Tag Archives: book review

Start each day with a Miracle Morning

Those days of wanting to accomplish more in a day but don’t have enough time is over!! When you start your day with a Miracle Morning, you start fresh every day and prepare for accomplishing more than ever!


No, it’s not just for giggles! Start your day an hour or two earlier than usual. Take some time for silence, affirmations, visualization, exercise, reading, and scribing. Author Hal Wlrod even suggests being able to donall this in just a few minutes when time is super tight. 

When you start your mornings in these areas, it balances you emotionally, gets your heart pumping, and creates a morning of reflection as well as helps you to focus on what you’re doing that day and journaling your emotional state. All of these put together make an extraordinary way to start the day! 

For those of us who have young children, it is important to get this done before they wake up. Have you ever tried to squeeze things in at the wnd of a day? Many times it’s impossible to squeeze anything in!

Hal Elrod had an amazing miraculous recovery from severe traumatic brain injury from a car accident. He has overcome much more than anyone should need to. He didn’t let his circumstances stop him from becoming more, nor should you. 

A friend of mine recommended this book as a great read. It sounded interesting enough that I took it upon myself to read it for myself. I was not disappointed and neither will you!

Misdirect is an understatement!

From the very start, this story pulls the reader in and never let’s go. It is highly likely you will feel like you’re right there with Eve every step of her journey. The emotions, atmosphere, people, everything is so very real! Don’t believe me? Read it for yourself!

This book by Beverly Nault is not my typical genre, but the title enticed me: Misdirect: A novel of spies, the Sahara, and Searching for God. How does someone go from being a spy to searching for God? This I had to read!!

Little did I know I would get pulled in so quickly and my every spare moment surrounded by this action-packed and thought-provoking storyline. Mysteries and action not being my typical read, I did not see the next step coming throughout this book. Wow!

And let me be brutally honest, the ending was nowhere what I was expecting!! In addition to a surprise around every turn, I found myself learning more about camels, sand storms, social norms, religious beliefs other than my own, and the secrecy that is required for those who work in the field to protect those of us here at home. 

A complimentary copy of Misdirect was provided for an honest review. If all Beverly Nault’s books are like this, I have a lot more reading to do! I highly encourage getting this amazing story in your hands! 

We can all agree: Don’t Sell Me, Tell Me

They used to come knocking on the door and we’re called a traveling salesman. Most often, they were men while the women stayed home with thee children. Then the sales industry picked up on new technology called the telephone and became a nuisance at dinner time. More recently, with social media where most people spend much of the day, sales has taken over the social media platform. I may have missed a few steps in between, but this is just the main idea.

Now, there has always been a “salesy” language and ways to cold call or hard close and whatnot. But do those even work these days? I think many of us prefer to buy from people we trust. Usually, the people we trust are those who are learning more about us and using what hey learn to focus conversations. It’s all about really listening!


In the book “Don’t Sell Me, Tell Me”, Greg Koorhan shares how people in the sales industry don’t want a lecture. Don’t tell me what your product or service does and it’s benefits. He says to ask questions, learn more about me, and use those answers to better direct the conversation. Basically, if someone says they are looking for a desk that has all these functions to be better organized, don’t sell him a table that does none of what he’s looking for! 

Asking questions is quite important and active listening. So many people out there are so busy thinking about what they’ll say next that they don’t even hear what is being said. Stop being preoccupied during conversations! How can you build any trust with anyone who really isn’t listening? 

Koorhan suggests that in the sales industry, after learning more about the buyer, there should be story telling. See stories should be relatable to the buyers needs and wants. Real examples are always great! The author goes on to describe how to build your stories and use  it to your advantage in telling, not selling!

I enjoyed this book as I am in direct sales myself. This book confirmed much of the training I’ve received from my leaders and has provided me with more concrete process to get the story developed. If I learned anything in the past year, it is that connecting with others often comes with story telling. When you create emotions in someone’s heart, they tend to remember you and the emotion that was created within their heart.

Provided complimentary for an honest review through Reading Deals, I am thankful for the opportunity to not only read this book, but also to build myself better stories. For anyone who is trying to connect with anyone, sell anything, this is an amazing book to read. 

God Made You Just Right: Adorably written and beautifully illustrated

As a matter of fact, God DID make you just right! How fitting of a title to a board book full of rhymes and beautiful illustrations!


