• Headline Murder
    Peter Bartram
    I thoroughly enjoyed this newspaper caper set in the early 1960s. There's corruption, red herrings and the brief appearance of an insulting budgerigar. It read like a breath of fresh air and I can't wait for the next one. ~ Little Bookness Lane

  • Belly Dance for Health, Happiness and Empowerment
    Tina Hobin
    The book on Belly Dancing by Tina Hobin was understandable throughout,
    particularly the dance routines at the back of the book, I had a back
    problem some years ago and joined Tina's class and after time my back
    certainly improved, so much so even to-day I give no thought to my
    back injury, Belly dancing exercises are generally good toning for the
    body. You can do them any time and feel vigourated and happy daily.
    Every woman should join classes and would lose weight and get fitter.
    This book is a Must Buy! ~ Jo Sothers

  • Belly Dance for Health, Happiness and Empowerment
    Tina Hobin
    I have read with interest Tina's most recently published book Belly Dance for Health Happiness and Empowerment. I can only say well written Tina.So much information is given about how to use Belly Dance for a women's health and personal benefit. The reasons why and how to use these movements is condensed and clearly explained . In the book can be found an appropriate exercise that will help many medical and physical conditions. This book has an amazing fund of knowledge and could be well used to keep a body fit and well. Do buy the book and start learning to Belly Dance at home. As a retired Physiotherapist I find some exercises useful to do at home. Belly Dance is a sisterhood and many would help you if you were to join a class. I hope you all enjoy this book as much as I.Thank you Tina for your friendship classes and fun in the past. I am still as keen to watch learn and enjoy as I grow older. ~ Anne Hawes

  • From Darkness to Diva
    Skye High
    I found this book very intetesting. It shows how narrow-minded and cruel people can be, but also how Skye over came the downward spiral he was on and fought back. I found from Darkness to Diva a very heart warming book. 5 stars! ~ Reader review, Amazon

  • Headline Murder
    Peter Bartram
    Headline Murder is a rather fun and well-written cozy mystery set in 1960s Brighton. Recommended for those who want a lighter crime read, with a genuine 1960s Brighton vibe. ~ Northern Crime

  • Headline Murder
    Peter Bartram
    A lot of fun. There's a light touch to proceedings, as you'd expect from the use of the word "cozy" on the blurb on the back. So, an enjoyable entry into what I hope will be a long series. Highly Recommended. ~ In Search of the Classic Crime Mystery Novel

  • Headline Murder
    Peter Bartram
    ...a little reminiscent of [Raymond] Chandler... ~ Bookwitch

  • Headline Murder
    Peter Bartram
    By the end of page one, I knew I liked Colin Crampton and author Peter Bartram's breezy writing style. ~ Over My Dead Body

  • Pagan Dreaming
    Nimue Brown
    I found a lot of new information in this book, but because of Nimue’s clarity and breezy writing style, Pagan Dreaming was a joy to read and it never once felt like I was trying to cram too much knowledge into my tiny head.

    Pagan Dreaming has gone straight onto my Top Ten list of Pagan Books, for sure. ~ Siobhan Waters,

  • Emancipation of B, The
    Jennifer Kavanagh
    A wonderful book which stays in the mind long after reading. Clearly based on personal experience of stillness, silence and solitude. But I'm longing to know what happened next! ~ Beth Allen, Amazon

