Monday, December 14, 2015

Courage to Dream

In this series we find it's hard to follow one's heart when family expectations gets in the middle. Would you have the courage to dream or would you follow the road paved for you?

The story of Irish Meadows focuses on two sisters Brianna and Colleen O'Leary. It's hard being in a place where you feel so loved, but then you don't fit in (Trust me I know) and that appears to be the case with these girls. Each sister has their own secret longing to hide from their father, and with his strict code of conduct for how ladies should behave makes things only harder on them.

I have to wonder how many times we put our hopes, our dreams, and our future happiness onto other people? It is a scary thing to think about in a ways. Imagine all that pressure on one, or even two, set of shoulder! Trying to carry all of that around on their own when their heart cries out for rest.
I am thankful for the many bible verses that say we can give it all to God and rest in His embrace, like this one.

"Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you." 1 Peter 5:7 NLT 

I am sorry this won't be a longer review, but I don't want to spoil much for you folks this time. I suggest taking a look at the book to see if it can help you in ways it helped me.

That's all for now. I hope y'all have a blessed day and a Marry Christmas!

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, which I have given.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

A girl with a Golden Braid

Melanie Dickerson once again brings us a novel that will bring you back to a time knights, dukes, and the true love God has for all His children.

The story of Repunzel has grown in popularity in the last few years (Such as Disney's retelling Tangled, and Alex Flinn's retelling Towering) I think this is because in some way everyone feels trapped in their lives, weather is is emotionally or physically. 
In this story though Repunzel is the outcast due to the efforts of her mother, Gothel. She has tried to instill into Repunzel that all men are cruel and only interested her beauty, then they would leave her as used goods. It was saddening in a way to see Gothel in this light, with a pain so obvious it was in almost her every move. I wonder where Melanie gets these ideas for her characters, and how she is able to give her latest villain a depth of pain that can be felt across the pages.

Another thing I loved was how each character was relatable in some way. Sir Gerek's plans were to marry into wealth, finding a girl with land and a suitable dowery. Repunzel did not fit his criteria. How often do God's plans do not aline with our own? We like to think we know what is best, but every time God has something even better planned. It makes me think of this verse.

"There are many plans in a man’s heart,

Nevertheless the Lord’s counsel—that will stand." Proverbs 19:21 NKJV

Having Repunzel be an outsider among the places she lived gave me a bond to her, and I think to many others. I always felt like I was on the outside looking in, and to remove the ache from my heart I wanted to learn all that I could. And this is what Repunzel did. At the time her greatest wish was to learn to read. Back in this day and age the only women to really learn to read were the children of the wealthy, so finding a teacher that is not a man would not be easy. Aaahh the humorous turns these story takes, for none other then the grumpy Sir Gerek (who saved Repunzel, who then later down the road saved him) would be her reluctant teacher.

This book also coincides with the events of The Princess Spy, and continues onward after those events. So if you want to read this one I suggest reading the previous one, though you don't have to. Also an interesting note is that it seems Melanie Dickerson has moved over to Tomas Nelson publishings instead of Zondervan, anyone have any thoughts on this?

Anyways, back to the book review. Secrets and wicked plots abound in this book, finding ways to make a more interesting plot and helping our beloved characters to trust in God's sovereign hand. There was a time in the book I feared the worst, but I won't tell you what happened, good or bad. This is too good of a book to spoil. If you haven't picked up any of Melanie Dickerson's books I suggest doing so now! If you want to know where to start in this book series you can check out my review for The Princess Spy on my blog.

Well folks that is all I have for today, I hope you have a blessed day and tune in for my next review.

I received this book from the publishers for free in exchange for an honest review, which I have given.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Legs on Fire

 For today’s post I bring you My Legs are on Fire by Samuel Faulk.
This isn’t my normal Christian fiction reviews, nor is this book from a review program; this is a normal fiction/memoir/poetry (covers a broad area of subjects for just 17 pages, doesn’t it?). This book does have some language in it; so if you are not over the age of 18, talk to your parents before reading this book.

