Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Book Review: Bible Trivia, Jokes, & Fun Facts for Kids

I love jokes, the cornier the better. When I received this book in the mail, I could not wait to open it. The first ones I came to were knock knock jokes. I began to tell them to my hubby and we were both laughing very quickly. Along with knock knock jokes, there are fill in the blanks from various verses, facts that children, and some adults, will find fascinating and so much more.

This book could be used by families, Sunday School teachers, educators, along with anyone that enjoys having fun with information from the Bible.

I loved this book and look forward to looking and using it in the future.

I was given this book by Bethany House Publishing in exchange for my honest review.

Monday, January 30, 2017

Book Review: What our Mamas Taught Us

What Our Mamas Taught Us is a little book filled with a lot of love. Linda Seger recorded, within two covers, sayings from the "mamas" in her life. Included in this is her own mama, grandmother and aunts.

The book is broken down into sections such as Adventure, Money, Problem and so on. It is a book of comfort for when you cannot hear your own mothers words of encouragement or advice. For a small book it packed a cartload of love.

Anyone who loves the words that others have shared with them throughout their lives would love this book.

I was given this book by bookfun.org, the author and Haven books in exchange for my honest review.

Book Review: cosmic Initiative

Jack R. Taylor is a Christian author and speaker. In this book, Cosmic Initiative, he speaks to the church about God's earthly kingdom, the cosmic initiative and how God's people are not looking for it any more. This occurrence first appears in each person, then it spreads throughout the world. In its path many positives are found, forgiveness, miracles, peace and more.

This is an interesting book that approaches a subject that many would choose to ignore, just as they would the cosmic initiative. I found it inspirational and informative.  The book is broken down into three parts each of with then has several chapters within. The three parts are: Cultivating a Cosmic (Kingdom) View; Restoring the Kingdom; Seeking First the Kingdom.

I would recommend this book to new or old Christians as well as members of staff within a church.

I was given this book by bookfun.org in exchange for my honest review.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Book review: The City Baker's Guide to Country Living

At first look, the title, The City Baker's Guide to Country Living, looks like it should be a cookbook, however, once you look closely you will see that this is a fun novel.

Olivia Rawlings is a pastry chef for a Boston dinner club. That is until one of her desserts burn the building down. To escape, she goes to Guthrie, Vermont, where her friend Hannah lives. Soon, Olivia is offered a job at the Sugar maple Inn. She takes the job and then moves to the inn's property with her large dog. Soon Guthrie is taken over by her wonderful desserts. She also discovers that the owner of the Sugar Maple Inn, Margaret, would like Olivia's help in reclaiming the inn's blue ribbon for apple pie at the county fair. Life in a small town seems to suit Livvy. She meets others including a surprise arrival who has Livvy deciding whether to stay or go.

The author is able to help the reader soak in all of Vermont through her brilliant descriptions, including the descriptions of Livvy's desserts. This fantastic book will take the reader on a well-deserved trip to a most lovely part of the country, through the world of a pastry chef.

I was given this book by Penguin Group Viking and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Book Review: The Women of Easter

Liz Curtis Higgs is such a gifted writer. I was reading her bio where she says that her one goal is to help help us find the "grace of God with joy and abandon." You can tell by reading any of her works that this is exactly what she wants.

In The Women of Easter, Higgs looks at Mary of Bethany, Mary of Nazareth and Mary Magdalene and their story surrounding Christ. Once I started reading this book, I could not put it down. Each woman was so dedicated and faced many trials because of their love of Jesus.

This book is such a blessing in my life and I know that it would be the same for anyone who would pick it up and read it.

I was given this book by Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest review.

Monday, January 23, 2017

This book, George Washington's Secret Spy War, was an interesting book to read. It appears to be thoroughly researched, however, I did have difficulties following the subject at times. The author is very credible, I just had a very hard time wanting to pick the book up when I had to put it down.

I am a history buff so I do know the details that have to go into writing to help back up the facts, but I just felt like the book was sluggish. I truly wanted to enjoy the book but I did have my problems with it.

I was given this book by NetGalley and St. Martin's Press in exchange for my honest review.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Book Review: Miss Dreamsville and the Lost Heiress of Collier County

Miss Dreamsville and the Lost Heiress of Collier County is the next part of Miss Dreamsville and the Collier County Women's Literary Society.

Set in 1964, the ladies decide to fight a new development where Delores Simpson lives in a fishing shack.

Darryl Norwood is the ex-husband of Dora Witherspoon, who has given her assistance to the fight. And what a fight is is becoming, including a court hearing and a reappearance of a ghost.

This is a quick, very enjoyable story. I did not feel lost by not reading the first book. The characters are well developed and fun to follow along. I recommend this book to anyone that enjoys reading and laughing at the same time.

I was given this book by NetGalley and Atria Books in exchange for my honest review.

Book Review: St. Martin's First

As with other samplers, St. Martin's First is filled with a variety of books. For those who enjoy samplers, I believe that St. Martin's provides a wide choice of stories to glance at. There are mysteries, romances drama...

