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Posts tagged ‘Secret’

You Will Do What I Say & Like It

TheSecretJourneyThe Secret Journey by Paul Christian
Reviewed by Gabriel Constans

There is nothing secret about The Secret Journey. It is a pornographic literary collection of women being dominated by men, and other women. IF you like hearing about, and enactments of, someone being controlled and enjoying (and learning) to be obedient, than this will be right up your alley, or other parts of your body.

Whether it is a man speaking, as the writer or teller of the tale, or a woman, it is always in first person. Environments include homes, bedrooms, baths, work spaces, school rooms, horse tracks, night clubs, trains, and other places and times. The writer claims to know the reader, and exactly what it is you want to hear, and do. Most of the scenarios are common male fantasies, and include the usual graphic scenes of sucking, licking, fucking, looking, talking, and doing what one is told to do.

There is no character development, or attachment to any of the people in these stories, but that is not the point, or purpose, of this book. The author skips any preamble, or pretext, of plot, or complexity, and zeros in on desire, wanting, giving and receiving. If that is the kind of erotica that tickles your fancy, than The Secret Journey will take you where they want you to go.

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Review of Tell Me a Secret

TEll-Me-a-Secret-by-Ann-Everett>Review of Tell Me a Secret by Ann Everett. Narrated by Sarah Pavelec.

He spun the chair around and straddled it like he was doing it a favor.”

That is the effect Jace Sloan has on women at college, and is one of the many wonderful metaphors used throughout this love story. His charm works on everyone accept Maggie, who is in graduate school and works as a nurse and tutor. Jace and Maggie’s personalities are like oil and water, but they must find a way to work together when she is assigned by her professor to be his tutor for anatomy.

Just when you think this story is following the usual boy meets girl, girl losses boy, and then they get together again, plot line, there is a twist. Actually, there are a number of twists that will keep reader’s wondering about the character’s futures. The dialogue shifts from chapter to chapter, between Maggie’s perspective and Jace’s, providing an intimate microscope into their internal thoughts, emotions and perceptions. Author Ann Everett did a good job keeping the dialogue and situations real, as well as the couple’s reactions.

As an avid reader, and past reviewer for The New York Journal of Books, I must confess that this is the first audio book I’ve listened to and reviewed. Though it was quite long, the narrator’s voice, Sarah Pavelec, was pleasant and engaging. Her tone for both the male and female characters was spot on, as well as the intonations for specific dialogue and action.

Tell Me a Secret is a good book to take on a long trip, or listen to for a period of time each day. It is a sweet romance that shows opposites can not only be attracted to one another when the pheromones are intense, but may also stay together through misunderstandings, tragedy and jealousy.

The First Treehugger

A tall tale from Zen Master Tova Tarantino Toshiba: The Illustrious and Delusional Abbess of Satire.

The redwoods in Asia, being especially tall, were a favorite of Abbott Tova. She loved to climb as high as she could and observe life from above. She saw wildlife, people in the village, travelers on the road, and her sisters in the community below. Seeing that her excursions climbing the ancient ones were made in secret, she often witnessed events and scenes that others were not aware of.

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One day, she saw a herd of rampaging river otters approaching the village and was able to scamper down the tree and go warn people of their approach just in time. Many lives were saved. Some thought the Abbott must be clairvoyant for knowing of the approaching otters, not knowing of her climbing feats.

On another day, the Abbott watched a bandit attack a lone farmer on the road and steal his money. She knew who the bandit was and was later able to assist in his capture and testify at his trail, as to what he was wearing that day and at what time it had taken place.

There was the time Abbott Tova saw Sister Kiva sneaking off with Sister Bhakti to make love in the meadow. In that case there was no need to do anything, other than turn her attention elsewhere.

As was the case with Abbott Tova’s ability to remain still and blend in with her surroundings in the garden for hour upon hour, so it was in the trees where she often lost track of time and became so engrossed and selfless that she could feel the sap flowing through her veins and her limbs transferring the sun’s light into energy through her skin.

Without it being called so at the time, Abbott Tova was the first known tree hugger. Her actions gave rise to a long line of environmentalists and forest advocates, including, Pocahontas, Johnny Appleseed, John Muir, Henry David Thoreau, Chico Mendes, Wangari Maathai, and Julia “Butterfly” Hill. It also gave her a great advantage in “seeing” the future, making predictions, and others believing she was omnipotent, which she would never deny, nor confirm.

More vast and small stories at: Zen Master Tova Tarantino Toshiba: The Illustrious and Delusional Abbess of Satire.

The Calligrapher’s Secret

Review by Gabriel Constans for The New York Journal of Books

The Calligrapher’s Secret by Rafik Schami

Suspenseful, spectacular, and searing are not adjectives one would use to describe The Calligrapher’s Secret. Intriguing, intelligent, and multifaceted are far more accurate to convey what readers can expect from this well written story about love, art, family and Syrian culture.

The primary characters in this historical, yet contemporary novel are Hamid Farsi (the calligrapher), Noura (his wife), Nasri Abbani (wealthy philanderer) and Salman (the calligrapher’s apprentice). The detail Mr. Schami provides for these men and women is quite astounding, as it is for the minor players as well. Each of their personalities, characteristics, family life, childhood experiences, and cultural and political influences that shape and affect them is presented with precision, empathy, and nuance. The beauty of these descriptions is both a blessing and a curse, as some of the back story and pages devoted to such, become a little tedious and occasionally divert attention from the protagonists.

The author is quite adept at setting a scene and taking you for the ride. It’s as if you are peeking inside your neighbor’s kitchen or bedroom and seeing and hearing every intimate detail of what is happening through their eyes. Place, time, and events are also highlighted with powerful metaphors. When a mason hears of his son Jirji being beaten by a teacher at school, his anger and fury is described as, “He closed his eyes for a second, and saw a fine rain of burning needles against a dark sky.” After falling in love, it is said of Noura that, “From that day on, time flew past as if it were made of pure ether.”

An additional delight of The Calligrapher’s Secret, as well as interesting history and insight into calligraphy, the wearing of the veil and the Arabic alphabet, are the glimpses into Damascene and Syrian life in the 1950s and some of the customs, undercurrents and unspoken realities of the time (and today). “Faizeh told Mahmoud the butcher and her neighbor Samira in confidence that Salman was working as a chef in Kuwait for a good salary. ‘But that is strictly between our selves’ said Faizeh in conspiratorial tones. In Damascus, that was as good as a request to spread the news with great speed, and Mahmoud the butcher and Samira did valiantly.”

Mr. Schami’s writing shines with characters that embody and are shaped by gossip, misinterpretation, misunderstanding, secrets, and truths layered individually and collectively to create a story that should be savored and taken in at a leisurely pace. The end of the story is also a beginning—and includes a touching surprise. MORE
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