Sheila's Books Read

Sheila's bookshelf: read

What Would the Founding Fathers Think: A Young American's guide to understanding the mess our country is in and how we get out
Isabelle Webb: Legend of the Jewel
Captive Heart
Cobble Cavern
Caller ID
Promises
Protected,
Summer of Secrets
On Little Wings
We Lived in Heaven: Spiritual Accounts of Souls Coming to Earth
Christ's gifts to women
A Woman's power: threads that bind us to god
Scary School
Hope's journey
Blue
Targets in Ties
Crater Lake: Battle for Wizard Island
Venom
With a Name like Love
Sean Griswold's head


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2017 Reading Challenge

2017 Reading Challenge

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Saturday, February 28, 2015

Jeremy's Promise by A.R. Talley-Blog Tour Review and Giveaway

Jeremy's Promise (1) 

Jeremy's PromiseProduct Details

  • Title: Jeremy's Promise
  •  Author: A.R. Talley
  • Hardcover: 308 pages
  • Publisher: AuthorHouse (October 28, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1491818123
  • FTC,FYI: Received  a review e-copy in exchange for an honest review.






 Book Description: 
"Are you okay?" he asked. Before I could reassure him once more that I was fine, the stewardess started the safety demonstration. I directed my attention to her, happy for the diversion. Jeremy and I had spent most of the day before in small talk and sightseeing, intentionally avoiding the issues we faced. He was so relieved that I was staying with him that he made a Herculean effort not to upset me. And later, I had to admit, that night had been sweet and intimate. But sitting on the plane, I couldn't forget David's kiss or his haunting blue eyes. I couldn't forget the look of devastation on his face when he said goodbye at the elevator. "Go home, Annie," he had said. And I was. I was going home, hoping that Jeremy and I could rebuild what I had destroyed. I needed to reach out to Jeremy, reassure him. I needed him to know I still loved him and was committed to our marriage. When the stewardess finished talking, I turned to him and gently laid my hand on his cheek. "Thank you," I said just above a whisper. He looked back in surprise. "Thank you . . . for what?" "For coming to get me." Instantly his eyes filled with tears.
 
The trip that was meant to save Annie and Jeremy’s marriage brought it to near ruin. Now Annie has returned home, frightened and confused. Jeremy, too, is frightened—and angry. What will it take to save their marriage? It’s clear. Jeremy needs to forgive—Annie needs to forget. A promise is made. A tragedy occurs. A second honeymoon is disrupted. A chance encounter brings David Andrews back into Annie’s life. Annie is determined to remain faithful. She’s made a promise she intends to keep—Jeremy’s Promise. 

EXCERPT from Jeremy's Promise
EXCERPT #1


“Okay, Jeremy,” Terry said, “Tell her.”

                “What?” Jeremy asked, bewildered.

                “Tell her how you feel about this other man in her life.”

                Jeremy was silent for a long moment. I didn’t know why he hadn’t launched immediately into a tirade about David Andrews. All I did know was I didn’t want to hear it.

                “Well,” Jeremy said, more subdued, “I think she knows—that anyway.”
                “No, Jeremy, you have to tell her.”

                More silence.

                “Annie, look at him,” Terry said. I shook my head. I couldn’t look at him. “Annie,” Terry said with measured patience, “Look at him.”

                I wiped the back of my hand across each cheek and slowly raised my head. I looked across at Jeremy. His face was red and silent tears ran down his cheek.

                “Tell her,” Terry said, gently prodding.

                “I’d rather die than have you be with him,” he said, his voice so strained I had to hold my breath to hear him. “Thinking of you—with him—it’s like having a thousand shards of glass lacerate my heart. It’s bleeding me to death.” His lip quivered. 

My Thoughts:
This was a hard book to read. Annie is struggling with her husband's death and having to rehash the past as she reads through Jeremy's journals. I loved the first book in the series, David's Song. My problem is that I really loved David in the book. 

This book will take you on an emotional ride. If you've ever had marriage problems or been divorced, you'll be able to relate to the struggles that Annie and Jeremy went through. I guess you have to wonder is...should Annie have went with her heart or her head? What was the right thing to do in the long run? There is a lot of pain that many of the characters went through and we feel it right along with them.

I was surprised when Annie goes on a cruise and meets up with none other than David again. Their relationship continues, even though David is engaged to be married to someone else. A lot happens on the cruise, but they don't get back together. The epilogue though has a surprise at the end, which will lead into the third book of the trilogy called Annie's Choice. I can't wait to read this third book. 

Though this book or the trilogy in general is not like your typical sweet romance, it is full of emotion and angst, but you truly get to know the characters. I liked reading Jeremy's Promise and I know anyone who likes a good story will love reading this too.

