Archive for the Category »Reviews «

Book Review: Billy Joel: The Definitive Biography

I have had two periods in my life where the music of Billy Joel was front and center. First, as a small child, maybe three or four, every night when I went to bed I made my mom put a certain record on, and that record was Billy Joel’s 52nd Street. And then, as a senior in high school, our marching band show for the year was The Music of Billy Joel. So when I saw this book, I jumped at the chance to read it. First, let me give you some information on the book. Keep scrolling to the end to see my thoughts.

billyjoel

Book Description

The long-awaited, all-access biography of a music legend.

In Billy Joel, acclaimed music journalist Fred Schruers draws upon more than one hundred hours of exclusive interviews with Joel to present an unprecedented look at the life, career, and legacy of the pint-sized kid from Long Island who became a rock icon.

Exhibiting unparallelled intimate knowledge, Schruers chronicles Joel’s rise to the top of the charts, from his working-class origins in Levittown and early days spent in boxing rings and sweaty clubs to his monumental success in the seventies and eighties. He also explores Joel’s creative transformation in the nineties, his dream performance with Paul McCartney at Shea Stadium in 2008, and beyond.

Along the way, Schruers reveals the stories behind all the key events and relationships- including Joel’s high-profile marriages and legal battles- that defined his path to stardom and inspired his signature songs, such as “Piano Man,” “Scenes from an Italian Restaurant,” “New York State of Mind,” and “She’s Always a Woman.” Throughout, he captures the spirit of a restless artist determined to break through by sharing, in his deeply personal lyrics, the dreams and heartbreaks of suburban American life.

Comprehensive, vibrantly written, and filled with Joel’s memories and reflections- as well as those of the family, friends, and band members who have formed his inner circle, including Christie Brinkley, Alexa Ray Joel, Jon Small, and Steve Cohen- this is the definitive account of a beloved rock star’s epic American journey.

About The Author

Fred Schruers enjoyed a successful high-profile career as a writer at Rolling Stone, chronicling an impressive body of musicians and actors, including Fleetwood Mac, Bruce Springsteen, Jack Nicholson, Sheryl Crow, Matthew McConaughey, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, and Chris Rock. His writing has also appeared in Premiere, Entertainment Weekly, Men’s Journal, GQ, the Los Angeles Times, and Columbia Journalism Review.

My Thoughts

This book is everything you want in a musician biography, covering everything from Joel’s childhood until the present. Personally, although I enjoyed his music, I didn’t know much about his personal life. I remembered him being married to Christie Brinkley, but knew nothing about his previous marriage and all the problems that occurred during that time frame. And thought Joel has achieved tremendous success, you really feel like he is a regular guy that you could hang out with when you read these interviews.

The author also includes information about certain songs, little tidbits that will make you listen to the song in a different way. Schruers also made sure to get interviews with many of the most important people in Joel’s life. This is a book that any Billy Joel fan should pick up, and would even be an interesting read to fans of music in general.

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

For more information, including a book excerpt: HERE

Author’s Page: HERE

Find it on Amazon:

 

Category: Reviews  Leave a Comment
Book Review and Giveaway: Spring Fling Kitty by Rachelle Ayala

Heartbreaker Connor Hart, one of the youngest fire chiefs in the country, is planning on marrying Dr. Elaine Woo, a woman who pretended to cheat on him with his best friend many years ago. She bought him a Dalmatian puppy, he gave her a ring—and the women of San Francisco are about to lose their most eligible bachelor.

Artist and poet Nadine Woo is down on her luck. The cast-off half-sister of Dr. Elaine Woo, she doesn’t measure up, according to her strict and distant father. When Nadine and her mother are about to be evicted from their apartment, she gets an interesting offer from her sister. Seems she’s in need of a little help concerning her relationship with Fire Chief Connor Hart.

As soon as Nadine meets Connor, she knows she’s in for a rough ride. Connor is the fireman who rescued her and her little gray kitten, and she’s never forgotten how safe she felt in his arms.

When Nadine takes her sister’s place at a spring fling weekend with Connor, love ignites, and there’s no going back.

Can a spunky little kitty show Connor and Nadine that doing the wrong thing is sometimes right, especially when it comes to love?

Spring Fling Kitty is Book #3 of the Have A Hart Romance Series. It can be read standalone, although characters from the previous books appear here in supporting roles.

MY THOUGHTS

I definitely thought this was a cute story. I didn’t even realize until later on that this was book 3 in a series, so I can speak to the fact that it can definitely be read standalone. The addition of the animals in the storyline was a fun touch that I found quite endearing.

I will say that there were a few bits of romantic conversation that, to me, seemed slightly unrealistic, perhaps something that something just wouldn’t say, especially after knowing someone for just a couple of days. But I am not romance hater, so I overlooked those bits and paid attention to the story underneath it.

And let me tell you, the ending was definitely not anything I was expecting! Of course I won’t tell you what happens, but let me say that I think that unexpected twist in the story was my favorite part of the book. All in all, this was a sweet story and I would not hesitate to check out more of this author’s books.

Have a Hart Romance Series 
Christmas Lovebirds, Book #1
Valentine Hound Dog, Book #2
Spring Fling Kitty, Book #3

Available to buy from…
Amazon   Barnes and Noble   Google Play   iBooks

 

“Beautiful romance with a touch of suspense, great combination!” – Amazon review

 

“A beautiful, heartfelt story. Love saw. Love came. Love conquered. I truly recommended everyone to read this book.”  – Amazon review

 

About heroine Nadine Woo – “A free spirit is a gift in my eyes. It’s what makes her beautiful. It’s what makes Connor love her. It’s what brings life to this story.” – Corissa Palfrey

About the author
Rachelle Ayala is a bestselling author of contemporary romance and romantic suspense. Her foremost goal is to take readers on a shared emotional journey with her characters as they grow and become more true to themselves. Rachelle believes in the power of love to overcome obstacles and feels that everyone should find love as often as possible, especially if it’s within the pages of a book. Her book, Knowing Vera, won the 2015 Angie Ovation Award, and A Father for Christmas garnered a 2015 Readers’ Favorite Gold Award.

Sign up for her NEWSLETTER to get a FREE surprise book and her latest book news HERE!

