The Time Garden - Daria Song

 5++++ Stars!

The Time Garden
A Magical Journey and Coloring Book
By Daria Song

About The Time Garden A dazzlingly beautiful coloring book for all ages, The Time Garden will sweep you away into a whimsical cuckoo clock–inspired world, created in intricate pen and ink by the internationally best-selling Korean artist Daria Song.

Journey through the doors of a mysterious cuckoo clock into its inky innerworkings to discover a magical land of clock gears, rooftops, starry skies, and giant flying owls—all ready for you to customize with whatever colors you can dream up.

DARIA SONG is an author and artist from Seoul, Korea. Winner of the Kyung Hyang Arts Contest, Song has a master’s degree in fiber arts and has exhibited at numerous galleries and museums in Korea, Singapore, Turkey, and Hong Kong. She spent five years of her childhood in San Francisco, California, before returning to Korea, and the sense of wonder and mystery that comes from living in a far-off place inspired The Time Garden

Honestly, words can not describe how gorgeous this book is! When I opened the package that I got in the mail - my first response was "Wow!". The artist's drawings are just beautiful and so special.

There is a short story in the beginning and end, but it seems pretty insignificant compared to the gorgeous pictures. It's not really a story book, it's a coloring book.
It also isn't really a child's coloring book in my opinion (there might be some younger children who might appreciate it, but probably not as much as adults). It is very detailed and a child might become overwhelmed or bored with it. I would say it is an adult or young adult coloring book (which are becoming increasingly popular). What a wonderful way to get out all the stress of the day. To sit down and unwind to a quiet time of coloring. Who doesn't love to color? I love coloring! I have actually seen a lot of "adult style" coloring books and this one is the nicest by far!

It seems like this book is very well made. It has a gorgeous cover with little metallic leaves (that don't come out nearly as nice in my pic.). There are nice thick pages. I plan on using color pencils for this. I think that would be best. It is also a very nice large size.

This would make a very nice gift for someone special (or for yourself!). I think a young adult or teen would love it.

Here are a few pictures I took, one of the cover so you can see the metallic and one with my hand so you could see the size.

Thank you "Ten Speed Press/Penguin Random House" for sending me a copy of this book for my honest review!

Get your copy from Amazon - HERE 


The Perfect Arrangement - By Katie Ganshert

5 Stars!

Meeting Nick was truly an accident—but Amelia finds that he’s one of the few people she can count on.

Amelia Woods is a small-town wallflower who inherited her grandmother’s flower shop. Despite her success in business, her love life has ground to a halt. And then her temptation to spy on her ex-boyfriend’s wedding leads her to a horrifying fender-bender—with Nick, the groomsman who happens to be her ex’s new brother-in-law.

Meanwhile, William, Amelia’s younger brother, has proposed to his girlfriend. Amelia would be excited except she has evidence that the fiancĂ©e is not who she says she is. How can she be supportive and yet be the protective big sister too? It seems Nick is the only one available for any advice-giving, and he’s pretty good at it—and pretty fun to talk to. Amelia and Nick continue online conversations about everything, but always lingering in Amelia’s mind is the fear that he’ll realize who she is and what she was doing at the church that day of the accident.

As Amelia works to craft the perfect flower arrangements for other people—including a ninety-year-old “fairy godmother” named George—she begins to wonder if real love is better than the dream. And if it is, will Nick still be interested when he learns who she is?

Katie Ganshert graduated from the University of Wisconsin in Madison with a degree in education, and worked as a fifth grade teacher for several years before staying home to write full-time. She was born and raised in the Midwest, where she lives with her husband, their young son, and their goofy black lab, Bubba. When she’s not busy writing or playing or reading or snuggling, she is obsessing over the paperwork and the waiting that comes with adoption. 
Visit her website at katieganshert.com.

OH I loved this one! This one was so much fun to read! I read it in one sitting. One thing I loved about it (and what others might not like about it) was all the emails! I love books that do this. I love books that use emails, texting etc. to make up their stories. It just makes it so much more fun to read. Of course, it did remind me of the movie "You've Got Mail" but I love that movie so I didn't mind.

The character development was great. I really liked all the characters and felt like I knew them in just this short time.

