Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Movies watched 2017 Jan 1 - Jun 30

Movies jan 1, 2017 - Jun 30
Maximum Ride
code of honor
rampage president down
Royal night out
swept under
Savannah Sunrise
St. Vincent
He Never Died
Sister Cities
Last  knights
I boy
The Three Musketeers
The Finest Hours
The Cold Day of Light
Captain America Civil War
The Frontiersman
Death in Paradise
The Salvation
Chinese zodiac
the asian connection
Finding Altamara
Unlawfally Yours
the perfect weapon
weekend with the family
sandy wezler
Reasonable Doubt
 Sand Castle
Wyonna Earp
Stagecoach: story of Texas Jack
Handsome Mystery Detective
death in paradise
hollow point
Heritage Falls
dead west
the D train
All We Had
Kill Ratio
Skip Trace
I Dream Too Much
The War Machine
Wild Oats
The Late Bloomer
Two lovers and a bear
Another forever
The place behind the pines
The Discovery
Between Us
bottom of the world
green is gold
Silver Skies
Kill Command
Shimmer Lake
The Last Kingdom
Dragonheart: battle of the heartfire
Playing it cool
5 nights in Maine
Win it all
Bridget Jones baby
echo park
Sophie and the rising sun
The Roman Empire
officer down

Book Review: A Traveler's Advisory by Marcia Laycock

A Traveler's Advisory: Stories of God's Grace Along the Way by Marcia Laycock
Enjoying this book because it takes you to a lot of different places. Love how the author uses Bible passages in everyday life events and explains them so you can understand.
She chooses many 'hard' times, 9/11, etc Loved hearing of all the sights, even in nature as they presented themselves on the journey.
Amazed at all the different locations and the descriptions of the places. The connection to religion is out there, you won't have to look for it. Liked hearing of all the traditions in each place they traveled to, made you feel like you were there.
Foreign words are explained in the contents.  Lots of hope in this book.
I was given the book by the author via Book Fun (The Book Club Network) and this is my honest review

Monday, July 24, 2017

Books read July 24

Cinderella's Escape by Gita V. Reddy
This book I listened to and it's about a up to date Cinderella who's lost her mother in a car crash and her father hires a woman to take care of Anne Marie along with her two daughters.
Every year he travels overseas and hardly ever comes home to visit, he pays the step mother over a million dollars. Evil exists in the form of the step mother and the daughters as they try to get their way.
Love how even with evil and the poisons Anne's picture is broadcast on the TV screen and magic happens. Love how the evil is dealt with.
Scary at times, very sinister also but all good things happen to those who wait.
Also a bonus story about a fairy godmother for boys-love this one as I have a grandson. Evil things happen and I like how the bullies are dealt with in this story.
Other works by the author are not only highlighted at the end but summarized.
Received this review copy from the author and this is my honest review.

Catherine Dickens, Outside the Magic Circle by Heera Datta
1850s Story of Charles Dickens wife, Catherine. Lots of drama surrounding the separation.
Married 21 years and they have 9 kids. The oldest is over the age and the others are given to Charles to raise-Catherine is cast off because everybody believes the story Charles has told.
Catherine's sister, Georgie has lived with them since she was 16 and Charles has taken a fancy to her....
Story goes back in time to when she was just meeting Charles. Love how the older child is able to visit with his mother and his other siblings so he can share information to them all from the other.
Can't imagine this happening in today's society, the pain she suffers and abuse.
Received this review copy from the author and this is my honest review.

A Native American feast by Lucille Recht Penner
This audio book is also available in print with color photos.
What I like about this book is not only the story of how the Indians used different foods in their diet but it has recipes that you can make using the foods of today.
So many interesting facts-love western Indians the best as they used salmon in every meal and snack because it was so plentiful.
Love the scenes of New England with a pit in the ground and layers of seaweed over the seafood to steam it for hours-like how today we make the clamboil..
I received this book from National Library Service for my BARD (Braille Audio Reading Device).

The orchard: a memoir by Adele Crockett Robertson
Love hearing of the depression years and how families survived.
This story is about a New England farm taken care of by a woman with a college degree and she takes on the job of reviving the orchard. Starts with her finding her father dead in the farmhouse and what transpires.
She does get help from some but there are thieves also that want her crops. 
A mill town she is able to sell the apples to a man who sells them at the street corner in the city. This is the story of where they came from.
Love hearing the strategies used to combat the pests. 
I received this book from National Library Service for my BARD (Braille Audio Reading Device).

