How can a book be big and small at the same time? Big and small are opposites of one another so it surely can’t be real, can it? I’m so glad you asked these questions because I am willing to explain what I mean in this book review.

Yes, this book is big and small at the same time. When I say small, I mean that it’s technically a short story. I was able to read it within 20 minutes. This would be a perfect read for those on break, waiting in line, and/or just short on time.

Now, when I say big, I mean that even though it’s such a short story, it packs a big message. Actually, there are two big themes present in this book that are relevant to today’s day and age, making for an excellent read.

What is this book, you ask? Here it is!

It’s called Faith is the Victory, and it’s by Faith Blum. That name shows up a lot within my blog posts, mostly because she orchestrates blog tours that I participate in.

This, however, is the first time I got a taste of her writing. I was not disappointed! And for FREE, you can also get a taste of her writing! This short story is permanently FREE – you can find it HERE!

To give you an idea of what makes this book pack such a big punch, here is the blurb, and then following that will be my own little remarks that share what I rated it and why.

BLURB

I don’t like change. I know most people get used to it, but I have never been able to. When Dad announced their move and I couldn’t go with them, I didn’t handle it well. Would I ever find the faith to be victorious?

REVIEW

That’s not a lot information to know if you want to read it or not, is it? Let me give you a little bit more. This short story is about a teen who is going through a rough time in life. What makes it so much worse is the constant bullying he gets from school. We all know that bullying is a huge problem in today’s schools, right? Totally not cool.

The second big topic discussed in this short story is suicide. The main character, with all his struggles and bullying, feels he isn’t worth going on. He takes it upon himself to end his life, or at least try to. Attempted suicide and successful suicide is no laughing matter. But it’s very real. It affects many, and not just those actually trying to go through it.

In comes faith. Just at the brink of committing suicide, memory verses flood the teen’s mind, reminding him God is there. Slowly, but surely, he decides to live and becomes victorious over his life situations.

I gave this short read four stars. Here’s why. I love the reality behind it. I love how faith was the victor here. I love how memory verses popped up, and I love how it was written in first person point of view. It was excellently written. It held my attention.

I think the issue of why I didn’t give it all five stars, though, is two-fold. First, I don’t have a lot of experience with suicide. I do have experience with being bullied, though. Never fun. But it was a different type of bullying so with not fully connecting on those two big topics, I felt overall my connection to the story was not as deep. And these two topics can be a little tough to read in general. And second, being as short as it is, there’s just not much of a chance to get much out of it. And really I don’t mean any of this negatively. I’d recommend the book for sure. And who doesn’t like a book where faith reigns?!? That message is crucial!

For FREE, you can’t go wrong. So give it a try! Maybe it’ll be the type of book that can help you or someone you love!

And as a side note, if you or someone you know is dealing with bullying or suicide, please seek the appropriate help you need!

What I am about to share with you, I would like you to pay full attention to. It’s no big deal, really, when I do book reviews. But this one is different. This one is a huge deal! Why? Because this novel that you’re about to see is hands down one of thee best romance novels that I’ve ever read. And truly believing that, I am so excited to share it with you, and am hoping you’ll also give it a chance. Like me, you’ll see why I highly recommend!

The book is called Her Best Match. It’s Book 1 in The Best Girls Series by Tamie Dearen. Let me stop there for just one minute. If you don’t know who Tamie Dearen is, please do yourself a favor and pick up one of her books. (If you like romance, make it Her Best Match!) Oh…my…goodness. She has talent! She’s not just romance, either. So, seriously, go check her out!

Back to the book. Let me share with you a little bit about it. Here is the blurb, as well as the front cover.

Feisty, stubborn, and bored with life in Texas, Anne Best is about to get more than she bargained for.

The lovely widow heads off to the Big Apple for a job interview, expecting no more than a few days adventure in New York City, only to find herself with a new job working for the most infuriating man she’s ever met.

Billionaire Steven Gherring is one of New York’s Most Eligible Bachelors, and he has every intention of staying that way. But Gram has other ideas. She’s on a not-so-secret campaign to find a wife for her grandson.

As fearless as she is clumsy, Anne tackles every challenge (including her new boss) enthusiastically, with two lone exceptions… public speaking and recognizing her own feelings. Passions rise along with hemlines as Gram joins forces with Anne, a veteran matchmaker, to find the perfect match for Steven.

This book currently has a 4.4 star rating out of 375 reviews!!!! That’s three hundred seventy five!! If you haven’t guessed by now, I rated it 5 stars. Here’s why… Continue reading “The Best Girls”

Can love trump faith?
Seventeen year old, South Floridian Trina Weber has the world at her feet: beautiful, part of the in-crowd, and with almost enough college credits to earn her AA while only a junior at Stonehaven High.
With her whole life planned, all she needs to complete her perfect world is a boyfriend.
But not any guy will do.
This boyfriend must accept her goals to become a family doctor.
When the gorgeous, equally ambitious college freshman Stuart Grant blazes into her world, he fits right in. He’s everything she dreamed of and more…except he doesn’t agree with the most important part of who she is.