Praise for Jeremy's Promise

 A.R. Talley, gives you a believable look at the struggle of one couple to reconnect and heal their marriage, with dialog which sweeps you into the moment as if you were there with them, experiencing both their pain and recovery. Kudos to the author who has once again produced a book I couldn't put down, as well as one I felt compelled to read multiple times. ~Donna Dech

 Jeremy's Promise second book in a trilogy by A.R. Talley is an awesome, emotional, romantic, highly recommended, well written story with captivating and engaging characters. ~Debbie Ballard

This is not a book I would have picked by myself! I loved it from start to finish! Eagerly waiting for the third book in the trilogy to come out!! I highly recommend this book! ~Goodreads
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AprilAuthor A.R. Talley A. R. Talley lives in Ohio with her husband Doug and the last of her seven children (the rest have flown the coup.) She loves to cook, read, write, watch movies, play piano, and laugh. Her second favorite vacation involves the British Isles and a small café in Scotland.
25_Amazon_Paypal $25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Ends 3/19/15 Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, February 20, 2015

The Lazarus Game by Stephen J. Valentine-Blog Tour Review






Product Details

  • Title: The Lazarus Game
  • Author: Stephen J. Valentine
  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Cedar Fort Publishing & Media (February 10, 2015)
  • Genre: YA Sci-Fi and Fantasy
  • ISBN-10: 1462115543
  • FTC, FYI: I received a review e-copy in exchange for an honest review.



Book Description:   
An amazing new video game has the power to resurrect the brightest minds of the past and see what they’d create in the modern world. There’s just one catch—it requires another person’s soul. Carter Chance, who is a teenage genius, must find a way to stop his generation from exchanging their souls for a computer-generated fantasy. This action-packed thriller delves into the enticement and dangers of virtual reality.

My Review:

The Lazarus Game is a book of adventure, a tiny bit of teen romance, history, sci-fi and fantasy all rolled into one exciting YA book. The main character, Carter Chance, is a typical 15 -year- old teen boy...except he is a genius. It's because of his great brain that he gets sucked into the world of The Lazarus Game and it's crazy inventor. 


The best part of the book, is that you really don't know who the good and the bad guys are through 3/4 of the book. You know that you want to root for Carter and his friends, but from that point on, you get pulled in a lot of directions.

Without giving anything away...which I refuse to do when it comes to surprising twists in a novel...this book has quite a few twists. You get so caught up in the high tech game and the wonderful opportunities coming Carter's way, that many things will happen that will catch you and make you pause in awe. 

This book written for teens, will make them think about life without that preachy feel that some books have. It will sneak up on them and that is a good thing. There is some violence and mild gore that would make me hesitate having anyone under 13 read this book, but anyone over will love it. Teens today will be able to relate to the hopes and dreams that Carter, his brother and friends all have. They'll also like all of the wild happenings too.


This book is a stand alone and has some great book club questions at the end. If you read this with your teens, make sure you have a nice discussion at the end with your kids like I did. One question, "What would you sacrifice in order to achieve your greatest desires?" Another asked, "Why do so many people today sacrifice reality for fantasy?" Many of these questions paved the way for lively discussions with my teens. 


I enjoyed reading The Lazarus Game for many reasons, but it really comes down to a nicely written book that will keep you glued to the pages. I'll be happy to pick up the next book that Stephen Valentine writes.













Meet Author Stephen J. Valentine
Stephen J. Valentine received his Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees from Utah State University. He is Senior Program Manager for FamilySearch International, responsible for the online publication of billions of historical records. Stephen loves history, hiking, cooking, reading, and traveling, especially to Disneyland. Stephen resides in Utah with his beautiful wife, talented children, brilliant Schnauzer, and massive J.R.R. Tolkien collection.


10 FUN FACTS

1. The movie theater/game store in “The Lazarus Game” is based on the Capitol Theatre in Brigham City, Utah, where I grew up. It is still in operation today, one of the few old elegant movie theaters still in business.

2. My favorite book is “To Kill a Mockingbird.” The recent announcement of an additional book by Harper Lee was about as astonishing to me as if they’d found human life on another planet!

3. I’m also a huge J.R.R. Tolkien nerd (way before the movies!) and have collected dozens of editions of his famous trilogy, including editions in Russian, Spanish, German, French, and Canadian (Frodo has an annoying habit of adding “eh” to the end of all his statements).

4. I started writing at the age of four. You can still find lots of four-year old humor in my books.

5. I have traveled to 48 of 50 states in the U.S; 49 of 51 if you count Canada as a state. (I love Canada, by the way—but I have many Canadian friends and love to tease them.)

6. My favorite places to write are in public places—airports, libraries, etc. The surrounding noise is like white noise to me.

