Backyard Chickens: Beyond the Basics by Pam Freeman

Book Review

 


Backyard Chickens: Beyond the BasicsBook Genre: Non-Fiction

Book Series: N/A

Released: 5/1/17 by Voyageur Press

Pages: 192 Price: $21.99 Paperback

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I received a copy of this book from the publisher for an honest review

 

Book Synopsis:

A must-have for every backyard chicken keeper, Backyard Chickens 2.0 goes beyond introductory lessons and explores the realities of raising a flock for eggs — and entertainment, of course! From odd eggs and molting to feeding and preparing for the seasons, this book covers the subjects beginner books don’t adequately address and re-examines common knowledge that may not actually hold true. It’s a resource to turn to time and again for expert advice to make sure your birds are happy, healthy, and productive.

Author Pam Freeman, an editor and “Ask the Expert” columnist at Backyard Poultry magazine, draws on her years of experience fielding reader questions to identify and clearly explain many common – and some not-so-common – issues in chicken keeping. How do you add new chickens to your flock? What is the pecking order and how can you change or control it? Is it better to raise chicks by hand or with a broody hen? What do you do when you collect eggs and discover: lash eggs, calcium deposits, soft eggs, eggs within eggs, or wrinkled eggs? In Backyard Chickens 2.0, readers will find not just answers, but a book full of “coop truth” that helps them continue on their journey. Because as every chicken owner knows: Chickens are individuals and real-life chicken keeping often takes you far from the beaten path.

Chapters include Expanding Your Flock, Flock Behavior, Life with a Rooster, All About Eggs, Chicken (and Egg) Health, Predators, Feeding Your Chickens, Chicken Keeping Through the Seasons, and Coop Truth.

My Review:

I am not a novus chicken owner.  I’ve owned chickens and other poultry ever since moving to the country 13 years ago with some success but also some loss.  Earlier this year I began battling a particularly smart and crafty raccoon and lost my entire flock.  So this spring I am starting over and have been seeking out these chicken books for new tips and ideas on how to get this new flock off on the right foot.  When I saw this book up for review I didn’t hesitate in putting in a request for review on the blog.

I’m so glad I did because while there is quite a bit of basic information here there is also a ton of new (to me) information that I found helpful too!  I plan on purchasing my own copy of this book to add to my home library for reference.  Also because while the e-book I reviewed was alright it did slow down my nook and the lovely pictures that the author referenced in the text would not load properly.  So this is definitely a book to have in print! (not that I’m sure it is offered any other way….)  Anyway, the chapters are broken down into a logical sequence and are thorough in their coverage of the topics discussed.  The book isn’t as technical as some and the author doesn’t lecture but informs based upon an example of what has worked for her.  There were a few antidotes from her own flock but most of this book was geared towards help a fellow chicken owner manage their flock.

Some of the sections I found particularly helpful and interesting were on egg formation and color, wound care, predators, and coop truth.  But honestly, there is a lot of good information for anyone beyond an expert that is. If you are a new chicken owner or someone like myself who has owned birds for a number of years this could be a helpful book to have on hand.  I found myself reading well past my bedtime and taking mental notes of things to try out with my own flock.  I’m so glad I read this book!

My Rating: 5 Stars

Night’s Darkest Embrace by Jeaniene Frost

Book Review

 


Night's Darkest EmbraceBook Genre: Paranormal, Romance, Urban Fantasy, Audio

Book Series: N/A

Released: 11/13/2012 by Pocket

Pages:100  Price: $1.99 E-Book

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed this audiobook from my library.

 

 

Book Synopsis:

Enter the dark realm of Nocturna in Jeaniene Frost’s redhot tale, where blisteringly sexy Raphael dominates the demons of a lawless dimension and tries to help a beautiful young woman avenge her cousin’s disappearance. Originally appeared in the Haunted By Your Touch anthology.

My Review:

This was a good listen for an afternoon spent removing tar paper from a hardwood floor.  Entertaining, short, and kept one’s mind occupied while doing a tedious task.  My only complaint is that this isn’t a series!  I thought this world was quite interesting and full of potential.  Maybe Ms. Frost will decide to revisit this demon dimension in the future, finger’s crossed.

While being short there was adequate world building and I didn’t feel lost. The story is fairly typical for paranormal romance there is a sexy alpha hero and an instant romance connection between him and the heroine who has to be rescued from the bad guy.  You know what to expect but that isn’t always a bad thing.  Sometimes you are just in the mood for a certain type of book and Ms. Frost constantly delivers an exciting steamy read.

