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Book Review! Called to Protect by Lynette Eason

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Title: Called to Protect
Author:
 Lynette Eason
Rating:
5/5
Release Date: 
July 31, 2018

Series: Blue Justice #2

 Description from Goodreads:  “For the past year, Chloe St. John has been working as a K-9 cop with her German shepherd partner, Hank. After being dumped by her fiance for another woman, Chloe has decided that Hank is just about the only male she likes. She’s over the whole romance thing and focuses her attention on doing her job. Because a serious case of human trafficking with connections to her missing cousin just landed in her lap.

When US Marshall Blake MacCallum’s daughter goes missing, he’s ordered to kill the judge he’s protecting and tell no one about his daughter’s disappearance or she will die. Blake races against the clock to rescue his daughter while Chloe and Hank are asked to be a part of the task force assembled to bring down the traffickers. Chloe finds herself attracted to the silent, suffering man, but thanks to her previous bad judgment, she wonders if she can trust him. And can Blake trust himself around this firecracker of a woman?

Bestselling author Lynette Eason warns readers to buckle in for a fast and furious ride that will have their hearts pumping from the very start.”

Review: This book was absolutely amazing! I devoured this book in just over a day, and that includes a full day of work. This book was amazingly well written, it was suspenseful, and riveting. Once I picked it up, I did not want to put it down.

I love the set of characters in this series. They are all so funny, strong, and likable. The Blue Justice series focus’s on one member of this crazy family (mostly cops, with a doctor thrown in) in each book so far, but you still see the other members of the family as well.

Although the first book in this series is amazing, and I highly recommend reading it, this book could easily be read as a stand alone. Each book has its own storyline and it wraps it up at the end of the book.

Recommendation: I would recommend this book to anyone who loves Christian romantic suspense. Even if you haven’t read the first book in this series, you can read this one.

 

*I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher. A positive review was not required. All opinions are my own.*

 

Book Review! Walking with Henry by Rachel Anne Ridge

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Title: Walking with Henry
Author:
 Rachel Anne Ridge
Rating:
4/5
Release Date: 
March 5, 2019

Description from Goodreads: “”Readers will be clamoring for more.” Publishers Weekly on Flash

Just when you think it’s the end of your story . . . grace shows up.

Sometimes it arrives as a moment of joy in the middle of despair. Sometimes you find it next to a trusted friend along an old, well-trodden path. And sometimes, grace has fuzzy ears, a bristled mane, and hope for a new start.

Join Rachel Anne Ridge, author of the beloved memoir Flash, in a journey back to the pasture. As she adopts a second rescue donkey as a little brother for Flash–a miniature named Henry–she finds that walking with donkeys has surprising lessons to teach us about prayer, renewing our faith, and connecting to God in fresh ways.

Readers all over the world fell in love with Flash and with Rachel’s thoughtful, funny, and poignant stories about what life with a donkey can teach you. Now, meet Henry and join him on a walk that could change everything about how you hope, trust, and move forward from past regrets.”

Review: I love animals, and I absolutely adore donkeys, so when I saw this book, I knew I had to read it. I know there was a previous book by this author, but I have not read that book yet. I didn’t feel like I missed too much without it, so I think this can be read as a stand alone book.

I love Henry and Flash. They sound so adorable and fun, and I really enjoyed “spending time with them” in this book. Henry completely stole my heart from the very beginning. I love that he walks backwards! How incredibly adorable is that!

I was inspired by Rachel’s faith and the way she endured difficult times. I always enjoy reading other’s testimonies and their faith stories. We are all unique, and yet we suffer very similar issues. The way each person deals with them in their own way, intrigues me.

 Recommendation: I really enjoyed this story and would recommend it to anyone who loves animals.

*Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of the book mentioned above in the hope that I would review it on my blog. A positive review was not required. All opinions are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.*

Book Review! The Lost Girls of Paris by Pam Jenoff

Title: The Lost Girls of Paris

Author: Pam Jenoff
Rating:
4/5
Release Date: 
February 5, 2018

Description from Goodreads: “From the author of the runaway bestseller The Orphan’s Tale comes a remarkable story of friendship and courage centered around three women and a ring of female spies during World War II.

1946, Manhattan

Grace Healey is rebuilding her life after losing her husband during the war. One morning while passing through Grand Central Terminal on her way to work, she finds an abandoned suitcase tucked beneath a bench. Unable to resist her own curiosity, Grace opens the suitcase, where she discovers a dozen photographs—each of a different woman. In a moment of impulse, Grace takes the photographs and quickly leaves the station.

