Every Day A Friday: How to be Happier 7 Days a Week by Joel Osteen ~ Book Review

Book Description: 

The title comes from research that shows people are happiest on Fridays. Pastor Joel Osteen writes how we can generate this level of contentment and joy every day of the week.

Known as a man who maintains a constant positive outlook in spite of circumstances, Osteen has described this message as a core theme of his ministry. Combining his personal experiences with scriptural insights and principles for true happiness, he shows readers how every day can hold the same promise and opportunities for pure joy that they experience at five o'clock on Friday.


Purchase a copy on Amazon

About the Author: 

Joel Osteen is an American best-selling author and the senior pastor of Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas. His ministry reaches over seven million broadcast media viewers weekly in over 100 nations around the world.

Joel, the son of John Osteen, a highly respected minister of the Gospel and the founder of Lakewood Church, attended Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Oklahoma where he studied radio and television communications. In 1982, Joel returned to Houston and founded Lakewood's television ministry where he produced John Osteen's televised sermons for 17 years until January 1999 when his father passed away suddenly from a heart attack.

For many years, John Osteen encouraged Joel to preach, but he always declined preferring to work behind the scenes. But, in early 1999 Joel felt compelled to accept his father's invitation and he preached his first sermon on January 17th of that year. Little did anyone know that would be the last Sunday of John Osteen's life. Two weeks later, Joel began preaching and later that year was installed as the new Senior Pastor of Lakewood Church.


Connect: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads |

Review: 

I have recently listened to Joel Osteen on one of his podcasts and I have a friend who absolutely loves him so I thought I would give one of his books a go. I am not very religious or maybe it was just a few bad times as a child that I fell out of faith. As of recent (more or less when I started my health & fitness journey) I have decided I need to be more mindful and more spiritual.

This book is a great one to start with. Joel is very kind and has a way of making his books easy to read and enjoy. Sometimes self help books can be hard to get into and stay reading, this one is totally different. I really enjoyed reading it and looked forward to spending some time with Joel. I really like how positive Joel is and how he uses stories and metaphors to help you understand what he is telling you to do.  I don't really remember a lot from the Bible but it is nice that Joel includes Scriptures that you can also look up and read more about.

Take away from this book has been great! It is weird to say but as I worked my way through this book I found myself feeling lighter and really thinking about ways I can improve my life and attitude. Over the last few years I have decided to rid myself of negativity especially people that were trying to rent space in my head. I also learned a great deal about the toxic mind and removing the toxic thoughts from our minds. I have really decided life is what we make it. I will be working on becoming even more positive even during the tough times and looking at what is ahead. God has a way of working things out and He has a plan for each and everyone of us.

Joel talks about looking for the positive and not be a faultfinder. I know I need to work on this. In the past I could easily be dragged down with negative thoughts and comments. I will work on finding the positives in every situation and everyone around me. One story Joel talks about is a gentleman that went to his pastor and said he had nothing to go on for and this pastor said that he was sorry to hear that his wife passed away. The man said no my wife is healthy and alive. The pastor wrote down healthy wife. He preceded to say sorry about the job loss and the man said no I have my job. Down that went into the asset section of the paper. Makes us really think about things that we should be grateful for even if there are bad times.

I will be reading more from Joel Osteen in the very near future as I really enjoyed this one.

I give this book a 5 out of 5 stars.


~*Disclaimer: This post was written by Genuine Jenn. I borrowed the above book from the library. All opinions are honest and my own.*~

Robots Rule! The Junkyard Bot Book 1 by C.J Richards ~ Book Review

Book Description:

Ten-year-old George Gearing  is a whiz with mechanics, but it'll take all his talent and the help of his friends Anne and Jackbot to save the day when all the robots in town go wild. This action-packed adventure marks the start of a fun, futuristic series for middle-grade readers .

Purchase a copy through Thomas Allen & Son Ltd. 

About the Authors:


C. J. Richards has loved tinkering with gadgets since he was a little boy. He remembers fondly the time he accidentally blew up his father’s radio after some experimental rewiring. Mr. Richards lives with his wife, his cat, and his eight televisions.
-

Goro Fujita has been fascinated by drawing since childhood. He was born in Japan and moved with his family to Germany when he was three years old. He now lives in California, where he works as an illustrator and visual development artist on feature films and TV commercials.


