Sunday, April 24, 2016

Drew Farthering Review

"Dressed for Death" by Julianna Deering is the fourth book in the Drew Farthering Mystery series.  In this novel Drew and Madeline have been invited to a Regency party at the Cummings'.  The Regency party is where the 1930's upper crust crowd spend a week dressing, dancing and playing as if they were in Austen era 1830s.  When the party begins to wind down and the final ball is being had, Tal Cummings fiancé overdoses on cocaine.  Swearing that she would never take it herself and that she must have been murdered, Tal asks Drew, a known amateur sleuth to take on the case and find the real killer.  Soon the murder is tied to a major cocaine smuggling ring and the bodies keep adding up. 

Since I don't normally read books of this style it usually takes me a little while to get used to the mannerisms of the characters.  But once I do, the story keeps my interest.  It has a quick pace and the characters are well developed.  The only fault I had was that I solved the mystery before Drew.  I received this book for free from the publishers, Bethany House.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

feathered bone review

"The Feathered Bone" by Julie Cantrell is the telling of one tragedy after another.  Amanda and her daughter Ellie, are on a field trip with the 6th grade class when one of the girls, Sarah, is kidnapped.  The novel then follows Amanda through the years following "the day".  Sarah is taken into sex trafficking while Amanda and Ellie are left to deal with the guilt.  Amanda also has an abusive, cheating husband to deal with.  This book keeps the tragedies happening.  From kidnapping, rape, abuse, divorce, suicide, Hurricane Katrina, etc., if you aren't clinically depressed by the end of this book you have a heart of stone.  Though all of the tragedies are well told, the suicide especially, putting them all in one book was a little much.  However, reading the suicide in a public place, as I did, is highly not recommended.  It was written beautifully.  I received this e-book in exchange for an honest review from www.booklookbloggers.com.   

Clean, blech

"31 Days to Clean: Having a Martha Home the Mary Way" by Sarah Mae is a daily devotional about getting the house in order.  Each day is given a quote, a devotional story, a scripture, and a Mary Challenge and Martha Challenge.  The author is a self described non-housecleaner.  The ideas she comes up with for cleaning are not the scrub and dust type, but the getting things in order, taking out the chaos.  She also incorporates the children.  They made the mess; why shouldn't they be helping clean it up.  I did the days in order.  Some of the days I didn't want to do the challenge and so I didn't.  Some days I was like "you know, I do need to clean the bathroom cabinet."  I liked the book.  I received a copy of this paperback from Tyndale Publishing in exchange for an honest review. 

Breathe Prayers

"Whispers:  Being with God in Breathe Prayers" by Jeanie Wise is a small book that makes praying as easy as breathing.  If you are familiar with yoga than you are familiar with using your breath to move or chant.  Wise takes a similar approach to praying.  The praying will use his or her breath to focus on the words that the person is to concentrate on. 
I liked this idea.  I have begun to use it frequently in daily life.  If you have ever tried Christoga, a form of yoga and worship for Christians, the two are very similar.  You will receive all of the physical benefit from yoga as well as the spiritual.  A twofer.  The book is very short, but the benefits are long.  I received this book in exchange for a review from the author. 

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Zelda the Flapper

"Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald" by Therese Anne Fowler is the fictionalized biography of Mrs. Fitzgerald.  Though Fowler sticks with the truth for the most part, where the holes in the story lie, she fills them and where the views differ, she picks one.  I have read two other books where Zelda was a major player and she varies from book to book.  In one she was openly a bitch, in another she was out of her mind, and in this one she is a rather pleasant party girl.  So the only people who would know the real Zelda would be the ones who were there.  In this novel, Zelda loves a good time and F. Scott Fitzgerald is the perfect partner.  The two took the literary world and party scene by storm.  However, as time goes on and the partying doesn't stop, the literary world takes notice.  The end result becomes sad.  The label 'artist' becomes just as excuse for an unemployed alcoholic.  This book is the brilliant look at the rise and fall of a literary giant.  When Zelda  becomes mentally ill, rather than actually treat her, the men around her, doctors and husband, instead use her illness against her to their benefit, be it financially or for authoritive control.    The poor woman didn't have a chance.  Though sad, this is a well written book and reading about Zelda's wilder days is greatly entertaining.  BTW, Amazon is making a series based this book, if you are interested.  I received this book in exchange for an honest review from www.netgalley.com

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Louisa Adams biography

"Louisa" by Louisa Thomas is the biography of Louisa Adams, First Lady and wife of president John Quincy Adams.  The book gives some background to her family then begins with her childhood in England.  She lived the life of the privileged, though her family was in debt most of the time.  She met and married John Quincy in England shortly before he began his prime ministry in Russia.  They moved to the United States shortly after she gave birth to their first child.  She then supported him as much as he would allow through his public service, including his presidency and his fight to end slavery while serving in the House.  John Quincy was an odd, cold man.  He gave little consideration to his wife and children.  They spent as much time apart as they did together. 
The book is a historical book told not in fictional format, but as if a fiction writer were to write a historical book.  The book, though well written, is rather long.  Over 500 pages.  I would recommend this not only to history buffs, but also as a fascinating peek into the life of a woman in the late 1700s, early 1800s.  I received this book in exchange for an honest review from www.firsttoread.com

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Reacher!

Who doesn't love Jack Reacher?  I ask you!  Well, maybe the bad guys.  In Lee Child's novel, "Never Go Back, "  Reacher has finally gotten to that "voice on the phone" and met Turner.  The new commander of the 110th.  Reacher's old stompin' grounds.  Upon arrival, both he and Turner become the targets of an underhanded scheme to keep secrets buried.  Turner finds herself arrested for taking a bribe and Reacher for both murder and failure to support a child.  Yep.  Reacher just might have a little Reacher out there.  The battle to prove their innocence covers from one coast to another.  There are bad guys everywhere and no is telling the truth.  Who is who and what is what? 
As usual, I love Lee Child's Reacher.  Very rarely do I think, "Eh, it was ok."  This was one of those mysteries where you lie in bed and night and try to figure it out.  I loved it.  Go read it.  I received this book in exchange for an honest review from abovethetreeline.com.