Quick post today because I visited the eye doctor for an annual check up and she put drops in my eyes to dilate them and my vision is kinda wonky right now! So typing this is a challenge!
Anyway, to make a long story short, i barely did any reading this week and I probably wont do much for the rest of July (lol) Its vacation season and im jetting off on a plane in 2 days. I have yet to pack….. sigh.
I did manage to finish, “All The Bright Places” by Jennifer Niven. What a great book! I really think that the author was able to capture the face of depression and the mask that so many people wear when trying to convince everyone that they are okay.You can never truly know what someone is going through, but this books serves as a reminder to us all to pay attention.To treat everyone with love and compassion and to cherish those you love each and everyday. One kind word could save a life…I give this book a 4 out of 5 stars.
As for next week/travel, I have no set goals! I really wanted to re-read ” To Kill a Mockingbird” in anticipation of is sequels ( “Go Set a Watchman)release on July 14th. But the way things are going…who knows?
I am also doing the Proverbs challenge! I chapter of Proverbs a day for the month of July. As of right now its day 8! So far so good. I am also continuing with Ezekiel 🙂
I hope you had a successful reading week. I did! After completing Roots, I wanted some quick reads that were easier to get through. So I dived back into the world of Young Adult Fiction. 🙂 ( my guilty pleasure)
As I mentioned last week I began the book “Tease” by Amanda Maciel. I managed to finish that really quickly. The content was still pretty deep as the content dealt with bullying/cyber bullying, suicide and the repercussions of your actions. As someone who works with children, It served as a reminder that I need to ensure that the children I am nurturing, are children who are kind, compassionate and wise. If you know of someone being bullied, don’t just let it happen. Speak up and get help. If not, it could cost someone their life. I’d give this book four out of five stars. I’m not sure if I loved the ending of this book. It kind of just ended flatly. All in all, I’d recommend it especially for preteens/teens.
Next I picked up the book “Mosquitoland” by David Arnold. The synopsis of this book as found on davidarnoldbooks.com reads:
After the sudden collapse of her family, Mim Malone is dragged from her home in northern Ohio to the “wastelands” of Mississippi, where she lives in a medicated milieu with her dad and new stepmom. Before the dust has a chance to settle, she learns her mother is sick back in Cleveland.
So she ditches her new life and hops aboard a northbound Greyhound bus to her real home and her real mother, meeting a quirky cast of fellow travelers along the way. But when her thousand-mile journey takes a few turns she could never see coming, Mim must confront her own demons, redefining her notions of love, loyalty, and what it means to be sane.
What a fantastic book! I read this book in a day and a half! This book touches on the serious topics of mental health issues. In this book it becomes evident that the protagonist Mim has some serious issues; mental health and emotional. After being forced to move from Ohio to Mississippi with her father and stepmother ( leaving her mother behind) Mim is overcome with grief. She decides that she is going to run away and go back home to Ohio and see her mother. For the sake of not spoiling the entire story, Mim meets some interesting characters along the way and in turn discovers some things about herself and her family. I did find that the last 50 pages or so dragged a bit. I still would encourage people of all ages to read this book. For a debut novel, I am impressed. I look forward to reading more of David Arnold’s work! He has a book in the works right now with a tentative fall 2016 release date. 🙂
Lastly, I picked up “Watch the Sky” by Kirsten Hubbard. The synopsis of this book is as follows:
The signs are everywhere, Jory’s stepfather, Caleb, says. Red leaves in the springtime. Pages torn from a library book. All the fish in the aquarium facing the same way. A cracked egg with twin yolks. Everywhere and anywhere. And because of them Jory’s life is far from ordinary. He must follow a very specific set of rules: don’t trust anyone outside the family, have your works at the ready just in case, and always, always watch out for the signs. The end is coming, and they must be prepared.
School is Jory’s only escape from Caleb’s tight grasp, and with the help of new friends Jory begins to explore a world beyond his family’s farm. As Jory’s friendships grow, Caleb notifies Jory’s mother and siblings that the time has come for final preparations.
