Friday, September 29, 2017

Book Review - The Heart's Invisible Furies by John Boyne

Photo Credit - Amazon

Cyril Avery was adopted from birth and his adoptive parents remind him that he will never be a true Avery. He was born out of wedlock to a teenage woman who was thrown out of her Irish community of the church. Only, Cyril's best friend Julian Woodbead allows Cyril to feel like he belongs and has a true friend. However, as Cyril grows older he realizes he wants more than just a friendship with Julian and struggles to cope with his sexual preferences. Will Cyril act on his feelings for Julian? Will Cyril be able to find someone who understands him? 

In this coming of age novel, it shows the struggle when one tries to find their true self. The novel spans the entire life span of Cyril and it allows readers to see how Cyril grows and adapt to his surroundings. While, the novel was a fun and interesting read, I felt like it had one too many coincidences and tidy "clean ups" but it was very entertaining to read. I look forward to Mr. Boyne's next novel.

*Disclosure - I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest opinion**

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Book Review - The Creeps by Fran Krause

Photo Credit - Amazon

The cute creepy and a bit dark graphic novel depict fears in an illustrated comic form. A few favorite comics were about the ghosts, falling trees, eating after visiting the dentist (a true fear!) or funny bathroom thoughts. A great read for people who have a lot of random thoughts! However, while the comic collection was fun to read, reading the whole book through one sitting is possible but not as fun. I also felt the book was definitely longer than it needed to be as some pages only had two cells of drawings. Overall, a fun coffee book or a good holiday exchange present.

**Disclosure - I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest opinion**

Monday, September 25, 2017

Book Review - Coloring Christmas Devotions by Lizzie Preston and Claire McElfatrick

Photo Credit - Amazon
Ah, I can hardly believe that the holidays are around the corner. It's seems just yesterday I was huddled together with my SO trying to keep warm while waiting for the ball to drop. Although, to be fair, I am excited that the holidays are coming. It is like the only best time of the year. The coloring book includes devotions on one side of the book and on the accompany pages it includes an intricate coloring page. A fun and perfect activity for the holidays!

**Disclosure - I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest opinion**

Friday, September 22, 2017

Book Review - Rule of Law by Randy Singer

Photo Credit - Amazon
For a rare mission ordered by the President and monitored in real time by top government officials, the members of the SEAL Team Six takes on a historic mission. An American journalist and a young Saudi prince were captured by Houthi rebels and the SEAL team was sent in to free the two prisoners when the prisoners are scheduled to be executed on Easter Sunday. However, the mission ends with failure causing everyone to point fingers. The SEAL families are all looking for answers and if the President knew the mission was going to be a failure going before the mission began. Paige Chambers was hired by the widow of one of the SEAL members, but she has also lost someone to the cause as well. Did the President know the truth about the mission? Who is behind the mission failure?

The book had an interesting and unique story line. Unlike, most of the other legal thrillers I have read, this book was the only one who didn't have a romantic interest where it was competing with the story. However, I still couldn't get into the book and felt like the story had a lot of unnecessary details that never went anywhere for example, the drone pilot. He called Paige and gave her information, but I don't recall them ever using his testimonial or even his name after they went to such great lengths to find the identity of the drone pilot. An interesting story line, but I felt the story was longer than it needed to be.

**Disclosure - I received a free copy of the book in exchange for an honest opinion**

Monday, September 18, 2017

Book Review - A Time to Stand by Robert Whitlow

Photo Credit - Amazon
Adisa Johnson, a young African American woman is living her dream. She is an aspiring lawyer in a prestigious firm in downtown Atlanta with a promising career.  However, a simple makes changes the trajectory of her career and causes her to lose the job she loves. Around the same time, her dearly beloved aunt became ill and Adisa to move to be closer to her aunt and looks for a new job. A few days earlier a Caucasian police offer had shot an unarmed African American team who is fighting for his life in the hospital. With racial tensions high, Adisa wants to be bought on as a special prosecutor on the case. Although, when she speaks with a fellow mentor and victim's grandmother, she is left with conflicting feelings on the case. Which side will Adisa choose? What happened during that faithful of the shooting?

