Book Review: Odd Thomas by Dean Koontz



And that could be an understatement.

I’ve read eight Koontz’s books so far and I loved this. Really. I will not spoil you about anything, if you have not yet read this series. The story was not the “most-original-story-there-is” but that’s Koontz’s specialty – he turns that “old-story” into something you never thought of.

This is the story of Odd, who was named because of a clerical mistake on his birth certificate. But then his characteristics match his name and so everyone calls him that. He sees dead people. And fortunately, he saw something out of place one fine day and that led to him and the story. (You see how hard I’m trying not to reveal any bit of the story)

He then sets out to possibly save the world, or simply his town with his girlfriend Stormy.

If you have read the book, I don’t know how you managed to think right after reading that ending. The first half of the book had its significance because of the writing and story-telling but the second half hooked me because of the story itself.

The whole concept of Odd writing his own story after it all happened intrigued me. He was the narrator who had experienced everything and now he had the responsibility to accurately narrate the incidents as they were.

I love the way Koontz’s writes his dialogues!! They are the reason I love to read his books so much. If anyone’s out there, who is a fan of dialogues, and I assume you’ve already read any Koontz’s book, PLEASE continue reading his books because they are all different yet alike . The writing is so powerful that I knew I’d love this book when I reached page 3. We should take some tips from him because he sure knows how to grip his audience.

Also because this review is turning into a “rant-plus-appreciation-thing” I’d like to clarify that Dean Koontz’s doesn’t send me money anonymously or dedicates me all his books. I appreciate him and feel the need to promote him to everyone I know and don’t know. It’s my moral duty to let people know of his greatness.*

*Also I do these promotions for free. But I’d die of happiness if he really did anything mentioned above. Not that I want his money. I’ll be happy just receiving all his books. For free, that is.

If you want to buy this book partly because you could imagine me staring at you is didn’t, you this link: Buy Odd Thomas at Amazon.


Book Review- Velocity by Dean Koontz




On the windscreen of his SUV, Billy finds the first note.

He thinks it’s a hoax.

The schoolteacher dies.

The next note reverses the scenario. If Billy takes the note to the police, a mother of two young children will die. If he doesn’t, an unmarried man who won’t be missed much will die…

Billy must think the unthinkable, fast, in an accelerating nightmare. More communications from the killer follow, with ever tighter deadlines. Each is more personal, more confrontational than the last until he is isolated with no one to rely on but himself. Finally he must risk everything to save the intended victims….


The plot started so strong when a person- Billy, leading a boring normal life of bar tending and going home, encounters a weird note stuck on his car. It appears to be a sick joke played by his bartender friend. He ignores the note and the worst happens. Someone actually dies.

The next note, he sits in confusion as his police friend decides to intervene and investigate. Again, a murder. All the evidence points towards Billy although he is innocent.

The story progresses on Billy trying to find out who is actually murdering people and making him the murderer. The plot was what kept me hooked to the book. Koontz’s writing is good, especially the dialogues but this time I had a plot to hook on to. The book went really well till the last, maybe, 50 pages. I enjoyed how the plot twists were unpredictable and I couldn’t guess them.

But when the last 50 so pages came, I was not sure I liked how the story went. The real murderer was close to a revealing and the revealing itself disappointed me somehow. I thought about who could have framed Billy for murders he didn’t do. An enemy? Or someone after him? But Billy had a quiet life and he didn’t know a lot of people.


There were not too many characters. Billy was the ‘one man show’ for the most part. There were other small characters including Lanny- his police friend and person who made an appearance in the middle with a task as instructed by the murderer himself.

Billy was this normal guy who liked things as they were. Any change upset him and I believe that is why he was chosen to go through this entire ordeal. He was continuously challenged and was tested. His patience level was strong but still there were times when he couldn’t take anymore and had a burst of emotion. I agreed with his decisions pretty much every time and he gave me no reason to complain.


I am a huge Koontz’s fan and I have that inherent bias of considering his every book a masterpiece. And since I have read 7 of his novels I pretty much get his writing even more. This was a ‘no-nonsense’ book, with great editing and could make you seated till the very end. The suspense in the way it is written is captivating but I admit the last 50 pages have a little downfall, not in the writing but in the plot itself. It may change things for you, a little.


