If You’re a #Tarantino Fan, You’ll Love Chasing Bedlam by @cyallowitz #bookreview #IARTG


Chasing Bedlam

 

Title: Chasing Bedlam

Author: Charles E. Yallowitz

Genre: Black Humor, Satire, Dystopia

 

Book Blurb:

Lloyd and Cassidy’s last adventure was to honor a life. This time they are out to end one.

It was a normal, violent mission to Texas that should have had nothing more than beer-induced hiccups. That is until an old enemy makes off with Cassidy’s jeep and most of their gear. Needless to say, she’s pissed off and challenging Lloyd for the psychopath of the month award. With the mouthy serial killer by her side, she is going on the warpath from Dallas to Miami even if it means declaring war on the drug cartels.

So strap in for another wild ride through the Shattered States and learn why you never mess with Cassidy’s jeep.

 

My Review:

Readers of Patrick deWitt and Joe Abercrombie, not to mention Tarantino: take a ride with me through the Shattered States.

 

Lloyd and Cassidy are back and in this adventure, all bets are off. An old rival has stolen Cassidy’s jeep and now she’s out for blood. It doesn’t matter to her who she has to kill or how many, she’s going to make everyone pay.

 

In the same vein as filmmaker Quintin Tarantino, Yallowitz brilliantly creates a hoard of death, blood and violence all with humorous banter between the characters. Strictly speaking, this is more than dystopian fiction; it’s black humor with bloodshed.

 

The action is swift and the dialogue is nicely peppered throughout so as to not distract too much from the violence. Lloyd and Cassidy are hilarious while the drug gangs are blissfully stupid. All in all, a fun read.

 

I found the bloodbath a bit excessive, at times, but that’s just me.

 

I’m a sucker for a good chapter title and Yallowitz nails these:

Back with a Bang

Child of the Battle Zone

First Sex . . .

. . . Then Violence

Malice on the Mississippi

The City of Beads & Blood

The Cats, The Mouse, & The Monster

Belles of the Homecoming Harvest

Don’t Feed that Puppy!

Nuts!

Attack of the Pricks

Worst Sightseeing Tour Ever

Return of the Old Friend

A Lawsuit Waiting to Happen

Told You I Know a Guy

Debauchery & Dented Skulls

Vengeance with a Side of Chocolate

 

If you like dystopia, action, lots of gunplay, and/or a killer female main character, 1-click Chasing Bedlam today. Your future self will thank you!

 

Disclaimer: I received a copy from the author in the hopes I’d review it.

 

Favorite Character/Quote:

“Now, the distraction’s job is to keep you looking in one direction while a mischievous maiden of mayhem prepares her new toy somewhere else. Don’t bother running, boys, because she’ll take that as an insult.”

 

My Rating:  4 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Chasing-Bedlam-Shattered-States-Book-ebook/dp/B06X8ZCGG5

Amazon CA https://www.amazon.ca/Chasing-Bedlam-Shattered-States-Book-ebook/dp/B06X8ZCGG5

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/Chasing-Bedlam-Shattered-States-Book-ebook/dp/B06X8ZCGG5

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34236934-chasing-bedlam

 

Author Biography:

Charles Yallowitz was born and raised on Long Island, NY, but he has spent most of his life wandering his own imagination in a blissful haze. Occasionally, he would return from this world for the necessities such as food, showers, and Saturday morning cartoons. One day he returned from his imagination and decided he would share his stories with the world. After his wife decided that she was tired of hearing the same stories repeatedly, she convinced him that it would make more sense to follow his dream of being a fantasy author. So, locked within the house under orders to shut up and get to work, Charles brings you Legends of Windemere. He looks forward to sharing all of his stories with you, and his wife is happy he finally has someone else to play with.

 

Social Media Links:

Blog: www.legendsofwindemere.com
Twitter: @cyallowitz
Facebook: Charles Yallowitz
Website: www.charleseyallowitz.com

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

It Pays to be a Wise-Ass: Guest Post by Jeff Lee #books @jfredlee #amwriting


 

It pays to be a wise-ass.

 

A little while ago, I was being interviewed for an article to run on a news blog serving the Northern California suburb where I grew up. The article was about local kids who’d gone on to do something with their lives, and the interviewer wanted to know what was it that separated me from most other writers.

 

“Two things,” I answered. “One, I’ve been writing professionally for more than forty years. And B, I’m an inveterate wise-ass.”

 

In my case, the two overlapped beautifully.

 

A couple of years ago, I retired from a career in advertising. And just so you know, it was light years away from Bewitched. Spent four decades writing ads, commercials, billboards, brochures and what-have-you. For everything from cars and motorcycles to Mexican Restaurant chains, airlines, toys, and heavy equipment manufactures. Even helped a successful, socially challenged Seattle businessman advertise for his future Mrs. wealthy recluse.

 

All of which was done under insane deadlines and then pitched to clients who couldn’t wrap their brains around why they needed to spend money advertising in the first place. Let alone laying out good funds to run stuff that was patently silly.

 

Like an ad for an imported line of ATV’s, showing a rider at night in driving rain, on his little 4-wheel, slogging through a seriously mud choked field, beneath a bold-type headline that read, “Take it where the sun don’t shine.”

 

Or an ad for a company that makes those little mini bulldozers you see on construction sites. The ad had to talk about how tough, rugged, economical and dependable these mini-dozers were. And it had to speak to cement and concrete contractors, since it was running in their industry’s trade magazines. Best of all, it was due yesterday. What the hell do you do? You grab some photos showing one of these little machines zipping around with tons of wet cement in its bucket. Under which, the headline says, “Enough to make any concrete guy good and hard.”