Visit her Reader’s Guide HERE

Find the author on the following sites…
Website   Facebook   Twitter   Pinterest   Google+   Goodreads 
Amazon Author Page

Follow the tour

NOW FOR THE AUTHOR’S GIVEAWAY

 

 

Win $25 Gift Card or Autographed Paperback of Spring Fling Kitty
(winners choice)
Open Worldwide

 

Ending on Saturday 13th August at 11.59pm EST

 

Enter Below and Good Luck !!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

018836-glossy-silver-icon-symbols-shapes-square-2

Book Review- The Quieting by Suzanne Woods Fisher

I recently had the opportunity to review The Quieting by Suzanne Woods Fisher. I received the book for free in exchange for my honest review.

quieting

I discovered that this is Book 2 in a three book series, The Bishop’s Family, and the first book is entitled The Impostor. I have not read that book, but did not have any trouble understanding what was going on in this one, so the author did a great job of explaining any info that was necessary from the previous story.

 

I have said before that I love Amish fiction, so you won’t be surprised that I enjoyed this book. I found humor in the description of David’s meddling mother and Abigail’s literal, matter-of-fact nature. Dane is smitten with abigail from the beginning and it is sweet to watch as he works to overcome her reluctance. The author also is adept in weaving together the multiple story lines seamlessly.

 

The book also deals with a topic in the Amish community that I have not read much on, which is known as a Quieting. The Author defines a quieting as revoking “the ordination of a bishop, minister or deacon so that he returns to being a church member, but not a leader.” I also enjoyed reading of Abigail’s genealogical interests.

Now I want to read the first book, and look forward to the third in the series, The Devoted when it is released in October. I have already booked up another book by this author, but in a different series.

Read the book description below and scroll down to a link to find it on Amazon:

It’s all her grandmother’s fault. For the last few months, Abigail Stoltzfus has helped her father with his genealogical research, hoping that breaking through a client’s brick wall would also break his melancholy. But now her intrusive grandmother has set her sights on marrying off Abigail and insists she come to Stoney Ridge, where there is a plethora of eligible bachelors.  

Except that Mammi is mistaken. There are no eligible bachelors in Stoney Ridge, barring one, and he’s all wrong. Dane Glick has the wrong last name and the wrong relatives–including the bishop who is at odds over a church matter with Abigail’s uncle, minister David Stoltzfus.  

As the conflict grows, setting family against family, it’s becoming clear that the path to a solution may lead to a Quieting–a removal of a church leader. But for which one? And when Abigail stumbles onto a curious connection during her genealogical research, it could help David solve one problem–but will it create another?

 

 

Suzanne Woods Fisher is an award-winning, bestselling author whose most recent novels includeThe Imposter, Anna’s Crossing, and The Inn at Eagle Hill series, as well as nonfiction books about the Amish, including Amish Peace and The Heart of the Amish. She lives in California. Learn more at www.suzannewoodsfisher.com and follow Suzanne on Twitter @suzannewfisher.

Category: Reviews  Leave a Comment
Book Review: Maggie Dove by Susan Breen

Book Description:

Susan Breen introduces a charming new series heroine in this poignant and absorbing cozy mystery with a bite. Maggie Dove thinks everyone in her small Westchester County community knows everyone else’s secrets. Then murder comes to town.
 
When Sunday School teacher Maggie Dove finds her hateful next-door neighbor Marcus Bender lying dead under her beloved oak tree—the one he demanded she cut down—she figures the man dropped dead of a mean heart. But Marcus was murdered, and the prime suspect is a young man Maggie loves like a son. Peter Nelson was the worst of Maggie’s Sunday School students; he was also her late daughter’s fiancé, and he’s been a devoted friend to Maggie in the years since her daughter’s death.
 
Maggie can’t lose Peter, too. So she sets out to find the real murderer. To do that, she must move past the grief that has immobilized her all these years. She must probe the hidden corners of her little village on the Hudson River. And, when another death strikes even closer to home, Maggie must find the courage to defend the people and the town she loves—even if it kills her.

maggie

 

My Thoughts:

I really enjoyed reading this book. I loved the description of the small town in New York and how the characters are all interconnected due to that small town “thing.” I was a little surprised that the main character, Maggie, was actually an older woman. Surprised, but not bothered by it. I definitely didn’t guess ahead of time who the bad guy actually was. And I also enjoyed that the character of Maggie Dove is also a mystery writer. I was able to read this book very quickly and would definitely recommend it to others. I look forward to more books by this author and especially those featuring Ms. Dove.

Category: Reviews  Leave a Comment
Book Review: Flirtation Walk by Siri Mitchell

Well, let’s start off with the required info, which is that I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

Flirtation Walk is actually not the first book that I’ve read by Siri Mitchell. I previously reviewed Like a Flower in Bloom. Click on the link to read my review of that book.

Here is a description of the book. Keep reading at the bottom to read my thoughts!

West Point History Comes Alive in this Warmhearted Romance

Trying to escape the shambles her con-man father has made of their reputation, Lucinda Curtis arrives in West Point, New York, determined to land a husband from the military academy. Campbell Conklin is first in his class and preparing to embark upon a storied career in the U.S. Army. Lucinda thinks Campbell will make the perfect husband . . . as long as he does not find out about her father.

Seth Westcott also has taken a liking to Lucinda. He’s kind, smart . . . and working extremely hard to graduate last. Tradition states that the worst cadets are assigned to the cavalry out west. And west is where Seth must head to track the swindler who stole all of Seth’s mother’s money. Seth is smart enough to vie for the top spot, but life isn’t fair and this is his chance to catch the man who ruined his family. It’s too bad Campbell is all shine and no substance, but Lucinda will surely see through all of that, won’t she?

flirtation walk

My thoughts:

I love historical fiction, so I jumped at the chance to read another of Mitchell’s books. She definitely does her research and makes you believe that you have jumped back in time. The con artist storyline was interesting. Also, just a note that wasn’t in the description- at the very beginning of the book Lucinda believes her father is dead, which is what leads her to Buttermilk Falls, the home of her mother that she never knew.

Even though Campbell Conklin is mentioned in the description, we pretty quickly realize that nothing is going to materialize with him and that Seth Westcott is definitely the real love interest. I found the description of West Point at that time believable, though of course, I wasn’t there. And we even get a cameo from General Lee!

The story alternates between Lucinda and Seth’s first-person points of view, which I enjoyed. Reading that Seth’s family has been taken advantage of by a con-man….. Well, I don’t want to give anything away but since there was another con-man mentioned in this story… hmm…..

Overall a very enjoyable book. I will continue to read any of Mitchell’s books I can get my hands on.

Category: Reviews  Leave a Comment
Book Review: Lies and Other Acts of Love

Here I am again, with another book review! I’m plowing through that list again. I should have shared this review a couple of months ago when this book was released, but unfortunately I missed it! But I still wanted  to make sure I shared the review, so here it is. And, as always, I have to state that I received a free copy of the book in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.

