Review: The Idea of You

Synopsis

With her fortieth birthday approaching, Lucy Carpenter dares to hope that she finally has it all: a wonderful new husband, Jonah, a successful career and the chance of a precious baby of her own. Life couldn’t be more perfect.
But the reality of becoming parents proves much harder than Lucy and Jonah imagined. Jonah’s love and support is unquestioning, but as Lucy struggles with work and her own failing dreams, the strain on their marriage increases. Suddenly it feels like Lucy is close to losing everything…
Heart-wrenching and poignant, this latest work by bestselling author Amanda Prowse asks the question: what does it mean to be a mother in today’s hectic world? And what if it’s asking too much to want it all?

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

The Idea of You by Amanda Prowse is a powerfully written novel. A novel that all women can relate to easily. Love, relationships, and family are just a few of the themes presented inside this tale. From the beginning, I felt saddened by the main charcater’s life. She gave up her one and only child. A child that kept her wondering for forty-years, if she had a good life or not. The  Idea of You was indeed a perfect title. It perfectly worked for this read.  This same woman felt like a loner. Always single at events that couples would be attending. My heart reached out to Lucy. But then, the unexpected happens and she meets Jonah. He’s a great man. Their love is true and it made me smile to watch them as they worked out their issues and are just as happy as when they wedded.  However, a secret comes out and before readers know it, Lucy’s and Jonah’s world has been flopped upside down and inside out…then, Jonah’s daughter has a secret to tell. I felt that this tale was very believable. I can see this situation happening to anyone. Jonah’s struggles as a father and husband were tested. I loved the end results that Amanda Prowse created. So much sorrow and then some healing and laughter. Lucy went through a lot more than giving up her only child, she also miscarried. I can only imagine her hurt…overall, I highly recommend The Idea of You to readers everywhere. Emotionally deep and satisfying to read. 

Review: Some Small Magic

Synopsis:

She whispers, “I’m supposed to take you home.”
“Not yet,” Abel says. “Please, just not yet.”
All Abel wants is a little bit of magic in his life. Enough money so his mom doesn’t cry at night. Healing for his broken body. And maybe a few answers about his past.
When Abel discovers letters to him from the dad he believed dead, he wonders if magic has come to the hills of Mattingly, Virginia, after all. But not everything is as it seems.
With a lot of questions and a little bit of hope, Abel decides to run away to find the truth. But danger follows him from the moment he jumps his first boxcar, forcing Abel to rely upon his simpleminded friend Willie—a man wanted for murder who knows more about truth than most—and a beautiful young woman who was already on the train. 
From Appalachia to the Tennessee wilds and through the Carolina mountains, the name of a single small town beckons: Fairhope. That is where Abel believes his magic lays. But will it be the sort that will bring a broken boy healing? And is that the magic that will one day lead him home? 

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

Some Small Magic by Billy Coffey is a heart breaking read. I wanted to cry and hug the characters. I felt the need to help, sympathize, and care. The entire read was an emotionally deep story. One that takes readers into its core and never lets go. Captivating, well-written, and stunning. Each character had an issue that pulled at my heart. I would love to see this book on the big screens everywhere. 

Billy Coffey has a talent for providing a fictional world that drags readers instantly inside and change everything they feel. A mother who is single and ones what she cans for her and her son.  A son who has a condition that makes readers like myself connect immediately with him. Then there’s others with other conditions that are just as sad. Some Some Magic is about a boy looking for the magic he believes exists. It’s up to readers to find out if he finds it or not. Once I picked up this book and read it, there was no returning from the tragic tale. Brilliantly woven for readers’ entertainment…Some Small Magic is a must read for all. I highly recommend it. 

Review: You Are A Queen


Synopsis:

What do you want out of life? What type of person do you want to be known as? What goals are you actively pursuing? At this moment in your life no matter where you are, I urge you to allow discipline to outweigh desire.When considering sex and relationship it is time to put each in the right perspective as both have their importance and respective placement. Perception is everything, yet for many the problem is that they tend to “put the cart before the horse.” Predominantly most people place sex ahead of marriage, relationship before intimacy, and desire tends to precede the caution of rational self-discipline. The greater truth here is that without self-discipline, no matter what you want in life, success will be impossible. 

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

You Are A Queen by Derrick J. Little is an inspiring read for all women. It’s a deep Thought provoking book. It asks questions that make the reader really question about what they’re doing with their life. It motivates women to be better. To be strong no matter what. Derrick J. Little’ nonfiction guide also teaches women to love themselves. I found positive change in this title. Life isn’t easy, but we can learn from it. Inside I was pulled in…to look thoroughly at myself. Where I am at now, where I wanted to be, and how were my appearances, actions and words taking me. Explored my conscience, feelings, and actions as a woman. Derrick J. Little also has some exercises that readers can go through after reading certain parts. I thought this book was great. Getting to know oneself better. A coaching to review my behavior and myself and see where I was heading and whether that was the direction I wanted to go. Overall, I recommend You Are A Queen to readers everywhere.

Review: Truly Madly Guilty



Synopsis:

Six responsible adults. Three cute kids. One small dog. It’s just a normal weekend. What could possibly go wrong?

Sam and Clementine have a wonderful, albeit, busy life: they have two little girls, Sam has just started a new dream job, and Clementine, a cellist, is busy preparing for the audition of a lifetime. If there’s anything they can count on, it’s each other.

Clementine and Erika are each other’s oldest friends. A single look between them can convey an entire conversation. But theirs is a complicated relationship, so when Erika mentions a last minute invitation to a barbecue with her neighbors, Tiffany and Vid, Clementine and Sam don’t hesitate. Having Tiffany and Vid’s larger than life personalities there will be a welcome respite.

Two months later, it won’t stop raining, and Clementine and Sam can’t stop asking themselves the question: What if we hadn’t gone?