Not a lot more to say being it was so short.  I enjoyed it and if you ever need to kill three hours then this would be a great audiobook to pick for you!

My Rating: Three Stars

Top Ten Tuesday: Series yet to start.

Top Ten Tuesday

Welcome to another contribution to the wildly popular Top Ten Tuesday hosted by The Broke and The Bookish.  This week they ask us to share lists on the following:

June 20:  Top Ten Series I’ve Been Meaning To Start But Haven’t

This week’s list seemed interesting so I am taking a break from my hiatus and posting a TTT list.  I, like many of you, have a long list of series that I want to star, and a lot of series I need to get caught up on….  So here are ten random series that I would like to try someday.

Ten book series I would like to start

  1. Grimspace (Sirantha Jax, #1)  I believe I picked up the second book in this series while thrifting and thought it looked interesting.  Now that I have my phone I usually check first to see if a book is a part of a series before automatically buying it.  Sometimes I set them back sometimes if it is book two I will go ahead and bring it home and borrow the first book through my library.  Of course, that usually means more planning and often those series need to wait.
  2. Kindling the Moon (Arcadia Bell, #1)  The same goes for this book, I think or this was a book series that was recommended to me.
  3. Written in Red (The Others, #1)   This series has been on my list for some time.  It might be time to give up on this series because I don’t own them and don’t seem to be making any effort to borrow them through the library either.
  4. Santa Olivia (Santa Olivia, #1)  I do believe this book’s cover caught my eye. The reviews aren’t great but that doesn’t mean it won’t work for me.
  5. The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet (Wayfarers, #1)  This book is actually being returned to the library today. I checked it out weeks ago, it has been renewed once… and never got around to starting it.  Then I was approved for a bunch of review books some that have deadlines and have decided to return this and try again at the end of summer.
  6. Touch the Dark (Cassandra Palmer, #1)  I have this one and the second book sitting up on my to-read bookcase waiting for their turn.  Good thing that books don’t spoil because my bedroom would be ripe with the rotten books that I took too long to get to.
  7. Afterlife (The Resurrection Chronicles, #1)  Don’t remember much about this one but it was on my to-read shelf so here it is.
  8. Flight from Death (Fly by Night, #1) I believe I have this entire series.  I picked them up at a Salvation Army in the city where we shop and haven’t gotten around to starting them yet.
  9. Skinwalker (Jane Yellowrock, #1)  I believe I wanted to try this series based on the recommendation of others.
  10. Deadmen Walking (Deadman's Cross, #1)  I was/am so excited about this new series by my favorite author that I pre-ordered the book months before it released without fully reading the synopsis.  My bad because now I see that it is a historical series and I’m not usually a fan of those.  I will try it though, she is my favorite author after all but if it isn’t my cup of tea then I won’t be reading more.

Well, there you have my half-hearted list for the week.  I don’t think I’m quite ready to come back from my hiatus or summer blogging vacay.  Hope to have a review for you soon.  Happy Reading.

Into the Fire by Jeaniene Frost

Book Review

 


Into the Fire (Night Prince, #4)Book Genre: Paranormal, Urban Fantasy, Romance

Book Series: Night Prince #4

Released: 2/28/17 by Avon

Pages: 340  Price: $7.99 paperback

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I own a copy of this book

 

 

 

Book Synopsis:

In the wrong hands, love can be a deadly weapon.

For nearly six hundred years, Vlad Tepesh cared for nothing, so he had nothing to lose. His brutal reputation ensured that all but the most foolhardy stayed away. Now falling in love with Leila has put him at the mercy of his passions. And one adversary has found a devastating way to use Vlad’s new bride against him.

A powerful spell links Leila to the necromancer Mircea. If he suffers or dies, so does she. Magic is forbidden to vampires, so Vlad and Leila enlist an unlikely guide as they search for a way to break the spell. But an ancient enemy lies in wait, capable of turning Vlad and Leila’s closest friends against them…and finally tearing the lovers apart forever.

My Review:

It took me forever to get this book, (note: do not pre-order books with vastly different release dates from Amazon they hold them and ship after the last book releases…).  Then it took me weeks to actually finish the book because life got in the way.  Just poor timing all around for this last book in the Night Prince series, on my part at least.  For what it’s worth I did enjoy the book I just think that I might need to read it again at a time when I can dedicate the attention it deserves.