We’ll start with the fiction part first. It is focused on a high school girl with cerebral palsy, a physical impairment that affects the muscles in her arms and legs. Adding on the struggles and strife modern high schools put on to teenagers, especially ones with a handicap. What makes this story special is our main character, Phoebe Razek, and her goal to be apart of the track team.

I was inspired by this young woman's aspirations. She wanted to do something the entire world said was impossible for her to achieve. The story flowed smoothly, and I feel would relate to teenagers on the same level as 13 Reasons Why, by Jay Asher.

The next part to review is the memoir. As you can guess this section goes over some events in the life of Samuel Faulk, and the struggles he survived throughout his life. I have only read one other memoir besides this one, and that was back in 2012, but this one had the same impact on me. 
Seeing someone on the outside as you walk by, you can never know his or her full story. What trials have they faced? What kind of jokes and humor do they share with friends and family? And how do they get through the day? Reading this short memoir was like being able to look into the eyes of that person and to see important moments of their lives, ones that are not easily described. 

And here comes the poetry! One of my favorite things about this book. This author has a talent for poetry, for I have been honored to read some of his other works besides these two poems. These two are very clear, and flow well in their parts. 
There is no need for extensive poetry study before you read these. Not to say they are dumb or silly, just that when you read them you will have no trouble hearing the  written words in your mind flow together into symphony.

The last section is this book is a bonus called "The Confessions of a Pyromaniac". This one was a little oddball, but it does help bring the title "My legs are Fire" into full circle. No he did not set himself on fire, but the author expresses his passions for fire, and fireworks. An interesting piece, but I might put a warning label with it that says, "Do not try attempt any of this". But it was still a good read.

All in all I did enjoy the book, minus the language. If this sounds like a book for you then follow the link below

My Legs are on Fire

Well, that's all for today folks. Kaitlyn W. signing off, I hope you have a blessed day

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

who said Chivalry is dead?

Taking place shortly after the events of Dina  L. Sleiman’s previous book Dauntless we meet young Gwendolyn a woman setting her heart out on being a knight, and proving she is more then just another helpless female.

I wasn’t sure exactly what to expect from Chivalrous since I have not read Dauntless, and in truth I thought it might be another somewhat unrealistic book where a girl becomes a knight and all her dreams come true. I won’t spoil things for you, but Chivalrous is so much better then that.

Gwendolyn has to battle more then just the constant reminder that for her time skills such as fighting and horseback riding are deemed unladylike and would bring shame to a family if that girl is ever caught. Her father, a cruel and unjust man, would see her married to a man who could break her very spirit.

I found that Gwendolyn is a very relatable character for any girl. In this day and age marriage is almost always looked on unfavorable and isn’t really encouraged anymore, to the point that girls get the wrong impression about marriage. Instead of seeing it for the beautiful commitment to one another under the power of God they see it as a ball and chain, or sometimes a prison depending on the examples of marriage that have been shown to them. This was the view Gwendolyn had of marriage and vowed never to go into marriage, no matter the costs.

Gwendolyn also had another relatable thing to just about anyone; the desire to be loved for who you are, not for what people want you to be. I struggle with this too, and seeing a character have to deal with the same things I have to in a setting where myth and knights was even more amazing.

This book is not only about Gwendolyn though, there are so many supporting characters I have come to know and love, to watch them grow and make their choices was amazing. Another amazing thing to watch was the change in Gwendolyn. Some think the changes made by God are wrong, that it makes you someone too different then who you want to be, but this book showed that the changes that God makes to make you a new person are not so drastic, and that He is making you the person you were always meant to be, the better person you could not be with sin controlling your life.

I would recommend this book to EVERYONE, and I want to read Dauntless even more now. I hope that Dina will make more books, if she continues with this series or not I will look forward to any work by her.

Well until next time folks, Kaitlyn W. signing out. I hope you have a blessed day.

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, which I have given

Monday, August 31, 2015

I'm not so sure....

Okay, I heard from a few people how much they enjoyed the NIV translation of the bible; it was enough to make me curious. So I chose the NIV bible for teen girls by Zondervan. I wasn’t sure what to expect.