Preston Falls by David Gates
This story is about a family, man wife and 2 kids. They travel to VT for their weekends to get away from the city.
Jean the wife is tired after working every day to drive 4 hours to get to the weekend house.
Willis the husband is on a leave, unpaid and is at odds with himself.  After relatives leave early things fall apart for them.
She leaves with the kids to camp out one night before heading home because school starts. Willis ends up coming after them, gun in the truck along with the dog and gets into trouble and ends up in jail.
Story continues and we learn about the past as the kids grow older year after year. Roger is the oldest and has a mind of his own. Mel is a teen also and has her way of getting things done.
Interesting to learn about the northern town but I found a lot of abusive vulgar swearing-so unnecessary to get the point across.
He goes through his mid life crisis and she goes to find him, having no idea where he'd be...
Liked walks through the woods and other places described. 
I received this book from National Library Service for my BARD (Braille Audio Reading Device).

Monday, July 17, 2017

Books read July 17

Calm Before The Storm
Book starts out with Travis and he's on his way to the family cabin with his wood projects. He hopes to stay there so he won't have to celebrate the Christmas Holiday. Several years ago at this time his wife and daughter were killed by a drunk driver.
Emily is an abused mother of twins and Sarah has lent her the cabin til her court date in Jan.
They all get along with her tending to the kids during the day and cooking and cleaning and he stays out of their way by working in the shed.
Love the adventures the kids go on with them both, so much fun in the snow!
Before the holiday he takes her back to the house he bought in hopes of fixing it up and flipping it. There's lots of work to do and it keeps Emily busy but he also sets her up with a job interview to keep her in town.
He's got it all worked out for the kids going to school even. Plans don't go his way and she leaves to go back to her town and get on with her life.
Later in time he is buying a house to be closer to his sister who's having a baby and he plans to permanently live close by to her when he runs into Emily.  Tragedies strike again and you wonder how they can survive.
Great story that didn't take that long to read. Hated hearing of the abuse and nightmares but there are good moments also.

White as snow: a Christmas story 
Charlie has been living with his grandparents on their farm since he was 3. His grandmother died and things changed, it was only the two of them then.
His grandfather just keeps sleeping-has been asleep two weeks now with a fever and shallow breathing.Charlie fixed the fence so the cows wouldn't get out. They had sold some cows to the soldiers but hadn't spent the money for the winter supplies yet.
The wind is howling and he knows winter is coming. He hurts himself while doing the chores in the frozen land and tends to himself as best he can. He's only 10.
Something magical happens tthen-Jess appears and helps him do everything, teaches him to read the Bible, does chores, helps with winter food and even a Christmas tree. The real miracle happens when his grandfather starts to wake up.
Like who Jess represents in this book and how the Bible holds all the answers.

Snow Jerk by Oliver Del Sigmore
This short story is about Carla and she lives in the mountains with her teenage son about 15 miles from any neighbors. She refers to those with noisy snowmobiles as jerks.
She's on her way skiing to the neighbors house one day when she's run over by one. She assumes it's a man til she finds the girl injured by the accident and helps her. Love the
things you can learn by just listening to the sounds. They get to talk and she learns about Angela and why she escapes to the mountain after losing her mother and having to work at her dad's store.
Love the relationship they have while walking the rest of the way and what they discover at the end. Cute story.

Slow Cooker Recipes: 53 Extremely Delicious & Healthy Crockpot Recipes That Everyone Will Love
Starts out with link to sign up with the author to get a free copy of her latest slow cooker recipes.
Each recipes includes a very small color photo of the finished meal.
Ingredient list and how to prepare. There is nutritional information but it's pasted into a picture file that is very hard to read.
It includes serving size, servings per recipe, calories and calories from fat.
Also has total fat, sat. fat and cholesterol, sugars, sodium and total carbs, dietary fib, sugars and protein. Also has variations on what to change in the recipe.
Problem I have with the recipes is they use canned condensed soups which contain a LOT of sodium. You might be able to substitute for a healthier option.
Nothing I found that we could eat unless we swapped out for the ingredients we can eat. It'd be a whole new recipe.
Bonus of 10 free recipes is included but the format changes and there is no nutritional information at all nor pictures.
Other works by the author 

35 Slow Cooker Beef Recipes – Crock Pot Cookbook Makes Beef Stew, Roast or Ground Meals Easy
Introduction talks about how she uses her mother, relatives and friends recipes and deemed them worth of being put into this cookbook.
Other chapters include how to save time in the kitchen by using the crock pot.
Recipes include a title, ingredient list and cooking directions.
There are no pictures and there is no nutritional information. You might be able to substitute for your dietary needs for a healthier option.
There are about 3-4 tiny color photos. Other works by the author are highlighted at the end.