 

www.amazon.com/dp/B071F9L2Y3/

 

In Thinking About Love we follow a girl who is crushing badly on a lifeguard. Good news for her is that he likes her, too. We see the relationship blossom. Only one thing is getting in the way, however. It’s the most important thing to Trina, but not even on Stuart’s radar. I’ll let you in on a little secret as to what that “thing” is…it’s faith. In Part 1 of Thinking About Love, we see what happens in regard to this hurdle.

There were many things that I loved about this book. The first was that right at the beginning of it, the scene is set on a beach. I could actually picture myself hanging out with the girls, the wind blowing through our hair, and the sun shining down on us. I could picture the waves. Audrey Rich did such a good job describing each scene that I felt like I was actually there. And I love being at the beach!

Another thing that Audrey did well at was developing each character. Not just the main character, but all the supporting roles as well. And they were believable! It was neat to see how all the personalities came out in each person.

I love that this was a clean, Christian, young adult love story. I would highly recommend it to those who are interested in this genre. And remember, Part 2 is coming so that’ll be something I will watch for.

One slight, slight, slight, slight, teeniest possible downfall, however. So much of the first part of the book is all around the beach and following day or so. Towards the end of the book it seems like much more time passes on. Nothing was confusing. I’m just simply stating that the pacing wasn’t equal from beginning to end. For me, not a problem. For others, maybe.

Overall, 4 stars!!!

 

If you are into books and cats, this is the book for you! Just look at the cute cat on the cover! (There’s also a pic of a cat for each chapter heading!)

In this novel, Jenny Kalahar did a phenomenal job describing different behaviors of cats. There were times I had to laugh because I know all too well just what cats act like. Each cat has their own personality, and it was neat to see some of the different ones in this book.

I also think that the events that took place in Shelve Under C were believable. There was one instance that I had to question (the price of used books), but overall, the story was written in a way I could picture what was going on and it all made sense.

This is a light, easy-to-read book. There is not a lot of depth to it. Basically, you will read the day ins and day outs of the life of bookstore owners and the cats they have roaming in their store. There is a side story of a foster child woven in that I think was cute. How everything ended melted my heart.

Shelve Under C is a book I would recommend to anyone. It’s clean! I think people of all ages would find enjoyment out of it. Just don’t expect anything deep. Overall, I rated this four out of five stars.

Here is the blurb of Shelve Under C by Jenny Kalahar:

A novel for everyone, Shelve Under C is a big, leaning stack of humor, heart, stray cat hairs, old book dust, mystery, family drama, longing and hope.

Used bookshops often have a cat or two roaming the aisles, sleeping on the shelves, or sleeping on the customers. Here is a novel all about one bookshop and its resident cats, Stomper and Buglit; and about Kris, a 12-year-old boy who apprentices in the shop. Kris is a little bit like the cats: he’s a foster child getting used to a new family, and the cats are being fostered in the bookshop for the local shelter. Stomper and Buglit are a little bit like Kris: they get into trouble, have some wild adventures, and find out just what being part of a family really means.

Unlike some novels that have a bookstore setting, Shelve Under C has the real spirit of the store, its owners, its apprentice, its customers, and, especially, its cats as the beating heart of this fuzzy beast. It’s full of wonderful characters, a wild storm, a doggy bucking bronco, catnip capers, an almost-deadly chicken salad sandwich, and . . . books! No need to knock — the door is open. So come on in, grab something to read, and get comfy on the big, red sofa.

Sound good to you? I thought it would! Here is the buy link so you can get your own copy! It’s only $0.99, too!

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0089S7M3S

 

I have to laugh a little. Out of all the book reviews I have done, this one is really tough. Not because of the material or anything. Well, in a way it’s because of the material. But really I just can’t figure out what I even want to say.

Let me just break it down between the positives and negatives:

Positives:

  • The author used amazingly descriptive imagery
  • It was easy to read
  • The struggle between the main character and her mind was interesting

Negatives:

  • The ending was just ‘eh’
  • Some scenes were difficult to follow
  • There wasn’t any real depth
  • Personally, I didn’t think there was much to the story, period

Now, having said this, maybe you can see my point. When there isn’t much to a story, there isn’t much to say. Yes, it flowed nice. It’s not like it was boring or difficult to understand. The problem is there was really no story! The main character dares to enter a tower that everyone says to stay away from. She meets the man that lives there. Has a couple of mental issues. Decides it’s best to let it all go and leaves. That is really the basis of the whole book! That’s it! No climax…no huge struggle (just one with self)…no nothing. Because of this I rated it 3 stars.

