Interviews

Fake Interview: Beth

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Hello everybody, I have another character from a book for you today, I hope she is aware she isn’t real, could get awkward real fast.  I would like to welcome Beth to this interview, she featured in a brill book I recently read called Jane by Riya Anne Polcastro and she will be featuring in an upcoming book called Dentata. 

Q1. Hello Beth, how are you doing?  Could you tell us a bit about yourself?

I’m doing fantastic, really fantastic. I’m so happy to be here! About myself . . . that’s so hard! Let’s see, I grew up in a small town in Oregon. The kind where they still expect you to marry your high school sweetheart and pop out some babies. My high school boyfriend was a terrible person and then I fell in love with a girl so that obviously wasn’t going to work for me. Turns out she was also a terrible person too since she started cheating and left me within a month of our wedding. So I’m really kind of heartbroken right now. I just need some acceptance—acceptance and love. Even if it’s just platonic love. Platonic love sounds real good right now actually. Wow! That was depressing! How about something a little more upbeat. Oh I know, I love to scrap book! Yeah really! Why are you rolling your eyes? Some of those supplies will come in handy in Dentata, just saying.

Q2. You are part of the “Circle” in the book Jane.  Could you give a run down of the other members and what you think of them?

Well first there’s Julia. She is my best friend! And such a strong, strong woman. I can’t imagine going through half the stuff she’s been through. But she just keeps on keeping on, just keeps pushing forward. I guess you could say I admire her. Yeah, yeah, I do look up to her, for sure. Angela is hilarious. She does great impressions. And she’s super loyal. Jane I’m not as sure about. She’s still friends with my ex-wife, which just, you know, well I don’t like it anyway. Katrina is a lot of fun. A lot of fun! Something may or may not have happened between us at some point, I’m not at liberty to say. Cherry shouldn’t even be anywhere near us, to be honest. You know she’s not even 18 right? What are we thinking? But she’s a lot of fun. And she’s definitely mature for her age.

Q3.  What is the most outrageous thing you have done so far?

Oh wow, that’s a hard one too. My life has really amped up since The Circle. A lot of sex. A lot of threesomes! A lot of alcohol. And a lot of drugs. And I’m probably the tamest one of all! Well except maybe Cherry, we don’t let her do drugs. I guess that is probably the most outrageous thing I’ve done—falling for Cherry. At least for now. The absolute most outrageous doesn’t happen until Dentata, so I won’t put any spoilers out there, but I am about to take it to a fucked up new level.

Q4.  Seeing as you are a character in a book, if you could jump ship and join another book which would you choose and how would you alter the story?

Hmmmm Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina. Yeah. I would swoop in and steal Anna’s affections. Vronsky wouldn’t have a chance to ruin her life, and she would be free of her stodgy old husband. And she would be so happy with me! I would treat her like such a queen, we would raise Seryozha together, and that terrible ending would never happen. We would live happily ever after instead!

Q5. Here’s a question from Abbygayle, aged 7,  from Upper Twatton. “I loved reading about you in Jane, my mum said it wasn’t appropriate for a 7 year old but I said “Whatever”. My favourite movie is Frozen and I was wanting to build a snowman but it never snows where I live, have you ever built one and do you have a picture of it for me?

I’ve built tons of snowmen Abbie, how did you know?! It’s one of my favourite things to do! I’m sorry I don’t have a picture for you though. But maybe we can build a snowman together if I am ever in Upper Twatton. Does it snow a lot there?

(Abbygayle) “It has never snowed in Upper Twatton, the lucky people in Lower Twatton get all the snow…all year round, imagine that! I could build a snow army there.

Q6. If you were to join a dating site who would be the perfect partner for you?

Let’s see, she’d probably be average height, on the thin side. Funny. She’s got to be funny! And athletic. And good with tools so she can fix stuff around the house. She has to get along with my friends and not be all judgy judgy like everyone I grew up around. Maybe if she could also be a man so that my family would accept her. I don’t want a man though, so if she could just appear as a man to them somehow . . . What? You said perfect, you didn’t say anything about plausible right?

Q7. Could you give the readers a book recommendation to sit on our fake library?

Caramelo by Sandra Cisneros. It’s the kind of book that transports you into its world, wraps you in the story’s culture, and just brings you face to face with humanity and human motivation and the strange dynamics of families and how messed up and awesome life can be at the same time.

