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REGENCY SPIES OF LONDON SERIES


A SPY’S DEVOTION
By Melanie Dickerson
Published by Waterfall Press
Kindle ISBN#Bo14ERJOMI
322 Pages

ABOUT BOOK: In England’s Regency era, manners and elegance reign in public life—but behind closed doors treason and deception thrive. Nicholas Langdon is no stranger to reserved civility or bloody barbarity. After suffering a battlefield injury, the wealthy, well-connected British officer returns home to heal—and to fulfill a dying soldier’s last wish by delivering his coded diary.

At the home of the Wilherns, one of England’s most powerful families, Langdon attends a lavish ball where he meets their beautiful and intelligent ward, Julia Grey. Determined to maintain propriety, he keeps his distance—until the diary is stolen and all clues lead to Julia’s guardian. As Langdon traces an evil plot that could be the nation’s undoing, he grows ever more intrigued by the lovely young woman. And when Julia realizes that England—and the man she is falling in love with—need her help, she finds herself caught in the fray. Will the two succumb to their attraction while fighting to save their country?

REVIEW: I enjoy regency tales that have characters I instantly care about, can cheer for, and are fun. I like that this story also includes a mystery, suspense, some drama and a splash of romance. I loved this original story that grabbed my heart and attention from the start and never let it go. This gifted author places readers on the dance floor of a ballroom, having as much fun as the characters themselves. Later the author has her characters running through the streets of London on a mission for their country. If caught they could be arrested and accused of being a spy.

I liked the main character named, Julia. She is tender but strong to do what is right in the eyes of God. She could think for herself. Julia also looked out for her cousin. She made sure they both followed all of the rules of society to make sure their characters weren't tainted. Julia wanted to marry someone she loved and respected. She would not be told who to marry or be swayed by her financial situation. She was hard working, kind, thoughtful, loyal and resourceful. I liked her spunk.

Julia played the piano at parties which gave her a vantage point others didn’t have. She could keep her eyes on the man her cousin's heart was set on, Lord Nicholas Langdon. Why wouldn’t her cousin want him? He was a handsome, kind, thoughtful, aristocrat, who was courageous, and loyal to his country and the cause. He’s returned home to heal up from a gunshot injury received in battle. Julia was determined to keep her promise which was to point Lord Nicholas toward her cousin every chance she got. Little did she realize how’d she’d feel when Lord Nicholas looked into her eyes when they danced. She dismissed it as a silly feeling that would pass. Seems Lord Nicholas was fighting those silly feeling too!

This author masterfully weaves together an action adventure story in a regency time period, with characters who accidentally discover a plot of an assassination attempt on a political leader which immediately brings them into danger, unexpected espionage, and nail-biting suspense, as Julia and Nicholas lives take a few unexpected twists and turns. This fun and brilliant blend leave the reader longing for more. Good news is I don’t have to wait long to read more about these characters because they are back in book two of the series, “A Viscount’s Proposal.”

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from AMAZON when Ebook was listed as free. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com
Book Fun Magazine
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BEAUTIFUL AMISH COOKBOOK


THE ESSENTIAL AMISH COOKBOOK
By Lovina Eicher’s Amish Kitchen
Published by Herald Press
ISBN#978-1-5138-0029-5
395 Pages

ABOUT BOOK: Taste the goodness of Amish life.
Bestselling cookbook author and food columnist Lovina Eicher brings together the best of Amish cooking in The Essential Amish Cookbook: Everyday Recipes from Farm and Pantry. Join Eicher as she shares traditional Amish recipes along with her own kitchen tips and secrets. Growing up, Eicher learned to cook and bake at an early age alongside her mother, longtime columnist and Amish cookbook author Elizabeth Coblentz, and has put those skills to use in her own Amish kitchen as she cooks for her eight children.

The easy-to-follow, authentic recipes you'll find in The Essential Amish Cookbook are prepared every day in countless homes in Old Order Amish communities across North America. Many of the more than 100 recipes are richly illustrated with step-by-step photographs to help you learn Amish cooking just as if you were in Lovina's kitchen. From hearty main dishes to substantial sides--plus a generous sampling of scrumptious cakes, pies, cookies, and other delectable desserts--learn how to make the hearty, simple dishes that the Amish cook together and serve at home, church services, and weddings.

