The Girls’ Guide to Conquering Life

There’s a lot a girl needs to know as she grows up and makes her way in the world. Having a reference guide of practical how-to life skills and character traits can empower her to become a confident and capable woman. Coauthors Erica and Jonathan Catherman offer this collection of step-by-step instructions on 100 things girls need to succeed, including how to

– introduce yourself

– change a flat tire

– respectfully break up with a guy

– behave during a police stop

– create a personal budget

– clear a clogged drain

– iron a shirt

– sharpen kitchen knives

– and much more

In fact, if it’s in here, it’s an important skill or character trait practiced by capable and confident women. With great illustrations and sidebars of advice from world-class experts, this all-in-one reference tool for young women in the making is the perfect gift for birthdays, graduations, or any occasion.

Girls.jpg

Wow! I haven’t posted any book reviews in a little while. I guess it’s time to change that. Life has just been busy for me and time has gotten away from me!

Anyway, now to the book review.

This was an interesting book about basic skills women need to “conquer life” as the title says. Skimming through this book at first, I found it to be full of many different skills, from talking to a guy to sharpening kitchen knives. To be honest, it was fun to see what kind of skills I already knew and what skills I didn’t.

There was one little downfall to this book. While they talked about the skills women should know, they didn’t fully explain each and every one. For a few of the skills, if I wanted to learn them, I would have to ask someone else how to do it or look it up online.

However, it was still a good “manual” for girls to look through!

The cover is kind of plain, so I’m going to give it 4 stars. The cover really fit the book that was inside it.

As for the book itself, I’m going to give it 3 stars. I was impressed with some areas of the book, and not as much impressed with others. However, I would still recommend it as a good, simple manual to “conquering life” as a girl/woman.

 

Title: The Girls’ Guide to Conquering Life: How to Ace an Interview, Change a Tire, Talk to a Guy, and 97 Other Skills You Need to Thrive

Author: Erica and Jonathan Catherman
I received this book from the Revell Division of the Baker Publishing Group for this review.

This review was written in my own opinions and words.

Advertisements

Together Forever

Marianne Neumann became a placing agent with the Children’s Aid Society with one goal: to find her lost sister. Her fellow agent, Andrew Brady, is a former schoolteacher with a way with children and a hidden past. As they team up placing orphans in homes in Illinois, they grow ever closer . . . until a shocking tragedy changes one of their lives forever.

Together Forever.jpg

Jody Hedlund does it again. I am blown away by what an amazing author she is. Somehow, within just a few short pages, she can pull you into a story and make you not want to leave until it is finished.

I have to be honest. I did not like Marianne as a character in the first book, With You Always, in this series. She just was not very likeable in my opinion. However, as soon as I started this book, that opinion changed, and she became a favorite character. Andrew was amazing. I love characters like him and I definitely fell in love with him as soon as I met him.

The cover is very wonderful. It fits the story perfectly, with the girl and the boy clinging to the woman, who is meant to be Marianne. Speaking of which, I loved all of the children. They were great little characters whom I grew to love as I “got to know” each one. Therefore, I am going to give the cover 5 stars.

Can you guess how I am going to rate this book? Definitely 5 stars. I am very excited to read the next book in The Orphan Train series. I can’t wait to see how Sophia’s story plays out! If you are looking for a sweet romance mixed with some mystery, intrigue, and history, this is the book for you!

 

Title: Together Forever

Author: Jody Hedlund

Author’s Website: http://jodyhedlund.com/

 

This review is written in my own opinions and words.

Check out a giveaway for a $25 Amazon gift card in honor of Together Forever’s release: https://promosimple.com/ps/cee5/together-forever-celebration-tour-giveaway

Honeysuckle Dreams

After Brady Collins’ ex-wife dies, he receives devastating news—his nine-month-old son Sam isn’t his son at all. And Sam’s wealthy maternal grandparents want custody of the child. Brady knows he’s in for the fight of his life. But regardless of what any blood test says, Sam is his son, and Brady will go to any lengths to keep him.