I would have absolutely loved this book if not for the plot twists in the end and after considering the book as a whole I’d say that I have read better books from him. It would still be in my ‘Top 30 Books of all Time That I Read’. I will give it 3.5 stars.

You’ll like it if:

  • You are a Dean Koontz fan.
  • You like mystery/thriller/suspense genre.
  • You like a fairly decent size book (basically not too small and not too big)
  • Great writing. A huge advantage.
  • You are reading as an enjoyment without really thinking about every small detail there is.

You’ll not like it if:

  • You are not a Dean Koontz fan and this is your first book. I recommend you try his other works first.
  • You don’t like mystery/thriller/suspense genre.
  • You’d rather read a short read. Or an insanely epic book.
  • You are reading because you want to get inside the story. Then I’m sorry the end will disappoint you a bit.

Other books by Dean Koontz that I reviewed:

One Door Away From Heaven by Dean Koontz

The Taking by Dean Koontz

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Book Review – Seeds of Hatred by Christian Nadeau



As a former assassin, a man on the run for years, Marac survived taking on odd jobs, living on society’s fringe, never putting down roots for fear of having to run again. Until he’s hired to steal a trinket from the Brotherhood.
Newly graduated, Soren is ready to shoulder the responsibities that come with an officer’s commission. Serving in the Brotherhood of Khanbis a privilege, one that he abandoned everything for. But when an Angel calls on him, he knows his first assignment is more than it seems to be.
As a Lightbearer, gifted with the power to shape light to her will, Alex lived a sheltered life in Tyranor’s monastery. Should the Brotherhood find out what she was, they’d kill her, but the monastery is underground, safely hidden from their prying eyes.
Then It all comes crashing down. A terrible game is played, and when the powerful move, pawns are doomed to be sacrificed.
Are they?

The story basically revolves around these three people, as mentioned in the book blurb, but it isn’t just limited to that. As the book started I thought- “So only these character’s point of view is used.” And I was wrong.
There are many short paragraphs (basically they’re sections) which change the point of views some times. And they didn’t confuse me at all. Now I haven’t read many fantasy books and I know the struggle to literally get into the book. And the start seems to be the most difficult part because all the characters are getting introduced. (AND THIS BOOK HAD 80+ CHARACTERS) And so when I started reading it flowed smoothly. I understood what was going on. No unnecessary action sequence to throw me off. The whole book was crisp, up to the point and just the best example for why we really should concentrate on editing more.
(The author ‘Christian Nadeau” himself told me that the original draft was 320k words and he edited to make it 180k and still it’s a lot of words.)
So plot wise, I’m impressed. There are like different factions made up – Brotherhood, Lightbearers, Darkbearers, Fey, Thrall, Revenants, etc. And they all had their own reasons to start a war. Some were trying to stop it and some were in favour it. It just was a mix of opinions and egos.
But the book ends in a CLIFFHANGER. I seriously thought the war was going to take place in this book but IT DIDN’T. And it’s okay no hard feelings (though I screamed a little inside because I wanted to KNOW MORE) *deep breaths* And seriously does any war just start like that? No it doesn’t. Hence the book was REALISTIC.

Now this is what I call a ‘strong character’ book. Every character was well thought out. But there was this minor problem. I thought about how the characters, which I repeat were 80+ could have been cut short a little. Because somehow the author named every soldier and every slave and I know it could’ve been hard on him too. But that’s just creative criticism.
I couldn’t actually write about each and every character there is but I can assure it will be like Game of Thrones level characters in a single book (and I haven’t even read Game of Thrones, so don’t quote me on that!)

The writing was sharp and not too much description but just enough to make you know what was really happening. And I can’t just write anything more about it because by now you would’ve known that I love this book! (Not forgetting that it ends in a cliffhanger!) *runs away to sob again*

Overall just because it was huge to read and took me almost 10 days of my life I would give it 5 stars. No. that wasn’t the real reason. The real reason being that I haven’t read a good from a very long time (like 6 months) and reading was a fresh experience for me.