Each moment in the life of a toddler is significant and absolutely amazing. God Made You Just Right focuses on many of these activities that toddlers go through. The rhymes are super cute and flows so angelically from page to page, one idea to the next. 

The images portrayed are also not short of spectacular! I love how the story shows these children of both genders and many ethnicities through activities both inside and outside. Most importantly, the focus of how something as simple as their fingers or toes is useful in its own special way!

It’s lovely to see a children’s book guiding toddlers to be themselves and not try to be like everyone else. God made each of us differently, but His creation is perfect so we are all perfect in His eyes. That’s all that should really matter!

I would have loved reading this to my son when he was younger! Now he can read it to me! Even adults enjoy being read to! 

God Made You Just Right by Jill Roman Lord and illustrated by Amy Wummer was provided complimentary for an honest review for Worthy Publishing.

3 lessons learned from growing up and self-discovery before acknowledging Scout’s Honor

Impulsive decisions. Decisions on the fly without a moments thought of how it will affect my future or those around me. Self-discovery. It was my life growing up into a young adult. Similarly, Scout seems to make similar self-discovery choices encouraged by emotion and flattery from older men. 


Although this book isn’t about me and my life growing up, it reminds me of how  I was and the emotional decisions I made in my own self-discovery that affected the course of my life. A very easy to read young adult novel, I think Scout’s Honor is an excellent book with three main lessons to be learned about self-discovery. 

Lesson 1: Choose thoughtfully 

Even at the young age of 14, a young teenager needs to be aware of her surroundings and understand right from wrong. Scout didn’t give her consequences a second thought for the serious action she was taking when approached by a man she knew for years and had her trust. It is very important that decisions be made after careful consideration and as little emotional ties as possible. Emotional self-discovery often occurs in a rush, without a second moment of thought on what may happen next. 

For example, there’s a super cute outfit you absolutely adore at a nearby retailer. It’s the perfect color on you and the fabric is so soft! You really can’t wait to wear it for the next ladies night and hope you get loads of compliments. Without hesitation you go to the cash register and charge it. 

Lesson 2: Consider others

Whenever we make decisions, it affects others around anyone involved. When Scout made the choice to be intimate with these older men, she did not consider how her actions may affect the wives and families of these men. She never considered if the wives may retaliate, be angry, or honorably be understanding and she didn’t think about how it would affect the relationships between herself and the men after their affair was revealed. Slowly, through life experience, she learns to take a step back and consider other people who are in her life. 

In the shopping example, the outfit has already been purchased. But you never gave thought to how you would pay for the bill when it comes or how that money could have been used more wisely, like for groceries to fill your nearly empty pantry. How will not having food affect your family?

Lesson 3: Contemplate the consequences

Throughout her life, young Scout seems to make decisions before thinking through the options and doesn’t stop to contemplate the consequences. At 14 and at 19, Scout doesn’t take even a moment to really consider what the consequences may be for the decisions she would make. Both ocassions encompassed Scout involved with a married man, and a father at that! Yet, she never considered what could happen should the relationships be revealed and how it might affect the family of these men.

In my shopping example, you never considered how payment would be made on that credit card. Finances are already super tight and living off what’s left over after paying bills has been very skimpy, often resulting in many meals of PB&J or cheap ramen noodles. Adding this one purchase actually makes things worse financially. In hindsight, that one purchase was not such a wise choice!

Scout’s Honor

Scout may have taken a while, but she went from naïveté teenager to gullible young adult. And eventually she learned to cope with her past and understand herself better. She gradually figured out how to be honorable to God and herself. Finally, she was able to be truthful to herself about her past, which makes her stronger as an adult. 

Scout’s Honor is a young adult fiction novel that brought me through many emotions, from smitten to worried, concerned to compassionate, angry to shocked. A complimentary eBook was provided for an honest review through BooksGoSocial.com

It’s “Not by Happenstance”

Being born and raised in the state of Hawaii is what first pulled me to read “Not by Happenstance”. It takes place in Hāna, Maui, a place that takes a long curvy, not-so-motion-sickness friendly, yet gorgeous path to get to. I’ve been to Hāna, so reading a book placed there was intriguing as I’ve never read a fiction story about my home state before.There is a lot of what we call pidgin in this book, something mentioned in the book called Hawaiian Creole. It is used by the locals a whole lot more than my friends and family ever do. But, I live in a more urban area and it is likely that pidgin could still be popularly spoken by those in the Hāna area. It’s been a long time since I’ve been anywhere near there.