In Truly Madly Guilty, Liane Moriarty takes on the foundations of our lives: marriage, sex, parenthood, and friendship. She shows how guilt can expose the fault lines in the most seemingly strong relationships, how what we don’t say can be more powerful than what we do, and how sometimes it is the most innocent of moments that can do the greatest harm.

Rating: 4-stars

Review

Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty is a suspenseful read. Edgy, dark, and gripping. It grabbed me and took me on a journey. The characters’ lives seemed pretty normal until one event that changed everything. Emotions leak out everywhere. The intrigue is so intense that once the wave comes…the relief wasn’t as spectacular. I felt something missing. However, there was humor written inside…and it was good. I haven’t read any of Liane Moriarty’s previous books, so I can’t compare to her normal standards of writing. This book moves slowly, then builds, only to come crashing upon everything readers think might happen. Curiosity is a killer. Overall, Truly Madly Guilty was great. 

Review: Human Acts by Han Kang



Synopsis:

From the internationally bestselling author of The Vegetarian, a rare and astonishing (The Observer) portrait of political unrest and the universal struggle for justice.

In the midst of a violent student uprising in South Korea, a young boy named Dong-ho is shockingly killed.

The story of this tragic episode unfolds in a sequence of interconnected chapters as the victims and the bereaved encounter suppression, denial, and the echoing agony of the massacre. From Dong-ho’s best friend who meets his own fateful end; to an editor struggling against censorship; to a prisoner and a factory worker, each suffering from traumatic memories; and to Dong-ho’s own grief-stricken mother; and through their collective heartbreak and acts of hope is the tale of a brutalized people in search of a voice.
An award-winning, controversial bestseller, Human Acts is a timeless, pointillist portrait of an historic event with reverberations still being felt today, by turns tracing the harsh reality of oppression and the resounding, extraordinary poetry of humanity. 

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

Human Acts by Han Kang is dark, haunting, and powerfully told. I haven’t read Han Kane’s previous work, but will definitely do so now. Her writing captured my attention immediately. The power of authoritarian rule and the suppression of its people…is not something anyone will ever forget. Especially the dead…

Bodies are building up…the numbers of dead are rising. Sadness broken out everywhere. Human Acts has caught a realistic event in South Korea. An uprising, a massacre, an a tragic situation overall. Violence hangs over the people like a heavy stone. Suffocating them little by little. Anger, censorship, and death. Families losing loved ones…the whole book was like a nightmare unfolding before my eyes. The pain, suffering, and emotions were terrifying. Like revisiting the Holocaust era all over again but more horrifying. 

Overall, Human Acts is well-told. The journey inside will never be forgotten. Han Kang’s characters have left their imprint…the terror was gruesome but entertaining to read. Definitely a page turner. I recommend it to readers worldwide. 

Review: Think Twice



Synopsis

From the blockbuster New York Times bestselling author of Look Again comes a novel that makes you question the nature of evil: is it born in us or is it bred? 

Bennie Rosato looks exactly like her identical twin, Alice Connolly, but the darkness in Alice’s soul makes them two very different women. Or at least that’s what Bennie believes, until she finds herself buried alive at the hands of her twin. 
Meanwhile, Alice takes over Bennie’s life, impersonating her at work and even seducing her boyfriend in order to escape the deadly mess she has made of her own life. But Alice underestimates Bennie and the evil she has unleashed in her twin’s psyche, as well as Bennie’s determination to stay alive long enough to exact revenge. 

Bennie must face the twisted truth that she is more like her sister Alice than she could have ever imagined, and by the novel’s shocking conclusion, Bennie finds herself engaged in a war she cannot win—with herself.

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

Think Twice by Lisa Scottoline is an interesting thriller. Here, Lisa Scottoline has brought readers a tale about two sisters and an unforgivable act of betrayal. Bennie and Alice are twins. Bennie is the more responsible one. She has her life all mapped out until her twin does something unexpected. Imagine dinning with a sister and the next moment, stuck in a box of some kind. The horror and fear Bennie felt was real. I immediately hated Alice. Alice is the unresponsible twin. The one with the bad streak. Alice was fine until she met a man who introduced to the life of selling drugs. From there she changed dramatically. If she didn’t share the same facial features as Bennie, then she would have easily killed her twin. But luckily Bennie survived…at least for the moment. This plot was fast-paced. Definitely, a read that excites as well as frightens the reader. I kept wondering what was going to happen next…Alice’s betrayal to her twin, made something snap in Bennie. It wasn’t until that dark moment did Bennie realize that she’s not as evil as her sister. But that didn’t mean, if pushed she wouldn’t go into the dark end…Lisa Scottoline has created an engaging story. I loved her fascinating characters. Believable, entertaining, and highly recommended to all. Readers won’t need to Think Twice. 

Review: The Night Mark 

Synopsis:

She has nothing to live for in the present, but finds there’s something worth dying for in the past…

From Tiffany Reisz, the international bestselling storyteller behind The Bourbon Thief and The Original Sinners series, comes an enthralling new novel about a woman swept away by the tides who awakens to find herself in 1921, reunited with the husband she’s been mourning for four years. Fans of Kate Morton and Diana Gabaldon will fall in love with the mystery, romance and beauty of an isolated South Carolina lighthouse, where a power greater than love works its magic.

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

The Night Mark by Tiffany Reisz was superb. It made me cry so hard, I needed a box of tissues. Loss, grief, and love. All of these entangled into one marvelous read. Imagine finding a love that works, then losing a child. Soon afterwards, losing that husband. For Faith, she seems to go about this round of loss again. Only she lets her husband go. Her heart really wasn’t for him. She still longed for her dead husband. He made her laugh so easy. The past consumed her whole. Over took her life. Faith was drowning in her sorrows. One day she decides to divorce and accept a job photographing. Her life soon turns for a different route. Maybe, just this once, she will be happy again…

The Might Mark is stunning. Every page was more intense than the previous. Engaging me to read further. Entertaining in that a modern woman goes to live with a man from the past. A love that swallows her whole. I couldn’t stop reading this book. I finished it within an hour. The plot was so entertaining, I didn’t dare put it down or stop. Tiffany Reisz is indeed a talented writer. She dragged me deep into her world of fiction and I loved every moment. Tears and all. Overall, I highly recommend this title to readers worldwide.