Review: This review is done by Parker (age 9)

I like this book because its about robots and a kid named George Gearing . My favourite character is George because he saved his home town from a robot invasion. DR Micron was behind it and George knew. My favourite part was when the robots invaded the city. I liked the illustrations especially when it showed the brain of the robots.

I give this book 5 out of 5 stars! I can't wait to read the next book in the series.


~*Disclaimer: This post was written by Genuine Jenn. I received a copy of the above book for review purpose. All opinions are honest and my own.*~

Sentenced by L.L. Colins ~ Cover Reveal & Giveaway (US only)



Title: Sentenced
Author: L.L. Collins
Genre: Contemporary Romance/Erotic Romance
Cover Design: Marisa-Rose Shor with Cover Me, Darling
 Release Date: October/November 2015 (TBD)


Blurb

THE BAD BOY: I’m Johnny. An ex-con with a bad attitude and a controlling demeanor that somehow made the women flock to my bed but never my heart. It was unavailable for possession.

THE TEMPTATION: She was just supposed to be a two day hookup. But one taste of her and I knew I was in danger of never getting enough. She has her own demons to contend with, and dealing with my own was hard enough. I won’t allow temptation to take control of me.


THE SENTENCE: I'd given myself a life sentence a long time ago, and she made me want things I wouldn't allow myself to have. Giving into it just might destroy us both.







Author Bio

L.L. Collins loves spending her days in the Florida sun with her husband and two boys, reading, and writing. LL has been writing since she was old enough to write. Always a story in her head, she finally decided to let the characters out made her lifelong dream of becoming an author come true in the self-publishing world. She's the author of the Living Again Series and the Twisted Series, plus a new standalone, Back to the Drawing Board. Visit LL on her website, www.llcollinsauthor.com and on all social media. Look for more of her emotionally charged novels soon!



Author Links

Giveaway



~*Disclaimer: This post was written by Genuine Jenn. All opinions are honest and my own.*~

DK Readers ~ Star Wars The Clone Wars Jedi Adventures

Book Description: 


Taking place between the last two Star Wars® films, Episode II: Attack of the Clones and Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, the Clone Wars fill a dark period in the history of the Galaxy.
DK and Lucasfilm celebrate the all-new computer-generated animated series that will launch theatrically in August 2008 with three new Clone Wars titles. Now young readers can experience more Jedi action, more villainous battles, more weapons, more imagery, more fun, and more excitement!

Join the Jedi Knights on daring adventures throughout the galaxy in Star Wars®: The Clone Wars™ Reader Level 4: Jedi Adventures. 

For more information visit DK Canada or purchase a copy on Amazon. This book counts towards DK Canada Be a Rebel Reader Contest!


 
Review: Reviewed by Parker (age 9)

I like this book because its based on the tv series . I found this book appropriate for level 4 reading as I didn't have difficulties reading it but it had some hard names. My favourite part was when Ventress the bad guy and  Ahsoka and Luminara had a fight it was intense because Luminara was almost destroyed because she fell off a ledge!
 

My favourite character is Ahsoka because she save Luminaras life. I really enjoyed the book because of the battles.
 

I give the book 4 stars.


~*Disclaimer: This post was written by Genuine Jenn. I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are honest and my own.*~

Mind Over Bullies: A Mob forms by D.K. Smith ~ Book Review & Tour

Book Description: 

Margo is pretty, popular and unsympathetic to just how intense bullying can get. As a counterfeiting plot sweeps through the city of Oak View, life for Margo will change dramatically.

With a mystery unfolding, an unlikely group of heroes emerges. Bullied teens love them, the police hate them and bullies fear them. Together they will try to get to the bottom of the counterfeiting mystery while ingeniously teaching a few bullies a lesson or two along the way… that is, if the police don’t catch them first.
 


Preview the book here: Read the first three chapters! http://tiny.cc/MOBPreview 

Purchase a copy on Amazon

Author's Bio:

A 38 year old native of Los Angeles, Mr. Smith began his writing career after getting news that he would soon become an uncle. Wanting to create stories and characters for his expected niece, he created the children’s book series “Sock n Boots Adventures.” The two characters (three year old Sock and five year old Boots) began to make names for themselves, generating downloads in countries around the world.


