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Just an avid reader who loves books!

Currently reading

Widow of Papina
Katie Hamstead
Parable Poems: The Parables of Jesus Retold as Poems
Nick Weatherhogg
Maid of Baikal: A Novel of the Russian Civil War
Preston Fleming
Anthony Stevens
How the Light Gets In: A Chief Inspector Gamache Novel
Louise Penny
Books for Kids: ELLIE THE ELEPHANT (Bedtime Stories For Kids Ages 4-8): Kids Books - Bedtime Stories For Kids - Children's Books - Early Readers - Free Stories (Fun Time Series for Beginning Readers)
Uncle Amon
Facts About Champagne And Other Sparkling Wine (Illustrated Edition)
Henry Vizetelly
The Sherlock Holmes Collection
Arthur Conan Doyle
Overcoming Daily
Dan Chesney
Progress: 12/192 pages
The Holy Bible : Scofield Reference Bible
Cyrus I Scofield
Progress: 456/1382 pages
Gray Hawk Terrapin - Moss Whelan
I did enjoy this book very much! Worlds of fantasy, stepping through unseen doors and crossing magical bridges and encountering fantastical creatures-- it was a tale that as a child I would have adored and read again and again.
Mool lives in Vancouver, but her father has been dead since she was small and she has never had really any friends except for an imaginary green lion named Inbrel and two talking mice names Robert and Pierre. Her mother has received word that she must go to help take care of her ailing brother, Mool's Uncle Matthew. Mool does not want to leave the only home she has ever known, but upon arriving at their destination, can't quite believe where she is. Nothing is as it is supposed to be and her mother informs her that this "other" world is actually where she and Mool's father are from. The land of Terrapin and her "imaginary" friends Inbrel, Pierre, and Robert actually live here. Danger abounds-- children are disappearing, Inbrel is illegally arrested, there is a war going on and no one can be trusted. Mool reluctantly makes "friends" with Olga her cousin and they have many adventures together trying to find Inbrel and avoid capture themselves. Mool doesn't think much of herself until she discovers her destiny, which is something she would have never guessed. I received this book from the author for an honest review, and it was a delight to read!


A Message to Garcia - Elbert Hubbard


I found the story of the story as fascinating as the story itself. 
The little article was written (the author explains in the forward "Apologia"), after a conversation between his young sons about who the 'real' hero of the Spanish-American War was. One son asserted that is was actually Col. Andrew Summers Rowan, whom had been summoned by Pres. McKinley to deliver a message secretly to the leader of the insurgents, General Garcia, in Cuba. The problem was that no one quite knew for sure where Garcia was. Rowan (only a Lt. at the time) was sent to find him and deliver the message as quickly as possible, alone and unguarded. He managed to find him in the (then) jungles on Cuba after only 4 days, and the later victory that happened was surely as a result of this. Rowan ended up being decorated for deed, and Pres. McKinley said "I regard this achievement as one of the most hazardous and heroic deeds in military warfare."
Upon reflecting on the conversation between his sons, the author realized that the one son was accurate, and wrote the article in the space of an hour for his magazines. He enlarged the meaning of the heroics Rowan did to apply to other areas of life-- labor, politics, family, etc. asking why are there not more Rowans in this world who are willing to go the extra mile and give something their all. He didn't highly regard it-- didn't even title it, but looked at it as more filler between the other stuff. When record numbers started pouring in for copies of reprints, he came figured out it was for this one article. It ended up in a visiting Prince from Russia's hands who took it back, had it translated and distributed to every soldier then serving in the Russian Army during the Russo-Japanese War. Upon taking Russian soldiers prisoners-of-war and finding a copy of this on each of them, the Japanese Government decided it must be very important and had it translated, and on order of the Mikado, had a copy distributed to every government employee-- soldier or civilian. By 1913, more copies had been printed world-wide than "any other literary venture has ever attained during the lifetime of its author, in all history-- thanks to a series of lucky accidents." (1913 figures)
The author, Elbert Hubbard, was well known at the time, not only for publishing his magazines "The Philistine" and "The Fra", but also printing fine editions of books out of publishing firm, The Roycroft Shop. He perished on board the Lusitania when it was sank by a German torpedo in 1915.

