Friday, July 14, 2017

Current Readings - July 14th, 2017

Hello Everyone!

I know I have been absent from the blog for a while. Things have gotten a little crazy in my life. My husband was in and out of the hospital for a while, but we are hoping to have his condition under wraps now.

I returned to school in May, so my window of free time has really narrowed down. I am lucky if I have time to eat or sleep.
I amazingly, found myself with some down time, this week so I thought I would stop by and update.

Summer is such a great time for reading. Especially for the kids who are suddenly so bored the second day of summer break. As a kid, I spent a good chunk of my summer vacations reading. The books took me to places, my family could not afford to go. It kept me out of trouble and kept my reading and comprehension skills sharp. So parents, I suggest many library trips this summer. Pack books for summer camp, or reading while traveling.

For those of us who don't have kids to contend with, summer is still a great time to read for us as well! Take a sunny day and find garage or yard sells and see what hidden literary gems you can find. Visit a good Samaritan or Good Will store, you can find some amazing treasures in thrift shops.
Curl up in your hammock or favorite chair, with a lemonade, sweet tea, or cold beverage of choice and let the book whisk you away.

Currently I am reading
Samson by Shawn Hoffman
The Practice of Creative Writing by Heather Sellers (My course textbook)

and I am sure by the end of the month I will have three more books added to that list.

What are you reading? What is your favorite summer reading memory? What is your favorite cold beverage, to enjoy on hot days?

Get in on the conversation in the comments below.
Happy Reading!!


Book Review #9 - The Underground Culinary Tour

The Underground Culinary Tour: How the New Metrics of Today's Top Restaurants Are Transforming How America EatsThe Underground Culinary Tour: How the New Metrics of Today's Top Restaurants Are Transforming How America Eats by Damian Mogavero
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

I originally got this book for my husband to read, as he is really into the culinary scene. About three weeks after I handed him the book, I asked him if he had finished the book, or read any of the book I got for him. My husband has Dyslexia but has learned how to cope and reads quite well. However, he relayed to me, that some of the vocabulary in this book was hard for him to understand. He was really struggling to make out the words, and so he gave up.

I picked up the book and tried to read some of it myself, but it just would not hold my attention. I'm not really interested in the culinary arts, so it just didn't do it for me. I intend on finding a friend, or a friend of a friend who is interested in culinary topics and pass it on to them.

So, I would recommend it to anyone who is a culinary whiz.

* I received this book from Blogging for Books, free, in exchange for my honest review and opinions.*

View all my reviews

Monday, March 13, 2017

Book Review #8 - Beautifully Broken

Beautifully BrokenBeautifully Broken by Laura Lee
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Kat is eighteen and she's going to be a high school senior. Lucky for her she looks older than she is. She's celebrating her eighteenth birthday alone, in a bar.
That is until Gavin walks in. After a little flirting, he takes her to the local diner and then to his place. She intends this to be a one night stand, as they usually are. Her heart, however, has other plans. Gavin and Kat continue to see each other for the rest of the summer. But on the first day of school, they realize there is a problem. Gavin is Kat's second period teacher! They know it is wrong, but there is such a strong attraction, that they want to make it work regardless.

Kat has a dark history, that she is sure will run Gavin off, but even when he learns her secrets he still wants her in every way.
We watch as their relationship has many ups and downs. Both Kat and Gavin experience heartbreak and heartaches. But can they make it last? Will they get through it all?

I adored this book. I related to Kat in some ways as I have had things happen in my past, that I was sure would run my husband away, but they didn't. I understood her fear and acceptance that there could or would be rejection. I cried with the characters as they experienced very heartbreaking events, and felt the joy they felt when things were going great. I could relate to the want that they both had for each other.
I feel that Laura Lee did a wonderful job creating these characters and their stories. Their pasts and presents; their ideations of their future. I felt more as if I were experiencing what was happening with a best friend, rather than reading it in a book.
I am hoping that the author could maybe, write a sequel to this book. Perhaps exploring Gavin and Kat's relationship going forward, after the ending. I would love to see these characters in a book again.
I am definitely recommending this book to whoever asks what I have been reading lately.

*I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review and opinions.*

View all my reviews

Book Review #7 - Stepbrothers in the Attic

Stepbrothers in the AtticStepbrothers in the Attic by Ryan Field
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A modern day homage to "Flowers in the Attic", Ryan Field gives us this interesting novel.

Marcus and David are a same sex couple who have been together since college. They have four wonderful children, whom they adopted. Eric and Brad are both almost eighteen, ready to go to college and start their lives. Kevin and Jasmine are still young, and need their parents. On the day that is David's birthday, Marcus and the children have a wonderful surprise planned when tragedy strikes.
With David now deceased, Marcus must figure out a way to support himself and the children. He has no choice but to call his mother and beg him to let them stay, until he can get on his feet.
Going with their last resort, the children are locked in a room on the top floor of the house, and are not allowed to come out. They barely get food or clean clothes. It is a nightmare; can this really be happening?

As a V.C. Andrews fan, I really enjoyed this homage to one of her greatest books. The same sex couple twist, did not bother me at all. In fact, I found it refreshing to have a different twist on a classic story.
I loved the twists and turns throughout the story, things that you did not see coming. The complexity of the characters is interesting. The ending, however, I did not expect. It was a great ending in my opinion, I just did not expect it.
I really loved this book and would recommend it to any fan of V.C. Andrews, or modern day stories.

