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Book Reviews

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Sound Bite Fiction: Medville Matters
Sound Bite Fiction: Medville Matters
Review by Alastair
The book is a collection of flash fiction stories each between 100 and 200 words. The majority have twists that no-one would ever expect and a lot of the time have you let out an involuntary laugh or spit your coffee out. If you haven't seen these stories before then you are in for a treat. If you have, then you KNOW you are in for a treat. Buy this book and enjoy...


Sound Bite Fiction: Medville Matters
Sound Bite Fiction: Medville Matters
Review by Brian
An excellent collection of short stories, or Sound Bites as they are called here.. I love that you can hear the author read his own work. Great value....


Finding The Rainbow
Finding The Rainbow
Review by Stacy Rollins
This story was very emotional. What I liked however was the short easy chapters which kept you hooked as you wanted this author to 'find her rainbow'. The chapter titles were fun and engaging and the story was deep and intimate but it also had humour through it which didn't make it depressing and too heavy to read. I have not had a similar experience, in fact I'm not married even, but it is a world I literally had no idea even existed. Many of my friends I know have had troubles and in reading this story I can better understand what they may have gone through. I recommend this to anyone who enjoys a good memoir, and something that isn't too deep and too long. I read it as soon as I bought it and it took me less than a day to read....


Think Like a Hero
Think Like a Hero
Review by thersa
I bought this book because it was in the final of the peoples book prize and my grand daughter emily would like to say ' i love Dylan and Ted they are lovely cats and they are funny but I was was sad when tthe old cat died. i like Oldmaricketts she is funny' She has never been so entusiastic about a book can you put me in tough with dave maclean....


Think Like a Hero
Think Like a Hero
Review by Magne
This is the best book that I have bought my children,it has very funny stories but it is also very educational and emotional. Mr Maclean seems a very nice man my daughter wrote to him and he sent her a very nice email...


Mantra to Mahatma!
Mantra to Mahatma!
Review by Shravasti Dhammika
The recently published Mantra to Mahatma by Singaporean poetess Anita M. Bennett is a collection of 33 poems. Clearly Bennett favours and excels in the modernist form and uses blank verse to a most pleasing effect. Most of the poems are about or are dedicated to persons the author admires. In fact, the collection is dedicated to George Harrison. Exceptions are poems such as Poetry of Pain, The Empire and the Ruled and Song Offerings in which the personal element is strong. In keeping with the collection's title the fragrance of Eastern spirituality permeates other poems and the longest one in the collection is a paean to Prince Siddhattha, the Buddha. Bennett has a particular skill with turns of phrase; "You massage Me into shape", "I was still and God was moving", "Your Astral Sea" and "the flaming torch of My own Life!" being some of the more striking ones. This is a collection that any lover of poetry can dip into during quiet moments, or at times of reverie and be transported to other more spiritual realms. ...


