Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Book Review: True Love and Other Disasters

True Love and Other Disasters by Rachel Gibson

Description: Faith Duffy learned that money was just as important if not more so then love growing up. So when she finds an older man who is willing to take care of her she jumps at the chance. And then they learn to love each other. But that means that a lot of men and women look down on her. When that man dies and leaves her in charge of his hockey team Faith doesn’t know where to even start.

Ty Savage is Canada’s favorite hockey player. When his team is left to the merry widow he can’t help but be anxious. What does she know about hockey – nothing. But their interactions leave each of them wanting more. Can a hockey owner and a hockey player be happy together? What about all the other conceived notions of what is or should be going on between them?

Thoughts: If you like sports and sports teams (as well as a romance) this is one of those books that you will like. It doesn’t focus totally on sports but it definitely is a part of the major plot to the book.

For me this was a quick and happy read. I enjoyed it – there isn’t a ton of subplots – it really just focuses on the relationship of the two people as well as their desire to show each other what they really are. They are more then just a pretty face or a hockey player.

What genre would you consider this?
Romance

Overall:

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Book Review: Start Me Up

Start Me Up by Victoria Dahl

Description: Lori had a chance to escape the small town that she has lived in her whole life. But she came back to help her father and hasn’t looked back since. She has reconnected with her old friend and her friend’s geeky (and yet incredibly cute) brother is back in her life.

Lori hasn’t been in a relationship in a while so what she wants more then anything is a no-strings attached relationship and Quinn is the perfect man for that. He always gets more involved with his work then the string of women that have paraded through his life. And he wants to get involved with her too.

But that isn’t everything that is going on in Lori’s life. It looks like her father was killed. Someone is creating havoc at her garage. And she is being contacted by people who will do anything to get some land that she was left by her father.


Thoughts: This is another of those romances that have hit the hot level. And I enjoyed it quite a bit (much like I loved the other Victoria Dahl book that I loved). The side story of the garage and Lori’s father was not something that I thought really needed to be a part of it. I was so concerned with the romance that I really didn’t concentrate on it all that much.

Despite this – the book is a quick read that you will love.

What genre would you consider this?
Romance

Overall:

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Book Review: Burning Wild

Burning Wild by Christine Feehan

Description: Jake Bannaconni is not a normal man. He has had a horrible childhood that has scarred him in ways that he never could have imagined. He trusts no one – not even his family. And with good reason. When he meets Emma Reynolds he knows she must be in his life no matter what. So he will stop at nothing to make that happen.

But the two have trust issues. And Jake has a large secret that a normal person won’t be able to handle.


Thoughts: More than a normal paranormal romance it has a touch of erotica. It is a hot romance that keeps you entertained. You feel for him in terms of his family and you want Emma to make him happy. You understand her need to not ruin their relationship as his child is her child and hers is his.

I love Christine Feehan but even more I like her romances. She gives them to you with unique stories. Usually they have had rough childhood. And their romancec with someone else saves them.

What genre would you consider this?
Paranormal Romance

Overall:

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Book Review: Primal Needs

Primal Needs by Susan Sizemore

Description:
Sidonie Wolf is a female vampire in a world where all they want to do is protect her. She has always been attracted to werewolf Joe Bleythin. But she let him go years before for both of their best interests and now that he is returned she doesn't know if she can do it again. Hopefully she can because in her society they are not allowed to be together. And it could mean death for Joe. Of course the bad guys are after all of them - so can they face the difficulties that they are facing and their growing feelings for one another?

Thoughts: As someone who is about to embark on the journey of mother hood the beginning of this book disturbed me like nothing else. They take away your child and then plant memories so that you don't feel that bad about the whole thing?!? I understand the need (at least in this book) I mean crazy vampire kids who want to suck your blood don't sound like the best thing to have around you - but still!

I guess if you really wanted to you could compare this book and its themes of women's rights (in a society that only wants to protect and coddle their women) as well as cross species (werewolf/vampire) marriages as being bad - to society in the olden times. For that it makes it interesting.