They begin an exhausting schedule digging a mysterious tunnel in anticipation of the disaster. But as the hold gets deeper, so does the family’s doubt about whether Caleb’s prophecy is true. When the stark reality of his stepfather’s plans becomes clear, Jory must choose between living his own life or following Caleb, shutting his eyes to the bright world he’s just begun to see ( goodreads.com)
I have only read about 20 pages of this book so far. So far it’s not really drawing me in. I’m going to really try to finish it! But if I get bored, I will probably pick up one of the other library Young Adult Fiction I have kicking around my house!
I also feel led to deviate from my weekly devotional and spend time in the book of Ezekiel. So I think that’s what I’m going to do this week!! ( Ezekiel 37 is probably my favorite passage of scripture)
After a two-week reading slump, I can honestly say I’M BACK! I’ve reignited my passion for reading again.( it was a sad two weeks without my books LOL)
Like I had mentioned before,I recently started reading the book “Roots” by Alex Haleyand although I didn’t have an enormous amount of time to read, I did manage to get about 160 pages (of 888) into it! (Yay me!) Man, is it ever a captivating read! I The story has been journeying through the protagonist Kunta Kinte’s childhood. Right now, I have reached the part of the story where Kunta has begun his manhood training. I don’t really want to say too much more, because if anybody has yet to read it, I don’t want to spoil the journey! I will continue with my progress next week. 🙂
I really have no set plans to read anything else right now, except for my “Women of the Bible” devotional. We just finished up “Tamar” and now we are on to “Potiphars Wife”.
This week was a big ole reading fail!! I started a bunch of books but couldn’t get invested in any of them. I had a lot going on this week. One of my dear friends went into labour and that consumed all of my time.( Welcome baby Dina Rose ❤ ) Plus, the weather has been really wonky and has been causing me to have excruciating migraines. Migraines= No reading! 😦
So there is really nothing to report. I’m almost finished “The Good Sister” by Jamie Kain.It’s a pretty dark read. There seems to be a plot twist coming up or something. I’ll let you know. 🙂
I tried picking up “Secret of a Thousand Beauties” and I put it right down. Just wasn’t interested. I may pick it back up again at some point in the future because the plot line really did intrigue me.
I read a couple of pages of “The Children’s Crusade” by Ann Packer. So far so good! I think that’s the only book I’m going to try to finish this week. It’s a long weekend here in Ontario Canada and I’ll be going out-of-town ,catching up with friends and family, so from Thursday to Monday I don’t foresee much reading happening ( LOL 🙂 )
We are back on our weekly devotional. We played catchup reading about Lot’s Wife, Rebekah and Rachel.( funny enough; Rebecca and Rachel are the names of my devotional reading buddies! Hey y’all! 🙂 ) This week we are studying the life and story of Leah!
Your girl is under the weather today ( spring allergies kicking my butt 😦 ) so I’m going to try to be as quick as possible.
I had to stop reading “Hold Still” by Nina Lacour. I just couldn’t get into it. It kind of put me in the mind of two books I had previously read ( Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher and I Was Here by Gayle Forman. )as all three novels deal with suicide. I guess I was just over that particular plot line. It’s a library book, but I still have 2 weeks left with it. I may give it another chance.
Next I picked up “Banished: Surviving My Years in the Westboro Baptist Church” by Lauren Drain. This is a memoir about a girl leaving the church and sharing her regrets about some of the acts she committed while being a member. Here is a synopsis of the book from http://www.amazon.com
You’ve likely heard of the Westboro Baptist Church. Perhaps you’ve seen their pickets on the news, the members holding signs with messages that are too offensive to copy here, protesting at events such as the funerals of soldiers, the 9-year old victim of the recent Tucson shooting, and Elizabeth Edwards, all in front of their grieving families. The WBC is fervently anti-gay, anti-Semitic, and anti- practically everything and everyone. And they aren’t going anywhere: in March, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of the WBC’s right to picket funerals.