When asked about his motivation to tackle the subject of bullying in a 108,000 word novel Smith said, “One day I came across a story in the news about a young girl that jumped in front of a subway train after weeks of bullying. As I investigated further, I was shocked at the number of similar stories I encountered. Bullycide, the news was calling it. I thought, wow, what if these young people had been shown that the pain of bullying can be handled without hurting themselves or someone else.”


Ultimately it was thoughts of his now four nieces and three nephews dealing with bullying as they get older that weighed heavily on the decision for Smith to write the story about bullying. “I recognize that the characters and situations in the book may not represent every bullying situation and that realistically the book won’t change the world, but I do sincerely hope that it sends a subtle message about there being life after bullying. We’ll just have to see how the public receives it,” Smith said.

A lover of mystery and espionage stories, Smith is a fan of everything James Bond. A favorite scenario is to see a character in an impossible situation get out of it at the last second or have the odds against them and see he or she turn the tables. Acting on the love of espionage and mystery, Smith has a new novel in the works centering on a James Bond-type character of his own creation.

Connect with the author:    Website  ~  Facebook  ~  Twitter
 
Review: 

This novel was wonderfully put together. It touches a tough subject of bullying and does a really good job of grabbing the reader emotionally and tying them to the characters. The story is not just straight forward you will learn quickly there are many characters and story lines but in the end they are all connected together somehow through being bullied or being the bad guys. Character development was spot on for myself as I felt like I could play the story very well in my mind and picture each character as they should be. This I find lacking in some novels. I felt a mix of emotions throughout but couldn't put this book down. I literately walked around with this book in my hands for a few days so I could read every spare minute I had. That to me is a good sign that this is a great novel especially as the kids are home on vacation and I was able to quickly devour this book.

The topic of Bullying is very hard to read as I have been a victim of it back in middle school and then my son went through it in jr. kindergarten. This book is about teens and bullying and is very tough read as I can't even imagine living in this day and age where bullying has taken a huge leap from name calling and spitting.

I love how the author mixes the story with a money laundering scheme where teens are targeted and asked to sell drugs.  It is really a MOB type of story. The teens that finally do group together and stand up against the bullies are pretty amazing group. I can't wait for book 2!! I am hooked on this series and hope to read more from this author.

I give this book a 5 out of 5 stars! A must read especially for teens that may be having a hard time through school.

Visit the rest of the Mind Over Bullies Book Tour Or Enter the Giveaway by clicking on the banner below. 

~*Disclaimer: This post was written by Genuine Jenn. I received the above book for review purpose. All opinions are honest and my own.*~

No Place to Hide by Susan Lewis ~ Book Review

Book Description: 

Fleeing her native England with her three-year-old daughter, Justine Cantrell gives herself a new name and a new life in America. In a quiet midwestern town on the shores of glittering Lake Maxinkuckee, Justine hopes to recapture the fleeting days of happiness in the long-ago summers she spent with her grandmother. And though her memories of that time are scant, Justine knows they must have shared a special bond. After all, the power of her grandmother's love has pulled her back to this haven in search of a new beginning.

But fate has other plans. The more Justine gets to know the small town and its people, the more she realizes that her grandmother had her own devastating secrets—secrets that will soon threaten Justine just as surely as her own dark memories.

Purchase a copy on Amazon

About the Author: 

Susan Lewis is the internationally bestselling author of more than thirty novels, including No Child of Mine, Don’t Let Me Go, The Truth About You, Never Say Goodbye, Behind Closed Doors, No Place to Hide. Having resided in France and the United States for many years, she now lives in the rural county of Gloucestershire, England.


Connect: Website | Twitter | Goodreads |

Review: 


I really enjoyed this book. I am going to try and give it a thorough review without giving out too many details to give away the story. The synopsis doesn't give much of the storyline to the reader and usually I don't read many books like this. I was hooked from the beginning. The author introduces us to Justine and her daughter Lula as they are starting a fresh new life in a new country away from the rest of their family. Then we take a trip down memory lane (18 years before) to learn about Justine and her husband and how they bought their first farmhouse and started their family. 

This novel floats back and forth between the present and the past and really builds on the characters and story before you even get to the reason why Justine ran with her youngest daughter to the USA from England. We know there are dark secrets Justine is running from and hiding but there really isn't many hints to guess what happened. I kept trying to guess what happened to make her so scared to be found in this new place and just couldn't. I really liked how the author went back and forth between present and past and felt it was really well done. 

