Thursday, April 27, 2017

Love Your Work: 4 Practical Ways You Can Pivot to Your Best Career Review


 About the Book

Are you dissatisfied in your career? Not getting the opportunities you want? Wish you could find your sweet spot?

Our best, most fulfilling work comes when passion and opportunity meet. But many struggle to find make that happen—and that’s the problem, one that can lead to dissatisfaction both in and out of the workplace.

In Pivot, you will learn how to strategically position yourself for forward momentum in your career. Get tips for critical tasks, like how to:

Discover where you are in relation to where you want to go

Maneuver step-by-step toward high-passion, high-opportunity areas
Take advantage of the process of change
Maybe the new economy feels daunting to you. Maybe you’re not sure how to break out of your industry. Maybe you’re struggling to move up in rank. Wherever you are, if you don’t find your work meaningful and engaging, it’s time for a change, and Pivot will prepare you to make it.

Using stories and examples from his professional experience, Robert Dickie III will teach you how to turn trial into opportunity, find the hidden value in your skills, and rewrite your career story into one that excites you. (Goodreads)

My Thoughts

I was pleasantly surprised by this book. I think it was written in a very easy to read way. Some chapters I enjoyed more than others simply because of my life experience with different jobs. There were many things, including the side stories of real people, that just gave me a new perspective. We get in this bubble in life and in our work and fail to realize the bigger pictures. It was encouraging to read about people who had to do a 180 in their life and accomplished much. 
I thought this was a great book and aside from a few slower chapters (personal preference) I enjoyed it!
Fours stars. 

"I received this book from MP Newsroom for free. All opinions are my own."

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

The Hideaway Review


 About the Book
When her grandmother’s will wrenches Sara back home from New Orleans, she learns more about Margaret Van Buren in the wake of her death than she ever did in life.

After her last remaining family member dies, Sara Jenkins goes home to The Hideaway, her grandmother Mags's ramshackle B&B in Sweet Bay, Alabama. She intends to quickly tie up loose ends then return to her busy life and thriving antique shop in New Orleans. Instead, she learns Mags has willed her The Hideaway and charged her with renovating it—no small task considering Mags’s best friends, a motley crew of senior citizens, still live there.

Rather than hurrying back to New Orleans, Sara stays in Sweet Bay and begins the biggest house-rehabbing project of her career. Amid Sheetrock dust, old memories, and a charming contractor, she discovers that slipping back into life at The Hideaway is easier than she expected.

Then she discovers a box Mags left in the attic with clues to a life Sara never imagined for her grandmother. With help from Mags’s friends, Sara begins to piece together the mysterious life of bravery, passion, and choices that changed Mags’s destiny in both marvelous and devastating ways.

When an opportunistic land developer threatens to seize The Hideaway, Sara is forced to make a choice—stay in Sweet Bay and fight for the house and the people she’s grown to love or leave again and return to her successful but solitary life in New Orleans. (Goodreads)

My Thoughts
I love the idea of the overall story line in this novel, but I simply couldn't get into this book. It was a struggle to connect to the characters and I wish that wasn't the case. For me, the overall flow of the chapters just didn't click and it got slow. There is a lot of issues discussed in this book and also a sort of awkward affair type situation. Now I think for the most part this was dealt with in a decent way and it's not the reason I didn't love this book. This is just my opinion and I hate saying negative things about books but I have to be honest. I think the part I liked the most was Sara's side and the current time period. I also really liked the setting and the overall feel of the B & B. I also think this author has some great potential and I will want to pick up her next book!
That being said many people have given this book a five star rating so I know others have loved it. 

I give it three stars. 

"I received this book from BookLook Bloggers for free. All opinions are my own."

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Catching the Wind- Wonderful Book!


 About the Book

What happened to Brigitte Berthold?

That question has haunted Daniel Knight since he was thirteen, when he and ten-year-old Brigitte escaped the Gestapo agents who arrested both their parents. They survived a harrowing journey from Germany to England, only to be separated upon their arrival. Daniel vowed to find Brigitte after the war, a promise he has fought to fulfill for more than seventy years.

