Thursday, February 27, 2014

LONGING FOR HOME - HOPE SPRINGS - by Sarah M. Eden

Picture and Description taken from GoodReads

Description:
All is not well in Wyoming. Katie Macauley gave up her life-long dream of returning to Ireland in order to make a home for herself in Hope Springs, but her future has never been so uncertain. The town is more divided than ever, with both the Irish and the Reds stealing property, burning buildings, and endangering lives.

Katie’s heart remains sharply divided between her love for playful Tavish and steady Joseph, a decision she feels ill-prepared to make. In the midst of the growing unrest, temperatures drop quickly, too quickly, and Irish nightmares of famine and cold resurface as the little Wyoming town struggles to beat the harsh winter.

Katie makes one sacrifice after another to keep the peace and help see her loved ones through the difficult days ahead, but will it be enough? Can the town make amends before their hatred consumes them all? And will Katie find the love she has been searching for as well as a home to call her own?


My Review / Thoughts:

Let me just start by saying that I love all things Sarah M. Eden.  She is such an amazing writer.  She is so talented, and has such a way with words.  Her books grab you from the moment you open them.  This one is no different.  

I have been dying for this book to come out, and then when I got it, I didn't get to it fast enough.  My daughter stole it first.  I had to listen to her "hmms, and haaa's" the whole time, and it about killed me.  When I finally got my hands on the book I couldn't put it down.  I had to find out where Katie's life was headed.

The discrimination going on in these books is just mind blowing to me.  Why?  I just do not like discrimination of any kind.  It's hard to read, and hard to even think that it is possible.  Katie is the sweetest girl on the planet.  In this book she is even more fabulous.  

Katie does all she can for the Irish friends she has come to know and love.  In a time of difficulty she does what no one else would consider.  She decides to work for the store keeper who keeps raising the prices for the Irish.  He is such a mean man, and I didn't like him in the first book, and I don't like him in this book either.

There are so many great characters in these books.   I love them all.  Tavish has such a funny personality.  He always knows how to make every one smile.  Joseph is such an amazing guy.  Great dad.  I love him.  He is the glue that holds the town together.  He is so considerate, caring, loving, and stern.  That doesn't seem like it would be a good characteristic, but it is.  He and Tavish love Katie.  It is torturous to read.  I love them both.  LOVE THEM!  It was so hard to decide who I wanted her to be with.  I am done with the book, and I am still trying to decide if she is with who I want her to be with.  

I cannot even tell you about this book too much because anything I say will give the ending away.  If you like the first book in the series, you will love this one.  It is such a fantastic love story.  

Eden does a great job of putting you "in" the book.  I read the book in an Irish accent...In my head it is a fantastic Irish accent :).  I don't think you can help but do an Irish accent.  The writing is that amazing. 

Pick this series up if you haven't yet.  You won't regret it.

Source:  I bought this book for myself off Amazon.  I am not affiliated with Amazon in any way and was not compensated for this review.  These are my own PERSONAL thoughts on the book.


My Rating:


Where to Buy (because you should buy it...it's awesome :))



About the Author

Picture and Bio taken from Sarah Eden's blog

Sarah M. Eden is the author of multiple historical romances, including Whitney Award finalistsSeeking Persephone (2008, Covenant Communications), Courting Miss Lancaster (2010, Covenant Communications) and Longing for Home(2013). Combining her obsession with history and affinity for tender love stories, Sarah loves crafting witty characters and heartfelt romances. She holds a Bachelor's degree in research and happily spends hours perusing the reference shelves of her local library. Sarah has twice served as the Master of Ceremonies for the LDStorymakers Writers Conference, acted as the Writer in Residence at the Northwest Writers Retreat and is one-third of the team at the AppendixPodcast.com. Sarah is represented by Pam van Hylckama Vlieg at Foreword Literary Agency.





IN TUNE - THE ROLE OF THE SPIRIT IN TEACHING AND LEARNING - By Gerald N. Lund - Review

Well, I have done it.  I missed a blog tour date.  I feel horrible.  BUT, in my defense I did have to go in for an emergency appendectomy so I kind of have an excuse.  I totally was out of it for a couple of weeks, and didn't do much where my blog was concerned.  It wasn't until today when I realized that I missed my tour date.  Thankfully Michelle Moore with Deseret Book was super nice about it, and is allowing me to still post my review for the book.


Book Description: 
The Holy Ghost gives knowledge, wisdom, understanding, and enlightenment, but how do we know when we have been taught by the Spirit? If we desire to be taught—and to teach—by the Spirit, what is our responsibility?