In a fast-food, digital world, the book's colorful photos and conversational tone provide a real taste of Amish life and invite you to slow down. Your family will come to love her Zucchini Chocolate Chip Bread, Rhubarb Juice, Roast Beef with Veggies, Oven Crusted Chicken, pickles, jams, and so much more. Experience the simple joys of Amish life--food, faith, and family!
Baked Oatmeal

Zucchini Muffins














REVIEW: This is more than a cookbook filled with beautiful photographs of the 100 recipes inside. It’s a book that gives readers a peek into the Amish way of life. I got to know about her family and her heart. “I learned to cook from my mother at a young age….She had a hand-cranked bread mixer, and we would turn it for her sometimes….We would have lots of fun trying to roll out a crust. Mom would sprinkle sugar on it and bake it, and then we ate it.”

Potato Pancakes












After reading the introduction I searched for something to make. I was only going to do a few recipes but they tasted so good I made more. I was encouraged by the fact that my family loved all the recipes I made.  I tried Zucchini Chocolate Chip Bread, muffins, Baked Oatmeal, Potato Pancakes, and Zucchini Fritters. There are a wide variety of categories: Quick Breads and Yeast Breads, Breakfast Foods, Soups and Salads, Meats and Main Dishes. Cakes and Frostings, Pies, Cookies and Bars, Desserts and Candies, Snacks and Beverages, Relishes, Pickles, James and Jellies, Amish Church Meals, and Amish Wedding Meals. 

The author's instructions are simple, the ingredients are easy to find, and there is a note from the author about the dish. The potato pancake note says, “These potato pancakes are good with a slice of cheese on top, or with bacon crumbled in them before cooking. We have these with biscuits and gravy sometimes. A tasty recipe!” I agree.

I liked that the author gave readers at look at meals that are usually associated with a church service. She shared some pictures at their church I liked. The last section is titled An Amish Wedding where the author shares how she and the community prepared for her daughter’s wedding. The chapter includes pictures and recipes of the food that was made for the event.

There’s a helpful index in the back of the book. You’ll love reading this book, making the recipes and telling your friends about the yummy garden to table meals you’ve made. I know I did.


LIKE TO MEET THE AUTHOR?
Author Tour
You can meet Lovina Eicher in person. Below is a list of confirmed book signings. More dates and locations are in the works. Updates will be posted on the Lovina's Amish Kitchen Facebook page.

May 6 – Dorothy’s Hallmark (Time TBA)
The Party Shop
3418 Lake City Hwy
Warsaw, IN 46580

May 19 – Better World Books – 6-8 p.m.
215 S Main St,
Goshen, IN 46526

May 20 – Barnes and Noble - 12 - 3 p.m.
University Park Mall
 6501 North Grape Road

Mishawaka, IN 46545

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Herald Press. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com
Book Fun Magazine
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POWERFUL WWII STORY TOLD THROUGH YOUTHFUL EYES

CATCHING THE WIND
By Melanie Dobson
Publisher Tyndale
ISBN#978-1-4964-1728-2

ABOUT BOOK: What happened to Brigitte Berthold?

That question has haunted Daniel Knight since he was thirteen, when he and ten-year-old Brigitte escaped the Gestapo agents who arrested both their parents. They survived a harrowing journey from Germany to England, only to be separated upon their arrival. Daniel vowed to find Brigitte after the war, a promise he has fought to fulfill for more than seventy years.

Now a wealthy old man, Daniel’s final hope in finding Brigitte rests with Quenby Vaughn, an American journalist working in London. He believes Quenby’s tenacity to find missing people and her personal investment in a related WWII espionage story will help her succeed where previous investigators have failed. Though Quenby is wrestling her own demons―and wary at the idea of teaming up with Daniel’s lawyer, Lucas Hough―the lure of Brigitte’s story is too much to resist. Together, Quenby and Lucas delve deep into the past, following a trail of deception, sacrifice, and healing that could change all of their futures.

REVIEW: Readers are transported back to July 1940 Moselkern, Germany and introduced to a young boy named Dietmar Roth; a young warrior in charge of knights sworn to protect a ten-year-old “pretend” princess named Brigitte Berthold. Their kingdom was an outside treehouse that had an amazing view of the forest and the back sides of their homes. From the treehouse, they could clearly see the outside world banging down the doors of their homes. They watched in horror as their parents were interrogated. Dietmar Roth grabbed Brigitte by the hand and ran. He’d seen enough to know they were in danger. With only the clothes on their backs, they ran for their lives, just as his parents had trained him to do.