 

Or an in-store banner for a line of imported dirt bikes, whose manufacturer supported this segment of the motorcycle market with a little free factory-sponsored tech support for amateurs racing their particular bikes in the dirt. No visual this time. Just a huge banner hung in dealerships around the country. Picture an all black background, with huge, dayglo green letters, proclaiming, “You gotta be nuts to moto without a good supporter.”

 

The whole thing taught me how to work under the pressure of a deadline.

 

And how to be funny as hell, on command.

 

And most importantly, how to be fearless as a writer.

 

If you can put words on paper in a way that tells a story about characters the reader can come to know and care about, you’ve got a brain.

 

If you can do that AND make your reader laugh out loud from time to time, you’ve got a sense of humor.

 

And if you can accomplish all of that without worrying about what your great Aunt Sylvia’s going to say; or what your BFFs think about it; or the reviewer for the local paper (who hasn’t liked anything printed since Gutenberg), then kiddo, you’ve got a spine.

 

Ultimately, there’s only one person on the planet your writing has to please.

 

And you look them square in the eye every morning while you’re flossing.

 

Take a look at the sample included here, and see what I mean.

 

Trust me, I’m really pleased with this hunk of writing.

 

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Title: Chump Change

Author: Jeff Lee

Genre:   Humor, Comedy, Crime, Murder, Mystery

 

Book Blurb:

You think being the Bounty Hunter and Repo Guy to the Stars is easy? Just talk to “Fish” Fishbein. If he isn’t trying to round up a heavily lubricated ex-rocker, he’s flying down the freeway in a repoed Wiener Mobile, chased by the pistol-packing deadbeat who owns it.

A bail bondsman hires him to track down a crew of unwise guys who blew off their court date to snatch L.A.’s monthly parking meter take — 300 grand in quarters. Then they start dropping like flies. And Fish has to catch the killer.

Maybe it’s the city’s armed and dangerous Parking Meter Czar. Or his brother-in-law, a corrupt televangelist who needs some serious coin to bankroll his foray into Bible-based porn. Or the Rev’s wife and co-minister, who’s several clicks beyond crazy about toddler beauty pageants. Or, it just might be the defrocked talent agent who’s dying to make Fish a reality TV star.

With more than seven tons of quarters at stake, bodies are dropping faster than turn-downs on America’s Got Talent. And if Fish and his hog-riding buds, Kenny and Einstein, don’t nab the killer in a hurry, they could get eliminated themselves.

   Chump Change is author Jeff Lee’s third book in his Adventures in La-La Land series, following The Ladies Temperance Club’s Farewell Tour and Hair of the Dog. If you enjoy the whacko characters, situations and fast pace that Janet Evanovich, Carl Hiaasen and Elmore Leonard bring to the party, check out all of Fish Fishbein’s big adventures.

 

WARNING: Contains some of the most hysterical explicit sex scenes ever written. 

 

Exclusive Excerpt:

This is a scene from my most recent book, Chump Change, a fast-paced, hysterical mystery that pokes a ton of satirical fun at the L.A. life, crime, murder, sex, porn and the entertainment industry. “Fish” Fishbein, the book’s main character, has just repoed a restored old Oscar Meyer Weiner Mobile, and is being chased by the pistol-packing deadbeat who owns it.

 

“Fish checked the outside mirror on his side of the Weiner Mobile and everything looked pretty normal.

 

The San Diego Freeway was its usual congested mess for this, or any other time of day.

Except for one ancient, thrashed looking beater, a disco-era Caddy, headed in the same direction as the Weiner Mobile.

 

And in one a hell of a hurry.

 

It was only about a hundred yards behind him and closing fast.

 

Passing slowly under the Sunset Boulevard overpass, he watched the back window on the old Caddy’s passenger side roll down.

 

Now the top half of a really husky looking guy in a satin N.Y. Giants fashion statement was fighting to lean out of the opening.

 

Fish kept his eye on the old car as the rear seat passenger reached back in and brought out a pistol big enough to snuff a grizzly.

 

Or at least make it reconsider a life choice or two.

 

Then he saw the guy’s gun hand jerk skyward and almost instantly, a pair of huge ventilation holes opened up in the rear and front of the Weiner Mobile.

 

“Gun!” Fish shouted. “Everybody on the floor! This crazy son of a bitch is shooting at us!”

 

He yanked his cell phone out of his pocket and dialed 911.

 

“L.A. County 911. What’s the nature of your emergency?”

 

“The nature of my emergency?”

 

Most times, Fish had a problem trying to keep his inner wise-ass from coming out to play.

 

Like now.

 

“Yeah, I’m trying to win on Wheel of Fortune, only Vanna won’t sell me any freakin’ vowels.”

 

Like most federal, state and county employees, Fish’s 911 operator was required by law to check her sense of humor at the door when she clocked in for her shift that morning.

 

“Sir, are you aware of the penalty for making a false 911 call in California?”

 

“Look, my name’s Morris Fishbein. I’m a repo guy and I’m headed North on the San Diego Freeway, about half a mile past Sunset,” he blurted into the phone.

 

“I’m in a vehicle I just repossessed. The deadbeat owner and some of his friends are right behind me. And one of them just took a freakin’ shot at us!”

 

“Can you describe your vehicle?”

 

“Yeah, it’s a restored old Oscar Meyer Weiner Mobile with personalized plates that read MEAT MAN. The whole thing’s painted tan and yellow and it looks like a giant hot dog.”

 

“Tan and yellow, sir?”

 

“Just picture a thirty-foot-long penis on rye.”