Teaching and learning can take place in a variety of settings. It might occur in a Church meeting or as we participate in a gospel lesson or in a family home evening. Often it is a personal experience that occurs outside formal instructional settings in the private, brief teaching moments of life. In this insightful companion volume to Hearing the Voice of the Lord, bestselling author Gerald N. Lund helps readers understand how the Spirit can increase our abilities as both teachers and learners. 

My Review / Thoughts:
This is not the typical book you will see from me on my blog.  I am a very proud member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  I love reading.  I love reading all kind of books.  I love reading almost all genres.  I have to admit this is not a book I would usually read, but when Deseret Book contacted me and asked if I would review it I jumped at the chance.  It was a book I needed to read.

It is all about how to recognize the Holy Ghost in our lives.  It talks about the functions of the Holy Ghost, and how to put the principles into action.  Honestly I think I take for granted that I have been a member my whole life.  Sometimes I don't give credit where credit is due.  Sometimes I like to think that the inspiration I have or had is my own.  I think I fail to realize when the Holy Ghost is actually trying to teach me.  While reading this book it taught me how to recognize the spirit in my life.

In the book there is a sub heading called "Create Your Own Spiritual Destiny".  The story that went along with it touched me tremendously.  This quote especially "It doesn't matter that your family was dysfunctional.  You, like Abraham, can create your own spiritual destiny".  I don't think any family is perfect, at least I know that mine isn't.  We try, and we work together.  This quote though gave me some fuel to give to other family members of mine who might be struggling.  It was so great.

There are so many wonderful things I want to say about this book, but I think you should go pick it up for yourself and read it.  

Thank you Deseret Book for giving me the opportunity to review this fabulous book.  It taught me a lot.

Source:  I was given this book by Deseret Book in return for an honest review.  I am not affiliated with Deseret book in anyway, and was not compensated for this review.  These are my own PERSONAL thoughts on the book.

My Rating:

Where to Buy:


About the Author

Elder Gerald N. Lund received his BA and MS degrees in sociology from Brigham Young University. He served for thirty-five years in the Church Educational System, and he served as a member of the Second Quorum of the Seventy from 2002 to 2008. He is a prolific author (The Work and the Glory series, The Kingdom and the Crown trilogy, Fire of the Covenant, The Undaunted) and has received many honors for both his fiction and nonfiction works. He and his wife, Lynn, are the parents of seven children.



The Leland Dragon Blast

  Reclamation Redheart coverRedheart 

 Enter the lands of Leland Province, where dragon and human societies have long dwelled side by side. Superstitions rise sharply, as a severe drought strips the land of its bounty, providing fertile ground for the darker ambitions of Fordon Blackclaw, Dragon Council Leader, who seeks to subdue humans or wipe them off the face of the land. As the shadow of danger creeps across Leland Province, a young dragon named Kallon Redheart, who has turned his back on dragons and humans alike, comes into an unexpected friendship. Riza Diantus is a young woman whose dreams can no longer be contained by the narrow confines of her village, and when she finds herself in peril, Kallon is the only one with the power to save her. Yet to do so means he must confront his past, and embrace a future he stopped believing in. A tale of friendship, courage, and ultimate destiny, Redheart invites readers to a wondrous journey through the Leland Dragon Series.

Praise for Redheart “Redheart is a captivating and enthralling book.”- Evie Bookish

“Gamber has written a hypnotic tale that lulls you into a dreamy state of ethereal bliss, as you enter into the world of the Leland Dragons!” – Jorie Loves a Story

 “I would recommend this book to anyone who likes a great fantasy novel.” – Jess Resides Here

“The story itself is very beautifully told, and Gamber does a phenomenal job creating personable characters and down to earth themes, all dealing with different aspects, such as social, psychological, feministic, archetypal, and philosophical issues.” – A Book Vacation