Review: The Hope Chest


Synopsis:

The Hope Chest is a deeply emotional novel about three people who have seemingly lost all hope until one woman’s heirloom hope chest is rediscovered in the attic, along with its contents and secrets.

Mattie is a fiercely independent woman battling ALS; Don, her deeply devoted husband is facing a future without his one true love; and Rose, their struggling caregiver, is a young, single mother who feels trapped in her life. With each item that is discovered—including a beloved doll, family dishes, an embroidered apron, and an antique Christmas ornament—the hope chest connects Mattie, Don and Rose to each other and not only helps them find hope again in the face of overwhelming life challenges but also brings new meaning to family.

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

Once more Viola Shipman has stunned me with her characters. The plot is like a vine. It keeps growing until it has me wrapped itself around me…taking me deep into it’s story. The heart of it, is sad yet beautifully told. Life, love, family and most of all hope. A family passes on the words of hope to their daughter. Later on in her life, she passes it onto her helper and her husband passes it on the the helper’s daughter. The Hope Chest is more than just a title or suggestion. It has meaning. A purpose that draws more life into the lives of others. Viola has sucked me into her main character, Mattie’s life. She’s suffering from ALS. Her hope has vanished. Until the Hope Chest is found and once more the forefront of the tale. Mattie’s suffering brings tears to reader’s eyes. Her husband has to watch as his once strong wife grows weaker each day. So much hope and joy has vanished that it’s intense when Mattie looks at her old home. Remembering her life as it was. But then enter’s a new woman. Rose. She is a helper for those needing extra care. Mattie and her husband need Rose’s help. Don, Mattie’s husband is trying not to cry and trying to breathe. It’s hard for a man to keep strong around his wife. Her life isn’t the same anymore. With Rose, life becomes more joyful. Don once more has hope…even as Mattie is deteriorating. The ending made my heart break and mend with love and hope. Overall, I loved reading this book. Viola Shipman creates a world where readers lose the,selves completely. Getting caught up within the emotions brought on by the scenes on every page. Stunning, well-developed, and the most engaging novel, I have read. Truly, a masterpiece all should read. I highly recommend it to all. 

Review: Faces of the Mother



Synopsis:

What happens when a group of everyday women go off in search of the most vital riches they contain…leaving behind notions of who they’re supposed to be and what they’re supposed to be doing?! Through this creative inner journey, Sharon Ann Rose, M.Div., intimately explores with a circle of women the many facets of the Mother…the full spectrum of Her deepest darkness to Her lightest ignition. Each woman goes through a life-altering transformation, facing resistance, shame, freedom, surrender, past wounds, new awakening, ancient understandings and the realization of what we encounter as we commit to fully living from the Sacred Feminine and its integrated expression in our modern world. Faces of the Mother offers an intimate portrayal of the REAL DEAL of CREATION, offering a pathway to face one’s greatest self-judgments. Here we learn to honor our deepest longings so we can work with, instead of resist them, and birth a life of beauty, blessing and extraordinary love.

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

Faces of the Mother by Sharon Ann Rose is deep, thoughtful, and a soul enriching read. This book is written for all women. No matter what difficulties in our lives or what kind of lives we live…every woman can find encouragement. Relaxation is also a key topic. Life is stressful enough. With this beautifully written guidebook, women can find their stress levels dropping. Each chapter focuses on different topics. Each new topic helps the readers feel motivated, less stressed, and renewed with energy. It was like Sharon Ann Rose breathed life into her pages and once opened, readers breathe it in…

While Faces of the Mother is a guidebook it is also a bit religious in a way. However, I didn’t let that bother me at all. It felt more like women speaking to women about daily things. Rather than a gospel book. There were prayers inside it. I thought those were nice. Calming, steady, and a way for others to connect. A total personal transformation kind of read. It inspires. The artwork with each section was easy on the eyes. I loved the color tones. They suited well with the book’s content. Overall, I recommend this to women everywhere.

Review: How to Mend a Broken Heart


Synopsis:

A compelling, heartbreaking tale that will make you laugh, cry and believe in the kindness of strangers. Perfect for fans of Jojo Moyes, Lucy Dillon and Miranda Dickinson.

Life is good for nurse Kat. That is until the man she intended to marry legs it, she’s unexpectedly promoted to a position with too much responsibility, and a patient arrives on her ward under strange circumstances.

Susan is a mystery. She refuses to speak or interact with anyone, she’s obsessed with a book of fairy tales, and the only name in her diary is that of Rhys – a plumber she barely knows.

Down-to-earth Rhys is trying to get his life back on track after the death of his beloved brother. His mum is his priority, and she needs him as much as he needs her. Or at least she did, until she starts disappearing, leaving him to find comfort in the form of his brother’s girlfriend.

Complicated is an understatement.

As the lives of these three lost strangers intertwine, will they find a way to lay ghosts past, present and future to rest? And when the chance comes to mend their broken hearts, will they be brave enough to take it?

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

How to Mend a Broken Heart by Anna Mansell is a tale for all. It’s about three people who dig through their lives finding a way to mend what’s broken. Happiness can only be found if determined to find it. Life is complicated and messy. Women everywhere can easily relate to the characters and their issues. Real world issues masterfully told in an entertaining way. Deeply emotional and thought-provoking. Mysterious, intriguing, and highly engaging to read. It was easy to follow along as the plot unfolded. Everything felt real. The pacing of the story is slightly slow but good. I haven’t read anything by Anna Mansell before, until now. I recommend her nove to all. Healing is an important themes that needs to be read and explored by everyone. 