I love samplers and I usually enjoy reading them right away,so I can begin looking for books to read the next year. Somehow I read these, this time, but I guess I did not post a review. I highly recommend this set of samples to all, along with St. Martin's Press.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Book Review: The Perfect Horse

The Perfect Horse transported me into the life of a horse and the value of it from the first page. This is a remarkable story of the rescue of priceless horses when World War II ended. Included in these were the Lipizzaner and Strong Russian horses. Those that were on the mission saw the importance of these animals and, in a way, it gave each of them closure.

Men from throughout Europe and the United States worked together to make this happen.

I fell in love with this book at the beginning, and was very satisfied with the ending. The writing was moving and made my heart travel with the heroic mission throughout.

I was given this book by NetGalley and Random House Publishing in exchange for my honest review.

Book Review: Toto's Tale and True Chronicle of Oz

Most of us know the story of the Wizard of Oz. This version, Toto's Tale, is from Toto's viewpoint. It begins with puppyhood and how he found his home and then goes from there.

I have always enjoyed the other stories but this version is so refreshing. Being an animal lover, I had to get this book and read it and it was definitely worth it. Even though this is probably written for intermediate to young adult readers, I think that it is the perfect book for many.

I was given this book by NetGalley and IBPA in exchange for my honest review and I say thank you to them.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Book Review: The Dressmaker

Tilly Dunnage is coming back to Australia after spending years working in dressmaking shops in Paris. While on her trip,which was only suppose to be a short one, she plans on visiting her mother, who is ill and then going back to Paris. Not exactly welcomed in her town, her dresses open many doors, including one to friendship with Sergeant Farrat, and one with Teddy, who is also not favored by the town.

I enjoyed reading this book. The author, Rosalie Ham, did a good job creating characters which were intriguing, including the towns people, complete with their own problems. I found this to be a book that I was able to read quickly but wanted it to go on and on. To me this is a sign of a good book.

I was given this book by NetGalley and  Penguin Group Penguin in exchange for my honest review.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Book Review: The Curious Nature Guide

This book is a wonderful resource to help the reader open up their senses to the world around them. I feel this would be good as a homeschool resource or for those that need to have their love of nature renew, but in a new way. It could be used in the backyard, a park, or anywhere.

I was given this book by NetGalley and Storey Publishing in exchange for my honest review.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Book Review: The Bear and the Nightingale

The Bear and the Nightingale, by Katherine Arden, is set in Russia. Like the main character, Vasilisa, I wanted to curl up under a warm blanket while reading this book. 

I am not usually a fan of books set in Russia, but this one drew me in and held me tight. 

The story tells about Vasilisa, whose mother died giving birth to her. She, herself, is different, as was her mother. Vasilisa could talk with household spirits. Her father finds another wife who, like other stepmothers, help to advance the story. When a new priest is assigned to the village conflict arises as new beliefs go against old beliefs. Vasilisa is set in the center of this conflict. 

The entire setting of this story is charming and believable. At the same time it can be eerie yet welcoming. The description of the area was so real I felt like I was a part of the story. The characters are also believable. I enjoyed the originality of the story. I do not believe I have ever read one just like this before. The main character is strong and wants to make decisions on her own, without a love interest interfering. This is made even more difficult when the two choices for her were to marry or to join a convent. 

This book, and all it entails, is a book I highly recommend to everyone. 

I received this book from NetGalley and Random House, Ballantine Publishing in exchange for an honest review. 

Friday, January 6, 2017

Book Review: Fresh made Simple

This beautifully illustrated cookbook is simplicity at its foundation. There are 75 recipes in here which shows how to elevate one ingredient to glorious heights. The ingredients are easy to find, such as eggs, blueberries, avocados. Then the author/cook creates recipes that will become a staple in the readers daily life. Yummy salsas, tortilla soup, or even a kale egg scramble.

I enjoy trying new recipes but it is even more enjoyable when I know that I will create it again and again. A book for the love to cook or the beginning cook.

I was given this book by NetGalley and Storey Publishing in exchange for my honest review.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Book Review: The Backyard Homestead book of Kitchen Know-How

This resource book is just one of the Backyard Homestead series of books. Each one focuses on one area.

In my dreams, I would love to thrive on my own homestead. However, health issues does not allow this to be any more than a dream. This does not mean that I cannot do what I can to live a sustainable lifestyle.

This book is filled with warm knowledge for anyone. It is organized nicely and I believe it would be a good go-to book for those just starting out or for those who have questions once in a while. I also think that those that live in the city but dream of homesteading would also find this a good book to read.

I feel like this is a book that I can turn to many times as I dream of the life of a homestead.

I was given this book by NetGalley and Storey Publishing in exchange for an honest review. 

Monday, January 2, 2017

Book Review: Knit the Sky

I have been a knitter for over four decades, so when I see a book with a knitting reference in the title, I smile.

The entire title is : Knit the Sky: A Playful Way of Knitting. It gives crafters a new way to look at life around them, through their knitting needles. There are a total of 32 creative crafts in this book which will stay with the knitter for a lifetime. There is a day-by-day scarf, made up of the colors of the sky, Or a unique growth chart for a baby which will be finished when they turn 18. It is such a beautiful and idea inspiring book.

Lea Redmond uses all of her creative skills to help others open their shells and knit away.

I loved this book and I am so glad that NetGalley and Storey Publishing gave it to me in exchange for my honest review.