Excerpt from Redheart

Kallon soared. He thrust his crimson wings to chase the clouds, tethered to the earth by only his massive shadow. He flew faster, but his shadow could not be outrun. He felt it below him, dragging across the dusty field like an anchor, pulling him downward. With a defiant twist of his wings, he veered straight up into the cobalt sky. The sky was where dragons were meant to thrive, and it was the place they returned to when they died. At least, according to his father. Kallon had believed it once. He had believed the stories of dragon valor in a world where humans and dragons worked together toward a common future. But that was long ago. Kallon didn’t believe in anything anymore. It became harder to breathe, and Kallon’s eyes burned and watered. His wings resisted moving. He’d gone as high as he could go. He paused. As far as he could see, the sky was the same unlimited blue. There was no rail, no net. There seemed nothing to keep him from going forward, yet there he was forced to stop, as every dragon before him stopped. With a groan of regret, Kallon hung his head and descended. He followed his shadow across a field of withered meadow grass. The field gave way to sand, and the sand to stones, then bulging fists of granite welcomed him home to the foothills of the Leland Mountains. Then he heard something. Instead of disappearing into his cave, he swooped above a high cliff and circled back. He dropped down to his feet, curled in his wings, and stood still as the mountains to listen. A scream. From somewhere beyond the next peak came a human scream. He snorted. Too bad it wasn’t something more interesting. His ears had long since grown deaf to the cries of humans. Then the scream came again. It was the sound of terror; the kind he used to hear from children as his shadow passed over the ground near them. He shuddered, and found himself turning toward the sound. He hadn’t wanted to go home yet, anyway. He supposed it wouldn’t hurt just to look. He flew low over the meadow until he caught the human scent. No, not one human—several. He landed quietly and loped toward a grove of ancient firs, some of which were taller than his head. Careful not to rustle any branches, he poked his face through the trees. There he saw the humans and discovered the source of the scream. Three men stood around a female, who crouched in the center of them. There was a leader, it seemed, who cackled an evil laugh and was goading the two younger men toward her. His voice was louder than the others, and his stringy hair was the color of dung. “Go on,” he said, and shoved his friend toward her. The woman shrieked and lunged, stabbing a knife at the air. The man jumped away, but the leader darted behind the woman and grabbed her wrist, then wedged the inside of his elbow against her throat. “Give me that little toy,” he snarled. The woman struggled. The leader yanked away the knife and pushed her to the ground. He slapped her face. Kallon could see her shoulders heave as she whispered in a hoarse voice, “Please. Don’t do this.” Kallon was still considering what he ought to do, when there was a sudden shout. “Dragon!” cried one of the men. “Bloody ‘ell!” yelped another. The leader just stood gaping, his bottom lip flopping up and down like a beached carp. “Run!” The man near the female jumped to his feet, and hollered again. “Run!” The leader finally moved. He flung up the knife, and it tumbled through the air to bump Kallon harmlessly on the nose. Kallon growled, anyway. The leader stumbled back. Kallon sucked in a deep breath and bellowed like thunder. The man wailed, and bolted after the others. The men collided with trees and smacked into each other in their panic. Kallon stopped bellowing to smile. Cowards. Then he swung his face to the woman. He found her gaze locked on him, and his smile dissolved, taken aback by the look in her eyes. He had grown accustomed to screams, shouts of fear, and the look of terror in the eyes of humans. But this woman reacted to him with none of these. Her face seemed to register… relief. Then her eyes closed and she fell backward onto the ground. Kallon inched forward through the trees. He bumped her shoulder with his snout. She didn’t respond. “You dead?” he asked. He nudged her again. She was breathing. Blood trickled from her nose and mouth. She smelled more pleasant than he thought a human could smell, like the musky forest path drenched in sunshine. He sniffed her again. He knew he should leave her right where she laid. She was no business of his, and he didn’t know the first thing about tending to her anyway. But she’d looked at him differently than most humans, and it stirred something within him he couldn’t explain. He lifted a claw to his cheek and rubbed, unsure of what to do. Then he mumbled, “Going to regret this.” He grasped her with his forelegs and soared off toward home.  

image

sela
Sela 

 Peace was fleeting. Vorham Riddess, Venur of Esra Province, covets the crystal ore buried deep in Leland's mountains. His latest device to obtain it: land by marriage to a Leland maiden. But that's not all. Among Dragonkind, old threats haunt Mount Gore, and shadows loom in the thoughts of the Red who restored life to land and love. A dragon hunter, scarred from countless battles, discovers he can yet suffer more wounds. In the midst of it all, Sela Redheart is lost, driven from her home with only her old uncle to watch over her. As the dragon-born child of Kallon, the leader of Leland's Dragon Council, she is trapped in human form with no understanding of how she transformed, or how to turn back. Wanderers seek a home, schemes begin to unfurl, and all is at risk as magic and murder, marriage and mystery strangle the heart of Esra. A struggle for power far older and deeper than anyone realizes will leave no human or dragon unaffected. In a world where magic is born of feeling, where the love between a girl and a dragon was once transformative, what power dwells in the heart of young Sela?


Reclamation cover

Reclamation 
The exciting conclusion of the Leland Dragon Series! Leland Province remains in danger. The sinister Fordon Blackclaw has returned from the shadows to strike at the heart of neighboring Esra, killing its Venur and making clear his intentions to retake what was once his: Mount Gore, seat of the Leland Dragon Council. All around, the land grows weaker and weaker. Leland, once thought saved by Kallon Redheart, is without purpose, and within its borders, Murk Forest, a place of mystery and danger, has driven its inhabitants to seek aid. Esra is in flames, and the Rage Desert grows. Dragon and human alike struggle to find their way, and the wizard Orman can sense that there may be more at stake than the affairs of dragons. Hope remains, yet it is not without obstacles. In Esra, Sela, the daughter of Kallon and Riza, found the well, a source of life, and made herself whole again. But her homecoming is not what she had imagined. Old wounds buried deep must reopen if life is to continue. Dragons, humans, wizards, and shape shifters are all at risk as the peace between dragon and human has finally been broken. War is here. The stakes? Perhaps the whole world.