Since no organized religion will claim affiliation with the WBC, it’s perhaps more accurate to think of them as a cult. Lauren Drain was thrust into that cult at the age of 15, and then spat back out again seven years later. BANISHED is the first look inside the organization, as well as a fascinating story of adaptation and perseverance.
Lauren spent her early years enjoying a normal life with her family in Florida. But when her formerly liberal and secular father set out to produce a documentary about the WBC, his detached interest gradually evolved into fascination, and he moved the entire family to Kansas to join the church and live on their compound. Over the next seven years, Lauren fully assimilated their extreme beliefs, and became a member of the church and an active and vocal picketer. But as she matured and began to challenge some of the church’s tenets, she was unceremoniously cast out from the church and permanently cut off from her family and from everyone else she knew and loved. BANISHED is the story of Lauren’s fight to find herself amidst dramatic changes in a world of extremists and a life in exile.
I remember watching the documentary “The Most Hated Family in America”which gives details about the church and what It stands for, and it crushed me! It was so disturbing to see people distorting the word of God and giving a false appearance of what true Christianity is about. So when I saw this book at the library, I had to read it and hear about it from the inside. It was an ok read. It does seem that she hasn’t become used to “life on the outside” and what that entails. I wish she would have waited a few years before writing this memoir.
Next, a book that I mentioned in a previous blog ( https://justlovethemanyway.wordpress.com/2015/04/02/wednesday-weekly-reads-success/) was released. That book was,”Hope: A Memoir of Survival in Cleveland” by Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus. This is the memoir of the other two Cleveland kidnapping survivors(Michelle Knight released her memoir, “Finding Me” last year) I finished this book in a day and a car ride. It was pretty parallel in content to Michelle’s book. This book really made me count my blessings that I was not a victim such a heinous crime. I pray these ladies one day truly find peace.
I suggest that you read these books in succession. Powerful stories of strength and resilience.
We took a break from our group devotional,”Women of the Bible” We will be back on it come Monday 🙂
This week, I have already started “The Good Sister” by Jamie Kain. The synopsis of this book is as follows:
The Kinsey sisters live in an unconventional world. Their parents are former flower-children who still don’t believe in rules. Their small, Northern California town is filled with free spirits and damaged souls seeking refuge from the real world. Without the anchor of authority, the three girls are adrift and have only each other to rely on.
Rachel is wild. Asha is lost. Sarah, the good sister, is the glue that holds them together. But the forces of a mysterious fate have taken Sarah’s life in a sudden and puzzling accident, sending her already fractured family into a tailspin of grief and confusion. Asha has questions. Rachel has secrets. And Sarah, waking up in the afterlife, must piece together how she got there.
Jamie Kain brings us The Good Sister, a stunning debut young adult novel about love in all its joyful, painful, exhilarating manifestations, and about the ties that bind us together, in life and beyond.
So far so good! I should finish this by tonight or tomorrow, ( Its a quick read) I really liked not having a reading goal last week and seeing where the reading fairy led me ( LOL) However there are two books that I have to return to the library soon that I would like to try to read. One of them is “The Children’s Crusade” by Ann Packer ( a book I’ve had my eye on for a while)
Bill Blair finds the land by accident, three wooded acres in a rustic community south of San Francisco. The year is 1954, long before anyone will call this area Silicon Valley. Struck by a vision of the family he has yet to create, Bill buys the property on a whim. In Penny Greenway he finds a suitable wife, a woman whose yearning attitude toward life seems compelling and answerable, and they marry and have four children. Yet Penny is a mercurial housewife, at a time when women chafed at the conventions imposed on them. She finds salvation in art, but the cost is high.