Now a wealthy old man, Daniel's final hope in finding Brigitte rests with Quenby Vaughn, an American journalist working in London. He believes Quenby's tenacity to find missing people and her personal investment in a related WWII espionage story will help her succeed where previous investigators have failed. Though Quenby is wrestling her own demons--and wary at the idea of teaming up with Daniel's lawyer, Lucas Hough--the lure of Brigitte's story is too much to resist. Together, Quenby and Lucas delve deep into the past, following a trail of deception, sacrifice, and healing that could change all of their futures. (Goodreads)

My Thoughts

Melanie Dobson has yet to write a book I didn't love. I have read my fair share of WWII novels but somehow Dobson has a way of making each story its own, completely different. This novel has two different time periods that go back and forth, which are written so well you won't even be confused! I loved all the characters in this book, but I think Brigitte will always have a special place in my heart. The history is fascinating and once again I learned a ton that I will have to do more research on. Wonderful side romance story and real life heart issues when it comes to abandonment. There is a pretty big twist near the end that I have mixed feelings about but you must read for yourself on that note.
There were a couple of things (small little insignificant things) that I thought were perhaps a little far fetched or over the top for this particular story. Otherwise this is one of the best books I have read so far this year! 

Five stars. 

"I received this book from Tyndale Publishing for free. All opinions are my own."

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

How to Overcome Worry Review


About the Book

Scripture’s cure for the worry epidemic

Do you struggle with worry or anxious thoughts on a regular basis? Does your mind get fixated on the same concern over and over? Do you know you should stop worrying but repeatedly fail to do so?

How to Overcome Worry presents a biblical and practical strategy for this exact problem. Dr. Winfred Neely, who has experienced his fair share of anxiety-inducing circumstances, walks you through Philippians 4:6–7 to help you:

Understand the difference between concern and worry
Use prayer as a means of grace to overcome worry
Cultivate gratitude and thanksgiving as an antidote to worry
Navigate changing seasons and circumstances without falling into worry
Employ practical strategies for experiencing the peace of God
Worry is one of the top issues in our world today, even among Christians, and this concise and biblical approach will offer real solutions. In His Word, God tells us to stop worrying, pray about everything, and expect His peace. This is a true promise of Scripture, and this book will help you to lay hold of it. (Goodreads)

 My Thoughts

This is a very small book but has some great thought provoking ideas. Worry is a struggle and a constant for me. I like the explanation between concern and worry, something that gets jumbled. I enjoyed the first few parts of the book, after that I found it to be nothing I hadn't read before. So while overall there were some good things to take away, it probably isn't a book I would read again. 

Three stars. 

" I received this book from MP Newsroom for free. All opinions are my own."


You'll Think of Me Book Review


 About the Book

In a small town in Idaho’s idyllic wine country where the past looms large, can two people realize their individual dreams for the future … together?

Abandoned once too often, Brooklyn Myers never intended to return to Thunder Creek, Idaho. Her hometown holds too many memories of heartache and rejection. But when her estranged husband Chad Hallston dies and leaves his family home and acreage to her and their ten-year-old daughter Alycia, it's an opportunity to change their lives for the better—a chance Brooklyn can't pass up, for Alycia's sake if not her own.

Derek Johnson, Chad's best friend since boyhood, isn't keen on the return of Brooklyn Myers to Thunder Creek. He still blames her for leading his friend astray. And now she has ruined his chance to buy the neighboring ten acres which would have allowed him to expand his organic farm. To add insult to injury, Chad's dying request was that Derek become the father to Alycia that Chad never was. How can he keep that promise without also spending time with the girl’s mother?

Brought together by unexpected circumstances, Derek and Brooklyn must both confront challenges to their dreams and expectations. He must overcome long held misconceptions about Brooklyn while she must learn to trust someone other than herself. And if they can do it, they just might discover that God has something better in mind than either of them ever imagined.

 My Thoughts

I think that Robin Lee Hatcher is a talented author and this story had some great characters. Hatcher has way of writing about life through her characters in a way that adds a lot of depth. Real life issues and all in a wonderful setting! Some of romance in this particular book just didn't seem to click for me. I felt at times that it seemed rushed/shoved upon the reader and wasn't quite as natural as I would have liked. It made some of the parts of this story a bit predictable and slower for me to read. Otherwise I enjoyed this book and the overall story line. 

Four stars.

"I received this book from BookLook Bloggers for free. All opinions are my own."

Surrendered Book Tour and Giveaway!

 Surrendered banner-celebrate lit

Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Book


Book: Surrendered
Author: Elaine Manders
Genre: Christian Historical Romance
Release Date: December 28, 2016
The fight never ends until someone surrenders.
Having vanquished his political enemies, Rhyan Cason is anxious to get home to his beloved Carianne. Then he receives word an anthrax outbreak threatens his ranch. Even as he ponders how he can afford to take a wife, dark secrets from the distant past shake his beliefs to the core and convince him he’ll never be able to find forgiveness or make Carianne happy.
Carianne Barlow is stunned when Rhyan breaks their secret engagement. She leaves Sollano, the beautiful ranch house she loves almost as much as its owner, and returns home to Westerfield. While waiting for her shattered heart to heal, she shifts her attention to building the library she’s promised the town.
Even though Colt Holliman offers her a new courtship, circumstances keep drawing her back to Sollano and Rhyan. Torn between her affection for Colt and her love for Rhyan, Carianne realizes almost too late Rhyan’s troubles lie deeper than saving the ranch. He fights an evil that threatens more than his love for her—one only God can defeat.