Jackie
 
Author Jackie Gamber

As an award winning author, Jackie writes stories ranging from ultra-short to novel-length, varieties of which have appeared in anthologies such as Tales of Fantasy and Dragons Composed, as well as numerous periodical publications, including Orson Scott Card’s Intergalactic Medicine Show, The Binnacle, Mindflights Magazine, Necrotic Tissue, and Shroud. She is the author of the fantasy novel Redheart and Sela, and writing an alternate history time travel novel. She blogs professionally for English Tea Store.com, where she reviews classic science fiction and fantasy novels and pairs them with the ideal tea-sipping companion. Jackie is a member of the professional organizations Science Fiction Writers of America and Horror Writers Association. She was named honorable mention in L. Ron Hubbard’s Writers of the Future Award, and received a 2008 Darrell Award for best short story by a Mid-South author. She is the winner of the 2009 Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley Award for Imaginative Fiction for her story The Freak Museum, a post-apocalyptic tale that looks closely at perceptions and outward appearances and how they affect the way we see ourselves. Jackie Gamber was co-founder and Executive Editor of Meadowhawk Press, a speculative fiction publisher based in Memphis. One of their novels, Terminal Mind by David Walton, won the Philip K. Dick Memorial Award in 2009. Jackie also edited the award winning benefit anthology, Touched By Wonder. She has been a guest lecturer at Memphis Options High Schools, and is a speaker at writers’ conferences from Michigan to Florida. Jackie is also the visionary behind the MidSouthCon Writers’ Conference, helping writers connect since 2008.


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Blast Giveaway $100 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Ends 3/24/14 Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

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Saturday, February 22, 2014

Grand Finale for Wildwood Creek!!


There is a mystery in Wildwood Creek's history, a mystery that affects Allie's present...

Wildwood CreekWildwood Creek
by Lisa Wingate
Christian Romance
Paperback, 384 pages
February 4th 2014 by Bethany House Publishers

Allie Kirkland has never been one to take wild risks. But when she’s offered a costuming assistant’s job on a docudrama in the hills near Moses Lake, she jumps at the chance. She’s always dreamed of following in her director-father’s footsteps, and the reenactment of the legendary frontier settlement of Wildwood is a first step. The family expectations will have to wait.

But in 1861, the real Wildwood held dangerous realities. Town founder Harland Delevan held helpless residents, including young Irish schoolteacher Bonnie Rose, in an iron grip. Mysterious disappearances led to myths and legends still retold in the folk songs of Chinquapin Peaks. Eventually, the entire site was found abandoned.
When strange connections surface between Allie and the teacher who disappeared over a century ago, everyone in Wildwood, including Allie’s handsome neighbor on the film set, Blake Fulton, seems to be hiding secrets, and Allie doesn’t know who she can trust. If she can’t find the answers in time, history may repeat itself . . . with the most unthinkable results.

Bethany House



Lisa, the Writer
Part IV of IV:

What sacrifices have you had to make to be a writer?

Writing two novels per year for two different publishers these last several years has been very time-consuming, especially while raising a family, driving carpools, and shuttling forgotten sports equipment to stadiums all over a three-county area. I'm still a mom, and I don't want to miss anything, which often means that I'm up late or up early to finish my writing. I think for me, the sacrifice has probably come in terms of giving up time for hobbies and other things I like to do outside of the writing business.

What keeps me going is the pure love of story and at times the letters from readers.  There is nothing more powerful than knowing that your words on a page affected a life, helped to inspire growth, or just walked through the dark night of the soul with someone. A few years ago, a reader wrote to tell me she’d couldn’t sleep on as the first anniversary of her young granddaughter’s death approached, so she picked up one of my stories.  The book took her away from that pain for a while. It made her laugh, and that was what she needed.  There’s an incredible sense of human connection in that.  A story can literally transport the mind, and body, and soul to another place. It never fails that when I’m having a “down” day, a note will come in from a reader and remind me that the human side of story is what matters most.

What advice would you give other writers?