Thirty years later, the three oldest Blair children, adults now and still living near the family home, are disrupted by the return of the youngest, whose sudden presence and all-too-familiar troubles force a reckoning with who they are, separately and together, and set off a struggle over the family’s future. One by one, the siblings take turns telling the story–Robert, a doctor like their father; Rebecca, a psychiatrist; Ryan, a schoolteacher; and James, the malcontent, the problem child, the only one who hasn’t settled down-their narratives interwoven with portraits of the family at crucial points in their history. ( goodreads.com)
Also, I would like to try to read “Secret of a Thousand Beauties”, which was a random pick ( honestly the cover intrigued me, it reminded me of “Memoirs of a Geisha” )
Set against the vibrant and intrigue-laden backdrop of 1930s China, Mingmei Yip’s enthralling novel explores one woman’s defiant pursuit of independence.
Spring Swallow was promised in marriage while still in her mother’s belly. When the groom dies before a wedding can take place, seventeen-year-old Spring Swallow is ordered to become a ghost bride to appease his spirit. Under her in-laws’ protection, she will be little more than a servant, unable to know real love or bear children. Refusing to accept her fate as a “bad-luck woman,” Spring Swallow flees on her wedding day.
In the city of Soochow, Spring Swallow joins a community of renowned embroiderers. The women work for Aunty Peony, whose exquisite stitching once earned her the Emperor’s love. But when Aunty Peony agrees to replicate a famous painting–a lucrative assignment that will take a year to complete–betrayal and jealousy emerges within the group. Spring Swallow becomes entangled in each woman’s story of heartbreak, even while she embarks on a dangerous affair with a young revolutionary. On a journey that leads from the remote hillsides around Soochow to cosmopolitan Peking, Spring Swallow draws on the secret techniques learned from Aunty Peony and her own indomitable strength, determined to forge a life that is truly her own. ( goodreads.com)
Let’s see how much I accomplish this week. The weather is finally amazing and I love to be outdoors and active! To read or not to read…… 🙂 Enjoy whatever you are reading this week!
I’m tired guys lol. Its been a busy one! So let me do a quick wrap up!
This week I finished up “I Love, I Hate, I Miss my Sister” by Amelie Sarn. I literally read this book in 90 minutes (It was just 150 pages). It didn’t love the writing of this book. I found the plot to be very monotonous ( Muslim girl ridiculed for her religious beliefs and choice of religious covering vs Muslim girl seen as not being “modest” enough.) It was just “meh”. I wouldn’t necessarily suggest this book to anyone to read.
I finished up my study on “Lot’s Wife” from my group devotional! Interesting read! It puts a true spin on the saying, “curiosity killed the cat” I really enjoyed the prayer at the end of this study. It reads:
Lord, You call me to live in a world without embracing the ways of the world. Help me to live in a way that preserves my freedom to follow you wherever and however you lead. If i should leave behind a monument, may it be a reminder to others of faith and not foolishness! ( excerpt from the “Women of the Bible devotional)
I tried to read “Coaltown Jesus” by Ron Koertge and I just couldn’t get in to the story because it was written entirely in prose. ( kind of like an Ellen Hopkins novel) Just not my cup of tea.
Lastly, I started “Hold Still” by Nina LaCour” and honestly I’m only a few pages in so I don’t have much to report! I’m going totry and finish this one up and give an honest report next week!
Next week I’m just going read whatever I want. I’m not going to set any goals. I’m just going to go with the flow and read whatever comes my way. I’ve got a ton of pretty interesting library books to tackle!
So I managed to finish up “Copper Sun” by Sharon Draper. I really love Sharon’s writing style and this story did not fail to impress me! Although this is classified as a Young Adult novel, the content was definitely mature. I did however find the premise of a “negro slave” and an “indentured slave” becoming allies and running away together to be kind of a stretch.( An indentured slave was someone who in order to possibly clear a debt, gave themselves in service rather than pay with money or property. Some Negroes were indentured, and some poor or lower class whites could have an indenture on them as well)Even though they were both ” enslaved” the white character in this story still found herself to be more superior than Amari the negro. This book really gave insight in to what it must have been like for children to become enslaved and then try to quickly assimilate to a new life and system of living. This book would be a good book for parents who want to introduce this part of history and style of literature into your “tween” or teens reading repertoire. Think of it as the starter book before you would introduce something like ” The Book of Negroes” . 5 out of 5 stars!! Great read!