I loved everything about this one. 
Oh yeah - and it was romantic!  :-)

This is funny because I also read last years - "An October Bride" by Katie and also loved it!
 read my review - HERE
And my review of Wishing On Willows - HERE

Thank you BookLook Bloggers for giving me this book for my honest review!

Get your copy from Amazon - HERE 


Rhythm of Deceit - Rachael Richey

4.5 Stars!

Book two in the NightHawk Series
Two years after finally being reunited, Abigail Thomson and Gideon Hawk are happily married and living in Cornwall with their children. While Gideon is busy focusing his energies on his musical career, Abi makes an unexpected discovery of old diaries dating from 1950. As she and her daughter read through them, the reasons behind Abi’s mother’s destructive actions become much clearer, and they discover a shocking sixty-year-old deception. Meanwhile, Simon Dean, the vengeful ex-drummer of Gideon’s band NightHawk, is about to make life very difficult for them all—again—and he is prepared to go to desperate lengths to achieve his goals.

Rachael Richey lives in Cornwall, England with her husband and children. She has been writing stories since she was a small child, and her first women's fiction novel, Storm Rising, was published in February 2015 by the Wild Rose Press. Storm Rising is the first book in the NightHawk Series. The second book, Rhythm of Deceit is due out shortly, to be followed by two more.

Visit her awesome website - HERE

Wow, wow, wow! Talk about your suspenseful, sad, heartwarming, edge-of-your-seat writing!
I have to admit something - It was a little slow going for me in the beginning. I kept thinking "Where is this going? Isn't something going to happen?" Then a third of the way in it got FANTASTIC and I had a hard time putting it down.

This story is kind of two stories in one. One that is happening now, which was scary, suspenseful and keeps you guessing. The other happens within a box of family papers, pictures, and old diaries from her mother and a mysterious aunt Abi knew nothing about. So half the book takes you back in time to 1950 when Abi's mother was a teen.. Many times I don't care for this part of a book as much as the original story-line, but in this case... I think I liked it even more! I think I could have read a whole book just about them. Their story was amazing, very well written and sad. I really felt like I was taken back in time. Rachael did a great job with this part!

The character development was excellent especially for Joan and Pauline from the diary. I loved these two girls and I truly felt emotionally invested in their part of the story. I really cared about what happened to them and found myself reading with my hand over my mouth. I had a few ideas about what I thought was going to happen but their sad story just shocked me! ~ I have you now, don't I? You want to know what happens!

Aaanndd... the ending, of course, leaves you hanging! A great ending to this book two, it was very exciting right up to the end - but has to leave you hanging for book three to sweep in and carry you away! - I can't wait! OK I admit it, I'm hooked!

I liked book one - Storm Rising, my review - HERE
But I loved this one even more and if book three - Cobwebs In The Dark, is anything like these I am sure I will love it!

Thank you Rachael Richey for sending me your book for my honest review!

Get your copy from Amazon - HERE
 Cobwebs In The Dark
The third book in The NightHawk Series
Coming Soon!

With NightHawk newly reformed and preparing for a world tour, Abi Hawk finds herself unaccountably insecure about the attention her husband Gideon, the band's frontman, will receive from groupies.  In New Zealand for the first leg of the tour and a visit with Gideon's sister, they are faced with a new problem.  An outrageous claim pushes Abi's insecurities to new heights, and it takes all their resolve to stick together and sort it out. Meanwhile their daughter Natasha goes on an adventure of her own; one that places her in grave danger from an old adversary, forcing Abi and Gideon to summon all their combined strength in an attempt to rescue her.


Friday Top Five!

For every top 5 list you do you get an entry to win an amazon ebook worth up to 1.99, a winner chosen every month!
For rules (seriously, there aren't any) click on the tab on the top left of the blog.

I am mainly a Spring and Summer person. There isn't too much about the colder weather I look forward to.
So I have searched my heart to find a few.

Top 5 things I am looking forward to this Fall -
1. Good walking weather. I love to walk and its terrible to walk when its 95 out!
2. Hoodies! I have so many hoodies and I am really looking forward to wearing them all again.
3. Football - Steelers! Woot woot!
4. Pretty colors, I do like looking at all the trees.
5. Pumpkin spice latte's 


Higher Ground - T M Carpenter

4 Stars

In Higher Ground: Zero Hour, the world goes mad when what many people dismissed as alarmism becomes a reality: an Ebola outbreak that could wipe out 90 percent of humanity. But how the virus has spread and who is behind it remains a mystery: is it the government or a rogue group of radical terrorists? To the billions of dead, it makes no difference, but for those who have survived, the truth is crucial…yet not as critical as finding a way to survive during the initial outbreak.

