Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Kiss Me Quick Before I Shoot: A Filmmaker's Journey into the Lights of Hollywood and True Love

Book Title: Kiss Me Quick Before I Shoot
Subtitle: A Filmmaker's Journey into the Lights of Hollywood and True Love
Author: Guy Magar
ISBN: 978-0982866344
Genre: Memoir/Filmaking
Publisher: Sea Script Company; First edition (May 4, 2011)
Reviewer: Vonnie Faroqui,  for Writers In The Sky

Kiss Me Quick Before I Shoot, is Hollywood filmmaker Guy Magar’s memoir detailing his journey from child immigrant, through college, years of filmmaking, and love along the way to becoming an accomplished director, writer and producer. In an industry known to gloss and glamorize a turd until it looks appealing, this book is being given all the best hype and promotional backing you might imagine the autobiography of a recognizable celebrity and talent would get. However, in this case the hype is REAL. Kiss Me Quick Before I Shoot deserves every bit of praise and recognition it gets and more.

Guy Magar's, Kiss Me Quick Before I Shoot
For those of us that love the movies or have ever dreamed of, aspired to, danced around, or dived into a career in motion pictures or television, Kiss Me Quick is a “director’s cut” commentary of life on the road to and inside the industry. When I read Guy’s recollections and experiences, I wept just thinking of all the hopeful seekers and dreamers struggling for a break that never get one. The detailed behind-the-scenes knowledge and wisdom he so generously shares is beyond priceless to any aspiring film or television talent seeking entry into the industry. This is “must” reading for acting and directing students seeking film and television careers. Theater and film school do not prepare you for the cold reality of the industry, but Guy’s conversational and revealing memoir sure will.

Readers looking for a Hollywood fix, an insider’s candid perspective on breaking into the business or stories of life among the stars will lock themselves behind closed doors to indulge their celluloid passions with this master story teller. I think I’m in love. Too bad Guy is taken. Which leads me to another aspect of this book, which I think places it a cut above other memoirs and books of its genre. Kiss Me Quick is more than a Hollywood success story, it also relates the very real human drama and love story between Guy and his wife, Jacqui; sharing intimate details of her diagnosis with Leukemia and of the trial medical treatments that saved her life. Guy opens his heart and with incredible spirit, courage, and candor shares it all.

The creativity and passion which infuses Guy’s film work also comes through in his writing. Kiss Me Quick Before I Shoot has all the excitement , flare, human interest , and drama Hollywood promises the hopeful, with a measure of reality, and God’s grace thrown in. Both of my thumbs are up for Magar’s Kiss Me Quick Before I Shoot. Hand me the popcorn. I am reading that again.

Join Me on Friday July 1, 2011, as I host a 
Writers In The Sky Podcast interview with Guy Magar!

This review will be featured at on July 4, 2011! Many Thanks for spreading the word.

Friday, June 24, 2011

The Answer

Join me and guest Allison Wynn on the Writers in the Sky Podcast for our author interview.

About the Author:

Allison Wynn has a 30-year career in leadership effectiveness, personal empowerment coaching, and family and relationship development. After a successful corporate career, she started her own coaching practice to help people transition through life’s challenges. She provides personal and professional coaching through one-on-one sessions, workshops, and corporate programs.

Allison holds a Bachelors Degree in Business Management and a Masters Degree in Organizational Development. Her business background, unique life experiences, and ability to connect with her clients are special qualities that make theSOFIprocess simple, practical and effective.

Book Title: The Answer: A Journey From Anger To Peace
Author: Allison Wynn
ISBN: 978-1432770945
Publisher: Outskirts Press
Reviewer: Vonnie Faroqui

The Answer relates a pivotal moment in the lives of Eric McPherson and Allison Wynn, two strangers drawn together by chance, who experience a life changing connection. Eric, frustrated and full of self loathing, stops at the local Starbucks on his way to work and finds a journal laying on the only available table. He opens it to look for identification, but there is none and so he reads the day’s entry.

When Allison returns to her table she finds him weeping, her journal clutched in his hand. “Are you okay?” she asks. And so the tale begins. . .

The Answer explores the destructive anger cycles that cripple human interactions, causing frustration and pain for so many individuals. The book is written using a journal entry format, from the perspectives of Eric, Eric’s wife, Mary Ellen and author Allison Wynn. The Answer provides a deeply insightful and poignant look into human relationships and the significance of feeling insignificant.

“How do we deal with anger in either ourselves or in others?” and “How do we create a more peaceful life?” These are the questions that Eric and Allison are asking. Eric knows that his anger is destroying his life and damaging his relationship with his wife, but he can’t seem to stop his angry outbursts. After spending the day deep in discussion with Allison, He returns home to share with Mary Ellen what he has discovered about himself and the changes he would like to make in his life.