Mantra to Mahatma!
Mantra to Mahatma!
Review by Tony Reavill, Editor of The Poetry Church
All the World's her stage Let me begin by saying I am writing this review at this moment under protest, because it is demanded of me, not because I am ready. Perhaps this is a good thing because it would need to be the size of a doctorial thesis, with specified instances to make my points clear, to do it justice. However, as many West End play reviews have shown, reviewing can be highly subjective and in many cases unsupported . So here are my potentially unjustified feelings: When I meet a new book I automatically search the 'margins' for indications of what I am likely to find in the main text. One can learn so much from what is outside the text itself and this book is no exception. To start with the front cover, (which I understand was closely prescribed to the publisher by the author and therefore representative of her intentions), the colours are the most intensely emotional possible, rich red on dark ground and profound blues, conjuring up an atmosphere of sacred ritual worship invoking the spirits of Mahatma Ghandi and George Harrison. (The former was a Hindu with a legal mind trained in England, used thereafter in the defence of freedom for the downtrodden segregated poor in South Africa; while the latter was arguably the most sensitive Beatle who espoused the Hindu culture after his initial success as a western rock-grounded musician.) Two figures in half lotus appear to be levitating slightly in a sub-marine shrine and evoke memories of youthful Harrison at his most captivating and perhaps the poet herself with him, contemplating enlightenment. It was no surprise to me therefore to find our book's author in the process of writing 'Mantra to Mahatma' fracturing the cultures of the East and West to reconstitute them in an overlapping racial complexity which embraces us all. The most striking statement made in the title pages is the positive denial that there is anything but fiction in the ensuing poems, which opens up the interesting proposition that these are dramatic monologues hiding the real feelings of the writer in the same way Robert Browning and even Shakespeare hide in the shadows behind the situations of their characters. John Keats talks about 'negative capability', the chameleon ability of authors to cloak themselves so strongly in the disguises of their creations that their real attitudes are imperceptible. This may be the case with Anita Bennett, but I suspect that some of her factual experiences do still peep through, affecting her choice of subjects. There is an underpinning humanitarianism throughout the collection. I think this string-pulling poetic puppeteer always has a generous love for her fellow human race. This lack of malice, almost of forgiveness, pervades the whole book. So who are the characters who people her pages? Here are examples of stories which hover between fiction and reality, the scenarios of a few of these remarkably vivid episodes where I cannot tell where fact ends and invention begins. For instance, the title-poem 'Mantra to Mahatma' is a vocative poem addressed to Gandhiji imploring him to return to Maganvadi. At first reading, it felt to be post-assassination, calling on his spirit to come back to solve the Indian political muddle as the only man who could speak to both Hindu and Muslim. If we go by the dedication to the 'late' George Harrison, it must a Twenty-first Century poem. But the point is that it doesn't matter when it is set; the sentiments are strong and clear – the emotions are bright, his ashram 'glows' – she, (assuming it is a 'she' because the speaker seems personally involved), wishes to be beautified with flowers such as Thoreau wrote about, and to eat 'boiled vegetables from brass plates' with the man who could perhaps have unified the Hindus and Muslims. A similar blurring of time, place and character takes place in 'Goodbye Teacher' with a real person, Carlo Ly, who was a fine Chinese Catholic priest, seen through the eyes of his student, Anita's brother. This lack of definition is a positive force which makes the reader concentrate on the good life of the man himself, his achievements, and suffering at the hands of the Maoists. Again the theme is a laudable life, lived to relieve oppression, which the author admires and commends. Her heart is in the right place. We keep returning to fine actions in a naughty world made up of many faiths, and always coming down on the side of generosity and unselfishness. Other such treatments are found in 'The Atheist', 'From a Mistress', and 'His Name', poems in which there is an interplay of blame, nobility of action and forgiveness. These are qualities at the heart of the central problems of twenty-first century racial politics, small-scale exercises in the acceptance of imperfection in others without which all negotiations inevitably founder in stalemate. Anita Bennett speaks for women trapped by injustice and prejudice in today's society. She can equally speak for men caught in the obligations of war in her detached poetic voice of reason and calm. In her grand-scale poems such as 'Seeking the Palace of Siddharta' and 'Hail Himalayas' this voice can stir great emotional optimism. Similarly she can speak passionately identifying the cruelty, heroism, suffering or joy of any human situation ranging from avoiding rape to being inspired by the beauty of her many favourite musicians; or about her own (real?) admiration of our Diana, Queen of Hearts, showing a touching affection for, and trust in, the integrity all things British. Her sincerity as a poet is revealed in her choice of themes; she cares deeply enough about these people to write so sensitively about them. This is how she shows love and hate – she conveys them in her inimitable stream-of-consciousness-language allowing her characters' speech to change direction as easily as we flit from one thought to another. It also licences the occasional crude, ugly words and ideas necessary to the action, without causing...


Finding The Rainbow
Finding The Rainbow
Review by Petrine
This was a lovely story. The subject area made me think it would be really depressing but I enjoyed the way that the writer put her own slant on her experience in a way that left me feeling that she will one day get her dream, and if she doesn't she will survive. I liked it a lot and would recommend to anyone going through a personal challenge and how you need to find a different perspective. I think is book will be a great success.. Thank you for your story....


Finding The Rainbow
Finding The Rainbow
Review by Aurora
I received this book via amazon, early - after ordering it pre release. It was a story I was highly interested in as I have followed the author for a while on her page. I had expectations, but can I tell you it was more than that. I'm someone who has also experienced miscarriage and some infertility challenges. The story is warm, emotional, honest, raw and it keeps you going through the author's own pregnancy stories, each making you feel the ups and the downs. Her strength and her honesty is touching, and yet she stays positive and seems to show a real sense of humour and reality to her situation. I highly recommend to others whether you have had the same experiences or whether you want a story of a woman's strength to enjoy. Its not a long book, it took me a few hours, but I couldn't put it down....