I had forgotten most of the times I had seen Sidonie and Joe together so it took a little while for me to remember what was going on with them and to catch up - so I wouldn't suggest this as a first time book for someone. Read the others first. But it is still entertaining.

What genre would you consider this?
Paranormal

Overall:

Friday, December 18, 2009

Enter a contest!

Christmas is a season of giving, so Linda Weaver Clark would like to show her thankfulness to all herfriends by giving a few books away for Christmas. To enter the give-away, visit her blog at http://lindaweaverclarke.blogspot.com and leave a comment along with your e-mail address. We hope all of you enjoy this wonderful Christmas season.

Book Review: Black Hills

Black Hills by Nora Roberts

Description:
Lil and Coop met when they were only 11 years old. Lil a farm girl who has had parents who loved and cared for her all her life. Coop a city boy who had been shipped off to stay with his grandparents for the summer. All he wants is to be back where he belongs – in the city. They bond that year as they realize they have more in common then they originally believed. Flash forward several years later when they are older and realize that their friendship has progressed. But things don’t work out for them as expected. Now they are in their 20’s and Coop is back to the farm and when someone starts threatening Lil he realize he will do whatever it takes to protect her (and win her back). Lil was hurt by Coop’s earlier defection and doesn’t want to open herself up once again. Can she?

Thoughts: Nora Roberts always delivers a book that will entertain. I love her series books because it allows me to get in touch with characters and see them through to the end. But these single story books are also a great read. You love the people in them or hate them – just as you should. The stories always end with a great love that was fated to be coming together.

What genre would you consider this?
Romance

Overall:

Thursday, December 17, 2009

12 Days and 12 Facts for This Holiday Season

By Caroline Taggart,Author of I Used to Know That: Stuff You Forgot From School

Ever catch yourself saying I Used to Know That? Each holiday season brings another round of cocktail parties, family get-togethers, and corporate gatherings -- and invariably, lots of small talk. It's easy to feel overwhelmed when discussing politics, literature, and other intellectual "stuff," especially when what is thought to be general knowledge is often long-forgotten. Enter I Used to Know That: Stuff You Forgot From School. From English and Literature to Math and Science, from History and Geography to Religion and Other-Worldly Topics, this book leaves you equipped to handle any topic of conversation. Here we've cherry-picked twelve fun facts for the holiday season -- one for every day of Christmas (or whatever holiday you prefer!)

Quiz yourself to see how much "stuff" you need to brush up on before hobnobbing with the boss or office crush.

1. On building sentences: Just what is a "clause"? (Not to be confused with Santa Claus.)

Answer: A clause contains a subject and a verb and may stand alone as a sentence or as part of a sentence (when it is often called asubordinate clause): Santa Claus loves cookies but can't eat them without milk.

2. How many bones is the spine made up of?

Answer: 26 small bones called vertebrae (Be careful lifting all those heavy holiday boxes.)

3. Acclaimed author Charles Dickens (1812-70) wrote which Christmas classic?

Answer: A Christmas Carol. The miserly Ebenezer Scrooge tries to ignore Christmas and is haunted by the ghost of his former partner, Marley, and by the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Yet to Come, who show him the error of his ways.

4. The fist chapter of this famous book opens with "Call me Ishmael." Name the book and author. (Hint: it makes a whale of a gift!)

Answer: Moby Dick by Herman Melville. Melville is also the author of Pierre and the unfinished Billy Budd.

5. There's a name for the process of watering your Christmas tree? Who knew?

Answer: Grab the kids and give them this science factoid as they nurture the family tree: Osmosis is a form of diffusion that is specific to the movement of water. Water moves through a selectively permeable membrane (that is, one that lets some types of molecules through but not others) from a place where there is a higher concentration of water to one where it is lower.

6. Can you name all 6 wives of Henry VIII, father of the Church of England?

Answer: (Listed in order) Catherine, Anne, Jane, Anne, Catherine, Catherine. They are often remembered as divorced, beheaded, died, divorced, beheaded, survived. Sure makes you think twice when complaining about bad relatives.