This is a must read for anyone who is struggling with anger issues and domestic instability. The message of the book is one that everyone could benefit from. Emotionally charged, intellectually stimulating and insightful, The Answer offers an eye opening perspective on relationships, and the need for significance. This book will change lives.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Discover Inventor Joseph Lee and the Automatic Bread Machine

Inventor Joseph Lee
I love learning and was thrilled to review the following book about an African American, former slave and inventor Joseph Lee. I hope you take the opportunity to read the book and to join us for our podcast interview with author Jerome T. Peoples on Friday June 17, 2011 for the Writers In The Sky Podcast.

Book Title: Lee’s Bread Machines
Author: Jerome T. Peoples, MS, ED
ISBN: 978-1432763374
Publisher: Outskirts Press

Many of us are familiar with George Washington Carver and possibly one of the other great African American and former slave inventors that have had a lasting impact on the industrial revolution and life in America today. Most of us, however, will never have heard of Joseph Lee, the inventor of the automatic bread making machine that revolutionized the bread industry. This former slave over came incredible hardship to rise (pardon the pun,) above adversity to have a significant impact on modern day America. The impact of his inventions, the first bread machine, then the bread crumber, changed the slice of bread on America’s table by allowing bakeries and restaurants to produce bread loves more efficiently and in greater numbers than ever before. Why without Joseph Lee there wouldn’t be a bread industry as we know it. And yet, in spite of the impact this man’s incredible inventions have had on us, hardly any information has been available about his life and accomplishments until now.

Much credit is due to retired science teacher turned author, Jerome T. Peoples MS. Ed., who researched and wrote Lee’s Bread Machines as an educational and inspirational tribute to this minority hero. With chapters covering : the African origin of bread, the life of house slaves, secret schools, the Civil War, Joseph Lee’s move to the north, his journey to greatness as an entrepreneur in the restaurant business, and especially his work as an inventor, this book is a treasure of information.

The book has school primer feel, but the layout makes for easy reading and information retention. Every child should have access to this book in school libraries and the knowledge of this American inventor should be included in school curriculum. Joseph Lee belongs to all of us, but his history as a former slave opens a door for further exploration of social history that could really capture and ignite the hunger for knowledge in students. I thoroughly enjoyed learning about Joseph Lee, his life and his inventions. I hope that others will read and be as deeply moved as I was by the example set by this African American inventor who rose from slavery to find freedom, enterprise, and lasting significance through the power of creativity and invention.

I recommend this book for youths and for general informational reading. The content is well documented and presents interesting images and records that will educate as well as fascinate most readers.

Grade A work Mr. Peoples!

Friday, June 10, 2011

The Killing Game

Book Title: The Killing Game
Author: Joe C. Stevens
ISBN: 978-1432769086
Publisher: Outskirts Press

The Killing Game is a novelette about a former mob hit man, Bronson Trellisane, who is being forced out of Retirement to kidnap a government witness. Why kidnap when, as Bronson puts it, “I’m a shooter, not an errand boy?” Ah, now we get to it. You see Bronson isn’t just any hit man and this witness isn’t testifying about the run of the mill mob activity. The whole messy business centers around the last job Bronson handled before disappearing into anonymity. Linda Masters is a bit of flash secretary for his former mob boss and she is running scared with information about the mob’s involvement and Bronson’s part in the assassination of JFK. Bronson needs to know what she’s got on them and at the same time extricate himself for good. Add to the mix a shady CIA man and the game they are all playing just gets deeper.

J.C. Stevens has written an interesting “what if” story for conspiracy theorists and crime fans to enjoy as a quick read. Perfect for airplane reading or an easy day on the beach. The Killing Game offers intrigue and a fast paced cross country ride to thrill audiences. There are a few surprising twists that I won’t spoil for you. Over all, The Killing Game is a good time read.

J.C. doesn’t attempt to prove any conspiracies with this book. He approaches the idea of a hidden gunman in the grassy knoll as if it was fact and not fiction, treating the assassination of JFK as background for the story he wants to tell. There comes a time when the truth can never be discovered and the myths develop. The Killing Game is an example of where one person’s creativity and imagination can journey out of the realm of fact and into the haze of fantasy.

Although it isn’t easy to find much sympathy for a person such as Bronson Trellisane, the author doesn’t seek to win hearts. This book isn’t about getting answers or true justice for JFK. This isn’t even a serious consideration of the JFK assassination, or an author’s attempt at historical reconstruction. The Killing Game is a creative exploration down one road in the many facets and theories surrounding the JFK murder. It isn’t intended as a school primer or to be confused with fact. It is a “What if story” simple and sweet.