  • Realignment Case, The
    R.J. Dearden
    Daniel Athley is having a pretty rubbish day. He’s ridiculously hung over, he’s millimetres away from losing his job after having punched the boss’s son in the face, he’s probably broken his knuckles from aforementioned punch and now he’s stuck in a car with a crazy driver on his way to a job interview where he knows precisely zilch about the employer or the job role. Although he arrives at the interview without suffering a vehicular mishap, his day does not get better. He is freezing (because who would think to wear a proper coat in Geneva in the winter), he almost loses his wedding ring which would cause his incredibly neurotic wife to lose her proverbial and he spends the majority of his interview with the enigmatic Winter off his face drunk on Armagnac. How he manages to make it back home in one piece and win the job offer is frankly a mystery, and the first clue that this book will not be straightforward.
    It turns out that Winter is a Counsellor (as in lawyer) who works for Le Département de la Dernière Justice and Athley is to be his clerk. The department has control of a machine named KASSI which can alter or ‘realign’ time. Governed by 25 Principles, the machine can only be used for a ‘Great Personage’, someone who could have contributed greatly to the good of the human race but who had their work cut short by death (accident or murder). So think biologist, peace maker, physicists etc. KASSI can realign time and change something which would mean the circumstances of the death do not occur and the ‘Great Personage’ can finish their work and change the course of human history for the better.
    The machine however must be tightly controlled… can’t just be changing things willy-nilly. As one character says “Once you start pulling at a thread, you could risk unravelling the whole fabric” and this is where Winter and Athley come in. In order for a person to have their death realigned, the worth and the risks of this must first be examined, weighed up and judged. Is this person worth the risk of the dangerous and unpredictable KASSI procedure? What will they contribute to the good of mankind? This weighing up process is done in a court room, with lawyers, and jury and judge. Winter is responsible for defending the status quo- basically it’s his job to prevent KASSI from ever being used.
    Athley is thrown in at the deep end and what follows is a clever and fast paced courtroom drama. There are twists and turns a plenty and the richly drawn characters will seemingly stop at nothing to achieve their goals.
    The Realignment Case can be found in the sci-fi sections of bookshops and on websites, the cover clearly marks it out to be a sci-fi book, the description on Dearden’s Facebook page references the time altering sci-fi premise and yet it’s not really a sci-fi book. It’s a courtroom drama, it’s a thriller, and it’s a crime book. Yes, it is indisputable science fiction but I wouldn’t class it as a sci-fi book. But maybe that’s just me.
    This is a clever book, occasionally too clever and the science aspects teeter on the edge of being too dense for a book written for entertainment. The diverse characters are generally well written, although frankly, some of them are despicable creatures. The female characters are less well done but this doesn’t take away from the overall enjoyment of the book.
    It’s an intriguing premise and Dearden manages to successfully sustain the intrigue throughout the book whilst negotiating a fast pace and complex plot.
    Awarding this 4 bites today… very tasty! ~ The Bookeaters,

  • Boundary
    Mary Victoria Johnson
    I really enjoyed this book. It was very original, and chock full of twists I never saw coming. The characters were all different, with intense motivations and personalities, and as a teen myself, I could relate to all of them. It was well written, with lots of humour, and a novel I'd read again and again! When is the next one coming out?? ~ AJ Lily, age 15

  • How I Left The National Grid
    Guy Mankowski
    'I enjoyed reading this...I like how the people & places seem familiar, yet not from documentary fact, the fragments re-assembled. I think there's a place yet for a sprawling fictional compendium about Manchester, full of city hobgoblins to quote Mark Smith.' ~ LoneLady, Warp Records artist

  • Realignment Case, The
    R.J. Dearden
    This book was amazingly exciting. I absolutely loved it and knew I would before I even read it. The premise is right up my alley, a theme I really enjoy, yet the author has written a completely original body of work. And just look at the cover! It's amazing. I'm big on cover design, and this one suits the story perfectly. Read this book! I highly recommend! ~ Suzanne Korb,

  • Last of the Shor Shamans, The
    Alexander and Luba Arbachakov
    The Shor Shamans are in the Altai Mountain region of Siberia believed by some scholars to be the place where religion, in the form of Shamanism, began. The authors are an indigenous husband and wife team, Luba a folklorist and Alexander a photographer. In their introduction they say that the subjects of the book, the last kam(s) - the shamans of Gornaya Shoriya - 'represent the true guardians of their people's traditions, customs and culture.'

    I found myself seeking parallels with other cosmologies, but maybe this is linear thinking. However one striking parallel was the finding that serious illness often preceded the awakening of shamanic power (otherwise it was handed down in families). This reminded me of many accounts in the Alister Hardy RERC archive, and elsewhere, of serious illness preceding profound spiritual experience/spiritual awakening. With the Shor Shamans the person would have to accept the shamanic power to get better. The implication was that the alternative would be death. In our culture there would not be such a stark choice maybe, in denial of death as we are most of the time. However, there does seem to be a parallel in our culture with anecdotal evidence of serious illness resulting in spiritual epiphany.

    Something I found moving and extremely significant was that often the shaman's sacred drum had been destroyed, but rituals retained drumming movements, and chants, the vividly evoked them. Shamanic practices had been suppressed, first by Orthodox Christian missionaries, then with great brutality by the communist regime. Shamans were killed, their homes (and of course their drums) destroyed. But the Spirit and thus the tradition survives.

