Posted in Reviews, Books, Product Revews, reading

My very first booksleeve from The Cozy Life ~ Review

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(So, somehow, in the pictures I took, I managed to put the cozy backwards each time, failing to showcase “The Cozy Life” fabric tag….oops! I’m still learning on picture-taking. ;))

 

My Book Cozy! My first from The Cozy Life. I have seen the cozies from this etsy shop all over, was very familiar with the name, and drooled over the cozies in the shop frequently.

And then I got to receive one for the purpose of this review. And I couldn’t be more excited about it!!

The owner is so kind, and super quick in mailing the cozy out – I received it right away. And when I took it out of the package, I found it wrapped so perfectly.

 

 

 

Perfect little package tied up in string – so cute and special!

Now, for the quality…Um, it’s beautiful. Need I say more? I mean, that word encompasses the whole thing! It’s durable, and thick, and soft, and sturdy, and I adore it. I was surprised by its thickness and softness upon receiving it – it’s almost like a pillow! You can tell it is extremely well made, and I love knowing it protects my books so well. Because if you know me, you know that I do my best to keep my books in like-new condition, but I still have to have my current read accompany me wherever I go, so this book cozy is perfect for that.

It’s just the right size for my paperbacks, and they fit snugly inside.

 

 

 

 

If you couldn’t tell already, let me tell you that I am utterly thrilled with my cozy from The Cozy Life, and wouldn’t hesitate to recommend her shop!

 

 

 

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Posted in Books, lists, Questions/answers, reading, Uncategorized

The First Book You’ve Ever Read Challenge

Hello readers! Marrok McIntyre created a tag-like challenge about the first book you’ve ever read that also inspired you to become a writer. In his words, “I thought it would be a pretty cool idea if we writers would share what originally inspired us to pursue this path of artist expression.”

 

Quite a fun idea, so lets get started!

 

 

 

The rules are simple
  • Challenge at least 1 person
  • Share what was the first book you’ve ever read
  • Why you read it in the first place
  • How did it inspire you to become a writer

 

 

 

Okay, so the first book I ever read.

Well, this may be hard to believe, but I actually hated reading at first. I know. But I did. I resisted it for quite a while. I didn’t want to learn, I didn’t like it, and I didn’t want to. I’ve always been a little envious of others who could say they loved reading from the get-go. Especially since reading is now one of my biggest hobbies. But, alas, it was not so for me. I remember how hard my Mum tried to get me to read. My older sister was one who loved reading right away. But not me. I liked The Bob Books that helped teach us to read, but only a little. I liked them in the way that they were entertaining, but the struggle to learn the words was aggravating.
So what switched me on reading? Well, again, I wish I could say that it was some amazing book. But it was…
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Yep. SpongeBob. I now realize it wasn’t even the first book in the series. I just remember sitting down at my sister’s bookshelf, wondering why she liked reading so much. I picked this one out (wish I could remember my motivation for this choice particularly!) and realized, “Hm, this is actually…enjoyable. The story isn’t boring,” and that was it, so to speak. Now, I don’t think I took off reading like a mad-man at that point, but it was my start. I realized that books took you on great adventures. Even silly ones. ^.^
However, I don’t think I really began wanting to write until I read this book:
I don’t remember much about the book, other than the thought of “I want to write a story too”. So I did, and it was basically a carbon copy of this book, with different characters. XD I don’t believe I finished it either.
But once I started writing, I found that I liked. For a while most of my writing energy was poured into journals (I had discovered “Amelia’s Notebook” series, and the Dear America series coincidentally) as I processed life. Then I eventually came upon another book that boosted my desire to write, and since then I haven’t looked back. Well, I mean, I’m looking back right now, but I think you know what I mean. ;)
The book that made me want to write more was:
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That was at about 12/13, and I reread it several times. It’s been several years since I read it, but I hold it in fond remembrance for being the book that I loved to read the most and what made me want to write more. And as for the motivation of why it made me want to write in ernest…well, it was creative, and captivating, and I loved how it transported me to a new world, to new things. I wanted to be able to do that too.
So, there you have it! A too-long posts about books from a now-book-lover who was once a book-hater! Sometimes I forget that I didn’t always love to read and I wonder how anyone couldn’t like it, but all I have to do is remember. And know that everyone is different. My younger sister has never been a fan, and that’s okay. She’s started to enjoy it a bit more now, but as more of a side-hobby.
So I’m more understanding now that I might’ve been before.
And I do really love books now. Really, really love books. ;)
Now, I hearby challenge, should they accept:
And I’d love to also challenge my bestie, author MacKenzie Morganthal, but she does not have a blog. However, I would like to know your answer, Ken… :D ;)
And that is that. Hope you all enjoyed reading, and if you were not challenged and would like to be, consider yourself challenged and please let me know when you post, because I’d love to read it!
Posted in animals, Books, Random babblings, reading, update