Review: Tangled Up



Synopsis:

Storm chaser Max Grady can already feel it: there’s a tornado coming to his hometown of Chance, Nebraska. Max is going after it, and the only person he wants by his side is police officer Bree McDermott, fellow adrenaline junkie, his best friend, and the woman Max has secretly been in love with for years. But when a close call with a tornado leaves them lip-locked, Max knows that the danger is only beginning.

Bree is always up for excitement. Her close and sexy encounter with Max is unlike anything she’s felt before, and she wants more. As they work together to help clean up Chance, the air between them crackles with sexual tension. But Bree has a tendency to look ahead to the next thrill, and Max knows it. Now they’re all tangled up as they chase the strongest force of nature on earth: love.

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

Tangled Up by Erin Nicholas is red hot read. Her characters are bold, sexy, and irresistible. Both Bree and Max are the kind of people that others can trust in…and respect. Both care about their town, Chance. A tornado comes destroying it. Leaving both our heroes to clean it up…

There is a lot of heat. Max tries his best to ignore the way Bree makes him feel. Best friends for twenty-five years. Now, he’s super aware of everything Bree does. He’s doing his best to not take her on the spot. Chasing after the crazy weather leaves them both in danger. Not just physically but emotionally as well…both Bree and Max will have trouble storming it now. Max keeps Bree from being injured. She helps him…and then all bets are off. They make one choice they may finally affect the friendship they have had. It where it will take them is the mystery. Tangled Up is indeed perfect for this book. Both characters get tangled up in more than one way. Erin Nicholas has created the perfect romance. A contemporary that brings readers deep into their lives. I felt like I never wanted to leave. The novel was written in a highly engaging way. Entertaining and intriguing. The intimacy and tension of the relationship inside was powerful. Overall, Tangled Up is a definite must read for all. I loved it. 

Review: The Oarsman




Synopsis:

In the novel, The Oarsman, a magical river begins singing out, and a dying man suddenly aches to know if the paradise at its end is real enough to fill his heart. He hires an oarsman to take him upstream, but a twisted encounter sends them back to revisit every role the man has played in his long life.

A merchant hoarding, an artist trying to capture love with a brush, a warrior looking for peace in war, and a dreamer imagining himself a knight to fight a dragon — these, and more, were faces of the man.

As forces try to derail their quest, and as they row further back into the man’s past, the man begins to suspect that the oarsman is more than he seems.
The Oarsman, with its combination of adventure, fantasy, and spiritual inspiration will delight any reader, and also excite the currents of the river flowing through all our hearts.

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

The Oarsman by Zubin Mathai is one of the most fascinating reads I have read. It begins with a man set on a journey. A journey to finding that peace he so desperately yearns for…yet resides within him the whole time. Peaceful, engaging, and inspiring. Readers will enjoy this tale.  A fantasy that allows readers to explore the character’s deep soul. As the story unfolds the man has a lot to learn before his journey is complete. Man struggles. Life is complex and difficult. But if we truly allow ourselves time to discover, we can find what we search for inside ourselves. I loved the deep meanings found on the pages. Rich, entertaining, and beautifully told. The book almost makes life look like a maze. We all must find our way to the end (opening). Overall, I highly recommend The Oarsman to all. 

Review: Computer Love Inc.

Computer Love Inc. by [Hansen, Kurt, Hansen, Jessica]

 

Synopsis:

Computer Love Inc. is the story of an imminent bio-robotics boom,
a questionable death, and two young paramedics who stumble into a technological nightmare in the form of a tiny blue chip. With the help of an eccentric godfather, they become compelled to unlock the mystery of what’s become of a famed artificial intelligence manufacturer, forced to make troubling moral decisions along the way. Through sharp twists and action paced faster than an air-car, Computer Love Inc. weaves a complex technological tale of conflict and camaraderie, all the while leading us to ask ourselves: What does it mean to be a true friend? And, should some truths remain unspoken?

Rating: 4 stars

Rating: 

Computer Love Inc. by both Kurt and Jessica Hansen is a fascinating science fiction read. Fans of this genre will immediately fall in love with the plot. It is fast-paced, exciting, and pulls readers into its depth. Technology and the future are major themes incorporated into this well-written novel. I am not usually one to read science fiction, but this one was great. It held my at attention from the start. Plus, it contained mystery, suspense, and a bit of romance. Those are my favorite things to look forward in any read. Both writers put together a compelling read for readers to enjoy. Robots, science, fantasy, and death all in one action packed title. The characters were mostly males who dominated the entire book. Only one female. Quite an interesting world of fiction to explore. Overall, I recommend this book to readers everywhere.

Review: The Best Possible Answer

 

Synopsis:

AP Exams – check
SAT test – check
College Application – check
Date the wrong guy and ruin everything you’ve spent your whole life working for– check

Ultra-high-achiever Viviana Rabinovich-Lowe has always had a plan—and no room to be anything less than perfect. But her quest for perfection comes to a screeching halt when her boyfriend leaks racy pictures of her to the entire school. Making matters worse, her parents are getting divorced and now her perfect family is falling apart. For the first time, Viv feels like a complete and utter failure.

Then she gets a job working at the community pool, where she meets a new group of friends who know nothing about her past. That includes Evan, a gorgeous guy who makes her want to do something she never thought she’d do again: trust. For the first time in her life, Viv realizes she can finally be whoever she wants. But who is that? While she tries to figure it out, she learns something they never covered in her AP courses: that it’s okay to be less than perfect, because it’s our imperfections that make us who we are.

E. Katherine Kottaras once again captures what it means to be a teenager in The Best Possible Answer.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

The Best Possible Answer by E. Katherine Kottaras is a young adult novel unlike any I have personally read. This book is just as epic as The Fault in Our Stars movie was. Mega sad. Actually is was sad all the way until the ending…the ending gave off an enormous feeling just as strong the weight of grief. I can’t ruin it and say what the new feeling was…but it’s one worth experiencing from beginning to end.