It's gauche to talk about money, but don't do it for the money. Everybody seems to think that becoming a full-time writer is the measure of success, but I would urge writers coming along to really take their time about making the decision to give up another career and write full time. Being financially dependent on writing as your livelihood adds a new level of stress. I've seen the way too many young writers make that jump too quickly, and that always seems to be the question at conferences, “Are you a full-time writer?” I don’t think you’re any more legitimate because you write full time or don't. In truth, it’s more important to find out how to preserve the magic and enthusiasm that kept you sitting down at the computer when no one was paying you to write, and you weren’t sure anyone ever would.

Did you miss the other three parts about Lisa, the other guest posts, or reviews?
Catch them now!

2/11: LDS and Lovin' it - Review
"I quite enjoyed this book, the characters, the plot, the mystery, everything really."

2/12: Mythical Books - Guest Post
"Well, to begin with, that our journeys, struggles, and challenges are never without purpose."

Christy's Cozy Corners – Excerpt
I imagine the words as he’s lookin’ at me, hear the echo as he spies Maggie outside the door. It troubles me not so much for myself, but for my sister. . . .

I Am A Reader, Not A Writer - Guest Post
"It’s impossible not to wonder, from the safer vantage point of a modern life, if I could have endured what those pioneer women endured. If I were in the shoes of my ancestors, would I have the metal to survive?"

2/13: Kelly P's Blog – Excerpt
The man trails the steeple along his bottom lip. “Yes,” he says quite slowly, thinking the words in the speakin’. “Yes, you will do nicely, I believe.”

2/14: Mel's Shelves - Review
"I love a good mystery and this book delivered!"

2/16: Brooke Blogs - Guest Post
"There is also, undoubtedly, a bit of my own hidden dream in Allie’s opportunity to join the historical reenactment — to go back in time."

Tell Tale Book Reviews – Excerpt
I felt something . . . happening, but I didn’t know what.

Paulette's Papers - Guest Post
"The story is a combination of folk legend, historical fact, and wild flight of fancy. I like to think of it as part historical, part contemporary, part romance, part adventure, and part drama."

"It was mysterious, and interesting, and exciting to read."

The Written Adventure – Excerpt
“One final thing,” she added. “Are you familiar with the name Bonnie Rose?”
The interview had taken another hairpin turn. “No, not that I know of . . .”

2/19: Getting Your Read On - Review
"Like I said, the ending was my favorite part. The mystery climaxed, the action picked up, the romance finally entered and I got a Happily Ever After."

Bookworm Lisa - Guest Post
"There were two special challenges in writing Wildwood Creek. The first was definitely the research...
The second challenge in writing Wildwood Creek involved the actual threading together of Allie and Bonnie's stories."

2/20: The Wonderings of One Person - Interview
"I think we all have mysteries that linger in our family histories or in our hometowns. Those tales are told at family gatherings, in the corners of local cafés, and around cook fires at Scout campouts. It’s impossible not to wonder, when hearing the retellings of things that have been passed down by word-of-mouth for generations, how much is true?"

Platypire Reviews - Review
"Wildwood Creek is the sort of book that drew me in from the first page, and I had to keep on reading to find out what was going to happen."

"If you are a fan of romance, historical fiction, and/or cozy mysteries, this story is for you. The author has created a completely scintillating story written in exquisite style."

"The way the characters and storyline were woven together was brilliant!"

Reviews By Molly - Review
"I try to remind myself of the things that really matter and to stay focused on what will be significant in a year, five years, ten years, and so on."


Lisa Wingate Author PictureLisa Wingate is a journalist, inspirational speaker, reviewer for the New York Journal of Books, and the author of over twenty novels.  Her novels combine elements of history, romance, mystery, and women's fiction with nuggets of Southern culture, from the sublime to the humorous. She is a seven-time American Christian Fiction Writers Carol award nominee, a Christy Award nominee, an Oklahoma Book Award finalist, a Christianity Today Book Award nominee, an Inspy Award nominee, and a two-time Carol Award winner. Her works have been selected for Booklist’s Top Ten List in 2012 and in 2013. Recently, the group Americans for More Civility, a kindness watchdog organization, selected Lisa along with Bill Ford, Camille Cosby, and six others, as recipients of the National Civies Award, which celebrates public figures who work to promote greater kindness and civility in American life.




Tour-Wide Giveaway
February 10 - March 2nd  US Only
Found out more about this amazing giveaway on the Launch and here.
See Rafflecopter for restrictions.

1 Winner, 1 Amazing Prize Pack from Bethany House and Lisa Wingate:
   $50 Amazon Gift Card
   Print copy of Wildwood Creek by Lisa Wingate
   Handmade-by-author Prayer Box with notepads 

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Friday, February 21, 2014

QUIET The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking by Susan Cain - Review

Picture and Description taken from GoodReads



Description:

At least one-third of the people we know are introverts. They are the ones who prefer listening to speaking, reading to partying; who innovate and create but dislike self-promotion; who favor working on their own over brainstorming in teams. Although they are often labeled "quiet," it is to introverts that we owe many of the great contributions to society--from van Gogh’s sunflowers to the invention of the personal computer.

