Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Review: A Sparrow Falls

A Sparrow Falls A Sparrow Falls by Vicki Olsen
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book was what I expected but at the same time was more than what I expected. It is Sarah’s story. It is Dee’s story. Dee is Sarah Jane’s mother. Sarah is the only daughter in a hardworking farm family. Some might have called it a white trash family. I don’t consider anyone trash but I have heard the term and know it’s usage. The story of Sarah does involve abuse, child sexual abuse to be exact. I knew it was going to be difficult to read because of that and my own history. I expected to go slowly with the book. The scenes were not over the top or gratuitous, in my opinion. I did take breaks after reading them but they weren’t what they could have been. Being ready for them helped me. There is more more to this book than that portion of it.
To me the book is about family and family isn’t always wrapped in pretty paper tied with a bow. It is about society, too. The ways we help, the ways we don’t and the times we ignore. I think the best part of this book was the lesson that we can’t change where we come from, what people do to us or what people say or think about us. Those things are all choices made by others that affect us. Our power is in our choices. Our choice to be a victim or be a survivor. Our choice in accepting or refusing to believe what others think, say or their treatment of us. Our choice in how we respond to it all. It’s a story about the healing power of love and the freedom found in forgiveness.
I cried copious amounts of tears. I recommend having tissues handy. I loved crying so hard. It meant the author forced me to feel something, which only happens when you have been transported to the world between the pages. What that means for me is that I will spend time after I close the book thinking about it. Relating to it. Working on my self improvement because something in the story has me examining myself.
I recommend this book to those who enjoy memoir type books. At times I wondered if this was based on fact. Afterward, in thinking about it, I realized it was. It might not be the authors story or even someone’s that she knew. But out there in the world..it is or was someone’s life.
I won this book in a Goodreads Giveaway. A review was not required. I voluntarily reviewed the book and all opinions are mine.

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Sunday, February 9, 2020

Review: The Sunday Potluck Club

The Sunday Potluck Club The Sunday Potluck Club by Melissa Storm
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is an amazing book. I finished it last night but have been unable to move on. I couldn’t begin the review until I thought about so many things that came at me while reading it. I still am not certain what to say. This book has layers.
I knew, after reading the first two pages, it would make me cry. I was ready for that. I got a box of Kleenex ready. I wasn’t ready for the push, pull of the book. The push to read on, wanting to know what was going to happen next, especially with Amy, Trent and Olivia. The pull to stop and absorb; to exam my feelings and connections.
Maybe it is because my mom has Alzheimer’s. Not the same as cancer but equally hurtful and devastating. There is two deaths in Alzheimer’s. Did you know that? The first death comes when your parent no longer knows you and you only get glimpses of who you knew was your mom, or dad. The second, the final one, the I’m still not acquainted with, the one I dread. My mom will be gone with no glimpses a possibility. I thought about how different it is from cancer yet the same. I thought of Amy and how closely I felt to her. How much I felt understood and validated by her internal emotional swings. I stopped quite a bit to examine her..and me. I wasn’t as close with my mom as Amy. My mom hurt me. I’ll never know why now. It’s locked up. I’ll never get the apology either that I wanted. Though, in reality, I wanted it with no real hope of getting it. I forgave because I needed to move on. I needed to cling to the belief that it wasn’t me, that I was so bad I didn’t deserve to be loved. But even so, I wanted to hear it from her. Now, even if she wanted to tell me it wasn’t me, she can’t. It’s never coming so I have to deal with that.
The book is a romance, a testament to friendships and, in an odd way, a coming of age. A different age from the usual teen into adult, but still, a coming of age. Amy, Bridget, Nichole and Hazel are all becoming someone different yet the same. All but one have gone from being a daughter into some new role. The memories are there. The love remains. But the arms are empty, the ears don’t hear and the only time you see them, is when you catch a glimpse in the mirror or, if you have them, in your children. You are still you but you have been changed. Death has left its mark just as walking the rocky road to adulthood does. So yes, a coming of age book.
Now, go, read the book.

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Saturday, February 8, 2020

Review: Murder in an Irish Cottage

Murder in an Irish Cottage Murder in an Irish Cottage by Carlene O'Connor
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I love this book. I’m honestly afraid I’m going to say to much so the review is going to be short. I adore Siobhán and her family. I was kept guessing until the reveal, changing my mind constantly over who it was. I was absolutely enchanted with the story and the location descriptions. This author is a recent discovery and I love how she is able to blend in me a longing to go to Ireland with the feeling that I am there while reading her books. I get totally immersed in the story with the people coming alive for me and the feeling of transportation. This author’s writing is magical. Go read this book and all the ones in the series.

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Friday, February 7, 2020

Review: There's a New Witch in Town

There's a New Witch in Town There's a New Witch in Town by Carolyn Ridder Aspenson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

There’s a New Witch In Town is a new series by Carolyn Ridder Aspenson. I have read a few books by this author and have never been disappointed. I’m delighted that this one continues that trend.
In this one we are introduced to Abby, a young writer who has just lost her beloved mother. Things start happening around her that she puts down to faulty wiring. In reality, she, who writes tales of a witch, is about to make a startling discovery.
I love the characters in this. Abby, love interest Gabe, best friend Stella and Bessie, her mom’s best friend. Mr Charming and Cooper were delightful surprises. I love the relationship Abby has with them.
One of the things I enjoy so much about Ms Aspenson’s writing is that she gives me so much to think about. She blends things and presents ideas and information that I find myself thinking about and remembering long after I close her books. She is also one author that I can count on to write characters that are strong yet still learning things. Her characters have relationships that are sometimes difficult. We get to see how those work out. In this case, not everyone can know about Abby’s newly discovered life. I have a best friend that I would be torn wanting to protect her but wanting to spill everything. I know, for different reasons, how delicate and tricky that is to balance. I’m so interested in how these relationships progress or change. The mystery I’m not going to say one word about because I am not chancing any type of spoiler. Matter of fact, I’m just stopping here and telling you to grab this book and read it now!

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Review: Inheriting Murder: A Bobwhite Mountain Cozy Mystery

Inheriting Murder: A Bobwhite Mountain Cozy Mystery by Jamie Rutland Gillespie My rating: 5 of 5 stars ...