Tag Archives: literature

My Sister’s Books Review #53

The Walk

By: Richard Paul Evans

#1 in The Walk Series

 

Alan Christoffersen had it all, a beautiful home, a fabulous career and his soul mate as his wife. His life couldn’t have been better, but sadly it slowly disappeared after that fateful day when his wife fell off her horse. When his life becomes virtually extinct, Alan decides to end it all, but he is reminded of the promise he made to his wife. Since he has nothing left, he decides to go for a walk, but not just any kind of walk, one that will get him as far away as possible. With just a few supplies and his hiking boots, he sets off from the outskirts of Seattle, Washington towards Key West, Florida, in hopes of finding life again.

From the very first page, Evans delivers a powerful and poetic tale. Through the first person narrative, the author proves that true human character is revealed during critical times. The quotes from Alan’s diary that start each chapter, give a preview as to what is to come. Readers will be able to relate to Alan’s desire to walk away from everything and thanks to the use of descriptive words, they will feel as though they are walking and eating right next to him. Despite the fact that the book starts with Alan in Key West, he is still in the state of Washington throughout this whole novel. The Walk is a dramatic start to a promising series that will compel readers to follow Alan’s journey.

 

Notes:
This review was written for My Sister’s Books. To learn more about this bookstore, please visit their website.

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My Sister’s Books Review #52

Small Blessings

By: Martha Woodroof

Rose Callahan has always been a wanderer, never staying long enough to get too emotionally attached to people.  However, when she starts her new job at the college bookstore, the welcoming, quirky individuals pull at her heart. Tom Putnam leads a monotonous life and with the help of his mother-in-law, they try to cope with his wife’s debilitating depression. When a shocking letter arrives, declaring Tom a father of a ten year old son, his world Is about to change forever. How will the people of this small college town cope, as their lives turn upside down?

Martha Woodroof challenges readers to think about the qualities that truly make up a family, whether it is love, duty, responsibility or blood. Broken into two distinct parts, the first section is a fast paced action ride, while the second is more descriptive and verbose. There is a strong cast of secondary characters that play a vital part to the story. With a little help from Shakespeare and Harry Potter, readers will dive into the magic of life and the beauty of love. This debut novel will leave readers hoping for more.

Notes:
This review was written for My Sister’s Books. To learn more about this bookstore, please visit their website.

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What are you reading today?

Good Morning Everyone,

They are calling for rain today, therefore I have declared today a reading day!!! I will be reading Snow Fence Road by Phyllis Edgerly Ring and Miles to Go by Richard Paul Evans. (Possibly a few more, but we shall see how the day goes!) What are you all reading today? Is it raining where you live?

Enjoy!
~Ariesgrl

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My Sister’s Books Review #51

The Fault in Our Stars

By: John Green

Hazel has terminal cancer that has forced her out of school. Despite her desire to stay inside reading, sleeping and watching television, her Mom forces her to get out and go to Support Group each week. It is there that she meets Augustus Waters, a boy who has been cancer-free for close to a year. He has a different outlook on life and with his unlit cigarette, he plans on making Hazel Grace’s life broader and brighter.

Written in a first-person narrative, John Green has created a poetic and powerful novel.  This book has a dark, realistic beginning, but quickly it sweeps the characters and readers up into a majestic fantasy. The author focuses on how cancer affects the patient, but also how it affects everyone. Knowing the end result, means grief is a daily experience for all, but the choice is to continue living life for however long it exists. Brimming with references to another heart wrenching, fictional tale, Green manages to tell an additional story within this one, to help foreshadow the growth of his main characters. Readers will cry and laugh as they fall in love with Hazel Grace, Augustus and Isaac.

 

Notes:

This review was written for My Sister’s Books. To learn more about this bookstore, please visit their website.

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Blog Tours-Author Appearances

Hi Everyone,

How are all of you doing? As for life around here, my family and I are still trying to adjust. Hard to believe that on Thursday, he will be gone for a month. Life is completely upside down for all of us. Anyways, I digress…

I am currently working on my rough drafts for the next several reviews, which you all will get to see later this week. :) But in the meantime, my calendar showed that I had a blog tour scheduled for today (and one in July, too.) I hope you all will enjoy these two tours. Blog tours have been a great way to introduce you all to new authors. My normal process for agreeing to these tours is that I have either read the author’s previous work, the author was listed on The List, or one of my blogging friends have recommended the author. Starting in August, I will be changing this process to only include authors that I have previously read, in order to be able to give you all my personal opinions. :) I hope this will allow for more author interviews and or guest posts, as well as continue representing a broad spectrum of genres for you all to enjoy!

So while I go finish editing my reviews, why don’t you all tell me what you are reading this week? Are any of you waiting for a particular book to be released this month?

 

Enjoy!
~Ariesgrl

 

P.S. Thank you all again for your continued support. I truly appreciate all of you.

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A Quote to Begin Your Day…

“If you have the words, there’s always a chance that you’ll find the way.”

~Seamus Heaney

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April 16, 2014 · 6:30 am

Inevitable

Harmony #1 By: Angela Graham. Format: eBook. Read: March 2014.

Cassandra Clarke is enjoying the last few weeks of summer, before she begins her first teaching job. Running in the morning and organizing boxes full of old memoirs is how she spends her days, until gigantic moving trucks indicate a new neighbor is in town. Little does she know, her new neighbor is Logan West, a handsome, rich and strong man with a certain reputation among women. Will Logan’s son, Oliver, bring these two together or will Logan’s past be too much to handle?