7. Who was the 16th President of the United States?

Answer: Abraham Lincoln (R, 1861-65) and yes -- he really was born in a log cabin on a winter's day. Notably famous for many reasons including his Gettysburg Address: "Four Score and Seven Years ago our fathers brought fourth upon this continent a new nation conceived in Liberty . . . "

8. 'Tis the season to be jolly giving! Don’t forget to tip well this season -- etiquette coaches will tell you that means no less than 18%. So just how much should you tip on a bill of $50?

Answer: Percent means by a hundred, so anything expressed as a percentage is a fraction (or part, if you prefer) of 100. So 18% is 18 parts of 100, or 18/100 or .18. If your bill is $50, multiply 50 by .18 to get your tip total of $9. If you're feeling generous, a 20% tip would require you to multiply 50 by .20, for a total of $10.0050.00 x .18 = 9.0050.00 x .20 = 10.00Percentages can also be holiday-relevant when it comes to figuring out in-store sales. In this case, you want to multiply by the inverse of the percentage listed. So if you have a $50 sweater that's on sale for 25% off, multiply 50 by .75 for your total of $37.50. That same $50 sweater on sale for 40% off would equate to $30, or $50 multiplied by .60.50.00 x .75 = 37.5050.00 x .60 = 30.00

9. Brr, it's cold outside. But just how cold does it have to be to get some snow around here?

Answer: Did you know that the freezing point of water is 32 degrees Fahrenheit? Keep an eye on the temperature and watch your footing for ice on the ground. (See previous fact about those treasured vertebrae!)

10. Everyone knows Santa and his elves live in the North Pole. But what about the South Pole (aka Antarctica)?

Answer: The South Pole was discovered by Roald Amundsen (1872-1928, Norwegian), who was also the first to sail though the Northwest passage, the sea route from Pacific to Atlantic along the north coast of North America. Antarctica is the only continent that contains no countries -- instead, it is a stateless territory protected from exploitation by an international treaty. A good place for the elves to protest low wages?

11. Which Ocean is bigger: the Pacific or the Atlantic?

Answer: The Pacific Ocean is larger at 69,374 square miles -- that's almost double the Atlantic, which comes in at 35,665 square miles. Making it even more astonishing that St. Nick can cross the globe in just one night.

12. Remember the reason for the Season! Can you name a few things that both Judaism and Christianity have in common?

Answer: Both are monotheistic religions that share the first five books of the Christian Old Testament. Both religions view Jerusalem as a sacred site, the former for the Wailing Wall (contains the remains of the temple that was thought to be the place where God resides on earth) and the latter for Christ's burial and resurrection site.Happy Holidays to all!

Second Annual Holiday Blogs from Authors

Check it out - http://bookreporter.com/blog/blog/index.asp

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Book Review: Summer Kitchen

The Summer Kitchen by Karen Weinreb

Description: Nora Banks had it all. A great house, a loving husband, children, and she wasn’t afraid to spend whatever she had to continue to keep everything going smoothly. But for her it wasn’t all about the money. Then one day she finds out that everything is gone. Her husband is going to jail and she and the children have nothing. What can she do? She no longer fits into the community that she has been making herself a part of. She has no marketable skills any more. That is where her summer kitchen comes in. She had built it as a historical piece that gave her the space to do what she loved to do – cook.

The summer kitchen and all that has happened to her, allows Nora to discover what it is that she wants. What the difference is between living and living to make yourself happy. It may be a lot of work but there is a certain amount of satisfaction involved as well.

Thoughts: This was a nice summer read. It has a lot to do with how women interact, how we feel we fulfill ourselves and how sometimes our children, families and possessions make us feel like all is well when really we are forgetting the most important thing – ourselves.

I think it ends appropriately where you don’t know if Nora belongs with someone or on her own – but that is a decision for herself to make. But either way she has finally found what makes her most happy.

What genre would you consider this?
Family Dynamics

Overall:

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Book Review: Kill for Me

Kill for me by Karen Rose

Description: Samantha Vartanian was hurt many years ago. But by not coming forward she has realized that many other women have been hurt. She is ready to stop that cycle. She is an ADAA and her job is to put people away. Luke Papadopoulos is a detective that has seen to much. And he wants nothing else then to have the people who do evil things to children put away.