June ’18 Recap

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June was an extremely busy month – I felt that I barely had time to breathe sometimes. Summer began in earnest, though there were a few days of cooler weather tucked within the June days. Not as many as I would like, but then I would gladly have a longer Fall and Winter ;)

The heat really has been sweltering lately, and without air-conditioning…I feel like I’m going to melt away. Haha.

We started selling at our local farmer’s market again once a week, which has been going well, but takes up a lot of our time in prep-work. I’ve added to my necklaces – now in addition to the Pixie Dust and ‘Drink Me’ ones,  I have some “Message in a Bottle” necklaces, “Dragon Scales”, and “Wishes”. They look pretty cute if I do so say myself. ;) I need to update the blog site I created for them at some point….

 

June was just filled with life-stuff, as usual. We got butcher chickens, and they are quickly becoming annoying and ugly. XD We got the garden in, and spent a whole day weeding (I got sunburned, of course), re-fenced the horse pasture (still need to add the wire line but so far the tape keeps Pepper and Adora in), and other life stuff happened.

I was happily introduced to the amazing movie, “The Greatest Showman”, and that has been a near-constant high. ;) It really is a remarkable movie, and probably shouldn’t even get me started on it… ;)

 

So! Among the busyness and constant running, I managed to actually read a decent amount this month. My sister and I read before bed each night, which helps immensely with that. ;)

 

A Breath of Hope by Lauraine Snelling  Among the Poppies by J'nell Ciesielski  Trust and Obey by Faith Blum  All for Love by Mary Connealy  The Orphan's Wish by Melanie Dickerson  The Hunter and the Valley of Death by Brennan S. McPherson  I Don't Dance by Jesseca Wheaton  Dangerous to Know by Megan Whitson Lee

 

 

If already reviewed, you can click on the covers to go there. :) I will have the remaining reviews posted soon, hopefully!

 

Added to my collection:

 

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Isn’t that cover of “Anne of Avonlea” stunning? And I found it at a Free Little Library! So cute.

Oh and see that little Paris lamp to the right? I found that at a garage sale and was so thrilled because I’ve been wanting an Eiffel Tower figurine thing and this is perfect. :)

 

 

Main Monday Posts from June:

 

LindsayHarrel AI (1)

LindsayH Megan Jacobs CI

 

Devotional Type Post: “It’s Okay”

 

Bucket List

 

Books Reviewed:

Jesus Calling // Quest for Leviathan // Among the Poppies //  Enchanting Nicholette // The Orphan’s Wish // A Breath of Hope // Trust and Obey //

 

Posted in Bethany House, Book reviews, Books, reading, Reviews

“A Light on the Hill” by Connilyn Cossette ~ Book Review

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“A Light on the Hill” by Connilyn Cossette

Book One in the Cities of Refuge Series

Review copy from the publishers

My Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

 

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About the Book:

 

Seven years ago, Moriyah was taken captive in Jericho and branded with the mark of the Canaanite gods. Now the Israelites are experiencing peace in their new land, but Moriyah has yet to find her own peace. Because of the shameful mark on her face, she hides behind her veil at all times and the disdain of the townspeople keeps her from socializing. And marriage prospects were out of the question . . . until now.

Her father has found someone to marry her, and she hopes to use her love of cooking to impress the man and his motherless sons. But when things go horribly wrong, Moriyah is forced to flee. Seeking safety at one of the newly-established Levitical cities of refuge, she is wildly unprepared for the dangers she will face, and the enemies–and unexpected allies–she will encounter on her way.