This time, I am reviewing Lies and Other Acts of Love by Kristy Woodson Harvey. I previously reviewed her book Dear Carolina. Click on the link to read that review.

And for a refresher, here is the author’s bio:

Harvey Port 02 ret

Kristy Woodson Harvey is the author of Dear Carolina, which was recently long-listed for the Pat Conroy Southern Book Prize and Lies and Other Acts of Love, a Romantic Times top pick and Southern Booksellers Okra Pick. She blogs at Design Chic about how creating a beautiful home can be the catalyst for creating a beautiful life and loves connecting with readers at kristywoodsonharvey.com. She is a Phi Beta Kappa, summa cum laude graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s school of journalism and holds a Master’s in English from East Carolina University. Her writing has appeared in numerous publications and websites, including Southern Living, Domino magazine, Our State, Houzz, the Salisbury Post and the New Bern Sun Journal. She lives in North Carolina with her husband and four-year-old son where she is working on her next novel.

www.kristywoodsonharvey.com

www.mydesignchic.com

Let’s follow that up with a description of the new book:

Dear Carolina was praised as “Southern fiction at its best.” Now author Kristy Woodson Harvey presents a new novel about what it really means to tell the truth…

After sixty years of marriage and five daughters, Lynn “Lovey” White knows that all of us, from time to time, need to use our little white lies.

Her granddaughter, Annabelle, on the other hand, is as truthful as they come. She always does the right thing- that is, until she dumps her hedge fund manager fiance and marries a musician she has known for three days. After all, her grandparents, who fell in love at first sight, have shared a lifetime of happiness, even through her grandfather’s declining health.

But when Annabelle’s world starts to collapse around her, she discovers that nothing about her picture-perfect family is as it seems. And Lovey has to decide whether one more lie will make or break the ones she loves…

2016-Kristy Woodson Harvey-Acts of Love5579

I definitely enjoyed the author’s first book, and was excited to have the chance to read this one as well. I definitely wasn’t disappointed! I fell in love with the characters in this inter-generational story of love and family. The story alternates between Annabelle and Lovey’s points of view and also skips back and forth to different time frames, specifically in Lovey’s story line. Not to give up anything, but the reader will definitely be surprised at the big lie at the heart of the story. You think you have figured out what it is, but don’t discover until the very end that you were definitely wrong! I do have to say though that Annabelle’s inability to be without a man for any length of time was a little frustrating, but I still enjoyed her character all the same. So grab some sweet tea, sit back and relax while you let yourself be sucked in by this great piece of Southern fiction.

Check out the book on Amazon:

And follow the author at the following social media links:

Twitter: @kristywharvey

Instagram: @kristywharvey

Facebook: facebook.com/kristywoodsonharvey

Pinterest: pinterest.com/mydesignchic

Category: Reviews  2 Comments
Book Review: Mirror Image by Michelle Pariza Wacek
MI
I love the chance to check out a book by an author that is new to me. I received a copy of the book Mirror Image by Michele Pariza Wacek in exchange for my honest review and I am going to share that with you now! Also, the author has a giveaway going on, so keep reading for that!

First, the author’s bio:

michele pw

When Michele was 3 years old, she taught herself to read because she wanted to write stories so badly.

As you can imagine, writing has been a driving passion throughout her life. She became a professional copywriter (which is writing promotional materials for businesses), which led to her founding a copywriting and marketing company that serves clients all over the world.

Along with being a copywriter, she also writes novels (in fact, she just published her first novel, a psychological thriller/suspense/mystery called “The Stolen Twin” and her second novel “Mirror Image’” is set to be published in May 2016) plus, she is also the author of the “Love-Based Copy” books, which are a part of the “Love-Based Business” series and cover both business and personal development.

She holds a double major in English and Communications from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Currently she lives in the mountains of Prescott, Arizona with her husband Paul and her border collie Nick and southern squirrel hunter Cassie.

And the description of the book:

mirror-image-3b-01

Which would be worse, knowing that your dead sister has come back to life and is now a serial killer or that someone else is the killer….and that person is you?

Six months after Linda’s sister Elizabeth killed herself, Linda has finally gotten her life back to some semblance of normalcy. Until a killer appears who is stalking men … a killer who resembles Elizabeth … a killer who seems somehow familiar to Linda.

And, to make matters worse, Steve, her old high school crush and now a detective, is assigned to this case. He’s asking Linda all sorts of questions, questions Linda couldn’t possibly have an answer to.

There’s no reason for him to be investigating Linda. She couldn’t possibly have anything to do with this.

Could she?

Ok, so I like to try to figure out the whodunit when I am reading. I was sure I knew what was happening, but I was wrong. And then I was sure a second time, but I was wrong again. I never would have guessed the outcome, so I was definitely on the edge of my seat. I always like to give a warning to sensitive readers that there is sexually explicit content in this book. So just a heads up for you. I especially liked the insight into the childhood of Linda and her family. The character development is phenomenal. This definitely added to the story and helps the reader understand the very strange family dynamic! Definitely a great psychological thriller that leaves you guessing. I would gladly read more books by this author in the future.

To pick up this book:

Amazon

Oh! And not to forget that giveaway!

Michelle PW Giveaway

$25 Amazon Gift Card & a Signed Copy of The Stolen Twin

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Category: Reviews  2 Comments
Book Review: Killer Pursuit by Jeff Gunhus

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

 

Killer Pursuit is the first book I have read by Jeff Gunhus, but he is no newbie. Here is his bio:

gunhus

Jeff Gunhus is the author thriller and horror novels for adults and the middle grade/YA series, The Templar Chronicles. The first book, Jack Templar Monster Hunter, was written in an effort to get his reluctant reader eleven-year old son excited about reading. It worked and a new series was born. His books for adults have reached the Top 100 on Amazon and have been Foreword Reviews Book of the Year Finalists.

After his experience with his son, he is passionate about helping parents reach young reluctant readers and is active in child literacy issues. As a father of five, he leads an active lifestyle in Maryland with his wife Nicole by trying to constantly keep up with their kids. In rare moments of quiet, he can be found in the back of the City Dock Cafe in Annapolis working on his next novel.

And here is the description of the book. Keep reading below for my thoughts!