 

Buy Links:

Amazon link: http://amzn.to/1KEN8U3

 

Jeff Lee

 

Author Biography:

Born near New York City and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, Jeff Lee has spent his entire writing career in Los Angeles. For more than 35 years, he has been a copywriter, producer and creative director for some of the advertising industry’s most recognizable agencies, winning numerous awards for his creativity and wise-ass sense of humor. Typical for his industry, none of those ad agencies are still in business, but Jeff appears to have pretty solid alibis for the deaths of each one.

Retired from advertising, Jeff now spends his time on his own writing, having produced four novels – The Ladies Temperance Club’s Farewell Tour, Hair of the Dog, Chump Change and Bird Boy. Each of these books debuted to rave reviews, garnering all 4 and 5-star reviews.

Trained as a cook in the Army, he still enjoys being creative in the kitchen, and admits that few things in life compare with the thrill of discovering you’ve just given a nasty case of food poisoning to 140 heavily-armed troops.

 

Social Media Links:

FB Author Page: on.fb.me/1QPczqQ

Website: bit.ly/1uHEmSo

Twitter: @jfredlee

Goodreads: bit.ly/1MCCM8p

 

Meet Fish From Chump Change by Jeff Lee #CharacterInterview #books @jfredlee


It’s time for another interview and this time it’s my great pleasure to introduce Fish from Chump Change (written by Jeff Lee) to you all. Fish, why don’t you introduce yourself to everyone:

I dunno, not sure I’m all that special. Hell, I’ve got an eye on each side of my nose and my legs reach all the way to the ground. Add a pair of arms that are sleeved in tattoos and healthy dose of wise-ass, and you’ve pretty much got the whole package. My mother used to joke that they broke the mold before they made me. I mean, I’ve done a lot of different things in my life. Shipping and receiving for a big department store; been a restaurant line cook and a sous chef. Worked for a big-time, downtown law firm, helping the rich avoid the consequences of their actions. (Christ, whatever you do, don’t get me started on lawyers. Please!) Now I practice a little law here, a little bail jumper apprehension and vehicle repossession there. And when we’re not doing that, the two junior members of the firm and I try to spend as much time as we can lickity-splitting up and down the coast on our Harleys. Look, at the end of the day, if we’ve done what we said we’d do; didn’t fracture any major statutes getting it done; and nobody’s wearing any fresh plaster on their extremities, then it was a good day. And if I’ve managed to royally piss off one attorney or A-list player, then life is good.

 

NN Light: What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?

Not knowing  when to keep my big, fat pie-hole buttoned & shut. You diss the mayor of a city the size of Los Angeles, or insult the worldwide head production for one of the major studios in a meeting, and they’re gonna come looking for a little payback. And sometimes, these bozos get pretty damn creative about it. But then again, hey, screw ‘em if they can’t take a joke.

NN Light: What is your greatest extravagance?

Hell, with what I do for a living, I can afford a number of things some people might see as extravagances. Like a house up on the cliffs in the Malibu barrio. And Kenny, Einstein and me fiddle-farting around on about 150K worth of custom Harleys. But, that’s just stuff. The real extravagance is that I only work with people I want to work with. If I don’t like a client, I can tell them to blow it out their little brown star, and walk away. And I’ve got friends – not just acquaintances. But guys (and women) I would trust with my life. Because I have. In a town like this, that’s an extravagance almost nobody can brag about.

NN Light: What is the quality you most like in a woman?

OK, beauty is definitely up there. I mean, in the final analysis, I am a guy. And L.A. is the paparazzi capital of the whole freakin’ world. But if a woman doesn’t take herself or this stupid town too seriously, if there’s a well-developed brain behind those gorgeous eyes, then yeah. She definitely has my attention.

NN Light: If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

Maybe get myself in better shape. What can I say? I love to cook and I’m pretty damn good at it. So, maybe I’m a little more aerodynamic than I’d like to be. Especially with what I, and my two buds do for a living. I mean, sometimes, a simple bench warrant roundup can turn into a full-contact sport.

NN Light: What do you most value in your friends?

Honesty, loyalty and a sense of humor. Look, when it comes to stuff like this, I’m old school. I need to know my friends aren’t going to try to stick it to me when I’m not looking, because that’s something I just wouldn’t do. If you’re a friend of mine, I need to know that you’ve got my back, come Hell or high water. Because I’ve definitely got yours. And if I bust your gonads over a poker bluff you couldn’t turn, a date gone sideways, or even an ugly gift you picked out for your wife, I need you to be able to laugh with me. What’s more important, I want you to be able to return my little digs in spades. That’s what I look for in a friend.

NN Light: What is your motto?

“Non illigitamus carborundum.”

It’s Latin for, “Don’t let the bastards grind you down.”

 

Thank you, Fish, for that, ummm, honest interview. (chuckles) To read more about Fish and his adventures in L.A., check out:

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Title:   Chump Change

Author:   Jeff Lee

Genre:    Comedy/crime/mystery/thriller/satire

 

Book Blurb:

You think being the Bounty Hunter and Repo Guy to the Stars is easy? Just talk to “Fish” Fishbein. If he isn’t trying to round up a heavily lubricated ex-rocker, he’s flying down the freeway in a repoed Wiener Mobile, chased by the pistol-packing deadbeat who owns it.

A bail bondsman hires him to track down a crew of un-wise guys who blew off their court date to snatch L.A.’s monthly parking meter take — 300 grand in quarters. Then they start dropping like flies. And Fish has to catch the killer.

