Thursday, July 31, 2014

The Newcomer by Robyn Carr

Product DetailsSingle dad and Thunder Point's deputy sheriff "Mac" McCain has worded hard to keep his town safe and his daughter happy. Now he's found his own happiness with Gina James. The longtime friends have always shared the challenges and rewards of raising their adolescent daughters. With an unexpected romance growing between them, they're feeling like teenagers themselves, suddenly they can't get enough of each other. Just when things are really taking off, their lives are thrown into chaos. When Mac's long-lost ex-wife shows up in town, drama takes on a whole new meaning. Can Mac and Gina's newfound love withstand the pressure?

483 pages

Another great Robyn Carr novel

The Promise by Robyn Carr

Product DetailsScott Grant has a bustling family practice in the small Oregon community of Thunder Point. The town and its people have embraced the widowed doctor and father of two, his children are thriving, and Scott knows it's time to move on from his loss. But as the town's only doctor, the dating pool is limited. That is, until a stunning physician's assistant applies for a job at his clinic. Peyton Lacoumette considers herself entirely out of the dating scene. She's already been burned by a man with kids, and she's come to Thunder Point determined not to repeat past mistakes. When Scott offers her a job, at a much lower salary than she's used to, Peyton is surprisingly eager to accept, at least for now. She's willing to stay for a three month trial period while she explores other options. Scott and Peyton know the arrangement is temporary, it isn't enough time to build a real relationship, never mind anything with lasting commitment. But love can blossom faster than you think when the timing is right, and this short visit just might hold the promise of forever.

437 pages

This was another wonderful book by a great author.  The author makes Thunder Point sound like a wonderful place to live. 

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

TWIRL: A FRESH SPIN AT LIFE by Patsy Clairmont

This is another great book written by Patsy Clairmont.

As a child we twirl about, fall down, and squeal with laughter--for it is just a game.  But as we become adults, our twirling can become stressful.  We twirl about in our daily lives trying to accomplish everything we think needs to get done, until we are tired and stressed out.  Patsy helps reader's gain a new perspective on life with activities and choices that lead to renewal and peace.  Her biblical wisdom gives us a renewed zest for twirling through life.

ISBN 978-0849947636
Copyright January 2014
192 pages

WHY I LEFT THE AMISH by Saloma Miller Furlong

Growing up in a dysfunctional family, Saloma Furlong faced a hard choice--endure abuse or leap across a big cultural gap to the outside world.  In this memoir, she describes her pain as well as her successful transition and ultimately a reconciliation with her family.

ISBN 978-0870139949, copyright 2011, 190 pages

Friday, July 25, 2014

Top Secret Twenty-One: A Stephanie Plum Novel by Janet Evanovich

Series: Stephanie Plum
Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: Bantam; First Edition edition 
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0345542924
ISBN-13: 978-0345542922

Trenton, New Jersey’s favorite used-car dealer, Jimmy Poletti, was caught selling a lot more than used cars out of his dealerships. Now he’s out on bail and has missed his date in court, and bounty hunter Stephanie Plum is looking to bring him in. Leads are quickly turning into dead ends, and all too frequently into dead bodies,-

MY THOUGHTS: What can I say. If you read one you read them all.  Great entertainment. and very fast read. Morelli or Ranger, Ranger or Morelli, poor Stephanie.  The real question is which "Grandma" will win the contest of wills.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014



ISBN 0310240085
copyright 2003
357 pages

The GOD I LOVE captures the heart and soul of one woman's powerful, deeply personal journey of hope. It is a journey of Joni's life from childhood to present. At the age of 17 she became a quadriplegic as the result of a diving accident. This book captures the heart and soul of one woman's powerful, deeply personal journey of hope.  It is a sojourn from a child's belief to a tempered faith that transforms and transcends personal tragedy, bringing light to the darkest places and good out of the most difficult situations, and offering glimpses of the glory that awaits God's children. This is a very inspirational book and I highly recommend it.

