Wednesday, August 24, 2016

"Waiting On" Wednesday: Because of Bethlehe: Love Is Born, Hope Is Here by Max Lucado

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

My pick for this week:

Max Lucado is one of my favorite Christian authors. His book, The Christmas Child, was made into a movie starring William Moses, Steven Curtis Chapman, and Megan Follows. I'm eager to read this new one when it comes out in September.

Max Lucado loves Christmas. Let the sleigh bells ring. Let the carolers sing. The more Santas the merrier. The more trees the better.

He loves it because somewhere someone will ask the Christmas questions: What’s the big deal about the baby in the manger? Who was he? What does his birth have to do with me?

And the answers he’s found give us all hope. God knows what it’s like to be a human. When we talk to him about deadlines or long lines or tough times, he understands. He’s been there. He’s been here. Because of Bethlehem, we have a friend in heaven.

And Christmas begins what Easter celebrates. The child in the cradle became the King on the cross. Because of Bethlehem, we have a Savior in heaven.

These are the heart shaping promises of Christmas. Long after the guests have left and the carolers have gone home and the lights have come down, these promises endure.

Let’s turn on the lamp, curl up in a comfortable spot, and look into the odd, wonderful story of Bethlehem.

Max has found a lifetime of hope. We will too.

Book Review: Is He Cheating? By Lisa Daily

Is your guy stepping out on you? Does he not seem like the person you once knew? If you have your suspicions, it might be time to pick up a copy of Is He Cheating? by Lisa Daily.

Part of Daily's Surviving Infidelity in Marriage series, Is He Cheating? provides tips and advice on how you can discover if your significant other is being unfaithful. The statistics are scary: 85% of women who suspect their partner is cheating are right and 70% of affairs begin at work.

In this useful resource, the author shares the character traits of men more predisposed to cheating, teaches you the signs he's cheating, and shares what tools you can use to help find out and ways to deal with the shame that often comes with being cheated on.

I read this more out of curiosity than concern and, honestly, I would never think to go to some of the lengths suggested in Is He Cheating?...mainly because I am way too cheap to spend any money on gadgets, tests, and private investigators. That said, if you are concerned and want insight into some good ways to learn the truth, Is He Cheating? is a great book.

My favorite part would have to be the letters from other women who are going through the same fears as you are. The author includes her responses, which allows you to see she is a down-to-earth individual seeking to help others. I like her sense of humor too. As a writer, I thought this book could also be used for research purposes if one of your characters is a cheater or one of them is trying to nail a cheater. Sometimes I think outside the box.

At only $4.99 for Kindle right now, you can't really go wrong.

File Size: 423 KB
Print Length: 112 pages
Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
Publisher: Siesta Key House; 1 edition (April 24, 2012)
Publication Date: April 24, 2012
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
Language: English

The author provided me with a free digital copy of this book through Pump Up Your Book. This review contains my honest opinions, which I have not been compensated for in any way.

I read this book for the following challenge:

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Book Review: Iced Chiffon by Duffy Brown

Iced Chiffon by Duffy Brown is a fun cozy mystery filled with plenty of twists and turns.

Reagan Summerside has just had to endure a horrible divorce from Hollis Beaumont III. All she has left is the run-down Victorian she's been restoring and a bunch of designer clothes. Needing a job--and money for groceries--she turns the first floor of her home into a consignment shop.

Thanks to her ex-husband's cunning lawyer, Walker Boone, he got everything else, including the Lexus. When Reagan finds Hollis' new blonde bombshell girlfriend dead in the Lexus, she's determined to find the murderer before Boone. Luckily, there are plenty of town gossips visiting her shop that provide helpful information.

I am so kicking myself in the butt for not reading this book sooner. It is superb! I'm such a huge cozy mystery fan, and Duffy Brown has written one that has tons of unique characters, a great plot, and the charm of the South.

The author has set up the potential for a great series. Someone gets killed and the main character gets pulled into the investigation for one reason or another. There seems to be no end to the number of possible suspects. The danger increases as Reagan gets closer and closer. And that ending was a total shocker to me. One other thing that I have to point out is that the secondary characters, especially Aunt Kiki, really shine in this story.

I'm looking forward to revisiting Savannah and Reagan's shop, the Prissy Fox, for another adventure soon. That shouldn't be hard. There are four other books in this series to enjoy.

Series: A Consignment Shop Mystery (Book 1)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Berkley (October 2, 2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0425251608
ISBN-13: 978-0425251607

I received a copy of this book from the author. This review contains my honest opinions, which I have not been compensated for in any way.

I read this book for the following challenges:

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Books That Have Been On Your Shelf (Or TBR) From Before You Started Blogging That You STILL Haven't Read Yet

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. Each week they will post a new Top Ten list that one of the bloggers at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join. All they ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND add your name to the Linky widget so that everyone can check out other bloggers lists! If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Have fun with it! It's a fun way to get to know your fellow bloggers.

Ten Books That Have Been On Your Shelf (Or TBR) From Before You Started Blogging
 That You STILL Haven't Read Yet

Wow! I had to go down into my other bookcase for this one. 

One of the first books I bought when I started writing. Needless to say, my writing didn't get me that far.

Bought the first six books in this series and haven't touched them.

Love reading anything about the Civil War; simply haven't gotten to it yet.

Enjoyed the Shaaras' books about the Civil War and figured I would give Jeff's series on the American Revolution a try. 

Davis is a superb author. I honestly had this one so long I forgot it was there. Will need to read this one. 

Sounded interesting when it came out, so I bought it. And there it sits on my bookshelf collecting dust.