The Orchid is a clean book for the most part. There are a few questionable words, and one steamy part (but no graphic details).  And it is beautifully written. So the author has real talent, no denying that. Let me give you a pic of the cover and the blurb in case you’d like to check it out. Perhaps you’ll get more out of it than I did!


The Orchid

Sahar Ayachi

“You will bring light to my darkness, you will bring hope to my despair. You will be my knight though you will first be a slave, but I know which spots to hit to make you brave.”

Dreamy, impulsive, but mostly confused—this is Lola.


On a journey where she just tries to live, love, and be loved, Lola is being followed by the one thing she thought she escaped from—a presence that will find her wherever she goes . . . a presence that isn’t happy with her decisions—not happy at all.


Follow Lola through a story where the lines between dreams and reality are blurred, where she will be faced with struggle—emotionally and physically—and where she is trying her best to make sense of the confusing situation she got herself into.


What is this scary unknown that Lola is running away from, and will she eventually be able to face it?

See? It did sound good on paper! The innards just weren’t quite living up to the premise.

As a side note, I think this book is only available in paperback at the moment. But here is the link in case you would like to view more:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/1482899884

 

 

 

If you’re into music and books, I may have something you’d be interested in reading. It’s called 2000 Tunes by Karl Drinkwater, and, well, it features a main male character who lives for music. Though it speaks of music of the late 80s through the 90s, I actually knew some of the references! That was kind of neat.

Let me tell you more about this book by, first, giving you the book’s blurb; and then second, my review:

 

2000 TUNES

 

“He started to sketch a face. A random face. With dark eyes and hair. Just any old face. He made the chin too small and drew over it, but then it looked like a double chin. That wasn’t appropriate for… Ah. He had been drawing Sam.”

Mark Hopton’s an outsider obsessed with Manchester music. He knows the dates, facts, band members, lyrics, histories and places. He can join them in complicated webs of association because he knows the secret: everything’s connected. Music’s his escape into a better world.

Oh man, he needs that escape. His dad’s in prison, his psycho brother’s only one step away, and they’re twisting his melons trying to make him risk his freedom by smuggling drugs. It ain’t easy saying no when family and their shady contacts can be bone-breakingly persuasive. Heaven knows he’s miserable now.

The summer sun does bring one ray of light: he secretly admires Samantha, a beautiful Welsh girl at work. Watching her is like listening to music, it strengthens him, she’s his wonderwall of true faith. He’s happy with that. Love is fool’s gold.

Meanwhile, Samantha’s been caught up in a hedonistic lifestyle of cigarettes and alcohol with the 24 hour party people but now she’s had it up to here with Mancunians. Cheaters, weirdos and two-faced scummers, the lot of ’em. When the drugs don’t work it’s time to grow up but no-one’s going to take her for granted again. Don’t look back in anger? Screw that. She’s never been one to walk away.

2000 Tunes is a meditation on life, family, friends, growing up, and following your dreams.

 

My Review

 

Like I briefly mentioned already, there are a lot of Continue reading “2000 Tunes”

I’m sure that a few of you reading the title of this blog are scratching your heads, wondering what this one is all about. I promise you it’s not something weird! Mistakenly Married is actually a book! Let me share with you some things about it!

Mistakenly Married

By: Victorine E. Lieske

 

 

Penny’s gotten herself into another one of her crazy messes. She’s broke and about to be evicted. When her online boyfriend suggests they elope, she agrees. Why not? She loves him, even though she hasn’t met him, so she blows the last of her cash on a fun Las Vegas wedding. Except, William stands her up and the limo driver picks up the wrong guy. A smokin’ hot wrong guy. Too bad she doesn’t find out who he really is until after the wedding.

Harrison Williams needs a wife to gain access to his trust fund account. He goes to Las Vegas to meet someone, but there’s a mix up and he ends up at the Chapel-O-Love exchanging vows with Penny, a spirited girl in a cheap veil. When they realize the mistake, he convinces her to go back to Bel Air with him to prove that he’s married, and he agrees to pretend to be William so her family doesn’t have to know about her big mistake. Sounds like a good plan. What could go wrong?

 

If you’re into clean romances, this book is a must read! It does say on the Amazon page that it is a romantic comedy, which for those of you who like that will appreciate it all the more. However, I don’t consider it a romantic comedy myself. There was nothing that really made me laugh. But that doesn’t mean the book wasn’t good!

Quite the opposite, really. I think this book was great on many levels! I thoroughly enjoyed the character development and descriptive elements that were part of the story. Though the two main characters made a mistake, it was neat how they ended up falling in love with one another in the end. The build up of attraction and desire between the two was amazingly written!

