So as many of my review readers know, I do not often touch non-fiction, and even less often do I publicly review any non-fiction books based on local areas. Why? Because the majority of the people who read my blog are international, there isn’t much desire on their end to read books about the area I live in. However while once again wandering the website of my locale county library I tumbled upon Haunted Tampa Spirits of the Bay by Deborah Frethem so I figured I have lived in this area for a long time now, I might as well take a peak in at its creepy background.
While I intended this to be a casual spooky Halloween read it ended up being a bit of a black hole of study as I study as I found myself Googling most of the locations mentioned in the book. Sure I’d driven past pretty much all these spots at least once but there were a few I missed. The information from the book had been fantastic tidbits that made me want to go out and find some more information. This was mostly due to the fact that the book is now quite old as far as non-fiction goes and some of the details were obsolete but certainly entertaining none the less.
If you are from the Tampa Bay area, or visited, or just like spooky knowledge, this may be an entertaining read for you.\
Short stories can be difficult to write, you are expected to get a lot of information and make people feel for your characters in a short amount of time. This is even harder to pull off when you do it in a second person’s point of view. Maria DeBlassie however, manages to produce an excellent story this way with Hungry Business. A story about dating, and zombies, that feels far too relatable to anyone who is in, or remembers, the dating scene. After all, how many times have we all gone on a really uncomfortable date with a person who is just staring at us like a piece of meat?
Hungry Business is well written. The main character walks you through their complicated dating life. Trying to cope with the loneliness of dating in a world where most would just be happy eating you rather than dating. Finding small ways to cope with the loneliness eating them away inside, the narrator talks about life as they desperately look for another warm body to cling to.
As touched on before, the story is old in the second person point of view, which is difficult to pull off in most narratives. Before this I have only seen it in game books, and choose your own adventure stories. However, the viewpoint works well with Hungry Business, giving it the feeling of perhaps a friend who is desperately trying to relate to someone they are letting their dating woes out to.
So is Hungry Business worth the read? It feels experimental, yes, and it may not be for everyone. However, I highly suggest this short story for anyone with half an hour to kill and a memory of their dating days. It is relatable and entertaining in the way it is told! Pick it up!
As someone who grew up with dyslexia, I take literature for children seriously. So I was super pleased when I got a message asking if I would be interested in reviewing a book written by a young lady. (Yes, I know I sound like an old lady as I type that.) How could someone who grew up wanting to write pass on such an idea? So I looked at the information and almost instantly signed up. They sent the Last Shimmer to me rather quickly, and I inhaled the tale.
Tiger Lilly Dander wakes up one day to find everyone she knows seems to be gone! Soon she finds out shadows are responsible. They have stolen the Shimmers of the world and seek hers as well! How she gets through this horrific scenario is both entertaining and heartwarming.
The Last Shimmer is an amazingly creative story. Not only is this story original but the way they executed the writing is fantastic. The way the story’s viewpoint moves from the main character to her shadow comfortably is fantastically done. It can be hard to fit different points of view in to one book, particularly shorter ones, but it is done very well in The Last Shimmer.
Beyond the creativeness of the storytelling, this tale is a tad spooky. Could you imagine if your shadow took over your body? Really, the idea spooks me a bit.
The Last Shimmer is an excellent piece of Middle Grade fiction and if you like a spooky adventure, I would suggest picking it up. And perhaps take a look at Sage Hyatt’s other work. I know I will be keeping an eye on her writing career.