Maybe it’s the city’s armed and dangerous Parking Meter Czar. Or his brother-in-law, a corrupt televangelist who needs some serious coin to bankroll his foray into Bible-based porn. Or the Rev’s wife and co-minister, who’s several clicks beyond bonkers about toddler beauty pageants. Or, it just might be the defrocked talent agent who’s dying to make Fish a reality TV star.

With more than seven tons of quarters at stake, bodies are dropping faster than turn-downs on America’s Got Talent. And if Fish and his hog-riding buds, Kenny and Einstein, don’t nab the killer in a hurry, they could get eliminated themselves.

   Chump Change is author Jeff Lee’s third book in his Adventures in La-La Land series, following The Ladies Temperance Club’s Farewell Tour and Hair of the Dog. If you enjoy the whacko characters, situations and fast pace that Janet Evanovich, Carl Hiaasen and Elmore Leonard bring to the party, check out all of Fish Fishbein’s big adventures.

WARNING: Contains some of the most hysterical erotica scenes ever written. 

 

Exclusive Excerpt:

“Yeah, I’m pretty damn happy to see you too.” Fish lifted Beast up and for a few moments, it was hard to tell which of the two pack members was happier to see the other.

Then, right in the middle of madly pumping his tiny legs in mid-air and trying to lick Fish’s nose, the little dog suddenly stiffened and started growling and barking in the direction of the front. Fish set him back down and Beast tore off for the front of the house, trailing a non-stop torrent of angry barks and growls that would have been more menacing, had he been about seventy pounds heavier.

A few months ago, right after their run-in with the hit man who talked like Marilyn Monroe, Fish had security around Big Dog Recoveries’ world headquarters building seriously beefed up.

Now there were motion sensors in the hallways and every window and exterior door was wired. And about a half dozen security cameras now kept an eye peeled 24/7 on the inside and outside of the house, including the front door.

While the doorbell was serenading the interior of the house with an eighties Aussie rock band musically musing Who Can It Be Now, Fish took a second to eyeball the video screen on the wall next to the door.

Some bozo was standing on the welcome mat, looking all Fred MacMurray in a shapeless, conservative business suit.

Fish didn’t have much of an issue with that. You didn’t see a lot of three-piece banker’s suits around this part of Malibu, but what the hay.

But he did have a problem with the way this stranger checked the snub-nosed .38 in his hand and then shoved it back into the waistband of his slacks.

He pushed the talk-back button on the monitor.

“Yeah?”

The man at the door was startled by Fish’s voice and jumped a little, almost dropping his gun.

“You Morris Fishbein?”

“Maybe. Why?”

Without taking his eyes off the monitor, Fish reached behind and back into the kitchen. The junk drawer was at the top of a floor cabinet where the kitchen counter ended at the doorway.

“Because you and I need to have a talk,” came back over the intercom.

Fish slid the drawer open, rooted around and pulled out a nine millimeter Glock trailing a couple of rubber bands and miscellaneous bits of flotsam and string. Sure, the gun wasn’t loaded, but the guy on the other side of his door probably wouldn’t have that piece of intel.

“OK, Wild Bill. This here’s a gun-free zone. You want to come in … then leave your six-shooter on the chair by the door.”

“Gun?” His visitor shrugged into the monitor, trying to look innocent and clueless. “What gun?”

Fish made a loud buzzer sound. “Ehhnck! Wrong answer, buckaroo. X gets the secret square. You want to try Rose Marie to block?”

“C’mon, it’s completely legal,” Fish’s wanna-be visitor fired back as he flipped open his wallet and held an official looking, City of L.A. stamped card up to the camera. “I even got a permit to carry. See?”

“So do a lot of other people, Hoss. But you don’t see any of them around here, either.”

The man on the monitor sighed in resignation. Then he grumbled under his breath as he pulled the pistol from his belt and set it on the chair next to the door.

“Good,” Fish took another look at the monitor, where the metal detector’s LED was still glowing red.

“Now, the back-up piece.”

On the monitor, his visitor opened his mouth to protest.

Then he had second thoughts, lifted his foot onto the chair and pulled a small caliber automatic from the holster velcroed around his ankle, and left it sitting next to its larger cousin.

“You happy now?”

“Uh huh, like the pig that found out it was too late for the luau,” Fish chuckled. “Just one more question, cowboy. Who the hell are you?”

The man dug a business card holder out of the inside pocket of his suit jacket and held one of his cards up in front of the camera.

Fish could make out the official city of Los Angeles seal, but that was about it.

“The name’s Harry Fairweather.”

Fish unlocked the door and pulled it open, keeping the hand with the unloaded Glock out of view.

“Hey, Harry. Call me Fish.”

He held out his free hand for his visitor to shake, but the man pressed his business card into it, so Fish took a second to read over the card.

“Hmm, so when did the city of L.A. start making armed house calls?”

“You all done being cute, wise-ass? Can we talk now, or do I have to wait for the end of your show?”

“Mighty big words, Hopalong. Especially for a guy who left his shootin’ irons out in the front yard.”

 

Buy Links:

Amazon http://www.amazon.com/Chump-Change-Jeff-Lee-ebook/dp/B00N4JKCMU

Jeff Lee

Author Biography:

Born near New York City and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, Jeff Lee has spent his entire writing career in Los Angeles. For more than 35 years, he has been a copywriter, producer and creative director for some of the advertising industry’s most recognizable agencies, winning numerous awards for his creativity and wise-ass sense of humor. Typical for his industry, none of those ad agencies are still in business, but Jeff appears to have pretty solid alibis for the deaths of each one.

Retired from advertising, Jeff now spends his time on his own writing, having produced four novels – The Ladies Temperance Club’s Farewell Tour, Hair of the Dog, Chump Change and Bird Boy. Each of these books debuted to rave reviews, garnering all 4 and 5-star reviews.