This is a depressing story of tragic loss and trying to rebuild a happy future. I wouldn't say this is a light read at all and be prepared for some harsh language and a very hard situations that will tug on your heart strings and emotions. The character development is very good and I felt I was really getting to know all the different characters in the story.

This is a very well written novel and I am looking forward to reading more from Susan Lewis. 

I give this book a 4.5 stars out of 5.



~*Disclaimer: This post was written by Genuine Jenn. I received a copy of the above book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are honest and my own.*~

Purified by Elizabeth S. Sullivan ~ Book Tour & Review

Book Description:
Thriller / Noir

Date Published: November 27, 2014

When a mutilated body of an African American girl is found in a park sandbox, the media shows no interest. Instead, their attention is riveted on the disappearance of Olivia Safra, a college student and only child of the powerful and dangerous Richard Safra. Suspended ADA, Beck Oldman, demoted to a rookie PI is assigned her first cases to find a missing teenager and Olivia Safra.

Leads connect the murders to the Safra case. The investigation into her client's private life reveals a dark side in the relationship between a father and daughter and exacts his wrath against Beck. More girls are found murdered, putting Beck in a race to stop a serial killer and stop her own client from destroying her.
PURIFIED is a thrilling story that explores many dark subjects, including what it does to those who have to live in the world of killers in order to stop them.

Purchase a copy on Amazon.

About the Author: 

Elizabeth S. Sullivan was born in Chicago and grew up in the LA area. Impassioned by social justice issues, inspired by her parents, she pursued teaching and earned a law degree. She has written five screenplays, one short. Her screenplays have placed or won such as: Nicholl, Austin, Page, and American Zoetrope. These recognition's garnered her a manager, Alexia Melocchi, Little Studio Films. Her first novel, PURIFIED, portrays a strong female protagonist in the genre of a noir thriller.  Sullivan explores issues of race, gender, privacy in the cyber age. She has written several blogs on of women in fiction featured on Venture Galleries.  She is busy working on the sequel to PURIFIED and a new screenplay.




Review:


This was a great nior thriller novel. I was hooked from the beginning trying to figure out Beck and her personality. The characters are very well developed and you find yourself liking some and being discussed by others. I didn't like Safra but felt closer to the end that he was a bad guy but not the worst one in the book.

Just be prepared to be dragged through tons of topics that are really tough to handle at times from abuse to race & religion, bullying and mental illness. The author has us wondering who and why would someone kill these girls and do what they have done to them. The objects that are left with them really had me thinking until near the end it all figures out.

The novel takes a risk with its topics putting Muslim religion and female genital cutting main focus in the story along with the murder. The killer is purifying the females that are murdered. 

I look forward to reading the next book in this series. I give this book a 4.5 out of 5 stars!

Follow the rest of the Book Tour by clicking the banner below!



~*Disclaimer: This post was written by Genuine Jenn. All opinions are honest and my own.*~

The Seduction of Esther by Jennifer Wilck ~ Book Blast

Title: The Seduction of Esther
Author: Jennifer Wilck
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Tour: Irresistible Reads Book Tours 
Book Description:

Samara Goldberg has a problem even the most beautiful singing voice can’t fix. She’s a walking disaster, especially when she’s around handsome men. To make matters worse, she’s in desperate need of someone to play the character of Mordecai for the Purim spiel she’s producing and the new congregant, Nathaniel Abramson, is a perfect fit. Nathaniel is a divorced dad who’s recovering from the biggest public scandal of his life. The last thing he needs is a relationship with the choir director at his new synagogue, who also happens to be playing the lead female role of Esther in the very play he’s been coerced into joining. 

Woven around the Jewish holiday of Purim, The Seduction of Esther is a story of two people whose lives mirror the plot of the Purim story. Like Esther, who had to hide her Jewish identity from the King of Persia, Samara and Nathaniel are hiding key pieces of themselves. Evil Haman wanted to destroy the Jews, and the nasty Josh will do anything to keep Samara and Nathaniel apart. 

Will their love survive, like the Jewish people in Shushan, Persia, or will their fear keep them apart?