You’ll LIKE it if:

  • You like a fantasy world based novel
  • You like a book with a truck load of characters
  • You like a book that’s well thought
  • You want to really not want to miss out on a great book
  • You want to read a series

You’ll NOT LIKE it if:

  • You want a light read
  • You don’t like too many characters
  • You don’t want to read a series

*The author provided me a copy and it in now way affects what I think and my review*

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Friday Art #16- I made a journal from an old book

I hated a book. I’m not going to take names here so don’t ask. I dislike other books but I hated this one. And I am too connected to books (both as a book with a story written in them and also books as in a collection of page binded together.) And so I couldn’t let the book go. I couldn’t sell it for money which was so much less than it’s actual worth. The time and effort the author took to write it.

And so I decided to just use it. Creatively.

And I decided to make a journal out of it. It is an advantage that I can paint and journal in a bounded book. No need of buying another expensive journal.

So here’s the first thing I painted after I got this idea. Wish me luck!😉

You can track my progress with this journal on my Instagram account: @vrushalipathak

Friday Art #14 – A rose

Hey! I’m starting to post this again.


In other news I started to write my novel again and I plan on finishing it this time. For those of you who don’t know about it, I started writing it in July 2016 but I couldn’t figure out how to continue the story. But I’m back writing it and I’ll probably do a post about it soon.

Till then…

Have a happy Friday!

P.S. Do tell me how do you like the rose!

Book Review- Somewhere in the shallow sea by Dennis Macaraeg



In this suspenseful thriller, two lovers are in a race against all odds in the jungles of the Philippines to save their kidnapped friend.

Somewhere in the shallow sea will test characters’ development in order to outwit the man who is after the scientific compound they brought as ransom.


The whole plot of this book can be summarized in two paragraphs which are given in the book cover blurb. They are so apt for this book and there is nothing extra or that’s not relevant. This is a short, crisp and adventure-filled book.

Two lovers who were separated a few years ago unite again to save a person who is kidnapped by a Philippines local don in exchange for a compound that’s supposed to save the species of fish from extinction.


There are mainly three characters: the two lovers – Danny and Helen and Helen’s cousin and Danny’s best friend, Blake who gets kidnapped.

This is told from Danny’s point of view and I loved that he took the right decisions all the time and anyone could relate to him.

Helen is a strong woman who doesn’t need anyone to take care of her and she is brave enough to travel all around Philippines to find her cousin.


The writing style was what stands out in this novel. His writing was so fluid and the totally complementary to the novel and the story.

There was one thing that requires special mention here. The plot is written and plotted in such a great way. This story requires fast paced adventures where the two main characters travel around the country, taking help from people and arranging the money to be paid as ransom. But the plot is not always fast, it slows down a bit in the middle but the flow isn’t disturbed at all.


You’ll like it if:

  • If you like adventure novels
  • You like well plotted and well-paced novels
  • You are looking for something short and simple yet very complex

You’ll not like it if:

  • You don’t like short reads
  • You don’t like the adventure genre

I’ll give it a 5/5 stars.

*This book was provided to me from the author in exchange for a honest review.*

You can view it on Goodreads and Amazon.


DISCUSSION #2- What is the secret of successful writing?


This is my second discussion post where I ponder upon some questions and I seek the answers from you.

You can check out my first discussion post where I ask you whether you like coincidences in books here. 

This week I am thinking about- What is the secret of successful writing?

We all write something every day, whether be it emails, letters or blog posts. We all have a different writing style, different vocabulary and different tone to write.

Everyone has different writing methods and attitudes. To some writing is a daily chore, and to some it is a deep mysterious art, to others a painful affliction. For some writing flows fast and confidently; others agonise over every word they think of. For some writing is the result of a planned process, a thoughtful process after thinking about every little detail; others think it as a ‘spur of the moment thing’ and jump in heedlessly, leaving the polishing for later. Some write to make a living, some write for enjoyment. Some write from experience, some from imagination and the rest after painfully researching.

There are many professionals and all have their own writing style. That’s what defines them. Many people have different views about how a ‘Successful Writing’ piece should be.

I’m going to see the various types and then we’ll discuss what you think works the most.

Firstly, there are those who need a creative inspiration or a particular mood, like George Eliot, to write effectively. They in times suffer from what is called a ‘writer’s block’. Either the inspiration dries up or they cannot settle down to the tasks, even after getting abundant ideas. To put it another way, the problem is either what to write or how to write.

Others are extremely unromantic about the ‘business of writing’ as they would call it.They work regularly keeping a tight schedule for everyday and following it diligently. They treat creating a literary masterpiece no different than drafting legal contracts or even insurance claims.