Inside, The Best Possible Answer, I like the main character a lot. I easily was able to connect with her frustrations, anger, grief and other feelings. Her reactions are completely normal for any teenage girl. Yet she handled every major life situation as maturely as possible. Okay, shouting at people isn’t mature but certain times do call for it. Working a summer job, she ends up offering her summer money to her mom. That’s shows she handles situations above her teenage years. Most teenagers roll their eyes, show awful attitude, and don’t want to do more than necessary. Here, however, Vivian is pressured into doing too much by both of her parents. This sets into motion the conflict that will hover over every scene.

Katherine Kottaras’s latest novel, The Best Possible Answer, shows readers a realistic side of being a teenager. Not only that but also how a teenager goes through a traumatic experience. Parents divorcing, failing AP exams, doesn’t get into the college of choice, a secret photo popping up everywhere and a health condition that lands her in the hospital. Could the life of Vivian get any worse? Yes. It does. But that’s for readers to find out and for me to keep top secret. I loved reading it. A great novel that captures everything brilliantly. I hope this makes it onto the big screens one day. Super good. Overall, I highly recommend this read to all.

Review: The Earl’s Unforgettable Flame

Regency Romance: The Earl's Unforgettable Flame (CLEAN Historical Romance) (Fire and Smoke) by [Stone, Charlotte]

 

Synopsis:

Benjamin Frederickson, the future Earl of Wembley, can’t forget that night… The night that changed him…
More importantly, he can’t forget that brave little girl who was scarred from the horrible fire.

Catherine Watson 
.
The night young Benjamin Frederickson met the victim of a house fire, he has remembered it all of his life… Her spirit has lingered in his memory for years.
Even through his days of rebelling against his father, The Earl of Wembley, as he drinks, gambles, and womanizes.

But when he meets the beautiful Catherine Watson again, still scarred from that fire so many years later, he is enchanted.
But can a woman so remarkable remember a boy she met briefly years ago? 
.
Catherine, however, is less than impressed!
Considering herself disfigured and resigned to the idea that she will never marry, she sees his advances as a cruel joke at her expense.

How can any man view her with anything but disgust, especially the dashing future Earl of Wembley?
 
“I cannot believe that you genuinely want to spend time in the presence of this.” She pointed to her own scarred neck and her covered arm.
“Then your belief in me is sorely lacking,” he sulked angrily. “As is your opinion of your ownself.”

It won’t be easy for Lord Benjamin to convince Catherine of his love.
Is he up to the task?

“I wish it were different. I wish you could court, me as if I were normal.” 
.
Will Catherine let the past dictate her future?
Will Benjamin give up and let her go?

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

The Earl’s Unforgettable Flame by Charlotte Stone is an exciting read. Adventure, danger, an unforgotten past, and a deep emotional journey. A young boy now, as an Earl, can’t forget the good deed a young girl did. She risked her life. Now, as a woman, Catherine has the scars that make her feel like an outcast. She feels like she is not worthy of any suitor’s attention nor love. But then fate sends Benjamin into her life. He wants her. Catherine doesn’t think he could and the lack of self-esteem she has causes Benjamin to try. He wants her to know he can and does want her. But will her attitude keep them both from finding their true happiness?

Charlotte Stone’s writing is superb. She sucked me right into the plot. Tempting, bold, and thrilling. The Earl’s Unforgettable Flame is indeed a perfect title for this read. The main characters lure me deep into their backgrounds and their present moments. I loved following them both. Each with fighting for a good cause. If I were in the main female character’s shoes I too would be hesitant if an Earl like Benjamin took interest in me. Catherine considers herself a damaged good. Living with ugly scars can take a lot from an individual. The banter between both characters is enticing. I kept turning the pages in a haste to read it all.  Benjamin is a good gentleman with good intentions; however, a man can only try so hard. The game of love is unpredictable but worth every struggle. Overall, I highly recommend The Earl’s Unforgettable Flame to all.

Review: Watching Edie

Watching Edie by [Way, Camilla]

 

Synopsis:

For fans of Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train: A dazzling work of psychological suspense that weaves together the past and present of two women’s twisted friendship.
 
Beautiful, creative, a little wild… Edie was the kind of girl who immediately caused a stir when she walked into your life. And she had dreams back then—but it didn’t take long for her to learn that things don’t always turn out the way you want them to.

Now, at thirty-three, Edie is working as a waitress, pregnant and alone. And when she becomes overwhelmed by the needs of her new baby and sinks into a bleak despair, she thinks that there’s no one to turn to…

But someone’s been watching Edie, waiting for the chance to prove once again what a perfect friend she can be. It’s no coincidence that Heather shows up on Edie’s doorstep, just when Edie needs her the most. So much has passed between them—so much envy, longing, and betrayal. And Edie’s about to learn a new lesson: those who have hurt us deeply—or who we have hurt—never let us go, not entirely…

Rating: 5 stars

Review: 

Watching Edie by Camilla Way is a  psychological thriller that will have readers on the edge of their seats. The story captivates readers in a way that keeps them reading all night long. I felt the compelling tug dragging me to the last page. The scenes are filled with darkness and a fright that leaves readers’ hearts pounding fast. Edie and Heather are two friends that will keep readers constantly on their toes. I wasn’t sure which I wanted to do more…to scream or to run. Both girls presented in this novel, suffered badly. Each one dealing with an equally heavy load. One with guilt the other with an obession of the past. The loss, grief, and destruction of these two girls now women is one that hooks readers. It’s  sad to follow their stories to the end knowing something big will happen that will forever change both of their lives. As a reader, I kept hoping for the best for both. Fear and complexity of the friends situations is one not to be taken lightly. So much is at stake…a secret kept between both girls. Will the suffering finally end?

Camilla Way has brilliantly crafted a masterpiece. For fans, of  Girl in the Dark, Gone Girl, and Her Darkest Nightmare, this is a must read. Once you open this tale, it’s hard to put down. I found myself woven and lost between each girls’  terrifying events from their past. A past that still seems to be haunting them to the point of destruction. The plot is steady-paced. It switches back and forth from the girls’ past to their present moments. I think the switching has helped me to understand each character more deeply. I got a bigger insight as to who they were and are as an individual. Watching Edie is superb. I love dark reads with a heavy dose of suspense. The ending is one readers don’t want to miss. Overall, I highly recommend this novel to all.