Reflections by Cassandra Riley
This is a love story about Edward and Daphne who are past their 50 wedding anniversary and they are getting ready for a big change.
Follows their current conversation about their past memories and each answers in their own way. Their son Christopher is picking them up as he is relocating to a different area and they are no longer able to take care of the house.
There is a solution and you will hear about that. Love the family gatherings that make up the good memories.
Reminds me of me and my spouse as I will ask what was the best part of your day or weekend or a trip and after his reply I will tell him what mine was.

The Wishing Star by Kallysten
This is a story about Tina and she's not gone near the bookstore in over 20 years. When she does enter she knows what she wants-herbs for the magic she knows.
She wants to get her boyfriend back for Christmas. She thinks she got the spell down right but she's not really sure as nothing happens.
When Ryan shows up she knows she had it right after all. Sexual scenes. They realize it's all about magic after all.
Excerpt from I'll be Home for Christmas is included.

The Knot Fairy by Bobbie Hinman
I can't pass up a colorful children's book.  Silly children's book about a fairy that has knots in her hair.
Like how the words are separate from the pictures so they are not hard to read.
The fairy that visits the children after they are asleep does something special...There is a cute poem/song about her.
Other works by the author that highlight other fairies are included at the end.

Homemade Ice Cream Cookbook - 150 Amazing Frozen Desserts Recipes by Jennifer Evans 
Starts out with an introduction about summer and having cold treats. Each recipe includes the title, summary, prep time and servings.
List of ingredients and how to make the ice ceam in your ice cream maker. Nutritional information includes calories, fat-not broken up into good or bad, fiber, carbs and protein. There are no pictures. Not sure if you can substitute for a healthier option as you really need to use heavy cream and other canned products that are high in sugar and maybe sodium.
Snow ice cream would probably be the healthiest to eat.
Never though to use alcohol in the ice cream, hmmm. Lots of different categories to choose from: classic, chocolate, fruity, nutty, party ice cream, and vegan categories.

The Curious Cookie: Over 50 International Cookie Recipes by J.R. Stevens 
Start out with joining a mailing list to get more free ebooks. Chapters on American Cookies, European cookies, Middle Eastern, and Asian cookies
each recipe starts out with a title, prep, cook time and servings. List of ingredients and directions. There are no pictures and no nutritional information.
You might be able to substitute for a healthier option but it's going to change the texture and taste of the cookies.
Too much fat content for us to have. 

Book Reviews: Gita Reddy , more books

More books from Gita V. Reddy. They each have something to teach us, great lessons.

Author Bio:

Gita V.Reddy is a writer of fiction for children and adults. She enjoys thinking up tales of different genres. She has written mysteries, adventure, fantasy, science fiction, and even an animal tale for children.

Ms Reddy was born in India, is a post graduate in Mathematics, worked in a bank for twenty-six years, is married to a physics professor, has a son doing research in neuro-electronics, and loves literature. Yes, her life is as mixed up as the multiple genres she writes. 

She enjoys trying her hand at new things and spending time with her family, and LOVES walking in the rain.

Visit her website: www.gitavreddy.com

My Reviews:

Dearie by Gita V. Reddy
Story of a deer as they grow up. The mother has taught her things to help her survive in the woods and what to watch out for.
Love that part of the story and as she goes off by herself. There are others around and she knows the signal to get them to help.
Other works by the author are highlighted at the end. Excerpt from a Cinderella story is included. Other works by the author are highlighted at the end.
I received this review copy from the author and this is my honest review.

Knife and Fork by Gita V. Reddy
This book starts out with the monkey and he travels to the city where Lily adopts him. She is able to train him to use a fork and knife like humans.
Like comparisons between the monkeys and humans habits. Story also goes beyond that to when he returns to the forest. The other animals want to go to the city also and they don't want to hear what that's a bad idea.
He was not always welcomed there himself. They take his utensils and he goes off to live by himself. Like the ending and didn't see it coming.
Other works by the author are highlighted at the end.
I received this review copy from the author and this is my honest review.