Nicholas Monsarrat, author of The Cruel Sea, apparently used to work a regular nine-hour day in his study, starting at 6 a.m. the Italian novelist Alberto Moravia would spend three hours at his writing desk each day, between 7:30 and 10:30 a.m.

Some authors need absolute privacy and silence to concentrate properly. The French novelist Marcel Proust had to seclude himself in a cork-lined room before he could settle into a creative working mood. Others need the daily hustle and bustle of life to inspire their masterpieces.

Some authors write extremely quickly and fluently. Dr Johnson completed his short novel Rasselusin the space of a single week. Balzac could write 200 pages a week when the need arose; so too the French novelist Stendhal. Others could write with excruciating slowness: another great 19-century novelist, Gustave Flaubert, often managed no more than two pages a week- sometimes only a single page. His classic novel Madame Bovary took him five years of painful full-time writing.

Some authors, such as Anthony Burgees or the late A.P.J. Taylor, happily draft original material directly on a typewriter or word processor. Others, such as Roald Dahl and Fay Weldon, Iris Murdoch and Athol Fugard, seem to need the feel of a pencil or pen in the hand, as if there were some mystical connection between the moving hand and the creative mind.

And one more thing, in the great divide between business-like ‘craftsmen’ author and moody ‘artistic’ authors, the everyday writer, in my opinion, should come down on the business-like approach. The creative ‘once-my-mood-gets-better’ writer may produce greater poetry or deeper novels, but in everyday writing it falls flat.

Of all business-like authors, Anthony Trollope’s daily routine remains the best known and the most impressive. For most of his writing life, he had a full-time job as a civil servant with the Post Office and his enormous output of over 60 books was the product of his leisure hours. Along with his busy life, he found 15 to 20 hours a week for his writing. Day after day, year and year, he would sit at his desk between 5:30 and 8:30 in the morning , writing 1000 words an hour after planning each novel thoroughly.

Business-like such authors may be, they are not always without superstitions. Melvyn Bragg insists on writing for a Monday morning writing the first word for a new novel. The 19- century French novelist Honore de Balzac insisted on having an unripe apple on his desk, and Alexandre Dumas, creator of The Three Musketeers, would always write bedsocks while writing whereas Roald Dahl favours large yellow notepads.

So the question is- All these writers differ so widely in their working methods, what guidance can we derive from them?

Perhaps, I think, to take writing seriously, and to work intensely at getting it right- that is expressing your thoughts as clearly and accurately as possible.

What do you think? Do you write fast- or take your time in plotting everything? Do you treat writing as a business or as an art? Do you believe in superstitions while writing? If yes, then do tell!



Book Review – The Black Tattoo by Sam Enthoven



The creature had reared up in its true form, a frozen man-sized explosion of pink custard like stuff. It wobbled and shook. Big bubbles formed and popped on its skin, belching out words.

‘Fresh!’ it burped, ‘Fresh meat! Fresh meat!’

‘Whatever,’ said Jack – and sighed. Yep, he thought.

Gang up on the new guy. In some ways, when it came down to it, Hell was really pretty predictable…


The main story revolves around 3 kids and a demon loose from Hell known as the ‘Scourge’. The story starts with 2 boys Jack and Charlie where Charlie is the dominant one and Jack simply hangs around with him. After a conversation with a mysterious stranger Charlie is chosen to be the leader of a gang that protects the Earth from the Scourge aka the demon from Hell. Now a weird black tattoo comes to life under Charlie’s skin and it is all unknown what it really is.

They both meet Esme, a girl who’s being training her whole life to fight the Scourge (because her father was a fighter too!). And when she comes to know that Charlie is the new leader she is very angry.

The story moves forward and there are many revelations about the story and the characters. At last this is a story about bravery, friendship, good over evil and most importantly how the side character of Jack turns into the hero of the story.


The characters were so awesome and so true! I mean they were all the way they should have been – witty and childish. The character of Jack was the most awesome of them all because he always had these little sarcastic comments that always made me giggle.

Charlie was purely – ugh I can’t even say because that’ll ruin the book for you. Esme was the most graceful fighter of all the female characters of all. She was brave and wasn’t scared of whatever the circumstances were. There are some things I so want to tell you but I can’t! (They are all spoilers!)

