook

amreading amwriting book review recommendation the sleepwalker legacy

The Sleepwalker Legacy (“TSL”), by Christopher Hepworth,  hit me with a pang of nostalgia for the thrilling espionage sequences of old before I had even turned a page. This was well played, because the book that makes you feel something is the one you deem worthy of reading to the very end.

The book sets a fast pace from the very get-go. This first book by a truly gifted author opens with a dangerous tone, showing a negotiation between the Chinese Government and the protagonist, Sam Jardine, a skilled corporate negotiator. Move over, Mr. Harvey Specter, there’s a new closer in town!

After a brush with death, Jardine is on the lam, evading arrest for the suspicion of having spied on the Chinese Politburo. He is rescued by the enigmatic yet very charming (and bestowed with the disposition to use said charms to her benefit) Rachael Becket, heir to…

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