Book Review: Stretched Too Thin by Jessica N. Turner

Turner’s latest book – Stretched Too Thin is definitely one to check out. The subtitle, ‘How WORKING MOMS Can LOSE the GUILT, WORK SMARTER, and THRIVE’ says it all. Find balance is the key to success in this area and Turner’s book helps reach this goal.

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According to Turner, “As a working mom you can often feel like you’re living stretched too thin. You want to thrive personally and professionally, but the day-to-day responsibilities and mental load can make that feel impossible. While periods of busyness are normal, if life feels overwhelming, it’s time for a reset.” Keeping this in mind, Turner discusses and gives suggestions to help you in areas such as:

  • Work and parent guilt-free
  • Set achievable goals
  • Discover more flexibility
  • Establish clear work boundaries
  • Develop home management solutions
  • Become more efficient and less stressed
  • Prioritize self-care
  • Invent in your marriage
  • Cultivate deeper friendships

The title of the book itself is what lured me into it. I’m sure many of us have been ‘stretched too thin’ during one part of of life. I feel like that could have been my slogan for the past year; between work and caring for a family member it just seemed like time was always escaping me.

It wasn’t until I received the book that I realized the subtitle, and that it was being advertised as a book for working Moms. Well you know what, I’m not a Mom and this book was something that definitely made me thing. Things such as ‘Prioritizing and Practicing Self-Care’ and reading about routines and organizing are things that can help each and every one of us.

Another great thing about this book was how everything was broken down into short, individual sentences. This is great for those who only have a few minutes to spare but still want to try to better their lives. At the end of each chapter there is a section for reflection, to allow you to reflect about the topic you just read by bringing in your real life.

This is definitely a book that everyone needs to read. The little tips and tricks Turner shares are something that everyone could use. I’m definitely going to give a few of these a try, especially with the holiday season on our tails. This is the perfect time for everyone to sit back and reflect. And hey, I may have just found you the perfect gift for that special someone in your life who may just need to take a moment to breathe!

** For those interested in learning more, check out the excerpt and study questions here! (The link will take you to the Nuts About Books page).

“This book, ‘Stretched Too Thin’ by Jessica N. Turner, has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.’

Mind-bending. Suspenseful. Gripping.

Mind-bending. Suspenseful. Gripping.

 

The Girl behind the Red Rope

 

 

Ted Dekker and Rachelle Dekker’s “The Girl behind the Red Rope,” is your next suspense read. Do you have your copy, yet?! Get it here: https://amzn.to/2lGZZpo

 

 

#TheGirlBehindTheRedRope

Book Review: The Cost of Betrayal

Hey all!

One of my goals for this year is to read more. That being said, being a teacher I am always reading some form of materials. I’ll be honest and state that I mainly focus on educational pieces that will either be used in the classroom or help guide me in my teaching.

However, I want to incorporate more varieties of reading into my life again. When I was younger, I spent most of my free time reading. It wasn’t uncommon for me to start, finish, and possibly start another novel in a day. I kinda miss that.

For the past few years I have been a member of the Nuts About Books program where I would be sent various books to review. I’ll be honest, I kind of slacked on that over the past year as life and its happenings got in the way of most things. However, I hope I am back on track now.

The first book that I’ll be reviewing for you all is The Cost of Betrayal. This book consists of “Three Romance Suspense Novellas” by Dee Henderson, Dani Pettrey and Lynette Eason.

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Betrayed – Dee Henderson

The first in the compilation is a Betrayed by Dee Henderson. In this tale we follow along with a married couple; one being a member of the FBI while the other is retired and completing many projects. After finding a box full of hidden treasures, Ann Falcon once again becomes engrossed in discovering the mystery behind initials written on a box, a pink pocket knife and a ring. After doing some digging, she discovers that these objects may have been clues to a murder years before. Getting her husband (Paul) involved, Ann discovers that a woman (Janelle Roberts) has been wrongly convicted and serving time for a crime she did not commit. The work the Falcons complete on the case prove that Janelle is innocent and the truth behind the case is even more shocking then one could imagine. With Janelle freed, they fear her life may be in danger and she is whisked off to a safe haven.

I am a fan of suspense and romance novels and would definitely recommend this one. I was intrigued by the surprising plot twists that kept popping up throughout the pages and couldn’t put it down until I finished reading it. It is definitely a page turner, one that I’ll let you read for yourself to discover the mystery behind what really happen that faithful night.

