Sunday, December 10, 2017


The Girl in the Tower (The Winternight Trilogy #2)The Girl in the Tower by Katherine Arden
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is a fascinating book alive with history, folk and fairy tales. I have to admit I am reading these out of order, despite having book one. I was pulled into the book so strongly that I had to read this first. The author had to have done an incredible amount of research to get the details so precise. Written to have taken place in the generation following Genghis Khan it clearly demonstrates life of Russian ladies in Moscow.
This book focuses on the interaction of three siblings, their cousin the ruler of Moscow, the Church and the creatures of golf and fairy tales. The story takes place in a time when magic and the creatures of folk. Tales are diminishing. Those who still believe are seen as, at best, backwards country folk or, at worse, evil destined for Hell. The siblings each portray a major force from that time. The brother is a monk standing for the Church. The older sister, the new ways and traditions. The younger sister, is the old ways.
The writing is a lyrical flow of words. As you read you find yourself expecting to see the various house elves in your home. I can not express how much I loved this book. Even now days after finishing bit of the story pop into my mind. I would recommend this book to all readers.
I chose to review an ARC I won from bookishfirst.

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Sunday, December 3, 2017


The Gender Game (The Gender Game, #1)The Gender Game by Bella Forrest
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Title: The Gender game
Author: Bella Forest
Rating: Four stars

This is the first in a series of books that explores what it could mean to have two kingdoms divided by a river, where one was males in charge and traditional male female roles required and the other where females are in charge and everything is supposed to be all sweetness and light. As you may guess each side tries to control their population by making the other sound worse than it really is.They each focus on the very worse of the othe . Since people are still individual, this is an extreme simplization of the two cultures.
Violet falls afoul the strict laws everyone must follow when she tries to send her llittle brother accross the river after he fails the test given to young boys to make sure they are pliant. She ends up basically becoming a slave for her country and another severe incident when fighting leads to her being given a choice; Cross the river and and do what her ruler wants and have all her crimes expunged or be put to death.
The majority of this book takes place after crossing the river. Through Violet's eyes we see why a purely feminine country and a traditionally male society both have serious flaws. Taking a girl, even one who has been a slave, and putting her in a country where she is subservient and has no rights leads to an interesting look at the world.
This book is well written and interesting. I didn't realized it was going to end on an extreme cliffhanger so ended up really frustrated. The next book wasn't available for several months. books with cliffhangers I usually prefer to wait and read all the books at once. This book is intended for YA readers and I would recommend it to any reader in that group. Some younger readers may enjoy it but someone should screen it for that individual child. I chose to review this book after receiving a copy from Netgalley.

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Saturday, December 2, 2017


Dear Pakistan (Beyond Borders #1)Dear Pakistan by Rosanne Hawke
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Name: Dear Pakistan
By: Rosanne Hawke
Rating: 5 Stars

This YA story is a touching story of learning to accept change wilthout losing yourself. This is an interesting cross-cultural story that is made more interesting by the fact that Jaime has lived her most of her life in Pakastan despite being Australian by birth. This book covers the culture shock that began in the airport and continued at home, school and everywhere else. Most people she encounters expect her to act and dress like an white australian girl and can not understand why she follows Hindi and Muslim dress codes. For example, she is forced to remove her nose piercing because they are not allowed on white non-Muslim students at her school. The only thing she can see is there are no rules on behavior, speech, dress or anything else she considers important in Australia. This book does a fantastic job at presenting culture shock.Though Jaime is the focus of the book we get to see each family member and how the culture shock affects them. What make this harder for them is that others can't understand why they are having trouble. After all they are Australian. When Jaime make friends with a Pakistani girl she sees in a park she thinks that she finally has found someone who she can understand and who will understand her.
Dear Pakistan is her diary heading as she tries to understand this culture. She tells the diary all the things she can't say to her parents. It is also her way of keeping Pakistan alive. This book is excellent for any young adult who is going toa different culture or who already has. It is also a great book for those who are meeting those from other cultures so they can see what a culture looks like through another's eyes. Having spent a year living in another culture I can honestly say this is a very true depiction of culture shock including the shock of returning to the culture you came from. This would be a fantastic book for anyone planning to go as an exchange student to read,as well as students moving rural to city, small town to college town. The changes each of us face may not be as extreme and this book depicts but culture shock affects every person at one point.
It is well written and edited. I chose to review a copy I received from Netgalley.

