Book Review – Keeper of the Flame by Catherine Chase

Book Description

The mystical land of Draecus-a land closed off from all others for generations. In Mikaelia, it is remembered only in bedtime stories passed down through the ages. With the war for the lands of Mikaelia now over, the human female Jarnell fights her family’s wishes of marriage to unite two noble houses and strengthen the family holdings. Running away, she seeks out her elven friend, Dekion, and gains a startling traveling companion in the form of a half-orscha warrior, Sahri-tah. Coming together after the devastating wars between the races of their land, the three of them battle against their own distrusts of each other’s races to search for Dekion’s father, who was lost during wars. Following their only lead, given to them by a crazed man in the streets of Sel Lorst, they find themselves in the lost, magical land of Draecus where a war between humans and orscha has just begun. While they wait, the companions become caught up in the war that crosses the once peaceful Draecus. They must fight to stay alive long enough for the portals to open again and allow them passage back to their own land. At the same time, Jarnell, a follower of the Goddess of passion, fights the desire to stay in the arms of Daedic, the only man to ever bring to life the flames of passion in her body, mind, and soul.

Book Review

Ms. Chase has written a novel that intricately weaves several storylines together skillfully into one cohesive story, spanning over several years, that while it stands alone, leaves the reader begging to know more. This is good, since there are rumors of another book along the same historical time line as this one from Ms. Chase.

With fanciful but believable characters, races such as the elves, orscha, and a race of people known as the Aishtoullar, which are similar to characters we have seen in other fantasy novels, but with a new twist that is unlike anything a reader might find in any other fantasy novel – the characters of Keeper of the Flame will not fail to delight and keep you drawn into the story, and they are not the same tired fantasy fiction races you might be used to reading in recent fantasy books.

The story begins with the birth of Jarnell, our unlikely heroine, who came into this world and into her station in a rather chaotic way, to fulfill a destiny, unknown to her, her family, or her companions – a destiny known only to that Goddess she serves, but to whom she has never committed herself or her sword completely – a destiny that Jarnell is not too sure she can fulfill.

From there, we are introduced to a variety of characters, all linked to Jarnell in some way, and we watch their adventures as they travel on their quest, a quest that, should they fail, would ultimately mean the destruction of two worlds. On this quest, we are taken through a series of events that show us war and destruction but also love and friendship, and the bonds of blood, family, not to mention a great romance thrown in the middle of all the other chaos. It’s a good balance, and a believable plot with which any reader can relate.

Keeper of the Flame is a story about passion… passion for life, passion for love, passion for following one’s destiny, in spite of all the obstacles.

The writing style of this book is almost poetic in nature, but it is very easy to read. The imagery is beautiful, the lands created drawn as pictures through words. The editing is superb. The formatting of the book is neat, attractive and clean. The binding is strong, with a full color paperback high gloss cover, with bold colors.

I highly recommend this novel and look forward to more of Ms. Chase’s creations.

Keeper of the Flame,

by Catherine Chase

* Paperback: 296 pages

* Publisher: Oculus Media Group, LLC (July 3, 2007)

* Language: English

* ISBN-10: 1934677019

Authentic Marc Jacob Blake Handbags and Quilted Keeper Handbags

You’d probably love handbags from Paraguay. But you don’t really need to go that far to get the trendiest bag styles in town. You can always choose to get a classic Marc Jacob Blake bag or a quilted keeper.

Marc Jacob Blake

If you want the ultimate in style and sophistication, you should get Marc Jacob’s Blake. Like every other Blake owner, you can easily shine like a star with this design on your arm. Blake was introduced in 2004 but still enjoys immense popularity to this day. Many stylish ladies simply prefer Blake because it is made of authentic calfskin leather which is what makes it ultra soft. The unique leather piece on each bag also makes sure that yours isn’t exactly alike as all the others.

Blake by Marc Jacob isn’t the biggest of bags. It is however the perfect size for any lady who wants to be able to conveniently carry her things. Even if it isn’t too big, it really does hold enough space with three parts inside and two pockets outside. Marc Jacob’s name is on the buckles of each external pocket. Blake can come in green, pink, black and cinnamon among other colors.

Naturally, authentic Marc Jacob Blake handbags have been liberally copied. If you aren’t careful, you could easily end up with a fake Blake. If you can’t really tell the difference between a real Blake and a fake one, you should shop only from popular luxury bag stores that have a reputation to keep. The price can also be a warning sign to you. Even if they have been around for some time, Blake bags do not usually cost below $200 unless you are buying a second hand piece that has seen better days.

Quilted Keepers

Another trendy option these days are quilted bags. The smaller keeper types can come in leather or casual fabric. This makes keepers great accessories for both formal and informal occasions.

Casual keepers are the cheapest of its kind. There are quilted designs that you can buy for as low as $30. These are perfect for carrying along on short errands or on coffee breaks on a weekend. Of course, you may prefer more formal quilted pieces if you need to go on semi-formal gatherings.

Among the many top of the line leather quilted bags are those from Marc Jacob. Aside from being convenient to carry around, quilted Marc Jacob bags are absolutely elegant and refined.

There is no question about it. Quilted keeper handbags and Marc Jacob bags are the best ones to lug around. Just make sure you always buy from reputable stores to get only authentic styles.

Parenting Style: Is Your Parenting Style Reactive Or Responsive?

Do you know your parenting style? It’s important to think about because the way you raise your child can affect his entire life, including his ability to have relationships with others. Basically, there are three schools of thought when it comes to raising children. In this article, I will explore all three and propose a fourth.