Grace soon learns that the suitcase belonged to a woman named Eleanor Trigg, leader of a ring of female secret agents who were deployed out of London during the war. Twelve of these women were sent to Occupied Europe as couriers and radio operators to aid the resistance, but they never returned home, their fates a mystery. Setting out to learn the truth behind the women in the photographs, Grace finds herself drawn to a young mother turned agent named Marie, whose daring mission overseas reveals a remarkable story of friendship, valor and betrayal.

Vividly rendered and inspired by true events, New York Times bestselling author Pam Jenoff shines a light on the incredible heroics of the brave women of the war, and weaves a mesmerizing tale of courage, sisterhood and the great strength of women to survive in the hardest of circumstances.”

Review: I read “The Orphan’s Tale” and absolutely loved it! I couldn’t wait to see what else she would come up with to write. When I saw that she had finally written another book, I knew I had to read it! Pam Jenoff has a way of writing about strong women that you wish you could meet in real life. They are always faced with difficult, unimaginable situations, and they rise to the occasion and kick butt!

I was drawn into this story right away and got completely lost in it. I didn’t want to put it down and only did so out of absolute necessity. This is a perfect book to read on a long, snowy or gloomy weekend. One of those weekends you really don’t have to do anything but read, because you really won’t want to do anything else once you pick this up.

*I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher. A positive review was not required. All opinions are my own.*

Book Review! Julie and Julia by Julie Powell

What I got out of this book…First, I never EVER want to eat lobster, I have of course heard about the way lobsters are cooked but the graphic description of her killing the lobsters almost had me quitting the book entirely. I really could have slapped her when she started describing how the lobster just kept flailing around and she couldn’t get it to die, some things just never need to be put in print. Second, French food sounds ridiculously unhealthy and quite disgusting. Seriously, cow bone marrow? I don’t care how great people may say it is, I will never try it. I am not a vegetarian or vegan but this just seems to be taking things too far. Third, truly anyone can apparently become famous for basically anything. It is a sad world we live in.

 

I love cooking and thought the premise of this book sounded great. Boy was I wrong. Between dropping the F-bomb every few minutes and talking about sex, dildos, and hand jobs, I wanted to bash my head against the wall. Didn’t the description of this book say it was about food? Yes food is discussed but it was just there in the background, like a secondary character. The food didn’t seem to be something Julie even really enjoyed, it just seemed like she was eating her unhappiness. Don’t get me wrong she describes some of the food, but it’s not with the love most have, it’s more like she’s literally reading the cookbook and then giving the gory details of her mistakes she makes with it.

 

Julie Powell seems to be the type of person that if I was stuck talking to, I would walk to slap, hard, but then she would probably tell me about how that is like some form of sex act. She seemed extremely bitchy and whinnies incessantly. I felt horrible for her husband, who she seems to treat like crap and for some reason just takes it .I really hope she exenterated for the sake of drama, but I doubt it. A perfect example is below:

 

“Eric was beside me, peering down at the mess. “Is it too hot in here?”

“Too hot?! Too hot?! You idiot!” I threw granules of dry dough about in a blind fury. “Goddamn this pastry dough. Fuck it! Three hundred and sixty-four days and I can’t even make pastry dough. This whole thing was fucking POINTLESS!”” (Powell page 634).

 

Ok, after this she did apologize to Eric and says how great he is and says she hates herself when she uses her pathetic whine but still, overreact much? I thought I got angry when things didn’t work out but I seriously hope I never get this bad. I have never called my husband an idiot when he is genuinely trying to help me. Might I also note that before this scene, Eric was vacuuming the apartment?

 

Thank goodness I listened to this while at work or I never would have finished this book and would have completely regretted wasting my precious time on this book. Now I can just cross this off my TBR list and move on.

Book Review! Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed

Review: I could not wait for this book to be over. I enjoyed the general aspect of this book but got really annoyed with her whining and self absorbed ways. She drove me absolutely crazy at times, she had no problem sleeping around, cheating on her amazing husband, and doing dangerous drugs, getting an abortion after becoming pregnant on accident, all in the name of grief over losing her mother. I know so many people who have lost their mothers, and they didn’t go off the deep end. I know everyone reacts to grief differently but I don’t think that should be an excuse to be an idiot.

I am glad she decided to find herself, and she did seem to try to be a better person, but even on the trail she still was constantly considering whether she wants to sleep with whatever man she came across. Really can’t just put desire for men aside while trying to find yourself? Nymphomaniac?

There were also parts that grossed me out to no end. The ripping of toe nails was downright disgusting but the absolute worst part of this for me was when she decided to EAT SOME OF HER MOTHER’S ASHES! I actually had to put this down because I felt as though I was going to throw up. I understand this is her story and she can tell it however she wants, but some of those parts were too much for me.

I did finish this book, but I think if I hadn’t been listening to it while I was at work, and therefore wasn’t wasting a lot of my time, I would have quit part way through.