Brady’s attorney tips him off that one major life change would virtually assure him of winning guardianship of baby Sam at the final hearing: an impending marriage. And his friend Hope is willing to step in as the loving and devoted fiance.

Local radio celebrity Hope Daniels has been driven by a solitary goal her entire life, and after a happy accident she’s finally offered her dream job. But if the truth comes out about her arrangement with Brady, she may miss the chance of a lifetime and stand in the way of a dear friend’s dreams.

As Brady and Hope make sacrifices to help each other in their times of need, they risk uncovering a truth neither of them expects to find.

Honeysuckle Dreams.jpg

Denise Hunter is definitely a favorite author of mine. I enjoy all of her books. So, while this one was still enjoyable, it was not a favorite.

The characters were very well written. I was able to get to know them easily throughout the book. However, the conflict towards the end of the book was very confusing. I did not understand the reason. It seemed like it just happened because there needed to be a conflict in order for there to be a dramatic and sappy ending. But, honestly, it just was altogether confusing and not understandable.

Even though I did not like that part of the novel, I still enjoyed it very much. For all fans of romance and Denise Hunter, this book is definitely for you.

The cover is very cute. Most of Denise’s book covers always set the mood and setting for the book. This one did no different. I am giving the cover 5 stars.

As for the novel itself, I am going to give it 3 stars. However, don’t let that scare you away from the book. The only reason I am giving is 3 stars is because I did not like the “conflict” in the end of the book. And, also, I am a bit bias with her other books and can’t give this novel the same rating as my favorite books by her.

 

Title: Honeysuckle Dreams

Author: Denise Hunter

Author’s Website: http://denisehunterbooks.com/

 

I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program.

This review is written in my own opinions and words.

Daisy Cakes Bakes: Keepsake Recipes for Southern Layer Cakes, Pies, Cookies, and More

The scent of cake baking in the oven, the pretty sheen of frosting being whipped up nice and light, or the glorious mess of measuring and mixing ingredients for cookie dough are memories cherished by many a home baker. Kim Nelson grew up learning to make family recipes alongside her mother, grandmothers, and great aunt. This pastime blossomed into Kim’s beloved company, Daisy Cakes, which ships delicious Southern layer cakes in keepsake tins all across the US. Daisy Cakes Bakes shares those family cake recipes, as well as recipes for cookies, bars, confections, pies, ice creams, and more. The flavors are rich but never cloying, the recipes are crowd-pleasing and simple to make, and Kim’s engaging stories will inspire everyone to start their own baking traditions.

Daisy Cakes Bakes.jpg

You know how thinking or reading about good food makes your mouth water? Well, this book does exactly that. As soon as I got this book, I quickly skimmed through it for an idea of what kind of recipes are in it. Well, I just had to take a second look right away. All of the recipes looked too die for.

For example, there was a pie crust that had pretzels in it. Pretzels! I was in love immediately.

However, since my family and I are trying to eat healthier, I have not made it yet. I am guessing though that I will make it pretty soon. I can never resist the temptation of such good recipes.

The cover is very cute. Just the cover alone made me want to read this book. I mean, that cake looks so good! 5 stars to the photographer!

The oven in my house is sure to be heating up sometime soon so I can try out a few of these recipes! I am sure they are as good as they sound and look! 5 stars to Kim Nelson! I hope she keeps writing more recipe books like this!

 

Title: Daisy Cakes Bakes

Author: Kim Nelson

 

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.

This review is written in my own opinions and words.

