Book Review: The New Dream Dictionary by Tony Crisp

Book Review: The New Dream Dictionary

Book Review: The New Dream Dictionary – A Handbook of Dream Meanings And Sleep Experience
Author: Tony Crisp
Rating: 4/5 Stars
Release Date: Nov. 28th, 2009

The New Dream Dictionary is a comprehensive, detailed listing of the meaning of the clues your dreams entail. While this is not a book on understanding the process of dream interpretation, nor a book that will tell you how to work in greater detail with your dream, it is a handy reference to many impressions that are common in dreaming.

Writing informatively and with care to stay authentic to the traditional interpretations, Tony Crisp has managed to compile a thorough list of the symbols, without making the volume sound like just another one of the many reference books of this type on the market.
If you are already familiar with dream interpretation, this is a good reference guide to keep. If you are new to the art of Dream Interpretation, check out books such as Dream Interpretation for Dummies or How to Interpret Dreams And Visions by Perry Stone.
This post is a part of the daily prompt blogging prompt by WordPress.
If you are looking for a more proffessional interpretation of your dreams, you can contact me via claudiablanton@live.com or via Fiverr. I am a Certified Dream Interpreter with 9 years of professional reading experience.

Following A Trend vs. Finding Your Own Voice

50 Shades of Gray was undeniably a hit. You do not have to like it, to realize the impact it has made in the publishing world. Twilight did the same thing, creating a massive following who was hungry for more of the same. Harry Potter rocked the children’s book world.

But unlike Twilight and Harry Potter, 50 Shades of Gray is written in “first person present tense”. A difficult task to pull off on a a good day, and despite the subject matter, and all of the little details one could argue about and get in discussions over, the Author did it, made it readable, in a filthy sort of way.

I can understand how one would like to copy this success. Who would not want to achieve what the Author of that series achieved? Fame, notoriety and one hell of a paycheck are hard to overlook and not want to have for oneself. At the same time, romance writers need to remember that it takes a special skill to make that voice work for themselves. What sounded authentic, sounds like a wanna-be copy cat in the many other books that came across my desk written in first person present tense. Either you can pull it off, or you should stick with the conventional 3rd person writing style. Most can’t.

Take the following book for example:

Breathless For Him

A promising premise, sex, tension, erotic, and romance, all that is promised to us in this short blurb:

As a gifted opera singer, Allegra Orsini’s only obsession is music-until she meets him. A strikingly handsome and powerful man with a life splashed across the tabloids, Davison Cabot Berkeley isn’t what she expected. He’s unlike the other wealthy patrons who dine at Le Bistro. Davison sees more than just a coat-check girl working her way through grad school. And from the moment he looks at her, those deep green eyes ignite a fire inside Allegra she’s never felt before.

She craves Davison’s touch-his possession-endlessly. Even though every fiber of her being is telling her to stay away, that it’s best for both of them, she can’t. As his passion consumes her, Allegra can no longer deny Davison’s hold on her. He’ll never let her go. But as much as she wants him, Allegra can’t surrender to his love-not until she faces a painful secret from her past that could destroy them both

Sounds interesting, doesn’t it? What turned me off, was that it was written as if to copy the above mentioned 50 Shades of Gray. It does not have it’s own voice, making the main character sound like an annoying person, in who’s head I really do not want to spend time in. It takes skill, a skill I admire, to take us  readers on a journey through an experience, it takes an extra skill to do this in a first person present tense narrative. What could have been an enjoyable read, was lost because of the need of wanting to jump on the bandwagon of a popular and if well done, enjoyable ride. But not very many Authors are good at this – E. L. James is. Sofia Tate is not.

The Smart Girl’s Guide To Getting What You Want – A Review

A Smart Girls Guide - Review

Title: The Smart Girl’s Guide to Getting What You Want: How to be assertive with wit, style and grace
Author: Mary Hartley
Publisher: Watkins Publishing
Release Date: April 22, 2014
Rating: 5/5
The Smart Girl’s Guide to Getting What You Want, is an interesting and practical self-help book for the girl who needs more self-confidence and assertiveness.
Considering that I have never been someone lacking the latter (I always speak my mind, and learned early to fight for what I believe in), it is refreshing to see a book who is attempting to teach exactly that. Not everyone is automatically an assertive person, and often have I seen people with these types of personalities run over by a boss, a relative, a spouse.
This book does a fine job teaching how to overcome that, making sure to distinguish between being aggressive and assertive, which is, in my opinion, important.
This volume contains practical advice such as using tone of voice, posture and body language not only to your advantage, but also to recognize other peoples behavior patterns. Learning how to give and more importantly accept a compliment is another thing rarely taught, but shared here.
Overall I think this book is one of the better and more practical self-help books of late.
If you are in need of more assertiveness, this is the book for you.

