When I think back on STRINGS by G. Miki Hayden, the first word that comes to mind is “bizarre.” It is all about different dimensions. I know there are other books like that out there, but this was my first reading one and I found it delightful. It was all over the place in a great way! Some parts were confusing, but they all led up to clarity, and the best part was that Robert, the main character, was confused too. I find him very real. Instead of being “perfect,” he was flawed like any teenage boy. Instead of grasping the new concepts quickly, he struggled with them, and eventually understood. I could relate to that.
Something that really stood out to me was when his mother taught him to hold photographs by the edges. My grandmother always stressed that to me!
Friday, March 24, 2017
I received a copy of THE ELUSIVE MISS ELLISON by Carolyn Miller from Kregel in exchange for an honest review. It is the first installment in the Regency Brides: A Legacy of Grace series.
This book is delightful! I have been sick since February (a cold that just will not go!), so I settled down on the couch thinking to read through this over the space of a few days. Imagine my surprise when it sucked up my entire day and left me wanting more!
The Regency world comes alive for Carolyn Miller. I’ve read Regency romances before, and they have never transported me the way THE ELUSIVE MISS ELLISON did. It is strongly reminiscent of Jane Austen’s works. When compared to those other Regencies I’ve read, I found these characters had more depth and dimension. The personalities are vibrant. They weren’t just focused on the romance. This book is also free of smut. (It can be considered Christian fiction) Granted, I knew what I was getting with some of those other Regency Romances. The covers involved a shirtless man in most cases. Without the smut, I found this book to offer much more adventure and heart.
I have a friend with the last name of Ellison, so I pictured her as Lavinia Ellison while I read.
Thursday, March 16, 2017
I received a copy of A STOLEN HEART by Amanda Cabot from Revell in exchange for an honest review. It is book one of the Cimarron Creek trilogy. This was my first dive into the series, and I found it delightful. It was also my first Amanda Cabot book.
She has a beautiful storytelling flair. Some historical fiction novels feel too modern, as if they are taking place in some backwoods community where people still have access to modern television (hence the modern talk) but rely on horses for transportation. A STOLEN HEART immerses the reader directly into the past, in this case Texas in 1880. I would love to see this as a Hallmark mini-series.
I felt bad for everything Lydia endured with her horrible fiancé and the local hatred for Northerners. Some parts broke my heart for her. However, there were many more endearing moments, and I finished the novel with a smile on my face.
I recommend this to fans of Christian fiction, historical fiction, and tender romance. My only complaint is a petty one. I didn’t really care for the title. It is too similar to other books I’ve seen, that involve “Stolen Hearts.”
By the way, I loved the inclusion of the map and family tree!
Monday, March 13, 2017
I received a copy of QUICK TIPS FOR BUSY FAMILIES: SNEAKY STRATEGIES FOR RAISING GREAT KIDS by Jay Payleitner from Bethany House in exchange for an honest review. Now that I actually have a kid, albeit a baby who focuses mainly on eating and sleeping, books like this hit home more. Maybe it is better that I’m starting off fresh with a baby. I can better incorporate his tips into our daily lives.
The 144 tips in this book are easy to read and sometimes amusing. I found myself engulfed in Jay’s writing style. All of the tips made me feel as if I was sitting next to Jay having a cup of tea and a friendly conversation. I didn’t expect to read as much as I did in one sitting. Be warned: this is an addictive book!
The one I liked best was to laminate stuff, like newspaper articles, so that they will always be treasured. This made me think of my maternal grandmother. She kept all newspaper articles about herself, my grandfather, my mom, and my uncle. After she passed away, we enjoyed reading them, and tucked most of them into a keepsake box (we gave my uncle his). I hope to do something similar with my son.
I HIGHLY recommend this book!