This is a sweet, multi-layered debut novel by Angela Graham. Readers will be able to explore their own feelings and motives with each new depth revealed by the characters. The minor characters are just as vital to the story as the main couple and they will cause just as many strong emotions within readers.  Graham does a delightful job weaving her tale and balancing it through each of the characters. The beginning and ending are very fast paced, while the middle will have readers anxiously flipping to the next page. Inevitable is a sugary and promising start to this Harmony series.

Enjoy!
~Ariesgrl

 

Notes:

The author provided a copy of this book for me to review. To learn more about this author and her work, please visit her website.

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Forbidden Harvest

By: Peter Rizzolo. Format: Paperback. Read: March 2014.

Dr. Ken Benholtz has spent his career at the Children’s Hospital working to preserve organs for transplant. His job becomes more personal when his nephew is admitted and is in desperate need for a heart, around the same time that his research funds are cut. He decides to take matters into his own hands by illegally harvesting cadaver organs. This is the story of the medical and legal consequences of his decision.

This story seems to have it all… young children in need of life-saving organs, details of both the medical and legal worlds and it is packed full of suspense and intrigue.  Though this book covers an intense topic and technical jargon, the plot allows it to be a fast and enjoyable read. Rizzolo does an amazing job of blurring the lines between the good guy and the evil guy. Readers will be questioning how far they would go, to save a child’s life.

 

How do you like your medical fiction books? Do you like them to read like a compelling thriller or a heart-wrenching story, or somewhere in between?

Enjoy!
~Ariesgrl

 

Note:

The PR representative provided a copy of this book for me to review. To learn more about her, please visit her website.

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Lillian’s Garden

By: Carrie Jane Knowles. Format: Paperback. Read: February 2014.

 

Helen’s mother-in-law, Lillian, has a beautiful garden that Helen likes to take care of, because it soothes her mind. However Helen suffers from bipolar disease and when she suffers a breakdown, her husband commits her to a mental institute. This decision leaves her children reeling from pain and confusion, because they do not understand their mother’s illness. While in the institute, Helen decides to write letters to her children, hoping for forgiveness and understanding, not just from her family, but also from herself.

This is a powerful and poignant tale of how bipolar disease affects not only the patient, but also the entire family. Add in the background of faith and family secrets, and readers will have a hard time remembering that this is a work of fiction. Switching narratives between the young girl and Helen allows readers a more intimate look at the family dynamics. Knowles has created a mesmerizing work of art that captures the human spirit. This is a must-read for anyone looking to get inside of a mind suffering from the wretched disease.

 

 

Why the long delay on this review? Well I had a hard time reading this book, seeing as how I read it during the same time that my family was experiencing the hear-wrenching side effects of Alzheimer’s and mood disorder. Then when it came to write the review, I sat down several times thinking I was ready, but my hands just hovered over the keyboard, as my mind played back the memories of that horrible month. I erased my rough draft twice, before finally writing this version. All I can say is that this is one powerful book, a must-read, but definitely a book that you need to prepare for and schedule time to recover afterwards.  Thank you all for your patience and understanding with this delay… now that I have posted this review up next on the blog will be the subsequent three reviews from The List.

In the meantime, what do you like to do to help focus and bring peace to your mind? Do you tend a garden, color, read, write in a journal, etc.?

Enjoy!
~Ariesgrl

 

Note:

The PR representative provided a copy of this book for me to review. To learn more about her, please visit her website.

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In Like a Lion, Out like a…

Hi Everyone,

No, I am not planning on discussing the weather. Sadly, this saying has applied to my family’s life for this past month…and so far there is no lamb in sight. So what has been going on in my world that has caused my silence here? Well, where do I begin?

Back in February, I posted that I was recovering from a broken wrist. (Tonight is my first night trying to type without my brace and it has proven to be an interesting journey.) What I didn’t explain during that short post, was that my grandfather had a nervous breakdown and spent 2.5 weeks in a hospital trying to “come back.” Unfortunately, once these nervous breakdowns happen, they will continue and they will become more frequent as the Alzheimer’s progresses. And over the course of the past two weeks, he has been headed towards another breakdown. My Mom and I are doing everything in our power to slow this one down. We know there is no stopping it, but if we could slow it down that would be a relief. He has a doctor appointment Tuesday to see what else we can do.

Needless to say, these past few weeks have been beyond stressful. And that stress has led to Ozzy having two seizures in the past three weeks. So it seems that despite the fact that I wake up each day, hoping, wishing, dreaming and praying for peace… peace is not meant to be for my home. By the time night falls, I am unbelievably exhausted and drained, that even the thought of looking at the computer leaves me cross-eyed. (Oh and don’t let me forget to mention that the season of fireworks officially started last night, with a surprise performance at 11pm.)

I offer you all my sincerest apologies and I hope that you will all understand my absence over these past few weeks. Please take note, over the course of the next 48hrs, I will be posting my 10 reviews that I have for you and answering all of my emails. Then next week, the quotes, author interviews and reviews will all be back as normal.

Due to the overwhelming stress in my life, there will be some changes to the site. The most significant change is that I will no longer be accepting review requests, until I have caught up on all current books from The List. I apologize for any inconvenience that this may cause authors, but I promise this will only be temporary. Once I have substantially caught up and/or my life has found a routine, I will re-open the Review Requests. Another change was made earlier today, when I updated both Lists and bolded the ‘Started Reading’ next to each of the books that I am currently reading, so it should be easier to see what I am reading. Over the weekend, I will be updating the sidebars to include book giveaways and/or author contests for readers to participate in.

In the meantime, let’s focus on the positive and discuss what everyone is reading. Right now, I am reading The Quest for Juice and Defending Jacob. What are you reading on this fine Friday night and how has your March been?

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!

Enjoy!
~Ariesgrl

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