Your parenting style is usually determined by the way your parents raised you. Although this is a hard truth for some parents to swallow, if you’ve ever found yourself acting just like your parents, then you know that this is true. Unless you’ve taken the time to think about how you want to raise your kids and what you plan to do differently, then the method you’ll resort to is the one that was used on you.

Which parenting style best describes how you interact with your kids?

Authoritarian

Are you a parent who demands obedience? Do you forbid your children to question you? If so, you are an authoritarian parent.

With an authoritarian parenting style, there is no question about who’s in charge. The parent is the boss and demands respect from the child who is expected to obey without question. A child who disobeys is reprimanded, shamed or punished.

Drawbacks of authoritarian parenting:

  • The parent’s relationship with the child is like master and slave. The child may be respectful of the parent, but primarily because he is afraid of him. Such a child usually perceives the parent as being cold and distant.
  • A child who is coerced into good behavior may only act appropriately when adults are watching. Punishment doesn’t teach a child to be a moral human being–it teaches kids how to avoid getting caught.
  • Parents who demand respect often do not treat their children respectfully. Such a child may grow up feeling bad about himself. Because his parents were not responsive to his needs, he may not be able to form healthy relationships with others.
  • A child who is raised to be compliant may act robotically and be unable to think for himself.

Permissive

Do you let your kids run wild? Do you let your child make his own decisions and choose not to correct him when he is disrespectful or insensitive? If so, you are a permissive parent. This type of parenting is often a reaction by those who were raised by authoritarian parents and want their children to have a better childhood than they did. Unfortunately, like most knee-jerk reactions, this type of parenting is extreme.

Permissive parenting is a parenting style in which parents let their children do what they will. A permissive parent acts more like a peer, than an authority figure. Little is done to teach appropriate behaviors.

Drawbacks of permissive parenting:

  • Since this child may have been over-indulged, he may grow up to be self-entitled.
  • The child may not be sensitive to others’ feelings and may have difficulty forming relationships.
  • The child may have problems in school.
  • A child who has been encouraged to make decisions for himself that he has not developed the maturity to make, may feel confused, overwhelmed or paralyzed at the thought of taking action in the world.
  • Like the child raised by an authoritarian parent, this child has not had a parent who acts in his best interest. As a result, he may feel that there is no one he can trust.

Authoritative

The final is the authoritative parenting style. (Today’s literature refers to this style as assertive-democratic.) This method recognizes that children need to learn to make their own decisions, but must be taught how to do so over time. Such a parent responds to the child’s needs but also teaches the child to be sensitive to the needs of others. Although authoritative parents have household rules which they expect their children to follow, they encourage questions and are willing to negotiate in some circumstances. This parenting style consistently produces children who are self-starters, perform well in school and get along with others.

Rather than being at either end of the spectrum, this parenting style is somewhere in the middle. Rather than being a reaction, it is a response to what children really need from us. As we practice being authoritative parents, our ideas about parenting evolve. While children do need a guide to teach them integrity, how to get along with others and how the world works, they also need a loving, trustworthy guide. Parenting is about connection and engagement. When you understand this, you can create a beautiful relationship with your child. I call this fourth and distinctly different parent style, connection-engagement and explore it fully in my book, Keepers of the Children.

Although during times of stress, we may unconsciously resort to the parenting style used by our parents, it is possible to unlearn this programming and raise children in a way that is humane and respectful–a way that resonates with your heartfelt vision for your child.

In Chronology and in Style!

Chronograph timepieces are designed with such patterns that provide great look and feel to your wrist. The best thing about chronographs is that you can adorn them in any occasion and event, whether it is to get a casual look or for a sporty look. Before there were many wrong notions that these watch types could be only worn for some specific reason or purpose. But this notion has altered today because of the advancement that has been made in technology and in the craftsmanship of watch making. Now you can wear these any time and anywhere, as these are versatile with a combination of elegance in design.

The features of these wrist watches are proof of technical advancements. Features and functions has been enhanced further to make the entire product compact and yet stylish. Sport them and witness the attention that you would receive. Now days, not only your clothes but also your accessories reflect a lot about you as a person and also points at your personality. Choosing a chronographic watch would definitely be rewarding, as people would judge and credit you of having great taste in watches and accessories. There are some of broader dials and designs; these give a very rough and sporty look to a man in particular. Wearing one of them would definitely reflect a tough and rugged image of yours. If not these, then you can opt for the sleeker and classic slim chronograph watches and have a poised personality. You can opt for this particular chic looking watch, while going out for dinner or a romantic date.

Like any other accessories, watches too are elements of status symbol in the society. It is quite human to judge a person by his or her dressing sense and accessories. So, if you one to be a part of the elite and the high end society, then your choice of watch would do tricks. You won’t be lost in this market of chronographs because there are several categories of brands and companies available, for you to choose from. Sporty chronographs are advanced by technology and its features.

They are mostly a concoction of toughness and at the same time grace. So, you can look elegant and yet profuse a tough personality by having these watches on your wrist. They serve as a stop watch and also as time keepers but they do not measure any time. Politi has come out with magnificent chronograph watches and OR2718 Pilot is one of the models. This is surely like its name, pilot as it has a multifunctional movement of quartz that with the accompaniment of luminous hands. This is entirely made of 316L solid and high quality stainless steel, attached to a smooth strap and casing. Having crystal mineral, it is scratch proof and also water resistant. This doubles as a perfect gifting idea, since these watches are packaged in a presentation pack or box, with an international warranty of 24 months.