Saturday, January 20, 2018

Girl in Pieces - Kathleen Glasgow (Review)

29236380Girl in Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow
Genres: Young Adult Fiction, Contemporary
Publication date: 
August 30th 2016

Publisher: Listening Library
Format: Audiobook10 hours and 43 minutes
How I got it: My public library
Buy it: Amazon Barnes & Noble
My rating: 5/5 


Charlotte Davis is in pieces. At seventeen she’s already lost more than most people lose in a lifetime. But she’s learned how to forget. The broken glass washes away the sorrow until there is nothing but calm. You don’t have to think about your father and the river. Your best friend, who is gone forever. Or your mother, who has nothing left to give you.

Every new scar hardens Charlie’s heart just a little more, yet it still hurts so much. It hurts enough to not care anymore, which is sometimes what has to happen before you can find your way back from the edge.

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My thoughts:

This book follows Charlotte Davis who is 17 years old and ends up in a facility to help with her cutting.  Charlotte has hard a colorful past, but she is trying to put that behind her and get her life together.  Charlotte had to grow up way before anyone should be asked to grow up.  She is dealing with some family issues as well as friend issues.  Charlotte’s best friend tried to kill herself and she feels somewhat responsible for what happened to her.  

I guess my biggest issue with the book was the lack of help that Charlotte received sometimes from people who should be supporting her.  Charlotte was only 17 and had some major events happen to her in her life.  She was working hard to get things straightened out, but some people who were supposedly there to help her really fell flat in my mind in trying to protect her.  I wanted Charlotte to be able to succeed and allow her to be herself. Some of the people in her life where strains to her and I didn’t want to keep seeing this happen to her in the book I wanted to yell at them for her.  I became so invested in Charlotte’s story I just wanted what was best for her.

The author does a great job with the story.  She kept the characters very natural and it felt authentic as we were taking our journey with Charlotte.   The author must have done a lot of research because there were so many emotions in the book that felt genuine of what someone might have gone through in the life that Charlotte is living.

Charlotte gets out of her facility and travels to a new town to stay with a friend.  Charlotte ends up getting a job and meeting some new people.  A lot happens for Charlotte in this short period of time in her life.  The author does a great job giving us some background, but also keeping the story moving along so that you want to know what is going to happen in the end.  Charlotte is trying to figure out the adult thing on her own during the book while still dealing with her cutting issues.

The topics in this book are sometimes very challenging to read about.  There are issues with cutting as well as drugs.  People have all different vices so it was interesting to read about them all combined.   The book is very emotional and does carry a large weight with it when reading.

I did enjoy the ending of this book.  The author gave me a lot to think about during the book and it was interesting how it all tied together in the end.   I can’t wait to read another book by this author.


I would suggest this as a weekend read or listen.  I needed a lot of time to process what was happening and what was going on.  It was easier to listen to this when I didn’t have anything else going on so I could focus on exactly what was going on.
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About the Author


Kathleen GlasgowKathleen Glasgow lives in Tucson, Arizona. She likes Tyrion and Shireen, musty old paperbacks from used bookstores that have cats wandering the aisles, cheesecake, coffee, and the Isle of Skye. Visit her on Twitter (@kathglasgow), Instagram (misskathleenglasgow), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/KathleenGlas...) or her website (www.kathleenglasgowbooks.com).
Author Links:
   

Outlaw Ride - Sarah Hawthorne (Review)

36488460Outlaw Ride by Sarah Hawthorne
SerieDemon Horde #3
Genres: Romance
Publication date: 
February 5, 2018

Publisher: Harlequin Digital Sales Corp..
Format: ebook, 180 pages

How I got it: From the author for an honest review
Buy it: Amazon Barnes & Noble 
My rating: 4/5 

A recovering gambler

Hard-living biker Clint Remmick is fiercely loyal to the boys of the Demon Horde motorcycle club. He’s worked hard to redeem himself, and there’s no risk he won’t take to help his brothers, even when rivals threaten their safety. When his grandmother’s health takes a turn for the worse, though, he moves out of the clubhouse to take care of her. With his duties for the MC, he knows he can’t do it alone, so he hires Jo, a live-in nurse.

He didn’t expect her to heal him, as well.

A dedicated nurse

Jo Smith enjoys working for sweet old Anne Remmick, and she’s especially intrigued by her tattooed bad-boy grandson. Clint’s tough exterior scares her a little, but she feels a pull toward the sexy biker. Soon she’s dying to close the distance between them.