Just when readers are emotionally invested in the flight of these two little ones; the author seamlessly switches to the current time, where they meet Quenby Vaughn. She’s an American journalist working in London who has a particular way in finding missing people. She has a private investment in a related WWII espionage story. This is why Mr. Knight wants to hire her. Daniel (aka Dietmar) vowed to find Brigitte. He believed Quenby would succeed when others had failed. He’d followed her career and knew her well.

This author masterfully weaves current time with past events. I liked the fact that in current time when they discovered something related to the past she would switch to the past and have that event play out first hand; so that the reader and Quenby Vaughn would find out about that situation at the same time. I liked the author's use of humor and thought provoking ideas to defuse some intense situations. Here’s an example.

Mr. Knight says this about life, “…Our lives are like the jigsaw puzzles you like to put together Quenby. All the pieces are out there, but we have to frame it before we complete the inside.”

Quenby was driven to dig for the truth.…”working on someone else’s story kept her from having to reflect on her own.” Quincy’s mission – it was about a girl lost long ago. A girl who’d never seemed to find her way home.” “Quenby knew what it was like to be left alone.”

This novel would work well for book clubs as there are 13 discussion questions and in author notes, there is valuable information that would also help create lively conversations in your group.

The author says in her notes, “the power of story has transformed my own life, and I’m incredibly grateful to Jesus Christ, the author, and finisher of faith, for enduring pain and humiliation and ultimately conquering the evil in this world, redeeming and healing because of his boundless love for his kids.”

This author seamlessly connects past and present events in this powerful, heart-rending story. It was a fascinating and beautifully written novel of two unspeakable tragedies, of love and loss and learning to love again. As I read, I kept thinking about the characters, their situation and all the other WWII stories out there. This moving story told through the eyes of children; stayed on my mind and close to my heart long after I closed the book.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Tyndale Publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com
Book Fun Magazine
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GOD LOVES MOMMY AND ME REVIEWED


God Loves Mommy and Me
By Bonnie Rickner Jensen
Published by Thomas Nelson Board Book
ISBN# 13-978-0718091781
20 Pages
Age Range 2-5 Grade Level Preschool-Kindergarten

ABOUT BOOK: “God loves Mommy and me, He knows we love Him too When we pray we always say, “You’re so good, God—thank You!”

Snuggle in cozy-close with a sweet reminder of God’s love for mommies and their little ones. Celebrating loving mothers, precious children, and the God who loves them all, God Loves Mommy and Me will remind parents and little ones of how much they are loved.

REVIEW: This padded board book cover illustration first caught my eye. It peeked my interest. I had to take a look inside. The illustrations are beautiful and gave me a warm cozy feeling as I quickly fell into the sing-song rhythm of the writing.

This story is a great reminder of how much God loves us individually and how much love flows between a mother and child because he first loved them both. It’s a celebration of motherhood.

Here is a peek at the rhythm in the story, “Mommy’s hugs are special…God made her extra sweet.”

“They make me oh-so-happy from my head down to my feet.”:

The illustration shows both mother and child hugging with great big smiles on their faces. The author depicts special everyday moments children can have with their mothers, like playing in mud puddles, doing chores and just being silly. This book has a grateful message at the end. The pictures are heartwarming, charming, bright and cheerful. It was fun to read.

ABOUT AUTHOR: Bonnie Rickner Jensen is a bestselling author, who for the past 20 years has written everything from children's books to gift books to thousands of greeting cards. She's won a Retailer's Choice Award for her book, "I Love You Head to Toe", and also several Louie Awards for her work in the social expression industry. Her inspirations are her grandchildren, running, and sunshine. She writes from her picture book, toy-filled office in Cleveland, Ohio.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Thomas Nelson. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com
Book Fun Magazine
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GOD LOVES DADDY AND ME REVIEWED

God Loves Daddy and Me
By Bonnie Rickner Jensen
Published By:Thomas Nelson
ISBN# 10- 0718091779
20 Pages Board Book
2-5 Years Pre-Kindergarten

ABOUT BOOK: God loves Daddy and me, He listens when we pray, When we tell Him “Thank You,” it’s the best part of our day!’