 

Review: No One Is Invincible

No One Is Invincible by [Walker, Shawn]

 

Synopsis:

Summary Life is a precious thing. This is something sixteen year old John knows all too well. Intelligent, punk rock, and seemingly alone in a home filled with domestic violence, John runs away and finds himself homeless and living on the streets. Faced with hunger, horrid winter weather, and human ignorance, John struggles to find morality in the world around him. That is, until the love and help of a mysterious old lady who goes by the name “Mom” and charismatic, 6-year-old little girl, Candy, show him light can be found in the darkest of places. Can John face down not only homelessness, but also the fear of losing a loved one to a very deadly killing agent, cancer?

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

No One Is Invincible by Shawn Walker is a read to behold. This novel holds more than to the eyes see. A story is that is deep…emotional and one that awakens readers to the evils of men. Human ignorance is one of the worst evils humans possess. That and greed. The more we have the more we want. Yet when we meet those who have little or nothing we turn a blind’s eye to them. It’s those people that we should be helping and paying attention to…not to our wealth. Family comes in all varieties these days. A young man is smart yet feels alone runs away from his home. He is soon faced with problems of hunger, shelter, and love. Humans see the issues but they harden their hearts instead of opening them. I felt sadness, frustration, and anger. The difficulties and struggles of the characters were easy to relate to and understand. I want to cry, hug, and love the characters like they were my own family. I wanted to help them. In the end, I felt the loss, the grief, but also, a sense of belonging and love. There is hope after all…Shawn Walker’s novel, No One is Invincible is one that all should read. I highly recommend it to readers worldwide. The issues are real. The characters will tug at readers’ hearts and souls. I fell in love. Overall, this was masterfully woven and well-developed.

 

Review: Still Here

Still Here: A Novel by [Vapnyar, Lara]

 

Synopsis:

A profound and dazzlingly entertaining novel from the writer Louis Menand calls “Jane Austen with a Russian soul”.

In her warm, absorbing and keenly observed new novel, Lara Vapnyar follows the intertwined lives of four immigrants in New York City as they grapple with love and tumult, the challenges of a new home, and the absurdities of the digital age.

Vica, Vadik, Sergey and Regina met in Russia in their school days, but remained in touch and now have very different American lives. Sergey cycles through jobs as an analyst, hoping his idea for an app will finally bring him success. His wife Vica, a medical technician struggling to keep her family afloat, hunger for a better life. Sergey’s former girlfriend Regina, once a famous translator is married to a wealthy startup owner, spends her days at home grieving over a recent loss. Sergey’s best friend Vadik, a programmer ever in search of perfection, keeps trying on different women and different neighborhoods, all while pining for the one who got away.

As Sergey develops his app—calling it “Virtual Grave,” a program to preserve a person’s online presence after death—a formidable debate begins in the group, spurring questions about the changing perception of death in the modern world and the future of our virtual selves. How do our online personas define us in our daily lives, and what will they say about us when we’re gone?

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Still Here by Lara Vapnyar is an astounding novel. Readers will be instantly hooked upon opening the book. This read offers a realistic and a deep emotional journey. One that has a way of powerfully knocking readers off their feet. The cast of characters come in an array of differences. Each one with their own journey that they struggle to overcome. Grief, stability, and an endless search. I was easily able to connect with each of the characters. Their lives were created in a way that is beyond believable. Emotions such as frustration, sorrow, and determination are felt as readers weaved through the pages.

Inside Lara Vapnyar’s novel, I have met individuals in the busy city of New York. The toughest place to settle and make a living. Yet these four immigrants do exactly that. Settled, worked, and loved in the one city that can make or break people. Still Here showed that a group of friends supported one another through their tough and troubling times. Entertaining, quirky, and smart. I enjoyed reading this tale as well as having followed the four friends as their new lives progressed. Overall, I recommend it to readers everywhere.

 

 

Review: Simply Faulkner

Simply Faulkner by [Weinstein, Philip]

 

Synopsis:

Nobel Laureate and two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner William Faulkner (1897–1962) was one of America’s greatest and most celebrated writers, whose work reflects and, at the same time, questions the South’s most deeply held values. His novel The Sound and the Fury is frequently cited as one of the best books of all time, and all of his works powerfully explore complex societal and family issues that continue to be relevant in our own day. Yet, because of his decidedly difficult, stream-of-consciousness style, Faulkner’s books remain sadly unknown to many readers.

In Simply Faulkner, author Philip Weinstein not only helps us understand these challenging works, but also explains why Faulkner had to write them as he did, in an effort to capture the sheer abundance and unruliness of life. Further, in his exploration of the author’s own colorful life—including decades of working for a film industry he despised—Weinstein reveals a fascinating connection between Faulkner’s troubled personal biography and his groundbreaking fiction.

The goal of Simply Faulkner is not to simplify the author, but, rather, to create a framework that allows us to comprehend him in his own idiosyncratic way. It strives to show us the real Faulkner—warts and complications and all—and to demonstrate why his brilliant masterpieces still speak to us in a deeply meaningful way.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Simply Faulkner by Philip Weinstein is an exploration into Faulkner and his life as he grew up in the South. Faulkner took what was happening around him and his feelings on these matters and portrayed into his poetry and fiction. The time periods of when Faulkner was born and where he grew up deeply shows readers why Faulkner wrote the way he did. This was book was a great way to dive into the famous writer’s life, background, and history. The writing was super easy to understand and follow along. Faulker instantly became more than just a mastery legend writer. Here, he became a man growing through and witnessing life as we know it to be. His frustrations at the lie around him clearly popped up within all of his writings where he could share them with the world. Simply Faulkner is a brilliant nonfiction book. Both education and entertaining. I was immediately fascinated with Faulkner, his writings, and his background. Philip Weinstein has woven a journey that readers will take part in time after time. Truly an unforgettable portrait of a well-known writer and poet captured in this book. Overall, I highly recommend this read to readers everywhere.