Keturah

In 1772 England, Lady Keturah Banning Tomlinson and her sisters find themselves the heiresses of their father’s estates and know they have one option: Go to the West Indies to save what is left of their heritage.
Although it flies against all the conventions for women of the time, they’re determined to make their own way in the world. But once they arrive in the Caribbean, proper gender roles are the least of their concerns. On the infamous island of Nevis, the sisters discover the legacy of the legendary sugar barons has vastly declined–and that’s just the start of
what their eyes are opened to in this unfamiliar world.
Keturah never intends to put herself at the mercy of a man again, but every man on the island seems to be trying to win her hand and, with it, the ownership of her plantation. She could desperately use an ally, but even an unexpected reunion with a childhood friend leaves her questioning his motives.
Set on keeping her family together and saving her father’s once-great plantation, can Keturah ever surrender her stubbornness and guarded heart to God and find the healing and love awaiting her?

Keturah

I can’t say that I liked this book better than Lisa’s River of Time series, but I still did enjoy it. I mean, The River of Time is hard to beat because I love it so much. However, Keturah was very good.

All Lisa T. Bergren fans will definitely enjoy this book. However, I do have to say Keturah’s backstory was slightly confusing. I didn’t really understand what happened to her. Therefore, I didn’t really “feel” for her. I am very excited to read about Verity and Selah. I wish I could talk more about them and what I hope happens to them in the next books, but I can’t without giving anything away.

The cover is interesting! The scenery/background is pretty. I am going to give it 4 stars!

I am going to give this book 4 stars. Although it wasn’t my favorite, I still would recommend it to fans of romance with intrigue. I can’t wait to read the next books in the series to find out what happens to the Sugar Baron’s daughters!

Before you go, I have to let you know about a great giveaway! Litfuse Publicity Group is giving away fives copies of Keturah for five lucky winners to enjoy! Here is the link to read a little bit more about the book and author: http://litfusegroup.com/campaigns/keturah-lisa-bergren. And then here is a direct link to the giveaway: http://litfusegroup.com/campaigns/keturah-lisa-bergren. Good luck!

 

Title: Keturah

Author: Lisa T. Bergren

Author’s Website: http://lisatawnbergren.com/

 

I receive this book from the Litfuse Publicity Group for this review.

 

This review is written in my own opinions and words.

A Loyal Heart

He’s taken her as his prisoner. But she’s holding his heart captive. In gaining their freedom, will they lose what matters most?
When Lady Olivia’s castle is besieged, she and her sister are taken captive and held for ransom by her father’s enemy, Lord Pitt. Loyalty to family means everything to Olivia. She’ll save her sister at any cost and do whatever her father asks—even if that means obeying his order to steal a sacred relic from her captor.
As Lord Pitt’s commander, Sir Aldric is in charge of the beautiful but feisty new prisoner. He has his hands full attempting to keep Lady Olivia out of trouble. When Lord Pitt throws her in the dungeon and threatens to hang her for stealing, Aldric conceives a plot to save Olivia’s life—betrothal to him.
Can Olivia give up the prestigious match her father has arranged with a wealthy marquess in order to marry a lowly knight like Aldric? And can Aldric move beyond his past mistakes to embrace love again? When loyalties are tested, they’re thrust into danger that could cost them their love and their lives.

A Loyal Heart

Wow! Jody Hedlund does it again! When I heard that she was writing another young adult medieval romance, I was so excited! I couldn’t wait! And then…I became a part of her influencing team. That meant, yes, I got to read the book before the release date. I was crazy excited about that!

Anyway, I really enjoyed this book. It was just as good as the other three books in this series. I honestly can’t pick a favorite between the four books. Lady Olivia and Sir Aldric were amazing main characters. It was really fun to follow along as they got to know each other.

Needless to say, I read this book in only a few days. As soon as I turned the first page, I couldn’t stop reading. Jody Hedlund has a way of writing where she just pulls her reader in.

However, the only confusing thing about this book is Lord Pitt. I didn’t really understand him. In the book, For Love and Honor, he was an evil guy. Now, in this book, he is the good guy. So, I was confused about whether he was good or bad. If I thought of him as a brand-new character, though, it was fine.

Just like all of the other covers of Jody Hedlund’s books, this one is just as amazing. The cover designer needs a raise! 5 stars to this cover!