Goodreads 

About the Author:

When I was a little girl and couldn’t fall asleep, my mother would tell me to make up a story. Pretty soon, my head was filled with these stories and the characters that populated them. Each character had a specific personality, a list of likes and dislikes, and sometimes, even a specific accent or dialect. Even as an adult, I think about the characters and stories at night before I fall asleep, or in the car on my way to or from one of my daughters’ numerous activities (hey, anything that will drown out their music is a good thing).

One day, I started writing them down (it was either that or checking into the local mental hospital—the computer was way less scary) and five years later, I’ve gotten two book contracts from Whiskey Creek Press. A Heart of Little Faith came out in June; Skin Deep is coming out in November.

In the real world, I’m the mother of two amazing daughters and wife of one of the smartest men I know. I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, reading, traveling and watching TV. In between chauffeuring my daughters to after-school activities that require an Excel spreadsheet to be kept straight, I serve on our Temple Board, train the dog we adopted from a local shelter, and cook dinners that fit the needs of four very different appetites. I also write freelance articles for magazines, newspapers, and edit newsletters.

When all of that gets overwhelming, I retreat to my computer, where I write stories that let me escape from reality. In my made-up world, the heroines are always smart, sassy and independent. The heroes are handsome and strong with just a touch of vulnerability. If I don’t like a character, I can delete him or her; if something doesn’t work, I can rewrite it. It’s very satisfying to be in control of at least one part of my life. My inspiration comes from watching the people around me and fantasizing about how I’d do things differently.
Official Website   


~*Disclaimer: This post was written by Genuine Jenn. All opinions are honest and my own.*~

Renew Life Ultimate Flora Critical Care 50 Billion Probiotic ~ Review

Weight loss and health are not just found with exercise, you need to combine nutrition and supplementation with it to achieve the goals you are striving for. Other the last year I have learned a lot about taking care of myself and keeping not just my weight in check but my overall health. I have been taking a very strong probiotic for sometime now and have really felt the change in my health.

Lets talk about regularity for a minute as we know fibre and probiotics are good for keeping you regular. I am one of those people who really wasn't regular. Never have been, even when eating lots of dark greens, fibre and drinking TONS of water. I am happy to say that I am now regular each and everyday. I do notice also a difference in my energy and mood since being on a probiotic.
I started to take Renew Life Ultimate Flora Critical Care 50 Billion daily and I drink a lot of water. Usually 60-80oz a day that is on top of tea or coffee. I have taken a probiotic in the past but it wasn't strong enough to do much for my gut. Having the 50 billion a day has helped a lot. If I forget one, I am ready for the next dose. I have even noticed a difference in my seasonal allergies that I normally struggle with and also the environmental allergies. I also haven't been sick when the kids or people I support have been sick! If I do get sick it seems to be not as bad and less time sick. Big Bonus for me as I work in the health care field!

Did you know there are over 500 types of bacteria in the digestive system? The two most prevalent are Lactobacilli (most prevalent in the small intestine) and Bifidobacterium (most prevalent in the large intestine). Keeping these bacterias in their prime is super important part of a healthy digestive system this is where using a probiotic comes to help.

Ultimate Flora Critical Care contains therapeutic levels of both Lactobacilli and Bifidobacterium, making it the most complete and effective probiotic supplement on the market. Each capsule provides 50 Billion active cultures from 10 different strains in a ‘once a day’ serving (30 billion active cultures of Bifidobacterium and 20 billion active cultures of Lactobacilli and Lactococcus). Ultimate Flora Critical Care also contains FOS (fructooligosaccharides), which is an optimal food source for probiotics. FOS aids in the colonization of probiotics in the intestinal tract.

"Renew Life is a leading manufacturer of natural health supplements that target digestive health, probiotics, fish oils and fiber supplements.  Renew Life’s founder, Brenda Watson started the company in 1997 to overcome her own health issues with natural approaches."

I am now a firm believer in keeping a healthy happy gut and the rest of our health will follow suit. I have read/listened to some people talk about the gut health and how important it is for optimal overall health. I am amazed at how our gut is the center of our health.

I have recently started my kids on the Ultimate Flora Kids 10 Billion Probiotics. I am hoping this will help reduce the antibiotics this fall/winter with my daughter. 