And how could I forget the characters of Scourge and God himself! And let me tell you that God really is a kind and sarcastic person! Well portrayed!


The writing style was the most unique of all the books I’ve ever read!

Just look at all the fonts and the things that the author did to make the reader know the alterations in the tone and voice of a certain character.



And also the fighting sequences requires a special mention because they were described so beautifully that it felt like a little movie playing inside my head.


I would happily give this 5/5 stars. Sometimes I think I’m giving too many stars to book but they’re all such a little thing of happiness that I can’t even..

You’ll like it if:

  • You like a little action in books
  • You want to read more about the concept of Heaven and Hell

You’ll not like it if:

  • You don’t like books with a little action in them
  • You don’t like children as main characters

Book Review- Second Spring by Sandhya Jane



This is Avantika’s heartfelt journey through love and life…

As a smart, successful, thirty-eight-year-old single mother, Avantika seemingly has it all: a great career as a seasoned banking professional, respect and admiration from her peers as an able leader, fulfillment as a mother, and so many other things.

What is it, then, that drives her towards Rohan, a man six years her junior? He’s a man who ideally would not occupy much room in Avantiks’s otherwise sorted mind space.

She has told herself she has no time fore love. Then, why does she make the choices she makes? Is it the sameness and banality of everyday existence? Is it the emotional vacuum? A need to relive life? A feeling that life as she truly lived and felt is passing her by?

However, as she struggles with her feelings, Avantika and Rohan part ways…only yo meet again. To what end? Why does Rohan want her back..and why now? So many questions! Very few answers!

Avantika’s journey is as spiritual as it is emotional. Can love give second chances? Join Avantika in the twists and turns of her story, through her ponderings over the mysteries and vagaries of the word “love”, the complexities of human relationships, and the reassessment of all the values she had held dear…


The basic plot of the story is the stereotypical relationship of a older woman and a younger man. In India, it is seen to be not acceptable and hence the inner turmoils of Avantika, both as a mother and as a thinker of what the society will think, is portrayed beautifully. When I read the book I found myself in the shoes of Avantika and I thought about what a girl should do in these circumstances. It made me think about things that I don’t usually think. This as a awesome job in the ‘story’ department.


The book skips between the point of view of Avantika and Rohan an both the characters were written very well. I could read and know which character was telling there side of story because the character’s voice were up to the point.

I liked Rohan from the start because he was a caring and good natured (did I mentioned very good looking?) person and he almost did the correct things for all the right reasons. I almost thought his decisions in the novel were correct and anyone would have done the same thing.

Whereas Avantika,  especially in the second half of the book lost somewhere. I connected with her in the first half well and good but as the second half started I felt like she was doing so many things wrong. Like for example (This is not a spoiler because I’m just mentioning the book cover blurb here) when Rohan and Avantika part ways, Avantika becomes an almost ascetic as she turns into this spiritual person which really seems awkward. Not because I didn’t want her to be spiritual or I have any hate for the people who are ascetics but because the turn as so fast that I didn’t really believed it.

Sure, the author hinted on her being a spiritual person from the beginning but the whole concept just didn’t please me.


The writing style was good for this novel. With simple words used the author did a good job with the different character voices. The dialogues were so swoon-worthy and I wanted more of the dialogues between the main characters without them being shy most of the time (I get it, they were shy but I wanted them to talk more too!)

Also the ending!!! OHMYFJFHVJ!! What was that! I’m trying really hard not to give any spoilers but what was that? I swear I didn’t see that coming in ages! And that made me happy because half the time I predict what’s going to happen in the books and I’m left getting disappointed because I guessed it. But reading this book ending was like walking into a wall straight on. I had to reread the lines again and again because I literally thought I was dreaming! And IU imagined the author smiling at me and saying “Nope. You’re not dreaming, my girl. You just had a book attack*. And you’ll be fine soon.**”


*I invented this word. It is a mix of a heart attack because of a book. TADDDAAA! Book attack!

**This translates to- “No you’ll never be fine. You’ll spend days thinking about this and then you’ll probably faint after thinking about it some more.”


You’ll like it if:

  • 1) You enjoy a light romance
  • 2) You are looking for a short novel with an emotion of feels
  • 3) You are looking for an adventure. Then I’ll suggest you read this. Probably better to read the ending than go bungee jumping!

