Showing posts from October, 2014

Book Review of The Way of the Wicked by Ellery Adams

The Way of the Wicked
Hope Street Church Mysteries #2
By: Ellery Adams
Genre: Cozy mystery
Publisher: Beyond the Page, 2014
Book Source: Publisher via netgalley in exchange for an honest review

This is book number 2 in the Hope Street Church Mysteries. Cooper and her bible study class volunteer at a local charity delivering food to shut-ins. But when the shut-ins begin being murdered and the class and charity volunteers become suspects it's up to Cooper and her friends to find the real culprit.

A fun quick read with a good message, gentle humor, likable characters, and an engaging mystery. I also like that it's set in my home state of Virginia. I really like this series.

 Book Links:
Goodreads / Amazon / B&N

Author Links:

Goodreads/ Website/ Facebook


Book Review: Island Fog by John Vanderslice

Island Fog
By: John Vanderslice
288 pages
Genre: Fiction/Short Stories
Publisher: Lavender Ink Press, 2014
Book Source: Author in exchange for an honest review

Island Fog is a collection of short stories set on Nantucket spanning 1795-2005. Each of the stories are connected by geography and theme.

An interesting blend of short stories, I enjoyed visiting Nantucket through different centuries and enjoyed the historical aspect of the book. So, I'm giving it...

About the author:

John teaches in the MFA program at the University of Central Arkansas, in Conway (about 30 miles north of Little Rock).  His fiction, poetry, and essays have appeared in Seattle ReviewLaurel ReviewSou’westerCrazyhorseSouthern Humanities Review1966Exquisite Corpse, and dozens of other journals.He has also published short stories in several fiction anthologies, including Appalachian Voice, Redacted StoryChick for a DayThe Best of the First Line: Editors Picks 2002-2006, and Tartts: Incisive Fic…

Product Review of Handi-Treads

Did you know that slips and falls account for over 20,000 deaths per year? And injuries from falls are the most common source of emergency room visits? Since my mother and husband have medical conditions that make them unstable on their feet and I am about as graceful as a bull in a china shop; I decided to take Handi- Ramp up on their offer to review their Handi-Treads in exchange for an honest review.  

They sent me metal treads and the screws to install them with. We decided to install them on the ramp leading up to the front door because even in good weather it's slicker than goose... well you get the idea.

They were easy to quick and easy to install- it only took about 20 minutes to get them down.  They have raised buttons on them for better traction. When walking on them they felt like they were gripping the bottom of my shoe. They're made out of durable material so they'll last a long time. My husband loves them, he feels more secure now when walking down the ramp…

Guest Post: Benefits of Staying Positive by Jacob Edward

Benefits of Staying Positive
 Why Staying Positive Matters

 Researchers have come out with countless studies showing that staying positive is good not only for wellbeing but for physical and mental health. The reason they think that the positive thinkers fair better in the long run is because they are better equipped to deal with stress and stressful situations. The positive thinkers recover much faster from stress and in general have no long term effects associated. Stress is very dangerous and can lead to many ailments. These can include fatigue, headaches, weight gain, inflammation, and insomnia just to name a few. Staying positive is one of the main keys to eliminating the harmful and long lasting effects day-to-day stress.

Focus on the Positive

There are many situations where individuals get stressed but the most stressful events are those that have the ability to permanently affect and/or alter our lives. A situation such as losing a job or missing payments on …

The Girl Who Came Back To Life: A Fairytale by Craig Staufenberg

The Girl Who Came Back To Life: A Fairytale
Author: Craig Staufenberg
Genre: YA/ Fantasy
180 pages
Publisher: Create Space, 2014
Book Source: Author in exchange for an honest review

Twelve year old Sophie is self-possessed, mature orphan who lives with her grandmother. When the weather gets warmer they make their way to the North and The City of the Dead where people go to tell their loved ones Goodbye so they can move on to the next world. But Sophie has other plans- she wants to bring her parents back to life. Along the way Sophie is resourceful and finds out things about her grandmother she never knew.

This was a quick, entertaining read. I found the storyline to be original and the characters interesting. I wished Sophie had acted a little more like a kid, though. But she was a very good heroine and she ended up learning a valuable lesson in the City of the Dead. My main quibble is with the cover. I think a more descriptive cover would have represented the story better. I'm g…

Damascena: the tale of roses and Rumi

Damascena: the tale of roses and Rumi Author: Holly Lynn Payne 348 pages Genre: Historical Fiction Publisher: Skywriter Books, June 2014 Source: Free copy via publisher
Young Damascena ( named after the rosa damascena) is an orphan born in a monastery in Bulgaria. She is raised by a cruel monk, but as an adolescent flees him and discovers her gift for turning roses into rose oil. She then travels to Turkey where she meets Rumi, who recognizes her as his final spiritual companion, and unlocks the secret of the rose.
I admire Rumi, but don't know much about him. Even though this is a work of fiction the setting, characters, and dialogue seemed so real that I felt I got to know him a little better. It's a beautifully written book. A little slow going at times but worth the read. So, I'm giving it...
1/2 teacups

Here's what others are saying:
Damascena is a stunner. Holly Payne takes us into the yearning at the heart of …

Nine Lives To Die by Rita Mae Brown

Nine Lives To Die: A Mrs. Murphy Mystery
Mrs. Murphy # 22
Genre: Mystery
272 pages
Publisher: Bantam, 2014
Source: Publisher via netgalley in exchange for honest review

Winter has come to Crozet, VA and Harry and Fair are busy preparing for Christmas in addition to delivering presents to needy residents and participating in fundraisers.