*I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for my honest reviews and opinions.*

View all my reviews

Book Review #6 - Kiss the Boys

Kiss the Boys (Lost Girls Book 2)Kiss the Boys by Chris Myers
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Three brothers, one girl.

River is a runaway from yet another abusive foster home. She's been in the system ever since her parents died in a horrific accident. She still blames herself for the way they died, and fills the holes in her heart by intimacy with a man. On the day she runs away, she finds herself stuck in Michigan snow, with nowhere to go.

Nathan is an artist with a loving family, but the events of his past haunt his heart daily. He seeks solace in finding "fallen angels"; troubled girls whom become his muse and he tries to heal them at the same time. The day he spots River stuck in her car, he knows right then and there that she is destined to be one of his angels. He just needs to convince her.

Noah is the more feminine brother, and Nathan's twin. He plays college basketball and is talented to the point he is being scouted for the NBA. He finds River as he is walking the dog in the park. He knows she needs help and gets jealous when Nathan, his twin, tries to make River another one of his "angels". Noah cannot let that happen, not after what happened to the last girl.

Jake never leaves the house anymore. Not after what happened in Afghanistan. He's sullen, withdrawn, and crabby. When River comes around he tries to run her off with his attitude. River won't have any of it, and as time goes on she gets Jake to come out of the house and fills him with courage. But he knows Nathan is after her, wants to make her one of his angels. After what happened to the last one, he doesn't want Nate to sink his claws into her. He must protect her.

Three brothers, one girl. One family, torn apart. How will it play out in the end?

Personally I loved this book, I could not put it down. I love how, as the story goes on, you learn more and more about the past of Nathan and River. You start to understand why there is such a magnetic attraction between the two of them. In some parts you will laugh at or with the characters. In other parts you will cry tears of sorrow and then joy. The author has such a way of dragging you into the story that you cannot get our until it's over.
I would definitely recommend this book to all of my friends.

*I received this book from NetGalley, in exchange for my honest review and opinions.*

View all my reviews

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Book Review #5 - The Sisters of Sugarcreek

The Sisters of SugarcreekThe Sisters of Sugarcreek by Cathy Liggett
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was an amazing read!

It all starts with a fire, a church fire to be exact. The heart of Sugarcreek is ripped out when the First United Church of Christ burnt down. Trapped inside was Rose, a small business owner in the town and the aunt of one of our main characters: Jessica, and volunteer fireman Henry Gruber, a quiet Amish man and husband of another main character: Lydia. Both Henry and Rose's lives were taken by the fire, leaving behind some heavy hearts and unanswered questions. We then meet Liz Cannon who happened to be Rose's best friend. With her best friend gone she starts spending time with Jessica, and as time goes on these three main characters become an unlikely group of friends.

Going through the ups and downs of life after loss, we see these characters develop in the most beautiful ways. Two of the characters find love, while another finally gets answers to questions that had been weighing her heart down. We meet other supporting characters with just as much heart as our three wonderful women.

I found this book to be a beautiful read. I laughed, cried, and smiled as I read the words that flowed beautifully. The author has an amazing talent. She sucks you in with the story and once you start reading, you have a hard time stopping.

I would recommend this book to any young lady or any other women I know. It is a truly touching story about how life goes on, even after incredible loss.

*I received this book from Tyndale Publishers in exchange for my honest review and opinions.*

View all my reviews

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Current Readings - January 28th, 2017

Whew! These last two months have been a whirlwind. Of course it's cold and flu season, so I have been doing a lot of sleeping and resting, instead of reading  😕.

I'm trying to get caught back up on my reading now, I am so far behind.

Here are my current readings:

The Last American Vampire - Seth Grahame Smith
The Sisters of Sugarcreek - Cathy Liggett
Twilight - Stephanie Meyer
And I'm about to start reading some books on my Kindle as well.

What are you reading? Are they old favorites? Have you found new, refreshing authors?

Share your list in the comment section below. You can also share any recommendations that you may have.

Happy Reading!

~ Ashley

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Book Review #4 - While You Were Sleeping

While You Were SleepingWhile You Were Sleeping by Kathryn Croft
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A thrilling page turner!

Tara Logan lives a fairly normal life. With a teenage daughter who can't seem to stay out of trouble and her eleven year old son who is the apple of her eye, and her husband, with whom the marriage feels a tad bit of a strain. When her husband goes away on a business trip and the kids go to stay with friends, Tara finds herself with extra time on her hands. She decides to go over and see if her neighbor and friend is ok, after receiving a worrisome text that same morning.

The next morning Tara wakes in bed, but not her own bed, but rather her neighbors' bed. The man next to her is not her husband and he is not alive either. Terrified Tara flees to her house and the spiral of madness descends.

As a writer, this book inspired me to continue at the Thriller I am currently trying to write. Ms. Croft definitely knows how to tell an amazing story.
Throughout the book, it has you constantly guessing, and just when you think you have the killer identified, something else comes to light. In the end, the killer end up being the person you never even suspected.

The page turning thrill of the storyline leaves you breathless and in suspense with each line of each page. Leaving you wanting more and waiting with bated breath for the answers.

I was so inspired by this book and so amazed, that I suggested this read to my grandmother. So far, she is loving every minute of it.

This is a must read, definitely!

*I received this book, from NetGalley, in exchange for my honest review and opinions.*

View all my reviews on Goodreads.