 As I said before I really was not sure what to expect from this translation, but others who had reviewed this particular Bible seemed to really enjoy it and liked the devotionals inside. I did too, and not just for teens, woman, but some I recommended that parents should read to their children, boy or girl, it will be really helpful.

The NIV Teen girls Bible introduces each book kinda like a few study bible I have seen before, telling about what time the book took place, listing who is in the book, and what verses you might recognize, along with explaining what it is about. This is really helpful to teens that wonder what’s the point in reading this part of the bible, giving just a small explanation to encourage them to go on.

Now here is where I have a little trouble with this Bible. While comparing some verses to see how it sounded against my NLT version I found that a few verses sounded really off, making them confusing to the reader. Such as Mark 3:24-27. I will give you an example of what I mean be putting the NIV and the NLT versions of this verse on here

A kingdom divided by civil war will collapse. Similarly, a family splintered by feuding will fall apart. And if Satan is divided and fights against himself, how can he stand? He would never survive. Let me illustrate this further. Who is powerful enough to enter the house of a strong man like Satan and plunder his goods? Only someone even stronger—someone who could tie him up and then plunder his house.” Mark 3:24-27 NLT

If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand.  If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand. And if Satan opposes himself and is divided, he cannot stand; his end has come. In fact, no one can enter a strong man’s house without first tying him up. Then he can plunder the strong man’s house.” Mark 3:24-27 NIV

Maybe I am being a little too nit picky, but this was one of the verses that just really bugged me when I was reading it. And there were others verses in this version that made it sound like if you repented of your sins and was baptized then you were saved, which we all know isn’t right. This happened a few times throughout this Bible. It’s like pieces of a puzzle were obviously missing, and when you’re a teen you need a clearer picture of what the Bible is trying to teach you.

I am not saying this translation is all bad, but it is not a version I would go for to read on a daily bases. In the end it is up to you, but when getting a Bible for your child or a teenager in your life read it for yourself before you buy it.

I guess that is it for now folks, Kaitlyn W. signing out.

Until next time folks I hope you have a blessed day

I received this Bible in exchange for an honest review, which I have given

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

We're going on a Trial Run

Time is almost in the eye of the beholder, and for everyone all over the earth it means something a little different. In Trial Run we get a new look at time and what it could mean for so many.

This isn't my normal choice for a book, but trust me if you had read the description for it you'd find yourself hard pressed not to pick it.

Two teams are after the same thing, controlling out of body experience and defying time itself, but for two very different reasons. Reese, a member of U.S. government wants her program to succeed to gain secrets and power. Gabriella and her team wish to find truth about out of body experiences and what it could mean for man kind to control them.

I wasn’t exactly sure what to make of this book, it honestly seemed too much like a book for science geeks then for a romantic like myself, but I was happily surprised to find out I was very much wrong.

Love is not excluded from this book of action and mystery. Gabriella has someone pinning for her, wishing to show her a love she has never known, but things get complicated from the very start and for the poor guy is seems almost hopeless, but he still doesn’t give up on her. Trent, our grad student thrown into the maelstrom of our story is brought together with a young woman named Shane, and though she is weary of his intentions they become business partners and find a more then just mutual friendship is growing between them.

Reese Clawson is not your typical fictional villain. Most are cold and give no regard to human life whatsoever. Reese is different. Thomas Locke has created a character I am unsure what to do with. She is still the bad guy, and what she is doing is wrong, but I see these glimpses of humanity in her and I have to wonder what Tomas has planned for her. It is so very hard to say, but even if the rest of the book had not held my interest I would have kept reading just to see what happened to Reese and her team.

Luckily for all you readers out there the book in its entirety was amazing. I did wonder where the Christianity was in this book, but the pieces fell into place (sort of) near the end of the book, and I am hoping book 2 will reveal more to us readers.

If you enjoy a well balance between Romance, action, and mystery then I suggest picking up Trial run and buckling yourself in for one wild ride.

Until next time folks I hope you have a blessed day!

I received this book an exchange for an honest review, which I have given