I like that the novel took on racial topics that are very prevalent this day. However, I felt the story lacked depth and suspense. The story seemed to drag on and on, filled with details that just cloud the story. Sadly, I also couldn't find myself liking the any of the characters. As a WOC, I loved seeing a fellow WOC in charge, smart and engaging. But I felt like Adisa fell flat and act impulsively/emotional. For example, when she was let go of her job she didn't want to steal her former employer's clients. But when she asked her mentor for a job, she had no problem becoming a special prosecutor on the same case her mentor was defending on.

**Disclosure - I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest opinion**

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Slight Break!

Dear Readers,

Thank you for reading my blog! I am taking a short break from posting makeup reviews but will still be posting book reviews. The computer and camera I was using for my blog is currently going through "tough" technical issues (I am not going to acknowledge that my anger might be a key component to why they are not currently working and needing to be repaired). Thank you for your patience, I am hoping to have makeup reviews back up by the end of September/early October (I have tons of reviews in the queue just waiting for the photos)! Thanks again!!!

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Book Review - Mercy Triumphs: A Contemporary Novel by Jana Kelley

Photo Source - Amazon
Mia and her family are American Christians who are living in Sudan under Islamic law. They face harassment, persecution and danger as part of their everyday life. Halimah and Rania who were formerly Muslims were forced to leave Sudan if they wanted to continue practicing Christianity.  Together the trio search for God's mercy to help guide them.

The last novel in the trilogy, Mercy Triumphs is about tying up lose ends in each character's stories and development. While leaving out religion in my assessment in this book, I found this book unnecessary. I felt like the author stretched the story out without actually adding anything to it. I felt that this portion of the book could have been added to the first two books to make the story meatier for the other two novels. I definitely felt that there could have been more to this book and was disappointed that there wasn't more. While I did enjoy reading Kelley's novels, I am not sure I would go out of my way to read more if the last novel is just going to be fluff pieces.

**Disclosure - I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest opinion**

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Book Review - White Fur: A Novel by Jardine Libaire

Photo Credit - Amazon

Stars collide when Elise Perez meets Jamey Hyde on a cold winter afternoon. While, they are next door neighbors, they couldn't come from more different worlds. Elise was raised by a single mother in a housing project and didn't graduate from high school. Jamey is a junior at Yale and is heir to a sizeable inheritance with famous parents. What started as a basic sexual attraction turns into something more when the couple decides to move their relationship into serious territory and move to Manhattan to search for a new life together. The author takes us along the way as couple trying to maneuver the hostile environment that wants to keep them apart and they consequences they face when they follow their hearts.

When I first saw the cover, I was thought this was going to be a gritty cool romance novel. How could I be more wrong?! I didn't like either of the main characters who both seemed selfish and vain but yet claim to love each other. I assumed the author usually wants the readers to fall in love with the characters and hope that their romance can weather any obstacles thrown their way. However, I wish nothing more than the two ill-matched characters to crash and burn. I also felt that the author was trying to hard with her writing style and it made it incredibly hard to finish this otherwise short novel. I felt that the novel went on and on while the story barely progresses.  A mediocre book at best and I definitely don't see how this was "Kirkus 11 Thrillers for Summer 2017", when the story never barely progresses along with an ending that seems unbelievable. 

**Disclosure - I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest opinion**

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Book Review - Start Where You Are Week-at-a-Glance Diary by Meera Lee PatelL

Photo Source - Amazon

The thin paper covered journal is a week planner than allows users to write not only their to-do list but there dreams and launchpad for ideas. The planner can be used whenever as the dates can be filled in by the user.  Each month is denoted with a beautiful decorated quote. The beautiful decorated planner is illustrated by Brooklyn based self taught illustrator, Meera Lee Patel. A charming gift for any planner in your life or beautiful enough to keep for yourself.

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Book Review - Love Heals By Becca Stevens

Photo Credit - Amazon
In life we all go through hardships. Sometimes, they can be so horrific it takes us years for us to overcome the pain. However, as much as how the pain and grief may be apart of us, how we deal with the pain is apart of us as well. In Love Heals, readers will learn principles that can help transform their lives and in each chapter it shares encouragement and practical steps for anyone who is faced with difficult times. The book is packed with true stories of faith, healing, and happiness where the broken can find peace and compassion.  I gave this book to my SO's aunt as a present as she was overwhelmed by sadness from her dearly departed husband. She found the book to be inspiring and helped her cope. A good book for anyone who might have lost their way.

**Disclosure - I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest opinion**