~*Disclaimer: This post was written by Genuine Jenn. All opinions are honest and my own.*~

Ultimate Plank Fitness by Jennifer DeCurtins ~ Fitness Book Review

Book Description: 

A safe, challenging, and effective method of core conditioning, planking is one of the best ways to get fit and toned. Variations of planks are used across many fitness domains including traditional group exercise, personal training, home workouts, yoga, pilates, barre, CrossFit and more. Not only are planks perfect for crafting six-pack abs, they also target shoulders, pectorals, biceps, triceps, glutes, quads, and hamstrings. They increase the heart rate, offer calorie-busting cardio exercise, and create healthy muscle tone.

Ultimate Plank Fitness features 100 different variations of planks that can be used to customize your workout. Easily increase the difficulty of your core strengthening exercises by adding stability balls, gliders, and weights. Each exercise includes a step-by-step photo demonstration, points of performance, where to engage, along with common faults to detect ways to improve your fitness. Finally, CrossFit coach, personal trainer, and fitness instructor, Jennifer DeCurtins provides you with ten 5-minute workouts incorporating several planks that you can use to target trouble areas and build strength.

With countless variations of the exercise, ranging from traditional planks to side plank variations and planks using external weights or unstable surfaces, your entire workout can be programmed around the plank! Work your way to a healthy core with Ultimate Plank Fitness.

Purchase a copy through QBookShop.com 

About the Author: 

Jennifer DeCurtins is a fitness instructor, personal trainer, yoga teacher and creator of the popular blog PeanutButterRunner. She also holds a 200-hour registered yoga teacher certification through Yoga Alliance and teaches hot yoga, power yoga, and vinyasa flow yoga at several studios in Charlotte, NC. Her classes often have 30-40 people in attendance and she was just named "Twitter Personality to Follow" by Charlotte Magazine in their "Best of the Best" awards. She has also served as a Lululemon Ambassador.

Connect: Website | Twitter | Facebook

Review:


I get some really weird looks when I tell people I love burpees and planks. Yes, I would prefer to do both of those over Jumping Jacks! I love planks as they are challenging and a total body workout that is low impact....no impact. This is a great book for anyone wanting to learn how to do a multitude of planks for their workouts. This book breaks them down into sections like Full planks, Side Planks, Forearm, Side Forearm, Unstable Surface like Medicine ball, Stability ball, Bosu, even planks using weights & gliders and also plyo planks! Did you know there was that many ways to do a plank? I didn't know there was that many when I first started working out. 


This book is good for the skilled and unskilled! The book is laid out super well with a picture of the plank at the top with a nice section in yellow that tells skill and modifications, under that is the key performance points (how tos) and also common faults and the payoffs (what is helps improve). 


With this book you could really learn and improve on your planks and get a great total body workout. I love adding a few different planks onto my workout for the day to improve as I go. I remember the very first plank I did, I thought I would die 20 seconds into it. I had a whole minute to hang in there for! I also love that this book all the moves can be done outside the gym. I workout at home so I find it hard sometime to find books that don't need big gym equipment. This one passed the test! 


I give this book a 5 out of 5 stars. The instructions are easy to follow and figure out and the pictures are great to help. I love the crispness of the layout, no clutter to distract for the workout pose. 



~*Disclaimer: This post was written by Genuine Jenn. I received a copy of the above book for review purpose. All opinions are honest and my own.*~

Tracing the Line Book Review and Giveaway




They say love doesn’t hurt.

But it’s a lie. I promise you, love someone long enough, and they’ll destroy your soul.

I’ve spent my life taking care of everyone else: my family, my ex-husband, my friends. Deep down, I know I should focus on myself, but how can I when I’ve got one sister about to implode while the other battles her own guilt?

The minute I met Kai Isaac, I should’ve run in the opposite direction. His business isn’t one I want any part of, and I’ve got way too much drama in my life already.

But his kiss...those eyes...the raging inferno he creates when he touches me...I can’t stay away. Life’s reeling out of control, and he’s my only refuge from the storm.

My sister Lux says trusting someone means not knowing everything about them and being okay with it...but what if not knowing the truth ruins everything?