 

 

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My Thoughts:

 

What a delightful treat to be able to read Moriyah’s story, whom we were introduced to in “Wings of the Wind” (part of the Out of Egypt Series, while this book is book one of the Cities of Refuge Series)!
I loved this book; it was excellent. I love how the author weaves a story that is at once so captivating and so meaningful and ripe with the Lord’s beauty.
And I loved the characters – of course, Moriyah, but also Ora, and Eitan (SO adorable!!), and the hero Derek – all such excellent characters, well-constructed and portrayed.
I was impressed that most of the book was one of the characters being on the move – they weren’t in one location for very long, and that made the setting very unique! And adventurous. Though the reason behind it was a sad one, the descriptions of the sights they saw were a pleasure to read.
Moriyah’s heart-journey was even more enjoyable, seeing her struggles from page one and how she found healing from Yahweh. Her finding her worth was beautiful. <3
She was so kind to those around her, and so strong even when she felt herself weak. I also loved how she could hear Yahweh’s Voice – so precious. Moriyah was such an easy character to bond with. I felt like I shared in her sorrows and also her joys. I wanted to see her triumph, but most of all I loved how she committed – and surrendered – her life to Yahweh. Such a humbling and good reminder, one I love to read about in fiction.
I was a little surprised by the amount of kissing involved…I am not a Biblical/Historical expert at all, but I wouldn’t think that a Hebrew maiden would give away so many kisses before commitment, let alone before marriage. And if it was a matter of getting caught up in the moment (understandable; the flesh is weak), I think because of their upbringing, she would have felt a bit of remorse afterwards, if that makes sense.
But otherwise, I very much adored this book.
Each piece of this book was well-written and engaging, and I can hardly wait for the next one (yay for getting to see an older Eitan in the next one!!)!!
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Quotes:

 

Moriyah

Moriyah 2

Moriyah 3

Moriyah 4

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“Hear, O Israel. The Lord your God, the Lord is One. And you should love the Lord with all your heart, all your mind, and all your strength…these words which I command you today shall be on your heart.” If I loved Yahweh, I would obey, no matter the cost.

 

Posted in Books, Random babblings, reading, Reviews, update

March wrap-up: Aquarium, life, books

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Hello! And surprise – this post is actually being posted while it’s still March!! I must say, I’m rather impressed with myself. ;) Just kidding.

 

So, March. We had the lovely opportunity of visiting the Aquarium this month, and met up with some friends there too, which was very nice.  We all enjoyed ourselves, and it was a very good time. :)  I’m still sad the Aquarium no longer allows visitors to pet the stingrays as they have in years past, but what can you do?

 

In our spare time, my Mum, younger sister, and I have been watching Season Six of Little House on the Prairie. If you’re familiar with that show, you’ll already know that’s when Almanzo enters the scene. ;) I love watching Laura Ingalls try to prove she’s not a little girl anymore, and fail horribly at doing so… ^.^ Though I will admit there are a couple episodes I am not fond of because of the unrealisticness of them…the writers just want drama (and no, not the original book author, Laura herself. The tv show writers).  But anywho!

 

 

I read quite a bit this month, which was nice:

 

 

The Sea Before Us (Sunrise at Normandy, #1)  Across the Blue  Milligan Mayhem  Blank 111x148  Ghost Quest (A Milligan College Mystery Book 2) A Light on the Hill (Cities of Refuge, #1)  The Miracle Maker and the Misfits: Two Supernatural Kingdoms and the Clashing of Swords

Clicking on their covers will lead you to my review of the book. (The one without a cover is “Pop Tops and Smiley Faces” by Ann Naedele”). All of them have been reviewed, except for “A Light on the Hill”, which will be posted soon! :)

 

My favourite of the month? It’d be a close tie between “The Sea Before Us” and “A Light on the Hill”. Both so good and highly recommended!!

 

 

I got a few books this month. Unfortunately our camera also decided to stop working this month, so I couldn’t take pictures. But here are the books I got:

 

  • “To The Farthest Shore” by Elizabeth Camden//Thriftstore find (only 50Cents!)
  • “Refiners Fire” by Sylvia Bambola//Goodwill find
  • “Always On My Mind” by Susan May Warren//Giveaway win from author Valerie Howard
  • “An Elegant Facade” by Kristi Ann Hunter// BetterWorldBooks
  • “It Had to Be You” by Susan May Warren//BetterWorldBooks
  • “The Wonder of You” by Susan May Warren//BetterWorldBooks
  • “The Reluctant Duchess” by Roseanna M. White//BetterWorldBooks
  • “Chasing Jupitar” by Rachel Coker//BetterWorldBooks
  • “Troubled Waters” by Susan May Warren//Bought of a facebook group
  • “My Heart Belongs in Superstition Mountains” by Susan Page Davis//FB group buy
  • “All the Tea in China” by Jane Orcutt//FB group Book Swap with a gal.
  • “Stealing Home” by Allison Pittman//FB group Book Swap with the same gal.
  • “Where the Fire Falls” by Karen Barnett//Blogging for Books review copy.