Cuddle up cozy-close with an adorable reminder of God’s love for daddies and their little ones. Celebrating loving fathers, precious children, and the God who loves them all, God Loves Daddy and Me will remind parents and little ones of how much they are loved.

REVIEW: I enjoyed this delightful, cushioned board book that described how little ones can have fun with their daddy. The illustrations showed every day heart-felt moments that can be moments to celebrate like taking a walk, doing chores and silly times that make you giggle.

This author shows the special connection and love between father and child in hopes that the child can grasp a connection with their heavenly father as well. The author shows how God and their father can be a protector, fun,  loving and gentle.

Here is an example of the rhythmic style of the writing, “God loves Daddy and me in lots of special ways.”

“His love is with us when we go on big adventure days.”

The endearing picture that goes with the words just quoted is that of a father and child raccoon in a boat fishing. The pictures make you grin, are adorable and lovely throughout this story. They make your face smile wide as this author and illustrator hope the readers see the symbolism of God and how much he cares for us just like this loving father in the story cares for the child.

ABOUT AUTHOR: Bonnie Rickner Jensen is a bestselling author who for the past 20 years has written everything from children’s books to gift books to thousands of greeting cards. She is the writer behind the bestselling Really Woolly® brand, with nearly 1 million books sold and an ECPA Gold Award–winning Really Woolly Bedtime Prayers. Bonnie has won a Retailer’s Choice Award for her book I Love You Head to Toe and also several Louie Awards for her work in the social expression industry. Her favorite inspirations are her grandchildren, running, and sunshine. She lives and works from her home in Cleveland, Ohio.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Thomas Nelson. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com
Book Fun Magazine
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LAST DAY TO ENTER AUTHOR GIVEAWAYS - CHECK IT OUT!

TO ENTER DRAWINGS You must first JOIN TBCN. www.bookfun.org 

If you are Already a member click on this LINK http://www.bookfun.org/page/author-groups-for-promo 














MARK BITTMAN SHARES RECIPES FROM HIS YUMMY VB6 PLAN/COOKBOOK


VB6 COOKBOOK
By Mark Bittman
Published by Clarkson Potter 2014
ISBN#978-0385-34482-1

ABOUT BOOK: Whether you call it flexitarian, part-time veganism, or vegetable-centric, the plant-based, real-food approach to eating introduced in Bittman's New York Times bestselling book VB6 has helped countless people regain their good health, control their weight, and forge a smarter, more ethical relationship with food. VB6 does away with the hard and fast rules, the calorie-counting, and the portion control of conventional diets; it's a regimen that is designed to be easy toa dopt and stick to for a lifetime.

When Bittman committed to a vegan before 6:00 pm diet, he quickly realized that everything about it became easier if he cooked his own meals at home. In The VB6 Cookbook he makes this proposition more convenient than you could imagine. Drawing on a varied and enticing pantry of vegan staples strategically punctuated with "treat" foods (including meat and other animal products), he has created a versatile repertoire of recipes that makes following his plan simple, satisfying, and sustainable.

If you've thought of trying a vegan diet but worry it's too monotonous or unfamiliar, or simply don't want to give up foods you love to eat, Bittman's vegan and flexitarian recipes will help you cook your way to a new, varied and quite simply better way of eating you can really commit to...for life. 

REVIEW: Change isn’t easy but when Mark Bittman’s doctor told him he had to make changes to avoid serious health issues he listened. He had to transform his diet. He knew that making drastic changes wouldn’t help him stick to it, so he took it slow. The author developed a strategy of eating he calls VB6 (vegan eating before 6pm). He lost weight, and felt better.

He started to eat more plant based foods; eat less highly processed foods and less meat. He says, “VB6 works in large part because a key aspect of the strategy is eating and enjoying delicious food – much of it in unlimited amounts…If you cook daily, or nearly so, you’ll have a far better chance of making long-lasting, positive change in your diet than if you didn’t.”

I liked how he walks readers through setting up a pantry and charts where he includes things like; What different items (in the pantry) are; How to store the item, the best ways to use it. He includes a handy 28 day menu plan.

There are 350 recipes most are vegan many include meat. The ingredients are easily found in your grocery store. He puts the serving size and how long it takes to make the dish. He lists about 3 to 5 steps in most recipes. His instructions are easy to follow and I love the variations to the recipes at the end of the page.