David and Goliath by Malcom Gladwell

David and Goliath : Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants
Malcolm Gladwell

320 pages
  • Little, Brown and Company; First Edition edition, 2013

*Starred Review* Gladwell’s best-sellers, such as The Tipping Point (2000) and Outliers (2008), have changed the way we think about sociological changes and the factors that contribute to high levels of success. Here he examines and challenges our concepts of “advantage” and “disadvantage” in a way that may seem intuitive to some and surprising to others. Beginning with the classic tale of David and Goliath and moving through history with figures such as Lawrence of Arabia and Martin Luther King Jr., Gladwell shows how, time and again, players labeled “underdog” use that status to their advantage and prevail through the elements of cunning and surprise. He also shows how certain academic “advantages,” such as getting into an Ivy League school, have downsides, in that being a “big fish in a small pond” at a less prestigious school can lead to greater confidence and a better chance of success in later life. Gladwell even promotes the idea of a “desirable difficulty,” such as dyslexia, a learning disability that causes much frustration for reading students but, at the same time, may force them to develop better listening and creative problem-solving skills. As usual, Gladwell presents his research in a fresh and easy-to-understand context, and he may have coined the catchphrase of the decade, “Use what you got.” --David Siegfried (BOOKLIST)

My Thoughts - I thoroughly enjoyed David and Goliath.   I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to challenge the way things are and become successful.  He talked about many instances where individuals made choices that changed their lives.  The choices,  while they were not the most popular or expected choices, they are what made the individual person unique and successful.  

Gladwell uses examples from history of people who made choices that while they seemed like mistakes at the time really are what made the person a success.    He talked about how people have overcome the typical problems with dyslexia to become great in-spite of if it such as Richard Branson.  Also he talked about that fact that 12 of our 44 presidents lost their fathers at an early age and achieved.  There was a very good story about the famous first "impressionist" artists and how they had to go against the establishment to get their works recognized.   

This is hopefully and encouraging book that allows the readers to challenge themselves to not give up but try alternative solutions.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Minding My Mother A Memoir by LaMoyne Dowell

When LaMoyne Dowell was born, his mother, 39 years old, was still recovering from breast cancer surgery and a radical breast cancer removal procedure. Three and one half years later, just two months prior to the bombing of Pearl Harbor, his mother broke her hip revealing that the cancer had returned with a vengeance which rendered her dependent and bedridden. Their relationship became a testament to the power of love between a little boy and his mother. With an older brother fighting overseas and his father having to work to put food on the table,  LaMoyne and his mother were forced to reverse their roles of caring for and nurturing each other -- a true story of how a  family can survive against incredible odds.

96 pages


I loved this book, especially living in the area the books author was from.  It was so good I didn't want to put it down until I was finished.  For a first book, I hope this author continues.  You could feel the emotions in his words.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Insurgent by Veronica Roth

  • Series: Divergent Series (Book 2)
  • Hardcover: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books; First Edition edition (May 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062024043
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062024046
    SUMMARY:  Kirkus Review "With both the Dauntless and Abnegation factions shattered by the Erudite attack, Tris and her companions seek refuge with Amity and Candor, and even among the factionless. But the Erudite search for "Divergents" continues relentlessly. They have a secret to protect—one they fear could prove more catastrophic than open warfare; one they will slaughter to keep hidden... Rather than ease readers back into this convoluted narrative, the book plunges the characters into immediate danger without clues to their current relationships, let alone their elaborate back stories. The focus is firmly on the narrator Tris, who, devastated by guilt and grief, reveals new depth and vitality. While taking actions less Dauntless than recklessly suicidal, she retains her convenient knack for overhearing crucial conversations and infallibly sizing up others. Her romance with Tobias is achingly tender and passionate, and her friends and enemies alike display a realistic spectrum of mixed motivations and conflicted choices. "

    MY THOUGHTS: I thought the story seemed to go off in several directions. The book is good and I do want to finish the series. I hope I like it better than the Hunger Games series ending".   A slow start but it does pick up, the ending leaves you with a "Cliff hanger" about the factions.  

