Month: June 2020

Release Day Review: 13 Billion to One: A Memoir by Randy Rush

13 Billion to One: Winning the $50 Million Lottery Has Its Price
Author: Randy Rush

Published:  Today, June 24, 2020
290 Pages

Reviewed By: Jessica
Jessica’s Rating: 3.5 stars
Dates Read: June 11-21, 2020

Book Description:

As a welfare kid who grew up in the streets, Randy Rush had to fight for everything he got and knew what it was like to struggle. So, when he was suddenly handed $50 million in tax free money, he vowed to use his new-found wealth to help others. But what he didn’t see coming was Jeremy Crawford.

In his gripping, adrenaline-packed memoir, Rush takes readers on his rocket-fueled journey after a trip to the corner grocer to buy food for his beloved cat, Conway Kitty, leads to the discovery that he has won Canada’s $50 million Lotto Max jackpot.

Soaring on a seemingly endless endorphin high, Rush spends the months following his win traveling, feeding his passion for rare sports cars, considering charitable causes, and splurging on friends — paying off their debts and even giving them a free place to stay in million-dollar homes. But his world comes crashing down when he discovers that Dave Crawford, a man he loved like an older brother and had generously provided for, has served him up to his con artist son, Jeremy — who scams Rush out of nearly $5 million.

Reeling from Dave’s betrayal and fueled by the discovery that the Crawfords are serial con artists who have devastated the lives of more than a hundred others, Rush embarks on a mission to take his adversaries down. But as his quest for justice drags on, his festering rage reaches a boiling point and he is faced with a choice: Let the Crawford’s cons destroy him, or re-focus his attention on doing good in the world and enjoying the enormous gift he has been given.

Jessica’s Review:

A bit of a ‘rags to riches’ story that takes a turn, 13 Billion to One is also a cautionary tale. Yes, we all occasionally buy that lottery ticket and fantasize what it would be like to win. But then we never actually win…. But what happens if you actually DO win?  That was why I wanted to pick up this memoir.  Winning the lottery is not all it is cracked up to be. 

Some of Rush’s circumstances were of his own fault.  He first wanted to not do any investments for a full year after winning. If he had stayed with his first thoughts, he would not have found himself in his circumstances.  He also came off a bit naïve and over the top with some of his early purchases and helping out of his ‘friends’.  So many people came off to him expecting multiple handouts. I get it, you want to help your friends out, but multiple times?  No, that’s taking advantage of his situation and possibly losing your friendship.

I never lost interest in reading this memoir. It was very easy to read, even when it came to the legal issues, and Rush tells us his story first hand.  Despite wanting to try and help Rush learn to say ‘no’ to people and pay attention to the many red herrings that showed up which he ignored, I had little empathy for him.  I did like how he shows us how he did end up using his money for the good of others in another country. 

A very cautionary tale that shows that the love/greed of money is truly evil and how winning the lottery is really not all you might think it may be.

Many thanks to the publisher Rantanna Media for granting me an e-arc to read and review.

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

Star Trek: The Next Generation: Section 31: Rogue

Star Trek: The Next Generation: Section 31: Rogue
Authors:
Andy Mangels
Michael A. Martin
Published: June 2001
360 Pages

Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 3 stars

Book Description:

They are the self-appointed protectors of the Federation. Amoral, shrouded in secrecy, answerable to no one, Section 31 is the mysterious covert operations division of Starfleet, a rogue shadow group committed to safeguarding the Federation at any cost. Six months before their ultimate battle against the Borg for the fate of Earth, Captain Jean-Luc Piccard and the crew of the “USS Enterprise”™ face a very different kind of crisis. A world in turmoil becomes the focal point of conspiracies and betrayal as an unexpected reunion brings with it startling revelations. Old friends become bitter enemies and one young officer reaches a crossroad when he’s forced to choose between the greater good of the Federation and the ideals for which it stands.

NO LAW.
NO CONSCIENCE.
NO STOPPING THEM.

Kim’s Review:

While I really enjoyed the first book in the Section 31 series, this book was a bit of a dud. As much as I love the TNG crew, I sludged through this book. To be honest, I can’t really say I remember much of what happened. I did go back and re-watched a couple of episodes of TNG to make sure I had all the groundwork. I just couldn’t really get into the story. It all just felt a little forced. It’s so sad, but I don’t think I could give any details from the story. I know there were Romulans and I learned a little more about Lt. Hawk before First Contact … but other than that, not much else. I remember kinda enjoying it while I read, but nothing stuck with me.

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
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Star Trek: Section 31: Cloak

Star Trek: Section 31: Cloak
Author: S.D. Perry
Published: July 2001
211 Pages

Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 4 stars

Book Description:

They are the self-appointed protectors of the Federation. Amoral, shrouded in secrecy, answerable to no one, Section 31 is the mysterious covert operations division of Starfleet, a rogue shadow group committed to safeguarding the Federation at any cost. Once, in order to preserve the galaxy’s fragile balance of power, Captain James T. Kirk carried out a dangerous mission to capture a cloaking device from the Romulan Star Empire. Months later, while investigating a mysterious disaster aboard a Federation starship, Kirk discovers that the same technology he obtained for the sake of peace is being put to sinister purposes. What the crew of the “Starship Enterprise(TM)” uncovers will send shock waves through the quadrant, as Section 31 sets in motion a plan that could bring the major powers of the galaxy to their knees.

NO LAW.
NO CONSCIENCE.
NO STOPPING THEM.

Kim’s Review:

I actually had not heard of Section 31 until I watched Discovery. It’s really an interesting concept that Starfleet would have such an agency. Since Star Trek is all about ideals, it was definitely jarring and this series just added to the mystery. Cloak is the first book in the series and it’s a great introduction! Section 31 is barely mentioned, but Kirk taking the initiative and searching out questionable activity within the galaxy is pretty par for the course. The one thing that stuck out to me was small, considering the scope of the story, but I still liked that sometimes it’s the little things. Kirk gave Uhura an encrypted chip to try to translate and she got so frustrated by the encryption and the possibility of failure … I just loved her for it! She was that constant in the series that seemed to ground everybody and I liked seeing her human side.

Overall, this was an interesting book and a good introduction to the series. There’s definitely prep work to be done before reading it though. I went back and re-watched The Enterprise Incident and then the book made a lot more sense!

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

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