Saturday, December 3, 2016

CHRISTMAS GREETINGS FROM THE PRESIDENTS

CHRSITMAS GREETINGS FROM THE 
PRESIDENTS. This looks like an interesting readespecially with the time of year. Take a look.


In the early days of Calvin Coolidge's presidency, a new White House tradition was born with the decorating of a "National Community Christmas Tree" in 1923. Since 1927, the annual lighting of the tree has also been accompanied by a presidential message. Those addresses, many of which are collected here, have provided an intriguing snapshot into the soul of two enduring institutions: The Christmas holiday and the American nation.
From the initial, decidedly brief messages that "Silent Cal" Coolidge presented at the end of the 1920s to those given by Franklin Delano Roosevelt in the midst of World War II as well as Ronald Reagan's message expressing solidarity with the people of Poland, which charted the beginning of the end of the Cold Car, the Presidents of the United States have marked the time through these inspiring messages of hope and goodwill.
This collection of Christmas messages consists of at least one address from each president since 
Calvin Coolidge. Reading them, we can trace the history of the United States from the Roaring 
Twenties through the Great Depression, World War II, the Cold Wa, the brief eras of Camelot and 
Watergate, the oil crisis and the fall of Communism, eras of economic book and recession, and the 
aftereffects of terrorism. Through all of these historic events, the lasting message of Christmas shines bright: We look to Christmas to remind us of what we can be—what is possible when we unite in 
hope, faith, and forgiveness.


Tuesday, November 29, 2016

WINTER SKY by Chris Stewart

WINTER SKY by Chris Stewart. Wow! This is an incredible story. It truly had me hooked from the first page. I loved seeing this perspective of the war. I loved the young rebel and all the people he met along the way. Everyone has a reason they do what they do. It was fascinating to learn about each of these characters. I did have trouble figuring out who's point of view the story was in, even within each section. Once I settle on an omniscient POV it made it easier to continue. I would highly recommend this novel to anyone, especially those with a love for historical things.

:) :) :) :)

In a bombed-out Polish village during World War II a young resistance fighter finds that he is suddenly alone and trapped between two opposing armies. He is one of Poland's "Devil's Rebels" fighting desperately to save his homeland, but an injury has erased his memory and his only possession is a torn photograph of a couple he assumes are his parents. The woman appears to be holding the hand of a young child whose image has been ripped off. Could the child be him?
Caught in the crosshairs of the retreating German army and the advancing Russian forces, the village holds nothing but destruction and despair until a mysterious young woman offers a small glimmer of hope that may represent his last chance - news of a refuge train departing from a nearby town headed for American installations at the border. But complications arise when the resistance fighter is betrayed by his own countryman and hunted by German SS Officers who are determined to kill him before they retreat. Desperately searching for a home and family he can't remember he is persuaded to rescue two children who are doomed to die without his help.
As time runs out the former rebel is faced with an impossible choice. Standing at the crossroads of saving himself or risking his life for strangers, what would motivate a young man at the brink of salvation to make one more sacrifice?
*A copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for an unbiased review.


Tuesday, November 22, 2016

EVERTASTER: THE DELICIOUS CITY by Adam Glendon Sidwell — spotlight


I have eaten up the other two books in this series. I can't wait to devour this one as well. :)

Ever since he took a bite of a legendary dessert last summer, twelve-year-old Guster Johnsonville has never been the same. In fact, when a strange little man dressed as a conquistador comes clattering into the barn at the back of the Johnsonville farmhouse one afternoon, he forces Guster to face the truth: Guster is now the most delicious thing in the whole world, and a terrible monster is coming to eat him.

The monster is one of the Yummies—a pack of horrible, ferocious creatures with an appetite for sweets. What other choice do Guster, Zeke, and Mariah have than to run away from home to escape the mysterious beast?

On the run in a far corner of the world, Guster and his siblings discover a secret settlement known as the Delicious City. Now, with the Yummies hot on their trail and the Delicious City’s Mayor determined to feed Guster to the beasts, Guster must embrace his talents as an Evertaster if he’s going to save the city from collapsing and get his family out alive.