You’ll not like it if:

  • 1) If you prefer a serious read
  • 2) If you don’t like romance
  • 3) If you have a weak heart because that ENDING!!


Book Review- Hart Broken (#1) by Annie Arcane [The Best Romantic Book Ever!!]



Mickey Hart doesn’t do one-night stands. Until she wakes up in a luxury penthouse. With nothing but a t-shirt. And no idea who it belongs to.

Enter Cale Windermere. Driven. Ambitious. Successful. And so gorgeous he could’ve walked straight out of a romance novel…

Except I can’t walk.

Not that it ever stops me from getting what I want.

And I want her.

Even if she’s keeping secrets.

That could tear me to f*cking shreds.


First of let me tell you, you would not expect the story to be what it is. I thought of this as a “bad-boy-good-girl” story in which the bad boy is on a wheelchair. But oh no no…you don’t want to underestimate the story. As soon as the story starts I have a clear view of what is going on and who is who.

There are two main characters (there will be as it is a romantic story so..) Cale and Mickey. Mickey finds herself in someone’s bed but she doesn’t know where she is but then it turns out to be the most unexpected place- a condo of a very rich handsome man named Cale. I loved him! And that’s probably an understatement. He is such a gentleman and absolutely not a bad boy and after reading this I thought about how boring it is to read about main characters as bad boys. They should be courteous and just good at heart. His introduction is also epic (Haha!)

“Cale Windermere.”, he said, sticking out his hand.


“Yeah. Like the leafy green, just take off the K and replace with a C.”

Then we meet Mickey who is a simple girl who has some problems. (Don’t wait for more I’m not going to tell any spoilers. Go read the book!) And the author Annie Arcane wrote in an interview that the character of Mickey is exactly like her. And after reading this I too think that she is like me. I too have that problem (Hint: It’s not a disease. It’s just is a thing. I really don’t want to give any spoilers) And the story revolves around how they both overcome their own problems- Cale’s accident which leaves him on the wheelchair and Mickey’s problem.


The characters are the best thing that happened with this book. I mean it! The characters are so real that after the book all I wanted to do was have all the characters as my friends (except Ashley. Those who have read this book will know why.)

I’ve already told you about Mickey and Cale. Melinda, or Mel is Mickey’s best friend and so sweet and her boyfriend Jason is so funny! Both Mel and Mickey are always making him work so much!

There are more characters which just add good things to the book.


Now talking about the writing style is what is making me smile here. The writing is so sarcastic and witty and hilarious. The book shifts between the point of views of Mickey and Cale and I enjoyed them both so much. God, I can’t stop gushing about Cale. And Annie Arcane wrote the struggles and problems of a wheelchair-bound person so correctly that half the time I was feeling so bad for Cale.

The best thing about this book are the dialogues. I always stress upon the importance of dialogues in any fiction book. Give me a bad story but just make the dialogues so awesome that I may not be able to put it down and this was just exactly I would’ve wanted.


You’ll like it if:

  • If you’re a human and if you’re not welcome on the Earth, Mr. Alien!
  • If you want another Book Boyfriend to top your list!
  • If you’re a romance book lover and you want another book to devour
  • If you’re not a romance lover, you’ll love this (see me!)


You’ll not like it if:

  • As I said you’re not human
  • If you don’t read then I think there is no chance to make you read (though I’ll try my best to make you read till you cry and finally read it and then we’ll cry together for different reasons altogether. ;P

And after all this if you have to think about what I’m going to rate it then…

So I’m going to give it…

*drum roll please*

5/5 stars!!!

A special mention:

I normally don’t do this but this is a special case. The author Annie Arcane requested to read this book and even if I was reluctant at first to even read it (because it is a romance novel and I don’t normally do romantic!) but I’m so so glad I accepted it and here I am constantly thinking about the book (Cale to be more specific!) And the I loved the author both as a writer and even more as a person. She’s so funny even in real life and I couldn’t contain myself not to email her about every little thing. And she was more than kind to reply to every one of them.

And I think when a book is so good, you try to make people read it and want that be such a successful book. And so this is the first time that I’m doing this and I hope that this continues in future as well, I going to recommend this to everyone and I really really hope that you read it. If you love reading give this book and the author a little love and appreciation.