Vlad is my favorite character from the Night Huntress world and I loved his spin-off quartet of books.  I can see the criticism that read in other’s reviews but I don’t care.  The series works for me and I will miss reading about these two.  The book is much like the others in the series Leila is being used as a tool to hurt and manipulate Vlad.  Mencheres and Ian take an intricate part in the plot of this last book.  In part to finish up this series and in part to set up Ian’s series.  Personally, I can’t wait to read that one as I think it is going to be a hoot!  I do believe the heroine has been picked and if it is who I’m thinking of there should be plenty of sparks and drama coming Ian’s way.

In this last installment, we learn quite a bit about Leila’s power and its source.  We also see the complete transformation of Leila into Vlad’s equal and contemporary.  Through the events that these two need to overcome we see Leila become just as vicious, dark and strong as Vlad.  While there is quite a bit of Leila needing to be protected and rescued in this book there were plenty of times where Leila was the one doing the rescuing.

While I am sad to see these two go I’m satisfied with how this series played out.  The book did make me long to revisit the Night Huntress world so I will most likely try to reread the series and its spin-offs some time.  Perhaps before Ian’s book come out.

My Rating: 4 Stars

The Space between the Stars by Anne Corlett

Book Review

 


The Space Between the StarsBook Genre: Science Fiction, Dystopian, Post-Apocalyptic 

Book Series: N/A

Released: 6/13/2017

Pages: 368 Price:$26.00 Hardcover

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I received a copy of this book from the publisher for an honest review.

 

 

Book Synopsis:

All Jamie Allenby ever wanted was space. Even though she wasn’t forced to emigrate from Earth, she willingly left the overpopulated, claustrophobic planet. And when a long relationship devolved into silence and suffocating sadness, she found work on a frontier world on the edges of civilization. Then the virus hit…

Now Jamie finds herself dreadfully alone, with all that’s left of the dead. Until a garbled message from Earth gives her hope that someone from her past might still be alive.

Soon Jamie finds other survivors, and their ragtag group will travel through the vast reaches of space, drawn to the promise of a new beginning on Earth. But their dream will pit them against those desperately clinging to the old ways. And Jamie’s own journey home will help her close the distance between who she has become and who she is meant to be…

My Review:

Not quite sure what I was expecting when I requested this book for review but it wasn’t this.  I’ve been on a science fiction kick for a few months now and thought this title sounded interesting. If you are looking for a hard-hitting science fiction thriller this is not the book for you.  If you want a book about the exploration of the human character than this one might be up your alley. This book is more about the human race than it about the solar system, oh sure, there is science involved but the heart of the story is more about internal and societal struggle than anything else.

While reading this book I often wondered just where the author was taking us. There was little set up as to how the human race ended up among the start.  We do get an explanation but not much of one.  Most of the flashbacks were introspective glimpses into the main character’s past.  Her personal struggle and how she ended up so far from home.  The plot quickly forms a small pack of refugees that are trying to make their way back to hopefully more populated parts of space and we eventually do find ourselves back on Earth.

I have to say I didn’t quite expect the book to end the way it did but that’s not necessarily a bad thing.  It was an interesting journey for these characters and I quite enjoyed tagging along.  I loved how the author shined a light on all aspects of humanity in this book.  The good and the bad.  She made me think about how, much of the time, we are our own worst enemy.  I also tend to agree with her insinuation that even if most of the human race disappeared instantly there would still be those that thought they could tell everyone else what to do.

The author touches on many sensitive topics in this book from government, religion, class warfare, disabilities, and manages to blend them all together in an interesting and thought-provoking story that I thoroughly enjoyed.  This was simply a good book and I can’t wait to introduce it to others.

My Rating:5 Stars

Hiatus

Read What I Like will go on hiatus for a week or two.  I will still post book reviews as I finish titles but I am going to take a break from Monday Morning Check-In and Top Ten Tuesday.  I … Continue reading

Magic Bites by Ilona Andrews

Book Review

 


Magic Bites (Kate Daniels, #1)Book Genre: Paranormal, Urban Fantasy

Book Series: Kate Daniels #1

Released: 4/1/2007 by Ace

Pages: 260  Price: $7.99 Paperback

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed the audiobook from my library.