****

Deadly Isle – Dani Pettrey

Throughout Deadly Isle, we are introduced to Tennyson Kent and the many misfortune events that have happened in her life. Fresh from the latest turbulence in her life, Tennyson settled down for what was suppose to be some relaxation as a storm surge tackles her isolated island. With a potential murder on the loose, she is thrown into the arms of a former flame as they set out to discover some hidden truths and try to remain alive.

Pettrey had me hooked from the start. The story began leaving me on the edge of my seat, needing to continue reading to find out what would happen next and who was responsible for various events. There always seemed to be a plot twist, something that we would not expect. This is definitely a must read.

****

Code of Ethics – Lynette Eason

When I first began reading Code of Ethics it seemed really familiar to be, almost as if I had met these characters before but couldn’t quite pinpoint if I had read this story before or if it was another novel I had read. All I knew at the time was that I was hooked.

Code of Ethics is written from the point of view of Ruthie St. John, a trauma surgeon who we later learn is a part of a family of officers. Ruthie was counting down the minutes to her grand escape; a weeks vacation to seclusion where she could do whatever she wanted away from her ‘real life’. But something, or someone, changed her plans. Detective Isaac Martinez ends up in the ER with a gunshot wound shortly before she is set to leave. After removing to bullet and checking on her patient before leaving, Ruthie discovers that their is more than meets the eye – with a side of crime and corruption. Fearing for his life, St. John helps Martinez run from the hospital and into what they hoped was a safe place. Unfortunately for them nowhere was safe, as they tried to outrun deadly killers while locations the evidence they needed end the danger.

This was, by far, my favorite of the three. Eason knows how to keep a reading captivated in the story they are reading. Many of the events are things that could happen in real life, at any point. I couldn’t put the book down until I finished the entire thing. (And for those of you wondering, I had read Oath of Honor by Lynette Eason previously where the same characters were mentioned with a different plot. That was the first book in her Blue Justice series.

****

I’m really enjoying getting back to reading and taking some time for myself. It has been just the thing that I needed.

So what are you reading at the moment? I’d love some suggestions!

 

Disclaimer: I was sent these books to review. These are my own opinions.

 

Book Review: Deadly Proof – Rachel Dylan

“Deadly Proof is a legal thriller that will keep you turning pages late into the night because you will have to know what happens next!”
Lynette Eason, award-winning, bestselling author of the Elite Guardians series

 

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This quote sums up the novel perfectly. It has a little something for everyone; mystery, suspense, romance, it is definitely a page turner. Deadly Proof follows the protagonist, Kate Sullivan, Lead Counsel in a corporate cover-up lawsuit against Mason Pharmaceuticals. She knows this is the case that could make or break her career, everything she has worked so hard for up to this point. On the opposing side is a former classmate and her friend, Ethan Black, using the argument that Mason Pharmaceuticals did nothing wrong. Will their friendship survive the trials and tribulations of this case? You have to read to find out.. No spoilers here!
The reader is also introduced to former Army Ranger turned private investigator, Landon Janes. Enlisted to help by Kate, he focuses on finding out information that will help Kate win her case, especially after Kate’s key informant is found dead in a parking garage. The pair becomes closer and closer, especially after Kate’s life becomes in jeopardy due to the case. As things begins to disappear and threats keeps coming in, it makes Kate wonder who she can trust. And there may be a little romance budding, oblivious to those struck by cupids arrow.
Dylan did an amazing job at making you feel like you were the one living in this daydream-nightmare combo. She leaves you on the edge of your seat, wondering what is going to happen next as you cannot put down the novel. She set out to capture the reader’s attention and she did just that. It seems as if she did her research to ensure that the reader was getting the authentic situations, feelings, etc. This only helped to solidity that Dylan had a hit on her hands. What can I say? I’m a sucker for suspense and romance with crime at the forefront. This book was definitely one made for me.

 

Book Synopsis

Standing For What’s Right Could Cost Her Everything

Tapped as lead counsel in a corporate cover-up lawsuit against Mason Pharmaceutical, Kate Sullivan knows this case could make her career. What really drives her, though, is getting justice for the victims whose lives were ruined by the company’s dangerous new drug. But when a whistleblower turns up dead, it paints a target on the back of everyone involved.