Understanding Heaven's Court System: Explosive Life Changing Secrets - Bill Vincent

I enjoyed this book. It should be on every believer's shelf. Expounds on our authority in the spiritual realm as Christians and packed full of scriptures. I am certainly going to keep it handy to refer to often. I would like to read more by this pastor. I received this copy in a giveaway. Thank you!

With Love, Ella - Alexa Randolph


I really liked this love story. It was beautiful and very moving. It emotionally effected me.
Ella and Daniel have grown up together. Their families are very close. Everyone always knew that they were meant for each other. Ella is co-partner with her mother in an successful event-planning business and Daniel is a pro-football player for the Giants. With both their busy schedules it is often difficult to find time for each other, but are truly in love and truly committed. Then shocking news rocks their world-- Daniel has planned a very romantic date to propose to Ella, and she must break the news to him. Not knowing what the future holds, they go ahead with their marriage forging ahead and facing the obstacles together. I cannot say more than this-- to reveal anymore (I feel) would be a spoiler since it is a large part of the story. I will say though it was very much worth reading.
I received a copy of this from the author in exchange for an honest review-- thank you!

The Treasure Principle: Unlocking the Secret of Joyful Giving (LifeChange Books) - Randy Alcorn


I think this is a great resource to examine one's attitude toward money and things in general. With the world being so materialistic, it is a great reminder about what is really important. At the end of our lives, will we really say "I am so glad that I had the latest gadgets" or "I made a difference in the world by trying to keep up with the latest fashions"? The focus was to be more like John Wesley, whom Mr. Alcorn quotes "Money never stays with me. It would burn me if it did. I throw it out of my hands as soon as possible, lest it should find its way into my heart." It is not that money in and of itself is bad, but how it is used, and as Christians we will one day have to give an account with everything the Lord entrusted us with-- not only our talents and lives but also our money. Did we spend more of it on ourselves (outside of necessary living expenses) than on feeding the hungry, or trying to educate the impoverished, etc? I don't see the major theme as using money now to buy goods in heaven (although Jesus did talk about "laying up treasures in heaven" by what we do and give in our earthly life), but since Jesus himself did talk about this, Mr. Alcorn addresses it as well. I think that since Jesus addressed this, I don't find Randy Alcorn's addressing it objectionable. Even though, truly, everyone should give for purely altruistic reasons and cheerfully, I guess there are some that need a little extra encouragement and motivation.

The Weight of Shadows (Shadow Series) (Volume 1) - Karl Holton



Wow... I was on the edge of my seat through much of the book! Very good, intense suspense.
Detective Benedict is haunted by the murder of his partner 3 years earlier, and some colleagues blame him for it. He now has to investigate different crimes that appear unrelated-- a mega jewel heist, a brutal murder and his department is investigating international mafias and their spread into England. Then one of his colleagues is killed in a similar manner to the first heinous murder-- are they related or is it a copycat?
Ray Hanson became a billionaire laundering money for many international criminals, creating many friends but many enemies as well. He regrets his past and wishes to make good on his life of crime by making a difference. But someone out of his past wishes to use his skills and deftly maneuvering money and kidnaps his most prized possession, his daughter to try to convince him to cooperate. He has just 21 hours from the time he finds out about the kidnapping to accomplish this or his daughter dies as the hands of a hired assassin that even the criminals that hire him to kill only know him by as "The Doctor"-- and he is horrible. Can they save Ray's daughter?
I am eager to read the next in the series The Wait for Shadows to see what happens with Detective Benedict and the other characters. Due to my enjoyment of reading this first in the series, my expectations for the second are high. : ) 
I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review, thank you!


My Old Clock I Wind and Other Poems - William Morris


A book of poetry by K. Morris. The poems explore different themes, lamenting the passing years, questioning what is called "progress" among others, but there are some nonsensical funny ones too. 
One poem that I liked:

The Seasons

Leaves swish like water
As I walk through
Them to reach the park. 'Tis true
Autumn is still here.
Yet, I fear winter will give no quarter;
For each season does murder its daughter
Who dies not, but rather sleeps
And creeps
Forth to softly kill
Her father who will
Rise once more.

As it was before
So it will remain. The perpetual cycle
Of the seasons, a vital order does bring
Follows winter stern
Buds return
And soon,
Come summer, flowers will bloom.