When two mentors with local agency Silver Linings end up dead in addition to a cold case turning up it's up to Harry and her pets to sniff out the mystery.

While the mystery itself was pretty good, there wasn't enough focusing on it. Still more talking in these books than doing. At least Rita Mae Brown has toned down on the political stuff. Thank Gawd. I wish she'd bring the old friends back such as Miranda and the Sanburnes. They helped make the stories more interesting. So, I'm giving it...

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Try A Little Tenderness

My Mother had an appointment at a neurologist's office yesterday. She hadn't been there in four years but her migraines got worse so she went back. This time she saw a nurse practitioner she'd never seen before. The FNP seemed nice enough even though she seemed hurried. She asked questions about Mom's medical history and at times asked another question before Mom could get the first one answered.

I had to keep chanting to myself " Don't say anything. Don't say anything."

I understand that medical practitioners are busy and pressed for time. However, not allowing enough time to get a clear picture of your patient can be detrimental. How can you treat someone properly if you're too rushed to listen? Or too rushed to do a procedure properly? She ended up giving Mom an Occipital nerve block to help with her migraines- I watched her do it. She didn't appear to have a light touch and didn't numb the area like Mom's dr. did when …

Cover Reveal- Gears of Brass

Gear up for GEARS OF BRASS!

A world like ours, but filled with gears of brass, where the beating heart is fueled by steam and the simplest creation is a complex clockwork device.

Within this tome, you’ll find steampunk fairy tale re-tellings, as well as original stories that will send your gears turning.

Welcome to the steampunk realm, with eleven authors guiding your path.
GEARS OF BRASS is a steampunk anthology published through Curiosity Quills. It will be available for purchase on November 10, 2014. Within the pages, you’ll come across clockwork inventions and steampunk-ified fairy tale retellings. Eleven authors will guide you through worlds filled with airships, top hats, and corsets.
Meet the authors:
Jordan Elizabeth writes young adult fantasy for Curiosity Quills, including ESCAPE FROM WITCHWOOD HOLLOW which was published in October and the upcoming TREASURE DARKLY; she’s represented by the Belcastro Agency.
J. Million is the author of Last of…

I Don't Wanna Be An Orange Anymore! By Hank Kellner

I Don't Wanna Be An Orange Anymore!: A Novel
By: Hank Kellner
Genre: Children's Fiction
82 pages
Publisher: Smashwords, 2013

I received a complimentary copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Follow nine year old Willie Watson as he goes through various adventures in his hometown of Meadowview. He deals with the school bully, rebels against being an orange in a school play, and puts up with pesky relatives at Christmas.

I really didn't know what to expect when I started reading this novel. While I found Willie's comparisons of people to horrible things who got on his nerves to be a little tiresome at first; the book started to grow on me. It reminded me a little of A Christmas Story. It's a cute book that suitable for children but also enjoyable for adults. It's a ...

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Buy it here:
Smashwords / Amazon / B&N


A Review of The Confession

The Confession
By: Robert Whitlow
Publisher: Thomas Nelson, 2014
406 pages

I received a complimentary copy from the publishers via BookLook Bloggers in exchange for an honest review.

Holt Douglas is an assistant district attorney for Ashley County, GA and  getting criminals to confess is a big part of his job. But lurking in his past is a dark secret that could ruin his career and end his relationship with Angelina, the woman he hopes to marry. As he starts to investigate an old suicide of a prominent businessman he suspects is murder the guilt from his past threatens to destroy what he's worked for.

I found the book to be a little uneven in places but overall I enjoyed it. The characters were well developed and the plot was paced well. The themes of confessing your sins, judgment, and forgiveness was subtle, yet effective.So, it's a ...

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A Review of- Chemo-Therapist: How Cancer Cured A Marriage by Mary Potter Kenyon

Chemo-Therapist: How Cancer Cured A Marriage
By: Mary Potter Kenyon
Genre: Memoir/Caregiving
224 pages
Publisher: Familius, 2014

I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.

When Mary's husband of 27 years is diagnosed with cancer it puts an added strain on an already troubled marriage. But after visiting her husband post surgery she finds herself falling in love with him again. A horrible disease ended up making their marriage stronger.

I found this to be a brutally honest memoir that was poignant and uplifting. It also provided useful information on caregiving and explaining a loved one's sickness to young children. I recommend it.

About the author:

 Mary Potter Kenyon graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with a B.A.
in Psychology. She writes a weekly coupon column for the Dubuque Telegraph Herald newspaper and is the Director of the Winthrop Public Library. Mary is widely published in magazines, newspapers, and anthologies, including fiv…