The Forbidden Door (Jane Hawk #4), by Dean Koontz ~ 5.0 Stars

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Thanks to NetGalley and Bantam for providing an eARC in exchange for an honest review.

Release Date: Available Now

480 Pages

Synopsis: “We’re rewriting the play, and the play is this country, the world, the future. We break Jane’s heart, we’ll also break her will.”

She was one of the FBI’s top agents, until she became the nation’s most-wanted fugitive. Now Jane Hawk may be all that’s left between a free nation and its enslavement by a powerful secret society’s terrifying mind-control technology. She couldn’t save her husband, or the others whose lives have been destroyed, but equipped with superior tactical and survival skills—and the fury born of a broken heart and a hunger for justice—Jane has struck major blows against the insidious cabal.

But Jane’s enemies are about to hit back hard. If their best operatives can’t outrun her, they mean to bring her running to them, using her five-year-old son as bait. Jane knows there’s no underestimating their capabilities, but she must battle her way back across the country to the remote shelter where her boy is safely hidden…for now.

 As she moves resolutely forward, new threats begin to emerge: a growing number of brain-altered victims driven hopelessly, violently insane. With the madness spreading like a virus, the war between Jane and her enemies will become a fight for all their lives—against  the lethal terror unleashed from behind the forbidden door.

The Forbidden Door is Dean Koontz’s 4th Jane Hawk book and is another perfect addition to this exciting series that shows no sign of slowing down. I think I’ve mentioned this in my reviews of the first three books that one of the biggest strengths of this series is the characters. I have become so invested in what happens to Jane, her precocious son, and the others on her team, that I find myself holding my breath as they face danger after danger. And the villains are so despicable and evil, that I want them to all die as slowly and painfully as possible.

There’s not much more I can say that I haven’t already said in my other reviews except that in my opinion the Jane Hawk series is some of Dean Koontz’s best work in years! The Forbidden Door ends in another nail biting cliffhanger, so I’m eagerly anticipating The Night Window which is coming out in May. 

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Whimsical Wednesday

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Instead of sharing a whimsical quote or song like I usually do on Wednesdays, I’d like to dedicate this Whimsical Wednesday post to 7-year-old Sarah Lane-Gomez, the 2018 winner of the Doodle 4 Google contest. The theme was “What Inspires Me.”

01084762-aa05-4efd-aca6-5774429037c9Sarah is an aspiring paleontologist from Falls Church, Virginia who created her charming drawing during a snowstorm last winter. In her submission Sarah explained that: “Dinosaurs inspire me to study more to be a paleontologist. The shovel is for my future job!” For the full story on the contest (which is celebrating its 10th year), and how Sarah’s whimsical dinos were brought to life, please check out the video below. 

And, before I forget, submissions are now being accepted for the 2019 Doodle 4 Google contest, so if you have any young artists at home they’re welcome to enter. This year’s theme is: “When I grow up, I hope…” Here’s the official announcement from Jimmy Fallon and Kermit, the 2019 judges. As an added bonus you get to listen to one of my favorite songs!

 

Whimsical Wednesday

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A Series of Unfortunate Events season 3 poster

As everyone who subscribes to Netflix knows, the streaming giant is known for its “What were they thinking?” bombs (I’m talking to you, developers of The Cloverfield Paradox, and Fuller House). However, they also have released many gems, including: The Christmas Chronicles with Kurt Russell, Bird Box with Sandra Bullock, and of course the brilliant Stranger Things. Another one of their wonderful creations is Lemony Snicket’s Series of Unfortunate Events, which is a nearly perfect adaptation of the books. The third and final season is comprised of the last three books: The Grim Grotto, The Penultimate Peril, and The End. It dropped yesterday and if you haven’t yet checked this out you need to ASAP! Will the perpetually suffering Baudelaires at long last be granted their well deserved happy ending? Will the greedy, grasping, villainous Count Olaf and his despicable minions get their just desserts? And most importantly, will Mr. Poe finally go see a doctor for his annoyingly persistent cough? As Lemony Snicket is the epitome of whimsy, I’m dedicating this week’s Whimsical Wednesday to both the Netflix show and the books.

In any case, this is how all our stories begin, in darkness with our eyes closed and all our stories end the same way too, with all of us uttering our last words—or someone else’s—before slipping back into the darkness, as our series of unfortunate events comes to an end.

~ Lemony Snicket, aka Daniel Handler, The End ~

 

Happy New Year!

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Hi everyone. I know I still haven’t made a full return to blogging yet (I’m still working on some new health issues) but I wanted to make sure I wished you all a Happy New Year. Stay safe tonight and enjoy the festivities!

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For last year’s words belong to last year’s language

And next year’s words await another voice.

And to make an end is to make a beginning.

~ T.S. Eliot ~

 

 

 

 

Whimsical Wednesday

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~ Dolphin Moon Mermaid, by Sue Halstenberg ~

Maybe I would become a mermaid…I would live in the swirling blue-green currents, doing exotic underwater dances for the fish, kissed by sea anemones, caressed by seaweed shawls. I would have a dolphin friend. He would have merry eyes and thick flesh of a god. My fingernails would be tiny shells and my skin would be like jade with light shining through it. I would never have to come back up.

~ Francesca Lia Block ~

Yes Virginia There Is A Santa Claus

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This is an older post of mine from 2015. I thought it was worth sharing again, especially since a certain doubting Trump, *cough, cough* I mean Thomas, has possibly just shattered a 7-year-old’s belief in Santa.

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In 1897, having doubts over the existence of Santa Claus, eight-year-old Virginia O’Hanlon was encouraged by her father to write a letter to the Chicago Sun telling her that “If you see it in the Sun, it’s so.”  One of the paper’s editors, Francis Pharcellus Church, chose not only to answer the question, but to also address the more philosophical issues it brought up. It is now almost 120 years later, but this message is still relevant to this day.

VIRGINIA, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not except they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men’s or children’s, are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, compared to the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.

Yes, VIRGINIA, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know they abound and give your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! How dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus. It would be as dreary as if there were no VIRGINIAS. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The external light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished. .

Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies! You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas Eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if they did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that’s not proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.

You may tear apart the baby’s rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart. Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, VIRGINIA, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding.

No Santa Claus! Than God! he lives, and he lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.

Lyrical Lines

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I’m sure many of you have heard about the controversy over the classic “Baby It’s Cold Outside.” Nope, I’m not going to wade into THAT hornets’ nest. However, Thursday on the Tonight Show, Miley Cyrus, alongside Jimmy Fallon and Mark Ronson, gave a modern feminist update to the 1953 Eartha Kitt song, “Santa Baby”, (which has always gotten on my nerves), and it’s actually kind of awesome!

Happy Winter Solstice!

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With everything going on in Washington regarding the looming government shutdown, the resignation of General Mattis, and Mr. Trump becoming increasingly unhinged (check out his Green Acres tweet from yesterday), I was going to write a post about the train wreck unfolding, but I realized that I just didn’t have it in me. (Plus I started hyperventilating!) So, I’m going to wish all of you a Happy Winter Solstice instead and share this lovely quote:

Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and a talk beside the fire: it is the time for home.

~ Edith Sitwell ~