The recipes that I made my family were the Apple-Oat Muffins, Mushroom-nut burgers over Greens, Tropical Fruit Pudding and Rice Pudding with Slow-Roasted Fruit. They all were very flavorful and a huge hit with my gang. I can’t wait to try more!

ABOUT AUTHOR: Mark Bittman is one of the country's best-known, most widely respected food writers. His How to Cook Everything books, with one million copies in print, are a mainstay of the modern kitchen. Bittman writes for the Opinion section of the New York Times on food policy and cooking and is a columnist for the New York Times magazine. He is regularly featured on the Today Show in How To Cook Everything Today cooking segments. For 13 years he wrote "The Minimalist" column and now a "Minimalist" cooking show is featured on the Cooking Channel. The How to Cook Everything series is highly respected: the first edition of the flagship book How to Cook Everything won both the IACP and James Beard Awards, and How to Cook Everything Vegetarian won the 2008 IACP award. He is also the author of Food Matters, Food Matters Cookbook, Fish, and Leafy Greens.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I checked this book out of the public library.  I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
COO of TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com
Book Fun Magazine

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FRESH IDEAS FOR ORGANIC GARDENING, RECIPES AND NATURAL BEAUTY PRODUCTS


HARVEST:
Unexpected Projects Using 47 Extraordinary Garden Plants
By Stefani Bittner and Alethea Harampolis

ABOUT BOOK: A beautifully photographed, gift-worthy guide to growing, harvesting, and utilizing 47 unexpected garden plants to make organic pantry staples, fragrances, floral arrangements, beverages, cocktails, beauty products, bridal gifts, and more.

Every garden--not just vegetable plots--can produce a bountiful harvest! This practical, inspirational, and seasonal guide will help make any garden more productive and enjoyable with a variety of projects using unexpected and often common garden plants, some of which may already be growing in your backyard.

Discover the surprising usefulness of petals and leaves, roots, seeds, and fruit: turn turmeric root into a natural dye and Calamintha into lip balm. Make anise hyssop into a refreshing iced tea and turn apricots into a facial mask. Crabapple branches can be used to create stunning floral arrangements, oregano flowers to infuse vinegar, and edible chrysanthemum to liven up a salad. With the remarkable, multi-purpose plants in Harvest, there is always something for gardeners to harvest from one growing season to the next.


REVIEW: The author states, “Harvest is a practical, inspirational, and seasonal guide to living with an edible landscape. In this book, you’ll find ways to make your garden more productive and enjoyable with a variety of projects using unexpected and often well-known garden plants, some of which may already be growing in your garden.”
I Agree!

Inside this lovely hardback book filled with beautiful pictures are a list 47 projects. They talk about food safety, organic gardening, and beneficial insects. I liked that the book is divided into seasons. I was amazed not only at the fact that you could eat these flowers but they also made tasty teas, beauty products, and other health-full useable items.

Each ingredient has a description of the plant, it’s history and how to care for it in order to get a good harvest. The book’s first vegetable is Rhubarb; the recipe is for a small-batch, quick-pickled rhubarb. They also list lilac the recipe is for Lilac Flower Cream, Bachelor’s buttons is after that the recipe is for Blooming Butter and another interesting plant is a Salad Burnet made from Early-Season Herb Salad.

I was amazed at how flowers can be more than something beautiful looking in your house; there are recipes for teas, spices to enhance the flavor of food, to edible vegetable plants to plants that are used for all natural face cream.

There is a list of project Ingredient alternatives. I found this helpful. I also liked the list of terms and techniques for me to refer to in the back. Along with a list of resources and an index for easy reference.

I haven’t started a garden yet but this looks like it could be for beginner gardeners (like me) to the more experienced ones. The plants and recipes inside these pages can put a beautiful sparkle in your yard, beauty on your table and boost of flavor in your mouth. It’s a win-win on many levels.

Disclosure of Material Connection: II checked this book out of the public library.  I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
COO of TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com
Book Fun Magazine

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GOING ON A TRIP? CHECK THIS OUT

How to Pack
Travel Smart for Any Trip
By Hitha Palepu
Published by Clarkson Potter Publishers
ISBN#978-1-101-90564-7
112 HB

ABOUT BOOK: It’s time to pack perfect. Every trip, every time. Your journey starts here.