 

 

I requested my last review copy from Blogging for Books (the Karen Barnett book). I’m so sad that BfB is closing its doors. That was one of my top favourite review-programs, and my first – good ol’ Blogging for Books is what started me into my reviewing journey! <3

 

So yes, quite a few…needless to say, I don’t have much book-spending money at the moment. ;) But it was all worth it. BetterWorldBooks has fair prices and free shipping which is amazing. The condition of the books are often a bit rough, but still readable!

Have you read any of these books?

 

 

I also was super pleased to review a Booksleeve this month, and you’ll see it in future pictures too, because it’s just so cute!

 

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As for other blog posts…

 

March 5th//Author Interview with MacKenzie Morganthal

March 12th//Character Introduction – Haley Hampton

March 19th// “Yet” devotional post

March 26th//Booksleeve post

 

 

And there were also some book-reviews posted between the Mondays. :)

 

 

Be on the lookout for a new Author Interview Post this Monday!! It’s a great one too :D

Copy of Author Interview_ (1)

 

 

 

How was your March, friends? Happy Passover/Resurrection Day :)

 

 

 

 

Posted in Book reviews, reading, Reviews, Tessa Afshar, update

Goodbye 2017, Hello 2018

It’s always weird to move on into the next year, to get used to writing the new number set, rather than the old. And the realization that time is going fast, and the number creeps up each more every year. 2018 seems so… far away, yet here it is. Crazy :)

And while we are in 2018 now, I am here to also wrap up, book-wise, the year of 2017. To give a last look-back and give a list of my favourite books of the year. Which is going to be hard, because I read a great many good ones!

 

 

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According to Goodreads, I read 20,650 pages spread out over 82 books.

That’s a lot of pages. If you’d like to see the books I read in 2017, you can check out the wrap-up Goodreads gave HERE. I love how Goodreads does that. I keep a Book Notebook throughout the year, but it’s nice not having to type it all up! :)

 

Trying to narrow down my favourite books of the year has been nearly impossible. I read a LOT of good ones, you guys. And I love them all! But by shear force, I made a list of my top TWELVE favourite books. Why twelve instead of 10 or 5? Well first off, 5 is not nearly enough I’ve decided. And Ten is kinda hard to choose too. So I went with twelve because that makes a book a month, and that sounded reasonable to me. :D Sooooo, without further ado, in no particular order, here are my…

 

TOP TWELVE FICTION READS OF 2017:

Clicking on the title/author of the book will bring you to my review of the book :)

 

 

Destiny Defended by J.A. Marx

Destiny Defended by J.A. Marx

 

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Bread of Angels by Tessa Afshar

Bread of Angels by Tessa Afshar

 

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Out of the Dark by MacKenzie Morganthal

Out of the Dark by MacKenzie Morganthal

 

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Everything's Coming Up Josey by Susan May Warren

Everything’s Coming Up Josey! By Susan May Warren

 

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Guilt by Association by Heather Day Gilbert

Guilt by Association by Heather Day Gilbert

 

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Wings of the Wind by Connilyn Cossette

Wings of the Wind by Connilyn Cossette

 

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Rescue Me by Susan May Warren

Rescue Me by Susan May Warren

 

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Lady Jayne Disappears by Joanna Davidson Politano

Lady Jayne Disappears by Joanna Davidson Politano

 

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A Name Unknown by Roseanna M. White

A Name Unknown by Roseanna M. White

 

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An Inconvenient Beauty by Kristi Ann Hunter

An Inconvenient Beauty by Kristi Ann Hunter

 

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The Case of the Clobbered Cad by Debra E. Marvin

The Case of the Clobbered Cad by Debra Marvin

 

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The Genesis Tree by Heather L.L. FitzGerald

The Genesis Tree by Heather FitzGerald

 

 

 

NON FICTON:

 

Daring to Hope by Katie Davis Majors

Daring to Hope by Katie Davis

 

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Infinite Tuesday by Michael Nesmith

Infinite Tuesday by Michael Nesmith

 

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And because I don’t want to leave the list at just these, I put together some…..

 

Honourable Mentions:

 

 

High as the Heavens by Kate Breslin

October by J. Grace Pennington

The Secret Life of Sarah Hollenbeck by Bethany Turner

The House on Foster Hill by Jaime Jo Wright

Dreams and Devotion by Sarah Holman

Priceless by brothers, Joel and Luke Smallbone

 

 

Life:

So besides reading, 2017 was a full year as most are.  And I have no idea how to sum that up in a post, or even a paragraph…I live life, so it happens, but to sum it up… I don’t really have skill in that one. ^.^  Stuff happened, good and bad, I learned things, I probably met new people, wrote stuff….and I read. That’s good enough for a life segment wrap up, eh?