The killer seems to still be out there. He is trafficking women and hurting those that he is done with. Samantha and Luke must stop him. Can they do it in time?

Thoughts: This is a great whodunit author. The book has a combination of mystery and thrill in it that also allows the readers who like a touch of romance to be happy as well.
The subject may be dark but it will keep you on the edge of your seat until you finish the book!

What genre would you consider this?
Mystery/Thriller

Overall:

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The Well-Read Commuter Reviews: Einstein: The Life of a Genius



By:Walter Isaacson

What this book is about: Albert Einstein is synonymous with genius. From his remarkable theory of relativity and the famous equation E=mc2 to his concept of a unified field theory, no one has contributed as much to science in the last century. As well as showing how Einstein developed his theories, "Einstein" reveals the man behind the science, from his early years and thought experiments in Germany, to his marriages and children, his role in the development of the Atomic Bomb and his work for Civil Rights groups in the United States. Drawing on new research and documents only recently made available, this book also includes items of rare facsimile memorabilia, to show you more than Einstein's groundbreaking theories. Documents include: postcard sent to Einstein by Mileva Maric, before she became his first wife; a letter written by Fritz Haber in 1911 to Einstein as he worked on his General Theory of Relativity; the telegram sent by Hendrick Lorentz, informing Einstein that his theory of deflection of light by the sun had been confirmed. This confirmed Einstein's principle of relativity; and, the letter Einstein wrote to President Roosevelt in 1939 warning him of the possibility that Germany could develop an atomic bomb

What did you think of this book: This is an amazing book that immediately caught my attention. I was looking for an interesting gift and I found one. This book is both the biography of an amazing man and a sort of time capsule. The book contains many visual elements such as replicas of letters, postcards and notes that Einstein wrote. The format of the book makes it accessible in a way that traditional biographies are not. Isaacson is an expert on the life and times of Eintein and it really shows in how this book was put together.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Book Review: Hidden Currents

Hidden Currents by Christine Feehan

Description:Being the 7th daughter of a 7th daughter means your fate has been written out for you – you will have 7 daughters of your own. That may be hard for you to understand, try finding the man that you are fated to and having him understand. That is what happens to the youngest sister Elle Drake and her love Sherriff Jackson Deveau. So Elle goes out into the real world trying to help people by spying. When she comes across a man so evil no one can destroy him and he will stop at nothing to have Elle.

Elle’s sisters aren’t going to let anyone have her. They and Jackson will do whatever it takes (including putting all their powers together) to get her back to their family. But that is only the first step – they must put her back together – and stop the evil that is coming for her!

Thoughts: This is the darkest book of the Drake Sister’s series. I was sad to see them end – but it was nice to see everyone happy. I wouldn’t suggest this for the faint of heart. Elle lives through a very rough time (rape, beatings, emotional and physical abuse) and comes out the end stronger because of it. But that doesn’t mean it doesn’t take its toll on her. She is lucky that she has a strong family behind her.

Despite that good will overcome evil once again. Sometimes the struggle and pain make the victory all the more rewarding.


What genre would you consider this?
Paranormal Romance

Overall:

Sunday, December 6, 2009

The Well-Read Commuter Reviews: Mommy's Little Girl



By: Diane Fanning

What this book is about: When news broke of three-year old Caylee Anthony's disappearance from her home in Florida in July of 2008, there was an outpouring of sympathy from across the nation. The search made front page headlines and thrust her mother into the spotlight. Soon a huge question mark began to hang over the case: the girl's mother.