Three Decades of Duty (The Comedy)
Three Decades of Duty (The Comedy)
Review by Brian
Thoroughly enjoyable and an easy read, having never served in the Army it is a refreshing angle on what the Army and particularly the Parachute Regiment get up to around the world. I laughed out loud at some of the stories, others were very amusing and some very poignant. An excellent insight into the make up of soldiers and their sense of humour. Very well done. ...


The Somewhat Bumpy Story Of The Bath On Legs
The Somewhat Bumpy Story Of The Bath On Legs
Review by Thomas
Great book for all kids. Lots of adventure and twists ...


Chopwell Story
Chopwell Story
Review by Sylvia
John read your book just before he died. He was thrilled and amused to have been included in your story. It seemed to me quite a good story but I felt you tried too hard to vent your rage from a personal point of view. Please get in touch if you can....


Marginus Morius
Marginus Morius
Review by Eugenia
I had the privilege to read this book in Greek and now I am very glad to see its English edition. There are books that you read for pleasure and there are books that transform your life in a way you could have never imagined. Marginus Morius is a magical fable about a spiritual journey. Almost on every page there is a hidden message for those who struggle for a spiritual path and look for a meaning in daily life. Every few years a book is published that changes the lives of its readers forever. ...


Lightblaser
Lightblaser
Review by Richard
Really enjoyed this book, the way it opens out a new world to discover and the rich history that the author has begun to reveal. Can not wait to see the next part of this great saga....


The Lady Predator
The Lady Predator
Review by maki
Disturbingly honest, explicit and moving confession that's not easy to forget. ...


The Lady Predator
The Lady Predator
Review by Aleksandar
That book is sooo sooo good, i loved it,i have read it for several times,and every time i read it i had a feeling that I am reading that book for the first time,i really enyoid it.Recommend for all users of this site,and all people to read it. ...


The Lady Predator
The Lady Predator
Review by dejana
I loved it.It is my favorite kind of story (true story).While reading I couldn't concentrate to get anything done.If you enjoy a read that will stay with you for days after you finish it,than I recommend you The Lady Predator....


Mantra to Mahatma!
Mantra to Mahatma!
Review by Clive Martyn, Examiner for Trinity College, Editor
It was a humbling experience to read such a range of texts imbued with both erudition and playfulness. So far I have particularly enjoyed ‘Hail Himalayas’, ‘The Empire and The Ruled’, ‘Restoration’, ‘His Name’, and ‘From A Mistress!...


Life's a Bag of Laughs
Life's a Bag of Laughs
Review by Helen
Brilliant! So glad my friend recommended this to me, a great read, very funny and I can totally relate to it! This is a great, easy going book with short chapters of real life capers to make you giggle with wonder or secretly admit that you've totally done the same!...


Life's a Bag of Laughs
Life's a Bag of Laughs
Review by Angela
Recommended by a friend and I am so glad she did. Very funny anecdotes which you can totally relate to. Easy to read and highly recommended holiday reading. Looking forward to the next book...


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I have just received my box full of complimentary copies of my book and marketing items.  This being my first published book, the professional help and expertise given by Pegasus throughout the whole process has been invaluable and second to none.  Many Thanks.

Chris Bardsley (Tom Cotton)

Many thanks to my publisher, Pegasus Elliot Mackenzie. For all their professional work and guidance, from editorial, production, publication and marketing. The book could not have been in better hands.

Roger Price

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Rebecca Joseph

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Sue Hampton

Just a note to say how delighted I was to receive the books and promotion material and also I am very impressed with the high quality of the products.

Jeremy Mills

Just to let you know that I am very, very happy with the production of Galaxy Rising. And I think the cover art is outstanding.

John Otto

It is very exciting for me to have a publication date and I continue to be thrilled by the whole process.

Barbara Morris

I received the parcel today with my complimentary book, thanks very much. It’d the best Christmas present I could have expected! I have just been perusing a copy and everything looks to be in order and very well produced, so thanks once again to you and your team for doing such a professional job.

Michael Hrycyszyn