    Shamans would now take a broom, or even a tea towel, seemingly any domestic object to hand. That they used tea clothes and brooms instead of the traditional sacred objects that have been destroyed affected me deeply; this does imply that the impulse to spirituality is so strong that all attempts tat obliteration will fail. This is what I found moving - a humble substitute for a ritual in the face of oppression and persecution somehow adds spiritual stature rather than detracting from it.

    This little book contains pages of ritual (kamlanie) and religious poetry that retain a vivid authenticity, despite having been translated from the vernacular into Russian, then from Russian into English. Whatever had been lost in translation, as with the loss of shamanic tools - drums to tea towels - the power is not diminished, the Spirit lives on. This is the culture of the throat singers; I once heard some Mongolian throat singers in concert and i was transported to the plains - I did ride like the wind with my harness jingling, the pounding hooves finding a rhythm in my blood. The Shor poetry took me back to this experience...

    Again I find parallels with other cultures, this time through Welsh Bardic poetry and the tales of the Mabinogian, (although these would have had the advantage of being declaimed, usually in poetic competition, in the royal court f the Bard's patron). But in both cases the hypnotic repetition and vivid imagery of nature in this world can lead to real experience in other worlds, or dimensions.

    However, 'the Shaman's most important function is to heal the sick'. The Shortsi believe illness happens when the soul leaves the body and loses its way.Then the Shaman, who travels between the worlds, must bring it back.

    In death, perhaps the most interesting aspect of Shor Shamanism for Alister Hardy aficionados, the kam would liase with the spirit of the departed, and other spirits in the beyond, in a series of rituals at the funeral and after at specified times. The book contains pages of ritual poetry for this journey of the soul.

    There are explanatory notes which illuminate the poetry by giving complex meanings of many of the lines, also a glossary and references. At the end one is left with a sense of gratitude to the Arbachakovs, who have preserved what are the only remnants of a culture which does back thousands of years, where scholars such as Geoffrey Ashe believe religion was born. ~ Patricia Murphy (Ed.), The Journal & Newsletter of the Alister Hardy Society for the Study of Spiritual Experience - De Numine, Autumn '15 issue No.59

  • No Fire Escape in Hell
    Kim Cayer
    A book about a woman fleeing a bad marriage? ... I was prepared for a sombre and sad read. Instead, as the author did with her last book (Lights! Camera! Dissatisfaction...), Kim Cayer has taken a dark subject and turned it into an entertaining, comedic read. The characters (the tow-truck driver, the daughter's transgendered boyfriend, the husband, among others) are well-written and the dialogue is totally believable. An excellent read for anybody, whether you're married or not! ~ Patricia Andrews, producer and actor, and Artistic Director, The Performing Arts Group Acting School.

  • No Fire Escape in Hell
    Kim Cayer
    The author quickly pulls the reader into a fascinating world that seems so real and yet quite unusual. From entertaining gigs to heart-breaking encounters, one cannot help but feel for Madeline who works so hard to escape from her own hell at home. An interesting read that makes it hard to put the book down. ~ Judy Peters Funk

  • Blowing the Lid
    Stuart Feather
    I think Feather provides an interesting lens to understand the movement’s internal debates, divisions and problems. This is a very rich understanding of how a social movement emerges and works through internal differences. So I have no doubt that this work will contribute to a lot of discussions on civil society and social movements. ~ Dr. Hakan Seckinelgin, Gender Institute, London School of Economics

  • May's Moon
    S.Y. Palmer
    I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and it was a lovely change from the fantasy, spooky, dark books I have been reading of late.

    It follows a young boy, Michael May, from Britain on his journey to try to become one of three children picked to go to the moon.

    The first chapter had me completely hooked and after about page ten I had my heart in my mouth. It is a really great read with some really interesting facts woven in to give the reader a real insight into what an astronaut truly goes through before being selected for a mission. I loved the mystery that is within the main story and I really felt that Michael was a lovely boy and I desperately wanted him to be picked.

    Great for adventure fans, space fan and mystery fans, boys and girls 8+

    Posted on Goodreads ~ Emily Dunn, A Festival of Books Bookshop

  • Burden, The
    N.E. David
    N.E. David's new novel The Burden is a pleasure to read, a witty and moving portrayal of the innocence of childhood, the responsibility we feel for our family, and the secrets that they keep from us. Every page is filled with evocative prose and fascinating characters that will tug at your heartstrings and make you smile.
    ~ Rob, Amazon

©2015 John Hunt Publishing Ltd.