Friday, July 26, 2013

Visit with Mary Alice Monroe at Foxtale Book Shoppe


Last Tuesday on July 16th was a beautiful evening to head to Woodstock and visit Foxtale Book Shoppe and Mary Alice Monroe.   There are always great events at this
store. 

Now onto the true for The Summer Girls by Mary Alice Monroe.  The decision to write it came from finding her next species of animal.  The chosen animal is Bottle nose Dolphins.  Mrs. Monroe researched Dolphins and how they interact and how the community works.   She did this by participating making ids dolphins in the waters surrounding Charleston South Carolina.   The themes that are discussed in the novel are community bonds, communication, and capriceness.   Then brought it to us in this wonderful novel!  I am looking forward to reading it soon.
The Summer Girls by Mary Alice Monroe: 

Three granddaughters. Three months. One summer house.


In this enchanting trilogy set on Sullivan’s Island, South Carolina, New York Times bestselling author Mary Alice Monroe captures the complex relationships between three half sisters scattered across the country—and a grandmother determined to help them rediscover their family bonds.


Set amid ancient live oaks and palmettos, overlooking the water, historic Sea Breeze is Marietta Muir’s ancestral summer home. Her granddaughters once adored vacations there, but it’s been years since they’ve visited. Mamaw fears once she is gone, the family bonds will fray. The Muir family is one of Charleston’s oldest and the blood of their pirate captain ancestor runs strong, so Marietta drops a subtle promise of loot—pearl necklaces, priceless antique furniture, even the house—to lure her “summer girls” back to the lowcountry.



For years, Carson Muir has drifted, never really settling, certain only that a life without the ocean is a life half lived. Adrift and penniless in California, Carson is the first to return to Sea Breeze, wondering where things went wrong . . . until the sea she loves brings her a minor miracle. Her astonishing bond with a dolphin helps Carson renew her relationships with her sisters and face the haunting memories of her ill-fated father. As the rhythms of the island open her heart, Carson begins to imagine the next steps toward her future.


In this heartwarming novel, three sisters discover the true treasures Sea Breeze offers as surprising truths are revealed, mistakes forgiven, and precious connections made that will endure long beyond one summer.
(Amazon)

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Come take a ride on the Titanic!




Have you ever been on a job search and you know that you don’t want to stay on the job you have?  Then look for the opportunity that might give you some growth.


Synopsis:

Tess Collins can’t wait to leave the job she has working as a maid at this house.   Her dream is to make dresses and be paid well for it.   She hears that this new ship Titanic might be hiring for the voyage to America.   Once she makes it to the ship it is too late to be considered for crew.  There is an argument over to the side as Lady Duff Gordon is trying to decide what to do with no maid for the voyage.  Tess sees this as her opportunity and makes the acquaintance of the Duff Gordons.   She is hired and starts working on the ship.  Who will she meet?  On the night of the sinking Tess has to think fast on how to protect those she cares about, but she gets separated from them.  She winds up in a different lifeboat than the Duff Gordons.   What really happened in their lifeboat.  What will Tess do?  Protect the Duff Gordons?  Or stand up for what she believes?

My Thoughts:

This is the first Historical Fiction novel I have really enjoyed in a longtime.  Others have been recommended to me but this one is by far the best.   This novel covers the events of the sinking through the characters of The Duff Gordons, Tess Collins, Margaret Brown, and Jim Bonney.   Once the ship pulled into port reporters and government officials wanted to know what really happened.  The characters of Senator Smith and Sarah Pinky Wade a reporter for the New York Times help bring the story of the hearings to life.  Everyone knows about the sinking and the trials but in how much detail?

I enjoyed hearing about the struggles and choices of Tess.  There is also a love triangle between Tess, Jim, and another character.   I could identify with Tess’s character and some of the hard choices she had to face.  

The story is a moving one to that keeps pace throughout the novel.   I didn’t really have any downside.  Only if the author doesn’t plan to write more.  A well-developed tale and characters you want to fight for.

Rating:

4.75/5

Please visit Kate on Facebook.


Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Great Summer Read!



There have been times in my life when I wished I had a redo button.  Circumstances of my life were not quite as I had envisioned.  Such was the case with Emily Aulenbach.
Product DetailsSynopsis:
 On the surface, Emily had a good life, married to a man she loves, nice home, nice car, decent salaries.  But, Emily was  unhappy with her life.  Her job is very demanding, leaving little time for anything else.  While cell phones, laptops, and other technology allow for constant connectivity, Emily feels alone and very much disconnected.  This feeling leads Emily to her decision to "escape".  Emily's escape takes her to a place from her youth, and a more carefree time in her life.
My Thoughts:
Escape is the perfect book to while sitting in your favorite chair, with beverage and a snack.  Emily's journey to find herself is very compassionate and at times a bit heart rending. Barbara Delinsky does an excellent job of developing her characters in this book. I found myself envisioning scenes of the story play out before me as I read.  At times, I felt as if I was eavesdropping on private conversations of the characters.  The characters are both believable and empathetic.  The story line is evenly paced with just enough intrigue to keep my interest, but not so much that I was unable to sleep at night.
Escape reminds its readers of the importance to "escape" from our own lives from time to time.  Taking time for ourselves and reevaluating our priorities may be difficult in our fast paced, technology driven lives.  However, taking time to reduce our stress levels and reconnect to what is really important in our lives is a necessary reality.
By Celeste Thomas 
Rating:
4.5/ 5
Please visit Barbara on her Facebook Page, Twitter, and Website.  Be sure to check out her new novel  Sweet Salt  Air.



Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Life Lessons From David



In a Heart Like His by Beth Moore a devotional that includes questions a bible study in the back.

The story of David is told in  Second  Samuel, First Chronicles,  First Kings, and the Psalms which are books in the bible that comprise his life as recorded in scripture. The chapters focus on a particular challenge and how David was human but also followed God.  Then there is the application of what we can learn from David’s life.   The author’s focus is to teach us how to have God’s heart which David was an example.   There are fifty chapters in all. 

My Thoughts:

I love Beth Moore and she is one of my favorite authors.  I did not know when I picked this study up for a good price last Christmas that it was meant for men.   The women are directed to the live workbook studies.   I chose to continue through this study despite it.  My one major criticism of her books is the study questions are at the back of the book instead of after each chapter.  Her regular workbook studies are not this way.  The story was still told with wit and humor as always, and a great appreciation for God’s word.

If you have only read her books you should check out one of her live studies.  She will have a telecast in September for a live study.  You will laugh, cry, and learn with Beth Moore. 

Rating:

4/5