Author Adam Glendon Sidwell


In between books, Adam Glendon Sidwell uses the power of computers to make monsters, robots and zombies come to life for blockbuster movies such as Pirates of the Caribbean, King Kong, Transformers and Tron. After spending countless hours in front of a keyboard meticulously adjusting tentacles, calibrating hydraulics, and brushing monkey fur, he is delighted at the prospect of modifying his creations with the flick of a few deftly placed adjectives.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

FABLEHAVEN BOOK OF IMAGINATION by Brandon Mull — Spotlight

FABLEHAVEN: BOOK OF IMAGINATION by Brandon Mull. As a lover of the Fabelhaven Series, this book looks like it will be a lot of fun to dive into the series even more. Check it out!
Don't open this book without a pen or pencil in hand!
Unlike the other Fablehaven books, this one is only half-finished...The missing ingredient is you!
Begin by writing your name in the space provided on the front cover. Then get ready to write, draw, solve, and create, guided by the many activities inside!
  • Draw a map for your own magical preserve
  • Color pictures of a dryad, a dragon, a demon, and lots of fairies
  • Solve the Tauran Maze
  • Fold origami figures of Raxtus and Olloch the Glutton
  • Bake desserts like a brownie would
  • Create wizard slime
  • Make a rain stick or a unicorn horn
  • Draw a dragon's head
  • Solve the Sphinx's riddles
  • Mix your own potion
The secret world of enchanted preserves is waiting for you to jump in—just make sure to avoid any deep pools filled with naiads!

TO WIN A LADY'S HEART by Sian Ann Bessey


TO WIN A LADY'S HEART by Sian Ann Bessey. This was a delightful read. I'm familiar with the legend it was based on so I was excited to see how that would be incorporated into the story. It was done well. The characters were true to their upbringing as well as the individual challenges that life brought them. It was fun to see Lady Joanna's growth throughout the story as well as her father and Sir Lukas. I'm always a sucker for a good tournament with the wrong guy in the lead. This is a well written love story that anyone will enjoy and appreciate. I highly recommend it.

:) :) :) :) :)

For eighteen years, Lord Gilbert has been tortured over a grievous lapse in judgment. Bitterness has tainted his interactions with the people of Moreland and his relationship with his only daughter, Lady Joanna. With a wolfhound guarding her around the clock and no freedom to leave the castle grounds unattended, the only time Lady Joanna can be alone is when she sneaks out through an old castle tunnel to visit the healer Agnes in her cottage by the sea. One morning as Lady Joanna approaches the cliffs, she discovers an injured man. She immediately goes to Agnes for help. The wounded stranger is Sir Lukas, and while he recovers, he makes plans to identify his attackers and their motive. Upon learning that Moreland’s wool has been stolen, Sir Lukas comes to believe that the crimes are related and point to a much more sinister plot. When Lord Gilbert announces an archery tournament, the prize being Lady Joanna’s hand in marriage, it attracts noblemen from across the land, and suddenly Sir Lukas’s pursuit of the villains takes a different turn. As Lady Joanna’s and Sir Lukas’s feelings for each other grow, the stakes soar, and only Sir Lukas’s skill with a longbow can save them.


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Friday, November 11, 2016

NOT A WORD by Stephanie Black


NOT A WORD by Stephanie Black. This was a really good read once I got into it. I had a hard time the first couple of chapters. When it settled into the main two characters points of view and I understood who the other character point of view was, the story made more sense. Natalie and Gideon are wonderful characters who are easy to fall in love with and understand their quorks. I enjoyed watching them grow. The red herrings were well planted and served their purpose well. For the most part I kept the pages turning. It is a great read that I would recommend to anyone who loves a good suspense novel.