7. The worst thing when writing is to be interrupted—potty breaks, eating, and loved ones are all huge distractions while “in the flow” of the story. All you authors out there know what I’m talking about.

8. My favorite place on earth is Disneyland with my family. We have more fun standing in line than most people have on the rides!

9. I’m tired of dystopian novels. Does the future have to be dark and nasty?

10. If “The Lazarus Game” were made into a movie 20 years ago, the perfect actor for Carter Chance would be Matthew Broderick. Think of a blend Matthew’s roles in “War Games” and “Ferris Bueller.” Perfect, right?


 

Friday, February 13, 2015

Water So Deep by Nichole Giles-Blog Tour Review

Water so Deep (1)


  Water so Deep 
Book Description:
 Seventeen-year-old Emma Harris is drowning on dry land. 

No one knows what’s happening to her, and she’d like to keep her evolution from human to mermaid a secret, but the truth is getting harder and harder to hide. From her adoptive family, from her friends, and especially from the irresistible James Phelps. Her time in the ocean is spent dodging a possessive merman, while her time on land is split between caring for her special-needs brother and squeezing in every last possible moment of human life. She soon realizes falling for James is unavoidable when he constantly comes to Emma’s rescue and somehow manages to see through her carefully constructed icy facade to the vulnerability she lives with every day. Everything about James makes Emma yearn for a life on land she just can't have. When Emma’s brother disappears on her watch, James is the only person she trusts to help her save him. But even if they can save her brother, nothing can prevent her return to the sea. Whether she likes it or not, Emma is changing—unable to breathe without yielding to the tide—and it's only a matter of time before she's forced to surrender forever. 


Water So Deep
Excerpt

BY THE TIME SHE HIKED down the steep embankment and around the tide pools to her cove, the pressure in her chest squeezed so tight, black spots floated in her vision. Not a good sign. It had only been five days since her last swim— usually she was good for seven. 
Emma hung her bag on a rock that jutted out of the cave wall and stripped off her clothes, breathing deep, squeezing her hands into fists to avoid the panic creeping up on her. Panicking stole precious air from her half-converted lungs, and she was already on the verge of passing out. 
If she did pass out, she couldn’t get to the water, and if she couldn’t get to the water, this terrible pressure wouldn’t ease, and if the pressure didn’t ease, she would soon stop breathing altogether. It would be hours before anyone missed her and came looking, and by that time, she’d be shriveled like a washed-up fish, and probably just as dead.
By the time she’d put on her suit, her vision blurred and she had to step carefully, trailing her hand along the wall of the shallow cave so she wouldn’t trip and hurt herself before she got to the water. Finally at the edge, she sucked in a last breath of air and dove, relieved as slits opened up to gills in the side of her neck and water filtered through them, finally allowing her lungs to expand.





My Review:
This YA Urban Fantasy mermaid tale begins differently than many out there, the main character is not a full mermaid yet. She is what is called a Changeling who was in human form and is slowing turning into a mermaid. She has to take a swim in the ocean, often, or she will stop breathing. To make matters worse, her "intended" a confident, possessive and abrasive merman is constantly there when Emma needs to swim to stay alive. He's pressuring her about how many days she has left before she will fully turn and have to come live in Atlantis with her real family, leaving her adopted family back on land.

The very beginning of the book something happens with Emma's first boyfriend, Tom, that is rather disturbing. We only get details later, but it sets a plot line for the rest of the book. Poor Emma can't trust another man. Then James comes along that she wants to love and trust, but is having a hard time. Then she has the surly Merrick that has been possessive where he has been violent to Emma. One of the best characters is the book is Emma's younger brother, Keith. He is learning disable and Emma loves and protects him fiercely. Nichole does an excellent portrayal of a high functioning Asperger's teen. I loved the parts of the book that showed Emma and Keith's relationship.

The books moves quickly and you really want to see Emma and James come together, the only problem is that you know that Emma's time is drawing near when she'll have to return to Atlantis.

There are some major things that happen in the last part of the book that are total shockers. These will leave you shaking your head a little and they are total spoilers. It also ends with a major cliffhanger, which to me sets this up perfectly for another book in the series.

This book will be enjoyed by older teens and adults. There is mild swearing and like I said, a violent act, that is not detailed. I would have liked to have seen more of Atlantis, but I'm sure there will be more of that in the next book. I liked this reverse mermaid tale and I would recommend you giving this one a read.


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Nichole  Meet Author Nichole Giles
 Nichole Giles, the author of the Descendant trilogy, has lived in Nevada, Arizona, Utah, and Texas. She loves to spend time with her husband and four children, travel to tropical and exotic destinations, drive in the rain with the convertible top down, and play music at full volume so she can sing along.
   

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