Former Army Ranger turned private investigator Landon James steps in to handle security for Kate. He’s still haunted by mistakes in his past and is determined never to let something like that happen again. But it soon appears someone is willing to do anything–even commit murder–to keep the case from going to trial.

As danger closes in, Landon can’t help but admire Kate’s courage and resolve–but will her determination not to back down become too great of a risk?

If you’re interested in purchasing a copy.. CLICK HERE!
Interested in learning more about Rachel Dylan, check out her website at www.racheldylan.com

Disclaimer: Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.” I was not required to give a positive review.

Book Review: The Day the Angels Fell – Shawn Smucker #thedaytheangelsfell

Hey all!

For a while now I have been a part of the Nuts About Books Bloggers Program and I have discovered some pretty awesome books so far.

However, I have to say that The Day the Angels Fell by Shawn Smucker is my favorite so far.

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We are always told not to judge a book by its cover. This one is a simple silhouette of a cat in a tree. You will not notice this cat unless you inspect it closely. The font of the title signifies something mythical. It almost reminds me of peeling bark.

The brief synopsis of the book states:

It was the summer of storms and strays and strangers. The summer that lightning struck the big oak tree in the front yard. The summer his mother died in a tragic accident–and young Samuel Chambers would have done anything to turn back time. Even today, he can hardly believe it all
happened . . .

Prompted by three strange carnival fortune-tellers and the surfacing of his mysterious and reclusive neighbor, Sam begins his search for the Tree of Life–the only thing that could possibly bring his mother back.

His quest to defeat death will entangle him and his best friend Abra in an ancient conflict, forcing Sam to grapple with an unwelcome question.

Could it be possible that death is a gift?

One of the first things I noticed about this novel was that it was broken into three separate sections as the narrator, an old man named Samuel Chambers, relives the Summer that changed his life forever.

Part One: The Storm begins with the reader being introduced to Samuel in ‘present day’. He entrances the audience by talking about still living on the farm where he grew up and how he his last living friend, Abra,  had just passed away. He reflects on how it is eerie now that the farm is exactly how it was the Summer he tragically lost his mother. He continues on by saying that he will never know if he got the story of that Summer right but there was no one left to ask. All this suspense from just one chapter. How can you not continue to read?

The first part of his tale begins with a storm, three strange carnival fortune-tellers and a tragedy. This brings us into Part Two: The Tree. In this part we learn the story of a mythical Tree of Life. After meeting his mysterious neighbour Mr. Jinn, Samuel is brainwashed with the idea that finding this tree will bring his mother back. Around this same time another mysterious man, Mr. Tennin entered the picture and began working for his father. Mr. Tennin recites a tale that may seem rather far-fetched to some. Little do we know that this story later becomes a part of Samuel’s realty.

This brings us to Part Three: The Sword. I won’t give too much away about this chapter but rest assured that this sword is an important artifact in the story. Part Four is entitled The Fire. It is during this part that we learn the significance of many earlier things in the novel; the carnival fortune tellers, Mr. Tennin, and Mr. Jinn. Finally we have Part Five: The Secret. Set completely in the present day, this ties up many loose ends that we’ve all been wondering about and also sets the reader up for another book, telling Abra (his friends) side of the story.

This book had it all; mystery and suspense that left you on the edge of your seat. I couldn’t put it down. I stayed up way too late the two nights I was reading it because I had to know what happened next. I was shocked to read that this was Shawn Smuckers first novel. I’m excited to see what creative genius he comes up with next. The Day the Angels fell is a page turner.. That’s for sure!

Haunting and hypnotic, The Day the Angels Fell is a story that explores the difficult questions of life in a voice that is fresh, friendly, and unafraid. With this powerful debut, Shawn Smucker has carved out a spot for himself in the tradition of the great authors of literature for young readers.

For any person who has struggled with why bad things happen, this mesmerizing book will be both a comfort and a challenge.

If you are interested in purchasing a copy of the book, CLICK HERE! For more information about Shawn Smucker, visit his website at shawnsmucker.com.

Disclaimer: “Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.” I was not required to give this a positive review. All thoughts and comments about the novel are strictly my own opinion.

Book Review: The Two of Us – Victoria Bylin (Repost)

Hey all!

It’s a New Year and with a New Year comes change, cleaning, decluttering and finding things you had forgotten you had.