When you travel, the journey is just as important as the destination—and packing is the first step. In How to Pack, Hitha Palepu, a former consultant who has traveled more than 500,000 cumulative miles around the world, shows that what and how you pack are who you are. Confidence and comfort inspire success upon arrival, whether you’re exploring a new city, hoping to nail a job interview, or relaxing on a beach. In How to Pack, you’ll learn about: 

·Power Pieces vs. Fantasy Pieces: How clothing earns its place in your suitcase
·The Accessory Math Secret: The precise formula for all you need to finish off your outfits
· Folding versus Rolling: What’s right for which items
· Globetrotter Gorgeous: Editing your beauty routine while still looking great
· The Packing Timeline: How to avoid “I’m forgetting something” syndrome
· Pack Perfect Lists: Samples and blanks for any kind of trip

REVIEW: Taking a trip? This book describes in detail how you can prepare for that trip. The cover of this book looks like a piece of luggage with name tag included, it fits easily into most purses and has wonderful information inside. This little book screams pick me up and look inside. So, I did. Since I don’t travel much this is a great reference book to have. I loved the fact that this book has visual aids to help me navigate my way in preparing for different types of trips.

The book has several Pre-preparing pages for you to fill in the blanks as you get ready for your trip. She has a packing time line that is seven days out. The author mentions things to avoid like, “I’m forgetting something” syndrome. She has a test to find out what kind of packing personality you have. Fun to know, useful information in planning.

A few of the visual aids I found helpful were the ones that included pictures of different pieces of luggage and which would be best for the trip you’d be making. I appreciated the visual on the carry-on crash course and the one on finding the right organizing accessories along with choosing clothes that will work for your trip. The author also talked about power pieces to mix and match.

I thought the other topics were helpful too like how to pack and fold for maximum space; toiletry needs and beauty must-haves, packing the in-flight bag and helping you navigate a security line like a pro. Then after your trip is said and done she talks about unpacking. This is for the frequent flyer as well as the beginner like me. This author packs a lot of information into the 114 pages. I look forward to using as my go to book in preparing for my next trip. The author thought of most everything so you don’t have to. It’s a win, win.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the Blogging for books site. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com  
Book Fun Magazine

BOOK that CELEBRATES GRANDPAS

Thank You, God, For Grandpa
By Amy Parker
Published by Tommy Nelson
ISBN#978-0-7180-8929-0
20 Pages Board Book


ABOUT BOOK: Thank You, God, for Grandpas,For Pops and Papas too,For Granddads, Gramps, and Grandpappies— They’re great, grand gifts from You!

No matter what you call him, there is nothing like the love between a grandpa and his grandchild! With whimsical rhymes and charming illustrations, Thank You, God, for Grandpa encourages little ones to treasure God’s special gift of grandfathers.
Grandpas and their grandchildren alike will love this heartwarming story that celebrates their sweet relationship.

Amy Parker’s children’s books have sold more than 800,000 copies, including two Christian Retailing’s Best award-winning books and the bestselling A Night Night Prayer. She lives outside Nashville with her husband and two children.

REVIEW: This is an adorable board book I’m going to love reading to my grandchildren. The illustrations are bright, colorful and fun to look at. The message is encouraging and delightful. It shows little monkey’s having fun with their grandpa. They enjoy his hugs, they love to learn from him, play with him and enjoy when he teaches them things he did with their dad. They also enjoy hearing stories about what life was like back then.

They also show how grandpa talks about Jesus and teaches them how to pray. He trusts God with his whole heart. This book helps everyone to be grateful for relationships. The little ones say, “Thank you, God, for Grandpa; There’s nothing I can do to make my grandpa love me less – Grandpa, I love you too!”

This is a beautiful precious story. One that you and your little one will enjoy reading over and over again.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the BookLook site. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com  
Book Fun Magazine

LOVE A GOOD MYSTERY? FASCINATED BY ILLUSIONISTS? Check this out!

The Illusionist’s Apprentice
By Kristy Cambron
Published by Thomas Nelson
ISBN#B1HAK32UC
368 Pages

ABOUT BOOK: Not all illusions happen on the stage.
Wren Lockhart, apprentice to master illusionist Harry Houdini, uses life on a vaudeville stage to

escape the pain of her past. She continues her career of illusion after her mentor’s death, intent on burying her true identity.