:) :) :) :)

Psychologist Natalie Marsh is a pro at keeping secrets. She not only guards her clients’ confidences but also expertly hides her own pain after being disinherited by her dying mother. As fresh personal challenges begin heaping on top of professional ones, Natalie’s best friend, Camille, confides that she thinks someone is stalking her. Natalie suspects that stress, not a stalker, is shadowing Camille—but Camille’s fear only continues to grow when the widow of a local businessman starts whispering that her husband was murdered and a new client of Natalie’s seems to be concealing something much more frightening than her inability to stand up for herself. Soon a shattering crime proves the danger is real. But when everyone has something at stake, is there anyone Natalie can trust? Or will she fall victim to a killer who will do anything to keep secrets hidden?


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Tuesday, November 8, 2016

FOR SALE BY OWNER Spotlight

FOR SALE BY OWNER by Marlene Bateman. This is a good read. Check out my review here.

Filled with plans, McKenzie Forsberg returns to her hometown to spend Christmas with her family. Stressed by a year of intense, ongoing problems, she quit her high-powered job to move back and rebuild her life.  Kenzie desperately needs the peace and security she is sure will come from buying the home she grew up in. But when she arrives, Kenzie discovers that a handsome widower, Jared Rawlins, has already put an offer on the house. However, he can only close the deal if he sells his own house by Christmas Eve.

When Kenzie unexpectedly runs into a couple who are considering buying Jared’s house, she unthinkingly gives them information that changes their mind. Jared is more than a little interested in Kenzie, but has second thoughts when it appears Kenzie may have attempted to sabotage the sale of his home. Feeling bad, Kenzie apologizes but the damage may be too much for their relationship to overcome. Despite themselves, sparks of attraction grow into something more. Then, a few days before Christmas, Kenzie makes a stunning discovery about her past. In that moment, everything changes. Will the power of love be enough to bring Jared and Kenzie together and allow them to find their happily ever after?

Author Bio
Marlene Bateman Sullivan was born in Salt Lake City, Utah and grew up in Sandy, Utah.  She graduated from the University of Utah with a Bachelor's degree in English. She is married to Kelly R. Sullivan and they live in North Salt Lake, Utah with their two dogs and four cats. Marlene has been published extensively in magazines and newspapers and wrote the best-selling romance/suspense novel, Light on Fire Island. She has written three other mysteries; Motive for Murder, A Death in the Family, and Crooked House.
Marlene has also written a number of LDS, non-fiction books:  Latter-day Saint Heroes and Heroines, And There Were Angels Among Them, Visit’s from Beyond the Veil, By the Ministering of Angels, Brigham’s Boys, Heroes of Faith, Gaze into Heaven; Near-death Experiences in Early Church History, and The Magnificent World of Spirits; Eyewitness Accounts of Where We Go When We Die. 

Excerpt

“What made you decide to move to Lake Forest?” Kenzie asked.
“I’ve always loved it here,” Jared said. “It’s a beautiful area, and there’s a special atmosphere here. People are so friendly. I guess part of the reason I came is because I needed to go someplace new and kind of start over, you know?”
Kenzie did know. That was exactly what she was doing now. She’d gotten over Larry, but she needed to go someplace new and reinvent herself and her life. 
“Now let me ask you,” Jared said. “What made you decide to come back?”
“A lot of reasons. I need a fresh start too. I’m tired of the hectic pace in Chicago.” Impulsively she added, “Also, I had to get away from my job at Midwest. A guy was causing some real problems for me—” She stopped. Their eyes met and lingered. Jared’s compassion was evident and the expression on his face kind. She felt so comfortable talking with him—as if they were kindred spirits. Something in her heart softened into a spreading pool, and she smiled at him.
Tearing open his packet of Oreo cookies., Jared took one and dunked it in his hot chocolate.
Kenzie frowned. “Figures. You’re a dunker.”
“And I bet you’re a twister.”
Snatching up a cookie, Kenzie twisted it open and took a bite of the creamy middle. “Ummm.”
Jared shuddered. “That’s wrong in so many ways.”
Picking up her mug and warming her fingers, Kenzie sipped her hot chocolate. “This is wonderful!”
“It’s a secret recipe—been in my family for generations.”
“Really?”
“No, but it sounds good, doesn’t it?”