When a secret webcam is found in the Georgetown bedroom of a murdered high-society call girl, everyone in Washington, DC wants the recording…especially the killer.  After a high-society call girl is brutally murdered in her Georgetown home, investigators find two cameras hidden in the walls of her bedroom. One has its memory erased, presumably by the murderer. The second is a webcam with an encrypted connection…and no-one knows who’s on the other end. Whoever has the recordings has embarrassing leverage against some of the most powerful men in DC, not to mention a video of the murder showing the identity of the killer.

FBI Special Agent Allison McNeil is asked by beleaguered FBI Director Clarence Mason to run an off-the-record investigation of the murder because of the murder’s similarity to a case she worked a year earlier. Allison knows the most direct path to apprehending the killer is to find the videos, but rumors that the victim’s client list may include some of Washington’s most powerful men makes her doubt the director’s motives. As she starts her investigation, she quickly discovers that she’s not the only one pursuing the recording…but that the most aggressive person racing against her might be the murderer himself.

killerpursuit

So obviously, when the premise of the story includes a call girl, you can expect that there are a few racy scenes. So if that is something that bothers you, don’t worry, it’s mostly just at the beginning of the book.

This book definitely has several twists and turns, and I will admit, I was completely surprised when I found out who the real bad guy was! The author uses alternating voices throughout the story, which builds the suspense as well as getting the reader into the mind of both the good guys and the bad guys. There are also some sweet parts, such as Allison’s relationship with her father who is suffering from Alzheimer’s. And corrupt political leaders? What?! No way that would happen in real life. I say that with sarcasm. This was a great read and I look forward to more by Mr. Gunhus.

Category: Reviews  Leave a Comment
Book Review: Amish Sweethearts by Leslie Gould

I received a copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for my honest review.

Amish Sweethearts is actually the third book I’ve had the opportunity to read by Leslie Gould. Click the links below to see my previous reviews.

 

Becoming Bea

 

Amish Promises

 

I just saw the author’s name and agreed to read it. I didn’t even realize until I started reading it that this is actually the second book in the Neighbors of Lancaster County series. So the characters I grew to love in Amish Promises are back, and now the kids are grown up and are the main characters!

 

Before I forget, here is the book’s description:

amishsweethearts

Their Two Worlds Couldn’t Be Further Apart.

Can Anything Bridge the Divide Between Them?

 

For years Zane Beck and his Amish neighbor Lila Lehman were best of friends. But just as Zane gathered the courage to discover if their friendship could develop into something more, her controlling father arranged for her to be courted by their bishop’s son. Zane, heartbroken and frustrated, joined the Army, running away from his shattered dreams.

 

The passing of time and the distance between Zane and Lila haven’t been enough to halt their–now completely hidden–feelings for each other. Any hope for their love grows even more impossible though as Zane’s service takes a dangerous turn when he’s deployed to Afghanistan. Being on the frontline, confronted with the hard choices of war, has him questioning everything, including whether he can continue to serve or not. But all choices have consequences, and with Lila preparing to marry another, will these one-time sweethearts ever find the life together that they both still long for?

If you took a quick look at my Amish Promises review, you know that the Neighbors series deals with the relationships between an Amish family and their Englisch neighbors. Zane and Lila have grown up next door to each other now they are reaching adulthood, but of course, it is next to impossible for them to be together romantically, especially when Zane leaves to join the military, as his father did.


Once again, I love the use of Amish phrases. As I finished the book, I wondered if maybe the next book will feature the younger brother and sister of Zane and Lila as the main characters. I will continue to snatch up any Leslie Gould books I can when I have the chance. I have been drawn in by these characters and into the world of Amish fiction in general. If you are a fan of love stories that are against the odds, this is a book for you. Although I’m not a story spoiler, so I won’t tell you for sure if they end up beating the odds or not! You will have to read and find out!

Category: Reviews  Leave a Comment
Book Review- The Immigrant Wife by Madhu B Wangu

As a girl on the brink of womanhood in 1960s India, Shanti Bamzai has big dreams. Rather than enter into an arranged marriage like her sister, Shanti embarks on a journey into the unknown, leaving her family home behind for an education and a chance to chart her own destiny.While India experiences an upheaval of cultural and societal changes as old-world traditions collide with the modern global era, Shanti navigates college, a marriage of her own choosing, and motherhood, fighting a constant battle between the pressures of traditional expectations and her own burning desire to be an artist and an independent woman.A move to America presents exciting new opportunities, but Shanti is disappointed to find herself still hemmed in by the restrictions of her Indian upbringing. As her children become adults and her marriage becomes a shell of what it once was, Shanti must find the courage to step out of her husband’s shadow and into the life she’s always dreamed of.

Book available from…
Amazon   Barnes and Noble   Kobo   iBooks

 

“Beautiful and lush, The Immigrant Wife takes the reader on one woman’s touching, turmeric-drenched journey from naive but determined art student in India to longing-filled American wife and mother. The author Madhu B. Wangu has written a maharaja’s banquet for the senses.” – (RITA Award Winning Author) Gwyn Cready

 

“A winner. The Immigrant Wife: A Spiritual Journey is beautifully written. The story weaves many small strands into an intriguing tapestry, much like the paintings of our heroine, Shanti. It paints two pictures one of the beautiful valley of Kashmir and the beautiful hills of Western Pennsylvania. Shanti’s quiet determination to stay true to herself, her art, and her family is inspirational. I loved it! – Professor Laurence Glasco (University of Pittsburgh)

 

“In her debut novel, Madhu Bazaz Wangu, conjures a mysterious time and place. The protagonist, Shanti, begins her life as an idealistic but naive girl from the valley of Kashmir. As the story unfolds in America, she learns to heed her desires and shape her life, no longer rolling along like a stone turned in the tide. Wangu creates rich, dynamic images of India, comparable to her watercolors, evoking every sense. The indigenous sights, sounds, and smells are so vivid that I swear I could find my way to Shanti’s home. Wangu’s style is gentle and quiet like the protagonist, and deeply powerful. This tale of love and nurturing, loss and growth, and transformation will stay with readers long after they finish the novel.”  – Kathleen Shoop (IPPY Award Winner of The Last Letter)

 

Read an excerpt HERE

About the author
An author, artist and the founder of the Mindful Writers Group, Madhu Bazaz Wangu was a professor of arts and religions of India before becoming a full time writer. She has a doctorate in the Phenomenology of Religions from the University of Pittsburgh and a post-doctoral fellowship from the Harvard University. For twenty-five years, she taught at the University of Pittsburgh and Chatham College in Pennsylvania, Wellesley and Wheaton Colleges in Massachusetts, and Rhode Island College.