Passionately argued, impressively researched, and filled with indelible stories of real people, Quiet shows how dramatically we undervalue introverts, and how much we lose in doing so. Taking the reader on a journey from Dale Carnegie’s birthplace to Harvard Business School, from a Tony Robbins seminar to an evangelical megachurch, Susan Cain charts the rise of the Extrovert Ideal in the twentieth century and explores its far-reaching effects. She talks to Asian-American students who feel alienated from the brash, backslapping atmosphere of American schools. She questions the dominant values of American business culture, where forced collaboration can stand in the way of innovation, and where the leadership potential of introverts is often overlooked. And she draws on cutting-edge research in psychology and neuroscience to reveal the surprising differences between extroverts and introverts.

Perhaps most inspiring, she introduces us to successful introverts--from a witty, high-octane public speaker who recharges in solitude after his talks, to a record-breaking salesman who quietly taps into the power of questions. Finally, she offers invaluable advice on everything from how to better negotiate differences in introvert-extrovert relationships to how to empower an introverted child to when it makes sense to be a "pretend extrovert."

This extraordinary book has the power to permanently change how we see introverts and, equally important, how introverts see themselves.


My Review / Thoughts:

This is such a different book.  I have to admit I probably would have never picked it up, had it not been for wanting to go to a friends book club.  This was the book for the month.  It is so, not what I read.  I am so glad I did though.  It was very interesting.  I have two fabulous introverts in my sweet family.  My amazing husband, and my sweet oldest daughter.  They are both such fantastic individuals, but we are so very different.  I am so NOT an introvert, although while reading this book I have discovered I am more of a ambivert (definition:  one whose personality type is intermediate between extrovert and introvert).  I put that there because I had never heard this term before.  While reading I kept telling myself I think that maybe I am an extrovert with introvert tendencies.  Then this term came to light.  

There are so many great things talked about in this book.  When I was done reading this book I honestly with I could say I was an introvert.  They seem to possess some fabulous qualities.  Not that extroverts don't, but introverts seem to be among the most successful people in the world.  This book honestly helped me understand my sweet husband and daughter so much more.  There were several times while reading that I thought "man that sounds just like my family".  It helped me understand what might be going through their heads.  

I don't think I will ever understand how a person gets to be an introvert, but this book certainly sheds a new light on how, why, and so forth.  It is just so interesting.  There are so many things talked about in this book and so many great examples, that I couldn't put it down.  I know.  Sounds strange right.  I do not like "self help" or stuff like that at all, but this book was so fascinating.  It has such a great insight into a world that I am not familiar with.   I honestly with that I was an introvert.  Something I NEVER would have thought I would say.  I sometimes give my husband and daughter a hard time when they are in their "quiet" place.  Now, I am totally understanding that so many great things come to those who are patient, quiet, and reflective.  I wish those were qualities that I possessed.  Although, I am realizing the older I get the more introverted I am becoming, and now I am totally okay with that.  Even, VERY okay with it.  

I have to say to Susan Cain, congrats on such a great read.  It is so interesting, enlightening, uplifting, and such a great look into the life of an introvert.  I love that this book opened up a whole new world of understanding for me and the introverts in my life.  One day I want to be just like you!

**Source:  I bought this book to read for a book club.  I was not compensated in any way for this review.  These are my own PERSONAL thoughts on the book.


My Rating:


Where to Buy:


About the Author:


SUSAN CAIN is the author of the instant New York Times bestseller QUIET: The Power of Introverts in A World That Can’t Stop Talking, which has been translated into more than 20 languages. Her writing on introversion and shyness has appeared in the The New York Times; The Dallas Morning News; O, The Oprah Magazine; Time.com; and on PsychologyToday.com. Cain has also spoken at Microsoft, Google, the U.S. Treasury, and at TED 2012. Since her TED talk was posted online, it has been viewed almost two million times. She has appeared on national broadcast television and radio including CBS “This Morning,” NPR’s “All Things Considered,” NPR’s “Diane Rehm,” and her work has been featured on the cover of Time magazine, in The Atlantic, Wired, Fast Company, Real Simple, Fortune, Forbes, USA Today, The Washington Post, CNN, Slate.com, and many other publications. She is an honors graduate of Princeton and Harvard Law School. She lives in the Hudson River Valley with her husband and two sons. Visit: www.thepowerofintroverts.com 

Before I became a writer, I practiced corporate law for seven years, representing clients like JP Morgan and General Electric, and then worked as a negotiations consultant, training all kinds of people, from hedge fund managers to TV producers to college students negotiating their first salaries. My clients have included Merrill Lynch, Shearman & Sterling, One Hundred Women in Hedge Funds, and many more. I went to Princeton University and Harvard Law School.