While starting this challenge, I discovered this book in my pile that I needed to add to my bookshelf. This sparked the idea of going through the bookshelf and sharing some of my favorites with you. We’ll start with this one that I received from Nuts About Books to review in August/Sept.

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TheTwoofUs

Recently I’ve decided to decrease the amount of screen time I have in the night time (even though this is the usually the only time I really have to sit down and interact online). Because of this, I’ve finally made time to feed my love of reading (and tackle the massive amount of books that I’ve accumulated but yet to read).

One of these books was The Two of Us by Victoria Bylin.

In The Two of Us we meet Mia Robinson, a woman who has had many obstacles to overcome. After two broken engagements, she seems to be fairly cynical about love and her trust in relationships in general. Because of this she has decided to join an international aid organization as a nurse practitioner and devote her life to helping others. She felt that this was the best thing for her.

Until her 18-year-old sister, Lucy, called with an invitation to her surprise Vegas wedding and put a twist on what Mia thought was plans that were set in stone.

Enter Jake Tanner, a former police officer, whose life was turned upside down during a tragedy where he lost his partner. However, he finds some solace in keeping an eye on her young adult son, Sam, who’s asked him to be the best man at his wedding.

Jake’s and Mia’s lives slowly become more intertwined. Little did Mia and Jake know, but this Vegas wedding would change their lives for the better.

This novel has it all: the laughter, the tears, the ‘did-you-really-just-do-that’ moments. It is something that most readers can relate to. We’ve all experienced good times, bad times, love and lost. We get to sympathize with Mia as she describes her life. We get to hope with Lucy and Sam as they start their new lives together. We get to see how by never giving up and working towards yours dreams things may fall right into place. We get to see that you may find just what you are looking for when you finally stop.

I’d definitely recommend this book. This is one that I will add to my collection and surely read again.

 

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If you have any books that you are loving right now and think I would enjoy, leave a comment below! I’d love to read some new ones!

Movie Review: The Resurrection of Gavin Stone

I’ve always loved to watch movies. I mean, who hasn’t? I am a fan of all types: horror, thrillers, romance, drama, action, etc. However, the ones that speak to me the most are those with a message; whether it be hidden or straight forward.

I was given the opportunity to watch “The Resurrection of Gavin Stone” recently.

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This movie was released in January 2017 and portrayed as an American Christian comedy-drama. According to the mini synopsis:

The Resurrection of Gavin Stone is an inspirational comedy rated PG about faith and forgiveness. Gavin Stone, a washed-up former child star is forced to do community service at a local mega-church and pretends to be a Christian so he can land the part of Jesus in their annual Passion Play only to discover that the most important role of his life is far from Hollywood.

Gavin Stone, played by Brett Dalton (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D), is portrayed as a washed-up former child star. We’ve seen from the media and tabloids how many individuals who are famous as a child end up following a destructive path, which ultimately leads our protagonist to trashing his hotel room and having to serve multiply hours of community service. Stone ends up being assigned to a local church where he learns of the Passion Play and ends up pretending to be something he is not in order to land the lead role; the part of Jesus. What happens after he successfully lands the part, you’ll have to watch it to find out! 😉

It was nice to see a movie of this nature released. Although it was a Christian based film, it wasn’t one that was that preached to us specifics about the Bible. Instead it was a light-hearted, wholesome movie that I thought had an excellent message and definitely kept the view engaged as many of the scenes are something we can relate to in our every day lives (other then being called to act on a TV show of course… well at least I’m not!)

The movie focuses on the idea that shows how through the littlest of tasks that he manages to find himself again in the ‘real world’ and discover the path that he truly wishes for his life to take. It just goes to show how we often have to overcome many trials and tribulations to find what we need to be truly happy in life. Fame is never all that it seemed to be.

It is worth mentioning the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) connection to this movie. I didn’t realize this until I did a little bit of research about some of the actors/actresses in the movie (like I often do). Not only was this movie released by WWE Studies and Blumhouse Tilt, but it stars Shawn Michaels, which is even a name that I recognize while knowing very little about WWE. Want to see/learn more about his character, why not watch the movie?

Overall I’d definitely recommend giving this light-hearted comedy a watch. It will leave you laughing at some of the antics. It may leave you crying at some of the sappy moments. It may leave you with a new perspective on some things that life has to offer!

“Movie has been provided courtesy of Mongrel Media and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.”