A losing bet

When Clint and his brothers have to pull a dangerous job in Reno, Jo is the perfect cover. With enemies around every corner, Clint needs to focus on keeping her safe—not the lust simmering between them. But when Clint is trapped by a rival club, Jo will have to save him…and their relationship. 

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My thoughts:

This book contains adult themes.

This is the third book in the Demon Horde series by Sarah Hawthorne.  In this book we follow Clint one of the members of the Demon Horde and Jo a nurse who ends up living with Clint to take care of his grandmother.

Clint is trying to move up the club ladder and take on more responsibilities.  He will now be running a car shop with a few recruits.  Clint previously had a gambling problem, but believes he has almost fully recovered from this issue.  Clint is working hard to keep his life on track when we he meets Jo. 

Jo has had a hard upbringing that I believe we only got bits and pieces of in the book.  I am pretty sure an entire book could have been dedicated to Jo’s past.   Jo is studying to become a nurse and in the meantime, she is a home live in health aide.  Jo gets to help Clint’s grandmother go to her dialysis during the week.  Jo is a strong character who takes on a large role when she steps into Clint’s life.  Jo is trying to just focus on herself, but she learns that sometimes you need other people in your life. 

I love the we get to see both the POV of Clint and Jo in the book.  The alternating chapters give us a clear look at what is going on in Clint’s head as well as what is going on in Jo’s head.  I loved that they both wanted to get to know each other more, but because of the employer/employee relationship they tried to stay away from one another.  It is nice to see how the relationship started between the two of them and all the issues it entailed.  I loved that Jo kept her guard up a lot during the book because we got to see how strong of a character she is. 

The storyline is great we get to see a relationship develop between two people and we get some motorcycle club action.  I loved that Clint wanted to show Jo his world and what family means to him.   Family is a strong theme in this book and the author does a great job showing that not every family is the same.

My one complaint with this book would have to be that the first two books in the series had a little more to do with the Demon Horde group and I enjoyed getting to know them.  This book touched on the Demon Horde group, but the first two novels give a lot more perspective of the group.  I think it is because a lot more takes place between the two main characters not at the club house.  I enjoy the club house and the characters that are there.

I would suggest this as a weekend read.  The book was fast paced and a quick read.  I could read it in almost one sitting stopping for the occasional stretch.


I received a copy of this book from the author for the purpose or providing an honest review.  This does not affect my opinion of this book. 
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About the Author


Sarah Hawthorne lives in the Pacific Northwest where she drinks too much coffee, plans a lot of vacations and writes romance novels. Her native habitats include her garden and the local library.

She is represented by Jessica Alvarez at BookEnds Literary.

Sarah received a Bachelor's Degree from California State Polytechnic University of Pomona, Los Angeles
with a major in history and a minor in English.

Author Links:
   

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Cradle to Cradle - William McDonough (Spotlight)


Title: Cradle to Cradle
Author: William McDonough (and Michael Braungart)
Genre: Non-Fiction

Cradle to Cradle
Originally published in 2002, Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things is now considered “the authoritative tome” on the subject of eco-effectiveness and beneficial design. This manifesto of environmentalism has turned the sustainable design industry on its head by expanding the definition of design quality to include positive effects on ecological and social health, while at the same time creating positive economic value.
The Upcycle
Building on the established principles of Cradle to Cradle, The Upcycle: Beyond Sustainability–Designing for Abundance showcases decades of experience from both McDonough and Braungart as they demonstrate the efficacy of designing for positive human and environmental impact while also increasing economic value generation. Utilizing examples from McDonough’s work with organizations including Ford, Nike, and NASA, The Upcycle presents a world of possibility in the future of sustainable design.

The Hannover Principles
Written by William McDonough Architects as sustainable design guidelines for the City of Hannover, Germany, in preparation for the Expo 2000, The World’s Fair. Twenty five years later, these principles, grounded in the enduring laws of nature, continue to inform sustainable designs and dialog. The 10th anniversary edition has been updated to include an introduction by Teresa Heinz, an essay by William McDonough and Michael Braungart, and an afterword by David Rosenberg.

Cradle to Cradle is available now at: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks

About William McDonough
William McDonough is an award-winning architect and author recognized internationally for his groundbreaking work in sustainable design. William McDonough’s 2002 book Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things is considered the seminal text of the sustainability  movement, work he has expanded on by introducing the Cradle to Cradle® Design Framework.