From all this you might guess that I’m a hardcore, wonderfully self-confident, pound-the-table kind of person, when in fact I’m just the opposite. I prefer listening to talking, reading to socializing, and cozy chats to group settings. I like to think before I speak (softly). I’ve never given a speech without being terrified first, though I’ve given many. And somehow I know that everything I’ve ever accomplished, in love and in work, I owe to these traits, annoying though they may sometimes be. I’ve explored this paradox in my first book, QUIET.

I live on the banks of the Hudson River in an 1822 captain’s cottage with my beloved husband, sons, and magnolia trees. My favorite activities are reading, writing, lounging around cafés, and doing the mambo with my family. I use a lot of old-fashioned expressions. A few times a year, I try to like cooking. I’m insatiably curious about human nature.



Wednesday, February 19, 2014

BUTTERMAN (TIME) TRAVEL, INC. BLOG TOUR and REVIEW


Welcome to my tour stop for Butterman (Time) Travel, Inc by PK Hrezo. 

This is a New Adult Time Travel Adventure Romance and the tour runs Feb. 10-21 with reviews, author interviews and a few guest posts and top tens.  It also includes a great giveaway.  Be sure to stop by the tour page for all the additional information and list of tour stops.

Book Title: Butterman (Time) Travel, Inc
Author: PK Hrezo
Genre: NA Time Travel Adventure Romance Recommended Age: 16 and up
Length: 267
Release date: November, 2013
Description:
It’s the year 2069 and even though eighteen-year-old Bianca Butterman is heir to the family biz, she may never see the day her time-craft license becomes official. When a government agent starts nosing around the operation, Butterman Travel, Inc. gets stuck with a full audit—part of a government take-over scheme to shut down all private time travel agencies. Enter former boy band superstar, Tristan Helms, desperate to retrieve a lost item from his past and willing to pay triple fare for a time-trip to get there, and Bianca has to find a way to complete the job and return home before the government gets wind and shuts down the family biz for good.

Welcome to Butterman Travel, Incorporated; a full service agency designed to meet all your exclusive time travel needs. We’re a family owned and operated business with one hundred years of experience. A place where you can rest assured, safety and reliability always come first.

Anxious to attend some special event from the past? Or for a glimpse of what the future holds?

You’ve come to the right place. We’re a fully accredited operation, offering an array of services; including, but not limited to: customized travel plans, professionally piloted operations, and personal trip guides. *Terms and conditions do apply

Use our Web conferencing to contact our frontline reservation specialist, Bianca Butterman, who will handle all your inquiries in a professional and efficient manner, offering a tentative itinerary and free fare quote, so you can make the most of your time trip.

We look forward to serving you at Butterman Travel, Inc., where time is always in your hands.
 GoodreadsAmazon Kindle  | B&N 


My Review / Thoughts:

I don't think I have read any books lately on time travel, so I was excited to get this book to review. 

Butterman Travels is a family owned time travels business that happens to be under audit when Bianca is about to take her first "solo" guide trip.  She is looking forward to being a full time guide and waiting to take her induction trip, when Tristen walks into their lives.

The whole idea of time travel is fascinating to me.  The idea of being able to pay for and do it like a vacation is even more fascinating to me.  Tristen is a superstar musician who is trying to find his place in the world after taking some wrong turns in his life.  He thinks that the time travel will solve all his problems and help him in his future.  

While the story evolves we find out there may be more to Tristen and Bianca meeting than meets the eye.  It is such an interesting and exciting read.  I couldn't put the book down.   I am excited to see what the next adventure brings in this series, and to see how things all tie together.

I know I have said this before, and it probably bothers some people that  I keep saying it, but I really do not like it when an author feels the need to drop the f-bomb all the time.  Having said that I really LIKED this book, but because of the language I didn't LOVE this book.


My Rating:




About the Author:

PK Hrezo is a native Floridian whose life could easily be a Jimmy Buffet song. She shares her home with her firefighter husband and their two children. When not creating characters and their worlds, PK can be found at her other job of rearranging passenger’s itineraries for a major international airline. The only hobbies she loves more than traveling, are reading, writing, and music, and when the four are combined she exists in total bliss.

She blogs regularly at PK HREZO: Fearless Fiction http://pk-hrezo.blogspot.com/

Twitter | Facebook | Website | Blog



Giveaway:
T-shirt from outofprintclothing.com (US)
$10 Amazon Gift Card (INT)
Bettie Bookpage Pixie ornament (US)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, February 17, 2014

WILDWOOD CREEK TOUR AND REVIEW!!