The novel focuses on a handful of people who learn the worst is coming and try to sound the alarm while preparing to survive the collapse of civilization. Banding together and facing unexpected threats, they combine their skills and knowledge to meet up at a remote, predetermined location in the mountains of Colorado—a refuge that will hopefully see them through the worst of what the world is experiencing. The group will need to rely on basic instincts and sharp wit to maintain a sense of decency in the most indecent conditions as they confront ruthlessness with their own brand of justice.

T.M. Carpenter’s novel is insightful and compelling, with characters who are deeply real, courageous, and compassionate. Who will survive, and can they learn to work together and live in peace and harmony? Or will the cycle simply start all over again? In Higher Ground: Zero Hour, the entire human species is on trial. Will we allow our lowest and most base instincts to win, or will we look for common and higher ground?

Throughout recorded history, Mother Nature has regularly thinned the human population with a pandemic, the most recent being the global influenza outbreak after World War I. Improved medical treatments, vaccinations, and knowledge have shielded humanity from a major pandemic since then, but the question isn’t whether it will happen again—it’s when, where, and how it will start. With scientific, political, and social trends torn from the headlines of recent news, Higher Ground: Zero Hour explores the ways in which terrorism, government conspiracies, and the growing indifference of humanity could all contribute to a worldwide crisis.

T.M. Carpenter was born in 1962 in Minnesota, where he developed a love for the outdoors, growing up near Minnehaha Falls and the Mississippi River in south Minneapolis. After a visit to Colorado as a young boy, he vowed that one day he would move there, and he now lives with his wife and two children in Parker, Colorado.

I love "end-of-the-world" type books! Boy they do get you thinking don't they. One thing this book has going for it is detail. The author really pays attention to detail, nothing was left out. I could really feel like I was right there. I could even follow where they were going, like it was mapped out in my head just using his instructions. A fun, thought provoking, very real feeling, action packed story.

The only thing that kept me from giving it 5 stars was that I rally didn't feel invested in it or the characters until half way through. In the beginning there was so much detail and the author kind of goes off on a lot of tangents detouring from the original story, the thing is - I loved all those little off shoots! They were all very interesting and fun to read. The author surly did his homework in the research department!

I thought there was good character development, but like I said I didn't really feel them (their personalities didn't shine for me) till halfway. Then finally, it started clicking. Also, there are a lot of characters to keep track of and you know what I think of that - fewer is better. Again, I kept forgetting who was who and who was with what family. I needed a list - He should have done a family tree in the beginning! That would have been fun. I suggest that for the next book. I did like the way everyone comes together in the end like it was meant to be. Kind of like Stephen King's "The Stand".

This story was well thought out, and well written. I am sorry to say though that it didn't have me running to the store for supplies or filling jugs with water like the "Life As We Knew It" series. That series had me making lists, putting things in my car and planning with friends to see if I really was ready!
But still I am looking forward to the next book - of course I have to find out what happens! There was not a dull moment in here, every page was filled with excitement, suspense and very real feeling adventure.

Thank you TM Carpenter for sending me your book for my honest review!

Get you copy from Amazon - HERE


Only With Blood - Therese Down

4 Stars!

Jack Flynn, strong and aggressive but slowly dying of tuberculosis on his farm in Tipperary in the Republic of Ireland, decides to acquire--purchase--a young wife who can bear him sons to inherit his family's land. His choice, Caitlin Spillane, is less than half his age, attractive and intelligent, and resents bitterly the obedience that is forced upon her.

When Donal Kelly, a young firebrand, a supporter of the IRA, arrives in the village, he and Caitlin are drawn together in their detestation of Flynn. Flynn, traumatized by his own insurgent IRA experiences twenty years earlier, is secretly convinced that Eamonn de Valera's more diplomatic, peaceful approach to Ireland's problems is the only sane one.

Could Caitlin be won for the cause, and leave her unloved husband?

