Book Review · Books

Where I End

If you know what it’s like to deal with physical health challenges then you will be able to relate to Katherine. Her memoir is the true story of how one little boy’s decision to jump off the top of a play set changed her life in a flash. One moment she was playing tag with her son, William’s class at recess and the next moment she was on the ground seriously injured. Katherine gives a no holds barred account of what it’s like to be a quadriplegic.

I can’t imagine suddenly not being able to walk or use my hands easily. You’d feel completely trapped in your own body. To go from one day being able to hug and help your kids to not being able to feel if they are hugging you. Katherine shares her ups and downs pre and post accident. She shares how this life event challenged her Christian faith and how it altered her kid’s faiths. How can someone come out of that with their faith intact?

I received my free ARC ebook of Where I End by Katherine Elizabeth Clark from NetGalley care of Moody Publishers. This book was an intense, yet inspirational read. Thank you for allowing me to read this powerful memoir.

Book Review · Books

How To Stop Feeling Like Sh*T

I’ve read a number of what would be deemed self-help books, but How To Stop Feeling Like Sh*t takes the cake. Andrea Own takes common ways we make ourselves (directed toward women) feel crappy by: isolating ourselves, thinking we are an imposter, being a people pleaser/approval seeker, comparing ourselves to others, blaming others, being a control freak, being cynical about everything and over achieving in all aspects of our lives and makes us dig deep. The different areas that Andrea discusses hit home. At the end of every chapter are questions to answer.

If you want a no holds barred book to help you wade through your crap then this is the perfect book. I plan on getting a journal to answer the questions that are at the end of every chapter. I got a copy of How To Stop Feeling Like Sh*t, care of NetGalley in exchange for my feedback. I definitely want to go find Andrea’s other book and possibly join her online community.

Book Review · Books

Beautiful Scars

The cover captivated me. Kilee Brookbank was a sixteen year old high schooler home after school when choosing to light a candle changed her life. The smell in the bathroom was incredibly gross, so to ease the stank she decided to light a candle. The next thing she knows her dog is barking nonstop at her, she’s on the floor of the bathroom and not sure why. Kilee goes outside to her neighbor’s house with her dog still barking at her heels. She sensed her face was warm, but didn’t realize she was on fire. Her neighbors helped put the fire out on her, called 911 and tried to wrap her since she was cold. Beautiful Scars is Kilee’s journey through her recovery from that horrific day.

I couldn’t put this book down. If you love memoirs, survivor stories then go grab a copy ASAP. Kilee and her mom, Lori share their experiences alternately. I can’t imagine surviving that type of life altering experience. Kilee is a survivor that will inspire countless readers. I was provided a free ARC from NetGalley in exchange for my feedback. This lovely memoir is a keeper. Thank you for sharing your story Kilee. You are a blessing.

Book Review · Books

We Need To Talk

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“We need to talk,” is one of the most intimidating sentences we hear. I know when I hear it my stress and anxiety levels go up. I hate feeling like I’m in trouble, or going to be lectured. If that’s the main sentence you hear from a family member, or friend it doesn’t endear you to want to ever talk with them for fear of being on their crud list. This book, We Need To Talk by Celeste Headlee took that one sentence filled with fear and opened my eyes to a lot more.

This book covers a lot of different aspects of conversation and how we either help, or hinder communicating effectively. I felt convicted on a lot. I interject similar experiences, I interrupt who I’m talking with and sometimes I go off into day dreamland not fully paying attention. When I get excited I get chatty, but if I’m nervous I go quiet. Another aspect to conversation that was addressed in the book is our lack of attention span and empathy as a society. Those statistics were sobering and disturbing. I think the invention of smart phones has given us access to information, but not made us smarter, or more compassionate.

If you are interested in reading more about the topic of conversation and how to be a great listener and conversationalist I highly recommend this readable book. To grab a copy click here. I got an early copy of We Need To Talk from TLC Book Tours for free in exchange for my honest assessment. What an enlightening read. To find out more about the author visit her website.