But when a rival performer’s act goes tragically wrong, the newly formed FBI calls on Wren to speak the truth—and reveal her real name to the world. She transfers her skills for misdirection from the stage to the back halls of vaudeville, as she finds herself the unlikely partner in the FBI’s investigation. All the while Houdini’s words echo in her mind: Whatever occurs, the crowd must believe it’s what you meant to happen. She knows that if anyone digs too deep, secrets long kept hidden may find their way to the surface—and shatter her carefully controlled world.

Set during one of the richest, most vibrant eras in American history, this Jazz Age novel of illusion, suspense, and forgotten pasts is perfect for fans of The Magician’s Lie, challenging all to find the underpinnings of faith on their own life’s stage


REVIEW: The opening scene is that of a famed medium named Horace Stapleton whose hosting a defying death ceremony for the public. At that event are two agents Elliot Mathews and his partner Connor Finnegan. They are there to discover the truth hidden behind the illusion. Another audience member is Wren Lockhard, who is a Vaude performer, and has a few secrets of her own besides those of Harry Houdini; she’s not willing to share. She used to be Harry’s assistant.

Both agents Elliot and Connor are at the event to discover the truth hidden behind the illusion. Things go crazy and they end up looking into more than how the trick was done; which has them knocking on Wren’s front door.

I was excited to read this novel because I was touched deeply and spell-bound by two other books I’d read by this author titled The Butterfly and the Violin and A Sparrow in Terezin. I read up until chapter nine. I concluded the fact I couldn’t get into the book was because I was unfamiliar with what an illusionist apprentice does and just as unfamiliar with Harry Houdini.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the BookLook site. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com  
Book Fun Magazine

"LIVE" BOOK FUN EVENT AT TBCN MONDAY NIGHT 20th


  

ATHENA DEAN HOLTZ - AUTHOR GROUP
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"LIVE" AUTHOR CHAT MONDAY 20th at 8 PM EASTERN STANDARD TIME - Lots of books and gift cards being offered. Check it out www.bookfun.org 

WHERE'S MY T.R.U.C.K?


Where’s My T.R.U.C.K?
By Karen Beaumont
Illustrated by David Catrow
Published by Dial Books For Young Readers
ISBN#978-0-8037-3222-3
32 Pages

ABOUT BOOK: Tommy's not himself today. He's lost his T-R-U-C-K! And no matter what Mom, Dad, sis, brother, and Grandma offer, it's just not as fun as his best red truck. The family dog isn't as picky, and sharp-eyed readers will wonder what happens to the cast-off toys Bowser gets his mouth around. Meanwhile, Tommy tears through the house and yard to hilarious and poignant effect, only to discover, in a grand moment of triumph, sneaky Bowser's secret stash. Hooray! Tommy's found his T-R-U-C-K! Come on Bowser, let's go play!

A welcome addition to the community of strong-willed but endearing picture-book protagonists, Tommy proves you can be in a funk and still be a sweet kid. Tommy's not himself today. He's lost his T-R-U-C-K! And no matter what Mom, Dad, sis, brother, and Grandma offer, it's just not as fun as his best red truck. The family dog isn't as picky, and sharp-eyed readers will wonder what happens to the cast-off toys Bowser gets his mouth around. Meanwhile, Tommy tears through the house and yard to hilarious and poignant effect, only to discover, in a grand moment of triumph, sneaky Bowser's secret stash. Hooray! Tommy's found his T-R-U-C-K! Come on Bowser, let's go play!

REVIEW: Pictures paint a thousand words! Illustrator David Catrow brings the authors words and emotions to life as readers feel the pain Tommy feels about not being able to find a red truck. It’s his favorite toy.

Family members try to distract Tommy; asking him to climb a tree or play a game but they can’t stop him from thinking about the red truck. Tommy is on a mission to leave no stone unturned as he seeks to find his truck. Everyone is helping him in this mission, they know there would be no rest until that truck is found.

He searches high and low and thinks, …”I had my red truck yesterday. A toy truck can’t just drive away.” He yells in pain while his family watches and he yells, “I want my T.R.U.C.K!”

Tommy is not comforted by anyone or anything. He bows his head and thinks, “I loved that truck. I love it still. I always, always, always will.”

Tommy and family rejoice and cheer when he finds his beloved toy in the most unlikely hiding spot that will make readers smile. The entertaining and loveable pictures bring the message across. This book will open up an interesting dialogue between children and parents on a few topics; at the same time it’s just plain fun.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I checked this book out of the public library. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com
Book Fun Magazine
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