Did you like this book: If you think that you have read it all and heard it all when it comes to the murder of Caylee Anthony, think again. True Crime author Diane Fanning is back and better than ever. Fanning must have poured over thousands of hundreds of documents, interviews and videos about the investigation to bring us her latest book. The pace of the book is good and Fanning's writing style if fabulous. True Crime lovers will delight as you delve into the unusual world of Casey Anthony.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

3 Ways to Get You Through the Holidays

3 Ways to Get You Through the Holidays
By Ed and Deb Shapiro,
Authors of Be the Change: How Meditation Can Transform You and the World

The holidays are a tough time, when demands are constantly being made on our patience, coping capacity, and endurance! When things are not going your way or they look topsy-turvy and you just want to scream; when your day appears chaotic and you are not sure if you are coming or going; or when it feels like it is all piled on your shoulders, then this is the ideal moment to resource yourself by just stopping, being still, and breathing.

You do have what it takes within you to do everything and still be peaceful, but you may need a reminder to just stop and breathe. So here are three moments to regenerate yourself and remember why you are doing all this in the first place. All it takes is a moment to look within and reconnect with your loving heart. You can get it together even when you think it is all falling apart!

Mini-meditations can be done on a train, walking down the street, at an airport, standing at a bus stop, in an elevator, while chopping vegetables, or while sitting in the bathroom -- often the only place you can guarantee you will be left alone! Silently count your out-breath up to ten times, or walk with awareness of each step for up to ten steps. Or relax each part of your body, then silently repeat "soft belly" for five breaths.

If you are at work, then use your lunch hour to find a quiet spot, perhaps in a park, or even in the office if everyone else has gone out. If you are traveling then use that time to consciously breathe, letting your awareness follow your breath from the nose tip to your belly and back out again. If you are driving or operating machinery and feel you are getting tense, then stop for a moment, focus on any part of the body that is feeling tight and breathe into it, until you relax and let go. Silently repeat "soft shoulders" or "soft neck" and so on.

As you walk down the street or ride an elevator practice a mini-loving kindness by silently wishing everyone be well, wishing that everyone be happy. In the office you can spend a few moments repeating the names of everyone you work with and wishing them happiness. On your way home from work reflect on your day and generate loving thoughts to all those you met. When you send out loving thoughts it relaxes the space around you and dissipates any chaotic or disturbing energies. What you put out comes back to you tenfold.

1. Mini Breath Meditation

Sit comfortably with your back straight. Take a deep breath and let it go. Begin to silently count at the end of each out breath: Inhale . . . exhale . . . count one, inhale . . . exhale . . . two, inhale . . . exhale . . . three. Then start at one again. Just three breaths and back to one. Simply following each breath in and silently counting. So simple. Do this as many times as you want, eyes open or closed, breathing normally.

2. Mini Walking Meditation

You can do this walking along a country lane, a city street, in the office or the garden. You can walk slowly, normal or fast, whatever feels right. As you walk become aware of your walking, of the movement of your body and the rise and fall of your feet. Become aware of your breath and see if you can bring both your breathing and your walking together. Just walk and breathe with awareness for a few minutes.

3. Instant Letting Go

Find a quiet place to sit, have a straight back, and take a deep breath and let it go. Then quietly repeat to yourself: "My body is at ease and relaxed . . . my heartbeat is normal . . . my mind is calm and peaceful . . . my heart is open and loving." Keep repeating this until you have let go of the tension and are at peace. Then take a deep breath and have a smile on your face!

Enjoy the holidays!

©2009 Ed and Deb Shapiro, authors of Be the Change: How Meditation Can Transform You and the World

The Well-Read Commuter Reviews: Cocktail Time




What this book is about: Fans of Sandra Lee's hit show "Semi-Homemade Cooking" love hearing Sandra say, "It's cocktail time!" The regularly featured segment on her Food Network television show has created a cult following, and for the first time, Sandra is answering her fans' prayers with a new book dedicated to Cocktail Time. The book mixes a selection of Sandra's most popular cocktails and canapes. Whether you're entertaining for your significant other, hosting a few friends, or throwing a big party, this slim, fun guide provides great ideas for mixed drinks that anyone can make at home.