About the Author

photo 3 (1)Elaine Manders writes wholesome Christian romance and suspense about the bold, capable women of history and the strong, dependable men who love them. She prefers stories that twist and turn and surprise, told by characters who aren’t afraid to show their love for God and each other. She lives in Central Georgia with a happy bichon-poodle mix. Besides writing, she enjoys reading, crafts, and spending time with her friends, daughter, and grandchildren.

Guest Post from Elaine Manders

I was born with the gift of story. The make-believe of childhood never left me, but it wasn’t until my daughter left for college, and I was left with the empty nest, that I decided maybe it was time to start writing the stories crowding my mind. I joined a local writers’ group, took a fiction writing course, developed the craft, went to conventions, and started pitching to editors.
Since I wrote romance, I found the publishing industry pushing me to a place I didn’t want to go. The secular publishers wanted steamier writing, and I complied as much as I could. Then when I was offered a chance for publication, I couldn’t allow my name to go on the book. The Christian publishers had a very narrow marketing concept. Again, I tried to comply until I felt the joy of story being squeezed out of me. I took a twelve year hiatus from writing.
Then in 2012, I was sitting in church listening to the familiar parable of the talents. When my pastor asked the question, “Are you hiding your talent?” I immediately visualized that closet filled with my unpublished manuscripts. I rededicated myself to putting my talent to use, and I asked God to send me a new story, if this was what he wanted me to do.
Later that week, I was on the golf course when I laid down on a little hill waiting for my husband to chase a ball in the woods and stared into the deepest, bluest sky I’ve ever seen. The sun was high in the sky, but the shade of blue was so dark I could actually see, not only the moon, but some of the stars. Looking into that sky, I experienced a strange sensation, as if I’d lost contact with the earth and was moving into infinity. I wondered, as I had many times before, how an atheist could look into the heavens and not believe in the Creator. This led me to an investigation of scientific atheism, Darwinism, and the entire series, Intrigue under Western Skies, was born. My protagonist is a Darwinist of the 1880s. Book 1, Pursued, is his spiritual journey to belief in Christianity, and Book 2, Surrendered, takes him to acceptance. The heroine, of course, helps him on this journey, while dodging all the dangers the old west has to offer. Incidentally, Pursued will be free on Amazon Apr 18-19.

Blog Stops

April 11: Karen Sue Hadley
April 14: Bigreadersite
April 17: cherylbbookblog
April 17: Baker Kella
April 18: I Hope You Dance
April 21: Pause for Tales


To celebrate her tour, Elaine is giving away a $50 Amazon Gift Card! Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!

My Thoughts

This was not the book for me. I really enjoyed the setting but I could not connect with either of the main characters. I felt like the story line was a bit too predictable and for me it was terribly slow. I am sure there are many other people who will enjoy this book a lot more than I did. 
The book had some good points and some amusing scenes but for me this book is three stars. 

"I received this book from the author for free. All opinions are my own."

Friday, April 14, 2017

Cynthia Ruchti's 'A Fragile Hope' Blog Tour and Giveaway


About the book:
Hope grows when seeds are planted-even in the muddy middle of life.
Josiah Chamberlain's life's work revolves around repairing other people's marriages. When his own is threatened by his wife's unexplained distance, and then threatened further when she's unexpectedly plunged into an unending fog, Josiah finds his expertise, quick wit and clever quips are no match for a relationship that is clearly broken.
Feeling betrayed, confused, and ill-equipped for a crisis this crippling, he reexamines everything he knows about the fragility of hope and the strength of his faith and love. Love seems to have failed him. Will what's left of his faith fail him, too? Or will it be the one thing that holds him together and sears through the impenetrable wall that separates them?