    Wednesday, July 2, 2014

    The Skin Collector by Jeffery Deaver

    The Skin Collector by Jeffery Deaver
    Grand Central Publishing
    448 pages

    Someone is murdering people, killing them by injecting poison as he creates exquisitely detailed tattoos on their bodies. Lincoln Rhyme, the quadriplegic criminalist, and his team race against time to identify and stop the villain before the body count rises. To make matters more perplexing, the unknown perpetrator appears to have learned how to keep his crime scenes clean and evidence-free, from Rhyme’s own writings (specifically an article about an old case involving a killer known as the Bone Collector). How do you catch a killer who’s learned how not to get caught by the best criminalist in the business? Meanwhile, the Watchmaker, the fiendishly clever killer introduced in 2006’s The Cold Moon (but referred to in intervening books), still haunts Rhyme, even after the man’s death in prison, making it hard for the investigator to devote his full concentration to the murder case at hand. Another suspenseful and twist-filled entry in this always-exciting series. --David Pitt (Booklist)

    My Thoughts - I always like a a good mystery and Jeffery Deaver does a fine job.   Another story in the Lincoln Rhyme series and it does not fail to hold the reader interest.   This story could stand on it's own but it is helpful to know the back story of Lincoln Rhyme and Amelia Sachs.  Some of the scenarios are a bit far-fetched, but with the Internet and biological terrorism anything could be possible.  I would recommend the book for those who have read other books in the Lincoln Rhyme series and for those who like a complicated twisted mystery.

    Frog Music by Emma Donoghue

    Frog Music by Emma Donoghue
     Little, Brown and Company, 2014
     416 pages, 

    Donoghue flawlessly combines literary eloquence and vigorous plotting in her first full-fledged mystery, a work as original and multifaceted as its young murder victim. During the scorching summer of 1876, Jenny Bonnet, an enigmatic cross-dressing bicyclist who traps frogs for San Francisco’s restaurants, meets her death in a railroad saloon on the city’s outskirts. Exotic dancer Blanche Beunon, a French immigrant living in Chinatown, thinks she knows who shot her friend and why, but has no leverage to prove it and doesn’t know if she herself was the intended target. A compulsive pleasure-seeker estranged from her “fancy man,” Blanche searches desperately for her missing son while pursuing justice for Jenny, but finds her two goals sit in conflict. In language spiced with musical interludes and raunchy French slang, Donoghue brings to teeming life the nasty, naughty side of this ethnically diverse metropolis, with its brothels, gaming halls, smallpox-infested boardinghouses, and rampant child abuse. Most of her seedy, damaged characters really lived, and she not only posits a clever solution to a historical crime that was never adequately solved but also crafts around Blanche and Jenny an engrossing and suspenseful tale about moral growth, unlikely friendship, and breaking free from the past. --Sarah Johnson (Booklist)

    My Thoughts:  Once in I while, I think about living in the "Old Days" and then after reading books like Frog Music,
     I remember why I really would not like to live in the olden days.  The story takes place in 1876 San Francisco and show the very underbelly of life in the city of that time.   This was a time of segregation, corruption, and just plain meanness.  Women were very much lower class citizens, the Chinese immigrant was despised, and the law enforcement turned a blinded eye to much of the corruption in all segments of society.  The murder was real and the story wove around the murder makes one glad that things have changed from those dark ages of American history.  

    This was not my favorite book because of the darkness and hopelessness of the situations presented but I would recommend it to get a feel for the life in a city in the 1800's for the poor and immigrant.