 

 

Book Synopsis:

Atlanta would be a nice place to live, if it weren’t for the magic…

When the magic is up, rogue mages cast their spells and monsters appear, while guns refuse to fire and cars fail to start. But then technology returns, and the magic recedes as unpredictably as it arose, leaving all kinds of paranormal problems in its wake.

Kate Daniels is a down-on-her-luck mercenary who makes her living cleaning up these magical problems. But when Kate’s guardian is murdered, her quest for justice draws her into a power struggle between two strong factions within Atlanta’s magic circles.

The Masters of the Dead, necromancers who can control vampires, and the Pack, a paramilitary clan of shapechangers, blame each other for a series of bizarre killings—and the death of Kate’s guardian may be part of the same mystery. Pressured by both sides to find the killer, Kate realizes she’s way out of her league—but she wouldn’t have it any other way…

My Review:

No, just no.  This book was not for me.  I like my supernatural/paranormal creatures to be the ‘good guys’, not monsters and especially not creepy monsters.  I am also not into this whole zombie or necromancer theme.  This book reminded me a lot of the Anita Blake series and while I stuck that one out for like five books this is where I leave this world.  I know it will not work for me no matter how long I stick it out.

I know that this is a popular series with many of you so please no hate mail but I just don’t get the appeal.  I don’t mind gritty but this was disturbing in places near the end.  I actually ended up DNFing the book but am counting it since I listened to all but an hour of it.  I just didn’t care and the plot kept getting increasingly more twisted and dark.  So I decided to tap out.

The main character also rubbed me the wrong way.  I just couldn’t get behind her in the plot.  She was too self-deprecating at times which I find super annoying.  One of my bookish turn offs is characters that don’t like themselves. She also felt like she had a chip on her shoulder much of the time.   I will tolerate it for a few books usually but throw in the creepy factor on top and I’m done.

If you are a fan of the Anita Blake series than this one will probably be right up your alley.  For me there just isn’t anything I enjoyed enough to finish the first book or bring me back for another.

My Rating:1 Star

Top Ten Tuesday: New To-Read Science Fiction

Top Ten Tuesday

Welcome to another contribution to the wildly popular Top Ten Tuesday hosted by The Broke and The Bookish.  This week they ask us to share lists on the following:

June 6:  10 Books From X Genre That I’ve Recently Added To My TBR List

I seem to be in a Science Fiction kick lately, or at least those are the books that are catching my eye.  While they are not the only books I’ve been adding to my tbr list they are the ones I’m going to be sharing in this week’s list.

Ten Science Fiction books I added to my TBR list this year.

  1. Paradox Bound This was on last week’s list or another list recently.  The Fold was quite good so finger’s crossed that this one is too.
  2. Steal Across the Sky  I’ve read two books by this author now and when I came across this title it sounded interesting too.  I have to say I’m not a fan of her covers though,  they don’t do her books justice.
  3. Artemis  This is probably my most anticipated read yet. I am keeping an eye out for the ARC listing on Net Galley for sure.
  4. The Atlantis Gene (The Origin Mystery, #1) Not really sure what this one is about but it must have sounded good for me to add it to my list.
  5. New York 2140  I recommended this brick length book to my library recently.  Decided to try another title first and checked this one out to a friend.  She gave it high marks so I will try to get around to checking this one out too.
  6. The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet (Wayfarers, #1) This book sounded like a lot of fun.  The plot reminded me a bit of Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy so I recommended it and even went to so far as to check it and the next book out.
  7. A Closed and Common Orbit (Wayfarers, #2)  This is the second book in the series or trilogy and I have it sitting on my nightstand currently waiting for me to finish three books… I might need to renew.
  8. Vulcan's Forge (Star Trek)   Picked this title up at a library book sale for cheap.  It was on my list already so it was quite the score.  LLAP.
  9. Never Let Me Go  Not so sure about this one.  It might be the only book on the list that doesn’t stay on my list.  It must have sounded good when I added it but now I’m not so sure.
  10. Leviathan Wakes (The Expanse, #1)  This book made this list simply because I needed a tenth book and it sounded kind of interesting.  Bonus points because it is listed as being LGBT in its categories might bring my reading list some much-needed diversity.

Well, there you have my list for the week.  Can you tell I’m feeling a bit apathetic lately… Know of a great Science Fiction title I might like or should be on this list?  Leave it in the comments or share a link to your own list for me to check out!