William McDonough has received the Presidential Award for Sustainable Development as well as the National Design Award for exemplary achievement in the field of environmental design in addition to earning the U.S. EPA Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award. His firm William McDonough + Partners has worked with companies such as VMware and Hero MotoCorp to develop sustainable projects around the world. William recently published a new proposal on carbon management in Nature magazine titled “Carbon is not the Enemy”.


Connect with William online: Twitter | LinkedIn | C2C Certified

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Getting Off: One Women's Journey Through Sex and Porn Addiction - Erica Garza (Review)

33985321Getting Off: One Women's Journey Through Sex and Porn Addiction by Erica Garza
Genres: Nonfiction, Memoir 
Publication date: 
January 16th 2018
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Format: Hardcover, 192 pages
How I got it: Simon & Schuster Marketing for an Honest Review
Buy it: Amazon Barnes & Noble
My rating: 4/5 


A fiercely courageous account of one woman's unflinching, raw, and ultimately hopeful journey through sex and porn addiction.

For almost two decades, Erica Garza was consumed by a singular, secret, shame-fueled pursuit that threw her life into chaos: orgasm. Back-braced, isolated, and teased in adolescence, and ambivalent about her Catholic upbringing, Garza found a secret solace in masturbation and porn--first by way of the limited softcore viewing offered by late-night cable, and, later, with the booming proliferation of online porn.

In this wrenching, vivid account, Garza explores her sexual fixations and relives the series of disastrous relationships and one-night stands that haunt her as she runs from one side of the world to the other in a futile attempt to break free of her habits―from East Los Angeles to Hawaii and Southeast Asia, through the brothels of Bangkok and the yoga studios of Bali to disappointing stabs at twelve-steps, therapy, and rehab back home.

Garza's terror at digging so deeply into her history to understand her anxieties is palpable, as is her exhilaration when she begins to believe she might just be free of them. And yet there is no false hope or prepackaged sense of redemption. Even her relationship to the man she will ultimately marry is credibly rocky as it finds its legs with several false starts, making her increasing sense of self-acceptance and peace by journey's end feel utterly earned.

In exploring the cultural taboos surrounding sex and porn from a female perspective, Garza offers a brave and necessary voice to our evolving conversations about addiction and the impact that Internet culture has had on young women.

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My thoughts:

This book contains adult themes.

This book follows Erica Garza on her journey to discovering her addiction of orgasm.   Erica opens up about her addiction and takes us from the beginning to present day.  We get to travel along with Erica through time to see how she got to this point in her life.

I think it is important to note, not ever path to addiction is the same and not everyone’s path to recovery will be the same.  I enjoyed getting to see the perspective of Erica’s thoughts on different events in her life and how they affected her addiction.  I also liked how honest she was when people told her she had a problem, but she didn’t think she had a problem.  I find reading memoir’s where the author feels genuinely authentic to be refreshing and makes reading more enjoyable.

Erica has traveled around a lot and meet a lot of different people along the way.  I enjoyed getting to hear the places that Erica has been and how she thinks these places also affected her mindset.   The journey that Erica took is not one that many one travel along so it was interesting to hear about the different places she got to visit and stay for periods of time.

Another great aspect of the book was getting a hard look at the relationships that she had with her family as well as friends that she crossed paths with.  I enjoyed getting to read about these relationships and hear her reflections on how they have affected her in the long run.  Erica took her time to evaluate her relationships and give the reader as much details and thoughts as possible.

I would suggest this as a weekend read.  I could sit down and read this one relatively quickly because I found the author’s voice to be honestly refreshing.   It was an easy story to follow along with and paced nicely through the author’s life.

I received a copy of this book from Simon & Schuster Marketing to provide an honest review.  This does not affect my opinion of this book. 

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About the Author

Erica Garza’s essays have appeared in SalonNarrativelyBUSTGood Housekeeping, and the Los Angeles Review, among other publications. She holds an MFA in nonfiction writing from Columbia University. Getting Off, her memoir on sex addiction, is her first book. Born in Los Angeles to a Mexican father and a Mexican-American mother, she has spent the majority of her adult life traveling and living abroad. She currently lives in Los Angeles with her husband and daughter.
Author Links:
   

The Wicked Vampire - Kate Baxter (Review)

33574187The Wicked Vampire by Kate Baxter
Series: Last True Vampire #6
Genres: Paranormal, Romance
Publication date: 
December 5th 2017

Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Format: ebook, 384 pages
How I got it: NetGalley for an honest review
Buy it: Amazon Barnes & Noble
My rating: 4/5 

He was one of the most feared creatures in the supernatural world, and yet, she was drawn to him unlike any other. His scent ignited her thirst. The sight of him drove her mad with want...