Trained as a cook in the Army, he still enjoys being creative in the kitchen, and admits that few things in life compare with the thrill of discovering you’ve just given a nasty case of food poisoning to 140 heavily-armed troops.

 

Social Media Links:

Author Page:  on.fb.me/1QPczqQ

Twitter: @jfredlee

 

Website: jeffleewriter.weebly.com

 

 

Ten Awesome Places in Canada Guest Post by Author @A_Snook #travel #Canada #satire


Ten Awesome Places in Canada

While pitching my book to customers at a recent book signing, I ended up in a conversation with a young man about ridiculous road trips we’ve taken (If you’ve read my book, Remy’s Dilemma, then you probably understand how this conversation came to be).

Remy'sDilemma_AndrewSnook copy

During our chat, I was asked if I have a favourite place to visit in Canada. I scratched my head for a second before replying, “I have no idea. I like lots of places in Canada.”

One of the benefits of working for national magazines  is that I’ve been able to visit a lot of interesting places across the country, so it’s hard to pick just one. So, I have compiled a list of some of my favourite places I’ve wandered into for your reading pleasure…

Log Barn 1912 – Armstrong, B.C.

LogBarn1
According to the company website, “Log Barn 1912 began humbly and simply in 1995, created to champion the culinary pleasures of the Mennonite heritage.”

LogBarn2

That’s a nice description, but I prefer, “Log Barn, the most wonderfully random place in Canada.”

From a live goat walk – yes, there are goats walking around on elevated platforms – to dinosaurs hunting elephants and a market that sells everything from wooden ninja weapons to waffle cups, bizarre barbecue sauces and something called “Mennonite Pies,” this place has everything you never knew you wanted.

LogBarn4z

(MRS N says she has to visit just to pick up a few bottles of this) 😉

The Diefenbunker – Carp, Ontario
Did this make my list because I’ve played one too many post-apocalyptic video games? Trick question! You can never play too many post-apocalyptic video games!

I’ve always been fascinated by the Cold War era and this museum did not disappoint. The bunker is 100,000 square feet over four levels and was built to withstand a 5-megaton nuclear blast from 1.8 kilometres away. How can you not want to check this out?

Two Rivers Gallery, Life Pod Exhibit – Prince George, B.C.

Life pod2 copy
If you lived in close proximity to oil and gas operations, how would you prepare for the worst? Two words: Life Pod.

Sculptor Karl Mattson was worried about sour gas leaks near his farm in northeastern British Columbia so he created several “life pods,” which are self-contained breathing apparatuses designed to hold and supply air for up to four hours.

I discovered the life pod in this photo while checking out the Two Rivers Gallery in April 2015 while attending a forestry conference. It was created from an old fuel tank, scrap iron, and various recycled objects.

life pod5 copy

Although this exhibit is no longer on display at Two Rivers, the gallery is still definitely worth checking out if you’re ever in Prince George. The Aboriginal artwork and crafts on display are amazing (I was asked not to photograph them, but trust me, it’s worth checking out).

Chateau Montebello – Montebello, Quebec
From log barns to log mansions, Chateau Montebello is a hotel and resort complex originally built in 1930 using approximately 10,000 logs. It features a 20-foot-tall rotunda containing a six-sided stone fireplace – that’ll roast your marshmallows!

It has more than 200 guest rooms and offers some beautiful grounds for walking. A great place to vacation if you’ve got a little extra cash, or, if you happen to work for a trade magazine that allows you stay there for free…

The World’s Longest Covered Bridge – Hartland, New Brunswick

Hartland1
It’s long, it’s covered, and it’s a bridge. The best part of your stop in Hartland is that you can buy a little wooden replica at the gift shop!

Hartland2

It’s pretty cool to know that Canada has the world’s longest covered bridge, and it’s a great way to lead into my next must-see…

Confederation Bridge – New Brunswick/Prince Edward Island
To truly appreciate the size and scope of a project like this, you really need to drive across it. The 12.9-kilometre-long bridge is the longest in the world crossing ice-covered water. Not only will it bring you to a land of delicious potato products (Cavendish make the best hashbrowns) but it will also lead you to another fun stop on my list…

The Gahan House – Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island
All this travelling making you hungry? Then stop for a bite at The Gahan House. This charming brewhouse has amazing fish and chips, offers tours of its brewing operations and has a variety of award-winning ales to sample. Sure they’ve set up a sister brewhouse in Halifax now, but this is the original, baby! Make sure to try the Island Red Amber Ale. Yum!

Okanagan Lake – Kelowna, British Columbia
With all the beautiful bodies of water across Canada it would be a shame not to recommend checking out at least one of them. I decided on Okanagan Lake for two reasons: the view of the 110-kilometre-long lake can’t be beat and it’s the home of Ogopogo, Canada’s legendary lake monster!

Royal Tyrrell Museum – Drumheller, Alberta
In addition to having Canada’s coolest collection of dinosaur fossils, Drumheller resides in the Badlands of Alberta, which offer amazing desert landscapes to take in. This place is must-see for anyone visiting the Calgary area.

Snook’s Harbour – Random Island, Newfoundland

snooks harbour
No explanation needed.

Andrew Snook

Andrew Snook is the author of humour-adventure novel Remy’s Dilemma. To learn more about this book and his future projects, visit www.snookbooks.com or like Remy’s Dilemma on Facebook.