    TransAtlantic: a novel by Colum McCann

    TransAtlantic by Colum McCann
    Random House
    300 pages

     In 1919, British aviators Alcock and Brown made the first nonstop transatlantic flight, from Newfoundland to Ireland. McCann, in his first novel since the National Book Award–winning Let the Great World Spin (2009), imagines a letter handed to Brown by a young photographer, written by her mother, Emily, a local reporter covering the flight, to be delivered upon their landing to a family in Cork. Years earlier, while on a speaking tour in Ireland with the mission to raise money for the abolitionist movement, Frederick Douglass forms a bond with young Isabel, the daughter of his host family in Cork. Lily, a young servant, emboldened by Douglass’ visit, sets out for America, in the hope of a better life. About a century and a half later, former Senate majority leader George Mitchell is coaxed out of retirement to broker talks between the various factions, with the intention of getting a peace agreement by Good Friday. At the tennis club, he meets a woman in her nineties who, years earlier, had lost her grandson to the Troubles. It is Lily and her offspring’s stories—set across different times and in many different places—that ultimately tie everything together, as McCann creates complex, vivid characters (historical and otherwise) while expertly mixing fact and fancy to create this emotionally involving and eminently memorable novel. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Prepub buzz about McCann’s latest suggests it will be among the summer’s leading literary fiction titles. --Ben Segedin (Booklist)

    My Thoughts -

    I enjoyed this book with it's mix of history and stories.  As we follow Lily, her family, and a letter written and given to the first aviators to try and fly across the Atlantic we learn about many events from Frederick Douglass's 1845 trip to Ireland as a lecturer to George Mitchell sent mediator of the Irish conflict of the 1990's.  The intertwining of famous historical characters, events, and a series of strong woman make this a very interesting and enjoyable story.

    Tuesday, July 1, 2014

    "Craving Redemption" By: Nicole Jacquelyn Review

    Craving Redemption
    By: Nicole Jacquelyn

    Asa and Callie had nothing in common. He was an Ace, raised in the club and loyal to it above all else. She was a high school student with braces on her teeth and a narrow view of the world.
    They should have never crossed paths.
    But when Callie decides to defy her parents, and Asa goes on an errand for the club, their lives collide. He saves her, and she mesmerizes him.
    They part believing they’ll never see each other again.Neither could have predicted the chain of events they’d put in motion.
    Now the two have to navigate the dark waters of a relationship built on tragedy and need without drowning in guilt for things outside their control.
    How do you love someone when the worst decision of your life was the reason you met them?

    My Thoughts
        Callie’s world changes in the span of a few short hours when she attends a party and gets caught in the crosshairs of a turf war between motorcycle gangs. Saved by Asa, Callie has no idea that the repercussions that will follow, for both the couple and their families. Threatened and constantly in danger, Callie and Asa embark on a journey together. While trying to keep one another safe and their newly found love strong, they deal with life in some of the worst ways possible. Caught up in the turmoil of one crazy night, Asa and Callie have to live with their decisions for the rest of their lives.
        Craving Constellations is almost a must read before this one. Not necessarily because the stories intertwine significantly, but I think to enjoy the characters and their dynamic within the motorcycle club. That said, the majority of the events in Craving Redemption actually happen before the first book..which I will admit threw me for a loop.
         I enjoyed Callie and Asa’s relationship and felt she gave as good as she got. They are both independent and strong willed, so seeing them try to adjust was pretty spectacular in places. The biggest problem I had with the book, was simply Callie’s age. In the book, she’s a teen. Due to unforeseen actions, she has to leave her home and her family, and no one thinks really twice about letting her go off with this older motorcycle guy. Just with an assurance that he’ll protect her. I probably would have been a lot more comfortable with the relationship and the sexual aspects if she had been just a teensy bit older.
         That said, I did enjoy the story and actually just pretended that Callie was older in my head. Asa was loyal to a fault which I loved and I enjoyed their at times tumultuous relationship. There is a brief period where Asa is incarcerated and the author gave an excellent description of how families deal under those circumstances. A fantastic addition to the Aces series, I can’t wait to see what Nicole comes up with next.

    The Aces Series

    Book Details
    Publisher: Self Published
    # of Pages: 426
    ASIN: B00IKZZ46W
    Date of Publication: February 1, 2014
    Location: Sacramento, CA