Lovers forever--or enemies to the death? 

Sasha Ivanov was born to be wild. A vampire party girl, she stalks the L.A. clubs at night. Dancing. Drinking. Indulging her darkest appetites. Never sated, she's always looking for more: more danger, more excitement, more blood. But when she enters a supernatural fight club--and is tethered to her mortal enemy--Sasha realizes she's playing the most dangerous game of all...

Ewan Brun was born to kill vampires. A powerful berserker and unbeaten champion, he doesn't need a weapon to be deadly. He is the weapon. But when his soul becomes captive to the most beautiful vampire he's ever seen, he is all but powerless. He cannot resist Sasha--and cannot fight his desires. Is their love strong enough to defeat the gathering forces of darkness that threatens to destroy them both?

"The chemistry is electric."
--San Francisco Book Reviews on The Last True Vampire
 

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My thoughts:
This book contains adult themes.

This book follows Sasha who is a vampire living on the edge with her nightlife habits and Ewan who is a berserker, which are vampire hunters.  Ewan has been fighting at night to make some additional money and Sasha randomly meets up with him at a fight.

The author does a great job creating the chemistry between Sasha and Ewan.  The chemistry felt almost instant from page one between the two characters.  I enjoyed that we got POV of both Sasha and Ewan during their relationship.   The big conflict is that berserkers are supposed to be killing vampires not getting into a relationship with one.   Sasha and Ewan must get past a lot of their chemistry to establish a deeper relationship.

Sasha wasn’t trying to get to invested in Ewan in the beginning and most of the book since she had her heart broken in the past.  I loved that she tried to remain as rational as possible during the relationship.  She knew her limits and what she was expecting out of the relationship.  Sasha stayed very level headed during the entire book and her insight during her chapters helped establish her as a strong character.  I loved that we got to hear about Sasha’s life in the past as well as how she became a vampire. 

Ewan was a completely different male lead.  Ewan’s temper could get the best of him in a lot of situations and it was hard for him to control what was going on.  I felt most of the book was centered around Ewan’s complicated life and the decisions that he had to make.  I enjoyed being able to get Ewan’s perspective during his chapters because it gave a lot of insight onto what was going on with him.  I enjoyed getting to learn more about Ewan’s world as I read and what he wanted to run from.

My major complaint would be that I read this as a standalone novel and felt like I was missing bigger pieces of the story.  I could follow along what was happening between Sasha and Ewan, but there are chapters in between from other perspectives that I was not understanding at all.  I get that this was building to a bigger picture so I would suggest reading this series from the beginning.   The story switched to many POV’s so it was hard to follow when a random character was introduced with little to no background information.

I would suggest this as a great nighttime read.  It was easy to get transported into this book and want to read a little bit each night.  There were portions that were harder to put down, but I did find some natural stopping points when we were switching POV’s.

I received a copy of this book from NetGalley to provide an honest review.  This does not affect my review of this book. 
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About the Author

Kate BaxterKate Baxter is a die-hard romantic with a thing for Shakespeare. She lives in the great northwest where she hides away to write about all things fanged, furry, and undead.
http://facebook.com/AuthorKateBaxter


Author Links:
   

Monday, January 8, 2018

Bout of Books 21 - Jan 8th to 14th

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda Shofner and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 8th and runs through Sunday, January 14th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 21 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team

Bout of Books
Time Devoted to Reading

  • I want to read at least 1 hour a day and about 2-3 hours each day of the weekend! 

My Goals

  • My goal is to read at least four complete books in the next week and write reviews. 

Books to Read

  • Ghostboy, Chameleon & the Duke of Graffiti Olivia Wildenstein
  • In Black and White - Catherine Lavender 

Updates

Monday 1/8
Books Started: Ghostboy, Chameleon & the Duke of Graffiti -- Olivia Wildenstein
Books Finished: None
Pages Read: GCDG - 1/31
Thoughts: I listened to an audio book at work so I wasn't to motivated to sit down and read last night.  I am hoping tonight that changes. 
Total Pages Read Total: 31
Total Pages Read for Challenge:
Challenge: Introduce yourself #insixwords

Tuesday 1/9
Books Started: None
Books Finished: None
Pages Read: GCDG  31/60
Thoughts: I didn't get a lot of reading done yesterday hopefully more tomorrow.
Total Pages Read Total: 29
Total Pages Read for Challenge: 60
Challenge: Share your 2018 reading goal(s)
Got a reading goal or two or ten for the new year? Share with us! Comment below, tweet it out, collage it on Instagram, film it on YouTube, or post it on your blog. Remember to use the hashtag #boutofbooks #2018goals if your platform of choice uses hashtags.

