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Sunday, February 24

Sunday Post / It's Monday What Are You Reading?

Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimberly @  Caffeinated Book Reviewer!

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly meme hosted by The Book Date.


Good Morning, Everyone!


What Am I Currently Reading?

Last week wasn't a good week for me; well, at least it was a bad week for reading. I've only had time to read a few pages in the thriller The Lost Night by Andrea Bratz. I do like what little I have read so far. I spent the majority of my free time boxing more my grandmother's belongings from her apartment this week. The storage unit wasn't available until Friday afternoon. It's a little smaller than what I thought it would be, but it'll have to do for now. Despite the freezing rain yesterday, we (my mother & me) did get all of the bookshelves and all of the boxed "fragile" items into storage. The weather is supposed to be better today, so we're planning on moving all of the furniture today. We borrowed a dolly from a relative and we have another relative who is going to help. Plus, my dad will be helping as well. He would've helped yesterday, but with all the boxes in the way only two people can maneuver inside my grandma's apartment. If there's time this afternoon, we're going to move a cabinet/bookshelf, nightstand, a magazine rack, and a small shelf to my grandma's room at the nursing home.

I hate this cold weather! I've been sick most of the week with another cold and sore throat. And to top it off, I now have a cold sore! So, I'm guessing being in and out and of the rain yesterday didn't help me any. I'm temporary back on caffeine! And, no, this isn't the reason why I have a cold sore. I already had it before I added the caffeine back into my life. I'm overexerting myself and I need an extra boost from caffeine to get me through this weekend. Once we get my grandma's stuff out of her apartment, then I can relax and switch back to decaf.

UPDATE: Just a few minutes after posting this, I was informed my grandmother either had a seizure or a light stroke earlier this morning. She's prone to seizures (or what she refers as "spells"), but hasn't had one in very long time.

UPDATE: It was a light seizure. Grandma seems to be doing alright!


UPDATE (6:50 PM): A little update on my grandmother. She was a bit loopy after her seizure, so they ended up sending her to a hospital in the city. The doctors think her seizure medicine was too high of a doze and caused the seizure. She might be released back the nursing home sometime tomorrow. On a side note, we moved all of my grandma's furniture to the storage unit. However, we didn't take the tall bookshelf, nightstand, or magazine rack to the nursing home since my grandmother wasn't there at the time. So the plan is take the furniture to her room on Tuesday. There's a few things left in her apartment that we'll pick up tomorrow. Then we'll clean the apartment on Wednesday.

UPDATE (Monday 11:30 PM): My grandma is still in the hospital. She had a cold at the end of the last week. She had a fever today and a really bad cough. After a few tests, she has been diagnosed with pneumonia! She will be in the hospital for awhile. If everything goes as planned, I'll be visiting her on Thursday. As for my grandmother's apartment, we finished moving everything out of it today; though we didn't take any furniture to her nursing home room. Instead we put everything in storage for the time being. 


UPDATE (Wednesday): If everything goes as planned, my grandmother will be released from the hospital sometime tomorrow.

 

Last Week's Reviews

The Passage
(Winter Reads)

The Restoration Series: Jonathan's Walk
(Web Series Review)

In the Mail

Friday, February 22

Book Blogger Hop: February 22nd - 28th





Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML


Welcome to the Book Blogger Hop! 


If you want to schedule next week's post, click here to find the next prompt question. To submit a question, fill out this form.

The Book Blogger Hop now has its own Facebook Group! Please join the group to get all the newest Book Blogger Hop updates. Also, you can communicate with your fellow book bloggers in the group.

What To Do


1. Post on your blog answering this question:


This week's question is submitted by Angelica @ Paperback Princess.


2. Enter the link to your post in the linky list below. Please enter your Name/Nickname @ Blog Name and the direct link to your post answering this week’s question. Here's an example: Billy @ Coffee Addicted Writer

3. Visit other blogs in the list and comment on their posts. Try to spend some time on the blogs reading a few posts and possible become a new follower. The purpose of the hop is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.

The Friday 56: The Lost Night



Rules

Grab a book, any book.
Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader.
Find any sentence, (or few, just don't spoil it).
Post it.
 Add your (url) post below in the Linky at: www.fredasvoice.com
Add the post url, not your blog url.


A chronic friend-defector. I'd noticed it as well but had thought- hoped - she was like me, floundering through her early social life until the right people, the right friendships, appeared.

page 56, The Lost Night by Andrea Bartz

  My Thoughts

Wednesday, February 20

Web Series Review: The Restoration Series: Jonathan's Walk


Available today to stream is brand-new 5-part documentary series "The Restoration Series: Jonathan's Walk." Presented by Prison Fellowship, "The Restoration Series," follows the lives of men and women who have been part of the in-prison program, The Academy, which tackles recidivism - the tendency of a criminal to reoffend.