Book Review! A Tender Hope by Amanda Cabot

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Title: A Tender Hope
Author:
 Amanda Cabot
Rating: 4/5
Release Date: 
March 5, 2019

Description from Goodreads: “As far as Thea Michener is concerned, it’s time for a change. With her husband murdered and her much-anticipated baby stillborn, there is nothing left for her in Ladreville. Having accepted a position as Cimarron Creek’s midwife, she has no intention of remarrying and trying for another child. So when a handsome Texas Ranger appears on her doorstep with an abandoned baby, Thea isn’t sure her heart can take it.

Ranger Jackson Guthrie isn’t concerned only with the baby’s welfare. He’s been looking for Thea, convinced that her late husband was part of the gang that killed his brother. But it soon becomes clear that the situation is far more complicated than he anticipated–and he’ll need Thea’s help if he’s ever to find the justice he seeks.

Amanda Cabot invites readers back to Cimarron Creek for a tender story of loss, betrayal, and love in the majestic Texas Hill Country.”

Review: This book is just as addicting as the previous books in this series. I love this small town, and all the residents. There is always some mystery to keep you turning the page, but I love how it’s also relaxing. It’s not a “keep you on the edge of your seat” book, more of a lounge on the couch all weekend and indulge type book.

I love the way the faith, romance, and mystery are all woven together throughout the book so you don’t get too much of any one part.

 Recommendation: I truly love this series, and I am usually not big on historical fiction. I would recommend it to anyone.

 

*Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of the book mentioned above in the hope that I would review it on my blog. A positive review was not required. All opinions are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.*

Book Review! Nowhere to Turn by Lynette Eason

Title: Nowhere to Turn
Author:
Lynette Eason
Rating:
5/5

Description from Goodreads: The day Danielle Harding takes her 11-year-old son, Simon, and flees from her abusive husband, is the same day Kurt Harding dies. A relieved Dani believes she and her son are finally safe–but in reality, the danger has just begun. When Kurt was alive, he took something important to a mysterious person. That person wants the item back and believes Dani now has it. As she and her son run for their lives, they have nowhere to turn, until she hires Adam Buchanan of Operation Refuge and goes into hiding. Unfortunately, she won’t be able to hide for long . . .

From the first breathless scene, this tension-laced story will hold readers in its iron grip. Bestselling author Lynette Eason propels readers along at a breakneck pace in a race to discover the truth and a better future.”

Review: This book was amazing! It was so suspenseful and I honestly couldn’t put it down. It grabbed my attention right away, and never really let up. I love when a book hooks me from the first page.

 

This is the second book in the Hidden Identities series, and since Adam is first introduced in the first book, I would recommend reading the first one first. The first one is just as good, by the way.

 

Dani, Simon, and Adam were all believable and interesting characters. I loved how strong they were, as well as how caring and compassionate. They weren’t perfect, which made them so much more relatable. The romance and faith were woven perfectly into this book. Neither felt forced or fake.

 

Recommendation: I would recommend this series to anyone who enjoys Christian Romantic Suspense.

Book Review! When Life Doesn’t Match Your Dreams: Hope for Today from 12 Women of the Bible by Jill Eileen Smith

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Title: When Life Doesn’t Match Your Dreams: Hope for Today from 12 Women of the Bible

Author: by Jill Eileen Smith
Rating:
4/5

 Description from Goodreads: Life is full of twists and turns. Relationships falter, careers fizzle, health fades. We may be faced with choices we never wanted to make or have situations pushed upon us we’d never expected. Yet, in all of it, God is at our side–even when he feels far away.

Drawing on her extensive research into women of the Old Testament, novelist Jill Eileen Smith turns her pen to the lessons in trusting God that we can learn today from women like

– Eve
– Noah’s wife
– Sarai
– Hagar
– Lot’s wife
– Rebekah
– Rachel
– and more

Readers will learn from what these ancient women did right–and even what they did wrong–when faced with dashed expectations and deferred dreams. And they’ll come away with the confidence that ours is a faithful God who loves us and is forming us through our trials into the women he longs for us to be.”

Review: This book was really well written and informative. I really learned a lot about these women’s struggles, and the fact that nothing I am facing is new or out of God’s reach. Through the eyes of these women, and Smith’s ever insightful and knowledgeable testimony, I feel like I am better able to endure, overcome, and live the life God has planned for me.

I have read about these women in the Bible, and yet I never sat down and just thought about what they must have went through beyond what is written on the pages. Their stories are so much deeper, and thanks to Jill Eileen Smith’s research and tenacity, we can better understand their lives.

 Recommendation: I recommend this book to any woman, especially if you are in a dark or tough time in your life. You are not alone, and this book will help you see that.

*Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of the book mentioned above in the hope that I would review it on my blog. A positive review was not required. All opinions are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.*