I definitely am going to give this book 5 stars as well. I really hope that Jody Hedlund writes more young adult medieval romances. She does a wonderful job!!

 

Title: A Loyal Heart

Author: Jody Hedlund

Author’s Website: http://jodyhedlund.com/

 

This review is written in my own opinions and words.

God Bless You and Good Night

Help Your Little One Gently Fall Asleep

Bedtime doesn’t have to be a struggle. Join the animal families as they enjoy each moment of special moment to snuggle up with your little one and discover God’s wonderful and comforting blessings.

 God Bless You and Good Night

This is the perfect book for little kids. We all know that kids never want to go to bed. They are never tired and always want to stay up later than their bedtime. However—there is a big however this time—this book will surely make it easier for kids to get ready and go to bed.

The rhyming and phrasing of this story is easy to read. Kids learning to read will enjoy reading this book as much as they will enjoy listening to an adult read it to them!

All the pictures are adorable. The illustrator did an amazing job drawing the animals. Personally, the giraffes on the cover are the cutest! However, all the other animals are drawn wonderfully well!

Both the cover and the book deserve 5 stars. Everything about it is great for little kids. I would definitely recommend this book to all children!

 

Title: God Bless You and Good Night

Author: Hannah C. Hall

Author’s Website: http://hannahchall.com/

 

I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program.

This review is written in my own opinions and words.

The Seer and the Sword

Legend states that there exists a mighty sword that makes its possessor invincible to his enemies. But there is a curse on anyone who lifts the sword for conquest. King Kareed of Archeld goes after this sword anyway, winning it from the King of Bellandra. When he returns home from battle, he brings his daughter, Princess Torina, two special gifts. One is a unique crystal, in which she can view visions of the future. The other gift is the defeated king’s son Landen, who is to be her slave. Torina immediately releases Landen, who becomes a member of the King’s army and her close friend.
But trouble is lurking in the kingdom of Archeld and people are accusing Landen of plotting against the King. Torina refuses to believe he would hurt her family. Then Torina begins seeing deadly visions in her crystal. Can she save her father’s life and the future of her kingdom?

The Seer and the Sword

I am blown away by this book! It was so good! At first, I was expecting some cheesy adventure story, but once I started reading it I could not stop! The characters, the plot, the setting—everything was wonderfully written out!

Torina and Landen were amazing main characters. It was super cool to read about them as they grew up. I didn’t just get to know them when they were adults or when they were kids. I got to know them as kids and adults. I really liked that.

I really hope Victoria Hanley has written/will write more books like this. I haven’t looked to see if Victoria has actually written more books. But, if she has, I am going to put them on my to-read list!

The cover is an “older” cover. Covers aren’t made like this anymore. But, I still like it. I am definitely going to give it 5 stars.

I would definitely recommend this book to everyone who loves an adventure with a slight—very slight—romance. Victoria Hanley totally deserves 5 stars on this book. I am sure readers of all ages will enjoy this book.

 

Title: The Seer and the Sword

Author: Victoria Hanley

Author’s Website: http://www.victoriahanley.com/

 

This review is written in my own opinions and words.

Troubled Waters

Billionaire Ian Shaw can have everything he wants–except a happy ending. Or at least that’s what it feels like with his fortune recently liquidated, his niece, Esme, still missing, and the woman he loves refusing to speak to him. In fact, he doubts she would date him even if they were stranded on a deserted island. Despite her love for Ian, Sierra Rose knows he has no room in his life for her as long as the mystery of his missing niece goes unsolved. The only problem is, Sierra has solved it, but a promise to Esme to keep her whereabouts secret has made it impossible to be around Ian. When the PEAK chopper is damaged and Sierra lacks the funds to repair it, Ian offers a fundraising junket for large donors on his yacht in the Caribbean. But the three-day excursion turns into a nightmare when a rogue wave cripples the yacht and sends the passengers overboard. Shaken up and soaked to the bone, Ian finally has a chance to test his theory when he and Sierra do indeed find themselves washed up on a strange, empty shore. It will take guts and gumption for the PEAK team to rescue the duo. But it will take a miracle to rescue Ian and Sierra’s relationship.