"Jonathan's Walk" centers around Jonathan, a man who has spent the last 15 years in prison. He's now getting ready to be released on parole and reenter society. During his time in prison, Jonathan has missed out on many family milestones, including his daughter's first day of school, so, of course he has been looking forward to leaving prison. 

Transition back into the community isn't an easy thing to accomplish, so the odds are against Jonathan. Over half of ex-prisoners end up returning to prison within two years of their release. With his wife by his side, Jonathan is determined to become a better man.

You can signup and watch the series at: www.prisonfellowship.org/restorationseries


Final Thoughts

Tuesday, February 19

Winter Reads: The Passage


AMAZON
I hardly ever watch network television anymore. Most of the scripted series are almost unbearable to watch, and the ones I do find interesting are most likely to be cancelled quickly.
Nevertheless, I've have been watching the new FOX vampire series The Passage, which is based on the trilogy by Justin Cronin. After watching the first few episodes, I ended up purchasing The Passage paperback at my local Walmart store, which has a new art cover to tie-in with the television series.

Published in 2010 by Ballantine Books, The Passage is a massive read at over 800 pages and is broken into 11 parts, with the first two parts being set before & during the vampire virus outbreak, and the rest of the novel is set 93 years after the apocalypse.

The beginning plot centers around the government's secret project known as "Project Noah," where they have been experimenting on a new drug that will prolong life. All the test subjects have been death row inmates, who have been transported from prisons to a Colorado military compound. The experiments began with "patient zero," Tim Fanning, who was infected by a Bolivian bat carrying an unknown virus.

Brad Wolgast is one of the FBI special agents assigned to locate and transport the test subjects to the military compound. It's not an easy job, but Wolgast has never had a problem completing an assignment. Well, that is until he's assigned to transport a six-year-old orphan, Amy Bellafonte, who will become youngest test subject in the experiment. Unlike the other test subjects, the virus doesn't consume Amy, but instead it gives her telekinetic powers and immortality. Against orders, Wolgast takes it upon himself to protect Amy.

Fast-forward 93 years into the future, the plot shifts to an isolated, walled California colony. The people there are shocked when a now fifteen-year-old Amy arrives and leads an expedition to the colony in Colorado, where she must face her past.

Final Thoughts

Sunday, February 17

Sunday Post / It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimberly @  Caffeinated Book Reviewer!

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly meme hosted by The Book Date.


Good Afternoon, Everyone!

I took a slight break from writing reviews last week, but I should be returning to the world of blogging this week with several planned reviews. When I say planned, it means I haven't written them yet! 

Thanks to the bad weather last week, we didn't get any more packing done at my grandma's apartment, except for the little bit we did yesterday afternoon. We're at a point where's there's no more room to stack boxes. My aunt did get a storage unit, but it won't be available until maybe Wednesday.

What Am I Currently Reading?

Thanks to a snowstorm, I had the extra time to finish reading The Passage, as well as its sequel The Twelve and The City of Mirrors by Justin Cronin. I'll be posting reviews for them sometime this week. As for my next read, it'll be the thriller The Lost Night by Andrea Bratz.

 

Last Week's Reviews

Bohemian Rhapsody
(Blu-ray Review)

In the Mail

Saturday, February 16

Blu-ray Review: Bohemian Rhapsody


AMAZON
Now available to purchase on Blu-ray (as well as 4K Ultra HD and DVD) is the award-winning blockbuster Bohemian Rhapsody (PG-13; 135 minutes), which is a biography of the rock band Queen and their lead singer Freddie Mercury (played by Rami Malek).

Along with Rami Malek, the rest of the cast includes Lucy Boynton, Gwilym Lee, Ben Hardy, Joe Mazzello, Aidan Gillen, Allen Leech, Tom Hollander, and Mike Myers.

Queen is one of the most popular rock bands who had dozens of #1 hits, including We Will Rock You, Another One Bites The Dust, Bohemian Rhapsody, Hammer To Fall, and Radio Ga Ga. The band consisted of vocalist Freddy Mercury, lead guitarist Brian May, bass guitarist John Deacon, and drummer Roger Taylor.

Bohemian Rhapsody mostly centers around Farrokh Bulsara (later known as Freddie Mercury), a young college student who forms a band called Queen with former Smile band members Brian May and Roger Taylor (played by Gwilym Lee and Ben Hardy). Later, they hired John Deacon (played by Joe Mazzello) as the bass guitarist; though this event is never shown in the film.