Q8.  When there is nobody reading a book that you are in what do you do in your downtime?

You mean there isn’t always someone reading a book I am in? That’s disappointing! Maybe I should find a more popular author to tell my story. Really though, it doesn’t seem like I have much downtime. This Polcastro chick has me running laps with Dentata coming out this summer. I already mentioned scrap booking right? Right, yeah. Well I love it. I just love crafty stuff in general. I like to party too. Got that from The Circle. Some gin and juice, maybe a couple of lines, a bowl or two. That’s my perfect night right there. It used to be leading youth group in worship and prayer. Funny how much I’ve changed already, and how much more I am about to. 

Q9.  Describe the perfect meal.  Include food, setting and company.

The perfect meal is definitely a picnic. It would start with brie and prosciutto and crackers. Oh and grapes. A little champagne. It would be just me and Sami, in a meadow full of wildflowers. She will have realized the error of her ways and come grovelling back to me. For our entrée we would have cucumber sandwiches and macaroni salad and big old slices of watermelons. Then, for dessert, chocolate covered strawberries and more champagne. Sami would feed me the strawberries and then she would kiss me. I would melt into her and we would make sweet, sweet love right there in the meadow. 

Q10.  It’s the Trump question that I always leave to the end.  What would you do if you ever met him?

*Sigh. I would ask him why he has so much hate in his heart. Another *sigh. That’s really a better question for Jane. She’d probably do like that woman at the Tim Horton’s in Langley and take a dump, scoop it up with her bare hand, and throw it at him. I couldn’t do that though. I kind of wish I could, but I wouldn’t be able to.

I would like to thank Riya Anne Polcastro for playing the part of Beth.  You can see my review of Jane HERE. You can also find the author on Twitter and check out her Website.  

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Book Reviews

Sightlines by Kathleen Jamie

13818573What da cover says:  The outer world flew open like a door, and I wondered—what is it that we’re just not seeing? In this greatly anticipated sequel to Findings, prize-winning poet and renowned nature writer Kathleen Jamie takes a fresh look at her native Scottish landscapes, before sailing north into iceberg-strewn seas. Her gaze swoops vertiginously too; from a countryside of cells beneath a hospital microscope, to killer whales rounding a headland, to the constellations of satellites that belie our sense of the remote. Written with her hallmark precision and delicacy, and marked by moments in her own life, Sightlines offers a rare invitation to pause and to pay heed to our surroundings.

What I says:   Wonderful writing, never have I been as jealous of an author as I am right now, the things Kathleen Jamie has done and the places she has been as part of the research for this book is stunning. Visiting remote abandoned islands in the Hebrides, St Kilda and Rona, to sitting inside a whale skeleton in a museum giving it a clean, that must have been an amazing experience. It wasn’t all fun and games though, at times she suffers big time with seasickness that she must be wondering why she is putting herself through this, then she reaches her destination and it all suddenly makes sense. In this book she talks about her past, working on an archaeological site, you can see that’s where her love of the outside started.

Beautifully written, she can make the mundane stand out so that you can become engrossed in it, really looking forward to what she gets up to in her next book.  This is one of my top 5 non-fiction books.

5_stars

Book Reviews

Breakfast at Cannibal Joe’s by Jay Spencer Green

 

26091959What da cover says:  You’re not assigned to oversee a CIA front company in Dublin unless you screwed up royally—and Joe Chambers did. If he didn’t know so much about so many people, the CIA would probably terminate him—possibly in both senses of the word. Instead, he’s stuck managing Whetstone Publishing while his stateside boss comes up with ever more daft ways to maximize profits.

But Joe’s frustration is only just beginning. An MI6 agent keeps breaking into his apartment and stealing his booze, presumably revenge for blowing the guy’s cover in Athens; his publishing assistant’s too smart for her own good; and with head office’s cost-cutting measures hitting new highs of lunacy, he might need to start selling drugs or—God forbid!—move back to the States. Oh, and he’s got a tapeworm named Steve happily curled up in his guts.

A raucous mix of double crosses, brothels, triple crosses, and cocktail recipes, Breakfast at Cannibal Joe’s is a dark and twisted tale that fans of Vonnegut, Heller, and Hunter S. Thompson should love.

Voted No. 6 in the Top 50 Indie Books of 2015. Winner of Lord of the Book Covers 2015.