Chump Change by Jeff Lee #bookreview @jfredlee #satire #fiction


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Title: Chump Change

Author: Jeff Lee

Genre: Humor Fiction, Satire, Crime Fiction

Book Blurb:

CROOKED TV PREACHERS. PSYCHO SHOWBIZ MOMS. NAKED ROMAN ZOMBIES. PORN STARS WHO TALK LIKE COLONEL KLINK.

You gotta love this town.

You think it’s easy being the Bounty Hunter and Repo Guy to the Stars? Just ask “Fish” Fishbein. If he isn’t trying corral a heavily lubricated ex-rocker, he’s flying down the freeway in a repoed Wiener Mobile, chased by the pistol-packing deadbeat who owns it.

A bail bondsman hires him to track down a crew of unwise guys who blew off their court date to snatch L.A.’s monthly parking meter take — 300 grand in quarters. Then they start dropping like flies. And Fish has to catch the killer.

Maybe it’s the city’s armed and dangerous Parking Meter Czar. Or his brother-in-law, a corrupt televangelist who needs some serious coin to bankroll his foray into Bible-based porn. Or the Rev’s wife and co-minister, who’s bat-shit crazy about toddler beauty pageants. Or, it just might be the defrocked talent agent who’s dying to make Fish a reality TV star.

With more than seven tons of quarters at stake, bodies are dropping faster than turn-downs on America’s Got Talent. And if Fish and his hog-riding buds, Kenny and Einstein, don’t nab the killer in a hurry, they could get eliminated themselves.

Chump Change is author Jeff Lee’s third book in his Fish Fishbein series, following The Ladies Temperance Club’s Farewell Tour and Hair of the Dog. If you enjoy the whacko characters, situations and fast pace that Janet Evanovich, Carl Hiaasen and Elmore Leonard bring to the party, check out all of Fish’s big adventures.

WARNING: Contains some of the most hysterical explicit sex scenes ever written.

 

My Review:

We first met Fish and his two buddies in The Ladies Temperance Club’s Farewell Tour (my review is here). Fish is a triple threat: bounty hunter, repo hunter and lawyer. He owns Doberman Recoveries and while at first glance he appears to be the tat-covered repo man we all know and love on various reality shows, he’s got layers.

Fish’s latest client wants him to find the criminals who stole an armored truck filled with money from parking meters. Sounds easy enough but hijinks ensue and in a city like L.A., hijinks are usually taken to a new level. Fish has to track these criminals but before he can nab them, they start dying off. Suspects are piling up faster than you can “I’ll have a triple caramel latte with foam”. Fish and his buddies better act fast because they’re swimming with invisible sharks and there’s blood in the water.

I loved this book! Filled with wise-cracking characters and quirky circumstances, Jeff Lee has a gem on his hands. The plot moves fast and I read it in one afternoon. Jeff Lee has a knack for comedic timing and I swear this should be on television.

If you’re a fan of Dog the Bounty Hunter or the Stephanie Plum series, grab this book!

Favorite Character:

Fish is my favorite character. I love how he’s a bounty hunter with a valley accent, cares about people and his inner thoughts made me laugh so hard I fell off my chair. Really. No, really. Fish deserves his own show and I’d bet it would be uber-popular.

 

Favorite Quote:

If you’re trying to get from one end of Los Angeles to the other during rush hour, you’ve got two choices.

Assuming you’re the head of Disney, ABC or 20th Century Fox, your corporate helicopter can whisk you where you need to be before the Grande, half­caf two­pump Chai Latté in your cup holder has a chance to cool off. But if you’re anyone else, you’re stuck sharing the Ventura, Santa Monica or San Diego Freeways with three or four million of your closest friends.

Which means, sometimes the best way to get where you’re going in L.A. is just to be born there.

My Rating: 5+ stars

Buy it now:

http://www.amazon.com/Chump-Change-Jeff-Lee-ebook/dp/B00N4JKCMU

 

Jeff Lee

 

Author Biography:

Born in New York State, Jeff Lee was raised in the San Francisco Bay Area and has spent his entire writing career in Los Angeles.

For more than thirty years he has been a copywriter and creative director for some of the advertising industry’s most recognizable agencies, winning numerous awards for his creativity. None of those ad agencies are still in business, but Jeff appears to have a solid alibi.

Trained as a cook in the Army, he still enjoys being creative in the kitchen and admits that few things in life compare with the thrill of discovering you have just given a nasty case of food poisoning to 140 heavily armed men.

Jeff lives about halfway between Los Angeles and Santa Barbara, in a house he shares with his two sons and a cat that’s part golden retriever.

Social Media Links:

Website:  bit.ly/1uHEmSo

Facebook Author Page: on.fb.me/1QPczqQ

Twitter: @jfredlee

Goodreads: bit.ly/1MCCM8p

#BookReview: Remy’s Dilemma by @A_Snook #books #CanadianFiction #Humor


Remy'sDilemma_AndrewSnook copy

Title: Remy’s Dilemma

Author: Andrew Snook

Genre: Adventure/Humour, Canadian

Book Blurb:

The world is coming to an end. That’s what Remy Dilemma believes, anyways. While double-checking his lifelong to-do list to ensure he has led a rich life, he realizes he hasn’t come close to completing his goals. Panicked and short on time, Remy embarks on a chaotic road trip to complete the most important item on his bucket list – finding the answer to man’s greatest question. There’s just one problem. Detective Tobias Gray, the most respected criminal profiler in the Toronto Police Department, thinks Remy is a serial killer; and he’s not the only one who has come to that conclusion. Armed with a green crayon, smiley-faced stamp and a pack of cigarettes in a race against time, the story’s main character, Remy, carves a path of hilarious destruction, baffling and infuriating the police, his government and every other person he encounters.