Basically the film chronicles the band's rise to stardom, their breakup (which never occurred in reality), and lastly their reunion at the 1985 Live Aid at Wembley Stadium.

Blu-ray Special Features:
  • The Complete Live Aid Movie Performance Not Seen in Theaters
  • Rami Malek: Becoming Freddie
  • The Look and Sound of Queen
  • Recreating Live Aid 


Final Thoughts

Friday, February 15

Book Blogger Hop: February 15th - 21st





Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML


Welcome to the Book Blogger Hop! 


If you want to schedule next week's post, click here to find the next prompt question. To submit a question, fill out this form.

The Book Blogger Hop now has its own Facebook Group! Please join the group to get all the newest Book Blogger Hop updates. Also, you can communicate with your fellow book bloggers in the group.

What To Do


1. Post on your blog answering this question:


This week's question is submitted by Danielle @PoetryBooksYA.


2. Enter the link to your post in the linky list below. Please enter your Name/Nickname @ Blog Name and the direct link to your post answering this week’s question. Here's an example: Billy @ Coffee Addicted Writer

3. Visit other blogs in the list and comment on their posts. Try to spend some time on the blogs reading a few posts and possible become a new follower. The purpose of the hop is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.

The Friday 56: The City of Mirrors



Rules

Grab a book, any book.
Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader.
Find any sentence, (or few, just don't spoil it).
Post it.
 Add your (url) post below in the Linky at: www.fredasvoice.com
Add the post url, not your blog url.

Peter knew a half-truth when he heard one. On the other hand, Sanchez's approach was so carefully laid he couldn't help but admire it.

page 56, The City of Mirrors by Justin Crown

  My Thoughts

Thursday, February 14

Improving Healthcare Quality



When I hear the words "artificial intelligence," I think of Skynet from the Terminator movies. I know what you're thinking, and, yes, I'm well aware that it's just science fiction and not real life.

Why do I have artificial intelligence on my mind?

As many of my reader already know, recently I had a family emergency involving my grandmother. Well, actually there were two emergencies to more precise! So my family has had to deal with hospitals and now a nursing home, which has lead me to learn more about healthcare.

Believe it or not hospitals now have the ability to use artificial intelligence, such as QuartzClinical, which is a cloud-based healthcare data analytics platform. This type of artificial intelligence uses big data to help monitor hospital performances. Overtime, machine learning can help hospitals lower costs while providing excellent quality healthcare to their patients.

Sunday, February 10

Sunday Post / It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimberly @  Caffeinated Book Reviewer!

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly meme hosted by The Book Date.


Good Evening, Everyone!


This past week sucked!!! The weather has been horrible with a few ice storms. Just as my cold/sore throat was finally gone, I caught the flu bug. The only good news is that I finally got some much needed sleep; many thanks to my electric blanket.

My grandma fell again a few days ago. Instead of using the call button to get help, she decided to scoot herself to the foot of the bed, where she slipped off and fell to the floor. She was taken to the medical clinic for an x-ray. Nothing is broken, but she does have a pulled muscle in her leg. Due to the weather nobody could get to the nursing home this week, so she was a little upset today (Saturday) at us. My mother told her to stay in the wheelchair! Don't get up! Use the call button for help! Then my grandmother tried to change the subject, which is a bad habit of hers for the last six months or so. I spent most of today (Saturday) helping my mother box up some of my grandma's things. We'll be there again tomorrow, but I don't know how much packing we can get done as we're running out of boxes. My aunt is supposed to be getting the storage unit on Tuesday.

What Am I Currently Reading?

I'm taking a guess that I'm still reading The Passage by Justin Crown. Remember, I'm writing this on post on Saturday at about 5 o'clock in the evening and I'm currently on page 387. At the rate I've been reading, I might have this book read by Sunday morning or somewhere close to it. Then I'll start reading The Twelve and The City of Mirrors, which both are under 600 pages with bigger print.

 

Last Week's Reviews

Self-Discipline
(Audio Reads)


The Making of Mrs. Hale
(Winter Reads)

Lonesome Dove
(DVD Review)

In the Mail

Saturday, February 9

DVD Review: Lonesome Dove


MILL CREEK ENT. * AMAZON
Thanks to an ice storm, I had nothing better to do in last two days than to watch the miniseries Lonesome Dove (6 hours 13 minutes; $14.98), which will be re-released on a 2-disc DVD from Mill Creek Entertainment on February 19th.