Did you like this book:
The Holiday Season is upon us. Between spending money we don’t have and spending more time with our family, let’s not bother pretending we don’t need a good cocktail or two. Sandra Lee delivers in her book, Cocktail Time. Although I have never seen her Food Network show, I assure you it did not stop me from rushing home from work to whip up a batch of Cranberry Margarittas and enjoying them all the same. Page after page of the book is filled with everything from sophisticatedly different to delightfully down-home easy drinks. The best news, there are drinks that are socially acceptable to drink at all hours of the day included in the book. The book also pairs food recipes and non-alcoholic drinks with the alcoholic recipes. So whip up some Cheesy Chili Fries with a non-alcoholic Maple Shake for the kids and an Autumn Coffee with mocha liqueur for yourself and call it a day.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Book Feature: Fail Nation

Title: Fail Nation
Publisher: Harper Collins
Publication Date: October 2009
Price $11.99
Description: Just like Fail blog it shows you the epic fails that we put out every day.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

The Well-Read Commuter Reviews: Polar Obsession



Polar Obsession
By: Paul Nicklen

What this book is about:
In this spectacular work, National Geographic photographer and biologist Paul Nicklen breaks new ground with stunning images of life in the polar reaches, and delivers critical new insights into animal behavior and the climate change that threatens the ice and its inhabitants. Paul spent his childhood exploring the frozen tundra and seascape of the Canadian Arctic. His award-winning photographs of Arctic and Antarctic wildlife tell powerful stories about the intricate web of life supported by sea ice, and the ongoing threat of climate change to these fragile ecosystems. Nicklen's intimate portraits of creatures above and below the ice focus attention on the plight facing the polar regions, while his passionate text recounts his remarkable encounters with animals at the ends of the Earth.

Did you like this book:
This is a high quality “coffee table” book with 240 pages of visually stunning photographs. It is a beautiful piece of artwork for your home. I should add a disclaimer that I have always had a fondness for coffee table books. As much as the pictures you choose to hang on the wall, your coffee table book can assist in setting the tone for the room. That being said, this book is filled with beautiful, unique and powerful shots. Nicklen takes you places in the Arctic and with the animals that are not often seen. The book gives you almost a sense of calm and peace as with each turn of the page the photos seem to transport you to another era. The stress of the day melts away and there are no cell phones ringing, televisions blaring or kids whining- just peace and majesty as you melt into the book and the pallet of whites and blues. Photography as an art is alive and well. You can get a copy to give as a holiday gift, but you had better get one for yourself too, otherwise you won’t be able to part with it.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

The Well-Read Commuter Reviews: Jesus is for Everybody



Jesus is for Everybody

By: Sophia White

What this book is about: Jesus is for Everybody explains how to build a personal relationship with God based on the teachings of Jesus Christ associated with common knowledge. White explains that her goal is to provide insight into the way of life that leads to the Kingdom of God as illustrated through the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Several ministries tend to mirror that of a motivational speaker while she writes about developing a personal relationship with God in terms of life, rather than religion.

Did you like this book: In this book Sophia White writes about developing a personal relationship with God. She focuses on life rather than religion. The book is a nice read and well organized. Overall I am glad that I picked it up.

Book Review: Best Friends Forever

Best Friends Forever by Jennifer Weiner

Description:Since they were 9 years old Addie and Valerie were best friends. Neither truly understood what it was like being the other – but they stayed together throughout it all. Then their final year of high school an incident happened that tore them apart. It made Addie’s life a living hell and meant the end of their friendship.

Now it is their high school reunion and Valerie shows up on Addie’s doorstep asking for help. They were best friends- right – so Addie does whatever she can to help her out. It will lead the two women on an adventure that they couldn’t predict.

Thoughts: This book was hard for me. I know that the weight made Addie self-conscious and not aware of what she meant to the world. She lost it but it still means a lot of hard work getting over the emotional implications of those things (as much as the physical). But if some person who did me so wrong ended up on my doorstep asking for help the last thing I would do is put myself out there the way that she does. It could mean jail for her! I spent most of the book going Addie don’t be so stupid – she is just using you. And part of me still thinks the same thing. I understand that Valerie had a horrible life with her mother and that part of her always hated Addie for the love that she got from her parents. But really – she hurt Addie – she made other’s hurt Addie. She generally is a selfish and full of herself person based on even her actions currently. She doesn’t deserve the best friend’s moniker. Maybe after she does something to prove it.