 

Review: Intensive Therapy

Intensive Therapy by [Deitz, Jeffrey]

 

Synopsis:

Intensive Therapy provides an intimate picture of a multifaceted relationship, written in a similar vein to modern classics such as The Prince of Tides and Ordinary People. Cerebral but grounded in the real world, Intensive Therapy will appeal to readers who enjoy close character study and the pleasure of a heady, cultured read.

Intensive Therapy follows the relationship of Dr. Jonas Speller and Victoria Schine-Bloch, an analyst and his patient, over twenty years in their interconnected lives. The story moves back and forth in time, alternating between the early 1980s. Then back to when both are becoming adults and professionals, and the last months of 2004, as each struggles to address ongoing family crises.

As a young woman, Victoria’s toxic relationship with her parents threatened her college education and her life, and Jonas helped her find the independence and strength to start anew. In return, her candor and insight helped the budding doctor see the flaws in his training and develop a new, better path. As mature adults with successful careers, Victoria reappears to ask for Jonas’s help with her troubled teenage daughter. When tragedy nearly takes the lives of both her children, Jonas must act quickly to save the woman who made him the man he has become.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Intensive Therapy by Jeffrey Deitz is stunning. It has opened up my eyes to a whole new topic such as psychotherapy. This was an area completely foreign to me and was interesting to read about in a fictional sense. The relationship between the doctor and client blurred over the normal lines of professionalism. Something deeper and crazier happened between the doctor and client. Here, inside this novel, readers will get a taste of what happens when two people allow themselves to get more involved than normal. A doctor leans more away from his current practice and more towards a new direction. However, that doesn’t occur until his most recent client, Victoria comes to him. She brings about changes in life that affect his work and changes him as an individual. Victoria has several issues and worries. But that’s what Jonas is for…to help her solve those issues and make her life a lot easier to handle. I have found this tale beautifully written with humor. The characters’ journeys have started out rough but soon have smoothed out in the end. The dynamics of life keep not only the characters puzzled but the readers as well. Interesting, suspenseful, and addictive to read. Intensive Therapy by Jeffrey Deitz is indeed a must read for all. I highly recommend it.

 

Review: A Long Walk with Sally

A Long Walk With Sally: A Grieving Father's Golf Journey Back to Life by [Clark Jr., David]

 

Synopsis:

A parent’s worst fear and most unimaginable horror began on April 4, 2004. As his world was torn further apart, David’s only wish was to escape–to walk away–but how could he? How would he ever find the peace he so desperately needed?

On a golf course in Ireland, the answer came. Thus began a ten-year quest, taking David to 290 courses throughout the British Isles. As he was about to leave on his final trip, he looked out the windshield of his car and realized where he would find his peace.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

A Long Walk with Sally by David Clark Jr. is a memoir that will an impact upon readers everywhere. Readers will get to travel a father’s darkest journey. The loss of his only daughter. A loved child…now, taken from this world.  The emotional journey within this memoir is something to behold. It will not only capture readers’ interest but also their hearts. Sad, powerful, and inspiring. Who knew golf, one of the most boring sports to me could be therapeutic to a father? I was surprised. I learned something from this book. Readers, I know without a doubt will take something deep and thoughtful from this father’s experience and the way he dealt with handling his daughter’s death. A Long Walk with Sally shows us that we all handle grief and loss differently. This father found a way to cope, to come to terms with the loss, and found an inner peace. It was easy to connect with the father in this book. Well-written and poised in a way that readers will enjoy reading it. Overall, I highly recommend it to all.

 

Review: Temptation’s Trust

 

Synopsis:

Love is but a splendid experience which may only be appreciated through unexpected actions. Temptation’s Trust expresses Gary R. Hess’s unforeseen and sometimes unthinkable affairs with love throughout his life.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Temptation’s Trust is a collection of beautiful engaging poetry by Gary R. Hess. His writing is superb. I loved reading each poem that splayed across each and every page. Capturing moments of life and love within each one…I enjoyed reading this book.Well-written and told in a way that lures readers into each word. Deep and meaningful. Overall, I highly recommend it to readers everywhere.

Review: Sky (Me Against The World

 

Synopsis:

We got a glimpse of Sky in “I Hate That I Love You” but now we get to hear her full story. Lauren was dealt a bad hand from birth but when she runs away and finds the life she always wanted, things start to change. Her life changes overnight when Sky’s born. Sky had the things Lauren would stay up at night crying, and dreaming about… A family that loved her, anything she wanted at her fingertips but most of all Sky had a safe home. Lauren never felt safe at night until she met Mrs. Carter and Jalen but one day that was all taken from her and her life as she knew it would never be the same. Sixteen, with a heart full of pain and revenge on her brain Sky’s forced out in this cold world trying to find her way. Will she find her way in this mean world or will she get swallowed alive?

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Sky (Me Against The World) by Keyanna Ford is truly a deep insider’s view, to the ugly side of our world. Sure we know about crimes that are committed but when a family turns against a child…that’s the worst kind of crime of all. A seven-year-old girl runs away from after her mom’s boyfriend tries touching her in a way no man should. Yet the mother knows and let it happen anyway. Luckily, the little girl finds an elderly woman who takes her. Once she’s safe inside with the older woman, the little girl’s life changes forever. For once she is treated like a child and loved. However, happy endings never last in real life. Again the world has returned to blow Sky a cruel hand. The elderly woman is now suffering from cancer and is dying…then, there’s the elderly woman’s son, who has become an uncle to little Sky. While they’re at home they get a terrifying call…Uncle was shot and didn’t survive the surgery…Little Sky is now a teen and lost the only good she had in life. Now, it’s up to her to find a good life or to fall back in the dark.. Keyanna Ford’s writing is superb. Her novel is African American literature but it presents real life scenarios, that all need to be more aware of… and I loved how well-developed the tale was. This was a fast-paced story that will grab readers’ hearts and suck them in whole. I loved reading every page…addictive, sad, and well-written. Overall, I highly recommend Sky (Me Against The World) to readers everywhere.