Heat rating: Super sexy, with very light kink ;)


About the author:
When you do something effortlessly and people commend you continuously, you have found your gift.
That’s what I tell people all the time. And it’s true.
I get story. I always have. I started writing when I was 8 on a Smith Corona (the electronic kind — I’m not THAT old). I wrote stories in every spiral notebook I had. Eventually, I graduated to a Mac (yes, I’m one of THOSE people). I imagined new worlds, emotional conflicts, and HEAs while I waited at stoplights or wandered the grocery store. But here’s the thing: I didn’t just dream it up and write it down — I critiqued what I read. I knew when ideas were good, and when they stunk. I ran writing groups, judged creative contests, and eventually got two graduate degrees in writing. That’s right: I love it that much.
So here I am, years later, writing kickass heroines and devastating good guys, along with some mystery and vampires thrown in (I promise: THEY’RE COMING). And what’s really cool? I do what I love. Wanna write a success story for your life: I promise you, that’s it. Do what you love. And hopefully, you can make a living at it too. That’s the golden ticket, Charlie.
And chocolate doesn’t hurt, either…
The serious stuff:
I have an M.A. in creative writing, as well as an M.F.A. in creative writing with a focus in publishing. I produce two podcasts, host one, and am a freelance editor and publicist over at Upgrade Your Story. In my free time (what is that, exactly?), I read, workout, game, and converse. I’m a high introvert despite my extroverted behaviors, so you’ll find me behind my computer most days. I’m married to the wild and brilliant Billy Crash, have two dogs who are filing to change their species designation to “human,” and can often be found wandering Manhattan in search of the perfect writing spot.

You can find me at Twitter at @upgradestory & @allyabishopFacebookPinterest, and my website.

You can purchase Tracing the Line from the following links.
Amazon: http://bit.ly/TracingAMowing links;Z
Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/TracingBandN
Kobo: http://bit.ly/Tracingkobo
Smashwords: http://bit.ly/TracingSW
Goodreads: http://bit.ly/tracinglineGR


My review:
What another phenomenal read from Ally Bishop! I had the pleasure of reading one of her previous stories, and happily jumped on the chance to read another, and as expected, I was far from disappointed.
Although this story is the third book from Ally's Without a Trace series, it can be read on it's own. 
Two sisters who have reunited after a long break after a rough childhood, they're trying to make up time. There is a third sister Blue, who I hope to hear more from in future.
The love story begins in an unusual setting, and the relationship although seems a bit difficult due to Kai's past commitments. Doesn't stop Zi and Kai from starting theirs off hot and steamy, making it a non-stopping page turner. 
The tell of a great book for me is when all my emotions are invested in the characters, and Ally had me doing just that. Loved it Ally, looking forward to more!


Take a minute to enter Ally's Giveaway, and you can thank me later :-)


~*Disclaimer: This post was written by Cheryl. I was given a free copy of this book in exchange for my review, all opinions are honest and my own.*~

Awake by Natasha Preston ~ Book Review

Book Description:

Scarlett doesn’t remember anything before the age of five. Her parents say it’s from the trauma of seeing her house burn down, and she accepts the life they’ve created for her without question—until a car accident causes Scarlett to start remembering pieces of an unfamiliar past.

When a new guy moves into town, Scarlett feels an instant spark. But Noah knows the truth of Scarlett’s past, and he’s determined to shield her from it...because Scarlett grew up in a cult called Eternal Light, controlled by her biological parents.

And they want her back.


Purchase a copy on Sourcebooks or Amazon.

About the Author:

UK native Natasha Preston grew up in small villages and towns. She discovered her love of writing when she shared a story online—and hasn’t looked back since. She enjoys writing romance, thrillers, gritty YA, and the occasional serial killer.


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Review:

This is the first novel I have read by Natasha Preston and it wont be the last. I really enjoyed this novel, it was a YA that was very clean. I enjoyed the light reading but it does get into a heavy topic when talking about Eternal Light which is sort of a religious group that lives off the land and really off grid. They believe in growing their own foods and not eating meat. They work as a community to help fix things and raise their families. The send Noah into the "regular" world to befriend Scarlett who doesn't have any memory before the age of 4 years old. Scarlett is determined to remember and has Noah by her side helping all the while Noah is there to get Scarlett to come with him back to his community. I really enjoyed the authors writing style and found that the character development was really well done but I did find closer to the end that there were times that things got repeated or drawn out. This may have been fixed as I had an ARC (advanced reader copy). Other than that it was a different read for myself and I really enjoyed it. Not too paranormal that it couldn't be passed off as real life events. I am wondering if there will be a book two! 

I give this book a 4 out of 5 stars. 


~*Disclaimer: This post was written by Genuine Jenn. I received the above book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are honest and my own.*~

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