The Missing Girl by Gita V. Reddy
This story starts out as kids are playing hide and seek at night and then they go home to study and do their homework. Problem is no one has seen Sneha. All the neighbors and kids help to find her by going to the places you'd hide for the game, to no avail.
Next chapter follows where Sneha is and how she got there and why...
While the parents have called the cops Sneha goes on her own adventure...
What I like about this book is that some foreign words are explained after they are mentioned in the story.
A bonus story is included. Other works by the author are highlighted at the end.
I received this review copy from the author and this is my honest review.

Never Ever by Gita V. Reddy
This book starts out with Raj talking to his wife Divya. They don't talk like regular people as she is deaf. He sometime speaks into her palm, sometimes sign language.
he's not sure why he said divorce but she misunderstands and everything goes wrong from then on. She ignores him and he's been coming home late at nights, hardly playing with the children or helping with the house.
She feels trapped and jsut wants the kids and she'll head back on India. They've seen their other friends divorce and nobody is together any more.
Misunderstandings and each thinking they know what the other is thinking and you wonder if they will stay together at all. This is part of a larger novel: A Tapestry of Tears dealing with subjects relating to those born in India and the struggles they have.
I  received this review copy from the author and this is my honest review.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Books read July 13

Crochet Afghans: Discover How to Crochet a Perfect Afghan in Less Than a Day by Emma Brown
Starts out with a phrase about how her mother taught her many craft and household skills, but not crochet. This sounds just like me but I am now a published crochet designer.
I picked it up by myself when my son was born although I know how to knit very well. An intro starts this book off and tells you what this book will do for you. There is also a linkable video to watch.
Crochet afghans with links to videos on how to make some of the stitches that are talked about.  Different sizes of an afghan for different size beds and for what age groups.
There are color photos along the way. Mattress size chart  has the sizes and how many squares to make.
Tools and material,  along with chart for right hook or knitting needles size needed along with discussion about what type of yarn to use.
There is also a chart about the different yarn weights with important information
Terms and understanding the patterns is another chapter. Step by step color photos of how to start the project along with the written words.Basic stitches are diagrams along wit the words along with video to watch.
Other techniques are shown also. Many levels of espertise in patterns are given.
Each pattern starts out with a summary of the afghan, size, yarn and hook needled also with a guage. Color photos show you the steps along with words. Steps to finish off are also included.
Quite a large variety of afghan stitches to choose from for beginner, intermediate and experienced crocheters.
Glossary and FAQ is included along with a chart that links colors that look good together. What I like about this book is it starts with the beginner in mind but if you're beyond that you can skip over and go to the appropriate section. I always like to review the earlier parts myself because sometimes they are explained in a way I was never able to understand them.
Also love the color combinations as it's easy to follow along with the pictures and diagrams when you can actually see the pattern in the yarn. Something for everyone.

July 2017 Book Fun Magazine
This month I especially liked not only the interviews but meeting new authors to me and their works.
Color pictures are high quality and beautiful-they tell a story on their own. Books for children and adults and everybody in between. Interviews are so involved and I love the things you are taught reading them.
You have to check out this magazine and join Book Fun yourself to get free books. It's all free!

 The Lady and the Mountain Main by Misty M. Beller
1860's She was to be married and then her father died. Her new to be husband she finds with another man discussing old details and she hears he wants to kill her like he did his last wife.
They are to be married and he will take over everything-she was to inherit the following February as her father's will stated. She takes off and with help ends up traveling by train to St. Louis where she sees advertisements for brides to head to the west.
She loses her purse, all her money and unless she finds a job she's stuck there and she knows Simon, her intended will be hunting her down. She travels with others and ends up in Butte, Montana but the man advertising for a bride is dead. She's left at his brother and sisters house for a few days.
Events occur that keep her there and I love the parts where she learns about taking care of people and the animals. Love the travel and how she even learns to cook. She's always thinking of others and Gideon is always doing things for others. After the health emergencies she heads to town to find a job to earn money.
Gideon stays in town til the next day waiting on supplies when he figures out Simon has hired hands there to kidnap her but he's too late.. God is present when he is called about to help them with troubling decisions and hope they are on the right paths. Love the herbs and how they are used.
Have had this book for a while and glad I finally read it. Other works in this series, are also highlighted at the end.

