Saturday, October 11, 2014

the river review

"The River" by Beverly Lewis follows two formerly Amish sisters living in the world as Englishcers.  Tilly has a tense and difficult relationship with her father, leading to her leaving the Amish community shortly after her youngest sister, Anna, was killed in a accidental drowning.  Ruthie is Tilly's younger sister, and has left the Amish community 5 years later after a difficult breakup with Will, an Amish boy without good intentions.  The two sisters go back home to their parents anniversary party after years of no contact and have a reunion of sorts.  Not all goes happily, but the healing begins.
If you have tired of Beverly Lewis I encourage you to go back and give this book a try.  She really gets into the nitty gritty of the father-daughter relationship.  She dives into the humanity of the relationship, rather than the usual "amishness" of things.  Then she drops a bomb about 3/4 of the way through book. The ending will give you a tear or two.  Good book.  I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review from Bethany House.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

early christmas

"Sweet Christmas Kisses" is a collection of 14 different romance novellas.  All of the romances are at a PG  level.  The novellas are all written by a different best selling author.  I will give a review on two of the stories:  Mistletoe in Maine by Gina Baird and The Christmas Promise by Melinda Curtis.  Mistletoe is a fair romance.  It's fairly predictable and quick.  A divorced woman and her two children decide to go to an Inn in Maine for Christmas.  While there she meets the Innkeeper, who is a widower and father of a teenage son.  The group along with the innkeepers mother, her much younger lover, and an ex-girlfriend all share a magical Christmas in winter wonderland Maine.  Christmas Promise is a much better book.  It is quite humorous and the reader becomes much more invested in the characters.  In Promise, the "bon-bon heiress" goes to Ecuador to try to resuscitate her family's cocoa beans.  While there she meets an American former Army soldier who is walking for his fallen friend.  To make things harder, he only has one leg.  I liked this couple and the writing.  As for the collection as a whole, the stories are all....well, sweet.  Which is the point.  I would recommend this as a good read for someone who wants to take a little mind-getaway.  You can also feel welcome to leave it laying out, because it is acceptable for teens and preteens to read as well.  I received this e-collection for free in exchange for an honest review from Sweet Kisses.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

NEGU review

"Never Ever Give Up: The Inspiring Story of Jessie and her JoyJars" by Erik Rees is a heart breaking, gut wrenching, amazing book.  The book follows Jessie Rees, a young girl with brain cancer on her 13 month battle.  It is told by her father, Erik.  He holds nothing back.  He is completely honest in the journey.  The book not only has a life changing topic, it is also written very well.  This is not just a book by a dad, but a book by a writer as well. 
This is an incredibly hard book to read.  It is so emotionally difficult.  When I agreed to be on the review team, my thoughts were that I could see how my husbands childhood with leukemia was like.  But there were too many years and science has advance so far, that there was little similarities.  However, I am the mother of a 9 year old with a life threatening heart condition.  So there were many things that I could relate to.  If you were to read and think he was exaggerating in parts, I can tell you he was not.  There were so many things he described that I had done myself.  Losing a child, or preparing to lose a child is the worst experience anyone can ever have. 
I received this book in exchange for an honest review and promotion from Handlebar Publishing.  I easily give it 5 stars.  This is a book you must read.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

this is how review

"This is How I'd Love You" by Hazel Woods is a novel centering on two pen pals during WWI.  Hensley lives with her father, a newspaper writer who plays chess via post mail with Charles, a privileged man serving as an emergency driver on the fronts in Europe.  As the two carry on the long-distance chess game, Hensley hijacks one of the letters and writes in the margins to Charles. The two being their own correspondence and quickly form a close relationship.  Shortly thereafter, she discovers that she is pregnant. The father is an actor that lied and used her to get his way.  As the two live separate lives, the novel follows them. 
This is a very interesting novel.  The ending is a bit predicable, but the storyline is well written.  The characters are a bit dramatic, especially Hensley, but keep in mind she is only seventeen.  Charles is every woman's dream man.  The research on gas use is especially intriguing.  I give it a B+.  I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review from First to Read through Penguin.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Hear me roar!

"Roar: The New conservative Woman Speaks Out" by Scottie Nell Hughes, Director of the Tea Party News Network, is the author's view of the modern Conservative woman.  Hughes writes of the compare and contrast of the Democrat Woman and the Republican woman.  First, let me state that I am a Libertarian, which means Liberals think I am Conservative and Conservatives think I am Liberal.  So this is a fairly unbiased opinion of this book.  Secondly, this will be a review of the book and her writing rather than her views and opinions.  They are hers and she is entitled to them; I will be judging how she writes them. 
The book is well written; well researched; and well thought out.  She know what she wants to say and tries to connect with other women in how she says them, especially mothers.  Many of her points are valid.  She makes her points and then backs them up with research.  However, this book would have been much more enjoyable if it were not so "us vs. them".  She goes out of her way to compare the two parties' women when I would rather she had stuck to making the points of her own viewpoint.  She tends to lump women of each party together rather than have them stand as individuals.  I give it a B.  I received this book in exchange for an honest review from Worthy Publishing.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

miracle in dry season review

"Miracle in a Dry Season" by Sarah Loudin Thomas is a Christian novel told through the eyes of Casewell, a 35 year old bachelor living in West Virginia in 1954.  A new woman with a 5 year old in tow comes to Wise, WV and catches the eye of the town's leading bachelor.  Soon after Perla arrives in Wise, a drought strikes the area and leads the local preacher to blame Perla for the drought.  Seems to think it is punishment for having a child out of wedlock.  Then the witch hunt is on. 
This book was a hard book to get into.  I never really came to care much about the characters.  The witch hunt seems a little ridiculous for 1954; more for a 1354 era really.  The book is well written.  Characters seem well developed.  The writer just could not bring me into the story. The cancer storyline was deeper and more realistic.  I give it three stars.
  I received this book in exchange for a review from Bethany House Publishers.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Roadtrip!

"Seeing America" by Nancy Crocker is an excellent book.  It is the telling of three 1910 high school graduates from a small town in Missouri that decide to travel from Missouri to Yellow Stone.  Not that that might not be adventure enough, but one of the them is blind and is also the owner of the Model T that they plan to travel in.  The three boys aren't exactly friends, but in a small town everybody knows everybody and there aren't a lot of options when it comes to buddies.  So the three set of in search of themselves. 
The travel methods of 1910 are much different than today.  Lack of roads, hotels, money other than cash made even a few days of travel an adventure.  This book is not only full of action, but it is funny!  Like peeking into the brain of a teenage boy.  Which is weird since the author is a woman and must be older since she sang with Loretta Lynn.  This is a really good book and I highly recommend it.  I received this book in a drawing from www.librarything.com.