Talen by Rebecca Zanetti

Book Review

 


Talen: A Dark Protectors NovellaBook Genre: Paranormal, Romance, Urban Fantasy

Book Series: Dark Protectors #7.8

Released: 6/6/17 from Lyrical Press

Pages: 95 Price: $2.99 E-Book

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I received a copy of this book from the publisher for an honest review.

 

 

Book Synopsis:

She’ll love him forever . . . but he can’t make her obey . . .

The war is over. Danger has passed. Cara Kayrs is healed after decades of illness and ready for a break.

Too bad her brooding, alpha vampire husband can’t seem to change gears. In their twenty-five years together Talen Kayrs has learned to sense every shiver of her body, to ignite her desire with a word or a look. She would think he could learn she’s not some fragile damsel in distress.

But Talen is on edge, watching their backs, treating her like she’s made of glass. Like there’s something following them, a deadly threat that somehow none of their intelligence has uncovered. It’s enough to drive a woman crazy, and Talen has plenty of those tendencies already.

But what’s even more maddening is that he seems to be right . . .

My Review:

This was a fun visit to a finished series I enjoyed.  In this book we revisit the couple from the book that started it all and get a chance to see how their H.E.A has been after the war has ended.  As in real life just because peace has been declared sometimes it takes a while for everyone to get used to the idea.

As with the other books in the series if you have a problem with dominant alpha-males that push the envelope between a healthy and abusive relationship this might not be the series for you.  If you can overlook all that then this is one sexy read for an afternoon of relaxing.  There was plenty of action to go along with the sex as well as a pretty great plot that worked out in a clever way.  I had to smile and shake my head at how things turned out for this novella. If the men in this world would only turn things over to the females then there might not have been a war to begin with…

Anyway,  I am going to keep an eye out for future novellas in this world because I enjoyed this brief visit to this world. If you’ve read the series than this is a must add to your to-read list as it will be sure to make you nostalgic for the series.

My Rating: 4 Stars

Month in Review: May 2017

Month in Review

Read this month: 15 Books, 1,808 Pages 

Read this year: 43  Books, 10,881 Pages 

The Collapsing Empire (The Interdependency #1) Black Wings (Black Wings, #1) Talen (Dark Protectors) Prince Charming Doesn't Live Here (The Others #3) Life According to Chickens: An Insider's View of the Language, Manners, and Rules of the Flock Star Trek: Boldly Go #1 Star Trek: Boldly Go #2 Star Trek: Boldly Go #3 Star Trek: Boldly Go #4 Star Trek: Boldly Go #5 Of Cats and Men: Profiles of History's Great Cat-loving Artists, Writers, Thinkers, and Statesmen Sleeping Giants (Themis Files, #1) After the Fall, Before the Fall, During the Fall

Looking Back:

Oh my, that is an impressive list of books up there.  One might think that I did nothing but read last month.  Sadly, one would be wrong…  Also, I know that there are two covers missing but they were online short stories that went along with the Black Wings’ book and there were no covers to post here.  I also did not post reviews for each one of the Star Trek comics.  I kind of felt that there wasn’t any point really.  They are only 21-30 pages long and are the continuation of an ongoing story so it wasn’t like my opinion of them was going to change much.  What I wrote for the first comic could be applied to them all.  While I enjoyed them I don’t think I am going to be going out of my way to add more comics to my reading diet.  If I come across one that I find interesting, probably another Star Trek one, then I’ll read it otherwise I’m not going to become a collector.  In all actuality, I think they are overpriced at $4 a pop for a 20 some odd pages of story…  I know the graphics are fun but I don’t find myself focusing on them I just want the dialog.  Two audiobooks listed up there, three short books under 190 pages and a DNF.  So while my month of reading might look impressive it really isn’t.  Put me nine books away from my reading goal for the year, though!

Looking Ahead:

June and July are busy months at the library and at home so I’m not going to try to sweat it if I don’t get a ton of reading done.  It has been nice to get some much put-off projects done to the property so while we are in the mood we will get some work done at home.  I do hope to get some reading done because I do feel this urge that I’m not reading enough.  It just feels like there is something that always needs to be done.  I need to remember that I need to relax too.  Perhaps tomorrow I will be able to sit down and get into my current read which is the end of a series I follow.  It has a great start but when I sit down to read in the evening I find myself too tired and just want to go to sleep.

Happy Reading ~Amy