 

Review: This Too Shall Pass

 

Synopsis:

Blanca is forty years old and motherless. Shaken by the unexpected death of the most important person in her life, she suddenly realizes that she has no idea what her future will look like.

To ease her dizzying grief and confusion, Blanca turns to her dearest friends, her closest family, and a change of scenery. Leaving Barcelona behind, she returns to Cadaqués, on the coast, accompanied by her two sons, two ex-husbands, and two best friends, and makes a plan to meet her married lover for a few stolen moments as well. Surrounded by those she loves most, she spends the summer in an impossibly beautiful place, finding ways to reconnect and understand what it means to truly, happily live on her own terms, just as her mother would have wanted

Rating: 4.5 Stars

Review:

This Too Shall Pass by Milena Busquets is a deep emotional journey. Readers like myself won’t ever forget it. Milena Busquets brought me to Spain. A place where the events were happening. This was a tale of a forty-year-old woman who has just lost her mother. The daughter is speaking about her life and journey to her dead mother. The shock and sadness that the main character felt and thought became my own feelings. The point of view from the daughter was interesting. I found myself lost in this woman’s despair, discovery, and life. Lots of sex within this read. I enjoyed reading this summer novel. It was definitely a refreshing story from what I have read in the past. The tale is about love and loss. Deep, thoughtful, and complicated. The scenes played before me…but it was like getting tiny glimpses into the forty-year-old woman’s life. I wished it went deeper into how she felt when she did have sex or what made her happy…every other book I have read there was at least one thing that made the main characters happy. Maybe, in this tale, it was Blanca’s mother that made her happy. Once her mother died, it was like everything didn’t have any meaning…Overall, I recommend this novel to all. It definitely has kept me guessing.

Review: All Summer Long

 

Synopsis:

All Summer Long follows one charming New York couple – prominent interior designer Olivia Ritchie and her husband Nicholas Seymour, an English professor and true southern gentleman.  They are seemingly polar opposites, yet magnetically drawn together and in love for more than fourteen years.

As they prepare to relocate to Charleston, S.C., Olivia, the ultimate New Yorker, has reservations about the promise she made to retire in the Lowcountry, where Nick wants to return home and lead a more peaceful life.  They are moving north to south, fast pace versus slow pace and downsizing.  Nick is ecstatic.  Olivia is not.   She can’t let Nick know that their finances are not what he thought.   Her client list is evaporating, their monetary reserves are dwindling and maybe that house she picked out on Sullivans Island needs too much work.  Thank God, for her assistant, Roni Larini, her right (and sometimes left) hand.

As they find themselves pondering the next step of their lives, Olivia and Nick travel with her billionaire clients and their friends and are swept up into the world of the ultra-rich and explore the globe with a cast of zany eccentrics over one tumultuous, hot summer. All as Olivia grapples with what lies ahead for her and Nick.

This is a story of how plans evolve and lives change in unexpected ways, how even those who have everything are still looking for something more.  Even the most successful people can often struggle to keep things together.  All Summer Long asks the ultimate question: can money buy happiness?  From Sullivans Island to Necker Island to Nantucket to the beaches of Southern Spain, we’ll come to recognize the many faces of true love, love that deepens and endures but only because one woman makes a tremendous leap of faith. And that leap changes everything.

Rating: 4 stars

Review:

All Summer Long by Dorothea Benton Frank is a truly a thoughtful novel. One that takes readers on a journey of finding what they really want and need in life. Marriage is not easy but it takes courage, sacrifices, and love. A woman and her husband get to take a vacation and it’s on this vacation she gets to think about everything. Maybe her marriage is okay and will survive no matter what is happening with her work and career. Marriage, after all, is for better or worse, rich or poor. All Summer Long is an exploration and deep thinking that leaves readers wondering what will happen next. Dorothea Benton Frank portrays the life of a wife and husband beautifully in this tale. I found the beginning a bit slow for my taste but once I moved past that…the plot was steady. Overall, I enjoyed the sneak peek into these characters lives and recommend it to all.

 

Review: Watering My Little Apple Trees

 

Synopsis:

When two persistent interviewers asked Caldwell if he would define Fiddler, his answer was “Nope.” It was his averment that meaning is a function of the story. That’s one of the two responses an author can make to requests for meaning. The other is to say what he was trying to do; that, too, is about the story, not of it. It is only the story itself that can give the reader its measure of meaning. This story fails, finally, to be adequate.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Watering My Little Apple Trees by James Bynum is a rare and highly unique read. Readers will instantly find themselves buried deep, into this wonderful collection of stories. James Bynum has brought his love for teaching and literature to readers everywhere.  I was intrigued from the beginning…the way James Bynum shows us readers on how to understand or learn what a story’s true purpose was. I never really put that much thought into what the deep meaning of a story was until I read this brilliant book.

Watering My Little Apple Trees contains a collection of stories that came from James Bynum’s many years of teaching and writing. Readers can only imagine what it would have been like to have been taught by such a teacher and writer. James Bynum makes it easier for readers to understand a writer’s underlying purpose when reading. Writers leave key phrases or words that will signify what they wanted their readers to take with them. It is this that James Bynum carefully instructs his readers to see and understand. Also, a story’s true purpose is the one a reader takes from it. Many writers won’t tell their readers what they wanted them to understand from their work…they leave the readers to finding their own thoughts on what the reading really said and meant. Watering My Little Apple Trees is a way for James Bynum to share his passion and knowledge of literature with readers everywhere. The book is deep, thought-provoking, and educational. Readers will be looking at literature differently after reading this book. Overall, I loved reading this, and I highly recommend this spectacular read to readers worldwide.