My Reading Goals for this year are:
Read 75 books
Catch up on past reviews and ARC's
Post My Reviews On Time

Wednesday 1/10
Books Started: In Black and White - Catherine Lavender 
Books Finished: None
Pages Read: IBW 1/42
Thoughts: I got some more reading done today, not as much as I was hoping for though.
Total Pages Read Total: 42
Total Pages Read for Challenge: 102
Challenge: Book spine rainbow

Thursday 1/11
Books Started: None 
Books Finished: None
Pages Read: None 
Thoughts:  I ended up getting a cold and felt awful.  I didn't get any reading done.
Total Pages Read Total: None
Total Pages Read for Challenge: 102
Challenge: ALL THE FAVORITES!

Friday 1/12
Books Started: None 
Books Finished: None
Pages Read: None 
Thoughts:  I ended up getting a cold and felt awful.  I didn't get any reading done.
Total Pages Read Total: None
Total Pages Read for Challenge: 102 
Challenge: Newspaper headlines

Saturday 1/13
Books Started: None 
Books Finished: None
Pages Read: IBW 42-65
Thoughts: This cold is not helping my reading! 
Total Pages Read Total: 23
Total Pages Read for Challenge: 125
Challenge: Book spine poetry

Sunday 1/14
Books Started: None
Books Finished: None
Pages Read: IBW 65-80
Thoughts: I am starting to feel better, but had way to much to catch up on to sit down and read a lot this weekend! 
Total Pages Read Total: 15
Total Pages Read for Challenge: 140
Challenge: Leave a book review

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Caught - Karen Fenech (Review)

25690692Caught by Karen Fenech
Series: The Protectors #4.5
Genres: Novella, Romance, Mystery
Publication date: June 9, 2015

Format: PDF, 83 pages
How I got it: For signing up for Karen Fenech's newsletter
Buy it: Amazon 
My rating: 3/5 


From USA Today Bestselling Author Karen Fenech comes another story in her bestselling Protectors Series.

CAUGHT (A Protectors Series Novella that takes place between the Protectors books)
** This novella may be read on its own and does not end on a cliffhanger.

While on her way home from work, Elle Jameson is abducted by a human trafficker. Her abductor, Sloane Devlin, is a man cloaked in secrets and contradictions. He takes her away from the traffickers he works for but will not set her free.

Sloane claims all is not as it seems and that he will see her safely home. Elle cannot separate the truth from the lie yet despite her resolve she is softening toward him and believing him, trusting him, may cost Elle her life.

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My thoughts:

This book contains adult themes. 

This book follows Elle Jameson as she is abducted to be sold off via human trafficking.  Elle ends up getting rescued by her original captor Sloane and now needs to figure out how she can trust. 

Prior to being abducted Elle had a job as an architect assistant and seemed to be going well with her life.  During her abduction it becomes a little detailed and the emotions that come through bring it to life.  I felt like the author was connected to Elle when she was describing now only what was going on, but how she was feeling. 

Elle is the main character and the only POV that we get during this book.  I enjoyed learning more about Elle and also seeing the situation through her eyes. 

Although this is a short novella I would have loved to see duel POV from Elle and Sloane.  I feel like Sloane had to have a lot of emotions going on I would have loved to read about. 

After reading this novella I will be looking into reading some more Karen Fenech.  I enjoyed the short story and also enjoyed the author's writing style. 

I would suggest this as a perfect weekend read.  It was easy to sit down and read this book quickly while being cozy on the couch. 

I received a copy of this book for signing up for Karen Fenech's newsletter. This does not effect my review or opinion of this book.

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About the Author


USA Today Bestselling Author Karen Fenech writes romantic suspense novels and short works of suspense. She is the author of the romantic suspense series, The Protectors. Karen's novels and short suspense fiction have received critical acclaim and have been translated into several languages. When Karen's not writing or spending time with her family, she loves to shop, watch movies, and just kick back in a comfortable chair and read.

You can reach Karen here:

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/KarenFenechsF...
Twitter: https://twitter.com/karenfenech
Website: http://www.karenfenech.com

Girl in Pieces - Kathleen Glasgow (Review)

Girl in Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow Genres:  Young Adult Fiction, Contemporary Publication date:   August 30th 2016 Publisher:   Listening...