The 1989 miniseries is based on the novel of the same name by Larry McMurtry, which was inspired by failed movie script McMurtry had co-wrote with Peter Bogdanovich that originally attended to star John Wayne, Henry Fonda, and James Stewart. Of course the "film version" never occurred resulting in McMurtry writing the novel, which was published in 1985. William D. Wittliff adapted the book for television with Simon Wincer in the director's chair.

The miniseries' cast includes Robert Duvall, Tommy Lee Jones, Diane Lane, Danny Glover, Robert Urich, Diane Lane, Anjelica Houston, Steve Buscemi, Tim Scott, D.B. Sweeney, Rick Schroder, Chris Cooper, and Frederic Forrest.

Lonesome Dove centers around two former Texas Rangers, Gus McCrae and Woodrow Call (played by Duvall and Lee), leading a cattle drive from Lonesome Dove, Texas to Montana. Along for the ride with them is Jake Spoon (played by Urich), an ex-Texas Ranger; Lorena Wood (played by Lane), a prostitute trying to escape to a better life; Joshua Deets (played by Glover), a former Texas Ranger scout; Pea Eye Parker (played by Scott), another ex-Texas Ranger; Newt Dobbs (played by Schroder), Call's illegitimate son; and Dishwater Boggett (played by Sweeney), the ramrod of the trail herd.


Final Thoughts

Friday, February 8

Book Blogger Hop: February 8th - 14th





Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML


Welcome to the Book Blogger Hop! 


If you want to schedule next week's post, click here to find the next prompt question. To submit a question, fill out this form.

The Book Blogger Hop now has its own Facebook Group! Please join the group to get all the newest Book Blogger Hop updates. Also, you can communicate with your fellow book bloggers in the group.

What To Do


1. Post on your blog answering this question:


This week's question is submitted by Elizabeth @ Silver's Review.


2. Enter the link to your post in the linky list below. Please enter your Name/Nickname @ Blog Name and the direct link to your post answering this week’s question. Here's an example: Billy @ Coffee Addicted Writer

3. Visit other blogs in the list and comment on their posts. Try to spend some time on the blogs reading a few posts and possible become a new follower. The purpose of the hop is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.

The Friday 56: The Passage



Rules

Grab a book, any book.
Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader.
Find any sentence, (or few, just don't spoil it).
Post it.
 Add your (url) post below in the Linky at: www.fredasvoice.com
Add the post url, not your blog url.


The girl's clothing and pack had gone into the fire; but not before the Household, wearing heavy gloves, had examined the meager, blood-soaked contents.

page 456, The Passage by Justin Crown

  My Thoughts

Thursday, February 7

Winter Reads: The Making of Mrs. Hale by Carolyn Miller


AMAZON
Originally, I had read The Making of Mrs. Hale by Carolyn Miller in early December, but due to a family emergency involving my grandmother and dealing with everything Christmas, I had completely forgotten what the book was actually about when it came time for me to write my review for it. I ended up rereading it last week, so I could refresh my memory.

The Making of Mrs. Hale (a.k.a. - the third book in the Regency Brides: A Promise of Hope) centers around Julia Winthrop, a young woman who had ran off and married Thomas Hale eighteen months ago. I guess you can say her marriage hasn't been a "happily ever after" one, as her husband is never around. Actually, Thomas seems to be missing!

Julia's husband has disappeared and she has no idea what has happened to him. Believing she's carrying his child, she has no other choice but to to return home to her family, who she had betrayed by eloping with Thomas in the first place. Of course her family wants her to divorce him right away, but Julia is still deeply in love with Thomas and hopes he will return to her.

Final Thoughts

Wednesday, February 6

Midnight Horror Review: Hostel & Hostel Part II: Horror Double Feature


MILL CREEK ENT. * AMAZON
I watch many different genres of horror including the controversial "torture porn," which is what modern "splatter films" are now called. The 2005 film Hostel was the first to be labeled "torture porn," though the new genre trend really started in 2004 with the original Saw. These types of films rely less on horror and more on gore.

Yesterday, Mill Creek Entertainment released the Horror Double Feature Blu-ray + DVD set ($14.98) featuring the director's  cut of Hostel and its sequel Hostel Part II (unrated director's cut). The only special feature on the two-disc set is an "Alternate Director's Cut Ending," which is only included on the DVD.