I also sensed slight animosity between the locals and visitors, even though this story is set at a bed and breakfast and the main character is not a local, but actually from California. This may be true in some areas, but I like how the story warms up to the visitors when they show they really care. 

The main character is Lokelani (Lani to her friends), she helps her grandmother (who’s real name is Cora, but Lani calls her Puna) take care of the bed and breakfast. Other characters include the interesting Pearl, who is a Chinese visitor who shares the right wisdom at all the right moments; Ahe, Lani’s local friend who doesn’t quite care for haoles (visitors); the college students who wrecked their place; a few others not mentioned much, and most importantly the mysterious, handsome, and flirtatious haole, Easton Allard, who is staying at the bed and breakfast for three whole months. 

Constantly attempting to do things and be close to Lani, Easton talks his way into doing things with her with the encouragement of Puna and Pearl. Frustrated, Lani goes anyway and Easton happily tags along, even though Lani made it clear that she is engaged to Derek. But, Easton makes it clear that Lani isn’t wearing an engagement ring, so technically she’s not engaged to anyone. 

Their adventures go from a potluck at Ahe’s with Lani’s local friends to fishing, hiking, and cleaning the place the college students trashed. Easton is always there to create memories with Lani, which she doesn’t like at first. It’s always sad when an engagement is broken, but when the love isn’t the same for both people, can it really work? Will being single be an open door for Easton or more frustration for Lani?

It is not often that I stay up all night to finish a book, but this is one of them. Enjoyable and adventurous, flirtatious and cautious, “Not by Happenstance” by Rachel Anderson is a book that will make you go through smiles, tears, blushes, and anger all in its 252 pages. 

   

Putter and the Red Car took me on a road trip across America

Literally, from the east coast to the west, Putter and the Red Car by Kate K. Lund and illustrated by Ana Maria Velicu took me on a road trip. With a few stops in between, driving across America can be fun and exciting. How do you travel with an Airdale terrier from Boston, Massachusetts to Seattle, Washington?   

Putter is a seven-year old Airdale terrier who went on a road trip with his human family. They stopped at dog-friendly hotels and got to play on playgrounds, which gave him and his human brothers a chance to stretch their legs after long drives. Putter had a few firsts during this road trip from staying at a hotel to riding an elevator, Putter even got to eat a hamburger!

Stopping to visit friends along the way is always fun, too! Putter had a chance to see a friend, Hercules, and they got to play together. Traveling is often more fun when taking advantage of seeing old friends to spice up a much needed stop.

My son and I read this road trip adventure together. We paused to study the maps at the beginning and end of the book. Being from Hawaii, it was immediate that the map did not include the 50th state. Although, there’s no way anyone will every drive here, it sort of makes sense to not be included as it is a book about road trips.

Otherwise, I personally would have stopped at more significant locations as a learning experience for the boys, places like Philadelphia or Yeklowstone. However, traveling with a pet changes everything as not all hotels or stops are pet-friendly.

A highlight for my son was Mount Rushmore as he recently learned about it at school. We also saw a small display of it at a local retailer the day before reading Putter and the Red Car. If only we could go to all these places he learns about at school!

Putter and the Red Car was provided complimentary for an honest review. I recommend this book to anyone who wants to go on a road trip and needs to prepare their family to do it. I recommend it even for children who want to follow a pet on a road adventure. Happy traveling!

Attractive, creative, and engaging

The Adventures of Ellie the Elephant is not your typical fiction story of a talking elephant and her friends. Nope, this series is adventurous, creative, and engaging for children and adults alike! Recently, I received paperback copies of Ellie’s Best Beach Vacation Ever and Ellie Goes Back to School written by Elle and Marci Fair. These two books are only part of The Adventures of Ellie the Elephant series.

 
The amazing pictures of Ellie the elephant and her friend Pudgy the penguin on their adventures of a beach vacation and going to school are creative and fit very well into the storylines. Ellie and Pudgy show their creativity along and show their love for whatever it is they’re doing. 