What I says:  Not really sure what I have read here, it’s total madness, totally disgusting, perverted, borderline offensive madness. The book starts off with “THE END” that’s the kind of craziness you’ll have to put up with if you read this book.

I think I have managed to keep up with the plot, it twists and turns and tries it’s best to shake you off. The humour is very good, I laughed a lot, the biggest laughs come at the end of each story with a list of facts or news clippings which I am sure are true, I’ve yet to Google the giraffe facts though. Each chapter also starts with a cocktail recipe, a few were above my head but I got some of them, very clever stuff.

Joe chambers is such a good character, you know you’re reading about somebody interesting when you keep thinking who could play them in the movie adaptation…I ended up with Jason O’Mara.

It is tough to describe the plot without just confusing matters even more so just take my word for it, this is one of the funniest and cleverest books I’ve read this year; In fact I do declare this book to be “Bogus” (read the book for the true definition of bogus).  This book also gets the ok from my dog and he recommends a bottle of Jim Beam to accompany the book.

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5_stars

Book Reviews

Cameron Fucks Dead Pigs and I Got Called a Scrounger by Andy Carrington

29910461What da cover says:

Tired of all the clichés
austerity
class division
corrupt policing
poor health care
benefit sanctions
high(er) taxes
road works
lack of affordable homes
evictions
tighter border control
illegal wars

… and the Prime Minister getting off on it. *

* Contains references to David Cameron exploiting dead animals for his own personal gain (true story).

What I says:  Andy Carrington’s finest work, such inspired writing.

If any book is ever gonna make you spiral into a depression then this is it. All the current problems in the world, all those ignored injustices are brought to your attention. It is so depressing when your country is run by an evil bastard who is quite happy to stick his cock in a pig carcass and not show any shame in his actions, what can you do about it? Not vote for his party in the next election? That don’t work either as they don’t need the majority vote to get back in power. This book doesn’t give you any hope for the future, what it does do is lay the facts out on the table, lets you see how the world really is, maybe if more and more people were to read this, then just maybe hope will start to creep in.

You also get some brilliant poetry, it is amazing how good this guy is and how little he is read.

This is a very important book, you must give it a read…even if you get featured in one of these poems you still should give it a read.

5_stars

Andy has very kindly offered up this book for FREE which you can get from HERE>

Book Reviews

Fury of the Chupacabras by Raegan Butcher

 

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What da cover says:   Attack of the Chupacabras: Two American gunrunners are besieged by the legendary creatures when their car full of illegal weapons breaks down in a remote Mexican town. Retreating to the local church with a handful of other survivors, including a comely waitress, an Irish “whiskey priest,” and two hardboiled Mexican policemen, they must use the arsenal hidden away in their automobile to survive through the night. Who will be alive in the morning? Who will survive the Attack of the Chupacabras?

FURY of the Chupacabras: Joe Gifford and his gang of professional Chupacabra hunters are called to a small town in the Florida panhandle only to find that the vainglorious rock star Jet Ryder is also in town to hunt the creatures for his reality TV show Armchair Warriors. Forming an uneasy alliance with the show-biz people, Joe and his team help the rock-star-turned-hunter battle a nest of Chupacabras hiding in an abandoned school on the edge of town. But Chupacabras are not like other animals. The tables are quickly turned, the hunters become the prey, and the entire town is besieged by the angry monsters. Can the intrepid band of hunters survive the Fury of the Chupacabras? 

What I says:  When I was younger I used to love watching monster movies, it didn’t matter if they were low budget and cheesy I would still watch them and have a great time. Since having kids I’ve probably not seen a single monster movie 😦 So I’ve found a new outlet for getting that kick-ass monster fun experience…Raegan Butcher’s Chupacabra stories! As soon as I started reading it wasn’t long before the monsters arrived and memories of those great movies came back. One of my favourites was Tremors and this book captured the basics of that movie, the bravery, the humour, the awesome characters, outrageous situations and back-against-the-wall action.

This book starts of with the novella “Attack of the Chupacabra”, we are introduced to the main characters as they are running guns into Mexico, due to a flat tyre they end up in a town under siege and one hell of a fight starts, it is high-octane action, the story is 80-pages long and you don’t get to stop for a rest until the end. When I did reach the end I was sat there with a massive grin on my face, immensely pleased that somebody had created that story.

So it was straight onto the main story “Fury of the Chupacabras” a few years later and the survivors from the novella have created a company that hunts Chupcabras for a living. They get called out on a job and the craziness starts again, this time though the enemy feels more formidable.