What genre would you consider this?
Summer Read

Overall:

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The Well-Read Commuter Reviews: Merchants of Deception



Merchants of Deception

By Eric Scheibeler

What this book is about: Eric Scheibeler and his wife longed for financial security and stability so they could enjoy their growing family. In the early 1980’s they thought they found the answer in a company called Amway. Instead, to their horror, they were plunged into a downward spiral that nearly cost them everything including their marriage and health. This book was written by a former government auditor and high level Amway insider who was the last one who wanted to discover massive consumer fraud. This book is gripping tale for anyone who has been or loves someone who has been recruited into a network marketing business or who is just interested in learning more about such businesses. This well documented book has been utilized by government authorities in both India and the UK to take action against Amway's deceptive business scheme which knowingly has created losses for the majority of all induced to invest.

Did you like this book: I had a mild interest in the subject matter when I picked up this book even though I am not too familiar with Amway or network marketing businesses. To be honest, I was mostly just curious as to how in the world selling soap and lip balm could lead someone to complete financial and personal ruin. As I worked my way through this book I was quickly educated as to how sick and twisted the American dream can become in the wrong hands. This true-life tale did not disappoint. I was completely unprepared for the white-knuckle wild ride that Scheibeler takes the reader on. The book is well written, a good length and I thought it was priced right. You don’t just have to take Scheibeler’s word about Amway as this isn’t your average kiss and tell book. Scheibeler backs his claims up with facts as noted in the footnotes and testimonials from many others who have found themselves in similar situations.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Book Review: City of Souls

City of Souls (The Fourth Sign of the Zodiac) by Vicki Pettersson

Description:Olivia/Joanna Archer is the Kairos and in the last book something she had done had screwed the fight between good and evil. The Shadow’s were taking over and making every space for the good – no longer safe. Joanna must do whatever it takes to put the two sides back on even footing.

Thoughts: I have enjoyed this series and will have to pass it on to others for a recommendation. I don’t know if it is over or not with this book (it could be the end) and if so I am sad because the plot and all that goes with it has been really interesting and different.

What genre would you consider this?
Paranormal

Overall:

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Book Feature: NutureShock – New Thinking About Children

Title: NutureShock – New Thinking About Children
Author: Po Bronson & Ashley Merryman
Publisher: Hachette Book Group
Publication Date: 2009
Price: $24.99
Description: Parenthood is tough – this book sheds light on some new ideas of how you can help shape your child. You can be a great parent – but if you don’t know why some of these key things occur then you can’t fix them. This book tells you some shocking science behind why your children behave the way they do.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Book Review: What Happens In London

What Happens In London by Julia Quinn


Description:
Olivia Bevelstoke has heard that her next door neighbor Sir Harry has killed his fiancĂ©. Is that just the gossip in London making things up or is it true. For someone who is beautiful but has a brain in her head – Olivia is generally bored by what is going on in her life. So she decides to watch him and find out.

Meanwhile Harry is back from the continent and the war. But the war office still has things for him to do. So he can’t help but be suspicious when he sees the girl next door watching him. What could she be doing that for? When war activities force them to be together – Harry realizes he can’t live without Olivia.

Thoughts: Generally I don’t like books with lots of war talk. But this one has a nice combination. Yes there is a plot twist that involves Napoleon but really it takes a back door to the story of Harry and Olivia. Until I had gotten in the book I hadn’t realized that this was a second book in a series where her friend Miranda had already had her book. Olivia was the mean one in that book. I think it is good that I had forgotten all of that as that allowed me to for a new opinion of her for this one.

What genre would you consider this?
Historical Romance

Overall:

Sunday, November 22, 2009

The Well-Read Commuter Reviews: Divorce Sucks






Book: Divorce Sucks: What to do when irreconcilable differences, lawyer fees, and your ex’s Hollywood wife, make you miserable!