It is especially enjoyable to see Ellie and Pudgy prepared for the travel to their beach vacation with puzzles and travel games for the trip, sunglasses to wear, and sand toys to use at the beach. In the same manner, Ellie and Pudgy bring their backpacks and lunches when they go back to school. 

What I found most intriguing in these books are the real life adventures anyone can take. In Ellie’s Best Beach Vacation Ever, the storyline takes the readers to a bookstore, one that sells this very series! And in Ellie Goes Back to School, we spend some time at a “Buddy Bench” that is a bully-free zone. Buddy benches are being donated across Atlanta, Georgia and will soon spread further!

When I read these books to my son, he loved pointing out the pictures and how Dllie and Pudgy dressed their parts on each page, even when it came to riding a bike and eating lunches. He got fully engaged in the storylines and wished his friends went on such fun adventures, too! And to see at the end of each book is an opportunity to share an adventure with your friend on social media! What a great way for children to share their own adventures!

Like mentioned in the beginning, I received these paperbacks complimentary. I received them for an honest review. I highly recommend this book series to anyone willing to go on an adventure with an elephant and her penguin friend!

Once Upon a Time…a House enjoyed its company

There’s a house sitting alone. It misses its previous occupants and doesn’t quite enjoy the quiet. The house missed the colorful flowers and goldfish in the pond among other things that were going on. Now it’s silent and still, making the house full of sadness. Then one day, a visitor came by. Who could it be? What do they want?

  
This house slowly gets new visitors, beginning with a spider and eventually many creatures are living amongst each other in harmony. Inside the house as well as outside the house there were creatures doing their own things. Eventually the house was happy again with all these critters filling it with life. Even the flowers began blooming again and other vegetation. 

Until one day, a man and his dog arrived. This man did not like many of the critters and chased them away, killing the vegetation and flowers in the process. While the critters the man didn’t like left the house, so did the ones he wanted to stay. The man was sad that he had no food to eat because all the critters left, so he sent his dog to look for certain critters. 

Will the dog be able to round up all the critters that were chased away from the place they all lived in harmony? Will the critters trust the dog or the man to return to the house? 

This is a story my son loved hearing. Although he did comment that he wished there were more pictures, he enjoyed the story. It started off so peaceful and fun to know all these creatures and critters could live in harmony. And all it took was one person to ruin the whole thing. My son was sad that the critters were chased away from their peaceful house. 

A complimentary electronic copy of Once Upon a Time… a House by Dulce Rodrigues was provided for an honest review. Although it is a little too difficult a read for my first grader, he definitely found it entertaining! I recommend this fantastic book to be read to children and adults alike.

When discouraged, pray with power to get results!

“Pray about it,” my pastor’s wife would say when I approached her about something that was on my mind. When you spend time in prayer, God hears you and will respond. How much effort do you actually place in prayer? How do I know He’s responding? How do I know if what I’m receiving is His answer or my own thoughts?

 
Prayer is huge in pastor’s wife’s daily life and I’ve only wished it were so important in my own. I’m learning, though, that prayer is as important as you make it. I’m reading so much about prayer lately as it is a topic that has captured my heart these last few years. Most recently, I read a book by Pastor Abolaji Muyiwa Akinbo, or Pastor Bo. He titles his book, Prayer, Power & Results, and it is about the power of prayer, along with the Holy Spirit, and the magnificent results that can take place.

Pastor Bo dives into scripture and examines the topic of prayer using examples from stories in scripture along with real life examples of people close to him. It is in these examples that the reader can see how the power of prayer can move mountains.

“Without us calling, there is nothing for God to answer.” -Pastor Bo, Prayer, Power & Results, p. 25.

Prayer, Power & Results fills readers with tools they can use to not only learn about prayer, but also where to find various topics in scripture and how to overcome satan and his followers. Generally a quick read, this book is stuffed with useful prayer tools and prayer suggestions. 

Do be on alert when digging deeper into scripture and learning to pray as it causes the enemy to be distressed and will be on attack to keep you from your goal. If you follow me on Goodreads, you can see that I started Prayer, Power & Results back in December 2015, but only finished it last night. In the last two months, my family and I have been attacked by the enemy in many shapes and forms. 

It is very useful to know that Jesus overcomes and so can you. Prayer, Power & Results by Pastor Bo was sent to me complimentary for an honest review. I recommend this book to anyone seeking to learn about prayer and has the willingness to work towards achieving the Godly response.