Welcome!! My name is Paul Lappen. I am in my early 50s, single, and live in Connecticut USA. This blog will consist of book reviews, written by me, on a wide variety of subjects. I specialize, as much as possible, in small press and self-published books, to give them whatever tiny bit of publicity help that I can. Other than that, I am willing to review nearly any genre, except poetry, romance, elementary-school children's books and (really bloody) horror.

I have another 800 reviews at my archive blog: http://www.deadtreesreviewarchive.blogspot.com (please visit).

I post my reviews to:

2 yahoo groups
Amazon and B&N (of course)
and on Twitter

I am always looking for more places to post my reviews.

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Google Ads (AdWords) Workbook

Google Ads (AdWords) Workbook: Advertising on Google Ads, YouTube and the Display Network, James McDonald, JM Internet Group, 2019

These days, it seems like everyone wants their ads to show up on Google's search results pages. This book goes through the whole process, step by step.

First of all, when starting the process of setting up your ads, you will be encouraged to advertise on Google's Search Network and Display Network. Stay away from the Display Network; they are two very different things. The Search Network ads will show up on Google's search results pages. Display Network ads will appear on YouTube, Gmail and on questionable sites whose only reason for being is to get clicks.

You, the business owner, pay Google every time someone clicks on one of your ads (that is how they make their money). You are interested in high quality clicks, that turn into a sale from your website. Keywords are very important. Be as specific as you can about the kind of customer you are seeking. Come up with, say, half a dozen "perfect" keywords, and set up a separate ad campaign for each. There are ways to measure, and analyze, just how well each keyword is doing. Don't be afraid to change, or delete, any ad campaign that is not working. Keeping it is only costing you money.

Along with positive keywords, there are negative keywords, like "cheap" or "free", that you will not pay for. Every so often, get online and make sure that your ads are running (don't just take Google's word for it). It is also possible to make sure that your ads will appear within the first four or five results on the results page. People who are searching using their smartphone will not go through pages and pages of results.

This book is not exactly a page-turner, but it is very much worth reading. The author does a very good job at making the whole process as painless as possible, helped by lots of screenshots. Any business, small or large, that wants to advertise online would do very well to start right here.

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

The Suicide Tree

The Suicide Tree, Shayla Raquel, Curiouser Editing LLC, 2018

Set a few years from now, Knox Kevel is a young man who is on his way to prison for computer hacking. His parents, both famous scientists, were given the task of finding a cure for the deadly Raven Virus. They were successful, but refused to give the cure to anyone. It led to protests worldwide, rampant conspiracy theories and their deaths in a mysterious explosion that destroyed their lab.

Knox is saved from prison by a mysterious man named Arlo. He gets the charges dropped in exchange for Knox's computer expertise. When Arlo was a child, he was the subject of a brain experiment, with the reluctant consent of his parents. It caused the creation of several alternate personalities, not all of them nice people. Arlo does not remember the name of the experimenter, but he wants Knox's help to find that person.

The focus shifts to southern Italy. Maybe one of Arlo's "alters" (other personalities) remembers the name of the experimenter. The "bad guy" is eventually found; does the person agree to give up quietly? Does Arlo get the effect reversed? Does Knox find out exactly how his parents died?

This is a really good present-day thriller, with a little bit of science fiction included. It has everything a reader needs, including good storytelling, good characters, a little romance and a plot that will keep the reader guessing until the end. This is well worth checking out.

Monday, May 6, 2019

The Trump Diary Reported by Mookie Goldwater

The Trump Diary Reported by Mookie Goldwater, Chris Murphy, 2019, self-published

In June 2017, around the time of the firing of James Comey as FBI Director, Donald Trump decided to write a daily diary. He kept it in his sock drawer. This lasted until the end of 2018, when it suddenly disappeared. After a late night phone call, Goldwater (a pseudonym) got hold of the diary, and is now living on the run.

Women are not treated well in his diary, despite his often-professed love for them. The few mentions Melania gets are not complimentary. There is much talk of the White House's revolving door. No matter how good a person may be at their job (or not), being part of Team Trump is a requirement.

There is considerable blame toward the Obama Administration, for practically everything. He makes himself look like the best President in American history (No administration is more transparent than mine; no President has done more for minorities, or women, than I have, etc.). Everyone has a nickname, from Kim Jong Un to Hillary to Charles Schumer.

This is an interesting look inside the brain of Donald Trump. Whether you are a supporter or opponent, it is important to get at least an idea as to where he is coming from. It helps that this book is not written by a Washington insider, intending to make Trump look like the worst thing, or the best thing, to ever happen to America. This book easily gets at least four stars.