 

 

So, there’s that! How was your year? Do you have any particular, big or small, hopes/dreams/plans for this new year?

Posted in blog tour, Books, For-Sale, Give-aways, lists, reading

Indie Christian Book Blog Tour! Sale & Giveaway!

Indie Christian Books Blog Tour with Sale!

 

It’s that time of year. The time for buying presents, making wish lists, and planning New Year’s Resolutions. If any of those activities involve books for you (which, come one, I hope they do!), Indie Christian Books has a perfect event for you.

 

Like most other bookdragons, great books easily make their way onto my “things I’m thankful for” list every year. It’s hard to choose favorites (in other words: rather impossible), but  I painstakingly  picked five books I read in 2017 that I am thankful for. But know that I will have a bigger list of favourite reads coming towards the end of 2017/beginning of 2018, as usual! Because I can’t keep it to just five favourites. :D For now, though, here are five that I am thankful for:

 

  • “Everything’s Coming Up, Josey!” by Susan May Warren: I’m thankful for this book because it was the first book that introduced me to SMW’s writing and got me hooked. And it was adorable, funny, annnd set in MN/Russia. :)
  • “Destiny Defended” by J.A. Marx: Thankful for this one because it was the last book in the series, and I was so excited to see how it ended! I love J.A. Marx’s books! They’re deep, enjoyable, and God-centered.
  • “Bread of Angels” by Tessa Afshar: I’m always thankful for a new Tessa Afshar book! Her Biblical Fiction is some of the VERY best there is, and I’m always deeply touched by her novels. This was no exception!
  • “Out of the Dark” by MacKenzie Morganthal: I’m thankful for this book because it was the long-awaited sequel to “Not Abandoned”, and the author happens to be my kindred spirit. :) This is an amazing, beautiful book!
  • “Lady Jayne Disappears” by Joanna Davidson Politano: Thankful for this book because it was a spectacular debut novel, one that keeps you enraptured, and it was so… bookish! Absolutely delightful.

 

 

And because I may be a rule breaker when it comes to books, one of my favourite NON-Fiction reads was:

“Daring to Hope” by Katie Davis Majors, and I’m thankful for it because it is so encouraging and inspiring. Very touching. 

So, there’s my list! I had to leave out a couple, but as I mentioned, I will be creating a more extensive list come December/January!

 

And I don’t know about you, but I’m looking forward to another great year of reading! Speaking of more reading, here’s one more thing to be grateful for. Books on sale! In honor of Thanksgiving and Black Friday, a group of independent Christian authors has banded together to offer a huge selection of discounted books between Nov 24th and 30th. There’s literally something for everyone.

 

On November 24th, the Indie Christian Books website (http://www.indiechristianbooks.com) will go live. Every single book listed will be on sale in one or more ways. Find discounted paperbacks, dozens of books offered with free shipping, $0.99 ebooks,package deals and more. Even if you have a budget of $0, new reading material awaits you. When you purchase a paperback book through indiechristianbooks.com you’ll be eligible to enter an exclusive giveaway including free books and an Amazon gift card!

And speaking of giveaways, there’s another fun giveaway connected to this blog tour, so please be sure to enter that!!

ENTER HERE!

There are quite a few bloggers participating in this blog tour, so be sure to visit them (links in the giveaway widget) too! This event promises to be lots of fun. :)

(Here’s a link to the list of supporters for ICB – it should be live on the 24th: http://www.indiechristianbooks.com/supporters/)

 

 

You can meet our authors by visiting the Author Database on the website. Want to get to know the authors better AND have the chance to win some fun prizes? We’d love to have you join our week long Facebook party which will feature 39 authors over 7 days.

 

What awesome reads of 2016 are you grateful for? What books are you looking forward to reading in 2017?

 

A note on the Ebooks Only page. Many of the books are listed as “Sold Out.” This is because we aren’t selling those directly through our site. Please click onto the product pages to find descriptions and links to discounted or free ebooks.
Acknowledgements: Thanks to Leah E. Good and Kendra E. Ardnek for their work organizing this sale, and Hannah Mills for her fantastic design work on the website graphics. Hannah can be contacted at hmills(at)omorecollege(dot)edu for more information about her design services.

 

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