About the author:

Cynthia Ruchti tells stories hemmed in hope through her novels, novellas, nonfiction books, articles and devotionals, drawing from 33 years of on-air radio ministry. Ruchti has written more than 20 award-winning novels, novellas, nonfiction books and devotionals. Her books have received numerous awards and nominations, including the RT Reviewers' Choice, ForeWord Reviews Book of the Year nominations, two Selah Awards, Christian Retailing's BEST, was an ACFW Carol Award finalist and a Christy finalist, among other honors. Her latest release is the novel A Fragile Hope.
One of Ruchti's greatest joys is helping other writers grow in their craft. To that end, she has served as worship and devotions staff and faculty for the Write-to-Publish conference and teaches at other writers' conferences across the country and internationally as opportunities arise. She also serves as the professional relations liaison for American Christian Fiction Writers.
Ruchti speaks frequently for women's groups and serves on her church's worship team. She and her husband live in the heart of Wisconsin, not far from their three children and five grandchildren.
Find out more about Cynthia at
My Thoughts
 So I'll be honest it saying this simply was not the book for me. I kept reading and waiting to see what would happen, so the drama within the book kept me going. I just had a hard time figuring out the characters and what the author's point was. I feel like the ending was rushed and tied up in a bow. I liked to see the difficulty in the marriage because it isn't easy but I just felt like the book was missing something. I am sure others might feel different but this book left me feeling empty and depressed. 

Three stars. 

"I received this book from Litfuse for free in exchange for an honest review."

When your life's work revolves around repairing other people's marriages, what happens when your own marriage begins to fall apart? Find out what happens to Josiah Chamberlain in Cynthia Ruchti's new book, A Fragile Hope. Feeling betrayed, confused, and ill-equipped for a crisis this crippling, he reexamines everything he knows about the fragility of hope and the strength of his faith and love. Love seems to have failed him. Will what's left of his faith fail him, too? Or will it be the one thing that holds him together and sears through the impenetrable wall that separates them?

Celebrate the release of A Fragile Hope by entering to win Cynthia's Sign of Hope Giveaway!

One grand prize winner will receive:
Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on May 3. The winner will be announced May 4 on the Litfuse blog.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

The Naturalist Review


 About the Book

The surprising story of intrepid naturalist Theodore Roosevelt and how his lifelong passion for the natural world set the stage for America's wildlife conservation movement.
Perhaps no American president is more associated with nature and wildlife than Theodore Roosevelt, a prodigious hunter and adventurer and an ardent conservationist. We think of Roosevelt as an original, yet in The Naturalist, Darrin Lunde shows how from his earliest days Roosevelt actively modeled himself in the proud tradition of museum naturalists—the men who pioneered a key branch of American biology through their desire to collect animal specimens and develop a taxonomy of the natural world. The influence these men would have on Roosevelt would shape not just his personality but his career, informing his work as a politician and statesman and ultimately affecting generations of Americans' relationship to this country's wilderness. Pulling from  Roosevelt's diaries and expedition journals, Lunde constructs a brilliantly researched, singularly insightful history that reveals the roots of Roosevelt’s enduring naturalist legacy through the group little-known men whose work and lives defined his own. (Goodreads)

My Thoughts

I enjoy biographies though some are written better than others. This particular book about Roosevelt had some great pictures and fun stories that I never knew. I honestly didn't know much of anything about this man or so much about taxidermy! I thought the author did a decent job keeping this book from being boring, but for those who don't appreciate history or reading biographies this isn't the book for you. 
Three stars. 

"I received this book from Blogging for Books for free. All opinions are my own."

Monday, April 3, 2017

If I'm Found Book Review


 About the Book

Is Dylan hunting Casey to prosecute her or protect her?

Casey Cox is still on the run, fleeing prosecution for a murder she didn’t commit. Dylan Roberts—her most relentless pursuer—is still on her trail, but his secret emails insist that he knows the truth and wants to help her. He’s let her escape before when he had her in his grasp, but trust doesn’t come easily.

As Casey works to collect evidence about the real murderers, she stumbles on another unbearable injustice: an abused child and a suicidal man who’s also been falsely accused. Casey risks her own safety to right this wrong and protect the little girl from her tormenters. But doing so is risky and just may result in her capture—and if she’s captured, she has no doubt she’ll be murdered before she ever steps foot in a jail.

In this riveting sequel to the USA Today bestseller If I Run, evil lurks, drawing Casey out of the shadows . . . but there is light shining in the darkness. Is Dylan a provision from the God who loves her, or another heartache yet to happen? (Goodreads)

My Thoughts

So first of all, do not pick this book up if you have not read book one! The book will make no sense and you will be missing out on a lot! I have been dying for this book to come out and much to might delight/irritation this book leaves you hanging too! There is yet, another book after this one to finish the story. 
This series is simply fantastic and I have enjoyed both books. This one felt like an in between book, the first one was slightly more suspenseful, If I'm Found was more intriguing than suspenseful. Don't get me wrong there is suspense since that is what the whole story is about but this book just seemed to go a bit deeper into the plot. I love Casey and Dylan and how different they are and how the author is shaping them. This is a book I could not put down and if you have read book one you must read If I'm Found! 


"I received this book from Booklook Bloggers for free. All opinions are my own."