Autumn imperceptibly doth replace
Summer's flushed face.
While the fall's slow decay
Whispers, "Winter is on his way."

And another:

Midnight Rose

No light, garish and red
Only night's dead
And the flower
Whose bloom
Was gone too soon.

The moon
Shone on
The rose picked
And stripped
By the wind that trifles,
And is gone. 

I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review-- thank you.

Talon: Come Fly With Me - Gigi Sedlmayer


This is the story about a missionary family from Australia teaching the Indians in the mountains of Peru, and in particular, their daughter Matica. Matica is 9 and was born with a growth disorder which makes her much smaller than she should be for her age. She questions her purpose here, being so much smaller than everyone and the Indians make her existence no easier by teasing her because of it and having no friends. She then befriends two condors, Tamo and Tia, and manages to save their lone egg from poachers. Matica incubates the egg and hatches it, raising the chick, which she names Talon, with the help of its parents. The Indians come to be in awe of her for this. In the end, her small stature enables her to do what no one else would be able to do.
I enjoyed this book, and think that it would be especially encouraging for children living with a disability questioning their place in the world. I would like to read the rest of the series and see where further adventures take Matica.
I received this book in exchange for an honest review from the author-- thank you.


How Do I Feel? - Norma Simon


A good introductory book about feelings for children, in a story kids can relate too. Strong, scared, stupid, lazy, pokey, and many other are explored. From the introduction "A beginning book about feelings provides a natural introduction to the subjective sensations, reactions, and emotions that all people experience. If at an early age children understand that feelings are important and can be expressed in words, this may help in learning to live in our stressful world." The book encourages interaction, and when reading with children, they will often vocalize when they felt that exact way. Great way to open up conversations when having to deal with a difficult feeling.
Harold Thinks Big - Jim Murphy, Susanna Natti


[/spoiler] Harold has a crush on Esther, but there is a problem-- she already has a boyfriend... a big one who happens to be a football star named Bruiser. Not to be deterred, Harold seeks the advice of Owl, a guy who knows everything, and is told that Harold must think big and do something extraordinary to capture Esther's attention and heart. And that is exactly what he does. At the next football game, he pulls out all the stops. He has arranged for the scoreboard to flash a message of his love of Esther, the band play a love song and spell out their names on the field, a blimp fly by dropping hundreds of balloons with terms of his endearment, but none of this impresses her. In fact, it makes her mad and she insults him. What he realizes at the end is that his friend Susie has always had a crush on him, has stood by him and he has the most in common with. Cute pictures. 

SantaKid - James Patterson, Michael Garland


This is the story of how Santa's daughter had to save Christmas. Exmas Express had bought the North Pole and Christmas too and made it a commercialized mess. The company was mass producing Christmas under the direction of its CEO Warrie Ransom-- an angry, mean and demanding boss. Christmas Eve arrived but the company's semis were stuck and couldn't deliver the toys only 50% of the world's children were targeted to get. Chrissy, Santa's daughter, stepped in and saved the day. Another book with wonderful illustrations. 

Behind the Mask: A Book about Prepositions - Ruth Heller


We loved this book so much that we want to read all the others by the author. I enjoyed it as much as the children. : ) Adored the prose with the prepositions highlighted for children to learn exactly what they are and how they are used, and the illustrations were very nice as well

Little Drummer Boy - Dandi



The classic Christmas song told in the form of a story for children.

Shell Crazy - Tracy Gallup



The family in this children's book loves collecting shells. When the narrator comes upon a pile of beautiful ones she suspicions as having been abandoned by her brother she tells herself "finder's keeper's". After she discovers that she could "hear" the ocean inside, she realizes that she doesn't need to hoard her brother's shells to herself. 
Me and my granddaughter love the pictures, each one featuring a shell in some part of the scene and a handmade doll (the author made each figure) to help tell the story, though my daughter thought the book was "creepy".

My Baby Animal Book - Stuart P. Levine


A boardbook for toddlers with a picture of a baby animal with a question as to give a hint as to what that animal is... ex:
Q: "What has red fur and a pointed face and can run very fast?"
A: "A red fox!"
My little grandchildren enjoyed the pics of the baby animals, but the book was far too short.

The Cat in the Hat - Dr. Seuss


Another lovable classic from Dr. Seuss. I am truly glad we don't have Cats in Hats roaming about that can create such havoc!