Christmas and Thomas can you go wrong? Would love to read this one day.

Long before I became friends with Kathi Macias, I had purchased this novel. I discovered it a couple of years ago while cleaning out my bookshelves. Still need to read it.

Another book on writing I probably should have read.

My husband read this series and liked it so much he recommended it to me. For the record, that rarely happens. We simply don't enjoy the same books. I haven't gotten to this one yet. 

What books have been on your bookshelf unread for a long time? 

Monday, August 22, 2016

Musing Mondays - August 22

Musing Mondays is a weekly meme now hosted at Jenn's blog Books And A Beat that asks you to choose one of the following prompts to answer:
  • I’m currently reading…
  • Up next I think I’ll read…
  • I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
  • I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I can’t wait to get a copy of…
  • I wish I could read ___, but…
  • I blogged about ____ this past week…
THIS WEEK’S RANDOM QUESTION: Name a favorite book you’d take to the beach.

When you read this, I'll be walking through Central Park. We opted for a quick overnight to NYC before school gets underway.

Right now I'm reading, Iced Chiffon by Duffy Brown. This is the first in her Consignment Shop Mystery series. I'm loving it.

Reagan's messy divorce has left her with nothing but a run-down Victorian and a bunch of designer clothes. Strapped for cash, Reagan makes use of the two things she has left, turning the first floor of her home into a consignment shop and filling it with the remnants of her rich-wife wardrobe.

Thanks to his cunning lawyer, Walker Boone, her ex got everything else, including the Lexus--not to mention a young blonde cupcake. When Reagan finds the blonde dead in the Lexus, she's determined to beat Boone to finding the murderer. As it turns out, the gossip fiends flooding Reagan's shop can give her a lot more than just their unwanted clothes--they have information more precious than a vintage Louis Vuitton...

Next up is this book:

Looks like it is part of a series. I'm blessed not to have this concern, but I'm sure there are a lot of women out there who do. I wanted to see what the author had to say on the subject.

Hope you have a great week. 

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Coming in September: In Such Good Company by Carol Burnett

Excited to learn about this one. I love Carol Burnett. Will you be placing this one on your wish list?

Comedy legend Carol Burnett tells the hilarious behind-the-scenes story of her iconic weekly variety series, The Carol Burnett Show.

Who but Carol Burnett herself has the timing, talent, and wit to pull back the curtain on the Emmy-Award winning show that made television history for eleven glorious seasons?

In Such Good Company delves into little-known stories of the guests, sketches and antics that made the show legendary, as well as some favorite tales too good not to relive again. Carol lays it all out for us, from the show’s original conception to its evolution into one of the most beloved primetime programs of its generation.

Written with all the charm and humor fans expect from a masterful entertainer like Carol Burnett, In Such Good Company skillfully highlights the elements that made the show so successful in a competitive period when TV variety shows ruled the air waves. Putting the spotlight on everyone from her talented costars to her amazing guest stars—the most celebrated and popular entertainers of their day—Carol crafts a lively portrait of the talent and creativity that went into every episode.

Here are all the topics readers want to know more about, including:
• how the show almost didn’t air due to the misgivings of certain CBS vice presidents;
• how she discovered and hired Harvey Korman, Vicki Lawrence, Lyle Waggoner, and Tim Conway;
• anecdotes about guest stars and her close freindships with many of them, including Lucille Ball, Roddy Mcdowell, Jim Nabors, Bernadette Peters, Betty Grable, Steve Lawrence, Eydie Gorme, Gloria Swanson, Rita Hayworth, and Betty White;
• the people behind the scenes from Bob Mackie, her costume designer and partner in crime, to the wickedly funny cameraman who became a fixture during the show’s opening Q&A;
• and Carol’s takes on her favorite sketches and the unpredictable moments that took both the cast and viewers by surprise.

This book is Carol’s love letter to a golden era in television history through the lens of her brilliant show which won no less than 25 Emmy Awards! Get the best seat in the house as she reminisces about the outrageous tales that made working on the show as much fun as watching it.

In Such Good Company can be pre-ordered here.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Musing Mondays - August 15

Musing Mondays is a weekly meme now hosted at Jenn's blog Books And A Beat that asks you to choose one of the following prompts to answer:
  • I’m currently reading…
  • Up next I think I’ll read…
  • I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
  • I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I can’t wait to get a copy of…
  • I wish I could read ___, but…
  • I blogged about ____ this past week…
THIS WEEK’S RANDOM QUESTION:  What sequel do you have yet to read?

Monday has arrived again. Technically, as I am typing this it is still only Sunday, but by the time you read this it will be Monday.

This past week was the one where I decided I had enough; enough mess, enough chaos--pretty much enough of a lot of things. I miss blogging. I miss reading every night before bed. I miss having my books organized and my TBR pile all mapped out on spreadsheets.

As part of deciding enough was enough, I am moving my office to the first floor of our home by converting our very unused formal living room into an office space. The printer/fax/scanner is on the first floor at the other end of the house in the hubby's office. It is so inconvenient when I need to do anything. I'm also thinking that if my office is on the first floor I'll keep it cleaner. And finally, I want to be able to have real estate clients come to my home if needed, so I want a place that is easily accessible.

I've made a lot of progress in going through books; cataloging them and boxing them up. I've donated some books and other belongings from my office. I've also recycled a bunch of old magazines and other fun stuff.

All this effort has made me feel a lot better. The hallway is a mess, but as things are delivered to where they need to go, that will change too.

The best part? The clean up fever has infected the girls too and they have been going through their rooms doing the same thing. I love it!

I'm open to any tips you are willing to share on major clean ups.