In 1997, Dr. Wangu voyaged around the world with students & faculty from various American Universities for the Semester At Sea. In 2010, she founded the Mindful Writers Group. She encourages writers of all levels and genres to delve deeper in their work by body-mind-heart meditations. Her CD, Meditations for Mindful Writers was released in 2011. She guides writers in meditation and writing marathons. Each year in September, the Mindful Writers Group organizes a weekend of Meditation and Writing.

Madhu B. Wangu has published numerous essays and four books on Hindu & Buddhist art and religions. She has also held five one-person art exhibitions in India and US.  Her debut fiction, Chance Meetings: Stories About Cross-Cultural Karmic Collisions and Compassion was published in April, 2015. And her debut novel, An Immigrant Wife has just been released. Currently she is writing her second novel, The Last Suttee.

She lives in Wexford, Pennsylvania, USA with her husband Manoj. They have two daughters — an avionics engineer and a pediatrician — and are blessed with two grandchildren.

MY THOUGHTS

One of my favorite aspects of this book was the fact that the author used actual Indian words, quickly followed by the English translation, so you weren’t left wondering. Also, all the descriptions of food sounded soooo yummy!

Even though the cultural is literally foreign to me, Shanti was a great character to follow. You will find yourself rooting on as she defies the expectations of women in her country at that time. You grow to love her family and friends and really feel like a part of the story.  The book is fairly long, split into 3 books within one, but I didn’t find it to be a slow read despite the length. Perhaps it could have been split into 3 smaller books, but I prefer it this way. Then I am not left wondering what happens until the next one comes out!

I enjoyed getting to know Shanti in her youth and watching her grow as a woman. A great read! Pick it up!

Find the author on the following sites…
Website   Facebook   Twitter   Google+   Goodreads   Amazon

Follow the Book Tour

Photobucket I received this book to review through Beck Valley Books Book Tours, all the opinions above are 100% my own.

NOW FOR THE AUTHOR’S GIVEAWAY

 

 

Signed Book Giveaway – 4 Winners !! Open Worldwide Ending on Saturday 30th April at 11.59pm EST

 

Enter Below and Good Luck !!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Category: Reviews  One Comment
What Was In My Snakku Box?

Some of you know that I enter giveaways all the time. Well, I won another one recently and the prize was a Snakku box, which is a subscription box with snacks from Japan. I thought I would share with everyone what was in the box. The theme for February was strawberries and also Valentines Day. When I opened up the outside box, I found the box inside wrapped in some sort of fabric. CAM00061 So I had to unwrap that and this is what I found next: CAM00062CAM00063   There was a personalized note to me and also a list describing the snacks that would be inside: CAM00064CAM00069 And now  for the snacks! First, there was some Gold Okaki. These are crepe crackers baked and dipped in a ginger emulsion and then dipped in real edible gold foils. Apparently these gold foils are made by hand in the city of Kanazawa. How cool! CAM00070 These little bags below are Chocolate Arare, from a rice cracker store in Kyoto. They are basically chocolate-covered rice crackers. One pouch was bitter and the other sweet. CAM00078 My favorite in the bunch were the Chocolate Fruit Crunch. They came in strawberry and blueberry and I think they taste like Special K bars. Yum! CAM00071 These little guys are the Pururun Strawberry Mochi, made from rice and seasonal strawberries. The taste was good, but I could see that some people might not enjoy the texture or consistency of the gooey stuff. CAM00073  Inside these packages was Chocolate Senbei, heart-shaped rice crackers covered in chocolate for Valentines Day!

CAM00077

 

Pocky seems to be a popular snack in Japan. They are biscuit sticks. These ones were covered in strawberry cream and in the shape of hearts.

CAM00075

 

Did you know here was such a thing as Green Tea KitKat? I had no clue. I’m not really a green tea fan but these were pretty tasty!

CAM00072Some more Senbei, rice crackers. But these weren’t covered in chocolate. They were plum and soy seaweed flavored. I have to admit that I wasn’t a huge fan of these ones.

CAM00076

There were a couple of Umaibo. Corn puff sticks is what they are. Cute packaging!

CAM00074

 

And to top it off, a bunch of these Ichigo Milk Candies- strawberry of course!

CAM00079

 

So that was everything! It looks like if you want to order one box, which contains nearly 2 pounds of snacks, it will cost you 38.95. The more months you sign up for, you get a bit of a discount. They also offer a tasting box, with 5-7 snacks for 15.75.

Category: Reviews  2 Comments
Book Review- Step by Step by Candace Calvert

Love and the emergency room. What else could you want?

I received a complimentary copy of the book Step by Step by Candace Calvert from Tyndale House Publishers, in exchange for my honest review.

stepbystep

As always, first I will share the book’s description with you:

Three years after a tragic accident left her a widow, ER nurse Taylor Cabot is determined to move on, checking off one item after another on her survival list. Her relationship with a handsome plastic surgeon even giver her hope for the last point- “fall in love again.” At least until criss chaplain Seth Donovan steps back into her life, reawakening unanswered questions about her husband’s death.

While in San Diego to train community volunteers, Seth hopes to learn why Taylor is back away from the crisis team and from their friendship. But nothing prepares him for the feelings that arise when he sees Taylor again… and sees her moving on with another man.

When a community crisis hits home and puts lives at risk, emotions run high and buried truths are unearthed. Will hope make the survival list?

MY THOUGHTS

This is apparently the second book in the Crisis Team series. I haven’t read the first one, which didn’t bother me, as this seems to be a standalone book. I am not 100% sure if any of the characters were in the first book or not.

I found it very interesting to learn about the work of chaplains. You hear about them, but in this book you learn more in-depth information about the important work they do. Apparently the author was a former ER nurse and a crisis peer counselor, so it is great that she was able to draw on her personal experience.

Of course, from reading the description, you can tell that there is a struggle for Taylor’s attention from two men. It’s not really much of a competition. As a reader, you will know exactly which one you want her to end up with. You will also enjoy the relationship between Taylor and her aging dog, Hooper. This is a faith-based story of hope that is definitely an inspiring read.

I believe there is another book to come and I THINK I might know which character it will follow, so I’m curious to see that when it comes out.

Category: Reviews  Leave a Comment
Book Review: Crushed by Deborah Coonts

Well, can you believe it? I’m actually posting two book reviews in one day, so I’m definitely still plowing through my list! Still several more to go through, but we will get there soon!

First, of course, here is the book description:

crushed

In Napa Valley, he who has the best grapes wins. And in the pursuit of perfection, dreams and hearts can be crushed.

Sophia Stone is a widow on the brink of an empty nest, stuck in an unsatisfying job managing the vineyard for a mediocre Napa vintner. Faced with an uncertain future she wonders how do you choose between making a living and making a life? Between protecting your heart and sharing it? Five years ago, after her husband was killed in an accident, Sophia put her heart and dreams on ice to care for those around her. Now her home, her dreams, and her family’s legacy grapes are threatened by the greed of the new money moving into the Valley. Sophia has a choice-give up and let them take what is hers, or risk everything fighting a battle everyone says she can’t win.

Nico Treviani has one goal in life:make brilliant wine. A woman would be an unwanted distraction. So, while recognized as one of Napa’s premier vintners, Nico finds himself alone… until his brother’s death drops not one, but two women into his life-his thirteen-year-old twin nieces. In an instant, Nico gains a family and loses his best friend and partner in the winemaking business. Struggling to care for his nieces, Nico accepts a job as head winemaker for Avery Specter, one of the new-money crowd. And he learns the hard way that new money doesn’t stick to the old rules.

When Sophia Stone gets caught in the middle of Nico’s struggle to remain true to himself or sacrifice his convictions to make stellar wine, both Sophia and Nico are faced with a choice they never imagined. A choice that might extinguish the hope of a future neither expected.

This is the first in a four book series, as described on the author’s website: “This series follows four women (and their men) each of whom toils in her chosen vocation in the farm-to-table movement- the winemaker, the artisanal cheese maker, the baker and the restaurateur. These are feel-good stories as each woman finds the life she was meant to live- and serves up some killer wine, cheese, and chocolate.” From the description, I believe these other women were introduced to us in this first book, so it sounds like we will be able to follow up on some of other favorite characters.

 

MY THOUGHTS

I am definitely no wine expert, but it seems like the author is, as she shares plenty of technical information. Every once in awhile it seems a little much, and sometimes the conversations seem a little awkward in how technical they are, but it probably wouldn’t seem that way to those who are experts in the field.

The love story was both great and complicated and left you guessing what would happen between these two.  The characters are believably imperfect which makes you love them all the more. And a word to more sensitive readers, there is a small amount of racy stuff in this book, but not a lot. Just a heads up as I know some people are sensitive to that.

This author has written another series, the Lucky O’Toole Vegas Adventure Series, which I am interested in looking into, and I do want to follow up with the rest of this Napa series. And it looks like she has even more series’ on the way.

Definitely worth your time to book up any of these books. To find out more check out the author’s website: www.deborahcoonts.com

Category: Reviews  Leave a Comment
Book Review- Deep Fried and Pickled

Paisley Ray books are not your typical fiction. A young woman’s plan for an art history degree turns into an outrageous series of misadventures in this laugh-out-loud romp about a girl who enrolls in a southern college during the height of the crazy era that was the 1980’s. This collection crosses genres of chick lit, mystery, romance, humor, and action with the possibility of a corpse or two. To date there are 8 novels in this humorous romantic misadventure mystery series with book #9 due to release spring of 2016.

It’s ’86, the era of Pop Rocks, Jelly shoes, and big hair rock bands. Rachael O’Brien’s freshman plan seems simple: Attend a southern college, earn a degree, party, and meet cute guys—hopefully acing the latter two.

But being threatened by a jealous She-Devil, avoiding the advances of a thirty-something redneck, and discovering an art fraud scheme thwart her “to do” list. On top of her troubles at school, Rachael finds herself forging a new relationship with her emotionally shaken father after Mom abandons the family to pursue a psychic calling.

Bad decision-making, law-bending behavior, and surprise romances make freshman year memorable in Paisley Ray’s DEEP FRIED AND PICKLED.

“I often get asked by readers what order THE RACHAEL O’BRIEN CHRONICLES books should be read in. Each book can be read without any prior knowledge of any of the others. That said, some readers do want to follow a chronological list of events in Rachael’s southern fried, 80’s college life antics so here it is”…..

 

DEEP FRIED AND PICKLED
SUMMER FLAMBÉ
SHELLED AND SHUCKED
TOAD IN THE HOLE
JOHNNY CAKES
SWAMP CABBAGE
PRAISE THE LARD
HOT TAMALE — New Release

Available to buy at….
Amazon.com   Amazon.co.uk   Audible
or
See the full series on Amazon HERE

 

“Being a Southern girl and child of the 80s myself, I enjoyed the characters, the setting and the period references. Good plot without being too serious or watered down.”

 

“This fun and quirky mystery was very nostalgic for me as I got to relive the eighties through Rachael.”

 

“An entertaining read. Fresh new characters and some zany plot twists kept me reading late into the night.”
Above reviews from Amazon

 

Also available in the series

 

THOUGHTS FROM HILARY

What a fun read! Poor Rachael, just trying to enjoy her freshman year of college and getting involved in all these hi-jinks! This book is fun, but also includes suspense, mystery, romance. Basically anything you might want. Now, I have to admit that since I was younger during the time that this book is set in, I had questions such as, “Were jelly shoes really already out of style by 1986?” Guess what? The author included some notes at the very end that answers to a few questions, including this one! There were a few times when I felt that there was too much emphasis on Rachael’s goals of partying and men. That wasn’t what I was focused on in college, but I suppose it could be very true for others. I thought the “Note to Self” at the end of every chapter was a cute addition. I plan to check into the rest of the books in this series and see what Rachael gets herself into next.

About the Author 
Born and raised in rural Pennsylvania, Paisley Ray, a steelworker’s daughter spent summer breaks with relatives on the Carolina shores. It didn’t take long for a love of southern to become rooted in her veins, and years later, yield the setting for her novels. Most days, Paisley can be found crafting the antics for the newest book in THE RACHAEL O’BRIEN CHRONICLES.

Find the author on the following sites…
Website   Facebook   Twitter   Pinterest   Goodreads   

Amazon Author Page

Follow the book tour

Photobucket

I received this book to review through Beck Valley Books Book Tours, all the opinions above are 100% my own.

NOW FOR THE AUTHOR’S GIVEAWAY

 

 

Win $20Amazon.com GC / Paypal Cash
(winners choice)

 

Open Worldwide
Ending on Sunday 13th March at 11.59pm EST

 

Enter Below and Good Luck !!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Category: Reviews  2 Comments
Book Review- Always Watching by Lynette Eason

Hey hey hey! Another book review! I’m getting caught up on my list!

 

So this time I received a copy of the book Always Watching by Lynette Eason. I received the book for free in exchange for my honest review. This is the first book in a new series by this author, called Elite Guardians. Many times when I am reviewing, I end up jumping somewhere into the middle of an existing series, so it was nice to be able to read the first one!

alwayswatching

 

So, here is the book’s description and stay tuned after that for a few thoughts from me!

The bodyguards of Elite Guardians Agency have more than just skill and prowess in common–they’re also all women. When it becomes clear that popular psychiatrist and radio personality Wade Savage has a stalker, his father secretly hires Elite Guardians in order to protect his son.

But when Wade’s bodyguard is attacked and nearly killed, agency owner Olivia Edwards must step in and fill the gap. Olivia’s skills are about to be tested to the limit as Wade’s stalker moves from leaving innocent gifts at his door to threatening those closest to him. Olivia has the feeling that she’s next on the list. And to complicate things even further, she realizes that her heart may be in as much danger as her client.

Bestselling author and fan favorite Lynette Eason drops readers right into the action in this fast-paced new series with a unique twist. Readers will love these strong female characters who put it all on the line to save lives.

 

MY THOUGHTS

This is definitely a fast-paced thriller that will leave you on the edge of your seat. Also, I believe in this book we are introduced to characters that will have larger roles in subsequent books in this series, so it was nice to have the heads-up! And while it is jam-packed with action, this is also a faith-based book, which is a nice change of pace from some of the doom and gloom action stories. I will admit that about halfway through the book, I thought that I knew who the culprit was, and found out that I was completely wrong!

I have two “complaints”, however. There were several instances where the narrative changed to another person’s point of view with no pause or transition, causing me to have to track back some and make sure I knew where I was and whose eyes I was viewing the story through. Also, there were a few times when there was some repetitious dialogue. One character would say something, and then the other character would say basically the same thing right back to them.

But for the most part, I enjoyed this book and do sincerely look forward to the next in the series. I’m hoping that some of the relationships that developed in this book will continue and at least have a mention in subsequent stories.

Category: Reviews  Leave a Comment
Book Review- Hannah’s Choice by Jan Drexler

Well, I’m trying to plow through my backlog of book reviews, and I’m making some good progress!

This time I was given the opportunity to review Hannah’s Choice by Jan Drexler. I was provided a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.

hannahs choice

Description

Hannah Yoder loves her quiet life on the banks of the Conestoga Creek. In 1842, this corner of Lancaster County is settled and peaceful–yet problems lurk beneath the placid façade. Hannah’s father worries about the spread of liberal ideas from their Mennonite and Brethren neighbors. And Hannah blames herself for a tragedy that struck their home nine years ago. She strives to be the one person who can bind the threads of her family together in spite of her mother’s ongoing depression and her sister’s rejection of their family. But her world is threatening to unravel.

When two young men seek her hand in marriage–one offering the home she craves and the other promising the adventure of following God’s call west–Hannah must make a choice. Faithfully perform her duties to her family? Or defy her father and abandon her community?

With a tender hand, Jan Drexler teases out the threads of a romance that will captivate readers in this brand-new Amish historical series.

 

MY THOUGHTS

For some reason, I love to read Amish fiction books, so I was excited to pick this one, and was not disappointed! The characters are great and I enjoyed learning more about how the Amish did/did not interact with Mennonite and others in their area. Well, from reading the description, you know that there are two men that are vying for Hannah’s hand in marriage, so I’m not giving away the plot when I say that I was rooting for the one that doesn’t win in the end, but oh well!

I also found it interesting that the author’s ancestors were actually among the first Amish, Mennonite, and Brethren immigrants to Pennsylvania in the 1700s. I believe this is the beginning of a book series, and I definitely would love to read more from this author. Her understanding of the historical context and her research into her ancestry makes her a great source of information, and her ability to create characters that you fall in love with is amazing.

Category: Reviews  Leave a Comment
Book Review- Ashley Bell by Dean Koontz

Another book that has been on my list for awhile, but it took me awhile to get to it is Ashley Bell by Dean Koontz.

ashleybellcover

 

Here is the description:

 

From #1 bestselling author Dean Koontz—the must-read thriller of the year, for readers of dark psychological suspense and modern classics of mystery and adventure.

Ashley-Bell-ecards5

The girl who said no to death.

Bibi Blair is a fierce, funny, dauntless young woman—whose doctor says she has one year to live.

She replies, “We’ll see.”

Her sudden recovery astonishes medical science.

An enigmatic woman convinces Bibi that she escaped death so that she can save someone else. Someone named Ashley Bell.

But save her from what, from whom? And who is Ashley Bell? Where is she?

Bibi’s obsession with finding Ashley sends her on the run from threats both mystical and worldly, including a rich and charismatic cult leader with terrifying ambitions.

Here is an eloquent, riveting, brilliantly paced story with an exhilarating heroine and a twisting, ingenious plot filled with staggering surprises. Ashley Bell is a new milestone in literary suspense from the long-acclaimed master.

Ashley-Bell-ecards4

 

MY THOUGHTS:

This was definitely a great read that took a turn I wasn’t expecting at all! I always love when writers write about writers and Bibi is a writer in this story.. I love the descriptions of Bibi as a young girl. The character draw you in and leaves you hoping for possibly more stories involving her, though the story doesn’t necessarily leave room for a sequel. Unfortunately, I can’t explain too much of the story, because I would give away that surprising plot twist that happens later in the book.

Ashley-Bell-ecards3

Of course you can expect thrills and a little bit of the mystical from Koontz, but as I stated, there is no way you will predict what is going to happen in this one! All the characters are great and the surf-lingo was fun to read as well, even though I know nothing about surfing.

This is definitely a page-turner, and you might find yourself turning the pages back to make sure you fully grasped what just happened.

Ashley-Bell-ecards2

Book Review: So, Anyway…. by John Cleese

So, when you pick up an autobiography by John Cleese, of Monty Python fame, you might expect to read quite a bit about Python. Well, let me tell you now, that most definitely is not what you will find in this book. So, if that is the one and only thing you wanted to hear about, well, maybe this is the book for you. However, for those of you with a sense of adventure, I would encourage you to pick it up and give it a read anyway.

This would basically be the story of Pre-Python Cleese, which is still quite an interesting story. Just pretend you are reading about someone that wasn’t a part of the Monty Python cast and then maybe you will find the great bits and pieces.

9780385348263

Here is the book’s description:

John Cleese’s  huge comedic influence has stretched across generations; his sharp irreverent eye and the unique brand of physical comedy he perfected with Monty Python, on Fawlty Towers, and beyond now seem written into comedy’s DNA. In this rollicking memoir, So, Anyway…, Cleese takes readers on a Grand Tour of his ascent in the entertainment world, from his humble beginnings in a sleepy English town and his early comedic days at Cambridge University (with future Python partner Graham Chapman), to the founding of the landmark comedy troupe that would propel him to worldwide renown.

Cleese was just days away from graduating Cambridge and setting off on a law career when he was visited by two BBC executives, who offered him a job writing comedy for radio. That fateful moment—and a near-simultaneous offer to take his university humor revue to London’s famed West End—propelled him down a different path, cutting his teeth writing for stars like David Frost and Peter Sellers, and eventually joining the five other Pythons to pioneer a new kind of comedy that prized invention, silliness, and absurdity. Along the way, he found his first true love with the actress Connie Booth and transformed himself from a reluctant performer to a world class actor and back again.

Twisting and turning through surprising stories and hilarious digressions—with some brief pauses along the way that comprise a fascinating primer on what’s funny and why—this story of a young man’s journey to the pinnacle of comedy is a masterly performance by a master performer.

 

The book starts, well, at the beginning, with Cleese’s early life and schooling. There are lots of pictures, which I always enjoy in a biography. The story follows how Cleese got his start in comedy and writing and there are lots of great stories involved. You can definitely “hear” Cleese’s voice as you are reading the book. It was interesting to learn about all the British TV shows that Cleese was a part of and also his stint on Broadway. I have to admit that I hadn’t heard of most of the shows he mentioned, but that is probably due to the fact that, a) I wasn’t alive and b) I’m from America. And while the book does not focus on the Python years, we do learn how some of the sketches got their start, and of Cleese’s writing partnership with Graham Chapman.

Since there was only slight mention of Python, A Fish Called Wanda, and Fawlty Towers, MAYBE we can expect a second book? It wasn’t hinted at, but one can hope, can’t one? Cleese’s first wife Connie was mentioned, and he does mention having other wives in the future, but there is no discussion of them, and it would be nice to hear more about that aspect of his life.


I didn’t realize when I started reading that there would be lack of Python info, and was surprised the further I got that we hadn’t gotten there yet. The very last chapter does have a little info, but is actually more about the recent reunion. So that aspect is a little disappointing, but, as I said, it’s still an interesting and humorous read.

For more information, check out Cleese’s Author Page  and the book page at Penguin Random House, which includes an excerpt and some interviews.

I received this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest review.

Book Review- The Upside of Iris by Helen Rose

The Upside of Iris by Helen Rose and illustrated by Lisa Falzon has been on my list of books to review for awhile now. I got a little too book-happy and agreed to review several all at the same time. I never forgot about this one, but I’m sad that I didn’t take a look at it sooner!

iris cover

 

First, here is the book’s description:

What does love look like to you?

For young Iris,the whole world looks upside down, and the only person who truly understands and appreciates her perspective is her new friend Charlie, who has his own unique trait:he cannot speak. His silence, her precociousness, and their  acceptance of each other make the two a perfect match.

But happiness is fleeting,as Iris’s new stepsisters, skeptical and jealous (as conventional folks often are of those who dare to swim against the tide), manage to drive the two apart. Iris and Charlie are separated for the remainder of childhood.

Grown-up Iris never forgets about Charlie, though, and her love for him influences the charming art gallery she now owns. But despite the visually magical environment she inhabits, Iris finds herself doubting Charlie once again, thanks in no small part to those pesky stepsisters of hers.

Still, before she decides to give up hope altogether, she decides to do one small thing for the other lonely souls around her…with wonderful consequences.

The Upside of Iris is an illustrated love story for all ages, and for anyone who has ever felt misunderstood. It is a whimsical, touching reminder that perspective is truly everything, and that a change in perspective can make all the difference in the world.

MY THOUGHTS:
The illustrations in this book are just amazing! And I believe the pictures themselves could probably tell the story, even without words. I think it would make a great animated short film. It is definitely a quick read, but one you could definitely read over and over.

iris

Though it is illustrated, I would not say that this story is solely for children. In fact, the story might go over the heads of some younger children. Though I could see myself as a child enjoying it, but I was a bit of a strange kid. The love story is adorable, and the book also focuses on how children that are little different than others can feel out of place but eventually find their true self.

Just an FYI, due to the amazing illustrations, the file size on this book is a little large, but definitely worth the space.

I was provided an e-book copy of this by Kate Tilton Book Bloggers and author Helen Rose in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Find it on Amazon here.

DVD Review: Captive #CaptiveMovie #FlyBy

You may remember that back in September I reviewed the book Captive by Ashley Smith. If you don’t remember, you can certainly click the link to take a look.

Well, at the time, the movie was about to be released in the theaters and now it is available on DVD and I had the chance to check it out recently.

captive

 

For a quick rundown:

Based on a miraculous story about the power of faith, Captive is an “amazing, inspiring” drama about the spiritual collision of two lost souls, Brian Nichols (Golden Globe Nominee David Oyelowo), on the run from police and desperate to make contact with his newborn son, takes recently widowed mother Ashley Smith (Kata Mara) hostage in her own apartment.  Fearing for her life and desperately hoping to see her daughter again, she turns to Rick Warren’s The Purpose Driven Life for guidance.  Ashley and her captor face a crossroads where they discover hope and light in the midst of despair in the moving film that Dick Rolfe, CEO, Dove Foundation hailed as “powerful.”

 

DVD Release Date: January 5, 2016

Runtime: 96 minutes

Rating: PG-13 (for mature thematic elements involving violence and substance abuse)

After I having read the book, I thought the movie was great and could also be a great movie even for those without a Christian background. I did think that the movie skipped over the story of what happened to Ashley’s husband. Of course, I’m sure this was for time, but I felt that it was an important element of her story that could have been elaborated on more. However, if you haven’t read the book, you wouldn’t notice that was missing.

The DVD also includes 30 minutes of bonus content, including Journey Through Darkness:Filming Captive, and Faith and The Purpose Driven Life. You also have access to a Digital HD copy that can be downloaded/streamed. Let me tell you, that comes in handy when your DVD player is not hooked up!

Find out more at the links below:

OFFICIAL MOVIE PAGE

FACEBOOK PAGE

TWITTER PAGE

ALSO!!!!!!! If you comment on this post, you will be entered to win your own copy of the DVD, so drop me a line!

Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.

Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller / FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.

Category: Reviews  One Comment