Troubled Waters.jpg

The easy solution to this book: communication! Seriously, Ian and Sierra, you could have been together 3.5 books ago if you would have communicated!!! And, so, my readers, that was my main “problem” with the book. I know, I know. There must be some drama in order for there to be a story. But, let us be clear on one thing. I am not dissing Susan May Warren. I like her books; they are very enjoyable. This one however just had way too much of the “I love her so much but she doesn’t want me” and “I love him so much but he doesn’t have room for me.” Come on, characters! If you would actually talk to each other, you could have been together—maybe even married—by now!

Anyway, sorry about that little rant. I just had to let loose. I am glad that Ian and Sierra finally got their story, but I am just slightly disappointed in it. I really enjoyed reading about all the side characters. I just kind of got sick of the main ones. If you have read it, you may know what I am talking about.

Unfortunately, I don’t really like the cover. It is weird. I mean, “Ian” is just staring at me creepily. See it? Yeah, not my type.

Hmm, I guess I have to give this book a low rating. And I do not like doing that. However, I must give this book 2 stars. There were a few aspects that I enjoyed about this book, but unfortunately there were more of the parts that I didn’t like. I am not giving up on Susan though! I am still excited for her new books!

 

Title: Troubled Waters

Author: Susan May Warren

Author’s Website: http://www.susanmaywarren.com/

 

This review is written in my own opinions and words.

The Lady and the Lionheart

Two worlds collide when the circus comes to Victorian-era Virginia.
Raised amid the fame and mystique of the Big Top, Charlie Lionheart holds the audience in the palm of his hand. But while his act captivates thousands, it’s away from the spotlight where his true heart lies. Here he humbly cares for his pride of lions as if they were his brothers, a skill of bravery and strength that has prepared him for his most challenging feat yet—freeing an orphaned infant from the dark bondage of a sideshow. A trade so costly, it requires his life in exchange for hers, leaving him tarnished by the price of that choice.
As the circus tents are raised on the outskirts of Roanoke, nurse Ella Beckley arrives to tend to this Gypsy girl. All under the watchful eye of a guardian who not only bears a striking resemblance to the child, but who protects the baby with a love that wraps around Ella’s own tragic past, awakening a hope that goodness may yet reign. When their forbidden friendship deepens, Charlie dares to ask for her heart, bringing her behind the curtain of his secret world to reveal the sacrifice that gave hope to one little girl—boldly showing Ella that while her tattered faith is deeply scarred, the only marks that need be permanent are his own.

The Lady and the Lionheart.jpg

I have found my new favorite book! I have fallen in love with Charlie as well. From page one to page whatever-the-last-page-was, I loved this story.

Okay, so I started the book two days ago. I finished it last night. Two days ago, I was only able to read up to chapter five. Last night, I finished the entire thing. I tried to tell myself to go to bed but I couldn’t stop reading. I just had to find out what happened.

If you haven’t read this book, you need to. I just can’t say—or write—enough good things about this book. Charlie is an absolute angel. As soon as I “met” him, I fell in love. Ella is an amazing leading lady. The plot twists and turns took me on an exciting ride. I never knew what to expect next.

The cover is absolutely beautiful. And make sure you look at the back; it also has a cool picture! 5 stars to whoever created this book cover!

How many stars should I give Joanne Bischof. I don’t want to give her only five stars. This novel deserves more than five stars. However, I suppose I shall have to be okay in saying that this book deserves 5 (+) stars. I wish it was a series. I would be so happy to read more about Charlie and Ella and all the side characters. To end this review of this wonderful book, I will simply recommend it to everyone—everyone—who enjoys a sweet romance as well as a wonderful story!

 

Title: The Lady and the Lionheart

Author: Joanne Bischof
Author’s Website: https://joannebischof.com/

 

This review is written in my own opinions and words.