Book Review · Books

The Grown-Up’s Guide To Teenage Humans

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I don’t have kids. Why would I pick to reciew a book about how to deal with teenagers? I’m not a parent, a teacher, a mentor, a counselor, but I am an aunt. Eventually my nephew will become a teenager and I’ll need to be ready. This book is very readable and has great suggestions on how to handle a myriad of things from sex, dating, dealing with death, anger, eating disorders, school, cell phones, etc. Josh writes with humor and candor. The author even goes over what to expect with teen’s emotions and physical changes, broken down by age category.

Reading this book brought to mind how I related back to my parents and the type of parenting they enacted. There are 4 different parental traps: comfort, approval, control and performance. I’d say my dad falls under the control and performance categories while my mom is under the comfort trap. I unfortunately relate to the approval trap. I still over think and care what others think of me. Even though I’m an adult this section of the book was very enlightening.

If you work with teens in any capacity I highly recommend this book. It has great examples for questions to ask when it comes to talking about the bird and the bees. If you want to put together a house rules document for your home so everyone clearly understands what’s expected of them Josh has a great template for it. I think having a journal to correspond between parent and teen is a wonderful idea. It gives a place to be honest without the pressure of the other person looking intently at you, waiting for an answer to a question. Plus, it gives history you can refer back to, to see how far your communication has improved. I received The Grown-Up’s Guide To Teenage Humans by Josh Shipp for free from TLC Book Tours in exchange for my honest review. To buy a copy click here and find out how you can get further awesome guidance from Josh here.

Book Review · Books

The Alphabet Of Grief

img_2099Grief is not a topic out of popularity, but out of necessity. We don’t know when a friend, family member, spouse, or acquaintance is going to pass away. The Alphabet Of Grace is a small little book packed with lots of wisdom. Chaplain Andrea Raynor brings death and grief to our door in an easy to understand Guide. Her guide of sorts is broken down via the alphabet. Each letter stands for a topic having to do with grief and death. At the end of each short chapter is a meditation and an affirmation.

I have had family members pass away and close friends. Death is never easy to deal with. I still miss my grandparents and my one best friend, but I know they are now not in pain. Personally I don’t find comfort in going to their graves. Honestly cemeteries creep me out. One way I like to remember them is by going to a fave place they liked to eat, or enjoy a favorite pastime they had like watching baseball, or reading a book. We all deal with grief in different ways.

I’m so glad I requested to review this book from Blogging For Books. This book is not preachy, though it is consider Christian. It comes across like a warm blanket on a winter night that keeps you warm and feeling cozy. It’s comforting and yet educational at the same time. I got this book for free in exchange for my review from Blogging For Books. I highly recommend this title for anyone dealing with someone in the process of dying or have passed on. I wish I’d had this book back when my grandparents passed. It would have helped me get through a lot.

Book Review · Books

The Landscapes Of Anne Of Green Gables

img_2107.jpgWho can’t resist reading about one of your all time favorite places even if you have yet to actually visit? In second grade I got to watch, “Anne of Green Gables,” the Kevin Sullivan production. It was breathtaking and Megan Follows will forever be Anne to me. I have watched the new version on Netflix. I was very negative about there being a new one. I chanced and watched it. It’s easily as fantastic as the previous mini series, possibly even better. Gasp. Very sacreligious I know. When this title became a possible ARC I’d be alllwed to read I jumped at my opportunity.

This lovely book takes the reader on a visual delight of the many wonders of Prince Edward Island. The photos show the island at different seasons. This book also, talks about the author of Anne Of Green Gables,  Lucy Maude Montomgery otherwise known as L.M. Montgomery. If you like reading about your favorite author’s life then this book will leave you craving to read more about her. There are photos throughout of her and also, places on the island that inspired her novels.

If you are a big fan of Anne of Green Gables then this book will be a keeper once it comes out. The photos made me want to book my trip right away. It also, inspires one to want to learn more about L.M. Montgomery. I was provided this ARC for free via NetGalley in exchange for my review. Thank you NetGalley and Timber Press.