This week I’m really not sure what I want to read! I have repeatedly broken my promise of not buying any books until i finish my TBR books……but I realized that all of the books on my TBR are really heavy in content and I need something a little different.
So in this last week I purchased three books ( hangs head in shame lol: Shanice don’t judge me LOL) One was a repurchase because the copy I owned was literally 16 years old.I first read it in the ninth grade. The book is “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee. I remember loving it back then but to be perfectly honest , I don’t remember what happens. So why not pick it up and re-read it! Plus the beautiful edition that I wanted was only $9.99!!!! score! Plus, I just heard that a sequel will finally be released in July of this year. This book was actually written before “To Kill a Mockingbird” in the 1950’s but was rejected by publishers. I’m excited to see where she takes the characters in this long-awaited sequel. I’ll give your more details on this closer to its release date, but this book is definitely being added to my TBR for this year.
Next, I was just browsing the bookstore…. lol and I saw a sale rack. Naturally I had to stop and look. I picked up this book called ” Miracle at the Higher Grounds Cafe” By Max Lucado with Candace Lee and Eric Newman. I was familiar with Max Lucado as an author( I believe my mom has a few of his books around the house) He is a Christian author. The cover( and 10 dollar price tag :P) caught my eye so I picked it up and it sounded pretty interesting. Amazon gives this summary of it:
Chelsea Chambers is on her own. After a public split from her NFL superstar husband, Chelsea takes a bold step out of the limelight and behind the counter of the Higher Grounds Café, an old-fashioned coffee shop in dire need of reinvention. But when her courage, expert planning, and out-of-this-world cupcakes fail to pay the bills, this newly single mom finds herself desperate for help. Better yet, a miracle.
Then a curious stranger lands at Chelsea’s door, and with him, an even more curious string of events. Soon, customers are flocking to the Higher Grounds Café, and not just for the cupcakes and cappuccino. They’ve come for the internet connection to the divine. Now the café has become the go-to place for people in search of answers to life’s biggest questions.
When a catastrophe strikes and her ex comes calling, Chelsea begins to wonder if the whole universe is conspiring against her quest to make it on her own. After a shocking discovery opens her eyes to the unseen world around her, Chelsea finds the courage to ask God a question of her own. Heaven answers in a most unexpected way.
Sounds like a pretty light read and I can’t wait to pick it up.
Lastly I picked up ” The Garden of Burning Sand” by Corban Addison. This was a book I had been suggested to read by a few of my book blogger peeps and since I had some time to kill yesterday before meeting up with a friend ( Hey Fafa!) I popped into Indigo and picked it up! Amazon.com details this story as follows:
Zoe Fleming, an accomplished young human rights attorney, has made a life for herself in Zambia, far from her estranged father–an American business mogul with presidential aspirations–and from the devastating betrayals of her past.
When a young girl with Down syndrome is sexually assaulted in a Lusaka slum, Zoe joins Zambian police officer Joseph Kabuta in investigating the rape. Piecing together clues from the victim’s past, they discover an unsettling connection between the girl–Kuyeya–and a powerful Zambian family who will stop at nothing to bury the truth.
As they are drawn deeper into the complex web of characters behind this appalling crime, Zoe and Joseph forge a bond of trust and friendship that slowly transforms into love. Opposed on all sides, they find themselves caught in a dangerous clash between the forces of justice and power. To successfully prosecute Kuyeya’s attacker and build a future with Joseph, Zoe must risk her life and her heart–and confront the dark past she thought she had left behind.
I’m so intrigued by this plot line. It’s definitely a genre( mystery/thriller) that I have been wanting to delve into. With my successes in reading “Gone Girl” and “The Girl on the Train”I think this may be one of my favorite genres to read right now.
So this week I’m going to try to finish the Max Lucado book because it’s a pretty short read ( 184 pages) and maybe try to get through some of ” The Garden of Burning Sand”.
Also , my girlfriends and I are continuing our Bible study devotional “Women of the Bible”This week we are studying Sarah 🙂