Happy Reading!

To have your book reviewed or to take advantage of my experienced translating services (German/English) contact me at @claudiablanton@live.com or via fiverr

Summer Reading List

Stephen King says it best:

“If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.”

Here are some of the books that are on my summer reading list:

Brilliance

1. Brilliance by Marcus Sakey (soon to be a movie)

Breathless For Him

2. Breathless For Him by Sofia Tate (a steamy romance)

The Tenth Chamber

3. The Tenth Chamber by Glenn Cooper (Thriller)

A Smart Girls Guide

4. The Smart Girls Guide To Getting Everything You Want (Self-Improvement)

Taken By Tuesday

5. Taken By Tuesday by Catherine Bybee (another steamy romance)

What are you reading this summer?

 

P.S. It would be interesting to jump into the Master Stephen King’s head for just a day – but on the other hand, this might be a scary place to be, what do you think? This is daily prompt post. 

Here are some other Daily Prompt Bloggers. Give them some love!

http://abozdar.wordpress.com/2014/06/18/ballerina/

http://underthemonkeytree.com/2014/06/18/not-applicable/

http://dragoneystory.wordpress.com/2014/06/18/in-every-candle/

http://dragoneystory.wordpress.com/2013/06/05/this-night/

 

http://tuckedintoacorner.wordpress.com/2014/06/18/famous-for-a-day/

Fearless Girls, Wise Women and Beloved Sisters – A Book Review

Book Review: Fearless Girls

Title: Fearless Girls, Wise Women, & Beloved Sisters

Author: Katherine Ragan

Publisher: Norton

Rating: 5/5 Stars

This collection of short folktales with a strong female lead, creates a charming and necessary addition to the traditional tales, we have been exposed to, and read as children. The lack of female leads in these stories was the reason behind the creation of this Anthology, trying to find stories to tell to her daughter, who showcased the strength, wit and resolve of women and which in turn exposed the lack of these types of stories to her.

As a result she created the book she wanted to read to her daughter. But this book is more then that. It is beyond a children’s book (which it is not written in the style of illustrated children’s editions we are so used to), but rather a reflection of the stories of our ancestors, those stories often forgotten, and suppressed, because it showed the strength, and honor women were given at one point in some societies. If you are interested in Women’s studies, feminism or plainly just want to read something empowering to your daughter, then choose this collection.

Stories contained in this volume are divided by continent, and have in addition many times a small explanation, or elaboration as a side note, which explains the background, adding to the anthropological value of the book.

________________________

Today’s Daily Prompt asked which family member (distant) I would choose to celebrate. I would choose to celebrate the women in my family – not just mothers, all women, our strength, our contribution, our sacrifices, our triumphs.The above book reflects this celebration.

Book Review: The Hypothyroidism Handbook

Book Review: The Hypothyroidism Handbook

Title: The Hypothyroidism Handbook

Author: Lindsey P.

Publisher: Amazon Digital Services

Rating: 1/5

Usually I check the credentials of anyone who writes a book about any disease, with the exceptions of books that speak only about a personal story of overcoming such illness. Lack of credentials would then keep me from reading the book, but out of some reason, I broke my own rules with this one. And the result was as expected.

This book is filled with information that is contradictory, filled with the standard answers that are currently used to cure anything (go gluten free!?), and has some information that is just plain wrong, all presented by a woman who had Thyroid cancer. Mind you, she is not speaking off thyroid cancer in this book, rather Hypothyroidism, which is a completely different disease. Yet, her tone speaks of authority on a subject matter she knows nothing about, and which in turn can lead to serious complications for the person (like me) who actually have the disease.

She mentions nothing of a medical training, nor does she quote any reliable sources with some type of training in the related field. Advising people to drink Green tea is just one example of misleading information. I was told by many doctors, to stay away from caffeine, plus specifically green tea, even more so, when taking medication to treat the problem.

Lesson learned here: If you want alternative advice on aiding you in your illnesses, make sure you check the Authors credentials – people with knowledge in the alternative medical field can aid you tremendously, but not those who have no training, or “picked up” information as they went along. Your health depends on you to do the right thing, and research thoroughly.

 

Theater – A Poem To Honor The Stage

Theater

Chairs
empty still
energy rising quietly
the room fills
slowly

Quiet
exited whispers
echoing against the curtain
red velvet separation
reveals

Actors
heartbeat skips
as the story calls my name
mesmerized I merge
with the stage