My Review:

I love road trip books and this one is unlike anything I have ever read before. I must preface this by saying the following: If you are Canadian or have spent any time up here in the Great White North, you have to read this book! The author created a world in the not-too-distant future that is hilarious and you’ll laugh your butt off.

Remy wakes up to hear the world is ending from none other than the Prime Minister. Before panic sets in, Remy grabs his life goals check-list (wrote it in the 4th grade) and sets out to answer man’s ultimate question. First, he gets a car then he goes on the ultimate Canadian road trip where anything can happen (and does to Remy).

Remy’s Dilemma is filled with Canadian hijinks and the funniest parts are when the police and FBI are on a manhunt to capture a deadly serial killer. Yup, they think it’s Remy. I laughed out loud in several places and sometimes rolled my eyes at Remy’s innocence.

The only part I didn’t like was that it ended abruptly. I know this is a trend in books right now but it’s a pet peeve of mine as a reader. I’m hoping Mr. Snook has a sequel lined up soon.

Humor is tricky in literature but Remy’s Dilemma delivers rib-tickling humor/satire in the same vein as Canadian comic Steve Smith (aka Red Green). Do yourself a favor and pick up this book. You’re in for a fun time.

Favorite Character:

Remy. While he is quite possibly the most obtuse character I have ever encountered, he has an innocence about him that I found endearing. He meets a woman who kicks his ass more than once and in his mind, she’s utterly in love with him. * shakes head *

Favorite Quote:

“Waking up at random hours in a daze has never been a conflict for me since I don’t believe it’s necessary to have steady employment.”

 

My Rating: 4 stars

 

Buy Links:

 

Amazon Kindle:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00VLIH45E/?tag=friesenpressc-20

Kobo: https://store.kobobooks.com/en-CA/ebook/remy-s-dilemma-1

iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/remys-dilemma/id983046558?mt=11

Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/search?q=9781460262771&c=books

Nook: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/%22Remy’s%20Dilemma%22-FriesenPress?store=ebook

FriesenPress (best deal for print version): http://www.friesenpress.com/bookstore/title/119734000015221192/Andrew-Snook-Remy%27s-Dilemma

Andrew Snook

Author Biography:

Age: 37

Born in Montreal, Quebec. Currently living in Mississauga, Ontario. Also lived in Wolfville, Nova Scotia, Carleton Place, Ontario, and Kanata, Ontario. Married with two children.

Social Media Links:

Author website and blog: www.snookbooks.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/a_snook @a_snook

Friday Humor: Cancel Credit Cards Prior to Death #funny #bank #creditcards


This is hilarious!!! 🙂 MRS N

Note to self: ‘Cancel credit cards prior to death! 

Be sure and cancel your credit cards before you die!
This is so priceless and so easy to see happening – customer service, being what it is today! 

 

A lady died this past January, and the Royal Bank billed her for February and March for their annual service charges on her credit card, and
Then added late fees and interest on the monthly charge. The balance had
Been $0.00, now is somewhere around $60.00. 

 

A family member placed a call to the Royal Bank:

Family Member:
‘I am calling to tell you that she died in January.’

Royal Bank:
‘The account was never closed and the late fees and charges still apply.’

Family Member:
‘Maybe, you should turn it over to collections.’

Royal Bank:
‘Since it is two months past due, it already has been..’

Family Member:
So, what will they do when they find out she is dead?’

Royal Bank PAC:
‘Either report her account to the frauds division or report her to
The credit bureau, maybe both!’

Family Member:
‘Do you think God will be mad at her?’

Royal Bank:
‘Excuse me?’

Family Member:
‘Did you just get what I was telling you . . . The part about her
Being dead?’

Royal Bank:
‘Sir, you’ll have to speak to my supervisor.’

Supervisor gets on the phone:
Family Member:
‘I’m calling to tell you, she died in January.’

Royal Bank:

‘The account was never closed and the late fees and charges still apply.’

Family Member:
‘You mean you want to collect from her estate?’

Royal Bank:
(Stammer) ‘Are you her lawyer?’

Family Member:
‘No, I’m her great nephew.’
(Lawyer info given)

Royal Bank:
‘Could you fax us a certificate of death?’

Family Member:
‘Sure.’
fax number is given 

 

After they get the fax:

Royal Bank:
‘Our system just isn’t set up for death. I don’t know what more I
Can do to help.’

Family Member:
‘Well, if you figure it out, great! If not, you could just keep billing Her. I don’t think she will care.’

Royal Bank :
‘Well, the late fees and charges do still apply.’

Family Member:
‘Would you like her new billing address?’

Royal Bank:
‘That might help.’

Family Member:
‘ Rookwood Memorial Cemetery , 1249 Centenary Rd, Sydney Plot Number
1049.’

Royal Bank:
‘Sir, that’s a cemetery!’

Family Member: 
‘Well, WTF do you do with dead people on your planet?’……..

I’d Like to Introduce You to the fabulous @Jed_Hamilton #authorinterview #books #satire


Author Interview with Jed Hamilton

 

What book do you wish you could have written?

Bleak House

 

What do you consider to be your best accomplishment?

Golden Globe Nomination for Film Music

Have you always liked to write?

YES

Do you read your reviews? Do you respond to them, good or bad? Do you have any advice on how to deal with the bad?

Ignore the good reviews: pay close attention to the bad. But never be discouraged by the mean-spirited.

 

 

What is your least favorite part of the publishing / writing process?

Marketing

 

Is there one subject you would never write about as an author? What is it?

 

ME

What are you working on now? What is your next project?

A novel set in the courts.