Author: Mary Jo Eustace

What this book is about:
Even if you don’t think that you have ever heard of Mary Jo Eustace, if you have ever watched TMZ, Lifetime or read Star magazine, chances are that you have heard of her. Her husband of thirteen years, Dean McDermott, left her for Tori Spelling. This book is one part tell- all and one part guide to get readers on their feet after a bitter breakup. This hilarious read will fill you in on all the things you never wanted to know about divorce from what a phone call with a lawyer will cost, to how to handle your new replacement, to what Hollywood divorcees are actually thinking when they watch their ex walk the red carpet with a millionaire. Sometimes horrifying, sometimes gratifying, and never merciful, this book will give readers an inside look at one of today's most public divorces while reminding them - hey, it could always be worse.

Did you like this book:

I did like this book. I immediately snapped it up when I saw it and settled in for what I was sure was going to be a gossip-filled and juicy read. It was not the meaty tell-all I was hoping for, but it is a pretty cute pick-me-up for any woman who is knocked for a loop by her recent relocation to the “51 percentile” area code. Mary Jo is inviting everyone to join her on her Divorce Cruise as she takes the reader through reassembling a life and adjusting to their new “single” reality. The book covers a lot of ground with some really funny insights into the demise of Mary Jo’s marriage and just how she picked up all the pieces. The book coaches the reader on how to live for yourself, date again and even think about giving marriage another go around- skipping quickly from subject to subject. Nothing is off limits as she advises women on deleting the porn he had on the family computer, ripping off the wood paneling in the den and throwing out that Bow Flex he had to have but never used. Since her husband left her while they were on vacation with another couple, and while she was holding their soon to be adopted seven week old daughter (the adoption was not even finalized) for a married woman whom he had known for only three weeks, Mary Jo’s life and the way she rebuilt it can serve as inspiration. If you are in the midst of a soul-sucking divorce and not in the mood for inspiration, at the very least a you can look at her break-up which included being dragged through the tabloid ringer, and having to stomach her ex and his new wife ham it up on their own reality show and get a good old fashioned, “thank God it’s not that bad” out of it.

I did bristle at the advice that Mary Jo gave to divorcing mothers on talking to their ex-husbands and make sure that their ex’s were fully understanding their (the mother’s) point of view. She advises the women to use guilt as a tool of manipulation to in essence make their ex-husband’s see things there way and do what they want. This made me cringe. A guilty parent lends itself to a guilty parenting style with no rules, also called permissive parenting, which leads to really bratty, entitled kids that no one wants to be around. Kids are also smart and when they hear mom on the phone controlling dad with guilt, they will add that trick to their toolbox and use it against both parents. Overall a great read and definitely a quick pick me up for those who find themselves on their own Divorce Cruise. This book is part of Joanne’ Kimes’ best-selling “Sucks” series which includes informational books such as Pregnancy Sucks for Men, Menopause Sucks, Dating Sucks, Dieting Sucks and Potty Training Sucks. With so many things about life, well, just plain sucking I am sure the series will enjoy success for quite some time.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Book Review: Under her Skin

Under her Skin by Susan Mallery

Description: Book one in the Titan sisters’ series. The Titan sisters have always had a bit of a thing with their father. He doesn’t seem to love or appreciate them. So they strive to get his attention. For Lexi Titan that meant opening up a spa on her own and making something of herself. When a mysterious loan finally comes due and almost means her losing her spa she will do anything to stop that from happening.

Cruz Rodriguez has the money but not the connections and he knows a Titan can give him those connections. When he finds out that Lexi needs something from him it is the perfect opening for a fake engagement. Their past has shown both of them that they have an attraction for one another, so this should work out great – right?

Thoughts: I have read the books out of order so I knew a little about what was going to happen in this one before it did. I can’t wait to see how they all end and they find out how good of a person their father (and the mysterious loan person) are. Right now they seem pretty darn evil.

In terms of this story in particular I enjoyed it. Cruz is a hard man. He ignores his daughter, has heart Lexi, but it is all because he just doesn’t know who to trust. And a woman that can teach him that he is worth everything in her life is important.

What genre would you consider this?
Romance

Overall: