Month: November 2017

The Prisoner of Hell Gate

Author: Dana I. Wolff
224 Pages
Published: July 5, 2016

Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 3 Stars

Description from Amazon:

FOUR DECADES AFTER TYPHOID MARY WENT TO HER GRAVE, FIVE CURIOUS GRADUATE STUDENTS STRUGGLE TO ESCAPE ALIVE FROM THE ABANDONED ISLAND THAT ONCE IMPRISONED HER. CONTAGION DOESN’T DIE. IT JUST WAITS. In the Hell Gate section of New York’s East River lie the sad islands where, for centuries, people locked away what they most feared: the contagious, the disfigured, the addicted, the criminally insane. Here infection slowly consumed the stricken. Here a desperate ship captain ran his doomed steamship aground and watched flames devour 1,500 souls. Here George A. Soper imprisoned the infamous Typhoid Mary after she spread sickness and death in Manhattan’s most privileged quarters. George’s great-granddaughter, Karalee, and her fellow graduate students in public health know that story. But as they poke in and out of the macabre hospital rooms of abandoned North Brother Island―bantering, taking pictures, recalling history―they are missing something: Hidden evil watches over them―and plots against them. When death visits Hell Gate, it comes to stay. As darkness falls, the students find themselves marooned―their casual trespass having unleashed a chain of horrific events beyond anyone’s imagination. Disease lurks among the eerie ruins where Typhoid Mary once lived and breathed. Ravenous flies swarm puddles of blood. Rot and decay cling to human skin. And spiteful ghosts haunt the living and undead. Soon five students of history will learn more than they ever wanted to know about New York’s foul underbelly: the meaning of spine-tingling cries down the corridor, of mysterious fires, of disfiguring murder, and of an avenging presence so sinister they’d rather risk their lives than face the terror of one more night.

Kim’s Review:

I was really excited about this book . . . another abandoned hospital! Then I started reading, and it was all downhill from there. Unfortunately, I had to push myself to finish this book. I ran into problems from page 1. The writing was so pretentious! I felt like the author was trying to write an epic poem instead of a horror story. Just spit it out! And I think the author, whoever he or she may be, since Dana I. Wolff is a pseudonym, was trying to encourage sympathy for Typhoid Mary and it didn’t work at all! By the time I was done with the book, I hated Mary! She was nothing but a selfish slut who complained about her lot in life, but then went right on trying to get her own way, no matter who she hurt! Even after it was proven that she spread typhoid to the people she cooked for, she completely ignored the danger and justified going back to the kitchen by complaining about how horrible people have always been to her and ended up killing more people. And then, when faced with all the lives that were lost because of her, she brushed it off by saying that those numbers were nothing compared to the lives lost by the actions of other people, hence they were eviler that she was!! Oh, give me a break!!!!

Why Mary is still alive on this island is never actually explained, she kills more people because everyone in her past abused her, so she’s clear to kill more . . .? And there are ghosts from the shipwreck of the General Slocum, stuck on the island possibly for the same reason Mary is still there, but again, it wasn’t clear so I still have no idea.  Karalee, whose grandfather was the man who identified Mary as a threat and quarantined her for the good of New York City, somehow got caught up in Mary’s fury, and killed someone as well, because . . . well I still don’t know. The only reason I gave 3 stars was because it had the potential to be an awesome book. I really wouldn’t recommend this book to anybody, I don’t think it’s worth the read.

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

Blog Tour: Tails of Friendship

Today I am part of the blog tour for Tails of Friendship, which was photographed by Sally Grace. This is my first photography book I have reviewed and I loved it. Any animal lover will love this collection of photos!


A collection of beautiful black and white portraits illustrating the loving relationship between dogs and their owners. Each photograph is accompanied by a famous quote or by a quote from the dogs themselves.

Sally Grace is a professional photographer and specialises in working with children and dogs. Sally works from her photographic studio in Surrey.

Tails of Friendship
Photographer: Sally Grace
Published: November 2, 2017
124 pages

Reviewed By: Jessica
Jessica’s Rating: 5 stars

Jessica’s Review:

Today I am reviewing Tails of Friendship. This will be different from my other reviews as this is a photography book of black and white photographs of dogs and their owners. This work is perfection! It really shows the unconditional friendship and love between dogs and their owners. You see the love shown in the owner’s eyes. The personalities of all photographed truly come out.

In addition to the black and white photo, included are the owner’s name and the dog’s name(s) and breed(s). There is also a quote from a famous person or from the particular dog photographed. You really get a feel for the dog’s personality when they are quoted. I tried to pick a favorite picture from the book unsuccessfully. They are all that good.

This is the perfect book for any dog lover. Grace masterfully captured the saying that a dog is man’s best friend. This would also be a great coffee table book and with Christmas around the corner, I am sure everyone has that special someone who really loves their dog who would appreciate this book. In fact, that person will most likely wish they and their beloved dog were in this collection!

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK
Barnes & Noble

About the Author:

Sally Grace is a professional photographer of over twenty years specializing in portraits of children and pets and a mom to five children. She works out of her studio in Surrey. In her youth, she was a prolific tennis player, winning a number of tournaments as a junior player and competing for the national team of Great Britain. This is her first collection of photographs

Contact Sally:


First Line Friday on a Saturday!

This week’s First Line Friday is on Saturday. I don’t like to blog more than once a day and yesterday I was part of a blog tour, so First Line Friday moved to today.  This is week #46 of First Line Friday! This is another selection where I have opted to share more then the first line. This is a short novel and one I NEED to read.  This looks to be a novel that you will go on a roller coaster of emotions as you experience this journey.

The monster showed up just after midnight. As they do.   

The monster in Conor’s backyard is not the one he’s been expecting — the one from the nightmare he’s had every night since his mother started her treatments. This monster is ancient. And wild. And it wants something from Conor. Something terrible and dangerous. It wants the truth. From the final idea of award-winning author Siobhan Dowd — whose premature death from cancer prevented her from writing it herself — Patrick Ness has spun a haunting and darkly funny novel of mischief, loss, and monsters both real and imagined.

Please see Patrick Ness’ Author’s Note from the novel:

There is also a movie that I hope to see. Please watch the trailer:

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

Buy the Movie: