About my blog


When I was a little girl, I struggled to read. Reading did not come naturally to me; however, over the last 30 years I have become an avid reader, I love books. I love LDS (Latter Day Saint) Historical fiction, I love romance, I love biographies, I love stories of hope, and ways to help. I will post books that I have read, ones that have warmed my heart and given me hope!

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Humbug: A Christmas Carol

I was given a copy of this book to read for an honest review. Media Guests supplied me with the book. I was supposed to have my review done on December 19th, however, we went on vacation and the book sat on my office desk as we drove to Phoenix. I'm sorry for the late review.

About the Book:

Winterton is a frozen town with frozen hearts and frozen people. A magical humbug that attracts the magical reindeer of Santa is brought to the town of Winterton by a little orphan girl. The warmth of the little girl and the magical music of the humbug bring Santa, the reindeer and Christmas back to Winterton

About the Author:

Lee Baker is the president of Sandman Studios, a visual effects and animation company and has taught courses at UCLA Extension, Loyola Marymount University and the University of Utah. He is the author of the illustrated books “Humbug, A Christmas Carol” and “Beau and the Beanstalk,” and now his latest thriller “Speed of Light.” Lee lives in Utah with his wife and five children.


My Review:

This morning, I sat down and read this book with two of my granddaughters. One is five and the other one is ten. Both were captivated by the story. They had questions and comments about the book, the graphics and the overall story.

What my girls and I realizes was that the graphics were so amazing, the girls believed that the people in Winterton were COLD. As we read through the story, it started to warm our hearts. The girls cheered when the Humbugs were singing and brought Christmas to the town.

I think my favorite was the forward by Ebenezer Scrooge, I started giggling while reading the forward. Overall, this story was cute, and heart warming. It showed my girls how to keep Christmas in our hearts. I would highly recommend this story for any family.

Sandie






Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Dark Star: Confessions of a Rock Idol

I was supposed to read Dark Star earlier in December; however, I was unable to finish reading the book. We went away for Christmas and the road trip was the perfect time to read Dark Star. The series Rock Star Chronicles is a Trilogy.


About the Book:


Everett Lester and his band, DeathStroke, ride the crest of a wave to superstardom. But the deeper they become immersed in fame, wealth, and power, the more likely they are to be swallowed alive by the drugs, alcohol, and discontentment that have become their only friends. Everett is headed down a perilous road of no apparent return when he’s charged with the murder of his personal psychic. The only hope he can cling to comes from Topeka , Kansas , and the letters written by a prayerful young lady who lives there. Consistent and persistent, the notes cut straight to Everett ’s empty heart, offering a fulfillment he’s never grasped before. But what if he’s found guilty of murder? Will he recognize the spiritual battle that’s raging for his soul?


About the Author:


Talented storyteller Creston Mapes graduated from Bowling Green State University in 1983 with a BA in magazine journalism. Since then, he has written for major corporations, colleges, and ministries. He has written for Coca-Cola, TNT Sports, Focus on the Family, Walk Thru the Bible Ministries, and The Urban Alternative. His stories have been featured in magazines including Private Colleges and Universities, In Touch, Leaders for Today, and The Hockey News. Creston makes his home in Georgia.

My Review:
When I first received Dark Star, I had a difficult time starting the book. Once I picked the book up to read on our vacation over the Christmas holiday, I found I could not put the book down. I read an e-book, via my computer and phone. I read in the car on our two day trip to Phoenix, I read at night when I did not have any television to watch. I found I read via my phone every chance I got.
The story of Everett Lester was a unthinkable life, his life had so many twists and turns it was hard to keep up. The story flipped back and forth from his current trial, to his rock and roll days, the story would change mid paragraph. I found much to my amazement that this was an effective way to tell the story of Everett’s life. The story was in Everett’s voice as he was writing his own story.
The story had drugs, alcohol, violence and Jesus all wrapped into one story. It was a crazy idea that worked well. I had a difficult time wanting to read of such hatred towards Christ, but in the end the good versus evil proved to be the kind of a story one would picture a wealthy rock start life to include. I was taken in by this story and highly recommend this book.
This book is a trilogy; I am starting the second book tomorrow and looking forward to the new book.
I would recommend this book to anyone who is willing to push through the dark in this book to find the light.
I was given a copy of this book from Media Guests for my honest review, I was not paid for this review and the words are my own.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Mystery of the Puzzle Bones

I recieved a copy of Mystery of the Puzzle Bones from Media Guest for an honest review, this review is in my own words and I was not paid for my review.

ABOUT THE BOOK:

The Mystery of Puzzle Bones is a story about four 12-year-old boys that find a secret hideout and skateboard spot in an unused sewer between their subdivisions.But something is leaving a strange Puzzle of Bones in the Boardunders club house.Something wants to lead them deep down into the sewers – into Hidden Town.
A place that doesn’t want to be found and people who will do anything to protect their secret. Suddenly the danger becomes extreme as they are running for their lives. Who can they trust to help them?One of the boys, Caleb, is a Christian who shares his faith and trust in Jesus which helps lead one of the other boys to the Lord as they go through the perils of the story.

About the Author:

T.A. Smith has been a non-denominational bible teacher in maximum Security Prisons, Juvenile delinquent centers, Rescue Missions, and Youth Groups for over 15 years. He has traveled from the Yucatan to working in fisheries in Alaska. As a ‘Guys study teacher’, he searched for a hard-hitting action adventure series that actually included thoughts and discussion about God. He wanted real discussions that he actually heard men and boys talk about in his classes over the years. Finally, he simply sat down and started writing stories for the guys he knew – and they asked for more stories which has led to a dozen popular tween/teen adventure books.
To read more about T.A. Smith and his adventure books visit http://www.christianactionadventures.com/
My Review:

When I first received my copy of Mystery of the Puzzle Bones I gave it to my nine year old to read. He took the book and read it, I had a hard time finding it because he took it to school to read during his free reading time. As he and I discussed the book and how we felt about it we both agreed that the book had some tense places and yet it was an awesome story of faith in Jesus and the power of prayer. We enjoyed this story, I saw we because I value my nine year olds opinion as he loves to read.

I would highly recommend this book for children and adults. This story although was a mystery it was a good mystery, it has moments that got my heart racing and then the peace that comes from knowing the danger had passed. I would not recommend this book for children that are just new readers unless the parent is available to read it along with them or answer questions because it is a little tense. However, it is a good book, well written, well thought out and the adventure keeps the reader from wanting to put the book down. I suppose that is why my nine year old took it to school.

I would love to read more book from the author.

Sandie



Holy Stable: Celebrate the Miracle

I recieved a free copy of Holy Stable from Media Guest, I was not paid for my review and this review is in my own words.


About the Book:


Holy Stable: Celebrate the Miracle, restores the tender joys of the season! Discover how sharing the gift of Jesus’ love blesses relationships, as you enjoy the magic of children’s narration, original music and song. Mary and Joseph’s devotion to God and sublime caring for each other will bring you to experience the story of Baby Jesus’ birth as never before.
Holy Stable is more than just a Christmas “play”! It has everything an actual pageant has and is a perfect highlight to our Christmas season!


Holy Stable brings about inspired memories, the play adapts for a few participants or a larger group and for use with or without your own vocal talent. Harp, wooden flute and violin instrumentals come with and without vocals and narration and are coordinated with the innovative script, including tips, which are offered to you as a downloadable bonus gift at http://blog.holystable.com/.
About the Author:

Heidi is a mother of eight and first time author. Her long held interests in studying scripture, benefiting relationships, drama, music, artistic expression and nurturing love came together in this multi-media experience. She’s an avid reader and writer and has conducted children’s music and participated in choirs for many years. With the desire to create more cherished Christmas memories and promote a deeper connection to the Savior, Heidi produced Holy Stable: Celebrate the Miracle…Story, Music, Nativity Play.

My Review:

Holy Stable is a beautifully wrapped gift for anyone or it could be a wonderful Christmas tradition for any family. This is a beautifully illustrated story, one we all know so well. Yet, this particular book can be done in several ways. The story could be acted out, there is music and narration, and there is a story to read. My family has decided on Christmas Eve we will use the narration to act out the story. This book is something families will treasure for generations. This DVD/Book set will enhance any gathering from small to large with the beautiful story of the Savior.


Sandie

Monday, November 21, 2011

Beyond Myself: Reclaiming Your LIfe After Sexual Abuse

This is a tough subject to talk about for most people, and even harder to move away from. I saw this book when it came on tour with Media Guests and wanted to read it because I am in my graduate program for Marriage, Family and Child Therapy. If beleived that I might be able to use this book as a resource in my professional library.

ABOUT THE BOOK:

Beyond Myself: Reclaiming Your Life After Sexual Abuse is an educational resource to explain to victims, support people, therapists, law enforcement, judiciary officials, and people from all walks of life about the devastation caused before, during, and after sexual abuse and sexual assault have occurred. This book will also offer insight as to how and why a predator chooses his/her victims, and why their perpetration must be stopped.
Designed for teen and adult survivors of sexual violation, Beyond Myself will enable the reader to capture the courage to stand up against this often-deadly epidemic. Along with this book and its companion materials (Beyond Myself music CD and study guide), victims will learn to let go of victimization and restore their mind, body, and soul without the baggage of sexual abuse.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Yvonne Rousseau brings twenty years of experience analyzing and researching the worldwide impact of sexual abuse and violence. She has extensive experience as an advocate for victims of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault, assisting men, women, and children through the different stages of healing. Yvonne has done presentations on the process of recovery from sexual and physical violence, offering an innovative technique for victims, treatment providers, clergy, and law enforcement personnel to take an active role for individual, familial, and societal recovery.

To read more about Yvonne Rousseau visit her website at: www.beyondmyselfrecovery.com


My Review:


I read Beyond Myself with the hope that I might be able to use the book in my professional library. Ms. Rousseau put much research and experience into each page of this book. How does one say that they "enjoyed" a book about reclaiming your life after sexual abuse? However, I did find great power in each page. I read and learned about the steps that a person who has gone through this experience would have to work through.

The one thing that I did like that this book offered was a study guide and a CD to help the counselor work with clients or a client to just order the study guide and CD to work on this alone. I do find great power in resources and at the end of this book a list of resources are available.

I cannot imagine what it is like to be sexually abused, nor do I ever want to have that experience. This book will help the person who has gone down this road to rebuild and reclaim one's life. There are six steps and each step has a powerful message, each step gives hope.

I found much hope in this book; I found that this book was a book that I would put in my professional library. I will order the study guide and CD so that I have this resource available to clients. The book had a quote at the beginning that resonated with me it states:

"We gain strength, and courage, and confidence by each experience in which we really stop to look fear in the face...we must do that which we think we cannot." Eleanor Roosevelt

What a powerful quote, what a powerful statement of hope. This book will give the reader hope.

I appreciate this opportunity I had to review Beyond Myself. This review is my own words. I was not paid for a positive review.

Sandie






















Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Common Denominators For Sucess: 7 Universal Formulas to get the Results You Want

In the last few years I have tried to align myself with people and tools that allow me to be the best person I can be. When I saw that this book was on the blog tour for Media Guests, I wanted to read this, it resonated with me in some ways. Because I am always looking for ways to improve I hoped that this book would be exactly what I wanted to read. I was given a copy of this book to review, my review is my own words, I was not paid for this review.


ABOUT THE BOOK:

For centuries people have searched for the underlying elements of lasting success that would produce results in every aspect of life. Kenny J. Anderson has devoted 20 years of research to uncover these 7 Formulas, in his book Common Denominators For Success.
Whether you are looking to pursue a lifelong goal, increase your ability to connect with others, be in optimal health, maximize your use time and money, increase the profitability of your company, or create a dynamic workplace, these seven timeless principles will uncover the answers that will allow you to reach your potential and turn your personal and professional ambitions into reality.


Ordinary people throughout all eras of time, have achieved extraordinary results as they have applied these seven powerful formulas, but now is the time for you to live your dreams and get the results you want.

About the Author:

Kenny J. Anderson has traveled the world discovering the Common Denominators For Success in both corporate and personal excellence. Anderson has tapped into some of the most brilliant minds around the globe to help corporations and individuals discover their blueprint for success.
Anderson discovered his own success as an entrepreneur in the fields of finance, real estate, and as an inventor. As a financial advisor, Anderson has consulted individuals and companies throughout the U.S. on wealth management. In the field of real estate, Anderson created his own development company, and has contributed to over one hundred million dollars of closed real estate transactions. As an inventor, Anderson patented an idea for an athletic shoe, which later evolved into his company, Leaper Footwear LLC. Since 1998, Leaper has licensed its patent to some of the largest companies in the world.


Today, as an international consultant, speaker, and author, Anderson continues to share the formula for success to companies and individuals around the world. Recently, Anderson completed a World Tour, traveling 55,000 miles in 50 days, to 15 countries and 6 continents, interviewing leaders in the areas of business, sports, entertainment, and government. He now shares this knowledge and experience to help companies and individuals achieve their own success.

My Review:
How many self-help books does one need? How many does one actually read? For me, I try to find ones that speak to me, there are many on the market, but for me personally, I want to read ones that are realistic to where I am in my life and what I hope to gain from reading a specific book.

Common Denominators for Success is just the type of book that called out to me. When I received this book, I quickly grabbed my pink highlighter and sat down to read. This book was not only a wonderful read, it was easy to follow, it made total sense, and the formulas are actually doable. I found that this book was so full of amazing information that I went online to order a copy for my son and his wife, and for a couple of other family members. Common Denominators has seven universal formulas to get the results that YOU want, and then it has five core values.

How often in your life have you ever asked for a blueprint for success? How often have you told one of your children that they didn't come with an owners manual, we just are working through life by trial and error. Well, now you have a blueprint for success. This book provides powerful tools that are easy concepts to understand and apply in life.

I highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a change, anyone who would like to realize his or her best potential. I recommend this book to anyone looking for a positive journey. The Author, Kenny Anderson, not only does he invite the reader to experience this book, he invites the reader to participate by practicing these formulas and values. I will keep this book in my professional office for my clients. This book is one of the best "self-help" type books that I have read in years.
On a scale of 1-10, I would give this book a 10! Thank you for the opportunity to read such a powerful, life changing book!

Sandie

Monday, November 14, 2011

My Salon Doll Contest Giveaway!!!

What every girl would want for Christmas, these dolls look for fun and are so inviting. My girls have looked over the blog, the videos and are begging for these for Christmas.


ABOUT THE PRODUCT:

Brynn, Malaree, KendreyWhat Ever you can Imagine, You can Create. Wow, My Salon Doll’s Really Great!
A young girl and her doll quickly develop a fast and lasting friendship. This new relationship will provide hours of creativity, imaginary play, dress up and YES hair styles.
My Salon Doll delivers a real treat! Uniquely designed, each doll is manufactured with real human hair. Their hair can be curled with a curling iron, straightened, crimped and blown dry. What ever you can imagine you can create.
My Salon Doll’s are vinyl; this design makes it possible to join her best friend everywhere… places like the pool, sprinklers, or tub are no longer off limits. Every moment with My Salon Doll is memorable and enjoyable. Another fun feature from My Salon Doll are her pierced ears, making it easy to add glam with real earings and other accessories.

Currently My Salon Doll has three dolls available Brynn, Malaree, Kendrey with a rapidly expanding product line. Each girl has her on personality, hobbies, and talents. The adventures are just waiting to begin! While exploring the website, visit the Styles and Smiles link. This is a fun place where you are taught different things like styling your My Salon Doll’s hair, special techniques, and safety tips. Styles you can recreate on your own hair!




My Salon Doll is hosting a Christmas giveaway.Enter to win a your very own, MY SALON DOLL.The First and Original Doll with Real Hair.


TO PARTICIPATE: For a chance to win you must complete the following three (3) steps below between November 7, 2011 and December 15, 2011 to qualify;



Step 1: Visit www.mysalondoll.com and get to know the three different dolls: Brynn, Malaree, and Kendrey. Then decide if chosen, which doll you’d like to win.



Step 2: Send an email to contest@mysalondoll.com with your first name, last name, email address, doll of your choice, and share where you heard about the contest.



Step 3: “Like” the My Salon Doll Facebook page



CONTEST DATES: The contest will be active from November 1, 2011 through December 15, 2011.



GIVEAWAY RULES: Open to USA and Canadian residents, age 18+ to enter, one entry per household. Winner announced on Facebook on December 16, 2011. No purchase necessary. Thanks for entering and good luck! Winner selected through random.org and notified by email.
Blog, Tweet or Share on Facebook about the giveaway and be entered twice in the contest. Make sure you leave a message on the My Salon Doll facebook page letting us know that you’ve done this.

A Gentle Thief

I am very excited to have had the opportunity to review A Gentle Thief for Media Guests. This book was sent to be to review in E-book form. The review is my own words. This E-book was such a wonderful read!


About the Book:


Maddie Johnson loved Shakespeare. Unlike everybody else she knew growing up, she seemed to understand him, enjoy him, more with every reading. It was partly because of this love that she drove from her home in rural Pennsylvania to college at Southern Utah University, home every summer to the Utah Shakespearean Festival. It was partly that, and partly the desire to get as far away as possible.


Maddie thought being in Utah would help her forget, that the stark beauty of the scenery and the power of the metaphor would be enough to clear her. They weren’t.


In her freshman year, she met and, after graduation, married a much older man, Robert Able, the first person Maddie had ever known who understood her love of Shakespeare.


At 21, Maddie felt too young to be married. At 23, she felt too young to be divorced.
Maddie was found dead on New Year’s Day, clutching a gun to her chest. Everyone assumed she committed suicide. Everyone except her father.


A Gentle Thief is Maddie’s story, and that of her father and the young attorney he hires who becomes devoted to him and the truth of his cause.
A Gentle Thief is a book nearly 20 years in the making, inspired by a case the author worked on while a lawyer.
About The Author:

Amanda Dickson is a radio announcer, author, newspaper columnist, and speaker based in Salt Lake City. Amanda earned her B.A. in English and her Juris Doctorate at the University of Utah. She practiced law for a brief time before returning to her first love of radio. Amanda taught Mass Communication Law at the University of Utah, becoming a favorite professor among the students. Amanda published her first book in the fall of 2007, Wake Up to a Happier Life. Her second book, Change It Up, came out in October of 2009. Her new book, Friends for Life, is due out in January of 2012. Amanda is married and the step-mother of three children. She is also the indulgent mother of two children.


My Review:
This book was a fascinating book, made me feel part detective, part attorney while reading the story. I found myself so engrossed in the book that I was unable to close it down. Last night I fell asleep reading in on the couch and woke up at 2 am with my laptop on my lap and my neck hurting.

A Gentle Thief is a book that will hold anyone’s fascination with mystery. The story was well written, page after page was filled with great detail, I almost felt like I knew the characters. While reading the story it would flip from Sophie the attorney, to Maddie the young girl who was murdered. The mystery takes so many turns, just when I "thought" I knew who did it, I was introduced to more reasons why someone else would want to kill Maddie. With the whole mystery revolving around a young attorney who was put on the case to have the state Medical Examiner change the case from suicide to a homicide. I won't give you the ending of the book, you'll have to read the book to find out which it was and if the attorney was able to help the grieving father change the medical examiners mind.

The story had so many twists and turns, but what I loved most was what Sophie found along her journey, what she had not expected. This was a heartwarming story, a mystery, a tender book, a sad book, a story that made me as a reader stop and think more than I could have expected.

I completely without reservation recommend this book as one of the best books I have read in a long time. This book held my attention, it was fun, easy to read and easy to follow the storyline. I completely enjoyed the story!

Sandie

Thursday, November 3, 2011

The Last Confederate Battle

When I saw this book on the book tour I wanted to read it. This past summer my family had the wonderful opportunity to go to Pennsylvannia where we went to many historical sites. Early in my marriage my husband and I lived in the South, Savannah, Georgia and Columbus, Georgia, where we found many historical sites to visit. I have always loved history, my father is some what of a historian and has passed that love for history to his children. This book although it was a fiction, it weaved historial facts and detail throughout. Given that I am a proud American, and come from a long line of a Military family you'll know that this was a story I wanted to read.

ABOUT THE BOOK: History records that the last battle of the Civil War was fought on the red clay soil of the Rio Grande River at Palmito Ranch, near Brownsville, Texas. That battle took place in mid-May 1865, more than a month following General Lee’s surrender at Appomattox, Virginia. There are factual accounts of skirmishes that took place long after Lee’s surrender. The historical attention to detail is highly accurate giving the reader a front row seat to life before, during and after the Civil War.
The Last Confederate Battle brings to light the perspectives from both sides, revealing the positive and negative natures of men. Conflict within our own country is remarkably described through the writings of John Cline; the main characters of this multifaceted story come to life as real historical experiences are interwoven into each page.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Following a twenty five year career in both the enlisted and officer corps’, John Cline retired from the U.S. Navy as a Limited Duty Officer (Mustang) in July 1993 with the rank of Lieutenant Commander. He was the director of the Idaho Bureau of Disaster Services until he retired in 2005.
He has a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in Workforce Education and Curriculum Development from Southern Illinois University, and a Master of Art degree (M.A.) in National Security Studies; Homeland Security and Defense from the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, CA. He is a graduate of the FBI National Academy (140th Session), and was nationally certified by the National Coordinating Council on Emergency Management and the International Association of Emergency Managers. He is an avid Amateur Radio Operator with the call sign W5USN. John and his wife Pat have three children and four grandchildren

My Review:
This book captured my attention from the start. I hated putting the book down when I had to do something or go somewhere. The books story line is captivating and draws the reader in quickly. The historical detail is done with a great deal of effort. Though I would expect nothing but that from a military man! Mr. Cline writes in a way that I found to be easy to read, which is something that is important to me, because some books write WAY over my simple head.



I loved this book, the story made me think of going to see the historical sites this summer and knowing that family did fight against family. Standing on Gettysburg this summer I realized how austere the terrain was, I think about the soldiers in the south and how poor most were. I think about how these soldiers do not have the gear or equipment that soldiers today have available.


The beginning of this book, when Andy walks into the plantation and decides to restructure how he runs the plantation, was awesome. I knew I would love the book from that point on! Because I love a good love story, I found that to be an excellent part of the book, something that was unexpected and yet made the story oh so much better for me! I am a true romantic at heart and this book found me loving that part of it! This book will appeal to a variety of readers. I highly recommend this book.


I was given a copy of this book by Media Guests for an honest review, the review is my own feelings and thoughts, I was not paid for this review.



Sandie

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Greatest Patriot

I have always loved history, and a great story is always something I am attracted to reading. I was born while President Kennedy was in office, and therefore, all I know I've read or was taught in school. Although this book is a fiction, there was a bit of the "conspiracy theory" that attracted me, my sister had a friend who worked in the hospital where Kennedy died, and said that there was a wing of the hospital that was blocked off, and only the Kennedy's and certain others were allowed to go to, she believed the president had lived, but was in a state he could not continue as president. So, you see this book intrigued me from the start.

ABOUT THE BOOK:

The Greatest Patriot is a thought provoking spin on the history of the last five decades that leaves its readers with a serious case of “What if?”
What would the world look like today had John F. Kennedy actually died in November of 1963? What was so compelling that the President of the United States found it essential to fake his own death? Where did he hide for the following 48 years and how did he shape the world we know today? The Greatest Patriot isn’t another ‘conspiracy’ theory but a fiction that relies on historical fact and creatively twists those facts to form a most intriguing story. Secretly sequestered on a Greek island, Kennedy continued to shape major world events from the political fall of Khrushchev to the demise of the USSR and even the rise of Barack Obama.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Dan Sullivan was raised in La Grande, Oregon, a small town nestled in the Blue Mountains of northeastern Oregon. He spent his younger years exploring the mountains and wilderness around La Grande creating wonderful adventures along the way. After graduating from Oregon State University he worked for three years in Seattle and Portland, Oregon before quitting his job and spending three months backpacking around Europe in 1990. Upon returning from Europe, Dan moved to Boise, Idaho where he went to work in the Real Estate industry.
He earned his Scuba Dive Master certification and spent years traveling to destinations such as Fiji, Belize, Mexico, and throughout the Caribbean. Dan and his wife Amy enjoy the incredible natural wonders of Idaho and the Pacific Northwest with their two children.
To read more about Dan Sullivan vist his website at: www.thegreatestpatriot.com

My Review:


This book is an easy read, full of history. Although this book is fiction, I felt like I was in the middle of real life while I read it. The book flips between the 1960s and Present day, where a wonderful man Hal Rumsey tells a story to Washington Post writer Mike Mahoney. I found myself being tense as I anticipated what might happen, anxious to get back to reading as soon as my kids were at school. I had a difficult time putting this book down. I was captivated by the story that Hal Rumsey told and the twists and turns that would alter the American history as we know it.

The book is a wonderful read, if you do not mind flipped between present day and the 60s the information in the book seemed plausible and enjoyable to read. The book took some turns that I was not expecting and in the end all I can say is that Hal Rumsey is the hero in my book! The fact that John F. Kennedy gave up his life for his country is one of the greatest sacrifices anyone could make. This fiction was a wonderful read! I highly recommend it. There was some language in the book; however, given the circumstances this language was not out of place.

This book was sent to me to review, I did not promise a positive review. I reviewed the book for Media Guests and appreciate the opportunity to do so!


Sandie



Monday, October 24, 2011

If My Body Is a TEMPLE, Then I Was a MEGACHURCH

The title of this book caught my eye and when I saw that it was available to review I jumped at the chance. I have often felt a little mega as well. For years my husband and I had a little family joke, that I was wearing our food storage. All good Mormon’s have a year supply of food. I absolutely have always had a year’s supply; however, in recent years I have been wearing that food storage on my hips, my thighs, my butt…you get the picture.
About the Book:


If My Body Is a Temple, Then I Was a Megachurch: My journey of losing 132 pounds with no exercise!
IF THERE’S ONE THING that’s guaranteed, it’s that you will bust a gut reading comedian Scott Davis’ hilarious yet poignant story about how he lost 132 pounds without any exercise. Spiced with his trademark comedy and self-deprecating humor, Scott serves up a dose of reality about the correlation between the state of our hearts and the location of our waistline. Scott explores the spiritual depths and practical steps to losing significant weight and shows how you can adopt a healthy lifestyle too.
Whether you need to lose 150 pounds or five pounds, Scott’s hilarious memoir will not only make you laugh but it will also equip you for your own journey to a happier and healthier you.


About the Author:


Scott Davis is a comedian, singer and entertainer. He received Christ at the age of sixteen on July 10, 1979. He graduated from Liberty University where he attended on a full scholarship for traveling with the Light Singers. While working toward his degree in cross-cultural studies, Scott traveled across the U.S. and to ten foreign countries.
Scott’s ministry has continued in the U.S. and abroad since his graduation in 1984. He has appeared on Mark Lowry’s videos and has written comedy for Mark while under contract with Word Records. For a year, Scott appeared weekly on the national television show, “The Mark & Kathy Show,” with Mark Lowry and Kathy Troccoli. Along with his weekly appearances, he has been a guest on numerous religious and secular radio and television broadcasts, including an appearance with comedian Dennis Swanberg on Swan’s Place.
Today, Scott conducts GET REAL national conferences with the nation’s top speakers and musicians. He also presents music and comedy concert events.

My Review:
As I started to read this book, the first thing that became extremely clear to me was his use of the bible and since I am an extremely spiritual/religious woman, this was something that struck a chord with me. Right from the start Scott suggests that if our bodies are our temples, then why would “I” treat them so poorly. That statement slapped me in the face and made me sit up and think. I stopped all reading and considered exactly what that meant to me as a disciple of Jesus Christ.


I have hid wrappers before, I am sure that most people who are overweight have some sort of a stash that nobody knows about. I however, never keep my stash in my house, I always eat the evidence first and I’ve been known to stop at the gas station to throw garbage away. In this book Scott talks about hiding wrappers in the trash and moving trash to cover over the wrappers. I know this hit home for me. There is a line in the book that has a definite meaning its talking about not being your own person (like the apostle Paul) only this time it’s because food is a barrier. He said “Same with me when it comes to food. I’m not my own. I’m enslaved”. Yes, I certainly can see how someone’s life to feel that way, enslaved to food. I’ve often said to others that food is to me what alcohol is to an alcoholic. This is just the same thing worded different.


This book parallels scripture, mixed with humor to illustrate an ordinary life that had extraordinary consequences. Scott, made some seriously valid points on weight loss that takes forever, as a person who has much to lose, this is something to help one lose motivation in a hurry. I love how he states that he wants to feel himself shrinking so his confidence goes in the other direction. Scott talks about golden nuggets, advice to live by.


The best part of this book, was how easily it is for someone to relate to, anyone who has ever have an issue with weight could identify with some if not all of what Scott went through. This is a fun read, a clean read and I would highly recommend this book to anyone who would like to consider weight loss.


Sandie




Tuesday, October 18, 2011

What are YOU Thinking?

I saw this book on the Media Guest Tour Here and I wanted to review it since I have three children still at home. I love children's books so this book just sounded like something I needed to read. Not only did I read this book, I sat down with each of my children and had them read the book to me and then we talked about the book. I was given a copy of this book and the words expressed in this review are my own.


About the Book:
Our thoughts, be it positive or negative, determine who were are and what we become. That is why helping our children understand the power of thoughts from an early age is essential.


Studies show that children with negative thoughts are more likely to give up; they lack confidence and motivation. One the other hand, children who think positively take on their life, they overcome challenges they are more enthusiastic, and driven. Author, Valerie Achley, illustrates the power of our thoughts in the award winning book, What Are You Thinking? This book introduces children to the law of Attraction. Beautifully illustrated with fun characters and humorous situations, this amazing creation teaches the power of the mind and the importance of wisely selecting our dominate thoughts.


"What Are You Thinking?" will inspire creativity, confidence, goal setting, gratitude, and How to turn a bad day around! Parents can use this book as a spring board to discuss healthy vs. unhealthy "thinking habits" with their children.


About the Author:

Valerie Ackley graduated from college with a degree in Business Management and worked eight years in the telecommunications industry before becoming a fulltime homemaker to her five sons.

After attending a seminar by Leslie Householder, author of The Jackrabbit Factor, Valerie gained a better understanding of the effect of our thoughts have on our experiences. Valerie had a strong desire to introduce these principles to her sons.

The idea of "What are You Thinking?" was born when she was unable to find any similar products for children. She hopes this book will be a tool to open a discussion between parents and children regarding the power of the mind, and the importance of wisely selecting our dominate thoughts. Valerie has seen her children benefit from applying these principles. She believes this book, with the delightful and humorous illustrations created by Lori Nawyn, will empower children and parents to enjoy the endless rewards of positive thinking.

Valerie lives in a beautiful valley at the base of the Wasatch Mountains in Utah with her husband and five sons.

My Review:

The day I received this book in the mail, I sat down with my five year old, and we read the book through about four times. She loved the pictures and hearing the story. She kept asking me for a few days after, hey what are you thinking? I then gave this book to my ten years old and she read the book through. After she read the book we sat down and talked about how she felt about the book. She stated that the book has a good message, she especially liked the dialogue of the little animals, she also believes this book is something that kids should read and remember. I next gave the book to my nine year old that read the book and said that he loved the pictures and to him the story had a good message, he said that more kids need to read this book. He asked if they have the book at the library at school, because he wanted his friends to read the book.

My thoughts on the book are that this book was well written and illustrated. At first I thought that the pages were a little too busy, but after looking at the book through my children's eyes I started to glimpse what they saw in the illustration and the pages written.
The messages in this book are real, and needed. I loved the light bulb, the idea of a light bulb represents thinking and then it says "just like a bug is drawn to a light..." That is exactly how this epidemic of negative thoughts.

This book was wonderful, the pages were well illustrated, some were busy to me, but my grandchildren loved the illustration, which went hand in hand with the message. As the book states "you decide what you are going to focus on" this is a powerful message to children!
Sandie



Velwythe: Resurrection of the Mind


Although Velwythe was not a book that would usually be in my genre, I wanted to read it so that I could expand my horizons so to speak. I was given a free copy of this book to review from Media Guests Here. The views expressed in this review are my own words. Thank you Media Guests for allowing me the opportunity to review this book.


About the Book:
His mother vanished. His father killed himself. Vaan, now 21 has no friends, no money, no family, and no hope. All his dreams have vanished. Unable to escape the horror of his own memories, his life has been in stasis.
But with a bit of luck and a bit of effort Vaan manages to make his first real friend since childhood. Duncan, a man who has watched the growing railline destroy his entire home city, was disowned after denying his birthright.
Vaan and Duncan become fast friends with troubled pasts. Now, with Duncan's help and the encouragement' of a local priest, Vaan decides his life has remained in a quagmire too long. Only by selling his house and everything he owns will he have a chance to become a wandering scholar.
Every year around the FreePort Solstice Festival (and his birthday) Vaan has terrible nightmares of his father's chronic pain. But the night before the festival Vaan has a dream unlike any before. He wakes up thinking he has gone blind-but it isn't just that, he can feel something cold pawing at his head as though it is absorbing his very thoughts.
After the horrible dream, leaving FreePort isn't just about getting an education. Ellred, a local priest, tells Vaan there could be more to his non-dream than he could ever imagine. But the only way to figure any of it out is if duncan agrees to travel with Vaan to the very place Duncan can never return. And on their way to Alpine, Vaan's encounter with a small militia forces him to question his understanind of humanity and the very reality he thought to be true for so many years.
But Velwythe is more than just the story of Vaan and Duncan. Visit Here the website for Velwythe to explore the world Vanna and Duncan explore,, participate in the story by communicating with the characters, vote on issues that will change not only the future books but the entire world and much, much more. No book has been so complete and so accessible. Velwythe, not just a book, a whole new world.




About the Author Bonn Turkington:



With a background in classical philosophy and a love of video games, a new author brings an original idea to the overstocked book isle. Bonn Turkington, was always intrigued by the interactive environments of video games and RPG's, but also enjoyed the intellectual feasts of Greek and Russian Philosophies. This mix laid the foundations for a unique vision of a fantastic world.



Bonn Turkington has opened the series to his fans, encouraging them to participate in the story development. Readers can vote on issues described in the available book, Velwythe: Resurrection of the Mind, as if they were citizens of the fantastic realm via the books website, http://www.velwythe.com/ This will change the enviorment around the main character, forcing him to deal with political and social fluctuations just as anyone in the real world would have to. There is also an open invitation to artists and writers who are interested in a chance to have their work recognized through working with the site and publishing company.



My Review:



Velwythe is as I stated earlier, not something I would ordinarily read. I read the synopses a few times before I decided I would like to try reading this book. I will admit that I had an extremely difficult time getting into the book. As I started the book, I considered a few times just giving up on the book. I took it everywhere I went and found I would rather make a phone call and talk to someone, than read the book.



As I started to move through each chapter I realized that this story was so deep, and complex that it was not something one could simply light read. I started to become more serious about the book and found that I started to enjoy the book as the chapters passed. I enjoyed the relationship that Vaan had with Duncan. I do not know if I was more excited that he had someone in his life because I felt so sorry for how lonely he was or if it was just nice to have another character that was solid. Vaan was an interesting character who in my professional opinion has issues with separation anxiety.



I felt sad when the Festival came, and how sad that made Vaan. It was a good idea that he sale everything and get away from there. The memories of his parents in his house seemed to haunt him. This was a good book, I am glad I did read it. I can not say that I loved this book, but I did like the book. I think its a great read for someone who enjoys a deep book and has the concentration level to devote to reading. Vaan is a great character and I would recommend this book! This book was Volume One so there will be more books coming in the future.


Sandie

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Echoes of Savanna

I was given the honor of reading Echoes of Savanna by Lucinda Moebius, by Media Guests Here. I was given a free copy of an E-book to read, I had never read an E-book before, and found it interesting and challenging since I read it on my computer. I had wanted to read this 2nd Edition copy of the book; I had heard so many good things about the 1st Edition, I was eager to read the book.



About the Author:

Lucinda Moebius grew up in the mountains of Idaho and Eastern Oregon. her mother taught her to read when she was only 4 years old and since that time books have been her constant companions. She has a Bachelor's degree in English Teaching, a Masters in Educational Leadership and is currently pursuing a Doctorate in Education. Lucinda supports her writing habits by teaching high school and college. She lives in Boise, Idaho with her husband and their dog and cat. Lucinda is the author of Echoes of Savanna, a Haven Novel, part of the Parent Generation. You can visit the Authors website HERE.


About the Book:

Every generation has their defining moments, events that change history and turn the course of lives. Forever will the children of that generation be identified by those moments. Savanna Taylor is a medical doctor in 2036, the same year terrorists release a series of plagues and viruses into the world. She is a nineteen year old Brain Trust whose task it is to find a cure for the diseases and develop vaccines to prevent their further spread. The world is thrown into turmoil and Savanna needs to find a way to survive with her sanity and family intact. Can Savanna cope in a world in constant flux brought on by war and disease? Can she save the world and protect her loved ones or will she make the ultimate sacrifice? How will she be defined?


My Review:

This book fascinated me from the start. I was quickly drawn into the story as it was set in the year 2036. I found that I was so captivated by Savanna and her way of life, that I became completely engrossed in this book and had a difficult time putting the book down.

The story moved quickly, there were times that the story went through many years in a page or a paragraph. This was not something I felt detracted from the book, but the story did move fast. The new age futuristic technology seemed to me like watching the Jetsons cartoon back in the 60s and 70s, now in the future; this technology did not seem so farfetched. I could see data pads and all the technology that followed in this story. I actually thought how nice it would be to have that type of a data pad.

I loved the story of Savanna; she was a good woman who helped so many people. I felt that she was a viable character who was easily likable in real life. As always, I love a good love story, the story of Travis and Savanna albeit different, it was heartwarming. I love how they found love. I know that people fall in love at first sight, I did. This relationship was fun to follow from Travis picking up Savanna in Phoenix, to his transferring dorms so that he could be closer to her and eat his meals with Savanna's family, and to his gentle care of Savannah when she was injured.

The story ended very differently than I had expected, I do hope that there are more books in this series, because I enjoyed reading the book so much. I would recommend this read to anyone who likes an adventure. This book was a clean read.

Sandie







Thursday, September 15, 2011

The Crystal Prince: Love is the Only Way












I was given the opportunity to review the Crystal Prince: Love is the Way by: Jeanette Clinger Hurley. This book was provided to me by Media Guests, I was not paid for this review, only provide a free copy of this book. The review is my own words.





I was anxious to read this book, it looked cute and since it was a children's book I believed that it would be a fun read for my three children.


About the Author:


Jeanette Clinger Hurley is an accomplished world-class singer, songwriter, story teller, entrepreneur and lifelong dreamer. As a child she and her family, The Clingers, performed with luminaries such as Bob Hope, Liberace, Sammy Davis Jr. and Gene Kelly to name just a few. In the 90's, Jeanette fronted and recorded with the best selling jazz contemporary artist Hiroshima, as well as recording and touring with Yanni and many others. She's written, produced and recorded several CD's of her own with abundant success. The Crystal Prince marks her first foray into children's literature and her passion and persistence having finally come to fruition in the book you now hold in your hands. Jeanette is a loving wife and proud mother to Logan and London, who are her greatest and proudest accomplishments to date. She currently resides in beautiful Provo, Utah.


About the Book:


Escape into a world of spellbinding adventure, a world where kindness is king, a world where faith and imagination separate life from death, a world where love is the key that unlocks both mystery and magic...Escape into the world of The Crystal Prince.


Jeanette Clinger Hurley transports you to a land where darkness and light are in constant battle, a place where good &evil equally wage war on the heart...challenging both faith and destiny.


Come along and join the charmed prince Xabian and the beautiful Jenevieve on their enchanted and courageous journey, as they discover...The heart is mightier than the sword, that faith conquers fear and that the true magical and transformational miracle of life is simple and pure...That love is the way, love is the only way.


My Review:


I love this fantasy book, the wonderful story of love and faith intermingle with suspense is what dreams are made of. I love the story between Xabian and Jenevieve, this story is so sweet. I love that her angelic lullaby could calm him and sooth him as he was scared and alone. What a tender story of their love for each other, a love that stood the test of time, the type of love that most girls dream of, and rarely find. The story tells a tale of good and evil, and it is illustrated beautifully in this children's book. I would suggest that this book for older children and not for little ones, unless the parents are actively involved and reading the book with the child.


This book was a fun easy read. I would recommend it but warn parents that some of the names are difficult to pronounce, therefore, be able to assist their child with these words. Otherwise, this is a delightful story.



Sandie

Thursday, September 1, 2011

The Liquid City





Again, I am late in posting this review, between travels and the kids starting school, I have been swamped. However, I finished the book in the wee hours of the morning this morning and I have to say this is one of the best books I have read in a long, long time. I was given a copy of the book to review by Media Guests the review is my own words, I was not paid to review this book. Thank you to Media Guests for allowing me to read such a fun and exciting book!

About the Author:
My passion and impetus to write has been in existence since birth. I pursued adolescence in the shadow of Ian Fleming's 'Bond'; survived my teens in the company of John D. MacDonald's 'MeGee'; and grew to adulthood under the guidance of Robert B Parker's 'Spenser'. My infatuation with literature's lethal lotharios, including Spade and Marlowe, is as innate as it is undeniable, and is much of not only who I've become, but of who I've come to encapsulate within my writings. I hope I have done my predecessor's proud, and that the legends will continue to mentor and wax immortal within my written pages. Please enjoy, for it is truly a writers only silent ovation! Curtis J. Hopfenbeck

About the book:
Shadoe Kilbourne is the consummate intellectual assassin, with an impressive arsenal of both wit and weaponry at this disposal. As Seattle's most successful nightclub owner and restaurateur; he is also a man of great resource, humor and humanity. His lethal charms and deadly ideologies are a devastating double-edged sword; brandished at will to put the bad guys in their place and get the good girls back to his. Driven by vengeance, derived from a painful and poignant past we can only speculate on, his ties to the highest echelons and lowest corridors of humanity also make him the perfect middleman for those who seek to solicit his fervor and favor in the hunt for the brand of justice, both inside and outside of the law.

My Review:
I read this book a little here and a little there, until this past weekend when I got sick and had to stay down. I was so engrossed in the book that I did not want to put it down for anything. I have never read a book that was so funny, serious, and made me think more. I laughed, I was tense, I thought about what I would do in a situation. This book was so full of one liners it made me burst out laughing in the oddest places. One of my favorite scenes that almost made me spit my water across the floor, was when Shad goes to see Mr. Rawls. Prior to going into his office, Shad drops to one knee and the ensuing next few lines had me laughing out loud. I loved this book.

I found this book to tap into my intellect and into my serious side, and I laughed often. I loved the relationship that Shad had with Pablo, that relationship made my heart happy. The one thing that bugged me was I wasn't sure if Shad was just an honest great guy or a player with women, dangling three women who were in love with him. I hate men like that, and that was the only negative thing I could see. This book was clean and filled with history, Curtis Hopfenbeck developed his characters well and left little to the imagination, I could picture these people in my head.

This book was one I hated to see end, and I hope there is a sequel. I would whole heartily recommend this book to anyone who loves a good story!

Sandie

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Inch Principle: 21 Millon Dollar Inches of Management















First of all I have to say that this post should have taken place in July; however, my summer was crazy as can be and I did not finish reading this book until late last night. My apologies to Media Guest who provided me with a free copy of this book so that I could review, for being seriously late. My apologies to the authors of this book John T. Condry and Paul E. Carpenter for patiently waiting for all the reviews. Thank you for the opportunity for allowing me to review this book. I was interested in this book for months before I asked if I could review a copy.

About the Book:

The Inch Principle: 21 Million Dollar Inches of Management by John T. Condry and Paul E. Carpenter provides a 180-page guide to 21 management principles, or 21 inches, that will increase manager's confidence to overcome challenges, reduce drama in the workplace, teach employees that profit is not a four letter word, make decisions and motivate today's entitled worker to be loyal. The authors strive to motivate managers to be better leaders by focusing on the present, rather than past experiences or hopes for the future. "It's a message of letting go of the past and letting the future take care of itself. It's how to make decisions today explain the authors.

About the Authors:

John T. Condry and Paul E. Carpenter are principals at CMI, which features the flagship management training program "Managing in the Zone." Condry, a management development expert, trainer, consultant, speaker and founder of Career Success Seminars Inc., also published the Cornerstones of Management training series. Carpenter is president of The Non-Traditional Revenue Group, LLC, a consulting firm that develops revenue for companies through training and marketing throughout the United States.

My Review:

As I stated earlier I had wanted to read this book. I am currently in school and plan to open my own business in the next five years. Therefore, I am interested in all the successful business tips I can acquire. My first thoughts of this book were that it was one of the easiest books I have read all year. The pages are filled with tips and guidance, but also point out all the different approaches of management good and bad. This book invites the reader to understand the types of management styles,what works and what does not work. Also why one style works for a while and then it stops working. I enjoyed each chapter of this book and found the book to be extremely helpful to me as someone who runs a household, and partners that with my husband of thirty one years. Each chapter had a theme. There were a few quotes from this book I would like to borrow the first one talks about taking responsibilitythis quote by Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe "Let everyone sweep in front of his own door and the whole world will be clean." I love, because we each need to take personal responsibility for our actions, myself included. I loved chapter 20 "Name that Meeting" the quote "A meeting is an event where minutes are taken and hours wasted." Haven't we all been in meeting after meeting and nothing gets accomplished. This chapter provides tools to stop wasting minutes in meetings.

I would recommend this book to anyone looking for help with management style, I would recommend this book to anyone working with others, who might be looking for ways to cope and learn how to make the work place a better environment for all. This is a wonderful book and I highly recommend The Inch Principle: 21 Million Dollar Inches of Management.


Sandie









Friday, June 10, 2011

Summer Fit: Exercises for the Brain and Body while Away from School








I feel privileged to be able to review these books. When I was at Brigham Young University in April, I was able to meet with some representatives of Summer Fit Learning. They talked to me about the books and since I do a form of summer school for my kids each summer to keep them on their toes (plus to give them something constructive to do), I was anxious to give this a try. I have a 9-year old who will be 10 in August she is going into the 5th grade, an 8-year old who will be 9 in July, he is going into the 4th grade, and a 5 year old she is going into kindergarten. I bought two 4-5 books and one K-1 book.


About the book (From the back cover):

Be Smart by staying on top of the classroom skills in reading, writing, math and language arts. Be active by using a daily fitness schedule to keep moving. Stay cool this summer by learning the importance of kindness, respect, honesty, and responsibility.

Keeping brains thinking & bodies active during school breaks is entertaining and engaging with summer fit workbooks and online games and activities.

Created by educators, fitness trainers, and parents, Summer Fit activities focus on key areas of child development, including academics, physical fitness, and core values.

Right now it might feel like a million years away, but the first day of the new school year will be soon upon us. With summer Fit, your child will take a seat better prepared to handle the mental, physical and social challenges of the new school year.


My Review:

I loved these books right from the start; I was excited to have something to enrich my children during the summer months. I spent one week going through the books to figure out my lesson plans for the summer, and then this week we have been using the books. My children love these books, the activities are fun, the lessons are interesting and they are learning in a fun way.

I found that the kids are anxious each day to start on their workbooks, so that they can learn. It is always a good thing when the kids are excited to do school in the summer months. The Summer Fit learning is a 10 week summer experience. Summer fit also has an online portion that just rolled out this week, I found some wonderful aides online to help the kids. My kids have not personally been online yet, but just you wait, they will be soon!

The only negative thing I could say about these books is that they are not long enough. The lessons take 20-30 minutes; however, each day I try to have a couple of hours in the morning devoted to school. This begins by the children taking turns practicing piano and reading this is 45 minutes each. Then we move on to 30 minutes of math, and 30 minutes of writing (we journal). I have added the Summer Fit books into the learning process, and they have added more than what I would normally provide. I love that the book offers core values; I think values are important aspects for children to learn. I love that these books teach about exercise, and have fun activities to do each day. There is a piece on nutrition and as our family is trying to change the way we live and eat, this is a wonderful addition for the children to learn about how important it is to be healthy and nutritious.

I would recommend this book to any parent who would like to enrich their children during the summer months to help them stay on top of school and remember what they learned. This book is an excellent way to teach children more than just Reading, Writing, and Math.


Sandie

Miracle Pill Recipes

I said I would post about some of the recipes I have tried, but I guess I forgot to do that. As I stated before, I love this book and it spoke volumes to me. I was anxious to try some of the recipes because for me learning how to cook is a key part of learning a new way of eating. I love to cook, although I am not professional by any stretch of the imagination, I do think that I am a pretty good cook so I tried several recipes that sounded good to me.

My recipe review:

Breakfast: I tried the Smoked Turkey & Sweet Potato Hash with Eggs, this recipe was scrumptious. My kids love a great breakfast before heading out to school, so I gave this one a try one morning. The review from the whole family was "can we have this again tomorrow?"

I also tried Breakfast Scones, I love scones so this was something I wanted to try, it was so wonderful, and again the kids loved this one too.

Salads: I love salads and I especially love fruit in my salads, so I made the Apple Waldorf Salad and it easy and tasty, I loved the flavor and so did my family.

Main Course: First I tried the Stuffed Cabbage, I was a little unsure how my kids would like this or even my husband because he is such a picky healthy eater. However, much to my surprise, they all loved this yummy good meal!

My oldest talked me into buying some Asparagus one day, I have to admit that I have never liked asparagus or even wanted to try it again since I was seven and a nurse told me it was good for me and made me eat it when I was in the hospital. I tried the Roasted Asparagus with Almonds, Grapes, & Balsamic Glaze...my opinion of Asparagus has changed, thankfully!

Next I tried Penne with Lemon Chicken, Artichokes, & Olives I was interested to try this because I love, love, love Lemon Chicken, however, I do like Artichokes, but I don't love them. My husband is iffy on Artichokes and Olives, so I thought "this should be interesting." This recipe was AWESOME, I loved it, so yummy and flavorful.

All in all this was a wonderful recipe book and I am certainly thrilled that I have new recipes to add to my collection. I always welcome new ideas so that I do not get stuck in the same ole, same ole! This is not only a wonderful book, but the recipes are truly scrumptous!

Sandie

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Miracle Pill, 10 Truths to Healthy, Thin, & Sexy

When I first read the synopsis of this book, I knew it was something I wanted to read. In the last year and a half, I have tried to change the way I thought about food. I have for years said that food is to me, what alcohol is to an alcoholic. I have said over the last year that all the diet foods on the market are designed to make one fat, not thin. I personally have used almost everything possible to lose weight only to gain everything I lost plus. I have spent thousands of dollars on Weight Watchers, I have spent hundreds of dollars on everything from Jenny Craig, HCG, Phen Phen and Pondimin, Adkins, and many more diets with no lasting results.

Funny, when I was at Brigham Young University last week, I saw the table set up for Tres Prier Hatch for book signing; I did not put two and two together. I even saw her book and thought, I should have that in my mailbox when I arrive home, still not putting two and two together. I was standing in the bottom floor of the bookstore when they carried her sign down and still did not put two and two together. When I got home, it hit me. I feel so blonde and bummed that I did not have a chance to meet Tres!

About the Author:
Tres (pronounced tray) Hatch lives to eat. She is a former chef, caterer, and food educator. She often appears on television as a guest chef and was heard weekly on the radio show Get Real Food with Gourmet Tres. Even though she is surrounded by good food all the time, Tres learned how to live in harmony with the needs of her body, which includes a treat every day. In the book Miracle Pill, 10 truths to Healthy, Thin & Sexy she shares these concepts with you.
Tres enjoys writing about food she regularly contributes food articles and recipes for major publications. Her most recent essay was published in Friendship, Bread for the Journey compiled by Doris Platt, from Perfect Niche Publishing. Miracle Pill is her first book, with two cookbooks to follow under the Miracle Pill brand. One will focus on yummy daily fuel recipes and the other on occasional treats.

Tres lives with her husband and children in Utah.

About the Book:
Miracle Pill reveals how to eat what you want and stay thin forever. Because of these 10 truths, Chef Tres Hatch lost 110-pounds, without dieting. Even more remarkably, she permanently changed herself from someone who battles her weight, to someone in harmony with her body-without sacrificing her love for yummy food.

With common sense and a goal of health, rather than strictly weight loss, Miracle Pill teaches how to transition from thoughts to reflect those of a healthy, thin person. Ultimately, those healthy behaviors become permanent and the body takes on the ideal shape for each individual, without diets, gimmicks, or extreme workouts. Living in harmony with your body really is the only permanent weight-loss method-and Miracle Pill helps you change your impulses so you desire correct fuel, and consistent, moderate exercise. The best part is: correct fuel includes all the great treats you love.

My Review:
When I sat down to read this book, I took a pencil, and a pink highlighter. I did not want to forget the parts of the book that resonated with me. Right from the start of this book, I realized that Miracle Pill was confirming everything I had thought about diets, eating, and fuel. I also knew that balance was the key to a successful weight loss that could be sustained and permanent.

I took every quiz or questionnaire in the book. I highlighted everything that hit home. I combed this book through with a fine tooth comb based on what I have learned over the years, and what I felt was missing in what I was being taught and what I have learned in a lifetime of battling the bulge. I loved Tres' candid truths about her own struggled, about how she after three month working hard felt and wanted to quit, but kept on going.

If you are looking for real sustainable change that will last a lifetime, and get back to the basics and trust those basics, then you should read this book. I loved the questions she asks us to write down, to soul search, that this book is not just about her story, but she invites the reader to follow along and participate to see where he or she is at in the process of health. Ultimately, our health should be number one in our pursuit of wellness.

The book offers, saying to tape to the bathroom mirror, and 5 touchstones to successful weight management to post on the mirror or the refrigerator. These empowering affirmations are something I took seriously. While reading this book, going through all the questions, learning about me, what I can and can not change, I realized that this was a book that I could whole heatedly support. Miracle Pill, spoke to me, I learned things about myself I had not thought about, I agreed with the formula for success.

I would recommend this book; I would especially recommend this book for someone who wants a permanent fix and not just a quick fix. The book has many recipes in the back that I had planned to try before posting my review; however, I was not able to do that yet, but I am going to try over the weekend, so check back for my review of yummy meals she has included. I am sorry I did not get to meet this woman who teaches what I already believe. I am going to send a copy of the book to some of my family members that I want to help them learn how to eat and not feel deprived. This book was an easy read, well written, user friendly, and full of enlightening information.

Sandie

This book was sent to my by the publishing company/Author for a review. I reviewed this book for Media Guest. The review is my own feelings and words.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Mosaic Amy Grant Pieces of My Life So Far


I admit that I love Amy Grant's music, and it was her seemingly squeaky clean image that caused me to purchase this book to read. Mosaic in the title was so appealing to me as well. After reading this book, I still love Amy Grant, I still love her music and now I love her as a person.


About the Author:

Amy Grant lives in Nashville Tennessee, with her husband, country music start Vince Gill. She has four children Matt, Millie, Sarah, and Corrina, and one stepdaughter Jenny.


About the Book, from the back cover:

With her unmistakable voice and honest lyrics, Amy Grant has captures a unique place in American music. As the bestselling Christian music artist of all time, a crossover pop sensation, and a the wife of country music star Vince Gill, Amy has lived much of her life in the spotlight, subject to adulation, speculation, and scrutiny. Now for the first time she bares her heart and soul to reveal thoughts on everything from motherhood and marriage to fame and forgiveness. Whether describing personal moments alone on a moonlit hillside or very public ones performing with the likes of Tony Bennett and James Taylor, Amy presents a captivating collection of beautiful reflections of life, love and faith.


My Review:

Mosaic, is a heartwarming book of faith and love. I love the honest portrayal of her life. Amy although famous, is just like the rest of us trying to find balance in her life, and attempt to do things better the next day. She describes how she writes her music and where, I enjoyed this section of the book, as her music is what brought me to her in the first place. I loved her spiritual sense and I could picture myself in her backyard on the patio sitting and visiting with her. She gives plenty of description to help the reader understand her surroundings. Again, I did love this book, I love the spiritual side of the book and the realistic reality of the life she lives, her family, her friends. Amy has had heartache, she has had tough times and blending two families. She talks winter depression that so many people experience and do not even realize it. The book was spiritual and heartwarming.


I would recommend this book to anyone.


Sandie