There is a mystery in Wildwood Creek's history, a mystery that affects Allie's present...


Wildwood CreekWildwood Creek
by Lisa Wingate
Christian Romance
Paperback, 384 pages
February 4th 2014 by Bethany House Publishers

Allie Kirkland has never been one to take wild risks. But when she’s offered a costuming assistant’s job on a docudrama in the hills near Moses Lake, she jumps at the chance. She’s always dreamed of following in her director-father’s footsteps, and the reenactment of the legendary frontier settlement of Wildwood is a first step. The family expectations will have to wait.

But in 1861, the real Wildwood held dangerous realities. Town founder Harland Delevan held helpless residents, including young Irish schoolteacher Bonnie Rose, in an iron grip. Mysterious disappearances led to myths and legends still retold in the folk songs of Chinquapin Peaks. Eventually, the entire site was found abandoned.

When strange connections surface between Allie and the teacher who disappeared over a century ago, everyone in Wildwood, including Allie’s handsome neighbor on the film set, Blake Fulton, seems to be hiding secrets, and Allie doesn’t know who she can trust. If she can’t find the answers in time, history may repeat itself . . . with the most unthinkable results.

Bethany House

Bethany HouseAmazon * Barnes & Noble * Book Depository


My Review / Thoughts:
When I signed up for the review I didn't realize that this was #4 in the series.  I have not read the first three, so my review may be a little on the "what did she say" side.  I enjoyed reading it, and will have to go back and read the first three so that maybe some of the things I think were from left field, might not have been left field after all :).  BUT, having admitted to only reading book 4, I still really enjoyed the book :).  The series must be fantastic :).  I love the go between the past and the present.  It is so interesting, and fun to see how they connect.

The story is mostly between Bonnie Rose and her sister Maggie May in the past and Allie Kirkland in the present day.  Allie gets the opportunity to work on a documentary film set about Wildwood Creek and what happened there.  We realize that it is also the story of Bonnie Rose, and how she came to Wildwood Creek, and what happened to her.  

Allie's father was in the film business and when he died she always held the memories of those days close to her heart.  It lead her to want to work in the film industry herself.  When the opportunity came up to work on a documentary Allie and her friend Kim apply.  Allie starts out as a costume/gopher for the production, and her friend Kim actually gets cast as part of the documentary.  

Soon Alllie is approached by the producer and asked to play the part of Bonnie Rose in the movie.  When she and Kim accept their jobs, they had no idea what was in store for them.  They embark on a 2 and a half month journey into the world of Wildwood Creek, and the mysterious happenings that went on there.  The past seems to be colliding with the future, and things start to get a bit bizarre. 

The bad guy from the past was obvious from the very beginning.  Although I think there were more than a few bad guys, but the main village idiot was obvious from the moment Bonnie Rose stepped foot into Wildwood Creek.  NOW, the bad guy in the present seemed to totally come out of left field for me.  I even had to go back and read to see if I missed some clues.  I may have STILL missed some clues, but I think the author did a fantastic job of hiding the identity of the "bad" guy "present".  

There are a few parts that got a little slow and a little wordy, but when it was all said and done I really enjoyed reading it.  It was mysterious, and interesting, and exciting to read.

Source:  I received this book as part of a tour stop from Netgalley and Prism Book Tours in return for an honest review.  I was not compensated in any way for this review, and these are my own PERSONAL thoughts on the book.

My Rating:




Lisa Wingate Author PictureLisa Wingate is a journalist, inspirational speaker, reviewer for the New York Journal of Books, and the author of over twenty novels.  Her novels combine elements of history, romance, mystery, and women's fiction with nuggets of Southern culture, from the sublime to the humorous. She is a seven-time American Christian Fiction Writers Carol award nominee, a Christy Award nominee, an Oklahoma Book Award finalist, a Christianity Today Book Award nominee, an Inspy Award nominee, and a two-time Carol Award winner. Her works have been selected for Booklist’s Top Ten List in 2012 and in 2013. Recently, the group Americans for More Civility, a kindness watchdog organization, selected Lisa along with Bill Ford, Camille Cosby, and six others, as recipients of the National Civies Award, which celebrates public figures who work to promote greater kindness and civility in American life.


Bethany House

Tour-Wide Giveaway
February 10 - March 2nd  US Only
See Rafflecopter for restrictions.

1 Winner, 1 Amazing Prize Pack:
   $50 Amazon Gift Card
   Print copy of Wildwood Creek by Lisa Wingate
   Handmade-by-author Prayer Box with notepads


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