Presented by Quentin Tarantino and directed by Eli Roth, Hostel (2005; 94 minutes) centers on two American tourist, Paxton and Josh, (played by Jay Hernandez and Derek Richardson) backpacking across Europe with their Icelandic pal Óli (played by Eyþór Guðjónsson). They travel to Amsterdam, where the trio have only have two things on their minds - parting and women. Shortly after arriving, they are told if they want to have a good time, then they need to go to the hostel in Slovakia, which is exactly what they do. Unfortunately, that was their biggest mistake. Unknowingly to them, Slovakia is home to a secret elite hunting group, where tourist are kidnapped and are given to the rich to be tortured to death.


Eli Roth returned to write and direct Hostel Part II (2007; 95 minutes). The sequel centers on three American art students, Beth, Whitney, and Lorna (played by Lauren German, Bijou Phillips, and Heather Matarazzo) traveling to Slovakia for a vacation, but shortly upon arriving they are kidnapped the same "hunting" group from the first movie and are sold off to be tortured by the wealthy.

Final Thoughts

Tuesday, February 5

ROACAW's State of the Union 2019


I don't know if this is going to be annual thing, but I thought it would be a bit of fun if I did my own State of the Union post for all my fellow readers.

As may of you already know, I no long participate in blog tours posts, such as book spotlights and cover reveals. I was assigned too many of these kinds of posts in 2018, which resulted in my reviews being shoved off of the homepage. Plus, setting up and reformatting all those spotlights was pain in the neck for me. I say, "Good Riddance!" However, don't worry, I'm still going to be signing up for the occasional book blog review tour.

Since I don't have to spend time every day working on "spotlights," I'll now have free time to start reading the books in my personal to-be-read pile. I'm finally going to finish reading Outlander by Dina Gabaldon. I had started reading it a few years ago, but I got sidetracked by other books that needed to reviewed and I never got around to finishing it. While my bookmark is still in place, I'll probably start at the very beginning. Then I'm going to read Dragonfly in Amber, Drums of Autumn, Voyager, The Fiery Cross, A Breath of Snow and Ash, An Echo in the Bone, and Written in My own Heart's Blood. My goal is to read all the books before the fifth season of the television series begins.


Monday, February 4

Audio Reads: Self-Discipline by George Pain




We could all use a bit more self-discipline in our lives.

Last year was extremely stressful for me for many reasons, and my procrastination issues didn't help any; which resulted in many late reviews and posts on this very blog.

Over the weekend, I spent an hour listening to the Self-Discipline ($3.95) by George Pain, which is basically a self-help audiobook narrated by Giles Miller.

In this 60-minute audiobook, where you will learn about the following:
  • Cognitive Principles of Behavior
  • What is a Habit Loop?
  • Replacing Habits in a Habit Loop
  • The power of delayed gratification.
  • Understanding the Psychology of Procrastination
  • Utilizing Habit Pyramids with Examples
  • Areas to Apply Self Discipline

Self-Discipline can be purchased at: https://www.audible.com/pd/Self-Discipline-Volume-1-Audiobook/B074KLCWG8

Final Thoughts

Sunday, February 3

Sunday Post / It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimberly @  Caffeinated Book Reviewer!

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly meme hosted by The Book Date.


Good Evening, Everyone!



What Am I Currently Reading?

My reading plans for last week didn't go as planned. I just started reading The Passage a few days ago and I'm still reading the anthology Flight or Fright. However, I did read the eBook The Curse of Misty Wayfair by Jamie Jo Wright. Then I went back and reread The Making of Mrs. Hale by Carolyn Miller, which I had originally read in early December. When I went to write the review for it, I couldn't remember anything about it. With everything that was going on in December, I guess my mind wasn't really focused on the story. I will be writing my reviews for the eBooks in the next few days. My plan for this week is to finish reading both The Passage and Flight or Fright, and then begin reading The Twelve (book two in the Passage trilogy).

 

Last Week's Reviews

The Silhouette Girl
(Winter Reads)

Halloween (2018)
(Midnight Horror Review)


In the Mail

Friday, February 1

Book Blogger Hop: Feb. 1st - 7th





Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML


Welcome to the Book Blogger Hop! 


If you want to schedule next week's post, click here to find the next prompt question. To submit a question, fill out this form.

The Book Blogger Hop now has its own Facebook Group! Please join the group to get all the newest Book Blogger Hop updates. Also, you can communicate with your fellow book bloggers in the group.

What To Do

1. Post on your blog answering this question:


This week's question is submitted by Angelica @ Paperback Princess
.

2. Enter the link to your post in the linky list below. Please enter your Name/Nickname @ Blog Name and the direct link to your post answering this week’s question. Here's an example: Billy @ Coffee Addicted Writer

3. Visit other blogs in the list and comment on their posts. Try to spend some time on the blogs reading a few posts and possible become a new follower. The purpose of the hop is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.