Welcome to Feathered Quill Book Reviews, a place for readers to find their next treasure.
Along with reviews of many well-known titles, this site also searches out unique books
from small, independent presses.
Feathered Quill Book Reviews prides itself on giving the reader an honest, unbiased critique of each and every book on its website.
So slip off your shoes, pour yourself a cup of coffee, explore our pages,
and discover many wonderful gems in the world of books.
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Nap Time Fairies
By: Jenifer Johnson
Publisher: Aztec Printing and Design
Publication Date: November 2014
Reviewed by: Deb Fowler
Review Date: April 16, 2015
The cat nestled next to the bed, as if he were going to be the nap time guardian over the boy. The boy lifted one foot, poised to jump up into his bed, but wait! Perhaps this time in his dreams the locomotive would come to him. He could just imagine it and could almost envision the smoke stack billowing out those clouds of smoke, the drivers and cranks that would move the train forward, and even the pilot who would push a wayward cow out of the way. Whooo! Whooo!
Yes, perhaps that train would visit him “as he snuggles in blankets so warm and cozy, as he listens to what he loves best.” Whooo! Whooo! A waning crescent moon, Saturn, and the twinkling stars surrounded his bed as the cat kept watch. The train had arrived to visit him as he slept. Whooo! Whooo! Not yet quite asleep, his favorite train began to enter the silent window of his dream world announcing its arrival. The smoke stack billowed out big clouds of smoke as it moved down the track and into his dreams.
The stars are now twinkling quietly. “As he snuggles deeply / he listens once more / for the sounds of the train / that he knows is quite near / Nap time, nap time, nap time.” The train has passed, but perhaps he will hear yet something more. A fairy overlooks his bed, but will he hear the fairies as they begin to dance? The cat continues to keep watch and even his rocking horse awaits the arrival of the fairies. They are waiting, soon to send their “sweet messages of love” when a little boy finally falls fast asleep. What else would the "Nap Time Fairies" have in store for him?
Of course the Nap Time Fairies keep watch over the sleeping boy, much as the cat sitting beside the bed does. Their arrival is symbolic of the author’s wish that they too would keep watch over her own child, Noah. The prose is lyrical and soothing, something to coax a little one into the dream world of nap time. I could almost hear that train arrive and anxiously awaited the Nap Time Fairies to see what they would bring to the little boy. The artwork is stunningly beautiful, meshing perfectly with the soft soothing tale. I was transported back in time to the world of John Tenniel and a time gone by with this wondrous work. This is definitely a book well worth placing on a little boy or girl’s nightstand.
Quill says: This is the perfect nap time tale that will transport any little one into slumber-land with the help of the Nap Time Fairies!
Harmonology: An Insider’s Guide to Healthy Relationships Through Music
By: Stephen O’Connor
Publication Date: December 2014
Reviewed by: Amy Lignor
Date: April 13, 2015
As everyone knows, there are many guides on the literary scene that focus on saving or keeping a healthy relationship. They break down the right things to do when it comes to difficult times, stressful times, and the basic issues that come with everyday living that can ruin a relationship completely. And the answers given when it comes to keeping a relationship healthy in most of these guides make it seem as if that goal is not only unlikely – but impossible. Even the statistic of “over 50% of marriages...” is still used in everything from books to movies. But this new, path, shall we say, actually steps outside the box, bringing in the realm of music to help people through the tough times in order to stay happy, keep together and live a good life.
The cover and the actual “plan” will remind those out there of the astrological chart/the 12-months out of the year. Using the calendar, the author comes up with a theory based on the 12 note musical scale, and its direct relation to the month you were born. This is a theory that actually makes a great deal of sense and is riveting to read. But you MUST make sure you study, because this is not something that just pats you on the head and recites old “feel good” mantras; this is one that can make a difference.
Beginning easily, it is crystal clear to all of us that there are certain songs that “mark” an event in our lives. Our minds keep that particular music. And when certain songs appear on the radio, in a restaurant, etcetera, that immediate feeling – whether it be elation or absolute heartbreak – is directly tied to those moments we will remember forever. To be even clearer, the author makes a mention of the movie Jaws. All anyone needs to hear are the first two drumbeats from that song and you’re frightened. This will always relate to a horror show, causing fear and thrills down to your toes. This works with all music that your mind pieces together with a specific event.
Now...how does this work in regards to the month you were born? In a very interesting way, Harmonology shows the reader what “type” of relationship they will form with someone born...say, the same month they were as opposed to someone born exactly six months apart. Each relationship (and this stands for friends, children and parents, etc.), can work well and function successfully depending on the “harmonology” of that union. And on the dark side, the author can show you what went wrong with a broken relationship and why no harmony was attained.
The laws of actual nature and the laws of music are the same laws – which means they run in perfect harmony with each other. So as you read the examples given of relationships that this writer talks about, you get a better understanding of how you and the other person in your relationship (two notes, so to speak) can, will and/or won’t create a harmony...and why.
Although in the beginning the concept is ‘easy’ and highly interesting, Harmonology is not something you can completely and utterly understand on the first read. This is a true study guide and, yes, those with an understanding of music terminology will have an easier time with it.
Quill says: A fresh approach to educating people about the creation and maintenance of a relationship.
For more information on Harmonology: An Insider’s Guide to Healthy Relationships Through Music, please visit the book's website at: www.harmonology.mx
Physical Literacy 12 Steps Pledge Ambassadorship
By: Steven C. McCartney
Publisher: Healthy Lifestyle Changes, Inc.
Publication Date: February 2015
Reviewed by: Amy Lignor
Date: April 10, 2015
The subject of “Literacy in America” is always spoken about. A headline for a good, long time, we want our children, above all else, to receive a good education; an education that allows them to progress in life in order to reach their dreams. Another U.S. headline comes from the fact that we are all trying to beat obesity; from learning how to cook better meals to understanding how important physical activity is to increase lifespans. This new book is a true help, because it combines both topics in one timely book.
Literacy of the mind is one thing, but being educated/literate when it comes to a healthy diet in this world of fast food joints and vending machines is an absolute must. In addition, there are all kinds of exercise programs out there, as we all know, but it would be more fun to exercise using a technique that also allows you to have a good time while keeping yourself fit. Physical fitness is achieved by participating in many activities. Running, walking, playing sports – you name it, there is a variety to choose from. With this particular guide, the author discusses the enjoyable activity of dance to bring about physical literacy, which makes for a fun activity AND a fun read.
This is a much-needed 12 Step program. And don’t get me wrong, you do not have to use dance as the activity. In fact, at the very beginning of Physical Literacy the author explains that while reading the 12 steps you can insert your favorite activity where the word “Dance” appears. Any recreation time can be used to fight obesity and reduce stress. And the illustrations of the dances are tremendous in this book. The participant looks to be having so much fun, that you may actually wish to focus on dance as your new “favorite” physical activity.
Provided in the back of the guide is a “12 Step Pledge” for all readers to sign, and ALL ages are focused on. This is also a program where cash is not required for a gym or workout center in order to get fit. In other words, anyone can achieve physical literacy and enjoy themselves while doing it. From the writer (a certified P.E. teacher) to the dancer, illustrator and photographer – all have come together to make this particular program lead us down the right (fun) path to longer, healthier lives. Extra suggestion: Head to www.physicalliteracy12steps.com to start learning immediately.
Quill says: This is truly “literacy” at its finest. By learning and then DOING physical activities, you increase your body, strength, heart, and mind. Let’s Dance!