Although I loved the ending where the two do end up together, I wish the way the book got there was different. But that’s not something I would change the rating of the book for. It’s just a personal opinion. The ending it has is still good!

Overall, Mistakenly Married is very well written! It was a fun, clean, and enjoyable read. I found myself wanting to read more each and every time I had to put it down! And, as a side note, I hear Victorine E. Lieske is kind of the queen of clean romance novels, having books on the New York Times and USA Today best sellers lists. So you know that this book is going to be good! I totally recommend reading if this is your sort of style!

 

To purchase, please visit the book’s Amazon page at:

www.amazon.com/dp/B01D3U63NG

 

 

 

Have you ever read a storyline, thinking that the book was going to be a great read? And then as you read the book you were severely let down? It was like the book did not deliver what it promised? Well, I was prepared for that to happen when I started reading Decimation. I read the storyline and I immediately thought that this was going to be one awesome story. How did it pan out? Did it follow through or was a huge flop?

 

First, what it’s all about:

 

Decimation: The Girl Who Survived is a brand spanking new book by Richard T. Burke. It was just released this past weekend, but is already receiving some great reviews. In fact, it was standing at #1 in Science Fiction: Genetic Engineering! Here is the blurb directly from Amazon:

 

How far would you go to save the human race? In 2017 a virus sweeps across the world and infects every living person. It lies dormant until a woman gives birth. Then she dies. Fifteen years later, nobody has survived childbirth since the outbreak began. Teenage wheelchair athlete, Antimone Lessing, thought she would be competing at the Delhi 2032 Paralympics. Instead, she is nine months pregnant and commencing labor. When she unexpectedly survives, she becomes a vital clue in the race to develop a cure before the global population declines beyond the point of no return. But survival comes at a price. As her doctors try to understand why she is still alive, she must choose between preserving humanity’s future and protecting the life of her newborn child.

 

See? Sounds really interesting, yes? I certainly thought so.  However, after reading it, this is what I now think:

First of all, I loved the idea of this virus that only rears its head when a woman gives birth. And, on top of that, I do think the author did a great job getting to the point of how this lone woman, Antimone Lessing, survived it. I’m not going to share what the doctors all found out, but I will share that it was a fascinating enough subject that inspired me to do some research!

But there’s more to the story! On mark of a good story, in my opinion, is that it evokes feelings in the individual reading it. I had STRONG feelings all right! Mostly anger because of the corruption we see within the biotechnology company. Why did it anger me so? Because I think it is 100% reminiscent of what our pharmaceutical community is like. Those in power over drugs, technology, tests, et cetera, get away with what they want. They abuse their power to continue doing as they please, to whom they please, and how they please. You see that in the book, and I know it’s a real thing.

There is some twists at the end of the book, which made for a pleasant surprise. I was really hooked from page one, and the author ended each and every chapter in such a way that I was hooked throughout. Especially at the end, I had a hard time wanting to put the book down.

So did this book deliver? Oh, yes, it did! It lived up to what it promised. Though it’s not a clean book due to some language and violence, it is something I’d recommend to those interested in science. It truly is a great read! FIVE STARS!!!

If you’d like to purchase this book for your own, you can find it here:

 

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06XKTGS5N

BLURB

Librarian Chloe McAlister finds solace in her books—and hats—but doesn’t know where to turn when her longtime crush gets engaged. On a whim, she signs up for a speed-dating mixer and convinces her best friend, Dill Thomas, to attend. All goes as planned until she realizes Dill means more to her than she thought … and he goes and falls for someone else.

This 10,000-word short story is perfect for your lunch break, workout, or while you wait in line at the mall. Read it today to experience a hint of spring any time of the year!

EXCERPT

“Is the beard a deal breaker? Serious question here.”

Chloe raised her brows. “Hm?”

“Do you like me rugged or clean? Be honest, I can take it.”

Dill had never cared about his appearance before, much less asked her about it. He was a no-frills kind of guy who couldn’t be bothered with designer clothes or the latest fashions. That’s why he lived in jeans and T-shirts at work and at home. For some reason, he was concerned about a beard? “You want my opinion?”

“Sure. You understand women better than I do. Would they be cool with this?”

Tilting her head to one side, then to the other, Chloe took a long, hard look at him. She pretended to give his question some thought, pursing her lips as she studied his face. His eyes still had the same self-assured, friendly sparkle in them as the freshman boy who always asked to borrow her lecture notes. A grin tugged at the corners of his mouth, revealing his playful, easygoing nature that hadn’t changed over the years. However, that’s where the déjà vu ended. Continue reading “Of Buds And Blossoms”