The book is full of violence, it has the best characters I’ve come across in a long time, the action is insane, the number of monsters incredible and some super unbelievable scenes. If that sounds like your sort of thing then pick up this book cos it is bloody brilliant.  And just check out the cover, the artist has captured those old classic movie posters perfectly.

5_stars

 

Book Reviews

Dog! a Novella by Mike Robbins

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What da cover says:   So you think you know your dog?

Bazza is an easy-going middle-aged college lecturer with a taste for weed, porn, beer and redheads. When he adopts a rescue dog, he sees nothing odd about the animal. Then a Himalayan monk comes to visit, and senses something strange.

Dog is a powerful story of love and loss, sin, redemption and dog mess. You’ll never see your pet the same way again.

What I says:   Have you ever had a dog?  Was it weird?  Did it have lots of little quirks that made you think it was acting like a human?  I’ve got a dog that can tell the time, he can dance, loves listening to me read and has some kind of psychic connection with me where he knows when I’m thinking about taking him for a walk.  And don’t get me started about leaving him in the car, within seconds he is in the driver seat with front paws on the steering wheel, sulkily looking at me as I walk away with the keys.

So, hearing about this book where the author takes you inside a dog’s head, it had to be a must read.  It should come with a warning though, you will find out some things about your dog you’d wish you didn’t know.

The story is unique, to hear the thoughts of the dog as humans are going about their business was hilarious.  Reliving the dogs memories of his past gives the story much more depth and you soon realise that this isn’t a funny story it’s about the life of a wonderful dog, a true legend.  The story is set at a nice pace picking up momentum to a shocking ending.

If you are a dog lover/owner/keeper then read this book, if you are a cat person then read this anyway just to see how much more awesome dogs are.  Like fish?  Then get some chips and a copy of this book.

5_stars

Book Reviews

Panama City to Rio de Janeiro Travels Through South America by Jason Smart

 

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What da cover says:  From the grime of Asuncion to a tango house in Buenos Aires, Jason Smart and his wife travels through the vast continent of South America on an eye-opening adventure. Beginning in Panama City and ending in Rio de Janeiro, they try to see as much as they can without succumbing to altitude sickness or over indulging in prime steak. The pair seek out a sloth amid the skyscrapers of Panama City, then head to Machu Picchu to see the Lost City of the Incas. Travelling by bus to Lake Titicaca, they cross the border into Bolivia, where they witness a strange spectacle known as the Blessing of the Automobiles. Next, they head to La Paz to see llama foetuses for sale in the Witches’ Market. Panama City to Rio de Janeiro is a travelogue covering seven countries in South America. Join Jason Smart in Panama, Peru, Bolivia, Paraguay, Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil. Jason Smart is a published author, with articles appearing in both magazines and print.

What I says:   What a spooky world of coincidences we live in, once for a reading challenge I had to read a book by an author who has same first name as you, my name is Jason and I found it really hard to find anybody called Jason who had written an interesting sounding book, eventually I settled for Jason Smart’s Red Quest and I wasn’t disappointed.  Because I enjoyed that I decided to try out another of his books, in his travels through South America he is joined by his wife, called Angela…guess what my wife’s name is, yep it’s Angela.  I have a similar sense of humour to Jason and both our wives have to deal with our craziness. So bizarre.

I really enjoy Jason’s writing style, it isn’t a travelogue like most travel books which are crammed full of info and experiences, these books are more like a taster of each country/city that gets visited, they are the sort of books that might get you off your butt to go and visit the places yourself.  You get a bit of history of places/people/buildings, maximum will be a page, enough to get the idea of what happened.  Jason isn’t scared to take part in most things that destiny throws in his path, riding a demon horse breathing fire into oncoming traffic is not an issue….going up on stage to do a tango lesson in a restaurant though is one step too far, much easier to sit at the table and laugh at others.

He visits some great places in South America and is honest about his experiences, Paraguay looks like the place to avoid, he does well to last a day there.

I have a few issues with the book, not all countries in South America were visited and it doesn’t get explained why they were missed out.  I read this on the kindle and the photos at the end of each chapter don’t display well, luckily the author has them loaded onto THIS WEBSITE for you to view.

I recommend this book to anybody wanting a good laugh about travels in South America, written by the best author called Jason ever.

4_stars