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Tuesday, November 28, 2017


Slap Shot: Bryant (Nashville Sound Book 2)Slap Shot: Bryant by Alicia Hunter Pace
My rating: 5 of 5 stars


Title: Slap Shot
Author: Alicia Hunter Pace
Rating: 💖💖💖💖💖

I just finished this book and I loved it. Any hockey romance catches my attention but the ones that I want to begin again as soon as I finish are few. The characters are well rounded and are ones that the reader can relate too. There were times I wanted to smack some of the secondary characters. This story requires the healing of emotional pain and discovery that guilt just holds pain tight. This story has many deep parts leading it to be more than the standard; hockey player meets non-bunny woman, hockey player must lose the bunnies or lose the girl, hockey player finally gets the girl. This story is a feel good story but also a tearjerker. I was a bit frustrated with the hockey player at times early in the book. His mom needed a muzzle. On the other hand the woman was very self-aware but that awareness didn’t necessarily show in her behavior. Her brother is another that needed a smack upside his head. They are both very human.
I chose to review this book after receiving an ARC from Netgalley. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves hockey romances. It is a bit hotter than a sweet romance but no hotter than the romances I read from age 10 on. Parents should read for themselves and decide based on their child or teen if it is something acceptable for their child to read. This book does deal with some references to past experiences that some people may find triggering but the references are kept brief


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Sunday, November 26, 2017


Easy Pumpkin Carving: Spooktacular Patterns, Tips & IdeasEasy Pumpkin Carving: Spooktacular Patterns, Tips & Ideas by Colleen Dorsey
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Name: Easy Pumpkin Carving
Author: Colleen Dorsey
✨✨✨✨✨

This is a fantastic book for the just starting out and more experienced pumpkin aficionados. It give ideas and directions from the simplest carving to those intricate carvings that we stare at in wonder. It provides lists of tools and general carving directions as well as suggestions on how to choose the perfect pumpkin or use the nonperfect creatively. I found this book something that a family could use from toddler to teen as a Halloween family tradition.
I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to get new ideas as well as those like me who end up embarrassed by their attempts at carving. Following their directions even I could create an image I intended. I would suggest looking at the whole book then starting with the easier carvings unless you have experience. They really do make carving easy. I chose to review this copy I received from Netgalley.


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Saturday, November 25, 2017


The Slime Book by DK ✨✨✨✨✨





This book is a great craft source that is not only fun but a learning experience. I gave this book 5 stars because it manages to provide basic recipes that kids can do based on the directions. It also encourages them to experiment to perfect their recipes. I found the chapter on edible slime interesting. The format makes these recipes easy for younger kids yet adds a level to challenge more experienced kids. The addition of difficulty level and time required helps with choosing what slime to make.
I didn’t find anything I would consider a problem. It is appropriate for all ages with those recipes needing adult supervision. I chose to review this after receiving a free copy I plan to give at least one copy of this book to the kids in my life and  want one of my own.

Monday, December 26, 2016

apologies

I have to begin by apologizing to my readers for being so erratic in my posting. I am sorry for not posting regularly.
I am still struggling with my father's death. I have realized that I am still working on grieving my Grammy who died 5 yrs ago in March. I can't get anyplace in grieving my dad when I am still trying to deal with my Grammy's death. Grieving a death can be much harder for a person with a tbi. It took nearly a year for me to stop forgetting completely that my Grammy was dead. Each time I remembered it was like I had just found out. It wasn't quite as severe with my father since I was there in the hospital with him enforcing his decisions on his health care proxy. Even though I fully support the decisions he made and my own proxy form has similar decisions on it I still have a degree of guiltI am still working through. Having to decide to turn off machines would have been worse but refusing them was hard. I was also the one who made the decision to switch him to comfort cate. It was the best decision for him but still a hard one to make. As the one who has taken cats and dog to be euthanized  on one level it feels a bit like the same decision. That day my dad's diagnoses had changed from mild emphysema, several mild strokes and Alzheimer's  to add leukemia, ling cancer and fast moving frontal lobe dementia. He could no longer speak and even his sensory nerves seemed to be failing.
He had extremely sensitive feet, touching them had always been dangerous yet that last few days he wanted fingernails dragged on them. I'd been kicked few times over the years. Having small fiber neuropathy myself it is possible he had it as well since mine is genetic.
I'm just really sad and not improving anytime soon. I will post when. I can but many days just getting out of bed uses my days energy.
Sorry.