Ernest Hemingway, selected letters, 1917-1961
So fascinating to hear the letters, who they are from and who he replies to and the subject matter.
You can follow his reporter career during the war and all the exotic places visited.
I received this book from National Library Service for my BARD (Braille Audio Reading Device).

The Secret Santa Wishing Well by Nikki Lynn Barrett
Have had this book for a while and finally got to read it and wish I had read it earlier.
It's a great story about a women who works a lot of hours and has 2 children. They babysitter and 2 kids visit the mall at Christmas time and the young son wanders off to talk to Santa's helper.
He encourages him to make a wish and gives him the penny to throw in the well. We find out later in the book what he wishes for. The young boy is so busy with community service projects at his age that the helper nominates him to get the award.
Alternating chapters also follow the helper and his family problems and how he becomes involved with the mother and her children.
Love that it's around the holidays and that they get to spend some quality time together. Love the date night and the ride, precious! Events take a bad turn for them both and you wonder if they will ever get back together when the little boy has run away from visiting his bio dad on Christmas eve.
There's a lot to this book, easy to follow, handful of characters and lots of things they do together and with others.
Hope I can collect the other books in this series. Passionate steamy sex scenes also.

A home is not a home, life within a nursing home by Tulloch_ G. Janet 
Tells you what to expect when you have to move to a nursing home to live our your life. They are depressing but you can make yourself do things so you don't think about all that.
Some like the one my mother in law was in had crafts, listening to old time music, getting her hair and nails done, groups would come in to sing or play music, lots of activities. The jewelry they'd make would be sold at the annual Christmas bazaar to give them money to visit places throughout the year-going to the store, stopping for ice cream on a hot summer day, going out to lunch, etc.
Some tragic stories in this book.
I received this book from National Library Service for my BARD (Braille Audio Reading Device).

Slow dancing by Benedict_ Elizabeth
Two women meet in college and become friends. Story goes to the present time and then chapters go back in time so you can understand their relationship.
Story follows David who has a teen daughter and he wants a story on immigration. Lexie is a lawyer sticking up for the immigrants.
Nell is the woman who loves talking to her girlfriend about the men she's been with. Lots of drama
Steamy descriptions of sex with other partners and themselves. Love hearing the travel and the places they visit or live.
I received this book from National Library Service for my BARD (Braille Audio Reading Device).

We swam the Grand Canyon by Beer_ Bill 
Two crazy guys in the 1950's decide to swim down the Colorado River which is part of the grand canyon. Describes in detail how they prepared for it and the things they took.
Very adventurous and I'm not really sure they are sane to do the things they did. Loved hearing of the floatable rubber suitcases and clothes.
Whirlpools, dangerous and exciting. So much pain and struggles along the way but also awesome scenes they describe.
I received this book from National Library Service for my BARD (Braille Audio Reading Device).

William Tell by Bawden_ Nina 
Have always heard about how he had to shoot an arrow at the apple on his sons head. This is the story why he had to do that.
Like the way the three countries come together. 
I received this book from National Library Service for my BARD (Braille Audio Reading Device).

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Book Review: The Captivating Lady Charlotte by Carolyn Miller

The Captivating Lady Charlotte by Carolyn Miller
Starts out with William, the duke and he's lost his wife during a complication to birth. The child is not his and he despised his wife for cheating on her with many.
Other chapters alternate and follow Lady Charlotte and her mother is trying to get her married off. Her brother Henry is a big help and he even brings suitors home for her.
She is quite taken with Markham. Visits are set up with her cousin Lavinia and she does meet the Duke William. So many controversies about his wifes' death, curse on his house, unexplained sightings, things heard, etc.
Love the mysteries surrounding everything and how they all come together at the end. Especially love the scenes with the gardens in them and details about the flowers and how they are grown, etc.
God is prayed to quite often from all different characters as they lean on him for support and guidance. Love the authors notes about the gardens in the older days. Love the secret passage ways.
Took me 4 times as long to read this book because the font size was not very dark and the size was a lot smaller-10 or 12 size font. I had to wear my regular glasses and a set of 3.5 readers and could only read for 20 pages at a time.
I was given this review book by the author via Book Fun (The Book Club Network) and this is my honest review.