 

What is the biggest fib you’ve ever told?

 

This one.

Do you drink? Smoke? What’s your vice?

Drink heavily and often.

What is your biggest fear?

Spiders

If you had a superpower, what would it be?

The power to heal

What literary character is most like you?

Cleopatra

What secret talents do you have?

None: I parade them shamelessly.

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

 

A dog. Dogs are great.

If you could have any name in the world, what would you choose?

J K Rowling

What do you dream? Do you have any recurring dreams/nightmares?

 

I often dream I can fly!

 

 Large is the smallest weve got

 

 

Book Title:  “Large is the Smallest We’ve Got”

Author Name: Jed Hamilton

Genre: Fiction/Satire

Book Blurb:

The Los Angeles earthquake of 1994 throws together an unlikely mix of characters, whose triumphs and disasters interconnect like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle, with the last piece falling into place on the last page of the book.

Quirky, funny, and dark, Jed Hamilton’s novel is a biting satire set in a chaotic Hollywood, where we encounter celebrities, drug dealers, ghost-hunters, male whores, suicide, a multi-million dollar religion, and a dog that looks like a panda.

The book has a bittersweet love-triangle at its core, and is ultimately moving  while never losing touch with a wry sense of the absurd.

Exclusive Excerpt:

1

Rome

“Then why did you stay there so long?”

After a short pause, in which the old man himself began to wonder why, he said: “I think I fell in love.”

“You?” said his godson, laughing. “I find that hard to believe!”

“Impertinente!” – The old man was Italian.

A long time ago, a very long time ago, he had been Oscar-nominated for a ‘best foreign language film’ which he had both starred-in and directed, set in Copenhagen; so it was only natural that on his arrival in Los Angeles they called him ‘the Dutch guy’. When he decided to stay, and make his home and career in Hollywood, the name stayed with him.

“No-one ‘thinks’ they fall in love,” said his godson. ‘You do or you don’t. Trust me.”

He, on the other hand, was from America. And at an age (not yet twenty) when a new-found confidence, risking impudence, finds itself indulged – encouraged almost – by those nearer the end than the beginning of their lives.

“So! The arrow has pierced your tender young heart already? Povero bambino!” said the Dutch guy, resorting to his native tongue.

“Just a glance. Don’t make a big thing of it.” (The young man was also at that age.)

“Mine was more than a glance, you should understand,” said his godfather. “But it was what you in America call ‘a love-hate thing’.”

“Oh. One of those. Been there. T-shirt. Una cosa di amore-odio. Isn’t that how you say it?” His Italian was excellent, but his godfather never acknowledged it, and insisted they talk in English ‘because he found it difficult to understand him otherwise’. Upon hearing his godson’s quite remarkable translation from idiom into idiom, all he said was –

“Since you were a child you have been coming to Rome, and yet you have the accent of a tour-guide.”

They were sitting in the older man’s apartment, a short walk from Piazza di Spagna. They had spent over an hour skirting around a subject they knew would have to come to, sooner or later. An October sun shone through the open windows, and the bustle of morning rumbled in the streets below.

“Will you stay for lunch? We can ‘send out’ if you like?”

“I have to go pack.” His godson shrugged what passed for a refusal.

‘All day?’ the old man wondered, silently to himself. His godson could wound unthinkingly. But he resigned himself to a finality in the young man’s voice that offered no hope of a longer visit.

“Check-in tomorrow is at the crack of dawn,” said his godson.

“What merciless words. ‘The crack of dawn.’ As though she had a whip! Peccato… But thank you for coming. It meant — ”

“Please don’t go all Italian on me! Not twice in one morning! I wanted to come. No-one back home will talk about it. And I wanted to see you again. True.”

His godfather’s look could not have been more fond, nor more pained, no matter how hard he tried to disguise both. To see him again – before…?

An awkward silence, then – “So who did you fall in love with?” asked his godson.

“It’s not that simple. And it was a long time ago.”

“I should hope it was!”

The significance of that careless reply did not even cross the old man’s mind. He stared out of the window, allowing himself to be blinded by the morning sunlight; and with his eyes half-closed he began at last to speak about the things his godson had flown across the Atlantic to hear.

“It was because of Madison that I met your mother,” he said, almost to himself. “And then, it was because of me that your mother met Scott. Strange! A late train, a longer shower, a red traffic light, you take the stairs instead of the elevator – who can say? – Una pochissima differenza, a delay of a just a few seconds, and we may never have met. Unless it was always to be. Do you believe in destiny? ‘La Forza del Destino’? Maybe the earthquake was always going to throw us together, no matter how long we spent in the shower, eh?”

“What earthquake?”

“Madison came to your parents’ wedding,” he said suddenly. “Did you know?  Risplendente she was.” Drifting deeper into memory, and with the trace of a smile on his face, he repeated  – “Risplendente.”

“What earthquake?”

Jed attending the Venice Film Festival
Jed attending the Venice Film Festival

Buy links: http://largeisthesmallest.com

Me Photo Final

Author biography:

Jed Hamilton was born in New York City in 1963 to  Scottish mother and a Canadian father. The family immigrated to the UK in 1970. He qualified as a lawyer in 1988 and was employed as in-house counsel for an American production company. In 1991, he moved to Los Angeles and worked first as a music copyist and then as a film composer, scoring 18 movies. Between films he wrote 3 screenplays.

After eleven years in the City of Angels, he returned to work as a lawyer in London in 2003.

“Large is the Smallest We’ve Got” is his first novel.

 

Connect with Jed Hamilton online:

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/largeisthesmallest

Twitter: https://twitter.com/jed_hamilton