A novel set against the struggle for the heart of Ireland in the Second World War, when the IRA notoriously sought assistance from the Nazis, Only with Blood explores flawed characters placed in extraordinary situations.

Therese Down is currently working as the Head of English at a High School in England and has been teaching English Literature and Language for over twenty years in a range of schools and colleges. She holds a MA in Employment Law and is experienced in personnel management. 

This book was very interesting. I have read a few books about Ireland's history but none about the IRA. I have to admit though, parts of it were slow for me, but the other parts were excellent and more than made up for it. This story has so many stories within it at times I compared it to a spider web tangling every which way and then finally coming together beautifully to make this intricate masterpiece! I kept thinking "Why are we going in this direction?" only to later realize "Oh, that's why!" Just keep reading, it all makes sense.

Character development was good but I didn't really like any of the characters! LOL  
I will start with Caitlin - what a selfish, hard as nails, unfeeling, brat! Yep, that about sums her up. I found it very hard to like her, so I didn't. But I loved reading about her! For me she was like this bad addiction.
Donal - Young, handsome, very intelligent, but I didn't like him either. I liked his passion, his love for Caitlin. I just didn't like the underhanded, sneaky way he went about it. I never did trust him, even up to the end.
Caitlin's parents and sister - what horrible people! This was the only thing I truly felt sorry for Caitlin about was the fact that she was born into this retched family! I know that parents back then did "sell off" their daughters into marriage even here in America, but that doesn't make it right.
Jack - Mean, old (and I love how they think mid 40's is old! LOL), sick, demanding, alone... but... he was my favorite! He was the only one I truly liked! I knew there was more to him than meets the eye. His character comes to a peak and finally gets the recognition it deserves at the wonderful end.

That brings me to the end. This book has, what I call, a non-ending. Unless there is going to be a book two??? It kinda leaves you hanging. And usually I hate endings like this. But - oddly enough, I was fully satisfied! I thought this was the perfect ending for a book like this.

Thank you Kregel Publications for sending me this book for my honest review!

Get your copy from Amazon - HERE


My First Hands-On Bible - Tyndale publishers

5 Stars!

My First Hands-On Bible is a fun and simple, yet meaningful way to engage preschool, prekindergarten, and kindergarten children (ages 3–6) with the Bible while helping them build a solid faith foundation. Each lesson focuses on a specific Bible point through a variety of activities in order to reinforce and help young children remember the stories and lessons. Using common household items, you can help your children have a “hands-on” learning experience while engaging them in 85 key stories from the Bible.

My First Hands-On Bible doesn’t just retell the Bible stories; it also includes actual Scripture from the easy-to-understand and easy-to-read Holy Bible, New Living Translation. In addition to the stories and activities, there are fun illustrations, prayers, and a special Jesus Connection feature.

This is probably the best Bible for young children I have seen! I just loved it. It doesn't just tell the Bible story, it has the actual Bible verses. There are lots of little extras that make this great for the young ones.
  • So first you have the Bible story with real Bible verses.
  • There are little hand prints that tell the children to do something - "Shout as loudly as you can for Jesus."
  • There is a short prayer at the end of each passage.
  • The "lets talk" section gets the child thinking and answering questions "Tell me a time when someone hurt your feelings" 
  • There are activities all throughout that are very age appropriate. "Put a flashlight under your chin to make your face glow. Talk about why you think Jesus glowed."
  • And "The Jesus connection - this is how the story relates to Jesus and our lives  "Jesus stopped the storm and took away the disciples' fears. Jesus can take away your fears too."
  • There are even suggestions of things for parents to do "Get out some oil and rub a little on your child's hand. Remind them how the Samaritan used olive oil to help soothe the man's wounds."

I am so thrilled with the thought of using this with my future grandchildren. This is definitely a Bible that you will use with your child, not just something for them to use on their own. This is a teaching tool, the best kind!  Each passage is short and easy for them to understand. There are tons of really cute colorful pictures to keep their interest. The activities are easy and quick so they won't loose interest or think they are too hard. Even the prayers are short, easy to understand and to the point.
I can honestly say that everything about this is perfect and age appropriate. Even the cover - imitation leather (mine is pink) is bright, soft, and beautiful.

Thank you Tyndale House Publishers for sending me this beautiful Bible for my honest review!

Get your copy from Amazon - HERE (this is the blue version)