I love reading books. I love sharing my opinions about them with others. Therefore, a book review site seems a natural for me.

I’ve been posting my book reviews on another of my websites, but that site also has heavy political content. I thought it would be a good idea to collect all of my reviews here, on an independent site just for those of you who love to read.   Hence, The North Country Review of Books. Also, here, you can post your own reviews. In addition, should publishers wish to quote from a review of mine (assuming that it’s positive), they might feel more comfortable linking to it here, rather than from my political blog.

You may contact me via email:  jeff@northcountryreview.com

I should point out a few things:

1. I receive the majority of my books from publishers as advance review copies (ARCs). My promise to you is that I will not let that privilege bias my review. I have no financial stake in any of the books that I review. There is no advertising on The North Country Review of Books. There is no “tip-jar.” I am not an Amazon Associate. I receive no benefits from a good review. Some of the books are sent to me by authors or publishers. Some are purchased by me. Most are requests to the publishers for “Advance Review Copies.” I tend to request ARCs that I believe I will like, either from publishers or authors I’ve had good experiences with in the past. I’m even more selective regarding purchased books. Hence, I don’t often read “stinkers.”

2. Note that I run a side business of copy editing books for self-publishing authors on Amazon. I do not review those books.

3. My main interests (since this site is strictly a hobby by a compulsive reader) are science-fiction, mysteries, horror, and thrillers. I also enjoy science texts. That will be reflected in what categories of books I review the most.

4. Your comments are encouraged. A comment can be a response to my review, or it can be a reply to another comment. Comments are nested. Just leave the ratings table blank if there is one shown. If you’ve actually read the book in question, please leave a review of your own and rate the book with the “star table” below the comment form. Hover over each category for an explanation of it. The purpose of offering multiple ratings categories is to make both my — and your — reviews more meaningful to other readers.

5. The ratings table has five stars. You can (with your mouse) rate each category in 1/4-star increments. Really! My own definition of the stars is: 1-bad, 2-fair, 3-good, 4-very good, 5-great.

6. The beautiful and comfy-looking illustration at the top of all pages was done by a former co-worker and professional artist, Jay Trefethen. If you’d like to contact him to commission work for you, email me and I’ll put you in touch with him. And no, I don’t receive a commission on that, either. He’s also done some of the other b&w illustrations scattered elsewhere on the site.

7. Like cats? So do I. We should probably go to therapy together.

Thanks so much for stopping by!

Jeff Soyer
Fairlee, Vermont


Recent reviews:




What is Relativity?, by Jeffrey Bennett

Posted by on Sep 25, 2014 in Non-fiction, Physics | 0 comments

  The full title of this layman’s guide to understanding the theory of relativity is What is Relativity?: An Intuitive Introduction to Einstein’s Ideas, and Why They Matter. Published by Columbia University Press, author Jeffrey Bennett uses his young adult, classroom lectures to aid in understanding the profound equations and theories that revolutionized our picture of how the Universe works. I’d like to write that this is a welcome addition to the field. I can’t. There’s nothing especially wrong, or...

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Life Beyond Earth: The Search for Habitable Worlds in the Universe

Posted by on Jul 6, 2014 in Astrobiology | 0 comments

A college level text on where, how, and why we should search for life outside the Earth.

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Spheres of Influence, by Ryk E. Spoor

Posted by on Jul 6, 2014 in Science Fiction | 0 comments

A joyous romp through a unique universe.

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The Cleansing (Earth Haven), by Sam Kates

Posted by on Jul 6, 2014 in Science Fiction | 0 comments

A novel twist on the Doomsday virus theme.

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Brass in Pocket, by Stephen Puleston

Posted by on Jul 6, 2014 in Mystery | 0 comments

An exciting police procedural.

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Copied, by S.M. Anderson

Posted by on Jul 6, 2014 in Thriller | 0 comments

An excellent thriller, written for young adults, but can be enjoyed by old adults, too.

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The Eighth Science-Fiction Megapack

Posted by on Jul 6, 2014 in Science Fiction | 0 comments

Hours of enjoyable reading for only a buck.

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The Flight of the Silvers, by Daniel Price

Posted by on Jul 6, 2014 in Science Fiction | 0 comments

The Flight of the Silvers is the type of novel that all science fiction authors should aspire to write.

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The Second Revolution, by Gary Hansen

Posted by on Jul 6, 2014 in Political | 0 comments

Without trying to be political, it seems that as the mood of the country becomes more polarized and angry — and I’m not pointing any fingers — there’s been a large uptick in novels about a new civil war, or in this case, a second revolution. The Second Revolution, by Gary Hansen (Amazon link) is better written than many of them and presents a clear case where action is needed. Though there isn’t an actual revolutionary war involved, there is an uprising against a stunningly corrupt president. The Second...

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The Waking Engine, by David Edison

Posted by on Jul 6, 2014 in Horror | 0 comments

An ambitious, complex story with a few flaws.

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